Date: August 19, 2013
Location: Staples Center, Los Angeles, California
Commentators: Michael Cole, Jerry Lawler
The main story here is Brock Lesnar is back, having returned the night after Wrestlemania to start a feud with John Cena. That feud lasted for a month before Lesnar started going after HHH. It wasn’t until three months later, as in tonight, that they’re having their showdown. Other than that we have Punk defending the title against Big Show and Cena and Sheamus defending against Del Rio. Let’s get to it.
Pre-Show: US Title: Antonio Cesaro vs. Santino Marella
A judo throw puts Cesaro down before Santino power walks out of an Irish whip. Must resist country jokes. Santino avoids a charge in the corner and loads up the Cobra but Cesaro takes his head off from behind. The Cobra goes to the floor and Aksana throws it away. Off to a reverse chinlock with Cesaro pulling on Marella’s ears to keep him away from the Cobra. IT’S A FREAKING SOCK! I know Foley used one too but it didn’t seem to have magical powers.
Santino kicks Cesaro away but still can’t get the sock. The gutwrench suplex gets no cover from the challenger, as he would rather rip the Cobra to shreds. Santino pounds away but misses the headbutt. He counters the Neutralizer and pulls out another Cobra, proving THAT IT’S JUST A FREAKING SOCK! Aksana gets on the apron and the Cobra wants her, allowing Cesaro to hit the Neutralizer for the pin and the title.
Rating: D+. IT’S A FREAKING SOCK! Match was ok but the majority of the five minutes were spent on Santino trying to put a sock on his hand so he can use a neck attack taught to him by John Lovitz. I know he’s a comedy character but there’s a point where it’s stupid rather than funny. Santino half crossed that line years ago.
The opening video talks about the twenty five years of Summerslam, meaning we’ll have to hear about how this is the 25th anniversary. The video is interrupted by talk of a storm called Brock Lesnar, which to be fair is the main draw of the show.
Jerry and Cole’s intro is cut off by Vickie’s screeching intro of Ziggler.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Chris Jericho
Dolph is Mr. MITB here and Jericho is freshly face after Ziggler accused him of going soft. Jericho has taped up ribs from an attack at Ziggler’s hands. The fans LOVE Chris and things start fast with the Canadian hitting the jumping back elbow to the jaw. Jericho slips out of the corner on a spinning clothesline but Ziggler escapes a suplex and kicks him in the ribs to take over. Dolph stays on the ribs for a quick two but gets backdropped out to the floor.
Chris’ springboard dive misses as Ziggler casually ducks, sending Jericho crashing to the floor. Ziggler hooks on a chinlock with a bodyscissors to stay on the ribs. A knee to the head gets two for Dolph and a neckbreaker, complete with hip swivel and ARROGANT COVER, gets two more.
Jericho gets a quick cradle for two but Ziggler takes him right back down with a clothesline. Dolph misses a Stinger Splash and Chris goes after him, only to be easily taken down by another shot to the ribs. Not that it matters as he pops up top for the ax handle but Ziggler kicks him in the ribs again. The Fameasser gets two but an enziguri puts Dolph down for two as well. Back and forth match so far here.
Dolph jumps over Chris in the corner and puts on the sleeper which looks horrid here. Jericho rams him into the corner to escape and rains down some right hands before snapping off a top rope hurricanrana. The ribs are damaged even more though, delaying the count by several seconds. A jumping DDT gets two on the Canadian and Ziggler is getting frustrated.
They slug it out with Jericho taking him down via the bulldog but the Lionsault hits knees. The Zig Zag gets two but Dolph can’t follow up. Instead he walks into the Codebreaker to send him to the floor. Jericho throws him in but gets tripped up by Vickie, allowing Ziggler to roll him up for two. Dolph misses a charge into the post and the Walls go on for the submission.
Rating: C+. The idea here was that Jericho couldn’t win the big one anymore. The problem here though is they would have a rematch tomorrow night with Jericho’s contract and Dolph’s case on the line. Why they didn’t have that match here is anyone’s guess but at least it was a good opener and the fans popped for the ending. They had some Shelton vs. HBK from 2005 in there with Jericho fighting a younger version of himself but using his maturity and experience to get the win.
Vickie freaks out over the loss.
We recap Brock breaking Shawn Michaels’ arm on Raw.
Heyman and Brock say Lesnar wins tonight.
Daniel Bryan vs. Kane
It’s amazing that this team started less than a year ago. The fans are already chanting YES and Bryan says NO. It’s amazing how a chant this simple carried Bryan so far. This was set up by GM AJ as revenge against Bryan for jilting her or something. Bryan fires off kicks to start but walks into an uppercut to knock him back. Daniel moonsaults over Kane in the corner but gets kicked in the face to put him down. The low dropkick gets two for Kane but the fans are all behind Daniel.
Another big boot gets two but Bryan comes back with the kicks to the legs, only to be thrown over the top and out to the floor. Bryan slides back in and hits the FLYING GOAT to put Kane down. The missile dropkick drops Kane again and there are more kicks, only to have Kane clothesline his way out of trouble. The side slam gets two and the top rope clothesline looks to set up the chokeslam but Bryan bails to the floor.
Bryan slaps him in the face like a knucklehead, sending Kane through the roof. Bryan is tossed into the corner and stomped down by a furious Kane. The referee drags him away, allowing Bryan to try the NO Lock. Kane powers out so Bryan kicks him in the head. Why overcomplicate things? The flying headbutt is caught in the chokeslam but Kane wants the tombstone, allowing Bryan to counter into a small package for the pin.
Rating: C+. Good match here and you could see the anger management stuff coming. Kane had Bryan beat but wanted revenge and let Bryan catch him off guard. These two obviously had chemistry together and the story would be a big boost to Kane’s career. Also the original idea here was Bryan vs. Charlie Sheen somehow. Thankfully that was never mentioned again.
Kane is going nuts in the back. Josh Matthews comes up to him like the schnook he is and is LAUNCHED off camera in a funny bit.
Intercontinental Title: Rey Mysterio vs. The Miz
Miz is defending and Mysterio is dressed like Batman. Rey grabs a quick rollup for two and the champion bails to the floor for a bit. AJ has promised to deal with Kane for attacking Matthews tomorrow on Raw. Miz throws Mysterio through the ropes to the floor but Rey rolls through to avoid pain. The champion sends him ribs first into the barricade to take over as this isn’t doing much for me so far.
Miz pulls on Rey’s face and puts on a chinlock before hitting something resembling Abyss’ Shock Treatment (torture rack backbreaker) for two. A boot to Rey’s head gets two and it’s off to a cravate for a bit. Miz hits the corner clothesline but spends too much time laughing at the crowd, allowing Rey to crotch him on the top.
Rey’s seated senton is rolled through into a slingshot sitout powerbomb for two from Miz. Rey comes back with a tornado DDT for the same result and a top rope hurricanrana sends Miz into the 619 position. The kick to the face connects but Rey misses the top rope splash. The Skull Crushing Finale is countered into a cradle for a hot two count. A second attempt at the Finale works though to retain Miz’s title.
Rating: C-. This took a long time to get going but it had a few nice moments at the end. Both of these guys fell so far in just a year as both guys were fighting for the world title just a year ago. The match wasn’t bad but it didn’t do much for me. It was one of those matches that came and went and I won’t think about it again an hour from now.
Teddy Long and Eve, the bosses of Smackdown, leave AJ’s office and seem to approve of what she’s doing. They leave and Punk goes in to find a smiling AJ. Punk doesn’t like the idea of being in a triple threat for the title tonight and thinks it’s happening as revenge for him rejecting AJ’s proposal. AJ just stares off into space and Punk accuses her of disrespecting him but she doesn’t move an inch.
We recap Alberto Del Rio vs. Sheamus. These two feuded FOREVER and Del Rio never did much of anything. He complained about Sheamus not being high class so Sheamus stole Del Rio’s car. Fake cops beat up Sheamus and that’s about it. It’s as boring of a feud as it sounds.
Smackdown World Title: Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio
Sheamus is defending. Feeling out process to start with both guys tumbling out to the floor. Back in and Sheamus hits a quick neckbreaker and the rolling senton for two each. Sheamus puts him on the top rope for a belly to back superplex but Alberto gets onto Sheamus’ shoulder to escape. The buckle pad is pulled off in the process. Del Rio can’t hook the armbreaker so he kicks Sheamus out to the floor instead. Sheamus is sent knee first into the steps as the crowd is DEAD.
Back in and Del Rio hits a flying shoulder block for two before hooking the chinlock. A kick to the head gets two on the champion and we hit the chinlock. That goes nowhere so Del Rio mocks Sheamus’ chest pounding before the Brogue Kick, only to have Sheamus ax handle him in the head. Sheamus goes up but a kick to the let puts him down again. A kick to the arm gets two for Alberto and the armbreaker goes on, FINALLY waking the fans up.
Sheamus of course is barely phased by it and rolls onto Del Rio to break the pressure. He picks Alberto up into a kind of powerbomb to break the hold, earning himself a chant from the crowd. White Noise gets two and Sheamus avoids a charge in the corner, setting up the forearms in the ropes. Sheamus pounds down right hands in the corner but gets dropped face first onto the exposed buckle. The enziguri in the corner is good for two so Del Rio yells at Ricardo. Rodriguez throws in a shoe but Sheamus intercepts it to knock Ricardo out cold. The Irish Curse hits for the pin, ignoring Del Rio’s foot being on the rope. REMATCH!
Rating: D+. The match was decent but it never felt like Sheamus was in any real danger. The drop onto the exposed buckle and the enziguri got a near fall, but it didn’t feel like a close near fall; It felt like it was there because this is where we’re supposed to have a dramatic kick out if that makes sense. It’s not bad but this feud didn’t need to continue at all.
We hear about Mike Tyson and Piers Morgan having a Twitter war over the main event. I’ve got nothing.
We get a clip from the pre show where HHH tells the referee that the match isn’t ending on a countout or a DQ.
Tag Titles: Prime Time Players vs. Kofi Kingston/R-Truth
I don’t remember Kofi and Truth being champions AT ALL. Truth and Young get us going as the fans chant Kobe Bryant, referencing the joke that got AW fires. Young is taken down by an armdrag and a legdrop gets two for Truth. Truth has to fight out of the corner but gets caught in the face by a big boot for two. Back up and Truth hits a great side kick to take Titus’ head off and get himself a breather. Off to Kofi to speed things up as the crowd still isn’t all that interested.
Kofi chops O’Neil down but a Young distraction lets the challengers take over. Titus clotheslines Kofi down for two before suplexing Young onto Kofi’s back for two. A snap powerslam gets the same for Darren and it’s back to Titus for an abdominal stretch. That goes nowhere so Titus loads up a spinout Rock Bottom, only to be pulled dowin into a DDT. Hot tag brings in Truth to clean house and everything breaks down. Titus is sent to the floor and caught by a Kofi dive, allowing Truth to hit Little Jimmy on Darren to retain the titles.
Rating: D+. This could have been on any given Raw. The Players are a decent team but Titus is clearly the star with Young just being there. Kofi and Truth are just transitional champions before HELL NO would take the championships a few weeks later. Nothing to see here other than a filler before we get to the main events.
Video on Summerslam Axxess.
We recap the Raw World Title match. Punk won the title at Survivor Series but got angry over Rock vs. Cena being announced as the main event of Wrestlemania 28 a year in advance. Cena cashed in the MITB case at Raw 1000 but Big Show cost Cena the match. AJ made it a three way for the sake of tormenting Punk (now a heel demanding respect) for turning down her proposal.
Punk’s complaints about how the title should be the focus and how he wasn’t getting respect are why his heel turn didn’t go well: those are logical points and heels aren’t supposed to be logical. WWE failing to get this is the source of a lot of their problems. Heels are supposed to be bullies or maniacal in their delusions, not making thought out rational points.
Raw World Title: John Cena vs. CM Punk vs. Big Show
Punk is defending. Show knocks down both smaller guys as Cole talks about Punk not main eventing a show since December despite holding the title the entire time. Good point actually. The LOUD chop hits both Cena and Punk’s chests twice each with Big Show in total control. They finally work together but Show easily suplexes them both down. Cena is crushed in the corner, knocking him out to the floor so it’s Punk vs. Show one on one.
Punk wisely takes out the knee and fires off kicks to the chest as the fans are entirely behind him. The smart moves are canceled out though as Punk tries a GTS with the obvious result. Cena tries an AA but the powers of gravity take him down to the mat, crushing Cena’s head against the mat. Show chops Punk down in the corner and knocks Cena out to the floor. Punk avoids a splash but tries a springboard cross body like a schnook, earning that powerslam he gets.
The Final Cut puts Punk down but Cena breaks up the WMD, earning himself a spear from the giant for two. Show loads up a double Vader Bomb but only hits Cena, allowing Punk to springboard onto Show for the save. Everyone heads to the floor with Big Show chokeslamming Punk against the ropes, sending him back to the floor. Show drops Cena with a side slam but stares at the crowd instead of covering. Maybe someone was holding up a Twinkie?
Cena actually hits a belly to back suplex on Show and loads up the Shuffle, only to have Punk charge in for the save. The champion drops the Macho Elbow for two on Show but gets launched away. Since covering hasn’t worked, Punk puts on a modified Koji Clutch but Show easily powers out. The crowd has DIED for some reason. Cena comes back in and shoulders Show down, bringing them right back to life.
There’s the STF on Show but the big man stands up to break the hold. Punk comes in with a springboard clothesline to take Show down again, followed by three straight knees to the head in the corner. The bulldog is easily countered (of course) but Cena hits the top rope Fameasser to put the giant down.
We get a Koji Clutch/STF combo and Show taps, but we have no clear winner. This brings out AJ (Punk: “DO THE RIGHT THING LIKE SPIKE LEE! LET THE PEOPLE DECIDE! THEY CAN TWEET ABOUT IT!”) who eventually says restart the match, allowing Show to hit a double chokeslam for two on each guy. Cena ducks the WMD and hits the AA, but Punk throws him to the floor and steals the pin to retain.
Rating: C. The match was ok with the logical story but it was nothing we hadn’t seen before. The restart was pretty dumb as well as Big Show shouldn’t have had a chance to win the title after tapping out. Cena vs. Punk would continue for months which would make for some great matches, but this wasn’t anything special. Not bad at all though.
Various B level celebrities are here. Maria Menunos in a Bob Backlund shirt works very well.
Trailer for whatever WWE’s latest movie is at the point. The Day. Ok then.
We recap the pre-show match to fill in time.
Kevin Rudolf sings the theme song.
We recap the main event. Basically Lesnar tried to hold the company hostage by renaming Raw to Monday Night Raw Starring Brock Lesnar. HHH stood up to him and got a broken arm as a result. Brock broke Shawn Michaels’ arm as well to make it a domestic issue for HHH. This was one of those feuds that people weren’t all that thrilled to see but it could have been worse. More on that later.
Brock Lesnar vs. HHH
Every time I watch a Brock Lesnar match I remember how scary of a human being he is. We get spotlights for the big match intros in a cool idea. Remember that HHH told the referee to allow a lot of fighting tonight. Lesnar powers HHH into the corner to start and goes for a standing kimura (arm lock that he used to break the arm) with a jumping body scissors. HHH though is a MAN and powers out of it before clotheslining Brock to the floor. Back in and Brock pounds away, only to be clotheslined to the floor again. You know, because Cena can be in a war with Brock at Extreme Rules but HHH can easily stop him.
Brock comes back in and takes the MMA gloves off before taking HHH down to the mat with an amateur move. They head outside with HHH shrugging off Brock’s attacks and pounding away, only to be dropped arm first onto the announce table. Lesnar eventually drags HHH back in for a hammerlock slam. Back to the standing kimura with Brock wrapping the arm around the ropes and ramming it into the corner.
A release German suplex puts HHH down again but he comes back with a neck snap across the ropes. Brock is taken down by a DDT but he goes right back to the kimura and another hammerlock slam. They head to the floor with the arm going into the steps and the rest of HHH going into the announce table. Brock jumps off the table onto the Game before taking him back inside. Of all things, Lesnar busts out a small package for a one count. A hard clothesline puts HHH down but he blocks a suplex into one of his own to get a breather.
Brock misses a charge into the corner but blocks a Pedigree and throws HHH out to the floor. HHH sends him into the announce table stomach first, which is a weak spot due to some real life past illnesses which ended his UFC career for all intents and purposes. More shots to the stomach have Brock in trouble and a knee to the ribs puts him down. Heyman is losing his mind and Brock is in trouble.
The spinebuster puts Brock down and there’s the Pedigree for two. A low blow puts HHH down and Heyman screams that this was HHH’s idea. The F5 is good for two and Brock is stunned. I have no idea why, as you know you can’t get a win off one finisher in WWE. Now the kimura goes on again with a bodyscissors but a rope break means nothing. Instead HHH pretty easily punches his way out of it and hits another Pedigree. Thankfully Brock no sells it and puts on the kimura, breaking the arm again and drawing the submission.
Rating: C+. The match is ok but it has one major flaw: it’s BORING. You don’t bring in Brock Lesnar to have him go toe to toe with HHH. You bring him in to have him destroy small cities and eat villagers. That’s the issue here. We went from Cena surviving against an insane Brock Lesnar to HHH having Brock in trouble in a dull match. Lesnar didn’t seem insane here at all and it made for a much less interesting match. Also, Cena won with a Hail Mary shot, where as HHH can slug it out with Lesnar? That just doesn’t hold up at all. Somehow this would be the high point, as this feud went on another TEN MONTHS.
Here’s the main event if you haven’t seen it in a long time.
Naturally HHH gets the big heroic stand up in the ring, but instead of people giving him a standing ovation they tell him that he tapped out. HHH stands there until people finally applaud him. He apologizes to the fans and slowly walks out. I guess this is supposed to be like Austin at Wrestlemania 13 but it’s just failing. The speculation is that HHH is leaving for good. If you bought that, raise your hand to show how gullible you are.
Overall Rating: C-. This is an interesting show as most of the matches are ok but nothing goes beyond that level. Most of this show would be classified as ok at best and uninteresting at worst. It’s just kind of there with nothing memorable other than HHH DEMANDING to give us his moment at the end. Nothing to see here and not worth checking out.
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