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Shawn Michaels starts off Raw wondering why Triple H changed his mind last week about facing The Undertaker. He talks about Triple H and calling him a coward and that he knows that Trips would not let that go. Michaels has the crew replay what Taker said about Michaels, and he said that he cannot believe that is the worst thing that someone could say to convince Triple H to face him. Triple H talks back and says he is tired of people saying Shawn couldn't get it done, and he hears it all the time. Triple H says he has it under control and Michaels sarcastically says thanks and that he knew who won last time and who will win this time. He announces he will be the special guest referee at WrestleMania.
What I Liked:
Once again, another solid session of speaking from two best friends. They were able to get the Boston crowd immediately interested in every word they were saying. I really liked how Michaels was on the defensive and made Triple H look like a bad friend. This interaction was typical, nothing amazing, and got a few pops from the crowd to start off the night on a positive note.
What I Disliked:
Do we really NEED Shawn Michaels as the referee? It is Hell in a Cell, the referee does not do much. I wonder what the pay off is here, which I feel is nothing. There is not much to do afterwards, and this will culminate the entire story. I am beginning to feel that its Michaels vs. Triple H, a battle of who is better. This is a terrible way of booking it because it is all about "The Streak." Focus on Undertaker and the end of an era type deal, not two friends trying to see who is better. Also, we need to see Undertaker each week on Raw. Even if it is a flickering of the lights, there has to be urgency and a focus on the match and not the friendship in the match now.
Santino Marella def. Jack Swagger to win the WWE United States Championship:
What I Liked:
Swagger has not done a thing with the US Title, so I did not mind Santino winning it here. I understand that they want to see some excitement in the mid card, and Santino brings that. He needs to work on his overall ring skills since he won't be taken seriously all the time, but he is refreshing and fun to watch whether you love him or hate him. The match was alright, but it focused on Long vs. Laurinaitis on the outside briefly. You see a power struggle, and you can tell these guys will be on some sort of "team" for their respected GM's.
What I Disliked:
You throw Ziggler in here because he has nothing to do. A waste of his talent and skills. Also, if you are going to give the title to Santino, do not let him lose it on Smackdown while Laurinaitis is running things. I really hope it does not keep switching, changing hands continuously. It would devalue it more, if that is possible. There is a good chance the match at Mania will feature some of the younger stars for Long and Laurinaitis, so let them work each week and shy away from the US Title. It is not needed to be the focal point of the story right now.
The Rock is seen at the Boston Harbor and talks about the Boston Tea Party. He then goes to throw all of Cena's merchandise into the Harbor while making fun of Cena and the gear he is tossing. This was great, as it felt like a circa 1998 Rock where he did not care about who to offend and showed attitude. Where was the Cena US Title Spinner belt? That would have been a nice touch! Grade: A (Hilarious)