If you missed Part 1, you can find it here. On to Part 2…
First 2014 Hall of Fame Inductee: The Ultimate Warrior
Rumors about this induction have been circulating for a while. Warrior was great, though he was overshadowed by Hulk Hogan.
My Take: This is an obvious induction. If he left on good terms, this would have happened years ago. Glad it’s happening.
Paul Heyman with Renee Young
Renee asks Heyman about Lesnar’s clash with Big Show last week, and their upcoming match at the Royal Rumble. Heyman insults Renee by saying her beauty is just beauty and she has no brains for even questioning Lesnar’s chances. Heyman says a lot of big words and then calls Big Show stupid.
My Take: Heyman had a bit of a different style in this promo than he usually does, but he’s such a good performer and he didn’t skip a beat. Renee Young does a great job with her facial expressions.
Randy Orton vs. Kofi Kingston
Kofi comes away with the major upset in this one with the SOS. Post-match, Orton attacked Cena’s father, who was sitting at ringside. Cena came out and chased Orton away before getting the medic to check on his unconscious father. For those who don’t know, Cena’s dad is in the business of professional wrestling. I like that they don’t overuse him, but when they do use him, he is very capable.
When Raw came back from commercial, they had Cena, Sr. on the stretcher and loaded him into an ambulance.
My Take: This is shocking, but I love it. I just hope that Kofi uses every bit of this momentum. Not everybody has to be champion, but that doesn’t mean a guy can’t be important. Per reports, this appears to be the beginning of something big for Kofi.
Cody Rhodes and Goldust vs. Rybaxel
Earlier in the night on the WWE App, the Rhodes brothers announced they would both be entering the Royal Rumble.
Michael Cole mentions Ryback’s issues with Twitter this past weekend, he just writes it off as Ryback being crazy. Cody almost messed up the moonsault and came close to landing on his head. Axel goes for his finisher, but Cody reverses it into the Cross Rhodes.
My Take: Ryback needs to go, between his insane rant this weekend and his issues in the ring, he is nothing but a liability. Not a bad match, but the crowd was dead for this one, and that hurt the quality of the match.
Rey Mysterio vs. Alberto Del Rio
Rey had control for most of the match, including hitting the 619, but Del Rio wins with the Cross Arm Breaker. Post-match, Del Rio cut a promo on Batista.
My Take: This was poorly booked. I didn’t want to see Del Rio win, he bores me. If he must win though, Mysterio shouldn’t hit the 619, especially if Del Rio is going to get up that quickly. I don’t get the Batista/Del Rio pairing.
Kane and CM Punk backstage
Punk comes looking for The Authority and begins attacking Triple H’s character. Kane tells Punk he will be in the Royal Rumble match, Punk tells Kane he has a problem with him and the segment ends as they stare each other down.
My Take: First of all, Kane’s done a good job in these backstage segments all night. Second, this was the clear beginning to the Punk/Triple H rivalry that will reportedly lead to a match at WrestleMania.
Daniel Bryan and Bray Wyatt vs. The Usos (Steel Cage Match)
After all the participants entered, Kane came down to the ring with the chain.
As expected, all 4 participants are legal. Win via pinfall, submission, or both members of one team climbing out of the cage. One of The Usos almost escaped early, with both feet outside of the cage, but Wyatt and Bryan fought hard to get him back in. One Uso hit an awesome corkscrew move off the top rope on Wyatt. Crowd has been quiet for most of the final hour, but this match really woke them up. Usos pretty over with the crowd, not just Bryan and Wyatt. The Usos climb out for the win, after one knocked Bryan down off the cage and he fell to knock down Wyatt off the top rope. Rowan and Harper attack but The Usos overpower them and escape.
Post-match, inside the cage, Bryan bows down to Wyatt again, but counters out of the Sister Abigail. Again inside the cage, Harper and Rowan can’t help Wyatt. Wyatt gets on his knees to let Bryan hit the Running knee, but Bryan doesn’t. Wyatt calls him a coward, and Bryan loses it, crowd pops big time. Bryan does his kicks and the crowd explodes into the “YES” chant. Bryan removes his coveralls to reveal his old ring gear as Harper and Rowan try desperately to get in. Bryan takes down Wyatt and climbs atop the cage to lead the crowd in the “YES” chant as his original music begins to play and Raw ends.
My Take: Fantastic match. The Usos continue to impress.
As for the post-match angle, though this angle was botched from the beginning, and probably should have never happened, the end of Raw was beautifully done. Daniel Bryan is back!
Very good show, very wrestling heavy. Good build to Cena/Orton and Show/Lesnar (all thanks to Heyman, and despite Big Show). I’m interested to see how they round out the card, I hope they do Bray Wyatt vs. Daniel Bryan in a singles match, if Harper and Rowan are involved it ruins it. Batista returns next week on the go-home show.
Stick with DailyDDT.com for updates as the Royal Rumble draws near.