By Ryan Kester
John Cena and Mark Henry
This week's show-closing segment was great. John Cena made Henry looks like a legitimate threat but being so weary of his potential attack. Henry's smirk and demeanor as he left the intimidated Cena in the ring drew good heat. This is the type of build we clamor for from John Cena and when he delivers, it does wonders for his opponents and for the match he is involved in hyping.
Henry was treated very well this week. From the closing segment to the video package that made him look like an absolute monster, WWE succeeded in making him look like a real contender for the WWE Championship.
Now, these two will still have to have a match at the end of all this, and it's easy to worry about Henry coming out of the match. He's being built up extremely well, the past few weeks, but he's facing a WWE Champion that is very early in his current run. Henry is a very threatening force now, but if his story ends with him being unable to capture the one title he couldn't capture before, where does that leave him?
Dolph Ziggler and Alberto Del Rio
This story took a bit of a backseat position on Raw, but Dolph Ziggler is starting to get a better reaction as a babyface from the live crowds. The crowd on Raw was quieter than normal, but Ziggler still got a good set of chants for his comeback and a pop for overcoming 3MB's attack after the match. WWE could really help him by moving on from the Showoff moniker and finding some new theme music to go with the babyface turn, but it's good to see that Ziggler's turn didn't kill his momentum as some worried it would.
Alberto Del Rio continues to impress. WWE is going all in making him feel like a stronger act than he has in his previous heavyweight title runs, and his more viscous ring style suits him so much more. I still get the sense that WWE needs to drive home his heel turn to the viewing audience with a big heat moment, but so far his reestablishment as a credible main eventer is going swimmingly.
Randy Orton, Kane, and Daniel Bryan
While the interactions between these three men have been entertaining, for the most part, the time has come for the next chapter. I imagine the plan is for that to take place at or directly after Money in the Bank, but the holding pattern these three have been in is beginning to get stale.
The acts involved are still enjoyable, but there's only so many times we can hear the same lines and see them hit their same spots without progression before it gets old.
Last night's Raw was solid, but it didn't have the momentum that the past few weeks have had, and the mid-show drag returned. It was not as bad as it has been, but WWE still has some work to do with regards to its pacing. This certainly came off as a transitional week to a bigger show next Monday, and the much hyped debut of the Wyatt Family is enticing.
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Kester's WWE Raw Rundown: Mark Henry intimidates John Cena, Dolph Ziggler costs Alberto Del Rio a win, and Randy Orton, Kane, and Daniel Bryan continue to bicker
Jul 3, 2013 - 10:10 AM
Jul 3, 2013 - 10:10 AM
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