Monday Night Raw – May 8, 2006

Monday Night Raw
Date: May 8, 2006
Location: Arrowhead Pond, Anaheim, California
Attendance: 15,290
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jerry Lawler

I’m not sure what the focus is going to be here as we had the big Joey Styles angle last week, along with what looks to be Shawn Michaels/HHH vs. the McMahons/the Spirit Squad. That could make for some interesting moments, as could Edge vs. Mick Foley in another hardcore match, which probably won’t be as good as Wrestlemania. Let’s get to it.

We open with a recap of what seems to be the beginning of HHH vs. Vince McMahon, which might be putting HHH/Shawn Michaels vs. Vince N Pals. What could go wrong there?

Opening sequence.

Hey JR is back. That’s an improvement.

Here’s HHH for a chat. He isn’t out here to be a referee or fight with Vince McMahon. The only thing he wants to do is be the WWE Champion so John Cena needs to get out here right now. Cue Cena, to say HHH has ten championships. The New York Yankees have like twenty seven, but that doesn’t mean they get the easy pass to the World Series. Cena knows what HHH has done, but around here, what has he done lately? Actually who cars because we can have a title match right now. HHH is pleasantly surprised and says get a referee down here.

Instead he gets Vince, who says this isn’t happening right now. HHH says he knows Vince wanted Kenny to win the title, but that would just be going from a poser to a cheerleader. Cena says hang on because there’s nothing wrong with being a poser. He had some great poses after he pinned HHH and after he made HHH tap out. HHH says his favorite Cena pose was him being flat on his back after HHH knocked him out.

Cena looks ready to go so HHH appeals to Vince, but that’s Mr. McMahon to him. Vince is the boss, not his friend, but he’ll change his mind: HHH can have a title match, just not tonight. Instead, he has the rest of the night off, but Cena doesn’t. Instead, Cena can team up with Shawn Michaels against the Spirit Squad. Cena tells Vince what he can kiss but Vince says cut the mic. For right now, let’s have a four way for the Intercontinental Title.

Intercontinental Title: Rob Van Dam vs. Charlie Haas vs. Shelton Benjamin vs. Chris Masters

Van Dam is defending and has a quick staredown with Cena on the way to the ring. Before the match, Van Dam agrees with everything Joey Styles had to say and it was a gutsy move to say them. Instead of hearing RVD, Van Dam wants to hear ECW. Masters and Benjamin jump the other two to start and it’s a double shoulder to Haas. Rob comes back in and starts striking away, including the top rope kick to Masters. More kicks take down Haas and Benjamin and we take a break.

Back with Rob in trouble for a change and the fans ignoring his pro-ECW chanting wishes. Rolling Thunder hits Benjamin as Haas is sent outside, leaving Benjamin to suplex Van Dam. Haas comes back in for some dropkicks and another suplex gets two on Rob. Masters gets sent outside but Benjamin kicks Haas down for two of his own. Rob gets some fast twos on Shelton, who is right back with a backbreaker on the champ. Back up and Benjamin grabs a Samoan drop on Haas but gets clotheslined by Masters. There’s the Masterlock to Haas but Van Dam comes in with a top rope sunset flip to pin Masters and retain.

Rating: C. This didn’t have a ton of time when you took out the commercial but it was nice to see Van Dam overcome some odds to retain. Giving him win after win is going to make him seem like a much more viable challenger for the World Title when he gets the chance. Wins and losses do matter in something like this and I’m really not sure why that is so hard to figure out.

We look at See No Evil, with the production crew thinking Kane is a little out there.

The cast of See No Evil is here to say Kane really is evil. Cue Kane to choke one of them out. Neither of these two segments are on the Network.

Carlito vs. Matt Striker

Carlito wastes no time in hitting a dropkick but gets taken down with a backbreaker. Striker hammers away and we’re in the early chinlock. Some clotheslines get Carlito out of trouble and there’s the springboard back elbow. Cue Eugene to go after Striker for the fast DQ.

Post match Carlito beats up Striker and gives Eugene a Backstabber, as he should.

Edge vs. Mick Foley

Hardcore and Edge and Lita are dressed like they were at Wrestlemania. Before the match, Edge says in real life, the bad guys win so Foley can get out here and take his beating. Foley has his own barbed wire baseball bat and since they had the best hardcore match ever, whoever wins tonight is going to be the best hardcore wrestler in the world today. However, we can’t do that without having ECW included, which is why this match is being changed.

Edge vs. Mick Foley vs. Tommy Dreamer

Hardcore. Edge bails to the floor to start so Foley hits Dreamer in the back with a barbed wire bat. Foley hands it off to Edge for a shot to Dreamer’s face and the double beatdown is on, with Lita getting in for a bonus. Mr. Socko goes on and Edge adds a spear for a double pin on Dreamer.

Post match Foley kisses Lita’s hand and the three leave together.

Mickie James vs. Maria

Non-title and Maria has Trish Stratus, with her arm in a sling, in her corner. An early Trish distraction lets Maria grab a rollup for two but Mickie kicks her down. Some rather taunting shots to the face set up the MickieDT for the easy pin.

Post match Mickie stays on Maria so Trish comes in to stare her down. Mickie beats her down anyway, so here’s a blonde “fan” to jump Mickie until security breaks it up. Mickie screams that the woman ruins everything as the woman is arrested. I think we’ll be seeing the blonde woman again.

Umaga vs. Kevin Martenson/Tommy Wilson

Martenson is still floating around the indies today. The destruction is on in a hurry with Wilson being sent outside, leaving Martenson to be choke suplexed off the top. The Tree of Woe headbutt connects and there’s the running hip attack against the barricade. Wilson takes the Samoan Spike for the easy pin. Total devastation, as it should have been.

Kane vs. Big Show

They start with a fist bump and then actually go to the mat for the technical exchange (someone pull up the Twilight Zone theme). Show takes him down with a drop toehold and JR (JR: “Well cut off my legs and call me shorty.”) is more than a little surprised. Show picks him up for the takedown and Kane looks a little impressed.

They fight over a hammerlock until Show drop toeholds him down. Kane is back up with a hammerlock of his own before sending Show face first into the middle buckle. Then the red lights are back on and, with Kane’s old mask on the screen, Kane’s voice says it’s happening again on May 19. The lights come back up and Kane grabs a chair to unload on Show.

Rating: D+. Well they certainly did something different before getting to the stupid ending. I really can’t wait for the movie to come out so we can get on from this already, as it isn’t exactly much more than Kane hearing voices and saying the date over and over. It’s fine for a weird marketing campaign, but it gets annoying having it take over everything Kane does for the last few weeks.

The Spirit Squad fires itself up.

Spirit Squad vs. Shawn Michaels/John Cena

Non-title. Shawn and Kenny start things off with Kenny shouting about how Shawn cost him the title last week. That earns him some slaps to the face and it’s Cena coming in to face Nicky. They go to the mat with Nicky getting the better of it until Cena fights up with the running shoulders. The Squad bails to the floor and Kenny is tossed onto the rest of the team for the big crash as we take a break.

Back with Cena cleaning house but Johnny uses the distraction to hit a spinwheel kick for two. Cena is sent outside and it’s the trampoline clothesline to take him down again. They head back inside and Kenny gets to unload in the corner, followed by the jumping back elbow for two. We hit the neck crank for a bit before Cena misses a running crossbody. Nicky comes in for two off some right hands and we hit the sleeper.

A running knee to the head gets two and it’s right back to the neck crank. Cena fights up but gets caught by a cheap shot from the apron. The group beatdown sets up a suplex for two on Cena but Johnny misses a Swanton. The diving tag brings in Shawn to clean house, including the flying forearm into the nip up as everything breaks down. In the melee, Kenny gets in a title shot to Shawn for the quick pin.

Rating: C-. The match wasn’t supposed to be anything great but they also made sure to get to the point. There is no shame in having two top stars losing to a group of five people with cheating involved so it worked as well as anything else they could do to keep the Squad looking like threats.

Post match Kenny decks the referee and steals his belt to whip Shawn. Cena fights back but walks into a Pedigree from HHH to end the show. Works for me for the pay per view level Raw main event.

Overall Rating: C+. They’re doing some things around here which make me curious to see more. The Edge/Foley stuff is a nice twist and hopefully means we get some evil Foley promos in the future. I’m also digging the HHH face turn as he really does need to do something fresh after so many years of being the big bad. That stuff is all working, but at the same time you have the Spirit Squad, Eugene/Matt Striker and the See No Evil campaign. The good is rather good, but the other end is dragging it down hard. Overall, good stuff though and I want to see where it’s going.



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