3 Hours of Raw was painfully to long despite a decent show overall. I watch WWE to avoid in part basketball and it be an escape from having to talk or think about it. A.W the manager of the "Prime Time Players" made reference to Kobe Bryant in comparison to Titus ONeal. I will not rehash what was said for a second time. Feel free to check my thoughts out on it in Dino Nation Blog my blog/job talking Toronto Raptors and NBA.
The combination of being a proud Canadian, covering basketball and 3 hours of Raw being to damn long made this show seem to go on forever. I went into Raw with really only one interest and that was what C.M Punk would have to say about his actions of last week and his apparent HEEL TURN. Beyond that I really had little interest in what would go on in this show.
Punk came out off the top of the show. Well after some actual news was reported that is. Chris Jericho made reference to this on Twitter but it was mentioned off the top of the show as well. WWE almost burned the house down before the show even got started in Cincy. As WWE explained it through Cole and King, a pyro test set the side of the new Raw set on fire. This delayed fans from entering the building for about an hour. This all happened about 30 minutes prior to when Fans would have been let in the building. So make you jokes about this being a HOT SHOW now I guess.
C.M Punk then would enter the ring and said he would address what he did to The Rock in a minute but first had something else to address. He was upset that The King said that he had and he quoted " Turned his back on the WWE Universe" and he continued on to make valid points on how Jerry was jumping to conclusions. He did a pretty good shoot on how The King is a pretty piss poor announcer. He then went on to say that the WWE Champion was the most important thing on RAW. He referred to The Rock as some delusional Movie Star that shows up every once in awhile. He made reference to how The Rock interrupted him and then basically ignored him. How he was just handed a title shot at the Royal Rumble and that he just assumed that he would win. Punk said that Rock was lucky he didn't drop him right there on the spot. He then said that The Rock would come out and try to steal his spotlight and be a hero. So he basically took care of him. Something he would reference later in the night to John Cena that he was able to do in one night that John Cena couldn't do in a year. He also mentioned how you don't hear The Rock talking trash about him on Twitter. He would be interrupted by the Big Show. Show had a different take on things saying that Punk couldn't even pin a knocked out Cena after he his him with a knockout punch. Show claimed if not for his interference that Punk would have tapped out in the STF that Cena had applied. That the spotlight of the 1000th episode of Raw was him causing John Cena to be the first to fail to cash in the Money in Bank and become champion.
This would cause Cena to come out and he would attack show. Punk now in the ring looked on rather smugly with his WWE Titile belt over his shoulder. This would bring out A.J who had one of Stephanie McManon's power suits shrunken to fit her. It sure looked like it anyway. A.J says as her first act as Raw G.M she is making the Main Event for the Show. It will be John Cena vs The Bog Show and the winner will face C.M Punk at Summerslam. That was you opening segment.
Let's start a feature "Segment I Didn't Need To See" and the winner is....Vicky Gurrerro coming out to interrupt Brodus Clay and saying that she could dance better than the girls he has with him aka the Funkadactals. Damien Sandow would eventually come in and end this pain. A close second to this would have been a match between Lord Tensai and Tyson Kidd. It was kinda pointless with one guy being given a light push in Kidd and another guy in Tensai aka Albert who honestly has been a total bust almost from the start and has quickly taken a slide to the lower mid card from the Main Event. He may need to beg Zack Ryder to get some camera time soon. Ryder knows all about a fall from somewhere to nowhere in record time.
Randy Orton is back and he squashed Heath Slater as Slater had called out anyone on the current roster to challenge him after he felt he was now free from the WWE Legends who he said had all returned to the retirement home. Orton is clean shaven and has a new hair cut but pretty much the same guy in the ring. He is back for strike 2 on the WWE Wellness policy. He did look smaller in size as a result. The interesting non wrestling angle will be if he gets a strike 3. The policy reads after a 3rd offense a talent would be gone. It makes it unclear on if they could ever return. Also if they returned if they would start with a clean slate. Orton has had his issues over the years. If not for his popularity and being a legacy of the company with his father not sure the WWE would have bothered to keep him around. He is clearly over as a Superstar and they have few of those these days.
Alberto Del Rio squashes Santino and the U.S Title in one promo. Saying wrestling him and referencing the fact he was U.S Champ was below him. He said that he refuses to compete in a match until it is for the World Championship. Which he will be facing Sheamas for at Summer Slam. Speaking of the hardly pushed shoved down your throat World Champion he would face Daniel Bryan on this card. More though WWE Fans....(Just not watching in Canada on The Score who shows Raw an hour later now than actual start time ) can vote on what type of match it will be. They have branded these as RawActive matches where WWE fans can decide. Here is the trick though. You decided nothing. It was a) no holds barred b) falls count anywhere or c) Street Fight. So basically this was going to be a no DQ style match no matter what is selected. The differences between the 3 types of matches are minimal to none at all. This was the match of the night as it turned out. Sheamus getting the win after a very physical match.
How this came about was Bryan going in to talk with A.J and A.J says she knew what Bryan had planned and why he was going to marry her. He was going to have A.J put in a mental institution. Bryan denies this and is informed he will face Sheamus to which he asks if it is for the Title A.J responds NO NO NO. On entering the ring Bryan says to the fans only he is allowed to say YES YES YES...Kinda of a throw back to The Rock heel move in which he tells the fans they have lost there right to play sing along with The Rock. After the match Bryan refuses to leave the ring and demands a doctor come to the ring. He is confronted by Truth and Kofi. Bryan after they ask him to leave the ring goes over to Little Jimmy and introduces himself and then punts the imaginary friend of R-Truth out of the ring. He would call for 4 guys in the back to take Truth away and they were interrupted by A.J who orders them to take Daniel away as she feels he needs to be evaluated on if he is mentally fit. This makes no sense seeing as these are the guys that Bryan had hired to have A.J put away. But whatever. I would little to some stupid segments with Bryan and a doctor in the back and eventually he would be deemed sane and than was attacked by Kane. At one point Bryan questioned the Doctor and asked if Charlie Sheen had put him up to this. It sure seems like were going down that path to some match with Sheen and Bryan at Summer Slam.
There was a tag match with a re-united tag team of the past of Christian and Y2J vs The Miz and Ziggler. This match continued feuds for all involved and to be honest I really don't even recall the finish. It really didn't matter much so who cares.
As for the Main Event C.M Punk would come out on commentary. As the match went on he basically killed The King at one point reference the amount of notes he had and compared it to the ones The Rock has for his promos. He also along the way ripped Cole for calling a hold wrong which was likely not intended but just points out how bad he sucks in comparison to J.R. Punk who had stated early to John Cena in the back said he did not care who won had stayed neutral in comments on the match itself and did not get involved until the Big Show involved him by throwing Cena in his lap quite literally. This send both to the ground. Cena would enter the ring and beat the count out. He would rally and was about to go for the Attitude Adjustment when Punk came in attacked both making it a no contest. He calls both losers and walks off and exits the ring area and heads to the back. A.J comes out and says Punk is in fact wrong that both are winners and that at Summer Slam it will be C.M Punk defending against Big Show and John Cena in a Triple Threat.
Punk returns unhappy about this and says that A.J is terrible G.M and she needs to respect him as the WWE Champion.
This makes for a match that really no one wants to see at Summer Slam and it is likely booked that way to make the HHH/Brock Match the true main event as it is booked to be. We were treated to 2 or 3 replays of the segment from last week that led to this match being made. I am as big a fan of HHH as anyone but the fact this is being booked as the Main Event is wrong and it speaks to the exact problem C.M Punk is using as the basis of this move to a more neutral and eventually Heel Character. Both the WWE Champion and World Champion are being overshadowed by a match involving part time talents and that is a problem. While HHH and Brock never actually feuding in Brock's time with the company I don't see this feud as something that should trump your Champions. In fact has there ever been a point in which titles over all have meant so little in WWE. Let's review.
Punk WWE Champion- Has had a long title run that they have highlighted in the storyline but in that time has rarely been booked as the main event on PPV's thus taking the luster of both the run and the title itself.
Sheamus World Champion- His 17 second win over Bryan has doomed this title run from the start. No matter how much they push him he can't get past that. He also has lacked any really storylines for title matches and has been booked a few times as the opening match on a PPV. World Title means even less than WWE Title.
The Miz I-C Champ- Walks back from making a movie and wins the belt. Has done little for a character and performer that fans are sick of and never really missed The Miz when he was gone.
Santino U.S Champ- Utter disgrace. He is a comedy joke performer and Del Rio himself in character pointed out how pointless he is and so is the U.S Title which for as long as he holds it becomes less and less of value. This use to be a major title in the WCW Days. Which might be why the WWE books it like a joke. In any case Santino should never have a title in his current persona.
Tag Champs Kofi and Truth- Tag Team division as whole stinks and Kofi regardless of partner has become a joke. R-Truth also falls in line with Santino as more of a comedy act than a champion.
Divas Champ- Layla - One she got the title as a reward for working hard to comeback from an injury. Nice gesture but terrible booking. 2) the divas division is a joke and badly needs a push as a whole and some new talent.
Zack Ryder and is made up Internet title have about as much relevance as some of the actual WWE Championships and that is a serious problem. The show was decent but the length made it painful. I am not sure once basketball season starts if I personally can commit 3 hours to this on Monday. While I wonder who cries more at the state of titles? Ric Flair over the World Title, Arn Anderson over the U.S Title, Strike Force over Tag Titles, Randy Savage over I-C Title or Trish Stratus over the Women's Division as a whole. Ultimately maybe none of them above as the current product today makes all of them look better by comparison.