Raw started off with a ten-bell salute honoring “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, who passed away last week. The production crew hit another tribute video out of the park, from every aspect this video allowed the tears to flow. It reminded us all, not that we needed it, of how great Piper was. While these videos are great I’d be happy to never see another tribute video open up Raw again.
Opening Segment: Hit
Seth Rollins came out and start spitting like he was Owen Hart following Steve Austin’s neck injury. While it’s never something you want to see, this broken nose injury might help take this feud to the next level. Rollins has really come into his own when talking.
His new shirt is the perfect parody to John Cena’s classic shirt, I’m sure we will see plenty of the Cena Haters wearing it during next week’s Raw.
WWE Championship Open Challenge: Neville vs Seth Rollins: Hit
This might have been the best overall opening to Raw in forever, from Rollins promo to his WWE Championship Open Challenge. Neville went full NXT Neville during this match as him and Rollins seemed to set the mood for the night. These two would have one hell of a series of matches, but chances are that we will never see Neville in anything of main event level status. With that being said Neville gave it his all tonight and I enjoyed every minute of it, especially that near fall at the end….it completely faked me out and I was in shock.
Lucha Dragons & Los Matadores vs New Day & The Ascension: Hit
I’m not sure if I was still riding out the high from Rollins vs Neville, but I actually enjoyed this match. Towards the end I did find myself wondering when Enzo & Big Cass would be getting the call up, but overall it was a solid 8-Man Tag Match that will lead to a multi-team title match at Summerslam…minus The Ascension of course.
The Bella Twins vs Charlotte & Becky Lynch: Hit
The Majority of the Diva’s Revolution has been nothing but quality matches, but the formula of one tag team match and one singles match per Raw has gotten old…rather quickly. These ladies all have the ability to put on entertaining matches and quality ones at that, but they’ve washed down the characters of Charlotte & Sasha Banks, created a stale formula, and given these divas nothing but more in-ring time.
I’m not sure if things will change come after Raw….I have a feeling Ronda Rousey will eventually be involved in all of this…but I’m not sure exactly what that presence will be. They need something better than silly team names like B.A.D and Submission Sorority…they deserve better than that. I find myself getting my hopes every week that we will see something fresh from this angle and that’s pretty close to changing….and not because they are going to do something new.
I’ve been against MizTV for the last few months, anytime it’s on I’m not against ignoring it. Tonight was different, instead of the normal stale routine Miz welcomes everyone to the second most must see show on television because there would be no Cutting Edge, Highlight Reel, Snake Pit, Heartbreak Hotel, Barber Shop without the originator Piper’s Pit…oh Miz shows a twinkle of likeability before going back to one of the most underrated heels on the roster. Out comes Kevin Owens, arguably the best heel on the roster, and delivers some nice on the low jabs at Miz. Eventually Ceasro makes his way out and we get an actually interesting MizTV segment. Cesaro and Owens are one of the better feuds this year and it’s just started. I expect their SummerSlam match to be announced soon.
Rusev (w/Lana Rae) vs Mark Henry: Botch
We have a first botch of the night…Mark Henry should not be out there constantly jobbing for guys. It might be a personal gripe I have, but to me Henry could and should still be a solid mid-card heel wrecking guys and going after either the IC or US title. This match was just a basic filler match that did nothing for Rusev. I expected to see Dolph Ziggler make a save during the post-match beat down, but I guess they are saving that for next week.
Wyatt Family plus Sheamus Promo: Botch
I’m tapping out from these Wyatt promos, they mean nothing anymore and Wyatt never delivers anything he says. I get it’s the booking and Wyatt himself is still delivering quality promos, but when something means nothing why should I care about it?
King Barrett vs Zack Ryder: Botch
Well it was nice to Zack Ryder on television, but these squash matches never seem to lead to anything. What I’ve said in the last two segments can be said about this match…the match did nothing for Barrett and never does so why should we care about them? Wins and loses do matter, while they aren’t the end all be all they do mean something so let’s work on that.
Heyman/Lesnar Promo: Hit
When Paul Heyman touches a microphone you know something great will be said…and unlike Wyatt you know that something will come of it. When Heyman dropped the “The match that’s too big for WrestleMania” line I was ready to drink his kool aid and shave my head.
Heyman just adds to the allure of Brock Lesnar, we don’t need him out there to sell us on Lesnar we all know he is a monster and will destroy everything in his path, but my god does it add something special to it. The combo of Lesnar and Heyman might be one of the best pairings in WWE history
Paige vs Naomi: Botch
I just couldn’t enjoy this…Naomi seems uninspired in the ring and it really took a lot out of the match. The crowd wasn’t into it and I’m not exactly sure what was wrong, but it wasn’t working. I’m hoping that Austin brings it up during the podcast tonight. Hopefully this doesn’t start a string of duds, but we were bound to get one soon.
“Rowdy” Roddy Piper Tribute: HIT
They re-aired the tribute from earlier in the night and it still hits those feelings just as hard. I never got the chance to meet Piper but man was he great.
Shield 3.0 Promo: Hit
We get a Piper reference from Ambrose, who delivers it like he is James Dean. I’m still on the fence about Ambrose, but Reigns and Orton deliver in the short but sweet message to Wyatt and company.
Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper & Sheamus vs Randy Orton, Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose: Hit
These guys put on a great main event match, by the end of the show I personally was burnt out and could care less about the main event, but then they drew me back in. Reigns has easily become the most improved wrestler of 2015, this guy has really come alive. I’m hoping that this Wyatt feud doesn’t hurt him any…but at this point I’m pretty sure that WWE will continue to sacrifice Wyatt and leave Reigns alone.
Well next week I’m going to be going full fanboy during next week’s Raw…