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WWE Raw onsite report: Detailed report on Undertaker, The Rock and John Cena, C.M. Punk drawing heat, Steve Austin fans, post-show observations of Jack Swagger and Zeb Colter, and Primo and Epico
Dot Net reader Matt Teal attended Monday's WWE Raw event in Buffalo, New York and sent the following report.
There were a lot of Steve Austin and "What?" signs. Wishful thinking maybe? Also, the "what?" chants really need to end. Undertaker was mostly what people in line were talking about.
Seeing Undertaker live was something to behold. There was a great pop when he came out, but when the WrestleMania symbol came up behind him the roof blew off.
There was a nice setup for the four-way match to start the show. Everyone but Big Show got nice ovations. Randy Orton is still very over. I like how they are going about this with building C.M. Punk up again via earning this spot. When he mentioned The Streak, he really got some nuclear heat from the crowd.
Ryback vs. Cesaro: Boy, Cesaro made him look really good. Interesting to see Ryback play a lot to the crowd. Even doing the Hulk ear thing except he just looked like a guy with swimmer's ear. The crowd didn't seem to know what to make of it. A great moment with him and Mark Henry
Mark Henry vs. Zack Ryder: We are in New York, so Ryder got some love...well, that didn't last long.
Miz with Ric Flair vs. Team Ziggler: Flair is still over. Seeing Flair and Ziggler out there at the same time really made me think about how they make sense together as opposed to Flair with Miz. I was in the upper bowl and could still see how good Dolph bumps. Ziggler losing to the Miz should make the smarks ecstatic.
The Rock and John Cena verbal exchange: Anyone else feel like this is the exchange we should have seen last year. They both looked strong. Good exchange. Rock got the loudest pop of night. In watching this closely, I feel like maybe Rock genuinely doesn't like Cena, period.
I was taking a deep breath. It felt like WWE really went all out in first hour. I wondered what could top that. It was the best hour of Raw I've seen in months. One thing I like about this season is the slow methodical builds they seem to be making.
Jack Swagger: Boy is Swagger not over. I heard a strong DWI chant, which I did find hilarious. Having Alberto Del Rio attack in him backstage felt strange. If he's a face now, why let Swagger beat up the "common man" Dusty Rhodes and the other legends only to get at him later.
Prime time Players vs. Team Hell No: Darren Young showed no signs of injury. I heard a strong "We want Virgil" chant, which got Ted DiBiase's attention. Daniel Bryan is definitely over. Seriously What happened to Tensai?
Fandango vs. Kofi Kingston: I seriously thought Mr. Fandango had no chance. DOA. But this guy can cut a promo. He actually got heat. I expected an effeminate voice to come out when he started talking but this might actually work. Great move holding off on match. It got the crowd angry. I so expected this disaster of an idea to go over like a fart in a phone booth.
Triple H: Still pretty over. There is something to be said for someone with an established ring entrance.
The Shield promo was a nice tease. It had everyone in my section guessing about what they were going to do.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Wade Barrett: Way to get a world champion over by having him come out at the 2:15 mark. Even better to bring out no heat guy (Swagger) to bore the crowd. Del Rio is so smooth in ring, though. I really dislike secondary champs losing. Hey, they actually advertised a Del Rio vs. Ziggler match for Smackdown!
The New Age Outlaws vs. Primo and Epico: The Outlaws can still can go. Pretty big pop for them considering that this is historically a slow part of the show. It's always interesting to put old acts who are obviously going to be one and one over on an established regular tag team. No lie, on the ride home to Rochester after the show I saw Primo and Epico at a rest stop Tim Horton's still looking defeated. It is saying something when this week sucked more than most for them. That bar was pretty low to begin with.
Mae Young birthday cake: Oh lord Jesus it's a fire! That cake lit up the whole arena.
Cool to see wrestlers interact. It seemed like a lot of the superstars genuinely seem to like Cena. Wrestlers seemed happy for Mae. The Punk interruption was brilliant. Not sure if his promo in the ring made it to air but man is he firing on all cylinders. We are talking nuclear heat. Orton once again got one of the bigger pops of night. Sheamus looked like he may have tweaked his knee during match. There were some great spots for everyone to look strong. The finish was well done. Everyone stopped running to the exits when they heard the gong hit again.
Taker and Rock (tie)
I didn't mention the 3MB segment...did anyone even catch that I forgot it?
The Old School powder blue ring announcer getup got a laugh.
They said they sold out the arena and it looked that way live. I saw only a few random empty seats.
I know it's my imagination but the Undertaker almost looks like he floats when he does that slow walk.
I kept thinking to myself after two hours that "I'm still really into this, where's that lull that Jason and Wade talk about? 12 minutes later, I couldn't find the energy to go much more than stand there like Jack Swagger did.
I saw Jack Swagger at the same rest stop as Primo. He appears to have bulked up a bit since his last run. Old man Dutch was hanging back in the rental car like a boss in the passenger seat waiting for him.
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