The SmarK RAW Rant – 10.07.13 Live from Pittsburgh, PA Your hosts are Michael Cole, JBL & Jerry Lawler Stephanie McMahon joins us to start, and although she and HHH weren’t in attendance at Battleground, they’re still really upset about what Big Show did there. Welcome to wrestling, where people arrive two hours into shows they’re main-eventing and skip PPVs because of “other business”, leaving Brad Maddox in charge. So Big Show is sorry for ruining the main event, but that’s not good enough for Steph , who berates him and fires him. Show continues to be great in the role, but storyline just makes ZERO sense. Damien Sandow v. Dolph Ziggler Sandow attacks in the corner and gets a chinlock, then drops knees, which would seem to be an ill-advised move for someone with an injured knee. Sandow goes to a headscissors on the mat, but Zigger fights back and gets dumped as we take a break. Really? THIS match gets a commercial break? Back with Sandow hitting the ELBOW OF DISDAIN for two. Back to the chinlock as Cole notes that Show is kicked out of the building, which means he’s 100% not coming back at the end of the night. To the floor as Sandow sends Ziggler into the post and gets two. Finally Sandow misses a charge and Ziggler comes back for another brawl on the floor as JBL notes that Ziggler should have been doing this all along “instead of getting beat up for 10 minutes”. That’s tough to argue against. Sandow blocks the Zig Zag and drops Dolph on the ropes for two, but the fameasser finishes at 12:00. Just a match between two guys doing nothing and going nowhere. **1/2 Meanwhile, Steph continues her bitching streak, going after Brad Maddox this time. When we return from the break, Brad announces that, yes, it’s Daniel Bryan v. Randy Orton yet again at Hell In A Cell, and to ensure no controversy, we’ll get a special referee, as voted by the fans. First candidate: Booker T. The Paul Heyman Guys are out to accuse Punk of being a BULLY and even worse, a CHEATER. Punk comes out to answer these allegations, but R-Truth offers help and we have a tag match. CM Punk & R-Truth v. Ryback & Curtis Axel The babyfaces double-team Axel and Truth slugs him down as we take a break. Back with Truth fighting off both heels until Ryback powers him down and goes to the bearhug. Axel comes in with a dropkick for two and goes to a chinlock as the boredom endures. Tweets from the idiots who post about this show indicate that Hulu is already cutting the Matadors out of the show after ONE WEEK. Ryback continues the boring as fuck beatdown of Truth with an abdominal stretch, and finally Truth comes back with a sidekick and makes the hot tag to Punk. Macho Elbow for Axel sets up the GTS, and Punk lets Truth finish Axel with an axe kick at 13:00. Well that was nice of him. ** Bob Backlund joins us to make his pitch as guest referee, and it involves putting whoever gets out of line into a crossface chickenwing. I’m unsure about his “crazy old man” platform, but I like his “maintain order with submission holds” platform. Kofi Kingston v. Randy Orton Orton tosses him quickly and puts the beats on him, and back in for two. Kofi comes back with kicks to put Orton on the floor, but Orton beats him down in the corner. Kofi tries a crossbody and misses badly, as we take a break. Back with Orton working on the leg, and into a chinlock. Dropkick gets two and they slug it out in the corner, until Kofi CREATES SEPERATION with a tornado DDT. Could this crowd be any more dead? Kofi makes the comeback and hits his crossbody this time, for two. SOS gets two. Kofi springboards right into a powerslam that gets two in a nice spot. Kofi counters the draping DDT, but walks into a clothesline on the floor, and things go badly for him. Draping DDT off the railing and they head back in for the academic RKO at 15:00. Nice to see them letting a title contender actually beat the fuck out of someone to build them up instead of jobbing to mess with betting lines or whatever. *** And then Daniel Bryan charges out and goes nuts on Orton as they brawl to the back. Meanwhile, Vickie Guerrero has a special announcement to make, which Alberto Del Rio assumes means that he’s going to be named the new face of the WWE. Shawn Michaels is the final referee choice. Duh, I wonder who’s going to win this poll? Alberto Del Rio v. Ricardo Rodriguez Vickie quickly interrupts the match and announces that Del Rio defends the World title against John Cena at the PPV. Del Rio is so upset that Ricardo rolls him up for the pin. How can we miss Cena if he never goes away? On the bright side, Cena with the World title will at least keep him away from Daniel Bryan for a while and hopefully elevate the belt to something worthwhile again. MizTV is pre-empted by the Wyatt Family, who chase him up the ramp. OK then. Meanwhile, it’s more Stephanie, who greets HHH and adds to the verbal beatdown of Maddox. The Shield v. Daniel Bryan & Cody Rhodes & Goldust Goldust slugs it out with Rollins and boots him down for two, and Cody springboards in with a kick for two. Cody fights off the Shield and hits Ambrose with a front suplex for two. The faces work Ambrose over in the corner, but Cody goes up and gets sent to the floor as we take a break. Back with Ambrose getting the heat on Cody, but he comes back with a moonsault press and it’s hot tag Bryan. He suplexes the crap out of Rollins and hits a top rope rana for two. We are BONZO GONZO and Bryan puts Rollins into the YesLock, resulting in the Shield getting themselves DQ’d at 12:01. However, HHH restarts the match, allowing Randy Orton to pop out of the crowd for an RKO on Bryan that finishes for Rollins at 13:34. **1/2 And before another beatdown can occur, the fired Big Show returns, breaks through the Shield, and finally KOs HHH. BUT WHERE IS HE GOING TO LIVE NOW?!? The Pulse Even at 90 minutes this show kind of bored me, mostly because it’s building rematches from a PPV that I had no interest in to begin with. I really think it’s time to cut bait on the Corporation storyline, it’s not going anywhere for them and business is down in real life. Hopefully they blow everything off at the PPV and let Bryan and Punk and everyone else do something fresh.