Monday, July 19, 2010

WWE Raw Report

Date: 07/19/10 from Tulsa, OK.

The Big News: Raw set up its top two matches for SummerSlam.

Show Analysis:

Randy Orton won a three way match over Chris Jericho and Edge to earn a title shot against Sheamus at SummerSlam in a strong opener. Edge and Jericho double teamed Orton to start but then turned on each other. Orton hit both with a double DDT. Orton took over on Edge but Edge avoided an RKO attempt and Jericho gave Orton the code breaker. Jericho covered but Edge broke up the pin.

Edge and Jericho brawled to the outside. Back inside, Orton hit a clothesline and powerslam on Jericho. He followed with clotheslines and a back breaker on Edge. Orton went for the draping DDT on Jericho but had it reversed into the Walls. Edge broke that up with an implant DDT on Jericho. Edge went for a spear on Jericho but had that reversed into the Walls. Edge made it to the ropes.

Edge clotheslined Jericho out of the ring and went for the spear on Orton but Jericho cut Edge off with another clothesline. They did a series of rollups. Jericho countered an RKO attempt by Orton but then missed the lionsault. Orton finally hit the RKO on Jericho. He then caught Edge with another RKO and covered Edge for the pin.

The result was very predictable but this match was still exciting because of the great work of the participants. They also told a really good story with Orton continually getting thwarted in his attempts at the RKO throughout the match only to finally get it at the end for the win.

After the match, Edge told Jericho that they have been going at each other for 11 years and it has to end. Jericho said it would because Wade Barrett and Nexus would do his bidding and take out Edge if he asked. Edge said Nexus would join him instead and pointed out Jericho was taking credit for their success.

Nexus came out. Barrett first put over both as worthy allies. Nexus then jumped and beat up Edge. Jericho put Edge in the Walls. Nexus then turned on Jericho and beat him up as well. This was kind of a weird segment because it seemed like they were blowing off Jericho and Edge but I guess they felt they needed to do something to explain Edge and Jericho joining John Cena later in the show. I liked the segment because it positioned Nexus very strongly compared to perennial main eventers Jericho and Edge.

Backstage, Barrett said that he will prove Nexus can get it done individually as well as collectively. Sheamus then came to Barrett and said he had a proposal for him. Elsewhere, John Cena said he brought his problems upon himself because he thought out of pride he could stop Nexus on his own when he couldn’t. Cena said he had something to say to Barrett and Nexus in the ring and concluded, “If you can’t beat them” before leaving. Cena doing the phony trepidation gimmick is at this point right up there with Brett Favre feigning retirement on the ridiculously obvious disingenuousness scale.

Eve Torres beat Maryse in a bizarre match. Maryse was showing off her new jewelry before the match. Basically nothing happened in the match. Less than a minute in after a random kick Eve pinned Maryse. Maryse, the heel, got her foot on the ropes before three but the referee didn’t see it and counted the pin. Ted DiBiase argued with the referee afterwards until John Morrison came in, attacked DiBiase, and hit starship pain.

Sheamus came to the ring and pointed out he has defeated John Cena in tables, 4 way and cage matches. He said that he is dominant over Cena. He announced that he has made a truce with Nexus and with Nexus out of the way Randy Orton doesn’t stand a chance. Sheamus vowed to be the longest reigning WWE champion of all time. Yeah, and Batista is going to be the next UFC heavyweight champion. Miz came out to interrupt Sheamus. He said he controls the fate of the title because he won Money in the Bank. He said that he will be watching and waiting for his chance to strike. He labeled himself Sheamus’ celebrity stalker. The anonymous GM then made Sheamus vs. Evan Bourne.

Sheamus beat Evan Bourne in a good match. Sheamus worked over Bourne while Miz watched from ringside. Bourne came back with a series of kicks and a crossbody off the top to the floor. Sheamus then hit the bicycle kick for the win. After the match, Miz attacked Sheamus repeatedly with the briefcase. This got cheers and Miz was kind of greeted as a face in Oklahoma. He gave Sheamus the skull crushing finale on the briefcase and went to cash in MITB.

As Miz was waiting for Sheamus to get up and the match to begin, R. Truth ran in. Miz decided against cashing in, beat up Truth and left. I liked pretty much everything about this segment. You had a good match. They put over Miz as a threat and important character, while getting over the MITB cash-in as a big future event. The only negative was the way they treated Evan Bourne.

Backstage, Miz said that Truth cost him the WWE title but that there will be more opportunities. He again got cheers. I hope they move through Miz vs. Truth quickly because Miz should be well above Truth’s level from here on. Orton then told Sheamus backstage that having the title has made him a target. He vowed to take out whoever has the title.

Santino and Vladimir Kozlov beat William Regal and Zach Ryder. This was even better than your average WWE comedy segment because they kept it simple and just let Santino be amusing. Regal and Ryder beat up Santino. Kozlov tagged in and hit a big boot, powerslam and power bomb. Kozlov tagged back Santino, who hit a diving head butt for the pin. Santino then of course celebrated wildly.

Wade Barrett beat Mark Henry. Henry hit a head butt, clotheslines and a power slam. He went for a second rope splash but Nexus came out for the idiotic distraction finish and Barrett hit a really sloppy version of his finisher (the forward fireman carry drop) for the pin. I was shocked they didn’t book Barrett stronger here. There’s really no defense for it.

To close the show, Nexus met with John Cena in the ring. Michael Tarver gave his word that they would hear Cena out. He said that if Cena keeps resisting they will make the rest of his short career difficult. Tarver wanted an apology from Cena. Cena came to the ring again teasing serious concern. He asked for a truce with Nexus. Barrett said no and wanted Cena to join Nexus instead. Cena said he couldn’t do that.

Barrett said that Cena had the choice to leave the ring with his tail tucked between his legs like a coward or stand and get destroyed. Cena left, but then announced that his peace offering was actually just a test and that he will take out Nexus. He introduced his team for SummerSlam: Edge, John Morrison, R. Truth, Great Khali, Chris Jericho and Bret Hart. That’s quite the group. I guess the question is who turns and costs them the match. The Cena group hit the ring and Nexus ran away.

Final Thoughts:

I thought this was the best edition of Raw in a while. It was a serious show directed towards building up characters and SummerSlam matches. Not everything was perfect but the more shows like this one the better.


Anonymous Bob said...

Pretty good show.

My wife, who hardly pays attention to Raw, happened to be in the room when they did the secret GM email bit. "Oh, no", she said, "they're still doing that stupid thing?" I haven't said one word to her about it, so I thought it was funny that someone that doesn't even really watch the show is annoyed by the concept.

Great Khali shouldn't be doing anything serious without a few months of character rehab, and Bret Hart at this point in his career should stay out of the ring.

12:09 AM  
Blogger hobbyfan said...

The way Edge & Cena parted the aisle for Bret Hart, I expected this to be the spot where Triple H was to return instead of challenging Sheamus for the title. With Hunter on the DL, they needed someone to take his place, and Bret fills the bill.

Why would people cheer for the Miz over Sheamus? Maybe it's because he's been around longer, is more established, and while he's higher on the annoyance scale, he's over. Sheamus is over, too, and I'd rather see him beat Miz any day of the damn week.

Of course, Sheamus proved he hasn't learned anything yet. Two more experienced heels were destroyed earlier in the show, and he has to realize that ultimately, his truce with Nexus will fall by the wayside.

Consider Barrett's remarks to Jericho. Chris didn't teach him anything after all, it seems.

Not on board with a likely screwjob in a rematch between Eve & Maryse next week. I can see it coming, including DiBiase buying off a referee to ensure the "appropriate" conclusion. It's a stunt his dad would try, so....!

As the all-stars came out, I thought maybe the Hart Dynasty might be part of this, but they're being saved for a likely tag title match instead, I guess.

R-Truth's clearly not 100%, but I'd rather they gave him back the US title. Miz will be in San Diego this week, but aside from that, he needs to lose the belt.

5:34 AM  
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