Live from Milwaukee, Wisconsin this is the Raw Deal for episode #1005. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport.
There was a video package highlighting the key events from last week, which involved John Cena confronting CM Punk and then Punk kicking Jerry Lawler in the back of the head.
The "Tonight is the Night" song by Outasight followed that. Then we saw the pyro in the building in Milwaukee. Michael Cole and Jerry Lawler welcomed us to the show. Took four minutes to mention Twitter as Cole read a Lawler tweet. That led to Lawler walking into the ring.
Lawler said "I know this is not the way Raw normally starts." Actually it usually starts with a promo. I think he means with him talking. Lawler said he apologized to Punk for what he said at Raw 1000 and he got a kick in the head. "Last week I apologized to CM Punk. This week I want an apology from CM Punk." Lawler waited in the ring for him. Punk's music started up as the WWE Champion made his way to the ring.
Punk had a different look. He had his head shaved on the sides and it's much shorter on the top. He's also rocking the beard. Punk said he's not a bad guy and he didn't turn his back on anybody. Punk claimed that Lawler turned his back on the WWE Universe when he said what he did about the WWE Champion. Punk told him that he'll put down anybody that gets in his way. Punk questioned Lawler being in the Hall of Fame because he beat up some Hollywood people (Andy Kaufman reference). Punk ripped on Lawler saying Lawler was jealous of him because Lawler was never WWE Champion. He called him a 14 year old on commentary too, which was great. This was a wonderful line: "When you finally got your big WrestleMania moment you couldn't beat Michael Cole!" Punk said most of all he's sorry about the man that Lawler has become. "You wanna fight me, Jerry Lawler?" The fans chanted "yes" at that. Punk said everybody knows that he would embarrass Lawler if they had a match. Punk said that by the end of the night Lawler is going to leave embarrassed either because he gets beat up or because he wouldn't fight Punk. Punk told him to think about it. As Punk made his way to the top of the ramp, Lawler told him that he would think about it. They went to commercial.
Analysis: Punk was in full heel mode here. He was terrific. He took some shots at Lawler that really stung and made the crowd hate him. The crowd cheered him for his entrance, but he acted like an evil man towards the legendary babyface announcer. Now we have to wait to see if they will have a match later or if they will have some kind of confrontation. To be determined, I guess. I thought Lawler did a good job. He's not my favorite as an announcer because of how he's produced, but in terms of promos he's still above average in that role.
Ryback vs. Jack Swagger
Swagger didn't get an entrance. He waited in the ring for Ryback. Ryback dropped him with a hard kick to the head early. Swagger avoided a charge with a drop toe hold followed by a shoulder block and then a body slam. Ryback kicked out of the Ankle Lock. Loud "Goldberg" chant. Ryback gave Swagger a back body drop that caused Swagger to land on his head. Ouch that hurt. Ryback destroyed Swagger with a clothesline as the crowd joined him in "Feed Me More" chants. Ryback put him on his shoulders and finished him off with the Shell Shock for the win after two minutes.
Analysis: It was a typical squash match that we've seen many times from Ryback. The announcers didn't call the finisher "Shell Shock" as usual, but that's the name for it as far as I know.
Post match, Swagger was angry at ringside. My buddy Frank the Clown was there encouraging him. He's a friendly clown, kids. And he's on TJR Radio with me on Tuesday at 10pmET/9pmCT.
Tonight: Game over? Triple H will talk as they seem to mention over and over.
Later in the show it's John Cena vs. The Miz. Cole wondered if CM Punk would wrestle Jerry Lawler. Lawler said he was thinking about it as they went to break. Can't the GM just make the match? Maybe she's too busy skipping around.
My favorite diva Natalya was in the ring for a match. She's up against Divas Champion Layla in a non-title match. They replayed last week's battle royal with Kaitlyn winning a battle royal to earn a Divas Title match against Layla. Vickie Guerrero interrupted. She said the match needed to be over quickly because she had an important announcement. Insert a "hey dumbass all divas matches are over quickly" comment here.
Layla vs. Natalya (Non-Title)
Cole said Kaitlyn called Layla an all-time diva great. Really? What a reach. Natalya hit some move, but the camera was on Vickie. Layla hit a nice arm drag followed by a pinfall for two. Layla hit a crossbody off the middle rope for two. Layla hit a move with her butt in the face off Natalya. A running butt splash. Layla attacked Natalya on the floor, but Natalya pulled the ring apron and trapped her. A Finlay move. Natalya went for the Sharpshooter, but Layla was able to shove her off. Guerrero was standing on the apron the whole time. Layla countered a suplex into a small package for two. Layla finished her off with a hard kick to the head for the win after about three minutes.
Analysis: * It was fine for what they were given. Obviously I want to see Natalya doing more, but with Layla in a title feud we knew who was going to win that match.
After the match, Guerrero went into the ring. She told Layla to leave. She did. Guerrero complained about how unfair it was for AJ Lee to have Dolph Ziggler put his Money in the Bank briefcase on the line. She said the Board of Directors should put Raw in the hands of somebody like her instead of some mentally deranged child like AJ. "Light It Up" time as Raw GM AJ Lee skipped her way down to the ring. AJ grabbed the microphone. Then she slapped Vickie. She tackled Vickie. They rolled around on the mat for a bit and then Vickie ran away. The crowd enjoyed that so they chanted "yes" in approval of the GM's actions.
They aired a DX video from Triple H's career because "is this Game Over" for Triple H story is going to be the theme of the show.
Michael Cole told us about some footage from last week when Daniel Bryan was in anger management class.
Daniel Bryan was sitting there in an anger management class wearing a "no no no" shirt. Some kid walked into the room with a goat mask on his face. Bryan thought it was a sick joke to have a goat face. The head of the class, Dr. Shelby, told Bryan that the kid was his son. He was playing a goat in a play of Noah's Ark. The dad said to his son: "Richard, this man is sick and needs help." Bryan sat back down angrily.
Analysis: Best part was the end. The Wrestling Observer reported that they taped a bunch of these skits in Los Angeles during Summerslam week, so there will be more of them throughout the show.
The Raw Social Media Ambassador is Dominic Monaghan (@DomsWildThings), who is from Lord of the Rings, Lost & the new movie The Day.
CM Punk fired off a tweet saying if Lawler fights him then he will let Lawler have the first punch. That's an ode to the Lawler/Kaufman story also. Lawler stood on the announce table with a microphone in hand. Lawler said he didn't beat up nobodies in Memphis, Tennessee because they were guys like Jesse Ventura, Harley Race, Superstar Billy Graham and others. Lawler said that Punk was right that he does react like a 14 year old and he has never been WWE Champion. He mentioned Andy Kaufman saying he was great. Lawler talked about being a Hall of Famer means standing up to somebody in the prime of their life. Lawler said he knows he's not the best in the world, but he knows Punk isn't either. Lawler said: "You damn right I'll fight you tonight!" Lawler left the commentary table.
Analysis: Lawler's promo was very good. It's even better that he left the commentary table. Thank you Jerry! If they can acknowledge on screen that Lawler reacts "like a 14 year old" why not change how he acts a bit? It's ridiculous.
John Cena's music started up. He commented to the camera: "Monday. Time to go to work." His time is now. You can't see him. His time is now. The Miz made his entrance. Cole said he was alone at the announce table. Why don't they put somebody out there with him?
John Cena vs. The Miz
Cole called this a "great rivalry." No it wasn't. They never had a good match together. By the way the IC Title of The Miz is not on the line. That's obvious, but I'm clarifying it anyway. Cena took Miz down with a side headlock. They went to break one minute into the match. No floor to commercial spot. They were in the ring.
Analysis: That's five commercials in the first 55 minutes of Raw if you're counting.
Josh Mathews joined Michael Cole at the commentary table. As they returned from break, Cena gave Miz a bulldog. Miz came back with a boot for two. Miz hit his corner clothesline followed by a double axehandle off the top. Miz grabbed a headlock so the fans started a "Let's Go Cena/Cena Sucks" chant as the camera got in too close and you could hear Cena call a spot. After a brief Cena comeback, Miz hit his neckbreaker/backbreaker combo followed by a running kick to the face for two. Miz went off the ropes, Cena tripped him up and put him into the STF. Miz was able to get to the ropes. Miz came back with a kick to the knee followed by his DDT for two. Mathews said people think the career of Triple H is over, which is announcer speak for it's not over. Miz went for the Skull Crushing Finale, Cena fought out and Miz hit a Matty Hardy like Side Effect for two. At least that's what it used to be called by Matt Hardy. Cena hit his usual offense with the shoulderblocks, the spinning suplex, the Five Knuckle Shuffle and then the Attitude Adjustment for the win after 11 minutes.
Winner: John Cena
Analysis: ** It was an average television match. Miz got control. Cena was never in that much danger and he was able to easily dispose of the IC Champ. What surprised me was that Cena didn't get a chance to talk at all. I wouldn't be shocked if we saw him later to save Jerry Lawler as the heroic babyface.
Michael Cole talked about breaking news from GM AJ Lee. He said the WWE Universe can pick the kind of match we'll see in the Punk vs. Lawler match. The hashtag choices that people can pick are #WWETables, #WWECage, #WWENoDQ. At least they picked three match types that are actually different. I think #WWECage will win.
There was another video package for Triple H showing some career highlights. "I am the Game. I am that damn good." Another shot of that "Game Over?" visual with Triple H holding his arm. We'll hear from him later.
Analysis: We get it. I've always liked Triple H although I've been known to throw a joke or two or six in his direction. They are really overdoing it, though. Just get it over with already.
Coming up later is Randy Orton & Sheamus vs. Dolph Ziggler & Alberto Del Rio. Why did it take them so long to mention a big match like that?
Another clip of Daniel Bryan in anger management class last week. Some guy named Harold shared something about how his boss makes him angry. Bryan told them about his evil boss AJ that was his girlfriend/fiancée who makes life hell for him. The host said their last patient is there. Kane walked in with his welder's mask. He sat beside Bryan. That was the end of that part of the skit.
Analysis: Best part of this so far is the hot blonde with a nice pair of chesticles two seats over from Bryan. It was Los Angeles, after all.
Heath Slater vs. Santino
They did some comedy spots early in the match with each guy dancing. Slater looks like he put on too much spray tanner and baby oil. He's just a weird looking fella. There was a "boring" chant, which is never a good sign. Slater climbed the middle ropes on one side, Santino rolled away. He went to the other side, so Santino rolled away again. Santino hit his patented arm drag followed by the fist drop. Santino pulled out the Cobra sleeve out of his tights. Suddenly, Aksana's music hit. Slater got up and Santino decked him with the Cobra for the win after three minutes.
Analysis: -* Yep negative stars. That was bad all around. I would assume Santino gets his US Title rematch versus Antonio Cesaro at Night of Champions, where he will lose. This Cobra angle reminds me of similar stories they did with "Head" that Al Snow carried around. That was over a decade ago, so I guess enough time has passed to copy it.
They showed some tweets from various WWE people that were likely told to tweet something about the HHH story. What's funny is they showed a Jericho tweet at the top even though he got "fired" last week. Do they forget their own stipulations or just assume we are stupid? Rhetorical question.
The "Did You Know" was about how the new WWE App has topped 1 million downloads in just 10 days. It's on Apple & Android. Then the announcers talked about how cool it is.
They reminded us about the Punk/Lawler match coming up later with the stipulation being either a Tables Match, Steel Cage Match or No Disqualification Match.
Brodus Clay made his way down to the ring with Candice and Naomi. The announcers went over the story that Clay's involved in with Damien Sandow. He's teaming with Sin Cara. Damien Sandow made his entrance. The Intellectual Savior said he has experienced a miracle because he found somebody he could have a conversation with. He introduced his partner Cody Rhodes. He insulted Clay & Cara. They went to break.
Analysis: The first 90 minutes were not good. Best part of the show was the Punk/Lawler promo at the beginning. Everything else has been average or below average.
Plug time. On Friday I wrote one of my favorite annual columns: "20 Ideas for WWE to Consider." I think I've presented a lot of fresh ideas that would spice things up in WWE. A lot of people commented on my Rock/Cena idea, so I wrote a column on Monday all about Rock/Cena at WrestleMania 29. Please check them out if you haven't done so already. Thanks!
Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow vs. Brodus Clay & Sin Cara
The match had already begun during the break. The Rhodes/Sandow team was working on Cara because if they had to work on Clay it would suck because he's not very good at selling moves. Clay got the tag. He went on offense, but Sandow kicked him in the knee to ground him. Cara knocked Sandow to the floor. Then he hit a dive off the top to take him. Rhodes went for his Disaster Kick, but Clay countered it by giving him a headbutt in the ribs. That was a good spot. Clay finished him off with the big splash for the win. We saw three minutes of action.
Winners: Brodus Clay & Sin Cara
Analysis: * They should make Clay & Cara a permanent team. It would be better than their singles careers, which are pretty boring these days. A small guy with a big guy is always a good pairing. I don't like Rhodes & Sandow losing, but it was a meaningless match. It doesn't mean much in the big picture.
Cole threw it to the final installment of anger management. Everybody was acting scared of Kane. He took off his grey mask. Kane said he was the devil's favorite demon. Dr. Shelby asked Kane what made him angry. Kane went over the ridiculous storyline of his character over the last 15 years. He talked about burying alive his brother twice, torturing people and electrocuting a man's testicles - that would be Shane McMahon. Kane: "Years ago I had a girlfriend named Katie. Let's just say that didn't work out well." Fantastic! Cracked me up. There were some other gems there, but it was hard to get it all. His last line: "I have an unhealthy obsession with torturing Pete Rose." The doctor told them to make an anger collage for their next time there. Bryan yelled at the doctor. Everybody left except one dude who thanked Kane for sharing. Kane grabbed the guy by the throat and said "no problem" to him.
Analysis: Best part of the show so far. Kane is an unquestionable star of the night. I'll have to watch that again because the one liners during his explanation of his anger issues were pretty good. Comedy Kane can be gold sometimes. He was in this instance.
Here are the anger management segments. Go to 4:00 for the Kane speech.
Back live, they showed Daniel Bryan walking to the ring. The anger management classes were taped last week as they said.
Then more ass kissing in the direction of Triple H's appearance later. It's like he married the boss' daughter or something! Oh wait.
Back from break, Michael Cole called Triple H a fierce warrior. There was another Triple H video package. There's that "Game Over" picture again. Apparently he's talking soon. Thank God. I want to see him so we don't have to see any more video packages.
Daniel Bryan vs. R-Truth
Truth's partner Kofi Kingston joined the announce table. The fans chanted "goat face" to infuriate Bryan. Truth gave Bryan a back drop over the top rope to the floor. Truth mentioned they were in Milwaukee, which was an ode to when he got the name wrong when they were there last year. Truth cut a promo using Little Jimmy. He gave Bryan the microphone. Bryan grabbed the microphone and said "no no no" in the face of the excitable Brock Lesnar fan at ringside (@WWEMarkoutMan on Twitter). The ref counted him out. It went about three minutes.
Winner: R-Truth via countout
Analysis: 1/2* Who is booking this crap? Bryan's being booked like a complete fool. They had a three minute match where they barely did anything because it was booked like a comedy match just like Santino/Slater from earlier.
Triple H is talking to us next at the top of hour two. I'm so glad the hype for it is over.
Ring announcer Justin Roberts introduced Triple H. The guy that had 47 video packages about him tonight walked out in a dress shirt and tie while his left arm had a white cast on it. The announcers were standing up at ringside. Way to suck up. Take a note, everybody else. There was a "HBK was better than you" sign behind Hunter as he stood in the ring.
Hunter said let's cut to the chase here. "Am I going to retire?" The crowd was chanting "no" at him. Hunter said WWE was "never say never." Hunter wanted to create something people would never forget and "retire from all of this before all of this retired me." Hunter said everybody comes to a crossroad in their career. Hunter said time is the one thing you cannot fight because time will win. He never wanted to be the guy that hung around too long or to just get in a ring because somebody wrote him a check. Now his family writes the checks, so that's an irrelevant point isn't it? Basically he didn't want to be like a lot of wrestlers that hung around too long while he's at the first crossroads of his career. Brock Lesnar made him ask the question of whether or not he is done. Hunter said that he wants to rise again to kick Lesnar's ass because that's what he does. "That's what I want to do, but I can't. The truth is because I don't know if I can." Brock Lesnar has forced him to say "am I done?"
He was silent as he thought about what he wanted to say. He said "thank you" to the fans. Sorry, the WWE Universe. He put over the superstars saying how they put their bodies and health on the line for our entertainment. Hunter thanked us for all of the support over the years. "Thank you for letting me play the game. You all gave me the reaction every night. I'll never forget each and every one of you." He said hopefully in some way we'll never forget him. There was a loud "thank you Hunter" chant from the fans because I guess they believed his words. He went to the center of the ring to do his "raise the arms up while yelling" pose, which looked awkward with a broken arm.
He walked up the ramp while the crowd chanted "thank you Hunter" at him. The announcers didn't say a word.
Analysis: Do I think he's really done? Of course not. It's not a case of him being broken down or being physically unable to do it anymore. This is a storyline. I'm not sure when he'll wrestle again or how they will bring him back, but it's expected that there will be another match with Lesnar. That could change of course. They can do this in a lot of ways. The key to the segment was that they clearly had the fans convinced that this was it because they were very supportive of him. They handled it in an emotional way. I liked the touch of the announcers not saying anything either. It was a very good 15 minute segment.
The music of Chris Jericho started up. He's not there of course. Instead, Dolph Ziggler was at the top of the ramp doing the Jericho pose. Ziggler bragged about how he cost Jericho his WWE contract. Alberto Del Rio made his entrance.
Sheamus & Randy Orton vs. Dolph Ziggler & Alberto Del Rio
None of these guys are crying about Triple H retiring? They need to learn to suck up like the announcers. The faces were in control early as they knocked the heels out of the ring after about two minutes. They went to break with the heels retreating for the vintage floor to commercial spot.
Back from break, the heels were in control. It's the tag team match formula. The faces get control two minutes in. Then there's the floor to commercial spot. Then a return from break with the heels in control. It's like I've seen this show hundreds of times before. Del Rio missed a charge in the corner as Cole said Orton "slithered" away to get in the quota of snake references regarding Orton. Del Rio got knocked to the floor, so Orton brought in Sheamus while Ziggler also tagged in. Sheamus decked Ziggler with a knee left. Ziggler countered the White Noise, but then Sheamus hit the Irish Curse backbreaker. Del Rio broke up the pin. Ziggler had the briefcase, but Orton slid back in with a backbreaker. Sheamus finished off Ziggler with the Brogue Kick. The match went nine minutes.
Winners: Sheamus & Randy Orton
Analysis: ** I was hoping for one of those fantastic 15 minute tag team matches that tells an interesting story with a lot of nearfalls. That's what this show needed. We didn't get that. There wasn't much of an advancement in the Sheamus/Del Rio story that is leading to a third straight PPV match at Night of Champions. I assume they will go with Orton vs. Ziggler at Night of Champions as well, but there was no announcement of that here. (Edit: It was announced for Smackdown. I wouldn't be shocked if that leads to a PPV match.)
Backstage, Jerry Lawler was shown talking to John Cena. He asked Cena to not interfere in the match. He said he's not fighting Punk for Cena. He's fighting Punk for himself. Cena understood and he wished Lawler good luck.
There was a "Be A Star" commercial. As always I popped huge for Alicia Fox's "they called me...a boy" line because it just sounds so awkward. I'm not laughing at bullying. I'm laughing at how she said it.
Kane made his entrance. Josh Mathews was scared at the announce table because Kane attacked him backstage two weeks ago. Mathews left through the crowd. He stood by the production table. Kane sat down for commentary. Zack Ryder made his entrance. David Otunga is his opponent.
Zack Ryder vs. David Otunga
Kane hasn't said a word. Otunga hit Ryder with an elbow, clothesline and shoulder block. That's about all the offense he knows, I think. There's the chin lock. Ryder got out of it. So Otunga gave him another chin lock. In my 20 Ideas column I referenced Otunga's propensity for doing chin locks repeatedly in short matches. He did two in the first two minutes of this match. Ryder made a comeback to no reaction. Otunga whipped him into the ropes, Ryder bounced off and hit the Rough Ryder for the win after 3 minutes.
Winner: Zack Ryder
Post match, Kane choked Ryder. He didn't hurt him. Instead, he gave a Chokeslam to David Otunga.
Analysis: 1/4* The whole point of the match was to put over the idea that Kane is now a babyface, which we've known for weeks now. Ryder going over Otunga means nothing because neither guy is regularly featured. This was filler. Other than Ryder's finisher the crowd didn't react to anything.
Another reminder of the stipulations for the Punk/Lawler match either as a Tables Match, Steel Cage Match or No DQ Match.
The "Did You Know" was about the NBC WrestleMania special being the most socially active show on Saturday night. Socially active should mean going outside to play sports. Not tweeting about a wrestling show.
Coming up on Smackdown is Dolph Ziggler vs. Randy Orton.
Twitter vote results: Cage - 48%, NoDQ - 32%, Tables - 20%. That's not a surprise.
AJ entered to "Light It Up" as always. She announced CM Punk's opponent at Night of Champions: John Cena.
Analysis: I am fine with that. I assume they will have several singles matches going forward.
They showed Jerry Lawler walking backstage in preparation for the main event.
In three weeks, CM Punk defends the WWE Championship against John Cena in Cena's home town of Boston as the main event of Night of Champions. Holy crap, it's the first PPV of 2012 where the WWE Title may be in the last match. Congrats on that, CM Punk.
Cage match time. The "only way to win is by pinfall, submission, escaping the cage or going through the door." It would be only if it was "escape the cage" like I would prefer, but instead the "only" allows for four ways to win. That means there are "many" ways to win rather than "only" a few ways.
Steel Cage Match: CM Punk vs. Jerry Lawler
Punk allowed him to get in the first shot. Punk was wearing blue tights with white stars on them. Lawler decked Punk with a punch to the mouth. Lawler has always been good at throwing good worked punches. They worked a very slow pace early with Punk attacking Lawler with kicks. He slammed Lawler's head into the mat. Punk hit a corner charge followed by a dropkick to the face while Lawler was in a seated position. Lawler was able to get in a shot on Punk and he tried to crawl out, but Punk dragged Lawler back to the center of the ring where he attacked him a series of elbow drops. The crowd wasn't very into this match. Lawler avoided a neckbreaker by shoving Punk into the cage. Lawler took control. He threw Punk into the cage head first. He followed that up with a clothesline. Lawler went to the middle rope and he hit the fist drop off the middle rope. That was his finishing move back in the day. Punk cut him off as Lawler was trying to escape. Punk hit his running high knee in the corner. Punk was bleeding. It was accidental most likely. Blame the cage, I guess. Punk took control by taking Lawler down with a Rock Bottom from the left side and Lawler was down in the center of the ring. Punk quickly slapped on the Anaconda Vice. Lawler tapped out. The match went about eight minutes.
Winner: CM Punk
Analysis: *1/2 It was an expected dominant win for the WWE Champion. Lawler got some offense in, but it wasn't a lot. It was booked how it should have been.
Post match, Punk grabbed his WWE Championship. He also had a microphone. He locked the door. Punk wanted Lawler to say that Punk was the best in the world. Lawler said "hell no." Punk destroyed him with a series of elbows. Punk wanted Lawler to say that Punk was the best wrestler in the world. He went after Lawler with punches. John Cena ran down for the save. He couldn't get into the cage while Punk tortured Lawler. Why not climb over the cage? Lazy bum. Cena told the guys at ringside to get the cage off. Finally the cage went up. Cena entered the ring. Punk left the ring. Cena was too lazy to chase after him. Or maybe he was checking on Lawler. You decide. Punk left with the WWE Title and his arm raised in the air.
The show ended with Cena checking on Lawler along with medical officials.
Analysis: I think the post match attack was pretty good. Punk was booed by the majority of the crowd, which was the whole reason why they had him beat up on the babyface announcer in the first place. They knew this angle would get him more heel heat. It worked. Punk was fantastic. Lawler played his part well also. I thought Cena should have tried to climb into the cage rather than waiting for the ringside attendants to raise it. That way when Cena reached the top, Punk could have climbed up the other side like a coward. It would have been a good visual. He still ran away the way they did it. I just think the cage climbing race would have been more fun.
Three Stars of the Show
1. Kane - His explanation of why he's mad in anger management class was terrific. Made me laugh.
2. CM Punk - I missed heel Punk. He's a lot of fun.
3. Jerry Lawler - I don't like how he's produced as an announcer, but thought his promo & work in the main event were good.
4 out of 10
Last week: 7
2012 Average: 5.8
2012 High: 9 (January 30)
2012 Low: 3 (July 9)
Last 5 Weeks: 7, 4.5, 7, 7, 6.5
If I said it in the Alicia Fox way I would say: "I gave it…a four."
I didn't like this show, hence my 4 out of 10 rating. I think you could tell I was frustrated by it with some of my comments I was making.
I just thought some of the matches they chose to book like Slater/Santino, Ryback/Swagger and Otunga/Ryder were all a waste of time. The booking of Bryan/Truth was one of the worst match finishes I've seen WWE do in a very long time. Was it supposed to be funny? It didn't really work.
The Triple H story is something they are going to ram down our throats. Get ready for video packages on Smackdown as well as on Raw next week. Do I think he's done? No. Of course not. Like I said, though, I thought they booked it well. With that said, seeing two hours of segments where Triple H's name was mentioned every single time was really annoying. It made the show drag a lot. The angle was done to write him out after pushing him in the last month. He'll be back of course.
It's nice that the Punk/Cena match at Night of Champions became official. They advanced the story pretty well here, but they still have two weeks to really sell it for the fans.
It was a forgettable show in a lot of ways. Three hours was too long. It made me miss the two hour format because there was so much time being wasted. Too much filler.
Hopefully next week in Chicago is better. That's arguably the best crowd in WWE, so they will do their part to make it enjoyable.
Best part of the show? This line by Kane: "Years ago I had a girlfriend named Katie. Let's just say that didn't work out well."
That's a wrap for this week. Let's bring it home with some quick plugs.
Check out TJRSports.com for articles covering all sports. My NFL season preview is coming by the end of the week or Monday at the latest. I'm looking forward to writing that.
As mentioned earlier, there's TJR Radio with me on Tuesday along with Frank The Clown, The Ace & Jakey. The show airs live for two hours at 10pmET/9pmCT. If you miss it live you can listen to it later, download it or get it on iTunes and we'll post that info on TJRWrestling.com for those that need it.
Next week it's a live Raw Deal again. Before that I don't know what I'm writing, but I'll have some posts up later in the week like I do every week.
Until next time, thanks for reading.
John Canton - firstname.lastname@example.org
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