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Raw: As always, a hot crowd in Montreal
By NICK TYLWALK - SLAM! Wrestling


Sometimes it's not just about the wrestling in the ring -- Jerry Lawler returned to Montreal, where he had his heart attack in September 2012, and Bret Hart made only his second WWE appearance in town since the 1997 Montreal Screw Job. Photo by Minas Panagiotakis, www.photography514.com


Canadian wrestling fans are awesome. This isn't news. And with Raw back in Montreal again tonight, it should be another lively crowd to shower John Cena with cheers and Bret Hart with jeers. Oops, reverse that! Let's head to the Bell Centre, live on USA.

Roman Reigns comes to the ring to address the Fatal Four Way situation and what the Authority thinks might happen that would allow Randy Orton to walk out with the WWE World Heavyweight Champion. Though Reigns calls what everyone else wants irrelevant, the sudden appearance of Kane might mean that's not true. Of course, Reigns points out that Kane has been Triple H and Stephanie's bitch as of late, which sets off a brawl outside the ring. Five referees try breaking up the two big men, and when one of them gets chokeslammed, some backstage officials come out to lend a hand. Reigns breaks free (shoving poor Jamie Noble and spearing Fit Finlay) and delivers a superman punch before the chaos finally settles down.

Match 1 - Luke Harper and Erick Rowan vs. The Usos

The Usos drive the Wyatt clan members from the ring early on, but Rowan is able to slow the pace with a neck vice on Jimmy. Jey tags in and gets a near fall before slowly falling prey to some effective teamwork. That's the proper time for some commercials. Nothing of consequence must have happened during the break, as Jey is still absorbing some punishment. That changes when he dodges a pair of corner moves and makes the hot tag to Jimmy, who runs wild until he's able to leap out of the ring to land on Rowan. Harper gets a two count on Jey but eats a big kick and has to kick out of a pinfall attempt himself. A huge powerbomb follows, setting off a frenzied sequence where the Usos tease going for a double dive, but Rowan trips one brother and the other is clotheslined and pinned by Harper. There's some question about which Uso was really the legal man, but it's a moot point now.

There's a 90 percent satisfaction rate with the WWE Network. That should be 100 percent this week as the WWE is offering a free preview to try getting its numbers up.


Orton says if one more thing would have happened to Kane he would have been out there to help in a heartbeat. Kane says that one way or another, the belts are coming back to the Authority, prompting Seth Rollins to come in and make some snide comments. Orton says he's starting to hate that kid, but apparently not as much as the Big Red Monster is starting to hate Orton.

Total Divas was nominated for its first Teen Choice Award this year. Wait, what?

Match 2 - Nikki Bella vs. Alicia Fox

The stipulation here is that both women have to have one arm tied behind their backs. Unfortunately for Nikki, Alicia refuses to follow the rules, spending some time attacking the remaining Bella Twin before pouring some beer on her and leaving. Um, okay.

Hey, Lana gets to dis a different country this week since the show is in Canada.

Match 3 - Rusev vs. Rob Van Dam

This isn't going to be a squash tonight for Rusev. RVD fires out with kicks and a DDT to get a near fall, but Rusev recovers and tosses him off the top rope. Some brutal punches, kicks and knees set up an overhead throw, and Rusev wrenches away on Rob's neck. RVD manages another flurry of offense, but Lana is able to provide just enough of a distraction to allow Rusev to dodge Rolling Thunder and hit a jumping kick. The Accolade is applied, and no one has been able to escape that hold yet. Rob taps out after a game effort.

Match 4 - Randy Orton vs. Dean Ambrose

True to form, Ambrose wants a head-on collision and Orton would rather do things at his own pace. Ambrose's bandaged left shoulder is a point of emphasis for the Viper, though Dean battles back by mixing in conventional moves with stuff like grinding Randy's face along the mat and ropes. Orton ends up getting sent over the top rope to the floor as we step aside for ads. Michael Cole gets corrected about how staples work to close a cut by both Jerry Lawler and JBL. Meanwhile, Ambrose fights his way off the mat and buys himself a breather catching Orton coming off the ropes. He unleashes some more of his rage and locks the Viper in a Figure Four. Randy strains and manages to reach the ropes, and he's able to capitalize with a dropkick after Ambrose misses a move off the top rope. Orton wastes some time posing on the turnbuckle, but it doesn't cost him as he's able to meet Ambrose on the outside and DDT him on the floor. Can Dean beat the ten-count? He does, and Randy is beside himself. Orton fails on his second attempt at an elevated DDT, but while Ambrose tries a couple of roll-ups, he eventually gets caught and pinned with an RKO.

Cena gets some boos (of course) as he speaks to Renee Young. He talks about life as the champ, which means he's got a giant target on him at all times. His promo comes to an abrupt end when Reigns shows up, and the two men exchange some tense words.

Match 5 - Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Ziggler

Fandango joins the announcers for his own unique brand of guest commentary. Del Rio pulls off a cool spot where he pulls out the ring apron when Ziggler is sliding out of the ring, tangling him up and leaving him a sitting duck for an enzuigiri. Alberto throws Dolph down using some kind of cool inverted superplex for two,but the Show Off responds with a near fall of his own. Fandango ultimately grows tired of the match and starts dancing on the announce table, and a distracted Ziggler is caught and pinned. The fans get into it as Fandango keeps doing his thing right in front of JBL.

The Dust brothers cut a weird promo. I bet that probably goes without saying at this point.

Fandango attempts to reassure Layla that she's the girl for him, but that's Summer Rae posing provocatively in the doorway behind her.


Damien Sandow tries to steal a little of Bret Hart's thunder.
Out in the ring, Lawler talks about one of his unpleasant previous experiences in Montreal, meaning the night of his heart attack. Speaking of Harts (ouch, that segue!), Bret Hart is introduced and makes his way to the ring. The Hitman shows he hasn't lost his penchant for playing to the crowd as he calls the fans the best in the world, though he's rudely interrupted by Damien Sandow doing his own Bret Hart shtick. Eventually, Bret gets fed up and lays Sandow out.

Match 6 - Sheamus vs. Damien Sandow

Well, this is short. I remember when Sandow looked like he was going places. Sigh ...

Young wants to talk to The Miz, but he's got a letter to read from a fan. The letter is allegedly from someone who's upset that he got attacked by Chris Jericho last week. I'm betting he wrote it himself. Isn't that right “Johnny Russo?”

Match 7 - Chris Jericho vs. The Miz

Miz's entrance video is strangely like one of The Rock's old ones. Lawler asks if Johnny Russo is watching this match. No King, he's IN this match! Jericho springboards off the turnbuckle to dropkick Miz from apron to floor and returns the action to the ring to deliver a bulldog. Miz checks his face as JBL admires how little rust the two men have considering they've been off for a while living the life of multi-media stars. An enzuigiri isn't enough to put Miz away, so he comes right back with a single-arm DDT for his own two count. The fans chant for Y2J as Miz applies the Figure Four, though Jericho is able to get his hand to the bottom rope. Miz takes a shot to the face and ends up in the Walls of Jericho, quickly tapping out. There's no time for post-match celebration, though, as Bray Wyatt appears in his rocking chair and uses Chris' own words against him. But Jericho says actions speak louder than words, so he's going up the ramp to get him. Ah, but there's the rest of the Wyatt Family.


Did you see this one coming? The Funkadactyls split!
Match 8 - The Funkadactyls vs. Paige and AJ Lee

Paige's enthusiastic signs of respect for AJ are strange, to say the least. Naomi could really use some help from her partner, but none is forthcoming. Naomi gets pinned by the Paige Turner, and the long-simmering beef between the Funkadactyls finally comes to blow after the bell.

Paul Heyman starts in on a promo, but Cesaro grabs the mic to insult the Montreal crowd in French. That's a cultured putdown!

Match 9 - Cesaro vs. Kofi Kingston

Kofi is sporting a bandaged midsection, the eternal wrestling short code for getting attacked the previous week. Despite his damaged ribs, Kofi manages to steal an upset victory, and Big E

Rollins pays Cena a visit for a “civilized conversation.” It also sounds like a bit of a threat. Cena lays out exactly how things have changed for Rollins, and love him or hate him, you know he's not backing down.

Speaking of not backing down, Bo Dallas isn't going to refuse the awesome challenge of … El Torito!

Match 10 - El Torito vs. Bo Dallas

The little bull gives Dallas fits in the early going. But his triumph is short-lived, and Dallas puts him away with the Bo-Dog. Does he take a victory lap after beating the little bull? What do you think?


John Cena and Roman Reigns share a moment at the end of Raw.
Main Event - John Cena vs. Seth Rollins

Rollins is able to out-quick and out-think Cena early on. And … there's the obligatory final commercial break. Cena shows off his power multiple times by hoisting Rollins to escape holds on the mat, but Seth hustles to score a kick to the head for two. Cena drops the hammer on the Five Knuckle Shuffle and gets the STF applied. Rollins gets dragged into the center of the ring, and … cue Kane, who comes to the ring as Orton attacks from behind. Cena is outnumbered, but here comes Reigns. A pair of superman punches drop the heels, but Rollins recovers to blast both Reigns and Cena with the briefcase. Seth calls for a ref, and Charles Robinson responds. Then Ambrose shows up, and all heck breaks loose again. Back in the ring, Orton stalks Cena, who recovers to hit the Attitude Adjustment. Reigns nails Kane with a spear, and he smirks at Cena while lifting his hand in triumph. John returns the sign of respect, but there's also a telling staredown between the two. They seem to be enjoying the contrasting reactions they're getting as Raw goes off the air. See you in seven!

RELATED LINKS

  • WWE Monday Night Raw in Montreal Photo Gallery
  • July 7, 2014: Bret Hart expects a great response at Raw in Montreal