Monday, February 06, 2006

Raw Report

Date: 02/06/06 from Atlanta, GA.

The Big News: Edge and John Cena will wrestle next week for the WWE Title with Mick Foley as the special referee, while HHH, Chris Masters, Rob Van Dam and Big Show remain alive in the tournament to determine the challenger for the title at WrestleMania.

Title Changes/Turns: None.

Match Results: Chris Masters b Kane; Ashley b Mickie James; Triple H b Ric Flair; Big Show b Shelton Benjamin; Rob Van Dam b Carlito Caribbean Cool; John Cena & Maria b Edge & Lita.

Show Analysis:

Maria introduced Edge and Lita. Edge told her to shut up, and said he has a title rematch with John Cena next week. He said there is speculation as to Lita’s motivations last week, but only Lita can answer, and she wouldn’t say. Edge vowed to win back the title, and told Maria not to announce him as former WWE champion any more. Maria said he should be happy to be former WWE champion. Lita got in Maria’s face and told her to label Edge future WWE champ, so she did.

Hacksaw Jim Duggan came out, and suggested he should be the referee for the title match. Edge didn’t like this idea. Duggan called Lita a ho, so Edge jumped Duggan and hit him with the 2x4. Lita slapped Maria and threw her by the hair. Edge was going to spear Maria, but Cena made the save in the spot set up to guarantee Cena be cheered. He still got significant boos from a large portion of the crowd for save a woman from being speared.

Chris Masters beat Kane in the first match in the tournament for the WrestleMania title shot. Kane missed an elbow drop, and was caught with an elbow. Masters dropped Kane on the top turnbuckle, and unsuccessfully went for the Masterlock. Kane answered with punches, a big boot, clotheslines, and a side slam. Kane went for the clothesline off the top, but Masters sidestepped and went for the Masterlock. Kane got out and went for the choke slam, but Masters escaped. Masters rolled up Kane and grabbed the ropes for the pin.

Backstage, Edge suggested Lita as the special referee for next week to Vince McMahon. McMahon wasn’t convinced Lita would be an impartial referee, so Edge encouraged Lita to come on to McMahon. McMahon was at first disgusted at this behavior, but then changed his mind and found it admirable. He made a match featuring Edge and Lita vs. John and Maria, with the winner determining the referee for next week.

Ashley beat Mickie James with Trish Stratus as the referee. Yes. They seriously booked this again. It’s too bad Giant Haystacks is dead, or they could book him in a rematch with Paul Wight. Mickie jumped Ashley, and they had a bad brawl. I’ve never seen people do nothing so unconvincingly. They did an awful slow motion spot where Mickie accidentally collided with Trish. Ashley rolled up Mickie and Trish counted the pin and stormed off. Backstage, Mickie apologized for hitting Trish. She said she loves Trish as a friend and idol. Trish introduced Mickie to her male date and left, while Mickie stood there fuming with anger. I really like this angle. I hope she murders him.

Shelton Benjamin and Mama were chatting backstage. Mama said Shelton isn’t a Mama’s boy. Shelton said he had to go get his phone, but Mama didn’t want him to leave. She noted when he has left in the past, she was approached by freaks like Viscera and Goldust. Benjamin said he took care of them, and anyone would be a fool to mess with Mama. When Shelton left, Eugene came in. He thought Mama was Martin Lawrence, and wanted to take off her wig. When Shelton came back, Mama smacked him.

HHH beat Ric Flair in another tournament match. Flair started off well with chops and punches. HHH went for the pedigree but was sent over the ropes. Flair sent HHH into the steps. HHH came back with a spine buster and knee drops. He hit a delayed vertical suplex, but Flair came back with chops. HHH hit a swinging neck breaker and went for the figure four, but Flair kicked him off. Flair hit chops, an ax handle off the top, and applied the figure four. HHH got to the ropes and hit the pedigree shortly thereafter for the pin.
Backstage, Maria went on and on about how concerned and upset she was about the mixed tag match. Cena proceeded to make out with her, which calmed her down. Oh my God! CM Punk is coming in to headline! Shawn Michaels was out for his tournament match, but Vince McMahon came out. He said he decided to let Shawn walk out on his contract as was suggested last week. Thus, next week Shawn Michaels will have a retirement party. Vince said this is not optional, but required, and Shawn won’t be at WrestleMania. Thus, he won’t be in the title tournament, and he was replaced by Shelton Benjamin.

Big Show beat Shelton Benjamin. Show hit chops early, but Shelton responded with a bulldog and neck breaker. Show hit clotheslines, a power slam, an avalanche, and a shoulder block. That sent Shelton into the referee. Show was going for the choke slam, but Mama grabbed his leg. Benjamin hit a crescent kick, and dove off the apron into a shot from Show. Show threw Benjamin into the ring, but Mama went after him. Show yelled at her, and she collapsed. Show hit the choke slam for a total squash win. Mama was carried out on a stretcher. Wow. WWE got me to root for a death twice in the same show.

Rob Van Dam beat Carlito. Carlito backstage said all he did was teach RVD some respect. He observed that it would be cool to headline WrestleMania and beat RVD in the process. Carlito and RVD brawled early, with RVD hitting a spinning leg drop off the apron. RVD hit rolling thunder twice, but Carlito got up his knees when RVD went for the split-legged moonsault. Carlito did what was essentially a triple jump somersault senton. I was in disbelief at that one.

Carlito followed up with the back cracker and brought a chair into the ring. The referee stopped him, and RVD hit the Van Daminator and five star frog splash for the win. RVD looked so much better this week, and Carlito looked good as well. This match made me happy. The semi-finals of the tournament next week will be RVD vs. Masters and Show vs. HHH. In a funny note, they showed a poll, asking who people thought would win the tournament. RVD received over 45 percent of the vote, with HHH a distant second.

John Cena and Maria beat Edge and Lita. Edge got the best of Cena early, and threw him into the steps. Maria and Lita were tagged in, and Lita bullied Maria and choked her. Lita hit a side Russian leg sweep, but Lita missed a spear and Cena was tagged in. Cena hit the clotheslines, shoulder block, and five knuckle shuffle on Edge. Lita distracted him, but then accidentally gave Edge a huracanrana off the top. Edge accidentally speared Lita, and Maria tagged in and scored the pin. Cena announced the referee for next week will be Mick Foley.

Final Thoughts:The show is so much more entertaining when they have some semblance of mid-to-long term direction.


Anonymous Phil said...

Pretty good show with some obvious shortcomings (womens' match, Shelton angle). I couldn't agree more with your assessment that mid to long-term planning strengthens the show. Actually knowing three matches and one angle that are taking place next week helps a lot. It's admirable to see that nearly every main player for Raw save the tag champs has a partner for WrestleMania six weeks out.
HHH-Cena, Vince-HBK, Flair-Shelton, Edge-Foley, RVD-Carlito (possibly), Trish-Mickie.

12:16 PM  

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