Here’s a rundown of the Nov. 25 edition of Monday Night Raw:
This edition of Monday Night Raw came to us live from Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y. The special feature for Monday’s episode was that it guest hosted by former New York Giants defensive lineman Michael Strahan — a big step up from “Raw Country” in my humble opinion.
The first person through the curtain was the WWE Champion Randy Orton, who successfully retained his title at Survivor Series Sunday by defeating Big Show.
Orton started his promo by saying that everyone who doubted he would hold on to his championship owed him an apology.
He then welcomed Triple H and Stephanie McMahon into the arena. Out came the Authority as Triple H congratulated Orton on keeping his title.
He then said that when he hand picked Orton to be the future of the company, he knew that he could become one the greatest in the company’s history.
McMahon then said that the Authority purposely put obstacles in Orton’s way knowing that he could overcome them. (Now that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, does it?) She also said it’s always nice when her and her husband are proven right.
Orton chimed in and said that once again the Authority managed to make it all about them. Orton continued by saying that he didn’t need their help at Survivor Series.
He also said that when he was in position to put away Big Show on his own, out they came to ringside, which was completely wrong.
The Authority never left the stage. They stayed there, which momentarily distracted Big Show and allowed Orton to hit the RKO. But who’s keeping track, right?
Triple H then told Orton that he promised that there wouldn’t be any physical interference and there wasn’t. While he was saying that, the Long Island fans were loudly chanting “Daniel Bryan!”
Triple H then said that the only reason the Authority went to ringside (wrong again) was because it looked like there was about to be a new champion.
Orton said he didn’t anyone’s protection or help, and that he took everything Big Show had and got the job done. He then said that he’s greatest superstar ever and no one could take that away from him.
Out came World Heavyweight Champion John Cena. Cena introduced himself to Orton and almost said some nasty words to him before McMahon stopped him.
She then wanted to know what he wanted. Cena said he wanted the Authority to listen to the people. He said if the Authority wanted to know why they chant for Bryan is because they tired of the “administrative B.S.”
He said the fans are sick and tired of guys like Orton being protected. Cena then asked who is champion because the way he saw it there were two champions in the ring — as if that wasn’t the case for the decade or so, but whatever.
He then said he wanted to find an answer to that question he believed it was time for only one champion to exist.
Cena said it was strictly between him and Orton and flat out challenged him to a match to unify the titles.
McMahon said that the Authority have been talking about unifying the titles for a while to which saw some conspiracy in that statement. Triple H then told Orton to grow up and asked why was he crying about all of this.
Triple H then announced that Tables, Ladders and Chairs that Cena would face Orton in a TLC match for both titles.
Both champions held their titles up in the air and the segment ended.
Match 1 – The Shield vs. Rey Mysterio, Cody Rhodes & Goldust
Roman Reins started the match against Goldust, but before that could happen Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins ran across the ring and attacked Rhodes and Mysterio.
From there, the Shield began working over Goldust with frequent tags and double team moves.
Goldust eventually shook off the trio and tag in Mysterio. Mysterio received the tag and jumped into the match on fire.
Mysterio kept up his momentum until he and Rollins attempted a cross body at the same time. Both men crawled to their corners and tagged in Rhodes and Ambrose respectively.
Rhodes hopped into the match took immediate control of Ambrose and even gained a near fall that was broken up Reins. Mysterio then went after Reins and even managed to get him out of the ring.
Mysterio then attempted to hit Rollins with the 619, but Reins hit him with the spear from out of nowhere. Reins then a spear to Goldust.
Rhodes came into the ring and knock Reins out if it. He then attempted to put Rollins in the cross Rhodes, but Ambrose from behind him and put him in his reverse DDT finisher for the victory.
Winners: The Shield
After the commercial break, we were in for another sure-to-be-enthralling edition of Miz TV. Miz’s guest was the special guest host Strahan.
When Miz introduced Strahan, Titus O’Neil came to the ring. I guess because he played football at the University of Florida and in the Arena Football League for the Utah Blaze?
That wasn’t the case at all. O’Neil was pretending to be Strahan and even at a huge gap in his teeth to complete the look.
The Miz and O’Neil engaged in a little skit where they made fun of Strahan’s trademark gap in his teeth. The Miz even had a greet a line (No really, he did.) where he said, “That gap is wider than the one between the Giants and the playoffs.”
Eventually, the real Strahan came out to sort of a lukewarm reception. I guess they’re not huge Giants fans on Long Island.
Strahan got in the ring and chest bumped O’Neil despite the fact that he was making fun of him just moments earlier.
Strahan then got on the microphone and ragged on the Miz’s comedic talents. Strahan then announced what he called a “double team, tag team main event.”
This main event would be Orton and Alberto Del Rio going against John Cena and Big Show.
The Miz commended Strahan on his match making ability and asked if Strahan could hack in a WWE ring. Strahan said that he was definitely tougher than the Miz.
O’Neil got in between the two while they were bickering and warned Strahan that the Miz was tough to handle. The Miz then challenged Strahan to take one move. Strahan accepted Miz’s challenge.
O’Neil helped clear the ring and told Kelly Ripa that he was available in case Strahan couldn’t make it to the television show Tuesday morning.
The Miz went to give Strahan the hip toss, but Strahan didn’t budge. O’Neil took his turn to hip toss Strahan and once again, he didn’t budge.
The Miz then told Strahan that if he was scared to take the hip toss to pretend he was Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo throwing touchdown passes against the Giants.
Strahan didn’t take that jab too lightly as he wound up giving the Miz a hip toss. O’Neil and Strahan then took part in a millions of dollars dance moment before Strahan hip tossed him, too.
All three men hugged it out and danced to end the rather bizarre segment.
Match 2 – Curtis Axel & Ryback vs. Big E Langston & Mark Henry
Axel began the match against Langston and landed a couple of quick chops, but was cut off quickly by the power of Langston.
Langston eventually tossed Axel into his corner where Ryback did a blind tag. Langston and Axel went at it a little until Langston walked into a spine buster from Ryback.
From there, Ryback and Axel cut off the ring from Langston. Langston eventually used a belly-to-belly suplex to by himself enough time to tag in Henry.
Henry got into the ring and took over the match with his power and the Junkyard Dog head butt. Not long after, Henry hit Axel with the world’s strongest slam to further bury him and Ryback.
Winners: Big E Langston and Mark Henry
Match 3 – Total Divas vs. Non-Total Divas (7-on-7 Survivor Series match)
Yup, the same that took place Sunday happened Monday. Much like Sunday, the eliminations came fast furious and there wasn’t much to come out of it.
Eva Marie and the Bellas were survivors for their team.
Winners: Total Divas
Match 4 – Damien Sandow vs. Dolph Ziggler – Hamptons Hardcore match
The fans apparently voted for this match via the WWE APP. Ziggler came out wearing a John Tavares to kiss up to the Islanders fans in attendance.
During his entrance, some stage hands brought out things rich people in the Hamptons are known for: tennis balls, tennis rackets, golf clubs and more.
Sandow somehow got a hold of one of the golf clubs and attempted to hit Ziggler with it as soon as the match started. Ziggler avoided it and then hit Sandow with a drop kick.
Ziggler grabbed a golf club of his own, but had knocked out of his hand by Sandow. Sandow then took the Islanders jersey off Ziggler and wipes his face with and threw it down.
Apparently, Ziggler was wearing a Zack Ryder shirt underneath his Islanders jersey. Ryder, of course, is from Long Island.
Sandow began working over Ziggler outside of the ring and eventually tore the Ryder shirt of Ziggler as well. Turned out that Ziggler was wearing yet another shirt. This one, however, was his.
Ziggler eventually turned the tables on Sandow and knocked him into the time keeper’s area. Sandow responded by hitting Ziggler with a microphone.
Ziggler found a way to put a trash can over Sandow’s head and drop kicked it. After a commercial break, Sandow was in firm control of Ziggler inside the ring.
Sandow picked up a trash can and dumped what looked like real trash out of it into the ring. Ziggler knocked the can out of Sandow’s hands, however, and then delivered a neck breaker into the garbage.
Sandow didn’t stay down long as he body slammed Ziggler, draped the Islanders jersey over him and delivered the elbow of distain.
Ziggler rolled out of the and eventually got underneath it. Sandow pulled his legs out from under the ring, but Ziggler had gotten a hold of a fire extinguisher and used it on Sandow.
Sandow gained control of the match inside the ring where he hit Sandow with a canoe paddle and a famasser. Ziggler went for a cover, but Sandow kicked out.
Sandow rolled out of the ring this time and managed to get his hands on a trashcan. He took that trash can and put it right across the face of Ziggler.
Sandow got Ziggler back into the ring and assumed control until Ziggler hit a big DDT onto a steel chair.
Ziggler went to hit Sandow with a splash in the corner, but Sandow ducked out of the way. Sandow then hit Ziggler with a canoe paddle across his back and followed that up with the you’re welcome into a trash can.
Sandow went for the cover and came away with the win. They’re now even in these hardcore matches.
Winner: Damien Sandow
Strahan was then backstage with Santino talking about something when Erick Rowan bumped into them. As Santino backed away in terror, Rowan handed Strahan a sheep mask. Strahan put it on as Rowan simply backed away.
Santino came back and gave Strahan some sort of Thanksgiving tip.
After some commercials, Renee Young was in the ring and welcomed CM Punk. After CM Punk made his way to the ring, she welcomed Bryan to the ring.
Young asked CM Punk and Bryan about their match later in the night against the Wyatt Family.
CM Punk asked the fans a bunch of questions while Bryan screamed to all of them except when he asked what their team name should be.
CM Punk said that the Authority could put any tag team in history, including Matt Classic and Colt Cabana, he and CM Punk would always overcome the odds.
That promo led to…
Match 5 – CM Punk & Daniel Bryan vs. The Wyatt Family
CM Punk started the match against Rowan as he used his speed advantage to dance round his stronger opponent.
Rowan eventually got a hold of CM Punk and halted his momentum. CM Punk quickly recovered and mounted enough offense to tag in Bryan.
Bryan attempted to pick up the pace, but was thwarted by a big elbow from Rowan. Rowan tagged Harper, who kept the momentum going for his team.
That momentum didn’t last long as Bryan recovered enough to tag in CM Punk for a double-team move.
Harper eventually regained control of the match and took control of Bryan. After getting beat on for a short time, Bryan finally made it to his corner to tag CM Punk.
CM Punk leaped-frogged his way into the match and immediately quickened the pace. He even landed a suicide dive to Rowan.
CM Punk eventually made his way to the top rope and hit the big elbow drop. He then signaled for the GTS, but Rowan picked him up and tossed him out of the ring.
After some commercials, Rowan was in complete control of CM Punk. CM Punk was finally to shake off the Wyatt and tagged in his parner.
Came into the ring red-hot and delivered a suicide dive to Wyatt. Bryan jumped to the top turnbuckle and a missile drop kick to Harper.
Bryan then gave Harper a series of kicks until Harper picked up during the last and almost power bombed. But Brian wiggled out of it and locked Harper in the yes lock.
Rowan broke up the hold. CM Punk then took care of Rowan while Bryan was delivering drop kicks to the both of them.
Harper caught Bryan during one of those drop kicks and slammed him into the mat. Harper went for the cover, but Rowan broke up the cover. All five men were suddenly brawling in the ring, which led to the official throwing out the match.
After the match, the Wyatts went to town on the duo and abducted Bryan. When CM Punk gave chase, Reins came out of nowhere and speared him. Rollins and Ambrose weren’t far behind and helped perform a triple power bomb to CM Punk in the ring.
After a commercial break, the Miz was backstage for a segment to promote his new movie on ABC Family.
Match 6 – Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz
Another match that was on Survivor Series (albeit the pre-show) was repeated Monday on Raw. Kingston wanted the Miz to shake his hand, but the both of them slapped each other instead.
The rest of the match played out mostly like their match Sunday. The match was still entertaining nonetheless. Even the finish was similar to Sunday as the Miz earned quick pin fall victory.
Winner: The Miz
After the match, Long Island’s own Mick Foley pushed some WWE merchandise. He even transformed into Dude Love and Mankind for the segment.
After the commercial break, R-Truth was in the ring with a microphone. R-Truth brought out Xavier Woods with the Funkadactyls. I guess Broadus Clay has been replaced?
Match 7 – Xavier Woods vs. Heath Slater
Like most matches Slater takes part in, he lost it. But that wasn’t the most important thing.
The important part was Woods looked in his first singles match on Raw. He can definitely work in the ring. His look is a little ridiculous, but that can be changed over time.
His dancing skills, however, definitely need some work.
Winner: Xavier Woods
After the break, Strahan was backstage signing autographs for the Divas. Unfortunately for Strahan, the final “Diva” was Goldust.
Match 8 – Randy Orton & Alberto Del Rio vs. John Cena & Big Show
Big Show began the match against Del Rio and used his power advantage to gain the early upper hand over him.
Del Rio quickly tagged in favor of his partner. It was more of the same for him as Big Show overpowered him.
After a commercial break, Del Rio was in the ring and was in complete control of Cena. Del Rio and Orton used frequent tags to keep Cena at bay and away from his partner.
A mistake by Del Rio allowed Cena to tag in Big Show and the 400 held court until Del Rio went after his knee. Del Rio followed that up with a super kick.
After the kick, Big Show had trouble getting to his feet as he was also selling the punt he took from Orton at Survivor Series.
Orton laid in some blows before allowing Del Rio to land another super kick. Big Show was so disoriented that he went to the wrong corner to tag out. Big Show did manage to kick out of a few cover attempts despite not knowing where he was.
The official eventually got the doctors into the ring to check on the big man. Big Show worked his way up to his feet and the doctors allowed him to continue despite having a glazed over look in his eyes.
Orton wasted little time taking advantage of Big Show as he immediately jumped on him. For a moment, Big Show looked as if he would recover, but Orton cut him off.
Orton backed into a corner for the punt, but was speared by Big Show. Big Show finally made it to the right corner and tagged in Cena. Cena came in the match hitting on all cylinders until Del Rio shut him down with a back breaker.
Del Rio for the cross arm breaker, but Cena countered it into the STF. Del Rio quickly tapped out.
Winners: John Cena and the Big Show
After the match, Cena went to check on Big Show, who was lying down outside of the ring. Del Rio then attacked him from behind. He went for the cross arm breaker again, but Cena countered again into the attitude adjustment.
Orton then came from behind and hit Cena with the WWE title. He then grabbed the World title and held them both high as Cena lied on the ground.