Raw’s opening, which was hindered by some technical difficulties, involved R-Truth wrecking a merchandise stand and concession area in the arena’s concourse. He then made his way through the sellout crowd, insulting fans as he headed towards the ring. After targeting everyone wearing a John Cena shirt (and all of the Little Jimmys), Truth was interrupted by the WWE Champion himself. Cena pointed out that Truth has gone off the deep end and belongs in a straitjacket, while Truth insisted that he was the only sane one. The phrase “Little Jimmy” had to be used close to ten times during this segment, and while it was funny at first, it’s well beyond overkill at this point. After a mediocre exchange, the main event was made for the evening, a non-title match pitting Cena against R-Truth.
In the main event, Truth did his best to avoid John Cena for a good portion of the match. Eventually, R-Truth attempted to flee through the crowd, but Cena gave chase. Unfortunately for the Champ, Truth was able to connect with a forearm shot to his face while they were still on the outside, and was then able to get back into the ring before the referee’s count reached 10. Cena, downed from the punch, did not make it back into the ring in time, giving R-Truth the countout victory. Post-match, R-Truth threw a beverage in the face of a Cena fan who he had been harassing at the start of the show. Well, if we can take one thing from last night’s main event, it’s that Capitol Punishment will almost certainly feature John Cena defending his Championship against R-Truth. Now that Truth holds a win over the Champ, there’ll be no denying him his title match. While I don’t think he stands a chance at winning the belt, I think it’s good that WWE uses a fresh face in a PPV main event, especially one who’s been on such a roll as of late. Before we move on to the rest of Raw, I’d also like to note that Cena had another encounter with Zack Ryder backstage before his match. You know it! The rest of last night’s show after the jump.
- CM Punk went over Rey Mysterio in what was easily the match of the night. I think that this match was better than any of their meetings during the feud they had a couple of years ago on Smackdown, although it’s possible that I’m just being biased because the right guy actually won this one. CM Punk is the best wrestler in the world today, and it was great to see him showcase his talents and actually walk away with a victory. Punk won with a kick to Mysterio’s head after his GTS attempt was countered. Otunga & McGillicutty, the new Tag Team Champions, were nowhere to be found, although Mason Ryan was at ringside.
- Dolph Ziggler scored a pinfall victory over Kofi Kingston in a non-title match, meaning that he’ll likely challenge Kingston for the United States Championship at Capitol Punishment. It’s good to see a feud brewing over a secondary title – too often the belt slips through the cracks today and isn’t even defended at pay-per-views. This match was decent, and I suspect that these two guys are capable of doing much more together. They should be able to take advantage of the PPV stage if given a decent chunk of time.
- Kharma’s first promo was a completely out of character one. She spoke the truth about being pregnant, and she did so in a very candid and sincere manner. Pretty much all of the work the WWE put into establishing her as a monster was deconstructed with the interview, but chances are a year away from the ring would have done that anyway. She was interrupted by the Bella Twins, who insulted her appearance, to which Kharma responded by expressing her desire to take out the twins upon her return. If the Bellas are still in the company a year from now, and if Kharma does indeed return, there’ll be a ready-made feud for her when she comes back.
- Earlier in the night the Bella Twins were in action, losing in tag team action to the combination of Kelly Kelly & Eve. Kelly delivered the goofiest stink face I’ve ever seen during this one before winning with an incredibly girly fame-ass-er. The match was slightly better than most divas matches, I suppose, since it ran for more than a minute.
- Alberto Del Rio cut an in-ring promo about what happened to the Big Show last week. He maintained that he was not involved, but also made it clear that he wasn’t too upset over the accident, citing that “bad things happen to bad people.” He’ll be sending a bill to Show for the damages to his car. Surprisingly, Kane didn’t show up here on behalf of his partner. I’m assuming Del Rio and the Big Red Machine are on a collision course heading into Capitol Punishment, but it appears as though that is far from official.
- The WWE really wants to get Alex Riley over as a face. One week after giving the Miz a grade-A beating, Riley got physical with Michael Cole. After Cole insulted A-Ry’s integrity, Riley got a hold of the journalist and looked to inflict serious damage before The Miz intervened. Although The Miz had the advantage of being the attacker, it was Riley who reigned supreme, beating Miz around the ringside area once again and finally tossing him over the announce table. The very start of Riley’s new theme music, I’m talking the first 1/2 second or so, sounds a little bit like the beginning of Chris Benoit’s pre-Our Lady Peace theme. Just saying. It looks like the WWE expects him to catch on as a good guy, or at least they’re playing it up that way. I have my doubts about how successful he can be.
- Evan Bourne nabbed a win over Jack Swagger with a rollup. The match was OK but nothing special. This was more the fault of the booking though and not the wrestlers, as there’s only so much that can be done with three minutes of TV time. I’m happy to see this feud continue, and I hope that it can result in Bourne becoming relevant again. I think both guys could walk out of this looking good.
Raw was decent last night, although not fantastic. The Punk vs Mysterio match was a good one, and I’m very pleased to see Punk gaining some momentum. The R-Truth stuff wasn’t as good as it’s been the past few weeks, but it’s nice to see him get a win over John Cena and solidify his spot as a title contender. Dolph Ziggler, Kofi Kingston, Evan Bourne, and Jack Swagger showed off why there should be an emphasis placed back on the midcard talents. Meanwhile, Kharma’s interview took a really strange approach, and WWE seems to be pushing A-Ry a little harder than they probably should be. I can’t help but think of him as today’s Virgil.