WWE Raw Review – August 15, 2011

-We are LIVE! from San Diego, CA (where unfortunately the translation for the city’s name was lost years ago)

-A photo montage from last night’s crazy ending catches everyone up but, of course, if you were following my Quick Hit blog last night, you already got all the details.

-COO HHH kicks us off, apologizing for blowing the end of the match and he assures us he had NO idea that Kevin Nash was going to interfere…no siree Bob. No one gets sympathy about Del Rio cashing in the MITB case though because that’s just how it works. And now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for…YOUR new world champion hits the ring.

Of course, Del Rio’s smugness is at an all-time high and the crowd responds my chanting their area code. Well, that’s just stupid…they already announced we were in San Diego, those people don’t have to remind us. Graciously, Del Rio offers to take pictures and sign autographs for every single person in this arena and the people have the nerve to BOO. What else could they possibly want?

He gets in a couple funny digs at Rey Mysterio’s expense and promises to continue the tradition of beating Rey’s ass tonight. A really good interview from the new champion as Del Rio is just full of charisma.

-Meanwhile, HHH pays a visit to John Cena’s locker room.

-You want some awesomely entertaining to do during commercials? Go through all the rabid Cena fans Twitter pages last night at about 10:45 PM. The amount of estrogen and rage being thrown around is absolutely mind-boggling.

Falls Count Anywhere
R-Truth vs. John Morrison
WWE goes old-school, giving us a John Morrison picture-in-picture promo during his entrance…I like it. They have a slugfest and both guys miss big moves so Morrison locks in a small package for two. Truth gets dumped to the outside and Morrison follows with a corkscrew plancha for a two count on the floor. It’s very nice that Cole explains the Falls Count Anywhere rules for the complete morons out there.

Truth avoids a clothesline but Morrison uses the ring barricade to hit a flash kick for two. Truth blocks a suplex and counters with a falcon arrow on the floor (sold very well by Morrison) for two. Truth looks shocked that didn’t finish as we head to a commercial break.

We return with both guys still on the floor and Truth giving the referee the business after a two count. Truth smashes Morrison’s head against the ring barricade with a running knee in a nice looking spot but it only gets two. Truth crazily stomps away and crotches Morrison on the barricade (thus ruining Melina’s nookie chances) then tosses him to the front row.

Truth sends Morrison into the hockey boards for two and tosses him back to ringside but takes too long following and takes an enzuigiri for two. Truth tries to get Cole’s rolling office chair involved but runs into a clothesline for two. Morrison uses a suplex to force Truth to sit in the announcer’s chair and smacks him with stiff running high knee for the win.
Winner: John Morrison

-Definitely a good TV match but I wish they were given ample time on a PPV for this ***.

-Recap of the Rey Mysterio title win at WrestleMania 22 that failed to set the world on fire.

-The Miz hits the ring while King sells out further with a forced movie reference. Miz introduces Jared from Subway (Crowd: “Boo!”) and proclaims himself a better spokesperson. He plugs a chicken sub and immediately takes credit for it trending on Twitter. Funny but at least they kept the corporate shilling short.

-Meanwhile, Kevin Nash arrives via limo backstage. But where’s Bischoff, DiBiase, Hogan, Fake Sting, Nick Patrick, Hall, Wallstreet, Bagwell, Konann, Syxx, Horace Hogan, Hart, Hennig and the rest?

Kelly Kelly & Eve vs. The Bellas
Apparently Kelly is dating Sheldon Souray now, which means Kelly has a soft spot for overpaid defensemen who kill a team’s salary cap.

Kelly gets a terrible looking flying headscissors on Nikki then delivers a stink face but falls victim to a dragon screw. The twins work the leg and show off Kelly’s flexibility (umm…nothing to see here, move along) but Kelly hits a flapjack and gets the lukewarm tag to Eve. Lots of kicks follow and she hits a neckbreaker on Brie to set up a moonsault for the win.
Winners: Kelly Kelly and Eve

-Your token sloppy women’s tag match *.

Natalya and Beth Phoenix come out to the stage and stare menacingly…scary stuff.

-Kevin Nash gets an introduction so over the top and outrageous that it had to be written by him and HHH. Why didn’t they include “he also almost tanked a record TWO wrestling companies by winning their world title”? For you younger fans, I have a bit of a hard time jumping on board anything involving Kevin Nash. It’s good to see he invested in some Just For Men for tonight, though.

Anyways, Nash gets the “What?” treatment after about 20 seconds because today’s wrestling crowds seem determined to be the most annoying group of morons on Earth. Nash claims he got a text from HHH telling him to take out the winner of the match, something Hunter claims never happened now but it was good for business.

CM Punk has heard enough and proclaims that Nash jumping off a bridge would be good for business. I bet former WCW executives just jumped off their couch and screamed “YES!” in unison. They go smarkly back and forth and Punk actually reminds Nash about the “vanilla midget” line in a moment I never thought I hear again.

Nash busts out all the old lines he used to use backstage in WCW about the midcard guys and Punk mentions all Nash’s old gimmicks…ouch. Punk tries to start a fight but hired security guards block the way, so Punk decides to pay HHH a visit.

Well, the interview was interesting to me because I know all Nash’s backstage stuff but I’m not sure if the 13 year old John Cena fan has a clue as to what is going on. This angle is definitely targeting the smart fan with tons of *wink wink* moments but I’ll be interested to see if it can maintain momentum over time.

-Backstage, Kevin Nash goes looking for Triple H but finds John Laurinaitis who invites him out for a drink. Well, that wasn’t creepy or anything.

Alex Riley vs. Jack Swagger
Dolph Ziggler and Vickie are on commentary but they basically argue the whole time. Swagger stomps away in the corner but showboats and gets beaten down. Swagger takes Riley down and hits a running pump slam while King works his unfunny fat jokes and JR diplomatically tells him to shut up.

Swagger hits a back suplex and works a top wristlock but runs into a spinebuster. Riley makes his comeback while Vickie distracts the referee using JRs cowboy hat….really? The distraction allows Swagger to nail Riley from behind and he screws up the gutwrench suplex but eventually gets it for the win.
Winner: Jack Swagger

-The match was totally secondary to the commentary gaga and that made for a boring contest *. Swagger stomps on the cowboy hat because he’s an evil guy. Hey, remember when Jack Swagger was supposed to be taken seriously as a main eventer?

-Meanwhile, Jack Swagger hits on Vickie Guerrero. A Dolph Ziggler face turn? Please no.

-Promo video for Fan Axxess again shows why the Miz is the guy asked to go on all the talk shows and such: He’s definitely a great ambassador.

-Meanwhile, Stephanie McMahon gloats about CM Punk’s bad fortune.

Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne vs. David Otunga & Mike McGillicutty
Your career is basically DOA when you’re saddled with a terrible name like “Michael McGillicutty”. Kofi hammers away on the aforementioned McGillicutty and Kofi helps Bourne with flying headscissors. Evan gets distracted with Otunga though and gets floored, establishing our Ricky Morton for the match.

The heels destroy Bourne in their corner while King says he’s waiting for Otunga and McGillicutty to “do something special.” Remember when winning the tag titles WAS doing something special? Nothing like burying your own product on TV. JR notes they need more competition (coughCHRISHERO) and should defend the titles more (coughCLAUDIOCASTAGNOLIcough).

Oh yeah, the match. Well it’s brutally boring while the heels are on the offense and remains so until Bourne gets the hot tag to Kofi and he gets two off a high cross body. Kofi gets rid of Otunga but Bourne gets a blind tag and, after a Trouble in Paradise, Evan hits Air Bourne for the win.
Winners: Kofi Kingston & Evan Bourne

-No, this win means absolutely nothing because the tag titles mean absolutely nothing. Match wasn’t very good and the former Nexus guys really need to step their game up because the heat segment was heat-less *1/2.

WWE World Title
Alberto Del Rio vs. Rey Mysterio
How can a title be “undisputed” if there’s another world title on Smackdown? Do they seriously think about these things before putting them on TV? No, of course not.

Naturally, Rey gets the hometown pop but Lawler is INSANE if he think it matched Punk’s reception in Chicago at MITB. Mysterio gets a quick dropkick to the face for two but Del Rio stops him with a leg kick and he stomps away. Rey dodges and looks for the 619 early but of course that’s not going to work and we take a commercial break.

We return with Del Rio trying to rip Rey’s mask off during a body scissors but Mysterio fights out and hits a dropkick in the corner. Mysterio fires off a really good looking tornado DDT and a springboard cross body for two. Victory rollup gets another quick two and Del Rio has had enough so he punts Rey in the gut.

ADR goes back to the body scissors to call some spots and tries for the mask again. Rey breaks and Del Rio misses his trademark Charge Against the Ropes that Never Hits then takes a dropick on the outside. Asai moonsault from Rey takes out both men but Mysterio recovers first and he hits a seated senton back inside. Another 619 attempt is cut off with a clothesline for two and adds a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for another near fall.

Del Rio hits a good-sounding enzuigiri with Mysterio on the top rope for two but tries for the cross-armbreaker too early and gets rolled up for two. ADR stops Rey with a dropkick and tries for the finisher again but gets countered and hit with the 619. Rey Rey heads up top for his victory splash but Del Rio gets his knees up and floats over into a cover for the pin.
Winner and STILL Champion: Alberto Del Rio

-Perfect booking here because Rey doesn’t need the credibility and taking the title off Del Rio would absolutely kill him. Now, Alberto is a top heel with a clean victory over Mysterio and didn’t need help to do it.

Del Rio attacks after the match and snaps Rey’s arm across the bottom rope then locks on the cross-armbreaker for some more punishment. Only John Cena sprinting from the locker room saves Rey from further damage. Hmmm, I wonder who’s going to challenge Del Rio next? Call the whole thing *** for good stuff.

-Mr. Spotlight Hog himself John Cena declares himself pissed off and basically challenges Del Rio for the title. Good thing he checked on Rey’s arm before laying down that challenge…what a friend.

Final Word
A rather middle of the road episode minus the Punk/Nash stuff and the main event. I’m sure the crowd was pissed about the title booking but that was the right thing to do with Del Rio and he needs the credibility heading into a match with Cena. Certainly, this HHH thing is going to be a slow-burn and that’s probably the correct decision after they hot-shotted the “Punk steals the title” bit. It was decent enough but I am going to be very interested to see what the ratings are.