Monday Night Raw 7-4-2011

Tonight I will be attempting a live blog about a special 4th of July Monday Night Raw. Last week’s Raw was one of the greatest moments in the history of Raw and the “real-est” wrestling has been for me since Bash at the Beach. Tonight’s Raw is already in the books. I’ve hidden myself under a rock so I know very little of what has happened beforehand.

Tonight is going to be a little weird for me. After one of the greatest promos in history, CM Punk does this. How I feel about using homosexuality as an insult is very well-documented. I think if I can forgive Michael Cole for using the cigarette term (f*****), I can forgive Punk for calling somebody a homo. Nobody is perfect. Punk has apologized, and I can move on. Punk has owned up to it (way more than WWE has). I think the WWE has done a good job of joining anti-bullying campaigns (except for putting the Bellas in the PSA). Wrestlers (and fans, too, for that matter), just be careful. You don’t know the life history of the wrestler or the fan.

Now forgive my serious moment. It is time for Raw is Punk. And of course, how else should Raw is Punk begin other than an entrance from “The Confederate Warrior” John Cena. Cena doesn’t want to pretend that Punk never existed. Cena wants to insure that WWE superstars retain the ability to speak their minds.

“I’m no fashion icon. I look like the Kool-Aid Man in shorts.”

-John Cena

Cena cut a very nice promo for him. He didn’t sound like he was pandering to an army of 10-year-olds. He mentioned fans getting their signs taken away at events. Must be all of the people holding up “Push Zack Ryder” signs.

First match up is Bella Twins vs. Kelly Kelly & Eve Torres. The Bella Twins took on a nice heel style. Kelly is learning some new moves. It was short for what it is. Jerry Lawler was a little more “vocal” during the Divas match. Are they going to an edgier TV-PG product?

We got a video package of Andy. Turns out he is still in Florida. Plus, we got to see Ricky Steamboat and Steve Keirn on our TV.

Then R-Truth is calling Flo, yet went with Geico. They couldn’t even do cheesy right.

The second match is Santino Marella & Vladimir Koslov vs. Michael McGillicutty and David Otunga. We had a cobra attempt by Santino. He really is one of the unsung heroes of the WWE. (And my inner Jim Cornette died inside saying that.) McGillicutty scored a nice pin and the tag champs are being built up nicely. After the match we saw Zack Ryder say “Woo Woo Woo.” Not exactly sure why he did that, but I’m happy that he’s doing that. Raw needs to make me ask questions so that I keep coming back.

Miz told us he was awesome. Then we got to see Evan Bourne & Sgt. Slaughter and then Jack Swagger. The great part of Swagger’s promo is that he was 100% accurate. Now we get to see Jack Swagger vs. Sgt. Slaughter. And we got to hear him call somebody maggot. My night is complete.

The third match was Jack Swagger vs. the world’s largest chin Sgt. Slaughter. It was short. According to my wife, “That was shorter than the girl’s match.” We got our Cobra Clutch, Swagger got an amazing rub, and so did Evan Bourne by coming to his rescue. This is a wonderful way to use a legend.

We have a triple threat with Alberto del Rio, Rey Misterio Jr. & R-Truth. I’m beginning to not hate Rey as much any more. He’s just going out there and wrestling really good matches. On commentary, we got Spanish 101 from Jerry “The King” Lawler. R-Truth is an amazing athlete and can do some great stuff in the ring. So is Rey. Alberto del Rio came out of nowhere to submit Rey. I like the arm-breaker. It is a good finisher and builds up a lot of drama.

(Random non-Raw comment. Watch Suits on USA. It’s good.)

Now coming to the ring is Sonny from Miami Vice and the most effective voice in the WWE. At least King is calling her an old bag rather than fat. (Personal note to fans: It’s “Viva la Raza,” not Rasa as some idiot had on their sign.) The great thing about Ziggler’s segment here is that the US Title was made to be important. Kofi Kingston interfered in the segment. The segment was nice. Vicki ended up doused in cake. I’ll say it again. She’s the top heel in the company.

(Non-wrestling comment: DirecTV sure is pimping Damages. Too bad they haven’t made it watchable by using somebody other than Glenn Close on it.)

We then had Miz vs. Alex Riley. We got a nice video package on Alex Riley. There are fewer better heel wrestlers than the Miz right now. Alex Riley reminds me so much of The Rock in the ring. It was a nice match. The Miz lost the match, but he didn’t lose anything by losing it. The commentary is pointing out that Miz has been on a losing streak as of late. For a while, Cole was so busy putting over his feud with Lawler, they lost their most important purpose: to put over what was going on in the ring and out. Miz’ post-match beatdown on Riley was awesome.

A 4th Orton-Christian match. Really? (Miz voice)

Why did we need two recaps of the same exact thing?

Now we have Mr. McMahon. He says Punk was never worthy of all the things he wanted. Then Cena came out to confront Mr. McMahon. I liked this John Cena. Cena and McMahon worked very well together.

I really liked this Raw. They raised a lot of questions. What’s up with Zack Ryder? How will Alex Riley react to Miz’ beatdown? Can Ziggler beat Kofi alone? And CM Punk? There were some good matches. I’m really looking forward to the Raw side of Money in the Bank.

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