'WWE Raw' July 7 recap: Bret Hart returns, Roman Reigns shines

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Previously on: Chris Jericho, AJ Lee and The Miz returned. A fatal 4-way match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship was set for "Battleground."

The big news: Bret "The Hitman" Hart appeared on the show, to the surprise of just about everyone. Of course, his return didn't really accomplish anything at all. Chris Jericho also wrestled his first "WWE Raw" match in some time.

Beyond that, the "Battleground" main event match got a good dose of storytelling, as the heels are sick of each other, while the faces want to be the very best. This episode started with a strong promo from Roman Reigns and ended with John Cena and Reigns dispatching of Kane and Randy Orton.

It wasn't all bad news for Orton, though. He got the win in a great match with Dean Ambrose that helps him look like the threat he should be. The Viper has been missing something in recent months, but competitive matched that leave him looking strong go a long way in regaining that.

Though Ambrose lost, he looked good in defeat. At this point Orton needed the win more and selling Ambrose as the unpredictable lunatic is working. He's sort of channeling Brian Pillman, which is a very good thing. The eventual showdown between he and Seth Rollins is going to be great.

Rollins' night was a mixed bag. He's got the "Money in the Bank" briefcase, but his loss to John Cena didn't make him appear particularly tough. He's also got that weird music that needs to go. The Wyatt Family has gone through a few different tunes now. How is it that Rollins still had this one?

The best mic work of the night goes to Bray Wyatt for his moment with Jericho. Y2J didn't get much of a chance to respond, but when he does the promo is going to be scathing.

Odds and ends:
  • Roman Reigns totally speared Fit Finlay. Take that, WCW.
  • Damien Sandow was Bret Hart this week.
  • Cameron and Naomi finally came to blows.
  • El Torito has a match, but Goldust and Stardust were stuck backstage. Figure that out.
  • Nikki Bella and Alicia Fox were supposed to fight, but the match never got started.
  • The Authority was on vacation tonight.
  • Give Cesaro the microphone more. He's pretty entertaining.
  • Fandango has the most relaxing commentary voice on record.
  • Where was Adam Rose?

Matches:
  • Luke Harper and Erick Rowan beat The Usos
  • Rusev beat Rob Van Dam
  • Randy Orton beat Dean Ambrose
  • Alberto Del Rio beat Dolph Ziggler
  • Sheamus beat Damien Sandow
  • Chris Jericho beat The Miz
  • AJ Lee and Paige beat Cameron and Naomi
  • Kofi Kingsotn beat Cesaro
  • Bo Dallas beat El Torito
  • John Cena beat Seth Rollins by DQ
Photo/Video credit: WWE