Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Bash & Monday's Raw

I'm not going to get into too much detail with these as ITVR podcast is only tomorrow night, but some quick thoughts (which as always could turn out to be not so quick ...)

  • My predictions were basically right on for the Bash - except foreseeing the Edge-Jericho pairing which makes sense in a Rated RKO kind of way (two top heels seeking to dominate the fed, not really trusting each other but figuring they're stronger together than feuding), and also forgetting to call the Jericho-Mysterio match, which I would have been wrong about as I didn't know about the unmasking stipulation, but would have called correctly if I had.
  • This means it was a basically predictable night but one that was strong on action; most matches here were good and the one REAL clunker (Khali vs. Dolph Zigler) featured Kane's much-anticipated return (what, he'd been gone? - shows how much I watch SD; I also thought Zigler had been released).
  • The one thing at the time I wish had been done differently was Cena defeating Miz - as you recall I called it, though saying it was a great opportunity for the WWE to have Miz get a fluky win over Dr. Thuggy-pants, by way of help from Big Show or what have you. I ended up appreciating the 'going the obvious route' much more by Raw, however. And why was that?
Well let me fill you in on my RAW thoughts ...

  • I'm actually going to go against the grain here and state I'm a fan of the 'guest host' concept; I'm not a fan that Vince McMahon felt the need to undo all the other things Donald J. Trump had done as Raw owner but not the 'weekly celebrity guest' idea, but I think this provides something new and different, an authority figure to still act on behalf of the show, but a chance to showcase some different names and talent every week. Do I think this is a bit experimental to be trotting out on WWE's flagship program and think it should have been tried on ECW or Smackdown first? Yes, I do. But it's still a worthwhile 'new' thing to try.
  • This week's guest host: Batista, who did a 4-man mini-tournament for the WWE Title Shot at Night of Champions next month. Triple H soundly defeated MVP, and John Cena beat the Miz, but here's the thing - Miz had some credible offense and seemed to have learned from the night before. That kind of detail and continuity is rare in WWE these days but those things ARE the small things that take a show from 'OK' to 'special'. Am I still disappointed that so early on in the tourney concept we have the same ole on the title chase? (Cena-H next week for a shot at Orton, who has feuded with both of them extensively) - yes. I think having MVP or Miz surprisingly go through could have added something here. But they both put on a good show and got a rub from working with the top two names on Team Raw.
  • I'm disappointed at the LACK of continuity on the other hand with Ted Dibiase Jr.'s questioning of Randy Orton at the Bash; I don't want them to hotshot Teddy's turn, I like the slow burn here, but to act like it never happened doesn't strike me as a trait of Ted's or Randy's. Perhaps this story will be a bit furthered next week when Dibiase's father, the Million Dollar Man, is the guest host.
  • Speaking of which - that was the other main element of Raw. Batista let us know that Trump, before re-selling Raw back to VKM, had orchestrated a 15-person trade between ECW-Raw-Smackdown; Randy Orton was going to fight a gauntlet match against 3 of Raw's 5 new acquisitions.
  • I liked the suspense thru the night here as to who would come out, and it was definitely a 'calling up to the big leagues' for young stars Evan Bourne and Jack Swagger; I enjoyed how they used Swagger here, purposely taking a 1o-count countout from the referee. I'm assuming he was paid off by Ted Dibiase, and Mark Henry by contrast teased he'd done the same before fighting Orton anyhow, begetting a (!) face turn. My only complaint here, on an otherwise perfectly-executed angle, was that WWE then went and revealed the names of the other 12 draftees involved in the trade; I'd have liked this to play out in reveals over the next week or two ahead on the various shows. But you can't win them all I guess ...
  • Other midcard storylines included the beginning of some dissention between Carlito and Primo Colon as they failed to beat Edge and Jericho for the tag belts; Mickey James earning a shot at the Diva's Title held by Maryse; some decent action and good storytelling.
The details of both shows, how Night of Champions is shaping up, other real world news and the ramifications of this midseason 'draft' will all be discussed on tomorrow's ITVR; be sure and tune in then and please in the meanwhile enjoy your Canada Day!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Bash Predix

As promised:

I'm predicting a Punk retention here, and I'm expecting at least one of the following two things: 1. his full-fledged heel turn, and/or 2. an Edge run-in as he's effectively the last real champion, edged (ahem) out of this match, with no other match under his belt for tonight.

(three stages of hell match - 1 fall match, then falls count anywhere, then stretcher match). I'm guessing Randy Orton retains here; he just won the belt this particular time about 2 weeks ago, Triple H is just back from some time off (not that that's stopped anyone before), and he so dominated Orton in their earlier feud that letting Randy get some of his own back wouldn't hurt anyone.

(Tommy Dreamer vs. Christian vs. Mark Henry vs. Finlay vs. Jack Swagger) - I think I've got that right. Either way, either Tommy Dreamer retains (if Vince is trying to go all fan-friendly and give Tommy a REAL final run), or Christian wins the belt back (if Vince goes with the stronger option longterm). Look possibly for a Hart Trilogy interference here as well.

I'm looking for Michelle McCool to win here; WWE doesn't put much stock in the women holding belts for a prolonged period of time, and Melina's held it awhile anyhow. Hopefully this match lives up to the potential I see in it, although I doubt it.

On a PPV? Really? a PPV? OK fine ... Khali for the win in a squash.

The obvious choice here is John Cena for the duke and I'm going with that one based on WWE's general lack of creativity in such situations. However this almost seems SO obvious, and so clearly laid-out on paper, that a sheer upset for shock value wouldn't entirely surprise me either, and is certainly how I would go; while John Cena wouldn't be damaged in a big way by a nice surprise rollup or such, the Miz could earn some amazing cred by beating Cena.

I'm predicting the two junior Legacy members to win here; WWE has more invested in them and they look so secondary to Randy Orton that some gold might look nice here; not to mention then that every Legacy member would be a champion.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Wrestling news and my thoughts

So today was too nice a day to spend indoors and now it's 'pay attention to the Little Tyke' time - it's his last meal before bed and change, etc. time; so we're going to go, y'know, be parents. We might still do ITVR after he's in bed depending on the time etc. but in case we don't I do want to touch on the thoughts that come into my head about wrestling this week, and assure you this isn't the only ball dropped this week, it's been an odd and unproductive one (house is messier than it's been in awhile, I have a cold, having trouble finding a summer job, some plans that kept falling through, y'know, one of those weeks); We'll be back up and running fresh tomorrow and going forward, after a good couple of weeks. In the meantime though:

  • I talked about Raw; the other big onscreen news is the Bash PPV tomorrow; if we don't do predix on air tonight be sure and tune in tomorrow for those from me before the show.
  • Condolences to Paul Burchill and his family as his brother passed away this week of cancer I believe I read.
  • I checked out Chris Jericho's Twitter page this week and it's quite entertaining; poignant tributes to Michael Jackson and going back some funny stuff. Check out a ways down Jason Powell's site at for a list of wrestlers' twitters and their responses to Jackson's death this week.
  • Matt Hardy injured himself on Raw but is keeping positive, speaking of some big upcoming changes in the weeks ahead; it will be interesting to see how that plays out as he's expected to take 3-4 months off nursing a torn pec.
  • Brian Christopher Lawler was arrested for public drunkenness this week after falling down drunk outside a convenience store. He is a wrestler in his own right, and more particularly the son of Jerry "The King" Lawler
  • I discussed the changing of Cyber Sunday into a Hell in a Cell PPV - my opinion remains the same. So does Ari's.
As I said - tune in at least for Bash predix in the next 24 (OK ... 23) hours if not a full-on ITVR; if no ITVR materializes accept our apologies and we'll be back on the ball w/a good one next week. Meanwhile hope everyone is as busy as us in a good way, enjoying life and the summer, and take care! Be well.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Apology & comment

Hi guys - not feeling very well at all today which is why ITVR hasn't gone up - I've been asleep since around 9 or so. But the format is all cued up and ready so it will go up tomorrow promise, and I apologize I knew when I woke up with a cold today it would be a struggle to get the show done. And if it's any consolation it's been one of those weeks - this isn't the only thing in which I've fallen behind (you should see my house right now, sigh).

But as I say - during the day tomorrow for sure, to talk about all the things I listed yesterday, plus today's arrest of Brian Christopher Lawler for public intoxication, and the discussion of WWE doing away with Cyber Sunday and replacing it with Hell in a Cell.

Which is something I want to quickly rant about, podcast or no - the Cyber Sunday concept was tremendous; I know it didn't give us a whole lot of say-so and freedom, but it provided the illusion of it. And every so often, we really did get to make some meaningful choices as it pertained to matches. To not only replace it, but to replace it with a PPV on which all matches occur inside the HIAC structure, I think is a bad decision. HIAC is one of the most straightforward and yet innovative new matches WWE has come up with in the last decade or so, and it is seen as a signature match in which feuds and and careers are shortened. They treat it as special, therefore it is seen as special by fans. To have an entire (say) 6-8 match PPV based inside the cell, will forever cheapen this important match. Sad.

More on all of that tomorrow though promise - ITVR is lookin' to be supersized now!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Make a liar of me - Tomorrow

Hi guys - the internet is slow tonight w/the following of the deaths of Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson, so trying to record and upload etc. has been a pain, not to mention that yes, admission, we've been following some of the coverage. It's a sad night, one I'm used to in terms of wrestlers but is strange to digest in terms of other avenues in life. Things are loosening up a bit and we could probably record now, but the baby will be up soon for food and we're both getting tired. It's lame and there's no excuse, but I've had a couple good weeks of posting, and we've had 3 or so consistent weeks of podcasting, so we appreciate understanding from the millions ... and millions of our fans. ;)

But rest assured ITVR will be up tomorrow in full force - we'll discuss Torrie Wilson's runner up finish on "I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here", Ken Kennedy's further comments on his release from the WWE, Matt Hardy's injury status, and of course the onscreen product - the Donald Trump episode of Raw this week, and The Bash coming up Sunday. We're sorry for making y'all wait again - but we promise it will be worth the wait. Until then, be well.

ITVR Update

Hi guys - sorry about last night's lack of ITVR; but anyone in SW Ontario knows of the heatwave and we absolutely could not put off installing our air conditioner any longer; we will put up our podcast tonight however so be sure and tune in - by about midnight.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

RAW Last Night and Billy Red Lyons

Raw last night was not especially memorable, save the lack of commercials and the at-times awkward product placement (KFC buckets on the announce tables ...), some excellent work between John Cena and the Miz, and Vince McMahon buying back Raw for twice what he sold it for. They changed up the stipulation for Sunday's match between Triple H and Randy Orton to be a 'three stages of hell' match (more on that tomorrow on ITVR), and Vince had a schitzo night being booed by the fans in his interactions with Trump, but taking out his frustrations on the heel Randy Orton (also a good job by him and Triple H, by the way).

Trump, in his short tenure as Raw owner, proved his lack of business sense as well by offering a refund on Raw tickets to all comers in the arena last night - so definitely some interesting moments and some decent wrestling, and some better-than-average promos/skits due to the lack of commercials, but nothing that felt like a go-home show in terms of Sunday's PPV - the show itself and its novel commercial-free status and Trump's presence kind of took away from that build. It wasn't awful, and it got good ratings, proving to Vince & Co. that despite our griping the Donald's stunt-casting worked, just for a show before a PPV, with a special feature like no commercials, and a celebrity appearance in Trump, it could have been even bigger is all I'm thinking. Still - entertaining anyway. :) It was also just unfortunate that Matt Hardy - who's been working through a broken hand the last 6 weeks or so - tore a pec on last nights show; he's expected to be out 3-4 months. Again - more on all of this and the buildup to The Bash on tomorrow's ITVR.

And finally, on a sad note, Canadian Wrestling personality Billy Red Lyons has died at the age of 77. He was the face of the 'event centre' for the then-WWF coming to Canada when I started watching wrestling in the late 1980s and early 1990s, where he would run down cards coming to Maple Leaf Gardens and signing off with his trademark "Dontcha dare miss it!" - Lyons was a recognizable and legendary figure in Toronto wrestling and he will be missed.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Slammiversary and Raw

Last night was TNA's Slammiversary PPV - did anyone get a chance to catch it? I'd love to hear how the show was, as it sounded in some instances like it had some potential, but also had a few gimmick matches that had the opportunity to overwhelm the quality of the show.

Tonight's Raw's first 'Donald Trump era' episode, commercial free, featuring a matchup between Triple H and Randy Orton, just 6 days before they face off on PPV. I'll be sure and post my thoughts on the show later tonight or tomorrow.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Several contract status updates, and a correction


Both Candace Michelle and Sim Snuka (Jimmy Snuka Jr.) were released by the WWE today. Michelle has had difficulty staying un-injured since the beginning of her wrestling career, despite having worked very hard to hone her craft and having learned several moves. Hopefully this time away will either allow her to pursue less dangerous avenues, or to tighten up her wrestling ability.

In the case of Sim Snuka, my initial reaction was 'he's still around?' - not that he isn't talented or entertaining, and not that he doesn't have potential, but as he hasn't been onscreen since being drummed out of the legacy along with Manu (Afa Jr.), and since Manu had been released shortly thereafter, I had just sort of thought he'd gone the way of the dodo as well.

Nonetheless these two were respectively hard working and talented, and I wish them well in finding future opportunities.


Kurt Angle confirmed that his contract with TNA expires in a few months' time on Sirius Satellite Radio today, while praising Vince McMahon's move in the last couple of years to cover rehab for any former WWE employees who might need it. Angle remained mum on whether he would resign with TNA at the end of his current contract, or return to WWE; he only confirmed that he was on good terms with both companies. I would actually not be surprised to see a jump back to the WWE in this case; Angle got the change of scenery he needed from the WWE, had a chance to recharge his batteries with less travel, has remained relatively healthy while still performing at a great level in TNA, but has a less-than-stellar working relationship with TNA founder Jeff Jarrett and now, with his marriage over, is probably more freely available to WWE's more rigorous travel schedule. Only time will tell, but I would not bet against an Angle return to the WWE by year's end.


A correction; WWE official and former tag team champion Jerry Brisco has been ailing of late; I first reported he had a stroke earlier this week, but that was later corrected (as we reported on ITVR) that he simply had a blocked artery. It turns out he has actually had several strokes. He is in surgery very soon, and we continue to wish him a speedy and full recovery. Our thoughts remain with Jerry, and his family.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


As always, click the link in the heading for the podcast. Enjoy.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A lawsuit and best wishes

As per usual we'll be talking about these two stories more in depth tomorrow but -

It's being picked up in such 'mainstream' media as TMZ that the Big Show, aka Paul Wight, is being sued by SoBe Entertainment. During his time away from the WWE approx. 2 years ago, Show was supposedly training to become a boxer; SoBe offered him a big $$$ contract plus some front money for a new home. Lo and behold come Wrestlemania time that year, Show was not only back with the WWE, but wrestling a boxer in Floyd Mayweather on the show, which grossed $31,000,000.

Here's hoping for Show's sake that he did dot all his 'i's and cross his 't's because this is the type of contractual backout that could hit him in the pocketbook.

Meanwhile I also wanted to send out In This Very Ring's best wishes to Gerald Brisco, who, according to the Cauliflour Alley Club website, recently suffered a stroke and is soon to undergo surgery. A highly successful wrestler along with his brother Jack, and one of Vince McMahon's right-hand cronies, Brisco has been a mover and shaker in the industry for decades. If this story is true (WWE has yet to confirm it but there's no reason for the Cauliflour Alley to lie about such a thing) we wish him a speedy recovery and good health.

We will talk about these two stories and much more tomorrow night, right here, In This Very Ring. Be sure and tune in. Cheers!

Monday, June 15, 2009

A few missed notes from last week, + RAW

This weekend was quite busy so while I got to watch SD etc. I didn't get much of a chance to post, or check up on the offscreen news of the pro wrestling world. So imagine my surprise when I found out yesterday evening that Mitsuharu Misawa, a Japanese wrestling legend, died during a match in Hiroshima.

My condolences go to Misawa's family, friends and coworkers - while it's almost become an accepted occurence in wrestling that there's a certain mortality rate, it's never pleasant as fans to hear and I'm sure it's only less fun for the men and women involved in the sport, and their loved ones. Especially when such a thing occurs in-ring, as a reminder that while 'fake', this sport is indeed a dangerous one and the risks everyone takes in the ring are real.

On another unfortunate, although less mordid and permanent, I also hadn't realized until yesterday that Umaga, formerly aka Jamal, had been released from the WWE earlier this week. Too bad - I hadn't been a big fan when he started out but he grew on me and by the end I was enjoying him very much - he was out a few months injured, and I was hoping his return against CM Punk etc. was going to be the start of a new push. Whether this is related to personal choices made by Umaga (perhaps HE was the major name supposedly out on an unannounced Wellness break?), or simply a parting of the ways, I do wish him the best in his future endeavours - one of the better 'big men' style wrestlers to come out of the woodwork in awhile.

Tonight was a major Raw as well. We'll discuss this in more detail Wednesday, but as this is supposed to be a blog as well as simply the dumping ground of my ITVR podcasts, a bit of a recap: the highlight of the night was by far the announcement that Vince McMahon had 'sold' the Raw brand to Donald Trump. His announcement that he'd sold the brand was intriguing and caught my attention; however, I have to admit upon learning it had been sold to Trump, I was less interested (although I'm more a 'wait and see' type than some and we'll see what Trumps involvement in the weeks ahead turns out to be). It has potential, but less so than if it were one of the McMahon kids, or Ric Flair, or someone who'd been in and around the business with a significant history with McMahon (although Vince DOES have some history with Trump, Trump at the end of the day has his own work and holdings to go back to).

Otherwise the big stories of the night would be Randy Orton's winning the vacated WWE Title in a Fatal Four Way, and two major announcements by new Raw owner Trump: 1. that next week's Raw would be commercial-free, and that Triple H, who had just won the right to face Orton for the belt at The Bash in two weeks (! - but more on that on Wednesday), wouldn't have to wait for the PPV but would get a shot next week. The other brands were also featured on Raw, particularly in world title matches; however, both champions in those cases retained.

Again, a great show that Ari and I will be discussing in much more detail Wednesday evening - along with the 'every 3 week' pay per view trend that seems to be flaring up again despite WWE cutting back on PPVs in the last 1-2 years (although we'll be going 4-5 weeks until Night of Champions and then the same to Summerslam so I suppose that's some comfort to the wrestling fan's wallet). Be sure and tune in then for all the action! Be well.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Disappointed in Joey Styles

Styles is the front man for the WWE Universe online ( and their social networking extension); formerly a broadcaster for ECW and Raw.

He's also a Twitterer. is his page.

Great thing about our neighbour to the south; free speech. Sad thing - it allows such nonsense to be spewed. Oh well, at least he's 'just a wrestling journalist' and no one CNN or the masses in general would take seriously. I just thought he was smart.

Have a great weekend all.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

ITVR podcast

You can listen by clicking the heading. Peace!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Will be posted tomorrow but with good reason - it's a mega-sized show, and will include discussion of Extreme Rules and Raw, and a review of the new Macho Man Randy Savage DVD. Be sure and tune in then for all the wrestling talk you could possibly want, tomorrow night, right here ... In This Very Ring! :D

Monday, June 8, 2009

Extreme Rules

Hi all,

So I made my Extreme Rules predix on Wednesday and have been slow on the uptake since as the mini computer problems I'd been having morphed into major ones over th weekend; but I'm back online now (or will be in a matter of hours - on the hubby's comp right now), and I just wanted to quickly post my thoughts on last night's PPV, along with a promise that all that bumpiness truly is now behind me and I'm ready to refocus on blogging now that it's not a chore just to log in. So. Extreme rules:

This was actually a very newsworthy show, and I've got to say given several pundits in the Online Wrestling Community were surprised by some of the results, I was quite pleased that my predictions weren't very far off, I don't remember them off the top of my head now but I think I did predict several of the title changes which occured, and those I might have gotten wrong I certainly said had the potential to be close and acknowledged I was coming down off a fence for them. Newsworthiness and my thoughts include (and I might get the order wrong ...) -

  • US Title match was not bad, but predictable; honestly I don't know why they had Kofi Kingston win the belt on Monday, making his retention so obvious. They had, in this match, 4 men who legitimately could have won the belt, and it was absolutely unpredictable until Kofi's win Monday. They took any mystique out of this match, which was unfortunate since, while good, it also wasn't as good as it could have been, and it could have benefited from the unpredictability factor.
  • Tommy Dreamer, the day his contract ends, wins the ECW title; this was expected and a great way to begin Tommy Dreamer's 'goodbye' run after 20 years in the industry. He's the last of the ECW originals in ECW, and it will be the end of an era when he retires. Here's hoping he reminds everyone what ECW once stood for.
  • Rey Mysterio vs. Chris Jericho was good, as any outing by these two will be, and Jericho won the IC belt as I know I predicted; I didn't foresee Rey Mysterio's unmasking and I still think that's kind of dumb given he wrestled sans mask for years in WCW, but all that's old is new again in the world of wrestling. Will be interesting to see where that goes. I agree with Jason Powell's assessment this should have gone later in the card though as it was definitely the match of the night until Hardy-Edge, and the 3-4 matches in between suffered for it.
  • Hog Pen match was exactly what I expected, no better or worse. The interaction between Vicki and Edge afterwards was interesting although I wonder how they'll be able to play the 'divorce' angle out as they're on two brands. Or if that's kind of the point and they'll just have them quietly go their separate ways 'offscreen', then that's fine too. But since it was a marriage of convenience and a business arrangement anyway, it makes no sense for them to still be married.
  • The two Raw main events were alright - I believe I predicted a Batista win which was alright enough, and John Cena vs. Big Show was exactly the same tune and lyrics as any other 'John Cena vs. Big Man' match. Which is not a complaint in and of itself.
  • SD main event is where things got interesting; I predicted Edge for the win here, while saying I wouldn't be surprised at a Jeff win; one of the most unique endings for a ladder match later, and Jeff had won the World Title. Here's where things go awry, however; CM Punk comes in, cashes in his Money in the Bank, beating Jeff Hardy for the title. So here's what we're left with: Jeff fans should have been able to celebrate his world title win, and didn't get the chance. If Punk were to win the title, his fans should have had the same opportunity, but instead it was too much a 'what the heck?' moment. It did none of the wrestlers involved any favours ... UNLESS (a) Punk is turning heel, in which case it would make sense for his 'Straightedge' character to have issues with Jeff Hardy's lifestyle, and/or (b) if Jeff Hardy is indeed taking a leave of absence this summer, although then I don't quite understand why they didn't just have Edge retain.
  • Bottom Line: if Punk is staying face, I don't understand why they couldn't have played things out the exact same way, following an Edge win.
Nonetheless an entertaining and newsworthy PPV: I question how they handled the SD title/MITB situation, but that's not un-rectifyable. We'll see where things go over the week ahead - be sure and stay tuned here for all the action!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Fun video of Randy Orton

An interview with Randy Orton on Mexican TV - WWE has since confirmed his going off on the interviewer for calling him 'fragile' was a work, but honestly as Jason Powell says, if Randy could take this and bottle it that would be awesome, because the intensity here was uber-cool.

On another note, Randy's clone, Chris Masters, is reported to be returning to the WWE. I was never a big Masters fan, but he was no less talented than a lot of the guys WWE has been pushing of late, and in fact on the contrary I've heard he's worked very hard to hone his craft and earn respect out on the indy circuit in his time away from the "E", so I'm enthused about his return. It is worth noting, however, that Wellness Policy drug test failures are lifetime, and the 3-strikes-you're-out rule is still in effect; therefore if Masters fails one drug test upon his return, it is grounds for termination. However, I've heard he's gone off performance enhancers and again, really focused on his craft in his time away, so I have high hopes for his return.


Sorry for the delay - had some trouble converting my sound file into an MP3 but got it taken care of.

As always, click the heading to listen. Enjoy! :D

Monday, June 1, 2009

Quick RAW Thoughts

My very tired Raw thoughts in no particular order:

  • The tie in through the show of Randy Orton vs. Batista, and Flair calling Orton out, and the Legacy supporting Orton, was basically strong, although makes Sunday a bit more predictable; while Batista got the better of Cody Rhodes early on despite Orton acting as spoiler to their steel cage match, Legacy trapped Ric Flair in the cage later on leaving Batista helpless to save his friend. Usually he who gets the last laugh, loses on PPV; my guess is Batista becomes World Champ and Randy Orton chases for awhile, which opens up several possibilities in terms of continuing their feud, or Batista getting into conflicts with current buddies John Cena and Triple H down the road. In terms of tonight though, a great way of giving Ric Flair a taste of the action without putting him in an out-and-out match.
  • A good promo night as well, basically - from the Miz in particular, and from Randy Orton at the beginning.
  • I don't find the Santino Marella-Vicki Guerrero thing that humorous; I wasn't a fan of slop matches when they made sense due to a wrestler's pig farmer gimmick and I certainly don't like it now where really it serves no purpose other than making fun of Mrs. Guerrero's weight. Two once-awesome comedy characters, and I don't know whether they just don't play well together or the characters are getting old on their own, but Santino as the amusing bumbler with no skills and Vicki being reduced to a shrill witchy laugh is making one-dimensional characters that have the potential for more - which we've seen in Santino's few ring successes, and Vicki playing both evil/scorned, and vulnerable in various conflicts with Edge.
  • I found the John Cena/Chavo Guerrero vs. Big Show/Miz match interesting; I'm wondering if ultimately Show ends up going face, given by the end of the match he had as much beef with the two other heels as with Cena. I also want to applaud Miz being in this match and being given something of an interesting role in it as well - the push continues and could only have been stronger, as Jason Powell implies, if he'd gotten that fluke pin on Cena after cold tagging Big Show.
  • I find Matt Hardy's helping of Edge's onscreen 'wife' interesting and I hope they pursue the history and relationship there, although with Edge on a separate brand I doubt they will - although PPVs provide ample opportunity. On a semi-related note; the Hardy-Regal pairing makes little sense given Regal's bashing of Raw draftees last month; I know they're both heels but I always appreciate it when WWE provides a bit more nuance than that; good guys don't need to like each other just because they're good guys, nor are bad guys automatically alligned for being co-heels. In fact, quite likely just the opposite in that case. This was shown much more clearly with Big Show's interactions with Miz and Chavo Guerrero.
  • Diva's match was basically non-existent; short and definitely to the point.
  • Highest praise for last: best Raw match I've seen in awhile from MVP and Kofi Kingston; always a pleasant surprise to see a title switch on TV, and Kofi's definitely deserving of this push while MVP goes on to the main event scene I presume; good show of respect between these two performers after giving it their all. My favourite Raw moment since before Wrestlemania I think, this match right here. My only fear: with MVP being so respectful of Kofi's win, and it being pimped on the show he went to prom with Sherri Shepard of The View last week, he could enter John Cena 'tool' territory quickly.
A better Raw than last week overall in terms of combining story AND action; didn't necessarily feel all the way like a 'go home' Raw, but entertaining, somewhat newsworthy with a title change, and didn't let the PPV go unacknowledged, especially with the use of the steel cage stipulation. Strong showing from the WWE, moreso than in the last few weeks now where Raw's been generally weak. Keep it up guys!

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