WWE Raw World Tour: 5 Things That Went Well in Nottingham
WWE Superstars and Divas are currently on a world tour, with Raw and SmackDown being taped in Birmingham, England.
I had the pleasure of being fifth row ringside at the Raw house show at the Capital FM Arena in Nottingham. It turned out to be one of the best live events I've ever seen.
This slideshow will be revealing a few things that happened on the tour, so if you have a ticket to an upcoming Raw event, there may be a few spoilers!
Santino teaming with Brodus Clay
We all know that Santino’s slapstick comedy is hilarious, but big Brodus Clay is just as good at getting the audience laughing. In Nottingham, they teamed up to face Primo and Epico in a well thought-out, funny match. It was also a perfect way to start off the event.
The team of Santino and Clay is a much better fit than Team CoBro of Santino and Zack Ryder.
Not only do their over-the-top personalities fit with each other, but they are perfectly suited to WWE’s younger audience. The kids at the show were absolutely sold on this team.
If they were to properly collaborate as an established tag team, they could shift a lot of merchandise as well.
Not many people are fans of Rosa’s in-ring work, but it seems she has found her calling as a heel manager/valet.
Her interactions with the audience at ringside generated a lot of heat for Primo and Epico.
She was naturally easy to dislike when screaming in Spanish at the WWE Universe, who responded enthusiastically with loud boos.
I think she could carry on in her current position with Primo and Epico, or as WWE has been hinting recently, could accompany Del Rio to the ring.
Either way, she has improved greatly and was extremely entertaining at ringside.
Dolph Ziggler’s feud with John Cena
John Cena vs. Dolph Ziggler was easily one of the best matches of the night and was worthy of a main-event spot, even though it was before the show's interval.
Both wrestlers are clearly enjoying this new feud and took full advantage of it, making sure their match was fresh and entertaining.
As many WWE viewers have already noticed, the talented Ziggler can make almost any wrestler seem like a better performer.
As referred to in a previous article, Ziggler is very similar to a young Shawn Michaels. So much so that he even attempted a Sweet Chin Music, complete with a foot-stamping build up.
AJ Lee ran in and stopped Vickie Guerrero, who was attempting to help Ziggler score the pin. After some flirting between John and AJ, Ziggler unsuccessfully attempted a sneak attack and Cena won.
The audience responded well to both wrestlers and were entertained throughout the entire match.
At this house show, Ryder faced Antonio Cesaro for the United States Championship. Although not victorious, Zack showed some real promise for another U.S. title run.
He is in the best physical shape of his career so far, and the fans have not yet tired of his current gimmick. His work with Cesaro in this match was excellent, with a lot of credit going to the current champ as well.
I think Zack can definitely still be seen as the underdog when going against a champion like Cesaro, so if another title run did come his way, it would be welcomed by the WWE Universe.
His new T-shirt being sold at the merchandise stands for £30 also tells me that WWE recognises he still has a lot of fans out there.
WWE's Continued Push of Ryback
The main event of the night was CM Punk against Ryback for the WWE Championship.
Ryback got a huge pop when he interrupted Punk, who was cutting a heel promo on the crowd in Nottingham (which was about football, always referenced by WWE when in England).
The majority of the audience was also enjoying the "Feed Me More" chants whenever possible.
The match ended in disqualification when Team Rhodes Scholars attacked Ryback, who subsequently fended them off, much to the delight of the WWE Universe.
The show ended with Ryback in the ring, posing for the crowd. Over the past few years, Raw house shows have ended with CM Punk or John Cena doing the same.
Hopefully this is very good news for Ryback, who gets another shot at the WWE Championship in a Triple Threat match at Survivor Series later this month.
Also worth mentioning in this article are the always entertaining Team Hell No and the very popular AJ Lee.
In conclusion, the Raw side of the WWE World Tour this year was a big success. The WWE and all of its performers should be very pleased.