Last week on Raw, Betty White arrived and did…really little of note. Daniel Bryan laid out Kane, Randy Orton whined, Triple H and Stephanie were the main stars of the show and we had John Cena vs. Randy Orton headline. Some great wrestling, though! How will this week stack up?
We start off with John Cena making his way to the ring. Says that in six days, the WWE title will be defended in the Elimination Chamber. Runs down Randy Orton. Mentions that he beat Orton last Monday, and therefore we WILL see a new WWE champion this Sunday. Cesaro and Zeb Coulter arrive. Says that he’s not the only one who beat Randy Orton last week, and that he will not only be the new face of the WWE, but the new face of AMERICA!
Cena says that just because Cesaro beat Orton last week, doesn’t mean he’s on a winning streak- perhaps it is Orton who is on a losing streak. He has to beat six other people in that Chamber on Sunday so bring it. Sheamus arrives and mentions he’ll kick both their faces in. This brings in Christian, who mentions he’ll take out Sheamus with the killswitch.
Orton arrives and thanks the Authority for allowing him to beat all six people in the Elimination Chamber on Sunday. This is new considering the last two weeks he’s been crying about having to defend it. Runs down everyone in the ring. Orton says there’s a reason that The Authority have named him as the face of WWE, a title more important than anything in the damn world.
Daniel Bryan arrives. He says everyone knows how important the Elimination Chamber is because it leads to Wrestlemania, pointing to the sign. He says people will only be chanting one word at Wrestlemania, YES! This brings out Kane. Fans chant “you sold out” to Kane. He says that the Authority have put him in charge. He starts making matches. John Cena will face Cesaro, and Christian will square off with Daniel Bryan. He says he’ll stay right here and enjoy the view as they’re going to face off RIGHT NOW!
Mark Henry vs. Roman Reigns is tonight, as well as Sin Cara and Los Matadores against the Wyatts.
Daniel Bryan vs. Christian: Kane enters the ring, distracting Bryan as Christian jumps him and lays him out on the outside. Did Christian turn heel and inform no one over the weekend? There’s a way to be a subtle heel in situations like these but Christian wasn’t subtle at all. As we return from commercial Daniel Bryan’s shoulder appears to be in bad shape as Christian works over it. Bryan counters with a half crab, but Christian blocks it and continues to work on Bryan’s injured shoulder. Tornado STO by Christian. Christian is thrown out of the ring as Daniel Bryan flies with a suicide dive but hits his shoulder.
Daniel Bryan cuts off Christian as we return from commercial as he starts his comeback. He goes for the headbutt but Christian dodges and cuts off his comeback, only for Bryan to counter back. Christian with an uppercut off the middle rope and goes for the Killswitch, but Bryan grabs Christian’s arm and goes for the Yes Lock but Christian counters and goes for the Killswitch, but Daniel Bryan rolls him up in a small package for the victory. Good match.
Kane says congratulations to Daniel Bryan, but he neglected to inform him that he had one more match tonight- against him. Bryan jumps Kane, but Kane attacks the bad shoulder as we go to commercial.
Kane vs. Daniel Bryan: Kane works on him for a good while, but Bryan cuts him off with a missile dropkick. He does his kicks, but Kane grabs him by the throat and throws him over the top rope to the floor. Kane continues to work on the shoulder as the referee disqualifies him after ignoring orders.
He destroys Bryan some more after the match then announces on the microphone that he is, indeed, disqualified. Cole mentions that Kane’s only goal tonight was to take out Bryan to diminish his chances inside the chamber.
Replay of last week’s US title match.
Shield interview. Renee asks Roman if he’s ready. Ambrose says he took care of Henry last week so tonight should be easy. Roman didn’t seem too sure about this. Renee ponders if they shouldn’t be on the same page for their match on Sunday. Rollins says that he appreciates what Renee is trying to do, but they’ll be fine. Reigns says that the Wyatts will go down on Sunday, and you can believe that.
Fandango (who kind of gets his entrance) vs. Santino Marella in a totally interesting rematch from last week. Fandango works him over, but Santino cuts him off with a jawbreaker and goes for the cobra but Summer Rae distracts him..only for Emma to come in and give her an airplane spin. Emma and Santino have a moment where they almost kiss, but Fandango interrupts and lays him out for the pinfall.
Mark Henry is shown walking as Renee talks about his match tonight. Mark Henry says that he should have won last week, but it didn’t happen. Tonight, against Roman Reigns, it’s all about inducting someone into the Hall of Pain.
“Speak softly and carry a big stick” said Theodore Roosevelt once. It’s President’s Day in the United States, remember.
Roman Reigns vs. Mark Henry: Some back and forth until Reigns unleashes a samoan drop. He hits the superman punch then hits the spear for the three count, just like that. Ambrose seems unimpressed as Rollins seems happy. Ambrose attacks Henry after the match as Reigns doesn’t look too happy with that as he and Ambrose exchange words.
Suddenly Bray Wyatt and the Wyatts appear on the screen. He’s singing. The clock is ticking, your defeat will not be in vain. He asks the Shield that in the end, is it all worth it? Harper asks if they’re willing to die for all of this. Wyatt says if they are, then they already lost. Reigns takes the microphone and says bring that noise out here. Bray says funny, they were thinking of the same thing as suddenly they start making their way to the ring. They have a long staredown, but the Wyatts back up and leave to boos.
Goldust and Cody Rhodes vs. Ryback and Curtis Axel will be a kick off match on Sunday. Riveting.
WWE toy advertisement time, using the Rhodes brothers. Bad News Barrett destroyed their playset. This was a waste of time.
Jack Swagger vs. Kofi Kingston: Neither got an entrance. You wonder why I mention this every week, well it’s simple. This is a three hour wrestling program. You’re telling me you can’t fit in entrances during these three hours? Also by giving them no entrances you’re telling them that they’re geeks and not worthy of your attention. So yes, the crowd became restless the moment these two started holds. Swagger did some stuff. Kofi cut him off. Cole used the controlled frenzy buzzword.
Kofi flies off with a clothesline and does something resembling a splash for a nearfall. Kofi hits the SOS for the almost three count, but Swagger puts his foot on the ropes. He flies off with a crossbody for a nearfall, but Swagger locks in the Patriot Lock and scores the submission.
Big E arrives after the match because his match is next. Swagger bails.
Big E vs. Jinder Mahal and Drew McIntyre: Coulter does running commentary running down Big E. 3MB actually work over Big E at one point during the match. Yes, this is happening. Who is the road agent for this match? They should be fired immediately as Big E shouldn’t be selling to two complete jobbers who haven’t been on Raw in weeks, perhaps months. Big E eventually takes them both out with a big splash then hits the Big Ending to both of them as he pins McIntyre in a hard fought victory?
After the match, Big E says that he hopes Coulter has adult diapers because after the match on Sunday his mouth won’t be the only thing full of crap. Oh WWE humor, never fail to be dumb. Or reference poop.
Alexander Rusev and Lana did their usual promo. This is so weird as he’s already debuted, but now they’re doing the vignettes. And to be frank, none of them have been that interesting.
Another nice Black History Month feature this week, this time on Ron Simmons.
John Cena promo. He pretty much cuts the same promo he did last week.
John Cena vs. Cesaro: Some back and forth early. Cesaro with some uppercuts, but Cena cuts him off. Cesaro opens the ropes and allows Cena to fly over as he works him over on the outside, throwing him into the barricade. Cena jawjacks him on the ropes but Cesaro counters with a dropkick and covers for a nearfall. Cesaro dropkicks Cena out of the ring and onto the floor as a commercial break starts.
Cesaro continues the offense as we come back. Cesaro wit a sleeper. Cena counters back but is quickly put back in another sleeper. Cena goes for a AA attempt but Cesaro counters with a rollup and giant swing attempt but Cena counters with the STF only for Cesaro to power out with a gutwrench suplex. Cena takes him out with a back suplex and does his comeback John Cena with another AA attempt but Cesaro blocks it and hits his flying uppercut. Cesaro goes for the giant swing but Cena lifts himself up and counters with a DDT.
Cena goes to the top rope but Cesaro counters with another uppercut that sends Cena to the ground. Cesaro grabs Cena from the apron while he’s on the top rope and lifts him up for a big suplex for another nearfall. Cesaro badmouths Cena as Cena puts Cesaro into the STF but Cesaro counters with the giant swing. Fourteen reps and Cesaro covers for two.
Neutralizer attempt but Cena counters into the AA but Cesaro floats back to his feet and hits a big boot. Cena counters with a huge clothesline, rolls over Cesaro and lifts him up, planting him with the AA and scoring the pinfall. Really great match that I would give probably ****.
“You can fool all of the people some of the time, and some of the people all of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time”- Abraham Lincoln. That’s a fascinating quote to use on WWE television.
Triple H and Randy Orton were talking backstage. Didn’t Kane mention that the Authority had given him full power tonight? So why is Triple H here? They have the same conversation they always have every damn week for the last month. He says he carried Evolution back in the day. Batista was right there. Orton casually said hi to him. Batista says that Orton is not the face of WWE, he’s the ass. Orton walks away like a chump upon that diss.
Alberto del Rio, wearing a neckbrace, comes in and says he hopes Batista doesn’t plan on winning the WWE title with his arms because at the Elimination Chamber, he’s going to break them both. Batista shoves him into some metal stuff as Triple H raises his shoulders. This is the least interesting feud of all time.
Recap of the Darren Young/Titus O’Neil feud. They’ll be facing off at the Elimination Chamber. This reminds me when Cryme Tyme split up, probably because they didn’t build that breakup match all that much either and neither went anywhere after. Titus says Darren has been holding him back from a championship and that after Sunday, he won’t have that dead weight to carry around anymore.
Los Matadores & Sin Cara vs. The Wyatts: One of the matadores get some offense in, but the Wyatts quickly start working them over. Finally the matador tags in Sin Cara who works in his offense as the matadores work over Rowan and Harper. Rowan grabs El Torito and throws him but he lands on his feet. Sin Cara takes out Harper and almost connects with the senton but Harper dodges, unleashes a clothesline and tags in Wyatt who hits the Sister Abigail for the pinfall.
Jey Uso vs. Billy Gunn: Dogg and Jimmy Uso are on commentary. Jey armdrags Billy who goes to the outside while Dogg consoles him. Back in the ring, Gunn takes him out with a clothesline and works him over. Crowd got bored pretty quickly. Gunn goes for the famouser but Jey rolls him up and scores the pinfall.
After the match, Jimmy superkicks Road Dogg, then both of them hit suicide dives to take them both out.
Sheamus cuts a promo saying he’ll go to Wrestlemania, then show off his aggressive side tonight against Orton. This was in the same locker room background and with the same interviewer as last week. Does WWE notice they repeat themselves way too often or are they just that burnt out writing eight hours of television a week?
Randy Orton vs. Sheamus: Crowd immediately became bored by this match by chanting CM Punk. Orton’s arm is worked over as he bails. Sheamus works over Orton and pummels him with knees to the fallen Orton. Sheamus misses a Brogue Kick but Orton dodges as Sheamus lands on the apron. Orton grabs him and throws him into the post, sending him to the floor as we go to commercial.
Back from it, three guesses what Orton has locked on. Sheamus powers out of the headlock and throws Orton over the top to the floor. Orton grabs him, however, and throws him into the steel steps. Orton puts him on the top rope but Sheamus powers out and hits a top rope shoulder block. Orton grabs a monitor on the outside, but instead opts to suplex Sheamus into the announce table. Sheamus rolls back in at 9 as Cole notes how tough Sheamus is.
Orton starts on the Garvin stomp but doesn’t connect with a knee. Sheamus powers back but misses a knee lift and Orton counters with a slam for a nearfall. Orton with the draping DDT but Sheamus blocks it and instead does the clubbering fists on the apron, then goes to follow but white noise but Orton counters with a backbreaker. Draping DDT now connects and Orton goes for the RKO but Sheamus blocks and works on Orton’s back and motions for the Brouge kick but suddenly the Shield arrive and start beating down Sheamus. Cena runs down and attacks. Cesaro and Daniel Bryan then arrive. Then the Wyatts enter as the Shield and Wyatts go at it to a huge pop as the show ends.
Storyline wise this show felt mostly uninspired as we head to the Elimination Chamber on Sunday. The only thing worth noting is the impending Shield breakup which I think they’ll do on the PPV, but who knows. Them against the Wyatts is the only interesting storyline heading into the Chamber as I don’t think that many people care if Cena wins the title in the main event and I don’t think any of the other announced undercard matches have any heat to them. Wrestling wise, this was a pretty good show as Bryan/Christian and the main event were solid while Cesaro and Cena had a terrific match.
It’s been a dull few weeks past Royal Rumble, but I think things will start to change next week as a bunch of returns are slated for next week’s Raw, including The Undertaker and Hulk Hogan. Plus, it’s the big push to the WWE Network as it will launch following Raw next week, so that’s gonna be pretty damn interesting.