After one of the best pay-per-views of 2012 (Tables, Ladders and Chairs), the WWE rolled into Philadelphia for the Dec. 17 edition of Raw and blew the lid off the place.
As someone who got to experience the show live from Philly, it was one of the best wrestling shows in a long time.
With epic returns of wrestling icons and enough storyline development to start the build to the Royal Rumble off on the right foot, the WWE did an amazing job building an exciting show for both the fans in attendance and at home.
Let’s just hope the momentum created from this episode of Raw can carry the company through the holiday season and into Jan. when things really start to heat up.
Raw Results from Dec. 3 (via WWE.com)
Rey Mysterio defeated Damien Sandow.
Kofi Kingston won the "Tell Me I Did Not Just See That" Moment of the Year Slammy.
Kaitlyn defeated Divas Champion Eve.
Jerry "The King" Lawler won the Comeback of the Year Slammy.
Intercontinental Champion Kofi Kingston defeated Tensai; Wade Barrett attacked.
AJ Lee and John Cena won the Kiss of the Year Slammy.
The Great Khali defeated David Otunga.
Ric Flair returned, presented Superstar of the Year to John Cena and fought WWE Champion CM Punk.
The Shield brawled with Ryback, WWE Tag Team Champions Team Hell No and Ric Flair.
Brodus Clay defeated JTG.
Santino Marella and Tensai presented LOL Moment of the Year to The Rock.
Cody Rhodes defeated Sin Cara.
Zack Ryder and Layla presented Trending Now (Hashtag of the Year) to Ryback.
Sheamus confronted World Heavyweight Champion Big Show; John Cena foiled Dolph Ziggler's Money in the Bank cash-in attempt.
The Miz, Alberto Del Rio & Tommy Dreamer defeated 3MB.
Ryback won Newcomer of the Year and def. U.S. Champion Antonio Cesaro via Count-Out.
Jim Ross, "Mean" Gene Okerlund and Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat awarded Match of the Year to Triple H and The Undertaker.
John Cena & Vickie Guerrero defeated Dolph Ziggler & AJ Lee via Disqualification after Big E Langston interfered.
The Slammy Awards
After one of the most exciting PPVs of 2012 and before the WWE goes on its annual holiday break, the company decided to blow out this week’s edition of Raw by bringing back several huge stars from the past to help make the Slammy Awards a big deal.
Question on Everyone’s Mind: Were you pleasantly surprised by Raw’s epicness?
There was no doubt that the lack of a return from The Rock or Brock Lesnar left the WWE Universe feeling a little empty, but the WWE knew exactly what it was doing when it exploited the fans of Philadelphia with returns suited toward them. With Tommy Dreamer, Ric Flair and others returning to the company, it was one of the best shows in a long time.
WWE Hall of Fame announcer Jim Ross took to Twitter to talk about his post-Raw experiences with a few of the wrestling old-timers (Oh, to be a fly on that wall):
Sitting w/ Ric Flair, Mean Gene, Steamboat & Booker T talking old times. @wwe 4:45 am comes early!— Jim Ross (@JRsBBQ) December 18, 2012
Nationally syndicated radio show, Ring Rust Radio, was on the scene for Monday’s Raw and is reporting on just how great the show was live:
After just getting home, that was one of the more exciting @wwe Raw's I've ever attended! Several markout moments! Great show!— RingRustRadio (@RingRustRadio) December 18, 2012
The Road to the Royal Rumble
Judging from The Rock commercials that have started to air with more regularity, the time for the Royal Rumble is almost upon us. With six weeks until one of the biggest shows of the year, the build to this event will be too good to miss.
Question on Everyone’s Mind: Is the WWE going all-in on the Royal Rumble?
With a bona-fide star in The Rock returning for a shot at the WWE Championship and CM Punk, the company realizes the opportunity it has to build one of the biggest shows in its history. Add in the fact that this is the official beginning of the road to WrestleMania 29, and the WWE will blow this build out like few times in the past.
While it may not seem like a big deal for the casual fans, the inclusion of JBL on the Raw announce team—and the WWE announce team in general—has been a welcomed change that proves the company is trying to freshen up the product:
Layfield (@JCLayfield) December 18, 2012
Even with so many high-priority storylines going, the WWE found time to ensure that Intercontinental champion Kofi Kingston and Wade Barrett continue their midcard feud. Kingston was not happy about the attack on him, though:
Kofi Kingston (@TrueKofi) December 18, 2012
Check back for more on the World Wrestling Entertainment as it comes, and visit Bleacher Report’s wrestling page to get your fill of WWE/TNA. For more wrestling talk, listen to Ring Rust Radio for all of the hot topics you just can’t miss (some language NSFW).