CM Punk leaps outside the ring to attack Daniel Bryan.
Decent promo to kick off the show featuring John Cena, John Laurinaitis, and Michael Cole. Cena's rebuttal to Big Show was nicely done, but everything else didn't do much for me. Cole's heel gimmick jumped the shark a year ago, so it seemed pointless to rekindle that for no reason. I'm not sure if the Cena vs. Cole main event hook was supposed to keep viewers tuned in, since it wasn't all that intriguing of an announcement either. Not the best way to start an edition of Raw to say the least.
Good match between World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus and Dolph Ziggler. Sure, we already saw this on SmackDown only a few days prior, but this was able to show the world (no pun intended) what these two are really made of. I'm still stumped as to why Ziggler is still with Vickie Guerrero at this point, but at least Jack Swagger wasn't at ringside. Ziggler desperately needs the push he so rightfully deserves, but he looked strong in defeat here. Alberto Del Rio's attack on Sheamus following the bout made him look more aggressive than ever before.
Fine match between Sin Cara and Hunico. I'm glad they're expanding Sin Cara back to Monday nights where he can be re-exposed to the Raw audience, and even gladder that his old rival Hunico was his opponent. Hunico was able to get in some offense and mesh nicely with Sin Cara's style, mostly since they're very similar in the ring. Sin Cara was certainly impressive here as I didn't notice any obvious botches, which is somewhat shocking given the fact this was live television.
Typical squash match from Ryback yet again. While he is doing the same thing he's been doing for weeks by facing two opponents at the same time, his sheer power never ceases to amaze me. The live audience seemed to be impressed as well, but it's time to put Ryback in a legitimate feud where he can really shine.
John Cena takes on Tensai in an impromptu match.
Solid match between WWE Champion CM Punk and Kane that was definitely better than their bore-fest from last Friday on SmackDown. Kane and Punk have natural chemistry, and it showed throughout the bout with the very near-falls that the live crowd bought into. Adding AJ into the mix (like they have been for the last few weeks now) is a very nice twist that keeps viewer intrigued in the on-going rivalry. Having Kane go over here was a smart move, as it allows people to buy into the fact that the Big Red Monster could very well leave No Way Out as the WWE Champion. The post-match angle with AJ eyeing Kane was yet another interesting layer added into this "love triangle" of sorts.
Fun match with WWE Tag Team Champions Kofi Kingston and R-Truth defeating Curt Hawkins and Tyler Reks. Although the contest was brief, it provided some entertaining action and gave the Raw audience a small dose of what Reks and Hawkins are truly capable of. As seen on WWE Superstars and NXT, Reks and Hawkins are a very talented duo and I'm thrilled to finally see them used on one of the main shows. Granted, they didn't win, but it would have been logical if they won since Kingston and Truth pretty much no-sold their injuries sustained last week at the hands of Big Show.
Despite it not being previously advertised, John Cena and Tensai provided a great match. While the crowd may not be very receptive to Tensai, they bought into his near-falls on Cena and meshed well with Cena's style. My main issue of this match was that it felt obvious what the outcome would be based on how Michael Cole was next in line for a match with Cena, as well as the fact that Tensai's undefeated streak wasn't emphasized throughout the bout. Cena's next match with Cole felt like a repeat of the Over the Limit main event, as the entire thing was of course one big joke. Sure, Tensai interfered, but I had a strange feeling that Big Show would make an appearance and cost Cena the match. Sadly, that didn't happen, and Cena bullied Cole for no apparent reason endlessly to end the show victorious.
Overall, a good show that featured some entertaining action and story-line development, except with the segments involving John Cena and Michael Cole. What was the whole point of that main event anyways? To my knowledge, Cena has never really had a major problem with Cole on television, so that entire segment and match felt completely filler. Facing the undefeated Tensai would had been enough, but they had to go and add "comedy" to it that was completely unnecessary. Regardless, it's also interesting to note the number of familiar faces that were absent from this show including Intercontinental Champion Christian, Cody Rhodes, Brodus Clay, The Miz, Zack Ryder and of course Big Show. The build towards No Way Out was decent on this week's broadcast, but hopefully the teaser of Mr. McMahon returning next week will attract viewers into watching the three-hour show.
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