WWE Monday Night Raw
September 19th, 2005

It's always been well-known that, if you catch any Raw/Smackdown, you want the one after a PPV. Thus, I was highly anticipating tonight's Raw event on Spike TV. For once, I believe I wasn't disappointed. Let's get to it.

- Raw began with Eric Bischoff coming out to the ring with the original WWE World Title. I would like, at this time, to display a comment I made in the WWE Unforgiven results:

"I hope Bischoff takes advantage next Raw and pulls a Heyman (remember when he stripped Cena because he put his hands on the boss?), if only to set up more intrigue for the WWE Title. Bring Vince in to straighten out the title picture, and continue the story until Survivor Series."

Well, Bischoff tried to strip Cena of the belt and award it to Kurt Angle, but was interrupted by Vince McMahon, who was there to talk about WWE Homecoming (the USA Network show 2 weeks away). Yes, I know, I'm a genius. McMahon canceled the stripping, then set up a title match for Homecoming, between John Cena and Eric Bischoff. Cena vs. Bischoff. Well, I guess it worked for McMahon vs. Austin. I just don't see it working here.

- After the break, Bischoff tried to convince McMahon that he was going to be too busy to wrestle at Homecoming. McMahon said he'd think about changing it. He then rolled down his limo window and said he had thought about it, and the match was still on. Zing!

- Match #1: Trish Stratus defeated Torrie Wilson with a roll-up. I'll give them this, they're putting some effort into the women. I just don't understand why all-star Victoria didn't get to wrestle this one, unless they're saving her for Homecoming. The match only lasted a couple of minutes (typical for Torrie). Afterwards, when Trish & Ashley tried to celebrate, the Evil Trio of Women (Torrie, Victoria, & Candice) beat the heck out out them, with Candice even pulling out a painful neck/back submission hold on Ashley. It's hard to say this.... but this storyline could have legs.

- Match #2: Trevor Murdoch defeated the Hurricane with another DDT. The Hurricane was portrayed as concussed and with a badly-injured left arm throughout the match, selling his Unforgiven injuries. So, ummm, why couldn't Rosey wrestle instead? Shouldn't he have stepped in for the Hurricane? Ah well. Murdoch knocked the Hurricane silly for another big win, with the Hurricane taking his 5,938th straight loss.

- Carlito is interviewed by Todd Grisham, saying that he didn't tap out the night before, and that he would regain the IC Title tonight.

- Edge was shown demanding to Bischoff that Matt Hardy be fired for putting his hands on Lita the night before. A pissed-off Bischoff instead makes an Edge/Hardy Loser Leaves Raw Money In The Bank Ladder Match for WWE Homecoming. I'm down with that.

- Match #3: Tyson Tomko stomped Eddie Craven(sp?) in about a minute, knocking him cold with that kick of his. Not much here worth noting.

- Match #4: Ric Flair retained the Intercontinental Champion, beating Carlito with the Figure Four. It was a pretty good match from old-timer Flair, and it was really great seeing the belt around his waist. Ok, so I'm an old-softie. At one point, Flair got Carlito's apple and spit in the Cool One's face, getting a little revenge. Carlito got in some nice moves in return, showing his true potential. In the end, Flair got a low blow of sorts on Carlito, kicking the middle rope up into him, then used the Figure Four, grabbing the ropes to add to the pressure. Carlito tapped, getting the Dirtiest Player in the Game a title defense. Wooooo!

- Matt Hardy, Shawn Michaels, the Big Show, and John Cena do a stirring interview that really pumped the main event.

- Maria interviewed Ric Flair about his win, and why he's called the Nature Boy. Flair's eye looked pretty bad, btw, thanks to a stray shot, I assume. I expected Flair to make a move on Maria, but Carlito interrupted with some real emotion, screaming at how Flair cheated. The two fought, with Chris Masters suddenly appearing and causing the double-team. They beat down Flair, leaving him laid out, with Carlito getting in one more spit of the apple.

- Match #5: John Cena, Shawn Michaels, Matt Hardy, & the Big Show won over Kurt Angle, Edge, Gene Snitsky, & Chris Masters. Hell of a main event, it really got me marking out at times. There were so many great moments, it's impossible to name them all. Hardy & Edge continued their reckless brawl, at times ignoring the rest of the match. Both Hardy and HBK spent time as the face-in-peril, while TBS took a horrendous-looking plunge over the ropes by Angle. Cena also took some hits, including a Spear through the ropes from Edge.

The turning point was when TBS recovered and climbed up on the ring apron, shaking with fury. He got the tag and took it to all 4 heels, dominating them, although he nearly lost after a low blow by Snitsky, followed by a Spear by Edge. The 4 heels surrounded TBS and beat on him, but the Giant couldn't be stopped! Cena and Hardy then joined TBS in the ring (while HBK was still selling his beatdown), getting rid of most of the faces. Hardy ordered TBS to throw him at the heels on the outside, taking them out. Edge then tried to use the briefcase, but was stopped by Cena, who used the 5-Knuckle Shuffle on him. TBS followed up with the Chokeslam on Edge, and all 4 men made the pin (with HBK sitting comfortably on top of the pile) for the victory. The faces celebrated to a roaring crowd to end the night.

Summary: Ok, I admit I've been critical of World Wrestling Entertainment over the last few months. I've told them that they needed to get things going again, or else UFC and TNA would become a major problem. And you know what? I think they're doing it. Smackdown last Friday was an above-average show. Unforgiven did all that I could ask from the line-up. And Raw tonight gave the fans what they wanted: a great main event that made the night. Now if only this week's Smackdown will do so as well (since I'll be there for the taping tommorrow night).

The Accelerator