What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at WWE Raw 3/26/12. With only six days till WrestleMania, how will the final week of build-up go? Let's find out and start the review.
Match #1: Randy Orton and Sheamus vs Daniel Bryan and Kane
We open up with a tag team match. Booker T has joined up with Michael Cole and Jerry "The King" Lawler for tonight's Raw. Hey, it's Kane. The guy with a mask over a mask, on top of an another mask, and a mask in his back pocket. Anybody thinking that……I was thinking it. Anyway, King calls Cole a hypocrite for siding with Bryan as of late. Hey, how can you NOT jump on the Daniel Bryan bandwagon when he goes around shouting, "YES"? There was a moment where Kane saved Bryan from getting the RKO. I know he did this to save the match for his team, but did Kane show a human emotion?
Did we just hit a paradox of some kind? Then again, I think we are thinking too hard about this. MOVING ALONG!!! The match was decent, but nothing overly amazing. Still, a pretty good opening contest. The finish comes when Kane and Randy are fighting on the outside of the ring. Kane ends up taking out Randy. In the meantime, Sheamus is setting up for the Brogue Kick, but AJ creates a shield between the Irishman and Mr. Yes Man. The referee eventually pulls AJ away since she's putting herself in danger. Kane gets on the top rope and hits the Chokeslam on Sheamus. Bryan runs over to pick the bones for the victory. This was a match to give some last minute build-up between the two separate rivalries. It isn't done extremely well, but it's passable. They will probably focus more on these rivalries later in the week. These are not some of the most intriguing matches heading into WM, but I think they can be a covered up gem. When I say that, I'm mainly referring to the Bryan/Sheamus match.
Winner via pinfall: Daniel Bryan and Kane (AKA: The Red Sea)
Match #2: David Otunga vs Santino
There was a Rock/John Cena video package during this spot. In fact, these videos would be running throughout the night. Just a quick reminder on everything that has happened between Rock and Cena. You know, just in case you have been living under a rock for the last year…..it's a small rock…..just a little…..it's tiny……okay, this joke has failed. Cole is in the ring wearing a Team Johnny T-shirt. So, John Laurinaitis has his own T-shirt, but there is no Bryan shirt saying YES? What's going on over there in the T-shirt department? Cole says he has been named the official commentator for Team Johnny. Well, just be happy he wasn't named the mascot. Lord knows we don't want to see Cole in tights….yeesh. Johnny shows up and names Vickie Guerrero as the official flag bearer of Team Johnny. You can't go into a fight without a flag bearer. Seriously, it's in the rules. Check them out sometime. David Otunga comes out and once again starts to flex his muscles. Hey, not too many lawyers look like that, so that has to be worth something. Booker is getting angry while on commentary….or, at least that's what he's trying to do. He lost his train of thought like five different times. Somebody needs to hand Booker a cue card or else we could be here all night. Booker finally announces Teddy Long. Santino also arrives and starts to speed walk in the ring, pinball style. Hornswoggle is also waving the Team Teddy flag.
Oh, and I probably should talk about the actual match. Yeah, I've been trailing off quite a bit. Probably because you know you are near WM when you see the same matches you saw a week ago. The match was a match. Of course, of course. The finish comes when Otunga starts to wave the Johnny flag in the ring. Hornswoggle gets in the ring to wave the Teddy flag. Otunga takes the Teddy flag because Hornswoggle is covering up his muscles. This allows Santino to hit the Cobra, thus Santino gets the victory. After the match, Johnny gets angry, but ends up walking into a teamwork push by Teddy and Santino. Johnny takes off the jacket. Oh no, anything but the jacket!!! Santino is ready to hit the Cobra on Johnny, but Miz arrives to hit the Skull Crushing Finale on Santino. Johnny announces that Miz is the last member of Team Johnny. Kind of an underwhelming addition to Team Johnny, don't you think? Miz has been losing for weeks and has tried to get on Johnny's team, but now gets added in because……the script said so? It just feels like lazy writing. Regardless, Miz will get to compete at WM.
Winner via pinfall: Santino
Match #3: Kelly Kelly vs Eve
Beth Phoenix is at ringside for this match. There was a hoeski chant during the match. The finish comes when Eve misses a moonsault….
This allows Kelly to hit her rollup finisher for the victory. Does every Diva match have to end in a rollup? It's getting ridiculous how THIS is considered a finisher in this division. What, can nobody master the technique to get out of this situation? It's okay to do the rollup every once in a while, but I swear you see this every single week. It's getting old. Now that I have said it, my prediction is for Maria whatshername to get the rollup victory at WM. I'm calling it right now.
Winner via pinfall: Kelly Kelly
Match #4: CM Punk vs Christian
I don't know if anybody saw this, but there was a split second where Punk's music was playing, while Christian's titantron video was still playing. The only time Christian can say he was the best in the world. Oh, that was pretty bad. Before the match gets started, Chris Jericho is on the titantron. Jericho calls Punk a fraud and continues to talk about Punk's family. Jericho brings up Punk's mother. Jericho says Punk's mother is clean and has no problems….but finds out that Punk was born before his parents got married. Jericho calls Punk a bastard child. This allows Christian to attack Punk. I gotta say. How does Jericho find out all this information? Chris Jericho might be the greatest detective ever. It puts Detective L to shame……to shame, I say. Punk eventually regains control of the situation and starts to flip out. Who told Punk about the dark side? He gets Christian and stats banging his head off the announcer's desk. He continues to beat the living hell out of him. He isn't done yet. Punk is setting up for the GTS, but ends up tossing Christian's head off the steel steps. Punk locks in the Anaconda Vice, while screaming how this will be Jericho's fate. Officials arrive to break it up and it seems Punk has finally calmed……WRONG!!! Punk jumps back in and locks in the Anaconda Vice one more time. Punk finally leaves. Christian got the crap kicked out of him. In fact, we would find out later in the night that Christian would be replaced by Drew McIntyre for Team Johnny. Not sure if Christian really injured himself or if it's just kayfabe. With McIntyre being the replacement, this does add a couple of theories that could end up happening at WM. I will save that discussion for the WM Rundown. Yeah, I can be cruel sometimes.
Match #5: Brodus Clay vs Curt Hawkins
I like how the commentators referred to Brodus as a rhino. I guess you can say he's Rambi the Rhino. See what I did there? Brodus hits the Splash and wins the match. It's pretty much the same formula they have been using for Brodus since he started the Funkasaurus gimmick. If they want to make this Brodus thing work, they eventually need to give him a program or a rival…..or anything. Just try something different or new. To be fair, this is WM season and maybe they can do something with him after the big event.
Winner via pinfall: Brodus Clay
Match #6: Big Show vs Primo
Well, this is a massacre waiting to happen. Show hits the Chokeslam and wins the match. Are you really surprised? That would be like putting Mr. Bill in a fight against the Incredible Hulk. It's not going to end well. After the match, Epico wants to teach this guy a lesson. This is what I would like to call dumbass heel disorder, or DHD as I like to call it. That's when your bad guy does a really stupid thing that will result in him getting killed. What would get accomplished by fighting Big Show? Oh, and he took you out as well. How are you enjoying that injured back? Anyway, Cody Rhodes shows up after the match. He talks about how the term, "Big Show" will mean the definition of something horrible. He talks about how people will say they how they gotta take a Big Show. Oh, that was funny. Give Cody some credit here. I thought this was hilarious. This was a pretty good promo by Cody. In fact, I almost like to consider this his best promo thus far. You gotta admit. Cody has really improved over the last year. He's come a long way from looking like Darkman.
Winner via pinfall: Big Show
A couple of backstage scenes to go through. The Bellas argue over Team Teddy and Johnny. Zack Ryder shows up and talks about how Brie's face is sick…..or something along those lines. Nikki gets offended since they are twins, so they both leave. Ryder "Big Shows" out yet again….LOLZ. Eve shows up and apologizes for canceling the dinner date from last week. She invites Ryder to her hotel room for WM weekend. Ryder wants to celebrate, but she wants to wait until after WM. Ryder gives off the biggest smile ever. Eve continues to play with his emotions and he just goes along with it. I think Ryder threw away his self-respect a long time ago. Maybe Kane took that away from him? There was a Punk interview. Punk talks about how Jericho has gone too far. Punk says you never talk about the sister or mother. That's true. That's just something you don't do. Punk says he will prove to Jericho that he is the best in the world. I wish I was the best at something…or am I? No, I am not. Anyway, I'm kinda disappointed that Jericho and Punk didn't do an in-ring confrontation. You could argue that keeping the distance between the two shows how intense and real this rivalry is since Jericho has crossed the line, but it would've been nice to have the option. I'm still very interested in how this match will go.
Match #7: Great Khali vs Mark Henry
This match lasted about 20 seconds. Damn, that's not even enough time to make a sandwich. Now, I'm disappointed. Henry hits the World's Strongest Slam for the victory. After the match, Johnny tosses Teddy into the ring. Henry is getting ready to punish Teddy while the members of Team Johnny are creating a line of defense. I LOVE DEFENSE!!! The members of Team Teddy start to arrive and try to break through the wall of robots. Kofi Kingston manages to jump into the ring, but springboards into the WSS. Henry has Teddy set up to hit WSS, but Booker gets in the ring to take care of Henry. After hitting the Scissors Kick on Henry, Teddy thanks him for the save. Teddy would ask Booker if he can be the final member of Team Teddy. Booker accepts and does a spin-a-roonie to celebrate the occasion. Well, Booker on Team Teddy is a bit of a surprise. I was expecting Rey Mysterio or Brodus, but we get Booker instead. I don't have a problem with this move. I would rather have Booker in there than Mick Foley. I know I won't get too many positive comments about that, but I just prefer Booker as a current in-ring competitor than Foley. Booker can still work a decent match while Foley has lost many steps along the way. Oh, and there was a Lord Tensai video package somewhere in the middle of all the madness. They definitely seem to be going with a Japanese/Chinese deal here. I would like to see where this is all headed.
Winner via pinfall: Mark Henry
Time for the final segment of the night. The Rock comes out and talks about how WM 20 was the last time he competed at WM. He says the people have been asking him when he will compete at WM again. He says he knew the time was right at last year's WM. Rock says the fans made it happen. He also talks about how Rock's last WM match was also Cena's first WM match. Cena went on to become a big star in the WWE, but he has never faced off against somebody like the Rock. John Cena finally arrives and brings up the fact that nobody will ever be like Cena. Cena talks about the mixed reaction he gets from the audience every single week and how nobody can do that. That's right, Rock. Nobody boos me like these people….wait, what? Cena talks about how he will rise above and win the match. He knows people hate him for winning all the damn time (at least he's self aware), but that's what he does and it's those people that know Cena will win this Sunday. Cena has to win at WM because this is his life. Rock says he knows how important it is for Cena to win the match, but this is important for him as well. Rock says in order to become the greatest of all time, he needs to beat Cena at the big event. Cena says otherwise and the show ends with a stare-down between both individuals.
I admit that I enjoyed this segment, but it was a re-hash of what Rock and Cena have been saying towards one another for over the last year. Not a whole lot of new things were brought to the table and I think they were trying to add genuine hatred between the two and sell the show. In that aspect, I think they did a decent job. Overall, the match has been over-hyped more than Tim Tebow, but I think this will be a very intriguing match. The time for talk is over and now it's time for them to beat the hell out of each other.
This was an episode of Raw where they were playing it safe. The matches were kept pretty short, but are you really surprised? They have WM this Sunday, so why go out there and do something stupid? Better to keep your talent secure for the main show, so I'm okay with that. The build-up to the matches was nothing special. In fact, the two things I enjoyed the most out of this program was Cody's promo and Punk going out of control. Cody shows that his getting better every single week while Punk shows a real type of emotion, which makes his match at WM even more intriguing. Still, this wasn't an amazing Raw to close up most of the WM hype. It was decent and I actually enjoyed certain elements of the show, but I can see why people didn't like tonight's show. There was no Triple H, Undertaker, or Shawn Michaels tonight. Don't understand why people are complaining about this since I'm almost convinced that this complaint is coming from the same people who keep bashing this match. I think they did all the build-up with that WM match on last week's show, so there was no need to do another segment for this week. There was not a whole lot of new things to bring to the table for this week, but I find myself pretty damn excited for WM after tonight's show. Then again, I was already looking forward to the event, so I don't think this show is the selling point to order WM. I would like to think the previous weeks were a bigger selling point for WM. That's going to do it for the review and I hope you enjoyed it. As always, tell me what you thought of my review or tonight's show. Also, check out my Top 7 Donkey Kong Country 1 Theme Songs if you haven't already. It's different from what I normally do, but who said I'm just a guy who reviews wrestling stuff? Oh, and I will have the WrestleMania 28 Rundown posted later in the week as well. I'm not sure when it will get released, but it should be released somewhere between Thursday and Saturday. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show. See you next time.