Fake Fighting Digest: WWE Roundup (Raw & Smackdown)

RAW 4/29/13

-Big E Langston takes on Ricardo Rodriguez and Zeb Coulter in a three-way dance and the winner gets to pick the stipulation for the match at Extreme Rules?  Oh, this is GENIUS.  Especially if Big E doesn't win.  Actually, Big E winning would be way too obvious.  I fully expect him to lose.  Especially since triple threat matches are always No DQ.

-Wait so AJ stops Zeb from getting the win...and then just stands there while RR gets the pin?
-That was seriously wildly entertaining.  A healthy dose of Big E beating the snot out of RR and Zeb, plenty of funny (Coulter collapsing and claiming his knee went out leading to RR attacking Big E with the bucket totally made me lol so hard), a particularly fun, enjoyable sequence where each of the three wrestlers intervened on behalf of their representatives in the match leading to a perfectly logical reason to have Big E out of the ring for the pinfall...Bravo, WWE...Bravo...

Oh yeah...also Zubaz pants...can't forget the Zubaz pants...

-Super Cena, you make it really hard to hate you when you do stuff like this.  And yet, somehow I manage.
-Seriously, though, that was pretty amazing.  As much as it kills me that WWE refuses to turn Super Cena heel, when you see stuff like that, you understand why.  This is more than a wrestling company at this point.
-This probably makes me a horrible person but I totally secretly wanted to see Ryback come out and trash Cena for parading out a bunch of little kids to show everyone what great guy he is.  Not because I actually think that, just because the heat it would have generated would have been EPIC.  (Obviously in this fantasy, Ryback would have talked to the kids backstage to let them know that he didn't mean any of the things he was about to say and possibly give them all epic piggyback rides)

There is literally no way for me to make fun of this.  Hats off to you, Super Cena.

-Considering the amount of time they gave these guys to work, this match should have been a whole hell of a lot better.  Way too slow.  Randy continues to take his sweet ass time in the ring and not care very much at all about his job.
-Did Randy just bust out the T-Bone Tazplex?  OK, that was kinda cool.
-Very nice counter to the RKO by Rhodes and Randy kicks out.  OK, this is getting interesting.
-And, of course, it ends with "Randy Turns 'Finisher' Into RKO #347" (I use the term "finisher" loosely because--as was the case in this match--half the time the "finisher" that Orton turns into the RKO is just some guy jumping into the RKO and pretending he could have conceivably been attempting his finisher)

Cody Rhodes "going for the disaster kick" according to Michael Cole.  Yeah.  OK.
-Randy Orton (in the least emotive voice he can possibly muster): "I've never been...I've never felt so extreme."  Well, except for that one time when Mick Foley slammed you into a pile of thumbtacks.  That counts, right?
-New drinking game for the month leading up to Extreme Rules: drink every time someone says "extreme" on WWE TV in the most unnatural way possible or in reference to something not even remotely extreme.

-WWE Diva(s): "Look how much hotter and more important we are than everyone else."
-I'm not even going to talk about that pointless Divas match.  If you wanna see what female wrestling is supposed to look like, watch NXT on Hulu or even the TNA Knockouts.

Sierra!  Hotel!  India!  Echo!  Lima!  Delta!
-Live Shield Promo?  Yes, please!
-I'm glad Shield beat the crap out of 3MB but why the hell would they then run away from Team Hell No, who they have already beaten WITH Undertaker?

-Lawler claims he wrote a song about a romance he had entitled "You Broke My Heart So I Broke Your Jaw."  HAHAHAHAHA DOMESTIC VIOLENCE GUYZ, GET IT?!  Later he would claim that Michael Cole asked AJ Lee what he would have to give her to let him kiss her and she said "chloroform."  Misogyny: Putting the LAWL in Lawler.

-There's not really a whole lot I can say about this match other than that it was every bit as exciting and well-executed as you would expect it to be.  Two of the best athletes in the company given the time to work and the result is a PPV-caliber match.  Phenomenal.  Some folks are peeved that WWE refuses to let Ziggler get a clean win (technically it was a clean win--he got help from A.J. and Big E but it didn't lead to the win) over Kofi, who is perceived as somewhat of a scrub after months and months of being a mostly pointless character and while I do agree that WWE's refusal to let Ziggler get clean wins over almost anyone (not to mention the fact that he needs a valet AND a bodyguard) is killing him I've always liked Kofi and I'm glad to see him get a renewed push.

-Backstage segments involving Ziggler, AJ, and Big E always steal the show.  My favorite moment from this one:
[guy shows up with a gift for Kaitlyn; AJ grabs it]
AJ: Aw Babyyy, you shouldn't have!
Ziggler: I didn't.

Ryback, you desperately need to get yourself some of those breath strips, dude...

-Brad Maddox channeling Bill Clinton: "What did he mean by 'no'?"

-Tug of war?  Really?  Are we in gym class right now?  How about a rousing game of dodgeball?  Next week on Raw: Mark Henry and Sheamus do that thing where you lie down head-to-toe and lock legs to see who can flip the other one over first.  EXTREME! (Sadly, this wouldn't be very far from the truth...)
-There was only one way to make that segment stupider than it already was and somehow, against all odds, WWE figured it out.  Tell me again how Sheamus is supposed to be a face when he does shit like challenging Mark Henry to a tug-of-war only to drop the rope like a jackass and kick him in the face.

The actions of a face.  Obviously.

Del Rio/Cesaro
-And now, ladies and gentlemen, the "Antonio Cesaro does the job" part of the show...
-That was truly an excellent, hard-hitting, stiff, PPV-caliber match.  They still wouldn't let Cesaro get a win but at least they made him look good against a top tier guy.  Also I love the fact that Del Rio can go toe-to-toe with Cesaro in a brutal, physical match like that.  He may be one of the most versatile guys on the roster right now.
-And the stipulation for Extreme Rules isssss...Ladder match!  Because when you're in a match with two former Money in the Bank winners where you get to pick the stipulation, ladder match is clearly the way to go.  Not that I'm complaining because Ladder matches are never not a good idea but I think a submission match or better yet an "I Quit" match would have been really cool (and would have the added benefit of putting Ziggler at a disadvantage which would have been actually, y'know, logical).

-A lot of people have been complaining about the dance contest but allow me to go on record saying that I approve of any excuse you can find to have Khali talk AND dance in the same segment.  Really, this is kinda genius--they needed someone who's a surefire bet to get more cheers for his dancing than Fandango and Khali dancing is more entertaining than roughly 85% of what's on WWE TV right now. Not only that but if you love Fandango and think a dance contest on a wrestling show is stupid, you've been doing it wrong all along.  Maybe you should have thought of that before you started cheering for a wrestler WHO IS A FUCKING BALLROOM DANCER.  Just an idea.

The Great Khali...Khali-ing...

Team Hell No/Super Cena v. The Shield
-Thank you, Super Cena, for reminding me why I hate you so much.  One of the MOST annoying things about Cena (which is saying a lot because that's quite a list) has always been what a goofball cheerleader he is for other faces whenever they're even remotely on his side.  He's constantly cheerleading on the apron for his one-time-only tag partners or pumping up the crowd for guys that help him out.  It's the main reason he got flattened by Ryback in the first place.  I don't care how much of a face you are, unless you're in a stable, you're still competing AGAINST all other faces, even if they are temporarily on your team at one point or another.  Cena's cheerleading nonsense just makes him look like a guy who desperately wants not only the fans but other wrestlers to like him.  No one likes that guy.  Especially in wrestling.

Super Cena doing the "YES" chant with the crowd like the douche he is.

-God damn is it entertaining watching Daniel Bryan work with The Shield.  It's no accident that he's spent more time in the ring than any other member of his team in both of these six-man tag matches.  I can't wait to see Bryan in some singles matches against some Shield guys.  With rumors circulating about a Team Hell No v. Shield tag title match at Extreme Rules, I am giddy at the legitimate possibility of Daniels v. Rollins or Daniels v. Ambrose to hype up a potential tag title match.

-By the way, is anyone else troubled by the fact that Ryback has become a heel based on being completely right about everything?  He attacks John Cena because Cena told him he had his back and then allowed him to get destroyed by Shield on six separate occasions (including one time costing him the WWE title).  John Cena tells him this is the wrong way to get a shot at the title.  A week later Ryback has a shot at the title.  Then, when The Shield attacks John Cena, Ryback refuses to help him, the same way Cena did the last six times Shield attacked Ryback.  So, of course, this prompts Mick Foley to call him a coward for walking away and a whiner for complaining about being jumped six times by Shield with no help from Cena--because I guess there's a different set of rules for the way you treat John Cena compared to the way you treat everyone else because, well, John Cena.  Then when Shield attacks Ryback, John Cena walks away, prompting our brilliant announcers to scream "YEAH! SEE HOW IT FEELS, RYBACK!" (my guess is Ryback's response would be: "THE SAME WAY IT FELT THE LAST SIX TIMES YOU FUCKS!").  Finally, when Cena injures his Achilles tendon, Ryback refuses to participate in a handicap match against The Shield, understandably not wanting to get assaulted for an eighth time (COWARD!) and even refuses to team with Team Hell No to take on The Shield because they've already been beaten by them once before (with Undertaker in their corner). And what happens?  Cena's injury costs his team the match.  So obviously Ryback is...a coward who sold out Team Hell No?  You know, the team that was only put into that match that night to replace the same injured John Cena who cost them the match?  I know, I know, Super Cena is Super but doesn't there come a point where his infallibility becomes enough of a storytelling liability that they just need to stop and admit that he can be--GASP--wrong from time to time?  Sadly, we all already know the answer to that question...

Oh look!  Cena's injury cost his team the match.  Obviously this means Ryback is a coward.

Called it...

(By the way, I don't generally comment on Wednesday Night Main Event but I would be remiss if I didn't mention the phenomenal match Antonio Cesaro had with Kofi Kingston.  Here's a highlight video cuz I couldn't find the full match online.  Check out the SICK superplex at 0:51.  I've never seen a superplex like that.)


Ryback v. Daniel Bryan
-According to Todd Pettengill (er, Josh Matthews) we found out why Ryback refused to participate in the match on Raw, claiming that Ryback tweeted: "My life.  My Rules.  Ryback rules."  Well, then.  That clears that up.
-Apparently Daniel Bryan wanted this match because Ryback left Team Hell No high and dry on Raw.  You know, in the match they were haphazardly thrown into to replace the injured John Cena who ended up replacing Ryback and costing them the match.

Did anyone else catch this girl creepily staring at Daniel Bryan?

Ryback nip-slip!

-Why does JBL love saying "World's Toughest Vegan" so much?  You'd think once per Daniel Bryan match would be plenty.
-Very deliberate, physical, well-executed match with plenty of sweet bumps and creative moves by both guys.  The Thesz Press by Ryback into the Half Crab by Bryan was very impressive as was the kick Ryback blocked and turned into a powerbomb to the outside that Bryan turned into a hurricanrana.  Love the methodical strategy by Bryan of trying to take out Ryback's legs as well as the sheer power of Ryback.  Phenomenal opening bout.

-Ricardo Rodriguez has a match with Zeb Coulter later tonight.  Ricardo Rodriguez is SO EXCITED.  So am I, Ricardo.  So am I.

Fandango v. Zack Ryder
-Josh Matthews informs us that Zack Ryder has more Twitter followers than Hayden Penetierre and Robert Griffin III combined.  This is now something I can't unknow.
-This match actually wasn't bad until it ended within five minutes of it starting.  Quite a few fairly impressive moves.  Fandango's finisher is very impressive, I have to admit.

Khali gives THE BEST ADVICE.  I want him to be my therapist.  I would never be sad about anything ever again.

-Zeb Coulter is interviewed by Renee Young and does his whole "DEY TUK UR JERBS Guy From South Park" thing, claiming Ricardo Rodriguez is an illegal immigrant unlike himself who is a real American.  I guess it's sort of encouraging to see WWE making a heel character anti-immigration.  Now if only they could stop sanctioning blatant misogyny.  Baby steps, Derrick, baby steps.

Zeb Coulter mustachio twirling FTW

Ricardo Rodriguez v. Zeb Coulter
Alberto Del Rio/Ricardo Rodriguez v. Jack Swagger/Zeb Coulter
Alberto Del Rio/Ricardo Rodriguez v. Jack Swagger/Zeb Coulter v. Dolph Ziggler/Big E Langston
-So we start out with RR (again rocking the Zubaz pants) v. Zeb and Dolph on commentary with AJ on his lap and Big E standing purposelessly next to him holding his belt.  Swagger attacks RR resulting in a disqualification so Teddy Long comes out and makes it a tag match.  Then in the middle of the tag match, Dolph and Big E attack Swagger and Del Rio leading to Teddy coming out yet again to make it a triple threat tag match (the best part is that when Teddy Long comes out and says "STOP IT!" Dolph and Big E just magically decide to actually listen to him for some reason).  This was actually pretty creative and, more importantly, unexpected.  All six of these guys have been doing some great work together over the last couple weeks.  I can honestly say they've gotten me legitimately excited for their match at Extreme Rules.

-Shield attacks Daniel Bryan backstage?  Oh man.  Pleeease let this be building to a Bryan/Rollins or Bryan/Ambrose match on Raw.  Super psyched!

Does Dean Ambrose ever dry his hair when he gets out of the shower?

Randy Orton v. Damien Sandow
-Well, at least this time they didn't even try to have Sandow do some contrived move that Orton turns into the RKO.
-You gotta love Big Show.  Shows up and distracts Orton while Sandow lays him out, then laughs for 30 solid seconds at Randy Orton getting creamed and then informs us that the reason he was laughing is because "that was so...funny."

According to reports, every car alarm in the parking lot went off at this exact moment

-Kane: "We're going on a little journey to a place called HELL."  Is it just me or does that sound like the tagline for the best/worst sitcom ever?

-What could be even BETTER than a "good old fashioned tug-of-war" between Mark Henry and Sheamus?  Why, a "good old fashioned arm wrestling match" of course!  We are officially back in middle school with this shit.
-What a shock!  Sheamus loses with his right hand, challenges Henry with his left hand, sucker punches him like a punk and Brogue Kicks him.  How does ANYONE possibly like this guy?

Sucker punching dudes in the middle of arm wrestling matches: THAT'S WHAT FACES DO!

Dean Ambrose v. Kane
-I'm not sure how much sense it makes for Kane to be as successful as he was in fighting off all three Shield members by himself but other than that this whole segment was incredibly well-executed.  Not that I expected anything less out of The Shield and Kane.  Not only did Dean Ambrose look like he could totally hang with Kane one-on-one but he got the win and The Shield not only shows great offensive teamwork but actually look just as good as a team when they're getting the crap kicked out of them.  And now The Shield has both tag belts which is always a great way to foreshadow a title change (assuming that's what's going to happen since Shield are over as fuck right now).


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