It was an electric night at the Frank Irwin Center in Austin on Monday night, as WWE hit the halfway point of their three day run to Houston.
The show opened with Triple H coming out to talk about Kevin Nash’s surprise return last night at Vengeance in San Antonio, and said that his longtime friend not only almost broke his neck but the man once known as Diesel broke his heart. He ordered Nash to come to ringside, but instead got interim General Manager John Laurainitis. Triple H was told not to embarrass the company, but The Game responded by telling John if Nash didn’t show up that he would find his former friend and find every possible way to embarrass the comapny and get arrested in the process. Triple H then told the Executive Vice President of Talent Relations to find Nash and bring the big man to him. As Triple H started to leave, Nash appeared again and attacked Triple H with a sledgehammer. Moments later, as Triple H was being loaded into an ambulance, Nash struck again and got one more sledgehammer shot in before Triple H was taken away in the ambulance.
The first match was a tag match involving participants from two Vengeance matches. Randy Orton teamed up with Sheamus to take on Christian and Cody Rhodes. This was a back and forth match that saw Sheamus pick up the win for his team, after nearly knocking Cody’s head off with the Brogue Kick and following up with the Celtic Cross.
Up next, United States Champion Dolph Ziggler made relatively short work of Santino Marella. Jack Swagger was at ringside and became a distraction to Santino, allowing Ziggler to sneak up from behind with the Zig Zag and pick up the win.
John Morrison and Wade Barrett were on deck, as they wasted no time in getting the action to the outside of the ring. This is where Barrett would do most of the damage, tossing Morrison around the ringside area like a toy. Morrison would get back into the match, but made his final mistake by attempted a springboard move off the ropes. Barrett caught him and hit Wasteland for the win.
Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler had made mention throughout the night of Jim Ross being active on his Twitter account. Cole stood up and got on top of the announce table, where he proceeded to make fun of Ross and showed photoshopped images of Ross on the TitanTron. Cole then challenged Ross to the “Michael Cole Challenge” next week in Atlanta. The stipulation is that if Ross wins, he can have his seat back on Raw as Cole announced he would quit if he lost.
Earlier in the night, John Laurainitis announced the main event would be The Miz and R-Truth facing John Cena and a selected partner. The interim GM announced the partner would be Zack Ryder. However during a pre-match interview where Ryder was talking about being in his first ever Raw main event, Miz and R-Truth attacked him and left him a battered mess. This left Cena on his own to deal with a handicap match. Miz and R-Truth spent most of the match in control, until Cena had managed to pick up Miz for an Attitude Adjustment. R-Truth took the opportunity to slide in and hit Cena in the head with a water bottle to earn the immediate disqualification.
Following the match, Laurainitis announced that at Survivor Series, there would be a legit tag team match. It would be Miz and R-Truth against Cena, and a partner that the former WWE Champion would be allowed to choose. Cena started to list his recent partners, saying Triple H had been deported recently and Zack Ryder had been attacked earlier. He paused, before being assured he could choose ANYBODY as his partner. He then said that whoever his partner would be would have to be somebody that could “bring it.” Cena went on to say that the Surivvor Series tag team match would be The Miz and R-Truth facing John Cena….and…THE ROCK! The crowd went crazy, as Miz and R-Truth retreated at the news.
Tomorrow night, WWE makes the final 2011 stop in Texas, with the “SmackDown” tapings at the Toyota Center. The event will air this Friday night on the SyFy Network. Be sure to check your local listings for time and availability. In a related note to tonight’s edition of “Raw,” the masked superstar Sin Cara defeated former NEXUS member Michael McGillicutty.