The John Report: The WWE Raw Deal 05/27/13 (4 Years of The Raw Deal)

This is the four year anniversary of the Raw Deal column. I wrote a column about it on Monday morning where I talk about how it got started as well a look at some of the best and worst moments of Raw in the last four years. Thank you so much for all the support over the years. It’s been a blast.

Live from Calgary, Alberta this is the Raw Deal for episode #1044. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport.

Raw opened with a video package honoring the armed forces of the United States in honor of Memorial Day. “A debt of gratitude that can never be repaid.” Well said.

Michael Cole welcomed us to the show. Then we saw highlights of last week’s episode.

The WWE Champion John Cena entered the ring for a promo. The crowd sounded supportive of him. Cena mentioned how at Extreme Rules both he and Ryback thought that they won their match even though neither guy got up by the count of ten. He said he’s holding the WWE Title while Ryback feels that he does. Cena mentioned how last week Ryback challenged him to an Ambulance match. Loud “we want Bret” chant during Cena promo. Me too. Cena acknowledged the chant. Cena moved on by making fun of Ryback by suggesting that he’s dumb. Cena suggested a Three Stages of Hell match saying that there’s only been three of them in WWE history. It’s a 2 out of 3 falls match with each fall having a different stipulation.

Cena said that stage one is a Lumberjack Match. Stage two is a Tables Match. Stage three is an Ambulance Match. He said after he wins the first two falls he’s still going to put Ryback in the ambulance. He even said “ass” during that portion of the promo.

Ryback appeared on the stage saying that payback should be hell. He said that he drove Cena through the LED board while not caring what was on the other side (cushions?). The crowd was chanting “WHAT” during the promo. He called himself Lucifer and Satan. “John, say hello to Ryback.” That’s it? Yep. He left.

Analysis: I’m a fan of Three Stages of Hell matches. The best one was Steve Austin vs. Triple H at No Way Out 2001. Look it up. Cena vs. Ryback won’t be that. That Ryback promo was very short, which of course is a good way to use Ryback because he’s not great at long-winded promo. Cena’s promo was fine. Not that many bad jokes, so it was tolerable.

After Ryback left, Paul Heyman appeared on the stage. He wanted to introduce us to a future Hall of Famer. He welcomed Curtis Axel, who he claims put Triple H out of action for a long time. Axel appeared on the stage with him. Heyman said that Cena was a fighting champion, which is why Heyman had a challenge. He wanted to see John Cena vs. Curtis Axel. Cena told Axel to stay away from Heyman saying that he was full of more crap than the stables after the Stampede. That was a good line. Crowd liked it. Axel said he didn’t ask for Cena’s opinion. He asked if Cena was looking for a fight. Cena said it’s fine and that they will have a match later on tonight.

Analysis: Cena said Axel shouldn’t listen to Heyman, yet Axel is now in a main event match after not being on TV for years. Cena’s bad at giving career advice.

We saw the announcers for the show: Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield and Jerry Lawler. There’s a medical update on Triple H later. Paul Heyman will be a guest on Chris Jericho’s Highlight Reel.

Alberto Del Rio and Ricardo Rodriguez were on their way to the ring.


Alberto Del Rio (w/Ricardo Rodriguez) vs. Big E Langston (w/AJ Lee)

Dolph Ziggler is still out with his concussion. Langston beat Del Rio last week on Raw and then Del Rio beat him on Main Event. Dropkick by Del Rio, then he sent Langston to the floor and hit a dive between the top/middle ropes. Langston dropped Del Rio head first onto the steel steps. On the WWE App, Dolph Ziggler was doing a promo from home. Why would I watch a promo during a match? I still don’t get it. Langston gave Del Rio multiple backbreakers. Langston missed a corner charge. Del Rio hit the Backstabber. Hard kick to the face by Del Rio got a two count. Langston came back with a belly to belly suplex. Del Rio gave Langston an armbreaker using his knees. AJ took the turnbuckle pad off. Del Rio applied the Cross Armbreaker. Langston powered out of it, but Del Rio put Langston head first into the exposed turnbuckle and then rolled him up to win the match after four minutes.

Winner: Alberto Del Rio

Post match, Langston was angry about the loss. AJ said it wasn’t her fault. Langston just walked off.

Analysis: *1/2 It was a solid match that the crowd was interested in. I like that Langston didn’t tap out. It keeps him strong. Of course the finish will lead people to think Langston may break free from Lee/Ziggler. I think it’s too soon, but we’ll see.

Later on Raw we get Reigns/Rollins vs. Hell No for the tag titles and Ambrose vs. Kingston for the US Title. Why not advertise this before the show? It could help people get interested in what’s going to happen during the broadcast.


Backstage, Kane told Daniel Bryan to stop thinking that he’s the weak link. Kane said being tough has nothing to do with your size. Bryan said that’s easy for him to say because he’s so tall. Bryan said Kane thinks he’ll screw up. Then they went into a “yes/no” argument. They turned around as Bret Hart appeared. Bret said they were one of the best tag teams he’s ever seen. He said tension destroys teams. Bryan asked Hart if anybody thought he was the weak link. Bret said being tough has nothing to do with size. “Nothing stops you. Nothing. Got it.” Bryan smiled as if he was a little kid talking to his hero. Kane said that’s what he said and wondered why Bryan won’t listen to him. Bryan said “he’s the best there was, the best there is and the best there ever will be and you…you’re just Kane.”

Analysis: That was a fun segment. It’s always great to see Bret Hart and the crowd reacted huge for the appearance of the Hitman. He’s God-like here in Canada.

Last week’s US Title match between Ambrose & Kingston ended in a disqualification, so they will have another match this week on Raw. The US Champion Dean Ambrose entered through the crowd like usual. The match is after the break.


United States Championship: Dean Ambrose vs. Kofi Kingston

Cole mentioned that Kingston is a three time US Champ and four time IC Champ. That’s seven singles secondary titles for Kingston, which is quite a bit. Kingston was on fire with kicks early on and then Ambrose ducked Trouble in Paradise by bailing to the floor. They went to break two minutes into the match with Ambrose resting on the floor.

Analysis: That was a really short segment. Kingston entered, they worked for two minutes and went to break. Too quick for my liking.


Back from break, Ambrose was in control of the match. Awesome “Jericho Invented You” sign facing the camera. Kingston made his comeback with his signature spots including a cross body block for two. Leaping clothesline by Kingston. They did a sequence of nearfalls followed by Kingston hitting the SOS for two. Orton and Sheamus are watching this on the WWE App as Kingston knocked Ambrose outside the ring. Back in the ring, springboard clothesline by Kingston for two. Ambrose goaded Kingston outside the ring where he dropped him head first onto the steel steps. Kingston sold it like he was out of it, so Ambrose dropped him with the Headlock Driver to win the match after nine minutes.

Winner: Dean Ambrose

Analysis: ** That setup move by Ambrose was awesome. Kingston took that bump perfectly by selling it as if he was knocked out. It also worked nicely because Ambrose’s finisher injures the head of his opponent. I’d like them to give a name to his finisher, but for now I’ll use Headlock Driver for it.

Daniel Bryan and Kane entered for their match. They cleared The Shield from the ring. The tag team title match is up next.

Analysis: The first hour this week was much better than last week, which was painfully bad.


Tag Team Championships: Roman Reigns & Seth Rollins vs. Team Hell No

Kane was in control of Rollins early in the matchup. Bryan tagged in and they did the Hart Attack clothesline move. The announcers didn’t even call it? C’mon! That’s a famous move. I’m shocked they missed that one. Kane tagged back in. He tried to give Rollins a Chokeslam, but instead Rollins hit a kick to the back of the head. That was impressive. Rollins is such an awesome athlete. Kane hit a suplex on Rollins, but Reigns tagged in quickly as they continued to isolate Kane in their career. It’s rare to see Kane as the partner that gets worked over during the match. Kane hit a clothesline on Rollins to knock him down and that led to Bryan getting the hot tag. Running dropkick to Reigns followed by a release German suplex to Rollins. Yes! Running dropkick to Rollins for two. The crowd exploded for Bryan’s offense there. Bryan hit his series of kicks ending with the hard kick to the head for a two count. Bryan went to the top, but Rollins tripped him up. Bryan escaped Rollins on the top rope, put him in the Tree of Woe and then hit a running dropkick. Back superplex by Bryan on Rollins. You don’t see that very often. Great move. They went to break with both guys down on the mat.

Analysis: The crowd comes alive so much when Daniel Bryan is in the ring. He’s my favorite performer in the company. The man is on fire.


Back from break, Reigns knocked Bryan down with a clothesline. Rollins put Bryan in the surfboard move that Bryan usually does. Bryan fought of it, but Rollins tripped him up to prevent a tag. Reigns knocked down Bryan with a shoulderblock, which Bryan sold by flipping onto his stomach. Rollins prevented a Bryan comeback by driving Bryan face first into that middle turnbuckle. I love that move by Rollins. Bryan broke free with a knee attack, which brought in Kane with the hot tag. Kane hit his clotheslines, a back body drop and a sidewalk slam on Rollins for two. Reigns broke it up. Bryan hit a missile dropkick to take out Reigns. The Flying Goat dive outside the ring knocked down Reigns. Kane dropped Rollins with a big boot to the face. Bryan hit Reigns and then Kane told Bryan to get into the corner. Kane hit a top rope clothesline on Rollins. Bryan argued with Kane. Bryan went for his flying knee on Reigns, who caught him and dropped Bryan with a spinebuster on the floor. Kane was watching all that, so Rollins hit his top rope flying attack on Kane to win the match for his team. It went 19 minutes.

Winners: Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns

Analysis: ***1/2 What’s there to say? Another week. Another amazing match featuring The Shield and usually Daniel Bryan as well. It’s typical of what we get most weeks and I absolutely love seeing it. The story of the match was that Bryan wanted to prove himself to Kane by showing how great he was, but that ended up costing his team the match because Kane was focused on what Bryan was doing. I love how The Shield is booked so strongly by outsmarting their opponents every week. It’s awesome to see how well they are used. Now it looks like their rivalry with Kane & Bryan is finally over. I’m ready for Bryan to have that babyface push. I think the angle they’re currently doing is intended to make him more of a tougher babyface performer instead of a comedy guy. I hope it works.

Recap of the Cena segment earlier. A Triple H health update is up next.


There was a recap of the Triple H injury story from last week. Michael Cole said that Triple H was advised not to travel to Raw. Neurological tests were normal and they’re hoping he can join them on Raw next week.

Analysis: In other words, Triple H is back on Raw next week.

The Miz made his entrance as we saw a clip from last week when Fandango distracted his own partner Wade Barrett, which led to The Miz beating Barrett. I love how Fandango is in this IC Title feud even though he lost to Chris Jericho at Extreme Rules and then in a tag match on Raw. That’s WWE “logic” for you.

You can vote on the WWE App to see what Miz will do in this next match between Wade Barrett vs. Fandango: Guest ring announcer, guest commentator and guest referee. The results after the break. Yawn.


It’s time for the WWE App poll results for the poll that was open for about four minutes: Referee 85%, Commentator 10% and Ring Announcer 5%. Are the people that voted ring announcer upset that they didn’t win? Or do they not care just like me?

Miz wore a referee shirt. Some of the crowd did the Fandango dance, but not that many of them really. Congrats to Summer Rae for doing the splits correctly. “Trending Now: WWE App.” That’s what happens when you mention it every ten seconds.

Wade Barrett vs. Fandango (w/Summer Rae)

This is non-title. Heel vs. heel matches don’t work that great. Cole just referenced Miz as the Calgary Kid. That’s a reference from a few years ago. Some in the crowd tried doing the Fandango song, but not everybody was buying in. Miz got in the way to prevent Barrett from hitting a kick. Barrett hit the kick on Fandango. Miz hit the Skull Crushing Finale on Barrett. Fandango covered to win after two minutes.

Winner: Fandango

Post match, Fandango danced with Summer Rae so Miz hit Fandango with a kick to the head. Summer Rae fell on top of Fandango, so Miz counted the fall? Weird. She was mad about it. Miz left.

Analysis: It was more of an angle than a match to further this three way feud for the IC Title. At least Fandango won a match as a way to say he can get a title shot. Of course a champion lost a non-title match. That happens nearly every week on Raw.

Backstage, WWE Champion John Cena was with Hall of Famer Shawn Michaels, who has a beard now. Michaels told Cena to be careful just like Hunter should have. That segment didn’t accomplish that much. It’s weird seeing HBK with a full beard with some parts of it looking grey.


Nice “Owen Hart Forever” sign in the crowd.

Tensai, Brodus Clay & Great Khali (w/Hornswoggle, Natalya & The Funkadactlys) vs. Heath Slater, Drew McIntyre & Jinder Mahal

It’s Natalya’s hometown. It’s also her birthday. WWE uses her as an accessory in a comedy match. Ugh. The heels got some offense in on Tensai. Jinder Mahal is also from Calgary by the way. Clay got the hot tag one minute into the match. He hit a splash on Slater in the corner followed by a slam. The heels broke it up, so everybody brawled. Khali hit a chop on Slater. That led to Clay hitting a big splash. The match ended in two minutes.

Winners: Tensai, Brodus Clay & Great Khali

Analysis: I’m not a huge fan of these comedy matches. They are just filler.

Post match, Clay mentioned it was Natalya’s birthday. He asked Great Khali to sing happy birthday. It sounds more like “happy bandaid” when Khali says it. Natalya kissed him on the cheek. Then everybody danced. JBL: “That was horrible.” Shoot comment! I agree. I wish Natalya was booked better. How many years have I been saying that? Two? Three?

Bret Hart Appreciation Night is on the WWE App after Raw. I’ll be watching it on television here in Canada on The Score.

Paul Heyman was shown walking backstage for the Highlight Reel as hour two is close to wrapping up.


John Cena narrated a video package in honor of Memorial Day and we saw clips of all that WWE does to honor the US military. Well done.

The Highlight Reel

The great Chris Jericho entered the ring for his Highlight Reel segment. Huge ovation for the Canadian, who trained at the Hart Dungeon in Calgary. Paul Heyman walked out to no music and mostly boos from the crowd. Two of the best talkers ever.

Jericho mentioned Heyman has been called a genius and walrus (small “walrus” chant), but he’s going to give him credit for aligning himself with tremendous talent. Heyman said it’s not just because he aligns with them, but he develops them. Heyman mentioned that he gave Jericho his first break. They didn’t mention ECW, but that’s where it was. Jericho said he owed him money, which is funny and possibly true. Heyman mentioned Curtis Axel by saying that he’s stepping up to the plate for taking on John Cena. Jericho said he wanted to talk about Heyman’s other client. Heyman said Brock Lesnar. Jericho cut off Heyman telling him to please “shut the hell up” with crowd support. Jericho didn’t care what Lesnar was doing.

Jericho mentioned Heyman’s other client as the crowd chanted “CM Punk.” Jericho said Punk has been absent for six weeks. Jericho asked them to air the clip of Punk’s speech when he left WWE. Heyman was shocked then and Jericho said that he looked shocked now while wearing the exact same suit. Heyman mentioned that he was wearing the same suit because it’s his favorite suit. Heyman sucked up to Jericho asking for respect as the crowd chanted “walrus” at him. Jericho wanted more, but Heyman didn’t know what to say. Heyman said Punk didn’t have to say stupid things like “I’m the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be” (crowd booed that loudly) as Heyman rambled on. Jericho said “blah blah blah” many times and asked wondered where Punk was. Heyman said that in the next few weeks his client will have an announcement. Jericho said Punk’s not the best in the world if he’s sitting at home. Heyman said Punk’s at home in Chicago.

Jericho talked to the camera as a way to talk to Punk and said that Payback is also in Chicago. He wanted to say he was the best in the world, but Heyman cut him off. Loud “Y2J” chant. Heyman kept cutting him off. Jericho wanted CM Punk to come back to WWE at Payback to face him in a match. Heyman said that Jericho couldn’t dictate terms to Heyman and Punk. Jericho says fine because that means Jericho is the best in the world at what he does. Heyman said that on behalf of CM Punk he accepts the match. Jericho shook his hand. “Tell Punk after Payback he’ll never, ever be the same.” That ended the segment.

Analysis: It’s like I said those are two of the best talkers in wrestling history and they proved it with an entertaining ten minute promo. It sets up a huge match at Payback. Of course the question is will Punk be okay with Heyman putting him into a match at Payback or will that be an issue? I’d like Punk to remain as a heel, but in his hometown of Chicago he could get cheered huge if he were to attack Heyman at that event. It’s an interesting question for sure. I like how they set it up. Obviously I love the idea of a Punk vs. Jericho match because they have awesome matches together. Great segment. No complaints from me.

Coming up later is John Cena vs. Curtis Axel.


Congrats to my friends at Wrestling With Subtitles for their work in raising awareness about adding subtitles to WWE & TNA DVDs. The latest WWE DVDs are including subtitles. I think it’s a great thing that they’re helping out wrestling fans that can benefit from subtitles. You can read about it here at You can follow them on Twitter at @WrestleSubtitle for more info.

Kaitlyn & Natalya vs. The Bella Twins

It’s nice to see Natalya in a match on her birthday in her hometown. Congrats to Kaitlyn for wearing an outfit that shows off more cleavage. I like her more now. If you got it, flaunt it? Right? One of the Bellas missed a corner splash on Kaitlyn, which freed her up to tag in Natalya. Spinning clothesline by Natalya followed by the Sharpshooter. Brie was close to getting the ropes, so Nikki came in and slapped Natalya. Kaitlyn speared Nikki. Back in the ring, Brie went after Natalya and the Kaitlyn hit a Spear on Natalya after Brie moved. Brie stepped on Natalya followed by a terrible cover to win the match. Kaitlyn was outside the ring. The match went about three minutes.

Winners: The Bella Twins

Post match, The Bellas sang “Happy Birthday” to Natalya and said “Loser” instead of her name. This is right out of third grade taunting I think. Natalya sold it by crying in the ring.

Analysis: 1/2* The best thing that could come out of this would be a Natalya heel turn by going against Kaitlyn due to her friend causing her to lose in her hometown on her birthday in a humiliating way. If that happens I’m okay with this. Of course WWE loves to have people lose in their hometown. They do that fairly often. Hopefully this leads to heel Natalya, but I don’t know if that’s where they are going.

In the locker room, Bret Hart walked into Curtis Axel’s locker room. He mentioned the great match that he had with his dad Mr. Perfect. Hart told him to avoid Heyman. Axel said before last week nobody gave him the time of day, but Heyman believed in him. Axel told Bret to enjoy his Appreciation Night while he (Axel) is going to beat the WWE Champion.

Analysis: Axel made the point I mentioned earlier in the show. It makes sense for the heel to say that while babyfaces can tell him to avoid Heyman because they know how evil he is.

Randy Orton entered for a tag match with Sheamus against Team Rhodes Scholars. Cole called them the Celtic Vipers. Silly name. It’s not official I hope.


There was a video package for Bray Wyatt and the Wyatt Family. If you don’t know who that is it’s the man formerly known as Husky Harris. It’s a unique gimmick that will allow them to stand out from the pack. It ended by saying “we’re coming” and didn’t give a date, but that obviously means it will be soon.

Sheamus & Randy Orton vs. Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow

There was a Sheamus vs. Sandow feud started on Smackdown this past week. Rhodes looks like he has too much spray tanner on. I usually don’t mention these things, but it’s excessive. Sheamus hit a powerslam on Sandow. Orton hit a dropkick, but Sandow was able to control him in his corner. Orton came back with a clothesline on Rhodes and then a suplex. JBL: “We are in Canada. King may have had another heart attack.” It was in Montreal, for the record. Lawler mentioned the Rhodes tan. They kept talking about Lawler’s heart attack. Sheamus worked on Sandow, but Team Rhodes Scholars distracted the ref wisely to regain control five minutes into the match. They went to break there.

Analysis: Seriously Cody Rhodes, either you put on too much spray tanner or fell asleep while tanning. I’m not sure what it was. People are tweeting me about it, so it’s not just me noticing.


Back from break, Sandow and the Orange Wonder known as Cody Rhodes were in control of the action. Sheamus hit the Irish Curse Backbreaker to get the momentum back and get the hot tag to Orton. Orton hit a powerslam on Sandow followed by one for Rhodes too. Orton with the off the ropes DDT on Sandow as the crowd went wild. Rhodes pulled Sandow outside the ring. Orton knocked down Rhodes with a clothesline, which led to Sandow pulling Orton into the steel ring post. Right now on the WWE App you can hear Paul Heyman talking to Curtis Axel. Heyman said it was Axel’s “first two weeks on Raw.” So his time as a tag champion and other parts of his career don’t count at all? Odd logic. The heels worked over Orton. Rhodes got caught by Orton, who dropped the Orange Wonder (that’s Rhodes – at least this week) with an overhead suplex. Both guys were down leading to Sheamus getting the hot tag from Orton. Running knee lift from Sheamus while Sandow tagged in to take the ten clubbing forearm shots from Sheamus. Rhodes hit a Disaster Kick on Sheamus while he had Sandow on his shoulder. Sandow covered for two. Orton threw Rhodes over the security wall by the timekeeper. Sheamus hit White Noise on Sandow. Brogue kick by Sheamus. That ended the match at the 15 minute mark.

Winners: Randy Orton & Sheamus

Analysis: *** That’s the second tag match that went over 15 minutes this week. I can get used to that. I would have liked to see the heels go over because the babyface team wins matches all the time and don’t really need wins. However, they could be positioning them as a tag team to go against The Shield in the near future. They could then use that feud to set up the long rumored heel turn of Orton in the summer. I’m not sure what’s going to happen. I’m just throwing ideas out there. Because that’s what I do. Yes Mark Henry, I miss you already.

Up next it’s John Cena vs. Curtis Axel.


There was another video with Kofi Kingston narrating about WWE’s partnership with the National Guard.

This Friday on Smackdown it’s Randy Orton vs. Dean Ambrose. It’s nice of them to advertise matches for a change. Why not advertise matches for Raw? It would help.

At Payback it’s John Cena vs. Ryback in a 3 Stages of Hell Match: Lumberjack, Tables & Ambulance. I would say there’s a 99% chance that they will make it to the third stage.

John Cena made his entrance. Signs side by side in the crowd: “You are a face YAY” Also: “You are a heel BOO.” Curtis Axel made his entrance with Paul Heyman.

John Cena vs. Curtis Axel (w/Paul Heyman)

This match is not for Cena’s WWE Title. After about thirty seconds of action they went to break with Axel stalling outside the ring while Heyman gave him advice.


As they returned from break, Axel hit a suplex on Cena. As that was going on the crowd was watching something going on in the audience. A fight? Perhaps. Axel did the right thing by applying an arm bar because when the audience isn’t looking that’s what you’re supposed to do. The ref John Cone was even glancing over at it. The cameramen focused in on close-ups of the wrestlers so we couldn’t see the crowd looking away. That was a long armbar by Axel. It felt like it was about three minutes long. Axel yelled at them to pay attention to him. The crowd focused on the match with the dueling Cena chants as the champ made his comeback. Shoulderblock, spinning suplex and five knuckle shuffle for Cena. I wonder how many times I wrote that over the last four years of writing the Raw Deal? Axel came back with a dropkick for two. Cena came back with a slam for two. Axel did the running snapmare that his dad Mr. Perfect used to do. Great to see that. Axel fought out of the STF and he hit the Perfectplex for two. Awesome spot. I marked out. All of a sudden, an Ambulance pulled up beside the ramp. Cena walked out of the match and went over to the Ambulance. The bell rang, so Cena got counted out. That’s it? The match went 11 minutes.

Winner: Curtis Axel by countout

Ryback attacked Cena from behind. Cena avoided an attack on the stage. Ryback shoved him off the stage and then he left. That was it? Cena didn’t sell it as a big move.

Analysis: *1/2 Another forgotten win by Axel just like last week against Triple H. I actually liked the match. It’s a shame it ended so suddenly. It was awesome to see Axel use the Perfectplex.

Raw ended with Heyman and Axel celebrating the win while the announcers put over the win by Axel.

Analysis: That ending was a bit flat, but it got the point across well.


Three Stars of the Show

1. Daniel Bryan

2. Seth Rollins

3. Paul Heyman


The Scoreboard

7.5 out of 10

Last week: 6

2013 Average: 5.57

2013 High: 8 (April 8)

2013 Low: 3.5 (January 28)

Last 5 Weeks: 6, 4, 4, 6, 7


Final Thoughts

It was an enjoyable episode of Raw, which is why it got the favorable score of 7.5 out of 10. I don’t have many complaints with what happened this week.

The first hour was much better than it has been in past weeks. That set the tone for a better show. The in-ring action was above average for the most part. Two tag matches getting over 15 minutes? I love that.

I thought the Jericho/Heyman promo segment was excellent. It set up the return of CM Punk in a way that excites me a lot because it opens up a lot of possibilities and makes me more excited about Payback, which is what is supposed to happen with pay-per-views.

Aside from the tag match featuring Tons Of Funk & Khali it felt like every segment on Raw had a purpose this week. It was a well booked show.

The pacing of the show was better. Different people were given attention. I liked it a lot.


I’m not writing about the Bret Hart appreciation night. I did watch it on The Score TV here in Canada, but don’t plan on writing a recap. I’m sure the video will surface if you missed it.

I have no major plugs this week except to check out for daily content from our wonderful team of writers and also exclusive content from me like the Q&A I did last week or the history of Raw Deal column from earlier on Monday. I’m not sure what I have later in the week, but I’ll think of something. I always do.

Until next time, thanks for reading.

John Canton –

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