Story of the Yes! Movement

Until Southern States Wrestling gets some new matches to air (hopefully from the Thanksgiving Extravaganza held last Wednesday), here’s a different kind of rerun that I found while checking out the new YouTube section as I while away the last few hours of my free month on The Network:

While it suffers from the usual WWE spin (some other guy was actually the first to call Daniel Bryan a Goat Face…guess he wasn’t anybody important), this 163 second video highlights the tremendous entertainment potential of the top-notch WWE production crew that is constantly wasted by a senile chairman who’s only agenda is to entertain himself.
If only Beau James had these kind of resources at his disposal…

The PG Era Rant: RAW IS YES!

When last we left our heroes, they knew
how we felt and wouldn’t let us stop them. Meanwhile, the pressures
of WrestleMania were getting to everyone. Groups were splintering,
teams were losing winnable matches, titles were not safe. But with
even the leader of the WWE being called to the carpet, and the most
iconic wrestler ever ready to change the game, will the Show of Shows
change drastically by the time the show is over?
Not doing the live look-in. The
pre-show covers it.
The PG Era Rant for Raw, March 10,
2014.
Live from Memphis.
Your hosts are Michael Cole, JBL, and
some guy they picked up while they were in town.

Your pre-show, meanwhile, has the
following to say about Raw:
  1. Your celebrity guest is Jimmy
    Hart.
  2. Added match: Daniel Bryan and Big
    Show will face Batista and Randy Orton.
  3. Hulk Hogan has something to say.
  4. The Undertaker is in the house.
  5. Superstars Match: Sin Cara against
    Alberto Del Rio.
  6. Sheamus and Christian are meeting
    again in a WWE App match.
  7. John Cena faces Erick Rowan.
  8. Dolph Ziggler has a match on
    Superstars. I can’t tell who his opponent is.
  9. HHH has nothing to gain from
    challenging Bryan, but everyone thinks he’s scared.
  10. The Shield are united. Maybe.
    They seem to be.
And we open with the man himself, Hulk
Hogan. He mentions how much fun he’s had talking about coming back
to WWE, and how everyone loves having him back. Also, he spends all
day on the WWE Network, watching his best matches. Why doesn’t this
surprise me? He watches the Warrior match (Hopefully the first one),
the Savage match, and the Andre match. But watching the Andre match
makes him get excited. Apart from saying he slammed Andre through
the mat, he keeps to reality. He gets so pumped up he thinks he pull
the bumper off a Cadillac. Really. But he has an idea, and he wants
to tell everyone. The idea: a 30-man Andre the Giant Memorial Battle
Royal, to be held at WrestleMania. Hm, not the worst idea. He
closes by giving the “Memphonites” the question about how the
memory of Andre will run wild.
And before we can continue, here’s John
Cena. And man, he looks amped to be in the ring with Hogan. The
sound goes out on his opening line, but he’s excited about being in a
hot crowd. He points to a Hogan Still Rules sign, and he agrees,
welcoming Hogan home. Hogan is right back where he belongs. And
tonight, the battle royal is starting a new tradition. Cena says
that Mania III is his favorite WrestleMania moment. He can’t imagine
what it was like for Hogan, but Cena was more or less marking out,
and he knew Hulkamania was immortal. So Cena asks himself one
question about the battle royal: what’s he gonna do? The answer:
ENTER IT. So John Cena is entering the battle royal.
Wait, what? Hang on…
However, they’re here. The Family,
that is. Bray takes his spot in the rocking chair and says he’s
fascinated with pride – “my favorite sin”. Pride can make
strong men blind, even take out immortals. He mocks both Hogan and
Cena, “as if they can do you any good”. He calls both men liars,
and says their pride makes them prey upon the weak and give them
hope. “Hope is dead… as will be your legacy, John.” He can
tell Cena doesn’t get it, and he can’t comprehend it. So here’s the
truth: Wyatt is a friend if you look up at him, but looking down
shows an enemy. But looking straight at him? You see a god.
Cena’s rebuttal? “Do you even listen
to all that weird crap you say?” Wyatt’s talking about pride and
calls himself a god. It doesn’t make sense. Cena notes that Wyatt
looks more like Jimmy Buffett than a god. But he didn’t find his
lost shaker of salt, just two goons and a rocking chair. Bottom
line, Bray needs to prove he IS someone. Cena cancels his battle
royal plans and demands Bray Wyatt at WrestleMania, and if Bray says
yes, “You gonna get the ass-whippin of a lifetime”.
Wyatt says it’s empty promises, and
notes it’s always fun and games with Cena until he’s caught in the
spider’s web. And with that, the Family approaches, but Hogan and
Cena are ready. Harper and Rowan climb to the apron, and it’s a
standoff as we go to break.
And that, my friends, is how you talk
people into the building.
John Cena v. Erick Rowan.
Joined in progress with everyone still at ringside as Rowan cuts off
a comeback with a clothesline. Rowan floors Cena for two. The
camera cut to Bray and Harper, so I don’t know how. Double noogie
follows as the duelling chants hit. Cena powers out, but Rowan cuts
him off and gets a pumphandle backbreaker for two. Rowan drops an
elbow, but Cena avoids a stomp only to get slugged down. Rowan
misses another elbowdrop, and Cena fights back but gets caught in a
fallaway slam. Avalanche in the corner gets two. A second avalanche
misses and Cena leaps at Rowan, but is caught again, this time in a
bearhug. Cena is calling something to Rowan, then twists around in
the hold and breaks only to get clubbed in the back. Powerslam by
Rowan, and he goes for another, but Cena cradles for the pin at 3:29
shown. 3/4*

Hogan
celebrates as Bray is furious. Then he starts laughing. And Harper
and Rowan jump on the apron. We get our staredown again, but this
time the Wyatt boys back down. Hogan builds up Cena in
trash-talking, and Bray walks away as we play Hogan’s music. Because
Cena and Hogan need to do the posing. (Justin, if you don’t get at
least one caption out of this for WrestleCrap, I lose faith in you.)
I never thought I’d say this, but this was a waste of Erick Rowan.
Tonight,
Christian and Sheamus face off in a WWE App Match: Falls count
anywhere, Best of three, or Street fight. Later tonight, our main
event: Big Show and Daniel Bryan face Randy Orton and Batista. Plus,
the Undertaker is here.
The
Authority is WALKING! They’ll be here next.
After
the WWE Rewind of how last week ended, we have the Authority headed
to the ring. (Random
thought as they come to the ring: last week, JBL said “this is what
happens to insubordinate employees”. Why doesn’t HHH just fire
Daniel Bryan at this point if he’s so sick of the guy?)

They stop at the stage an say that Daniel Bryan “viciously
attacked” HHH and suffered the consequences. These are grounds for
firing, but they’ll lead by example instead, so they offer “a very
sincere apology”. It’s what is best for business – keeping
Daniel Bryan around, even if he’s not an A+ brand. He has value, he
has a niche following… so why fire him? Well, Bryan still needs to
apologize to them. Bryan needs to admit that he’s wrong and not man
enough to face HHH. (Crowd: NO! Stephanie: You’re right, he’s not.)
See, HHH is above Daniel Bryan in every manner of speaking. So if
Daniel apologizes, we move forward; otherwise, there are “severe
consequences”.
The
New Age Outlaws hug HHH and Stephanie on their way to ringside. They
will be on commentary during the next match.
Ryback
and Curtis Axel v. The Usos.

Ryback will be in the Andre match. Ryback starts with Jimmy and
gets chopped a bunch. Ryback reverses and gets a headlock, but Jimmy
with an armdrag. Axel tags in but gets caught with an uppercut. A
criss-cross leads to Axel sending Jimmy out of the ring. Ryback tags
in and throws Jimmy in, getting two. Ryback with a suplex, and Axel
gets an elbow and chinlock. Back suplex try, but Jimmy flips out and
escapes Axel’s grasp. Jey with the hot tag, and he gets a Hotshot
and clothesline. Jey with an uppercut to Ryback, and Axel eats
Samoan Drop. Jey ducks the Meathook, gets the Rikishi hip check, and
superkicks both men. Tag dive and Jimmy with the big splash for the
pin at 3:01. 1/2*
Meanwhile,
Kane is talking to the Shield about how they’re abandoning each other
and leading to losses. And on SmackDown, they were unprofessional.
Ambrose asks what the point is, and Kane says he wants them to remain
the valuable asset they are. The first cracks appeared when the
title were lost, so it’s Rollins/Reigns against Cody/Dustin. Rollins
accepts, but he asks if it’s about the Shield or about how Kane lost
to Daniel Bryan. Repeatedly. Kane is not amused, and he orders the
Shield to step it up. Ambrose says they will exorcise the demon…
and Reigns makes it clear they’ll take out any Demon that gets in
their way.
The
free trial is still going.
Big
E Langston v. Jack Swagger.

Swagger calls for time and tells his seconds to stay away. Swagger
with an attack in the corner to start, but Langston reverses and gets
a pair of cross-corner shoulder rams. Ten punch countalong is
stopped at five when Swagger does his high-leg tackle. Short
clothesline gets two, and Swagger goes to the butterfly lock.
Meanwhile, Langston will enter the Andre match. Langston fights out,
but Swagger gets a big boot for two. Swagger punches away, kicking
Langston down but getting caught with clotheslines. Greco-Roman
suplex follows, but Swagger avoids the Ultimate Splash and gets a
chop block. Swagger chokes Langston in the ropes, and Colter asks
Cesaro to add his two cents, but Cesaro refuses. Swagger is confused
about this, so Langston rolls him up for the pin at 3:04. Cesaro
finds this turn of events funny. *1/2
Swagger
is having a fit and gets in Cesaro’s face. Cesaro actually makes
Swagger back down as each one blames the other. Colter finally snaps
and blames both of them. And he’s sick of this garbage and rips his
jacket off. Cesaro tries to calm Colter down, but Colter insists on
handshakes. Swagger protests, but Cesaro calmly offers. Eventually,
Swagger agrees… but neither man will let go. Cesaro has a death
grip on Swagger just to prove a point.
The
Undertaker will be here next.
Two
thoughts: one, this show needs more wrestling. And two, I can’t
figure out who’s going to turn on whom in We The People. The first I
don’t like; the second I like.
Hey,
vote on the WWE App for the Sheamus/Christian match! And you can’t
vote to have it not happen.
Gong.
The Undertaker is here. Cole talks about how the experts are not
giving Lesnar a chance, but JBL points out Lesnar upset Randy Couture
too, so it’s not like the experts mean anything. Lawler says Brock
has never faced the Undertaker, and Cole and JBL immediately add the
“at WrestleMania” qualifier.
But
before Undertaker can say anything, Paul Heyman appears on stage.
He’s nervous. He apologizes in advance for interrupting. He came
out tonight to tell Undertaker to preserve his Streak. See, so many
people toss his record around that it seems meaningless. It’s an
historic accomplishment. To use a comparison: Shawn Michaels never
won at back to back Manias. HHH never won three in a row. Hulk
Hogan never won four in a row. Steve Austin never won five in a row,
nor did John Cena. And here the Undertaker has won 21 in a row. It
makes a man become myth, myth become legend, legend become god. So,
Heyman is here asking him to preserve the Streak… by calling off
the match. The Undertaker is the Streak, and people worship that,
even Heyman. But Brock Lesnar will destroy the streak. Sure, Lesnar
doesn’t know what he’s getting into, because nothing compares, but
he’s not afraid. Undertaker should be, though. Because if that
match happens, he will be conquered.
As
Heyman steps back, Undertaker speaks. Since Heyman is the messenger,
he can tell Brock this: “the fear of death is far greater than the
death itself, but the fear of the unknown is the greatest fear of
all.” One more thing: tell Brock that if he’s there at
WrestleMania, he will Rest In Peace. Heyman puts the mic down and
slowly backs away.
Later
tonight, Show and Bryan face Batista and Orton. Also, will Daniel
Bryan apologize? Plus, up next it’s the Rhodes Brothers against
Reigns and Rollins.
Tomorrow
on Main Event on the WWE Network, Dean Ambrose defends against Mark
Henry, while AJ Lee defends against Natalya.
Goldust
and Cody Rhodes v. Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns.

Sign guy sign: “Architect? Seth can’t make a sandcastle!”
Rollins will start with Cody. He backs Cody into the corner and
kicks away, slugging Cody down and stomping away. Rollins with a
suplex try, but Cody reverses to a stalling front suplex, getting
one. Cody brings Goldust in, and Dustin gets a snapmare and running
elbow. Rollins backs Dust into the corner and pops him one, but
Dustin reverses a corner whip and gets a back drop for two. Cody in
off the top rope, and he gets a Hammer Throw. He tries an alley-oop
bomb, but Seth flips through to his feet and sends Cody into the
turnbuckle (!!). Rollins traps Cody in the Shield corner and brings
Reigns in. Reigns powers Cody down for two. He punches away and
headbutts Cody, raking his elbow in Cody’s face. A palm strike
follows, and Rollins returns with a fistdrop off the top. Rollins
with a snapmare and kneedrop, getting two. Rollins with a smothering
chinlock, and Reigns enters. Cross-corner whip, but a blind charge
misses and Goldust gets the hot tag. Kneeling uppercut to Reigns,
Rollins is knocked away, and Reigns eats spinebuster for two.
Goldust stops a double team and gets a twisting body press on both
men before throwing them both out of the ring. Both brothers take
off and dive on their opponents, and Ambrose threatens to do
something about it as we go to break.
Brotherhood/Shield,
part two.

Reigns has Goldust in a front chancery, but Reigns gets a slam for
two. During the Break, Reigns got a Samoan Drop on Goldust. Reigns
with a huge uppercut, and Rollins comes in. Snapmare by Rollins into
a ground sleeper. And with a break in the action, we get a CM Punk
chant. Rollins with a Stinger Splash, and Reigns gets the Drive-By
Dropkick. Reigns drags Goldust’s carcass to the Shield corner and
mocks him (“He ain’t going nowhere, Dean.”) before picking him
up. That just allows Goldust a flurry before he runs into an elbow
for two. Rollins tags in and kicks away on Goldust, getting two.
Rollins works the arm on Goldust, but Goldust punches out only to get
caught with an enzuigiri. Reigns in, and he corners Goldust with
kicks and a corner clothesline. Reigns charges a second time, but
Goldust with a powerslam. Rollins stops the hot tag, but not for
long as Goldust kicks off an gets the tag. Cody gets the Brisco
rollup for two, then the sliding uppercut. He flips out of a back
suplex try, then gives Reigns the Disaster Kick and Rollins a
moonsault press for two. Ambrose is nervous about this as Cody
knocks Rollins onto the turnbuckle and gets a MUSCLEBUSTAH! Reigns
saves. Goldust dropkicks Reigns out but gets tossed, and Cody and
Rollins crack heads. Reigns spears Goldust, but Cody drops Reigns
and gets a Cross Rhodes try. Rollins escapes and catches Cody with
the buckle bomb and Curbstomp for the pin at 14:20. That’s more like
it. **3/4

Vote
on the WWE App about the match you’ve seen for the last six or seven
shows! Lawler really wants a Memphis Street Fight. Of course he
does.
We
take a quick look back at SmackDown and how Natalya made AJ tap.
AJ
Lee and Tamina Snuka v. The Bella Twins.

Natalya is at commentary. Tamina starts with Nikki, and after a
clean break, Tamina shoves Nikki around. Nikki fires back with
forearms, but Tamina with a back elbow. Nikki works the arm and
brings Brie in. The twins get a running knee double-team, but AJ
distracts and Tamina superkicks Brie out of the ring.Tamina with the
JACKET THROW OF DOOM, and back in, she stomps Brie for two. She goes
to a chinlock as Natalya quotes Owen’s catchphrase. Tamina with
headbutts, and she throws Brie into the AJ corner. Of course this is
when AJ enters, and she gets a spinkick for two. Hard throw, but
Brie blocks a charge. AJ tries a tornado guillotine choke, but Brie
fights out and gets a dropkick off a sunset flip try. Hot tag Nikki,
and AJ gets dropkicked. Nikki with a running clothesline, but AJ
gets the feet up only for Nikki to get a jawbreaker for two, Tamina
saves. Brie dives off the apron onto Tamina, so AJ kicks Brie down
and has Nikki at her mercy. Black Widow is blocked, and the Shock
Treatment gets Nikki the pin at 4:19. *1/4
But
wait, Nikki is posing with the belt only for Natalya to stare at her,
since, hey, she’s next in line, right?
They’re
doing a sneak peak at NCIS Los Angeles, which explains why the fans
ignored the twins and chanted for LL Cool J in the last match. Along
those lines, LL and O’Donnell are interviewed by Renee Young.
They’re asked who they want to recruit for the show, and they pick
Cena (O’Donnell). LL says Undertaker, Daniel Bryan, or the Bellas.
This is just USA Network synergy.
Later
tonight, the main event of Bryan/Show and Orton/Batista, with a
potential apology. Cole: “You think that’s gonna happen?”
Lawler: “No.” JBL: “It better.”
Earlier
tonight, Hogan and Cena and Bray and stuff. Scroll up. We’ll hear
from Bray Wyatt later tonight.
There’s
a lot of YES, so I’m guessing it’s Daniel Bryan time. Bryan says the
Yes Movement is real and live. He talks about Stephanie’s apology
(using air quotes, too), but he knows the crowd thought it was phony.
So did he. The Authority wants to scare Bryan into apologizing and
falling in line, but he should’ve attacked HHH months ago. But they
can’t have it both ways. If HHH wants to be corporate, that’s one
thing; if he wants to fight, that’s another; but he can’t attack
Daniel Bryan and expect him to back down, can he? Bryan WILL FIGHT.
And if HHH wants an apology for defending himself, Bryan only has one
word: NO. Bryan says it ends tonight. HHH doesn’t listen to Bryan
or the people, but tonight, he’ll make HHH listen. Tonight, it’s
OCCUPY RAW. JBL: “What does that mean?” Good question,
actually.
Bryan
says he’s not leaving the ring until he gets the match. And yeah,
people say that all the time, but Bryan is not alone. He will have
the ring and arena filled with the Yes Movement. And yeah, maybe all
of this will be unlawful and dangerous, but he wants members of the
Yes Movement to come to the ring RIGHT NOW. And yes, fans (plants, I
know, but still) are flooding the ring! Daniel Bryan says they will
stay in the ring until they get what they want! And on that, they go
to commercial.
I
think JR would put it best: “Business has picked up.”
We
come back, and there’s like 200 guys surrounding the ring!! Holy
hell, this is something! YES chants everywhere. Bryan: “YOU CAN’T
IGNORE US FOREVER!” I honestly don’t know what’ll happen next.
JBL is screaming for the cops as Cole calls it a revolution. HHH and
Stephanie come out and get a lot of NO. HHH patiently walks around
before congratulating Bryan on his movement. He says the hippies and
trolls must be happy. And yeah, now reality sets in because they
have 30 seconds to leave or they get arrested. Not one person moves.
The NO chant takes up the whole 30 seconds. HHH eggs them on to
chant some more. And now, HHH asks for security… but Bryan asks
for the whole damn audience to leave. The crowd likes that idea.
They want their own Raw. With blackjack and stuff.
HHH
demands security take them out, but it’s just two guys. Bryan is
giddy. Security just turns around and says they have no chance.
Stephanie demands they do their job, then says the fans are Bryan’s
sheep. It’s all a power trip. Power can go to someone’s head, but
it’s false power, and Bryan’s the wrong horse to back. “You think
Daniel Bryan is worth it?” Crowd chants for Bryan. Bryan then
turns it around: they don’t get the power of the people. Last week,
Stephanie said they own the ring… well, how about now? “YOU
DON’T OWN ANY OF THIS. WE OWN THIS RING!” HHH takes the microphone
and says it’s over, asking for the next match, asking the show to
continue.
And
next out is Damien Sandow. He wants them to move aside, but no one
is moving. JBL asks for martial law. Bryan eggs Sandow to enter.
Bryan basically asks Sandow to join the movement. Sandow decides…
forget it, he’s outta here. HHH re-emerges and tells him to get in
the ring. Sandow’s like “How?” A Hijack Raw chant starts.
Stephanie tells Sandow not to disrespect the McMahons. She owns the
WWE and owns the fans, demanding they leave… but no one is budging
as she gets more shrill. Bryan, though, says he won’t leave until he
gets what he wants, and no one is moving. All Bryan wants is the
match. More YES from the whole arena… and HHH walks away. This is
Bryan’s ultimatum.
Finally,
HHH says… that he likes Daniel Bryan and saw something in him, so
he protected Bryan. Because when Bryan became successful, he’d be
run over. He protected Bryan throughout the fall and winter. So why
isn’t he accepting? Because HHH will win and he will destroy Bryan.
He will not stop until he destroys Bryan. “You wanna fight me at
WrestleMania?” Crowd: “YES!” HHH: “Be careful what you wish
for; YOU’RE ON!”
But
before we go anywhere, Bryan says he has one more demand. You see,
even though the fans want to see Bryan win, they really want to see
him in the title match. Crowd goes nuts with YES. So here’s their
new demands: a Bryan win means he joins the main event. HHH charges
the ring, and now security tackles HIM out. HHH agrees to everything
and says he’ll end it all at WrestleMania!
Folks,
this is why we love wrestling. THIS is why we watch. This, right
here, is what we love – the fans not just getting what they want,
but setting up one of the biggest moments in Raw history. When we
look back on history, this will be the moment that Daniel Bryan is
made a wrestling icon. This is the most electric I’ve seen an arena
in months, and it wasn’t a match. The WWE has spent months
pretending not to listen. They then gave us everything we wanted.
Was this the plan all along? It doesn’t matter. What matters is we
got what we wanted – our #1 face in the high profile match.
The
WWE knows how to work the fans. Congratulations, Vince. This is why
I gave you my Network money.
Anyway,
later tonight, Bryan and Big Show face Orton and Batista. Up next,
the WWE App Match.
Look
back at it. LOOK AT IT. You will remember this. Daniel Bryan, you
are MADE.
Jerry
Lawler is in the ring ready to talk about the WWE App match. We are
getting…
Memphis
Street Fight (67%): Sheamus v. Christian.

Out of curiosity, who was Damien Sandow’s opponent? JBL actually
namedrops the Gentrys – fun fact: the lead singer of this one-hit
wonder the Gentrys was Jimmy Hart. Yes, THE Jimmy Hart. There’s a
drum kit at ringside, and other blues instruments. Brawl to start,
which of course Sheamus wins. Sheamus tosses Christian but misses
the Brogue Kick and gets punched. He recovers and clotheslines
Christian out of the ring. He sends Christian into the barricade,
then the announce table a few times. He grabs an acoustic guitar,
but Christian ducks and the ringpost eats it. Christian gets a
second guitar and spears Sheamus with it. Into the post goes
Sheamus, but he reverses a whip and sends Christian into the steps.
Twice. Sheamus then stomps Christian’s head onto the steps, but
Christian escapes and they go up the ramp. Sheamus catches Christian
and goes to slam him off the ramp, but Christian throws Sheamus off
it instead. Christian with a Tornado DDT off the stage onto the
floor, and both men are down and out as the refs check on both men
and we go to break.
Memphis
Street Fight, part two.

Sheamus hits the post off an in-ring charge, and Christian finds a
kendo stick. He jabs it into Sheamus and fires away, smacking him
over and over to floor him. He gets two out of it. More kendo
usage, as he jabs Sheamus in the corner, but a running charge misses
and Sheamus punches back. Christian with a knee to the gut to stop
it, and he gets the stick back… before discarding it and getting a
new one. JBL implies Lawler orchestrated the Occupy bit. Please
make that real. Anyway, Christian off the top and Sheamus catches
him with a punch to the gut. Sheamus stops a punch and comes back
with Polish Hammers and a shoulder ram. Kneelift and clobber, then
Sheamus finds the stick only gets nailed with a boot on the charge.
Christian up, but Sheamus catches him with a Finlay Roll. It gets
two. Sheamus catches Christian on the apron, but Christian blocks
the Ten of Clubs and drops Sheamus on the top rope. The two men race
to the kendo stick, but getting a hold of it. Sheamus wins that war
of wills and goes nuts with the stick. White Noise follows, getting
two. Christian gets to the apron, but that just leaves him set up
for the Ten of Clubs. Er, SEVENTEEN of Clubs. Running powerslam
follows, and it’s Brogue Time. Christian bails out before he can run
up, catching Sheamus but getting sent into the post. Sheamus
delivers the Irish Curse off the steps to the floor and throws him
in, following with a chair or two. Or four. He then sees the drum
kit and goes for the big bass. Christian avoids going into the drum
and kicks away, then gets a chair and goes to town with it. He
stacks two on Sheamus, and the frog splash sends them into his gut.
It gets two. Christian eyes the bass drum and snatches it, ready to
attack, but it’s a Brogue Kick through the drum to Christian to end
it at 14:26. ***1/4
Cole: “After that [kick], Christian is seeing Yellow Submarines.”
Credit
where credit’s due here: after that insane Occupy Raw segment, the
street fight kept the crowd into it. Amazing. It’s like
WrestleMania 13 and the underrated Street Fight there.
Go!
Sign up for the WWE Network! I mean it! Look, they’ll even walk
you through it!
Brad
Maddox is trying to calm Batista down over the main event change,
saying HHH and Stephanie left after the Occupy moment. Randy Orton
jumps in, and he’s just as mad at what happened. Maddox tells both
men (on the Authority’s behalf) to settle their differences and take
care of Bryan and Show. Orton says he’ll do it for them if Batista
is. Batista doesn’t respond, just walking off.
As
the only Randy Orton fan left in existence, his part of this story
intrigues me more than anything else. I wonder where he’s going
after WrestleMania, and we didn’t think anything of him before the
story began.
But
before our main event, here’s Lana to give us Alexander Rusev and his
podium. She gets WHAT chants. Lawler: “This is Memphis; we barely
speak English. What the heck was she saying?” Rusev says stuff.
We
recap the announcement of the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
Honestly, good for WWE for making Andre immortal, especially since he
died before most fans were born.
But
the recap is cut off by the Wyatt Family. Harper tells Cena he’s
made a really big mistake. He’s falling into the hands of the
Reaper. Wyatt addresses us upside down, then tells us it was
euphoric seeing Cena and Hogan next to each other. It was like
seeing the future of Cena. “Do you see yourself in him, John?”
He does – the self-absorption, anyway. It would take a lot to
admit that Cena is also a monster, but he is. Challenging him was
the most foolish thing he did. He has a thousand faces and a million
names; he can be a vicious beast or a smiling child. Bray accepts
the challenge. “Just remember, you are the one with everything to
lose. Your time is up. My time is forever. Ti-i-i-i-ime is on my
side…” Yes, we just had a reference to “Fallen”. There, I
saved you a Googling. Oh, yeah, almost forgot: Run.
Big
Show – who at this point has been reduced to the other guy –
comes out for the main event.
SmackDown’s
main event is Kane against Big Show. Sorry, Tommy.
Big
Show and Daniel Bryan v. Batista and Randy Orton.

Cole: “It’s been an exciting night, thanks in part to this man.”
JBL: “What do you mean, in part?” Orton, Bryan, and YES start.
Orton pounds away on Bryan and sends him into the buckle. He adds a
kick but gets low-bridged, and Bryan follows with a tope suicida. He
fires up the YES chants as we go to break.
Main
event, part two.

Bryan has a chinlock of sorts on Orton as we return. He adds
uppercuts, but Orton reverses a whip and gets a knee to the gut.
Batista in, and he kicks Bryan in the head and works him in the
corner. Hammer Throw and more shots to the gut follow, then a
forearm to the back. He chokes Bryan in the corner, then tags Orton
in. Bryan tries to fight back, but Orton with headbutts to keep him
down. Bryan still gets to his feet only to get caught with a
powerslam. It gets two. Orton brings Batista in, and the Animal
gets a suplex and slams a forearm into him on the apron. He sends
Bryan into the apron spinbuster style and throws him in. Blind
charge eats boot, but Batista recovers with a lariat for two. Orton
in, and Batista holds Bryan open for Orton to slug away and get a
headbutt. Orton kneedrop misses, and it’s hot tag Big Show. Batista
is bowled over repeatedly, adding an avalanche and sidewalk slam.
Show goes up… but stops to catch Orton with the goozle. Orton with
a Hotshot and Batista adds a chop block. Orton back in, and he
stomps away on Show, kicking him to keep him down and getting two.
Batista in again, but a big boot misses and Show chops him only to
get speared. Batista Bomb try, but Show backdrops out of it, and
here’s a sentence you don’t expect to see every day: Big Show makes
the hot tag to Daniel Bryan. Bryan slugs away on Orton (YES), then
does the video game sequence. He dropkicks Batista off the apron
before doing the YES Kicks to Orton, including the roundhouse. It
gets two. Bryan goes up, kicking Batista away as he does, and the
Ram Jam… misses. Orton with a rollup for two. Bryan switches to
the Yes Lock, but Batista saves. Big Show with a huge kick to
Batista, RKO to Big Show, and everyone’s down. Orton stalks Bryan,
but Batista charges in and spears… Orton, missing Bryan. Knee Plus
to Batista, but Orton avoids a corner dropkick. Orton with the
Draping DDT to Bryan (complete with SIGN POINT OF DOOM), and he riles
up the crowd. He stalks for the RKO, but Bryan with a backslide for
two. Knee Plus ends it at 13:02. **1/2
FINAL
THOUGHTS:
We
can argue all we want about what the original plans are. It’s what
we do. But the fact is, these are the plans now. All the twists and
turns we took emotionally – whether they were audibles or planned
all along – no longer matter. We have the matches we were begging
for at WrestleMania.
It’s
time to deliver.
STATS:
MATCH
TIME: 55:41 over seven matches.
BEST
MATCH: Christian/Sheamus
WORST
MATCH: Usos/Rybaxel
NIGHT
MVP: It’s a tie; Daniel Bryan and the Fans.
FINAL
RATING: 9. A Raw is remembered by its biggest moment. If it’s good,
the rating is inflated; if it’s bad, the rating is dropped hard.
This was amazing television. Nothing else matters, and nothing else
will be remembered.
Which
is crazy, because we had a lot of good on this show. The Andre match
being announced is a fantastic tribute to the Giant, although I
imagine Big Show wins it. Cena/Wyatt is interesting, because a win
for Wyatt would be a big deal, but I don’t know if he isn’t already
bulletproof.
But
none of that matters. We got a moment that will be on Best of Raw
DVDs until 2093.
Whew.
Tommy… I’ll see you for SmackDown. Scott… I’ll see you for NXT.
Guys… I’ll see if I have it in me to do Main Event tomorrow.
YES!
YES! YES!

Yes! Yes! Yes!

I have no idea when or if you'll get around to reading this. Something I find slightly humorous is that since Summerslam maybe slightly before when they really starting going strong with this Daniel Bryan push is that all of the fanboys on the internet are VERY invested in this guy. Its almost like they're eight years old and its the eighties again. 

Daniel gets a title shot and they all love and cheer it as the greatest thing ever, HHH turns on him and they all despise him, Daniel Bryan does a heel turn and joins the Wyatts and they react how five year olds would have reacted if Hogan joined the Heenan Family. 

Its very funny to me to watch these proud smarks get reduced to nothing more than marks when it comes to their favorite wrestler. Also I don't remember ANYONE getting this invested in CM Punk and say what you want but CM Punk got a lot stronger of a push and never got the reactions Bryan got. Of course the last year or so he's just a guy going through the motions and seems to be in full on not giving s--- mode. 

Anyway its incredible that no matter how old we are and no matter how many WON newsletters we read Vince can still work them over. 

Sure, but we WANT to get invested in someone.  It's been a long time since someone has actually captured the imagination of the fanbase like Bryan has and made people feel personally tied to him.  And thus that's the guy that should get pushed!  Can you imagine if Vince had been this stubborn in 1983 and kept Bob Backlund on top for another three years while people were screaming for Hogan?  Wrap your head around that — Backlund was champion for six years and people thought that was an eternity back then.  And now Cena has been the top guy for another three years on top of THAT!  

Big Show….YES!???

When I was reading the comments in the RAW open thread, I was really glad a lot of the comments brought this up.  I was hoping you would comment on this during your RAW review but you didn’t(maybe Hulu edited it out?) but something from RAW really bothered me:  Why is the Big Show using Daniel Bryan’s YES chant?  Daniel Bryan has nothing to do with that Authority storyline anymore.  At least when Show did it before, Bryan was usually around and it sort of made sense.  I mean at what point does every top babyface start doing the YES chant for a cheap pop?  Because I guarantee you if Triple H came up with a chant as over as YES, NO ONE would EVER be allowed to use it.  No one used Rock’s phrases(other than Foley for comedic purposes) and no one used Austin’s(unless they were mocking him).  I mean do you think Bryan is at least a little annoyed that Big Show not only took his position at the top of the card but is now stealing his catchphrase?
So to summarize, Bryan wins the title, gets screwed out of the title numerous times, gets jumped by the Authority almost every week, never really gets his revenge and now is in that ‘parallel universe’ along with CM Punk in a completely different feud.  Meanwhile Big Show is now in Bryan’s spot and is using Bryan’s catchphrase to get, in my opinion, a cheap babyface reaction. 
Any thoughts?

Let’s be brutally honest here:  if Daniel Bryan drew money like the Rock or Steve Austin, this wouldn’t be an issue.  

Yes! Yes! Yes!…. I Mean No! – WWE taking legal action over use of Yes chant

I know the WWE has been involved in some bizarre legal issues over the years but if this is true then surely it has to rank high amongst them?
 
"WWE has started to seek out "infringing uses" of Daniel Bryan's "YES" slogan, so that they can take legal action."
 
http://www.411mania.com/wrestling/news/240978/WWE-News:-Richie-Steamboat-&-Dean-Ambrose-on-the-Road,-Sid-Vicious-Teases-Major-Appearance,-More.htm

I'm assuming the nebulous 411 report would be referring to their legal monkeys going after bootleg t-shirts and the like, since the YES shirt is a big seller, although I should note that 411 stole that report word-from-word from PWInsider without any context.  You can't trademark a word (like "Yes") but you can trademark a shirt design, especially if it's an easy one to rip off like Bryan's.  And really, even if someone is doing an innocent "Yes" shirt on Cafepress, WWE can easily bully them into stopping.  If that's what this is about, I'm on WWE's side for once — you have to protect your trademarks or risk losing them.