Monday Night Raw
Date: December 29, 2014
Location: Verizon Center, Washington D.C.
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler, John Bradshaw Layfield

It’s the final show of the year and WWE has managed to double book the show. There’s a house show in Virginia tonight, meaning a lot of the roster is going to be there instead of here for Raw. We do however have Cena and Lesnar guaranteed and the potential debut of the Ascension to keep us until the full roster is back to start the new year.  Also in some breaking news, Daniel Bryan has a major announcement which could mean retirement.  Let’s get to it.

We open with a clip of Edge’s retirement a little less than four years ago. That was such a shocking moment and actually got to me a little bit. He and Christian are hosting tonight, which should be a lot of fun if they just let those two have fun.

Here are Edge and Christian to open things up. Chimmel (before doing the voice cracking deal) lists off their resumes and it’s hilarious to hear how much more Edge accomplished as a singles guy. Christian thinks we should have this show E&C style, which Edge, who appears to be wearing a Sami Zayn shirt, likes. That means we should have a special edition of the Peep Show, which Edge doesn’t like. Why not have it be the Cutting Edge instead of something that sounds like a perverted idea from the 1920s? Instead it’s going to be a Cutting Edge Peep Show with special guest Seth Rollins.

The fans aren’t thrilled, so Edge makes Rollins vs. Reigns to make them feel better. It’s Christian’s turn now as he makes Rusev vs. Ziggler in a Champion vs. Champion match……and they’ll both be completely naked? Christian: “Maybe just Lana then?” He tries to get the fans back by asking if the fans would like to see Daniel Bryan and I’ll let you guess the reaction. We’ll wrap it up with a five second pose, but here’s Brock Lesnar instead. Of note here, Lawler says that both Edge AND Christian are retired, which I believe is the first official confirmation for Christian.

Heyman says both guys are too damaged to be in the same ring with someone like Lesnar, so Brock won’t hurt either of them. Instead, Heyman thinks Lesnar wants to “penetrate the virgin neck” of John Cena. Cue Cena as the Canadians kind of hide in the corner. Cena isn’t going to knock Lesnar into 2015 so he doesn’t have an excuse at the Rumble. He does have a new year’s resolution to take that title off him at the Rumble. Cena grabs Heyman by the throat but throws a charging Lesnar up for the AA, only for the champ to bail to the floor.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Rusev

Non-title. Ziggler gets in a few cheap shots to start but Rusev nails him in the face to take over. This time the announcers talk about how no one has beaten Rusev, but don’t suggest Ziggler could be the one to beat him. Instead they’re too busy getting in Ziggler buzzwords like “stealing the show”, because getting in buzzwords and catchphrases has replaced the idea of actually calling a match. Ziggler comes back with a dropkick and the swinging DDT as we head to a break.

Back with Rusev in control and putting on a side choke instead of having one on already. We get a full screen replay of Ziggler getting catapulted into the corner from the App, which isn’t the worst idea during a chinlock. Dolph fights up and tries a high cross body, only to get caught in the fall away slam. Ziggler escapes that as well and nails a middle rope dropkick to put both guys down. He tries something like the Stinger Splash (which may or may not be a tribute) but has to settle for ducking the superkick and nailing the Fameasser.

It might have injured his knee though, allowing Rusev to throw him by the leg into the corner for a smart move. What isn’t a smart move though is trying a splash when Ziggler is down in the corner. Moves like that just get on my nerves because there is no logical reason to try something like that. A kick (clearly missing) to the knee has Ziggler in trouble and Rusev stomps away in the corner for the DQ at 10:10.

Result: Dolph Ziggler b. Rusev via DQ when Rusev wouldn’t stop attacking in the corner (10:10)

Rusev puts Ziggler in the Accolade in the ropes (doesn’t really add anything) until Ryback makes the save.

Time to insult fans who are still buying the pay per views, because telling someone they’re an idiot for giving you $55 is certainly going to make them want to pay you $10 a month right?

Ryback is still in the ring after a break and he has something to say. Ever since he debuted in the WWE as Ryback (his words), there are a lot of things about him that you don’t know about him. He was a guest bell ringer at his first WWE show when he was twelve years old. Then ten years ago he got his start on Tough Enough as the Silverback. We get a clip of Ryback, then known as Ryan Reeves, being eliminated.

After that, he lost his dream job and fell into a deep depression. He didn’t talk to his family for over a year and got a job at some barbecue joint in Louisville, Kentucky with only a stack of Wrestlemania DVDs to get him through his time. Then he read a book called the Secret on being positive. It changed his life and shortly thereafter he got rehired by WWE, leading to him making his redebut as part of the Nexus. We see a clip of the awesome Nexus beatdown that introduced us to the Meat Hook.

Then he broke his ankle and leg in three places in a match in Hawaii and missed a long, long time. This led to the debut of the Ryback character, which leads us to a package on Ryback’s domination. Now he’s here, which brings Ryback to Rusev. This isn’t about the USA vs. Russia. It’s about one big guy beating up another big guy, because Ryback likes to eat big negative people. Then he looks at someone like Rusev and says FEED ME MORE.

Nikki Bella vs. Natalya

The idea here was that Tyson was wearing a Nikki Bella hat last week and Natalya isn’t happy. To continue the annoying run of commentary buzzwords and terms, Cole says a win here could put Natalya in the title hunt. Not that it matters as Natayla kicks Nikki off the apron and into Tyson’s arms, only to have the distraction let Nikki hit the Rack Attack for the pin at 1:05. So much for Natalya’s push.  Cole: “Let’s see how things play out on Total Divas this Sunday!”

Result: Nikki Bella b. Natalya – Rack Attack (1:05)

Naomi comes up to hug Miz in the back, because the producers want to meet with her. She even wishes him luck in the title defense against the Usos.

John Cena came in seventh in some celebrity charity deal that no one has heard of nor cares about.

Tag Team Titles: Usos vs. Miz/Damien Mizdow

This is the TLC rematch due to Miz using the Slammy Award for the DQ. The best thing of this match: JBL dubs Mizdow’s small titles the Subtitles. The Usos aren’t in shirts for a change. Miz hides from Jimmy in the corner to start and of course the fans want Mizdow. They feel each other out a bit until Jimmy sends Miz into the corner for a nice running splash. Off to Jey who eats a chinlock as the announcers, I kid you not, actually talk about the match. Jey goes into slow motion for an uppercut to Miz’s jaw before slapping on an armbar.

An even slower double atomic drop have Miz in trouble but Mizdow comes in to do the same motions. He’s dedicated if nothing else. Both champions go to the floor and the Usos aren’t sure what to think. Jimmy loads up the dive but gets snapped across the top, setting up Miz’s big boot for two. Back from a break with Miz in control on Jey but not willing to tag Mizdow. Jey misses an enziguri but makes the hot tag just seconds later. Now the big dive connects but Jimmy comes up favoring his arm or wrist. I always worry about things like that on those dives.

It doesn’t seem bad, but Miz nails the low DDT for two. Jey and Mizdow are nowhere to be seen and both guys are down. We see Mizdow down on the floor, but for once he isn’t mimicking Miz. There’s the Figure Four on Jimmy but he finally makes the rope. Still no sign of Jey. Another Figure Four attempt is countered into Konnan’s Tequila Sunrise but Mizdow comes in for the save.

It’s Mizdow eating a superkick but Miz grabs a rollup for two. The superkick drops Miz but the Superfly Splash hits Miz’s knees. The Skull Crushing Finale plants Jey for…..two? That’s not a move you see kicked out of that often. Think about it for a second. Almost no one kicks out of that. The hot tag brings in Jimmy for another superkick and a mostly missed double superkick sets up Jimmy’s Superfly Splash to give us new champions at 13:06.

Result: Usos b. Miz/Damien Mizdow – Superfly Splash to Miz (13:06)

Naomi comes out to celebrate and the Usos say they’re going to have a big party with JR’s barbecue and champagne. Jimmy says they played Miz to get where they are here and nothing major happens. Cool surprise here and I’d assume it sets up Usos vs. Ascension.

The announcers hype up Bryan’s announcement and imply he’s going to retire.

Video on Shield splitting and the beginnings of Reigns vs. Rollins to set up their match tonight.

Cesaro is in the corner ala Raven for his match but has a mic because he has a few things to get off his chest. 2014 should have been his year. He won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal at Wrestlemania, but now WWE is telling him that he doesn’t connect. That’s true, because he delivers instead of connect. And who does he not connect with? The WWE Universe? He doesn’t care about connecting with them, because he doesn’t care about anything except what happens in this ring. No one in WWE can hold a candle to him inside this ring, and if anyone back there doubts him, come out here and make his day.

Cesaro vs. Bad News Barrett

Barrett: “It’s me it’s me it’s BNB!” He has some bad news for Cesaro: Cesaro may not care about caring with the fans, but this Bull Hammer is connecting with his head. Cesaro nails him in the face to start and stomps Barrett down in the corner. Barrett looks leaner here and seems to be playing to the crowd like a face for the first time. He knocks Cesaro to the floor but gets dropped face first onto the barricade.

Back in and a very nice top rope ax handle drops Barrett, but the announcers are of course ripping on Cesaro for slipping up and saying no one can touch him inside “these four ropes”. You know, because…..well you get the idea by now. Cesaro hits a great looking German suplex but Barrett kicks him in the side of the head for two. The pumphandle slam is countered into the Cesaro Swing but he pops up with the Bull Hammer for the pin at 3:40.

Result: Bad News Barrett b. Cesaro – Bull Hammer (3:40)

Harper is in the dark again and says people like him are thrown aside like trash. He is a product of our environment and a nightmare come to life. Sweet dreams.

Jack Swagger vs. Luke Harper

Harper knocks him into the corner to start and cranks on Jack’s head a bit. A nice dropkick gets two and we hit the Gator Roll. Jack is able to take it outside though and nails a clothesline as we take a break. Back with Harper holding a chinlock and kicking Jack hard enough that JBL stops mocking Cole and calls the match. We hit another chinlock as the filler for this show continues.

Swagger fights up and hits the usual to set up the Patriot Lock. You know Luke isn’t tapping to that though so it’s a superkick for two. Harper touches the sides of his own head like he’s hearing voices for a bizarre bit that totally fits him. The Patriot Lock gets the same result but the Vader Bomb hits knees. Harper’s discus lariat (JBL: “Clothesline From Smell!”) is enough for the pin at 9\:46.

Result: Luke Harper b. Jack Swagger – Discus lariat (9:46)

We recap the opening segment.

Cena is talking about the old times in the back with Edge and Christian until Christian brings up the time Edge beat up Cena’s dad. He leaves before death ensues and Cena and Edge have a nice feel good moment to I guess officially bury the hatchet. Wasn’t that buried liked five years ago?

Seth Rollins vs. Roman Reigns

Big Show is on commentary. Rollins is tentative to start and gets shoved out to the floor for his efforts. They seem to be treating this like a big deal, which is exactly what they should be doing. These guys are going to be the future of the company and a showdown should matter. Back in and Roman goes after the arm for some psychology, including a ram into the buckle.

Big Show says Rollins is the future and should be the Superstar of the Year. For once I actually agree with him. Reigns runs into a boot in the corner and they head outside for a change. It’s Rollins sending him into the corner and we hit the chinlock back inside. Show isn’t exactly being impartial on commentary but he’s actually entertaining by just cheering for Rollins.

Roman fights up and hits a nice powerbomb to send Rollins outside yet again. That goes nowhere so Reigns puts him in the ropes for the Apron Kick. That’s still a cool looking spot, but a distraction by the Stooges lets Rollins knock him into the barricade as we take a break. Back with, of course, Reigns in a chinlock. Seth starts changing strategy by kicking the knee out dropkicking Reigns for two. That ends our interesting idea phase as it’s back to the chinlock. Reigns fights up again but we hit chinlock #3 in about two minutes. No following up on the leg kick or anything. Just another chinlock.

The hold is escaped again but Rollins downward spirals him down into the buckle, only to eat a tilt-a-whirl powerslam for two. A belly to back slam gets the same as Big Show is still playing cheerleader. Rollins pops back up with an enziguri and low superkick for two as both guys are down again. This match really doesn’t have the energy that it should, but the fans haven’t been all that interested in most of the stuff they’ve seen all night. The Curb Stomp misses and Roman sidesteps the springboard knee, setting up the Superman Punch. Not that it matters as Big Show comes in for the DQ at 16:20.

Result: Roman Reigns b. Seth Rollins via DQ when Big Show interfered (16:20)

Big Show throws Reigns over the announcers’ table and shoves all the equipment on top of him. Cole makes a big point of Reigns’ leg being crushed so this might be an injury angle.

Post break, Rollins promises to offer a New Year’s toast to John Cena on the Cutting Edge Peep Show.

We recap Wyatt vs. Ambrose, who will be having an ambulance match next week.

Bray Wyatt, sitting in the back of an ambulance, says everything must come full circle, like an ambulance taking you to a place where life begins an ends. It all ends next week but Dean died long ago. Bray and Bray alone has his soul. He closes the doors and the ambulance drives away.

Here’s Bryan, who JBL declares as being back despite not being gone more than a few weeks at most. Daniel says it’s an honor to be in this ring every single time. Who would have thought that a small kid from Aberdeen, Washington who was labeled a B+ player could have main evented Wrestlemania? No one, except for the fans. Thanks to the people, he beat HHH, Randy Orton and Batista in one night in front of 75,000 people. Five days later, he married the woman of his dreams to complete the greatest week of his life.

Then everything changed. Two days after their honeymoon ended, his dad died. Bryan was here wrestling that night and wasn’t there for his dad. Then a few weeks later, he had a career changing neck injury, and all he could do was sit at home on his couch and watch. All he wanted to do was be here in front of these people competing because it’s all that can take the pain away. He’s starting to cry as he says this.

No one cheered louder than he did when Ziggler got rid of the Authority. It was a great moment but it hurt because he couldn’t be there in the ring. He talked to everyone including Edge, who knows a thing or two about career ending injuries. You reach a point where you have to think about making a decision. He isn’t sure if all of this is worth it or not.

The fans all say NO, but Bryan wanted to make this announcement in front of all of the people. Is his career over? NO. That is not his announcement, because he is ready to fight and compete. His announcement: he will be in the 2015 Royal Rumble! Now THAT woke the crowd up.

Edge and Christian are playing the kazoos when Miz and Mizdow come up. Christian says Miz needs a Tic Tac and Edge has a puppet for a stunt double. They’ll be getting a rematch tonight…..but not for the title and not against the Usos. Mizdow is watching the puppet.

Miz/Damien Mizdow vs. Ascension

We already open with a gaffe, as the Ascension’s combined weight is listed as 480lbs but Cole says Konnor weighs 290 and Viktor 240. Miz immediately hides on the floor, leaving Mizdow to take a big power beating. The Fall of Man (high/low with a running back elbow from Viktor) is enough for the pin at 1:10. This worked.

Result: Ascension b. Miz/Damien Mizdow – Fall of Man to Mizdow (1:10)

Rollins would like Lesnar to join he and Cena in the ring next.

It’s time for the first ever Cutting Edge Peep Show with special guest the Walking Pile of Suck (Christian came up with that one) Seth Rollins. The Stooges come out carrying champagne and are dubbed the Geek Squad by the Canadians. Rollins says Edge and Christian pioneered a generation and he might not be here without then. Edge and Christian see this as condescending, but Rollins goes on to talk about what a great year he had.

He ended the Shield, won Money in the Bank, should have been named Superstar of the Year, and has become the future of WWE. Who else has had a better year? “Cena?” “Daniel Bryan?” “Sting?” Edge: “The Doctor of Style Slick?” Christian: “He was a jive soul bro who always lied to his friends.” Rollins, somewhat bewildered by the reference, says he wants to start a new year. The old Seth Rollins is dead and it’s going to be a new version next year.

First of all, Rollins would like Big Show to come out here. Show comes out applauding Rollins, but Rollins gets nothing when he requests Cena. Edge thinks it’s due to Rollins’ lack of charisma. Apparently Rollins wouldn’t have charisma if he had a live sex celebration right here with Big Show. Seth still wants Cena out here and nails Christian with the briefcase. Edge gets in his face but is surrounded and injured.

The villains put Edge’s head onto the briefcase until Cena runs down to ringside. Rollins stops him at ringside and says Cena knows what Seth wants. The announcers point out that Rollins wants the Authority back as Seth says Edge is a husband and father. If Cena wants Edge to be with his wife and play with his kid, Cena better give Rollins what he wants. Let’s find out if Cena is Mr. Hustle, Loyalty and Respect. Bring the Authority back or Edge gets paralyzed.

Cena finally says ok but Rollins makes Noble go to him with a mic to make sure it’s clear. John confirms that the Authority is back but Rollins loads up the Curb Stomp anyway. Cena comes in for the save but the numbers are too high. The Curb Stomp lays out Cena as Big Show tries to start an Authority chant. Lesnar and Heyman come out as Rollins and Big Show celebrate. Heyman shakes Rollins’ hand and the Authority just happens to be here to celebrate. They were there the night after Survivor Series, so they weren’t even gone five weeks. JBL is thrilled to end the show.


Dolph Ziggler b. Rusev via DQ when Rusev wouldn’t stop stomping in the corner

Nikki Bella b. Natalya – Rack Attack

Usos b. Miz/Damien Mizdow – Superfly Splash to Miz

Bad News Barrett b. Cesaro – Bullhammer

Luke Harper b. Jack Swagger – Discus lariat

Roman Reigns b. Seth Rollins via DQ when Big Show interfered

Ascension b. Miz/Damien Mizdow – Fall of Man to Mizdow

Make sure to join us on Thursday at 4pm EST for NXT.

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