Monday, February 07, 2011

WWE Raw Report

Date: 02/07/11 from Milwaukee, WI.

The Big News: Next week Vince McMahon will announce a guest host for WrestleMania.

Show Analysis:

Vince McMahon came out to start the show. He put over WrestleMania as a bigger event than Super Bowl. I’d like to take this opportunity to say this Raw report is a bigger piece of writing than the Bible. He said that no one has ever hosted an event in front of 75,000 people, not the Super Bowl or the World Cup or anything else. I guess that depends on WWE’s definition of what constitutes a host. He then said they will announce the guest host of WrestleMania next week. I wonder if they can find a way to have a “guest host” make a difference in a pay-per-view buy rate.

Randy Orton came out and said that he and CM Punk aren’t even after last week and he is only just getting started. He vowed to cost Punk a lot more than Husky Harris. CM Punk made his entrance and agreed that this isn’t over and they aren’t even. He kept calling Orton Randall and said he cost Orton the title at the Royal Rumble because Orton punted him and forced him to forfeit the title in 2008. Punk said he waited for his chance for revenge and that he’s right while Orton is wrong.

This was a very good promo by Punk keeping with the theme that Punk always has a pretty good justification for what he does as a heel. I was surprised someone remembered that Punk/Orton angle so that they could bring it up and tie it in.

Punk said he would eliminate Orton immediately and went down to the ring with David Otunga, Michael McGillicutty and Mason Ryan. In the midst of beating up Orton, Punk injured and began bleeding from his nose. He gave Orton the Go 2 Sleep. During the commercial break, the GM announced members of Nexus vs. Elimination Chamber participants throughout the show.

R. Truth beat Mason Ryan via disqualification. This was quite the segment. So, Truth comes out and says “what’s up Green Bay.” The crowd boos. Michael Cole freaks out. He stands up and starts screaming about how they are in Milwaukee and loudly burying Truth. The crowd loudly begins chanting “Milwaukee” and Cole began leading the chant.

Truth sold his leg in the match. Ryan didn’t do much beyond a series of body slams, and even the body slams looked really bad. This guy does not appear remotely ready for live television singles matches. Ryan wrapped Truth’s leg over his head for the submission but wouldn’t break the hold and was disqualified. He then put it on the crippled Truth again as the sympathetic crowd loudly chanted Milwaukee. When Truth was announced as the winner via DQ the crowd booed. This was an all-time burial of a babyface.

Backstage, CM Punk told Nexus to hurt people and that he didn’t care about wins and losses.

Eve Torres, Tamina and Gail Kim beat Melina and the Bellas. Natalya did commentary and Michael Cole spent the entire match burying what she said. It’s one thing when you’ve got a face that’s able to hold his or her own on the microphone like Jerry Lawler, but when it’s someone like Natalya who isn’t a very good talker you need to know to let up. The heels worked over Gail. Eve tagged in and hit a standing moonsault and spinning neck breaker on Melina for the pin. They announced Eve vs. Natalya for next week and Cole sarcastically mocked that match.

John Morrison beat Michael McGillicutty. McGillicutty tried to injure Morrison’s arm but Morrison quickly came back with a springboard kick and starship pain for the win. Morrison was booked to look strong here. After the match, Punk sprayed something in Morrison’s eyes on the stage.

Miz did a promo where he said he was pulling for Jerry Lawler last week and called Lawler into the ring. Miz said he patterned himself after Lawler and now he is the champion while Lawler never will be. Lawler said the difference is they both have big mouths but Lawler backs it up. Lawler added that he didn’t pattern his career after anyone because he’s an original. Huh. Lawler said that he has never been WWE champion or wrestled at WrestleMania but those have been lifelong dreams he won’t let pass him by.

Miz disagreed and started to do his catchphrase but Lawler interrupted and led the crowd in chants of “awful.” Miz attacked Lawler but Lawler got the better of it. He also fought off Alex Riley. Ted DiBiase came in and attacked Jerry Lawler but Daniel Bryan made the save. The GM then made a tag match. This segment was pretty good as both Lawler and Miz are very good talkers but the basic story of Miz emulating Lawler didn’t ring true to me. Maybe it is true but it felt made up out of thin air.

Jerry Lawler and Daniel Bryan beat Miz and Ted DiBiase. Alex Riley did commentary and Michael Cole continued the trend of the night by even burying Riley’s commentary. Riley didn’t help his cause by referring to Bryan as Bryan Daniel. The heels worked over Bryan. Lawler got the tag and hit a back drop and DDT on DiBiase. Bryan took out Miz with a dropkick off the top and tope. Lawler then hit his fist drop off the second rope for the win.

King Sheamus was going to wrestle David Otunga but prior to the match Sheamus was asked about Mark Henry saying before the show that he should have Sheamus’ spot in the Chamber. Sheamus insulted Henry and said he should shut up. So after a nervous Otunga came out, Henry showed up and attacked Sheamus. Otunga climbed to the top rope in the midst of this and was quickly knocked off. Sheamus missed a Brogue kick and Henry gave him the world’s strongest slam twice. After Henry left, Otunga stood over Sheamus and looked very satisfied with himself.

Alberto Del Rio beat Santino Marella. Prior to the match, Del Rio said Santino thinks he almost got Del Rio at the Rumble but it was Del Rio’s destiny to win. Santino hit some punches and threw Del Rio over the top. Del Rio posted Santino and worked him over. Santino made a comeback and went for the cobra but Del Rio ducked under. Del Rio then attacked the arm and applied the armbar for the tap.

Vickie Guerrero and Dolph Ziggler came out. Vickie said that Dolph will enter Elimination Chamber as champion, not challenger. Why is she so desperate to get the title to Dolph now when there’s a six person match coming up with no championship advantage? She was interrupted by Cena and they basically just redid the scene from a few weeks ago where Cena encouraged the people to boo the hell out of Vickie until she and Dolph left. After they left, Cena said Nexus has been hurting other guys but they won’t get him.

CM Punk beat John Cena via DQ in a nothing match with a crap finish. Cena repeatedly punched Punk. The referee threatened to DQ Cena so he gave Punk a low blow right in front of the referee for the DQ. After the match, Nexus ran out. Ryan tended to Punk. For some reason, Cena seemed intimidated by McGillicutty and Otunga. That was the cue for Jerry Lawler to give him a chair and Cena used the chair to take out McGillicutty and Otunga.

Final Thoughts:

This wasn’t a very good show.

It feels like Michael Cole is dialing up his heel persona even more, I suspect in preparation for his involvement in WrestleMania. That’s fine in the short term because there is a ton of heat for him to get beat up. But after WrestleMania, they really need to change things when it comes to commentary. Crazy play-by-play heel Cole burying everyone is frequently very entertaining but it’s terribly counterproductive to getting over wrestlers and matches.


Anonymous Phil/Timelord said...

Vince doesn't follow Australian Football obviously. Our big grand final in September ALWAYS draws more than 90,000 people every year (let alone 75,000). It used to draw more than 100,000 until the health department stepped in and restricted the capacity of the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

4:13 AM  
Blogger Todd Martin said...

Oh, the World Cup has drawn nearly triple that, Inoki did over double, Super Bowl did 25% more this year, many NFL games do each week just for starters. I think Vince's angle is that somehow none of those events have a "host" as defined by WWE.

11:14 AM  
Blogger hobbyfan said...

Where to begin?

Poor booking. Mason Ryan should've gone over in his first match to establish him, but he's just not ready. I ticket him as Randy Orton's next victim, so they can send him back for more seasoning.

BTW, Ryan's submission finisher was previously employed by Brock Lesnar during his run.

R-Truth flubbed, and took some necessary and unnecessary heat. You can guess which was which.

The main event was a joke. Otunga refused to compete against Sheamus, and a real GM would've thrown him into a tag match vs. Cena and a mystery partner, which could've been a rapidly recovering Orton. Or Mark Henry, once he realized he'd been had.

Michael Cole's act has worn thin already. Time to get him out of the booth before he ruins someone else's heat.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Phil/Timelord said...

Oh, the World Cup has drawn nearly triple that

To one game? Doubt that very seriously.

11:38 PM  
Blogger Todd Martin said...

12:21 AM  

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