The 878th edition of WWE Monday Night RAW came to you, live, from the HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA. Six nights before the biggest WWE show of the year, WrestleMania, WWE Hall of Famer and legendary baseball player Pete Rose would take the helms as Guest Host of RAW. On the final RAW before they go one-on-one for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, WWE Champion Batista and John Cena will have their final face-off before their WrestleMania showdown. Two of the WrestleMania grudge matches would collide as “The Game” Triple H would team with the former antagonist to his family, “The Viper” Randy Orton as the former Evolution teammates would face their respective WrestleMania opposition in former WWE Champion Sheamus, Cody Rhodes, & Ted DiBiase in a 3-on-2 Handicap Match. RAW would also see the tenth and final Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match participant be determined as Kofi Kingston would go up against “The Moscow Mauler” Vladimir Kozlov with the winner joining Christian, Dolph Ziggler, Kane, Shelton Benjamin, Jack Swagger, MVP, Matt Hardy, Evan Bourne, & Intercontinental Champion Drew McIntyre in the match in six nights at WrestleMania.
- Non-Title: John Morrison def. The Miz by pin following Starship Pain.
- Final Money-in-the-Bank Qualifying Match: Kofi Kingston def. Vladimir Kozlov by pin following Trouble in Paradise to become the final participant in the Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match at WrestleMania.
- 3-on-2 Handicap Match: Sheamus & Legacy def. Triple H & Randy Orton by Sheamus pinning Randy Orton following the pump kick.
- No DQ: Shawn Michaels def. Kane (with The Undertaker) by pin following Sweet Chin Music.
During the match, Shawn Michaels was set to deliver Sweet Chin Music to Kane, but The Undertaker appears and delivers a chokeslam to Shawn Michaels. However, Michaels is able to kick out of the chokeslam and ends up delivering Sweet Chin Music to Kane en route to picking up the win.
- 6-Diva Tag: Maryse, Michelle McCool, & Layla def. Beth Phoenix, Gail Kim, & Eve Torres by Michelle McCool pinning Gail Kim with the Faith Breaker.
In what could be the final RAW of his storied career, “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels kicks off the show on RAW! Michaels proclaims that he’s got a “feeling”; a feeling that he can do “absolutely anything”! HBK then vows that, after WrestleMania, he will be known as the “one and only man who ended The Undertaker’s WrestleMania undefeated streak”! Following this bold proclamation, HBK is interrupted by the lights fading as a video highlighting the twenty-five career of Shawn Michaels; a video that ends with The Undertaker vowing that the career of Shawn Michaels will “rest in peace”! A confident Michaels responds by saying that he “appreciates” the “attempt” at intimidation by The Undertaker, but if Undertaker really wants to “intimidate” him, he should come out there and face him! However, Shawn Michaels is not greeted by The Undertaker, but the Guest Host of RAW, Pete Rose! The legendary baseball player wishes Michaels luck and calls him the “right man” to end The Undertaker’s streak! The Guest Host then announces that he wants Shawn Michaels to face The Undertaker’s brother, Kane, in a No Disqualification match and says that he needs HBK to get “revenge” for Rose for Rose’s run-ins with “The Big Red Machine” over the years! Michaels then agrees to the match by vowing to get “revenge” for himself, as well as Pete Rose! Can Shawn Michaels beat Kane in a No Disqualification match six nights before he puts his career on the line against The Undertaker at WrestleMania?
Six nights before he and Big Show would defend the Unified WWE Tag Team Titles against R-Truth & John Morrison at WrestleMania, United States Champion The Miz would go one-on-one with one-half of the opposing WrestleMania team and former tag team partner, John Morrison! In the end, it was John Morrison hitting Starship Pain on The Miz en route to picking the momentum-building win! After the match, Big Show shoved R-Truth on the outside, which led to John Morrison knocking Big Show down! An enraged Big Show then chased Truth & Morrison out of the ring! With this win, R-Truth & John Morrison are rolling towards WrestleMania, but will the duo be able to unseat The Miz & Big Show as the Unified WWE Tag Team Champions on the grandest stage of them all?
Then it was time to determine the tenth, and final, entrant into the Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match at WrestleMania as Kofi Kingston would go one-on-one with “The Moscow Mauler” Vladimir Kozlov. In the end, it was the quickness of Kofi Kingston that allowed Kofi to defeat Vladimir Kozlov and earn the final spot in the Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match! Christian, Dolph Ziggler, Kane, Shelton Benjamin, Jack Swagger, MVP, Matt Hardy, Evan Bourne, Drew McIntyre, and, now, Kofi Kingston will all compete in the Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match this Sunday at WrestleMania, but which Superstar will earn the career-changing Money-in-the-Bank title opportunity in six nights?
Then it was time for the 3-on-2 Handicap Match that would see WrestleMania opponents compete as reluctant partners Triple H & Randy Orton would face the team of Sheamus, Cody Rhodes, & Ted DiBiase. In the end, the numbers game was too much for Triple H & Randy Orton as a distraction by Cody Rhodes allowed Sheamus to hit the pump kick on Randy Orton en route to picking up the win for himself and Legacy! After the match, Sheamus tried to lay Triple H out, but “The Game” dodged the pump kick, but Triple H was able to fire back and send Sheamus careening out of the ring! Will Triple H be the one standing tall in the ring this Sunday at WrestleMania or will Sheamus get the upset win over Triple H in his first WrestleMania?
Six nights before he faces WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon in a No Holds Barred Match that is thirteen years in the making, Bret “The Hitman” Hart makes an appearance on RAW to address his WrestleMania opponent! The Hall of Famer states that, leaving the WWE in 1997 left a bad “taste” in his mouth, but now he gets the chance to leave on a high note and vows that, starting next week, “Bret screwed Bret” will become “Bret beat Vince”! Bret then states that Vince has managed to “drive” half his family out of the WWE, but that the Hart family will be in Phoenix in “full force” when he gives Vince the “beating of his life”! Bret then states that he has waited a “long time” to get his hands on Vince McMahon and he will do just that at WrestleMania! Bret then lays out the promise that, at WrestleMania, he will be “the best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be”! Before “The Hitman” could leave the ring, WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon comes out to simply and diabolically state that, “one way or another”, Bret will be “screwed” this Sunday at WrestleMania! What does the WWE Chairman have in store for Bret Hart this Sunday?
In a match made by Guest Host Pete Rose, Shawn Michaels would compete in what could be the final match on RAW in the career of “The Heartbreak Kid” as Michaels would face “The Big Red Machine” Kane in a match with no disqualifications and no count-outs just six nights before Michaels puts his career on the line against the undefeated WrestleMania streak of The Undertaker in the same type of match at WrestleMania! Shawn Michaels looked poised for victory as he was prepared to put Kane down with Sweet Chin Music, but the lights fade and the familiar gong of The Undertaker sounds before “The Phenom” appears in the ring in front of Michaels before Undertaker plants his WrestleMania opponent with a thunderous chokselam! The lights then fade again and when the lights come back on, it is Kane standing over HBK and “The Big Red Machine” pins Michaels, but HBK is able to kick out despite interference by The Undertaker! Kane then sets Michaels up for the Tombstone Piledriver, but HBK escapes and finally hits Sweet Chin Music on “The Big Red Machine” en route to picking up the essential win! Shawn Michaels defeated Kane in the no disqualifications and no count-outs environment, but can Michaels do the same when his storied career is on the line against the undefeated WrestleMania streak of The Undertaker this Sunday?
Backstage, Guest Host Pete Rose is having a conversation with Christian and Rose tells “Captain Charisma” that he feels his “luck” is turning around, but when the Guest Host opens the door to his office, he is met by Kane, who grabs Rose by the throat and drags the Guest Host into the office as a beating by “The Big Red Machine” is easily audible!
Following the Divas brawl last week, RAW hosted a 6-Diva Tag Match as the Women’s Champion Michelle McCool, Layla, & Divas Champion Maryse (with SmackDown Consultant Vickie Guerrero & Alicia Fox in their corner) took on “The Glamazon” Beth Phoenix, Gail Kim, & Eve Torres (with Kelly Kelly & Mickie James in their corner)! Michelle McCool was able to make short work of the contest as she hit Gail Kim with the Faith Breaker to win the match for her team! How will Vickie Guerrero fare in her match against Beth Phoenix this Friday on SmackDown?
Six nights before they go one-on-one for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, WWE Champion Batista & John Cena would have their final face-off before WrestleMania! With his security force by his side, WWE Champion Batista comes out first and proclaims that John Cena will “never beat” him and reiterates that, whenever they are in the same ring, “bad things” happen to Cena and it will be no different at WrestleMania! The confident WWE Champion continues that he is seen as the “bad guy” because he is “honest” before proclaiming that the fans mean “nothing” to him; all that matters to him is titles and money! Batista then proclaims that the fans hate him for his “honesty”, but they all pay to see him because he is “greatness”! Batista then confidently proclaims that Cena will “disappoint” the fans at WrestleMania and says he is done talking before inviting John Cena to come to the ring; a request that Cena wastes no time in fulfilling as the #1 Contender makes his way to the ring! Cena states that he has already “disappointed” the fans and it happened when Batista became the WWE Champion! The #1 Contender continues that he has lost “confidence” in himself and the fans have as well before saying that he has tried to stop Batista every week to no avail! Cena then states that, even with all of the “fight” in the world, he may not stand a chance at WrestleMania! Cena then tells Batista that he is tired of Batista’s “garbage” before stating that Batista thinks he is “The Animal” and that he is “proof positive” that Batista is not good at his “job” and that is proven by the security surrounding him! Cena continues that, if Batista was good at his “job”, then he would not be standing there and says that he does not see “The Animal”, he sees Batista and proclaims that Batista “can be” and “will be” beaten before vowing to win the WWE Title this Sunday! The words then ceased as champion and challenger clashed in a brawl that took Batista’s security and several referees and officials to restore any semblance of order! What will happen in this heated battle over the WWE Championship this Sunday? Who will emerge from WrestleMania as the WWE Champion?