This week is the OLD SCHOOL edition of WWE Monday Night Raw where the legends take the center stage. Plus, Daniel Bryan makes his first appearance as part of the Wyatt Family, CM Punk battles Roman Reigns and more.
We start off with the old logo and intro and then “Old School” WWE Monday Night Raw opens with “Nature Boy” Ric Flair coming to the ring. No one deserved to open the show more. Flair gave his normal spiel and then Randy Orton came out, still carrying both title belts. Orton points out how Ric Flair is the man who helped him when he started his career, and since he likes Flair so much he wants to ask Flair respectively to step out so he can talk.
Orton then complains about being put in a match with John Cena at the Royal Rumble and he asks The Authority to reverse the decision since he already beat John Cena. Flair said the reason he is so great is because he defended his title seven nights a week against everybody. He said that Orton was the most talented wrestler to come along in a long time but has a punk attitude he never grew out of.
Orton then said that Flair always had someone watching his back his entire career and is the most overrated wrestler of all time. He told Flair to leave or he would not be responsible for what happened next. Flair refused, and that brought out John Cena. He challenged Orton to fight but Orton walked off.
Jerry Lawler is not with the announce team tonight, as he was hospitalized today. JBL and Michael Cole are in the old school red and gold jackets and are sitting at an old folding table, like early Raw episodes.
Up next was a video promo of Daniel Bryan joining The Wyatt Family. Up next are The Usos and Rey Mysterio against The Wyatt Family and Daniel Bryan.
Daniel Bryan came out in blue workman clothes and got some advice from Bray Wyatt before the match started. When Bryan was finally tagged in, Rey Mysterio was in the ring and Rey tried to talk some sense into Bryan, but Daniel just started beating the crap out of him. The Wyatt Family lose when Luke Harper tagged himself in and ordered Bryan out of the ring before getting wrapped up and pinned. The fans were pretty quiet most of the match, not a good sign.
The fans will vote on a legend to referee the match between Damien Sandow and Great Khali. The three men to get voted on included Bob Backlund, “The Enforcer” Arn Anderson and Sgt. Slaughter.
After Brad Maddox announced that, Kane came in and asked about what Maddox said the week before about him. When Maddox asked if Kane was going to beat him up, Kane said that he would be fired if he did. Then Kane warned Maddox that if he attacks him, he will get fired but no one will ever see Maddox again. He said that if Maddox gets him fired, he will become the Big Red Monster again and no one will ever see Brad Maddox again.
Up next was a fun segment where Big E Langston was walking backstage and passed Nikoli Volkoff, who started signing the Russian National Anthem. He then saw Ted DiBiase, who said everyone has a price for the Million Dollar Man and started laughing manically. Then he passed IRS, who told him to make sure to pay his taxes. Big E just smiled and walked on.
Big E Langston took on Curtis Axel next, with Ryback at ringside doing color commentary. Ryback was pretty funny on commentary, saying that Big E was probably the third or fourth strongest guy in the WWE and should buy a bra. Big E Langston won with the Big Ending.
Piper’s Pit was next with Rowdy Roddy Piper coming out to the ring. Piper started talking but then his guests, The Shield, came down to the ring. Dean Ambrose got in some great lines (classic Piper-style) before Piper cut him off. Piper said there was only one man in the WWE who could match Roddy Piper on the mic, and that is CM Punk. Seth Rollins took the mic and said that Piper was just jealous because Ambrose is a better U.S. champion than Piper ever was. Piper then said Punk was better than both Ambrose and Seth Rollins and proved it in the ring and asked Roman Reigns if he thought he could beat Punk. Reigns said he would beat Punk and if Piper ever touched him again, he would break him. Right as The Shield was ready to attack him, CM Punk and the New Age Outlaws ran in for the save.
The next match was the millionth match between Sin Cara and Alberto Del Rio. ADR finally got the win over Sin Cara and then cut a promo saying he would personally eliminate Batista from the Royal Rumble.
Backstage, Daniel Bryan was dressing down Luke Harper and Erick Rowan and said he wanted them to teach him how to be a monster, but he could teach them how to be a tag team champion and asked to team with one of them next week. Bray Wyatt interrupted and said that he would team with Bryan last week.
The world tag team champions Goldust and Cody Rhodes took on The Real Americans in a non-title match. The match was a great one and Goldust won when he pinned Jack Swagger.
Backstage, DDP and Booker T meet up. DDP pimps his DDP Yoga (it works, seriously – it might be the best workout I have ever done) and DDP shows how flexible he is now. Booker T tried to do a stretch but pulled something in his back. That brought in Ron Simmons for his typical “Damn.”
Damien Sandow vs. Great Khali is next and Runjin Singh is back with Khali. The WWE Universe voted for the special guest referee and the winner is Sgt. Slaughter. Khali picked up the win despite Sandow having his foot on the lower rope before even the first of the three counts. Sandow tried to attack Slaughter after the match but Slaughter locked in the Cobra Clutch. After that, Slaughter danced with Khali and Singh (he twerked).
Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar came out and Lesnar talked about Lesnar being the self-proclaimed number one contender to the world title and compared him to Bruno Sammartino, Hulk Hogan and Stone Cold Steve Austin. Heyman then said no one could stop Lesnar and started chanting Lesnar’s new motto and Mark Henry came out. Lesnar attacked him and broke his arm the same way he did Triple H last year. Brock was leaving and it looked like it was over until Big Show’s music started.
Brock Lesnar backtracked and went back into the ring and challenged Big Show. When Show went into the ring, Lesnar left. Paul Heyman tried to distract Show and Lesnar attacked but Big Show grabbed Lesnar and tossed him across the ring. Lesnar and Heyman left after that. It actually worked to set up this upcoming match and was a nice segment.
The Bella Twins were up next and lost to Alicia Fox and Aksana. Brie Bella tried to act tough – it didn’t work.
In the next match, WWE legend Rikish and Too Cool came out to wrestle 3MB, and the returning Heath Slater (he has been gone for personal problems). Rikishi pinned Jinder when he sits on him. It wasn’t a great match, but it was fun nostalgia, with Scotty doing the Worm and Sexay hitting the Hip Hop Drop with his goggles on. Then they did their old school dancing with the lights down and the spotlight on.
The legends in attendance (minus The New Age Outlaws) come out next to be introduced. The ones here are The Godfather, Too Cool and Rikishi, Ric Flair, DDP, Ted Dibiase and IRS, Nikoli Volkoff, Ron Simmons, Rowdy Roddy Piper and Arn Anderson. Then Bad News Barrett shows up and says no one will remember their names when they leave.
The main event is next and The New Age Outlaws come out to introduce CM Punk. They will remain at ringside as his backup as he fights Roman Reigns, with The Shield in his corner. The match was pretty great and included the NOA and Shield fighting outside of the ring. Dean Ambrose distracted CM Punk at the end so Reigns could hit the spear and pick up the big win.
The three are about to hit the Triple Powerbomb when JAKE ‘THE SNAKE” ROBERTS’ music hits and he walks out (looking great) with his bag (with snake in tow). The Outlaws are back in and they help get rid of Reigns and Rollins while Punk hits the GTS on Ambrose. The Jake pulls out his snake and puts him on Ambrose to end the show.
There was a fantastic main event and a couple of other good matches on the show, but this WWE Monday Night Raw was all about the nostalgia and the legends. Jake “The Snake” Roberts showing up (after all he has been through – sober for over a year thanks to DDP Yoga) was all it took for me to pop right out of my chair at the end of the show. That was the biggest moment for me in a very long time. Jake looked great and I am a very happy man.
The Daniel Bryan stuff was good too, but this show was about the legends and the show was a perfect sell to an old school fan like me.