The following is WZ reader feedback from last night’s Monday Night Raw broadcast. If you would like to send in your thoughts, please email us at WZInbox@yahoo.com!
The following is from Matthew
I attended the 3-hour Raw event in Charlotte. I drove from Columbia, SC with a few of my friends and had a great time. A few thoughts from the event:
Lots of "Woo!" chants throughout the night from the capital of Flair Country in Charlotte. A bunch of people in my section were upset that he didn’t make it onto the show, but it makes sense given that he needs time to sell the Orton punt.
John Cena and HHH were both incredibly over with the live crowd. Jeff Hardy was, too. Matt Hardy got a good hometown pop as well, despite his current heel character. CM Punk got a mixed reaction, though though not nearly as loud as either Jeff’s cheers or Edge’s boos.
Jericho and Mysterio was a good opener. The fast pace and high spots really helped get the live crowd into the show, especially since the only pre-show match was a completely forgettable Superstars bout between Santino and Chavo. The coolest spot in this match was Jericho’s spinning backbreaker.
The ECW title match wasn’t much, though it did had a tough position following the always-entertaining Jericho and Mysterio. Christian got a decent reaction from the crowd, but the crowd was nearly dead for Dreamer. I noticed his music get louder about halfway through his entrance, I’m assuming to cover the lack of crowd noise.
The WWE title match was, again, nothing really special. I wasn’t excited about any of the competitors, though as mentioned above both Cena and HHH got massive reactions from the crowd. Highlight of the match was Big Show’s huge spear on HHH. Finish was good, and I think Orton winning the belt back was the least terrible way that match could have gone. It would have been nice to have MVP in the match instead of Big Show to get a fresh face in the title picture, especially since MVP keeps dropping his name into the hat in his promos. More on this later.
The announcement of Trump as the new owner of Raw was a HUGE letdown to the live audience. Names being tossed about by my friends and people in my section included Flair (the local favorite), JBL, Ted Dibiase, Eric Bischoff, and others who all would have been much better choices. The banter between Vince and Trump was obviously pre-recorded which was just awkward to watch. They’re writing him in as the new owner of the show and he can’t even be bothered to speak live? Ugh. It was a surprise, which is saying something, but not much.
Mickie and Rosa was… the time when my friends went to the bathroom. The bit at the end where Mickie and Maryse faced off was awkward at best.
The Miz is awesome. That’s pretty much all there is to say. He is golden, his promos are great, and he showed the ability to play a really really mean heel by cutting into Goldust like that. I’ll have more on him in a bit, but he was great here. To those who still doubt him because of his past on MTV, I think it’s time to really start thinking of him as the future of the business.Golddust also needs something to do on the show. His ring work lately has been stellar and he definitely is great on the stick. I don’t want to see Miz get pulled away from his program with Cena, but if they could find a direction and good use for Golddust that would be a good thing. I was just upset that the Miz didn’t get to deliver his "I’m the Miz, and I’m awesome" tagline for the crowd.
The Punk interview was handled really well. They’re doing a great job of planting the right seeds for him to turn heel, but not doing it too quickly and easily. I think they’re going to give his character a good edge (no pun intended) to it, and let the fans turn on him on our own. He clearly doesn’t understand think he’s done anything wrong by cashing in the MITB against Jeff, but made it clear that he doesn’t want anything to do with guys like Matt Hardy. The World title match was booked very well. There were some really cool spots, including Punk jumping over Edge and letting Jeff eat the spear. The spot that sent Punk to the outside looked like it was botched as he hit the stairs on the way down. We noticed that he was being attended to by blackshirts and not the ref, which led me to think that he might actually be hurt. Another blackshirt came running down from the back in the middle of the match and stayed through the end, making me think that it was an unscripted injury. Whether it was written in or not, it was handled very well in the match. The crowd favored Hardy much much more than Punk, so he naturally became the heel when he interrupted the pinfalls. Jeff looked pretty vicious when he fought back on the outside, targeting the knee. This should develop very nicely. With the title scene playing out as it is on both shows, Smackdown! is moving farther and farther ahead of Raw in terms of intrigue.
The Hart Dynasty vs. the Colons was like any WWE tag match, meaning it was short, uninteresting, and lacking in any cohesion. Oh well. David Hart Smith has a bright future, assuming he can keep his name off the suspension list. He’s got the right look and looks great in the ring. I wish the match had been given more time, as both he and Tyson Kidd are fun to watch.
The Battle Royal was a good finish for the night but could have been written better in my book. I don’t think the TV audience saw the Big Show’s entrance, but as soon as he came in, the Miz hopped out of the ring. Show got on the mic and ran down the Miz as being a coward. Miz’s reactions were great, which was just more gold from him.Eliminating MVP so early just confirmed my early suspicions… the return of HHH means that he won’t get a sniff of the main event scene. His elimination was so early in the match, and so unceremonious, that it really killed any momentum that he might’ve had. William Regal had a GREAT showing… why couldn’t they do the same for someone who was on the verge of a main event push two weeks ago? The elimination of Matt Hardy was fun to watch and I thought was a very creative spot. I was sitting on the side of the arena where Miz was in full view the entire time. I was hoping that when it came down to Cena and HHH that Miz would come back in, catch Cena by surprise and eliminate him. IMO this would have given the Miz something huge to build on. HHH tossed Cena out right away anyway, so why not give the Miz something to work with? He could talk about how he bested Cena and give him some legitimacy. Instead he became a comedy spot. Shame.
Maybe the biggest highlight of the night came after the show ended. HHH tossed his elbow pads into the crowd and a little kid got caught up in the craziness as people went for it. He went down, got the kid, and brought him into the ring. They posed together and HHH brought him back to his dad. This was a really really classy move on his part and must have made that kid’s year. I’m sure he’ll never forget it. I’m normally not a fan of HHH because he’s just so damn adept at crushing other people’s momentum, but Paul Levesque is truly a class act. Good for him. HHH had some more fun with the fans, stealing JR’s hat at one point and continuing to shake hands with a lot of people in the front row. JR eventually got his hat back and HHH and all the announcers posed at the top of the ramp together. HHH looked like he was genuinely having a great time.
Despite some of the letdowns (Trump, no Flair) and throwaway matches (Mickie/Rosa, Colons/Harts) I still had a great time. I think it’s funny that the most intriguing storylines and matches actually came from the Smackdown side of things, but I guess that’s the way it goes. I think the Friday guys put on a much better show and wouldn’t have minded at all if it had been a SD/ECW show that rolled through town instead. Perhaps the Trump storyline may lead to a change in direction for Raw, so it could end up being interesting.
The following is from Patrick
I have been to many live WWE shows in my life, including three wrestlemanias, and tonight by far was my favorite. Triple h has always been one of my favorite wrestlers, and tonight made me proud to be a wrestling fan, as the show was awsome, and many of the wrestlers enteracted with the fans, and my favorite part of the night was when the show went off the air, and hhh threw hisout into the crowd, and one kid got knocked over when the scuffle was going on for the 2nd pad, so hunter brought the young boy in the ring, for what i am sure will be something he will never forget, as he posed with the boy, and then went around and interacted with every one of the fans sitting around the rails. This was by far the greatest raw show i have ever been to.
The following is from Alex
This three-hour edition of raw most certainly did not live up to all the hype. Four championships on the line! That is about the amount that one pays for a pay per view to see! With four titles on the line, I had anticipated something special, but got a dragged out version ofRaw with 4 of the most lackluster title matches that I had ever seen.
Allow me to list things that need to be tweaked:
1) In a three-hour special, people expect to be blown away, not to see championship matches that look like tna impact main events (less than 8 minutes when you remove commercials, with no good spots)
2) Who expects me to believe that WWE is a divisable asset and that different people can own different brands? Wouldn’t a different owner technically make it a different federation? I’m just glad that what I had feared when Vince announced the "sale" did not come true and that is that Dixie Carter is not the new "owner" of raw, because Raw’s matches would get even shorter, and each two-hour program would feature 30-40 performers in order to model impact.
3) Hornswoggle needs to go.
4) In a battle royal for number one contendership, I would place all 22 members of the roster who aren’t world champions in the battle royal (even Hacksaw and ), as it would contribute to the excitement and set the battle royal mentality. In order for it to be a good battle royal to me, I need to see people get thrown out of the ring right at the beginning.
5) Commercial-free raw is a good idea, as I saw a commercial in the 8:00 hour telling me to watch the 9:00 drama block on TNT, and I would not be surprised if people switched the channel right then and there. "Well if USA doesn’t have faith in their own product, then why should I?" they ask themselves.
6) Glad to see that after 2.5 months of Carlito and Primo appearing sporadically with the belts since their last defense, they will finally defend those belts and most likely loose them to an even duller tag team at the bash. I hope the colons retain, then loose the titles to the hart dynasty the week right after the bash.
7) Randy Orton vs. Triple H last man standing is WWE saying "thanks for watching this crappy over-hyped edition of RAW, here’s a decent reason to turn in next week."
In closing, I would like to add that next week’s raw looks to be a great one. Without commercials, raw might actually give mid-carders a chance to shine, as WWE tries to cram most mid-card matches within one segment between commercials.
The following is from Brad
Okay so let the Vince is a crackpot for letting Trump be the on screen owner, but I say it’s just what the Dr. ordered. He as well as the WWE needed an overhaul and this just may be the ticket, all is well in wrestling for now all we need is HBK to come back which might happen durring living legend get his due.with Priceless stalking HHH during the last man standing match. Taker can rest, Kane can recover, and let , , and Edge take things over. , it’s great to see a
Now that that’s been said, I was very pleased to hear what Hunter did for the child at the event. It’s great to see a man of that stature break his bad ass mold and show some compassion. I hope it will be posted on youtube soon, just hearing of this warms my heart.
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