For Your Consideration…The RAW Judicial Review for 1/31/11
by Andy Wheeler on January 31, 2011

For Your Consideration…The RAW Judicial Review for 1/31/11

Welcome back to the longest running, action-adventure, passive-aggressive column on Inside Pulse, For Your Consideration. I’m still Andrew Wheeler (despite it saying Andy as my link, which continues to baffle and annoy me), and this week promises to be another big one. Of course it does. It’s the day after the Royal Rumble and one step closer to Wrestlemania. This is that time of the year when every single day seems to bring about ten or twenty stories as the WWE works harder than ever to seal up any leaks. What this means is that anyone with even the tiniest morsel of information is going to use it to get his or her 15 minutes of fame. Speaking of fleeting fame, let’s get to…

An Indiscriminate Number of Thoughts on the Royal Rumble

1. Nice, standard opening video package. Nothing too memorable but nothing offensive. It was like spending the afternoon with your grandparents; familiar, comfortable but ultimately kinda dull.

2. Having the Rumble match itself main event the PPV is always a good idea. It doesn’t matter how lackluster your winner is (not that I’m saying the winner here was lackluster), but you really want to sustain that air of suspense for the entire evening.

3. Dolph Ziggler did just about as well as he possibly could out there, and justified his position to a lot of people in the back. Ziggler was booked in such a way that he looked weak and easily beatable, which is to be expected since he just kind of came outta nowhere to be the #1 Contender. Look, I’m as much a supporter of Biff Swangle as the next guy, but he was another guy that went from midcard talent to World Title contender and was just made to look like a fool and fizzled. Ziggler’s biggest asset going into the match was Vickie Guerrero, and her monumental heat on the live RAW is what paved the way for Ziggler to even get the shot.

4. Everyone said that the beginning of the Dolph/Edge match was a slow, plodding, downright predictable match, and they were all right. But once the thing got going, it became clear that they both needed to set the bar low and build on it. Kudos to the fans in Boston for not simply turning on this thing out the gate and destroying what turned into a really fun match. I didn’t for a second actually believe Edge was going to drop the title, but Ziggler showed he’s good enough to keep up the believability despite us all knowing better.

5. The finish for Ziggler/Edge was to be expected…for the most part. The Kelly Kelly run-in was incredibly random, especially since she’s been in that ultra-creepy angle with Drew (you remember him as that guy who is MARRIED to the girl that used to be Kelly’s tag partner). Kelly’s involvement could lead to, as Glazer predicted, some sort of Ziggler/McIntyre feud where the two “chosen ones” who didn’t truly peak can kill some time. On the other hand, Kelly’s involvement could very well be due to the fact that Vince saw her standing in the back, saw her in shorts and decided to put her on TV. Whatever the reason, she served her purpose just fine and prevented Rated TV-PG Edge from striking a woman.

6. Of course the Spear when the ref was down is going to lead to something else. Everyone’s predicted that they are going to strip Edge of the title and hold it for ransom during the Elimination Chamber, which is a perfectly acceptable way to handle it. Knowing that Del Rio is going to face a Smackdown champion means that the company has a lot of pressure on them to make sure his opponent is a right fit. Edge has been fine in his current title run (though the audience may very well never fully get behind him as a face), so there’s no reason to not let Edge and Alberto go out there. Some folks have predicted Mysterio, but I doubt it. First off, we’ve seen Alberto Del Rio and Rey Mysterio for what felt like 30 matches, and Alberto’s victory of Rey in the 2-out-of-3-falls match a few weeks ago was enough closure on their feud for me. Second, the WWE just isn’t very high on Rey, who thanks to injuries, can’t give them everything they want. In the end, it’ll be Edge/Del Rio, which is a fine Smackdown Mania match.

7. The Miz/Orton match was not my favorite match. It was technically fine, but it just didn’t at all feel like a “BIG” match. The blame can be spread around here, but I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that Randy just seems to be sleeping out there. He doesn’t have a sense of urgency in the ring right now, which is bad news since he hasn’t always set the world on fire when he’s in there. The Miz continues to look like a weak champion, which makes sense if you’re booking him like a coward. The problem I have is that I don’t think he needed all of the Alex Riley interferences. The WWE knew they were ending the match with a PuNexus run-in, so why the hell bother with half a dozen Mizfit attacks? It made The Miz look incredibly weak, which isn’t necessary since he showed in his match with Morrison that he CAN hang in there. On top of which, it made the official look like a joke because he never should have allowed Mizfit to stay ringside.

8. PuNexus’s attack was fine, but for me it completely telegraphed the finish to the Rumble. The second I heard their music, I knew Punk had no shot of winning the main event. He’s now penciled in to face Orton at Mania, which is kind of a shame. I think Punk and Cena could have done something very special, and to be honest I would have been fine with Punk/Cena/Miz. Now the WWE is either going to do a Fatal Fourway or do Miz/Cena and Punk/Orton. Don’t get me wrong, I think CM Punk would do fine in a feud with Randy Orton, but not having him interact with the biggest star on RAW is going to knock him down a peg or two. And don’t fool yourselves, Randy Orton ain’t the biggest star on RAW.

9. The Divas match was exactly what I figured it would be: a slow moving train wreck. LayCool are a great team on the mic and they are great heat magnets, but making this anything but a handicap match was a mistake. And after months of LayCool feuding with Natalya, the entire thing gets blown off with Eve winning the title? What the hell? My only guess is that Eve is, in Vince’s mind, a pretty girl that the fans like that, when she gets fed to Awesome Kong, will make the audience really care. You can’t spend weeks mocking the Divas champion for being an ugly cow and then have the fans freak out when she gets mauled by Kong. Eve, on the other hand, is the bubbly, cute Diva Search winner whose shocking beatdown will make children cry (not to mention the fact that with the new Diva Search just around the corner that the WWE would like to say that their last winner is a world champion).

10. Daniel Bryan, Gail Kim and the Bella Twins did a pretape that was all kinds of awful. It was basically the exact same thing on RAW, only this time Bryan was made to look even weaker. Worst of all was the waste of flowers. It’s that kind of reckless spending that put WCW out of business. Granted they were smashing Hummers and these were only multi-colored carnations, but still.

11. Todd Grisham reading a prepared statement by Cody Rhodes was silly. There is no reason they couldn’t have taped something with Rhodes delivering his message with his back to the camera ala Dr. Claw. We all know this is going to end with him getting a face guard, which is fine with me because those things always generate heat.

12. With only three matches announced, there was no mistaking that the Royal Rumble match itself was the big draw. It’s a shame they didn’t do a lot of backstage interviews or show people drawing their numbers, but with no human GM present, it would have been anticlimactic.

13. CM Punk as #1 started the Rumble with a “big time” feel. Forty guys means that there are a lot of filler wrestlers, so having a top tier talent start it out makes perfect sense. I for one figured that Randy Orton was going to jump him right then and there, but I was wrong.

14. The Hilary Swank Movie/PuNexus brawl was a necessary evil. It killed a few minutes of time, gave us something they’ve been teasing for a while and allowed the GMail to have it’s true moment in the sun (no, the Diva thing earlier in the night doesn’t count).

15. Of course the WWE is going to give us Bryan/Punk to start the Rumble. They love doing that to the Internet fans. A few years ago they started the Rumble with Guerrero/Benoit, so this just continued the tradition of teasing the IWC with a dream match.

16. William Regal’s been spending a little too much time sitting on his throne. With boobs like that, he could win the Diva Search. Who am I kidding? They would never pick someone with actual wrestling ability.

17. The opening few minutes of Bryan and Punk brawling and then eliminating someone to go back to brawling was a nice moment. On the other hand, their sequences highlighted the sheer awfulness of the commentators during the show. Maybe it’s because I’m usually writing my column during RAW or because I tend to be liberal with the FF-button during Smackdown, but I cannot believe how disjointed the three-man booth was. Cole’s inability to be both a heel commentator and the play-by-play man has been well documented, but Striker and Lawler couldn’t seem to decide who was going to play the face and who was going to play the heel. They all kept talking over each other and ultimately created this painful cacophony of noise that made me threaten pushing the mute button.

18. Glad Chavo got a little moment to do his Three Amigos spot. It was a nice little way of saying thanks to the guy who has officially jobbed to every single member of the roster.

19. Everyone went batshit over John Slo-Mo-Rrison’s Spiderman-esque non-elimination. Yes, it was one of the greatest Rumble spots ever. Yes, it was something that left little room for him to botch. And yes, it will be on a billion video recaps for the next 20 years. But so what? It was high risk, low reward. Had he blown that spot (which was easy to do considering he almost blew ENTERING the ring when he slipped), he would have been an Internet joke and probably lose any semblance of a push. And while it looked impressive, so did a lot of Money in the Bank spots featuring Shelton Benjamin and look where he is now. In the end, it was a great moment, but John wasn’t allowed to do anything impactful while in the actual match. He didn’t last all that long, he got bitched out by PuNexus and his elimination just felt like everyone else’s. This was a show where he could have really shined and instead everyone came away from this show thinking the same thing about him, “Dang that John Morrison does some cool spots.”

20. I liked PuNexus working together to bulldoze through a lot of useless guys. They helped move us past the normally brutal “everyone gang up on Mark Henry” spot and “everyone gang up on Great Khali” spot, so I’m thankful for that. They looked like a badass stable, which is what Vince needed them to look like. Overall, I’m fine with it (and how can you not like Punk absolutely burying Resurrection-Truth?).

21. Yes, Booker T got a big pop. It’s called a nostalgia pop. They happen quite a bit. I’m not surprised in the slightest that the place came unglued, because when used appropriately, Booker can get a crazy reaction. It’s all of those brutal 20 minute matches that feel like paint-by-numbers that made fans want to see him go last time (though that could have also been due to his wife’s grating voice). Booker will do well on Tough Enough because he is a respected veteran, and maybe he’ll get a shot on commentary (though if his “Weakest Link” appearance is any indication, he won’t do so hot thinking on his feet).

22. John Cena mowed down PuNexus like he should, because his gimmick is always about overcoming odds and although there were a lot of them, they’re all still green guys and he’s THE man.

23. Surprisingly, I have no problem with the Cena/Hornswoggle thing. I know that I, of all people, should hate anything involving The Fucking Midget, but it just worked as an inoffensive comedy angle. And to the people getting their panties in a bunch about Kidd being eliminated by him, calm down. It’s Tyson Kidd. He can be buried one week and look fine the next. In fact, I doubt that most fans realize that his manager, former dyslexic president Jackson Andrews, is gone at all.

24. I expected the fans to get more excited about the Kofi/Cena face-off. To quote Griff Tannon, “You thought wrong, dude.”

25. Once the “big” names started coming in again, things got a little more Rumble-ish. The Rumble is all about seeing Barrett and Sheamus and Cena and Mysterio brawling all over the place.

26. Not too happy about Dolph Ziggler being in the Rumble. At the very least he should have been given his slot by Vickie as a way to get more heat, but instead he just kinda went out there like everyone else. Even worse, he got tossed out without any real fanfare.

27. On the other hand, fanfare doesn’t even begin to describe the pop for Diesel. One of my secret shames of my youth was that I absolutely bought into the whole Diesel thing. No clue why, but I did. Maybe it stemmed from the fact that I could never get behind Bret Hart, or maybe it was because his Powerbomb always looked like it could kill someone if he botched it just a little. But despite my feelings about Kevin Nash, when I heard that music and saw him in his gimmick, I kinda had the nostalgia moment a lot of people had with Booker. With that being said, his pop should be taken as nothing more than nostalgia and in no way, shape or form should he be taken seriously as a member of the roster. Treat him more like the sparse Steamboat appearances or the recent Lawler push and let that be that.

28. The Randy Orton spot in the final 4 should have gone to John Morrison. Most people figured it would be Cena/Morrison/Barrett/Del Rio (or some form of that with Punk), but there was no real reason to have Randy in there. Sure, he lost his match, but he was a lock for Elimination Chamber anyway. I guess the thinking here was that Miz needed to eliminate Cena to further their feud, and Del Rio dumping Morrison wouldn’t have been “big” enough, but there’s tons of ways to book around that. Besides, it didn’t matter at all because…

29. Like Glazer said, Santino’s comeback almost justified every lame skit he’s ever been in. The guy still had a zero percent chance of winning, but the arena went absolutely nuts for him. This is the same arena that no-sold the Cena/Orton face-off, so getting them to pop for anything at that moment was a victory.

30. Alberto Del Rio was a smart choice for the company. He’s someone new and different, and aside from Cena, the only logical choice. Punk winning the Rumble would have meant that Miz needed to drop the title, Morrison winning wouldn’t have worked because that means a RAW Main Event without Cena or Orton and a returning Triple H didn’t work because his eventual feud lies with Sheamus. Del Rio now feels like a major star, and he has over two months to really solidify himself as the next great heel in the WWE. This was a daring move by the WWE, but certainly not a foolish one. Alberto Del Rio has made the most with what he’s been given, and he may be good enough to talk the fans into the building.

Tough Enough! Stone Cold! Tough Enough! Stone Cold! Mah Gawd

So the WWE apparently went out and landed the biggest whale they could for the relaunch of Tough Enough, Steve Austin. The idea of using the single biggest name in the industry from the last 20 years is one of the smartest moves the WWE has ever made, since Austin is a recognizable name that can draw interest from people who don’t normally watch the “current” WWE programming. After the pops that the WWE brass must have heard for Booker T and Kevin Nash, it’s clear that despite it all, nostalgia works. And Steve Austin is one of the few nostalgia acts that is still willing to answer the phone yet can garner legitimate buzz (what with The Rock being a legit star and guys like Hogan and Flair cashing [and in Flair’s case blowing] checks from the Distinguished Competition).

One of the most surprising things for me is that the role of “face of Tough Enough” wasn’t given to Triple H. With him taking over more and more responsibilities for Vince, having him be the guy front and center for molding new talent seemed like a perfect fit. Logically, the Tough Enough kids would be housed somewhere in Connecticut, so they can have access to the production studios. With Hunter on the sidelines, he’d have more than enough time to mentor the kids. And anyone who thinks he wouldn’t get the job done needs to track down his “pep talk” during season one of the MTV version, where he absolutely tears them to pieces while at the same time making them all want to charge Bunker Hill.

In the end, Steve Austin is going to do a great job with Tough Enough. Along with the rumored Booker T, the show is certainly not wanting for star power. If this venture, like NXT before it, should net the WWE even one bona fide main event star, then it will be a success. Hell, just the fact that USA is willing to give them air time at all is a sign of confidence in the WWE brand, which is enough of a win for Vince.

Alright, enough of this serious crap, it’s time to get down to bidness (yes, I chose to use the Dusty spelling in case I should either get funky like a monkey or balloon up to 300 pounds and suddenly think I’m black due an unnatural birth mark). Remember you can friend me on Facebook, follow me on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/awheeler316) and post in the comment section down below. Enough stalling, onto…

The RAW Judicial Review for 1/31/11

“The Champ is here.”

So the show opened with something but due to the wonders of DVR, I lost the first five minutes. The gist of it appears to be that JBLatino has come to the ring with a Mariachi band to celebrate his victory. He announces that he will be going after one of the titled, but gives a long amount of stalling, which allows The Miz to make his first appearance.

The Miz and Mizfit come out and congratulate Alberto for winning the biggest and yet still least star-studded Rumble in recent memory. He says it isn’t as impressive as winning the Money in the Bank, done by such major stars as Kane and Biff Swangle.

Miz promises to still hold the WWE Title by Wrestlemania, while Edge will drop the strap. The Miz says that Edge was gloating about being able to beat Alberto, mocked his accent and his tallis.

Del Rio asks if The Miz is lying, but since when does a reality star ever lie? This of course leads to Edge coming out in a stylish flannel shirt. He says that he does hate Del Rio, but he has no problem saying it to his face. That’s much easier now that he doesn’t wear a mask.

Edge reminds us that he’s the Rated R Superstar, taking special care to roll his r’s. Alberto again reminds us that it’s his density to be the greatest of the greats, and he will be the new…long, dramatic pause…World Heavyweight Champion. Edge responds by decking him, which leads to a fleeing mariachi band.

As soon as Edge is distracted by the scampering musicians, Alberto pulls a Jeff Jarrett and marries his ex-wife. Wait, no, all he does is hit him with a guitar. My bad. Good thing, too, because I don’t know how to say Slap Nuts in Spanish.

Edge is left lying on the mat clutching his chest, which makes sense since he was struck in the head with the guitar. Maybe the shock of the move is giving him a heart attack?

Coming up next, Borscht Marinara will face members of PuNexus.

Commercial.

We’re back some moments ago, which would have been great for people like me who have their DVR crap out, but I only get a replay of everything I already knew about. Guess I missed me some pyro and ballyhoo. Oh well, off to the illegal fireworks guy tomorrow morning.

Michael “Casual Male” Cole and Jerry “Mystic Tan” Lawler are on camera prattling in incessantly until the GMail goes off. And I paraphrase…tonight, for the first time ever, there’s a RAW Rumble match. Seven men will participate and the winner will face the WWE Champ at the Elimination Chamber. The remaining six will fight in the Chamber itself. The participants are Randy Orton, CM Punk, John Slo-Mo-Rison, Resurrection-Truth, Sheamus, Jerry Lawler, and John Cena. Well I guess we’re getting Lawler/Miz at the next PPV.

WWE Tag Team Championship: Borscht Marinara w/ Snukette v. PuNexus Members Slightly Perfect and Husky Harris

The champs come out first to a surprisingly decent pop, while PuNexus comes out without pants but sporting those spiffy shirts (and of course Husky’s hat). Santino and Slightly Perfect (hereafter SP) start it out with some mat work while Cole and Lawler remind us that Santino almost won the Royal Rumble itself. SP hammers away on the corner and goes for a splash but Santino moves and tags in Vlad The Botchmaster.

Vlad wails on SP but gets kicked in the knee, allowing Husky Harris to get tagged in. During this disastrous exchange, we get hype for Triple H’s disastrous-sounding new movie, The Chaperone. Santino gets tagged in and connects with some punches until he gets headbutted.

Husky and SP both splash Santino in the corner before SP takes over on offense. He drops Marella for two and then lobs him out of the ring and into a…

Commercial.

Are you married to an exceptionally hot woman yet you want to go cheat on her? Then “Hall Pass” is the movie for you. Also for you? Serious amounts of therapy.

We’re back and SP is going for a pin. Apparently that motorcycle mechanics commercial took a lot out of him. Santino breaks free from a rest hold and tags in Kozlov just as SP tags in Husky. Vlad hits the headbutt for two but it’s broken up by SP, who hits a dropkick. Santino low-bridges him out of the ring and Santino hits the Cobra for the…ugh…pin.

Randy Orton runs out from the back to RKO Husky and SP, who were already made to look like jokes after jobbing to the fucking Cobra. Speaking of which, Cole started yelling “Snakes”, which made me think of “Home Alone”’s famous “Snakes. I know that name. Snakes.”

Anyway, Randy’s gonna give Husky to the count of ten to get his ugly, yellah, no good keister off his property or else he’s gonna kick him in the head.

Punk comes out and ask shim to stop, while being flanked by Mason Ryan and David Otunga. CM Punk asks if he has to say please, which is the magic word. Husky, meanwhile, is still lying there in the prone position, which makes him look like he’s bawling. Punk says if he kicks Harris, there will be consequences. Orton pauses for a second, which gives us in HD a chance to see the cold sore on his lip. He mulls it over as the fans halfheartedly cheer for him to end Husky’s career (because clearly after jobbing to The Cobra he’s being punished) and then kicks him in the head. PuNexus chase him into the crowd, but Orton’s already in section 143. He celebrates with the fans he wouldn’t spit on if they were on fire as PuNexus stand over their fallen Fathead.

Commercial.

The one thing to make that segment seem more “authentic” would have been for IRS to come running out and check on his kid. Either that or for Randy to kick him only to have his leg sucked into Harris like he was The Blob.

We’re back and Cole is using the super cereal voice to recount Randy Orton punting Husky Harris back to FCW.

Speaking of potential busts, here comes Ted DiBiase and Maryse. DiBiase has the mic and he’s declaring Lawler’s career over. He feels that Jerry doesn’t need any more opportunities and it’s time for him to step aside for the future and give him his spot. I think if he offers an even exchange for Maryse he might do it.

Cole interrupts and says that Jerry Lawler is a Legend and a Hall of Famer. He says that there’s no way that Lawler’s ego would allow him to give up the spot. Jerry won’t give it up to anyone. He says that his Road to Wrestlemania has always been under construction. He’s never been in a Mania match, so his road starts tonight. He’s been in the WWE for 18 years, which is a long time to (a) be in the WWE and (b) be the age of Lawler’s dates.

Teddy hides behind Maryse as Lawler charges him, so she responds by slapping him. Jerry follows that up with a punch to the face. The fans chant “Jerry”, which normally happens during on-air incidents of spousal abuse.

Miz versus Edge again, only this time there must be a winner.

Commercial.

Lawler has to win this Rumble since having him job to The Miz (giving him a clean win on PPV) is a better option than him having to wrestle in the Elimination Chamber. Look, the guy’s showed he can do hardcore in his empty arena match with Funk, but it’s 2011 and we aren’t in Memphis.

We’re back with some kind of creepy images and on 2/21/11 it looks like The Undertaker is returning. Super.

The Bella Twins are on commentary.

Daniel Bryan w/ Gail Kim v. Tyson Kidd

Kidd and Bryan start off trading hammerlocks as my ears battle listening to the Bella Twins. Tyson fires away with some elbows and stiff kicks for two. Bryan comes back with an arm drag and unleashes some kicks of his own. Bryan goes for the Patti LaBelle lock for the submission. Bryan and Kim celebrate in the ring as The Bellas enter. For some reason they’re dressed like Heat dancers. Gail and the Bells catfight again, which again makes Daniel Bryan look like a fool. On the plus side, he has a job. Ask Kaval. He’d leap at the opportunity to be in that nonsensical angle.

Edge and The Miz are in the back walking towards a…

Commercial.

The fact that there is another sequel to Big Momma’s House is proof of global warming.

We’re back with stills of Cena being eliminated by The Miz. Yep. Stills.

Champion v. Champion: The Miz w/ Mizfit v. Edge

Neither guy gets an entrance, because we needed that time to show you still frames from the Rumble. Edge starts off pounding The Miz (that’s what she said) and hits a swinging neckbreaker for two.

Edge whips Miz into the ropes but Miz bails outside the ring. He yanks Edge to the outside and introduces him into the steel steps. Edge immediately tries to have sex with them, but it doesn’t work out well.

Everyone’s back in the ring and Miz has a resthold locked in. Miz props Edge upon the second rope so that Mizfit can pop him in the face. Miz continues to focus on the arm, as they’re selling the guitar shot as something that damaged the shoulder. Hmm, doesn’t someone on Smackdown use a finisher involving the arm?

Edge breaks free and rolls up Miz for two, but Miz drops him to the mat arm-first for two. The Miz again locks in a resthold, slowly sucking out the energy from the crowd. Edge fights back until they trade boots, leading to a long, slow 10-count.

Edge flapajacks The Miz for two. Edge and Miz then trade pin attempts as it just feels like they’re filling the time they were allotted despite being exhausted. The Miz comes off the top rope but Edge turns it into an Edgecution. Lawler makes fun of Miz’s horse teeth, completely ignoring the fact that Edge is pretty much known for his Melina-esque teeth.

Edge goes for a Spear but Miz moves out of the way. John Cena appears in a press box taunting The Miz. Miz is distracted by the mocking to the point where he clearly forgot he’s IN A MATCH, then turns around and gets Speared.

Cena feigns innocence, which is something Jerry can admire. Cole consoles The Miz while demanding Mizfit avenges his.

Commercial.

We’re 62 days away from Wrestlemania. Plan yourselves accordingly.

Cole and Lawler officially announce Lawler as the new Tough Enough trainer. This is interrupted by a bedazzled Vickie Guerrero. This Friday Edge has a big surprise waiting for him. He will defend his title in a way that has never been defended before. Midgets?

Here comes Eve Torres, and I thought that the Bella nonsense counted as our Diva segment.

Eve Torres & Natalya v. LayCool

You know, because these four were so amazing last night. We get an “earlier tonight” with LayCool blaming the referee for their finish from the night before. If they can make peace, I guess there’s hope for Egypt.

Natalya takes McCool down for a few two counts but Michelle locks in a headscissor. Nat kicks up so Michelle tags in Layla. Layla’s offensive move is to roll up a ball. Natalya just lifts her up, but Layla breaks free and jumps into Michelle’s arms. I’ll take wackiness over them trying to wrestle any day.

Nat hits a release suplex for two before tagging in Eve Torres, who hits a dropkick, thus exhausting her offense. Eve hits a standing moonsault for two (which doesn’t count as a move since it’s a gymnastics technique). Eve hauls Layla onto the top turnbuckle, but Michelle kicks her in the head, which allows Layla to get a top rope stunner for the pin.

Commercial.

We’re back with…Khali. Whoa, he’s teaming with Mark Henry? What the hell did I do to deserve this?

The “Great” Khali & Mark Hey-Hey-Henry v. Greek Booze

Josh Matthews is on commentary now. I can’t believe this train wreck is about to…hey, here comes the GMail. And I paraphrase, Greek Booze doesn’t have a chance. Tonight’s match is now a dance-off. I’m not sure this is much better.

After they finish dancing, Greek Booze jump them and wind up taking their finishers. I know that with 7 guys in the main event they’re hurting for stuff to fill time, but this isn’t the answer.

Commercial.

We again get the 2.21.11 spot that is making people think that The Undertaker is returning. Seems a little on the nose, though, doesn’t it?

Speaking of indescribable darkness, here comes the world premiere of “The Chaperone.”

RAW Rumble

Justin Roberts’s mustache is creepy as hell. That’s all I gotsta stay about that.

John Slo-Mo-Rrison is out first as we get another chance for Cole to hype his Rumble spot. He’ll be faysun da kihn ah da ribs, Sheamus. As Sheamus comes down to the ring in his giant piece of felt, we go to another…

Commercial.

Sheamus and Morrison start off and Sheamus takes him down with a headlock. He shoulderblocks John down but Morrison quickly snaps off some armdrags. Sheamus tries to power John over the top rope but Morrison battles out of it and hammers away on him in the corner.

The third entrant is John Cena as Morrison eats a backbreaker. The fans pop like mad as he runs in and wails away on Sheamus. He hits the Five Moves of Mediocrity before trying to FU John. Morrison lands on his feet and hits a spinning heel kick. Morrison stomps away on Cena and Sheamus but Cena gets to his feet, tosses Micardison out of the way and goes after Sheamus.

CM Punk is number four and he looks perturbed. Punk takes out everyone in the ring before trying to eliminate John Morrison. Sheamus and Cena pair off on their own like middle schoolers at a dance.

The fifth man is Resurrection-Truth. What’s up? My patience with him. Tryth hits clotheslines on his “pal” John Cena. Cena gets bested by the Minstrel Offense. Truth tries to eliminate his former partner Morrison and we get near stereo skinned cats (until Truth botches it).

Punk stomps Morrison, Sheamus stomps Cena and Truth, like the cheese, stands alone.

CM Punk DDTs Cena as the sixth entrant arrives: Jerry Lawler. Cole continues to over-sell how implausible Lawler is. Jerry connect with closed fists on everyone in the ring. Lawler almost eliminates Punk, but Sheamus stops him.

Jerry almost gets tossed by Sheamus as the final entrant comes out, Randy Orton. As soon as Orton’s music hits, Punk runs under the ring. Randy pulls him out and wails away, so Punk flees into the ring. Randy clotheslines Sheamus and Morrison before eliminating Punk. Truth turns around and eliminates Orton. Everyone’s so shocked that we have to go to a…

Commercial.

We’re back and conveniently no one was eliminated during the commercial break. They must have stopped fighting to watch the “Characters Welcome” spots. Cena now unleashes some more of the Five Moves of Mediocrity on Sheamus, who can’t see him or his “natural” tan.

Cena whips Truth and Morrison into the corner and pancakes them before going for the multi-racial FU. Truth gets eliminated but Morrison hangs on. Morrison and Cena battle on the apron and Sheamus tries to eliminate them and they’re all standing on the apron.

Sheamus gets into the ring and clotheslines Lawler, who was busy taking a multivitamin. Morrison almost gets dumped but his feet hook the bottom rope in another cute spot. Sheamus launches himself off the top rope with the Patriot Missile, but gets locked in the STFU. Sheamus taps for no reason so Morrison goes for (and almost completely misses with) Starship Pain.

Lawler dumps Morrison over the top rope and he catches himself with a handstand. John hits a Flashkick onto Cena and he’s harder to eliminate than an STD. Finally, Sheamus hits the bicycle kick to dump him.

Sheamus turns around and eats an FU. Lawler delivers a halfhearted dropkick onto Cena and he almost eliminates him. Sheamus breaks up the attempt so that he can be the one to dump John, but Cena won’t let go. Lawler gets thrown into Cena, eliminating him.

Sheamus tries for the Bicycle Kick but Cena low-bridges him and Jerry Lawler wins the Royal Rumble. My guess is that after Vince stole Booker T and Kevin Nash from TNA that he wants to rub salt in the wound by running a PPV featuring Miz/Lawler for the WWE Title.

The Miz and Mizfit are watching in the back and they don’t so much seem worried. Jerry celebrates in the ring and points to the Wrestlemania sign. Yeah, sure.

Look, this move works because The Miz needs a clean pinfall victory on PPV, and jobbing out Lawler isn’t going to hurt him at all.

This has been for your consideration.




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Andy Wheeler

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  • Storm

    Saw the stupid Lawler win coming from a mile away, and I wasn’t any happier to see it when it happened. I can’t wait to see Jerry’s amazing offense. Will he throw a punch? Maybe a sloppy drop-kick! Think we’ll be treated to a second rope fist drop? Nash could teach Jerry a lesson in move variety.

  • CB

    Tonight’s Raw was pretty good except for the danceoff. I was happy to see Lawler get the win to stick it to Cole tonight, and this is obviously leading to Cole vs. King at Mania after he costs Lawler again and the GMail lifts the ban.

  • Danny Cox

    I never once thought Taker for 02/21/11 promo for some reason. It seemed familiar but couldn’t place my finger on it. Did a little looking around online to see what anyone else on the net thought and many think Sting cuz of the dark feel and trench coat. They also said to look at this promo from 1997 cuz it was similar (?): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=exS_djjs3WA

    Not entirely but good thought.

  • Cynical Bastard

    @4: I’ll accept on behalf of Boston fans. I expected the match to have a slow start and the obvious Edge retention, but he and Ziggler didn’t disappoint in match quality. Ziggler definitely belongs in the main event picture.

    @23: I hate the fact that That Fucking Midget (TM Wheeler) was in the match when there were available unused talents (Smith, Baretta, etc). Lowest point of the Rumble IMO, even beyond that god-awful pointless Divas match.

    @27: I couldn’t -believe- the pop Diesel got live. No idea what it was like televised, but from my seat it seemed like the biggest reaction of the night. I don’t want to see Nash wrestling, but it was cool to see him in the Rumble.

  • Zandria

    just got home after watching the event live. after raw ended, lawler stayed in the ring and delivered a promo, thanking the fans for cheering him on, believing in him, etc. all the while the ‘Tron was showing Michael Cole, who was absolutely hilarious with his smarmy expressions and air-violin playing. lawler then stated that he wanted one person to share his moment of victory with him, eliciting more smarm from Cole, only to end up with lawler calling out Miz. after a brief exchange where miz essentially badmouthed the king and his chances, he and mizfit tried to punk out jerry, who made quick work of them. Cole stormed off in a huff with Riley and Miz, and Lawler waved us out of the arena

  • Zandria

    random observation: Sheamus is not as white as mayonnaise. yes, i hate that joke (and Cena, in the interest of disclosure), but its not why i’m calling it false. Sheamus is, in fact, WHITER than mayonnaise. seeing him live and also seeing him on the ‘Tron reveals that the TV image actually puts a slight pinkish shade on him, and everyone else appears darker as well. bottom line, sheamus is the whitest thing since larry bird, and it only makes his red-dyed-redder hair stand out like a beacon

  • Zork

    I really dislike the fact that they pretty much abandoned Punk and Cena’s story, I was really enjoying it. The fact that Orton and Cena pretty much switched storyline is just really weird, and I hope that it at least leads to a Fatal 4 Way or have some kind of justification!

  • Joseph Hargrove

    Gail Kim=Canadian version of Manami Toyota.

    For those of you who don’t get the comparison, Gail Kim and Manami Toyota are two international women’s wrestling icons who people have wanted a head to head battle for quite some time.

    May I just say that I despise everything about The Miz, Michael Cole and CM Punk!! Just saying the truth.

    Have a great night, everyone.

  • EWF_X29

    To those that attended it seems like the crowd was really into it tonight. They made a greater effort to show the crowd then usual. Looked like a lot more signs too. I’ve seen shows live in Providence and it can be a moderate crowd reaction. The last few televised Providence shows it seemed like the crowds were kind of flat. Was there a reason for the big response tonight or was this just post PPV highs?

  • Zork

    How could anyone hate Punk?!

    Have faith…

  • Sebastian Howard

    So how come Mizcouldn’t beat anyobe else cleanly? Like John Morrison or R-Truth, Orton, Cena, anyone in the Battle Royal? He’s the freaking WWE Champion.

  • Limodriver

    He has beaten Morrison cleanly. It’s just that people care about Lawler more than they do about SloMo.

  • Joseph Hargrove

    @Zork: There is a solid reason why I hate Punk, he is a pompous idiot. See, I marked out when he first came to the WWE but ever since the SES my opinion of him has drastically changed.

    As for my hatred for the Miz and Michael Cole, they are both massive tools and they screwed over Lawler for the WWE Title last month.

    In closing, faith did not save Husky Harris last night as Orton kicked his head off. Be warned Punk, you’re next!!

  • Tommy Sleeper

    @Joseph: You do realize that wrestling is scripted, right?

  • Joseph Hargrove

    @Tommy: I know it’s scripted, bro. Chill out.

    One last thing, the Daniel Bryan/Gail Kim pairing is one of the best ideas in the WWE so far this year which results in more predictable wins for the US Champion.

    The bad news, the Bellas are not too pleased with Bryan playing them for Gail Kim.

    This could end badly for Gail because of the imminent arrival of Amazing Kong as the Bella Twins enforcer. Watch your back Daniel and Gail.

    Like I said, it’s good to be the US Champion.

  • Joe

    I really hope this 2.21.11 isnt for a ‘Taker return. While it seems as such, it also seems odd that he’d return to RAW, although it could be a build to ‘Mania.

    Let’s hope it’s Kevin Thorn returning as Mordecai!

  • CB

    I think it’s pretty set now that it’s Sting coming on 2.21.11.

  • Steven Gepp

    The 2.21.11 promo was reminiscent of the Sting promo from the beginning of Starrcade 1997. So is it Sting? It has that dark, brooding feel. So is it Undertaker? Some one is walking alone. Is it Batista?

    Dark horse – considering he currently looks like a hillbilly uncle, and that it seemed to be set in a deserted Western town, could it be Randy Savage?

  • Sebastian Howard

    Joesph you come across as a mark that knows the show is scripted and dosn’t base things on actual wrestling ability as much as story telling.

    Anyway http://www.facebook.com/#!/photo.php?fbid=10150373826015453&set=a.10150373826010453.603579.694695452 Batman vs Joker at Wrestlemainia (not really, the pictures of Sting/Taker)

  • Joseph Hargrove

    @Steven: The dark brooding figure in the video could indeed be Sting for two reasons.

    1. It reminded me of his entrance video from TNA
    2. Death Valley doesn’t get much rain ever.

    It’s could be a sign that Sting could be coming so we’ll see if it is indeed him. All that was missing was the symbolic scorpion but it’s a matter of time.

  • Penny Sautereau-Fife, Shaman Of Hedon

    Funny, I saw Edge clutching his SHOULDER because the guitar hit him in the SHOULDER. Not that you’re stellar to begin with Wheeler but geez man, you’re slipping.

  • Joseph Hargrove

    There was a segment on NXT concerning the DB’s and Gail Kim. Gail rocks the Daniel Bryan T-Shirt while teaching Derrick Bateman a triangle choke. As expected, Gail chokes Derrick out and makes out with her boyfriend Daniel afterwards.

    Daniel/Gail reminds me of Edge/Lita when they were a couple except that Edge and Lita were heels while Daniel and Gail are faces.

    It looks like the DB’s have found their new female sidekick. Check out the segment and give me some feedback on it ASAP!!

  • Steven Gepp

    Hang on:
    Rain
    Very long coat
    Dark

    RVD!!

  • EWF_X29

    While this is a guess and I hope I’m wrong. But didn’t a certain King of Kings have a long jacket and some kind of headgear?

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