It’s the final RAW SuperShow before Night Of Champions, and just like with every Monday Night, GuysNation gives grades to the flagship show, segment by segment, and then an overall grade for the show as a whole.

What am I expecting to see? Obviously something involving CM Punk and Triple H… possibly to include Kevin Nash (according to the voters in last week’s poll, you all agree). I expect to see Alberto Del Rio and John Cena trade words, and that shouldn’t surprise anyone.

But what of the United States title? Dolph Ziggler doesn’t officially have a match yet, unless I missed something from Smackdown (when I was a bit busy dealing with a flooding basement).

And the tag titles? The Miz and R-Truth said they had tag title shots, and I suppose we’re going to find out that their challenge was accepted.

How many members of the regular Smackdown roster will show up tonight, since this IS a SuperShow after all?

All that and more… let’s get to it!

Opening segment

Alberto Del Rio starts things off in the ring, and he’s got an almost-fancy medallion around his neck, which I’m guessing is available on for his dozens… and dozens of fans.

To liven things up after the same old boring speech that ADR always gives, Bret Hart shockingly makes his entrance, and if he mentioned on Twitter that he’d be showing up tonight in Ottawa, I missed it, and it’s a welcomed surprise.

Just when things get interesting between Bret Hart and Del Rio, John Cena shows up and reminds us that the two 30-something competitors have a match coming up. It was an interesting comment by John Cena, reminding us that this is the first time ADR and Cena have been face to face, trading words, in weeks.

Del Rio plays the coward and sets up an opportunity for John Cena to face Ricardo Rodriguez one-on-one… but John Cena has another idea. Alberto Del Rio vs Bret “Hitman” Hart

John Laurinitis shows up and goes the direction I thought John Cena was going with the booking proposal: Alberto Del Rio & Ricardo Rodriguez vs John Cena & Bret Hart

Grade: A.  Any segment where Bret Hart shows up unexpectedly, works on the mic and sets up for something later in the show, I’m happy with it, and there was some decent mic work between Cena and Alberto Del Rio, although I’m less interested with ADR now than I was prior to his reign beginning. I’m guessing it’ll be a while before he gets another title reign.

Tag Match

John Morrison & Alex Riley vs Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger

This match makes me hope that the United States title is defended at the pay per view in a four-way match. There’s clearly strife between Ziggler and Swagger, and it wouldn’t be hard to have Alex Riley and John Morrison have a backstage segment to show that they both want that belt to take their careers up a notch, thus wanting to wrestle one another.

As a sidenote, I found it to be an interesting comment by Jerry Lawler when he suggested that David Otunga and Michael McGillicutty talk to Vickie Guerrero about her being their manager, because I do feel like that would be a great fit.

Outcome: Alex Riley pins Jack Swagger cleanly, and the story involves Swagger bumping heads with Dolph Ziggler near the end of the match, leading to him getting hit with whatever A-Ry’s finisher is called, and then Ziggler NOT getting involved and allowing Swagger to get pinned.

Grade: B+.  Decent match, good storyline ending. It almost got an A, but we still don’t find out what’s going on with the United States Championship for Night Of Champions, and the way it’s looking is that we’re going to get Swagger vs Ziggler, winner take all, and that’s too rushed and it leaves us without a good option to cheer for. If they are going the route of the four-way, they didn’t build it up enough with Alex Riley and John Morrison, and they’ll seem like after-thoughts in the match.

The Miz & R-Truth Mic Time

We get a role-reversal this week in terms of fashion sense, as The Miz is dressed down, wearing just a t-shirt and his ring attire, and it’s R-Truth who’s sporting a suit jacket and looking almost stylish.

The segment gets dynamic, as The Miz takes the cover off the microphone and flips it around to make it the double-M instead of the WWE logo, and then they walk off of the interview set, doing their own backstage interview.

The duo is happy to be getting a shot at the tag titles, but The Miz isn’t happy about all the on-screen time / hype that’s going in the direction of CM Punk vs COO-HHH.

Grade: B+. Decent promo, showing their perspective, but we don’t really get the idea that they WANT the tag titles, only that they want to be on the pay per view. It does a decent job of leading from backstage into the ring and setting up the following match.

The Miz vs Kofi Kingston

I’m happy about this booking because Evan Bourne isn’t nearly as credible as Kofi Kingston is, and neither of them is on the same level as The Miz, a former World Champion.

Outcome: The Miz stalks around slowly and hits his Skull Crushing Finale, and I don’t like the ending’s pacing, and I’ll say that it went the wrong way if Air BOOM end up losing their titles at the pay per view.

Grade: B

United States Championship Match Booking

Teddy Long tells Vickie Guerrero that Dolph Ziggler is booked to a fatal fourway match (just as I predicted) against the other three guys from the tag match earlier tonight. Works for me.

We also get Vickie Guerrero dragged into a match later tonight against Kelly Kelly.

Just before the commercial, we are also reminded about Jerry Lawler taking on Otunga & McGillicutty later in the evening, with The King bringing a mystery guest tag team partner into his corner.

Grade: B

David Otunga & Michael McGillicutty vs Jerry Lawler… and Sheamus

The Celtic Warrior makes his way over from Smackdown, and as should not be a surprise to anyone, the team formerly called New Nexus gets the short end of the stick.

Outcome: Sheamus picks up the win for his team by pinfall

Grade: C+. It was nice to get Sheamus in the ring, but other than that, this was nothing special. What’s it leading to? Why should we care about the Lawler / Otunga feud anymore? Why did this match even happen, when Lawler and Ryder won a similar match last week? Lazy booking, though not necessarily a failure.

John Cena & Bret Hart vs Alberto Del Rio & Ricardo Rodriguez

Nice work before the match, with Ricardo Rodriguez BEGGING not to have to get into the ring. You’d think that if anyone was going to be starting the match against the ring announcer, it would be Bret Hart. Clearly Bret Hart’s not going to be slammed or punched or anything like that, and he may as well get to have his way with Ricardo Rodriguez from the start.

So long as this doesn’t turn into a situation like those huge Diva tag matches where one or more of the “partners” stays on the apron the entire match, I’ll be okay with it. Frankly, if Bret doesn’t enter the match, I’m guessing the Ottawa crowd would riot.

Alberto Del Rio, having worked in the ring against John Cena for a bit, runs for the hills once Ricardo Rodriguez gets tagged back in… and only after John Cena hits the Five Knuckle Shuffle AND the Attitude Adjustment does Bret Hart get tagged in to apply the Sharpshooter for the win.

Grade: B. Nothing special with the in-ring work, and or nostalgia purposes it’s better than average, but they could’ve done better with this and it left me feeling almost cheated.

Kelly Kelly vs Vickie Guerrero

Before I even get a chance to complain about how poor the wrestling was between Kelly Kelly and Vickie Guerrero, the match turns into a glorified segment to push the tensions between Jack Swagger and Dolph Ziggler, with the occasional shot of Kelly Kelly’s ample cleavage celebrating in the ring

Outcome: Kelly Kelly wins via quick roll-up.

After the match, Beth Phoenix tries to get the jump on Kelly Kelly, but K2 kicks her as she tries to enter the ring and then the Diva’s champion runs for the hills, happy that she avoided Beth Phoenix’s attack.

Grade: C+. They managed to push two things towards the pay per view, though they did so in something of a sham of a match… which was going to be sub-par anyway.

Champion Vs Champion Non-Title Match
Randy Orton vs Cody Rhodes

So the main event of the evening is going to be a segment that they typically start the show with: COO-HHH and CM Punk. Interesting choice, and it tells me what they think about Randy Orton.

I guess they realize that the Orton vs Mark Henry feud isn’t lighting anything on fire with its popularity heading into Night Of Champions.

Outcome: Cody Rhodes takes a huge step up in terms of credibility as he gets a victory over Randy Orton, who was albeit distracted before Cody hit him with the mask, leading to an easy Cross Rhodes. Still, it would’ve been easy to envision a scenario where Cody Rhodes loses the match.

After the match, Mark Henry enters the ring, beats up on Randy Orton a bit and then stands over the fallen champion with the title in his hands.

Grade: A. I don’t think I would’ve done things any differently, though I wouldn’t give it an A+.

Final Face to Face

CM Punk starts things off and makes his case for competitors with his size, attitude and background being main event quality guys.

COO-HHH says that the only opinion which matters is the fans in the arena, and now that they’re cheering for Punk, COO-HHH considers Punk a star.

Hiding with the kayfabe curtain as his cape, COO-HHH disregards the fact that Punk was on WWECW in lowly matches without decent feuds and no pay per view opportunities. Punk rightfully recalls Survivor Series when Punk was sidelined in the DX corner despite the Philly crowd chanting his name all night.

Again COO-HHH hides the truth behind wrestling’s never-discussed-but-widely-known secret and claims that John Cena got to be the main event by working hard and winning over the crowd, but it was the management who handed him a lot of it.

Punk rightfully says that he has EARNED everything he’s ever gotten in WWE, and then COO-HHH tries to tell Punk how to “get over” in this business… and ironically he doesn’t mention, not even once, that you need friends in high places to carry you place.

COO-HHH brings things back around and claims that this isn’t about business, it’s personal based on all the crap Punk has said the past few weeks.

Then the mic cuts out. And the mic that COO-HHH was using cuts out. And then Punk gets another shot with the ring announcer’s mic… and the pipe bomb becomes an actual weapon, as Punk hits COO-HHH in the face with it and walks out.

Grade: A.  Not perfect, but the ending to it was high quality. Only near the end of the segment did they actually bring up the fact that there’s a match coming up and it’s personal between them.

Overall Grade: B+.  It was a decent “go home” show before the pay per view, but I’m underwhelmed by what’s going on in the United States Championship situation and the tag title situation. The CM Punk / COO-HHH situation was getting really heated, but they’re not doing a great job of showing us why this is so personal to COO-HHH, and that’s arguably the biggest storyline going into this pay per view.