- Last night on Monday Night Raw, everybodyís talking, and most of them not very well. John Cena desperately wants to bring back Ziggler, Ryback, and Rowan, and threatened to go home with the WWE Title if he wins it at the Royal Rumble. What a threat... the current Champion already does it. Roman Reigns continues to become 2015ís version of 2014ís Batista, and Dean Ambrose loses another match against a high-profile opponent.
- Taped from wherever the hell Smackdown is being held this week (Baton Rouge, LA). Tom Phillips and John "Bradshaw" Layfield are at ringside to call the action, unless otherwise noted.
- This was mentioned during the previous match, but so far, only the following names are confirmed for the Royal Rumble Match: Goldust, Stardust, Bad News Barrett, Bray Wyatt, Dean Ambrose, Rusev, Roman Reigns, and Daniel Bryan. Iím more than sure weíll get the annual Kofi Kingston ďholy shitĒ elimination spot. 20 bucks says Randy Orton makes his surprise return in the match, too.
- Next week, WWE Main Event is pre-empted on the WWE Network in favor of a Santino Royal Rumble Special. I guess thereís a contract situation going on overseas where Main Event is actually contracted for Network Television. All signs point to an agreement being reached by the 27th.
- The Ascension are here... to talk. UGH. Please, donít do it. These guys need a mouth piece. In my Monday Night Raw recap, I mentioned the Ascensionís music sounding familiar. The opening riff is almost surely from CM Punkís original ďThis Fire BurnsĒ theme from Killswitch Engage, and then the rest sounds like a remix of Seth Rollinsí current Metallica knock-off.
- Thursday Night on WWE Smackdown, Daniel Bryan returns to the ring against Corporate Kane. I have a feeling itís going to be a pretty good match.
- Recap of the Contract Signing from Monday Night Raw.
- Montage of the ďMacho ManĒ Randy Savage, as part of the announcement of him being the 1st name announced for the 2015 WWE Hall of Fame.
We return from a break, with Rose in control with a chinlock. Woods fights to his feet and counters a suplex with a small package for two. Kidd pounds away in the corner and hits a leg drop across the throat. Cesaro in with a MAN-SIZED basement dropkick, knocking Woods to the floor. Cesao covers for two and quickly grabs a chinlock. Cesaro catches a boot, but leaves himself open for an enziguri. Kofi with the tag, coming off the top with an axehandle to Tyson Kidd. He connects with a dropkick and jumping clothesline, then comes off the ropes with the Boom Drop. Running knees to the chest by Kofi, followed by a dive onto Rose. He springboards back in with a body press on Tyson, but it only gets two. Blind moonsault is countered by a Cesaro uppercut, but it only gets two! I didnít even notice he switched with Kidd! He knocks Big E. off the apron with a boot, gives Kofi the Giant Swing, and Kidd in with a dropkick to the face for two! Woods gets dumped again, and Kofi surprises Cesaro with a small package for two. Big E. with the hot tag, unloading with rights. Belly-to-belly suplex connects. He comes off the ropes with a splash to both Cesaro and Kidd. He scoops up Cesaro for the Big Ending, but Rose with the blind tag. Big E. brings him in with a hip toss, followed by an overhead belly-to-belly suplex for two! Woods with a weird victory roll/splash on Cesaro. TROUBLE IN PARADISE TO KIDD! Cesaro takes Kofi out of the ring, to the floor with a suplex. Rose with a spinebuster on Big E. for two! Rose with rights, but Big E. shrugs it off and connects with a clothesline. New Day Assemble! Woods and Kofi with suicide dives, and Big E. spears Rose through the ropes! Back inside, the Midnight Hour finishes Rose at 11:02. ***1/4 Super-energetic match, with minimal resting, some nice high spots, and overall fluid work from all involved. Yes, Iím a mark for three of the six men, but itís still pretty good.
Final Thoughts: Itís an episode like this where I can go "this is why I still watch WWE." Through the stale match-ups, the ungodly three hours of Monday Night Raw, and some questionable booking choices, I can still relax and enjoy a bunch of midcard tag team matches. A solid Six-Man Tag Main Event, a decent tag team opener, and the Ascension squashes another pair of scrubs. Even Rusev crushing Gabriel served a purpose. The recapping of Raw was minimal, and I just feel like WWE needs to get back to the basics and cut out the endless amount of talking. It requires a deeper roster, but come onÖ use some NXT people for Main Event and Superstars, give them some more exposure and time to work "WWE Style" in front of a WWE crowd.