It's Monday, Summerslam has passed, and everyone is looking forward to Raw.
Randy Orton regained the title, Kelly Kelly was able to actually wrestle, Big Sexy made a comeback, and a destiny has been fulfilled. Pretty unexpected night right? I'm going to talk about each of the matches, my personal thoughts on them, and grade each match.
6 Man Tag Match AKA The Guys We Didn't Bother Writing a Story For:
It's Miz, Alberto Del Rio, and The Truth going against Mysterio, Morrison, and and Kofi Kingston. I guess this was supposed to be a spot to let the midcard shine but instead it a place for spotmania 2011.
We had John Morrison spots, and Kofi Kingston spots, and Rey Mysterio spots. Did anyone else think that that match had too much going on or wasn't given enough time? Either way, it was a decent match, that just didn't feel right...but hey, the crowd was hot for it.
My rating: B-. I would have liked to have seen more and something other than Super Rey. Kofi needs a better gimmick stat, the guy is awesome in the ring.
F For the booking team. How do you have this much talent in a match without any build-up?
Wade Barrett Vs Daniel Bryan:
This was a pretty good match with lots of back and forth action. Barrett is one of the better big men in the business and it's nice to see he finally got a win on a PPV after months of getting squashed by guys like Ezekiel Jackson. Unfortunately, that win was at the hands of a guy they are trying to build up as a main eventer in time for Wrestlemania.
Unfortunately, the match didn't have much going for it in terms of spots and I felt it didn't have the greatest build-up either. Nevertheless, good work from two of the best young guys in the business.
My rating: A for the in-ring work. D for the booking. Wade needs wins but so does Daniel Bryan. Why book someone to go over the MITB winner clean?
Kelly Kelly Vs Beth Phoenix:
Someone tell me where and when Kelly Kelly learned to wrestle? Okay, she wasn't great but compared to what we have seen in the past this was pretty good. It was the first watchable Divas match in a long time and Beth did a wonderful job making the match believable.
Kelly Kelly countered Beth's finisher into a roll-up for the pin which looked pretty smooth. Sadly, it was another Divas match ending with a roll-up, which seems the way they have been booked for over a year now. I'm not a fan of Kelly Kelly, but I'm ok with her holding onto the title since it will bring us a rematch.
My rating: B- in ring. B- booking.
Sheamus Vs Mark Henry:
Let me be clear, I mark out for Sheamus as a face. As much as I like Sheamus, I fully expected this match to suck. I was mistaken. Other than the finish, it didn't have any major spots, and it wasn't technically pretty at all. But I thought it worked, I liked the way that Sheamus tried to go toe-to-toe with a bigger man and on occasion dominated Mark Henry.
It really made that entire "Irish Warrior" thing work for me. I felt that match had a pretty good build-up because I was excited to see it even fully expecting it to be horrible. Overall, it was a decent match that fit into the character of both guys. Sheamus has a chance to be over with the audience, unfortunately being destroyed by Mark Henry greatly hurts his character.
My rating: C+ In ring, A- build-up, F finish. I'm sorry, but Mark Henry is not main event caliber and no matter how many Kane's, Big Shows, or Sheamus's he destroys is going to convince me otherwise.
Christian Vs Randy Orton:
How many times have we had to watch this one? It's a boring storyline that looks it may still continue. That being said, the in-ring action was great and once again, Christian left it all in the ring. This match stole the show with great back and forth action, some good spots, and a sick bump. It also got almost 30 minutes of in-ring time.
I could go on and on about how I thought this was their best match yet. I could also list this reason #537 that I hate Randy Orton. Christian took all of the bumps, worked most of the match, but Randy still had to go over.
My rating: A+ in ring, match of the year candidate. D build-up and booking. I'm simply tired of this feud and Super Randy finding new and exciting ways to grab a guys head while he falls. I have the feeling I'm not alone.
CM Punk vs John Cena:
Great build-up, good in-ring work, the crowd was hot, and three unexpected endings. What more can you ask for? A lot actually. CM Punk pinned Cena with Cena's foot on the ropes, which would have been fine if they hadn't done it last month with Christian.
Kevin Nash ran in and leveled CM Punk after the match, which would have been great if it wasn't Kevin Nash. This is the hypocrisy that TNA fans (how few they are) scream at WWE fans over. In TNA, Nash was a dinosaur that hasn't had a good match since 1999...but now he's great?
Nash is great on a mic, and had a good run in his day but lets be honest...his knees are gone. He can't compete at the main event level anymore, and I'll eat my hat if I'm wrong about this one. Nash will blow out his knee in the course of this feud. It happened the past two times he got a push in TNA.
Alberto Del Rio cashing in the MITB this early was a surprise. I'm cautiously optimistic as I'm a big fan of Del Rio, but I think they waited too long to pull the trigger (he should have won the belt on Smackdown) and I'm not sure he can handle being the main guy.
Cena and Punk don't need the belt to be relevant, as long as they get TV time.
My rating: A match with a lot of 2 and 3/4 counts. A+ build-up, I was just as hyped for this as I was for their MITB match. B- writing to close the show. I'm not a fan of Nash being throw into a main event angle at his age with his health track-record.
The PPV had lots of great in-ring work with the co-main events being two of the better and more memorable matches this year. Daniel Bryan and Wade Barrett showed why they are the future of the company while R-Truth and Kofi Kingston showed they should be the present.
In addition, Kelly Kelly showed that she can be serviceable if put in the ring with a Diva who can carry the match.
Unfortunately, the booking was pretty lack-luster. Randy Orton doesn't need to carry the belt all of the time, and having two guys you are trying to push (Sheamus and Daniel Bryan) lose cleanly and convincingly makes no sense. Smackdown's writing team is so lost right now.