It is, indeed, a New Day, if the performance of the WWE Tag Team Champions is any indication. The positivity-preaching triumvirate of Kofi Kingston, Big E & Xavier Woods got the biggest win of their young reign when they knocked off no less than the two No. 1 contenders to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, Randy Orton & Roman Reigns, in a 3-on-2 Handicap Match.
In a match born of some show-opening skullduggery from Kane, The Viper and The Big Dog managed to shelf their differences long enough to keep the champs occupied. That is, until New Day channeled Reigns and his old buddies to stage a numbers advantage. That momentum held until, appropriately enough for Montreal, Orton & Reigns screwed Orton & Reigns, albeit accidentally, when a Spear intended for Kingston went wide and bisected The Viper instead, giving New Day a win that’s really worth clapping about. Orton & Reigns, on the other hand, got hit once again by The Devil’s Favorite Director of Operations when Kane placed them in the Raw main event against each other.
So Bray Wyatt wants a piece of Ryback. Fine by The Big Guy, who responded to The New Face of Fear’s sneak attack last week by standing firm and daring Wyatt to come get some. Of course, given that fear leads to anger, and anger leads to hate, and hate leads to suffering, Ryback wasn’t sweating Wyatt’s scare tactics in the slightest. That, of course, made The Eater of Worlds’ response all the more chilling. Addressing Ryback from an undisclosed lair, Wyatt’s sermon boiled down to one simple promise: Ryback may not be afraid yet, but he will be. He will be.
The Ascension have deemed themselves the “greatest tag team of the future,” and that may very well be true down the line. But for the time being, it looks like Konnor & Viktor may not have their facts straight. Continuing their redemption tour en route to a potential rematch with The New Day, Cesaro & Tyson Kidd neatly disposed of the tag division’s brutish braggarts, shaking off a double-team of Kidd out of the gate to bring Cesaro in like a house on fire. The Swiss Superman unleashed a never-ending barrage of European uppercuts and initiated a Cesaro Swing–dropkick combo with Kidd to send The Ascension back to the wretched hive of scum and villainy from whence they came. Fact.
Thanks to that trip through a ladder, Dean Ambrose was never able to make good on his promise to prevent Seth Rollins’ Money in the Bank cash-in. But thanks to a little dirty deeds by Kane he may yet be the one to take the title away from The Architect come WWE Payback. With a spot in the WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match at stake in this SmackDown rematch thanks to Kane, Ambrose brought the crazy in convincing fashion against his onetime brother-in-arms, who was sorely hampered by the Kane-induced barring of J&J Security.
Rollins, for his part, was largely just playing catch-up as Ambrose emptied the entirety of his deep, ever-evolving arsenal to increasing returns. Except for a powerbomb into the barricade that almost earned him a count-out win, and despite an illicit match-crashing by J&J, the champion had trouble maintaining a consistent advantage. The Lunatic Fringe, meanwhile, came back for more and more eventually found paydirt with a schoolboy to send him to Payback. The wall of champions may be in play yet ... pending a contract signing on SmackDown, of course.
Well, now we know what happens when someone tries to cozy up to Lana. In an attempt to woo The Ravishing Russian to the side of light via the power of dance, Fandango drew the wrath of Rusev and suffered mightily in the ring as a result. Despite a bold flurry of offense against The Super Athlete, ‘Dango was done in relatively quickly in the contest by a furious Rusev after he convinced Lana to do the Fandango at ringside. The Ravishing Russian’s dance moves momentarily threw Rusev off his game and Fandango took advantage, but a kick to the face and the Accolade brought the bout to an abrupt conclusion shortly thereafter.
What’s scarier than a bag full of spiders? Nothing, that’s what. Except maybe an evil, 20-something clown, but without access to that nightmarish vision, Stardust relied on a sack full of creepy crawlers to get his revenge against R-Truth for knocking him out of the King of the Ring Tournament last week. Of course, Truth couldn’t possibly know that Stardust’s mystery bag contained an army of fake arachnids, so when the former U.S. Champion took a break from their bout to peruse its contents, the fright of his discovery landed him flat on his back.
Well hello there, Sami Zayn. For John Cena’s first U.S. Open match in two Raws, he got a taste of NXT’s finest when the former NXT Champion answered his call, carrying the cosign of Bret Hart (who also dispelled Heath Slater’s third crack at Cena’s title in the process). Taking a break from his business with this terrifying guy down in Full Sail, Zayn stormed his way onto Raw for a crack at The Champ.
Despite a nagging shoulder injury that hampered Zayn with a handicap, the hometown hero ran roughshod over Cena for a sizable portion of the contest, unleashing his Koji Clutch, diving DDT through the ropes and a Blue Thunder Bomb that briefly turned Cena into a human centrifuge. The Montreal native even kicked out of an Attitude Adjustment, but Cena’s Springboard Stunner put Zayn on his heels, and a second AA put him down. His time isn’t now, but it will be soon.
The Bella Twins have proven to be the thorns in Naomi’s side, but now she’s got some muscle of her own to back her up. Before Nikki and Brie could even make it to the ring on Raw, a returning Tamina acted as the equalizer, joining her cousin-by-marriage on a two-Diva beatdown of The Bellas and a warning of further punishment to come.
“The Bloody King” left a pair of fan favorites seeing red on Raw when the newly crowned King Barrett teamed with Sheamus to knock off their recent rivals, Dolph Ziggler & Neville, in tag-team action. Still on a high from his ring in the resuscitated tournament, Barrett not only opened the contest with a strong salvo against The Showoff, but he, in his benevolence, even allowed The Celtic Warrior a few cracks at his arse-kissing enemy as well.
It was the re-emergence of Barrett and the late tag of Neville that really kicked things into high gear, however. The Man That Gravity Forgot battered the King into a corner so ferociously that Sheamus had to come to his royal side. The interference allowed Barrett to rally and catch Neville in midair with the Bull Hammer, earning a victory for the past two Kings of the Ring.
Turns out Kane’s secret plan to control Roman Reigns vs. Randy Orton was to bring the entire Authority to ringside. With J&J as the guest timekeeper and ring announcer, Kane himself as the ringside enforcer, and Seth Rollins on commentary, the entire main event was brawled in the shadow of the assembled Authority.
And battle they did, trading blows until Kane tripped up Reigns after a Superman Punch, ending the bout in a disqualification. Of course, there was no bell to toll, as the timekeeper and the rest of The Authority barnstormed the ring and briefly turned the bout into Two Versus All until Dean Ambrose joined the fray to even the odds against the corporate power. The burst of teamwork flamed out fast once it came down to the four contenders to the title, and it became a game of one-upsmanship as Reigns Speared Rollins, Orton felled Reigns with the RKO and Ambrose followed suit, avenging his “brother” by striking The Viper down with Dirty Deeds in a display of charity and affection that may well not be there in two weeks’ time.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) defeated Randy Orton & Roman Reigns in a Three on Two Handicap Tag Team match (13:13)
- Brass Ring Club (Tyson Kidd & Cesaro) (w/ Natalya) defeated The Ascension (Konnor & Viktor) (4:07)
- Dean Ambrose defeated Seth Rollins (16:30)
- Rusev (w/ Lana) defeated Fandango by submission (2:13)
- Stardust defeated R-Truth (2:56)
- John Cena (c) defeated Sami Zayn to retain the WWE United States Championship (10:45)
- Bad News Barrett & Sheamus defeated Neville & Dolph Ziggler (8:38)
- Roman Reigns vs. Randy Orton ended in a No Contest (8:00)
Other on-screen talent