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Raw: A night of new beginnings
By MATT BISHOP - SLAM! Wrestling


There's a new Paul Heyman Guy -- Cesaro. Photos by Mike Mastrandrea



Tonight on Monday Night Raw: The day after WrestleMania is always a newsworthy day in WWE. This was no different. On this episode of Raw, we got a new champion, a new Paul Heyman guy, new superstars ó not to mention, Triple H booking himself into a WWE World Heavyweight Championship match against the new champ Daniel Bryan. Should be a good one!

We are LIVE! from New Orleans, La. Michael Cole, Jerry "The King" Lawler and John Layfield are our hosts and this show is presented in WWEHD (TV-PG, V)

Raw opens with the new WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Daniel Bryan, making his way to the ring to a raucous ovation, one that just doesnít stop. Bryan actually has to interrupt it to start his promo. He says it was a little more than two years ago that he started saying yes, and now look where he has. He says when he started doing it, it was about the power each and every one of them has. Before he can go on too much further, he is interrupted by Triple H and Stephanie McMahon.

After being greeted with a chant his father-in-law used to receive quite regularly in the late 90s, Triple H says heís not going to get in the ring (just stand on the apron), so Bryan gets in his face with the titles and chants yes. Triple H says enjoy this moment because thatís all this is. In fact, Bryan wonít make it through the night, because tonight, Bryan will defend the title against him.

(Ads)


Triple H and Stephanie are backstage when they are confronted by Batista. He wants to know whatís going on. He says he earned a 1-on-1 match for the title, not a triple threat. In comes Randy Orton, who says he wants his contractual rematch tonight. Triple H says both Orton and Batista get rematches, just not tonight. McMahon says theyíll settle everything after Raw, but tonight, Orton and Batista will be in action against the Usos for the tag team titles. They says they donít care about the tag titles. Triple H says they all have their problems, but this is happening for one reason only, and historically, when all three are on the same page, no one can stop them.

(Ads)


The Wyatt Family are introduced. Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
Match #1 - Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper & Erick Rowan (Parts Unknown) vs. Big E (Tampa, Fla.), Sheamus (Dublin, Ireland) & John Cena (West Newbury, Mass.)

Cena off to a big start on Wyatt, then tags in Sheamus who continues the roll, putting the boots to Wyatt in the corner. Wyatt brings in Harper, but Big E comes in and hits some impressive backbreakers. Harper tagged in to a big ovation, but Big E leap frogs him and brings in Cena. Cena on fire on Harper, including the Five Knuckle Shuffle, but Harper counters the AA and snaps Cena flat on his face.

(Ads)

Crowd chanting ďLetís go Harper!Ē as Harper has Cena down on the canvas as we return. Cena powers out of it only to have Harper hit a DDT. Rowan in with a slam and a leg drop on Cena. Wyatt back in and he drops a mud hole in Cena and walks it dry to much applause. Wyatt with a series of headbutts before bringing in Harper. Cena, though, back drops Harper, which allows Cena to make the tag to Sheamus, who is in fire on Rowan. Harper tries to interfere and Sheamus loads Harper up and hits the rolling senton onto Rowan. A double clothesline later and heís calling for the Brogue, but Wyatt distracts and Rowan with a big clothesline. Wyatt in now, but Big E runs him over.

Big belly-to-belly by Big E, then a big splash. He pulls the straps down and wants the Big Ending, but Wyatt slips out and Harper cracks E with a super kick. Rowan pounces on Cena and Harper hits a suicide dive on Sheamus. That clears the ring out for Wyatt to hit Sister Abigail on E and thatís all she wrote.

Winners via pinfall: The Wyatt Family

(Ads)

Match #2 - Fandango (Westbrook, Maine) & Summer Rae (Raleigh, N.C.) vs. Santino Marella (Calabria, Italy) & Emma (Melbourne, Australia)

This one is over in short order as Emma makes Summer submit to the Emma Lock.

Winners via submission: Emma & Santino Marella

(Ads)


Brock Lesnar didn't say much, but his shirt said it all for him ... and Paul Heyman too! Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
Well, this should be interesting. Here comes Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman. Heyman has the mic first and the crowd chants some unsavory things at him and Heyman says they told them so. He says people had the temerity to doubt his managerial skills and the physical skills of Lesnar. Heyman says Lesnar isnít here to be nice, heís here to put tears in the eyes of children.

Heyman says itís time to shoot from the hip. Seconds after coming through the curtain at WrestleMania, Undertaker collapsed and had to go to the hospital, where Vince McMahon went to the hospital with him, leaving WrestleMania. Heyman says itís a good thing the Undertaker didnít kick out, because Lesnar wasnít going to stop until the streak was dead. Heyman says every member of the crowd is just like each member of the WWE locker room ó just a bunch of wannabes. He says no one gave Lesnar a standing ovation last night, they just looked down. Heyman talks about how no one else fought in an Octagon, but Lesnar is the one. He says Lesnar is the one in 21-1.

Heyman says thereís legends, thereís Hall of Famers, thereís superstars, but thereís only one Beast Incarnate ó Brock Lesnar. Go out of your way to watch this promo.

(Ads)

Match #3 - WWE Tag Team Championship - (c) Jimmy & Jey Uso (San Francisco, Calif.) vs. Batista (Washington, DC) & Randy Orton (St. Louis, Mo.)

Orton and Batista ruthless early as the match goes outside the ring. Orton delivers the draping DDT to Jey and Batista plants Jimmy with the Batista Bomb on the steel steps, but the bell rings.

This match is a double countout

(Ads)


Match #4 - Rob Van Dam (Battle Creek, Mich.) vs. Damien Sandow (Palo Alto, Calif.)

Van Dam hits all his signature spots, then finishes Sandow off with the Five-Star Frog Splash. Total squash.

Winner via pinfall: Rob Van Dam

(Ads)


Bad News Barrett enjoys the cheers for once. Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
Match #5 - Rey Mysterio (San Diego, Calif.) vs. Bad News Barrett (Preston, England)

The crowd 100 percent behind Barrett here. Mysterio hits a nice, sliding innovative splash to the outside, but Barrett rallies inside the ring. He hits the Boss Man Slam for two. They go up top. Barrett wants a superplex, but Mysterio headbutts his way out and hits a seated senton. He follows with a tornado DDT for two. Mysterio hits the 619 and goes to the top to a chorus of boos, but Barrett crotches him. Barrett cracks Mysterio with the Bull Hammer Elbow and thatís all she wrote.

Winner via pinfall: Bad News Barrett

(Ads)

Match #6 - Alexander Rusev (Bulgaria) vs. Zack Ryder (Long Island, N.Y.)

Rusev destroys Ryder with a big thrust kick, then puts him on the ropes and ruthlessly knees the kidneys before dropping him with a big slam. Rusev hoists Ryder up and slams him with a big uranage before locking in the Camel Clutch and that is all she wrote.

Winner via submission: Alexander Rusev

(Ads)


The Ultimate Warrior returns to Raw. Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
Raw is back with none other than The Ultimate Warrior, making his first appearance on Raw since July 8, 1996. We finally get a little bit of rope shaking. He says it was difficult finding the words to say, so Warrior pulls an Ultimate Warrior mask out and goes into full Ultimate Warrior. He gives a quick little promo in true Warrior fashion, saying the Ultimate Warrior spirit will live forever.

(Ads)

AJ Lee and Tamina Snuka are out. She says she overcame the odds last night at WrestleMania, just like she has her whole life ó going from a poor girl in New Jersey to the best Diva in the world, and she is the Divas division. Sheís gloating when she is interrupted by none other than NXT Womenís Champion Paige. Loud ovation and a ďPaigeĒ chant from the crowd. Paige says she wanted to congratulate AJ, but AJ is condescending toward her. AJ suggests since Paige is ready to compete, why doesnít AJ do to her what she did to every Diva last night ó beat her. AJ slaps her and says they should have a match right now, and for a post-WrestleMania treat, they should have a match right now.

Match #7 - WWE Divas Championship - (c) AJ Lee (Union City, N.J.) vs. Paige (Norwich, England)

AJ attacks Paige right off the bell. She almost immediately goes for the Black Widow, but Paige escapes, hits the Paige Turner and thatís it!

Winner via pinfall and NEW WWE Divas Champion: Paige

(Ads)

Itís time for the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal trophy presentation. Hulk Hogan is out. Of course, he is sure to mention how excited he was about last night in the Superdome. He says as great as last night was, nothing warmed his heart like the battle royal did. He brings out the winner, Cesaro to a huge ovation. Hogan tells Cesaro congratulations, hands him the mic and takes off.

But before he can say anything, Zeb Colter takes the mic and says heíll take it from here. Colter talks about how he brought Cesaro into the fold. Cesaro grabs the mic and says heís not a Zeb Colter guy. Heís a Paul Heyman guy. Heyman saunters down to the ring and says not only is he the architect behind breaking the streak, but he is the advocate for the King of Swing, Cesaro.

The fun party is broken up when Jack Swagger attacks Cesaro from behind, knocking him out of the ring, and then dumping the trophy off the podium, breaking it, then smashing it down to the floor. They go at it briefly as Cesaro knocks Swagger out of the ring.

(Ads)

Match #8 - Cesaro (Lucerne, Switzerland) vs. Jack Swagger (Perry, Okla.)

Well, looks like we have a match. Heyman is clutching the top of the trophy, the Andre part, at ringside. Cesaro going well early, but Swagger is able to cut him off an take over. Cesaro battles back with two uppercuts, but Swagger floors him with a suplex. Swagger wants a Vader Bomb, but Cesaro gets his foot up. Swagger on the apron and Cesaro grabs him and hoists him, from the second turnbuckle, over the top into a suplex. Cesaro going corner to corner with uppercuts. Cesaro calls for the Giant Swing, but Swagger bails out and takes a walk.

Winner via countout: Cesaro

(Ads)


The Shield stand up to Triple H. Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
Match #9 - WWE World Heavyweight Championship - (c) Daniel Bryan (Aberdeen, Wash.) vs. Triple H (Greenwich, Conn.)

Before Triple H comes to the ring, Orton and Batista make their way to the ringside area. They get in the ring and itís a 2-on-1 attack. Just a total beatdown. Orton hits the RKO before Batista picks up the scraps and hits the Batista Bomb. Then Kaneís music hits. He backs Orton and Batista off before picking Bryan up for a choke slam. With Bryan laid out in the middle of the ring, Triple H makes his way to the ring.

Bryan is totally out, but Triple H and Stephanie threaten referee Mike Chioda with his job if he doesnít ring the bell. Triple H goes to pick Bryan up when The Shieldís music hits and they head to the ring. Orton, Kane and Batista all hop up on the apron on one side with The Shield on the floor on the other. They hop up on the apron and Triple H says this is not going to happen to both sides. The Shield gets in the ring and Triple H tells them to stand down. Now the other three get in the ring.

As Triple H turns around, Reigns destroys him with a spear. Itís on! Ambrose and Rollins hit dives onto Batista and Orton as Reigns fights off a choke slam and hits the superman punch on Kane. Now itís the three members of The Shield surrounding Triple H in the ring. Triple H turns around right into the flying knee from Bryan before he is pulled out of the ring by Orton and Kane.

ĒYou just started a war you cannot win,Ē Triple H shouts as we go off the air.

RELATED LINKS

  • Monday Night Raw in New Orleans Photo Gallery
  • Raw crowd shows its love for Bryan, Barrett, Ziggler, Cesaro ... and Paige?!
  • More on WrestleMania 30
  • WrestleMania 30 photo galleries

    Matt Bishop can be reached at bishop20@gmail.com. Please include your name and hometown. Click here to follow Matt on Twitter. Should be a good one!.