Taking the bull by the horns

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February 22, 2010

INDIANAPOLIS -- One night after WWE Elimination Chamber, special guest co-hosts, singer Jewel and her husband, pro bull rider Ty Murray, were riding high in the saddle as they helped wrangle an ornery herd of Superstars into several WrestleMania matches.

John Cena def. WWE Champion Batista by Disqualification (PHOTOS | WATCH)
All of John Cena's matches should be this easy -- if less painful. Within moments of the opening bell, his challenger, WWE Champion Batista, kicked Cena in the groin and was immediately disqualified. Per Mr. McMahon's earlier stipulations, the win cements Cena in a title match against The Animal at WrestleMania.

Things aren't always as easy as they appear, though. While staggered by the blow, Cena tried to rise above and fight his tormentor. Seeing this, Batista attacked his WrestleMania rival before attempting to leave the ring again. Again, Cena clawed his way back to his feet, and again, Batista attacked him. This time, The Animal nailed Cena with a steel chair before, satisfied, he finally left his victim in the ring alone.

Cheech & Chong to host Monday Night Raw next week
Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong, better known as Cheech & Chong, will bring their iconic comedy to Raw next week when they act as special guest hosts. The pair will take a break from their 2010 tour to stop into Oklahoma City and offer some primo laughs to the WWE Universe.

Mr. McMahon invited Bret Hart back to Raw next week for a proper "farewell" (WATCH)
After the horrible auto accident that befell Bret Hart last week, in which The "Hit Man" suffered injuries to his left leg, Mr. McMahon addressed the situation. The Chairman informed the crowd that the WWE Hall of Famer was invited back next Monday night to offer the WWE Universe a proper "farewell."

2010 WWE Hall of Fame Inductee announcement: Wendi Richter (WATCH)
One of the original Divas and a WWE Universe favorite, Wendi Richter has been announced as the latest 2010 WWE Hall of Fame Inductee. The two-time WWE Women's Champion will be inducted the night before WrestleMania.

Jewel & Ty Murray host Diva Bull Riding Competition; Unified Tag Team Champions Big Show & The Miz def. Mark Henry & MVP
Just when the Divas were beginning to master the mechanical bull guest hosts Jewel and Ty Murray brought to Raw, Unified Tag Team Champions Big Show & The Miz decided to drop onto the scene like a couple of cow patties. The duo mocked the sport and heckled the bull. (PHOTOS | WATCH)

That's when Jewel and Murray decided a little revenge was in order and put "Show-Miz" in a title match against Mark Henry & MVP. Unlike last week, though, The World's Strongest Man and The Franchise Playa fell short and dropped the match to the champions. (PHOTOS | WATCH)

Christian def. Carlito in a Money in the Bank Qualifying Match (PHOTOS | WATCH)
The Road to WrestleMania begins with a few steps -- up a ladder. At least that's the case for Christian. The former ECW Champion, freshly signed with Raw, battled Carlito in a Money in the Bank Qualifying Match and won, earning an opportunity to compete in the all-important Ladder Match at WrestleMania. The two Superstars will likely become very familiar with one another moving forward thanks to WWE NXT, the brand-new show on Syfy Tuesday nights in which eight Superstars, NXT Pros, including Christian and Carlito, have been chosen to mentor eight NXT rookies.

The Undertaker accepted Shawn Michaels' WrestleMania rematch challenge (PHOTOS | WATCH) Shawn Michaels found himself running out of options. He wanted desperately to face The Undertaker again at WrestleMania, but he couldn't figure out how to make it happen -- until last night. HBK interrupted the World Heavyweight Championship Elimination Chamber Match and superkicked The Deadman, allowing Chris Jericho to win the title.

As a result, The Undertaker confronted Michaels tonight and put his WrestleMania undefeated streak on the line by accepting HBK's rematch challenge … under one condition. If The Phenom wins, The Showstopper must retire!

Kofi Kingston, Evan Bourne & Yoshi Tatsu def. Randy Orton & The Legacy (PHOTOS | WATCH)
Things couldn't have gone much worse for Randy Orton the night before. In his WWE Championship Elimination Chamber Match, The Viper "accidentally" received a lead pipe to the head thanks to his Legacy henchman Ted DiBiase, who was also in the bout. So, when The Viper struck a conciliatory tone before the match, both DiBiase and Cody Rhodes should have known something was amiss.

The three prepared to square off against Kofi Kingston, Evan Bourne and Raw's newest member, Yoshi Tatsu -- who officially signed on from ECW -- in a Six-Man Tag Team Match. Before the match could take on too ominous a feel for Orton, however, he headed off an attack from Legacy and laid out Rhodes and RKO'd DiBiase, essentially handing his opponents the win.

Maryse def. Gail Kim for the Divas Championship (PHOTOS | WATCH)
Last night, just moments before Maryse and Gail Kim were to settle which sexy, smart and powerful woman would lay claim to the Divas Championship, Vickie Guerrero just had to butt in. She decided that SmackDown's Divas weren't being represented enough, so she arranged a tag team match pitting Maryse & Gail against Michelle McCool & Layla. Maryse abandoned her partner, watched her get pummeled and then circled around to punish Gail herself.

All of which made for a rancorous bout tonight when Maryse and Gail finally met to decide the Divas Championship. While Gail certainly had ample motivation, the conceited Canadian proved too difficult to handle and netted herself the Butterfly Title.

Mr. McMahon arranged WWE Champion Batista vs. John Cena tonight
Robbed. There's hardly a better word to describe what happened to John Cena after he managed to defeat five opponents on the way to victory in the WWE Championship Elimination Chamber Match on Sunday night. The victory was not without casualties. Former WWE Champion Sheamus suffered a concussion and Triple H sustained neck and upper back injuries during the heated bout.

As an exhausted Cena soaked in his accomplishment, The Chairman emerged a mere three minutes and 35 seconds later to inform him that he must defend the title against Batista. After a valiant effort, Cena succumbed to The Animal and relinquished his title.

Tonight, Cena appeared hellbent on facing the new WWE Champion, but Mr. McMahon wouldn't hear of it, insisting that The Animal will defend the title at WrestleMania. The Chairman did, however, offer Cena a deal: If Cena could win his match tonight, he would become No. 1 contender for the WWE Title. If he lost, Sheamus would assume that position. And who might Cena's opponent be tonight? None other than Batista himself!

Edge chose to face World Heavyweight Champion Chris Jericho at WrestleMania (PHOTOSWATCH)
Thought Edge might let bygones be bygones? Not bloody likely. When newly-minted World Heavyweight Champion Chris Jericho opened Raw and began boasting about how he defeated The Undertaker and four others in the Elimination Chamber to night before, The Rated-R Superstar could no longer take it.

Edge had heard Jericho's boasting before. While he endured an excruciating recovery from a torn Achilles tendon, The Rated-R Superstar listened to his former tag team partner claim credit for their championship accomplishments. Consider it payback time.

After outlasting 29 opponents at the Royal Rumble, The Ultimate Opportunist had an enviable decision to make: For which World Championship would he choose to compete at WrestleMania. Edge made his decision loud and clear when he climbed into the ring and dropped Jericho with a spear just before proclaiming to the entire WWE Universe that he will be challenging for the World Heavyweight Championship.

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