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By Revin Samuel on 2/7/2012 9:07 AM

RAW – 6/2/2012
What needs to happen on this week’s Raw
•I felt like last week’s Raw was the first show, television or pay per view that felt like we were indeed on the road to Wrestlemania. I hope that trend continues and that the company continues to promote Elimination Chamber as an important show, while also promoting Wrestlemania. I know some people get tired of it, but I have no real issue with everybody and their mother pointing to the Wrestlemania sign
•John Cena-Kane. Perhaps I’m the only one who hasn’t totally been turned off by this storyline, it’s been hit and miss, but I thought last week was a definite win. WWE is going to shove John Cena down our throat either way and if I have to watch him, I want him intense as oppose to doing bad John Cena comedy. I’m intrigued where this goes next. Does it involve Kane assaulting Zack Ryder or Eve? I want more heat put on Kane so it keeps John Cena focused and angry
•Chris Jericho-CM Punk. I really felt like some of the spice was taken out of Jericho with the Royal Rumble loss and he needs a killer promo to make up for it. I hope we get it tonight that being said Jericho and Punk should not be the only focus of the Raw Elimination Chamber match since there are four other participants.
•Speaking of those participants, two of them are in need of a couple solid wins in Dolph Ziggler and The Miz. I’m not holding my breath that they’ll get those wins, but I will ask that they are at least protected tonight
•Smackdown synergy. I really hope WWE delivers some nice hype for the first time Bryan-Orton match set for Smackdown this week
Show Breakdown

  1. So WWE decided to do a six pack challenge match with the six competitors involved in the Raw Elimination Chamber match? This is not the news I wanted to hear to start the show. The formulatic ways WWE goes about promoting main event pay per view matches needs to be adjusted when I hear things like this.


  1. Interesting start to Raw. As per usual when Triple H is out to cut an extended promo, it dragged, but in one promo segment he was able to put doubt in my head that the streak will continue.


  1. Michael Cole “Daniel Bryan has found a way to weasel out of all his matches with the Big Show”; I’m pretty sure Bryan won the cage match under the guise of the rules. More credible killing announcing from the most counterproductive person on WWE television.


  1. Weird that at no point during this match has Cole mentioned the Bryan-Orton match set for Smackdown this week.


  1. Fine little angle there with Show and Bryan. Bryan’s promo work continues to the best in WWE for 2012 in my book.


  1. BTW the fact that WWE is telling us that Laurinaitis faith will be decided tomorrow (I assume on their website) would probably tell the audience that indeed he did get a stay of execution. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see him by night’s end.


  1. Carl Edwards-John Cena backstage segment, no comment.


  1. I like that video package on the Elimination Chamber. I don’t like that they are having a six pack challenge with all six guys involved. Only in wrestling in 2012 is this how they try and promote their pay per view main events.


  1. Is it bad that I was hoping that it would be the Funkasaurous out to challenge Otunga?


  1. They gave Otunga more than I thought they would in that match with Sheamus. Another solid outing for Sheamus on his road to Wrestlemania


  1. Does Kevin Dunn not realizing how much Nickelback is hated in 2012?


  1. I laughed at CM Punk entering the ring and Chris Jericho’s jacket flickering, I’m not sure why, but it’s comical, maybe a little too much of a distraction.


  1. Good segment with Jericho and Punk. I thought Jericho’s explanation for the end of the world was a bit weak, but he’s a heel so it’s allowed. Punk’s reaction of holding up the title and walking away was great drama to build their eventual one on one showdown and give Jericho a dose of his own medicine with the silence.


  1. Let’s see if Wade Barrett and Cody Rhodes get better treatment on Raw this week then they did on Smackdown when they both took clean losses.


  1. I don’t really want to see The Great Khali wrestling, let alone on both Raw and Smackdown.


  1. WWE acknowledges the Bryan-Orton match for Smackdown this week. I’m not sure why they couldn’t also acknowledge it during Bryan’s match with Big Show as well.


  1. Nope, WWE just refuses to give their heels any help. Cody jobs clean to Khali who then gets taken out by Orton. The people they employ just don’t understand the wrestling business and the man at the top clearly has other priorities on his mind then building his year round talent.


  1. This “Turn me on”, Wrestlemania song is going to get old fast, although glad to see them using an in artist with Nicki Minaj


  1. Great video package on John Cena and those of us who hate Cena probably hate him even more after that package! I’ve seen it too many times now with the Royal Rumble, Smackdown and now Raw so I’d like them to keep it up, but perhaps change the footage.


  1. Tamina really sticks out like a sore thumb when she comes out with Kelly, Eve and Alicia and they are all dressed in orange, but perhaps that’s by design.


  1. Good in set promo from Beth and the storyline of her being too dominant for the rest of the diva. Unfortunately I don’t like Cole and Lawler’s commentary here since they are playing dumb about the fact that Kharma lead to Cole’s elimination at the Royal Rumble and she could step up as that challenger.


  1. Tamina needs new theme music; she’s not going to get over. They should just give her Snuka’s music. Also if they are going to say she is paying homage to her father they need to show footage of Snuka. WWE targets their franchise character to eight year olds yet with stuff like this The Bubble who are all probably above 50 don’t want to put the effort into let the audience know what Cole means when he says “Paying homage to her father”.


  1. Nice touch of WWE to show a snippet of The Rock on Leno. They are really doing some quality things to promote that much thus far.


  1. Good move to plug Shawn’s appearance for next week.


  1. Does every authority figure have to be texting on Raw the second someone else leaves the room?


  1. Here’s what I want to know. Why does Laurinaitis tell Triple H that Shawn Michaels will be a guest on Raw next week, yet Cole says he’ll be there directly to talk to Triple H.? The entire thing comes off a bit contrived and thus one of the rare times where perhaps Shawn’s appearance should have been executed as a surprise.


  1. I don’t like they did the match, but the finish was creative and puts Jericho in a prime position for the Elimination Chamber.


  1. Whacky Kane promo to end the show, but a cliff-hanger so it is what it is.

What this show accomplished
The Good
•I like the continued hype for The Elimination Chamber and Wrestlemania. They seem to be more focused on their pay per views and surprise, surprise that’s what happens during Wrestlemania season. It’s like Vince wants to make his money here so he can just toy around with the product the rest of the year
•John Cena-Kane match announced. I like that they announced another match for the pay per view. It was kind of a throwaway backstage segment, but I’m sure they will emphasize it further next week
•Video packages. The video package for Wrestlemania, Elimination Chamber, The Undertaker and John Cena were all great stuff and materials that WWE needs to leverage more when building matches, characters and pay per views
•Chris Jericho-CM Punk chapter 2. A fine second chapter with Punk giving Jericho a dose of his own medicine and their interaction in the six pack challenge was also very creative
•Sheamus win over Otunga. I liked that they gave Otunga some offense, but Sheamus continues to build momentum towards Wrestlemania
•Daniel Bryan/AJ-Big Show. Fine segment to further develop the AJ/Bryan pairing. I said it at the top of my column and I’ll say it again here, Bryan is the best microphone man in WWE for 2012 so far.
•Triple H promo. I had some issues with this due to the length and repetitive nature of it, but in one segment they’ve already established doubt that the streak can continue. Even I am thinking to myself that they would have the gall to let Triple H be the one to end the streak
•Nicki Minaj as the Wrestlemania soundtrack. I think the song will get old quickly, but she’s one of the most in artists there is right now
The Bad
•The heels continue to look like fools. Once again Ziggler and Cody Rhodes, perhaps the two most promising talents in WWE for 2011 lose and lose clean. The Rhodes one is even more bewildering as he loses to an immobile likely not around for the long haul Great Khali who then gets buried by Orton. This segment was the epitome of everything wrong with WWE Creative
•Tamina push. I’m shocked Natalya didn’t take the loss here. The Tamina push is not going to work here. The music is terrible, nobody reacts to her doing the splash and her outfits are bad. I realize it’s not creative to give her Jimmy Snuka’s music, but if she’s going to get the crowd behind her she definitely needs a better theme song. She could also use some talking time and perhaps a cameo by Snuka himself, plus footage of him doing the splash. Yes WWE put the effort into push her, don’t just give us your haphazard standard diva of the month push
•The promotion for Bryan and Orton. A slight nitpick, but I thought they could have done more to push this match
•Nickelback as the Elimination Chamber soundtrack. They couldn’t go two for two on music choices. I don’t mind Nickelback myself, but I know for the majority of the audience they are very played out
•The six guys who will participate in the Elimination Chamber Raw match all face each other on Raw in the same match. I hate when they do things like this in an attempt to build a future pay per view match between the exact same guys involved! It’s like the enemies who become tag team champions garbage.
Overall Analysis
•I feel like this overall analysis is something I’m going to add to my column going forward. I thought while this was a show where nothing really happened, it was a show where they built thing and created intrigue for The Elimination Chamber and Wrestlemania. I actually think WWE needs to have more shows like this in the future, although the storytelling and match selection could be improved
What needs to happen next week?
•Strong Elimination Chamber push. It’s the go home show and everything can’t be overshadowed by Wrestlemania and the confrontation between Shawn and Hunter
•John Cena-Kane. I said in my goals for the show that I was intrigued to see what they do next and I don’t have an issue that they basically held both men off the show this week. It would have been nice if Kane got some major heat and then Cena could deliver an intense go home promo, but that can still happen next week. All I hope is that Eve doesn’t turn out to be Kane’s next lover seduced by evil or something straight out of TNA
•Give me a reason to believe Kofi Kingston, The Miz, Dolph Ziggler or R-Truth can win the Raw Elimination Chamber. I will not hold my breath for anything here as just like with Survivor Series with Rock and Cena, WWE probably thinks all they need to focus on is Jericho and Punk, but I disagree. There is no reason you can’t give the other guys some credibility
•The return of the Funkasaurous, Yes I’m calling for it. I actually liked that they kept him off a couple shows as they should do that with more characters. This week neither him nor the United States Champion made television, I’d like to see one if not both of them back next week and maybe programmed for Brodus’s first title shot at the pay per view. Although that might be too quick of a turnaround.