WrestleMania is shaping up, but I’m not sure if I should say, nicely. There are now more than just the top three matches booked. But we’ll get to that later. Tonight’s show was sans Rock and for about all but 5 minutes, Brock Lesnar too.
It wasn’t a strong effort at all.
The build feels a lot like WrestleMania 15 where they had the main match set up and they seemingly changed plans with a lot of the other matches. At least for this show, we won’t see all the multi-man matches that we saw for that one.
The stipulation for Triple H and Brock Lesnar is…
Loser stars in No Holds Barred 2. Oh, I misunderstood. It’s a no holds barred match which means anything goes. Also, Triple H’s career is on the line. This all but signifies that Triple H is winning this match, which is a bit of a downer, but in today’s WWE, wins and losses aren’t recognized like they used to be. If Triple H wins, it probably won’t mean a whole lot when it comes to how big of a deal Brock is. He lost to John Cena last year and it really didn’t hurt him as much as people thought it would.
Paul Heyman made a joke when giving out false stips that the match was going to be for Triple H’s wife. And then he said, but it would be apropos for the loser to get Steph. I popped. That caused Triple H to beat up Heyman forever and there’s nothing worse than watching a tortuous beat down that’s boring. Lesnar came out late with a chair but Triple H had the sledge hammer and Brock never entered the ring. That’s when Heyman told him the stipulation that he signed up for with an emphasis on the career.
No Rock and very little Cena on the show.
It was very odd to see very little of John Cena on this show. Being that he’s working the main event and Rock was in London promoting his GI Joe movie, you’d figure that we’d see a bit more of John Cena. But no, we saw him beat up Darren Young after the Primetime Players did some humor that I enjoyed, but no one else did. Even worse, it opened up the show and made it immediate lukewarm.
The same Cena/Rock package that aired last week aired again. It’s a good one so I didn’t mind, but it was a bit mind boggling to me that there wasn’t more. The Rock couldn’t have done an interview signifying how big of a deal he is right now? Cena couldn’t have cut another promo about how important this match was to him?
The Undertaker vs. CM Punk takes a slight turn for the distasteful.
Last week, I mentioned that I didn’t mind the Paul Bearer references on Raw because he just passed and it didn’t turn out tasteless. That may not be true anymore. While we haven’t seen them go over the top, CM Punk interrupted The Undertaker’s promo, doing a Paul Bearer impersonation and then tossed the urn around back and forth and even dropped it once. I don’t think he insinuated that Bearer’s ashes were in there, but it was the kind of work that you’d think Punk would be above. He’s still doing the God complex gimmick which I absolutely hate, but oh well. I think the steam is way off him. I hope he can get it back with Taker.
And the rest…
- Ryback vs. Mark Henry is on for Mania. I’m not sure why they tried to portray that Ryback was in the match with Randy Orton and Sheamus vs. The Shield if this was the plan all along. Maybe they wanted the fans to yearn for Henry? I think they should do a hot dog eating contest. Would probably be more interesting than a match. #feedmemore
- Fandango almost wrestled. But instead, he took a powder against the Great Khali. Later in the show, he interrupted an interview with Chris Jericho leading us to believe they are wrestling at WrestleMania. Chris Jericho deserves better.
- R-Truth beat Damian Sandow by count out in one of those segments that would’ve been better placed on Main Event.
- Even though AJ tried to mess with Kane’s head yet again, Kane and Daniel Bryan beat the Colons. Later, Dolph Ziggler beat Kofi Kingston and Vickie came out to say that Dolph and Big E get a tag title shot against Daniel Bryan and Kane. What a last minute wacky match.
- Alberto Del Rio beat Cody Rhodes in a far more competitive match than I thought was possible considering they’re trying to get Del Rio over. After Del Rio won with the cross arm breaker, Jack Swagger jumped him. I really liked Swagger’s aggression here. He walloped Del Rio a couple of times. Del Rio also grabbed Zeb Coulter. During the commercial break, poor Ricardo’s ankle was broken.
- Sheamus and Randy O beat 3MB. The Shield ran in, but the Big Show came in and evened the odds and the Shield thought better and bounced. Man, how they’ve allowed the Shield too cool off just boggles my mind.
- Booker T is in the Hall of Fame. You’d figure they’d save him so that he could be second from the top in a less stacked year, but hey, I can dig some King Booker.
- Wade Barrett won a three-way between he, Miz, and Jericho by rolling up Miz after he hit Jericho with his finisher.
Here’s the card so far:
John Cena vs. The Rock
Triple H vs. Brock Lesnar
CM Punk vs. The Undertaker
Jack Swagger vs. Alberto Del Rio
Sheamus, Randy Orton, and The Big Show vs. The Shield
Mark Henry vs. Ryback
Dolph Ziggler and Big E vs. Team Hell No
All in all, yet another very boring edition of Monday Night Raw. Let’s hope they really rev up their engines for the last two weeks. Not to say that they need it to sell the show, but they need it from an entertainment standpoint. The shows have been downright boring.