This week's Raw Deal was written live.
Live from Detroit, Michigan this is the Raw Deal...
The show starts with the Nickelback song as usual. No video package highlighting last week or anything else. I've noticed there are clips of Brock Lesnar in the video, so that's new.
To start the show, Teddy Long was in the ring and he introduced John Cena for the contract signing. When Brock Lesnar's music hit, John Laurinaitis showed up. He got mad at Long for doing this so early because Lesnar wasn't there yet. They advertised that it would be at the start of the show, but it was obvious that they never intended on doing that. Laurinaitis told Cena to enjoy the night because it would be his last time on Raw (assuming that Lesnar would hurt him so bad that he would be gone forever). Teddy Long left. Laurinaitis welcomed us to the show and to People Power.
All of a sudden, Edge's music hit! Awesome. My favorite entrance song in wrestling history. He was wearing a black jacket and made his way quickly to the ring. He's sporting the short hair. Edge said he wasn't supposed to be there and that in a couple of days he won't even be under WWE contract. Edge said he came there to talk to John Cena, but not the Cena in front of him. He said the Cena he wants is the guy that his best opponent. He referenced their history like their awesome TLC match at Unforgiven 2006 and when Cena tossed him into the Long Island Sound.
Edge talked about how it takes a lot to lose. Edge told him he has to win. He has to find THAT John Cena. He said even though they were polar opposites in their career, all that they ever wanted to do was this…meaning wrestling. From the time they were kids this was it. He wondered if Lesnar gives a damn about any of this or about any of them. He left for eight years while they carried the load. Edge told him to wake up because if he doesn't it's a slap in the face to guys in the industry like Shawn Michaels, Undertaker and him. "WAKE UP! I'm not asking you to beat Brock Lesnar. I'm telling you to." Then Edge left. They went to break with Cena thinking about what Edge said.
Analysis: Fantastic opening segment. Cena didn't say anything. He looked at Edge with a serious look on his face and we were left wondering what Cena really thinks about what Edge said. Edge was money in his promo. It felt very real in the sense that he was speaking from the heart. That's why it worked. He wants Cena to represent guys like him that can't wrestle anymore and that's why he wants Cena to win. It works. Well played.
The lights went out and Chris Jericho made his entrance. He was in his wrestling gear, so after weeks of promos against CM Punk he's actually booked in a match. That's always a good thing. They plugged a WWE.com story wondering if Jericho is the new Cerebral Assassin. His opponent is Kofi Kingston because if you need to have a good babyface wrestler to put on a solid match he's a good choice. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler previewed the contract signing, which will take place on Brock's terms. In other words, it's likely the main event of the show.
Chris Jericho vs. Kofi Kingston
These two have had a lot of great matches over the years, so as long as they get time it should be solid. Kingston hit an awesome dropkick early on. He gave Jericho a clothesline that sent him over the top to the floor. No floor to commercial spot? Not yet. Jericho ran back in the ring where Kingston applied an armbar. Jericho gave him a flapjack to get the momentum. Kingston knocked Jericho to the floor again. He ran the ropes and hit an awesome somersault dive over the top to the floor where he took Jericho down. There's your floor to commercial spot four minutes into the match.
They showed highlights during the break that saw Jericho regain control. Jericho hit a running enziguiri for two. Jericho hit a bulldog. The Lionsault missed like it usually does. Kingston hit a nice hurricanrana for a two count. Kingston tried for the comeback, but Jericho decked him with a clothesline. If you're wondering, I don’t hear the "yes" chants in Detroit as of yet. Kingston made a comeback, hitting a high crossbody that connected although Jericho rolled through for a two count. Kingston hit the SOS for two. Nice sequence of nearfalls there. Kingston hit a crossbody to the back of Jericho. Kingston went for a springboard attack, but Jericho caught him with a Codebreaker out of nowhere. That was pretty sweet. He put Kingston into Walls of Jericho for the tapout win at 13 minutes. Cole called it the Lionsault at first, but then corrected himself by calling it the Walls of Jericho moments later.
Winner: Chris Jericho
Post match, Jericho cut a promo bragging about his win. He ripped on CM Punk's family. He promised to give CM Punk a gift later in the night to help him cope after he loses. He said after he wins the WWE Title he'll prove that he's the best in the world at everything he does. The crowd isn't that loud.
Analysis: ***1/4 Very solid TV match. They got 13 minutes, which is fine by me and ten minutes of it aired, so that's enough. Nobody thought Kingston had a chance. Jericho won clean with his signature moves. That Codebreaker he hit was an awesome spot. Hopefully Kingston gets a push post Extreme Rules, but I don't see that coming. Jericho looked strong in his win. Mission accomplished.
They showed a clip of Brock Lesnar vs. Jeff Hardy at Backlash 2002. It was Lesnar's destruction of Hardy, which was his first televised match. I'd assume we'll get clips during the whole show.
They hyped up that the contract signing would be later when Lesnar arrives and when he decides it will happen. Good thing they conveniently had these Lesnar video packages lined up to tide us over while we wait huh?
Back from break, they showed the Fox Theater in Detroit where the Hall of Fame ceremony was in 2007.
There was a backstage segment with John Laurinaitis talking to Eve. He said his administration needed an Executive Administrator. She said the key word was executive, so she shook his hand to accept the job. Big Johnny wanted a hug. He didn't get that. Eve looked gorgeous as always.
The same Brock Lesnar video package aired that they showed on Raw last week as well as Smackdown last week. It's an awesome video, but it isn't new. Three hour Raw episodes always have a lot of filler.
Backstage in the locker room, Josh Mathews was in the locker room talking to CM Punk. Punk is rocking the beard again. He showed that Jericho gave him a gift basket of liquor. Punk said he'd give him a gift at Extreme Rules. Punk gave the liquor gift basket to Josh Mathews, who left. It looked like a lot of booze. Lucky Josh.
They showed clips of Lord Tensai beating John Cena from last week. I think they're trying to show Lesnar or Cena in every segment of the show. It might not happen, but they are certainly trying.
Lord Tensai vs. R-Truth
Before the match, Tensai spoke in a pre-match video. Cole mentioned that Tensai means Destruction. I'm betting $1000 on Tensai in this match. Call it a hunch. Small "Albert" chant early although not as loud as in other cities. Nice delayed butterfly suplex by Tensai. Tensai gave him the double choke bomb that needs a name. He spit the mist into his hand and gave Truth the claw. Then he tripped up Truth by the back of his leg and drove his head down to the mat. The whole thing went about two minutes.
Winner: Lord Tensai
Analysis: 1/2* Typical squash match. Truth got a bit of offense, but not a lot. They need to come up with names for some of these signature Tensai spots. Other than that, it's similar to what we've seen from him.
Backstage, Kane is shown walking backstage. We'll hear from him next as we reach the top of hour two.
It was a typical hour one during a three hour Raw. Lots of video packages and talking segments to fill time. The Jericho/Kingston match was good. So was the Edge promo on Cena. By the way, Edge was speaking the truth when he said his WWE deal was about to run out. I'd expect him to sign a Legends Deal similar to what Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart and others have. If they need him for an angle he'll likely do it. Always on call, basically.
Kane made his entrance. Kane said Extreme Rules is his favorite night of the year because WWE gets extreme. It's really his favorite night of the year? Poor guy. Kane talked about his rivalry with Orton. As he did his speech, the crowd chanted "what?" which is okay because Kane was talking about when Orton was standing over his unconscious father on Smackdown a couple of weeks ago. Silly angle. Kane called him a scared little boy begging for the nightmare to end. He said Orton was praying that the monster would go away. You mean like that Cena feud and how it was so bad we were hoping it would go away?
Randy Orton showed up on the video screen. Orton said he had to return the favor. He was standing by Paul Bearer, who he had tied up in a wheelchair. Did he fly Paul in or did he just happen to be there this week? Find out in an exclusive column on WWE.com! Or not. He put Bearer into a freezer. It reminds me of that awful Edge/Kane story when Edge kidnapped Bearer in multiple cities because he's the nicest kidnapper ever. Kane said he doesn't care what Orton does to Paul Bearer. He said his dad is the devil himself. "I'm sorry to say dad…I have no intention of saving you." Then he left.
Before Kane could get backstage, Orton showed up. He attacked Kane with a lead pipe. Their match at Extreme Rules is a Falls Count Anywhere match. Orton blasted Kane in the head with a lead pipe. Kane ran up the steps to get away from him. Orton's music played to show that he won this battle.
Analysis: None of it was bad. It's just that this feud really doesn't have my interest. Can we get that Orton-Ziggler feud I've been asking about for a while now?
There was a replay of Edge's speech towards Cena from the beginning of the show.
Another plug for the contract signing later in the show when Brock arrives.
My turn to plug. Check out my buddy Brandon (and Burnsy) at With Leather for his daily sports comedy related posts. His Best & Worst of Raw column that goes up on Tuesday afternoons is always entertaining too. He was one of my roomies at WrestleMania. We had a blast. Great memories. I'm hoping to be on his podcast soon, so tweet him @MrBrandonStroud to ask for it as well.
There was a backstage segment with Jericho walking backstage. Alex Riley walked up to him saying he saw CM Punk drinking some of the booze that Jericho left for him. Riley took him to the room. Punk was drinking from a red glass. The bottle was on the table while Punk was talking. Was he drinking booze or something else? Hmmm.
Alberto Del Rio made his entrance. Nice 2012 Porsche that he used for his entrance. Cole mentioned that Del Rio is now on Smackdown. There was no reason given. It just happened because they needed more star power on Smackdown. It was announced that Rhodes vs. Big Show for the IC Title would happen at Extreme Rules, but we don't know the stipulation yet. Their opponents are Big Show & Great Khali.
Big Show & The Great Khali vs. Cody Rhodes & Alberto Del Rio
Last week Show & Khali won on Raw versus the jobber tag champs. On Smackdown, Cody took Khali out before the match on Smackdown, which led to Big Show being in the match instead. This is Khali's revenge. Rhodes tagged out, so Khali chopped Del Rio in the corner. One minute in, Del Rio rolled out to the floor and we got our floor to commercial spot.
Back from the break, the heels were working over Show. He was selling the beating on the floor. When they got back in, the attack continued. Show went for the chokeslam on Rhodes, but Cody avoided it and went after the left knee again. Cody gave Show the Figure Four Leglock, which was very impressive. I like that Cody is using the Figure Four because it fits his old school persona. It's smart that Khali is not in the match since he's pretty much unable to sell moves at this point in his career. Show knocked down Rhodes and then chopped Del Rio. Del Rio walked away with Rodriguez, so Rhodes was alone. Khali hit a chop to the head. Big Show delivered the Chokeslam for the win. Match went about 9 minutes.
Winners: Big Show & The Great Khali
Analysis: * Dominant win. There wasn't even a hot tag since Show made his own comeback. Khali is likely unable to do the hot tag sequence. He needs to stop wrestling, really. The loss makes me think Cody will get his title back on Sunday. I'm not really sure where they are going with that. Show doesn't really feel like an IC Champ. Please don't put the tag titles on Show & Khali.
The pre-show match at Extreme Rules is now live on Youtube. An announced match for that is Santino defending the US Title against The Miz.
Another plug for the contract signing. It's one of the most anticipated matches in company history, they say. And this is one of the most promoted contract signings in the history of a three hour Raw. We're halfway done now.
The Did You Know was about WWE's work with Make a Wish, which is fantastic.
Backstage, Jericho was shown talking to Laurinaitis, Eve & Teddy Long. No David Otunga tonight. He's with his fiancée Jennifer Hudson in Chicago. Jericho wanted Punk to be stripped of the title. Eve said she was reading up on company policy. Something could be done because of some rule about not drinking on the job, so to speak. Jericho said they should call Punk to the ring and have him take a field sobriety test with some cops. If Punk failed, Jericho would be given the title. Laurinaitis agreed. He told Teddy that he'd be out there for it to take the title away from Punk.
Brock Lesnar was shown arriving. Mathews tried to interview him. Lesnar grabbed Mathews by the throat, pushed him against the side of a truck, scared him and walked away. Josh said he was just trying to do his job. Brock threw him into some random piece of steel that was nearby. Brock said nothing. He left.
I like that use of Lesnar. Talking is overrated. He needs to be a man of action. That's the right way to book him.
Back from break, there was a clip of Lesnar going after Mathews. Mathews was taken away on a stretcher. Really? Being thrown into some steel backdrop on the backstage Raw set can cause a stretcher job? SERIOUS VOICES~! for Josh, by the way.
Before the Beth Phoenix/Nikki Bella match could begin, Eve cut a promo. She said that her suggestion was that this match would become a Lumberjill match. Finally they are using Natalya on Raw although only as a Lumberjill. Worst dressed is Alicia Fox with the fur on her head. Good to see Maxine out there, who is a favorite of mine on NXT and needs to be on Raw or Smackdown regularly.
Divas Title: Beth Phoenix vs. Nikki Bella
Congrats to Josh Mathews for trending worldwide apparently because he was taken away on a stretcher. What an honor, I'm sure. This is for the title since Nikki beat Beth in a non-title match a few weeks ago. The announcers mentioned Beth's impressive title reign is nearing a record. That’s probably because she's barely defended the title on television or PPV. The divas at ringside were banging the mat to get the crowd into the match, but there was no response. Two heels in a match nobody cares about are not going to generate a reaction. Nikki avoided a submission and gave her a facebuster for two. Beth pulled Nikki out to the floor. Beth slipped off the apron and looked like she had hurt her ankle. Brie attacked Beth on the floor. The other Lumberjills broke up the brawl. Brie threw Beth into the ring. The ref asked Beth if she was okay to continue. Nikki Bella rolled up Beth for the win. No reaction from the crowd at all. The match went about 4 minutes.
Winner and New Divas Champion: Nikki Bella
Analysis: 1/4* The injury looked legit, but it's a work. An excuse to say Beth lost without being 100%. The title switch is an odd choice to me. The word had gone around the net that the Bellas contracts were expiring and they weren't going to re-sign, but maybe that's changed. Perhaps Nikki will lose the title at Smackdown, Extreme Rules or next week's Raw before the deal expires at the end of the month. I'm not sure. It's likely that it will lead to return of Kharma too, so keep an eye out for that. By doing this they get the title off Beth with somebody other than Kharma beating her for it. That's their money divas match, so it's wise of them to save it.
There was a backstage segment with Punk and Long, who told him about the sobriety test. That was next as we get to the start of the third hour.
In the ring, Teddy Long and two cops were there. Chris Jericho came out because he wanted to see it. Punk walked out there to his music. He looked drunk. When he talked he was stuttering and even said WWF Universe instead of WWE. Obviously it's a set up.
The cop asked Punk to recite the alphabet backwards. Punk said nobody can recite it backwards. I agree. Punk sucked at it. Needless to say, he failed.
The cop asked Punk to walk across the red line that was taped in the ring. He did a Karate Kid pose at one point, which was great. Punk was acting like he was hammered. He took a few steps. Then he stumbled.
Jericho demanded that he is given the WWE Title. The cop said that Punk was clearly intoxicated. Jericho thanked the cops, so the crowd booed the cops. Long asked for Punk to hand over the WWE Title. Punk gave it to Long. Punk asked for one more chance. He did the alphabet backwards. He actually got the S and T wrong when he did it, but that's okay. Then he walked the red line forwards, backwards and even did a Ric Flair strut during it. Punk ended up attacking Jericho. It was a setup all along, which anybody could tell. They brawled up the aisle. Punk attacked him with punches and kicks that caused Jericho to retreat.
Analysis: Not a great segment, to be honest. I love both guys. They are two of my five favorite performers in the company, but this wasn't a homerun segment. I would have rather see them in a tag match or Punk in some of kind match. The idea was that Punk finally got the upper hand after Jericho dominated the feud in the last three weeks.
Up next is Sheamus vs. Mark Henry in a non-title match.
They aired a Lesnar video that was a match on Smackdown in August of 2002 against Hulk Hogan. Lesnar gave him the F5. Then Hogan passed out after a bearhug. A few weeks later, Lesnar beat Rock for the WWE Title. If you're keeping track, that's the second TNA employee they've shown Lesnar beating up.
Another plug for the Lesnar/Cena contract signing coming up later.
The Sheamus/Henry non-title match was next. Before the match began, we found out there would be a special guest referee: Daniel Bryan! YES! YES! YES! And now the crowd starts the "yes" chants that could have helped some of the earlier segments on the show.
Sheamus vs. Mark Henry (Daniel Bryan as guest referee)
Henry overpowered Sheamus early. Sheamus fought back. Henry hit a shoulderblock to knock Sheamus down. He covered. Bryan counted very fast to three, so Henry won even though it was actually about one second. The whole segment was under two minutes.
Winner: Mark Henry
Post match, Sheamus went after Bryan. He threw him into the ring. He gave Henry the Brogue Kick. Bryan took advantage to trip up Sheamus, kick him in the face and then apply the Yes Lock. He was yelling "YES" while he had Sheamus in the hold. The crowd was booing him. After the match, more "YES" chants from the crowd.
Analysis: NR (That means no rating by the way.) Like I say often on Raw, it was more of an angle than a match. Good way to build up Bryan as a crafty heel that could outsmart Sheamus in their 2/3 falls match on Sunday. That was a very fast count. It doesn't make Sheamus look bad since it was such a cheap loss.
Coming up later, Brodus Clay & Hornswoggle vs. Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger. Oh crap.
Another plug for the Cena/Lesnar signing.
There was a shot of Comerica Park in Detroit where the Tigers play.
Backstage, Matt Striker walked up to Sheamus, who called Bryan a coward. He said he was no saint, but if he was Daniel Bryan he'd start praying.
Primo & Epico w/Rosa vs. Santino & Zack Ryder
This is a non-title match that was apparently an open challenge. Rosa looks stunningly beautiful as always. There were some "Let's Go Ryder…woo woo woo" chants, so it's nice that the fans made some noise. Ryder hit the Broski Boot on Epico. Primo attacked him from behind, so the heels took advantage. The champs isolated Ryder, who got the hot tag three minutes in. Santino got the tag and brought out the Cobra. That sounds so wrong when you read it without knowing that it is a sleeve that he puts on his hand. Santino no sold an attack and then hit Primo with the Cobra to the mouth. Again, that was an awkward sentence. Santino covered for the win after 4 minutes.
Winners: Santino & Zack Ryder
Analysis: * Second straight week where the tag champs lost a non-title match on Raw. I'm fine with Ryder & Santino as a team if that's what they're going to do with them. I don't think that's a long term plan, though.
Another replay of Lesnar's attack on Mathews.
We got the Cena/Lesnar graphic again. How many times has it been shown? If I was doing a shot every time we saw that graphic I'd be passed out by now. And I have a strong alcohol tolerance. It's just that they’re really driving it down our throats.
The Did You Know was about how Raw had four times as many viewers as Major League Baseball on ESPN last Monday.
Backstage, Kane walked up to the freezer where Orton had put Bearer earlier. You mean nobody cared enough to help him during all that time? Kane pulled him out. He took off the tape over his mouth. Bearer asked if he was there to save him. Kane said he was there to save him from him. Then he put him back in the freezer. I guess Paul Bearer is going to die again.
Creative team: "Somebody call Paul Bearer. We want to book him to be locked in a freezer for a few hours!" Genius angle. Not really.
Backstage, Primo & Epico along with Rosa were there and were joined by A.W. aka Abraham Washington. He wondered why their entrance happened during a commercial. He also wondered why they weren't at WrestleMania. They were on the pre-show at least. He gave them their card. The answer to his wonderment is that this company sucks at booking the tag division. I'm here to offer that kind of great advice, Abraham.
Brodus Clay made his entrance along with Hornswoggle and the girls. They were in red outfits. They danced. This match is brought to you by Taco Bell Doritos by the way. Match is after the break.
Back from break, they were still dancing in the ring. Did that last three minutes or did they just stand there while the music played? Vickie Guerrero introduced Dolph Ziggler and Jack Swagger. They looked pretty excited for a couple of guys that should be near main events, but instead are booked against the midget. Lawler & Cole said this match was cool because it plugged by Taco Bell Doritos. That makes it cool why? Because they paid you to say that.
Brodus Clay & Hornswoggle vs. Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger
Ziggler booted Hornswoggle early. The match disintegrated. Poor Ziggler, the best seller in the company, had to sell for Hornswoggle and actually did a good job of it. Guerrero went into the ring and slapped Clay in the face. It got thrown out, so it was a DQ finish.
Winners via DQ: Clay & Hornswoggle
Vickie ended up in the ring. She wanted to dance with Brodus and crew. Hornswoggle bit her ass. She left angrily. The others danced.
Analysis: For once I'll give it to Michael Cole who said this: "I can't believe we just sat through that." I feel the same way. Brutal segment.
Another Lesnar video. This time it's WrestleMania 19 as Lesnar defeated Kurt Angle to win the WWE Title. No clip of the missed Shooting Star Press. Instead, it focused on the 3 F5's that Lesnar did to win the WWE Title. That's the third clip featuring Lesnar beating up a TNA employee, for the record.
Finally the contract signing is up next.
This Friday on Smackdown it will be Sheamus vs. Mark Henry non-title again. Michael Cole said he'd also have an exclusive interview with Randy Orton. Is Paul Bearer still frozen or is he dead? Oh right nobody cares.
The same video package of Lesnar that aired last week on Raw, last week on Smackdown and earlier on this show is airing one more team. I love the video. I'm a huge Lesnar fan. It's 10:54pmET. Get on with the contract signing. This is too much.
John Laurinaitis made his entrance. There was a table in the ring along with two leather chairs. He introduced the "new face of the WWE" Brock Lesnar. Hey look it's that guy from that graphic that told us there would be a contract signing on this show for the past three hours. Lesnar got a good reaction, but the crowd wasn't that loud. It wasn't the most entertaining show, though, so can you blame them? Laurinaitis introduced Cena. His music played. He didn't come out.
Lesnar grabbed the microphone. "Come on out, Little Johnny." He said Cena's too scared to come out there. Lesnar told Laurinaitis to sit down because they had some business to conduct. Lesnar mentioned some changes he wanted. He said since he's back he's not happy with how things are turning out. Lesnar had small requests that he wanted JL to sign. He wanted things changed before the Extreme Rules match on Sunday. Lesnar said he's not the same naïve farm boy that he was eight years ago. Lesnar called himself an enterprise. "This company needs Brock Lesnar. If I'm going to be the face of this company, then I need changes." He told Laurinaitis that any thought he had about the company, he had to run by Lesnar. Brock requested Vince McMahon's private jet to and from the venue. "What makes me happy is beating people up." Lesnar talked about how he beat up somebody already, referencing Mathews from earlier. "I don't like people. Especially stupid people." I agree with him on that! Lesnar said he can show up to Raw when he wants and how he wants. The crowd isn't sure how to react to this.
Lesnar told Laurinaitis that he can't fine him like he fined Sheamus. He said he can't fine him. He wanted more money. Finally the crowd started a "you suck" chant. Lesnar said he didn't care what the fans thought. Lesnar said that until these demands are met he's not signing any contract. Lesnar said since he's the face of Monday Night, a new name was needed. "It's not just going to be Monday Night Raw. It's going to be Monday Night Raw starring Brock Lesnar." It's already felt like that this week. Laurinaitis said he agreed to those terms. They shook hands. Lesnar signed the paper.
John Cena's music started up. Where was he for the last ten minutes? Was he locked in a freezer too? Cena was rocking a chain like he did in his Thuganomics days. I guess he was more serious after Edge's speech. There are the dueling "Let's Go Cena/Cena Sucks" chants. Cena wrapped the chain around his right fist. This segment is brought to you by Jimmy John's, which is one of the sponsors on the back of Lesnar's shirt. That's not really true. I just felt the need to write something while Cena stares at Lesnar.
Lesnar picked up the microphone. He told Cena he was scared. He claimed he was the reason that Cena lost last week. He told Cena to sign the contract. Cena signed it. They stood there ready to strike. Nothing happened. Lesnar tipped over the table. Lesnar walked away as the crowd booed. They wanted the brawl. I think we all did. Pay for it on Sunday, I guess. The show ended with Lesnar walking up the aisle as Cena continued to stare at him.
Analysis: Not the electrifying finish that I was expecting. I get that they want to save the brawl for the PPV, but the crowd wanted to see them go at it here. It would have helped. Lesnar's promo was pretty average. It was a little long winded. I assume they had him ramble on like that with the demands to get him heel heat. That doesn't mean he'll get booed on Sunday in Chicago. They are certainly trying to get that reaction. It will be interesting to see what happens at Extreme Rules, that's for sure.
Three Stars of the Show
1. Chris Jericho
3. Daniel Bryan
I don't know. It wasn't easy to pick anybody really.
4 out of 10
Last week: 7
2012 Average: 6.15
2012 High: 9 (January 30)
2012 Low: 4 (January 9 & April 23)
Last 5 Weeks: 7, 5, 8, 6, 6.5
A below average Raw. It was three hours that dragged. I'm excited about the PPV on Sunday because the matches have the potential to be really good. However, this show didn't do much in terms of making me want to see anything on Sunday. This show was mostly a letdown.
There were far too many videos of the same things over and over. How many times did we see the contract signing graphic? Six? Seven? It was a boring show. A hot finish could have helped.
It was a three hour show that felt like it was six hours because it dragged on so damn much. Once again a three hour Raw disappoints. Instead of having longer matches with different stars featured we get typical matches while adding more video packages.
I'll be back on Friday with the Extreme Rules Preview. No Canton's Corner column because of that. Then on Sunday I'll write about Extreme Rules live. At least it will be a better show than this was.
Now if you'll excuse me I may lock myself in a freezer. Ohhhhhh yes!
Thanks for reading.
John Canton - firstname.lastname@example.org