Below are news and notes from this week’s episode of Monday Night Raw in Providence, Rhode Island. We’ll have Backstage Notes from the show online later in the week:
– This week’s show was a legitimate sellout from the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, Rhode Island. They didn’t announce a number but did announce this week’s show was episode #1077.
– The official sponsor for Royal Rumble 2014 is Jackson Hewitt Tax Services.
– Billy Gunn and Road Dogg, known collectively as The New Age Outlaws, worked this week’s show with CM Punk in a match against The Shield. Both Gunn and Dogg work as producers backstage in WWE. In a swerve, the tag team left Punk when he was going for a tag. This resulted in Punk being pinned by Roman Reigns and assaulted after the match.
– WWE reiterated the WWE Network will include every WWE, WCW and ECW on-demand. We all have serious doubts about the company including WWF Over the Edge 1999, the show in which Owen Hart died on. The company never released the pay-per-view on VHS or DVD (which absolutely was the correct move).
– Jerry Lawler returned to announce following last week’s absence due to a stomach bug.
– Lilian Garcia worked as the show’s ring announcer in place of Justin Roberts. This was expected as we reported here at WrestlingNewsWorld.com.
– This was the first week since September 2013 WWE didn’t have to oppose stiff competition on ESPN. Monday Night Football has concluded and last week was the 2014 BCS National Football Game.
– This week’s Monday Night Raw marked 211 days of the WWE Divas Championship reign for AJ Lee. It was noted on commentary that’s only 5 days off Maryse’s longest reign ever.
– WWE NXT Diva Emma was in the crowd for the Divas tag team match between AJ Lee & Tamina vs. Naomi & Cameron. She was spotlighted on commentary and shown holding a sign that read “#EMMAtaining.” Emma has been on main roster live events over the past couple weeks and teamed with Natalya to oppose AJ Lee and Tamina at a show last weekend.
– The Ultimate Warrior was officially announced as the first inductee into the 2014 WWE Hall of Fame. We have more at this link.
– CM Punk, Kofi Kingston, The Miz, Big E Langston, R-Truth, Xavier Woods, Cody Rhodes & Goldust were all announced as 30-man Royal Rumble match entrants. Batista and Alberto Del Rio have already been announced.
– Randy Orton “attacked” John Cena’s father after getting rolled up by Kofi Kingston in a surprising finish to their singles match. Cena’s father was sitting at ringside and spotlighted by Cena earlier in the night. Cena Sr. is a trained professional wrestler and a regular on the northeast independent scene. The angle was done to make things “personal” headed into their rematch for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at Royal Rumble. The kayfabe update on Cena Sr’s condition was he possible suffered a “fractured orbital socket” but “his heart was OK.”
– Matthew Mulligan, Michael Hoomanawanui, Cari Kalama and James Develin of the New England Patriots were guests at this week’s show. Stephanie McMahon Tweeted a photo at this link.
– Batista will make his return to WWE on next week’s episode of Monday Night Raw from Wright State University’s Nutter Center in Dayton, Ohio.
– The New Age Outlaws will face WWE Tag Team Champions Cody Rhodes & Goldust in a non-title match on this week’s episode of Smackdown.
– The overrun segment of this week’s show featured Daniel Bryan unloading on Bray Wyatt with his kicks, much to the appeasement of the live crowd. Bryan took off his Wyatt Family jump suit to reveal his ring gear and had the entire sold out crowd doing the “Yes! Yes! Yes!” chant.