WWE's Old School Raw did a great job of entertaining fans and honoring the show's history in leading up to WrestleMania 29.
Legends made comebacks, the Undertaker returned and new matches were hinted at for "The Grandaddy of Them All."
The night was an absolute success, and it was the best Raw of 2013.
Keep reading for the reasons.
The WWE went all-in for Monday’s Old School Raw.
The set was reminiscent of the early 1990s before the Attitude Era. Red, white and blue ropes surrounded the ring with a modified version of the old WWE logo on the 12 turnbuckles.
The stage, besides the Titan Tron, was similar to that of the beginning of Monday Night Raw.
Black steel barricades and a blue mat surrounded the ring and on the outside, the announce table was also old school.
But the WWE didn’t stop there.
The announcers, Michael Cole and Jerry “The King” Lawler, both dressed as announcers did in the beginning. Cole had the misfortune of wearing that horrid mustard jacket. Even the referees dressed in grayish blue shirts and black bow ties.
It was a great night, but it was even greater to see that the WWE thought of everything it could do to make the night fully “old school.”
When the notorious gong of the Undertaker’s theme song sounded, I could not help but to smile.
His return kicked off the show and really set a tone for the evening. Dressed in my favorite robe of his, the Undertaker stood at the top of the ramp.
The Undertaker then lifted his hands and the WrestleMania 29 logo appeared on the Titan Tron.
For the 13th straight year, the Undertaker will put his streak on the line at WrestleMania. At that point, I was just happy that he would make his return.
His return truly made the evening more exciting. Without it, the show would still have been alright, but the return of the Deadman was great.
We’ve known about a few matches on the WrestleMania 29 card for a while now.
The Rock vs. John Cena at WrestleMania was evident since the Royal Rumble. Triple H and Brock Lesnar will battle in the ring as a result of their scuffle a few weeks back. We knew the Undertaker would return since the Slammy Awards, when Triple H hinted at it.
On Monday, though, a new match looks to be in the books: Ryback vs. Mark Henry.
Ryback was celebrating his victory over United States champion Antonio Cesaro, and as he was walking toward the back, Henry’s music hit, and the two stared down one another.
It wasn’t much, and it is all speculation, but this match would be great to see. I’d want to see two of the strongest Superstars in the WWE in a match together.
Regardless if this match happens or not, the WWE has people talking. The hint of this at WrestleMania 29 is enough, for now.
Part of having and “old school” show, for any type of show, is to celebrate its history. Old School Raw did just that by having legends come back.
Some WWE legends not only came back, they also got physical.
Although very predictable, it was still great to see The Honky Tonk Man smash his guitar over Heath Slater’s head. Ric Flair attempting to knife edge chop Big E Langston was also hilarious.
Road Dogg and “Bad Ass” Billy Gunn got physical in their first match on Raw together in 13 years. And Sergeant Slaughter, Dusty Rhodes and “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan took hits with Duggan’s wood plank.
It’s been talked about for a while, but it is official: CM Punk will attempt to end the Undertaker’s undefeated streak at WrestleMania.
The best part about this is that it will be the first time since 2009 that The Undertaker will face a new opponent at WrestleMania. 2009 was the first showdown with Shawn Michaels.
The Streak has taken on a life of its own. It’s the greatest streak in all of sports entertainment. Seeing it defended against, finally, a new opponent will be a refreshing change of pace.
With the Undertaker vs. CM Punk announced, WrestleMania season has officially begun.