Alright guys we are at the go-home show before Fastlane, which is also the last ppv event before next month’s Wrestlemania. So we should be in for a good one, if not a decent one tonight, let’s get into it. You know how we do here, it’s 4 Things to Take Away From Tonight’s Raw.
4. Goldberg/Kevin Owens
So we start out the show with our first advertised appearance, Goldberg returns to Raw to cut a promo about Kevin Owens’ promo from last week. No seriously that’s what this opening segment was. Then cue Kevin Owens to come out to talk about the promo that Goldberg did on the promo that Owens did last week, and that’s pretty much it. I can’t speak for everyone, but this wrestling geek…really…really…does not care about this match whatsoever. I’m just sitting here waiting for Owens to fight Jericho, like that’s what I’m invested in right now, I could care less about this throwaway feud to put the belt on Goldberg to ‘build the stakes’ in his Lesnar match at Mania, like my excitement level is literally at 0 for this match.
3. The Wrestling
Now, we all know this is “sports entertainment”. But it seems to me that there’s either too much focus on the entertainment, but not the sports part, or vice versa. But what kept me watching my whole life was that fine mix of both, with compelling matches that we care about with characters we care about and want to see win or lose.
But other than a few of the main storylines going on there’s a lack of compelling matches. Like tonight I got hyped for the match we’ll be talking about in a bit, Samoa Joe vs Cesaro, and that’s pretty much it. The rest of the show is either filler matches or matches that just don’t feel important. What the purpose of the draft/brand split was supposed to be was opportunity for everyone, a chance to make better shows out of both wrestling shows. But instead Smackdown has gotten fantastic, and Raw has become well, a hit or miss show.
I should really be excited for both aspects of the show, the matches and the entertainment. And I have been before, and I can be again. It’s Raw itself that needs to Redesign, Rebuild, and Reclaim.
2. Samoa Joe vs Cesaro
Longtime indie wrestling fans have seen these two battle before all across the indies, but this is a first time for WWE fans here tonight. It was in fact the one match tonight that I was legit excited for when it was set up by a backstage segment. Now, pure speculation here, at the end of that segment, which had Joe talking about how much better off in his career he’d become compared to what Cesaro’s career has gone, and Joe storms off with Sheamus about to defend Cesaro but Cesaro says that he’ll take care of it.
Now most fans I saw on Twitter took this to mean that a feud was incoming, and we got the match of course tonight, but I’m thinking long term, and I saw what could have been a subtle hint at a twist, with maybe a heel turn for Cesaro in the works, joining the faction that Triple H is making with Samoa Joe and Kevin Owens. It would seem like a logical twist. He’s been doing all he can and is still not getting pushed, what else is next but to turn to the dark side? Like Ziggler but more effective hopefully.
Good match between the two of them tonight, Cesaro like seriously, one way or the otehr deserves some kind of push, but I’m still standing by my theory. We’ll see if it turns true.
- Seth Rollins/Triple H
Any longtime reader of this site knows how much I’m looking forward to this match at Wrestlemania. And almost right after I wrote the article on how much I’m looking forward to this match we had Samoa Joe’s main roster debut and he injured Rollins in his opening attack. Would we see Rollins again at Wrestlemania? This was an A+ segment all around. From the interview with Corey Graves, talking about his whole story selling out, buying in and his return last year from his first injury, we really felt sympathy for him finally with his in ring promo, and he says with full sincerity that he will not be at Wrestlemania. And I bought into it.
Then, Triple H’s music cues and we have one of the best face off promos in a long time, the animosity between these two is visceral, and I’m absolutely loving this whole setup. Like this slow burning feud is some of the best stuff these writers have come up with on the show in quite some time. If only they could put their attention into the whole show and not just one segment, we’d be in a much better place as wrestling fans.