Official Raw/Smackdown Aftermath, Ratings and Review Thread

Discussion in '[Hidden] World Wrestling Entertainment' started by raymond27913, Sep 30, 2006.

?

Grade tonight's RAW.

  1. A

  2. B

  3. C

  4. D

  5. F

Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. LSN80

    LSN80 King Of The Ring

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    LSN's Raw Hits and Misses:

    Raw Hits:

    Ryback's promo:
    Probably his best in front of the live crowd to date. He seemed much more comfortable, and acted like a badass, rather then the coward he was in the weeks leading up to his match with Cena at Extreme Rules. The key here was that Ryback backed it up later when he attacked Zach Ryder and threw him into the ambulance. This was the edge he was missing in the build to Extreme Rules. I could have done without his 'Ill send Cena and all of you to the morgue', but otherwise, this was very well done.

    Chris Jericho and The Miz vs. Wade Barrett and Fandango:

    While I despise seeing Barrett lose in a dominating fashion, it was essentially a two-on-one match against two former WWE Champions. To top that off, Fandango didn't cross the line from silly to cheesy. This was decent comedy from WWE, something we don't see much of these days. I'm not sure I know where they're going with the Fandango character, but I liked this. *1/2

    Sheamus vs Titus O'Neill:

    I expected a quick squash here, so I was surprised to see this go almost 7 minutes and Titus get in a decent amount of offense. I disagree with JBL's assessment that Titus is a future world champion, but he looked good and credible at times against Sheamus. WWE has seemingly tried O'Neill out in a variety of roles, such as on commentary, and as Pancake Patterson, and he showed he has decent charisma and can talk. Here against Sheamus, he showed he's quite capable of holding his own in a single's match. O'Neill isn't much that Sheamus gains much from this win, but it was a good match that continued his forward momentum. **1/4.

    The Shield vs Team Hell No and Kofi Kingston:
    The match of the night, and to me, the second best match of the year on Raw.(Behind Punk and Cena to face Rock at WM 29) Daniel Bryan was simply outstanding here. He sold well, delivered incredible offense, and his mannerisms and facial expressions were gold. The Shield continues to rack up impressive wins over credible opponents, gaining further momentum as a group. It's one of the best pushes I've seen for a stable in a long time. Everyone came out of this match looking good, even the three that lost. I like Kofi teaming with Kane and Bryan, and each Shield member brings something different to the table that enhances them as a unit. An awesome match I'll be sure to re-watch soon. ****

    Curtis Axel introduced: Paul Heyman did a wonderful job of introducing who seemingly was a lackluster wrestler into his stable. I was disappointed at first with the way he was brought out, but Heyman did a nice job of explaining his name change. I'm not sold on Joe Hennig, mainly because I think he lacks charisma and mic skills, but he has a fantastic mouthpiece in Heyman. And what a rub getting to work his first match under his new moniker then with HHH, eh? It became more about HHH then it did Hennig/Axel, but it was a nice rub nonetheless.

    Randy Orton vs. Jack Swagger:

    They couldn't have set the opponent up better with the vote. Orton, Khali, or R-Truth? Please. Still, this was a good match with Swagger looking good in close to a 20 minute match. Orton feels like he's stuck in 'Sheamus' mode in 2011, when he racked up victories, but really didn't go anywhere. Still, he continues to produce quality match after quality match, and this was no different. He's certainly, win/loss wise, in a position where he should be a contender for the World Title, and that time may come soon. Bottom line, Swagger and Orton put on the second high-quality match of the night, showing that good wrestling is the cure for the things that are poor. ***

    No John Cena:

    I read that Cena wrestled the dark match, but the fact that they kept him off TV was a smart move. Yes, the show suffers a bit when your two biggest stars aren't on it(Punk and Cena), but Cena is just off the show for a week likely to sell his injuries from the LMS match, which puts Ryback over as a beast. Smart move by WWE.

    Overall Show: The show was dragged down at times by too many commercials and plugs for the WWE App, along with recaps. But there was quality wrestling, including an outstanding match between the Shield and Team Hell No and Kofi, and Orton vs Swagger. The comedy here was kept to a minimum, and what comedy we got was good stuff with Fandango. Axel, even with the focus being HHH, got a great rub simply being in the main event with HHH, who wrestled his first Raw match in 3 years. Ryback finally looked like a monster rather then a typical cowardly heel, and keeping Cena off TV for a week only helped that further. B-

    Raw Misses:

    Cody Rhodes vs Zach Ryder:

    Filler, and nothing more. Both men are perennial losers, and even if there's going to be a renewed push for Cody Rhodes, beating Zach Ryder isn't exactly a step in the right direction. Everyone beats Zach Ryder. It felt like this was more a set-up for Ryback to beat up Ryder following, but again, everyone beats up Zach Ryder. I like the beatdown and the symbolism of him putting Ryder in the Ambulance, but I just wish it had been against someone more relevant. A nothing match. *1/4.

    HHH vs Curtis Axel:

    Shouldn't this be a hit just for Axel getting a rub by main eventing against HHH? Yes, it's a nice rub, but the focus was ALL HHH. If they had done something with Axel where he did damage that put HHH out, that would be one thing, but this match was dominated mostly by HHH, and HHH wasn't even counted out! Since when does an injury keep someone from being counted out? That's a first for me. No announcement of Axel winning by countout, no count by the referee. That affirmed that the focus wasn't on Axel whatsoever, simply on HHH. A good rub putting him in the main event with HHH, but a disapointment with how he was handled. *1/2

    Alberto Del Rio vs Big E Langston:


    I understand the desire to protect Langston, I really do. But why not do a similar finish to his match with Swagger, where he got counted out? It protects him, and it doesn't have the #1 Contender lose to the lackey of the World Champion he's facing. Del Rio isn't exactly a strong babyface as is, and having him lose to Langston after winning on a screwy finish the night before doesn't make him look good headed into his match with Ziggler. The match wasn't terrible, but the booking was. **

    AJ Lee vs Layla:

    As much as I enjoyed Layla slapping AJ's rear as she tapped out, it's just another meaningless Diva's match. What are they waiting for to have AJ take the Diva's title off of Kaitlyn, who doesn't even carry it around with her? This was a sloppy match for the most part, which is a disappointment when you have two solid workers like AJ and Layla together. I like them establishing AJ's finishing submission move as effective, but that's the only positive here. 1/2*


    Commercials, recaps, and App plugs:


    I suppose for those just tuning into the show, having recaps catches them up. But WWE should have enough faith in it's viewers to have watched the entire show that they know what's going on. I think they recapped the Ryback promo three times, and the HHH/Heyman/Axel one twice. It's overkill. As for the commercials, they came every 5 minutes it seemed. I understand they have sponsors they need to appease, but the frequent commercial breaks were frustrating and completely disrupted the flow of the show. And the App plugs were just simply annoying and self-serving, and contributed nothing to the product, rather, it detracted from it.

    This was still a good show, and I enjoyed many aspects of it. There were two excellent matches, Ryback finally looks like a beast, and keeping Cena off for a week was a good move. The segment with Heyman/HHH/Axel was a good one, and even though I didn't like the way the main event was handled, it was a good rub putting Axel in there with HHH. After a pretty slow and frustrating first hour at times, the show really gained traction and became good follow-up to Extreme Rules.
     
    #3551
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  2. Brahma_Bull9

    Brahma_Bull9 Pre-Show Stalwart

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    lol buddy you are completely misinterpreting what I said.... I don't want the title on Ryback, but with the shit the E pulled it should be on him. I disagreed with both endings that was all.... so if im clueless about wrestling you don't even understand English. I mean seriously, what the hell is wrong with you? To write all that shit and its not even what I was saying.
     
    #3552
  3. berlinbrawler

    berlinbrawler Lovable Curmudgeon

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    The vote made me lolz. They called Orton Mr. Landslide because he got voted over Khali and R-Truth. Might as well have pitted him against an old dishwasher and a bucket of toenail clippings.
    This year I'm definitely feeling the "Wrestlemania hangover." For the time being I have given up on Smackdown completely and mostly just skip through RAW.
     
    #3553
  4. #TheSkipper

    #TheSkipper Dark Match Jobber

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    I'm just going to write up on parts of Raw.

    John Cena comes out and cuts a typical Cena promo about Extreme Rules. In no way, shape or form did I get the impression that he was banged up and slightly fearful of Ryback. He pretty much dismissed it. That's not how you put a guy over. Had that been Mick Foley cutting that promo, Ryback would have been put over as a warrior and as a genuine threat to the WWE Championship. Cena did not do that. Cena then announces that his match will be a 3 Stages Of Hell match. The first stage: a Lumberjack (UGG!). The second stage: a Tables match and the third stage: is making Ryback and Cena watch the first two stages - just kidding - it's an Ambulance match. I have a major problem with this match happening for a couple of reasons. Number one is that, like Hell In A Cell, a 3 Stages Of Hell match doesn't fit the PG Era. This match needs some barbaric matches for it to be considered "hell". Second, the original 3SOH between Austin and Triple H was awesome. It'll never be beaten. They had three barbaric stages and they beat the hell out of each other. But the other thing about the original was, they hated each other and this was the only way to settle their feud. Cena doesn't hate Ryback. He doesn't even CARE about Ryback. People compare Cena to Hogan and in a lot of ways rightfully so but, Hogan usually put over his opponent on the mic. You got the impression that all of Hogan's wanted to kill him. You don't get that with Cena. With Cena you get the impression that his opponents are an inconvenience, an annoying fly that will be swatted away on Cena's whim.
    Ryback comes out and accepts the match. He tells Cena that he can call him "Satan" amongst other things with Ryback's penchant for ripping off gimmicks and looks, I'm surprised that he didn't tell Cena to call him "The Bad Guy".
    Paul Heyman comes out with Curtis Axel (fuck you WWE for changing his awesome entrance music), a match is made for later tonight between Axel and Cena, after Cena tries to convince Axel to leave Heyman.

    Dean Ambrose defeated Kofi Kingston in a match for the United States Championship, it was a good match, possibly better than their match at Extreme Rules, Ambrose gets the win after be flapjack's Kingston onto the steel steps. He rolls him into the ring and hits the Headlock Driver (that move needs to be given a name) and gets the 3 to retain.

    The Shield (Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins) defeated Team Hell No (Kane & Daniel Bryan) in a match for the Tag Team Championship. Again a pretty good match and again probably better than their Extreme Rules match. The Shield get the win when Rollins hits a springboard thrust kick on Kane for the 3.

    There's a Highlight Reel segment between Jericho and Heyman. To cut a long story short, Jericho wants to know why Punk still claims to be The Best In The World when he can't be bothered to show up and prove it. He challenges Punk to a match at Payback and Heyman accepts. I don't see this match happening. I think it's a ploy by WWE to get Punk heel heat by having him no show in Chicago because they now he'll get a baby face pop when he returns.

    Now for the highlight of the night...a Bray Wyatt vignette aired. God is was awesome. I'm a big fan of Wyatt and his character and he's a perfect example of the good work that Triple H is doing on NXT (hurry up Hunter and take over Raw, a Raw in the style of NXT would be awesome). The vignette wasn't what I would call "PG" very creepy but that's the idea.

    Orton and Sheamus defeated Team Rhode Scholars. Is this the best that WWE can come up with for two former World Champions? Fuck sake. Put them in the IC Title picture and bump up your midcard. It doesn't take a genius to figure out that Orton and Sheamus should be used to elevate the midcard and get the midcarder's to the next level.

    Axel def Cena by countout. I didn't really watch the match, as I've now decided to pretty much ignore everything that Cena does from now on. He had an opportunity to make Ryback seem like a monster tonight and he didn't do it. So, yeah, fuck John Cena.

    Overall though it was a pretty decent show.
     
    #3554
  5. scottyshowman82

    scottyshowman82 Getting Noticed By Management

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    Great show, funniest back and forth of the show..

    "I don't want to talk about Curtis Axel, I want to talk about your other client"

    "BRRRRRROOOOOOOOOOOCK LESSSNAR... I am glad you brought that up Mr. Jericho I am so proud to be the advocate for Brock Lesnar, the only man to hold the NCAA Division 1 Championship-"

    "PAUUUL... would you pleaseee SHUT THE HELL UP!"

    :lmao:
     
    #3555
  6. JustB

    JustB Me? Oh I'm just B

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    Their whole interaction was great. My personal favorite line (paraphrasing here)

    Heyman: "If you recall, I gave you YOUR first big break"

    Jericho: "Yeah and you still owe me money" *holds up 2 fingers and mouths "two bucks"


    Also liked Lawler talking about his heart attack the last time he was in Canada. Said something along the lines of:
    "last time I was here it was Pat Patterson appreciation night and I had a heart attack. Sorry about that Pat, we still owe you another night"
     
    #3556
  7. steven87gill

    steven87gill Pre-Show Stalwart

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    In his defense, I don't think it's that he's not trying to put people over, it's just that he isn't very good at doing it correctly. And who can honestly blame him? The guy has only learnt how to be put over, not the opposite. That's what being the top face for 7 years plus does to you, no sense of competition, working up the ladder & how giving a rub works.

    If the E' had thrown some twists and turns in Cena's character in the 8 odd years he's been top dog, we might not even be having this discussion.
     
    #3557
  8. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    I thought Cena's promo was ok except the part where he mocked Ryback, I just don't think that's a good way to go with a monster heel who acted like The Terminator in your previous match, it's more how a face treats someone like Miz or Sandow. I like the fact Cena took the initiative and upped the ante of the match stip, I just wish the 2 falls he added were more exciting.

    I hope the little fallout between Big E and AJ is not leading to a Langston face turn, he's just hitting his stride and Dolph would be the better fit of the two to go face.

    The Heyman and Jericho segment was a class for those learning the art of cutting a promo at length, great interaction between the two and an interesting match comes out of it, although I'm skeptical it will happen.

    Ambrose vs Kofi was solid and Rollins & Reigns vs Team Hell No was the match of the night, Daniel Bryan and Seth Rollins exchanges were fantastic. I'm guessing this "weak link" angle will lead to THN finally splitting but it looks like Bryan will be the heel despite being the more popular of the two.

    It looks like they are setting up the Celtic Vipers as the next contenders for The Shield. First we had Orton and Sheamus watching The Shield's tag title defense muttering about being pissed about losing at Mania, then the two of them beat perennial jobber team Rhodes Scholars, who the WWE can't seem to make their mind up on, are they split or not? I guess it depends on who needs a job doing on any given week. Good match though.

    I thought the main event was pretty solid, I liked how much offense Cena gave Curtis Axel and how competitive the match was, the sequence where they went into the Perfect-Plex was really nicely done. The count out win for Axel was the right way to do things IMO.

    Overall a decent Raw.
     
    #3558
  9. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    Some good wrestling on this weeks show, Kane vs Rollins, Ambrose vs Orton and Cody vs Jericho were all good matches. The show belonged to Daniel Bryan though, his match with Reigns was excellent and the fury with which he cleared The Shield from the ring to close the show was awesome to see.
     
    #3559
  10. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    I can't say much about the first 90 minutes of Raw as my cable picture was freezing so I was mostly just listening, it also had some freezing issues during the main event, so I'll keep this brief.

    Promos:

    The opening promo from Vince and Stephanie was interesting, I don't like this Triple H sympathy angle, in fact I can't stand him as a face as it doesn't suit him, but the way they turned from concerned to heelish was intriguing, both Vince and Steph went at the fans and you only do that if you want heat. I find it hard to care about anything involving this lot but that change of tone caught my curiosity.

    The Heyman and Jericho promo wasn't as good as last week but it did it's job, Jericho doing a little bit too much schtick for my tastes but the stage is set for Punk vs Jericho to be the most interesting match at Payback.

    Bryan's promos with Kane and Orton and then with Ryback all worked well on a show where the little bearded wonder was brilliant in all aspects. I really hope the story is going to be that of him overcoming his insecurity as right now he's in a good position to be the second main face in the company.

    Matches:

    I can really only talk about two as I wasn't really paying attention to the Divas match and I could only see the 6 man opener in bits and pieces.

    Ryback vs Bryan was superb in my view, in fact for me it is the second best match of the year so far. It was a perfect case of two guys understanding the story of their match and executing their roles perfectly. Bryan's partial Indian deathlock into the driving forearm smashes looked brutal and I think this was Ryback's best match to date as far as timing and selling goes. One thing he should do though is change his finisher to the Powerbomb as it looks far more devastating than the Shellshock.

    Cena vs Curtis Axel in a no DQ match was also pretty good, once again Axel got to look strong against the #1 one guy in the business and he executes his moves with a real crispness, you can see his confidence grow in just 2 weeks and he's already interacting well with Heyman during his matches. The finish with Ryback smashing Cena through the table worked well in both giving Axel another dubious win over the WWE Champion and adding another tide shift between Ryback and Cena leading into their 3 Stages of Hell match at Payback.
     
    #3560
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  11. Jack-Hammer

    Jack-Hammer YOU WILL RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!!!!
    Staff Member Moderator

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    I also got a lot of interest out of the opening segment. The way Stephanie & Vince suddenly changed their tone from one of concern for Triple H to snobbish heels insulting the fans. It has me wondering if WWE might be planning some sort of power struggle angle in which they try for control of the company. I thought their concern for Triple H came off mostly as cosmetic, which might be what was intended, as it was mentioned that the decision was not only personal but business. The tension between Trips & Vince does suggest, at least to me, that there might ultimately be some sort of struggle between the two for who controls WWE, at least as far as on-screen goes.

    Contract signings usually don't feel fresh and that's something that plagued this setting. At the same time, it was kind of refreshing to see a contract signing that didn't break out in some kind of brawl. Their interaction wasn't as good as last week's but I agree that it ultimately did what it was supposed to do. Personally, I think WWE keeping CM Punk off TV right now is a good idea as it makes his return at Payback and subsequent return to WWE television afterward seem more momentous.

    Daniel Bryan, in my opinion, has really stolen the show over the past several weeks whether it's Raw or SmackDown!. I'm hoping that the insecurity aspect of this angle ultimately leads to Bryan managing to conquer it while remaining a passionately aggressive performer. If anything, fans are rallying behind him even more than before, and rightly so, as Bryan once again is proving the doubters wrong.

    The six man match another quality match featuring Team Hell No & The Shield. I don't think it was as good as the tag title match was, but still ppv quality in my opinion. Bryan & Orton were both crazy over and while they didn't explode for Bryan as they did for Orton when he made the hot tag, they were in full "Yes!" mode within a matter of seconds. The ending to the match was another solidly booked win for The Shield that managed to ultimately protect Bryan, as it was sort of Orton's fault that they lost as he was thrown into Bryan, while increasing his sense of frustration at being the "weak link". I thought it was a good 3 star match.

    The Usos vs. The Prime Time Players was a pretty solid 5 or 6 minute match. The fans gave The Usos a pretty decent reception and popped during all the right moments for the match. The Usos winning was a nice touch as well. According to a report I read a little while ago, The Usos are being built as the next challengers to Rollins & Reigns. While I don't expect The Usos to be thought of as an "all time great" team, I've got no problem with WWE building them up into solid title contenders. I don't expect The Usos to win the titles but, this is still a good opportunity to elevate them into strong players in the tag team picture. I figure it was about 2.25 stars.

    Khali vs. Fandango wasn't much of anything, mostly just silliness with Khali dominating.

    Miz vs. Barrett was okay but it just didn't click with me. I've seen Barrett lose far, far too much as IC champ to really get behind him, and that's a shame because he's got all the tools.

    Del Rio vs. Big E. Langston was pretty good in my opinion. Langston has impressed me with his overall power and speed in the ring. Don't get me wrong as I'm not saying he's ready for a title push or anything, but he & Del Rio have managed to mesh their styles together well. Langston has been giving Del Rio competitive matches and watching Langston continue to power out of & counter the Cross Armbreaker is impressive when you consider how much emphasis WWE has put on the move in Del Rio's past feuds. I thought it was a good 2.5 star outing.

    The Diva match wasn't the stuff dreams are made of but WWE is actually give Diva matches at least some basic storylines and feuds. Frankly, that's a lot more than they used to do. I do wish they'd book AJ to look stronger against Kaitlyn, but I'm hoping they decide to save that for whenever they really begin to head down the stretch to their eventual title match.

    It was a superb match, no doubt. It also did what it was supposed to do in that it continued to portray Ryback as a vicious monster and Bryan as a passionate scrapper who can go against anyone on the roster. Ryback's taunts during the match only furthered an already compelling story. Some will probably complain about Ryback not squashing Bryan, though I honestly don't see why. Ryback simply not powering out of the LaBell Lock, but rather having to crawl towards the ropes while teasing he was about to tap at times was great. WWE protected both men here and made them look like stars. I thought Lawler's comment of Ryback thinking that maybe he couldn't beat Bryan, while obviously not true, only cemented Bryan a little bit more. Bryan did get the DQ win, so he didn't lose. Ryback did lose, but he didn't look bad. I thought this was at least a 3.5 to 3.75 star match.

    Cena vs. Axel did surprise me, just as their first match surprised me. As with their first match, I kept thinking "okay, maybe they're just gonna feed Axel to him tonight", but that wasn't the case at all. Axel looked really strong against Cena and, again, seemed to have an answer to Cena's offense or was simply just flat out able to endure it. Axel also got a couple of really nice near falls during the bout. Heyman pleading with Cena not to AA Axel through the table was something I could have done with out. I would have preferred Axel simply slide off of Cena's shoulders and manage to just sort of step out of the way, ready to go at Cena again, only for Ryback to just pop out of nowhere to spear Cena through the table. But, it's a minor complaint. Axel got himself another win, albeit under dubious circumstances. An entertaining 3.25 star outing in my opinion. WWE can still milk this for a little while longer but they will have to start giving Axel solidified victories if they keep putting him against top level guys. I'm expecting Axel to get into it with Chris Jericho before long, probably earning another dubious win. If Trips faces Axel next week then, personally, I think Trips should job clean, or at least mostly clean, to Axel as a means of not only giving him a massive, solidified win but to further the storyline going on with the concussion bit.

    There was some filler on the show but I enjoyed the majority of it and thought it was a strong B+ show with Daniel Bryan stealing the show once again.
     
    #3561
  12. LoudClearVoice

    LoudClearVoice Mid-Card Championship Winner

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    Was that a Vince McMahon heel turn last night? I do agree with others that it seems like they're building up a power struggle storyline but I think some else has to be on Trips' side? Is Shane going to come back?

    It sure did seem like that was a heel turn but maybe it's just for this "power struggle" angle with Trips.
     
    #3562
  13. LSN80

    LSN80 King Of The Ring

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    LSN's Raw Hits and Misses for 6/3/13

    Raw Hits:

    The Shield vs. Randy Orton and Team Hell No: Week after week, Team Hell No and a partner vs The Shield continue to create magic in the ring together. If you watch the product and didn't thoroughly enjoy what you saw from these six last night, stop watching. These matches are as good as it gets for a TV match, perhaps save the Punk/Cena match from February. This time, it wasn't so much the numbers game, but simply a mistake by Orton and Bryan that cost them the match. Bryan continues to impress as the "go to" guy for solid, fast paced matches that get the crowd behind him. He's really found a groove as a character and is doing the best work of his career. An excellent match continued to pile up frustration in Bryan, which is most likely leading to a heel turn and him snapping. Hopefully he can sustain the momentum he's built up if that does happen. Excellent match. ***3/4

    Daniel Bryan vs. Ryback: Likely the best single's match of Ryback's career, with Daniel Bryan putting on another stellar performance in his second match of the night. He took it to Ryback like no one previous has done before, and incorporated various submission maneuvers that he hasn't used in some time. I was somewhat surprised by how much of this 15 minute match they had Bryan on offense for, but Bryan's backstage promos set this up nicely. Bryan looks credible against Ryback, and Ryback still destroys him in the end, albeit losing the match in the process. Logic would dictate that he pin Bryan thengo for the table, but I digress. A really good match, that like the first one, is go-out-of-your way to see worthy. ***

    John Cena vs Curtis Axel: Although the ending was about Cena and Ryback, the match itself for the most part was about getting Curtis Axel over more, and it did just that. Cena sold beautifully for him for the second week in a row, and Axel took full advantage of the No-DQ stipulation to punish Cena. It says a lot of how WWE feels about Axel that he took the fight to Cena, and earned another victory, albeit by count-out, in the process. I would have preferred this to be a Falls Count Anywhere Match, as this is the third straight Raw main event Axel has won by count-out, which hilariously has prompted someone to edit his Wikipedia page and write Count-Out in as one of his finishers. But this was the best Axel has looked, and the finish with Ryback getting involved makes him continue to look like a monstrous heel, rather then the chicken-crap one he had been looking like prior to Extreme Rules. **1/2

    Chris Jericho/Paul Heyman contract signing: Paul Heyman is right: WWE is going to have to do a hell of a job in trying to get heat on Punk, or he will receive a hero's welcome in Chicago. But with Jericho's comments recently, I can't help but wonder if they're going for a double turn here. This wasn't as good as their exchange from the week prior, but it was solid enough to continue to make the match enticing.

    Opening Segment: I'm back and forth on this one. Stephanie and Vince came across as heels, rather then just a concerned wife and father-in-law. The goal may be to attempt to get HHH back into the mega-babyface role, but he doesn't need it at this point. Still, it was a welcome sight to see Vince and Stephanie on Raw, and they played their roles well and convincingly. Minor Hit.

    Kaitlyn and The Funkadactyls vs. The Bellas and AJ: While this didn't come near the level of the Gail Kim/Taryn phenomenal match at Slammiversary, it was good in comparison to any recent women's matches in WWE in some time. AJ continues to be intriguing, and the mind games she continues to play make for good TV. This was nothing special, but it wasn't channel changing material either. *3/4

    Alberto Del Rio vs Big E. Langston: While these two have good chemistry together, I hope this is the end of their series, the rubber match, so to speak. I like the way Del Rio saw Langston was going to power out of the cross-arm breaker, and rolled him up for the pin. Get well soon, Dolph Ziggler, because this feud needs freshened up, as seeing these two wrestle over and again in such a short time has gotten tiresome, despite the decent level of matches from both. **

    Overall Show: This was the Daniel Bryan and everyone else show. Yes, they effectively pushed the Ryback/Cena and Jericho/Punk matches, but Bryan was head and shoulders above everyone else the star of the show. With two good wrestling matches just from Bryan, and some nice backstage segments, Bryan is showing himself to be one of the best all-around performers in the business today. The wrestling on the show was solid all-around, which is the cure for what ails any fledging show. Curtis Axel continues to be elevated, the McMahon nonsense was kept to a minimum, and the build for Payback pushed along. It wasn't a great or even very good show, but it was effective and had its moments that were excellent. B-

    Raw Misses:

    Sheamus vs Cody Rhodes: Was it a bad match? No. But it was more of the same- Sheamus beating up on one of the Rhodes Scholars, which we've seen ad naseum now for what feels like months. I get that Sheamus is stuck in upper mid-card purgatory with nothing to do right now, but there's got to be someone else on the roster he can beat up on. *1/2

    The Great Khali vs Fandango: I really have little to say here. Fandango's character of being counted out over and again is a baffling one if WWE is trying to get him over. He should beating guys such as the Great Khali if so, not walking out on matches. This was pure junk filler to set up the Miz/Barrett match. N/R

    The Miz vs Wade Barrett: Speaking of said match, does anyone remember the last time Wade Barrett won a match? For a supposedly smart guy with a physics degree, he looked awfully dumb being distracted by Fandango's music to allow himself to be put into position for the figure four and the quick tapout. At this point, all signs look to be leading to a Fandango/Miz/Barrett match for the IC Title, with Fandango likely winning, then becoming jobber to the stars like Barrett and the previous 10 IC Champs before him were. *1/4

    The Usos vs the Prime Time Players: Why does no one care about this match? Because despite this being between two up and coming teams that could help revitalize the tag teamdivision, both have been squashed or disappear from TV for weeks at a time, making it impossible to invest in either one. The Shield and Team Hell No have been the entire tag team division for so long that there's been no room for any other team to establish credibility. Give the Usos a weekly match for a month, let them win each, then I'll start caring. Until then, more useless filler. *1/2
     
    #3563
  14. I'm A Vince Russo Guy

    I'm A Vince Russo Guy Dark Match Jobber

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    The show peaked in the first 10 minutes and everything else after that was bland filler.

    The Shield interrupting Vince's promo and it cutting to a break, only for them to be coming out for the same fucking match I've seen them in 100 times already, is symbolic of why WWE has become so shitty. How can you tease such a big angle like that and not deliver anything after the break except dissapointment?
     
    #3564
  15. TempestH

    TempestH Championship Contender

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    Bryan tore the house down tonight. I liked both matches, but lets be honest, the only reason why Bryan worked two matches in one night was as an excuse to avoid having to put any other face wrestlers on TV.

    Bryan blew the roof off in the six man tag, and while I enjoyed his match with Ryback, I feel like they should've given that spot to anyone else. I feel as though the time for the Ryback vs. Bryan match could've easily gone to putting a few undercard matches on TV. With all of the people taking time off for injuries, there is plenty of room to showcase new talents in the midcard, but instead they just stretch out the remaining main eventers' screen time. They had the perfect opportunity to allow other talents the chance to prove themselves, and they blew it because "only main eventers matter".

    With the amount of underutilized guys on the roster, ABSOLUTELY NO ONE should be pulling double duty, regardless of how awesome or entertaining they may be.


    If Bryan absolutely had to work two matches, I would've just put him against one of the undercard faces. Like have someone like...let's say Alex Riley trying to calm Bryan down and reassure him that he's not the weak link, but Bryan instead just goads them into a match. Riley gets a few hope spots and struggles to hang with Bryan, but Bryan just wears him out with brutal holds and strikes. While Riley is getting his ass kicked, Kane comes out and pleads with Bryan to end the match because he has nothing to prove. But instead of just finishing the guy off, Bryan just continues the beat down until the ref stops the match and give Bryan a TKO win.

    Bryan still gets to look like a badass, and a deserving talent gets some TV time.

    Bryan didn't necessarily have to wrestle Ryback. Even if Ryback didn't have a match, there was still room for a Ryback appearance during the Cena vs. Axel match.
     
    #3565
  16. Jack-Hammer

    Jack-Hammer YOU WILL RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!!!!
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    According to various reports, everyone expected Raw to do a poor number last night and it looks as though it has, though they weren't as bad as I expected.

    The final numbers aren't out yet but tvbythenumbers.com is reporting that Raw drew an average of 3.68 million viewers last night, which will definitely be the lowest rated show of the year thus far. It had heavy competition last night in the form of game 7 of the NBA Conference Finals, which drew 11.57 million viewers. A silver lining to the dark cloud, however, is that Raw's audience didn't shrink through the night. Hours 1 & 2 had identical viewership of 3.62 million viewers while hour 3 increased to 3.8 million. Not a great night but, surprisingly, not a complete disaster.

    Reports state that Vince had a complete re-write of Raw during the day on Monday, which would explain how come WWE didn't hype the crap out of he & Stephanie making an appearance over the course of last week's broadcast.
     
    #3566
  17. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    My only concern with an angle like that is how much focus it will put on three characters who are not full time, in fact two of them are not even wrestlers. I hope if the power struggle does happen it involves other wrestlers taking sides and maybe stirs up a big Survivor Series match that can really showcase several talents.

    Agreed on keeping Punk off TV, just from the pop his music got on SD you can see the sense in making the fans build into a frenzy for his return, plus from a PPV perspective it makes sense to not have him say or do anything, it adds to the mystery factor.

    The thing I love about the angle's potential is Bryan is proving it to himself where as the other wrestlers and the commentators already believe in him, and it's not a Rey Mysterio thing where he's the little underdog, they are building him as a tough, aggressive competitor who's talent and will far outweigh his size.

    I'd love to see the Usos get a tag title push even if they are unlikely to win the belts at this juncture. A PPV match between them and The Shield at Payback would really elevate them.

    Barrett has been treading water for so long he's entering that zone where you wonder if he'll ever get over the4 hump, and for a big man and IC champ he is jobbed out to a ridiculous degree.

    The bolded is spot on, and any time you come out of a match where both guys are better off for it then the booking has succeeded IMO.


    I enjoyed Heyman's pleading of "He's a human being!!!" as he is such a classic smarmy heel, but it did look a bit silly as Axel should have had plenty of time to slip off the back while Cena was scowling for the camera. Overall Axel has performaed well so far in my view and his confidence looks to grow each time out, but you're right, he needs to start getting some legit wins and he needs a proper feud as opposed to these random matches with main event guys where he gets count out victories.
     
    #3567
  18. LSN80

    LSN80 King Of The Ring

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    LSN's Raw Hits and Misses for 6/10/13

    Raw Hits:

    Curtis Axel added to IC Title Match: I was about to write off the Miz/Cody Rhodes match and the segment in general as filler and meaningless to the build for the IC Title come Sunday, but Paul Heyman's interruption and announcement that Axel would be in the IC Title match adds excitement to the match once again. It's a tough break for Fandango, who likely would have walked out of Payback champion, but a huge deal for Axel, who will likely leave Payback with the title his father once wore. I hope so, because, fingers crossed, Axel winning the title will help make it relevant the way Ambrose has done so far for the US Title.

    Chris Jericho promo: Jericho did a wonderful job of putting over CM Punk as his toughest opponent, and laid out the reasons why. It's said that while some athletes have the talent, skill, and work ethic, but the truly special that have that 'look in their eye', and that's what Chris Jericho was referring to when he talked about both believing the two are truly the 'Best In The World.' There's groundwork there for Jericho to turn heel if he loses again, as he stated he needs to win the match on Sunday, and Jericho's promo made me want to see the Jericho/Punk match at Payback all-the-more. It makes me wonder if Jericho and Punk will do a double-turn come Sunday in front of Punk's home-crowd, with Heyman possibly siding with Jericho. It wouldn't be the first time Heyman turned on a client. The announcers have dropped the ball somewhat in hyping Punk's return as a big deal, but Jericho did a nice job in putting it over.

    Chris Jericho vs Big E. Langston: The bait and switch was easy to see a mile away when Ziggler 'accepted' Jericho's challenge for a match, but it was another opportunity for Langston to mix it up with a top competitor, and he looked good in doing so. Further, it continued the rift between Langston and Ziggler/AJ that seemingly started when Ziggler was on the shelf during Langston's best of 5 with Del Rio. Del Rio coming out to even the odds does nothing to hurt Langston here, although I wish they'ld protect him a little more. Still, this was a solid back-and-forth affair between a steady veteran and an up-and-coming star. **1/2

    Sin Cara vs Antonio Cesaro: It does nothing to hype Payback, per se, but could this mean Colter adding Cesaro as a client? I was a fan of Cesaro and his 'flag-waving' gimmick before he started yodeling, and he remains solid in the ring. This was the best Sin Cara has looked in some time, and while I wish the announcers and Zeb would have focused more on the match then on arguing over whether or not Cara was 'legal or not', the action was good. These two meshed well together in the short match, and the possibility of Colter adding Cesaro to his stable, even if it's as a tag partner for Swagger, is an intriguing one.

    Randy Orton vs Roman Reigns: The two worked a nice match, but the story here was that Bryan had Orton's back as much as Rollins had Reigns. This may be the first single's match, to my recollection, that Reigns has wrestled on Raw, and he acquitted himself well. The 'no contest' ruling is nonsensical because Rollins clearly attacked Orton first, but it saved Reigns from taking the clean loss. I liked the segway immediately to the Rollins/Bryan match as well. Although I'm not a fan of the PPV tag match, this was a good first step in selling said match. **.

    Daniel Bryan vs. Seth Rollins: When it was Daniel Bryan and Tyler Black, these two had one or two excellent 60 minute matches in ROH. Well, they weren't given 60 minutes here, but what we did get was excellent stuff. Bryan's reversal of the surfboard into almost a Deathlock then Surfboard then a Dragon Sleeper was incredible, and Rollins fighting out was impressive as well. This was the hottest the crowd was all evening, and it's no surprise that it was once again for Daniel Bryan. The near-falls and counters were outstanding in the final moments, including the roll-up by Bryan that won the match. It's a big statement that the only three of the single's matches involving Shield members was won by Daniel Bryan. Excellent TV match. ***1/2.

    Kaitlyn's 'secret admirer' revealed: Kaitlyn's bad acting aside, this was well-done in setting up Kaitlyn vs. AJ on Sunday. AJ was awesome here on the mic, shifting between crazy and rational in seamless fashion. I expected the worst here, specifically the Bellas being behind it, but AJ was a much better choice. Interesting of AJ to use the same words towards Kaitlyn that Dolph once aimed at her, but AJ, when given the chance, continues to be stellar on the mic. Here's hoping these two deliver in the ring come Sunday, but this was nice hype for the match.

    Cena/Ryback hype: Cena started cute, but got serious fast, and delivered a strong promo. Ryback, while I didn't like him shying away from the 'face to face', was strong in response. I like the relative lack of physicality between the two, as it makes the anticipation for what should be a brutal match all the more palpitating. This may be as good as I've seen Ryback on the mic, and Cena was his typical excellent self when selling a big-time match. It strengthened my desire to see the match, which is all I can ask for. Both men made claims as to why they'll walk out of Chicago as champion, and while I have no doubt Cena will retain, I'm looking forward to the match.

    Overall Show: A minor hit. Daniel Bryan continues to gain momentum as the solid #2 babyface in the company behind Cena, and is getting the strongest crowd reactions of anyone on the roster. Both the U.S. championship match and Tag Title match were hyped to the fullest tonight, and WWE did a decent job with hyping the Divas title match as well. The final segment with Cena and Ryback was as strong a verbal interaction as we've seen between the two, and it raised my anticipation for the match. There were several decent matches on the show as well, although down in quality from previous weeks. Only the Rollins/Bryan match seems worth a second look.

    The McMahon family drama was drawn out and unnecessary, and I don't know what they're going for there, especially on the go-home show for Payback. I'm sure there's a long-term storyline in place, but couldn't it have waited to hype, say, the World Championship match? Combined, the World Champion and his challenger spent less then 10 minutes on the show, with Del Rio making all of a 30 second appearance. And while they saved Curtis Axel's night by inserting him into the IC Title match, the opening segment did him no favors. Perhaps it's just personal preference, but I feel Bryan and Orton teaming in a match they're going to lose is a mistake, especially when the two could likely tear the house down as opponents. Further, a win for Bryan would be a huge stepping stone towards landing a WWE Title match at perhaps MITB, and instead, he's in a match he and Orton likely won't win.

    The hype for Payback was there, and was good, and while nothing will stand-out, it was solid in hyping the PPV. Except for the World Title match, of course. C+

    Raw Misses:

    Opening Segment: They can give Curtis Axel 251 wins over HHH in this fashion if they choose to, but this type of win in a match/segment like this did him no favors. Instead of spotlighting him in the ring against HHH, he was simply the 'other man' in regards to the power play between HHH and Vince. It gives Axel something to brag about, I suppose, and hopefully this will lead to a Payback match between the two, but as much as HHH was shown up by Vince, Axel was eclipsed by the McMahons. If the goal is to elevate him in some way, the last thing he needs is to be a guy filling a slot just to continue controversy between HHH and Vince. What Axel needs is what Cena and Jericho have done for him, which is put him over, not on the back-burner. The last thing needed is more McMahon family drama played out on TV, especially if it leads to Vince vs. HHH in some fashion. And Stephanie's acting in segments with both her dad and HHH was just atrocious.

    Bryan & Orton vs. The Shield rather then Bryan vs Orton made for Payback: After Bryan was RKO'd by Orton on Smackdown Friday, it was the perfect segway to Orton vs. Bryan at Payback. Instead, Kane is simply swapped with Orton to give Bryan another partner to bicker with. The comedy isn't there between the two, granted, giving this a slightly more serious nature, but if the plan is to move Bryan into the WWE Title picture, how does this help? A match and win over Orton would have been huge, but an almost guaranteed loss with Orton against the Shield isn't the momentum Bryan needs if he's going to be facing John Cena over the summer, as rumored.

    The Miz vs. Cody Rhodes: A squash match for Miz that makes him look strong headed into the PPV, but the match was too short to mean anything. Speaking of not meaning anything, that's essentially what a win over Cody Rhodes does these days. One of the longest IC title holders in Rhodes is squashed by Miz, who hasn't meant much more then Rhodes in the past year. This in itself did nothing to push the IC Title match come Sunday.

    Kane vs Dean Ambrose: I've never understood giving away the same match you're doing on PPV on the go-home show before said PPV, even if there wasn't a decisive finish. It was done nicely to set up things to come later in the evening. The match wasn't anything to write home about either, as Ambrose and Kane just didn't seem to click. The finish with the run-in was perhaps a little telegraphed with Orton and Bryan watching backstage, but it was nice to see babyfaces hit the ring so quickly rather then seemingly wait until the man in the ring is beaten down. Still, giving away a PPV match that will likely go no longer then the ten minutes this one was given is a baffling move for me. *1/2

    No World Title hype: Unless you want to count Del Rio rushing out to end Ziggler's distraction of Jericho during the Langston/Jericho match, there was zero hype for the World Title match....on Sunday. Instead, we got McMahon family drama and 3 replays of it, Damien Sandow vs. R-Truth, and a match with no implications for the PPV in Sin Cara vs. Antonio Cesaro. There's still Smackdown to go on Friday, but they made the IC Title and US Title seem more important then the World Title with the hype they gave both in comparison. Wow.
     
    #3568
  19. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    Odd stuff with Vince, Triple H and Steph, I was expecting something more serious and that may come, but tonight was like watching a corny sitcom, bizarre angle for Triple H in particular.

    Kane vs Ambrose was bowling shoe ugly as JR would say, they had no chemistry in-ring at all. Kane's post match promo with Bryan and Orton was great though, Kane as the exasperated voice of reason is hilarious.

    Jericho's promo did a great job of selling his match with Punk, it was good to see the callback's to their previous two PPV matches and it felt almost like a face vs face promo, great work from Jericho and his "I NEED to win" line was interesting.

    Dolph's return promo was good and I liked that he had a little chip on his shoulder about feeling overlooked. I didn't see the Big E vs Y2J match but I caught the finish which I think worked fine for all involved.

    Orton vs Reigns was a decent match, it had that feeling of two guys who've never had a singles match together, one of whom is very inexperienced, and the pace was slow and deliberate with bursts of athletic ability from both men. The no contest was the right finish.

    Bryan vs Rollins was just incredible! the counters, the selling, the intensity, these two have looked a special combo in their exchanges during tag matches and I think that was reflected in the landslide voting win for Rollins. The match is another addition to an excellent set of PPV caliber matches on Raw this year so far.

    I thought the Big E swerve on Kaitlyn worked well, Big E thankfully is not going face and should get some heat for his cruel treatment of Kaitlyn going forward, despite the live crowd barely reacting.

    AJ then came out and cut a money promo, if there is such a thing in women's wrestling these days, and absolutely destroyed Kaitlyn who I thought sold the notion of her inner confidence not matching her outer confidence pretty well. AJ's line about the shattered glass still being able to cut deep was straight up Jake Roberts stuff.

    The face off with Cena and Ryback that closed the show was ok, I thought both did well enough with their promos given this feud has being going on ten weeks and isn't exactly rich with material to mine from. The predictable pull-apart brawl that ended the show was fine, you don't always need to do something fresh, sometimes tried and tested is all that is needed.

    I expect the general response to this Raw to be lukewarm as it was a go home show, but I think that is more down to the fact the PPV they are promoting is not exactly filled with exciting matches as opposed to the actual promotion of said matches.
     
    #3569
    LSN80 likes this.
  20. Jack-Hammer

    Jack-Hammer YOU WILL RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!!!!
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    Overall, Raw was really enjoyable last night in my opinion. The one thing that sorta turned me off was the somewhat comedic element of Vince & Triple H's final interaction with each other. I'm wondering if it was done to, possibly, lull people into thinking that the tension has passed and that everything will be all good, before Vince somehow really puts the screws to Trips. Given their interaction last night, with them arguing about Triple H going against Axel next week, I don't know if the match will happen. I'm thinking it will and that's where the next phase in this angle will begin.

    I really enjoyed the opening of Raw. It had a completely different feel to it than any opening I've seen for any wrestling show in quite a while. While Axel didn't really gain a major moment here, I do think it's something that they're saving for very soon. There was some major heat on Vince and all this tension between himself & Triple H looks like, at least in the early goings, as though there's going to be some sort of power struggle angle between them. I'm fine with that as long as they don't each get wrestlers to their side in some sort of WWE Civil War and as long as they don't eat up time while making themselves the center of attention.

    Kane vs. Dean Ambrose wasn't all that great, in my opinion. The match seemed too slow and clunky at times and there did seem to be a lack of chemistry, so a rare miss for a match involving a Shield member. I'd give it about 1.5 to 1.75 stars.

    The post match stuff with Kane, Bryan & Orton was well done and the idea of Kane being the voice of reason in a group of people does come off as funny to me. Vickie's announcement that Bryan & Orton would team up to face Rollins & Reigns for the tag titles at Payback will be interesting and that's where I expect Orton to go full blown heel, probably after some sort of misunderstanding or miscommunication. Kane will take on Ambrose for the US title, so maybe their match this Sunday will improve. I do like that they didn't just leave Kane out in the cold and they're milking Team Hell No's interaction with The Shield for all they can. Can't blame them as it's been a hot feud featuring consistently, minus Kane vs. Ambrose, entertaining matches.

    The Miz vs. Cody Rhodes was pretty forgettable, maybe 1.25 stars. It was done just to give Miz a win and add a little hype to their IC title match. After the match was over, Paul Heyman announced that Curtis Axel was going to be added to the match, making it a triple threat match once again, as Fandango is out with a concussion. I was surprised by that and it does put the outcome of the match more in doubt. Have they simply accelerated Axel's push in light of the uncertainty of when Fandango will return to action? Will Fandango show up at Payback and have some role to play in the outcome?

    Chris Jericho's promo was solid and a good final pitch for his match against CM Punk. I also agree with WWE's decision not to bring CM Punk back to television until after Payback. It only makes his return to television, probably next week, after Payback all the more special. It was also good to see Ziggler back and his interaction with Jericho has me wondering if Jericho will ultimately be Ziggler's next feud once things are settled with Del Rio. If so, then I'm perfectly happy with it. Jericho's match against Big E. Langston was pretty decent, I thought it was a good 2.5 star match. I enjoy watching Langston in the ring. He's not a technical marvel, but he's a genuine powerhouse that has a good deal of speed and agility in the ring. Jericho scoring the win was expected, and what was needed, but Langston still looked solid against him. Del Rio running some interference on his behalf, after Ziggler provided a distraction himself, gave a little boost to the WHC match. I expect, however, that they're saving the final pitch for that match for SmackDown!.

    Sin Cara vs. Antonio Cesaro was a nicely worked 5 minute match. Cesaro shows, yet again, that he's one of the most reliable guys on the roster when it comes to working a good match. He looks better against Sin Cara than just about anyone else on the roster. The real surprise, however, was Zeb Coulter's presence at ringside doing commentary. He talked about Jack Swagger a bit while also going on his anti-immigration stuff. However, it looks as though WWE has changed the angle to where Coulter & Swagger are now only targeting immigrants believed to be illegal. The fact that he was out there sort of singing the praises of Cesaro has me wondering if Coulter is going to wind up being Cesaro's manager. It seems an odd fit, considering what Coulter's current angle is, but it'll be interesting to see where it goes, if anywhere. I give the match about 2.25 stars.

    Orton vs. Rollins worked fine, a good 2.75 star match. I got the feeling that they were holding back a bit, which I think people also knew that there'd be some degree of interference at some point. When you know that it's coming, with people standing at ringside, it can detract some from the match because you're wondering when they're going to strike.

    Bryan vs. Rollins was a flat out awesome match, as most people expected I think. The only hitch I saw, and it was a minor one, is when Bryan was going for the German suplex out of the roll up attempt. He didn't quite get all of it, thereby not getting the full impact. Aside from that minor flaw, the match was working on all cylinders. Again, it looks as though Bryan stole the show as it seemed that the entire crowd was chanting Yes. Rollins & Bryan have really good chemistry together, which Bryan is someone that seems to be able to work well with just about anyone. I'm also glad that we got to see an ending to the match. Roman Reigns did try to interfere late, but Orton pulled his feet out from under him, causing him to crash onto the apron. After Bryan dodges a corner splash from Rollins, he rolled him up in a small package for the win at the 16 minute mark. Rollins lost nothing from losing but Bryan gains a good win in what I thought was a good 3.5 star match.

    The unveiling of Katilyn's secret admirer wasn't the train wreck I was expecting, not by a long shot. Big E. Langston came out with a bouquet of flowers and Kaitlyn sold her shock well. Langston's swerve as he dropped Kaitlyn, after he dipped her and was going in for a kiss, was well done in my opinion. Langston looked like an ass but it would have fallen flat if AJ hadn't come out afterward. I really, really like AJ's "crazy" schtick and she continues to tell a better story with her facial expressions & body language than any woman in wrestling right now. Her comments to Kaitlyn came off as nasty and had a lot of impact. I think if you're someone that's ever had the blues when it comes to your love life in which you've felt lonely and unwanted, you could picture yourself on the receiving end of AJ's words and how much it would've hurt. I agree with The Eighties in that AJ's comment about broken glass being able to cut deep sounded disturbing in Jake Roberts kind of way.

    I didn't get to see the Sandow vs. Truth match, the satellite went out for a bit, but I don't think I missed much.

    The final segment between Cena & Ryback featured solid mic work from both guys. Ryback has really improved and while I doubt he'll ever be The Rock, he's doing a good job. He's gotten his timing down and the fact that he's no longer grunting & growling like a grizzly in heat only helps things. I also dig the fact that Cena wasn't trying to be Mr. Happy-Go-Lucky out there. He wasn't cutting stupid jokes, he wasn't out there trying to be cute and play up to the crowd. While this match might not come off as a huge deal, I personally like the fact that Cena isn't all over Raw as much these days and that other feuds seem to be getting just as much build as the main event. It might result in the main event not feeling quite as epic, but I think it makes for a much stronger card overall. The attempted brawl was expected, yet well done. I like that they didn't really get much of a chance to get at one another.

    All in all, a very solid go home show. Overall, wrestling action on the show was pretty good but Bryan & Rollins stole the show. Good promo segments, a couple of surprises here and there and good storyline progression. I give last night's show a B+.
     
    #3570
  21. SmartMarksUnite

    SmartMarksUnite New Member

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    What's with all the people commenting on the Smackdown spoilers about how Daniel Bryan beating the Shield on Smackdown was the "end of their streak"? Do these people even watch the WWE product? He freaking pinned Reigns LAST NIGHT!
     
    #3571
  22. LSN80

    LSN80 King Of The Ring

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    LSN's Smackdown Hits and Misses:


    Smackdown Hits:​

    Daniel Bryan, Kane, and Randy Orton vs. The Shield:What did you think would top the list? For nine months, the Shield have gone undefeated in one-fall-to-a-finish tag matches. All of that changed last night in an ecellent main event that saw great teamwork from the bickering team of Kane, Randy Orton, and Daniel Bryan as well. Instead of being laid out on the outside, Kane laid out Reigns and Ambrose, while pushing Rollins straight into an RKO, leading to the YES! Lock being applied, and Rollins submitting.

    I'll admit, as I don't read spoilers, that this caught me off guard. I didn't expect the Shield's undefeated streak to come to an end on a taped show on TV, rather, on a Raw or PPV. Still, it was an awesome moment. Hearing Lilian Garcia barely able to get her words over the crowd noise was incredible. As for the match itself, it was, as usual, the match of the night. The Shield were even more spot-on then usual with their teamwork tonight, so it was a nice almost-swerve that they lost. Id' have preferred a PPV outing for this, but still, and awesome moment, and perhaps a career-defining one for Daniel Bryan. ***1/2

    Opening Segment: This was great. Daniel Bryan was his usual obnoxious self, with Kane trying to play the voice of reason....until Bryan accused him of being the weak link. Orton's entrance was timed perfectly, as he told Kane he had a problem with Kane laying him out, not from a personal standpoint, but because he needs him at 100%, with Bryan then getting mad at Orton because he doesn't need his help. Team RK-NO, as Bryan said earlier, was clever. The Shield were perfect in their brief Jumbotron promo, perhaps a bit too arrogant gloating over their opponents arguing, as it would make it easier for them to defeat them. Mentioning all the "super-teams that have been put together to beat them and failed was a small giveaway that they'd be losing later, but still, this was an excellent segment from all involved. It really hyped the main event, which was the most important thing of all.

    Sheamus vs. Antonio Cesaro: They hyped the PPV match between Sheamus and Sandow slightly, but the more important thing was the quality of the match. It would be nice if Cesaro would receive better then a jobber's entrance with a predictable outcome, especially if he's being paired with Colter, who was on the WWE App while the match was gong. I was surprised by both the match length and the amount of offense Cesaro received, as he really hung with Sheamus. The European Uppercut into the double stomp was something I haven't seen from Cesaro before, and it looked good. The problem here, even though the match is a hit, is that Cesaro had no chance of winning. None. It's odd using him to enhance a feud that's going to be on the pre-show, especially if he's going to be made relevant again by being paired with Colter. Good match, however. **3/4.

    CM Punk return video: This wasn't anything special, but it was a nice reminder of who Punk is and what he's about. The hype for the match between Jericho and Punk has been solid, but not great, and this continued the trend. If nothing else, it made Punk look like a superstar, because how many men would get return videos after just two months off?

    Alberto Del Rio and Chris Jericho vs. Dolph Ziggler and Big. E Langston: I was tempted to give this a miss due to the fact that this was the essentially extent of the hype for the World Title, but the match itself was pretty good. Del Rio gets momentum headed into the PPV by pinning Ziggler, and Ziggler returns where he left off...losing. Still, a solid effort by all 4 men.**1/2

    Kaitlyn vs. Aksana: Obviously, the match never got started, but this is hit- worthy as it showed an aggressive, mean side of Kaitlyn we've yet to see in the past as a direct result of AJs actions on Monday. She beat the tar out of Aksana before the match, and the referee who attempted to stop her. Where has this been? It's a storyline, in the Diva's division. Kaitlyn is a horrible actor, but she did a nice job in beating down Aksana.

    Overall Show: This one flew by. It hyped the matches that needed that something extra, like the Divas match, Del Rio and Ziggler(slightly), and the return video for CM Punk was nicely done. The biggest moment on the show, by far, was the six-man tag match, with Bryan making Rollins tap out for the first loss ever by the Shield in this match. It's a huge moment for Bryan, and I pray WWE capitilizes on it and gives Bryan a push worthy of the reactions he's been getting due to the incredile energy he's been bringing both to his matches and his mic work. I smell an Orton heel turn coming, as why else would WWE pair Bryan and Orton together? I suppose to cause more friction between Bryan and Kane, but I doubt it. But the big moment of the show belonged to Bryan, who ended the Shield's nine month streak of not being pinned or submitted. A nice go-home show.

    Smackdown misses:​


    The Great Khali vs, Heah Slater:Yes, this is the same Khali who main-evented back to PPV's with John Cena, won the World TItle once being drafted to Smackdown, and wrestled at Summerslam against HH for the World Title. Now, he's one on one matches with friggin Heath Slater, a comedy act, in one minute. What a waste. This didn't hype the PPV whatsoever, and as much as I hate them, give me hype over meaningless filler every day.

    Curtis Axel vs Wade Barrett: I truly believe it is in the IC holder's contract to lose every non-title match in a short span of time. Worse, it was in two minutes. Axel was just added to this match, do a segment or a longer match to make his addition feel important, not this. Having a two minute match, especially when the win comes out of nowhere, does nothing for the match. Here's hoping Axel takes the title Sunday, then both he and Barrett can move on to bigger and better things.
     
    #3572
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  23. Adam Rush

    Adam Rush Can you feel...the electricity?

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    In my opinion, this was 2013's best RAW. Look at what we saw set up tonight.
    Lesnar-Punk at MitB
    Ziggler-Del Rio, World Heavyweight Championship at MitB
    Christian's return!
    Henry-Cena, WWE Championship at MitB
    Possibly Bryan-Orton at MitB
    An actual REAL Diva's feud!
    The family storyline continues.
    Cesaro aligns with Colter!

    What did you think of tonight's RAW?

    I personally give it an A. I wasn't bored for a second tonight. Hell, I was even okay with Jericho burying 3MB!

    But I could be dead wrong. WWE Universe, speak now.
     
    #3573
  24. The Eighties

    The Eighties Forward Thinking Nostalgist

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    Really good Raw, probably my favorite of the year. The crowd was energetic and there were a lot of fresh elements in play tonight.

    Del Rio's promo was perhaps his strongest to date, his old heel promos were rinse and repeat on the smug destiny theme, then his face promos were all a mix of unfunny jokes and sucking up, tonight he was angry and aggressive and had that thing a good heel needs, conviction in his point of view.

    Punk's music hits and the roof comes off, I thought we must still be in Chicago. Punk takes issue with Del Rio calling himself the best and challenges him to a match. This is where we get the first bit of friction with him and Heyman as Paul tries to prevent the match because his "clients" don't fight for free. Punk stops him and tells him to back off, then Vickie comes out and makes the match for the main event.

    We get a nice surprise next as Barrett is out in the ring to get an IC title rematch with Axel, however Vickie comes out and cancels it as she has brought someone back to the WWE, out comes Christian to a great pop.
    The match is decent and Christian goes over cleanly.

    I'm gonna put my thoughts on the McMahon drama angle all in this paragraph as it was spread out over the night. Personally I don't care for it, I can't see where a match comes out of it and to me that is the point of wrestling angles. HHH was his usual smug self and got his shooty dig in at 3MB, Steph was a complete bitch to AJ and Kaitlyn and Vince actually came off as the most likable of the 3, it's odd stuff but at least it seems the Triple H sympathy concussion angle has been passed to Ziggler who actually had a concussion......Or did he? :shrug:.

    Speaking of AJ, she was great on the mic yet again and her segment with Steph was like a less heated version of the Punk/HHH segments from a couple of years ago.

    Daniel Bryan vs Orton was good but obviously got unexpectedly cut short. Maybe I am being a mark but I think Bryan was injured, he looked totally dazed and Orton stepped out of character, it didn't really do anything for either guy and WWE didn't overly push anything until they got confirmation so it felt like a legit injury to me. I know Mark Madden says if it happens on TV it's a work but accidents happen.

    The Cesaro/Coulter pairing got off to a lukewarm start. I just don't think the fans care about Zeb's rhetoric and now Cesaro is back to being a 80's "foreign heel" only he hates illegal immigrants instead of Americans. Other than a match with Rey I don't see much mileage in this.

    Mark Henry's retirement promo..........Holy shit! that was some great stuff from the big man, I had the sneaky feeling he was gonna turn on Cena who is officially this generations Sting, but damn if he didn't put the emotion and sincerity on so convincingly that I started to buy it. The crowd popped huge when he hit Cena with the WSS and Henry stopping at the top of the ramp to deliver his "That's what I do!" line just topped it off. His backstage promo afterwards was great as well, yes Mark, I am a puppet! loved it. :D

    Shortly after Vickie tells Vince she is booking Cena vs Henry for the WWE title at MITB.

    Sheamus vs Rhodes Scholars...the only surprise here was Sheamus didn't win. Right now Sheamus and Sandow are bearly treading water and Cody is drowning.

    Curtis Axel looks great as the IC champ and he's starting to get over, this can do wonders for him and the title. The DDT he put Sin Cara away with was crisp and that's 3 finishers he's used so far. Miz on commentary for the match setting up an IC title match for MITB is the ideal next opponent for Axel.

    Punk making his way out to the ring when Heyman catches up with him and just wants to make sure they are cool, he tells Punk he loves him and gives him a hug, just another little piece in what they are building here.

    Punk vs Del Rio was a good match and the crowd got into it as it went along even after a pretty full on show. Punk looked sharper than at Payback and was solidly the face in the match. It ends when ADR and Ricardo decide to take a count out after Punk hits the GTS on Del Rio and he falls out of the ring.

    As Del Rio is leaving Dolph suddenly comes running out and dives off the stage onto him and starts raining down punches, the refs try to pull him off and he ends up chasing Del Rio out of the arena. The crowd were chanting for Ziggler and I think this cements the double turn for those that were unsure after Payback.

    The camera cuts back to the ring where Punk shrugs and is announced as the winner to a big pop....Then it happens.... The Beasts music hits and out he comes! He circles Punk like a shark as Punk watches him with a mix of confusion and wariness. The crowd is crackling as they have a stare down and then Brock pics the mic up and a hush falls over the arena, then suddenly he drops the mic and strikes, in an instant Punk is on his shoulders fighting to get free but he's F-5'd and bumps hard. There is an initial excited buzz that turns to boos as Brock smirks his evil smirk and then leaves, stopping to stare back at the destroyed Punk.

    The beauty here is Heyman was not involved and I think he'll act as if he had no idea Brock was there or that he was going to attack Punk thus adding more layers to the angle.

    If you said this Raw didn't have as good in-ring action as the last couple I'd agree, but there was some good in ring action, however what really made it exciting was all the fresh angles it put in play and the new directions for several wrestlers has left the show feeling revitalized in my view.
     
    #3574
  25. Jack-Hammer

    Jack-Hammer YOU WILL RESPECT MY AUTHORITAH!!!!
    Staff Member Moderator

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    I'd have to say that, from top to bottom, last night's episode of Raw was probably my favorite one of the year. The only thing that felt like it didn't really need to be on the show was Jericho vs. Slater.

    The opener did a good job of establishing Del Rio as a heel. Del Rio showed more passion & fire last night than we've seen from him in quite a while. Even though his explanations didn't exactly justify attacking Ziggler the way he did, they were logical & believable. After all, look at the reaction when Ziggler got the night after WM when Ziggler cashed in MITB. CM Punk interrupting him was something of a surprise and Punk continues to look refreshed and rested. Good work from both of them.

    I wasn't wild about the handicap tag match but, frankly, it was good to see Sheamus lose clean to Team Rhodes Scholars. I gave it about 2 stars.

    Christian returning was also a nice surprise and while it's a shame to see Wade Barrett jobbed out left and right, Christian looked great and his win over Barrett probably puts him right smack in the middle of the IC title scene along with Barrett himself & Miz.

    The backstage segments with Punk & Heyman set things up nicely for an eventual turn for Punk and separation from Heyman. Daniel Bryan backstage with Kane wasn't anything particularly special, but the fact that Bryan mentioned that he "needed to win the WWE Championship" is a good sign that he will be in the title scene at some point.

    Orton vs. Bryan in a no DQ match was very good and it told a great story of Bryan being the sympathetic babyface whose also a scrappy underdog. Orton & Bryan worked well together and while I was initially a little disappointed that they stopped the match for "medical reasons", as I said, it told a great story and further establishes Bryan as someone to watch. Again, Orton didn't go full blown heel here and I like that we're being kept waiting. Whenever they're together, I keep on the edge of my seat waiting for the big turn. I thought it was a fun 3.25 star match with really nice work from both men. Later in the night, Cole would say that Bryan, kayfabe, got right in Triple H's face over the choice to stop the match.

    The segment with Stephanie and AJ was really well done, in my opinion. AJ is consistently entertaining on the mic, in my opinion, and does a great job of telling a story with her facial expressions and body language better than almost anyone in wrestling right now. Stephanie was an all out, mean ass bitch in this segment. I did like that AJ kinda pointed out the hypocrisy in Stephanie by mentioning her marrying a superstar and Steph's reaction suggests that she's probably going heel, especially her threat to Kaitlyn and the other Divas when they came out on stage. Damn...a strong Diva match one night and a promo segment the next that actually seems to have a good story. Gotta admit that I'm a little shocked.

    Ambrose vs. Kane barely got started before it was interrupted, but I expected that to go down. No big loss as, frankly, they're just not all that good together.

    It's official now that Antonio Cesaro has joined Zeb Coulter and Jack Swagger. Right now, I'm not sure where this is going because it feels so strange.

    The promo segment featuring Cena was solid and it was nice to see Cena wasn't out there joking around or trying to be cute. He did shamelessly pander to the fans for a bit, but that's babyface 101. Mark Henry's segment was flat out awesome, anyone that says otherwise is a damn fool. I didn't really know what to expect from Henry when it was announced he might be "retiring". When he did come out, I expected someone to maybe come out and goad him into not "retiring" or something, but Henry truly suckered me in when I saw tears streaming down his face and heard that hitch in his voice. Everyone in that building was suckered in as well and, it might honestly be the best bit of acting I've ever seen out of a wrestler. Henry mentioning his family, coupled with all the display of emotions he was putting was just perfect. I marked out when Henry, at the last possible instant, turned the hug from Cena into a World's Strongest Slam. The live crowd bought into it and Cena spending almost all the time out on the apron, looking as though he was getting choked up listening to Henry, only added to the realism of the moment. Handing Henry the WWE Championship only furthered that. It would be revealed later that Henry will face Cena at MITB. While initial reports said it'd be Bryan, Henry deserves a shot after that performance. It just means there'll be more time for WWE to build up Daniel Bryan.

    As I said earlier, Jericho vs. Slater seemed unnecessary and I'm not sure why it happened other than for a reason to get Jericho on camera.

    Axel vs. Sin Cara wasn't much to talk about, but it got Axel on television as the new IC champ and he got some pretty good heat. Miz being out there on commentary does mean that he's still in the IC title hunt and I like that he spent his time out there putting over Axel, for the most part, rather than trying to bury him as someone he doesn't think is deserving or anything like that.

    Punk vs. Del Rio was a strong, 3.25 effort that had both guys looking good. Punk looks to have slimmed down a little bit since his hiatus, or he at least seems to be a little more defined muscularly. He also did a great job of selling his arm Del Rio worked on during the match. The count out ending was fine as neither of them needed a significant loss. Ziggler came out of nowhere to attack Del Rio and the crowd really popped for it. Ziggler was going at Del Rio like a rabid weasel with a hard on and if the crowd reaction is any indication, WWE will have no problem with a Ziggler face turn.

    Punk standing in the room shrugging as he was announced the winner was interrupted by Lesnar's music. Again, this was a surprise and I marked out a bit. Lesnar came down to the ring and circled around it like you might see a predator circle its prey before ultimately climbing inside. I thought Lesnar was going to say something, so did everyone I think. However, he really quickly hoisted Punk up on his shoulders and delivered an F5 so quickly that nobody really would've had time to squirm out of it. Punk sold the move like he'd just run down by a tank. Just an awesome ending for an awesome show.

    Overall, the in-ring action of last night's show wasn't as hot as we've seen on Raw as of late, but there were some very fresh angles that came about last night. There were some fantastic promos, with Henry's stealing the show, and a couple of nice surprises. Bryan vs. Orton and Punk vs. Del Rio were both strong matches, the McMahon drama isn't eating up a ton of time nor are they making it the center of attention. Last night's show was an A+ in my opinion.
     
    #3575

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