Powell's WWE Raw Hit List: Chris Jericho and Paul Heyman, John Cena vs. Curtis Axel, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns vs. Kane and Daniel Bryan, Dean Ambrose vs. Kofi Kingston, Bray Wyatt Family video
By Jason Powell
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WWE Raw Hits
Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns vs. Kane and Daniel Bryan: It was surprising to see them blow through the rematch on Raw rather than save it for the pay-per-view. All signs point to The Shield members moving on to face Randy Orton and Sheamus for the gold, which begs the question of where things are going with Kane and Bryan. I like the backstage paranoia from Bryan over being the weakest link and the speech Bret Hart gave him. My biggest complaint is that the Hart Attack Clothesline wasn't treated like a big deal by the announcers and was positioned as a throwaway move during the match. Why not end the match
Dean Ambrose vs. Kofi Kingston: I was even more surprised to see creative blow through this feud with a clean finish on Raw. Ambrose's decisive win was not done in a way that set up the need for a rematch between the two, so I'm not sure what's next for either man. I would have stretched out the program longer, but I enjoyed the match and the clean finish was a surprise.
Chris Jericho and Paul Heyman: A quality verbal exchange with Heyman trying to dodge questions about C.M. Punk and Jericho not allowing him to do it. Heyman's excuse for wearing the same suit he wore in the video that was shown was priceless. This wasn't the red hot reintroduction of Punk that viewers may have expected, but I hope the idea is to build up his on-camera return for the pay-per-view as an extra hook for that show. We've seen Punk vs. Jericho many times in the past, but they never disappoint. I just hope they have strong creative worked out for the Punk character beyond just coming up with a good pay-per-view opponent for him.
Wyatt Family video: WWE really created a really eery vibe with the introductory video for Bray Wyatt, Luke Harper, and Erick Rowan. It was great to see the initial direction of the app is staying true to what the trio have done in NXT. WWE has slowly but surely added a lot of new blood to the main roster.
John Cena vs. Curtis Axel: A predictable outcome in that no one expected either man to lose clean, yet it felt like the right move because it forwarded the Cena vs. Ryback program, and gave Axel a count out win he can boast about. Week two of Axel was a better than week one. They haven't done anything to make viewers think he's a future main event star, yet he seems to be slowly gaining momentum.
WWE Raw Misses
Alberto Del Rio vs. Big E Langston: I'm not a fan of watching Langston trade wins at this point. Langston hasn't been established enough to lose throwaway television matches. Del Rio doesn't really gain anything from this and it didn't leave me anxious to see Del Rio challenge Dolph Ziggler once the World Hvt. Champion returns. I am mildly intrigued to see where things go with Langston and A.J. Lee after her interference backfired. It was hard to tell whether she was being apologetic and somewhat defensive or scolding Langston for losing.
Wade Barrett vs. Fandango with The Miz as special referee: I'm still not even sure what the point of this match was. I assume they are setting up a Triple Threat since viewers have seen more than enough of Barrett vs. Miz in singles action. Here's hoping Fandango takes the secondary title, and Barrett gets a stronger push without the title that has done him more harm than good.
Randy Orton and Sheamus vs. Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow: Good action, yet the same old problem existed in that I had no doubt whatsoever that Rhodes Scholars would end up losing this match. It's a shame because they are a talented duo and they should have been established as players in the tag division rather than guys who trade wins with Tons of Funk. Hell, for that matter, I'd be fine with Brodus Clay and Tensai if they abandoned the tired funk gimmick and became bad ass heels or even tough guy babyfaces. The tag division sadly consists of the champions, their challengers of the month, and then a bunch of teams that lose to the champions and the challengers.
Brodus Clay, Sweet T, and Great Khali vs. 3MB: I wrote this one in as a Miss before the opening bell. In a perfect world, WWE would have given viewers a break from the bad comedy acts and some of the other filler in favor of showing the Bret Hart Appreciation Night ceremony during Raw.
Kaitlyn and Natalya vs. The Bella Twins: The match was the usual bad Divas action, but the post match angle with Natalya crying because the Bella Twins called her a loser was embarrassingly awful. Why is the Divas division stuck with a weird junior high school mentality? You have the mean girls, the crying girl, and the girl with the secret admirer. Please tell me Kharma is going to show up again one of these days to shake up this dismal division.
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