World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus battles Daniel Bryan.
Decent opening segment featuring Alberto Del Rio and company. He's opened the show countless times in recent weeks saying the same thing, so this felt extremely repetitive. I'm glad Christian appeared in some fashion in his home country of Canada, but his involvement felt strange since he's a face. The save grace of this promo was Daniel Bryan coming out, who has the tendency to make any horrendous segment ten times better just because of how entertaining he's become. Not only that, but it also helped hype the main event and give it significance as well.
Nice match between Intercontinental Champion The Miz and Sin Cara. Of course, it had its share of botches, but the action was good for what it was worth. While I was a bit disappointed Miz lost yet another non-title match, it was logical in order to get Cara involved in the Intercontinental Championship match at Night of Champions.
Brief match with Kane defeating WWE Tag Team Champion Kofi Kingston. The action was fine while it lasted, but it was enough to hype the WWE Tag Team Championship match for Sunday. Obviously, the best part about the entire ordeal was Kane hugging Kingston following the contest, which was almost as hilarious as the anger management segment from earlier in the night.
Good match with Randy Orton defeating Tensai. It was certainly better than expected and made both participants look good. Tensai came off as a beast and Orton sold his offense very well. Granted, it was predictable victory for Orton, but still an enjoyable match nonetheless. The post-match angle with Orton preventing Ziggler from attacking him was something out the ordinary and a nice change of pace, while also building their feud going into Night of Champions in the process.
WWE Champion CM Punk turns his back on Bret Hart.
Great opening promo featuring the returning Bret Hart and WWE Champion CM Punk. This an encounter that I've been anticipating for weeks, and it certainly lived up to my expectations. Punk had some strong mic work here while Hart also played his role well. The "Best in the World" line was great, and the electric Montreal crowd was fun here, especially with their various chants.
Decent tag team match with WWE Tag Team Champions Kofi Kingston and R-Truth defeating United States Champion Antonio Cesaro and Intercontinental Champion The Miz. It felt random other than the fact it slightly hyped the title theme of Night of Champions on Sunday, but the action was still good. I would've liked to see the heels go over here, but their loss wasn't all that damaging.
Horrendous segment featuring David Otunga and World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus in a legal setting. They were obviously trying to repeat the same success the anger management skits had, but they failed tremendously. Neither Otunga nor Sheamus are funny, so I'm not exactly sure what demographic they were attempting to appeal to. I appreciate the fact that they were trying to build upon the banning of the Brogue Kick story-line, but this did nothing for this viewer.
Throwaway six-Diva tag team match with Eve, Kaitlyn and Divas Champion Layla defeating Alicia Fox, Beth Phoenix and Natalya. The action was what you'd expect from the Divas, but nothing too bad. It was done to hype Sunday's Divas title match, but with Eve picking up the pin-fall for her team, don't be surprised to see her added into the match.
Solid match with Randy Orton and Jerry Lawler defeating Dolph Ziggler and WWE Champion CM Punk. The singles match between Punk and Orton that preceded the tag bout was also very good, but it would've been nicer to see Punk pick up the victory, especially since he's heading into a major title match on Sunday. The subsequent tag match was logical, but the cut to commercial break seemed strange. As much as I dislike seeing Ziggler consistently taking pins while Mr. Money in the Bank, they made it work by having Paul Heyman come down and collaborate with Punk.
Typical match between Ryback and Heath Slater. I'm glad to see them actually building a feud between Zack Ryder and Slater, and incorporating Ryback as well was a nice touch. Needless to say, Ryback scored the victory in the same fashion he always has, so there was nothing new here.
Damien Sandow takes control of Randy Orton.
Boring opening segment featuring Alberto Del Rio and company. While I have been enjoying Del Rio's recent re-build lately, his promos are still as boring as ever. I tuned out for a majority of what he said, and the same goes for David Otunga. I appreciate the fact they're trying to make this "banning of the Brogue Kick" into a story-line, but we've seen so much of this law involvement in wrestling as of late that it's grown tiresome with this viewer. Nonetheless, props to Ricardo Rodriguez for selling that injury like a beast.
Great tag team match with Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara defeating Intercontinental Champion The Miz and Cody Rhodes. Although we saw this same exact matchup a few short weeks on SmackDown, I still throughly enjoyed the action, as the chemistry between all four guys is simply phenomenal. I've been loving this partnership between Mysterio and Cara in recent months and hope to see it lead to an eventual pairing or a run with the tag titles at some point. While I'm not high on the heels losing here, it gives Mysterio a reason to go back after the Intercontinental title at Night of Champions after pinning Miz here.
Nice little match between Daniel Bryan and Zack Ryder while it lasted. I definitely would've liked to see more from these two, but what we got was fun. Granted, it was more focused on Bryan's character rather than the actual match itself, and it succeeded in that aspect as well. Ryder was made to look like a complete doofus by accepting Bryan's phony hug, but thankfully was able to defeat the former World Heavyweight Champion by technicality since the referee reversed the decision in the end.
Solid match between Randy Orton and Damien Sandow. Honestly, I found this contest much more enjoyable than Sandow's match with Sheamus from last week mostly since Sandow didn't run outside the ring as much here, but instead was able to score some offense in on Orton. I knew there was a very slim chance that Sandow would be upsetting the Viper, so I wasn't surprised when he eventually bolted and Orton picked up the count-out victory. It protects Sandow, while also allowing Ziggler and Orton to brawl afterwards. Speaking of Ziggler, he played his role well on commentary and definitely put over his on-going feud with Orton.
WWE Champ CM Punk and World Champ Sheamus face off.
Solid segment to kick off the show featuring World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and WWE Champion CM Punk. Their exchange was both entertaining and extremely well done, which makes this the first Sheamus promo I was actually interested in. I liked how Punk didn't ignore the cheers he received from his hometown crowd, but instead embraced them. This segment made both World Championships feel important and set up a blockbuster matchup for later in the night.
Great match with Dolph Ziggler defeating Randy Orton. These two never cease to have a bad match, and this was no exception. It was an awesome opening match that once again has me eagerly anticipating a rematch. Ziggler going over was very smart booking, even if it was via dirty tactics. It keeps the feud alive and proves to the Raw audience that Ziggler is a legitimate threat as Mr. Money in the Bank.
Good tag team match with Rey Mysterio and Sin Cara defeating Cody Rhodes and Tensai. Hyping the teaming of Mysterio and Cara as a first-time-ever thing before the break was a nice hook, and they made for a fun team. They've been pairing up quite a bit lately, so I wouldn't be surprised to see them eventually form an official tandem. Tensai's place in this match felt random, despite Cole mentioning that Cara faced Tensai a few weeks back, as Damien Sandow would've been a much better choice. Given Tensai's involvement, he should've been the one to be pinned and not Rhodes, since Rhodes needs momentum in this feud with Cara in order for it to matter.
Excellent booking by having CM Punk walk out on Sheamus, preventing their Champion vs. Champion match from happening. Given the fact that's a first-time-ever match, I'm glad to see it saved for a later date with even more anticipation following the build towards it earlier in the night. Sure, Punk still got cheered by Chicago while leaving, but he did receive a share of boos as well, so what he did was certainly effective. As for Sheamus' match with Jack Swagger, it was fine for what it was, but we've seen it so many times that it was merely pointless. If nothing else, the Celtic Warrior's innovate Texas Cloverleaf maneuver was innovative and I hope to see him use it more often going forward.
Typical Divas match between Eve and Kaitlyn. It contained a handful of botches, but thankfully, it was painless and over quickly. I'm not down on the idea of giving the number one contender Kaitlyn a loss here, as it seems they're trying to incorporate Eve into the title picture as well. Layla played her role well on commentary, but her bickering with Miz took away from the match for a short while.
Fine match between Ryback and Jinder Mahal. We saw the culmination of this feud a few weeks ago on SmackDown, so this match was nothing new. What was new, however, was Ryback's new shirt, which actually looks pretty cool. Any chance I can get it in my size?
Damien Sandow takes World Champion Sheamus to the limit.
Nice opening segment featuring World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and Damien Sandow. I've grown tired of seeing Sheamus open the show with a promo, as it's been the same old opening segment for weeks. However, Sandow was a fresh face to kick off the show and his verbal jabs to the Celtic Warrior were entertaining. It set up one of the night's matches nicely and gave Sandow some effective heat.
Solid match between Rey Mysterio and Cody Rhodes. Obviously, we've seen better matches from the two, but this one was pretty good for what it was worth. I didn't like the idea of Rhodes losing clean, as they could've at least had Sin Cara cost him the victory. Sin Cara masking Rhodes following the match furthered the feud, but didn't do anything for this viewer.
Fine match with Kaitlyn and Natalya. The action wasn't terrible, but instead short and sweet. It gave Kaitlyn the victory she needed going into her Divas Championship match at Night of Champions as well as incorporating her recent rivalry with Natalya over social networking. Speaking of Natalya, she deserves much better than this, but it's good she's still being featured on the main shows even if she's on the losing end.
Good match between World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and Damien Sandow. The action was good while it lasted, but Sandow running in and out of the ring numerous times grew old quickly and made him look cowardly. Sheamus winning via count-out doesn't do anything for either man, as it gives Sandow his first real loss in singles competition while Sheamus continues to dominate for no apparent reason. Nonetheless, I'm glad they made the smart decision to protect Sandow by having him not get pinned here. I understand that Sandow is not yet big enough of a character to upset Sheamus, but then why have this match at all? Strange booking here.
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