Opening SegmentA slightly odd Raw to be kick off this new 'Quick Hits' review I'm doing, because last night's Raw was filled with so much good stuff. The opening segment is now exception. It was a segment that probably shouldn't have worked, but with a hot crowd behind all three guys (Cena, Orton and Fandango) it just made for a nice opening to the show. It shows that with a right crowd the Fandango character can still get over.
Fandango vs. Randy Orton
Speaking of Fandango, he also had his best singles match to date against Randy Orton. I've never been the biggest fan of the ballroom dancer, but last night he was able to stand toe-to-toe with the 9 time World champion and look pretty strong in doing so.
The action itself was also pretty good, with Fandango getting the opportunity to lay in some offence on Orton. A good opening match.
The Shield Attack Mark Henry
Good stuff from all four guys involved here. Mark Henry cut another fine promo (and even managed to own the loud Brooklyn crowd at one stage), and also did a good job of what essentially must be a face turn for the World's Strongest Man.
Will this lead to a Shield/Henry feud? It's hard to say. The segment was definitely used to turn Henry face, but it might have also been used to put Mark out of action for a while.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Ziggler
A really enjoyable match here that had great action, and an ending that was in my opinion better than the one at Money in the Bank.
Del Rio and Ziggler once again got to show their superb chemistry together, and AJ (as well as Big E) was able to turn on the former World champion in great fashion. It's been said for a good year now, but AJ Lee really does play the psychotic character extremely well.
The Wyatt Family Attack R-Truth
It was a night filled with attacks on Raw, but once again it was one that came off really well. Not only did the Wyatt Fairly get to make their awesome entrance and lay out another victim, but Bray Wyatt also got to cut a promo as well.
And what a promo it was. Not only did Wyatt get his message across but the manner in which he did it was simply a joy to watch. I've never seen such a fascinating group coming along in the WWE in a very long time.
Heyman and Punk Confrontation
Segment of the night, and arguably the segment of the year. Simply put, this was absolutely perfect. I was slightly worried that Heyman might not have been able to come up with a good excuse as to why he turned on his former best friend, but he did, and in a terrific way as well. When Heyman talked you could really feel the anger behind his words, and ditto Punk who let his venomous hatred come through in his talking and mannerisms.
The fight between Lesnar and Punk was also excellent, as Punk go to show off his 'relentless' side while Lesnar got to beat down on Punk and look like the monster he is. Everything about this segment was simply outstanding to watch.
Rob Van Dam vs. Chris Jericho
A great match here which strangely enough wasn't as surreal to see as I thought it'd be. You'd think that and RVD vs. Y2J match in 2013 wouldn't look even slightly out of place but it really didn't.
The match was given a lot of time and both guys took full advantage of that by putting on a great back and forth contest. Both guy may be past their prime, but they were still able to deliver here by putting in a terrific effort.
John Cena vs. Daniel Bryan is Set
A minor hit here. The segment itself with Cena deciding who to choose certainly could have been better, but I'm just so happy that they're going with Daniel Bryan that I don't care how it was announced.
It's Daniel Bryan vs. John Cena at SummerSlam for the WWE Championship, and I cannot wait to see it.
There were some parts of the show I wasn't a fan of (Sandow losing, the lack of time given for the Real Americans/Usos match), but overall there really wasn't anything which I felt was a complete miss.
I have a feeling that there won't be many Raw's with no misses in the future, but last night was one of those shows where I was pretty much happy with everything. Definitely one of the best Raw's of the year.