David Stephens reviews the 1/28 WWE RAW

David’s RAW Thoughts
January 29, 2013
By: David Stephens of Wrestleview.com

Ah the Royal Rumble. It’s one of the big four PPVs of the year and undoubtedly leaves us with a myriad of surprises as well as twists and turns each year. The following Monday Night’s RAW, which is what we witnessed last night, sets the tone for how the angles will wind their way towards Wrestlemania.

Jericho’s return was unexpected and a nice reminder that he’s incredibly talented as a face. I’ve long made it a habit to avoid wrestling news sites on the day of major PPVs in order to avoid spoilers. This year I’m very glad that I did because just as much as I was surprised by Jericho’s return, I also was not disappointed waiting for other rumored entrants to arrive. It’s a philosophy I hold dear and certainly encourage others to partake in because it makes the shows so much more enjoyable.

Anyway, let’s move on to RAW. Lesnar’s return was the marquee event of the night. It opens up a few possibilities for Lesnar’s WrestleMania opponent. I can see that the rumor mill is full of theories that Lesnar will take on The Undertaker, but as of this moment I’m not convinced. Let’s not forget that Taker is still very banged up from his years in the wrestling ring. His opponents over the last five years have specifically been chosen to be people that can wrestle a safe style and protect Taker while still putting on a solid match. Let’s just say that Lesnar isn’t the most graceful or protective wrestler in the business. If this match does occur, it’s going to take a lot of Michelle McCool sponge bathes to make the Deadman feel better.

CM Punk’s storyline moving forward has potential. I commented on Twitter last night that CM Punk’s RAW work was some of the best promo work he’s delivered in the company. Someone responded, “too bad it took 435 days” which I suppose is a fair point. Actually, one of my favorite Punk promos was the one he delivered to The Rock last week. It wasn’t his typical snarky attitude; instead Punk delivered a true old school wrestling promo that hit home. I’d like to see more of that out of Punk as sometimes it lends better to his character.

Cesaro continues to impress me each and every week. His dead lift of Orton off the mat into a suplex was a tremendous maneuver. I had the chance to see Cesaro on the Indies on a number of occasions, but it was only when I began to see his work in HD that I truly realized his gift. Cesaro is going to be around for a long time, no doubt.

I just don’t get the Primetime Players. There was a stage about two-three months ago where I was starting to come around to their style and could appreciate their heel antics, but instead I’ve begun to lose interest. Sure, they hip and hop, but I don’t buy them as a true threat at this point.

Poor Cody Rhodes, doesn’t he know that John Cena never loses? Okay sure Cena loses every now and then, but I’d like to point out a staggering statistic. In 2012 it took just 108 matches for Cena to reach 100 wins. This of course includes house shows and the like. He had 4 losses and 4 draws up until that point. This is why I never pick against John Cena in the faculty predictions, and probably why I’m the first ever 2-time Champion.

Not really much to say about the Divas match. Pretty much just a Vegas Cluster—

Sandow was able to get in a surprising amount of offense in his match against Sheamus. I was expecting a lopsided victory for the Irishman, but there were enough spots that made both competitors look strong. Sandow dropping Sheamus onto the side of the table did not look like a fun time.

Team Hell No is about to come to an end. I’d expect a match between the two at WrestleMania, but that will depend on how much of a slow burn the WWE utilizes during the break up. While their time may be coming to an end, I can undoubtedly say that they have been my favorite tag team in recent memory. It’s been a good ride.

Overall, RAW was a pretty solid show this week. The RAW Roulette gimmick is hit or miss, but this time it was a hit. They didn’t make a huge deal out of the gimmick and instead let it help guide the show. The Road to WrestleMania is upon us, so let the finger pointing commence.

David Stephens
Follow me on Twitter! @TheDaveStephens

David Stephens is the official recapper of WWE RAW for Wrestleview.com.