RAW REAX: Cena on last on a school night, hype for next week’s Divas and Tag Title matches,
-I was a little higher on last night’s Raw than most in our online poll, where 25 percent are giving it a thumbs up, 32 percent a thumbs in the middle, and 43 percent gave it a thumbs down. I guess I graded it on a “holiday show” curve where it can often feel like WWE is phoning it in with the assumption fewer people are watching. I thought there was just enough solid wrestling and just enough developments regarding the Seth Statue, Night of Champions, and next week’s Raw to make the show newsworthy and watchable.
-I was surprised on the last Raw before kids start school, WWE saved John Cena for the last match on the program, though. On the bright side, I’m all for new wrestlers being put in the main event mix on Raw. The Prime Time Players and New Day being in the main event tag team match with Cena and Rollins elevated them to a certain degree. On the downside, Titus O’Neill and Darren Young were barely in the match at all, almost as if WWE management didn’t trust that if they were in the ring, viewers would stay tuned in. The ten minute beat down of Cena before a hot-tag to Titus made the main event almost exclusively about Cena rather than the Prime Time Players. Back on the bright side, I liked that they advertised the tag title match for next week on this week’s show, giving the tag team championship a sense of more importance than usual. The spot where Xavier Woods played the trombone to the rhythm of Big E whipping Kofi Kingston into the corner against Cena was pretty creative.
-I talked about this in the Keller Hotline last night for VIP members when I received the whole show start to finish, but as entertaining as Seth Rollins is in his role as a bumbling immature big-mouthed big-headed heel, the way Triple H and Stephanie McMahon talk to him doesn’t seem worthy of a heel World/U.S. Champion. By the time Hunter and Steph are done talking down to him, it’s just difficult to take him the least bit seriously. He’s treated more like the sidekick gatekeeper to a top level World Champion under the control of a heel authority figure, not the actual man anyone would truly entrust with leading the company.
-I suppose it depends on the countdown clock and the booking plans, but next week would have been a great opportunity to feature the Divas Championship match in the final segment of Raw. I think to have a Divas Revolution (as if anyone is taking that the least bit seriously anymore after Stephanie McMahon coopted it and then failed to actually revolutionize anything other than the frequency and length of the matches the women are in), you have to elevate the title to one that can main event a weekly episode of Raw.
-The way WWE utilized Sting this week was better than last week. Sting’s strength is not standing in the middle of the ring alone talking for several minutes. He’s better off in those backstage segments in short snippets where he can do two or three takes if necessary. His mind-games with Seth is where his strength lies as a performer more than giving an impassioned speech about how much the WWE World Title means to him.
-Oh, Michael Cole is totally overdoing the “Oh, no no no no no!” thing he does before a big move by a wrestler.
-If you’re a VIP member, check out my full report on Raw here.