Monday, March 22, 2010

Raw Thoughts - March 22, 2010

On behalf of Cincinnati Reds fans around the globe, let me begin this live blog by saying: PETE ROSE!  Excuse me, HALL OF FAMER PETE ROSE!  Remember to refresh your page throughout the evening for ongoing thoughts of the final Monday Night Raw before WrestleMania 26! Just six days away!

Starting things off with The Heartbreak Kid, Shawn Michaels!  When we last saw HBK, he took out The Undertaker at the end of of Smackdown, very similar to what he did last year, but if their WrestleMania match turns out like last year's did, this could be the last time we see Shawn Michaels on Monday Night Raw.  I know we went four years without seeing him on a regular (or semi-regular) basis, but the thought of a WWE without Shawn Michaels isn't a happy one.  Shawn's on fire here tonight though, saying the release of his new DVD might make people think things are coming to an end, but that we better clear some space on our shelf for Volume 2!  Awesome line.  Shawn's interrupted by a slick video package that ends with "Shawn Michaels' Career: 1985-2010," which leads Mr. WrestleMania to call out The Undertaker, but instead we get Pete Rose!  Oh God, Pete, you're a little too close to something involving The Undertaker, which means you're too close to Kane!  But Pete's out here to get revenge, he wants HBK to take out Kane in tonight's main event!  I can dig it.

John Morrison vs. The Miz is our opening contest, and I'm really excited for this one, so long as they're given enough time, which you never know with Monday Night Raw.  I really enjoyed their match at Bragging Rights and they've always had good chemistry in the ring, whether they're a tag team or rivals.  Big Show and R-Truth are on commentary for this one, getting in more last-minute hype for the WrestleMania match, and they're definitely amusing.  Gorilla and Heenan they are not, but I'd love for these two to announce a whole show just for the WTF factor.  During commercial, Miz hit a certified NASTY! move, standing on the apron and using it to hit Morrison with a sickening neckbreaker.  One "nasty" doesn't do it justice, that move was NASTY~!  That's right, I used a tilde, that's serious business.  Miz controls most of the match, but Morrison hits a sunset flip powerbomb off the top rope and follows up with Starship Pain for the victory!  Nothing too complicated here, but it did exactly what it needed to do and it was longer than your average Raw match.  Good match, good length, good build for the PPV, what more do you need?

Triple H & Randy Orton have some words backstage, there could be some tension in the main event tonight.  Hey, it wouldn't be WrestleMania hype without bitter rivals having trouble coexisting before the big show, I'm surprised they didn't give them the tag belts.

So it turns out there WILL be ten guys in Money in the Bank this year and our final qualifying match is Kofi Kingston vs. Vladimir Kozlov... seriously, Kofi better win this.  Thankfully, after taking a brutal beating, and showcasing the coolest way to exit the ring ever, Kofi wins and is going to WrestleMania! I was getting worried there.  WWE's done a good job hyping the other MITB participants this year, what was originally a surefire win for Christian, could be a win for him, Kofi Kingston, Drew McIntyre, maybe even Jack Swagger or Dolph Ziggler; I don't even think Christian is the favorite anymore.  Who do you think will win the briefcase this year?

Warning: Legacy talking, better brew a pot of coffee.  Yeah yeah, they're awesome, born into a life of luxury, they're better than everyone and don't need anyone to help them... which is why they're teaming with Sheamus in a handicap match tonight.  These three are teaming up in said handicap match (argh) against Triple H & Randy Orton.  It makes sense, it's two Mania matches combined, but still, handicap match, the bane of my existence... at least it's not 2-on-1.  Honestly, not a bad little match and the bad guys came out on top thanks to Sheamus booting Randy Orton in the head.  Hey, if only that outcome could've happened two months ago, Sheamus wouldn't have been an afterthought as WWE Champion.

Bret Hart!  I know I say this every week, but I still can't believe I'm watching Bret Hart on WWE TV in 2010.  It's so funny though, he really hasn't changed a bit, still works the mic like he did 15 years ago, still has the Bret Hart charm, I can't wait to see what this match with Vince will be like this Sunday.  Speaking of the chairman, Vince McMhaon lets Bret know that this Sunday, he's going to get screwed.  Oh dear, anyone else getting memories of WrestleMania 19 with Hogan vs. McMahon?  If Jim Neidhart hits Bret with a lead pipe, I'm going to be pissed!

Shawn Michaels vs. Kane up next, no count-out, no-DQ, same stipulation as this Sunday in what could be Shawn Michaels final match on Raw.  Now normally I wouldn't be that interested considering it's a Kane match, but it's also a Shawn Michaels match, so automatically it's going to be good.  Kane's looking good here, you can even see some abs, which you usually don't see on Kane unless you're playing Smackdown vs. Raw.  Perhaps he's in a competition with Scott Hall to determine who's more surprisingly in-shape?  The Undertaker interferes, in pure Undertaker fashion, but it's still not enough for Kane to get the win.  One Sweet Chin Music later, HBK comes out victorious, which could be the last time I type that sentence.  If HBK does lose at WrestleMania, here's hoping he gets a proper Ric Flair style send-off the next night on Raw.

Bob Uecker is the final inductee in the WWE Hall of Fame, joining Pete Rose and William "The Refrigerator" Perry in the Celebrity Wing.  If you don't know who Bob Uecker is, one: stop making me feel old, and two: go rent Major League.  And I just realized telling someone to go rent a movie makes me sound old.  Put Major League in your Netflix queue... and get off my lawn.

After Kane's loss, Pete Rose's luck is about to change... don't "bet" on it.  Get it?  The Big Red Machine continues to be the Roadrunner to Pete's Wile E. Coyote.

Six Diva tag team action with Gail Kim, Eve & Beth Phoenix vs. Michelle McCool, Layla and Maryse, and by the time I typed the competitors names, the match was over.  Although I do have to admit, the exchange at the end with McCool and Gail was the coolest thing I've seen from the Divas in months.  Mickie James, Kelly Kelly, Alicia Fox and Vickie Guerrero were at ringside as well, which makes me wonder if they're setting something up for WrestleMania.  Really odd that there's nothing scheduled for the Divas yet, they always find something for them to do at Mania, but maybe after last year's horrible battle royal, they're reconsidering that?

The cast of Hot Tub Time Machine will host Raw next week.  Hey, I'm not going to complain about Rob Cordry hosting Raw.

Our Main Event this evening is the Final Face Off between Batista & John Cena.  Personally, I'd be a lot more excited if this were the Final Face/Off and Batista & Cena did their best Nicholas Cage and John Travolta impressions.  Batista's out first and I don't think this guy has gotten the credit he deserves in recent weeks for becoming so good at being a giant d-bag.  He's not at Vince levels of evil, he's not at CM Punk levels of psychotic, he's just an asshole, and no one plays that role better than him right now.  With the mocking of Cena, talking about fat people paying for two seats, why the hell didn't they turn this guy sooner?

Speaking of fat people in two seats, they start up a "YOU CAN'T WRESTLE" chant at John Cena when he makes his way to the ring.  Cute.  Hey, with the cast of Hot Tub Time Machine coming in next week, perhaps these smarks can hop in and get out of 2005!  Anyway, standard hype here, Cena gets a couple shots in, but Batista storms off, like he said, you gotta spend money if you want to see him work.  I really dug their match at SummerSlam 08 and that didn't even really get a proper build, but with good hype and putting them on the grandest stage of them all, I expect big things out of Cena and Batista this Sunday.

The go-home episode of Raw before WrestleMania was easily the best the show has been since WrestleMania hype began.  Things have been getting better and better every week, the hype for Mania has been insanely good, and everything here was perfectly executed.  Aside from the Divas hiccup, I couldn't ask for much more in the final Raw before WrestleMania 26.  I'm probably going to say this everyday until Sunday, but seriously, Sunday can't get here soon enough.


  1. you said on twitter that bret referenced shane and linda leaving wwe. I missed that! What did he say? I don't know how i missed it! lol

  2. He said Vince "ran half his family out of WWE."

  3. odd, i completely missed that! thanks for the catch! ;)

  4. Oh no, it's another Jack Swagger in a suit sighting.

  5. I liked the slight pop for the mention of Owen.

  6. I thought that was more than just a slight pop, crowd went nuts for Owen's name.

  7. I guess that they didn't teach grammar in Deadman school. "Shawn Michaels' Career" not "Shawn Michaels Career".

  8. You know what The Undertaker has to say about your grammar lessons?