Battle Lines Drawn.
Six nights before Battleground, the 1062nd edition of WWE Monday Night RAW came to you, live, from the Mississippi Coast Coliseum in Biloxi, MS. After Cody Rhodes was unceremoniously fired a few weeks ago, the Rhodes Family have sought revenge against the Triple H regime as Cody, along with his brother Dustin and their Hall of Fame father Dusty Rhodes have appeared on WWE television in different roles as Dustin appeared as Goldust to try and defeat then WWE Champion Randy Orton to get his brother’s job back, followed by Dusty appearing for a “business proposal” from Stephanie McMahon that would result in the Hall of Famer getting knocked out courtesy of Big Show and, last week, Cody & Dustin took it to another level, hopping the barricade and assaulting The Shield! As a result, WWE COO Triple H has invited the Rhodes Family to appear on RAW for a “lucrative business deal” from the COO!
Also, before Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan go one-on-one at Battleground for the vacant WWE Championship, what will we see go down between the two former champions? Following his dismantling of The Miz on SmackDown, will Randy Orton find a new target for his destruction?
- CM Punk def. Big E. Langston by pin following the GTS.
- Kofi Kingston def. Fandango by pin following Trouble in Paradise.
- Los Matadores def. Heath Slater & Jinder Mahal by Diego pinning Heath Slater following a double Samoan Drop.
- Non-Title: R-Truth (with CM Punk) def. Curtis Axel by pin following the What’s Up.
- Brie Bella def. Alicia Fox by pin following the facebuster.
- Non-Title: Alberto Del Rio def. Zack Ryder by submission to the cross armbreaker.
- 6-Man Tag: The Shield def. Dolph Ziggler & The Usos by Roman Reigns pinning Dolph Ziggler following the Spear.
- Santino Marella def. Antonio Cesaro by roll-up.
One week after he was assaulted by Ryback & Curtis Axel in an apparent trap set up by Paul Heyman, RAW would kick off with “The Best in the World” CM Punk, just six days before he goes one-on-one with Ryback at Battleground. Punk says that RAW thrives on “unpredictability”, but, sometimes, he enjoys the “predictable”, saying that him getting beat down in his hometown last week was fairly predictable. Punk continues, saying that he knows how this “story ends” as it will end when he puts Curtis Axel to sleep, show Ryback what really happens to bullies, and it will end when he finally gets his hands on Paul Heyman and when he puts an “end” to Heyman. Punk says that the story could end at Battleground, it could end on next week’s RAW, or it could end right here tonight! Punk then says that he is not going anywhere until he gets a fight and he will not stop until he puts Paul Heyman out of his “misery”. RAW General Manager Brad Maddox then makes his way to the ring, saying that he knows that Punk is angry over being attacked last week, but a showdown with Ryback or Paul Heyman is not what is “best for business”. The GM then says that he does have the power to put Punk into a match. Punk begins to respond, saying that he needs an “outlet” for his rage, but Punk is interrupted by Big E. Langston, who comes to the ring and says that, if Punk wants “aggression”, then that is what he will get. With that, Langston pops Punk in the head with the microphone, sparking a brawl between the two. This leads to Maddox calling for a referee, making the fight into an impromptu match.
Six nights before he goes one-on-one with Ryback at Battleground, the opening match of the night would see “The Best in the World” CM Punk going one-on-one with Big E. Langston. In the end, it was CM Punk hoisting the huge Superstar up, putting Big E. Langston down with the GTS en route to picking up the win.
“The Lord of Dance” was in action on RAW as Fandango, with Summer Rae in his corner, would go one-on-one with Kofi Kingston. In the end, it was Kofi Kingston hitting Trouble in Paradise, pinning Fandango for the win. Things would take a turn for the sinister after the match, however, as Bray Wyatt leads Luke Harper & Erick Rowan to the ring as The Wyatt Family set their sights on Kofi Kingston. Wyatt sits in his rocking chair and he has a demonic message for Kofi, saying that he has spent the majority of his life wondering why “horrible things” happen to him and he now understands what he must do, saying that, one-by-one, they must all “fall”.
Backstage, Randy Orton confronts Daniel Bryan’s new fiancée, Brie Bella, advising Brie to have the wedding soon because, come Battleground, he will make sure that Daniel Bryan will not be able to even walk!
After weeks of vignettes hyping their arrival, it was finally time for the newest tag team to debut in the WWE as Fernando & Diego, Los Matadores, would arrive on RAW! Los Matadores would walk out to the stage, bow their caps to the crowd and produce their bull-tamers’ capes, taunting their miniature bull mascot, El Torito, on their way to the ring. Apparently Spanish for “little bull”, El Torito would use the ropes to hop around on the ring ropes before Los Matadores would make their in-ring debut, facing 3MB’s Heath Slater & Jinder Mahal. In the end, Los Matadores would put Heath Slater down with a double-team Samoan Drop and Diego would pin Slater to pick up the win, marking a successful debut for Los Matadores.
The Chief Operating Officer of the WWE, Triple H, would then make his way to the ring with his wife, WWE Owner Stephanie McMahon, to propose his “lucrative business deal” for the Rhodes Family. The COO wastes no time in inviting the three proud men to the ring as WWE Hall of Famer “The American Dream” Dusty Rhodes would lead his two unemployed sons, Goldust & Cody Rhodes, to the ring to face Triple H & Stephanie. Triple H asks why the three men are giving them a “look of hostility”, saying that they have given the family multiple “opportunities”. Triple H continues, saying that he first gave Cody Rhodes the opportunity to defeat Randy Orton and keep his job, but Cody “failed”, so they gave Dustin the chance to beat Randy Orton and get Cody’s job back, but like Goldust always does, he “failed”. Triple H then says that Dusty Rhodes opted to make it about himself instead of his sons, accusing the Hall of Famer of being angry because couldn’t make it as a star outside of the original NWA or when he “failed” to become a global star with the WWE. The COO continues, saying that Dusty Rhodes got knocked out for telling Stephanie to “go to hell” a couple of weeks ago. Stephanie then tells Dusty that he has a very important job, working in WWE’s developmental territory, NXT, training and developing the Superstars of the future. Stephanie says that it is ironic that she and Triple H hold the fate of Dusty’s sons in their hands.
The WWE Owner then gets to the business proposal, saying that they would like to give Cody & Dustin the “opportunity” to get their jobs back, offering the Rhodes brothers a match against the WWE Tag Team Champions, The Shield’s Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns and, if they win, then Cody gets his job back and Goldust gets a job, as well! However, Triple H adds the “catch”, saying that, if Cody & Goldust fail to beat Rollins & Reigns, then not only will they “never work for the WWE again”, but their father will be fired as well! Dusty then snatches the microphone out of the COO’s hand, telling Triple H that the COO is big on getting in people’s faces, getting in Triple H’s face and accepting the challenge. Stephanie then tells Dusty that the family is “looking for a fight”, telling them to be careful or they might just get it. Triple H & Stephanie then exit the ring and the Rhodes Family looks to follow, but after Cody & Dusty exit the ring, The Shield decides to strike as Roman Reigns runs through an unsuspecting Goldust with the Spear! This brings Cody Rhodes into the fray, but The Shield immediately gets the jump on Cody, but Dusty Rhodes grabs a steel chair. However, the Hall of Famer would not fare well as The Shield immediately puts the boots to Dusty before turning their focus back on Cody, beating Cody down before driving him down in the center of the ring with the three-man powerbomb. Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, & Roman Reigns then stand tall in the ring, having decimated the Rhodes Family.
The Intercontinental Champion was in action on RAW as Curtis Axel, with Paul Heyman in his corner, would go one-on-one with R-Truth in a non-title match. During the match, CM Punk would strike with a bit of mental warfare as Punk’s music hits, distracting Curtis Axel long enough for R-Truth to take advantage, hitting Axel with the What’s Up en route to pinning the Intercontinental Champion for the win.
Before she challenges AJ Lee for the Divas Title at Battleground, the soon-to-be-wed Brie Bella, with Nikki Bella in her corner, would go one-on-one with Alicia Fox on RAW. In the end, it was Brie Bella hitting the facebuster on Alicia Fox, picking up the win.
In a backstage interview with Renee Young, Big Show says that he nearly reached his breaking point on SmackDown when the taunting by Triple H almost led to the giant knocking the COO out. Big Show says that people are always telling him to “be a man” and “do the right thing”, saying that, if it were up to him, he would not choose any “evil”, he is doing what is best for his family. Big Show continues, saying that he has done everything that he has been asked to do and he cannot even look Dusty Rhodes in the eye anymore after he was forced to knock the Hall of Famer out a couple of weeks ago. An incredible angry Big Show then says that he is “not going to take it anymore” and, with fist clenched and shaking, the giant vows that he is going to “knock Triple H the hell out”, stomping away from the interview, ready to do just that!
Backstage, a meeting between R-Truth and RAW General Manager Brad Maddox is broken up when Big Show barges into the GM’s office, grabbing Maddox by the throat and pinning him up against the wall, demanding to know where Triple H is at! Maddox utters that he doesn’t know where the COO is and Big Show tells the GM to go and find Triple H because he is going to wait right there for him!
Six nights before he defends the World Heavyweight Title against Rob Van Dam in the anything-goes Battleground Hardcore Rules Match at Battleground, World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio would go one-on-one with Zack Ryder in a non-title match on RAW. In the end, Alberto Del Rio would lock in the cross armbreaker, forcing Zack Ryder to tap out to pick up the win.
After an awkward backstage conversation with Curtis Axel where he vowed to “propose” to Ryback, Paul Heyman would accompany Ryback to the ring. Heyman says that, since he “owns” CM Punk, he decided to “squash” Punk’s “rebellion” last week, saying that he was forced to “put down” Punk in his hometown last week. Heyman continues, saying that the only reason that Punk has failed to break his face is because of one “big, beautiful man”, Ryback. Ryback then says that, if there is one thing he hates, it is a “bully”, saying that Punk used all of Heyman’s “sacrifices” and attempted to throw them in Heyman’s face. Ryback then says that there is “nothing” that he will not do for Heyman. Heyman says that 2013 is such a “progressive year”, saying that it is a time of people “coming out” and he wants something much more “meaningful” for them than a managerial relationship. Heyman continues, saying he feels “free” and “liberated” ever since Ryback came to his rescue at Night of Champions and he wants to feel that way for the rest of his life. Heyman then says that he wants to make an “honest man” out of Ryback before Heyman actually takes Ryback’s hand and gets down on one knee, asking Ryback if he will become a “Paul Heyman guy”. Before Heyman can get an answer, CM Punk’s music hits again, but, this time, Punk comes through the crowd.
However, when Punk jumps the ringside barricade, he appears to injure his right knee as Punk struggles to get to his feet, hobbling around ringside. Punk then tries to hop onto the ring apron, but falls back down to the floor and WWE’s ringside physician rushes to aid Punk. However, when Heyman walks closer and peers over the top rope to get a closer look, Punk spots his moment to strike as Punk shoves the doctor out of harm’s way before grabbing a kendo stick and taking Heyman out at the knee with it and smacking Ryback in the shoulder with the weapon. Punk then slides into the ring with the stick, using the kendo stick to take out both Ryback and Curtis Axel. While Ryback manages to escape with Paul Heyman, Curtis Axel is left alone to bear the punishment as Punk repeatedly strikes the Intercontinental Champion with the stick, splintering the stick! Punk then delivers a final kendo stick shot to the skull before dropping Curtis Axel with the GTS! Punk then stands tall in the ring, waving the kendo stick around.
Before Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns face Goldust & Cody Rhodes at Battleground with Dusty Rhodes’ job on the line, The Shield would face the team of Dolph Ziggler & The Usos in a 6-Man Tag Match on RAW. At the end of a chaotic match, it was Roman Reigns hitting the Spear on Dolph Ziggler, pinning Dolph to pick up the win for The Shield.
Still waiting on Triple H’s arrival backstage, Big Show is met with a detective and a group of Biloxi’s finest, all set to arrest Big Show for threatening a WWE employee! However, Stephanie McMahon enters the office, explaining that Big Show is just trying to feed his family, saying that she has everything under control. Stephanie then tells Big Show that she talked to his wife and she said that Big Show hasn’t quite been “measuring up” to her expectations! Stephanie then leads the police out of the office as Big Show sits and cries before Big Show sets his sights on a framed poster of Triple H’s new DVD, punching the poster and leaving a hole in the wall, as well!
Ridiculousness would then ensue on RAW as Santino Marella, with Hornswoggle & The Great Khali in his corner, would face Antonio Cesaro, with Jack Swagger & Zeb Colter in his corner. In the end, Santino would catch Cesaro with a roll-up to pick up the win.
Six nights before they go to war with the vacant WWE Championship on the line at Battleground, the dangerous and remorseless Randy Orton and the determined Daniel Bryan would come face-to-face on RAW! Jerry Lawler would mediate the face-off and Randy Orton says that he was angry when Triple H did not hand him the WWE Title after Night of Champions, he is glad it happened because it allowed him to find it deep within himself to become the “Viper” of old. Orton then says that he is “genetically superior” to Daniel Bryan and he will regain the WWE Championship this Sunday. Daniel Bryan responds, saying that the reason that Triple H felt the need to motivate Randy Orton because the COO knows that Orton cannot reach his “full potential” without help. Bryan then says that he has never needed anyone else’s “motivation” to succeed in the WWE and he will succeed again this Sunday when he wins the WWE Title again. Orton then asks what could be so “incredibly wrong” with Brie Bella to want to marry Daniel Bryan, saying that, one day, Brie Bella is going to wake up and realize that she didn’t marry a “handsome champion” like Orton, she is sleeping with the “barnyard animal”! This would send Daniel Bryan over the edge as Bryan attacks Orton, pummeling “The Viper” with a flurry of right hands, but Orton is able to fight back, sending Bryan into the steel ring steps. Orton would then begin a scary assault as Orton would repeatedly ram Daniel Bryan into the steel ring post and blasting Bryan with right hands. As Brie Bella rushes to try and help her fiancé, Orton waits until Brie Bella is close enough before drilling Daniel Bryan with the suspended DDT on the arena floor. Brie then rushes to check on Daniel Bryan, but is scared away when Randy Orton returns to the scene and, in front of Brie, Orton dismantles the announce table before putting Bryan on the table and driving him through the table with the RKO! Referees then scramble to stop Randy Orton and, as Orton walks away, Brie Bella joins the referees in tending to her fiancé.
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