michael dworkis F5’s Raw…
Before we get to Raw, some interesting noteworthy items. Jim Ross posted on his blog that while Rock is not a WWE regular anymore, his championship reign going into WrestleMania will equal money for WWE and that is what this business is about, the money. Sadly, I have to agree with this, which is likely one of the reasons Punk had to drop the title to The Rock.
We started off Raw with a recap of the Royal Rumble, showing Cena winning the Royal Rumble match and The Rock winning the WWE Title after convincing McMahon to restart the match. We cut to Vickie Guerrero to announce tonight is Raw Roulette. Yeah. First match is Antonio Cesaro vs. Randy Orton is… (spins the wheel), a Guest Referee match. But first, CM PUNK!
CM Punk bolts to the ring, and he is irate, ripping up signs and yelling at everyone. He is a bit bent out of shape about losing the title, claiming he retained the title. Heyman looks like he does not know what to do with his client. He rips into The Rock and Vince McMahon. He claims it is worse than the Montreal Screwjob, this will be forever known as the Phoenix Screwjob. Vince McMahon interrupts and Punk resumes the personal bashing. Vince says that later tonight he will show footage proving that Punk is behind The Shield, and later tonight, Paul Heyman may very well get fired.
This is bothering me, Punk is turning into a whining bitch. Honestly, if there was a screwjob every time something like this happened, there would be a “____ Screwjob” in every city in America. I have fears over Punk and his status. I hope that once Rock drops the belt to Cena at WrestleMania, Cena then loses it back to Punk. If Punk goes back to mid-card, its over. Everything he built in the past two years, gone.
Randy Orton vs. Antonio Cesaro (non-title) with The Miz as Special Guest Referee
Thanks to the Raw Roulette wheel, The Miz is the guest ref. Looks like they are continuing the Miz-Cesaro feud. Randy Orton throws a vertical suplex, but very sloppy, as you can clearly see Cesaro jumping strong to get himself over. What the hell is wrong with Orton. I’ll tell you what, he is sleeping and walking through everything now. He knows he will never get fired so he can do whatever he wants. Orton beats on Cesaro on the outside, then on the ring apron, finally bringing them into the ring. JBL is back on commentary, and he seems to be filling the “heel commentator” gap since Cole dropped his annoying gimmick. Orton and Cesaro trade uppercuts, earning the “yay” vs. “boo” chants from the crown, but it seems as if Cesaro started to earn some “yay” chants. Cesaro regains control hitting a huge suplex and powerslam, but could not get the three count. Miz counting fairly, but the United States Champion still complains. Orton sets up Cesaro for the second-rope DDT, but Cesaro threw an eye-poke and then got into it with The Miz. Orton regained himself and scored the RKO when Cesaro turned around.
Winner by Predictable Ending: Randy Orton
Still nothing left for Orton to do. It was a decent match. Post-match, Miz splattered Cesaro with the Skull Crushing Finale.
Ryback vs. The Prime Time Players in a Make Me Laugh Match
Whoever makes the crowd laugh most, wins. This is a terrible idea. Prime Time Players do some lame shtick, and then Ryback asks “What has four eyes, twenty fingers and about to be unconscious?” Predictable, Ryback beat up the Players, resulting in much laughter from the crowd. Ha. Ha. Ha. NO.
Thankfully, the crowd was firmly behind Ryback as he mauled the team. As Matt Striker joked in the ring, Ryback then mauled him to, much to JBL’s delight. #facepalm
Winner via Lame Waste of Time Segment: Ryback
The same thought rolls through my mind. What is next for Ryback? He can continue to eat people, but like Goldberg, he can get stale if left to stagnate for too long.
Wade Barrett chooses Bo Dallas from NXT in a “Choose Your Opponent Match”
Obvious set up, since he eliminated Barrett from the Royal Rumble. Barrett calls him a little rookie NXT punk. Ironic, Barrett being an NXT graduate too, but whatever. Dallas starts off on fire, leveling Barrett, forcing the veteran to regroup. Barrett takes over, and pounds away on the young challenge. Barrett has enough and sets up for the Bull Hammer. Barrett charges forward and Bo Dallas counters it into a Belly-to-Belly Suplex and gets the pinfall!!
Winner by Pinfall: Bo Dallas
There you go, giving someone a good win. Nice way of doing it too, counter into an awesome move. Barrett looks good, and maybe we will see more NXT on Monday Night Raw.
Cody Rhodes vs. John Cena
Match made thanks to a spin on the dreaded Raw Roulette Wheel. Rhodes ditches the match saying it is not worth his time. He gets beat up anyway. Cena instead takes the mic and blathers on and on, for about 10 minutes (?) and in a REAL BIG SHOCKER chooses to challenge for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania. Gee, Cena vs. Rock II. Huh, so I guess the “Once In A Lifetime” gimmick from WrestleMania 28 goes out the window now, huh? #sarcasam
The Shield comes out and lays out John Cena. Ryback and Sheamus rushed out to make the save, but they too were overpowered. What did that even do? Nothing? That made no sense at all, unless… THE ROCK IS BEHIND THE SHIELD.
This was the worst goddamn segment I have ever seen in my life. This was so overdramatically drawn out, and anyone who skipped a heartbeat at the decision needs to get his or her head examined. Anyone who thought Cena was going to choose Alberto del Rio needs to have a lobotomy. I’ll perform the operation for free. #iamanasshole
Backstage: Brodus Clay and Tensai spin the wheel… and land on Lingerie Pillow Fight. Tensai storms off while Vickie realizes it is a bad idea and has Brodus Spin again. Lands on Dance Off. Brodus tells Vickie he will inform Tensai of the new match…
Brodus Clay vs. Tensai in a Dance Off
Guess what Brodus didn’t do? Whatever, they all dance, even Tensai, and Ron Simmons shows up for the DAMN moment. Michael Cole has the line of the night “Someone should blow up the Raw Roulette wheel.” I agree Cole, I agree.
Backstage: Alberto del Rio spins the wheel, and he will face Big Show in a bodyslam challenge.
Bodyslam Challenge: Alberto del Rio vs. Big Show
This went nowhere as Big Show beat the hell out of both Ricardo and the World Champion, even using duct tape on the champ, just like he did to Big Show at the Rumble. Lame segment, but clearly continuing the feud.
Kaitlyn vs. Tamina Snuka went to a no-contest when the other Divas brawled. I think this was a Lumberjill match, but I really have no clue at this point. The match was actually good, since we got two women who actually know how to wrestle.
The Rock Appearance
Well, heaven forbid he wrestle on Monday Night Raw. Instead he talks, and talks, and talks about how great it is to be champion again and back in the WWE again. As The Rock talks about ushering in the “People’s Era” we are thankfully interrupted by a true wrestling champion, CM Punk. He demands Rock hand over the title, but the Rock goes back to his usual bag of tricks and questions the location of Punk’s nuts and suggests he finds them and come to the ring to take those, and the Rock’s Title. Punk instead pulls a Rock and says that he has to check his busy schedule, since he is wrestling at every live event this weekend, so if next Monday Night does not work for The Rock, then he can defend the title at Elimination Chamber. Alright, a rematch. Michael Cole calls Punk “delusional.” I call Punk “The Best in the World.”
Sheamus vs. Damien Sandow in a Tables Match
Now this was a great match. Sheamus and Sandow worked very well together, and dare I say it, I heard cheers for Sandow from the live WWE Universe crowd. Sandow with great wrestling moves and even got creative with the table, trapping the arm of the Celtic Warrior and crushing it. Match went back and forth to the floor, and Sandow worked over the arm which was injured by the Shield earlier in the show. Both men wound up fighting on the ring apron, with a table just below them. Sandow nearly took a spill, but regained himself and Sheamus nearly went down but the both managed back in the ring. Sheamus regains control and works over Sandow, but the Intellectual Savior comes back and clobbers Sheamus, using the table as a weapon. Sandow has Sheamus on the table, but before he could even climb the turnbuckle, Sheamus grabs him and blasts him repeatedly over the ropes with his trademark forearm shots. Sandow tries to mount a comeback, but Sheamus grabs him, and sets him up for White Noise! Instead, Sheamus runs to the corner where a table is waiting!! Crash! Sheamus plows Sandow through and wins the match!
Winner via Best Match of the Night: Sheamus
Zack Ryder vs. The Great Khali in a Karaoke Match
No. I will not even dignify this with any commentary. 3MB comes out and get beaten up. That is all. I refuse to say anything more.
Chris Jericho Promo
Y2J is back! Again! He thanks the fans for welcoming him back. Well, that is nice, considering this happens every year or so. Enter Mr. Money in the Bank, Dolph Ziggler. He reminds Jericho that he beat him in a career match, so what is he even doing here?! Big E. Langston threatens Jericho, who then makes fun of him. Their little verbal exchange is interrupted by Vickie Guerrero, who informs Ziggler she re-hired Jericho because she hates Ziggler, and does what is right for business. Go call the waaaabulance. She spins the wheel and the match is made…
Dolph Ziggler & Chris Jericho vs. Team Hell No
Short match which saw Kane and Bryan show some discord again and the match ends with some comedy as Kane and Bryan argue over a botched move, and Ziggler blind tags Jericho. Before leaving the ring, Jericho blasts Kane from behind. Jericho ducks out, and Kane only sees Ziggler. One chokeslam to the Show-Off later, and Team Hell No wins.
Winners: Team Hell No
The next inductee into the WWE Hall of Fame is Trish Stratus. Here is a real success story for you. Started as a manager, and built herself up to a multi-time Diva Champion. I do not think I will hear any disagreements when I say, Trish Stratus was the greatest Diva of all time. Better than Sunny, better than Lita, and I will say, no one in the modern-wrestling era even comes close.
Vince McMahon comes out and demands Paul Heyman enter the ring. Heyman gets some EC-Dub chants. Heyman extends his hand and Vince shakes it, but then applies some anti-bacterial. Funny stuff. He goes right to it, asking Heyman about The Shield and Brad Maddox. Heyman says he has never had any dealings with them. Vince then asks Heyman if he has ever told a lie in his life. Heyman gives a great line about Vince McMahon Sr. about surviving in this business as a promoter, that yes he had lied to get where he is today. But still has not lied about The Shield and Brad Maddox. Well, Vince rolls the footage and here we have Heyman talking backstage to Maddox saying that his services are no longer required because he keeps asking for more and interfering in the affairs of Punk and Heyman. Heyman says The Shield is doing a better job than him and does not risk exposure at all. Maddox begs for forgiveness but Heyman says that time is done, and The Shield beats down on Maddox. The crowd chant of “you got busted” echoes the arena as Heyman is about to puke. Heyman says he is being falsely accused and set up. He claims to have a “thick New York-Jewish accent” which anyone can imitate. He says someone is jealous of his success but Vince is not buying it. Right as Vince is about to fire Heyman, enters… BROCK LESNAR. He comes down to the ring and Heyman begs him not to do anything. Lesnar puts Heyman in the corner, confronts Vince, and then hits the chairman with the F-5! Heyman is on his knees in shock. Show over.
I love Heyman. He admits to being downright dirty, downright dishonorable, and a man who will do what he has to in order to survive. He is awesome on the mic. But geez, what a mess do we have here. We learn that Booker T is making an announcement about the World Title on SmackDown, Rock vs. Punk II is on the way, and now Brock is back. I will be honest here, I thought this was not a good show to follow-up the Royal Rumble. Too much talking, not enough wrestling and now we have more confusion. I hope storylines get straightened out, because I do not even know what is flying anymore. Next week on Raw we might get Zack Ryder vs. The Rock for the WWE Title in a When Pigs Fly Match.