This recap and analysis of WWE’s Monday Night Raw are the personal opinions of the writer. The author of this article is a former promoter, writer, and referee in the wrestling industry. You won’t find analysis as accurate as this anywhere else on the internet.
WWE Monday Night Raw Results 3/26/12. Six days away from Wrestlemania.
Randy Orton and Sheamus vs. World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan and Kane w/ AJ- Daniel Bryan kisses AJ before the match starts. They have been doing this every week on Smackdown. Orton and Bryan tie up. Shoulder block by Orton. Bryan charges at him with multiple kicks. Back body drop from Orton followed by body stomps. Orton misses a knee to the face, and Bryan comes back with high knees. Irish whip into the corner, but Bryan runs up the turnbuckle, flips, but is caught with an Orton clothesline. Sheamus is tagged in. Bryan rolls to the corner and tags Kane. Randy Orton is trending on Twitter. Kane and Sheamus tie up. Kane uses uppercuts. Sheamus comes back with a knee to the gut. Kane uses another uppercut followed by a clothesline. Irish whip into the corner, but Sheamus counters with a boot to the face. Battering ram off the top rope for a near fall. Sheamus goes for the Celtic Cross but Bryan jumps up onto the apron. Kane sends Sheamus to the outside. Bryan hits a running knee off the apron to the outside. Commercial break. Nice start to the show. It’s a wrestling match! And it’s longer than two minutes! TNA take notes. #Raw is trending on Twitter.
Back from break and Bryan is kicking Sheamus hard in the corner..repeatedly. Bryan runs at him with a dropkick but Sheamus moves out of the way. Hot tag to Orton. Multiple clotheslines and a snap power slam by Orton. Hanging DDT off the ropes. Orton signals RKO but Kane pulls Byan out of the ring. Orton goes to the outside and punches away at Kane. Orton throws Kane face first into the turnbuckle. Bryan uses a baseball slide from inside the ring which nails Orton in the face. Kane throws Orton back in and is tagged in. Kane punches away at Orton in the turnbuckle. Irish whip, clothesline, two count. Pretty standard and boring stuff here for Kane’s heat. Chin lock. Just because Kane wasn’t making it boring enough. Orton fights out but is Irish whipped to the corner. Orton counters with a boot to the face but is caught in a side slam when he runs at Kane. Kane comes off the top rope with a clothesline. He signals for the chokeslam.
Orton dropkicks Kane in the face. Hot tag to Sheamus, tag to Bryan. Lot’s of clotheslines followed by the Irish Curse Backbreaker. Kane comes into the ring but is met by Orton. Kane is tossed to the outside. Orton follows him out and goes for an RKO on the mat. Kane sends him face first into the turnbuckle. Sheamus goes for the Brogue Kick on Bryan, but AJ gets in the way. She stands in front of Bryan. Kane grabs Sheamus from the apron and hits a chokeslam. Bryan covers Sheamus for the win. Instead of thanking or celebrating with AJ, he immediately jumps up on the turnbuckle and yells “Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes.” Solid match. Good start to the show. That’s not a good sign for Bryan that he just went over in this match. I’ll literally cry if he drops the title. My predictions are at the bottom of this recap. The stuff with Bryan and AJ gets better and better every week. He’s the best in the world. Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes!!!!! World Heavyweight Champion!!!!
Michael Cole is in the ring with a Team Johnny shirt. He says he has been named the official commentator for Team Johnny at Wrestlemania. Cole introduces John Laurinaitis. Laurinaitis introduces the official flag bearer for Team Johnny, Vickie Guerrero. Laurinaitis then introduces his team captain, David Otunga. Otunga comes out with a black robe, poses, and has a half cut Team Johnny shirt on. If you don’t follow Otunga on Twitter you need to. His new law advice that he gives to people is the most entertaining thing on Twitter. Booker T, who is on commentary tonight, grabs a microphone. He names himself the official commentator for Team Teddy. Booker then introduces Teddy Long. When Booker T tries to tell everyone that he’s the official commentator, he can’t spit it out….as usual. He really sounded like an idiot. Reminded me of Lou on the Celebrity Apprentice. Teddy Long introduces team captain Santino Marella. Hornswoggle comes out with him with a flag.
David Otunga vs. United States Champion Santino Marella- Santino starts with a side headlock. Irish whip and a shoulder block by Otunga. The #1 trend worldwide on Twitter is Michael Cole. Santino goes for a shoulder block but Otunga doesn’t budge. He goes for another shoulder block but instead drops down with a drop toe hold. He sends Otunga into the turnbuckle. He runs at him in the other turnbuckle but is hit with a clothesline. Otunga grabs the Team Johnny flag and waives it in the middle of the ring. For no reason. Other than to bring about the finish. Which looks incredibly predetermined. Hornswoggle runs in the ring and waives his flag. Santino puts on the Cobra glove and hits Otunga with it. That’s the match. Santino wins. Waste of time.
Laurinaitis gets in the ring and throws the Teddy flag down. Santino squats as Teddy Long pushes Laurinaitis down over Santino’s back. Laurinaitis corners Teddy Long as Santino sets up to hit the Cobra on Laurinaitis. From out of nowhere The Miz hits the Skull Crushing Finale on Santino. Laurinaitis says “Miz congrats on being the newest member of team Teddy…Johnny.” Yes, he messed up his lines too. Nobody can seem to talk tonight. So I’m happy The Miz finally has a match. The actual match at Wrestlemania better be used to either put Zack Ryder or The Miz over. One of those guys needs to get the pin fall. They have to. That Wrestlemania crowd will be going absolutely nuts for Zack Ryder. Let me tell you whats going to happen. Your going to hear “we want Ryder” chants the whole way through the match. So he better go over at the end. Michael Cole, John Laurinaitis, The Miz, David Otunga, and Team Teddy are all trending on Twitter. The WWE owns Twitter.
Video package of Undertaker vs. Triple H. Ugh. Talk about a waste of time. I attempted to get #RawPissBreak trending on Twitter. You should follow me on Twitter during these shows. Anyways that video was way too long. 3-5 minutes. Cole, Lawler, and Booker T are talking and wasting more time.
Eve Torres w/ Beth Phoenix vs. Kelly Kelly- And Kelly has nobody with her. Where is Maria Menounos at? Oh that’s right, she’s a celebrity. So she has more important things to do right? So Natalya gets to sit backstage and do nothing while a one time celebrity comes in and takes her Wrestlemania spot. Does Maria Menounos realize she will be booed at Wrestlemania? Booker T says Shucky ducky quack quack. Kelly does a terrible bridging pin to start. Eve comes back at her with chokes. She holds Kelly’s head against the turnbuckle while Beth yells at her. Choke hold from the top rope by Eve. Next she uses a chin lock arm bar. The crowd is dead. Kelly gets up and reverses an Irish whip with a spinning head scissors. She punches away at Eve, but is back body dropped. Eve goes to the top rope for a moonsault and misses. Kelly rolls her up for the win. What??? Why would Kelly go over here? So if Kelly can beat Eve with Beth at ringside, and by herself, why does this Wrestlemania match need to happen? Everything was just decided. Kelly can beat them both by herself so she doesn’t need a partner. Can we just cancel the match and make Miz vs. Ryder its own match? Kelly Kelly is trending on Twitter.
Christian vs. WWE Champion CM Punk – Ring announcer Justin Roberts says “Please welcome, the man that refers to himself as Captain Charisma…” Was all of that really needed? Just please call him Captain Charisma. Chris Jericho is on the Titan Tron again. I guess I kinda like how they have kept these two apart over the past few weeks. It does build their face to face meeting up. Jericho says that Punk’s parents’ wedding date is after Punk’s birth date. He say’s that makes Punk a bastard. Punk is attacked from behind by Christian. Christian punches and kicks away at him before tossing him to the outside. Christian follows him out but is caught by a furious Punk. Punk fires punches at him, slams his head off the commentary table multiple times, then uses the Daniel Bryan repeated elbows to the face. I love Punk, but I’m kinda getting tired of seeing him rip off Daniel Bryan’s ROH stuff. First, best in the world, and now his viscous elbows? Punk seperates the ring steps and sends Christian flying face first onto them. Punk hooks in the Anaconda Vice on the outside floor. Referees try to get him off Christian. Punk screams “this is you Jericho.” He finally gets up and walks away, but then goes running back at Christian again. He hooks the Anaconda Vice a second time. Eventually he relinquishes and holds up his title. Captain Charisma and “CM Punk vs Christian” are trending on Twitter.
I have about 30 problems with what just happened. First of all, who cares if Punk is a bastard? Why would these things really bother Mr. Sarcasm in real life? They wouldn’t. Punk hears much worse all the time. His persona is to be a sarcastic prick. A sarcastic prick needs to be able to take this petty talk. Which makes this whole thing highly unbelievable. Because anyone who follows Punk knows what kind of negativity he puts up with on a daily basis just on Twitter alone. So your trying to tell me that he can’t take a couple of comments about things he’s lived with his whole life? This really might be the worst build up I’ve ever seen for a championship match. I absolutely hate it. I also hate how Christian was just squashed in his first match back in a very long time. So it looks like they will be taking him out of the Wrestlemania match. Michael Cole says that Christian reinjured his neck. This is obviously a work. Why would they do this though? Is Christian really not ready to come back? Does this mean Christian is just going to retire? He might as well. We can’t wait for him to recover for multiple months again. He might as well just hang it up if that’s the case.
The Funkasaurus Brodus Clay vs. Curt Hawkins- He’s the only living breathing Funkasaurus in captivity. That’s fascinating. Cole makes an awful joke about Clay weighing more than a brachiosaurus. Clay does the leg shake as the match starts. Clothesline to Hawkins. Hawkins surprisingly comes back with a dropkick to the knee followed by a grounded DDT. Jerry Lawler has no idea who he is and calls him Curtis Hawkins. Lawler is senile. Clay headbutts Hawkins when he runs at him. Then comes a T-Bone suplex and a splash off the ropes. That’s the match. If you blinked you missed it. Brodus Clay, #somebodycallmymama, and Curt Hawkins are trending on Twitter. Surprisingly, Hawkins is the #2 trend worldwide.
Promo for the Hall of Fame ceremony. It’s not airing until the night after Wrestlemania. I’m angry. Ridiculous. How am I supposed to get excited about Wrestlemania if there is nothing on tv the night before? Way to kill a tradition.
The Big Show vs. Primo w/Epico and Rosa Mendes- This is a match? Really????????? Big Show pushes Primo into the corner and uses a chop. He tosses him into the other corner. Then another. Primo kicks him and jumps off the top rope, but he’s chopped down. Chokeslam. 1-2-3. Rosa jumps up on the apron as Epico tries to attack Big Show from behind. Chokeslam on Epico. Cody Rhodes comes out. He says after Wrestlemania Big Show will be a verb. People will not want to Big Show their tests, Big Show with the ladies, and they will take big Big Show’s. That means poop. Rosa Mendes is trending on Twitter. I have one question. Aren’t Epico and Primo tag team cha….oh who cares?
John Laurinaitis announces on Twitter that Drew McIntyre will take Christian’s spot. Good for Drew. The most underused guy in the company. He deserves a big push. Drew McIntyre is trending on Twitter after the tweet. Only the WWE can trend worldwide because of a personal tweet by one of their characters.
Lord Tensai promo. Reports say that it will be A-Train. Hence A-Train trending on Twitter. A-Train has had a long successful career in Japan. A Japanese guy is shown in the promo so it appears that they are either trying to throw people off or that he will have a manager.
The Bella Twins are arguing in the back about Team Johnny vs. Team Teddy. They are representing different guys. Apparently they are just throwing everyone into this match to fit everyone on the card. Hence the usage of the Bellas, Hornswoggle, Khali, etc… Zack Ryder comes up to the Bellas and talks about Team Teddy. Nikki Bella says that Ryder should change his team. Ryder says “maybe you should change your face.” Haha. I finally laughed. Eve comes up to Ryder. She asks Ryder to stay at her hotel in Miami. She says they will celebrate after Wrestlemania. Zack is excited. #PoorZack
Josh Matthews interviews CM Punk. Punk cuts him off. He says if you want to know how he feels, go ask Christian. He says that Jericho can say anything he wants to him except for things about family. He claims that what Jericho is saying is a complete lie. He’s not a bastard, hes the best wrestler in the world.
The Great Khali w/Teddy Long vs. Mark Henry w/John Laurinaitis- Shoot me now. Zero pop for Khali when he comes out. Khali chops Henry in the corner. Then he chops him coming off the rope. Then Mark Henry picks him up and uses the World’s Strongest Slam. 1-2-3. That’s it. Laurinaitis tosses Long into the ring. He calls for his team to come out. His team blocks the ramp waiting on team Long. Santino and Ryder come running down but cant break the wall. R-Truth comes running down and knocks the guys down with a dive. Kofi Kingston comes running down, leap frogs over the team, springboards into the ring, and is caught with a World’s Strongest Slam. Mark Henry picks up Teddy Long for the World’s Strongest Slam, but Booker T comes out of nowhere at stops him. He hits a scissors kick on Henry. Teddy Long asks Booker to be on his team. His response is “now can you dig that sucka.” Gag. The Great Khali, Team Teddy, R-Truth, and Booker T are trending on Twitter. I can’t believe that’s all Dolph Ziggler will be used for tonight.
The Rock comes to the ring. This is it. The final Raw segment before Wrestlemania. The crowd chants “boots to asses” right away. Rock starts with 2004- Wrestlemania 20. What most people thought would be The Rock’s last Wrestlemania match. Ever since then people have asked him “when are you coming back?’ When he went to the doctor he said “drop your pants…but when are you coming back?” Rock says “No, I’m not dropping my pants your my dentist.” It’s funny people. Then he talks about women in Hollywood wanting his Civil War pie. The joke was that it was Betty White. Okay, I didn’t laugh at that one. He talks about Wrestlemania last year. The night after Wrestlemania, in the same city he’s in right now, the match was made. Then he says “finally The Rock has come back to Atlanta.” Boots 2 Asses and Civil War pie are trending on Twitter. Rock puts Cena over saying he’s become one of the biggest stars in the industry. He says Cena will never see anything like The Rock. Cena’s music hits.
Cena says The Rock will never see anything like John Cena. Cena says he keeps coming back with a smile on his face. He says millions of people have talked trash about Cena. The list is as long as the people’s struddle, the holy moses, or whatever The Rock is calling his penis. That was funny but didn’t get laughs from the crowd. Cena pauses awhile for the crowd to get hot. They chant “let’s go Cena, Cena sucks.” Cena repeats those words and says he’s heard them for years. He says everyone has turned their back on the people at some point, including The Rock. But Cena is the only guy ever who hasn’t, who rises above, and who wins. He says that some people may hate that but everyone knows that Cena will win at Wrestlemania. Cena says he’s been an active member of the WWE longer than The Rock has. Rock gets shaken by that. Cena also says that he did it in an era where it wasn’t as cool to be a WWE superstar. That pretty much means that the Attitude Era carried The Rock. John Cena is trending on Twitter.
Cena says he has to win at Wrestlemania. After Wrestlemania The Rock will star in GI Joe. He puts The Rock over and says that the movie will be huge. He says after Wrestlemania wrestling is still his life. He says he will be god damned if The Rock comes in as a visitor and takes his life. The Rock says that he helped build the company. He says he needs to win to be the greatest of all time. That way he would have beaten Hulk Hogan, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and John Cena. That’s on a business level. On a personal level The Rock says he just doesn’t like Cena. He says the people know that. Cena says “it doesn’t matter what you think.” Both guys look heated. He says he will whip The Rock’s ass at Wrestlemania. He drops the mic and they stare at each other as it fades to black quickly. They definitely ran out of time.
Excellent promo. A lot of passion there. And The Rock got heated, but not shaken up. So he was able to fire back. Which made for an excellent promo. What did that promo tell me? Let’s look at the Wrestlemania predictions for this Sunday to see…
Wrestlemania 28 predictions
Intercontinental Championship- Cody Rhodes (c) vs. The Big Show- The Big Show wins this one. I no longer think that this match will be quick. I think The Big Show vs. Primo thing tonight was to show people that this match won’t be quick. They showed the audience what a quick squash looks like. Cody Rhodes looks very credible compared to Primo. So normal match. I expect this match to open the show. I also expect a new Intercontinental Champion…The Big Show.
Kelly Kelly and Maria Menounos vs. Beth Phoenix and Eve- It’s about time a celebrity loses. Beth and Eve win. Because they are the only two in this match that are actually being pushed by the company. Maria gets the upperhand at the end, but her team loses.
Randy Orton vs. Kane- Orton wins this one. No debating that. A clean win for Orton.
Team Johnny (David Otunga, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Swagger, Mark Henry, The Miz, Drew McIntyre) w/Vickie Guerrero and Nikki Bella vs. Team Teddy (Santino Marella, Zack Ryder, Kofi Kingston, R-Truth, Booker T, Great Khali) w/Hornswoggle and Brie Bella- They truly did fit everyone into this match. Team Teddy wins it. They have been dominated over the last month. “We Want Ryder” chants will echo throughout the match until Zack Ryder gets the pin on Drew McIntyre.
World Heavyweight Championship- Daniel Bryan (c) w/ AJ vs. Sheamus– I think they drag this feud out. Daniel Bryan wins. It won’t be clean. But I think he retains. There are too many faces going over in the main matches. A heel has to win a big match. They will steal the show.
WWE Championship- CM Punk (c) vs. Chris Jericho- Punk retains. Since he is “the man” in the industry, he needs his big Wrestlemania win as “the man.” The match will be excellent.
Hell In a Cell- Undertaker vs. Triple H special referee: Shawn Michaels- The Undertaker wins. 20-0. Why would you ever bet against him? You don’t expect a horribly built feud to change my mind do you?
The Rock vs. John Cena- John Cena wins. He told The Rock tonight that he wins. He told everyone. He even said that the people already know the outcome. Cena won’t let The Rock come in as a visitor and steal his life. What good would it do for an outsider to self promote himself at Wrestlemania while burying the current product? The Rock won’t do that. He hates it, but he won’t do it. He will put Cena over for the WWE. And after he does that nobody can say that he is selfish anymore. The hand shake will happen to end the show. I just hope that the crowd doesn’t riot. I think there will be a surprising number of Cena fans in the crowd though.
Big update. After Raw ended CM Punk and Stone Cold Steve Austin began a Twitter war. Reports have said recently that WWE plans to announce plans for the main event at Wrestlemania 29 soon after Wrestlemania 28. I am officially predicting that CM Punk vs. Stone Cold will be announced as soon as next Monday on Raw.
Follow Mark Brown on Twitter @FantasyGodmb.