AJ Lee is not impressed by your signage.
Punk! Cena! Show! Respect! Knockouts! WWE Championship!
Last Monday's Raw (Aug. 6) ended with CM Punk demanding respect from the WWE Universe and promising that he will be closing every show holding the WWE Championship high in the air. This was followed by a WMD from Big Show and we faded to black with both Punk and John Cena on the canvas while Show stood tall.
Because this is something that makes sense.
I understand WWE wants to build up Show as a monster. It would seem foolish for him to be in the main event of SummerSlam if he had no chance to win. But I'm still not sure why he's in the championship match to begin with. Punk vs. Cena is the major draw. It's not like their having a match at SummerSlam would preclude them from facing off again at Night of Champions, or any other pay-per-view (PPV) between now and the Royal Rumble in January next year, where The Rock will challenge the WWE Champion, whomever that may be. Yet here Show is, knocking out two of the top figures to close Raw.
Makes you wonder if Cena was actually supposed to win Money in the Bank, no?
Nevertheless, here we are, just six days away from SummerSlam. If Show got to close Raw last week, it would make sense that the show will fade to black on either Cena or Punk tonight. Pay close attention to whom that man is. The myth has always been that whoever ends the go home show will find himself taking the loss at the PPV.
Lets see if that myth holds strong.
The rest of the show after the jump.
Bryan! AJ! Kane! Sneak Attacks! Boyfriend Material!
On last Friday's Smackdown, AJ Lee demanded that Daniel Bryan and Kane shake hands and promise to have a clean fight at SummerSlam. However, when she was leaving the ring, the new Raw General Manager gave Kane a little wink. The "Big Red Machine" took his cue and proceeded to beat the crap out of Bryan until "The ‘NO' Man" ran out of the building. It seems that AJ and Kane were working together all along.
Pretty sneaky, sis.
So Bryan and Kane will battle it out for the love and affection for the lovely AJ, although neither of them will admit it. Bryan will try to right the wrongs he committed while dating AJ, and Kane has always gravitated to a position of power. It's a fun storyline featuring the best talent on the roster, the newfound star of Raw, and a giant who knows his place in the upper midcard. Everyone has been playing their role to perfection, and it would be a safe guess that they will continue to tonight and into SummerSlam.
Bryan is the heel in this situation, so he will probably find himself on the losing end when all is said and done. But he has been getting the most airtime out of anyone. As much as we want him to be in the title picture, this is a solid alternative.
Trips! Lesnar! Michaels! Heyman! Advancement? Who Knows!
We got a 10-minute segment from Triple H, Brock Lesnar, Shawn Michaels, and Paul Heyman last week with everyone talking about how they'll kick everyone's ass, yet no asses were actually kicked. So going by my "How often will Trips/Lesnar make an appearance" chart, we should get 5 replays and maybe a Heyman cameo. Lesnar is supposed to beat the tar out of Michaels before SummerSlam, but who knows if they will actually have the "Ass Kicking War Machine" show up on Raw or if they will figure out a way to do it without using up one of Lesnar's contracted dates.
I understand they are trying to go with a Triple H vs. Undertaker approach, but it really just doesn't work here. First off, no one actually cared about the build up to that match. Triple H could have showed up the week before WrestleMania 28, called out Undertaker, asked politely for a rematch, and we all would have been stoked. The excitement was for the match itself. Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar has been about two clashing characters, but right now I'm not sure if anyone really cares about them.
Second, Lesnar is literally the poster boy for SummerSlam. If you are trying to get people to buy the PPV because of him, you might as well try to make him look as strong as you can.
Sheamus! Del Rio! Booker! Fake Cops! Repercussions! World Heavyweight Championship!
On Friday's SmackDown, Sheamus was attacked by what seemed like uniformed officers before his scheduled match with Alberto Del Rio. He bravely fought them off, but was eventually overpowered. WWE.com is quick to point out, though that the men were actually Del Rio's "cronies" who were only "disguised as police officers." So why even have them dress up as cops in the first place?
Random people interfere in matches all the time. It's not like Bob the security guard is actually going to look up from his coffee and donut to check anyone's ID. Have them wear WWE shirts. Have them in plain clothes. Hell, put the lot of them in Sheamus' Hooligans shirt. It doesn't actually matter. But the WWE just had their number two babyface beat down what looked to be a group of police officers. That's just dumb.
Also, Booker T has pulled Del Rio from his championship match at SummerSlam, with the assumption that Randy Orton might be put in his spot. More importantly, though, the WWE.com article mentioned earlier questions the "precedent" that the SmackDown GM like it's the bloody Commerce Clause. He's a WWE authority figure. I'm pretty sure he can do anything he wants until The Board says otherwise.
At least, that's how I think it works.
Hopefully this has helped get you prepared for the nights activities. Leave a comment about what you are looking forward to, make sure to follow the action @CagesideSeats, please join Nolan, myself, and the whole Monday Night gang during the live blog here, and join us after the show for the Cageside Live podcast here.