Posted on 01/25/11
Knee-Jerk Reaction (RAW 01/24/11)By Derek X
Less than a week away from the Royal Rumble and I don't think I've ever been this excited. I'm not being facetious. My excitement level is at about a 1 out of 10. Seriously, I don't think I've ever been this excited for a Royal Rumble. Usually, I'm at or around 10, given the Royal Rumble is my absolute favorite PPV each year. WWE's efforts to make the Royal Rumble more exciting (i.e. adding ten more losers to the titular match) isn't doing much to help. I think what I need to get excited is an undercard. Why is there no undercard for this PPV? There is barely even any rivalries worthy of a PPV undercard in development as everyone is so damned intent on competing in a Royal Rumble they have no hope of winning. Stupid WWE. And they wonder why their stocks are falling.
WHAT I LIKED:
Champion vs Champion:
I know at the beginning of this match that there is no way there will be a clean finish. And in case there was any doubt, here comes Dolph Ziggler on commentary. Come on, WWE, two commercial breaks? Yeah, that means it's a long match, which is good, but it really takes the momentum out of the match for us home viewers. You could have shown commercials instead of the Cena/Miz promo which was completely unnecessary. Regardless, this was a decent match altogether and Randy Orton's return was done correctly... aside from him RKO'ing Dolph Ziggler. Edge should have speared Ziggler if they really wanted the faces to get over, after all, it is Edge who is in a rivalry with the guy.
Corre vs Nexus
Even though the whole ordeal was spoiled by the AnonGM, a Cena name-bomb, and Ezekiel Jackson looking like he was about to pass out, I must admit that I marked out a little when Corre's music hit. I ouldn've hoped for more than we got, but I wasn't expecting anything at all, so that was a good little mini-surprise. I also like the idea that one of the stables will be kept out of the Royal Rumble. No surprise here on which group that'll be...
Morrison/Henry vs Sheamus/Del Rio:
I don't even know if I would call this match a cross-brand tag team match. Del Rio has been on RAW just as much as Smackdown lately, so it's difficult to figure which show he's actually on. You know what's also hard to figure? Why WWE is so insistent on trying to push these four men as 'dark horses' to win the Royal Rumble. I expect all four of them to make great strides during the match and perhaps even last a good while throughout, but neither of them will win it. It's just not going to happen. Royal Rumble implications aside, this was a nice match. It's always great to have a decent length tag match on RAW - that's not something we get everyday. The end to this match should quell all speculation on Mark Henry winning the Rumble. You don't tap out in RAW and then win the Royal Rumble match. WWE booking is bad, but it's not that bad.
Harris/McGillicutty vs Santino/Kozlov:
I think this match might be the best one of Santino Marella and Vladimir Kozlov's reign as Tag Team Champions - and it was in a losing effort. Santino was particulary impressive, that is until his pulled out his Cobra... I also have to give a lot of credit to Husky Harris, who hasn't lost a step since outperforming everyone on NXT Season 2 in my opinion.
Joe Hennig (a much better name) did well too. I can't wait for him to adopt his real name. He's the son of a true legend. It's time they allowed him to wear that perfect last name.
WHAT I HATED:
Opening Special Exhibition:
There's a reason why neither Jack Swagger, Drew McIntyre or Tyson Kidd could eliminate Edge during this exhibition... because seeding in the Royal Rumble doesn't matter. In fact, the 'numbers' that they claim the Royal Rumble is all about, they don't matter either. The only number that matters is the amount of money Vince figures in his head the Royal Rumble winner will draw in. And for a super-sized Royal Rumble like this, there are only two or three people who could win it.
I said I would reserve judgment until I saw what he could do. Well, here we go. Judgment #1:
Walking down to the ring, he had a totally bewildered look on his face - just like Batista. Of course, that could be because he's a rookie and he's just taken aback by this exposure. Judgment #2:
The voice. I believe he's from Wales, so an accent was due. I kind of like the accent. It gives him a bit of a difference from the normally gruff-voiced big men that WWE loves so much.
Remember what I was saying earlier about a Royal Rumble undercard? You know what match did not need to take place tonight and would have been better served being a part of that undercard? Did you guess this one? Is it because these questions are inside of this bracket? Or are you clairvoyant?
The Bella Sluts:
So, they're in a competition to see who can bag Daniel Bryan first or be his 'first'? Isn't that blatant slut behavior? I could see if they were... if it was... nope, no matter how you spin it, they're being sluts. At least now when I call them 'The Bella Sluts', I'm being accurate. Oh, great, now Daniel Bryan us in a relationship with Gail Kim? Will this perversion never end? At least Gail can actually wrestle. END THIS STORYLINE IMMEDIATELY!!!!
Barrett vs Punk:
The match started in earnest at 9:55, so time was already in short order. Then the next three minutes was wasted having to watch John Cena act like an idiot while ejecting the members of Corre and Nexus. Then, of course, Cena gets away with murder attacking both opponents and neither one of them can touch him - even if he wasn't the referee. More juvenile antics from Cena, and my eyes are almost stuck to the top of eyelids from rolling them so much. This is followed by AnonGM basically making this entire match a waste of time by putting both teams in the Rumble after all. AAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!! <--- Frustration.
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