By Ryan Clark on March 4, 2013
Event: WWE Monday Night RAW
Airdate: Monday, March 4th, 2013 (USA Network)
Location: The First Niagara Center in Buffalo, New York
Results by Ken Hill
“Yes, sir, we promised you a great main event…”
We are LIVE from the First Niagara Center in Buffalo, New York…
He’s baaaaack! The bad-ass spiked trench-coat, the ominous fog and flames…THE UNDERTAKER! He raises his arms…and the Wrestlemania logo appears! Foreshadowing, perhaps?
We’re going back…in…time as Raw goes Old School!
Lawler and Cole introduce us, decked out in the classic outfits and the old school announce tables!
Punk’s music hits and he and Heyman come out. Punk getting a strong mixed reaction, but doesn’t look at all pleased given how last week went down.
Punk hasn’t taken his eyes off the WM 29 sign. On the mic now, Punk says he should be main eventing this year, defending his championship, but he’s nooootttt! It’s not because of what he did or didn’t do, but because of the fans. They stole from him, they screwed him out of what was precious to him. In screwing him, the fans only screwed themselves. There’s no point now to Punk being at WrestleMania. What Punk and all of us just saw gives him a new purpose at WrestleMania. He points out how we fawn over Taker’s 20-0 record, yet snark at his 434-day title reign. He’s good, and he backs it up every night. He gives us a new number: 20-1. That “1″ is drug-free, alcohol-free, straightedge, The Best In The World. He’s going to beat Undertaker…Deal with it!
Randy Orton out now, and he says Punk shouldn’t be challenging Taker when he couldn’t even beat Orton a couple years back. Punk’s never faced Taker on the biggest stage. Orton faced Taker 8 years ago as a rookie, and came within inches. 8 years later, he’s no rookie, he’s the most dangerous man in the locker room. He asks the fans who should face Taker, and it seems like a relative split…
Now Big Show is out! He says he’s faced Taker and lost, but back then, he didn’t have the KO Punch, and that’s all it will take to punch the 20-0 record into oblivion…
And now Sheamus is out! He’s says everyone in the ring has faced and lost to Taker, but Sheamus hasn’t. That means he hasn’t lost to the Phenom. It’ll take more than a punch, a GTS, or a RKO. It’ll take a big boot and a little luck of the Irish, which makes achieving the impossible possible!
EXCUSE ME! Vickie Guerrero out now, and says that whoever defeats the Undertaker at WM will cement their legacy as the greatest of all time. She makes a Fatal Four Way match and the winner…will face the Undertaker at WrestleMania! The four men and Heyman eye one another with the announcement made.
Ryback…is…WALKING! He faces Antonio Cesaro…NEXT!
Non-Title Match: US Champion Antonio Cesaro vs. Ryback
Cesaro, in a pre-match interview, tells us in five languages what a neanderthal Ryback is…yeah, that’ll cheer up the “Human Wrecking Ball” for sure.
Cesaro assaults Ryback early, but Ryback knocks him down. Cesaro propped up in the corner, Ryback lifts him on his shoulder and spins him into a nice Bulldog powerslam for two. Ryback with a stalling vertical suplex for another near fall. Cesaro with a surprise headbutt and boots to Ryback. Ryback flips Cesaro, who lands on the apron and goes up top. Ryback catches him and military presses him for a two count. Cesaro rolls to the outside and Ryback follows. Cesaro tries to catch Ryback coming in, but misses and gets a kick to the head. Ryback looks to ram Cesaro into the turnbuckle, but Antonio reverses and bashes Ryback into the ring post. Boot by Cesaro sens Ryback into the railing, and Ryback looks a little woozy. Antonio peppers Ryback with some rights and roars to the crowd as we go to break…
Cesaro with Ryback in a neck wrench, but Ryback comes back with clotheslines and a big back body drop. He drills Cesaro with a spinebuster. FEED…HIM…MORE! Meathook…European uppercut by Cesaro! Neutralizer…Ryback stops it and picks him up for the Shell-Shock! It connects! Three count!
MUCH better than getting squashed by Orton last week, as Antonio looked to be on equal physical ground until Ryback countered the Neutralizer for the first time.
As Ryback heads to the back, Mark Henry’s music hits, and the two beasts have a very interesting staredown as Henry heads to the ring to make some “old-school” squash next with Zack Ryder.
Mark Henry vs. Zack Ryder
Ryder with right hands and puts the knees up on a corner charge by Henry. Henry pancakes him though, splashes him in the corner and polishes Ryder off with the World’s Strongest Slam.
Methinks Zack better get his resume ready before TNA’s next PPV…
WINNER: Mark Henry
The Fatal Four Way to face the Undertaker at WM 29 is official, and Dolph Ziggler faces The Miz…NEXT!
FAN…DAN…GO GO GO! He premieres (again) tonight on Old School Raw!
The Miz w/Ric Flair vs. Dolph Ziggler w/AJ Lee & Big E. Langston
Miz decides to bring someone out who transcends the Old School into the New School..DA NATURE BOY, RIC FLAIR!
Miz and Ziggler exchange lock-up holds. Ziggler with a boot to Miz. He drives Miz to the corner and lays into the movie star with right hands and boots. He mouths off to Flair, then delivers a chop ala Naitch to Miz. Ziggler pushes it with the strut before Miz drops him with a hard left, then boots him to the floor as Flair’s strutting on the apron and Miz with a (rather bad) struts of his own as we go to break…
Dolph with a nice neckbreaker to Miz for two. We see during the break that Dolph countered Miz’s neckbreaker into a sharp dropkick. Dolph shows off with the headstand headlock. We find out he’ll face off with Del Rio on Smackdown this Friday. Miz fights out with left hands, then he and Ziggler exchange hands before Miz gets the better of it. Dolph counters Miz’s corner clothesline with a float over, but Miz lands on the apron and leapfrogs into a sunset flip for two. Miz with his Reality Check neckbreaker for a near fall. Dolph comes back with an inside cradle for a near fall of his own. Miz chop blocks Ziggler, but Ziggler counters the Figure Four and hits a jumping DDT for a near fall. Miz goes for a boot, but Ziggler dodges and locks in the sleeper hold. Miz seems to be fading…he rolls Ziggler off! Good back-and-forth match we have here. Miz hits the corner clothesline, goes up, and nails the axe handle. He looks for the SCF, but AJ distracts the ref and Big E. with a BIG right hand that drops Miz. Flair goes after Big E. but it looks like his jacket did more damage then his chops and Big E. just shrugs it off and stalks Flair. Miz dropkicks Langston! Doplh rolls up Miz with the tights. 1…2…NO! Miz catches Ziggler on the dropkick attempt! THE FIGURE FOUR IS IN! WOOOO! DOLPH TAPS OUT! Wow!
A shocking (at least in my view) competitive win for Miz, and a likely little love note to Flair on “Old School” Raw.
WINNER: The Miz via submission
The Miz and Flair celebrate old-school with struts and elbow drops! Miz’s struts still need some work…
The Rock-Cena point-counterpoint…is NEXT!
IF YOU SMELLLL…WHAT THE ROCK…IS COOKING!
Here comes the WWE Champion, and the crowd is popping big for the People’s Champion, as always! He’s going “Old School” as well with the “Just Bring It!’ shirt.
Rocky soaks in the cheers for a bit more. The Rock just came in from Panama, where it’s 95 degrees every day. When he came here, he planned on bring his shirts, his boots, his “boots to asses” boots. A woman asked him, “Don’t you need a jacket?” The Rock says he didn’t need no jacket, he’s got electricity coming out him, enough to melt icebergs! When he stepped off the airplane, though, GODDAMN HONEY BOO-BOO it was cold! Cold enough to put ice on the People’s Nipples! He knows, however, that all that means is that after 10 years, FINALLY…THE ROCK HAS COME BACK…TO BUFFALO! As he goes into talking about WM 29, Cena’s music hits…oooh boy, Rocky don’t like that.
Cena couldn’t wait to come out. He’s been waiting for this moment, and the Rock can’t understand why he’s been waiting for this. The Rock’s conquered the Attitude Era, Hollywood, and has conquered the WWE Championship. Unlike the Rock, Cena promised to conquer at WrestleMania last year…but he failed. It makes him want to crawl in a hole. It sent him into a tale-spin throughout 2012. The Rock’s responsible for his downfall, but he’s also responsible for firing Cena up. It’s not a coincidence that Cena won the Rumble and Rock won the WWE Title. This is Cena’s chance to right the biggest wrong of his career and his life, a chance at redemption. He’s not throwing it away this time.
The Rock applauds Cena’s fire, it’s the same fire he saw when Cena defeated Punk last week. He knows it matters to Cena, every time he comes to the ring, salutes, and kisses the dog tag with his family’s names. He knows it matters, and no one would know that more…except for the Rock. His energy, his connection with the fans, it drives him each and every day.
Cena goes on to quote Mike Tyson, “To be the greatest ever, you have to beat everyone living.” Cena’s accomplished everything he’s set out to do in the WWE…except for beating the Rock. History will not repeat itself, and he will win at WM 29.
Rock has an athlete’s quote of his own. “Winning is like heart; you have to have it in the right place.” That athlete? Lance Armstrong, and Cena’s just as full of crap as he is! BURN!
Cena applauds the jab, but promises he will come to WrestleMania and right the wrong. Rock says he just summed up Rock-Cena. Cena thinks he can beat the Rock…The Rock KNOWS he can beat Cena. If you smell, what the Rock…is cooking.
Intense, serious promo from both men, and I hope we keep it that way for the next 34 days.
We get a recap of Undertaker making his intentions known for WM 29, and the Fatal Four Way to decide his opponent!
“Real American” Jack Swagger w/ “Founding Father” Zeb Coulter vs. “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan w/Sgt. Slaughter & “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes
“IF YOU WILL!”
Thought I’d get those out of my system, as Swagger just takes the 2×4 and drills it into Hacksaw, then Slaughter and Dusty, before locking the Patriot Lock on Hacksaw, and the ref has to force him off as Swagger and Zeb look on proudly at their carnage.
WINNER: No Contest
We get another preview of “The Marine 3″ featuring DA MIZ!
Josh Matthews tries to ask Swagger in the back why he assaulted the Legends. Swagger says they haven’t done anything for Jack Swagger’s America…before Del Rio CLUBBERS Swagger from behind and officials have to pull the two apart!
Non-Title Match: Tag Team Champions Team Hell No vs. The Primetime Players
“The Million Dollar Man” Ted DiBiase out at ringside, and the Primetime Players are looking for new management apparently.
Kane and Titus start out. Kane dominates and overpowers Titus, and Young and Bryan tag in now. Bryan with kicks to Young, but misses the corner dropkick. Titus tags in, puts the boots to Bryan and slams him with a loud bark. YOung in, and the Players with a nice double team suplex for two. Young drops some fists ala DiBiase for another two count. Young misses a charge, and Bryan makes the tag to Kane, who is CASA EN FUEGO! Rights to Young, clotheslines in the corners, and a side slam. Top-rope clothesline connects, but Titus breaks up the pinfall. Kane takes Titus over the ropes, and Bryan drills Titus with a knee off the apron. Young up top, but Kane catches him. GOOZLE! CHOKESLAM! Three count!
Don’t see the point of this; are Titus & Young actually feuding with the Tag Champs or jsut fodder. WWE can’t seem to make up their minds.
WINNERS: Team Hell No
DiBiase’s not impressed, but leaves a small tip ($100) for Young. Bryan makes sure they’re not looking…and takes the C-Note! OUTLAW GOAT!
Who’s ready to Shake, Rattle and Roll!
“Sweet T” Tensai & Brodus Clay vs. 3MB
The Honky Tonk Man’s music hits and it looks like he’s about to do a solo for us, but Slater talks him downa and tells him to go back to Vegas with the other Elvis impersonators. Honky Tonk just leaves as McIntyre lays into Tensai with right hands. He misses a charge, and Tensai rolls him up for three! Uh, what?
Yep, 3MB’s dead in the water.
WINNERS: Clay & Tensai
TIME: Less than 1:00
Honky Tonk joins the fab foursome and wants them to dance to his music. Slater objects, and gets a good old KA-BONG! from Honky Tonk Man before the dancing resumes. Shovel it good, Sweet-T!
Next up, the debut of FAN…DAAANGO GO GO!
Kofi in the ring for Fandango’s debut. Some saucy music hits, and an even saucier female dance comes out, followed by Johnny Curt…I mean, FAAAAN…DAAANGO! He insists that Justin Roberts get his name right, and tells him to really express the A’s. Justin tries again and again, but Fandango is disappointed. he says this is the night everyone will remember that Fandango ALMOST graced them with his presence and walks off. Lawler is aghast at Roberts “ruining” FAAAN…DAAANGO’s debut.
We recap Heyman and McMahon’s “fight”, Lesnar seemingly trapping Vince once more, and Triple H triumphantly returning to beat the bejeezus out of Lesnar, busting him open HARD (18 staples hard) and driving off “The Beast.”
Triple H out to a monstrous pop, new haircut, leather jacket, and new t-shirt. Triple H said the last time he had a mic, it was 8 days after Summerslam, after Brock broke his arm again. He said he wasn’t sure if he’d be coming back, and wasn’t sure if he was trying to convince us of that, or himself. The moment the cast was off, he was tearing it up in the gym, but with no real goal in sight. He found himself being in the best shape in years, cutting his hair, and acting as the COO…but then he found himself in a hospital, staring at an old man who had hip surgery thanks to Lesnar, and had to see his wife, children, and grandchildren sit there and cry…
Lesnar thinks it was over at Summerslam, but HHH wants him to feel those 12 (18) stitches and know that Triple H says we’re just getting started. It doesn’t take a genius to see why he’s out here. It’s 5 weeks until the big dance, and he’s calling Lesnar out. Lesnar’s usually the one that does the destruction, but Triple H came out here and destroyed Lesnar. He wants to fight. Does Lesnar want to fight back, or does he want to sit home and bleed?
Intense promos seem to be the flavor of the night, and I’m liking the taste.
We recap The Shield’s assault of Orton and Sheamus, only for Big Show to KO Roman Reigns on instinct when he bumped into the giant…and the Shield retreated!
We get a recorded message from The Shield, who says it’s that time of the season, when everyone’s gearing up for WrestleMania. Sheamus and Orton seem focused on the Undertaker, when they seem to have forgotten someone else with an undefeated streak…The Shield. They have never been stopped, and they warn the two men to watch out, and Reigns says Show got one cheap shot, and that there won’t be another. Ambrose and Rollins wish Orton and Sheamus “luck” and say they’ll see them out there, believe that. BELIEVE…IN THE SHIELD.
Champion vs. Champion: World Champion Alberto Del Rio vs. IC Champion Wade Barrett
Barrett starts out with rights to Del Rio. Alberto reverses a whip. He blocks a kick, props Barrett on the ropes and delivers shots to the back and a Backstabber for two. Swagger and Coulter out now to observe. Del Rio goes to roll Barrett back into the ring. He stares down Swagger, which allows Barrett to drill Del Rio with the Winds of Change and elbow drops for a near fall. Chinlock by barrett, but Del Rio fights out. He looks for the enziguri. Barrett tosses him, and Alberto floats over on to the apron, locking in a cross arm breaker in the ropes! Barrett with a big boot to Del Rio, who falls to the floor. Barrett with knee strikes to Del Rio on the apron, and rolls him back in for a two count. time until Del Rio comes back, hitting clotheslines. Barrett misses a right, and Del Rio with the tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, then a STIFF kick to Barrett for a near fall. Del Rio misses the enziguri again, and Barrett hits a sharp kick to the gut. Pumphandle attempt, but Del Rio floats out, counters a Winds of Change into the Cross Arm Breaker! Barrett struggles, but he has to tap!
Intense, short brawl between the two champions and Barrett looked good, even in the loss.
WINNER: Alberto Del Rio
Swagger and Coulter give us a promo on “Political Correctness”, lamenting how free speech seems to be a thing of the past and how they can’t even express themselves without some sort of political backlash.
OH, YOU DIDN’T KNOW! The D-O-Double G and the B-A-D A-Double crooked letter out and the crowd is loving the return of The New Age Outlaws for the first time in over a decade. He asks “ARE WE READ-just ribbin’ ya!” He introduces himself and Billy as only he can, “THE NEW…AGE…OUTLAWS!”
The New Age Outlaws vs. The Colons w/Rosa Mendes
A kick by Epico to Road Dogg starts it off. Epico misses with a clothesline, though, and Road Dogg lands his punches and a “VINTAGE!” kneedrop for two. Dropkick by Epico stops the fun, though. Double team by Primo and Epico on Road Dogg. Knee drop by Primo and a leg drop by Epico for a two count. Chinlock by Epico and Road Dogg to his feet, nailing a shoulderblock to Epico. Billy Gunn makes the hot tag with a series of clothesline and a slam to Primo. Gunn knocks Epico off the apron and nails Primo with the Fameasser for the three count.
Good bit of nostalgia, and how sad is it that the New Age Outlaws STILL look better than WWE’s current tag team division?
WINNER: The New Age Outlaws
We come back and get a table with cake out in front of the Raw stage with a host of WWE Superstars. Mean Gene Okerlund, the TRUE Voice of the WWE, is introduced to a nice ovation and he introduces WWE Hall Of Famer Mae Young, who is celebrating her 90th birthday. Good for Mae. Everyone starts singing Happy Birthday when CM Punk interrupts (surprise, surprise) and makes his way to the ring for the Fatal Four Way.
Big Show comes out to the ring next.
Randy Orton comes out next.
Finally, Sheamus come out and joins them in the ring.
Fatal Four Way match
CM Punk vs. Randy Orton vs. Big Show vs. Sheamus
Bell sounds. Punk leaves the ring right away. Orton and Sheamus leave and surround him while Show stays in the ring. Punk rolls into the ring and bumps into Show who delivers a headbutt. Sheamus enters the ring and he and Show brawl until Show throws him out. Orton gets on the apron and jawbreakers Show. Show with a headbutt that sends Orton out of the ring. Show grabs Orton and tries to ram him into th turnbuckle, but Orton slides off and tosses Show head first into the post. He goes back in the ring and meets Sheamus. Sheamus and Orton trade punches. Sheamus goes off the ropes and Orton with a backbreaker. Punk slides in the ring and covers Sheamus for a two count. Punk goes back out. Orton whips Sheamus. Sheamus counters ajnd ducks. Orton with a kick. Off the ropes and Sheamus grabs him with the Irish Curse backbreaker. Punk tries to get the pink again, but Orton kicks out. He tries to run, and Sheamus and Orton catch him before throwing him out of the ring. Show heads back in the ring and knocks down Orton and Sheamus.
Punk has Orton down with a knee drop to the face for two. Punk picks Orton up and they trade punches. Punk with a knee to the stomach followed by a whip. Orton explodes with two clotheslines and a powerslam. Orton grabs Punk and hits a t-bone suplex for two. He puts Punk on the apron and goes for a DDT, but Punk tosses Orton over the top. Sheamus gets on the apron and hits a battering ram on Punk for two. Punk gets up on the apron. Sheamus grabs him from behind and lands a 10 count of blows to the chest. Show then grabs Sheamus from behind and hits Final Cut for a two count. Punk gets up and delivers knees to the face of Show. He turns to the fans and taunts them, then turns back and gets hit with the Knock Out punch! Sheamus attacks Show and nails him in the corner. Off the ropes and Sheamus with a running knee lift. Sheamus runs the ropes and lands a flying forearm shot. Sheamus goes to lift Show up, but Show with a headbutt to knock him down. Show climbs the turnbuckle and goes for a splash of the top, but Sheamus rolls out of the way. Sheamus lifts Show up and hits White Noise. He covers and Show kicks out at two.
Sheamus sets up for the Brogue Kick. He runs and Orton with a powerslam out of nowhere for a two count. Orton goes over to Show and Show grabs him by the neck. Sheamus come at him and Show shoves him back before hitting Orton with a chokeslam. Sheamus goes for the Brogue Kick but Show grabs him and hits a chokeslam on Sheamus for two. Show goes for the Knock Out Punch, but Sheamus ducks and hits the Brogue Kick. Show falls out of the ring. Orton gets behind Sheamus and hits the RKO! Punk gets behind Orton and hits a roundhouse kick to the back of the head followed by the GTS for the three count.
Winner via Pinfall: CM Punk
CM Punk will now face The Undertaker at WrestleMania.
The lights go out. The Undertaker comes out and stands at the entrance. CM Punk watches him from within the ring. As the two look at one another the show comes to an end.
Credit: Ken Hill
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