Raw and Smackdown Live 1/30 and 1/31 review.
Monday Night Raw
What I liked.
- Owens powerful promo to kick off the show.
- Owens had a strong, powerful match with Reigns way before Braun came in and messed with it and he should be credited for that. Yes I know, the whole Owens can’t win alone thing bothers me as well, but what happened between Reigns and Owens at the Rumble was an INCREDIBLE match. I do wish that Jericho had broken the record for most time in a rumble in their career by doing something in the match instead of hanging out, outside, until it was convenient but oh well. The explanation as to why Braun did what he did made since because at the time I didn’t understand why Braun would be helping Owens. Braun is getting better on the mic, and when he threatens to break Owens in half he does it in a way that freaks me out, which is perfect.
- Jericho vs Zayn.
- I expected nothing less than greatness from this match and I got it. It was also super exciting to see Zayn get a clean win over Jericho and hopefully set up a title match for the US title and give Jericho a separate feud away from Owens. And man, would it be exciting for these two to fight for the US title on a PPV… even mania.
- Tony Nese vs Mustafa Ali
- Both guys have such different offences and it makes for a great match. Ali unique offense matched with Neses insane power gave us quite the match. Both are incredible athletes. I really enjoyed the match up.
- Seth Rollins and Stephanie go face to face.
- This is probably the first segment involving Stephanie in a LONG time that I didn’t find annoying and a complete waste of time. Rollins and her work incredibly good together on the mic. The entire thing about HHH trying to grow out of the destroyer and simply stay the creator is fantastic. Rollins believing he is HHH greatest threat to his legacy is perfect, as only a child of the game could believe that. Rollins threats to go to the end of the earth, including their house, to get to HHH, brought quite an intensity. When Stephanie decided that she lied and that HHH is actually on his way, Rollins look of pure joy and excitement was far better than if he suddenly looked scared, perfectly done.
- Cesaro Sheamus and Bayley vs Karl Luke and Charlotte.
- Really great mixed tag team match. It was something about Karl Luke and Charlotte teaming together that just looked extremely dominate and powerful and I liked that look. The back and forth between all six competitor was amazing and I’m always happy to see the women get the win in mix tag team action.
- Neville and Swann
- I didn’t mind Nevilles celebration party. I loved his mic work and I love that he proclaims himself the king, but doesn’t wear a silly crown, he wears a damn championship, it truly makes all the difference. Swann and Neville throwing down is always something I enjoy because they work incredible with each other.
- Braun vs Owens
- Braun attacking Jericho at the announce table was brilliant. So, so, brilliant. I didn’t like how Kevin looked so scared of him all night BUT I think it can be chocked up to the fact he was really beat down from 24 hours ago with his incredible match with Reigns and he knew his body was hurt and his title was on the line… The match, while it lasted, was pretty good, Kevin was fighting SO hard to beat him at least get him down on his feet which I liked because I was afraid this would just be 15 minutes of Braun destroying him. Reigns saved Kevin from losing his title when he interfered which everyone around the globe knew was coming. I love all sides of Roman but my FAVORITE side is when he just comes out, says NOTHING, and beats the crap out of people with this look of insanity on his face. He did all that when he came at Braun and I liked it. If they are inevitably setting up Braun vs Reigns at Fastlane or Mania, I probably wouldn’t mind it.
- Nia vs Sasha
- Now this was in no way my favorite part of the night at all. I put this in the like column because of the way Nia won. Just tossing her around and using different submissions on her knee. I also liked it because it looks like heel Sasha Banks is looking to come out… and might even end up coming out against Bayley.
- Triple H ends the show.
- “you already know who your creator is…. Get ready to meet your destroyer” That line was SO incredible. It pretty much gave me goosebumps. No one can ever say that HHH doesn’t still have incredible mic skills. The tension between Seth and HHH when Rollins was walking down the ramp was nuts. I wish I could he felt it in the arena itself. AND THEN here comes the actual destroyer Samoa Joe. First of all this was a MUCH better debut for him than coming in the rumble just to lose.
- We all now know that Rollins knee is injured… again… 😦 this is so heartbreaking. If you watched the WWE24 special you saw how hard it was on Rollins to miss last years mania. He was just so sad and depressed and to have this happen again as hes about to go into this AMAZING feud with HHH, its heartbreaking. His tweet didn’t sound positive but MAYBE we’ll all get lucky and it’s just a tweak and he’ll back for mania. Doesn’t look good though. 😦
What I didn’t like.
It’s been a while since this column was smaller than the what I like column so that’s an accomplishment!
- Big Cass and Enzo vs Rusev and Jinder
- Now I will say the match was actually pretty good. But I hate this stupid feud. They said this was the end and I SERIOUSLY hope it was. I’m not a fan of Rusev taking the pin. I don’t like what they’re doing with Rusev… I think he should be much higher on the card than he is now. I also think that Big Cass and Enzo should be in the tag team picture just doing what they’re doing now. It’s a waste of all the talent. I do hope that match really was the end of it.
- Brock Lesnar with Heyman.
- I hate all Lesnar segments so it’s no surprise I didn’t like this one. I did like Heymans who everyone has that one person who has their number no matter what sport youre in… that is very true. I don’t understand why Goldberg would want to accept Brocks challenge. He’s already proven he’s better. He’s embarrassed him twice now. I also read that a rumor was that Goldberg was going to win the Universal Title at Fastlane and go into mania against Brock for the title. I am SO NOT okay with that. If Lesnar and Brock want to go one on one at mania again then fine whatever…. But for the title? Absolutely not. Im PRAYING that rumor just stays a rumor.
First of all the Elimination Chamber consisting of John Cena, AJ Styles, Miz, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt and Baron Corbin looks fantastic! That match should prove to be one of the best chamber matches with the talent involved. Very excited for it.
What I liked.
- Cena opens the show.
- I loved how Cena opened the show and immediately told the world that Styles brings out the best in him, because that is so very true!
- Harper and Cena vs Randy and Bray.
- Intresting to say the least to have Harper and Cena on the same team first off. The intensity between Harper and Randy is fantastic. The way that Luke Harper can move in the ring and the personality that he has makes him one of my favorite wrestlers on the roster today. Really great sequence at the end between all four with the sister Abigail’s, AAs, big boots and finally the RKO to Cena from Orton. Very fun opening match.
- Becky and Naomi take on Alexa and Mickie.
- Bliss character is outstanding. It’s not just the way she is in the ring, or the mind games she plays in the ring, but the way she is on the apron, the facial expressions, it’s all so incredible. The crowd pop for Naomi when she finally got in the ring made my heart jump. Naomi deserves this push to the title so much and I really hope that they pull the trigger on it and she becomes champion sooner rather than later. The somersault clothesline and the split legged moonsault are INCREDIBLE. I hope we get a little more solo time with Becky and Mickie now because that could really take this womens division even higher. We learned on Talking Smack that because Naomi pinned Bliss at the Rumble and the tag team match she earned her opportunity at the title and will get it at the Elimination Chamber PPV. IF this doesn’t happen at EC and Bliss remains champion, I hope they’ll continue it into Mania. They’re going to be in Orlando, where Naomi is from, and man, after all the hard work Naomi has put in all these years, she’d truly deserve a moment like that!
- Nikki and Nattie in Bryans office.
- It made me laugh how Bryan had to go all dad voice on Nikki and Nattie to get them to stop arguing so he could talk. I love that they’re going to get their singles match at EC and one can only keep hoping it’ll get a stipulation attached… but if it doesn’t those two should absolutely bring down the house.
- Ambrose vs Styles.
- To have this match again without Ellsworth was great. At the end there Ellsworth really just took away from it and it was annoying, so I’m glad they got to go ahead and have this match. It was SO GOOD. If anyone works as good with Styles as Cena does, its Dean. Miz and Baron on commentary was okay, I liked Miz enthusiasm but it wish the cameras focused more on the match than on him at the table. Styles kick to the back of the head into deans clothesline was insane and Styles going off the top with his elbow onto dean, on the floor. Amazing. The brawl between the EC participants post match was great. I really love how Baron Corbin is in mixing it up with them and that End of days to miz to close the show…. Hot damn.
What I didn’t like.
- Ellsworth announcing Carmellas match.
- That was so cringe worthy. It was hard to watch. It was just awful. Carmella going from the feud with Nikki to now just fighting local competitors and needing Ellsworth help to win those matches doesn’t do it for me. If she needs James help to fight these local talents then how could she ever beat any of the girls on the actual roster.
The American Alpha Open Challenge.
- I was so happy to see AA on SD last night and have them have the open challenge. Although most of us were hoping to see The Revival answer the challenge, it was still okay that they didn’t. When the Usos came out, I was like oh okay, AA vs Usos, I’ll take it, two of my favorite teams. And then all the SD teams came out. What gets me is that the SD Tag division has great teams and great talent… they just need to figure out what the hell they’re doing. Put some feuds together… give AA competition so their reign isn’t a total loss. The hot mess that came to be in the ring last night was a nightmare. Now on Talking smack we learned that at Elimination Chamber there will be a tag team turmoil match for the Tag Team Championships… at least that’s a step in the right direction!
- Kalisto vs Dolph
- The only reason I didn’t like this is because it’s already happened like four times. It’s like his his beef with Kalisto or Apollo… is he going to get a match with Apollo some day? Is this new Dolph thing going anywhere? I’m lost and I’m thinking that they are too.
So right now going into Elimination Chamber, the matches are:
- Nikki vs Nattie
- Alexa Bliss vs Naomi- SD Live womens championship
- Tag team turmoil match for the SD Tag team championships
- The chamber match consisting of Dean, Miz, AJ, Baron, Bray and Cena.
- This PPV is shaping up to be fantastic!!