Monday Night Raw – June 23, 2008 (WWE Draft)
By Thomas Hall on 11th October 2023
Monday Night Raw
Date: June 23, 2008
Location: AT&T Center, San Antonio, Texas
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler, Michael Cole, Mick Foley, Mike Adamle, Tazz
It’s a big night as we have three things going on at once. We have a three hour show with the major focus being the annual Draft, with the focal point being that EVERYONE is available to be drafted. Other than that, Million Dollar Mania is still going so expect a lot of Vince McMahon. Finally, it’s also the last Raw before Night Of Champions. Let’s get to it.
Commentary welcomes us to the show and hype up the idea of everyone being switched around.
HHH (Raw) vs. Mark Henry (Smackdown)
Non-title and it seems that the winning brand gets a Draft pick. Henry yells a lot and HHH looks nervous, with Henry running him over to make it worse. The headbutts rock HHH some more and Henry runs him over for an early two. A Vader Bomb gets two more and Henry grabs the neck crank. HHH finally slips out and tries some running forearms to stagger Henry. The facebuster sets up more right hands and the jumping knee finally puts Henry down. The Pedigree is countered into the World’s Strongest Slam for two but Henry misses the splash. That’s enough for the Pedigree to give HHH the pin.
Rating: C. There was only so much that HHH could do here and he made it work as well as possible. Henry is a big monster and the Pedigree was only going to look so good, but HHH trying to knock him down was a nice sequence. For a quick match, they did about as well as they could have, with Henry being a fine monster.
Drafted to Raw: Rey Mysterio.
Here is Vince McMahon to announce that tonight, five people will win $100,000 and one will win $500,000. Vince brings out Kelly Kelly to help him and they call a woman….who Vince says gives the wrong password. Kelly says it’s right though and gives us a celebratory dance.
HHH welcomes Rey Mysterio to Raw when John Cena comes in. Rey leaves so HHH can say he’s not losing to Cena again at Night Of Champions. HHH says nothing Cena has done matters until Cena beats him for the title.
Finlay/Hornswoggle (Smackdown) vs. Carlito/Santino Marella (Raw)
For a draft pick. Santino wants Hornswoggle to start and gets Stunned for his efforts. Finlay comes in and ties Santino up in the ring skirt for the beating. A Carlito cheap shot puts Finlay down though and the villains take over. Santino gets caught with the shillelagh and it’s the Celtic Cross into the Tadpole Splash for the pin.
Drafted to Smackdown: Jeff Hardy.
Hardy comes out to pose and we see the still injured Randy Orton watching backstage.
Vince McMahon brings out Randy Orton to help give away more money. First though, Orton warns HHH and John Cena that he’s coming back for the WWE Title. Actually that’s it for Orton, who isn’t in the mood to help give away money. Vince is in the mood to do that, but he’ll also give us a great main event tonight: Cena vs. Edge.
Hardcore Holly/Cody Rhodes (Raw) vs. Chavo Guerrero/Bam Neely (ECW)
For a draft pick and Ted DiBiase Jr. is on commentary to promote his dad’s book. Neely jumps Cody to start and the stomping is on in the corner. Chavo comes in but Cody escapes a belly to back suplex and hands it off to Holly as the crowd is almost eerily silent. Holly hits the hanging kick to the ribs but the Alabama Slam is broken up. Chavo headscissors Cody to the floor, only to walk into the Alabama Slam for the fast pin.
Drafted to Raw: CM Punk. It’s about time.
Here is Chris Jericho for a chat. Jericho is used to fans throwing trash at him, but he’s just waiting for Shawn Michaels to turn on the fans like he does with everyone else. We see a highlight package of Shawn turning on people over the years, including Marty Jannetty, Diesel, Hulk Hogan and John Cena.
Then we move into Shawn faking his knee injury, which has Jericho talking about all of Shawn’s lies. Jericho hates lies more than anyone else, save for maybe one person: the man who helped Jericho against HHH last week, Lance Cade. We see Cade on the Titantron, where he talks about how he was trained by Shawn Michaels and wasn’t going to give Shawn the chance to turn on him.
Jericho never lied to him, but now Jericho needs a person to face for the Intercontinental Title at Night Of Champions. It would have been Shawn, but we see Jericho massacring him. Cue Shawn, with his eye taped up, to go after Jericho. Shawn slugs away, until Jericho sends him eye first into the announcers’ table to cut him off immediately. That match is going to have some crazy heat.
We recap the Draft picks to date.
John Morrison/Miz (ECW) vs. Curt Hawkins/Zack Ryder (Smackdown)
Vickie Guerrero introduces Hawkins and Ryder, but recent developments have made her change her mind. Here’s the new match:
John Morrison/Miz (ECW) vs. Jeff Hardy/Matt Hardy (Smackdown)
Non-title but for a Draft pick. Matt and Miz start things off as Cole talks about how great this was from Vickie Guerrero. Matt’s wristlock and headlock don’t get very far as Miz takes him into the corner for the left hands. That’s broken up as well so Matt hits a clothesline and hands it off to Jeff for Poetry In Motion. The slingshot dropkick hits Miz in the corner but Morrison gets in a cheap shot to take over.
Morrison grabs a chinlock and then it’s off to Miz for, uh, another chinlock actually. Jeff fights up but Miz runs him over again for two. A legdrop gives Miz two more and we hit a crossface chickenwing. Jeff fights up and nails a quick Whisper In The Wind to put them both down. The diving tag brings in Matt to clean house, including the Side Effect for two on Morrison. The middle rope legdrop connects but Morrison is right back up with a rollup (and tights) for the pin.
Rating: C. This felt like it was supposed to be a low level dream match but it was pretty dull for the most part. There were some good moments with Matt’s comeback working well, but you’re only going to be able to get so far with an eight minute match and a pretty abrupt ending. At least ECW got something though.
Drafted to ECW: Matt Hardy (with the US Title).
Vince McMahon recaps Million Dollar Mania and brings out Ric Flair to help him give away $100,000. Flair calls and the fan wins the money, plus a bonus WOO!
We look at Mickie James participating in the Dreams Take Flight charity event.
Mickie James/Melina (Raw) vs. Natalya Neidhart/Victoria (Smackdown)
For a Draft pick, but only announcers/interviewers are eligible. Natalya grabs a front facelock on Melina to start before a powerslam gets two. Victoria comes in and drives Melina into the corner but Melina rolls her up for two more. Back up and Victoria sends her off the top for a crash to the floor, where Melina looks banged up. Mickie goes over to check on her but the brawl is on for the double DQ.
Drafted to Smackdown: Jim Ross. To say he does not look happy with this would be an understatement.
Drafted to Monday Night Raw: Michael Cole.
Post break we see Melina being taken out of the arena as she seems to have suffered a rather bad leg injury.
Vince McMahon brings out Great Khali to plug his new movie Get Smart, which also features Dwayne Johnson. Khali calls someone who says “wrong number” and hangs up. Someone else answers, tells Vince to hang on and brings on someone else to give the password (Khali looks mad and yells a lot) but the guy wins (and sounds bored).
John Cena (Raw) vs. Edge (Smackdown)
Non-title but for a Draft pick. Jim Ross isn’t sure why he’s calling a match involving a Raw competitor (oh yeah this isn’t going well) as they fight over a lockup to start. Cena sends him into the corner but misses a running bulldog, allowing Edge to score with a big boot. Edge slugs away as Foley is handling most of the commentary. A hard clothesline drops Cena again as JR talks about how he didn’t expect to leave Raw tonight but that’s how the cards were dealt.
Cena comes back with a shot of his own for two but it’s a double clothesline to put them both down. It’s Cena up first to start the comeback until Edge escapes the FU into the Edgecution for two. The spear is countered into the STFU, sending Edge over to the ropes rather quickly. Edge goes up top but has to escape a super FU, allowing him to knock Cena outside. Cena catches him diving off the apron though and decks Edge, who takes the countout.
Rating: C+. These two always have good chemistry together and anything they do is at least worth a look. At the same time, the result was one of the only options they had, as you don’t want either of them losing heading into a World Title match on Sunday. They didn’t have much time here, but what they did was pretty nice while it lasted.
Post match Batista throws Edge inside for a beating.
Drafted to Raw: Batista. Well that’s convenient timing.
Post break Edge and Vickie Guerrero are glad with their win because Batista is out of their hair. Vince McMahon comes in to say the title match is still on for Night Of Champions. This might have had a bigger impact if Michael Cole hadn’t said the same thing before the break. Vince suggests Vickie and Edge could be split up and panic ensues.
MVP (Smackdown) vs. Tommy Dreamer (ECW)
For a Draft pick. Colin Delaney is here with Dreamer, who gets punched in the ribs and kicked in the head to start. They trade right hands as commentary seems way off here, with Mick Foley joining in and talking about a Playboy Playmate. Tazz: “You know there is a match going on.” MVP misses a charge in the corner and gets hit with a bulldog. Not that it matters as MVP hits a running boot in the corner for the pin.
Drafted to Smackdown: Umaga. Cue Umaga to beat up Dreamer and Delaney.
John Bradshaw Layfield (Raw) vs. Kofi Kingston (ECW)
For a Draft pick. JBL grabs a headlock to start but Kofi is back up with the jumping back elbow. With the jumping getting on JBL’s nerves, he kicks Kofi in the face to take over. Something close to a cobra clutch keeps Kofi in trouble and the clubbing forearms to the back make it even worse. The bearhug goes on but Kofi sends him into the corner to escape. A dropkick looks to set up the Boom Drop but the Clothesline From JBL finishes Kofi.
Rating: C+. This took some time to get going but there was something good about having Kofi using his weird style and JBL just hitting him in the face over and over. Kofi is still someone who is on his way up and needs to be in there against bigger competition. Fun little match here, and Kofi feels like he is on the way up.
Drafted to Raw: ECW Champion Kane.
Vince McMahon gives away more money…..and the fan happens to be here in the arena.
Night Of Champions rundown.
Raw: CM Punk, HHH, Kane, John Cena, Batista
ECW: Matt Hardy, John Morrison, Miz, Chavo Guerrero, Shelton Benjamin
Smackdown: Big Show, Edge, Jeff Hardy, Great Khali, MVP
For two Draft picks and that’s one heck of a lineup. We’re joined in progress after a break and a bunch of people get together to toss Khali. Everyone looks at Show who tells them to bring it and then knocks a bunch of them down. Miz can’t get rid of Edge but Batista can get rid of Miz and Morrison at the same time.
Show and MVP send Punk over the top but not out as this is not the most thrilling stuff despite the names involved. Edge fires off some spears and we take a break. Back with Punk having been eliminated and HHH hitting a facebuster on Show. Matt gets the same thing and Jeff enziguris Chavo out. That leaves Matt as the sole ECW star as Benjamin seems to have been tossed during the break as well.
There goes MVP and we get the Hardys showdown. Jeff gets the better of things and kicks Matt out to officially finish off ECW. Edge and Batista both try spears and they’re both down in a heap. Jeff misses Whisper In The Wind and HHH knocks him out and it’s HHH, Cena, Batista (very bloody), Kane, Show and Edge left.
Batista spears Edge but gets punched out by Show. Kane is knocked out as well and it’s two vs. two. Show manages to suplex Edge and Cena at the same time, leaving everyone down. HHH and Cena get back up and dump Show but Edge knocks Cena into HHH to get rid of him. Cena is so shocked that Edge is able to toss him for the win.
Rating: C. The ending got better, but there were some long stretches with pretty much nothing going on here. That isn’t the best way to draw up interest in the match but at least the star power was on display. I was expecting ECW to win to finally get a little something else, though that would imply WWE cares about ECW in any meaningful way.
Drafted to Smackdown: Mr. Kennedy and HHH (Raw World Champion).
We go up to Vince McMahon, who gives away $500,000…..and then the stage collapses. Vince is crushed under a part of the set and yells for Paul because he can’t feel his legs to end the show.
Overall Rating: C+. As you might have guessed, this wasn’t the most traditional show, as they were trying to do a lot of things at once. Between the Draft and the money and hyping up Sunday’s show, this was a bit too all over the place. The Draft was the big focus and some of the moves should shake things up a bit, though ECW is gutted even more than before. Above all else though, I feel sorry for Jim Ross, who gets treated badly again, because Vince McMahon enjoys it or something.
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