1. First thing I want to mention is that I’m glad my prediction came true and the new WWE Championship has customizable side plates. It’s a creative update to the traditional nameplate idea and should make for some pretty cool looking WWE Championship designs.
2. Ok, I’ll admit it. The “heel turn/dance move” line was pretty slick. Kudos to John Cena or whomever came up with that line.
3. I have no idea what the reasoning was behind hotshotting the IC Championship but good God did Miz and Wade Barrett work an intense, stiff and physical match. Not only should have this version of Barrett/Miz been featured on WrestleMania but I wonder what was said to these two that lit fuses under their asses for this Raw match. Sure there were some missed spots but overall, this is what the Intercontinental Championship division should be like and I’m glad Barrett’s carrying the title again. Now they just have to rebuild his character into something credible…
4. The Dolph Ziggler cash in was executed fantastically. During Big E’s match & celebration, Ziggler kept to the shadows and AJ held onto the briefcase the entire time. There was absolutely no hint that tonight was going to be the night. That is until the trainer entered the ring to check on Alberto Del Rio. Suddenly the entire crowd rose to their feet, cameras pointed toward the stage. That’s the anticipation and reaction the Money In The Bank briefcase is supposed to elicit. And I LOVED the fact that he had to work for the championship because he’s probably the best WORKER in the company right now. The crowd’s reaction wasn’t probably what the WWE hoped for considering Ziggler is a heel but the reaction was absolutely incredible and maybe one of the loudest in the modern era (post-Attitude Era).
5. Randy “What’s My Line?” Orton was terrible and might have been one of the most embarrassing moments in Raw history. Combine that with the pin drop reaction the announcement of the Orton vs Sheamus match got and WWE must be ecstatic to be out of New Jersey. All I know is that considering Randy Orton’s well documented temper (which I’ve actually witnessed first hand a few times), I would HATE to be anywhere close to his path when he got backstage.
6. This is honestly the most entertaining the announce team has been in years. I don’t know if it is because Vince McMahon is in the back freaking out about the crowd and not screaming in the ears of any of the guys or if they decided to just go with the crowd but they legitimately seem to be having fun with this crowd and everything that is happening. For once their laughter isn’t canned or faked.
7. Fandango & New Jersey. I really don’t know what to say. It will be interesting to see if the singing carries over to other arenas or if this stays in Jersey. If that’s the case, at least we all have at least one night to reflect on and relive the greatness that is the “Fandango Sing-a-Long”.
8. John Cena really seemed to be thriving with this crowd. From the improvising in his opening segment to the impromptu dance moves before his match with Mark Henry, Cena worked WITH the crowd instead of against them like Sheamus & Orton.
9. I’m extremely curious to see how the Ryback angle plays out next week. Is he a heel? Is he a babyface who just wants the WWE title? Is he a heel to all John Cena face and a babyface to all John Cena haters? There’s a lot of different directions they can go with Ryback now and considering he hasn’t won on a PPV in months just lends itself to more speculation that he’s turned heel because being a good guy wasn’t working for him. But, he’s also in the top 5 of babyfaces the WWE has right now. As fun as this Raw was, there are still a lot of questions. Hopefully we’ll get a few of them answered next week… as long as the wrestlers can be heard over Fandango’s entrance music that is.
10. And to round out tonight’s Raw and our post-WrestleMania Raw 10 Thoughts, a video courtesy of our own Justin Czerwonka taken while exiting the IZOD Center:
Gotta love a crowd FULL of hardcore wrestling fans.