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Yes! Yes! Yes! The Raw Review (#YYYTRR)

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Considering WWE only comes to the UK a few times a year, I’d expect a bit more effort to be put into the product when the British fans are allowed the experience live.

We got the Raw standard of a few good matches, and a couple of relevant things happened. The thing which stole the show had to be what I’ve dubbed as Vince McMahon killing Survivor Series, though.

Not only did the Traditional Survivor Series match become a waste of time this year (the only storyline angle I can think of is Dolph Ziggler’s insistence that Mick Foley was too old to compete in this year’s Royal Rumble), but the WWE Championship match that will now take place is predictable (John Cena doesn’t need the title, and Ryback is too fresh in the main event to end a title reign that will be one day off of a full year in length).

Punk screwed Punk?

CM Punk’s crusade for respect has taken quite a few turns over the last year. After 351 days, Punk has been involved in a battle over who the “best in the world” truly was, a three month feud with Daniel Bryan which showcased some of the best matches of 2012, countless matches with John Cena, and more recently the introduction of Ryback to the main event picture.

We are a mere fourteen days away from Punk completing a full year as WWE Champion, and I for one would rank it as the most interesting run in several years. There is just one more obstacle facing Punk before he can reach the milestone year though, a Triple Threat Match versus Cena and Ryback.

Whilst logic dictates that anything other than a CM Punk victory would be pointless, it seems that WWE planting The Rock in the WWE Championship match at Royal Rumble has backfired. At least it seems that way to me…

After watching this week’s Raw, it seems that Ryback has been pushed too quickly to believe as WWE Champion (the fanfare is based on the fact that it would be surprising in my eyes – and I do chant “feed me more”) and my gripes with Cena go a long way back in this blog. My thoughts on the current state of the WWE title picture are very simple – Daniel Bryan should have never been relegated to the Tag Team Championship. As entertaining as Bryan is as the technically proficient half of Team Hell No, his run with Punk was short-lived and could have easily continued with or without AJ.

I honestly think Daniel Bryan and CM Punk are the two best technical wrestlers in WWE right now, and much like Kurt Angle and Brock Lesnar have done they could have gone all the way to at least TLC or Royal Rumble embroiled in a more and more intense feud.

My main point here is that CM Punk’s title reign is nearing its end not because he has become stale (he hasn’t, his promo this week still has me interested and his matches are still good as a heel), but because WWE aren’t letting anybody on his technical level face him.

I mean, you have Dolph Ziggler right there and even he has to settle for the World Heavyweight Championship…

Live from Birmingham, Alab… sorry, England

I am choosing to dedicate this section to the fans in attendance of this week’s Raw, and the UK fans in general. It is in part due to the lack of interesting content in this week’s show, and also because I think us fans in the UK are hugely unappreciated by WWE.

I brought this up in my first edition of Yes! Yes! Yes! The Raw Review, but this week’s crowd made me want to drive the point home once again – the UK deserves to host a pay-per-view, namely WrestleMania!

Before anyone brings up the logistics of the US having to be awake at “insane” times to watch WrestleMania if it was held live in the UK, I want to stop you right there by reminding you that we stay up every week on a Monday night, sometimes Friday, and once a month on a Sunday, to watch the WWE product. Not only that, but every year at WrestleMania you see that thousands of the fans in that crowd are from other nations, and there is always a select group in the video packages that come from the UK. It may forever be a pipe dream to wish for any PPV to be held in the UK in this day and age, but if anybody outside of the US shows their commitment to the WWE product more that the US itself it is the UK.

If you need any more convincing that we are a committed fan base, just listen to the Birmingham crowd from this Monday. They were electric for what was a very poor episode of Raw (in my opinion), and it made the show worth watching in my eyes.

Also, we have to put up with American Football ruining the pitch at Wembley Stadium every year, and I don’t remember there being much call for that…

In other news…

The Miz quits Team Punk – this was on the cards after last week’s escape by Punk, but as we all know by now it didn’t even matter.

R-Truth, Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara def. US Champion Antonio Cesaro & The Prime Time Players – A decent opening match, but I did spot a Sin Cara botch for old time’s sake.

The Vickie/Cena/AJ scandal – I’m not sure how this is even a storyline…

Wade Barrett joined Team Punk (nee Ziggler) – At least Barrett gets a role at Survivor Series.

Cody Rhodes def. WWE Tag Team Champion Daniel Bryan – I have to know, why did WWE book one of their best received stars to job to Cody Rhodes?

WWE Tag Team Champion Kane def. Damien Sandow – An easy way to level the playing field between Team Hell No and the Rhodes Scholars, but I think this should have been the initial squash match.

Brad Maddox gets a chance at a Million Dollar Contract – Say what you will about Madox ruining the Hell in a Cell main event, but I already like him. His promo showed promise and he seems to have the look of a potential star. I just hope outside interference helps him earn a contract.

Sheamus def. The Miz – simply put, this was the match of the night. It had a back and forth tempo, and Big Show on commentary teasing to knock Michael Cole’s teeth down his throat is hard to dislike.

Layla & Kaitlin def. Divas Champion Eve & Aksana – Sky+ exists for a reason…

Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston def. Alberto Del Rio – I would have liked to see more of Kofi’s aggressive streak here, but it made Del Rio look strong and evened the score with Orton and himself.

Team CoBro def. Primo & Epico – I fast-forwarded to the inevitable Cobra for this one. I have no interest in seeing Zack Ryder in the ring whilst he thinks he’s a horny Jersey Shore teenager. I also think Primo & Epico deserve better than losing to WWE’s comedy team.

Wade Barrett def. Brodus Clay – The chants throughout this match were awesome. En-Ger-Land! En-Ger-Land! En-Ger-Land! is a personal favourite.

Heath Slater def. Jey Uso – Another obvious outcome, but I wasn’t aware the 3MB had such popularity in the UK.

John Cena & Ryback def. WWE Champion CM Punk & Dolph Ziggler – This was a better main event than I expected it to be, and the final stare down did a little to enthuse me for Survivor Series, but not too much. I expect something incredible to make this incredibly short build worthwhile.

You can probably tell by now, but I’m not overly enthusiastic for Survivor Series.

I want to tell you that there was storyline progression this week, but Punk’s title reign is based solely on whether he can pass the final hurdle and make it to a full year at this point. I expect next week will be all about Cena being fed to Ryback, whilst Punk will be in the background (it always seems to be the case when Cena’s involved, don’t you think?).

This week disappointed me purely because the fans were the best part of the show. I’m glad WWE’s fans are so vocal when the show goes on tour, but when you have to rely on the fans to pick up the viewers’ interest you know you lack that special something.

Thank you for reading, and as always leave me your feedback on here and on Twitter (@SpringerAJ) using the hashtag #YYYTRR.

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  1. ToiletBowl's Avatar
    Only 3 uses of "whilst"? You're slacking...
  2. ComingToCinemas's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ToiletBowl
    Only 3 uses of "whilst"? You're slacking...
    Lol, why would you go to the effort of counting that?
  3. grave's Avatar
    i agree, weak show and the cena vs ryback vs punk match ruined a possible good survivor series match (although i didn t like the teams to much, to much a hiac flashback)
  4. Muzza_H16's Avatar
    That was a disgrace. Wwe rewarded an unbelievably hot UK crowd with a terrible RAW. I felt bad.

    On another point though.... you talk about the UK not being treated fairly by the WWE.... well I think anyone else from Australia would agree.... where the hell is our TV taping of Monday night RAW?!?!? We're one of the biggest sporting nations and we're getting completely neglected. Sure we get our tour every year, but I don't think that's good enough. No wonder the UFC is taking over here. They actually realise how worthwhile it is hosting taped events here.

    So feel free to talk about not getting a PPV over there... at least you get a taped RAW.
  5. King MC's Avatar
    I'm not sure it's so obvious that Punk will retain at Survivor Series. If it was a one-on-one with Ryback, then I would agree with you. However, they threw Cena in to the mix, and I honestly think it'll be Cena/Rock at the Royal Rumble.

    On the other hand, if Cena were to beat Ryback then realistically there shouldn't be anybody that he couldn't beat. Eh.
  6. ToiletBowl's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by ComingToCinemas
    Lol, why would you go to the effort of counting that?
    I enjoy your use of the word. So a simply ctrl+F and I saw how many times it was used.
  7. ToiletBowl's Avatar
    Exactly what is the WWE doing with Daniel Bryan? They have a guy the "universe" is begging to make into a massive superstar. Yet, it's like they are deliberately holding him back. Vince definitely is out of touch. I mean, the DB is probably one of the top 2 most over guys in the company, if not THE most over guy in the company. How hard would it be to have Kane say something like, "Dummy, the crowd is chanting 'YES' because they are supporting you". Then let DB embrace the "YES" chants and I think the WWE has created a mega star. They dropped the ball on this immediately after Wrestlemania and have continued to drop the ball since.

    Dont get me wrong, I love the comedic interactions of Kane and DB as well as the anger management sessions, but the dude had a bigger crowd reaction in the UK than Barrett! Let the other stars pick up the "NO" gimmick. It could be an easy way for DB's heel opponents to get some in ring heat. Imagine a feud with Ziggler and DB. Ziggler saying "NO" would be great and only increase the "YES" chants for Bryan.
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