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Raw: Trips makes some stips
By DAVE HILLHOUSE -- SLAM! Wrestling


Did CM Punk get his hands on Doc Brown’s DeLorean and travel back into a decade-old storyline with Kevin Nash and Triple H? While the storyline strives to get back to the future, a new match is announced for Night of Champions, a Teddy Long special plays out on Raw, and someone gets fired in Columbus, OH.

CM Punk, he of the pipe-bomb mic, hits the ring first, sits down criss-cross apple-sauce, and wants an audience with Kevin Nash. Nash obliges, and, after trading some trash-talk, makes it halfway to the ring before Mr. H interrupts. The C.O.O. offers some new evidence from SummerSlam, citing security camera footage to prove that it was Kevin Nash, in Mr. H’s office, with the cell phone. Nash admits that he texted himself and set up the whole thing, and is promptly fired for it.

Backstage, after the break, Johnny Ace steps into a departing limo with Nash, so methinks this isn’t over yet.

Match #1 – Air Boom (Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne) (champions) vs. Jinder Mahal & The Great Khali

Air Boom is at least dressing like a team with some complimenting outfits. Fashion doesn’t help Bourne, though, as both Mahal and Khali throw and chop him around. Mahal loses his grip on Bourne, and in comes Kingston off the top turnbuckle. Mahal wrangles him to his own corner and holds him for Khali to deliver a chop, but Kingston ducks away and Mahal takes the hit. Kingston tags in Bourne to finish things off with Air Bourne.

Winners via pinfall: Air Boom

Match #2 – Eve Torres vs. Beth Phoenix (w/ Natalya) - #1 Contender’s Match

Kelly Kelly joins the announcing team to offer up her redoubtable insight, and Natalya picks up another headset for a five-person commentating team. In the background, Eve puts up the good fight but suffers an awkward Glam Slam for the loss.

Winner via pinfall and #1 Contender: Beth Phoenix

As Kelly attends to Eve, Natalya decks her from behind and Phoenix looks forward to a hometown match for the Divas Championship.

After the break, Christian is presenting his reasons for getting another title shot to Drew McIntyre of all people, but Alberto Del Rio interrupts to try and plant a seed in Christian’s head that Cena cost him a fair shot in the cage last week.

Match #3 – R-Truth (w/ The Miz) vs. CM Punk

Truth and Miz arrive, mics in hand, and announce that they are taking on Air Boom for the WWE Tag Team Titles at Night of Champions. Truth feels good about his opening offence, taking time to bust a move before a dropkick from Punk kills the vibe. Truth responds by sending Punk to the floor where The Miz attacks his left leg, setting up a lengthy assault on the legs by Truth. Punk has a good response, though: a true superplex with both wrestlers teetering on the top buckle. Not long after, Punk puts Truth down for a nap with the GTS for the win.

Winner via pinfall: CM Punk

Almost immediately after the bell, Mr. H power-walks to the ring to let Punk know that their match is No-Disqualification. Punk sees that stipulation, and raises this: if Punk wins, Mr. H resigns as C.O.O.

Meanwhile, on Del Rio’s backstage tour, looking for a Shane Stant to take out John Cena for him, he apparently finds Wade Barrett to be a willing accomplice.

Match #4 – Michael McGillicutty & David Otunga vs. Jerry Lawler & Zack Ryder

Ryder starts off poorly against the former tag champs, but all is well when Lawler gets in to dropkick Otunga and bring a fist down from the second rope. Ryder wants back in and rips Otunga and McGillicutty of all credibility by finishing the match with ease.

Winners via pinfall: Jerry Lawler & Zack Ryder

Del Rio is with Dolph Ziggler, and they spend considerable time talking about surprisingly nothing of interest.

Match #5 – Randy Orton (champion) vs. Heath Slater

Slater gets the biggest singles match of his career thus far, regardless of its non-title condition. He delivers early, too, hitting a spinebuster before the inevitable DDT and RKO sends him packing.

Winner via pinfall: Randy Orton

Backstage, Ryder gets Cena to play Broski for him, and Cena takes a little poke at The Rock’s passion for wearing sunglasses indoors before heading to the ring. The Cena crowd split sounds to be about 60/40 against as he calls out Del Rio.

The champ arrives in customary style and quickly calls out a group of thugs to attack Cena. Ziggler, Swagger, Christian, and Barrett rush the ring, but Cena is saved by Sheamus, Alex Riley, and John Morrison. Smackdown GM Teddy Long can smell a potential match better than anyone, and he steps out to make an eight-man elimination contest. Vickie Guerrero comes out to watch for good measure.

Match #6 – Dolph Ziggler, Christian, Jack Swagger, and Wade Barrett vs. John Morrison, Alex Riley, Sheamus, and John Cena

Morrison provides the early fireworks, but finds himself in a sequential Sleeper Hold and Ankle Lock from Ziggler and Swagger to become the first casualty. Riley steps in and drops Ziggler with an impressive spinebuster, but Swagger tags himself in and gets another elimination via Ankle Lock. Sheamus is eager to try his hand, though he and Barrett are more interested in trading boots to the face. The biggest boot belongs to Sheamus, though, hitting the Brogue kick to eliminate Barrett.

Christian takes Barrett’s place, proceeding to slap Sheamus in the face. Sheamus chases Christian in anger, and they are both counted out. Cena comes in against Swagger first, but Guerrero’s guys double-team Cena to the mat. Pretty hard to keep Cena down, though, as he drops them both and brings down a 10-Knuckle Shuffle. Cena finishes Ziggler with an AA, but Swagger is waiting with an Ankle Lock. Cena turns it into an STF and takes the match.

Winners: John Morrison, Alex Riley, Sheamus, and John Cena

Del Rio tries a sneak attack but gets an AA for his efforts, with Rodriguez assisting him up the ramp.

Dave Hillhouse is a screenwriter and teacher, and yes, is ready to say it: Michael Cole has perfected his character and is the best thing going right now on commentary.