The 919th edition of WWE Monday Night RAW (the first RAW of 2011) came to you, live, from the U.S. Airways Center in Phoenix, AZ. After defeating Sheamus in an incredible and hard-fought Ladder Match at WWE TLC to become the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title, John Morrison would get his shot at the gold as Morrison will challenge his former tag team partner, The Miz, for the WWE Title in a Falls Count Anywhere Match!
- WWE Championship: Falls Count Anywhere Match: The Miz (c) (with Alex Riley) def. John Morrison by pin following the Skull Crushing Finale on the arena floor to retain.
- 6-Diva Tag: Natalya, Eve Torres, & Brie Bella (with Nikki Bella) def. Melina, Maryse, & Alicia Fox by Eve Torres pinning Melina following a swinging neckbreaker.
- Non-Title: Jimmy & Jey Uso def. Santino Marella & Vladimir Kozlov by Uso pinning Santino Marella following a Samoan Drop.
- Alberto Del Rio def. R-Truth by submission to the Cross Armbreaker.#1 Contender’s Triple Threat Steel Cage Match for the WWE Title: Randy Orton def. King Sheamus & Wade Barrett by escaping the cage to become the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title at the Royal Rumble.
The first RAW of 2011 kicks off with commentator Michael Cole, without Jerry Lawler as the Hall of Famer was brutally assaulted by The Miz last week, states that, after being attacked by CM Punk and The Nexus last week and after suffering a hip injury at a WWE Live Event last Tuesday, it is highly unlikely that John Cena will be on RAW! Cole then reveals that the very first match of 2011 will see the WWE Title on the line!
The very first match of 2011 would be for the WWE Title as The Miz, with his “apprentice” Alex Riley in his corner, would defend the WWE Title against “The Monday Night Delight” John Morrison in a Falls Count Anywhere Match which, as the name suggests, means that pinfalls and submissions count anywhere in the arena and there will be no disqualifications and no count-outs! Early on in the match, John Morrison would battle The Miz and Alex Riley up to the staging area where Morrison would climb the large WWE logo set up as a part of the stage and would dive off of the top of it, taking down Miz & Riley! A little bit later on in the match, John Morrison would get fed up with the constant interference from Alex Riley, so Morrison would attack Riley and would deliver a knee to Riley on the outside, knocking Riley off the top of the ringside barricade, which would result in EMT’s being called out to assist Riley to the back as the match continued! Later on in the match, John Morrison would hit Starship Pain on The Miz in the ring, but Miz would kick out of the move, prompting Morrison to send Miz to the outside where he would place Miz on a table and would go for Starship Pain, but Miz would move out of the way and Morrison would go crashing through the table, but would still kick out of a pinfall attempt by Miz, prompting The Miz to deliver the Skull Crushing Finale to Morrison on the arena floor en route to finally defeating John Morrison to successfully retaining the WWE Title to kick off 2011 with a big win!
After The Miz successfully defended the WWE Title against John Morrison in a Falls Count Anywhere Match, the main event of RAW was revealed as three to-be-announced Superstars would compete in a Triple Threat Steel Cage Match with the winner being named the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title with that Superstar getting their shot at the title at the Royal Rumble in four weeks’ time! What Superstars will compete in the dangerous Triple Threat Steel Cage Match? Which Superstar will emerge as the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title?
The Divas would be in action on RAW as Divas Champions Natalya would team with Eve Torres & Brie Bella to take on the team of the #1 Contender for the Divas Title Melina, Maryse, & Alicia Fox in a 6-Diva Tag Match! In the end, it was Eve Torres hitting a swinging neckbreaker on Melina en route to picking up the win for her team!
The WWE Tag Team Champions were in action on RAW as Santino Marella & Vladimir Kozlov, with former Usos manager Tamina in their corner, would face Jimmy & Jey Uso in a non-title match! In the end, it was Santino Marella going for the Cobra Strike, but one of the Usos would counter and hit a Samoan Drop on Santino en route to picking up the win! After the match, one of the Usos would have some choice words for the former Usos manager, Tamina, but Vladimir Kozlov would come into the ring and would deliver a headbutt to the Uso, which would allow Santino and Tamina to team up and hit the double Cobra Strike on an Uso!
One week after shocking the world by orchestrating a Nexus assault on John Cena before symbolically joining The Nexus, “The Straightedge Savior” CM Punk would make an appearance on RAW to explain his attack last week and what his role is in The Nexus! CM Punk states that he spent all day walking around the backstage area looking for John Cena, but he “can’t see John Cena” and that is because Cena is not in the arena and it is because of him! Punk then states that he is a man of his “word” and he is also a three-time World Heavyweight Champion, which makes him a “leader of men”, which is why The Nexus “begged” him to be their new leader! Punk then continues to mock Cena by saying that “hustle, loyalty, and respect” are the words he “lives by”, as well as The Nexus! Punk then tells John Cena to “stay at home” because it is a “fight that Cena can not win” before proclaiming that is “taking over” The Nexus and he is “taking over” RAW before CM Punk is interrupted by Wade Barrett! Barrett states that he was the one who “destroyed” John Cena in a match they had last week at a WWE Live Event before saying that he is the leader of The Nexus, not CM Punk and Punk responds by saying that The Nexus “needs new management”, prompting Barrett to call Punk a “hypocritical, manipulative, waste of skin”! Barrett then states that, under his leadership, The Nexus “changed the face” of RAW before saying that Punk is not a “leader”, he is a “liar” as Punk “lies” about being “straightedge” and he “lies” to all the fans, who Barrett calls “John Cena flag-waving morons”! Punk offers the idea to bring out The Nexus and have them decide who is telling the “truth” and who is a “liar” and, on Barrett’s order, The Nexus comes out and marches to the ring! Nexus member David Otunga states that both CM Punk and Wade Barrett make “good points”, but Otunga is interrupted by the anonymous RAW General Manager as the GM chimes in with an email that announces the three participants in the Triple Threat Steel Cage Match to determine the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title between “The Viper” Randy Orton, the 2010 King of the Ring Sheamus, and either CM Punk or Wade Barrett! CM Punk responds by giving Barrett the spot in the main event, citing that he does not want to fight Barrett because he is a “talker” before stating that, if Barrett wins, he will allow Barrett to resume his role as leader of The Nexus, but if Barrett loses, then Barrett is out of The Nexus and Punk takes over as leader! Barrett then confidently shakes Punk’s hand and agrees to the stipulation! Can Wade Barrett overcome both Randy Orton and Sheamus in a Triple Threat Steel Cage Match to become the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title or will Orton or Sheamus win, forcing Barrett out of The Nexus in favor of CM Punk becoming the new leader of the group?
Four nights before he faces Rey Mysterio in a 2-out-of-3 Falls Match on SmackDown, “The Essence of Excellence” Alberto Del Rio makes a special appearance on RAW as Del Rio states that his “destiny” is to become the World Heavyweight Champion and his “destiny” is to “destroy” every single person on SmackDown before stating that his name will be “emblazoned” in the “heart and the mind” of the fans before proclaiming that his “destiny” is to win the Royal Rumble Match and main event WrestleMania! Del Rio then tells the fans that they have “no destiny” before he is interrupted by R-Truth who tells Del Rio that Del Rio’s only “destiny” is to go back where he “came from” before saying that he is just the man to “send” him there before slapping Alberto Del Rio across the face!
After his confident statements in regards to winning the Royal Rumble Match in four weeks, SmackDown’s “Essence of Excellence” Alberto Del Rio would go one-on-one with RAW’s R-Truth! In the end, it was Alberto Del Rio locking in the Cross Armbreaker on R-Truth, leaving Truth no choice but to tap out, earning Del Rio the victory! Will Alberto Del Rio continue his success heading into SmackDown this Friday Night when he faces Rey Mysterio in a 2-out-of-3 Falls Match?
It was revealed just prior to the main event that the anonymous General Manager of RAW has made the announcement that John Cena may return to action on RAW next week! Will John Cena return to RAW next week? What kind of condition will John Cena be in?
Then it was time for the main event as “The Viper” Randy Orton, the 2010 King of the Ring King Sheamus, and the current Nexus leader Wade Barrett would face off in a Triple Threat Steel Cage Match with the winner becoming the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title with a title shot at the Royal Rumble in four weeks, with the added stipulation that, if Wade Barrett wins the match, he will resume his role as leader of The Nexus, but if Barrett loses, he will be kicked out of The Nexus in favor of CM Punk becoming the new leader of The Nexus! During the match, Wade Barrett would look like he was moments from being named the new #1 Contender as Barrett would scale the wall of the cage, but CM Punk would come out and quickly climb the outside of the cage and would, shockingly offer his hand to help Barrett over the top of the cage, but once Barrett got close enough, Punk would rip the Nexus armband off of Barrett before knocking Barrett off the cage and back inside the ring! After hitting the Brogue Kick on Wade Barrett, King Sheamus would call for the cage door to be opened, but as Sheamus started to make his way to walk out of the cage, Randy Orton would come out of nowhere and deliver the RKO to Sheamus before walking out of the cage to become the new #1 Contender for the WWE Title! The match is now set for the Royal Rumble as The Miz will defend the WWE Title against the man that he cashed in the Money-in-the-Bank contract against to win the gold in Randy Orton! Can The Miz retain the WWE Title against a determined Randy Orton or will Orton regain the WWE Title in four weeks’ time at the Royal Rumble?