Biggest Lessons Learned from Feb. 17 Edition of Raw
The go-home edition of Raw prior to the Elimination Chamber is finally in the bag—and the card is almost set in stone for the final show before WrestleMania XXX.
These particular editions of Raw are often important, as they put some final gloss into existing rivalries to try and sell the show.
And, this Monday's show was a pretty solid one—and gave us plenty of clues as to how good the Elimination Chamber can be.
But were these the biggest lessons we learned from Raw? Let's take a look.
Fandango, the Lesser of Two Evils
Look, when Raw is a three-hour show—as it has been for some time now—you expect matches like Santino Marella vs. Fandango.
What you don't expect though, is for them to be filled with such ludicrous storylines. Emma seems like an interesting, fresh Diva—but we really don't need to see her blossoming relationship with Marella teased inside the ring.
That's why it was a minor positive when Fandango came out on top. It seems a shame that he's gone from somewhat of a cult figure to almost jobber level. He was never a superstar in the making—but he certainly had some potential.
Hopefully we don't see any more of this next week. To say it was the final show before the Elimination Chamber—it was pretty unneccessary.
Big E vs. Swagger Should Be a Smart Match
It's nice to see the Intercontinental Championship get a run out this Sunday at the Elimination Chamber—as Big E desperately needed some exposure on WWE TV.
And it will probably turn out to be a pretty decent showing—adding further interest to a decent-enough Elimination Chamber card. With Cesaro competing inside the Chamber, the opportunity has arisen for Jack Swagger to get back into singles competition, and he is an excellent No. 1 contender for Big E.
Zeb Colter did plenty of talking throughout Big E's victory over Jinder Mahal and Drew McIntyre—perhaps too much, although there were some amusing moments—and that adds more intrigue to the match.
In the ring, their amateur backgrounds should make for a technically superb spectacle—and it is up in the air over who will prevail. That is what you want from a championship match.
Cesaro Is Going Places
It takes a special kind of man to make a match with John Cena come across as exciting. There are very few who can do it—CM Punk is one, Daniel Bryan is another.
Well, it appears you can add Cesaro to that list, too. This is a guy who is supposed to be a heel, a guy who is supposed to get roundly booed by everyone in attendance. The only thing is, it hasn't quite worked out like that.
The "This is Awesome!" chants during his match with Cena were well merited. It was a great match—but largely due to the impressive showing Cesaro put on.
That patented swing maneuver is something which will serve him incredibly well if he turns babyface—the crowd are already crazy for him.
Unfortunately, we knew the eventual result of the match, which was a shame. I don't really know where the harm would have been in having Cesaro knock Cena off.
However, whilst The Real Americans were impressive enough—you get the impression Cesaro is going to be a huge, huge star.
Daniel Bryan Will Not Win at the Elimination Chamber
It's been the running theme of the last six to eight months—and it looks set to continue this Sunday.
Daniel Bryan has been up against it since he was screwed out of the WWE Championship at SummerSlam, and Monday's action seemed to suggest he is still carrying the same problems.
This week though, it was Kane who did the damage to Bryan. It seems like the current storyline is that Bryan will be carrying some sort of shoulder injury into the Chamber—and it is highly unlikely he will emerge as the champion.
Whether there is some sort of deeper storyline involved—perhaps a bout with Triple H at WrestleMania XXX—remains to be seen. However, you would expect Daniel Bryan to fall short on Sunday inside the Chamber.
Dean Ambrose Will Initiate the Shield's Split
The Shield vs. The Wyatt Family is arguably the most anticipated match on the Elimination Chamber card. It is a match that will see the company's two main stables square off against each other—and it looks like The Shield will finally implode at the event.
The question over how it will happen has been the main talking point, though. It is starting to look pretty clear that Dean Ambrose will be the guy who initiates the split—leaving Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins behind.
It is obvious that Reigns is set to be an enormous star within the WWE when the group goes their own way—and Rollins looks to be on the same page as the monster of the stable. Ambrose's jealousy over Reigns' success looks set to be the thing that causes The Shield to internally combust—as was teased again on Raw.
Whatever the case, Sunday will be fascinating viewing in terms of The Shield.
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