WWE Raw Thoughts: April 11, 2016
I have to say that for the most part, I really enjoyed Raw this week! Let’s take a quick breakdown of the show!
The opening with Shane McMahon coming down to say he’s running Raw again is still mind boggling, and Shane seems just as surprised. No Authority on Raw and no Vince, either, but we’re supposed to believe this is OK with everyone? Have the writers forgotten WrestleMania and the buildup involving Shane and Vince? Oh, that’s right, the writers want you to believe it’s all because of social media. Yeah, right. At least the beginning of the show wasn’t the same old/same old and the verbal confrontation between Shane and Kevin Owens was pretty good!
That lead us to an excellent match between Cesaro and Kevin Owens for a shot at the Intercontinental Championship. It makes sense for Cesaro to win because then we’ll get a classic heel vs. face buildup and match involving him and The Miz – and a match that I would actually like to see!
My Spidey-sense tells me that we may be seeing Shane in the ring one more time, against Owens, sometime in the future.
Holy crap! Did Monday’s crowd convince WWE yet that your audience still doesn’t dig Roman Reigns? Perhaps they feel that having the audience feel that passionate against Reigns is good for business, but I’m curious how many people have turned off Raw and cut out WWE because of him and Wrestlemania.
Just as confusing as WWE trying to push Reigns as the next top star, Bray Wyatt and his family teamed with Reigns. Why would he agree to team with someone he was just cutting promos not even a month ago and wanted to destroy Reigns over the last year? Is it because he despises the League of Nations more? That can’t be right as there has been no story told or explanation of the Wyatt’s involvement with that stable. Writers, where are you?
I’m pumped about WWE giving the Tag Team division a little shot in the arm. I’m already getting sick of The New Day and want someone to kick their asses, so a tournament to actually find a team to challenge them for the titles is welcoming. The Usos going over anyone in the Social Outcasts was a good move. The same goes with The Dudleys going over the Lucha Dragons (but having the US Champion on a losing team is bad booking).
Speaking of the Tag Team division, things just got hotter with the surprise debut of Anderson and Gallows. They came in and decimated the Usos –the proper way to make an impact. Those reading this are probably familiar with Anderson and Gallow’s background and link to NXT Champion Finn Balor, and fame of the Bullet Club in NJPW, so I won’t go into details. Suffice to say, I’m quite excited.
It looks like WWE is going forward with the Dean Ambrose/Jericho feud that was supposedly scheduled as the first program for involving these two for WrestleMania. I think there will be some great mic work leading up to their encounter at the next PPV (if WWE is smart enough to leave it until then).
Apollo Crews and Baron Corbin got some more exposure on Raw, but Crews needs a video package like they gave Corbin, who I think benefited greatly from it.
Speaking of NXT stars trying to make a name for themselves on the main roster, holy shit, was the crowd ever hot for Enzo and Cass. The line of the night was Enzo’s line, as he was responding to the Dudleys: “I’m here because my mom and dad got it on. How you doin’?” It came across as such an impromptu line and the delivery was spot on. It’s going to be great watching Enzo and Cass go against the Dudleys because if Enzo and Cass can hold their own against the Dudleys in the ring, they’ll gain the respect of a lot of people.
AJ Styles vs Sami Zayn was another great part of Raw. The match was another great TV match (not PPV quality, but almost there) and shows why these two are the future of Raw. I still think Zayn needs mic time or a video promo to get the crowd to latch onto him more, not just the soccer chant or feel-good theme music. I wouldn’t mind watching another match from these two on Raw again next week, or in the future.
Lastly, while the match between Charlotte and Natalya was OK, the ending was a mess. I’m so sick of seeing Flair get involved. I’m even more upset that Charlotte didn’t even sell the Sharpshooter that made her tap in the first place! I despise Dr. Phil and his exploitation TV show, so no matter how little he was involved, and how it seemed like knew the program he got involved in for his “guest” spot was, I prefer him not on TV.
All in all, I’m pleasantly surprised with how this episode flowed and the developments during it. I think it was better than last week’s more famous “Night After ‘Mania” edition. Leave your thoughts in the comment section!