|Monday Night Raw|
|Date||January 4, 2010|
|Previous episode||December 28, 2009|
|Next episode||January 11, 2010|
The January 4, 2010 Edition of RAW is a Professional wrestling television show of the WWE's RAW brand, which took place on January 4, 2010 at The Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio. The Guest Host was Bret "Hitman" Hart.
The conclusion of the WWE Title Match at Survivor Series 1997 between then-champion Bret “Hit Man” Hart and Shawn Michaels remains one of the most controversial episodes in WWE history. Hart was forced to relinquish his title to HBK after the referee called for a quick bell while Michaels had his opponent locked in Hart’s signature submission hold, The Sharpshooter, despite the fact that Hart never submitted. The incident, known as the “Montreal Screwjob,” left a bitter taste in Hart’s mouth, including a palpable disdain for both Michaels and the man who orchestrated his defeat, Mr. McMahon. While revenge has always nourished motivation, time continues to mend old wounds, which seemed to be the case when Hart addressed the audience at the top of Raw. Not only did the former five-time WWE Champion and WWE Hall of Famer thank the WWE Universe for their support, he also called out Michaels in an effort to bury the hatchet. Michaels obliged, and the two talked openly about their feelings from that night and beyond. The men concluded their conversation with a handshake and, eventually, a heartfelt embrace. Perhaps in a forgiving mood, Hart even called out Mr. McMahon, who nonetheless did not emerge to join the two in the ring.
In the wake of a serious leg injury that will have Melina out for several months, WWE has arranged a Divas Championship Tournament to determine a new champion. The first round witnessed Maryse facing off against Brie Bella, who was accompanied by her twin sister, Nikki. Just as it appeared the conceited Canadian had gained an advantage, Nikki switched places with her weary sister. After a futile attempt to alert the referee, the beautiful blond took matters into her own lethal hands and finished Nikki off herself to prevail and move to the next round.
United States Champion The Miz loves to be seen and, unfortunately, heard. Which may explain why he sat in on commentary to watch the Fatal Four Way Match featuring MVP, Mark Henry, Carlito and Jack Swagger to determine the No. 1 contender for the U.S. Title. When the dust, and Miz’s mouth, finally settled, Montel Vontavious Porter emerged victorious among the field and will face the self-proclaimed “Awesome” Superstar for the championship.
Chris Jericho had his chances. The SmackDown Superstar and his partner, Big Show, held the Unified Tag Team Championships for months, which allowed Jericho to appear on all WWE brands, including Raw. Last month, however, Jeri-Show dropped the titles to Triple H & Shawn Michaels. Ever since, the arrogant Superstar has done everything in his power to recapture the titles, which would once again allow him to launch his petty attacks on Raw.
Jericho’s whining, however, simply wasn’t enough. When Jeri-Show teamed up against DX, The Game and HBK, with a little help from Hornswoggle, managed to overcome their opponents and bid Jericho a gleeful goodbye.
A man comfortable with destroying opponents inside a ring, Mike Tyson, will act as special guest host of Raw next week. This won’t be the first time the boxing legend has joined Raw, and this time is sure to be just as memorable.
Sheamus continued his frightening reign. After retaining his title last week against John Cena, the WWE Champion came crowing. After bragging that he is now the best there is and the best there will ever be, Sheamus was confronted by a courageous Evan Bourne, who stepped forth to challenge him. While the high-flyer demonstrated that speed and agility can stagger a giant, The Celtic Warrior managed to hinder and hobble Bourne, persisting on his path of ruin.
Last Monday, Randy Orton gave his Legacy charges, Cody Rhodes & Ted DiBiase, an ultimatum: Win your match or be barred from the group. This week, the Legacy ringleader was forced to choke down a spoonful of his own medicine. Earlier in the evening, Rhodes & DiBiase confronted their mentor and told him that if he lost his match against Kofi Kingston, he would be booted from the group.
With Rhodes & DiBiase looking on at ringside, The Viper clashed with Kingston in a rivalry that has boiled over several times in the past. On this occasion, though, Orton would prevail, perhaps in part due to a bit of unexpected incentive.
If Bret Hart’s appearance on Monday Night Raw could be summed up in one world, that’s it. The former five-time WWE Champion and WWE Hall of Famer seemed determined to bring perspective and resolution to the controversial events of the past, most glaringly the infamous “Montreal Screwjob.”
Like a leery mountain lion guarding his pride, Mr. McMahon invited Hart into the ring. While the two proud men initially reacted defensively, trading cold words and icy glares, their distrust eventually began to thaw. The Chairman even announced that Hart’s father, famous trainer Stu Hart, would be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame this spring.
After the two had shaken hands and raised their arms in a triumphant truce, however, Mr. McMahon reverted back to form, hitting the WWE Hall of Famer with a low blow that left him in a fetal position in the center of the ring. Like unicorns, the Loch Ness monster and the lost city of Atlantis, the return of Bret Hart to WWE seemed merely the stuff of legend, a sight among the WWE faithful that would never come to fruition.
Then it happened. After a controversial exit and a 12-year absence, The Excellence of Execution agreed to return to WWE as the first special guest host of Raw to kick off the new year. Even Bigfoot himself couldn’t have proven a more exciting host … or more shocking.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Dark Match: Bryan Danielson defeated Chavo Guerrero
- Maryse defeated Brie Bella (w/ Nikki Bella) in a WWE Divas Championship Tournament Quarter-Finals (2:18)
- MVP defeated Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, and Carlito in a Fatal 4-Way match (7:06)
- Triple H & Shawn Michaels (c) (w/ Hornswoggle) defeated Chris Jericho & the Big Show to retain the WWE Unified Tag Team Championships (12:01)
- Sheamus defeated Evan Bourne (1:45)
- Randy Orton defeated Kofi Kingston (10:58)
- Featured an opening segment in which Justin Roberts introduced Bret Hart as the guest host of the show.
- Moments later, Hart appeared, took the mic, and said "Well I guess Hell froze over" as the fans chanted "We want Bret" and "Welcome back;" Hart thanked the fans for their support over the years and noted he won the King of the Ring tournament in that same arena only to be jumped by Jerry Lawler, with the camera then showing Lawler smiling at ringside; Hart then asked for Shawn Michaels, with Michaels appearing and Hart asking to bury the hatchet and call for a truce; Michaels then said Hart deserved what happened to him in Montreal and that he disrespected Michaels and the business in 1997, while the crowd chanted "You screwed Bret;" Michaels then said there was a big part of him that didn't regret but there was another part of him; Michaels said he always respected Bret but got the feeling Bret never respect him and there were times he couldn't look at Hart; Michaels then said he didn't think of Montreal when he thought of Bret, instead remembering their WrestleMania 12 Ironman match; Hart then said Michaels wasn't the easiest guy to work with at the time and he had his issues but said it was a good time to put it behind them and said they could be friends; Hart then extended his hand to Michaels, with Michaels shaking it; Michaels then went to leave but came back and hugged Bret; as Michaels left, Hart called out Vince McMahon but McMahon didn't appear (debut of a modified theme song for Hart).
- Included an ad promoting WWE Hall of Fame 2010 tickets going on sale Jan. 16.
- Featured a backstage segment in which Josh Matthews attempted to interview McMahon, with McMahon saying he just left a meeting and had no idea Hart had called him out. *McMahon then said he would call Hart out later in the broadcast.
- Included the announcement WWE Divas Champion Melina suffered an injury the previous week in Manchester, NH and a 8-woman tournament would be held to determine the new champion; featured a backstage segment in which Chris Jericho & the Big Show discussed their title match later in the show against WWE Unified Tag Team Champions Triple H & Shawn Michaels, with Jericho saying he would present Hart with an idea for the match that he couldn't pass up; included an ad for "The Marine 2;" featured a backstage segment with Hart and Jericho in which Jericho suggested Hart be the guest referee for the tag team title match so he could call for the bell the moment Jericho gets either Michaels or Triple H in the Walls of Jericho, with Hart saying he wasn't a hypocrite and Jericho would have to win the match on his own; included a backstage segment in which Triple H and Hornswoggle talked about the new line of Mattel WWE action figures, with Triple H saying the only way Hornswoggle would get to play with them was if DX won their match; Michaels then walked by, with Santino Marella then appearing dressed as Jericho wearing a suit; Triple H then showed off the fact he had trained Hornswoggle to attack, with Hornswoggle jumping on Santino; featured a "Did you know?" graphic which read more than 2 million women watched Raw the previous week, beating every show on The CW, Lifetime, Hallmark, TLC, Oxygen, and NBC; included a backstage segment with McMahon and Randy Orton in which Orton offered to kick Hart in the skull if McMahon gave him the word but wanted the #30 spot in the Royal Rumble if he did so; McMahon then said he had his own security and to never confront him again; Orton then walked off and was confronted by Cody Rhodes & Ted Dibiase Jr., with Rhodes & Dibiase then saying they would be ringside for Orton's match with Kingston and would kick him out of the group if he didn't win; featured the announcement Mike Tyson would host the following week's show; included a graphic noting the recent death of "Dr. Death" Steve Williams; featured a video package recapping the events of the 1997 Survivor Series; included a "Did you know?" graphic which read the previous week's Raw was seen by more people than any show on Fox, ABC, CW, and NBC; featured a closing in-ring segment in which McMahon wished the fans a Happy New Year and said there was no reason to call out Hart because Hart and Michaels had already buried the hatchet; McMahon then thanked Hart for being the guest host and promoted Tyson being on the show the following week until Hart walked out to the ring; McMahon then said he knew the fans wanted to see Hart apply the Sharpshooter and then said he would never forget Hart spitting in his face or punching him backstage after Survivor Series; McMahon then said he hoped Hart would tell him he's sorry, with Hart saying he came to get closure, he got it from Michaels, and that McMahon wanted it as much as Hart; McMahon then said he remembered WrestleMania 2 and the battle royal where Andre the Giant was the past and Hart was the future; McMahon then said he wanted to personally nominate Stu Hart into the 2010 WWE Hall of Fame and then thanked Hart for every moment he gave the WWE audience; McMahon continued to sing Hart's praises with the two shaking hands and then raising Hart's arm in the air and playing to the crowd; moments later, McMahon kicked Hart in the groin, dropping him to the mat, and then walked off: