18th Feb2014

WWE RAW Results & Review (17.02.14)

by Chris Cummings

WWE-Raw-logo

Welcome to this week’s RAW write-up.

Tonight’s show opens with John Cena’s music playing and him making his way to the ring to his usual reaction, the kids cheer, the rest of the fans boo. We see a replay of Cena pinning Orton in the main event of last week’s RAW. Cena poses for the fans before speaking. He talks about the upcoming Elimination Chamber PPV next Sunday. It’s the usual “shout and whisper” Cena promo to which most fans scold with boo’s. Cena says that he has headlined WrestleMania many times and plans to headline, against Batista, again this year. He insults Randy Orton but gets booed for it. Cena mentions Bryan, and the fans chant yet. I guess he has to get a pop somehow. Cena predicts that there will be a new WWE World Champion after the Elimination Chamber match on Sunday. Cesaro’s music hits and he comes out with Zeb Coulter. Cesaro says that he also beat Orton last week and announces that he will be the next champion. Cena does his comedy shtick and buries Cesaro with stupid comments designed to belittle the talented Swiss Strongman. Sheamus, smiling like a moron, heads to the ring next and talks about how he is going to win on Sunday. It’s the usual, “I’m gonna win. No, I’m gonna win” stuff that we see every year at this point. Christian makes his way out next and threatens Sheamus. Orton makes his way out and says he will beat everyone on Sunday at the Chamber. Orton talks to each man in the ring and tells them how he is better than them. Daniel Bryan then comes out to a big pop and lots of “yes” chants. Bryan makes his way to the ring, grabs a microphone and says that the people have “spoken” for him. The fans cheer. Bryan talks about the importance of the Chamber match, and how the winner will go on to main event WrestleMania 30. Bryan says that everyone will be chanting “yes” at the end of Sunday’s PPV. Kane then comes out, stoic-faces, and makes some matches for tonight. Kane announces Cesaro versus Cena and Christian versus Daniel Bryan. The Christian/Bryan match will be next.

The match begins quickly and Christian goes on the offense, playing the heel in this match as the fans chant for Bryan. It seems that they’re going for a possible heel turn for Christian which is a good thing and might breathe some new life into Christian’s career. Kane watches on from ringside here. Christian keeps the match slow and works on the arms of Bryan, mocking him and the fans with “yes” motions during the match. Christian gets lots of heat here which is cool. Bryan fights back with kicks to the legs and torso of “Captain Charisma”, but Christian gets back on the offensive and gets frustrated when he gets a two count after countering a Bryan-splash. Bryan fights back again with corner dropkicks to Christian. It’s a very back and forth match and Christian seems to be in control for a good volume of the match. Bryan rolls up Christrian out of nowhere and scores the three count victory. Bryan celebrates with the fans in the ring, chanting “yes, yes, yes”.

Kane congratulates Bryan, but then announces that Bryan will wrestle again tonight, against him. Kane gets in the ring and attacks Bryan as we go to a break. We return from commercial and the match has begin properly, with Kane beating Bryan as Bryan sells pain on the mat. Kane is wearing suit-pants and a white vest here, which seems to be the in-ring attire of this version of Kane. Kane works on the already-pained arm of Bryan, stomping and stretching it. The fans chant for Bryan while Kane continues to beat on his former ally and tag team partner. The fans chant “you sold out” at Kane. Bryan fights back with a missile dropkick on Kane, followed by his signature kick spot, but Kane reverses and throws Bryan out of the ring by his throat. Kane stretches Bryan around the ringpost but the referee calls for the disqualification when Kane refuses to release the illegal hold. Kane continues the assault on Bryan after the bell, tossing him into the steel stairs and stomping on the arm of Bryan. Kane says “yeah I know, I’m disqualified” before laughing, and walking away. Bryan sells the assault at ringside while the announce team express some concern.

Renee Young is backstage talking with The Shield and she mentions that they need to be on the same page for their match against The Wyatt Family on Sunday. Rollins says that they’re on the same page, Ambrose and Reigns say that they don’t experience fear. They then put their fists together, united.

Fandango and Summer Rae are in the ring next, and Santino and Emma make their way to the ring for what is a one-on-one match between Fandango and Santino. They show a NXT clip of Emma and give the fans some information on the new diva. This match is the usual comedy silliness that we’ve seen for years from Santino. It’s not good, and the fans hardly react. Fandango wins this poor match fairly quickly as Emma looks upset at ringside. Emma consoles Santino in the ring.

Renee Young asks Mark Henry, backstage, how he thinks he will fare tonight in his match. Henry reacts angrily and says he will induct Reigns into the Hall of Pain tonight. The Shield are out next, followed by “Big” Mark Henry for his match with Roman Reigns. The fans chant for Reigns in the early-going here. Henry uses his strength to dubdue Reigns, splashing him in the corner and taking him down with a big boot. Reigns fights back with a chinlock on Henry and an impressive samoan drop for a near-fall. Henry does the Junkyard Dog crawling head-butt on Reigns which was fun to see. Reigns the Superman-Punch on Henry and signals for the spear, which he easily hits for the three-count. This match was much quicker than expected and was almost a squash to show the talent of Reigns. Ambrose attacks Henry after the match but Reigns shakes his head at Dean, asking him what he is doing. The Wyatt Family then appear on the titan-tron and do the surreal-riddle promo that they are known for to hype the Shield/Wyatts match at Elimination Chamber on Sunday. Reigns reacts and calls them out, to which the crowd cheers. It seems that Reigns is the sole-babyface at this point in this feud. The Wyatt Family’s music plays and the creepy-trio make their way to the ring. The lights turn on and The Shield and The Wyatt Family stare each other down, much-like last week’s RAW. Reigns steps forward before his Shield-mates, signifying his leadership perhaps. The Wyatts then leave the ring, like last week, to boo’s from the fans. This was just a repeat of what they did last week and a final push for the PPV.

We get a “Bad News” Barrett segment with Cody and Goldust where Barrett ruins a game that the Rhodes brothers are playing. Silly.

Kofi Kingston is in the ring for a match with Jack Swagger next. Both men already in the ring as we went to ringside. Swagger will be wrestling Big E for the I-C title on Sunday, so this seems like it is here to give Swagger a win before the PPV. The match is decent and each guy gets lots of chance to show their abilities and shine in the ring but the fans don’t seem interested in the match at times, chanting “JBL” and ignoring the in-ring product, which I hate to see and don’t understand why fans are doing this nowadays. Swagger locks in the ankle lock on Kofi for the submission victory, winning a decent little match. Big E comes out as the match ends but Swagger bails.

Big E is already in the ring for a match as we return from commercial break. His opponents tonight are Drew and Jinder Mahal from 3MB. Zeb Coulter berates Big E on the mic while Big E is in the ring. Big E gets beaten down a lot here which is unusual booking, plus I have no idea why this is a handicap match. Weird. Zeb keeps insulting Big E as the fans sit on their hands. Big E nails Drew and Mahal with suplexes and the whole match is messy and clumsy. Big E wins the match but this was the worst in-ring segment of the year so far.

Renee Young is with John Cena backstage and Cena talks about how everyone will have to go through him to be the face of WWE. How true that is.

Cena is out next for his match against one of the best that WWE has to offer, Cesaro. Cesaro is accompanied by Jack Swagger and Zeb Coulter. Cesaro and Cena test their strength against one another in the early going here. Cesaro tries his best to pull Cena through some cool spots here but Cena’s refusal to sell to anyone and lack of psychology makes it hard to enjoy as much as normal. Cesaro has the fans chanting along with him when he does the “we the people” bit. Cesaro tosses Cena into the barricade outside the ring and hits him with a dropkick inside the ring, before keeping Cena grounded with a sleeper hold. The kids chant for Cena and Cena fights back before being knocked down again by Cesaro. Cena hits a full nelson slam into a neckbreaker for a near-fall, and Cesaro takes control again, baseball slide kicking Cena out of the ring. Cena, at times, sells for Cesaro fine here, but it’s the sudden bursts of energy and non-selling that makes the pre-selling pointless. Cesaro is in control for most of the match, and it is an okay match-up with Cesaro being allowed to look like a tough opponent to the indestructable Cena, which is nice. Cena stops selling all of a sudden, as usual, to hit his silly-looking shoulder blocks. Cesaro goes for the Cesaro-Swing but Cena reverses it to a mass of boo’s from the fans. Cena’s offence is booed more and more as the match progresses. Cena goes for the Attitude Adjustment but Cesaro reverses it into the launching-uppercut for a near-fall. The fans chant “this is awesome” for what is Cena’s best match since his match against Daniel Bryan at SummerSlam 2013. Cena hits a big DDT for another near-fall. Cena goes to the top rope but Cesaro knocks him off and to the floor with an uppercut. Cesaro lifts Cena into a superplex which looks great, but only earns Cesaro a two-count. The fans pop for Cesaro’s work, and the announcers put over both men. Cena locks in his awful looking STF but Cesaro counters it into the Cesaro Swing, which earns him a big pop. He swings Cena fourteen times and gets another two-count. The fans chant “this is awesome” loudly, again. And it is. Cesaro goes for his finish but Cena counters into the AA, which Cesaro reverses. It’s all reversal after reversal which ends with Cena hitting the AA for the three-count. A predictable outcome to what was a very good match and the best Cena has looked in a long while. Cesaro should be rewarded for pulling a good match out of a guy who hasn’t had one in months. Cena doesn’t sell a thing once the match is over, by the way.

Randy Orton and Triple H are talking backstage and Orton tells Hunter that he appreciates what he has done for him in the past. Batista comes into the picture and calls Orton an “ass”. How creative. Batista and Triple H seem friendly which might result in a heel turn for Batista soon, considering the fans are booing the so-called animal like a heel already. Del Rio comes into the scene and insults Dave, who proceeds to shove ADR.

Los Matadores and Sin Cara are out next for six man tag team action against The Wyatt Family. The match is created to put over The Wyatt’s prior to the upcoming Elimination Chamber show. Harper does a lot of the work here, using his brawling and power moves on his opponents. The masked babyface team fight back now and then but eventually end up back on the receiving end of Wyatt Family offense. Bray ends the match by hitting the Sister Abigail driver on Sin Cara for the three-count.

The New Age Outlaws, time travelling from 1998, are in the ring next for a one on one match against one half of the best tag team in WWE today, The Uso’s. The Outlaws do their shtick before the match. I hate that they are champions, but hopefully that will change soon. Billy Gunn will face Jay Uso here and this is here to hype the match at the Chamber PPV for the titles. The match doesn’t last too long, it’s just a promotional match, and Jay gets the roll-up victory over Billy, before he and Jimmy hit suicide dives on the Outlaws. Hopefully The Uso’s will finally get a run as tag champs after Sunday.

Randy Orton comes to the ring, his WWE World Titles over his shoulders next, followed by his opponent, Sheamus. This is the main event of RAW and the final RAW sell before Elimination Chamber. The back and forth action is what we have come to expect from these two men from the variety of matches they have had over the last few years. I still feel like it is too soon to begin booking this match regularly again, but hopefully this is just a one-off, because these two men seem to have worked together too often over the years. The match is okay and they sell well for one another throughout. They trade holds in the ring, hit signature spots, brawl around ringside and nail each other with hard hitting kicks, stomps and clotheslines. It’s all very tidy and decent, but not particularly exciting, and definitely not fresh. Orton suplexes Sheamus through the announce table at ringside which gets a pop and a “holy shit” chant from the non-PG fans. You can tell that these guys have a chemistry and enjoy working together by the work they do in the ring. The Shield interfere suddenly, followed by Cena and Bryan, followed by Christian and Cesaro, and The Wyatt Family, and the whole ring is brawling and trrading blows as the show goes off the air.

Until next week.

RAW: Best Match: Cesaro vs. Cena

RAW: Best Talker: Randy Orton

RAW: Dud of the Night: Santino/Fandango match, Big E/2MB match

RAW: Surprise Moment: Cena having a good match

RAW: Honourable Mentions: Daniel Bryan, Roman Reigns, Randy Orton

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