Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Announcers: Michael Cole & Jerry Lawler
- We open up the show in the arena and we are immediately joined by Randy Orton, who is standing in center ring. He is out here because he has been hearing rumors that he bullied Piven last week so he could do all the dirty work. He did it because he can. He doesn’t answer to the fans because they are beneath him. He will beat Cena at Summerslam and that is a fact, not a rumor. He is interrupted mid-sentence by Cena who gets a loud mixed reaction. Cena says he is a patient man but Orton makes his hair gray, which makes him angry. He compares his mindset to Orton’s anger problem. He is tired of the talking and Orton acting like the business owes him something. Cena is all business here today and Orton is just staring at him as he rants. Their Summerslam match will happen, but right now Orton is staring at a problem. Cena wants action and they do a head to head staredown. Before things accelerate, Chris Jericho and Big Show saunter out to the ring, decked out in a pair of swank suits. Show says that neither Orton nor Cena know much about intimidation. The crowd is chanting for Jericho big time here and Lawler acknowledges it. Cena gets a Shaq dig in on Show and then asks why they are there. Jericho says they are there because Raw is in his home country. Cena lands a shot on Canada, saying Jericho chose to move to the US. Jericho shrugs it off and says he met with tonight’s host and he was granted a match with Cena tonight. Orton threatens to punt Cena later tonight but Show lets Randy know that the host also made another match: Big Show vs. Randy Orton. Orton is annoyed as Show smirks at him. All four men trade stares and smirks for a few moments. We then cut backstage where Sgt. Slaughter is decked out in his full gear. He yells “Atten-Hut!” and we find out that Triple H will be searching Texas for Shawn Michaels tonight before we head to break. Raw is in Canada, Sgt. Slaughter in charge and we will be watching Triple H & Shawn Michaels antics? Yes, it is officially August 1997 again. That was a solid opening segment with Jericho getting the biggest pop of the four.
- We are back and checking out the WWE.com trivia question of the week. Who did Sarge beat to win the WWE Championship? Log on and vote! We then head to the ring for our opener.
1) Kelly vs. Alicia Fox vs. Gail Kim vs. Beth Phoenix
All the ladies make their entrances and Gail gets the homeland pop. The four ladies all brawl off the bell and trade some near falls. Alicia plants Gail with a nice backbreaker, sending her to the floor. Kelly fights off Beth and Alicia until Gail comes back with a big missile dropkick. Beth uses her power to slow Gail down and eventually stacks Gail and Kelly on her shoulder and squeezes both. That was a neat power move. Alicia breaks it up and Beth is not happy. She shoves Alicia down and then tosses her to the floor. Gail recovers and dives out onto Alicia off the second rope. This is a spunky little match. Kelly takes it to Beth and then dives onto Gail and Alicia with a cross body. Now Beth heads up but Alicia trips her up and she lands on her stomach across the top buckle. OK, now we know for sure she isn’t pregnant. Gail and Alicia end up alone in the ring and Gail hits the modified Codebreaker for the win. Gail looked strong throughout and she earns a title match with Mickie James with that win. Gail d. Alicia, Kelly and Beth when she pins Alicia with the Eat Defeat Grade: 2
- As the ladies clear out we are joined by Sgt. Slaughter and the crowd is not impressed. He is honored and privileged to stand in front of Canada as the guest host. He respects Canada and that is why his first assignment is to salute the Canadian flag. And the maple leaf pops up on the Tron on cue. And the flag is quickly covered by a circle with a line through it. Sarge says if it wasn’t for Uncle Sam, the Canadians would all be speaking Russian and French right now. He rags on Canadians for taking the US President and protection for granted. The crowd is chanting “asshole”. He demands the fans to stand and pay respects to the US. He recites the Pledge of Allegiance as the crowd intermittently boos. And that is that as we head to break. Sarge did a solid job but it really doesn’t make sense to do a heel turn.
- We are back and heading back to last week when Hunter rambled on about making a phone call to a good friend after his loss to Rhodes & DiBiase. Cole tells us that Hunter traveled to Texas to track down Shawn Michaels. Shawn has apparently found a new profession and we will check that out later tonight. We now head to the ring for our next match.
2) Jack Swagger vs. Evan Bourne
Swagger makes his way out for the rubber match with Evan Bourne. They have split their bouts over the past two weeks. Swagger controls early but Bourne trips him up and nails him with a nice one footed dropkick. Swagger bails and Bourne comes off the apron and onto Swagger with both knees. Swagger drills Bourne with a knee as he came back in and starts to pick Bourne apart. Evan comes back with a quick attack and gets a near fall. These two just really mesh well together and are quite fluid. Swagger catches Bourne and goes for a powerbomb, but Evan rolls through for a near fall. Swagger dodges Bourne in the corner and crushes him with the gutwrench powerbomb for the win. Another good TV match but I am dying to see these two get more time. Swagger d. Bourne with a gutwrench powerbomb; Grade: 2
- Swagger has the mic but he is quickly interrupted by MVP. He says that the Canadians couldn’t care less about Swagger’s All American championships. He rags on Swagger a bit and the crowd is kind of waking up. MVP lays down a challenge to Swagger for a match tonight. Swagger says maybe they can fight next week. MVP shoves him down MVP got a decent pop, but this crowd has been rather flat so far. Cole runs down our double main events as we head to break.
- We are back and checking out some footage from earlier today. Triple H is wandering around an office building cafeteria. He is leaving a message for Shawn, saying he hasn’t seen him anywhere and is on a wild goose chase. He sees a guy from behind that looks like Shawn and Triple H gives him the business. The guy comes on to Hunter and we get some awkward conversation. We cut to the kitchen where some random little girl is banging a bell and screaming for a hamburger. Shawn pops in and stops her from banging the bell. He yells at her to calm down and let him cook the burger. He rips on “Bring Your Daughter to Work Day” as Hunter is just staring at him with his mouth agape. Shawn walks off as we cut back to Cole and King. And we are again joined by Sarge. He says he was just playing before, but the fans will really like this. He went out and got someone special to sing the Canadian National Anthem: Celine Dion! The crowd goes mild. Sarge says he couldn’t find her so he got someone even better. And it is Jillian dressed as Apollo Creed. She sings “Oh, Canada” and dances a bit as Sarge salutes. This is dying a slow painful death. We head to break.
- We are back for a Contract on a Pole match. The winner will become the newest member of the Raw roster.
3) Eugene vs. Calgary Kid in a Contract on a Pole match
Eugene is back in the house and looking to get back onto Raw. His opponent is the masked and mysterious Calgary Kid. They battle a bit before Eugene nails a Rock Bottom and People’s Elbow. Eugene climbs up but Kid fights him off. Cole slips up and calls him Karate Kid but King corrects him. OK, I admit it…I missed Eugene. Kid knocks Eugene off the top rope and grabs the contract to win the job on Raw. Calgary Kid d. Eugene; Grade: 1
- Kid helps Eugene up and then plants him with a facebreaker. He unmasks and…it’s the Miz. He tells us he is back on Raw and he is awesome. Miz outsmarts everyone and earns his job back. Backstage, Orton is walking as we head to break.
- The 7-11 Rewind takes us back to last week when Big Show dominated Kofi Kingston but lost by DQ.
4) Randy Orton vs. Big Show in a non title match
Back to the ring and we are being joined by Randy Orton for some non title action. Show makes his way out next as Orton looks on confidently. Maybe he will actually get a win this week. Show stares down Orton and he backs off a bit before flailing at him. Show blocks it, drills a headbutt and takes over. He slowly wears down Orton with a front facelock and headbutts. Orton’s selling is great as always. The crowd is getting restless as Show tosses the Champ around. I don’t get why you have your top heel Champion get tossed around by another heel two weeks before the second biggest show of the year. Orton thumbs Show in the eye to turn things around for a second and gets a near fall. Orton hits the Garvin stomp but Show counters the RKO. Show drops him with a Chokeslam for a near fall as Orton gets his foot on the rope. Show lines up a big right hand but Orton bails and takes the lame countout. Could they make Orton look like anymore of a pussy? Show d. Orton by countout
- Cole sends up back to Texas where Hunter is trying to understand what Shawn is doing. Shawn says he is a chef, not a cook. They just don’t give the shirt and hat to anybody. Shawn says everything was over after Wrestlemania and he didn’t feel the need to do it anymore. He tells Hunter that he doesn’t understand. The corporate nimrods are his brothers and he is part of something there. He likes it and more importantly, he is respected. The little girl comes up and tells Shawn his tater tots suck and calls him a monkey. She tosses the tots in his face and says it is a virtual paradise as his voice cracks up. Hunter says Legacy is out of control and he needs Shawn. Shawn says everyone needs him. He doesn’t want to hear it and he isn’t listening. He is happy now and more importantly, he is really good at what he does. We see a grease fire blow up in the background and Hunter calls him “Chef Boyardee”. Shawn runs over and puts out the fire and emerges covered in black smoke as we go to break. OK, that was kind of funny, I will admit it.
- We are back and heading back to the ring for our next match.
5) MVP vs. Chris Masters
MVP makes his way out for a second time tonight as he will battle Chris Masters. The Masterpiece is out and with him and Eugene on the show tonight, we have moved to August 2005. Masters stomps away on MVP as he dominates early in the contest. Masters has been showing some nice aggression since returning. I am glad he is back to solidify the lower mid card. MVP comes back with a nice throw to turn the tables. MVP drops the Ballin’ Elbow, which gets one of the few pops of the night. Masters dodges the Drive By and goes for the Masterlock, which MVP counters. He hits the Playmaker and picks up the win. That was another sub par match in a series of them tonight. MVP d. Masters with the Playmaker;
- Now Swagger walks out and stares down MVP. Masters comes from behind and locks MVP in the Masterlock as Swagger taunts him. Masters releases and Swagger drops him with the gutwrench powerbomb. Swagger stands tall over MVP and we head to a video package highlighting Jeremy Piven’s guest spot last week and subsequent media coverage. Cole and King chat a bit and we take a break.
- I may have to watch “White Collar” just for the return to TV of Valerie Malone…um, I mean Kelly Kapowski…or, Tiffani Thiessen.
- We are back from break and back in Texas. Hunter is behind the grill with Shawn and is still trying to convince him to quit and come back to WWE. Hunter helps him flip burgers while he pumps up Shawn’s ego. He makes Hunter put on the apron and hat and he kind of digs it. Hunter drops a burger, dusts it off and puts it back on the grill. Shawn makes a Summerfest joke which was funny. Shawn’s boss comes in and calls him “Hickenbottom” and Hunter says it is a stupid name. Shawn said he had to keep his anonymity. The boss yells at Shawn and calls Hunter an idiot. The boss says he can find guys like Shawn anywhere and Shawn drills him with a Superkick. He smacks Hunter playfully and says he is in. They have two words for you…and an old lady yells “Suck It!” We hear the little girl complaining some more and Shawn walks over and stares at her. The camera pans over to Shawn and he unleashes a Superkick, presumably on the little girl. He walks over and he and Hunter torch the chef gear and he officially quits. Back in the arena, Cole reveals the answer to out trivia question: the Ultimate Warrior. 51% of the fans got it right, but King got it wrong and Cole mocks him. Sarge is back out again for more fun. He thanks all the fans for being great sports and says the WWE Universe encompasses all countries. As a token of his appreciation, he wants to bring out a special guest. Being in Calgary, it is a great time to bring back…the best there is, the best there was, the best there ever will be…and Bret Hart’s music fires up. But it quickly ends as Hacksaw Jim Duggan stomps out instead. Poor Calgary fans, they get mocked every August. Sarge chants “USA” as Duggan stomps to the ring and we go to break.
- The AutoZone Slam of the Week brings us clips of Mark Henry beating down Chavo Guerrero last week. Back live, Hornswoggle and his cousin, Markswoggle, head out in their matching hats. Cole tells us that Horny was hanging out with Bob Uecker at a Brewers game last week. I say that is awesome. Chavo heads out but he has street clothes on. His injuries from last week haven’t healed so he can’t compete tonight. But he has enlisted a replacement tag team: Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes.
6) Hornswoggle & Mark Henry vs. Ted DiBiase & Cody Rhodes
DiBiase & Rhodes head out to see if they can keep their roll going. Ted and Henry start things off and Mark uses his power to dominate. Ted quickly tags out but Cody doesn’t have much more luck. Henry is aces in this role. He should be the one to finally unseat Orton. Ted and Cody are able to take over and quick tag to keep control. It is short lived as Henry hits a nice double suplex on both men. Henry crushes DiBiase with the World’s Strongest Slam and then tags in Horny. He tries for the Tadpole Splash but Ted rolls out of the way. Cody takes out Henry and Ted drops Horny with a sweet Dream Street for the win. And here I was ready to bitch about Legacy jobbing again. The match was only saved by Henry’s smiles and the great quick tagging by the heels. DiBiase & Rhodes d. Hornswoggle & Henry when DiBiase pins Hornswoggle with Dream Street;
- DiBiase has a mic and they are ready to face DX at Summerslam. It will be the shortest comeback in WWE history. Cody tells us they have two words for us if we aren’t down with it: Too Bad. Backstage, Josh Matthews is with Chris Jericho. He will beat Cena for the first time ever in the city in which he lived and trained for seven years. He dedicates his victory tonight to Calgary. Show butts in and complains about Orton running, but Jericho soothes him. The people will boo Cena and cheer for him because they are easy to manipulate. He isn’t even Canadian, he was born in America. He rags on Canadians until Matthews tells him they are still on the air. Jericho realizes his faux pas as we go to break. Thank God for Jericho.
- We are back and King tells us big time fan and former creative team member Freddie Prinze, Jr. will be the guest host next week from St. Louis. They then run down the Summerslam card before we hit the ring for our main event.
7) John Cena vs. Chris Jericho
Cena gets a mixed pop again and Jericho is mainly cheered, so his antics before the break were for naught. Well, I guess it turned some of the fans on him. Jericho hits the ring as we take our final break. When we return, the bell sounds and we get underway. The two get off to a quick start with Jericho mainly outmaneuvering Cena. The crowd is waking up a bit, pretty much split down the middle. Cena fights his way back and locks in a side headlock. Cena misses a flying shoulderblock and Jericho knocks him to the floor. Cole reminds us that Jericho has never beaten Cena. Jericho hooks a modified rear chinlock but Cena powers out. These two always have good matches, but this one feels like they are going through the motions for the most part. Even then, it is solid enough. Cena hits his shoulderblocks but Jericho gets a roll up to block the Five Knuckle Shuffle. He reverses an AA with an elbow and follows with a faceplant. The crowd is so weird right now. They are kind of popping here and there, but it’s mainly booing. Cena catches Jericho and goes for the AA, but Jericho slips free and hooks the Walls. Cena can’t get to the ropes as Jericho drags him to the middle of the ring. Cena reverses the hold and locks in the STF. Orton hops in the ring and lines up the Punt, drawing a super lame DQ. Cena d. Jericho by disqualification;
- Orton’s distraction allows Jericho to drop Cena with a Codebreaker. Jericho attacks Orton but Orton dumps him to the floor. Show comes out and plants Orton with a Chokeslam. Sarge comes out and calls them all maggots, which is funny. He makes a tag match for next week: Show & Jericho vs. Cena & Orton. Cena and Orton dump Show and Cena hoists Jericho on his shoulders. Orton comes over and drops Jericho with an RKO off Cena’s shoulders. They stare each other down as we fade out. This show was just rough from start to finish. The matches were all weak, the crowd was flat and Sarge bombed for the most part. Let’s hope they go home strong next week. See you in St. Louis!
Final Grade: D+
MVP: Chris Jericho Runner Up: Shawn Michaels & Triple H Non-MVP : The Booking Runner Up: Sgt. Slaughter
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