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Welcome to Monday Night Raw and this week we are live from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario Canada and we kick things off with the return of The Cutting Edge with Toronto’s very own Edge.
As Edge makes his ring entrance, Tony Chimel handles the official ring introduction, hitting a weird note on "Rated R Superstar," playing off the old deal where his voice cracked on "Suuuuper-star." Edge acknowledged Chimel with a smile, then stood in the ring as the crowd cheered and roared. In the ring, Edge said it feels great to be home before welcoming everyone to the Cutting Edge. Edge said the reason why he is here tonight is because he was requested by the new COO of the WWE (boos), Triple H (boos). Edge said Hunter thought it would be good for business if they had a reunion - not with Christian, of course - but Hunter thought it would be a great idea with a different partner, Randy Orton, from Rated RKO. Edge said he's known Randy a long time and the guy has nothing interesting to say. "I'm not going to do it," Edge said. Edge said he has no problem with Orton cashing in MITB since he wrote the blueprint on it, but Orton is just a hand-picked puppet. Edge said he's decided the following: Randy Orton is not going to be the guest. The crowd cheered, then shouted, "Yes!" over and over. Edge smiled and said this guest will be good for business, and that guest is Daniel Bryan.
Bryan's music played to bring out Daniel Bryan to a big reaction. WWE showed numerous "Yes!" signs in the crowd as Bryan hit the ring with a smile on his face. Cole noted that Bryan wasn't smiling last week when Big Show knocked out Bryan after Hunter used Show as a pawn in his plot to take out Bryan. The announcers re-stressed the idea that Show needs this job and does not have any other means to provide for his family. Back in the ring, Bryan waited out a loud, sustained "Daniel Bryan" chant. Edge then noted Bryan has been through a lot tonight. Bryan smiled and said he has been through a lot, but it helps when he has a whole audience out here chanting his name. The crowd responded accordingly, then Bryan noted that last week, Hunter told him he would get hurt if he gave up his title shot. And he has been. Like last week when Orton attacked him from behind (boos). But, the McMahons don't understand satisfaction in the struggle. Bryan said it doesn't matter how many times he gets taken out, "I will beat Randy Orton. I will regain the title. And I will be the WWE champion!" Bryan declared. "Yes!" chants followed. Edge responded that he likes Bryan because of his confidence, looking at obstacles as inspiration. Edge said they came up the same way wrestling in barns and armories before making it to WWE. Edge said he doesn't know if Bryan can beat Orton, but he at least deserves a fair shot at it. So, do you think you can beat Orton? Bryan pretended to stroke his beard and think it over before replying, "Yes." Orton asked Bryan if he can shove it in The Man's face and become WWE champion? "Yes!" Bryan replied. Suddenly, Randy Orton's music interrupted. Orton stood on-stage and noted that it's a shame that when Edge decides to come back from "time to time," he chooses a crap place like Canada (boos). And it's a shame that Edge's body failed him at such a young age. Orton responded to "Randy Sucks" chants by holding up the WWE Title belt in the air. Edge then responded that he might have an injured spine, but at least he has one. Edge followed up by saying Triple H sucks at picking and evaluating talent. Edge began to say Hunter doesn't even think Bryan can --- suddenly, Triple H's music interrupted. Hunter walked out on-stage with a self-satisfied smile and stood next to Orton. Hunter said since Edge has something to say, he can say it to his face. Edge said the best part is he doesn't have to bite his tongue like the rest of the locker room because he doesn't work here. "You didn't think that I could make it," Edge said. Edge added that Hunter thought Chris Jericho and John Cena couldn't make it. "And now you say that Daniel Bryan can't make it. I know your nose is huge, but sometimes you have to look past it," Edge said. Hunter absorbed, then said it's great to see Edge tonight. Hunter offered a sarcastic line promoting "Haven" on Syfy this Friday after Smackdown, then retorted to Edge. He said he'll admit to getting a few talent evaluations wrong over the years. Hunter said he'll admit to being wrong about Jericho and Cena, but time will tell on Daniel Bryan. But, there was one guy he was right about. Hunter said he was right about Edge being a failure. Hunter said they can come out here and pretend like Edge is a big star because they're in Canada, but the reality is the Rated R Superstar was a failure. Hunter said Edge never drew a dime. He said when he says those things, all the person has to do is prove him wrong. So, he'll give Daniel Bryan that opportunity tonight. When he faces the U.S. champion Dean Ambrose. And since Ambrose is going to have The Shield in his corner, he will give Bryan someone in his corner. Not Edge, whose ability to fight like a man is long past. He's going to give Bryan the Big Show in his corner.
Hunter said it would be so much easier if everyone would just learn to get along with him. Contrary to popular belief, he is not a dictator. The crowd responded with an "a-hole" chant, then Edge replied from the ring that he didn't have to marry into his success because he earned this Hall of Fame ring. And Hunter isn't a dictator, but a "dick." Hunter tried to talk over the "k" to interrupt, then said it's easy for Edge to talk tough when no one can touch him. So, Hunter decided to hurt the ones he loves. The Shield then dragged out Christian on-stage and tossed him down on the entrance ramp. This got a reaction from Edge, who shouted for someone to bring help. Refs came out to check on Christian
Backstage: Edge barged in as Triple H and Stephanie McMahon talked about the opening segment. Shield stepped in front of Edge to protect Hunter, who asked Edge what he wants. Edge said he wishes doctors would clear him so that he can give it to Hunter. Hunter replied that Edge doesn't have a neck to stand up to him. Hunter got in Edge's face that this is his town, his show, and his building. Hunter told Edge to get out or he would be escorted out. Edge smirked and looked down at Hunter like he's not worth it, then left.
Kofi Kingston vs Curtis Axel
Kofi scored with an SOS early on, but Axel grabbed the bottom rope for a rope break. Axel rolled to the outside as the camera focused on Heyman sporting a scraggly beard. Heyman, annoyed, walked toward Axel for a word, but Axel smashed Kofi when Kofi tried to follow up. Back in the ring, Axel pounded away on Kofi in the corner. Axel "snapped" and refused to break on a five count.
The winner of the match by DQ: Kofi Kingston
Post Match: Heyman entered the ring to calm down Axel as Cole noted that if Axel gets carried away on Sunday and loses, it will make Heyman fair game for Punk. As Heyman soaked in the consequences of Axel's actions, Heyman shouted at Axel that if he does this on Sunday, then he will ruin what he and Brock Lesnar built. Axel calmed down, then tried to attack Kofi, but Kofi smashed him with Trouble in Paradise. Heyman could only watch and sell annoyance with Axel. "Heyman is screwed," JBL noted. The announcers continued to play up the idea of Heyman getting his comeuppance on the PPV at Sunday
Backstage: Paul Heyman was selling an injury. Curtis Axel dragged Heyman through the hallway to the trainer's room after he apparently "slipped and fell" on water. Heyman was placed on the trainer's table, but refused medical treatment. Heyman said he has his own doctor, but was okay with some ice. Axel then demanded to know who put water in the hallway that caused Heyman to fall.
We see a video package highlighting Goldust through the years
Backstage: Big Show was sitting down in the locker room selling dejection. Booker T then walked in and tried to give Show a pep-talk as Show talked under his breath, trying to give himself his own pep-talk. Booker said the fans are all over Show for being a "sell-out," which is easy for the fans to say. Booker said he would have done the same thing. He told Show to think about his family and his daughter. He told Show not to let his pride make a mistake out there tonight. Show dramatically stood up and quietly said, "Pride is about all I have left."
We get a Wyatt Family video
Bray Wyatt vs Dolph Ziggler
As Bray dominated early on, Cole said The Wyatts are from Louisiana, which seemed like the first geographic reference for the act, further making it seem like WWE is doing their own take-off on the Robertson Family from "Duck Dynasty." Ziggler teased a comeback, but Wyatt cut him off with a big clothesline. Bray held his pose before Raw cut to break
Wyatt was still dominating. Cole hyped the card for the rest of the night before Ziggler corner-splashed Wyatt and delivered rapid-fire strikes in the corner. Ziggler delivered a leaping elbow drop to the chest before nailing a Fameasser for a close two count. The other Wyatts then ran interference, allowing Wyatt to cut off Ziggler and nail his Sister Abigail finisher for the pin and the win. Cole noted he named the finisher after his "late sister, Abigail."
The winner of the match: Bray Wyatt
Paul Heyman was shown hobbling down to the ring on crutches. Curtis Axel and a third individual accompanied Heyman down to ringside. In the ring, Heyman spoke that he is not an advocate for socialized medicine. "In other words, I do not believe in the Canadian health care system," Heyman said. He said he is fortunate that when he travels to Canada, he brings along with him his personal physician from New York City. Heyman paused before "cutting to the point." Heyman said his doctor has confirmed his fear - he tore his knee. Heyman said a proper MRI in the U.S. will tell him the results. So, regretfully, he is withdrawing himself from competition this Sunday at Night of Champions. "Believe me, believe this, no one is as upset as Paul Heyman. I looked forward to teaming with my client, Curtis Axel, and finally putting out of my misery, my prodigal son, C.M. Punk," Heyman said. Heyman said he is an injured man, therefore he will leave and return home to New York, where he will receive the proper medical care. Heyman said he will do like Edge and promise to return when he can. Suddenly, a voice was heard. It was Raw GM Brad Maddox, flanked by WWE's Dr. Sampson. Maddox walked out and noted they have a fully-licensed medical team to evaluate Heyman. JBL noted he's a good doctor because he saved Lawler's life (one year ago in Montreal). Maddox said the only way he will allow Heyman to be removed from the match at Night of Champions is if Dr. Sampson does not clear him. A chair was produced in the ring. Heyman was asked to take a seat for the examination. Dr. Sampson rolled up Heyman's pants leg, exposing Heyman's leg, as JBL noted this is a family show. Heyman muttered to himself about slipping on the floor as Dr. Sampson examined the leg. Heyman got in Sampson's face that he will sue him if he causes further injury. Heyman randomly shouted out as the crowd cat-called before finally chanting for C.M. Punk. Brad Maddox then asked Dr. Sampson for his evaluation. Dr. Sampson offered a bunch of medical terms before saying his evaluation is that Heyman is fine. Heyman stood up on one good leg and pretended to sell the injury while screaming at Dr. Sampson. Suddenly, Cult of Personality played and the crowd popped big. C.M. Punk ran to the ring with a kendo stick and smashed Heyman's doctor. Punk then cleared Axel from the ring before Heyman took off running through the crowd, indicating he's perfectly fine. Back in the ring, Punk was left alone with Heyman's doctor. Punk surveyed the crowd on whether he should inflict damage to the surrogate, but opted to let the doctor go. Check that, Punk bashed the man on the way out of the ring. Punk then pounded away on the surrogate with kendo stick shots before popping him over the head with a final blow. The announcers continued to play up the idea of Punk inflicting that damage to Heyman on Sunday if Punk can beat Curtis Axel first, which Cole said Punk has guaranteed to do. "Paul Heyman is screwed," JBL declared.
Naomi, Brie Bella & Natalya vs Aksana, Alicia Fox & Layla
So, the messy line-up here is apparently Divas who don't get along on "Total Divas" versus Divas who don't get along on Smackdown. And the audience has no one to root for. Well, except for Natalya, who eventually hot-tagged into the match. Natalya elbowed A. Fox to the mat before applying a Sharpshooter for the win, which went over well in Canada.
The winners of the match: Naomi, Natalya & Brie Bella
Alberto Del Rio vs R-Truth
The crowd picked up a JBL chant one minute in. Next were "Jerry, Jerry" chants and a "Michael Cole" chant as Del Rio worked on Truth on the outside. The crowd continued to entertain itself as the announcers tried to find a way to endorse RVD as a threat to Del Rio's World Title on Sunday. The crowd then played along with the storylines by chanting for RVD, angering Del Rio. Truth took advantage with a flapjack suplex for a two count. The crowd then went back to their own chants, going for "Under-Taker" this time.
Del Rio regained control before stalking R-Truth in the corner. Del Rio smashed Truth in the face with a standing sidekick, aided by Del Rio's sound effects. Del Rio then slapped on the cross arm-breaker and Truth was forced to tap out. On commentary, JBL wondered if that will be RVD's fate on Sunday.
The winner of the match by submission: Alberto Del Rio
Santino Marella vs Antonio Cesaro
Cesaro quickly decked Santino once the bell sounded as Cole hyped Santino opening a new training academy in the Toronto area. Santino tried to mount a comeback, but Cesaro took down Santino and went for the Big Swing. The crowd went from chanting random things to standing up and applauding Cesaro's effort as he continued to swing Santino. Over and over. "Holy s---" chant after Cesaro released the hold.
Santino, dizzy, managed to avoid taking a finisher from Cesaro before delivering a hip-toss and sailor's salute drop. Santino then reached into his pants and took out The Cobra to a pop, but Cesaro ducked and delivered a European Uppercut for a nearfall. Cesaro then chucked the Cobra sock puppet aside before body-slamming Santino for a nearfall. Cesaro tried to follow up, but Santino surprised Cesaro with a quick roll-up for the win.
Post-match: Zeb freaked out as Santino ran out of the ring and jogged to the stage to do the trumpet-salute celebration while the crowd cheered.
Miz vs Damien Sandow
As the bell sounded, JBL plugged John Cena appearing on the latest "JBL & Cole Show" to update his injury status. As the match unfolded, the announcers discussed Sandow formerly having "Ignatius" sent out tweets for him, but Sandow fired him. Will WWE now introduce an "Ignatius" character on TV after mentioning the fictional person on the air? As Miz and Sandow traded control, Cole monologued about his "interview" with Triple H on WWE's website last week.
Miz made a comeback to boos, which Miz played into. Suddenly, Fandango's music played to a pop. Fandango and Summer Rae came out on-stage and danced for Miz, which allowed Sandow to roll up Miz from behind for the pin and the win. The crowd didn't even notice, as they were too busy dancing and uninterested in the match.
After the bell sounded, Fandango introduced himself as the crowd cheered along. Fandango's music played as Miz seethed in the ring. FandangoRae then danced to the back.
The winner of the match: Damien Sandow
Goldust vs Randy Orton
As the match started, Cole ran down the history of the McMahon vs. Rhodes Family, which essentially turned into JBL running down Crockett/WCW/Turner in response to each of Cole's talking points. Goldust started with a flurry of offense that knocked Orton to the floor, drawing a chant of "You Still Got It." Meanwhile, the announcers continued to play up the idea of Goldust wanting to make up for screwing up in the past. Orton took control of the match and slowed down the pace, but Goldust avoided Orton's trademark offense. Goldust then dragged Orton to the corner to set up for Shattered Dreams, but Orton slipped out of the ring and rolled to the floor to get a breather as Raw cut to break.
Orton was in control. Goldust fought back, so Orton rolled to the outside again. On the floor, Goldust ran Orton into the ringpost before rolling him back into the ring. But, Orton caught Goldust on the way back into the ring and ran Goldust shoulder-first into the post. On the floor, Orton punished Goldust before rolling him back into the ring. In the ring, Orton delivered a move, then clutched his nose/eyes area, selling an injury of some sort. Orton then slowed down the pace and regained his bearings before applying a reverse chinlock. The crowd rallied behind Goldust, who fought to his feet and escaped before mounting a comeback. Goldust put Orton in the corner for Ten Punches and connected. But, Orton came back with the trademark second-rope DDT. Orton proceeded to slowly do "Yes!" chants, mocking Daniel Bryan ahead of their PPV title match on Sunday. Orton then stalked Goldust for an RKO, but Goldust pulled the same move as Cody last week by pushed Orton's neck under his chin and hitting Cross Rhodes for a very close two count, popping the crowd. And, just like last week, Orton followed right up with an RKO after Goldust was unable to capitalize on Cross Rhodes. Orton pinned Goldust and it was good for the win. On commentary, JBL and Lawler dejectedly said they can't imagine the disappointment for the Rhodes Family right now.
The winner of the match: Randy Orton
Post Match: Randy Orton took a mic and stood over Goldust. Orton spoke down at Goldie, saying, "Goldust, it looks like your dream of saving your baby brother, Cody's, job has been shattered. Just like Daniel Bryan's job of taking this (WWE Title belt) away from me will be shattered at Night of Champions." Orton's music played to conclude the match segment.
We get a Los Matadores vignette
Backstage: Goldust was shown slowly walking down the hallway, his facepaint smeared and tears in his eyes. Stephanie McMahon stopped "Dustin" in the hallway to tell him that he must be disappointed and Cody must be disappointed. Stephanie killed Goldust with kindness about letting himself, his family, and the fans down. Steph asked Goldust how it feels. "How does it feel to be a loser?" Steph asked, now with malice in her voice. Stephanie told Goldust to go join Cody in the unemployment line. Steph then got nice again and told Goldust to tell his dad that she says hi.
RVD vs Ryback
Ryback quickly dominated the action as the crowd grumbled some "Goldberg" chants. Ryback tried to power RVD to the mat with a powerslam, but RVD escaped and hit Rolling Thunder for a nearfall. RVD followed with a cannonball flip splash from the top rope for another nearfall. RVD continued the attack with a thrust kick from the top rope, but Ryback blocked a Five-Star Frogsplash attempt. Ryback blasted RVD on the outside before awkwardly crotching him into the post. The ref was so aghast at the events that he called for the bell, DQ'ing Ryback. Ryback had a good laugh, then dragged RVD back into the ring, where he delivered Shell Shock. Despite Ryback losing, he got the TV focus and his music on the way out.
The winner of the match by DQ: RVD
Backstage: Stephanie McMahon stopped Big Show in the hallway. Stephanie said she cannot have mass chaos in the main event tonight, then vowed to terminate Show if he touches Shield tonight. But, she'll have a special seat for Big Show to watch the main event. Show, seething, clutched a 1990s TV and destroyed it on the floor. Show walked off as Raw cut to break.
Daniel Bryan vs Dean Ambrose
As the match started, the announcers recapped Top Star Triple H admitting to missing on some talent evaluations in the past, including John Cena and Chris Jericho. JBL said Hunter has been right 90-95 percent, though, prompting Lawler to slow down JBL and say it's more times wrong than right. Lawler has (purposefully) taken subtle digs at Hunter on commentary for the past few weeks, setting up a likely confrontation down the road.
In the ring, Bryan ran over Ambrose with a hard clothesline, then climbed to the top rope for a diving headbutt, but Rollins slowly stepped onto the ring apron to cause a distraction. This allowed Ambrose to knock down Bryan hard to the floor. Show made a face, unable to help, as Raw cut to break.
Ambrose was working on Bryan in the ring. Big Show then stood up and tried to lead the crowd in "Yes!" chants, which was a bit jarring considering Show KO Punched Bryan in the face last week after cowardly giving into the McMahons. Bryan used the cheers, anyways, to rally and apply the Yes! Lock, but Ambrose reached the bottom rope for a rope-break.
Ambrose regained control after Bryan's flurry of offense, but Bryan came right back with a trademark corner basement dropkick. Bryan then took Ambrose to the top turnbuckle, where he delivered an overhead flip suplex for a close two count. Show almost heelishly encouraged Bryan, "Oh, that was so close," from ringside.
Bryan fired off a round of kicks to Ambrose, but Ambrose chucked Bryan out of the ring to the floor after ducking a big roundhouse kick. As Bryan recovered, Roman Reigns went for a Spear, but Bryan side-stepped and Reigns ate the ring steps. Bryan avoided Rollins, too, but Ambrose snuck up on Bryan to smash him to the floor right in front of Big Show. Ambrose rolled Bryan back into the ring and covered, but Bryan kicked out of a pin in-time. Ambrose then taunted Bryan: "Stay down! Stay down!" So, Bryan simply rolled him up with a quick small package for the pin and the win
The winner of the match: Daniel Bryan
Post Match: Bryan cleared Shield of the ring as Show smiled and did "Yes!" chants ringside. Randy Orton's music then played and Orton charged down to ringside, only to take a suicide dive from Bryan. Bryan landed right hand strikes, but The Shield jumped Bryan. Shield beat down Bryan as Orton led the attack, then Big Show grabbed his chair and walked over to the ringside area to do something, but opted to throw down the chair and hang his head. Shield and Orton rolled Bryan into the ring as Show watched from ringside. In the ring, Orton pointed to Show before clutching Bryan by the hair and swinging him into an RKO center-ring. Show clenched his jaw to sell anger and frustration before slowly walking away from ringside. In the ring, Orton held up the WWE Title belt as he stood over Bryan. But, the show wasn't over. Triple H and Stephanie McMahon walked out on-stage and Hunter told Show to put aside his feelings and knock out Bryan again. "Go," Triple H said. Show slowly walked back to the ring like a zombie and slowly entered the ring. Show shook his head as he approached Bryan, who was already KO'ed in the ring. Show did the thing from last week where Show sold inner conflict about doing this. Orton then spun around Show and told Show that Hunter is the boss, so he better follow orders. Show didn't appreciate Orton's words of encouragement, but Orton offered to help out Show by picking up Bryan. "Do it!" Orton shouted toward Big Show, who opted to turn around and back away into the corner. Orton tossed Bryan aside, then yelled at Show to turn around. Show shouted back not to tell him what to do, but Orton cut a promo in Show's face that he has Triple H's authority to tell Show what to do. Orton continued to yell at Show, then he turned around and Bryan popped Orton with a knee to the face out of nowhere. The crowd popped for the surprise ending, then Bryan picked up the title belt and held it in the air over Orton as Show left the ring with a smile on his face. No camera shots of Hunter & Stephanie reacting, as WWE stayed with a final shot of Bryan standing tall over Orton, while the announcers wondered aloud if this could be the scene at Night of Champions