The Authority Segment
WWE’s Power Couple – Triple H and Stephanie, accompanied by their unimpressed third wheel – Kane, opened RAW by praising the current Standard-bearer of the company – Seth Rollins.
When Seth joined them in the ring, he was almost prancing with happiness. He was overjoyed to have gotten rid of Ambrose and announced that he was officially moving on to feuding with John Cena. Isn’t it ironic how things change? Last month Cena was running after Rollins, and now Rollins is voluntarily coming to him. Just that Cena doesn’t really care any more.
I liked Seth’s mic work in this segment. He was actively interacting with the audience. Regardless of what chant the fans started, Rollins had a response and it flowed like a proper conversation. On top of that he offered one or two of the awesomely poetic lines he’s been delivering lately. This time Rollins said that he had left Ambrose “lying in a puddle of his own failure”. Just beautiful.
The whole happy party of the Authority was about to leave when Randy Orton barged in the ring. He blamed Rollins’ curbstomp on RAW for his loss at Hell in a Cell. The Viper was angry, really angry. The crowd enjoyed that. Triple H wanted to calm Randy down but Orton didn’t let the COO finish his tirade but pushed him aside and RKO-ed Rollins instead.
That unleashed anger is what I want to see. Someone’s been annoying you for a long time, you can’t take it anymore and you rage out. That’s an absolutely realistic plot. One that can make up for a storyline that I’d like to follow.
Gold & Stardust vs. Big Show & Mark Henry
This match was arranged by Mark Henry and was for the Tag Team Championship.
The fight started great for the World’s Strongest Team (the World’s Largest Team?). In fact, it was suspiciously perfect.
The two big men were dominating decisively. Gold and Stardust had very little to no offence at all. The fans were cheering for the Big Show and were chanting SEXUAL CHOCOLATE. The tag-team champions were near to jobbing in a squash match.
However, mid-match Mark Henry got upset because the Big Show tagged himself in. The two started arguing and the tension between then kept rising till the end.
When Big Show was finally done toying with the champs, he KO-ed Stardust. Henry entered the ring and hit the World’s Largest Athlete with the World’s Strongest Slam. Then he dragged Stardust on top of the Big Show and gave the win to the Cosmic Brothers.
After the match, Mark Henry delivered a second World’s Strongest Slam. The crowd was booing him at first but then, as a typical violence-thirsty WWE crowd, yelled for ONE MORE TIME. Henry gave it to them and then topped it off with a splash on the Big Show.
I might have gotten some stuff wrong in my HIAC predictions but I called this turn. As I said, there’s nothing better for Show and Henry to do now, so another feud between the two of them is their best option.
Mark Henry Backstage
When Renee asked Mark Henry about his actions, he said he had done what he did before the Big Show had done it to him. Apparently the Big Show was also jealous of him.
Yeah, makes absolutely no sense but arguing with an angry Mark Henry wouldn’t be very productive.
Roman Reigns via Satellite
We got another Reigns health update via satellite. Just this time – without the hype preceding it.
Roman said he was getting better and couldn’t wait to come back. This is no news. What was more important was that he announced his plan to go after Rollins, once he’s back.
In my HIAC review, I called that one too. All that’s happened till now, was a filler until Roman’s back. The WWE Creative wouldn’t scrap up months of storyline with a guy they want to invest in. Everything that was planned to happen between Ambrose, Rollins and Reigns will happen once Roman’s back.
AJ vs. Alicia Fox w./Paige on Commentry
Paige was complaining on commentary that Foxy cost her match at HIAC. She was also flirting with JBL and hinting some same-sex attraction towards the divas in the ring. This does not get any less disturbing when she keeps saying it.
In the ring Alicia was dominating. Recently, it has become a tradition for AJ to play the face in peril and then give a fast come back and pin her opponent. So, although Foxy was great, AJ planted her on her head with a DDT and gained momentum.
Alicia was trying to regroup but Paige pushed her from the outside, AJ rolled through and won the match.
Paige pretended to be sorry, offered Foxy a bracelet as a make-up gift and then gave her a violent beating, using the barricade.
Basically, we got a summary of what came out of the Divas Championship match at HIAC. That has nothing to do with the title itself, of course.
John Cena/ The Authority Segment
Cena had a few words to say about Brock Lesnar, being a champion, sitting at home, while other people fight every day. I couldn’t agree more with Cena. Lesnar is an utterly useless champion. Another thing that Cena was right about was that the next time he faces Lesner, the Beast is going to lose. I think no one doubts that there’s no way Cena’s losing to the same guy three times in a row.
However, the center of this segment was Survivor Series. Stephanie and then Triple H both tried to persuade Cena to join Team Authority at Survivor Series. Even the fans, who normally support a Cena heel turn in their chants, were yelling NO and DON’T SELL OUT.
Obviously, Cena turned the offer down, so Triple H made him the captain of Team Cena, which is about to face Team Authority in a Traditional Elimination match at Survivor Series. The catch is that Cena has to find superstars, who’d be ready to stand up against the Authority and join his team.
I think most people are happy to have a traditional match at Survivor Series. Who’s going to be on who’s team? Let the guess-work begin!
The Usos vs. The Miz & Damien Mizdow
What we learned from that match was that Mizdow mimicking everything that the Miz does, even falling outside the ring, is just a perfect set up for the Usos to fly in stereo.
Surprisingly, the A-lister and his stunt double were the ones, who got tricked last night. Jimmy had Miz beat, when Mizdow got involved and saved his boss. While the ref was busy with Sandow, the Usos did Twin Magic and Jay pinned the Miz.
Miz and Mizdow are actually doing well as a team. If this works out for them, they might even give the titles a shot.
Dolph Ziggler/Kane Bakcstage
We saw a muted footage of Cena and Ziggler talking for a bit and then shaking hands. Following that Kane found Ziggler and told him that by teaming with Cena, The Show Off is committing an “act of aggression towards the Authority”. Kane inserted himself in a match against Dolph as a punishment.
Kane keeps trying to present himself as a punisher of those, who cross the boss. It’s too bad that no one takes Kane as a threat anymore. Apart from Adam Rose. And the Bunny. The Rosebuds have been gone ever since Kane took them out.
Hulk Hogan Talks Cancer
The Hulkster talked about breast cancer and promoted the Susan G. Komen initiative. Then he asked a group of cancer survivors to come in the ring and they all flexed in typical Hogan poses.
Bo Dallas vs. Ryback
When Bo announced that he had issued an open challenge to anyone, who wanted to face him, I just wanted to say “That never ends well, Bo. Ask Seth Rollins.”
I was wondering what this was setting up for. When Riback’s music hit, I was surprised. I knew that Ryback was returning. I knew he was to be a face. However, his return felt completely deflated.
The audience really wanted to cheer for the Big Guy and gave him loud FEED ME MORE chants. But let’s be honest, squashing Bo Dallas in something that could barely be called a match, is not a promising return. I’m sorry but I don’t think Ryback’s going to get a good push out of this.
Dean Ambrose/Bray Wyatt Segment
The Lunatic Fringe came out, passed the ring and climbed straight on the announce table to talk. I love his unpredictability.
Ambrose said that he loved everything that happened at Hell in a Cell. The way Ambrose presented thing, it felt like in his head he had beaten Rollins, so he wasn’t really concerned with him any more, regardless of the win/loss score. However, the Lunatic Fringe had an issue with Bray Wyatt, simply because no one screws with Dean Ambrose.
Dean was supposed to have a match with Cesaro but he attacked the Swiss Superman with a microphone istead. The Lunatic Fringe beat Cesaro up and down the ramp until the referee stood between them. Them Ambrose went back in the ring and called Bray Wyatt out.
A pre-recorded promo of Bray Wyatt popped up on the screen. The Eater of Worlds said that he and Ambrose were very much alike. “I am not your brother and I am not your friend” but “I know you. I am you” was the essence of Wyatt’s message.
What caught my interest was that what Bray said left me with the feeling that he’s giving Ambrose a choice. He told Dean that it was up to him what happens next. Is Bray offering Dean the option to join him? Not that it’s going to happen but it’s still a strange idea.
I wish we could see a really insane Ambrose resurface in this feud.
Naomi vs. Nikki w./Brie
This match was a decent match but its main purpose was to demonstrate Brie’s current position as Nikki’s assistant.
Before the match Nikki whispered something to her sister. The result of that was that in the end, Brie grabbed Naomi’s leg, leading to a win for Nikki.
To be fair, this doesn’t look bad at all. I’m used to seeing the Bellas help each other. It looks natural, rather than a punishment.
Kane vs. Dolph Ziggler
It was an entertaining match. Kane actually was serious about hurting Ziggler and Dolph sold it well. At one point it looked as if Kane had knocked Dolph out. It came after Ziggler launched himself at Kane and then momentum and all fell onto an uppercut.
Ziggler was trying to survive because Kane wasn’t going down easily this time. Even a superkick from Dolph didn’t faze Kane the slightest. He kicked Ziggler in the face instead.
In the end, Kane went for a chokeslam but Dolph slipped away, rolled Kane and picked up the win.
Ziggler was retreating when Seth Rollins jumped him from behind and then fed him to Kane in the ring. I was just about to ask where Cena was, having in mind that Cena caused Doloh all the trouble, when Cena did come to the rescue.
I have to say that in the end of the day, if you pay attention to Dolph’s actions as a face, he’s the most moral superstar after Cena. Ziggler just always volunteers to stand up to people he has no business standing up to.
Seth Rollins vs. John Cena
Seth Rollins was hurt. His whole midsection was heavily taped after HIAC. Every time he hit the mat, he was screaming in pain, regardless whether the move was executed by Cena or by himself.
Obviously, Rollins put to use his new security bffs, who kept taking cheap shots at Cena, shielding Rollins or simply distracting his opponent.
Despite Mercury and Noble, I was impressed by Rollins’ performance. He’s a heel, who’s supposed to be hiding cowardly behind bodyguards, but at the same time, he launches himself through the ropes and crash-lands with his bandaged back on the announce table, just to take Cena out. The amount of times Seth climbed the ropes in this match was impressive.
At one point, the audience started a faint ROLLINS chant that evolved into a LET’S GO ROLLINS / ROLLINS SUCKS chant. It wasn’t very loud and it didn’t last too long but it was worth mentioning.
In the end, Cena locked the STF, Rollins waved and Kane ran in, causing a DQ.
Then the whole RAW locker room spilled into the ring, selling Survivor Series. Apart from Rollin, who sneakily retreated to the top of the ramp where Triple H and Stephanie were waiting for him. It made me chuckle. Rollins is such a troll.
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