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ThunderStruck: WWE Raw Analysis 06/09/14

The Authority kick off Raw and declare the WWE World Title vacant(Daniel Bryan will not be ready to compete in time for Money in the Bank). Therefore, the MITB Ladder Match at the pay per view will be for the championship instead of a title shot. Hunter then announces that Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose will take on the Wyatt Family tonight in what will most likely be a handicap match(since Hunter assumes they can’t find a partner and wants us all to forget that John Cena is feuding with the Wyatt Family).

^I’m sad that Daniel Bryan isn’t healty, but I’m grateful for what we got to witness at WrestleMania and Extreme Rules with his title run(he certainly earned every bit of it). I like the ladder match being for the title; it maks the match much more exciting. The tag match later should also be good.

Sheamus defeats Bad News Barrett in a Money in the Bank qualifier. Sheamus wins with a brogue kick from out of nowhere.

^Very competitive match that I found to be exceptional. Both these guys know how to give us a good story in a hard fought battle and they delivered here tonight. I find it interesting that Barrett isn’t being considered for the main event picture, but that’s okay as long as he keeps getting the TV time every week.

A typical Wyatt Family promo on the big screen. They’re always good.

Rusev squashes Zack Ryder.

^Nothing new to say about this, but that superkick from out of nowhere was intense.

RybAxel defeats Goldust and R-Truth. Axel scores the win with a school boy rollup.

^Axel continues to look really good in the ring with this tag team, but how about Goldust? Does the guy not continue to deliver that spinebuster just as well as he did twenty years ago? When a guy is in his early to mid forties and can work a match the way Goldy can, it’s nice to see him giving back to the younger talent by working with them. Good storyline with Cody Rhodes trying to “help” his brother, but I suspect it will ultimately lead to a one on one feud at a major pay per view(Summerslam perhaps?).

Layla is shown backstage trashing the people from Minneapolis to her makeup artist. Summer Rae comes into the scene and pours milk all over Layla’s head before beating her up.

^That was funny and intense. You can see the personal heat with this feud come through and that’s rare for the divas.

The 3MB are in the ring and Heath Slater says the Shield were supposed to be out here talking, but that’s not what the 3MB does. The Shield’s music hits and down comes Reigns and Ambrose. Ambrose and Reigns destroy the 3MB and then cut some really awesome promos.

^I LOVE LOVE LOVE the promo work from both Ambrose(when I get the opportunity to rearrage your face…etc.) and Reigns(you don’t stab superman’s cape, piss in the wind…etc) here. The intensity of their characters truly shined after the 3MB beatdown. Give these guys more microphone time, please!

The Usos defeat Damien Sandow(in long underwear as a dancing fool) and Fandango in a short match with the splash from the top rope.

^Typical match with the Usos looking awesome as always. The crowd really seems to buy into them as a tag team and it’s nice to see them so consistently successful on WWE’s main programming. Dango and Sandow have fallen, but at least they’re still being used on the show. I do believe Damien is so entertaining that he could be doing much more, but his personality works for even these silly gimmicks. I have faith that he’ll bounce back.

Bo Dallas defeats Xavier woods in another typical short match.

^The hype for Bo is working through the announcers, and I see big things for his career in WWE once he gets beyond this ridiculous gimmick in the future. Embracing this silly character impresses me and says a lot about Bo’s drive in the business to succeed.

Cesaro defeats Rob Van Dam with the neutralizer to qualify for the MITB World Title Ladder Match. Heyman does his usual speech before the match and teases a potential Brock Lesnar appearance only to fool the crowd and introduce Cesaro.

^Cesaro and RVD always deliver something exciting, and that’s what we got here. I just hope we don’t see RVD challenge for the IC Title AGAIN at the Money in the Bank pay per view with nothing else to do. Good back and forth match by RVD and the King of Swing.

Randy Orton is on vacation tonight and has been announced as a participant in the WWE World Title ladder match at MITB. I suspect he’ll be the transitional champion until Daniel Bryan returns…unless WWE decides to surprise us and do the RIGHT thing.

Michael Cole introduces Seth Rollins for an interview. Rollins has what sounds like his old NXT/FCW music as he comes to the ring. Rollins says he did what was best for his business when he took out the Shield. Rollins says he created the Shield and he destroyed it. He says Ambrose and Reigns are nothing without him and owe him every ounce of success they’ve ever achieved. He says everyone better start believing in Seth Rollins. He calls out Reigns and Ambrose now that he’s said his piece. Ambrose and Reigns come to the ring but the Wyatts come in and Rollins is out of the ring. John Cena runs in for the save after Rollins runs off and the Wyatts have the upper hand. Looks like we have the official partner for the Shield.

^I don’t why Lawler tried to act surprised; it’s the same old story. Cena teams with whoever he can help while he’s held out of the World Championship scene. Good promo work from Rollins as well; the Shield split might just be the best thing for these guys as we get this whole new character development for the man once known as Tyler Black.

Paige takes on Alicia Fox w/Aksana. Paige wins the match with the PTO submission after making Alicia bash heads with Aksana.

^That was awesome! What a competitive and highly entertaning matchup between these two ladies. Paige taking over the Divas division has done wonders for the match quality that we now see on TV. Props to WWE for finally going in the right direction with these women.

Alicia slaps and beats up Aksana after the match. Then she does her usual psycho routine around ringside and steals some popcorn and water from a fan. She shoves the popcorn down Aksana’s throat. Alicia apologizes to Aksana after the fact.

^Weird and ridiculous but the crowd seems to get into it. So much for that “solid” friendship. I’m sure they’ll be best friends by Smackdown this week.

Jack Swagger w/Zeb Colter takes on Santino. Swagger wins the short match when he counters the cobra and turns it into a gutwrench powerbomb.

^Swagger has always been good in the ring, but this dynamic with Colter is working for me(the face slaps). Perhaps he can chase the US or IC Title before the year is over.

Cody Rhodes tells Goldust backstage that he’s found someone who can match Goldust’s star power next week on Raw and it’s someone he’s never seen before.

^There’s speculation that it could be Ted Dibiase, but we know Goldust once had a feud with Dibiase early in Ted’s career. I’m guessing Cody Rhodes is going to repackage himself into some sort of superhero gimmick to team with his brother.

Hunter and Stephanie are shown talking backstage. Hunter says tonight is the last time we’ll ever see the Shield. Vickie comes in to celebrate with them but she sneezes on them by accident. Stephanie says she fired Vickie once and to not make her do it again.

^Nice to see the anger of the authority here. Stephanie will forever be my favorite “bitch” character on WWE TV.

Sheamus will take on Cesaro this week on Smackdown. Should be as good as some of their prior matches – if not better. It’s also announced that a Smackdown rematch will take place on Main Event with Dolph Ziggler facing Seth Rollins(Can you say four stars without trying?).

Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose team with John Cena to take on the Wyatt Family in our main event. Reigns pins Harper after a spear in a lengthy main event.

^Was that not insanely exciting? The finish of the match was fun and well put together, and this match here truly showcased the top YOUNG talent in WWE; the future is very bright when you consider who is in the mix here. Great main event to close out Raw.

It’s a 7.5 out of 10 for me. I loved the show overall and even the squash matches weren’t overdone. Highly enjoyable program this week and I would recommend to anyone to check it out.

Thanks for reading!