What's up wrestling fans? I'm here with a preview of tonight's 3 hour Raw special being billed as WWE's "Three-For-All" broadcast. All three major titles in WWE will be on the line during tonight's show including the World Heavyweight Championship, the WWE Championship and The ECW Championship. Additionally, the General Manager position on Raw is now vacant, and a successor to Vickie Guerrero should be named sometime during the event. With an already stacked line-up for tonight, let's take an in depth look at what should be a big night for Raw in Charlotte, NC!
Why Not Promote This Show?
First off, I don't understand why WWE doesn't promote these 3 hour events better. They used to promote them weeks in advance as major shows, but now it feels like they announce the week before that the following week is going to be a 3 hour special and only take one week to hype the show. Not that they haven't hyped this show well during the past week, because they've put together a solid main event card in addition to the new GM angle, but if they had spent several weeks promoting this show, then they could have built its importance all the more. The 3 for all concept could have been announced, and although the participants in the bouts would be unknown as there were still title matches yet to be wrestled on PPV, the audience would have something to look forward to and more importantly, plan for in advance. I'm sure there's a percentage of people out there who simply can't watch all 3 hours of Raw tonight because of prior obligations they had thinking that Raw would be its normal 2 hours tonight. If the 3 hour show was announced weeks in advance, then people would have time to plan for it, thus bumping the overall rating a bit for WWE.
Fatal Four-Way Match For The WWE Championship: Triple H vs Randy Orton vs John Cena vs Big Show: Why are Big Show and John Cena in this match? I understand that they are main event level wrestlers, but they have been away from the title picture long enough now that it seems odd to just throw them into a title match when they are amidst a grudge type feud of their own. Either way I don't see Show or Cena walking away with the title tonight unless WWE decides to pull some type of a swerve, but even then it wouldn't be the right move in my opinion. Cena and Show, especially Cena, need to be kept away from the title right now while they finish the program they are working with The Miz, and it seems unnecessary to have all three of them feuding with the title involved as well. That said I would liked to have seen some new blood involved in this match considering MVP did throw his name into the hat last week but apparently no one decided to pick it.
It's my belief that WWE wanted to throw the fans a curve ball at "Extreme Rules" by having Batista go over Orton even though a good percentage of us knew that The Animal was injured heading into the bout. WWE knew he needed surgery and that he would be missing at least enough where he'd have to relinquish the title, so all-in-all I don't think WWE was ready to end Orton's title reign, they just did a hot shot title switch at the PPV to get people talking. That said, I see Orton winning tonight and picking up where he left off before "Extreme Rules," which makes sense because I don't think it's time to see Triple H with the strap just yet.
CM Punk (c) vs Jeff Hardy vs Edge in a Triple Threat Match for The World Heavyweight Championship: I suppose it was because the Edge vs Jeff Hardy bout ended in a DQ this past Friday night on Smackdown that tonight's match is now a triple threat match, but realistically Edge won his singles match so it should just be Punk vs Edge. But in this case I'll take the triple threat match over the logic of its booking because this has the potential to be the match of the night. Obviously Punk needs to go over here if WWE wants people to believe he has an ounce of credibility as a title holder, but more importantly it's going to be interesting to see how the match is booked. If WWE goes down the same road with Punk the last time he was Champ, then they'll make the mistake tonight of giving him the victory, but he will not have earned it. Some fluke type finish will happen where Hardy hits Edge with the Twist of Fate then the Swanton, only to have someone like Matt Hardy come out and pull him out of the ring as Punk gets the lucky cover for the win. WWE needs to avoid a hypothetical situation like this. They need to book Punk strong here, and if he does indeed win, it needs to look like he earned it and is fully capable of beating guys like Hardy and Edge. This will make him a credible main event player now and in the future.
ECW Championship Match: Tommy Dreamer (c) vs Christian: A lot that was said about the CM Punk bout can be said about this match as well. Tommy Dreamer has won the ECW Title. But that's only half the battle. I give WWE a lot of credit for making this long awaited dream come true for Dreamer, as they have done in the past with guys like Benoit and Mysterio, but before I pat them on the back with both hands, I'll have to see how he's booked as the champion during his reign, however long it ends up being. Dreamer has to look like a champion while he's the champion if he's going to look back on his win at "Extreme Rules" with any amount of dignity. WWE has a bad habit of giving underdogs a chance at the title and then burying them while they hold it. Here's a "what would you rather:" would you rather have the title and be a chump champion or not have the title at all? Might be a harder choice to make then you'd think.
Incidentally, here's another "what would you rather:" would you rather have bologna ankles or mayonnaise hair? That's another tough one.
Raw's New General Manager
It was announced last week that Vickie Guerrero has resigned from WWE and her GM position is now vacant on Raw, so the big question tonight is "who will be Raw's new General Manager?" The show is emanating live from Charlotte, NC, otherwise known as Flair country, so it does make sense to predict that The Nature Boy will be announced as the show's new GM, and it would make for some very compelling television to boot. We reported here on WrestleZone that Flair actually backed out of his obligations at the Ring of Honor show this past Saturday in New York City, and all indications are pointing toward him working a more full-time schedule with WWE and signing a more lengthy contract with the company. That combined with the fact that Raw is in Charlotte tonight seem to indicate that all the stars are in line for an announcement to be made that he will indeed be Raw's new GM, but if he isn't, here are a few names that I would like to see fill the spot.
Vince McMahon: we haven't seen him on TV in awhile and more importantly we have never seen him in a position of "power" on Raw as a face, which is something that would be refreshing for the audience as well as the Mr. McMahon character.
Shane McMahon: he's always entertaining in an on-air role and the GM spot would suit him nicely. He could work as the GM and occasionally get physically involved in the show, which is something GM's rarely do. If he gets pissed enough, he can book himself into matches. Cool idea I think.
Santino Marella: at this point WWE is not doing anything with him as a wrestler, and his matches are far less entertaining than his character work, so why not give him a shot as the GM? I know, it's far fetched, but it could work.
Leave it to WWE though, the GM will most likely be announced as Hornswoggle. Yikes.