Monday Night Raw – 14th January 2013
Raw's 20th Anniversary Show!
Raw begins live in the arena with a shot of the crowd cheering as JR and Michael Cole welcome viewers to the show.
JR: “Welcome everybody to a historic night in WWE history as Monday Night Raw celebrates it's 20 year anniversary. Jim Ross and Michael Cole here at ringside for this 3-hour special.”
Suddenly the lights go out and the crowd erupt with cheers as a gong is heard. A second gong plays and the Undertaker's music begins to play. Smoke fills the entrance-way as the crowd cheer, before we see The Undertaker begin to appear through the curtain. Taker is wearing his shredder jacket as he slowly approaches the center of the stage. Flames begin to rise as Taker's trademark entrance pyro shoots with the crowd still cheering. Taker stops at the top of the ramp and slowly raises his arms – thunder is heard before the WrestleMania 29 logo appears on the Titantron. Raw fades to black and transitions into the opening credits.
Back live, the camera is on JR and Cole at ringside.
Cole: “A chilling way to begin this historic broadcast ladies and gentlemen, the return of the Undertaker!”
JR: “We've not seen the Deadman since he went 20-0 at WrestleMania 28, Michael it would appear Undertaker just told the world he will be looking to extend that streak at this year's WrestleMania event.”
Cole: “There were many predicting that Undertaker would never been seen again after that epic End Of An Era match last year, the question now is who will step up and challenge the streak at WrestleMania 29.”
The Rock's music suddenly plays and the crowd once again erupts with cheers as The Great One makes his entrance. Rock, dressed in jeans and a Just Bring It shirt, takes to the ring with a mic.
Cole: “Speaking of streaks, is this the man who will finally end the WWE Championship reign of CM Punk?”
JR: “We'll find out in 13 nights at the Royal Rumble pay-per-view. We saw last week on Raw that Rock has no love lost for Punk after dropping the champion with a People's Elbow, a fate also suffered by Wade Barrett this past Friday on The Rock's return to SmackDown.”
Cole: “Rock looks better than ever JR, I don't believe Punk's title reign has ever been in more jeopardy.”
Rock stands in the middle of the ring with the mic and waits out a Rock chant before speaking.
Rock: “Finally... Finally... Finally The Rock gets to answer a question that has been on the mind of experts around the world for months. Every time The Rock is interviewed by E!, every time The Rock hosts a Q&A on Twitter, every time The Rock heads to the bakery for a sweet slice of pie, the question is the same... Rock, why do you want to be WWE Champion. You see in the minds of the people, they have seen The Rock climb that mountain on numerous occasions, why does The Rock need to climb that mountain again? Well let The Rock answer that question right now. There is no championship more engrained in The Rock's history, in his blood, than the WWE Championship. The WWE Championship is a symbol that you are the absolute best in the world at what we do. And yeah, right now CM Punk holds that title and is right to call himself the best, because that's the power that holding that title gives you. But after The Rock returned last year, he stepped in the ring at WrestleMania and felt the electricity again, he heard the voices of the people, it lit a fire in the heart of The Rock. And that's when I knew, when I hit that Rock Bottom on John Cena and won the main event on WrestleMania 28, I knew my next goal. The Rock came back to prove he is still the absolute best, and the only way I'm going to do that is by holding that championship above my head and declaring to the people that FINALLY The Rock is the WWE Champion!”
The crowd cheer and once again a Rock chant breaks out before Rock continues.
Rock: “And The Rock says that in 13 nights, that's exactly what will be happening. But before that, Raw's 20th anniversary. 20 years of Monday Night Raw, 20 years of Ruthless Aggression, 20 years of Attitude, 20 years of jabroni-beatin, 20 years of Fruity Pebbles, 20 years. Tonight there is a big vote, a vote to be decided by the people. Tonight the WWE will crown the most popular superstar of Raw's 20 years, and The Rock knows he can count on the millions... and millions of Rock's fans to take to WWE Active and vote for The People's Champion...”
Glass Shatters, the arena explodes with cheers as Stone Cold Steve Autsin's music plays.
JR: “Oh my God it can't be, it can't be...”
The revs of a quad bike are heard before The Rattlesnake drives his trademark quad on to the stage. Austin stops at the top of the ramp and revs the engine again.
JR: “My God almighty it is, Stone Cold!”
Cole: “The Rattlesnake is here, and he's heading right for The Rock! This place is ecstatic, the roof's about to explode!”
Autsin rides his quad down the ramp and around the ring before he steps off. Austin is kitted out in light jeans and a t-shirt that promotes Red Neck Island. Austin walks right past Rock and performs his infamous 4-corner pose for the crowd, before taking a mic from ringside.
The crowd cheer as Rock laughs at Austin.
Austin: “You know Rock, I was sitting back there drinking a few beers thinking about the good old days. You remember those days Rock? Me and you, back and forth, some of the greatest damn matches of all time. And then Stone Cold heard you bring your ass out here and start talking about the millions voting for you as the most popular superstar of Raw's 20 year history... You know they did the very same vote 10 years ago, and you know who they crowned the most popular superstar on that night? It sure as hell wasn't you Rock, it was Stone Cold Steve Austin!”
The crowd cheer as Rock and Austin stand face-to-face.
Austin: “You know I've got a hell of a lot of respect for you Rock, and I for one hope you whoop CM Punk's ass all over the Royal Rumble in 2 weeks. But when it comes to the most popular superstar of Raw's history, his name ain't The Rock, his name ain't Dwayne Johnson, his name is Stone Cold...”
Rock: “... it doesn't matter what your name is! You listen to me Austin, The Rock shares that mutual respect for you. Rock and Austin will go down as one of the very best rivalries, some of the very best matches of all time. You want to talk about ten years ago? Ten years ago these people chose you over me, and that lead to us going one-on-one at WrestleMania 19. That night, The Rock put you down for 3 and you never stepped back in the ring again.”
The pair share a rye smile and the crowd begin to chant “one more match” - but the cheers turn to loud boos as Wade Barrett's music hits. Barrett makes his way to the ring with a mic as the crowd boo loudly.
Cole: “You've got to be kidding me? Wade Barrett has no business out here.”
JR: “The Englishman fell victim to a Rock Bottom last Friday night on SmackDown, I don't fancy his chances against Rock and Austin!”
Barrett enters the ring to heat from the crowd, pushes Austin aside and gets in the face of The Rock.
Barrett: “I thought I told you last Friday night that we do not give a crap about the past. Nobody wants to listen to you two has-beens gush about the past. We're in the here and now, and the future of this business is the Barrett Barrage.”
Rock smiles, he spins Barrett round and the Englishman is greeted with a Stone Cold Stunner! The crowd explodes as Austin gives Barrett the finger.
Cole: “I don't think the Rattlesnake took too kindly to been bumped out of the way like that!”
Barrett is laid down in the middle of the ring, and Rock adds insult to injury by hitting Barrett with a People's Elbow. Austin once again steps up to Rock, but the pair shake hands and the crowd cheer. Austin's music plays and he signals for beers. He throws one to Rock, the pair share a beer before emptying their cans over the fallen Barrett.
Cole: “Two of the greatest superstars of all time come together to put a halt to the Barrett Barrage here on Raw's 20th anniversary.”
JR: “The stunner, the people's elbow, such iconic images in our company history, what a fitting way to get things kicked off here tonight.”
Cole: “And I don't think that's the last we'll see of Austin or Rock tonight, there is of course the results of the vote later on tonight, plus CM Punk will have something to say about taking a People's Elbow last week.”
We transition backstage, where Josh Matthews is on camera.
Matthews: “Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my guest at this time, The Viper, Randy Orton.”
The camera pans out to show Orton standing with Matthews, wearing a referee shirt.
Matthews: “Randy you are 13 nights away from a shot at the World Heavyweight Championship, when you face both Daniel Bryan and the reigning champion Big Show in a triple threat match. Tonight you will referee a match between Show and Bryan, your thoughts?”
Orton: “Josh, last week I was knocked out by Big Show when he was supposedly refereeing my match. So when I was told by Jerry Lawler that I'd be an official tonight, I had to laugh. See, I'm not the most stable of guys at the best of times, much less when you put me in the ring with two men who I need to defeat to once again become World Heavyweight Champion. Tonight gives me a good opportunity to scout my Royal Rumble opponents up close and personal, but I don't think Mike Chioda has to worry about me taking his role as senior official any time soon.”
Matthews: “Randy moments ago we heard The Rock talking about what it would mean to become WWE Champion again. You're a multiple-time World Champion, what would it mean to you to hold the title again?”
Orton: “It's no secret that I've had my demons over the last couple of years, some people have been questioning if I can make it back to the very top. The World Championship will prove to the world that I am as deadly, dangerous and dominant as ever.”
The screen fades to black and Raw goes to commercials. Raw returns with a video package on Triple H's career and how to vote for him as the most popular superstar in Raw history.
Back live in the arena, Antonio Cesaro is mid-entrance. He is dressed to wrestle and carrying the European Championship belt.
Cole: “Even though we are celebrating our 20th anniversary tonight, and we will be looking past to our rich history during the show, I feel I must stress to viewers that Antonio Cesaro is not a sanctioned champion here in WWE.”
JR: “That's right Michael, since losing the United States Championship to Zack Ryder last month Cesaro has declared himself the champion of Europe, and while that is the same belt that the likes of Shawn Michaels and Triple H once defended, it is not currently a sanctioned championship.”
Cesaro enters the ring and snatches the mic from Justin Roberts, who was about to begin ring introductions.
Cesaro: “As the current European Champion, in fact as the greatest European Champion of all time, I feel it is only proper that I issue an open challenge on this historic night. I, Antonio Cesaro, fill defend this prestigious championship against any former European Champion.”
After a short pause, William Regal's music hits to cheers from the crowd. Regal makes his way to the ring in his usual manor.
Cole: “I'm not sure how this is going to work JR, Cesaro is defending a non-sanctioned title here.”
JR: “Either way, we're in for a technically sound match-up here. Regal may have a few miles on the clock in this stage of his career, but he is still a deadly competitor and will pose a challenge to Cesaro here.”
It's a short match with lots of chain wrestling, grapple holds and technical counters. Regal looks to have the match won and goes for a running knee, but Cesaro catches him with a big European uppercut. He follows up with the Neutraliser for the win.
Antonio Cesaro def. William Regal
Cesaro clutches his European Championship to his chest and the announcers put over Cesaro's strength as they replay him hitting the Neutraliser on Regal.
Backstage, Steve Austin is shown in conversation with somebody. The camera zooms out to reveal Ric Flair, which draws a cheer from the crowd.
Austin: “Ric! Damn it's good to see you friend.”
Flair: “The Nature Boy never misses a party Steve, I'm gonna go out there later tonight and party like it's 1985, woooo!”
CM Punk walks past, before checking back. He stares into the eyes of Flair, before turning to Austin.
Punk: “Hi Steve.”
Punk smiles and walks away. Austin turns back to Flair.
Austin: “What the hell was that?”
Flair: “CM Punk”
Austin: “I know who the hell he was Ric, but what was that little stare thing he just did?”
Austin: “Don't what me!”
Flair: “What? Wooo! What? Wooo!”
Austin doesn't look impressed.
Austin: “Good to see you Ric, I've got some business to take care of.”
Austin pats Flair on the back before walking off camera, leaving Flair alone. He continues to “what/woo”
as the screen transitions back live in the arena and the camera focuses on the announcers.
Cole: “You could have cut the tension with a knife right there Jim, CM Punk staring out Stone Cold Steve Austin.”
JR: “Stone Cold has never backed down from a fight in his life, you can guarantee Austin won't let that moment be forgotten.”
Cole: “Punk has been calling Austin out for months, remember the night he cut his infamous pipe-bomb promo, he was wearing an Austin shirt that night.”
JR: “It's no secret that Punk wants to bring Austin out retirement for a match, I'm not sure staring down the Rattlesnake is the way to go about it.”
Ryback's music hits to cheers from the crowd, and they chant “feed me more”
as he makes his way to the ring.
Cole: “It's decision time ladies and gentlemen, Ryback has earned the right to select his own entry number in his debut Royal Rumble match in 13 nights, Ryback on his way to the ring to announce his decision.”
Ryback stands in the ring with a mic, light Goldberg chants from the crowd before he speaks.
Ryback: “For months I have been saying 'feed me more'. That is because I have an appetite for destruction. At the Royal Rumble, 30 men will compete for the right to earn a championship match at WrestleMania. But for me, the Royal Rumble match presents the ultimate feast, 29 other men for me to sink my teeth into. At the Royal Rumble, I will enter the match... at number 1!”
The crowd cheer.
Cole: “Number one! Are you kidding me? This guy could select number 30 and give himself the best possible chance of victory, and he goes for entering first.”
Ryback: “I am not entering at number one to emulate Shawn Michaels, I am entering number one to destroy whoever enters at number 2. And number 3. 4, 5, 6. I will eliminate every single man from the Rumble match. Feed! Me! More!”
The crowd chant along before Alberto Del Rio's music hits. The crowd boo as his music continues to play. Del Rio appears through the curtain and stands at the top of the ramp, dressed in a suit with a mic in hand.
JR: “It's Alberto Del Rio! We've not seen Del Rio for a number of weeks after coming out on the losing end of a tables match with Randy Orton at TLC, what is he doing here?”
Del Rio: “Ryback, you have shown the entire world what a stupid man you are. You are a very stupid man. Not just for picking the worst possible entry number for the Royal Rumble match, but for thinking that you will win the Royal Rumble match. Alberto Del Rio was the first and only man to win a 40-man Rumble match, and I have returned tonight to tell you and everyone else that I am back to win the Royal Rumble match again.”
Ryback: “How about instead of standing up there in a suit, you come down here and tell me that to me face?”
Del Rio smiles, he takes off his jacket and teases making his way to the ring before turning back around. He walks back through the curtain to boos from the crowd, Ryback is shown looking angrily up the ramp as Raw fades to commercials.
Raw returns with a video package on Shawn Michaels' career and gives viewers instructions on how to vote for him as the greatest superstar in Raw history. Live in the arena, the bell rings as Justin Roberts stands in the ring.
Roberts: “The following contest, scheduled for one fall, is for the WWE Tag Team Championships.”
The crowd cheer as Rey Mysterio's music hits to bring out Mysterio and Sin Cara as the challengers, and the announcers speak as they make their way to the ring.
Cole: “Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara looking to bounce right back after suffering a shock loss of their Tag Team Championships on SmackDown.”
JR: “That's right, The Prime Time Players capitalising on miscommunication between the Luchadors to pick up their first championships in WWE, Mysterio and Sin Cara immediately looking to recapture the titles with their rightful return match.”
Roberts then introduces the Prime Time Players as the new Champions, and they makes their way to the ring as the announcers continue.
Cole: “JR before we get going with this match, what are your thoughts on the shock return of Alberto Del Rio here tonight?”
JR: “I think picking a fight with a man like Ryback is asking for trouble, but he's right in saying he is the only man to ever win a 40-man Rumble match so if he is indeed entering this year's match he has to be up there with the favourites.”
Cole: “Right now we have a Tag Team Championship rematch, JR it's important for the Players to put in a dominant display tonight if they want to go on to have a lengthy reign.”
JR: “The important thing tonight is retaining the titles, Titus O'Neil and Darren Young have bright futures here in WWE but they need to get that first title defense out of the way early on. Losing the titles back to Rey and Cara on their first defense as champions could have catastrophic effects on their confidence as a team.”
The match goes four minutes with both sides getting an even amount of offense, before Brock Lesnar's music hits to the surprise of everybody. The crowd pops and the four competitors look fearfully up the ramp as Lesnar appears on stage, flanked by Paul Heyman. Lesnar jogs on the spot for a moment before heading to the ring.
Sin Cara tries to cut Lesnar off, attempting a springboard splash from inside the ring, but Lesnar catches Cara mid-air and delivers a devastating F5 to Cara on the outside. With Heyman laughing and barking instructions, Lesnar hops the apron and enters the ring. The Players back off and retreat to the corner, but Rey tries to stand up to Lesnar. Brock delivers a knee to the stomach of Rey and hits him with a belly-to-belly suplex.
Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara def. Prime Time Players via DQ
Lesnar then makes his way to the champions, who begin to double-team Lesnar. They delver a few shots and throw him into the ropes, but Lesnar comes back with an explosive clothesline to take out both men.
JR: “What on Earth is this monster doing? He's out of control!”
Cole: “Look at the dominance, the ease in which he's dismantling our two best tag teams single-highhandedly.”
The Players roll out of the ring and run up the ramp to avoid further punishment, but Mysterio gets up and once again tries to fight off Lesnar. Brock reacts with an F5 to Rey, before Heyman tells him to stop. Brock stands in the middle of the ring with a smile on his face as Heyman enters the ring with a mic.
Heyman: “What you have seen here is a demonstration, a sneak peek at what to expect at the Royal Rumble. My client is not a man, he is a beast, and he cannot wait to enter the Royal Rumble match in 13 nights to deliver the same punishment to the 29 other superstars brave enough to enter the Rumble match. But there is one man that the beast incarnate has a particular thirst for, a man he wants to break and destroy once and for all, and that man is John Cena.”
The crowd cheer the mention of Cena's name as Heyman continues.
Heyman: “Brock Lesnar is the most dominant, gifted and destructive man in WWE history, he is a man who has climbed to the top of the mountain in UFC, simply put Brock Lesnar hurts people. John Cena should have got the message when Brock Lesnar almost broke his neck last month, but Superman has declared that he will enter the Rumble match too. John Cena thinks he can earn a shot at The Rock by winning the Rumble match. This is foolish, John Cena is foolish to willingly step in the ring when my client is around. As is anyone else. John Cena, if you are stupid enough to enter the Royal Rumble match my client will ensure it is the last ring you ever step foot in. You see, in Brock Lesnar you are facing a different kind of challenge. You're not facing a man who is entering the Rumble to earn a World Championship match – if Brock Lesnar wanted a Championship match he would get one at the click of his fingers because he is a big-match, big-money fighter. No, Brock Lesnar is entering that match to hurt, dismember and destroy as many people as he wants...”
Suddenly, John Cena's music hits and the arena explodes with cheers. Cena wastes no time, dressed to wrestle he sprints down to the ring and delivers a spear to Lesnar. The pair trade blows in a violent fist-fight as they roll around on the mat. Heyman has escaped the ring and watches on in horror as Lesnar and Cena continue to go at it, with the crowd cheering the confrontation. Lesnar begins to take the advantage and bloodies Cena's face with a stiff elbow shot before security and officials try to pull the two men apart. Lesnar throws two security men to the ground before again swinging for Cena, but there are simply too many security men pulling the two apart and the fight is over.
JR: “What a collision it's going to be at the Royal Rumble, John Cena has shown right here that he is not afraid and he is ready for a fight!”
Cole: “He's going to get a fight, he's going to get the fight of his life, these two men cannot stand each other!”
JR: “It's going to be the most explosive Royal Rumble match of all time!”
As Cena is pulled to the back by security with blood on his face, Lesnar and Heyman stand in the ring with a smile on their face. The announcers transition into a video package on how fans can vote for either Cena or Lesnar to be crowned the most popular superstar of all time.
The action transitions backstage, where Santino and Ricardo are sitting at a table in discussion. Santino is congratulating Ricardo on how good a job he is doing at been his new personal ring announcer when Alberto Del Rio walks past.
Del Rio: “Ricardo, what are you doing with this peasant? Come with me.”
Del Rio: “What?”
Ricardo: “I work for Santino now, I have a contract.”
Del Rio: “To hell with Santino and his contract, I brought you here, you belong to me, now come on.”
Santino stands up.
Santino: “He said no.”
Del Rio frowns at Ricardo before striking Santino with a right hand and delivering a Spinebuster through the table. Ricardo runs away before Del Rio can turn his attention to him. Del Rio angrily walks away and Raw fades to commercials with Santino lying motionless on the ground.
Raw returns with a vignette. In a darkened gym, the camera is zoomed in close to a muscular black man's chest. The camera zooms out slowly, revealing the word LANGSTON across the singlet. The camera zooms out fully to reveal Big E Langston standing with his arms folded. The camera fades to black and a logo on screen reveals that Langston will make his debut next week on Raw.
Back live in the arena, the ring is set up for MizTV and the Intercontinental Champion The Miz is stood in the ring wearing a suit and the title belt over his shoulder. Zack Ryder and Damien Sandow are sat in two directors chairs as Miz's guests.
Miz: “As we celebrate 20 years of Monday Night Raw, it is only fitting that I bring to you a special edition of the most must-see talk show in Raw history, welcome ladies and gentlemen to MizTV!”
The crowd boo Miz, who continues regardless.
Miz: “I am joined here tonight by the United States Champion Zack Ryder, and the man who will challenge him for the US title at the Royal Rumble, Mr Damien Sandow. Damien if I may start with you, can you remind viewers at home why you have been rewarded with this championship opportunity.”
Sandow: “Certainly sir. Following the amicable break-up of former Tag Team Champions Team Rhodes Scholars, I elected to peruse a singles career. I hold several victories over this ignoramus, who somehow has found himself holding a prestigious championship belt. Zack Ryder is a buffoon, promoting terrible use of the English language and setting a poor example of how a champion should present himself. Take a look at your United States Champion ladies and gentlemen, slouched in this chair with terrible posture, wearing a shirt that depicts the Statue Of Liberty fist-pumping, I find this behavior repugnant. Or in words that even Zack Ryder can understand, distasteful.”
Ryder: “Are you serious bro? How about I get up off this chair and fist-pump you in the face?”
Miz separates the pair.
Miz: “Zack I must ask you to behave yourself on my show, I know you're only the United States Champion but you still have a level of responsibility...”
Ryder: “... Woah, what do you mean ONLY the United States Champion bro?”
Miz: “I mean you're speaking to the Intercontinental Champion, I am a class above you and you will show me some respect.”
Ryder takes exception to this and squares up to Miz, only to be attacked from behind by Sandow. Miz and Sandow beat-down Ryder, with Sandow ending events with his Neckbreaker finisher. He takes Ryder's title belt and holds it aloft alongside Miz, who has raised his Intercontinental Championship belt. Sandow's music plays as the pair receive boos from the crowd.
In Jerry Lawler's office, King is sat at his desk watching events on a TV. In enters John Cena.
Cena: “King, you wanted to see me?”
King: “Thanks John, take a seat... It's about earlier on, that brawl with Brock Lesnar... well actually it's about you in general. You're here against doctors recommendations. Now I have no problem allowing you to enter the Royal Rumble match, but you're clearly hurt and I have to protect the best interests of Monday Night Raw as it's General Manager. John, even at 100%, stepping in the ring with a lunatic like Brock Lesnar can spell the end of a career. In your condition, with the neck still hurt, are you sure you want to go down this road?”
Cena: “I have to Jerry. At the Rumble, The Rock challenges for the WWE Championship. And if he wins, he may well have to defend the title against the Royal Rumble winner. I need redemption for what happened at WrestleMania last year, and I know that's a lot of “ifs” and “maybes”, but if there is a chance there for me to get a second shot at The Rock then I have to take it. It's worth putting my career on the line for King, because without getting my win back from Rock my career means nothing.”
King: “Fine, I can't argue with that. You just be careful John, take it from a guy who knows, hospital aint a fun place to be at. Take care.”
Cena shakes King's hand and heads out the door.
Back live in the arena, Cody Rhodes is in the ring as Justin Roberts introduces him for the following match. Christian's music then hits to cheers from the crowd, and Captain Charisma appears on stage. He has a mic in hand.
Christian: “I hope you don't mind, but with this been a bit of a party here tonight, I decided to invite a friend along...”
After a short pause, Edge's music hits to a big reaction from the crowd. Edge makes his trademark entrance, complete with pyro. Rhodes looks unimpressed in the ring as Christian enters the ring for their match.
Despite Rhodes dominating the early-going, Christian manages to make the comeback at 6 minutes. Christian pays tribute to Edge by hitting Cody with a Spear to pick up the win.
Christian def. Cody Rhodes
Edge enters the ring to celebrate with Christian. Edge asks for a mic from ringside.
Edge: “20 years, that's kind of a big deal right? That's kind of memorable. It's the kind of occasion that might want to make you... I don't know... take a picture?”
The crowd cheer as Edge continues.
Edge: “So... for the benefit of those with flash photography...”
The crowd goes wild as Edge and Christian take part in a five-second pose, Raw fades to black for commercials.
Raw returns with the announcers talking over replays of the key events of the night so far, before feeding to a video package on CM Punk and how to vote for him in tonight's poll. Backstage, Stephanie McMahon is in Jerry Lawler's office watching a replay of the Cena/Lesnar brawl from earlier tonight.
McMahon: “King, we can't let this continue, we need to do something.”
Before Lawler can answer, a loud bang is heard. Brock Lesnar has kicked the door down, he has a sick smile on his face. He turns to Stephanie.
Lesnar: “Hey, Mrs Helmsley, how's Hunter's arm doing?”
Lawler then turns to address Lawler.
Lesnar: “I just wanted to let you know that what I did to John Cena earlier tonight, that was just a taste of what's to come. So you and this woman here, you can do and tell those corporate types that you answer to that they better prepare for blood, broken bones and a lot of violence. I'm really starting to enjoy myself round here.”
Lesnar laughs to himself before exiting.
The camera transitions to Josh Matthews, who is in the interview area.
Matthews: “Ladies and gentlemen please welcome my guest at this time, the World Heavyweight Champion, the Big Show.”
The camera zooms out to reveal Show, with the title over his shoulder.
Matthews: “Show tonight you get to step into the ring with one of the two men you will face at the Royal Rumble event in 13 nights when you go one-on-one with Daniel Bryan. The referee for that match will be the other challenger to your title Randy Orton. Show after you knocked Orton out while refereeing his match on Friday, are you concerned that the Viper may not be so partial tonight?”
Show: “Do I look concerned? Nothing concerns you when you're a Giant little man. It doesn't matter if Randy Orton wants to attack me in a referee shirt, in a suit, oiled up in his trunks, the result will be the same. He gets knocked out. As for Daniel Bryan, there's still a part of me that wants to punish the flying goat for cashing in Money In The Bank on me a couple of years ago. So tonight, on the 20th anniversary of Raw, I will do what I've been doing since I got here. I will knock out my opponent, and I will dominate anyone who tries to stop me.”
Back live in the arena, Cult Of Personality hits to a flood of boos from the crowd. CM Punk appears, accompanied by Paul Heyman, carrying the WWE Championship around his waist while wearing jeans and a CM Punk t-shirt.
Cole: “He is 9 nights away from defending the WWE Championship against The Rock, and CM Punk has said for months that he doesn't agree with Rock getting a title shot.”
JR: “It doesn't matter if he agrees, he needs to get his mind ready for what could be one of the biggest matches in his career.”
Punk enters the ring, hands the title belt to Heyman and takes a mic.
Punk: “As the greatest WWE Champion in the history of Raw, I wanted to come out here on this special night and make a few points. My first point is about the Royal Rumble. Everywhere I look, I see posters for the event, and who is on the poster? Not the longest-reigning WWE Champion of the modern era, no, it's The Rock. A black and white poster captioned by the word “finally”. And that poster sums up exactly why is wrong with this company, but also what is going to happen at the Royal Rumble when Dwayne steps in the ring with the best in the world.”
The crowd boo and a Rocky chant breaks out, but Punk continues regardless.
Punk: “See, the fact that it is a black and white picture just shows me how old Rocky is, he is old news, a throwback to an era long-gone, an era subservient to me and what I am doing in the here and now. And “finally”. A word so often associated with The Rock, but in 2 weeks when we are sitting here on Monday Night Raw and CM Punk is WWE Champion, he will be the one yelling “finally”. I will be talking about how I have finally proven that I am the best in the world, finally I have proven that those attitude era guys who can't let go of the past are not in my league, finally I am the true face of this company, and finally I have your respect... I'm not holding my breath, see I know that it's going to take more than me defeating The Rock to get you people to open your eyes. A simple victory just won't cut it, we'll still be back where we started with people clambering for Rocky. No, in 13 nights I'm going to have to end The Rock once and for all. In fact, I don't see why I should wait for the Rumble to do that. I say I march back there and end him right now.”
Punk drops the mic and exits the ring with Heyman following closely behind as Raw fades to commercials.
Raw returns with a summary package on every superstar you can vote for to win the 20 Years of Raw award at the end of the show; the full list of nominees is Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Rock, CM Punk, Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Ric Flair, Hulk Hogan and Bret Hart.
Back live, Vickie Guerrero is stood in the ring with Joe Hennig and Ted DiBiase and the crowd is booing loudly.
Guerrero: “EXCUSE ME! Tonight is not only about the past, but it about celebrating the future of Monday Night Raw. My clients – Ted DiBiase and Joe Hennig – represent that future, and are calling out any pair of legends backstage for a match right now!”
A short silence is ended by the New Age Outlaws' music hitting to a big reaction from the crowd, Road Dogg and Billy Gunn make their trademark entrance.
Cole: “The Fortunate Generation have laid down the gauntlet, and wow has it been answered!”
JR: “Jesse James and Billy Gun, multiple-time Tag Team Champions and looking in great shape here. This is sure to be a great match between past and present.”
The Outlaws take advantage early on, with Gunn hitting a FameAsser on Hennig but seeing his pin attempt broken up by DiBiase. Perfect Generation then double-team Gunn for several minutes before he makes the hot tag to Road Dogg, who hits his signature spots to cheers from the crowd. After a 7-minute match, DiBiase throws Gunn into the ring steps. Hennig looks set to hit the PerfectPlex, but Road Dogg reversed into an inside craddle and gets the 3!
New Age Outlaws def. The Perfect Generation
The Outlaws' victory is short lived as DiBiase enters the ring and drops Road Dogg with Dream Street. Guerrero laughs to herself and their music hits as they exit the ring.
Backstage, an angry Wade Barrett is walking down the hall when is stopped by Josh Matthews.
Matthews: “Wade if I may have a moment of your time?”
Barrett: “No you bloody well can't. What happened tonight, what happened on SmackDown, and the way this company is treating me of late is unacceptable. The Rock has a WWE Championship match in 2 weeks, but the guy hasn't wrestled a single match since he came back a few weeks ago. If Rock wants to lay his hands on me, then I say he does it like a man. This Friday on SmackDown I am calling out The Great One, he can step in the ring with me and see just how great he really is.”
Barrett then shoves Matthews to the ground and walks away.
Back live in the arena, Howard Finkel is in the ring with a microphone.
Fink: “The following is an over-the-top-rope gauntlet match...”
Kane's pyro shoots to boos from the crowd as the Big Red Machine makes his way to the ring, with AJ skipping behind him.
Fink: “Introducing first, accompanied to the ring by AJ Lee, Kane!”
Kane shoots his pyro in the ring as the announcers speak.
JR: “One of the most dominant Royal Rumble match wrestlers in history, an over-the-top-rope gauntlet for Kane is ideal practise ahead of the Rumble.”
Sgt. Slaughter is first out to cheers from the crowd as the bell rings to begin the match, but he lasts a matter of seconds as Kane delivers a big boot that sends Slaughter crashing to the outside. Out next is Bob Backlund, who puts up a small flurry of offence before Kane takes him by the throat and delivers a Chokeslam to the outside. The crowd pops for Jim Duggan, who enters the ring and attempts to hit Kane with a 2x4, but Kane grabs the weapon and returns the favour to Duggan before throwing him over the top.
Cole: “Sheer dominance here from the Big Red Machine, can anyone even come close to eliminating this guy?”
Cheers from the crowd as Sheamus's music hits and the Celtic Warrior makes his way to the ring.
JR: “Here is a man who will fancy his chances, the winner of last year's Royal Rumble match!”
Sheamus and Kane go at it for 6 minutes, trading blows and attempting to eliminate each-other from the ring. The finish comes when Sheamus slides out the back of a Tombstone attempt and connects with a Brogue Kick, sending Kane over the top and to the floor.
Fink: “Here is your winner... Sheamus!”
Cole: “What a match, what a collision between these two men.”
JR: “Sheamus gets a big boost heading into the Rumble, can Sheamus possibly pull off a second consecutive win?”
Cole: “We find out in less than two weeks. But up next, Ric Flair is making his way to the ring, what does the Nature Boy have in store when Raw continues?”
An image of Flair walking down the hall sends Raw to commercials.
Back live and Flair's music plays to cheers from the crowd. Flair slowly makes his way to the ring dressed in a suit, strutting in his usual manor. A figure is shown running down the ramp behind Flair, and the crowd boo as Dolph Ziggler smashes Flair with his Money In The Bank briefcase. The fans continue to boo as Ziggler stomps away at Flair, ripping his jacket off his back and rolling him into the ring. Flair attempts to fight back with a series of right hands and chops, but Ziggler drops Flair with a Superkick. The crowd boo loudly as Ziggler demands a mic from ringside.
Ziggler: “WWE need to spend less of their time, effort and money on washed up 60-year-olds and more time looking after their future. The future is bright, the future is Mr Money In The Bank, the future... is... Ziggler!”
Ziggler then adds insult to injury by applying the Figure Four Leglock to Flair as the crowd boo loudly. Ziggler eventually releases the hold, picks up his briefcase and mocks Flair's strut as he heads back up the ramp.
Backstage, the camera is on R-Truth, who is talking to someone off-camera.
Truth: “You know, you really need to do something about those Goldberg chants…”
The camera zooms out to reveal Ryback with an angry expression on his face.
Truth: “That’s why me and Little Jimmy invited him along for you to talk to, try and get this thing straightened out…”
Into the room walks Gilberg, acting like Goldberg. Ryback is less than impressed as Gilberg approaches Ryback. Gilberg then begins chanting Feed Me More. Ron Simmons then walks by, sees what is going on and delivers his trademark “DAMN”
Back live in the arena, the announcers sell disgust as a replay of Dolph Ziggler attacking Ric Flair is shown. We are shown exclusive footage of Flair been helped to the back, before live in the arena Randy Orton’s music hits to cheers from the crowd.
Roberts: “The following contest is scheduled for one fall. Introducing the special guest referee, Randy Orton!”
Orton appears through the curtain wearing a referee shirt and black pants, and he makes his way to the ring as the announcers speak.
Cole: “The rivalry between Orton, Bryan and Show has escalated over the last couple of weeks to the point where this match we’re about to see really is unpredictable.”
JR: “Randy Orton is unstable at the best of times, putting him in charge of our main event here tonight might not prove to be a brilliant decision.”
Out next is Daniel Bryan, who milks the Yes/No chants from the crowd in usual fashion.
Cole: “Bryan has a point to prove here tonight, a victory over the reigning World Champion will give him a huge boost going into that Triple Threat match at the Royal Rumble.”
Out next is Big Show, who looks angry as he marches to the ring.
JR: “Easier said than done, Big Show has looked like a giant that cannot be slayed since picking up the World Heavyweight Championship several months ago. He’s angry with Booker T for putting him in the triple threat, and while he will look to take his anger out on Daniel Bryan here that does not make Orton safe either.”
Orton calls the first 7 minutes down the middle with no controversy. Show dominates the early-going before Bryan makes a comeback by targeting the legs of Show. At the 9 minute mark, Bryan hits a missile dropkick but Show powers out at one, drawing awe from the crowd.
Show retaliates with a Chokeslam at the 10 minute mark, but Show is shocked when Bryan gets the shoulder up before 3. Show gets to his feet and argues with Orton, before shoving him. Orton reacts with an RKO to massive cheers from the crowd. Bryan gets to his feet and climbs the top rope before landing a diving headbutt. Orton fast-counts to give Bryan the 3!
Daniel Bryan def. Big Show
JR: “If Randy Orton’s mission here was to make Big Show even angrier, then mission accomplished.”
Cole: “Not every day you’re going to see a WWE official deliver an RKO to the 500lb World Champion, and the win gives Bryan a psychological advantage.”
Orton raises Bryan’s hand before delivering an RKO to Bryan, which again gets cheers from the crowd. Orton takes the World Title belt and stands over the fallen Show and Bryan as the crowd continue to cheer.
Cole: “Orton sending a message to both Show and Bryan here tonight, it’s every man for himself at the Rumble and Orton doesn’t need to slay the giant to take his title.”
JR: “You’re right Michael, it’s going to be explosive at the Rumble.”
Cole: “After the break, we will have the results on the vote to crown the most popular superstar in Raw’s 20 year history, don’t go anywhere!”
Raw goes to it's final commercial break, and returns with a backstage segment. Jerry Lawler and Booker T are in discussion when Vickie Guerrero storms into the office, followed by Joe Hennig and Ted DiBiase.
Vickie: “EXCUSE ME!”
Lawler: “Excuse you? Excuse me, we were talking.”
Vickie: “This is important. My clients want a rematch with the New Age Outlaws, and we want it as soon as possible.”
Booker: “Fancy that, Vickie me and King were just talking about what matches to put on the Main Event card this Wednesday. You want a rematch? You got it. Now get the hell out.”
Vickie smiles and escorts Hennig and DiBiase out of the office.
Live in the arena, Vince McMahon's music hits to massive cheers from the live crowd. Vince struts toward the ring in trademark fashion.
JR: “It's been quite some time since we're seen the Chairman on Monday Night Raw, I assume he's out here to present the big award.”
Cole: “It was in fact the Monday Night Raw heading into TLC that we last saw Mr McMahon, he faced CM Punk in a Tables Ladders and Chairs Match!”
Vince enters the ring with a mic and waits out chanting before beginning.
McMahon: “Before I present the award for the most popular WWE Superstar in Raw's 20 year history, I would like to take a moment to thank the WWE Universe. Without the support of our fans we would not be here tonight, so on behalf of WWE I thank you all.”
The crowd applaud before Vince continues.
McMahon: “Right, let's get down to business! I am please to announce that the winner of our public vote, and officially the most popular WWE superstar in Raw history is...”
The Rock's music hits to cheers from the crowd. Rock re-appears for the second time tonight and begins to make his way to the ring.
JR: “There were some amazing contenders for this award ladies and gentlemen, The Rock should be very proud to pick up this accolade.”
Cole: “The final results will be posted on WWE.com shortly, but I can tell you it was very close between Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin in the voting.”
Rock takes the mic from Vince, who exits the ring to allow Rock his moment.
Rock: “The Rock is a multiple-time World Champion, movie star, whatever I have set my heart on I have aimed to be the very best. The reason I came back, the reason I returned to the ring last year was not for me. It wasn't for money, or to promote a movie. It was for the people. So for the people to vote for The Rock, when there are names like Undertaker, Austin, Michaels and Hart in the running, The Rock thanks you from the bottom of his heart. I am truly humbled...”
Cult Of Personality interrupts to loud boos. CM Punk (with Paul Heyman) appears on stage with the WWE Championship around his waist and a mic in hand, and he shouts furiously into the microphone.
Punk: “There is nothing humbling about this travesty. These people are a joke. I am out here busting my ass every day, breaking records and selling out arenas, yet Mr Part-Time wins this award? You want humility Rock? I'll give you humility, I'll give you all the humility you can handle at the Royal Rumble. In fact, it won't be humbling. When I destroy the People's Champion at the Royal Rumble and once again defend my WWE Championship successfully, you will be more than humbled. I will leave you beaten and embarrassed. Embarrassed that you thought you could come back and go toe-to-toe with the best in the world. Because despite this stupid little award you just won, I remain the best. I am better than you, Stone Cold, Undertaker, whoever else you want to name.”
Rock: “The Rock says you run your mouth an awful lot, how about we don't wait until the Royal Rumble, how about you walk your monkey ass down that ramp and I shove your humble right up your candy ass?”
Punk laughs to himself before unhooking his title belt, handing it to Heyman and sprinting to the ring as the crowd explode with cheers.
JR: “Oh my God it's gonna happen right here, Rock and Punk is on!”
Punk slides into the ring and begins to trade blows with Rock, but Rock gets the upper-hand and drops Punk with a Spinebuster. He signals for the People's Elbow, but as he rebounds off the ropes he is tripped by Heyman. The crowd boo as Punk gets back to hit feet. Punk connects with a GTS, the crowd booing loudly. Punk stands tall over a fallen Rock with the title held high as Raw goes off the air.