Divide and Conquer
For the past two weeks, The McMahon plan has been to divide and conquer D-Generation X, and for the past two weeks, the scheme has worked flawlessly. Last week, there was a plot to lure Triple H from the arena; this time the tactic was changed to remove Shawn Michaels from the DX equation. With HBK gone, Triple H was outnumbered in what was supposed to be a singles match with the undefeated Umaga…and The Game paid a painful price both in the match and afterwards.
Prior to the match, Mr. McMahon and Shane warned police at the arena that “Shawn was looking for a fight” and he was “looking for Shane.” The Chairman’s son then baited HBK into chasing him, which led the police to swarm and believe the warning the McMahons gave them was warranted. In the scuffle with Shane, HBK allegedly struck a Memphis police office and was removed from the arena and taken to the Memphis Police Station.
In the match, Triple H had his hands full, but nearly gave the Samoan Bulldozer his first taste of defeat. The 350-pound monster was relentless in his attacks, surprising The Game with athletic moves and his ability to stay on his feet after being on the receiving end of numerous powerful blows. But with the McMahons at ringside — just like with Michaels’ match with Umaga last week — the odds were heavily stacked against Triple H.
Every time The Game seemed to have the match in hand, one of the McMahons would step in to make sure he didn’t win. Finally, their distraction was enough to give Umaga a window to slam his deadly Samoan Spike into Triple H’s throat for the pinfall. Afterwards, similarly to last week when Shane hit HBK with “Sweet Shane Music” while his father pressed a steel chair firmly against Michaels’ face, the Chairman took The Game into the middle of the ring and dropped him with Triple H’s own signature move…the Pedigree. Mr. McMahon showed complete disrespect, and the way he mocked The Game’s pose afterwards was equally humiliating.
A few weeks ago, the McMahons seemed to have — no pun intended — no chance against DX; now the notion that they can win at SummerSlam not only seems plausible, but inescapable. The isolation method implemented by the Chairman has taken one of the strongest entities in WWE and made them as vulnerable as Superman in a city made of Kryptonite. His ability to disassemble DX has proven yet again that the McMahons should never be counted out. With SummerSlam less than two weeks away, how big of a party will the biggest party of the summer be for DX if they’re bruised, battered and beaten?
While Umaga remained undefeated by beating the 10-time World Champion, Trish Stratus was trying to make herself a six-time champion by challenging Mickie James for the Women’s Championship...or so we thought. Just as the bell sounded for the match to get underway, WWE Champion Edge interrupted to whine about his lack of presence in WWE.
“I am sick of getting no respect around here,” groaned the two-time Champion. “I’ve been bypassed [for the cover of the Aug. issue of WWE Magazine] by someone who hasn’t won a match in more than a year.”
His disrespect toward Trish for being chosen for the cover got Carlito’s attention. He rushed into the ring when Edge and Lita began to bully her, but both he and Trish got spears from the Rated R Superstar and Lita respectively. This set up a Mixed Tag Team Match between the two teams for later in the evening.
In the locker room area before the match, Carlito and Trish’s relationship took a giant step forward. The rumors surrounding their relationship might be able to finally be put to rest, as the romantic kiss was juicy enough to make Page Six headlines. After recovering from the spear Lita delivered, Trish was talking to Carlito before grabbing him and planting a passionate kiss on his lips.
Unfortunately for Carlito and Trish, that highlight of the evening would soon be overshadowed. During the match, Edge aimed a spear at Carlito but missed and hit Trish, sending her crashing to the mat. It sure looked like an accident but the damage was done. Edge's spear enabled Lita to feast on Trish's broken body and pick up the win for her team. Afterwards, the Rated R Superstar and his girlfriend showed no remorse for their actions.
What’s Edge’s problem? He’s already achieved his lifelong dream of becoming the WWE Champion, yet the Rated R Superstar still has more to complain about. On RAW, the WWE fans let him hear about it with a barrage of boos, but they weren’t the only ones that noticed how crabby he was.
John Cena, the challenger for Edge’s WWE Championship at SummerSlam, also recognizes bellyaching when he hears it.
“You're the WWE Champioin, life isn't that bad,” he told Edge.
The display, said Cena, made him sick and he invited Edge out to the ring to prove he deserved the admiration he claimed he should get. That’s when Mr. McMahon’s Executive Assistant Jonathan Coachman strutted out and told Cena he did have a match…but it was against Viscera, not Edge.
The Dr. of Thuganomics isn’t one to complain or back away from any challengers, and in his match with Viscera he did something so incredible, so unbelievable, you had to see it to believe it. In a blatant message to Edge, Cena slung the 500-pound Viscera over his back and dropped him to the mat with a thunderous FU. The arena shook like an earthquake, and Viscera couldn’t recover. He gave it everything he had, but Cena’s drive and will to reclaim the WWE Championship lifted him through the match for the victory. With less than two weeks until SummerSlam, John Cena not only looked prepared for his match with Edge, but also anxious and focused. Did the Rated R Superstar notice Cena’s display of strength, or was he too busy thinking up more complaints? If he did, he’ll certainly know John Cena is ready for another opportunity to call himself The Champ.
A WWE Hall of Famer who isn’t complaining at all is Hulk Hogan—even though his SummerSlam match against Randy Orton is in serious jeopardy. As reported on WWE.com, Hogan has a partial tear in his meniscus. The severity of the injury is unknown, but was severe enough to keep him off of RAW. Randy Orton didn’t buy it.
“Hogan, rest up and take care of that 'knee injury' brother, because if you heal up in time for SummerSlam, your Legend will be killed,” a smug Orton warned the Hulkster prior to the Legend Killer's match with Jerry “The King” Lawler.
In the match, Orton’s disregard for WWE Legends continued. At one point in the bout, it looked as if the hometown crowd may ignite something in “The King” that would carry him to victory. Lawler looked quick, agile and ready for a fight. But after a low-blow that set Lawler up for an RKO, Orton was able to get the pinfall. Even in front of “The King’s” hometown, Orton didn’t have the respect to keep the match clean.
Though he wasn’t there physically, Hogan was definitely watching. If he is able to compete, he’ll use Orton’s contempt for sports-entertainment and the Legends that paved the way before him as his fuel to destroy the Legend Killer…but for now, the match remains a question mark.
Mick Foley has finally agreed to give Ric Flair a rematch at SummerSlam…an “I Quit” Match. After Flair cited an except from Foley's second book, “Foley is Good,” that made mention of Flair’s “I Quit” Match with Terry Funk as being his favorite match of all time, Foley agreed to give the “Nature Boy” the opportunity to make the Hardcore Legend scream “I Quit.”
Both Superstars have had memorable “I Quit” Matches before—Flair against Funk in 1989 and Foley with The Rock in 1999. When the two meet at the T.D. Banknorth Garden, the outcome will no doubt be brutal.
“May one of us bleed to death in Boston,” Flair told Foley after the match had been set.
WWE fans can quit guessing at who the The No. 1 Contender is for Johnny Nitro’s Intercontinental Championship. With weeks of vagueness blanketing the runner-up for Nitro’s gold, Shelton Benjamin was given another chance to prove he should outrank the rest of the RAW Superstars. Unfortunately, his opponent was former WWE Champion Kane. Shelton was outmatched in power and size, but used his agility to stay in the match…until Kane caught him in a Chokeslam. Once he got his grips around Benjamin’s neck, there was nowhere else to go but into the mat. The Big Red Monster got the pinfall and, with the win, became the No. 1 contender for the Intercontinental Championship.
Who made the final four of the Diva Search? Well, it wasn’t Erica Chevillar. The blond beauty made her exit from the Diva Search on RAW. Then, after she left the ring, “The Miz” initiated ‘Dis the Diva,’ where the remaining finalists took turns hurling insults at the Diva Search contestants. (Read about ‘Diss the Diva’ and Erica Chevillar’s exit)