Raw Rebound: Wait, Raw's Still Good?
Last week Melina made her triumphant return following a fantastic Divas match up. It was the best that's come out of Raw in weeks, but did it keep going this week? Find out by watching below:
Melina's out first to a nice pop, and I am so relieved to see she looks fabulous and healthy. She doesn't seem to favor her leg at all, and she can still do the splits! Did I mention she brought the fur boots back? Sweet.
Alicia's out next. I question why she skinned a pink pinata. In any event, the bell rings and we're underway.
The women stare each other down until Alicia takes control by lifting and tackling Melina into a corner. The Foxy champ forearms Melina before whipping her to the other side of the ring by her hair. She then nonchalantly kicks Melina who ends up on the ring apron. The Latina firecracker shoulder blocks her opposition, then sliding between her legs and pulling her down for her back to meet her own knees.
Melina forearms Alicia for a two count, elbowing her viciously in the back multiple times afterwards. The Foxy one shoves Melina off. She goes for a clothesline but Melina avoids it with the matrix maneuver, following up with an elbow to Alicia's head and the snapmare driver we saw her utilize last week. She then goes on to hit her patented running hair smash takedown. This is enough for the Divas Champ as she heads to the outside for some regrouping time.
Melina has enough, heading to the outside to go after Alicia but finding a sick clothesline instead. The fans rile Melina into the ring as the ref counts, but Alicia pulls her into the ring by her hair. She yanks the A-lister up by her hair before slamming her harshly onto the mat. Alicia lifts Melina, sending her to the ropes and going for her tilt-a-whirl backbreaker, but it ends up landing awkwardly instead. Alicia goes for the pin anyhow, receiving the usual two count from the ref.
The champ continues to toy with Melina, flailing her around by her hair. Alicia locks in a submission move, pulling back on Melina's neck and head, digging her knee into Melina's back as well. The former Divas Champion tries fighting back with multiple shots to Alicia, but the current champion stops her in her tracks with a club to the back.
Alicia brings her opponent into a torture rack next. Melina ends up fighting out, using her elevated position to signal the crowd with a scream before hitting a scary looking Last Call for the pin, the win, and a huge pop. During the commercial break, due to Melina's win she earns herself a title match against Alicia at SummerSlam!
Ok, let's begin with the match. Honestly, it wasn't bad at all. The crowd was definitely into it, and that's something rare in this day and age. It's a testament to how over Melina is, and how over Alicia is getting, because the fans payed attention to the match!
I think there were two semi-but-not-really botches, which were the backbreaker and the Last Call. It was iffy in some spots, but overall I think it wasn't that bad. I think both girls are to blame in regards to the bad points in the match. They've never hit that tilt-a-whirl backbreaker well for some reason.
The Last Call they've been able to hit beforehand, but it always turns out a bit off. Alicia doesn't seem to be able to support that much weight, but I think it was also too soon for Melina to try and hit it. It seemed to me that Melina was a bit timid tonight. I think both women could have done, and wanted to do, much, much more with this match. Still, it was smart to take it slow, which is why I question WWE's methods.
I just don't understand why they would give this match away so quickly! If they want a good feud to come out of Alicia and Melina they need to give them the time needed. Melina should've been kept out of the ring a little longer to build for her in-ring return, especially when she faced Alicia right off the bat! Now this Sunday they're going to face off again, but I doubt they're going to be able to go all the way with it.
Knowing Melina, I know she always wants to give one hundred and ten percent, and when it comes to the pay per views she wants to give 210 percent! But, I don't think she'll be able to that this Sunday due to her previous injury. She's going to have to be careful about it. Just like tonight, it will be noticeable. It's not that it's impossible for them to pull out a great, possible match of the year candidate. It's that it's going to be damn hard to pull off.
This wasn't the only Divas action for the night, folks! Oh no, oh no! We also got to see the Bellas face off against the team of Gail Kim & Eve, and Jillian & Maryse. Watch what came about below:
The Bellas are walking out to the arena and you can see them wearing one pieces. Ok, so the PG thing is now in full effect? Back from the commercial break Maryse and Jillian are already in the ring until Eve's music plays. She enters the ring with Gail in a funslide. Ummm, ok?
I couldn't help but notice the titantron issues. It reminds me of Melina's return in 2008, which is never a good thing. Moving on, the Bellas enter next and we're underway.
Maryse shoves her hat in Eve's face, but the former champ is unphased, hitting an almost-botched lou thesz press and struggling with Maryse. The French Canadian Beauty knees Eve, sending her to the ropes for one Bella to tag in. Maryse still nails Eve in the back as Bella#1 hits her in the face with a forearm. She continually hits Maryse in the face until she's slapped and sent to her opponent's corner.
She elbows Maryse off but Jillian traps her in the corner with a towel. That's creative, I guess. Bella No. 2 comes in to complain, but her sister is pummeled in the corner for her efforts. Jillian tags in, flinging Bella No. 1 to the far side of the ring by her hair. She obviously hasn't forgotten her hatred of the twins. She elbows the Bella in the face, locking in a submission move by pulling Bella No. 1's arms backwards and digging her knee into her back as well.
The fans rile behind the Bella until she finally flips Jillian off of her. Bella No. 2 is tagged, quickly knocking Jillian off her feet with a clothesline, dropkick, and a slick head scissors takedown. She hits another low dropkick that Eve breaks up at two. Eve then hits her sick neackbreaker, which prompts Maryse to come in. She tries hitting her French Kiss ddt, but instead finds herself in a tube and Eat Defeat, courtesy of Gail Kim.
Jillian takes it upon herself to take both Gail and Eve out, kicking Eve to the outside and piling Gail on top of her from inside the ring. One Bella hits her with a bulldog while the other goes for a diving crossbody from the top rope. This garners a win for the twins and they go on to cheer. As they do so however Tamina comes to the ring with her own one piece. She looks Santino up and down, getting all up in his grill, before slapping him on the ass when he leaves.
Despite the bikini stipulation, if it deserves to be called that, the match wasn't that bad. The best parts came in the momentous ending, and more Diva screen time is always good. They were getting reactions from the crowd, and that's quite a feat when they were put at the end of the card, and they were the second Divas match on the card.
I guess that small feud with Jillian and the Bellas on Superstars was worth it. We know Eve and Maryse are over already, to a degree, and Gail always pulls reactions out of the crowd with her wrestling.
The only jibe I have with this whole thing is it served no purpose whatsoever. I guess it was just a filler match, but in the end it's not so bad to get more Diva screen time, or is it?
What I mean is there was a lot of potential coming from last week. Jillian turned on Alicia last week, so I thought it was a given she would complete her face turn this week. Obviously, I was wrong. It sucks because WWE could've progressed from last week by giving the Divas a tag team match.
Melina could've teamed with her off-screen best friend, Jillian, and gone up against Alicia and someone else. Preferably Tamina. Then, all the time used up in both Divas matches tonight could've been better utilized in one match, rather than both. Or maybe a match and a promo afterwards? I think overall a Jillian face turn would've been or the best, but, this is WWE we're talking about. When have they ever progressed in a smart manner?
I think WWE should throw Jillian into the mix of Melina vs Alicia. Maybe have her attack Alicia after her match with Melina Sunday, which Alicia should win. It would lead to a Jillian face turn, and later on it could easily transition into a feud between Melina and Alicia alone. After that's done and over with you could have Jillian feud with whoever comes out on top.
See that? I just planned months ahead in a matter of minutes, is it that hard for WWE to do the same? I mean, really!
As for the whole Santino and Tamina situation after the match, I don't know. I just don't get it. If this means yet another Santino romance storyline, please WWE, put your forgetfulness skills to good use and pretend it never happened!
At this point Santino is just an annoying guy on the brand, and Tamina is the newbie who doesn't need to be shoved in a storyline with him. I think this would basically screw over Tamina's young career, actually. It would be sad to see that happen, so let's hope Tamina sticks with her boys.
Now I just hope this Sunday isn't a complete disaster, and that next week the improving Raw women's division continues to look up.
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