Punk vs. the World
July 7, 2008
After seeing the WWE Championship move to SmackDown, and failing to win a World Championship back to Raw at Night of Champions, Monday nights once again have a World Title. CM Punk cashed in his Money in the Bank briefcase to challenge and defeat Edge, bringing the World Heavyweight Championship to Raw and even going on to defend it in the same night against JBL. Though Raw suffered a dearth of World Titles for a period, there is no lack of former World Champions, eager to end the Straightedge Superstar’s title reign, including John Cena, Batista and JBL. Which of these men will step forward in search of gold, and will Punk be able to hold them off?
Though Raw is no longer lacking a World Title, there is a conspicuous absence on the program in the form of Mr. McMahon. The WWE Chairman was injured at the end of the June 23 Raw when the set collapsed and he was buried underneath a ton of lighting equipment. His son, Shane McMahon addressed the WWE Universe on Monday, but opted to keep his father’s condition a private matter. Are Mr. McMahon’s injuries worse than originally thought? And how will Raw function in the vacuum left by the incapacitated Chairman?
Proving that his Night of Champions win over Chris Jericho was no fluke, new Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston successfully defended his title in a rematch against Y2J. With the Jamaican Superstar being such a new member of the Raw roster, will he be able to maintain the gold around his waist?
A bitter Jericho blamed his Night of Champions loss on Shawn Michaels for interfering in the match, and even challenged HBK to a match at The Great American Bash in just three weeks, asking the injured Superstar to have an answer on Raw next week. We’ve seen explosive interactions between HBK and Y2J in recent weeks — what will their confrontation on next week’s Raw have in store?
One of Raw’s most exciting draftees was Rey Mysterio, who had been on SmackDown for his entire WWE career. On Monday, the Master of the 619 was interrupted by Santino Marella as he was greeting the Raw audience. The Italian Superstar belittled the Ultimate Underdog, prompting Mysterio to attack Marella and break out the 619. Santino Marella has shown that he isn’t one to let an insult go, and Rey Mysterio has never been known to back down from a fight — how will the Italian Superstar retaliate against the former World Champion?
For the answers to these questions and more, make sure to watch Raw on Monday nights at 9/8 CT only on USA Network.