The SmarK RAW Supershow Rant – 02.27.12
Live from Portland, OR
Your hosts are Michael Cole & Jerry Lawler
But first, to the mailbag!
Bruce Mitchell had a great column today, and I think he hit the nail right on the head with his finish:
“Rock takes a main event spot away from someone who works full-time?
That’s the most interesting one, that no one in the locker room looks at Dwayne Johnson and goes, Who cares whether he hangs out with us and tells stories about the old days with Stone Cold? Every time he comes around I make more money. A lot more money.
That’s what WWE Superstars used to say during the glory days of Hulkamania, when working a show with Hulk Hogan, who took time off months at a time and when there would hide in his own locker room, then leave at intermission.
Then it hit me. Maybe none of today’s Superstars made more money than they would have without The Rock breaking the WrestleMania buyrate open last year. Maybe McMahon just took the overage. Hell, when house show grosses dropped, McMahon cut expenses across the board and the Superstars didn’t seem to notice.
Maybe Rock raising grosses and ratings for WWE actually hurts the WWE rank and file, just like John Cena and the locker room say.”
If he’s right, then what The Rock is doing for the boys is not analogous to what Hogan did at all.
That’s…a pretty valid point, actually.
CM Punk v. Daniel Bryan
Part THREE! But first, Chris Jericho comes out in place of D-Bry to say his peace to CM Punk. And now Jericho is also talking about being part of the dying breed of older wrestlers, much like HHH and Undertaker last week. Punk points out that Bret Hart was calling himself the best years before Jericho came along, and Jericho possibly plagiarized being Canadian from him. They go back and forth about who’s the best…and why the heck is Santino randomly standing down at ringside by the announce table? Anyway, Punk thinks it might be eating at Jericho that he was never The Man when he was World champion, and now Punk is swimming with sharks instead of dancing with stars. Jericho clarifies that the only reason he came back was to beat Punk and embarrass him at Wrestlemania. Punk thinks Jericho’s jacket is embarrassing enough and yeah, they’ll beat up on each other at Wrestlemania. Now this is what we were waiting for. Oh, and after all that, there’s still the match.
Bryan attacks before they can even get the speakers out of the ring, but Punk dumps him and we take a break. Back with the champions exchanging shots in the corner before Punk gets a crossbody for two. Big Johnny and Teddy Long are doing commentary, which finally explains why Santino is standing around down there – backup for Teddy. Back in the ring, Bryan throws kicks, but Punk gets his own for two. He backdrops Bryan out of the ring while the commentary becomes increasingly distracted from the match. They fight on the floor and we take another break. Back with Bryan missing a blind charge so that Punk can make the comeback with the running knee and Macho Elbow. Punk gets distracted by Otunga and we get the double KO, as it turns into a donnybrook at ringside. Bryan walks out of the match, but Sheamus throws him back in for the GTS, at which point Ace calls for the DQ at 12:23. And then Jericho lays out Punk on the way to the back while the GMs fight in the ring. Match itself was a huge letdown after the first two thanks to all the extracurricular crap, but it got three different programs some airtime leading into Wrestlemania, so that’s pretty damn effective for this company. **1/2
And now, a video package about last year’s HHH v. Undertaker match.
Kelly Kelly v. Nikki Bella
It’s a vicious brawl to start, but Nikki bulldogs her for two. Kelly comes back with the spinning headscissors and an alleged bulldog, then reverses a rollup for the pin at 1:29. ¼* You’d think after two people had wrestled each other 18 million times it might be decent, but no.
John Cena v. The Miz
Cena tosses Miz around to start and goes for the FU right away, but Miz escapes with his goofy neckbreaker for two. Kneelift gets two. Cena makes a mini-comeback, but Miz gets the DDT for two. Corner clothesline and he goes up, but Cena comes back with the FIVE MOVES OF DOOM to finish clean at 4:00. Sucks to be Miz these days. **
WWE tag titles: Primo & Epico v. R-Truth & Kofi Kingston v. Dolph Ziggler & Jack Swagger
Well at least the oddball booking last week makes more sense now. Kofi hits both Dolph and Primo with monkey flips and Truth gets two off it. Everyone quickly brawls to the floor and we take a break. Back with Zig-Swag beating on Truth in the corner, and Primo gets two. Truth fights off the heels with an impressive combination Downward spiral and DDT on Dolph and Primo and it’s hot tag Kofi. We get a double boomdrop on Swagger and Epico, but Dolph breaks it up with a Zig Zag that gives Swagger two. Primo gets the backstabber on Swagger, however, and Epico steals the pin at 8:14 to retain. They really need to get the US title off Swagger, it’s worse than useless on him. And before the champions can even celebrate, Kane comes out and destroys everyone. You just can’t get any kind of decent rhythm going in a triple threat tag match like this. **
Meanwhile, Teddy and Johnny argue about rumors and who’s the horse’s ass.
Meanwhile, it’s yet another video package, this time about the Cena-Eve storyline from last week. This brings out Eve, who cuts a stupid promo about how men should blame themselves for falling for her act. And that leads to a backstage confrontation with Kelly Kelly. Why couldn’t any of this been cut out, especially given how rushed other segments on this show were?
Big Show & Sheamus v. Cody Rhodes & Mark Henry
But first, Cody gives us a video of Show losing to Floyd Mayweather. Cody quickly walks out and Sheamus finishes Mark Henry with the Brogue Kick at 1:00. That was weird. They must be extremely pressed for time.
And now, finally the Rock has come back to Portland. He talks about people in the back hating on him for leaving (which draws a “Fruity Pebbles” chant from the crowd) and how John Cena actually has his cell phone number and could call him anytime he wants. So he talks about how he too was booed unmercifully when he was a young babyface starting out, and how no one fought for people like himself and Randy Savage and Steve Austin and Roddy Piper because THEY WERE MEN. Fuck yeah. And while Cena fights for “them” (the whiners in the back), Rock fights for “them” (the fans). Rock gets a little too into the Twitter thing and then has fun leading the crowd in anti-Cena chants. Another funny line as Rock busts on Cena changing from jean shorts to camo shorts as his big innovation. This finally brings out Cena to break up the lovefest. He notes that while Rock is entertaining, Dwayne Johnson is an egotistical jerk who doesn’t care about WWE. And has promo notes on his wrist. Ouch. And then he leaves with a curt “Carry on, continue trending.” That’s pretty awesome, actually. Rock seems legitimately pissed about the notes on the wrist thing and he’s kind of flustered before he gets his groove back to end the promo. Oh yeah, I’m buying this show. Sign me the fuck up right now.
Huh, three main programs where the basic gist is that the combatants wish to do bodily harm to each other to prove that they are in fact the best. Funny how that would produce the best buildup to Wrestlemania in years whereas stupid comedy would not. The show itself might be meh this week, but they have convinced me to part with my $60 many times over already, so everything else is just gravy.