Each week, Mary “Queen of the Busted Open Nation” Grater reviews WWE Monday Night Raw. This week, Mary gives her take on the new tag team champions and The Shield’s run with the belts.
Raw kicked things off Monday night with a Shawn Michaels promo. (Remember last week, Michaels was named special guest referee for the WWE Championship match between Daniel Bryan and Randy Orton at Hell in a Cell.) From there, the show seemed to be headed toward another mediocre night.
The early rundown:
- After suffering a loss to Randy Orton, The Miz was confronted by the Wyatt family, who cut another creepy promo on him.
- Fandango beat Santino Marella.
- 3MB faced Los Matadores, losing for the third straight time against the new tag team.
- The Real Americans took on Tons of Funk and continued their winning streak. Brodus Clay was the latest victim of Antonio Cesaro’s Giant Swing. (Dude is strong!)
- Brie Bella faced Tamina Snuka. Nikki Bella was banned from ringside, but AJ Lee was allowed to watch as Tamina decimated Brie for the win.
- Several mandatory John Cena video packages that left the WWE universe wondering if Cena is Superman or a cyborg.
Later, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon addressed the WWE universe about the events that took place last Monday night, when Big Show knocked out Triple H. Daniel Bryan came out and interrupted Triple H and McMahon, only to be attacked from behind by Alberto Del Rio. Bryan and Del Rio were booked in a match later in the night, which ended via count out when Bryan left the ring to save the Bella Twins from Randy Orton. (Ugh.)
Brad Maddox also booked CM Punk and Ryback in a Beat the Clock Challenge, with Punk facing Curtis Axel and Ryback facing R-Truth. At stake: Whichever wrestler won their match in the shortest time could pick the stipulations for the Punk-Ryback Hell in a Cell match. Much to the chagrin of Paul Heyman, Punk beat Ryback’s time, and announced a two-on-one handicapped match: Punk vs. Heyman and Ryback inside the cell.
What truly saved the night though was the main event: The Shield put their WWE Tag Team Championship on the line against Cody Rhodes and Goldust. (When was the last time a tag team title match closed Monday Night Raw?)
The Rhodes brothers continued their run, following up their win over The Wyatt Family on Smackdown — the Family’s first loss — by beating The Shield in one of the best matches of the year, winning the Tag Team Championship in the process. The match had the feel of a big fight, and the spot that featured Roman Reigns spearing Goldust through the barricade made it feel like viewers traveled back to the Attitude Era.
The Shield were again booked perfectly, as they have been since their debut. And the notion they held the tag titles for too long is off base for two reasons:
- The extended title reign returned importance to the tag title.
- The Shield was so dominant for so long that fans never thought they would drop the titles.
That’s what made the Rhodes’ victory even sweeter.
(Well, that and Goldust holding a title again in 2013. Who saw that coming?!)