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Monday Night RAW September 29, 2008
by Bigelow34

Target Center
Minneapolis, MN
Announcers: Michael Cole & Jerry Lawler

- We hit our opening animation right off the bat this week and then head inside the Target Center where we are welcomed to Raw by Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler. Cole tells us this the most momentous week in WWE history and then runs down tonight’s card for us. We are then joined by the Animal, who is pumped up and ready for action and it seems the crowd is jacked for him as well.

1) Batista defeats Santino Marella with the Batistabomb in a non title match
Batista heads into the ring and he is ready to battle JBL at No Mercy to try and earn a World Heavyweight title shot. We are now joined by the greatest couple in wrestling history: Glamarella. Santino stops on the ramp and has some words for the “Manimal”. Before they engage in battle, we need to check in with the Honk-a-meter, which is at 6 weeks and counting. But, for “Baptista”, we have some additional visual aids, namely the “Brain Barometer”. The average human brain has six million brain cells. Santino has ten trillion brain cells, which is twice as many as the average human being. Batista apparently only has 12. Batista is amused as Santino says he is about to knock 10 of the cells out right now. He will leave Batista in worse shape than the economy. Batista nails a clothesline out of the gate and hits the shoulderblocks in the corner. He follows with a charge in the opposite corner and then kills Santino with a spinebuster. Batista loads up the Batistabomb and kills Santino with it for the quick win. Batista smirks at Beth, but as he is distracted, JBL slides in from behind and nails him with the Clothesline from Hell. Grade: 1

- Backstage, the Grish is with Shawn Michaels and he wants to chat about the tag match later tonight and Michaels’ loss to Lance Cade last week. Ten years ago when Shawn trained Cade, he knew he was quite good but he never thought Cade would show everyone at his expense. Chris Jericho has six days left to walk around as Champion because he will climb the ladder and walk out with the gold at No Mercy. Michaels says that Batista will not be his partner as they don’t really get along. So, he put some thought into it and asks what we think of a tag team with Shawn Michaels and a Real American? That doesn’t get much of a reaction, so he moves on. How about a team with a Texas Rattlesnake? The crowd likes the one and Shawn says he is getting warmer, but that is not the answer. How about a team with the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be? Nah, that pushed it too far. He just wants a tag team partner that actually likes him…and that is all he has to say right now as he walks off and we walk off to break.

2) The Miz defeats JTG with the Reality Check
We are back and set for our next match as Cryme Tyme make their way out to the ring. JTG will be in singles action nettling the Miz as the war of words on WWE.com rages on. Miz and Morrison head out and we get clips of them digging on Cryme Tyme’s parents in the latest Dirt Sheet. Miz starts with a go behind which JTG reverses. Miz hammers out of it but JTS is able to shoot Miz to the corner. He charges and floats over to the apron and then hops back in and hits a shoulderblock and a dropkick to put Miz down. He follows with a reverse neck snap and gets two. JTG lands a shot to the face when Miz attempts a back drop but Miz is able to hot shot him on a charge. Miz runs him to the corner and then hammers away in the corner. Miz hits the charging corner clothesline and then continues to land some boots. He drops a leg and gets a near fall. Miz grabs a neck vice but JTG fights to his feet and tries to break loose. He is able to slip behind Miz and get a roll up for two but Miz regains control and goes back to the neck vice. JTG blocks a right hand and is able to hit a cool leapfrog rocker dropper to put Miz down. He follows with a modified legdrop senton from the top for two. JTG hits a neckbreaker but he is distracted by Morrison who had hopped up on the apron. Shad comes over to deal with Morrison but Miz lands a kneelift and the Reality Check for the win. That was a fun little match and both guys worked well together. Grade: 2.5

- Jamie Noble is backstage and happens upon Jillian. He says he needs a favor. Every time she opens her mouth, he damn near swallows his skull. However, he respects her wrestling ability and he is desperate and needs a female tag team partner here tonight. Jillian says that if Layla didn’t want to be seen with him, why would someone that is 10X hotter want to? She sings “Loser” by Beck to Noble but they are interrupted by Dolph Ziegler who introduces himself to both of them a few times. Noble says he heard him the first time and storms off as we go to break.

3) Jamie Noble & Mickie James defeat Paul & Katie Lea Burchill when Noble makes Paul submit with a cross armbreaker
Noble is making his way out alone while the Burchills are already in the ring awaiting him. Before the match starts, William Regal’s music fires up and he and Layla walk out to the ramp where a throne is located. Regal has a seat and is going to take in the match and it looks like Noble is going to have to go this one alone. Just as the bell is about to ring, Mickie James comes charging out and Jamie seems to be pretty happy to have a partner. Noble and Paul start off and Burchill has control early but Noble fires back with some headbutts. Burchill runs him back to the corner and tags in Katie. The attempt a double clothesline, but Noble ducks it. However, on the rebound Paul hits a clothesline and Katie gets a near fall. Noble catches her leg on a kick and shoves her into the corner before tagging Mickie in. Mickie mares her over and hits the ropes, but Paul hooks her legs from the outside and trips her up. Katie goes to work and locks in a seated double chickenwing submission. Mickie bridges up but Katie kicks her back down and retains control of the hold. Mickie fights out of the hold with a neckbreaker and both ladies are able to make tags. Noble hits a dropkick to the leg and follows with a shoulderblock and a back suplex. He yells at Regal and Layla and then heads up top. He hits a missile dropkick but Katie breaks up the pin. Mickie hits a Thesz press off the top and tosses Katie to the floor. Burchill lands an uppercut and grabs a front facelock but Noble takes him over with a Northern Lights suplex. He then grabs the cross armbreaker and wrenches it in for the quick tap out. Noble rolls on and continues to look good. Grade: 1.5

- Backstage, Team Priceless is walking around looking for somebody and they seem to have found him. Manu offers to talk, but Cody speaks and we see that they are visiting Kane. Cody says that he knows Kane isn’t a tag team type of guy, but the way they see it, his father is Paul Bearer, so that makes him a second generation star like them. All he is trying to say is that if they act as a unit out there, they should be OK for the match. Ted says they didn’t ask for the match but they want to make sure they are all on the same page. Kane says he doesn’t take orders from anyone and he is going to massacre Rey Mysterio tonight whether they are on the same page or not. The way he sees it, they better stay out of his way or there will be a pile of second generation carcasses lying in the ring. If they are through, he is going to visit his good friend, Mike Adamle. We take a look at the exterior of the Target Center and then get clips from last week’s main event which saw Lance Cade pick up the win of his career. Back in the arena, Cade joins us and he has something to say. As we all just saw, he was the man who beat his one time mentor, Shawn Michaels. In the last three months, he learned more from Jericho than he did from Michaels in ten years. His victory was the proof that Jericho is a better teacher, a better influence and just better period. As far as tonight goes, Cade could care less who the partner is, because Shawn will either lose to him or Jericho. When No Mercy is over, Jericho will still be World Heavyweight Champion. Over at the announce table, Cole and King break things down a bit but then we head right back to the ring as CM Punk is making his way out for our big eight man match.

4) Kane, Cody Rhodes, Ted DiBiase & Manu defeat CM Punk, Evan Bourne, Rey Mysterio & Kofi Kingston when Kane pins Kingston with a chokeslam
Punk hits the ring and then he is followed by Rey, who gets a nice reaction. As Rey does his thing, we head to break. When we return, Bourne and Kofi have hit the ring and are awaiting their opponents. Team Priceless is out first and then they are joined by Kane. The bell sounds and Manu and Bourne start off. Manu takes control and puts Evan down with a back elbow. Bourne tries to kick his way back into it, but Manu puts him back down. Bourne slips out of a suplex attempt and tags in Rey. They hit a cool double team headscissors with Bourne propelling Rey and they take Manu to the floor. Rey then sends Bourne over the top with a huge back drop onto Manu. DiBiase and Rhodes charge but Punk pulls down the top rope and they go flying to the floor. Mysterio dropkicks Kane to the floor as he tries to enter and the crowd is rocking. Kofi and Punk hit suicide dives onto Rhodes and DiBiase and Rey hits a top rope Thesz press onto Kane and we go to break as the heels try to regroup. When we return, Cody has a reverse chinlock on Bourne. Evan elbows his way out of it but Cody stomps him back down and tags in Manu. Manu grabs a wristlock and then takes Bourne over with a back suplex for two. The crowd is chanting for Bourne as Manu hammers away at him. Bourne is able to slip loose and tag in Punk. He slugs away at Manu and hits the running knee in the corner. He kicks DiBiase off the apron but Manu catches Punk with a chop block and regains control for his team. He tags in Cody and he goes right to work on the leg. Cody tags in Kane and he works over Punk with some stiff kicks. Kane pounds away and then tags in DiBiase who goes right back to the leg. He keeps the pressure on but Punk is able to fight free and tries to punch his way out of the corner but that doesn’t last long. Cody is tagged back in and he goes back to the leg. He tags DiBiase back in and Ted comes off the middle rope with an axehandle to the leg. He tags in Manu who splashes the leg and then stomps away at it. He grabs a step over toehold as the crowd tries to rally Punk. Punk is able to get an inside cradle for two, but Manu stomps him back down and tags in Cody. Punk tries to fight back again and he trades right hands with Cody, but Cody wrenches the leg and tags in Kane. Punk kicks his way back up and then lands an Enziguri. He is about to tag but Kane catches him and then kicks Rey off the apron. Kane tags Cody back in and he works the leg some more as they continue to dissect Punk. The crowd is getting into it again but Punk misses an Enziguri this time. Punk dodges an elbow drop and tags in Kofi who comes in and cleans house as only he can. He hits the Boom legdrop and gets two before Manu breaks it up. Bourne takes Manu out over the top rope but Cody is able to tag Kane. He lines up Kofi for a chokeslam, but Rey kicks him from behind. DiBiase charges in but Rey takes him out to the floor with a headscissors. Kane backs into the corner and Kofi charges in and leaps high into the air but he is caught by Kane and chokeslammed hard to the mat. Kane covers and picks up the win after that sweet finish. That was a great match with some rock solid heel psychology as they dominated Punk and dissected his leg leading to the hot tag. The finish was cool too as Kofi got some insane height. Grade: 3.5

- We are back and thanking Metallica for “All Nightmare Long” which doubles as the No Mercy theme song. Back to the arena, GM Mike Adamle is in the ring for some words. Earlier tonight, Kane made a request and he told him he would grant the request based on whether or not he won tonight. Well, Kane won and he will keep his word. Sunday, if Kane defeats Rey Mysterio, Rey will have to unmask in the middle of the ring. Before he can continue, Randy Orton interrupts Adamle and heads to the ring. Adamle asks Randy if he can help him. Orton says he wants to make sure Adamle has his cell phone on him. He is out here making announcements and decisions and wonders if he has to call Shane McMahon to get the OK. Adamle doesn’t care for his tone and wants to go backstage and talk. Orton doesn’t like that Adamle let Shane overturn his decision to suspend CM Punk and he says Adamle needs to reinstate that suspension and stand up for himself. If Orton isn’t happy, Adamle won’t be either. Adamle may run things now, but when he is healthy and back in the ring, he will own things and when that day comes, Adamle will need Orton on his side more than he needs Shane. Now JBL interrupts things and saunters out to the ring. JBL is having a very bad week, so this will be short. With the market down, he has lost more money than most people have ever seen. He rags on the bailout plan but says he can take solace in a few things. He is JBL and his wife is one of the most powerful people in the world. She will testify for congress next week and he will defeat Batista to earn a title match next week as well. He says that Orton can take solace in his wonderful past but he is now a one armed gimp. His past was so bright but now, not so much. He tells Adamle he should make a stipulation saying that Orton will never get a shot at the title when JBL wins it. Now Batista’s music starts and he enters from the crowd and jumps JBL from behind, putting him down with a spear. He knows JBL had a bad week, but after No Mercy it will get a whole lot worse. JBL is out cold as we go to break. Backstage, Santino is on the cell phone. He is chatting up whoever he is talking to, but when he runs across Beth he name drops “Frank” and quick hangs up. Beth wants to know who he is chatting with and Santino says he was talking to a sick kid, Frankie, who has taken a turn for the worse unfortunately. He tries to pump up Beth for her match, but she tells him not to come out tonight because he screws matches up for her. She says he does it all the time and she doesn’t want to lose another match. Santino says it is a good thing Beth doesn’t have a Fabulous Moolah-meter because she would be 22 years behind. Beth heads off and Santino chalks it up to “the female problem” and dials Frank back up. We see Kelly and Candice walking as we go to break.

5) Beth Phoenix & Jillian defeat Candice Michelle & Kelly when Beth pins Kelly with the double chicken wing slam
We are back from break and Kelly is on her way out to the ring for our next match. Candice is out next as we are going to get a little preview of the women’s title match this Sunday. Beth and Jillian are out next and we get clips of Santino costing his woman her match with Kelly last week. Beth and Candice are up first and Candice lands some kicks to start. She hits a dropkick to the knee and tags in Kelly. They hit a double dropkick and Kelly gets one. She tags Candice back in and she comes off the middle rope with an axehandle. He lands some back elbows but Beth is able to shake her off and toss her into the corner. She tags in Jillian and she lands some forearms in the corner. Candice tries to fight her way out and is able to hit a Russian legsweep for two. She runs Jillian into the corner and attempts a headscissors off a float over, but Jillian blocks in and spikes her to the mat. Jillian stands on Candice’s head and then tags in Beth. Beth hits a pair of backbreakers and gets a near fall. She tags Jillian back in and she works Candice over by yanking her hair. Candice lands a kick to the back and then follows with a spin heel kick. Both ladies tag and Kelly ducks a clothesline and slugs away. She hits the big spinning headscissors takeover but Beth puts her down with a big double sledge to the chest. Candice comes in to help, but Jillian pulls Candice her of the ring. Kelly gets a roll up on Beth for two. Beth hoists Kelly up and plants her with the double chicken wing slam for the win. Grade: 1.5

- At ringside, Cole and King are talking about Raw’s 800th episode last week, putting over the show’s longevity. They plug the main event and we go to break.

6) Great Charlie defeats Deuce with a top rope clothesline
We are back and Deuce is in the ring for our next bout. We get a bit of a shock as Great Khali’s music fires up, but alas it is just Charlie Haas dressed in the role. He is accompanied by the real Runjin Singh, though. He even steps over the top rope as he hits the ring. He is rocking a sweet wig and fake chin and he has a mike. He yells in gibberish and Runjin translates for us: “Great Charlie says to behold his awesome power” and “When prepared correctly, curry is both delicious and nutritious”. Charlie stomps around the ring and screams at Deuce, telling him to hit the ropes. Deuce obliges and Charlie meets him with a big chop to the head. He hits some headbutts and attempts the tree slam, but Deuce blocks it and lands a nice leaping kick. Deuce eats a boot on a splash attempt. Charlie ditches the wig and lands some stiff punches. He heads up top and hits a flying clothesline for another win. Grade: 1

- Things are not over, however, as Runjin had gone backstage and retrieved the real Khali. Charlie has his wig back on and continues to mock the big man as he powerwalks to the ring. Khali is smiling and clapping a bit. Runjin introduces them and Charlie throws his hands up and yells. Khali is smirking but drops Charlie with his chop before we head to break.

- We are back and visiting with Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler at ringside. They break down the major happenings going down this week. ECW moves to 9PM, the world television premier of Wrestlemania airs on MyNetwork on Thursday as does Smackdown on Friday and then the week wraps up with No Mercy. We now get a sneak peak at the Wrestlemania world premier that will air this Thursday night. It is a pretty cool video that shows highlights from all 24 Wrestlemanias, so I guess the special is all encompassing and not just about this past year’s edition. I may be wrong, but I guess we will have to tune in to see. They now run down Sunday’s card for us before we head to the ring for our main event.

7) Shawn Michaels & Triple H defeat Chris Jericho & Lance Cade by disqualification
Jericho is center ring, belt around his waist and mike in hand as he is ready to speak. When he arrived today someone had the audacity to wish him luck for Sunday. He doesn’t deal in luck; he will be victorious Sunday because he is better. He wants to give us a quick demonstration of what he will do on Sunday and instructs Cade to grab a ladder. Everyone is obsessed with the closing moments of a ladder match, but he is obsessed with what will happen during the match as he destroys Shawn Michaels. Cade demonstrates with the ladder on the floor for us as Jericho narrates. Jericho gets the ladder in the ring and says he will slam Michaels’ neck in the ladder again and again before caving in his rib cage with it. The cold hard fact is that there is not another man on the planet that knows how to hurt someone with a ladder more than him. After Sunday, he will still be World champion and it won’t be because of luck. To show that he doesn’t need luck, he walks under the ladder and we head to break. Well, that trick worked for Razor Ramon so hopefully it works for Jericho as well. When we return, Jericho and Cade await their opponents in the ring. Michaels’ music hits first and he makes his way down the aisle, but then quickly scampers back up the ramp and disappears. Are you ready? The crowd sure seems to be as the Chris Warren Band plays Degeneration X down to the ring for our main event. They pop huge for the return of Triple H to Raw but I am less enthused pending the outcome of the match. Hunter and Jericho start off and Jericho fires away but Hunter slugs him down with a right hand. Hunter goes for a kneelift, but Jericho blocks it and slams him down. He tags in Cade, who comes in and hammers away at Hunter. Hunter hits a suplex and drops a knee before tagging Michaels in. Shawn hits a flying forearm and then attacks Jericho as he comes charging into help. He hits an atomic drop on Cade but Jericho runs interference again, allowing Cade to kick Shawn in the face. He tags Jericho in and Chris hits a back suplex. They work Shawn over in the corner and Cade tags in. Cade lands a sharp elbow in the corner and tags Jericho back in. He mares Shawn over and grabs a reverse chinlock. Jericho hits the facebuster but Shawn dodges a Lionsault. Both men make tags and Hunter is all over Cade. He slugs Jericho off the apron and puts Cade down with a clothesline. He hits a spinebuster and goes for the Pedigree, but Jericho comes in and hits the Codebreaker. Michaels comes into break things up but he gets killed with a clothesline. Cade and Jericho double team Michaels in the center of the ring, drawing the weak DQ. The crowd doesn’t care for the finish but at least Hunter didn’t pin either man. Grade: 1.5

- Jericho and Cade are about to use the ladder to punish Shawn, but Hunter grabs the sledgehammer and buries it in Cade’s gut as Jericho bails up the ramp. Michaels nails him with Sweet Chin Music and Hunter kills him with the Pedigree. Shawn heads up the ladder and lands a big splash on Cade. He writhes on the mat a bit as Hunter stands tall and we are out. See you Sunday!

Final Analysis
The opening match was nothing more than a quick squash to get Batista a win before Sunday and existed so JBL could land a shot in as well. Santino still rules and could never win another match again and still rule it. I really enjoyed the Miz/JTG match as Miz continues to grow as a performer and both guys had nice chemistry together. I like that they are including their WWE.com shows in this as well as that is smart cross promotion. Good to see Jamie Noble continues to get face time even after being a pawn in the William Regal game. He picks up a nice win over the free falling Burchill and hopefully he and Regal finally get a PPV match out of all this. Layla looked good decked out in black alongside the King as well. The eight man match was fantastic stuff as Team Priceless continues to master the heel tag team game. Evan Bourne’s great push continues as well as he was well protected in the match. Punk really is the modern day Bret Hart with his fantastic selling and great comebacks. Kane picks up the win here as he heads into No Mercy. The Orton segment was well done but a bit pointless. He is still angry at Punk and is still injured were the main points there. Batista got his revenge on JBL and left us wondering who will get the win Sunday as they both landed strikes tonight. The mask stipulation is interesting, but with WWE headed to Mexico I can’t see Rey losing the mask right now. The Diva tag was good for what it was and that was just a chance to reestablish Beth as a beast after a fluke loss last week. The Santino/Beth interactions continue to scratch our collective itch and I hope they never split up. Charlie Haas continues to bring the goods with his impersonations and seems to be having a great time in the process. That is good, as he deserves a good angle and push. Jericho’s promo wasn’t one of his best, but it was still quite effective in building heat for Sunday. The main event was energetic, but too quick to ever really get going. DX was mega over, but lets hope they don’t get any ideas out of the one time pop. I could have lived without them killing Cade post match, but at least he didn’t eat a pin. The show was a whole was solid tonight. It wasn’t great but it wasn’t bad in any way. We got a great match in the eight man tag and a lot of build for No Mercy. All of the Raw matches have been built up nicely and the card looks to be good. The crowd was into everything the whole night and helped carry what ended up being a very enjoyable, if unmemorable show. Raw continues to deliver the basic, interesting episodic wrestling TV and lets hope Triple H just made a one time pop in and stays far away from here on out. Grade: C+

MVP: Ted DiBiase, Cody Rhodes, Kane, Kofi Kingston, CM Punk, Rey Mysterio, Manu & Evan Bourne
Runner Up: Santino Marella & Beth Phoenix
Non MVP: Paul & Katie Lea Burchill
Runner Up: Deuce

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