Kester's WWE Raw Rundown: The final hype for Elimination Chamber includes CM Punk stealing The Rock's Championship, The Shield getting turned back again, and Jack Swagger and Mark Henry getting renewed pushes
By Ryan Kester
CM Punk and The Rock
All the men involved in this build, Paul Heyman especially, are doing their jobs and are producing some quality segments. Elimination Chamber is looking like a stacked card, but I still find myself most excited about what's happening with the WWE Championship.
However, I feel like WWE shot themselves in the foot with the approach they took on the go home show. Rock and Punk had an amazing verbal exchange before, but they were kept relatively separate since. Yes, they've had some physical interactions, but these are two of the best talkers WWE has at their disposal. Why on earth didn't they utilize them to their fullest?
The Shield vs. Ryback, John Cena, and Sheamus
There's something off about this storyline. WWE is doing several things correctly, both with the Shield and the way they are presented, and with the handful of babyfaces they are pairing them with. However, I am finding it difficult to get excited about the eventual confrontation between the two teams.
A large part of my misgivings about this match may have to do with Cena's involvement. No, that isn't the standard internet wrestling fan complaint about Cena; it's due to the way he is destined to move on as soon as Elimination Chamber concludes to work with the WWE Champion. With the future of the leader of the babyface team so clearly outlined, it makes it difficult to invest in the rivalry that's taking place in the present.
Jack Swagger and Mark Henry's Renewed Pushes
It's nice to see Henry and Swagger getting some attention from creative following their lengthy absences. Henry looks like an absolute beast in his assaults. WWE has a lot of rebuilding to do with Henry considering how much he jobbed out after injuring his groin last year.
Swagger is obviously getting primed for a run with Alberto del Rio. I expected he would be getting a slower push over several months, but it's obvious after the inclusion of Zeb Colter that Swagger is their next challenger. The inclusion of Colter is a good thing for Swagger, but as a viewer I hope they curtail some of his more xenophobic comments so they don't pass into the realm of racism.
Last night's show was good, but it still suffered from the extended runtime. WWE is draining their live crowds with these marathon shows, and their lack of energy directly effects the quality of the television product. I still don't feel like we're on the Road to WrestleMania, and a large part of that is due to how much the show drags by the end.
If you have any questions or comments or just wish to chat with a fellow wrestling fan about whatever, then feel free to email me at email@example.com or follow me on Twitter.
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