Below is complete coverage of Monday Night Raw on February 3, 2014 from Omaha, Nebraska featuring results and Richard Reacts:
* WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton came out to open the show with a promo about the Elimination Chamber match. He talked down everyone in the match – John Cena, Daniel Bryan, Christian, Sheamus and Antonio Cesaro. He said he was tired of beating each of them. The crowd chanted loudly for CM Punk when The Authority came out. Stephanie McMahon informed Randy that he’ll be facing each one of his Elimination Chamber challengers in singles matches leading up to the pay-per-view. The first match is tonight and it’ll be against Daniel Bryan. Stephanie said as much as it pains her to say it, if he were victorious, they might have to reconsider the face of WWE. Hunter led a “Yes!” chant.
* The Shield beat Rey Mysterio, Big E Langston & Kofi Kingston when Dean Ambrose hit the Headlock driver and pinned Langston. Seth Rollins had to get between Ambrose and Roman Reigns as Ambrose tagged himself in and it didn’t set well with Reigns, who was setting up a spear. CM Punk was trending Twitter during the match. As for the entrances, neither Langston nor Kingston got their entrances televised. The Shield were introduced, they went to break and came back as Mysterio was entering.
* The Wyatt Family cut a promo on the big screen on their Elimination Chamber opponents. Luke Harper says what all three of The Shield are missing is that he has always been their king. They tell The Shield to run. Spooky, different and bizarre. Exactly what WWE is going for with The Wyatt Family and it came across very well.
* Bad News Barrett had some bad news. He talked about the Super Bowl being the most-watched televised event in US history and picked on the crowd for eating junk food during it. Jerry Lawler cut him off, saying he had some bad news for Barrett. He said hopefully next week you won’t be around and his music played.
* Christian beat Jack Swagger after going off the top rope and pinning his shoulders on the mat. Christian looked good but took a tough bump on the ring apron, which is never good for someone coming back from any injury much less a concussion. Christian hit a sweet missile dropkick. Zeb Colter got in the ring after the match in attempt to coach Swagger up. Antonio Cesaro shook his head on the outside.
* Betty White, 92, will guest star on next week’s Raw from LA. You can read our report at this link.
* The New Age Outlaws beat Cody Rhodes & Goldust to retain the WWE Tag Team Championship in a steel cage match. The finish saw Rhodes scale the cage and perform a moonsault off the top back into the ring. They sold it as Road Dogg took the majority of it and Billy Gunn, as the legal man, ended up pinning Rhodes. It was a good idea and looked great in the air but the contact from Cody onto Road Dogg left a lot to be desired. Road Dogg seemed off the entire match as he had a really awkward sequence with Goldust off a hip toss at the beginning and asked Gunn what they were doing in there. The bout picked up nicely as it went on and would have been spectacular with the moonsault spot but Road Dogg was out of position. I’m a fan of Road Dogg but this was pretty inexcusable, especially for someone that works backstage and is supposed to teach people not to make such a mistake.
* A newly turned Titus O’Neil destroyed Zack Ryder, hitting Clash of the Titus to win the bout. The Miz came out and grabbed a headset on announce and ranted about not being on TV. He took a shot at Ryder’s Internet fame. It was very random. O’Neil was working hard but the CM Punk chants were a bit more audible. I see a ton of upside with O’Neil given his strength, size and raw athleticism.
* Fandango and Summer Rae came out. Santino Marella followed and this resulted in a dance-off with Emma, from NXT, coming in from the audience. Summer Rae went first with her Fandango routine then Emma in a routine that was meant to be comedy. When Santino surveyed the crowd, Summer Rae got heat and Emma got a pop so mission accomplished. I guess. I don’t get the use of Emma there. It was almost like they wanted her to look bad. First impressions are so important and that was bad. Her outfit did nothing to make her stand out and she wasn’t funny.
* Sheamus beat Curtis Axel after the Brogue Kick. This was billed as Sheamus’ first match back since returning. Axel came out with Ryback and got more offense than you might think. The CM Punk chants were loud in this one with a great sign getting on-camera. The sign read, “My Other CM Punk Sign Got Confiscated.” This is WWE’s first live episode on FOX8 in Australia.
* Batista came out for an in-ring promo but Alberto Del Rio interrupted. Del Rio hit a cheap shot while Batista was speaking and followed-up with an assault. Batista countered with a boot but as he went for the Batista Bomb, Del Rio hurried out of the ring. Batista ripped off his shirt and screamed from the ring. Del Rio teased like he was going to go back down the ramp but retreated like a heel. Batista is babyface, Del Rio is a heel and they’ll likely feed the latter to the former at the pay-per-view. This actually has a decent backstory to it.
* WWE announced that Mark Henry will return on next week’s show from Los Angeles. He hasn’t been on television since having his elbow “dislocated” in the Kimura lock by Brock Lesnar. Henry was on the road at live events over the weekend.
* The Wyatt Family beat Dolph Ziggler, Xavier Woods & R-Truth. Luke Harper hit Ziggler with a clothesline and Bray Wyatt finished him off with Sister Abigail. In the midst of a situation over Daniel Bryan, CM Punk walking out, why does the company feel the need to do this to Ziggler? Flanked by two mid carders, he steps up to do a pointless job. The Shield cut a promo on the big screen, responding to The Wyatt Family from earlier.
* A vignette for Alexander Rusev aired with Lana. They played it on Smackdown and he of course was an entrant in the 30-man Royal Rumble match.
* Naomi beat Aksana after hitting her Split-legged moonsault. WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee was on commentary with Tamina flanking her. AJ’s commentary was good and was the highlight of the match – she asked Michael Cole how to download the WWE App. Cameron was with Naomi and saved her from a post-match attack by Aksana. Naomi, who AJ called a sexy baked potato, ended up hitting the Rear View on Aksana. There was a bad spot when Naomi went for a sunset flip but Aksana dropped a knee in her eye.
* Daniel Bryan beat WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton with a pinfall victory. Kane came out during the go-home sequence, to which Bryan knocked him off the apron and threw Orton out. He connected on a suicide dive. Kane charged Bryan but he countered with a drop toe hold into the steel ring steps. The match went back to the ring and Orton went for the RKO. Bryan countered, hitting the running knee to get the pinfall victory. This was a pay-per-view quality bout that both Orton and Bryan deserve a lot of credit for. They’ve had a lot of matches against one another but to constantly come up with ways to tell a story and put on an entertaining bout is worth a large amount of praise. Bryan worked the left leg of Orton, while Orton worked the shoulder of Daniel Bryan. The crowd was into it with Bryan still extremely over. After the match, Kane and Orton attacked Bryan and he was given a chokeslam to end the show.
* John Cena did not appear on the show as advertised. As we reported here on WrestlingNewsWorld.com, Cena was pulled from Sunday’s WWE live event in Kansas City due to an eye injury suffered Saturday night in a match against Randy Orton. However, he did appear when the cameras stopped rolling. Since the crowd assumed Cena wasn’t there, he got a massive pop when he saved Bryan from more of a post-match beat down. There was no dark match main event.