Welcome to this week’s review of Monday Night Raw, which comes to us live from Milwaukee, Wisconsin (Not Green Bay, Truth). The show opens with an announcement from Vince McMahon (Who Michael Cole erroneously implied we hadn’t seen in a year). Just one day removed from the Super Bowl, he announced that Wrestlemania was set to be better than the biggest football game of the year with a guest host that would be revealed next Monday night on Raw.
After Vince said his piece, Randy Orton enters the ring. He says that he still intends to get revenge on the Nexus for interfering in his WWE Championship match. CM Punk comes out to tell Orton that the reason Nexus cost him the championship was because Legacy did the same thing to Punk a few years ago (Unforgiven 2008). It’s ridiculous that the WWE can remember something like this and still pair tag-teams who were feuding six months ago, but whatever. Yeah, Punk’s getting his revenge. The Nexus enters the ring to attack Orton, who manages a bit of offense before being held down for Punk…
…to get kicked in the nose, causing him to bleed. Ultimately, Nexus puts Orton down. Next we go to a commercial, during which time Michael Cole announces that the GM has scheduled matches between members of the Nexus and the competitors at Raw’s Elimination Chamber Match. Which leads to the first one…
Match 1- Mason Ryan Vs. R Truth – *
As Truth comes out to the ring, he does something I’ve never seen him do before: he messes up on the mic. Yeah, like I said, Raw is in Milwaukee this week, not Green Bay. The mistake causes fans to instantly boo him, inspiring chants of “Milwaukee!” Michael Cole heels it up by joining the chant and making a comment about him going down like the Steelers did yesterday. It was at the point that I have never been more serious when saying “Shut the fuck up, Cole.” Anyway, the match starts with Mason in control for most of the match, during which he works Truth’s knee. He gets a submission victory by tweaking the injured knee, which was promptly overturned by the ref via DQ as he continued to work that knee after the bell. The match was short and R Truth hardly got any offense.
Mason goes backstage, where he is congratulated by Punk for putting the hurt on Truth. He tells the other members of the Nexus to do the same to their opponents, regardless of whether they win or lose.
Match 2- Eve Torres, Gail Kim, and Tamina vs. Melina and the Bella Twins. – *
So yeah, the Bellas are heels now. Whatever. One of the twins works on Gail for briefly before tagging in Melina. Gail manages to get a tag to Eve, after which the teams kinda spill over the place. Eve would eventually get a pin after a swinging neckbreaker. Meanwhile, Natalya joins the commentary for the match, providing a distraction in a somewhat entertaining “debate” between her and Michael Cole. It was not very long and not everyone got to wrestle.
Match 3- John Morrison Vs. Michael McGillicutty – ***
McGillicutty controlled the match from the start, making it seem like the pattern established in the first match would be followed. As McGillicutty attempted to smash Morrison’s hand, however, J-Mo got out of harms way and managed to turn the match around, getting some solid offense in before landing Starship Pain for the pinfall. As a lot of the matches tonight, it was short, but definitely the best so far.
Following the match, Miz comes out to the ring to congratulate Jerry Lawler on his win last Monday, an event for which Lawler prepared by already suiting up in his ring attire. During this promo, the Miz told Lawler that he actually modeled his career after him, basically calling himself a modern-day Lawler, to which the King replied that unlike him, he actually backed up his mouth. The confrontation exploded as Miz attacked Lawler, but was de-nied. Alex Riley comes in but falls quickly too. A surprise attack from Ted DiBiase finally floors Jerry and allows the Miz and his apprentice to get some offense before Daniel Bryan shows up and helps to clear the ring. It was then that the GM announced that Bryan and Lawler were to face The Miz and Dibiase immediately
Match 4 Daniel Bryan and Jerry “The King” Lawler Vs. The Miz and Ted DiBiase – **
The match started with some offense from Daniel Bryan on Ted DiBiase before they tagged in the King and The Miz, respectively. It was a nice opener, but the match slowed down as the King was thrown out of the ring and received a kick from Ted. Just then, we go to a commercial. This happened several times last week, but thankfully, this is the only match to be cut by a commercial. By the time the show comes back, Miz is in control against Daniel Bryan. A nice spot ensues as Bryan drop-kicks the Miz. A long, drawn-out double tag follows. The King would eventually get the pin after a knuckle-drop from the ring-post to Ted DiBiase. The match gets 2/5 from me. The match suffers from the same curse as the others, though easily the longest. It was a good display for both Lawler and Bryan, but the commercial break killed the match’s momentum for me.
Match 5- King Sheamus Vs. David Otunga – WTF?
This was the match we were SUPPOSED to see, but a rumor that Mark Henry thinks he should replace Sheamus in the Elimination Chamber was apparently something Josh Matthews thought the King of the Ring just had to know as he was on his way out to the ring. Sheamus made some cutting remarks toward Henry, to the end that as Otunga made his way to the ring, the World’s Strongest Man arrived to lay a beating on Sheamus, flooring him with not one, but two World’s Strongest Slams. I had a feeling Sheamus wouldn’t end up wrestling against a member of the Nexus. No ratings here because no match actually happened. It was implied that this conflict was orchestrated by CM Punk, but I must have missed the evidence for that.
Match 6- Alberto Del Rio Vs. Santino Marella – **
ADR opens with a promo, stating that it was his destiny to win the Royal Rumble… blah, blah, blah! Santino comes out shortly afterward and puts a couple of shots on the Royal Rumble winner and throws him over the top rope. Del Rio gets back into the ring and the match finally gets underway. ADR controls the majority of the match, but Santino did get some offense. Santino attempts to nail Alberto with the cobra, but missed. Del Rio than locks in a cross armbreaker for a submission I’ve been somewhat impressed with Santino lately, though unfortunately, an improvement over a complete flop isn’t necessarily gold. Keep trying, Santino.
They didn’t get much time, but it was an entertaining match. If there’s one thing Santino Marella is good at, it’s being entertaining.
Vickie Guerrero and Dolph Ziggler come out next, ostensibly to brag about Dolph’s title match this Friday. Before she could say much, however, Cena comes out to chase Vickie out of the arena by riling up the crowd with chants of “Go, Pack! Go!” This infuriates me personally. Why? Just guess who my favorite NFL team is and who DIDN’T win the Super Bowl. Michael Cole tries to make me feel better by saying the Steelers should have won yesterday, proving once again that he has no idea how to be a heel. You suck, Cole. Don’t help me.
Cena goes on to say that he intends to kick CM Punk’s “Elimination Chamber” and the “Elimination Chambers” of the entire Nexus so that he can walk into the Elimination Chamber in good health. If you don’t want to say “ass,” don’t, but at least come up with an innuendo that makes sense instead of implying you want to kick a bunch of butts and walk into another. GAWD!
Match 7- John Cena Vs. CM Punk
The match starts off on the note that Cena plans to come out of it intact, which seems unlikely as CM Punk controls almost the entire match. The only thing satisfying about it is that we got to see Cena get beat up for a few minutes. After a while, he apparently gets tired of having his ass handed to him and low-blows Punk, giving him the victory via DQ. The Nexus enters the ring to corner Cena, who manages to run them out of the ring with a chair handed to him by Jerry Lawler.
All-in-all, I give the entire show a 3/10. The Nexus angle of the night was kinda pointless, only serving to put an unreasonable number of matches on the card. Most of the promos were short, yet none of the matches got a lot of time. I hope to see better next week.