Monday Night Raw
Date: May 21, 2007
Location: Mark of the Quad, Moline, Illinois
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler
We’re past Judgment Day and believe it or not, John Cena has somehow done it again, this time by making the Great Khali tap out to retain the WWE Title. That is going to make for some interesting futures for both of them, as Khali loses a big step and Cena beats another giant with less than two weeks to go before the next pay per view. I think you know where this is going so let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of the pay per view, including Bobby Lashley winning the handicap match in just over a minute but not winning the ECW World Title because he pinned the wrong McMahon.
Here is an annoyed Bobby Lashley to get things going. Since he has to beat Vince McMahon to get the ECW World Title back, get Vince out here right now. Cue Vince (unfortunately minus the snappy doorag), Shane McMahon and Umaga to say no. Vince is on to bigger and better things, like One Night Stand, where he will defend the title in a street fight against the Blue Meanie. Lashley: “Why not me?” Shane talks about how great Vince is and lists off his street fight wins. You might even say he is “inVinceable”. Vince says Lashley can have a street fight at One Night Stand, but he is going to be running a gauntlet.
Saturday Night’s Main Event is back next week.
Ric Flair vs. Carlito
Rematch from last night where Flair won. Flair chops away in the corner to start but Carlito knocks him into another corner and stomps him down. It’s time to go after the arm again, which worked well enough for Carlito last night. Back up and Flair fires off more chops before a Cactus Clothesline takes them both outside. More chopping ensues until it’s a double countout.
Rating: D+. I’m really not sure why we’re seeing the feud continuing after Flair beat him last night but that has never stopped WWE before. You would think that they would have something else for Flair to do but why do that when you can have Carlito spinning his wheels even more? Nothing match again, but what else were you expecting?
Post match Carlito lays Flair out, including a Backstabber and apple spitting.
Melina vs. Candice Michelle
Non-title. Melina starts fast by choking on the ropes and then cranking on both arms. That means some neck stretching on the ropes but Candice is back up with a backbreaker. Some kicks have Melina in trouble and Candice pulls her away from the ropes for a crash. A rake to the eyes slows Candice down but she blocks an O’Connor roll and grabs a jackknife cover for the fast pin.
Great Khali is yelling at Runjin Singh.
The Condemned needs to go away already.
Bobby Lashley vs. Chris Masters
This is the first match in Lashley’s gauntlet. Lashley wastes no time in taking him down, only to miss a charge into the corner. Masters starts stomping away and goes after the banged up arm. The Masterlock goes on but Lashley makes the rope to save himself. Lashley is back up with a powerslam for two, followed by the spear for the pin.
Rating: C-. They kept this short and it’s not like Masters was going to be any kind of a threat to Lashley. Masters got in his best move, had it shrugged off and then got pinned. What else were they supposed to do in something like this? Lashley is on to bigger and better things while Masters is the same guy he has been for a long time now.
Hardys vs. Johnny Nitro/Kenny Dykstra
Non-title with the World’s Greatest Tag Team on commentary. Matt and Kenny start things off with Matt getting caught in the wrong corner. A clothesline gets Matt out of trouble and it’s off to Jeff to pick up the pace. The sitout gordbuster plants Nitro and Hardy goes up, where he has to shove Nitro down. A top rope sunset flip finishes Nitro in a hurry.
Post match the World’s Greatest Tag Team runs in to jump the Hardys but Lance Cade and Trevor Murdoch make the save, as this is still going too.
Here are Great Khali and Runjin Singh for a chat. Through translation, Khali says he was cheated last night because his foot was under the rope. John Cena never knocked Khali off his feet, because he needed to use the steps to hurt him. Khali can defeat Cena in the ring or out of the ring, but here is Cena for a rebuttal. Cena says that the foot was under the rope but he made Khali tap. Tonight though, Khali has called Cena a coward and that’s not cool. Last night, Cena was scared but he stood toe to toe with Khali and survived, so he knows he can do it again. Cena wants a rematch and gets dropped by the chop and chokeslam.
Bobby Lashley vs. Viscera
More gauntlet action, though you don’t often see such long breaks between the matches. Lashley gets driven into the corner to start but avoids a shot to the face. Viscera runs him over a few times but Lashley is back with a slam (nearly dropping him) for two. Back up and Viscera takes him down again for some standing on the chest. The swinging Boss Man Slam gives Viscera two and a spinwheel kick is good for the same. Viscera misses a charge in the corner though and the spear gives Lashley the pin.
Rating: C-. This was actually a bit better than the previous match as Viscera felt more like a monster as opposed to someone who was just there for Lashley to beat. Lashley actually had to work at this one a bit and Viscera’s offense looks that much more devastating just because of his size. Not exactly good, but it made sense for what they were trying to do.
Cena vs. Khali II is set for One Night Stand and it’s falls count anywhere.
Here are a bunch of the WWE Divas to introduce the video for Timbaland’s Throw It On Me, setting up the world premiere.
Shawn Michaels has a concussion at the hands of Randy Orton, so here is Orton for a chat. Orton is sorry for what happened last night and we see a video on the attack, including Shawn’s wife checking on him. Back in the arena, Orton wonders if that was Shawn’s last match. Orton did what any wrestler would have done last night and beat Shawn, but it wasn’t because of the concussion. No, Orton beat him because he is the Legend Killer.
Vince McMahon fires Umaga up.
Bobby Lashley vs. Umaga
The gauntlet continues. Umaga wins an early slugout and some kicks to the back keep Lashley in trouble. The bearhug goes on to work on Lashley’s back before Umaga plants him down. A middle rope headbutt misses though and Lashley fights back, including sending him into the post. They fight outside with Umaga superkicking Lashley out of the air. After throwing the timekeeper aside (and making him look like a mannequin in the process), Umaga chairs Lashley down for the DQ.
Rating: C-. Another match that made sense as Umaga’s job was to weaken Lashley rather than flat out beating him. You don’t need to have Umaga take another pin so this was about as good of an idea as they had. The damaged Lashley gets to keep going while Umaga looks like a monster, which works out well for everyone.
Bobby Lashley vs. Shane McMahon
During the break, Umaga Samoan Spiked Lashley to make this even more one sided. Shane knees away at the bad back and hits a baseball slide to send Lashley’s ribs into the post. Umaga loads up a chair but here is Vince McMahon to say no and send Umaga to the back to avoid the DQ. Makes sense.
The distraction lets Lashley come back with a spinebuster but Shane gets in a cheap shot. The Boston crab has Lashley in trouble but he powers out with straight leg strength. Shane knees him in the back though and we hit the camel clutch. That’s broken up as well and Lashley hammers away in the corner. His back gives out on him but Shane takes too long going up top and is speared out of the air for the pin and the title shot.
Rating: C. This was the big finale, but it felt a bit lacking as Lashley beat someone he shouldn’t have had trouble beating. I don’t think there was any doubt about Lashley getting the title shot so there wasn’t much drama. That being said, how much drama can you really build up with two weeks between pay per views?
Lashley stares at Vince to end the show.
Overall Rating: C-. Oh we’re going full steam ahead on the rematch train here and that is not exactly thrilling. This show was built around setting up a bunch of rematches after a lot of them were already settled at Judgment Day. Now we’re on to One Night Stand, but we only have one more week to build it up. They’re running out of steam with these stories and that is starting to show, as this was the weakest Raw in a pretty long time.
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