TITLE THIS: 8/1/11 WWE Raw Reaction

Nick Paglino

Welcome to Josh Isenberg's first editorial review here on WrestleZone.com. It will be titled "Title This" because we don't have much time to think of clever titles, and ironically, "Title This" is pretty clever. Maybe. Josh will be providing reviews of WWE and TNA TV here on WZ, and remember, you can check him and Justin LaBar out on "Chair Shot Reality" by CLICKING HERE.

TITLE THIS: WWE Raw Reaction
by Josh Isenberg

Monday Night Raw airs a recap of the WWE Championship match from Money in the Bank, as well as John Cena winning it a week ago, and the controversary that comes with having “two” champions.

SEGMENT RECAP:
C.M. Punk discusses how he speaks his mind and the change that he created since his explosive comments towards WWE in his worked shoot promo. Punk gives a promo where he wants to make WWE fun again, and how the fans have missed out on what used to be good about professional wrestlng. He says he has a championship title, while Cena has just a belt. Punk goes on saying that he holds the most important title in the world because he is the best professional wrestler the world has to offer. Triple H’s music hits, but Punk still tries to talk over the music, which is comical. Triple H discusses bringing back C.M. Punk because it was good for business. The WWE Universe wanted Punk so he gave it to them. He says he put his “personal feelings aside” and signed Punk. H calls C.M. Punk a “smug, overrated, attention seeking guy that puts too much stock in his hype.” Punk compares himself to Triple H. Punk talks about Vince letting main event guys slip through his hands, like Batista, Mick Foley, Chris Jericho, Brock Lesnar.  Back and forth from the two men, but Punk continues to bash Triple H, how he hogged the spotlight, pushed people around, and was only the bag carrier to Shawn Michaels. He pulls the Stephanie McMahon card, and says he will not be pushed around by Hunter.

REACTION:
C.M. Punks song, “Cult of Personality” not only fits his character but fits Phillip Brooks.  He used the mass media, influence, and his dictatorship to change minds of many fans. He is truthful, and the credit goes the creative team to give him all of the freedom to do what he does best, and that is speaking the truth. I will admit that I have never been an enormous fan of Punk until he turned heel, because his heel self is more like a realistic person that we can all know and appreciate. He is the friend that is cocky, arrogant, and boastful in your group.  His interaction with HHH was well done by both parties, because both men know how to dictate their words, and how to get the crowd involved. This segment gets an A-, as I feel they needed some John Cena interaction, because Punk will face Cena, not Triple H at Summerslam.

WWE Divas Battle Royal Recap
A divas battle royal is up next that includes quick eliminations of Gail Kim and Rosa Mendes, two divas who can actually wrestle.  They take an unnecessary commercial break, with Eve, Beth, Bella Twins, and Alicia Fox left in the ring. Beth eliminates the Bella Twins to earn a title match against Kelly Kelly at Summerslam. Beth attacks Kelly Kelly after the match. She gets on the mic, and talks about her days as the blonde bimbo are over.

REACTION: Beth Phoenix is long overdue for a championship run. I feel like she needs to dominate at Summerslam because she is the long term type Diva that the WWE needs to build on. A great physical specimen of a female who can actually wrestle, and hopefully they begin to build up a division that’s overdue for a change. This segment gets a B-, just because they gave a diva who deserves it the win.

Backstage Segment:
Truth and Miz talk about the mistakes Triple H made, and how they are actually similar to one another right now.

Backstage Segment
John Cena in a quick backstage interview with Josh Matthews. He is interested to see what Triple H does.

Tag team match Miz/Truth vs. Mysterio/Morrison Recap
Miz and Morrison start off the match with Miz taking the early offensive advantage. Mysterio enters and does his typical offense, and Morrison barely hits a corkscrew to the outside on Miz and Truth.  We head to another commercial break. Raw returns with Rey getting beaten down. Miz continues the offensive with a DDT on Mysterio, and Miz tags Truth in.  Mysterio finally hits an offensive move and gets the hot tag to Morrison. Quick moves back and forth, as Truth hits his finisher on Morrison for the win. Truth and Miz beat up Morrison after the match.

REACTION: This tag team match was definitely entertaining to watch, but where is the storyline at? Who is feuding with who? The spots were nice, but I just want to see something more than a typical beatdown after the match.  There needs to be a progression, something that makes you want to see more of those wrestlers, and I just didn’t feel like it was meaningful with these 4 talented superstars. This segment gets a B because of the entertaining wrestling and seeing Morrison back at 100 percent.

Backstage Segment
Triple H is interviewed by Josh Matthews, which didn’t do anything besides emphasize he is in charge.

In-Ring Segment
Dolph Ziggler is escorted and introduced by Vickie Guerrero. Dolph talks about how the superstars besides him are not as talented, or have his skills in the ring. He talks about how much of a man he is, more than anyone in the locker room. Alex Riley’s music hits, and out comes  A-RY. Riley questions If Ziggler is a man, because he hides behind Vickie. They exchange words,  and Riley tells Dolph to drop Vickie. Ziggler teases fighting Riley, but heads to the back.

REACTION: I appreciated this segment very much. Ziggler needs a fresh and new feud, and Riley needs something to show his ability aside from the Miz. This could be a long 3-4 month mid card feud that potentially sets Ziggler up for bigger and better things, while solidifying Alex Riley as a talented, but still young, superstar. This segment gets a B. Wish there was an announcement of a match at the end… at Summerslam, as 2 weeks away and there, at this point, isn’t a solidified match from Raw.

WWE Tag Team Champions David Otunga and Michael McGillicuddy vs Santino and Zack Ryder recap
Santino and MuGillicuddy start off the match, with a quick tag to Otunga. He begins a beatdown, as the crowd chants “ We want Ryder.”  Ryder enters and hits a few impressive moves, knees to the face, and a boot to the face of McGillicuddy. Ryder misses his finisher, and the tag champs begin to beat away at Ryder. A weak finisher of a forearm finishes off Ryder, as Otunga pins Ryder.

REACTION: This match did nothing for me, because it proved that the Tag Team division is still a joke. I like the tag team champs as a unit, but this quick match proves that they lack competition. I would rather of seen Hawkins and Ryder, who have been a tag team before together and succeeded. It is nice to see a fan favorite Ryder get TV time, so we will see what happens with the champions and Ryder in the next few weeks. This segment gets a C- because it meant nothing in the long run, a sub par in ring performances from all 4 men, and still shows the weaknesses, when they should focus on their strengths.

We get a recap of Triple H and C.M. Punk from earlier tonight. Josh Matthews again with C.M. Punk, who talks about what the decision, and Punk says he tested Hunter earlier, and hopes that it is strictly business in the future. Punk says the champ is himself.

Alberto Del Rio vs Evan Bourne. Del Rio starts off beating on Bourne. He uses submissions and armbars to ground Bourne. A backbreaker by Del Rio gives him a 2 count on Bourne.  Bourne finally hits a few kicks to Del Rio, but Del Rio ends up making Bourne tap out. Kofi saves Bourne from further attacks from Del Rio.

REACTION: This match was nothing special, because nobody thought for a split second that Bourne would win. I wish this match got more time because both men are talented between the ropes. Del Rio and Kofi continue their feud as he runs in at the end to preview a possible one on one match at Summerslam. This segment gets a C. Not much to be excited about, as it seems Mr. Money in the Bank will be a mid to lower card wrestler until he cashes in. I would rather see him feud with someone like a face swagger, or a bigger build guy who will have a better chemistry with him in the ring.

In Ring Segment Recap:
Triple H begins to talk, and John Lauranitis comes out and interrupts Hunter. Laurinitis introduces himself and talks about his duties, as well as his longevity with the company. He tells Triple H that Vince would want him to strip Cena of the WWE Championship.  Out comes Cena, who criticizes Laurinitis as a “yes man.” They rehash the Money in the Bank night, and Cena tempts to punch Laurinitis in the face.  Hunter says Cena’s claim to the WWE Title is legit. C.M. Punk comes out,  and says he has been in this position before. He asks if he will be stripped of the title, and Triple H says at Summerslam it will be WWE Champion John Cena vs. WWE Champion C.M. Punk, for one undisputed WWE Championship. Triple H leaves and Cena and Punk remain in the ring, as Punk lifts his title up, his music hits, Cena lifts his title up and his music hits. Punk goes on the ropes and his music hits, followed by Cena doing the same, and we go back and forth music and poses as Raw goes off the air.

REACTION: This ending made sense, and was what everyone knew what was going to happen. It was a nice twist to see Lauranitis entered in the picture and speaking, which again gives another element in the changes the WWE has seen. The fine line continues to be pushed further back from what is real and what is fake. Good mic work from both, and the ending, although somewhat boring, shows the crowd is split with Punk and Cena fans. This segment gets a B-

OVERALL REACTION: Monday Night Raw from Indianapolis receives a B-. The positives were seeing Dolph Ziggler enter a new feud with Alex Riley, whom both young competitors can learn from at the same time. I really cannot wait to see what happens. Also, Punk, Cena and Triple H did enough to keep you watching, as all three show why they are at their positions in the company right now. I also enjoyed seeing Beth Phoenix given a chance to shine again. The Miz/Truth/Mysterio/Morrison match was entertaining, but ended on a sour note because it’s strange to see where they all go from here, less than 2 weeks away from Summerslam. The negatives were the Tag Team Champions beating Santino and Ryder, as the match gave you nothing to be desired for. Also, a few backstage segments were useless throughout the night, and Alberto Del Rio continues to be under utilized in the company, even though he holds the briefcase. I would like to see Swagger and McIntyre over Kofi and Bourne. We have seen the same old song and dance with these two, so fresh faces could help all of these men. Raw Reaction, over.  Follow me at JoshIsenberg4 on Twitter.

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