Raw results: Punk and Sheamus collide following AJ’s resignation, but Ryback has the last word

October 22, 2012

Alberto Del Rio def. Zack Ryder

With Hell in a Cell only days away, the time was ripe for Alberto Del Rio to deliver a statement. And that’s exactly what he did, taking it to Zack Ryder in a brutal matchup in the IZOD Center that saw a game Long Island Iced-Z fall victim to Del Rio’s Cross Armbreaker.

Ryder put up a tough fight against The Essence of Excellence, stringing together spurts of offense and nearly connecting with the Broski Boot. But it was Del Rio who had the final word in the contest, trapping Ryder’s arm in the ropes and finally forcing The Ultimate Broski to tap to the Cross Armbreaker, keeping the hold locked in past the bell as a vicious statement to Randy Orton before they collide at Hell in a Cell. Is there a new Apex Predator in WWE? Only time will tell.


WWE Champion CM Punk def. World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus

The highway was jammed with broken heroes and a small army of WWE Superstars on Monday in IZOD Center as three dozen lumberjacks roamed ringside for the Champion vs. Champion Match between CM Punk and Sheamus, the largest such match in the history of Raw and the first main event of Vickie Guerrero’s tenure as Managing Supervisor. The contest was appropriately pulse-pounding, but in the end, it was a Superstar who wasn’t even involved that proved to be the most impactful man in the ring.

Punk took an unconventional route against The Great White, attempting to use his technical acumen as a way to slow down the brawling World Champion and prevent him from building to the devastating Brogue Kick. The strategy found early success (although Punk was the first competitor to get tossed back into the ring by the lumberjacks), but Sheamus, as always, would not be kept down. The Celtic Warrior rallied quickly, but Punk took advantage of the unique stipulation by shucking Sheamus over the ropes, leaving him to the mercy of the lumberjacks before attempting a pinfall.

The Second City Saint would repeat his strategy throughout the match, and after a few trips over the ropes for Sheamus, the lumberjacks began to target each other, with one group attempting to assist The Great White while another worked to keep him down. The Voice of the Voiceless moved to capitalize with a trio of top-rope strikes, but after connecting with the first two, Sheamus countered with a thunderous punch to the WWE Champion’s. An attempt at a headlock by Punk seemed to have Sheamus down for the count, but The Great White powered up, and that’s when Sheamus began to roll.

The Celtic Warrior moved fast, clobbering Punk with ax handles, forearm clubs and shoulder tackles, powering out of Punk’s attempted pinfalls before planting The Voice of the Voiceless with a rafter-shaking superplex. Punk decided to use Sheamus’ own power against him, reversing The Celtic Warrior’s turnbuckle charge into a small package, but that proved fruitless as well. Sheamus would continue to withstand Punk’s assault, dodging The Second City Saint’s flying elbow and planting him with a furious Irish Curse. The Voice of the Voiceless used his last wind to throw Sheamus to the lumberjacks again, but The Great White was ready, rumbling with the enforcers before making his way back to the ring.

Attempted attacks on Sheamus by Antonio Cesaro and Jinder Mahal ended unceremoniously, but before the World Champion could execute the Brogue Kick on Punk, Big Show made his way up to the ring and planted The Great White with a chokeslam while the referee’s back was turned. Punk picked up the pieces and covered Sheamus for the pin, but instead of his theme music, “FEED ME” roared through IZOD Center speakers and Ryback, the one Superstar conspicuous by his absence, made his way to the ring.

With Ryback hot on his heels, Punk made a move to leave the ring, but the lumberjacks were right there to throw him back. Each time Punk tried to escape, his fellow Superstars tossed him back into Ryback’s waiting maw, where The Second City Saint felt the wrath of the No. 1 contender’s earthshaking attacks before fortune finally afforded him an escape. It was a luxury the champion may not have on Sunday when he finds himself enclosed in the place where rivalries are settled, with the hungriest beast in the stable staring him down bold and stark in the ring.