|Date: October 25, 2009
|Venue: Mellon Arena |City: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
|Attendance: 13,562 |Buys: 200,000
|Brands: Raw & Smackdown
|tweet me: @BastionBlogger
Welcome to this review of the first ever Bragging Rights PPV. Bragging Rights replaces Cyber Sunday and has a considerably higher buyrate. The theme for the show is Raw vs. Smackdown and there are three matches tonight pitting Raw superstars against Smackdown superstars to decide who is the better brand. As well as those three matches, the WWE Championship and World Heavyweight Championship will be defended. Randy Orton won back the WWE Championship from John Cena at Hell In A Cell and so Cena was owed a rematch. Cena challenged Orton to a final ever match between the two at Bragging Rights in a 60 minute iron man match. Orton would only agree to the match if Cena would agree that if he lost, he would leave Raw forever. A stipulation that Cena agreed to. The match will also be under “anything goes” rules.
CM Punk was hoping for a rematch against The Undertaker for the World Heavyweight Championship but instead, Teddy Long made the title match at Bragging Rights a fatal four way match, adding Batista and Rey Mysterio to the mix. Punk wasn’t happy but did get a singles match against The Undertaker on Smackdown, a match that Undertaker would win with Hell’s Gate. Batista and Rey Mysterio have a friendly rivalry as both men look to win the title.
The main bragging rights match will be a 7 vs. 7 tag team match. Originally scheduled to be the winners of Raw and Smackdowns matches during the show they changed that and instead had qualification matches to put together the teams. Raws team is captained by Triple H and Shawn Michaels, In qualification matches, Big Show beat Chris Jericho, Cody Rhodes beat Ted DiBiase and John Cena, Jack Swagger beat MVP, Kofi Kingston beat Evan Bourne and Mark Henry beat Chris Masters. Over on Smackdown, Chris Jericho was announced as captain and was soon joined by his co-captain Kane. Dolph Ziggler then beat Mike Knox and Finlay, Cryme Tyme defeated The Hart Dynasty, newcomer Eric Escobar beat Matt Hardy and Drew McIntyre beat R-Truth. However, a few days ago on Smackdown, Matt Hardy, R-Truth, Finlay and The Hart Dynasty beat Dolph Ziggler, Drew McIntyre, JTG and Eric Escobar to replace them on team Smackdown! If there’s any confusion then the match will be Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Mark Henry, Cody Rhodes, Jack Swagger, Kofi Kingston and The Big Show against Chris Jericho, Kane, Matt Hardy, R-Truth, Finlay, Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith.
The second Bragging Rights match pits former tag team partners, United States Champion The Miz against Intercontinental Champion John Morrison. Miz turned on Morrison when he was drafted to Raw and the two men have had a war of words over the past few weeks. There will be no titles on the line tonight but the winner will be earning their brand a win. The third and final Bragging Rights match will be a six diva match pitting Raw’s Melina, Gail Kim and Kelly Kelly against Smackdown’s Michelle McCool, Beth Phoenix and Natalya. Whichever brand wins the most matches will win the Bragging Rights trophy.
In a dark match prior to the event Christian successfully defended the ECW Championship against Paul Burchill.
A video package kicks us off, first showing the Smackdown team for tonight and then the Raw team. It’s all about the fight for supremacy. Michael Cole then welcomes us to the Igloo and introduces us to the Bragging Rights trophy which will be given to the winner. Jim Ross is ill tonight so we have a three men announce booth with Jerry Lawler and Todd Grisham joining Michael Cole.
The Miz vs. John Morrison – Bragging Rights match
This is the first of three Raw vs. Smackdown match with United States Champion The Miz representing Raw and Intercontinental Champion John Morrison representing Smackdown. It’s a match between former friends and tag team champions and a first singles PPV match pitting them against one another. There’s a video package for the match after The Miz makes his entrance. We see the Smackdown and Raw lock room looking on. Plenty of smack talking from The Miz in the early going but Morrison takes him down. Morrison hits a firemans carry for a one count and then a couple of shoulder charges. Miz hits a headlock takedown which Morrison gets out of but Miz knocks him down before Morrison knocks Miz down and follows it up with a standing shooting star press for the first near fall of the night. Miz throws Morrison out of the ring and mocks his opponent.
John Morrison gets back into the ring with a pinfall which leads to both men attempting pinfalls. Morrison avoids a running knee and then clotheslines Miz out of the ring. Morrison hits a baseball slide and then throws Miz back into the ring and pins him for a two count. Morrison attempts a head scissors but Miz throws him out of the ring. Back in the ring and Miz lays in some knees and then a side suplex for a two count. The Miz then applies a surfboard which Morrison gets out of with a mule kick. Morrison hits some right hands but Miz hits an Irish whip and then hits his trademark clothesline in the corner. Miz hits a running knee from the outside for a near fall and then applies a chinlock. Morrison gets out of it and hits a schoolboy for a two count and then rolls Miz up for another two count. The two men exchange kicks and right hands and Morrison takes the advantage with a flying forearm, clothesline and a dropkick for a two count.
John Morrison hits his flying chuck kick for a two count, Miz barely getting his foot on the bottom rope. Morrison then looks to head to the top but Miz rolls out of the ring. Morrison hits a corkscrew plancha to the outside on Miz and then rolls him back in for a near fall. Morrison then pops Miz on the top rope and looks to hit a superplex but Miz fights him off and hits a flying axe handle. Miz then looks to hit the skull crushing finale but Morrison counters it with a side Russian leg sweep. Morrison then heads to the top but starship pain but Miz swipes him off the top and then quickly pins him for the three! The Miz wins the match and gets the first win for Raw! A decent way to start the show.
We’re shown some footage from Smackdown last week with the entire Smackdown team changing from Cryme Tyme, Dolph Ziggler, Eric Escobar and Drew McIntyre to The Hart Dynasty, R-Truth, Matt Hardy and Finlay.
Cody Rhodes is backstage confident that it’ll be a clean sweep for Raw tonight. R-Truth argues the point but Cody calls him a second rate competitor on a second rate show. Truth tells Cody that the only reason he is on Raw is because of his daddy and Randy Orton is the only reason he has had any success. Big Show turns up and tells R-Truth to tell his team that Raw will let their actions speak for themselves.
Melina, Gail Kim & Kelly Kelly vs. Michelle McCool, Beth Phoenix & Natalya – Bragging Rights match
This is the second Raw vs. Smackdown match. Fully expecting the Smackdown team to win this one. Gail Kim is looking for her first PPV victory tonight. Beth Phoenix and Gail Kim start the match and it’s a back and forth start until Phoenix takes Gail down. Michelle McCool then tags herself in which Beth doesn’t take very well. Gail kicks Michelle hard and then hits a hurricanrana. Michelle crawls to the corner and tags in Natalya. Natalya and Gail exchange pinfalls and Natalya hits a powerslam but misses with an elbow drop. Gail hits a cross body in the corner and then drops Natalya on the middle rope for a one count. Gail tags in Kelly Kelly who chokes Natalya with her boot. Kelly then hits a flying head scissors but Natalya then plants her on the rope for a two count. Kelly Kelly is far from polished. Natalya lays into Kelly with her knees and then tags in Michelle McCool.
Considering Michelle “picked her own team” I don’t know why she didn’t pick her mate Layla. Michelle tags in Beth Phoenix who applies an armbar but Kelly gets out of it. Beth won’t let Kelly make a tag and she tags in Michelle McCool who applies a sleeper. Michelle hits a knee and Beth Phoenix then tags herself in. Kelly hits a hurricanrana on Beth for a two count and then a jawbreaker before tagging in Melina! Melina avoids a clothesline then hits a dropkick. She hits a running double-knee and then takes down Michelle. Beth looks for a suplex but Melina rolls her up. The referee gets distracted and Michelle rolls Beth on top but Melina kicks out. Melina hits a facebuster for a one count and all six divas then get involved. Melina and Beth are left in the ring and Beth drops Melina on the top turnbuckle and follows it up with the glam slam! Beth hooks the leg and gets the three! Beth Phoenix, Michelle McCool and Natalya win the match for Smackdown!
Team Raw don’t look happy backstage but Triple H gives an inspiration speech. Jack Swagger interrupts and says that he is on the team so there’s nothing to worry about. Shawn Michaels tells Swagger that nobody respects him. Triple H says that everyone has been making fun of Mark Henry since he had a baby with Mae Young. DX brings up putting Vince McMahon’s up Big Shows ass, taking Cody Rhodes out and Kofi Kingstons fake Jamaican accent. Michaels says that he could replace Swagger with the first person that he sees which prompts Hornswoggle to walk in with full DX gear on. Triple H gives a motivational speech and the seven men come together.
There’s a video package next for the World Heavyweight Championship match.
The Undertaker (c) vs. Batista vs. Rey Mysterio vs. CM Punk – Fatal four way match for the World Heavyweight Championship
This is a first time fatal four way match between these men and a first World Heavyweight title defence for The Undertaker during this reign. The bell rings and CM Punk takes a cheap shot to Rey Mysterio. Batista chases Punk around the ring but Undertaker takes down Batista. Undertaker lays into CM Punk and then throws him out of the ring before Mysterio dives down at Punk. Undertaker hits a flying clothesline on Batista and Rey Mysterio then dropkicks Undertaker out of the ring. Undertaker land son his feet, gets back into the ring and hits a running boot on Mysterio. Undertaker hits old school on Batista and then looks to do the same on Rey Mysterio but CM Punk crotches Undertaker on the top and then throws Mysterio out of the ring. Punk looks for a superplex on Undertaker and hits it. Mysterio hits a splash on Undertaker and hooks the leg but Punk throws Mysterio out of the ring.
Batista knocks Punk down with a clothesline and then hits a powerslam. Batista fires up but Undertaker knocks him down with a big boot. Mysterio then flies off the top but Undertaker catches him and looks to hit a last ride but Batista drops Undertaker with a spear. Batista and Rey Mysterio both look to pin Undertaker but Undertaker grabs Mysterio by the throat. Mysterio forces Undertaker onto the middle rope and hits him with a 619 and Batista drops the champion with a spinebuster. CM Punk gets involved and hits Mysterio with the go to sleep! He hooks the leg but Batista breaks up the cover. Undertaker then locks on hells gate to Batista! CM Punk breaks it up and then lays into Undertaker with right hands. Punk hits a running knee on Undertaker but Undertaker then hits Punk with a last ride! He hooks the leg but Batista breaks it up. Batista and Undertaker slug it out until Undertaker hits a chokeslam for a two count. CM Punk broke up the count, I’ve not seen Rey Mysterio for a while.
Undertaker wraps his hand around CM Punks throat but Punk fights him off. Undertaker throws CM Punk out of the ring and then looks at Batista, motioning for a tombstone. He scoops Batista up but Batista slides down the back and hits a Batista bomb! He hooks the leg but Rey Mysterio breaks it up. Mysterio then pins Undertaker but Batista breaks it up! Batista isn’t happy with Mysterio and then pie-faces him out of the ring. Undertaker chokeslams Batista and then pins him but Batista kicks out. Undertaker sets up for another chokeslam but Batista fights him off. Both men then clothesline each other down. CM Punk tries to capitalise and pins both men but both kick out. Batista throws CM Punk out of the ring and then throws Mysterio into Punk. Batista turns around into Undertaker who hits him with a tombstone foe the three! The Undertaker wins the match and retains the World Heavyweight Championship! It wasn’t one for the purest but I enjoyed that!
Josh Mathews interviews Mysterio who said that he and Batista tried their best. They were both close but it didn’t work out tonight. Batista isn’t happy though, he thinks he was close to winning but he’s tired of his best friend stabbing him in the back. Batista then tells Rey that he’s going to rip his head off before knocking him down with a big clothesline. I like this side of Batista, he is brutal. He kicks Mysterio out of the ring and then throws him into the barricade, hard.
Team Raw (Triple H, Shawn Michaels, The Big Show, Mark Henry, Kofi Kingston, Jack Swagger & Cody Rhodes) vs. Team Smackdown (Chris Jericho, Kane, Matt Hardy, Finlay, R-Truth, Tyson Kidd & David Hart Smith) – Bragging Rights match
This is the third and final Bragging Rights match which will decide which brand gets the trophy. This match marks PPV debuts for Tyson Kidd and DH Smith. R-Truth looks for his first PPV victory. Strange that we’ve seen a Raw team-talk tonight but not a Smackdown team-talk. Firework issues for DX who gets their own entrance. The rest of team Raw come down together. Chris Jericho and Kane also get their own entrance. There’s a great camera show reflecting off the trophy. R-Truth and Cody Rhodes start the match which is good considering their issues earlier. The match starts quickly and Truth hits a dropkick for a one count. Cody hits an elbow and takes down Truth, hitting him with right hands. Big Show tags himself in for Team Raw. R-Truth tags in Kane and the two giants and former tag team champions square up. Kane hits right hands but show hits an Irish whip. Kane avoids a splash and hits a clothesline but Big Show takes him down.
Big Show tags in Jack Swagger but Kane makes quick work of him and tags in Matt Hardy. Hardy hits a big clothesline on Swagger for a two count and then looks for the side effect but Swagger fights him off. Swagger runs into a boot and Hardy then goes up to the middle rope and hits a legdrop for a two count. Swagger rolls out of the ring and Hardy follows, dropping him with a clothesline. Cody Rhodes gets involved which distracts Hardy long enough for Swagger to throw him into the ringpost. All 14 men then square up on the outside. Back in the ring and Swagger works the shoulder of Hardy. Swagger tags in Mark Henry who continues to work Hardy’s shoulder. These two men feuded over the ECW Championship last year. Hardy avoids an elbow drop but Henry stops him from making a tag, throwing him into the Raw corner. Henry tags in Shawn Michaels who hits Hardy with chops and also works Hardy’s shoulder. Hardy struggles but hits a side effect!
Matt Hardy tags in Finlay who hits Michaels with a powerslam and then locks on a chinlock. Michaels gets out of that but Finlay hits a hard Irish whip. Finlay hits a clothesline and an uppercut and both men then collide in the middle of the ring. Both men get up and Michaels hits sweet chin music! DH Smith tags himself in and he and Tyson Kidd hit a Hart Attack for a near fall. Smith hits a powerslam and tags in Chris Jericho. Jericho is slow to get any attack in and decides to lock on a sleeper, screaming “ask him” at the referee. Michaels gets out of it and rolls Jericho up for a two count. Jericho then hits a clothesline for a near fall. Jericho tags in Kane who hits a low dropkick on Michaels for a very close two count. Kane then applies an armbar before tagging in DH Smith. Smith applies a chinlock to Michaels but Michaels fights out of it. Smith hits a side suplex for a near fall and then hits a powerslam and tags in Tyson Kidd. Kidd misses with a springboard elbow drop and Michaels tags in Triple H!
Triple H lays into both members of the Hart Dynasty. He hits a facebuster and clothesline on Smith and then a spinebuster to Finlay. Kidd also gets a spinebuster but in comes Kane who drops Triple H with a chokeslam. Kidd drapes his arm over Triple H for a two count. Cody Rhodes and Kofi Kingston have yet to be tagged into this match yet. Tyson tags in Jericho who hits a bulldog on Triple H. Triple H avoids a lionsault and tags in Kofi Kingston! Kingston picks up the pace, taking down Jericho with clotheslines. Kingston looks to hit the boom drop but Jericho counters it and tries to get the walls of Jericho on but Kofi rolls him up for a near fall. Kofi hits trouble in paradise but the Hart Dynasty break it up. Mark Henry then takes down Tyson and Smith and all hell breaks loose. Finlay gets involved, Swagger, Kane and Big Show. Vintage Bragging Rights call from Michael Cole.
Kofi heads to the top but Big Show grabs him and chokeslams him to the mat! Triple H can’t believe it but Big Show knocks him out with a punch. Big Show then heads to the back! Jericho covers Kofi Kingston and gets the three! Team Smackdown win after Big Show turned on his team! Team Smackdown celebrate with the trophy. A fun match that Cody Rhodes was never officially tagged into.
There’s a good Raw vs. Smackdown 2010 ad.
John Cena is backstage concentrating.
There’s a video package for John Cena and Randy Orton.
Kofi Kingston is backstage when Cody Rhodes tells him that he was the weak link in the team before attacking him and leaving Kofi laying.
Randy Orton (c) vs. John Cena – 60 minute Iron Man match for the WWE Championship
This is the 7th PPV match between these two men. They both have three wins a piece going into this one. This is the only match on this card that has taken place on pay per view before. The bell rings and the two men lock up as the clock starts to count down from an hour. Cena applies a headlock which Orton gets out of and then locks on a headlock of his own. Cena gets out of it and hits a hiptoss but Orton reverses an Irish whip, flooring Cena. Cena looks for a bulldog but Orton counters it and then stomps away at his challenger. Cena hits a drop toe hold out of nowhere and locks on the STF! Orton quickly taps out! Randy Orton 0 John Cena 1.
There’s a 30 second break and following that Orton hits a powerslam and a kneedrop. Orton applies a chinlock which Cena gets out of. Cena hits the throwback and then looks for a five knuckle shuffle but Orton jumps up to his feet and hits an RKO! Randy Orton 1 John Cena 1. The thirty seconds seem to count down quickly and Cena gets to his feet only to be thrown out of the ring by Orton. Randy then grabs a TV monitor and nails Cena with it. He rolls Cena back into the ring and then nails him with a microphone but only for a near fall. The referee checks on John Cena who refuses medical attention. Cena gets to his feet and throws Orton out of the ring before bouncing him off the ring steps but Orton reverses an Irish whip and throws John into the steps. Orton looks for a pinfall on the outside but Cena kicks out. Back in the ring and Cena hits a couple of shoulder charges and then the five knuckle shuffle. Cena is busted wide open but hits the attitude adjustment. Grisham seems to think Orton countered it with an RKO. Both men are down and both men drape their arms across the other. The referee counts and both men get a fall! Randy Orton 2 John Cena 2.
Nearly a third of the way through this match as the clock ticks down to 40 minutes remaining. Cena avoids a shoulder charge in the corner and then sets Orton up for an attitude adjustment off the top rope! Cena hits it and gets a fall! Randy Orton 2 John Cena 3. Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase hit the ring and lay into Cena, DiBiase hitting dream street. Orton pins Cena and gets the three! Randy Orton 3 John Cena 3. Kofi Kingston hits the ring with a chair and chases off Legacy. Cena takes down Orton who rolls of of the ring. Cena chases and throws Orton from one barricade to the other as the two men make their way up the entrance ramp. Orton manages to take the advantage and scores a near fall over by the tech area. Orton bounces Cena’s face off the pyro desk which causes fireworks to go off on the entrance ramp. Orton then throws Cena through the set which causes an explosion. Orton pins Cena and gets the 3! Randy Orton 4 John Cena 3.
Orton keeps looking back over to the pyro desk and he walks over and sets off some of the pyro. Orton then grabs a chair and smashes it across Cena’s back. He drags Cena over to the edge of the stage where the pyro was going off and then walks over to the pyro desk. Orton starts pressing random buttons and the pyro on the stage goes off! It looks like Cena rolled out of the way in time. He did. Orton hits Cena with right hands and then drags him back down the aisle. Orton throws Cena into the ring steps before picking up the ring steps and throwing them at Cena. Orton gets a near fall on the outside and then smashes a chair into Cena’s back for another near fall. 28 minutes remaining. Orton rolls Cena into the ring but Cena rolls Orton up from nowhere and gets the three! Randy Orton 4 John Cena 4. Orton gets up and lays into Cena, not waiting for the 30 second break and the referee breaks it up. After the 30 second break Orton hits Cena with a hangmans DDT off the apron to the outside and gets a fall! Randy Orton 5 John Cena 4.
Orton hits a knee drop for a two count and then waits for Cena to get up before clubbing him down with a right hand for another near fall. Cena ducks a clothesline and hits Orton with a right hand, sending him to the outside. 20 minutes left in this match. Orton stands at the top of the ramp just staring at Cena who gets to his feet in the ring. Cena then goes after Randy but Orton hits Cena with a kick and right hands. Orton then heads back to the ring allowing Cena to recover. Cena heads to the ring but again Orton beats him to the punch. Orton looks for a hangmans DDT but Cena counters it and sets up for the attitude adjustment but Orton manages to get out of it and heads out of the ring and into the crowd. Cena follows him up the stairs and battles the WWE Champion up near the boxes. Cena lays into Orton all the way back down the stairs and then back over the barricade and into the ringside area. Cena gets a near fall. We’re now inside the final 15 minutes. Cena smashes Orton into the ring steps and pins him again for a two count.
Cena launches Orton into the barricade two times and then through the barricade and into the timekeepers area. Cena then rams the ring steps into Orton’s face before picking the WWE Champion up for an attitude adjustment, walking up the steps and hitting the move through the announce desk! Cena covers Orton and gets the three! Randy Orton 5 John Cena 5. There are 9 minutes left. After the 30 second break Cena pins Orton again and Randy kicks out at 2. Cena pulls a table out from under the ring and slides it into the ring. He sets it up then goes out for Orton, picking him up and rolling him into the ring. Cena lays Orton on the table and then goes up top and dives off with a legdrop but Orton rolls out of the way and Cena crashes through the table! 5 minutes remaining. The two men slowly get to their feet, slugging it out, 3 minutes left. Cena hits a shoulder tackle and tries for a second but Orton ducks and Cena wipes out the referee. Orton then hits an RKO and pins Cena but the referee is down! Another referee comes out but Cena kicks out at 2.
2 minutes left and Orton shoves down the second referee, Charles Robinson. Orton looks like he’s having a meltdown. He backs up and looks to hit a punt but Cena rolls out of the way and hits a drop toe hold before locking on the STF! 45 seconds left. Orton screams, 30 seconds left. Cena applies more pressure with 20 seconds to go. 10 seconds left and Orton taps out! The bell rings and Cena wins the match 6 falls to 5! John Cena is WWE Champion again!
And that was Bragging Rights 2009! Only five matches, I would have liked to have seen the dark match on the main show, but there were five matches and they were all good matches. The Miz and John Morrison opened the show and it was a solid match between the two. Morrison is a star and The Miz is really starting to shine bright himself. Miz got the win and I had a feeling it would go that way. It was a clean win and a big victory for The Miz. Both men go back to their respective brands as champions. Beth Phoenix, Michelle McCool and Natalya then beat Melina, Gail Kim and Kelly Kelly. Again, it was a fairly predictable result to even up the score. It’s strange to think of Beth Phoenix as the number two heel on Smackdown. I actually think that she might turn face. Melina doesn’t really suit being a face either. I’d like to see her turn heel and feud with Gail Kim.
Next up The Undertaker successfully defended his World Heavyweight Championship against CM Punk, Rey Mysterio and Batista. The real story to come out of this match was Batista’s heel turn post-match on his long time friend Rey Mysterio. Batista looked like an absolute beast as a heel and I look forward to this heel run, it’ll freshen up Batista and put him back in the main event picture. Team Smackdown then beat Team Raw thanks to The Big Show turning on his own team. This meant Team Smackdown beat Team Raw for the Bragging Rights trophy. This looks to be setting up a feud between Chris Jericho and Big Show and DX which is a long time coming. A lot of this match was filler and Cody Rhodes never actually got tagged in during the whole match. Tyson Kidd looked impressive and it’ll be interesting to see how his career goes.
In the main event John Cena beat Randy Orton to win the WWE Championship. This was a really good match and if it is the last match between the two then it was a memorable one. I am a little bored of this feud so I am glad to see the back of it. A solid Iron Man match, I loved the spot with the pyro. Overall a really solid PPV from top to bottom, go check it out!
Overall Rating: 70/100 (ranked joint 5th out of 245)
Match Of The Night: Orton vs. Cena / Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown / World Heavyweight Championship match
Worst Match Of The Night: 6 Diva tag team match
Surprise Of The Night: Batista turns heel
Worst Booking Of The Night: N/A
Superstar Of The Night: John Cena
Bragging Rights 2009 Will Be Remembered For: The Iron Man match between Cena and Orton and also Batista’s heel turn