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Raw Reaction 08/18/2014: The NEW Champ is Here!

In some ways this felt like a night after Wrestlemania and not Summerslam. We had a brand new logo, a new WWE World Heavyweight Champion and a new championship belt that was being presented. It felt like how it does then night after a WrestleMania in that we had turned a page in the storybook so to speak.


We said it was like the night after Wrestlemania and Daniel Bryan returns what a surprise. Oh wait, it was only Stephanie modeling her new “Steph! Steph! Steph!” t-shirt and doing a poor Daniel Bryan impression. Stephanie would proclaim that Summerslam was a major success and that many were saying it was better than Wrestlemania. She would go over the various matches and end with talking about her own victory. She said that she did not do it alone and thanked her husband Triple H for his love and support. She would than introduce Nikki Bella who walking to the ring had a literal heel turn and lost her shoe.

She would begin her promo and microphone missed her first two lines for the television audience. This was not exactly going well for Nikki in a big moment for her. Still she did manage to get her way through it stating that she and Brie had always had issues. Her full explanation did not make a lot of logical sense to be honest. In any case, this brought out Brie who claimed Nikki has broken apart their family. Nikki ends up slapping Brie and full marks for the slap but Brie was her typical terrible. This Bella vs. Bella feud may feature some of the worst promos in WWE history. It has that kind of awful potential too it.

Brock was presented the new title revealed by Stephanie and Triple H. Brock with Heyman would pose for pictures on all four sides of the ring with the WWE’s power couple. I saw it as a subtle throwback to the Hulkster working all four sides of the ring with his posing and antics. Time for Paul Heyman to say something stupid as Brock likes to say. Actually, nothing was stupid at all, as Heyman constructed a brilliant promo that both praised John Cena but ultimately put over Brock even more. Among the highlights were Paul Heyman being disgusted by the fact his children were Cena fans. Heyman also points out that Cena has outlasted greats like The Rock and Stone Cold Steve Austin in his time on top. He also pointed out that Cena never gave up which could mean something down the line. This came all prior to his putting over the dominance of Brock, which he referenced as “Brock-o-Nomics”, saying Suplex and repeat, 16 times, to match the 16 that Brock landed the move in the match. It was 10 minutes of Heyman at his very best.

Funniest segment of the night goes to Dean Ambrose. Seth Rollins is doing an interview with Renee Young and out of nowhere is hit with a water full of ice water. He turns around to see Dean Ambrose with a bucket. Dean with a look of what is wrong with you on his face says “What, it’s for charity,” he than smashes the bucket into Seth’s face and brawl breaks out. It leads to Seth demanding a match from Triple H with Ambrose to which Triple H grants with fans picking the stipulation so that when Ambrose is finished the blood will be on the hands of the fans.

Jack Swagger with no Zeb had a promo that made you realize why he needs Zeb. Chris Jericho and Bray Wyatt would also get promos that suggest their feud will continue as expected.

Mark Henry would not only wrestle, but also get an in ring segment in which he declared that he was the next one to face Rusev in effect without saying it.  He in his match tagged with the Big Show and got a big win over Harper and Rowan. While in the segment with Rusev, he talked about being his pride in being a Two-Time Olympian and how Rusev and Lana behaved sickened him last night at Summerslam. He would attack Rusev give him the World’s Strongest Slam and a big splash with Lana watching on in horror unable to do anything to stop him.

Bo Dallas meanwhile after a match with Swagger in which he lost to Cesaro came out to tell Jack he let down 312 million United States citizens at Summerslam by losing to Rusev. He went on to point out the loss of his manager but encouraged Swagger to just “BOlieve” and it would all be ok. Guess Swagger is now feuding with Bo Dallas and his “big push” appears to be finished.

Ric Flair interacted with both Dolph Ziggler and Randy Orton on this show. WWE tempting fate by having Flair on a show in Vegas, but both his segments appeared to be pre-tapes, so that was likely a smart idea.


We already have mentioned some of the matches on the show. We had a six-man tag match that Vegas fans kind of hi-jacked with Roman Reigns and Sheamus and RVD against Ryback, Axel and Randy Orton. The fans went crazy for Ryback chanting for him. Vegas, technically is his hometown but this was odd. Feed me more, Ryback rules and we want Ryback chants. Randy did not fight the crowd and made what seemed like an unplanned tag to him during the match to Ryback.

Main issue here is you have the guy that is suppose to be the next big thing in Roman Reigns being involved in this, it is not a good look for him. Sure, he got the win but no one is talking about that today.

Ziggler as mentioned had a backstage moment with Ric Flair and his opponent on the night the Miz was involved as well. The Miz was using his re-match clause to get back the IC title he lost at Summerslam the night before. Miz would get a win but by count out so Ziggler keeps the title and this feud continues.

The only match on this show worth talking about was the main event of the show with Seth Rollins going against Dean Ambrose in a fan decided “falls count anywhere match” that was choice of fans. This is coming off a crazy “Lumberjack Match,” that many are saying was the best ever, but given the history of those matches not a huge compliment to make. It was an excellent match though but Rollins and Ambrose would go on to top it with another crazy all over the place brawl. Kane would end up being involved and they would end uncover some cinder blocks of cement at ringside. Kane would hold Ambrose head down as Rollins would come off the announce table and use his curb stomp to drive Ambrose through the cement. It was well shot by camera people to make it all look good. Referee Charles Robinson would call off the match after that declaring Rollins the winner due to the state of Ambrose who was knocked out.

In reality, Ambrose is scheduled to do a movie and this was likely the send off for him to have the time off to allow him to do that. Ambrose plays a cop that is cast to be a little crazy that seems like a good role for him, he can’t be a worse actor than The Miz let’s be honest. In any case this is a great way to leave the fans wanting more, as Ambrose might be the most “over face” in this company now. I think his presence is going to be missed while he is away.

That was your Monday Night Raw from Las Vegas. No silly wheel gimmicks on this show and was a decent follow-up to a better than average Summerslam. They gave you something to look forward to in John Cena returning next week. I think for the first time in a long time both his detractors and fans are interested in what this guy has to say.

Raw Reaction Overall Rating: 7 Angry JBL rants out of 10

It is rare I have anything positive to say about commentary while it was back to its normal brutal standards on Summerslam it was very good. I have no idea what got into JBL last night but he was a constant distraction and took away from a great many things with his ridiculous old man type rants that seldom added to what was taking place in the program.

Still, if you managed to block him out you could be able to enjoy this show. That is your Raw reaction for this week.

About James Borbath

James has covered the NBA and Toronto Raptors for 6 years for various publications as well as his own website. A native of Hamilton, Ontario where he attended the first ever Royal Rumble, James is a life long wrestling fan and has decided to trade to slams of a different kind in pro wrestling. He hopes his transition will be more successful than Dennis Rodman or Karl Malone. Among his talents is a better than average Randy Savage impression. Follow him on Twitter @condoonthemoon

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