Paul Heyman introduces Curtis Axel – Source: http://www.examiner.com
So I’m going to try something different today. Last night I sat down and watched Raw with a notepad and a pen. I made a note of everything ‘noteworthy’ and I’ve decided to post this here. You can read what I thought as I thought it, and decide whether or not it was a good show.
The opening segment was Ryback cutting a promo on top of an ambulance. He got excellent heel heat by crapping all over the audience, calling them “pathetic” and “weak” and did an all round good job of putting himself over. I know he isn’t CM Punk, but I do think the guy deserves a little more credit than he gets. He isn’t just a big meat head. I think he has a decent understanding of how to cut a good promo, and he is improving all the time. This was some pretty solid mic work overall. ‘The’ Ryback proposed an ambulance match between him and Cena at the upcoming PPV Payback. I think this seems like a good logical next step.
The first actual match of the show was a tag team match: Chris Jericho and The Miz v Fandango and Wade Barrett. It was good to see all of these guys in action together. Our Wade seems to have been off TV far too much recently, and all of these guys could do with a spot on Raw every week really. Quite fascinatingly, Fandango left Wade Barrett to compete two-on-one while he danced next to the announce table with Summer Rae. He then fled through the crowd when Jericho and Miz left the ring to come get him, after pinning Barrett for the victory. This hints at a possible switch away from Jericho v Fandango III towards something with Barrett. Perhaps a face turn for Wade?
A backstage segment with Kane and Daniel Bryan set the wheels in motion for Team Hell No’s demise. The two of them have already started bickering about who is the weak link in the team, having lost the title. However, Kane mentioned the fact that they do have a rematch clause, so it may not be as soon as I originally thought. The friction between the two of them will surely come to the fore after they have lost that rematch.
Sheamus and Titus O’ Neill had a surprisingly good match. I expected literally nothing from this. It’s just an irrelevant, thrown together borefest between two guys who rarely excite me these days. Nonetheless, they had a fairly long match and thanks to Sheamus’ willingness to sell his opponent’s moves, Titus came out of this one looking a lot better than he did going in. Sheamus obviously had to pick up the win though.
Paul Heyman made his big announcement in the ring on who his latest client would be. He introduced to the world: Curtis Axel. He put the guy over like an absolute God. By the end of this promo you felt like you were looking at the new Ric Flair. He mentioned his third generation status and his father Mr. Perfect Curt Henning. He warned the rest of the roster. Triple H then came out and booked a match between the two of them for the main event. This whole thing was incredible in every way. There really isn’t a better way they could debut the man in this character. I have very high hopes for this one.
Triple H and Curtis Axel face off – Source: http://www.bleacherreport.com
Big E Langston impressively beat multiple time former champion Alberto Del Rio. It was an albeit cheap way to knock off the Mexican superstar, by poking him in the eye to set him up for his power finisher, but it was impressive nonetheless.
AJ Lee and Layla had a match that didn’t go for an overly long time, but was very solid indeed. By recent Divas standards, this was a classic. There was a lot of good selling, great athleticism, and intensity. AJ won the match with her new crazy submisson move. Very impressive!
Zack Ryder got a little bit more TV time than usual, but not in the way he would have hoped. He was demolished and ambulanced by Ryback, after his match with Cody Rhodes.
The Shield came to the ring and cut an effective promo, bigging themselves up for their performance at Extreme Rules. They of course brought their gold along with them! They then defeated Team Hell No and Kofi Kingston in a decent six man tag team match. The Shield got the win and will keep going strong.
Randy Orton won the poll on the WWE app to get the right to face Jack Swagger in an irrelevent contest. He beat off some not so stiff competition from The Great Khali and R-Truth to win by a landslide. Coming out to another heroes welcome in his home state of Missouri, Orton won a very hard fought contest against one of the most underrated guys on the roster. Just like his match against Big Show, I expected nothing, and was pleasantly surprised to see a good entertaining match. Jack Swagger is jobbing far too much though, and it’s really worrying.
Randy Orton and Jack Swagger – Source: wwepredictor.wordpress.com
Triple H and Curtis Axel competed in a main event that I never expected to see. It was good to see the epic Triple H entrance again, having had it cut short last night. I’m not feeling Axel’s theme music though, but it’s not the worst first I’ve ever heard. Hunter competed in his first match on Raw for three years. Axel’s tactical strategy was to focus on the jaw for a lot of the match. Triple H ended up forfeiting the match when he wasn’t allowed to continue by the ringside crew. He was stumbling around like a crazy drunk as the show went off the air. A strange, but interesting ending to the night. Axel didn’t job in his debut match, and it was against one of the best of all time. So, not a bad start at all.
Who knows where all of this will go next week? One thing is for sure, I’ll be watching to find out! I was more than pleased with this week’s episode, coming off the back of an excellent pay-per-view. I’m fairly excited about Payback already, so that’s a good sign. What did you think of last night’s show? Why not go ahead and leave a comment?