What up wrestling fans, I'm the WrestlingNerd bringing you another written review. Today, we take a look at WWE Raw 4/16/12. With the WWE taking over London, how would the show measure up? Let's find out and start the review.
Match #1: CM Punk vs Mark Henry; WWE Championship (No DQ/countout)
We open up the show with the WWE Championship match. The audience is really active tonight, but you usually get a lively audience whenever you see pro wrestling in the UK. You gotta give the UK credit for being passionate about the product. Now, THIS is what I would call a wrestling audience. What the hell was the audience I saw at TNA Lockdown? Was a knitting convention in town? Like the previous Punk/Henry matches, this match showed the power struggle between the small guy and the big guy. Henry would do a bunch of power moves while Punk would have to find new ways of taking down the big man. Personally, I enjoyed this match for what it was worth. Yeah, it isn't what I would call a good wrestling match, but I think it told a pretty good story. Plus, the audience being pumped up really helped the match. In fact, there was a lot of "Yes" chants during the whole show. I guess we know who the UK wants to see tonight. During the match, a chair got into play. The finish comes when Henry charges at Punk, but the chair is propped up against the turnbuckles, thus Henry runs head-first into the steel chair. With Henry down, Punk gets the chair and climbs the top rope. Punk hits the flying elbow with the chair. It's like RVD's Van Terminator, except it's a flying elbow instead of a dropkick. Yeah, how's that Hall of Pain deal working out for you?
Winner via pinfall and still WWE Champion: CM Punk
After the match, Chris Jericho is on the titantron. I show my toughness by doing all my promos via satellite. It's the Rock all over again. Anyway, Jericho talked to John Laurinaitis and he will give Jericho another shot at the WWE Championship. So, I guess it was lucky that Henry lost the title match. It's wrestling logic, but I think we can let it slide for the sake of an interesting storyline. It will be Punk vs Jericho at Extreme Rules. The WWE title will be on the line and it will be a Chicago Street Fight. What exactly is a Chicago Street Fight? Is that a street fight where you toss a Chicago-style pizza at your opponent? Do you listen to the band Chicago? Whatever. Jericho continues to mock Punk's straight edge lifestyle and thinks Punk is starting to embrace the alcohol. In fact, Jericho has a video of Punk walking into a pub. Jericho is talking stalking to a whole new level. How has he not be arrested yet? I guess he must always be one step ahead…..No matter the circumstances. Punk says that he went to meet up with a friend. Jericho says Punk is in denial, just like his father. How dare you talk about my father like that. Jericho claims he has taken away everything from Punk except for one thing, the WWE Title. Punk is about to answer back, but Jericho leaves. I guess Jericho forgot to pay his electric bill. Well, I guess we will wait until next week to see what Punk had to say. Just like Punk has been saying, this is no longer about who's the best in the world. It's a personal grudge between the two that could be a very interesting rematch.
There was an ongoing backstage scene involving R-Truth/Teddy Long for the rest of the night. I'm gonna get this out of the way now, so I will be jumping the gun since I normally go in order of presentation. Truth is dressed up like Sherlock Holmes and is talking to Little Jimmy Watson. They are trying to find Teddy a new job. I guess Truth has never heard of the classifieds. Later in the show, Truth emerges out of a secret passage. Hornswoggle sees this and wants to find it. The final segment showed that Truth has found the job for Teddy. The job is the SD GM job. Teddy informs him that's the job he got fired from. These scenes were pretty damn stupid. My theory is the writers were with Jericho and started drinking the script.
Match #2: Santino vs David Otunga; US Championship
Two title matches to start off Raw? What is this madness? Santino wore a bunch of soccer jerseys, but he kept getting the wrong country. After a bunch of boos, Santino finally gets the right one. Otunga was pretty much dominating this match, but he made one major mistake……his dumb-ass ego. The finish comes when Otunga hits the Verdict and gets the three count….BUT WAIT!!! Santino had his foot on the rope and the ref catches it. Otunga starts to argue with the ref, which allows for Santino to get back in the match. After a flurry of offense, Santino hits the Cobra for the victory…..
Winner via pinfall and still US Champion: Santino
There was a Lord Tensai interview backstage. It was nothing more than him saying, "Fear me……and my spit". There was also a Brock Lesnar video interview. He talks about coming back to WWE because he's sick of John Cena's garbage and says if he stayed in the WWE, Cena would have never been the face of the company. I've been thinking about that for quite some time. When Brock was apart of WWE, he was one of the biggest forces in that company. I still think Cena would've had a fine career, but would it be as big if Brock stuck around? Personally, I think it would've had an effect. We also find out that Brock vs Cena will be an Extreme Rules match at ER. Seems appropriate.
We are getting ready for the Zack Ryder/Kane match, but it never got started. As Ryder stands on the ring apron, Kane hits him with a big boot. Ryder falls on top of the announcer's table. Now, what did you think you were gonna accomplish by standing there going, "Duuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhhh"? Kane brings Ryder back in the ring and hits the Chokeslam on him. Since the match never got started, it doesn't really count as an official match. Regardless, Ryder gets killed while Kane dominates. After the beat-down, Kane says that taking out both Randy Orton and his father were way too easy. Kane claims for them both to be weak. Hey, didn't Randy defeat Kane about two weeks ago? I'm just saying. I've been so caught up with everything else going around that I haven't realized that Ryder has been losing for months. His momentum has really slowed down since he lost the US Championship. The Ryder craze has gone down as well. Fans are still supporting him, but he seems that he has lost a bit of his mojo.
Backstage with Kofi Kingston and AJ. Kofi is trying to convince AJ that she's can find a better man than Daniel Bryan. Well, Bryan just so happens to hear this and interrupts. Oh, and Daniel Bryan is now on-screen. DANIEL BRYAN!!!!
Oh, people got the claps. They got the claps….wait, WHAT? Anyway, Bryan says even though he has no interest in AJ, nobody is allowed to go after her. Bryan claims that he will no longer call it the Le Bell Lock. From this day forward, it will be known as the Yes Lock….
Bryan ends the segment by saying "Yes" over and over again. Kofi looks at him like he's crazy, but you can tell he broke character since he was laughing. Then again, how can you not laugh when you see this? I like how they show the audience joining along in the chant. Daniel Bryan is quickly becoming my favorite character in all of television. I need to go buy that T-shirt.
John Cena comes to the ring. Cena talks about how Johnny is on a power trip since WrestleMania. He also talks about how Brock Lesnar is nothing more than destruction, but he will fight him at ER. Johnny comes out and announces that Cena will compete in an ER match tonight. There will also be a contract signing between Cena and Brock on next week. It also turns out that Raw will be a three hour show next week. Three hour Raw next week? YES YES YES!!!
Match #3: Daniel Bryan vs Kofi Kingston
I thought it would've been one of those three minutes matches, but it was given a decent amount of time. I thought this was a pretty fun match to watch. It makes Kofi and Bryan look good. The finish comes when Kofi attempts a crossbody off the top rope, but Bryan is able to counter and apply the Yes Lock. Kofi taps out, and it's time to celebrate. The audience was really into this match. Outside of CM Punk, Daniel Bryan was the favorite. This should definitely encourage WWE to embrace Bryan a little more. I don't see him winning the WHC title anytime soon, but they can at least make him a big-time player in the company. It's pretty clear that people want to see him. Oh, and AJ was watching this match in the back. After the match, Bryan re-applies the Yes Lock on Kofi, but Sheamus arrives. He goes for the Brogue Kick, but he misses. D'oh, I missed.
Winner via submission: YES!!!
Match #4: Brodus Clay vs Dolph Ziggler
Even the UK is loving the Funkasaurus. Who says all wrestling fans take everything way too seriously? A few seconds into the match, Biff Tannen interferes and the ref calls for the bell. After the match, Brodus takes out both Dolph and Swagger. Vickie Guerrero starts to yell at Brodus on top of the ring apron. Cameron and Naomi get involved. Vickie ends up pushing Cameron to the ground, but she gets in the ring to get away from Naomi. Unfortunately, Vickie forgot about the fact that Brodus was still in the ring. After the jiggle dance, Naomi is in the ring and pushes Vickie to the ground. Well, it's nice to see the dancers do something else besides dancing for a change.
Winner via DQ: Brodus Clay
There was a backstage scene with Johnny, Otunga, and Eve. Eve still wants that private meeting with Johnny. They all step into Johnny's office for that meeting. Well, I guess Eve is going to get "a head" in this company. Know what I'm saying? HEHEHEHE…..I'm a jerk.
Match #5: Great Khali and Big Show vs Primo and Epico
Well, you know this wasn't going to go well for two guys who don't even outweigh one of the giants. AW showed up during the match and seemed to be taking notes on the people involved. Primo and Epico are about to leave, but Show manages to catch up to them. I guess Primo and Epico forgot how to run. Show feeds the tag champs to the wolves. A Chokeslam and Punjabi Plunge later, the giants win the match. This scene had to do more with AW. He could be setting up a partnership with the tag champs, but maybe he got lost and ended up in the entrance ramp?
Winner via pinfall: Great Khali and Big Show
Match #6: John Cena vs Lord Tensai; Extreme Rules match
Once again, there was some "Albert" chants going on during the Tensai match. It's going to be one hell of a challenge to make this Tensai deal work. In fact, it's probably designed to fail, but at least they're trying. For being an ER match, it really didn't take advantage of the concept. The only thing that happened was Sakamoto doing a couple of round kicks to Cena and Otunga getting involved. You could've made this a No DQ match and it would've been fine. I guess they didn't want to have two No DQ matches on the same show. So, Tensai is dominating the match, but Cena is fighting back. The finish comes when Cena locks in the STF on Tensai, but Otunga gets in the ring. He hits the AA on Otunga, but Tensai is back up and spits green mist in Cena's eyes. Tensai hits the Chokebomb for the victory. The story seems to be that Johnny wants to break Cena, which is why he brought in Brock. Regardless, things have been rough for Cena ever since he switched over to his green ranger outfit. The green ranger lost to green mist? Oh, the humanity.
Winner via pinfall: Lord Tensai
I thought tonight's Raw was pretty entertaining. The show featured some great matches and had a lively audience. The audience definitely had an influence in tonight's show. They really made the show come alive. Punk and Henry wasn't too bad, while Bryan/Kofi was pretty fun. The fan support for Bryan shows that people want to see more of him. I think some people are starting to come around on him. The major storylines continue to get more build-up as we get closer to the ER PPV. At the same time, it seems like WWE is mostly riding the two title matches and the Cena/Brock match to drive in the interest for ER. Still, there doesn't seem to be anything wrong with that at the present time. They are intriguing matches and I think they can be a lot of fun. We still have one more week of ER build-up, so hopefully they can continue the streak of great shows. That's gonna 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. I will see you guys and girls on the next WrestlingNerd show. See you next time.