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Raw after-party: With no Nexus, Raw is a dud

I had to decide whether or not I hated Raw or if it was above average. Usually I write my review of Raw right after the show goes off the air. I had to wait and a day and sleep on it because last night’s Raw had something I had wanted to see for a long time. How would Raw operate now that the Nexus/John Cena feud was pretty much over?

For the first time in months, Nexus did not run the entire show. As a group they made one appearance for about 15 seconds to tell Sheamus their truce was over. Then Wade Barrett appeared at the end of the show alone. Also, John Cena did not make 17 appearances like usual on Raw. He was shown three times and did not wrestle in the main event. Think about it, a Raw without Nexus and John Cena might seem like a breath of fresh air after their long feud, right? Not really. Raw was boring and lifeless. I’m not jumping to a conclusion and saying Raw was boring because it didn’t feature too much Cena, but it was boring without Nexus. Moreover, it was very boring without Nexus and their heat which they have now totally lost.

Raw was booked around Sheamus, the other top heel on Raw. I think Sheamus’ character is wonderful and he’s done an excellent job so far. But the pack of Nexus members and the heat they used to carry with them was top notch stuff that you can’t get in a lone superstar. There’s just something about six guys that can destroy the show or a star at a moment’s notice that has you sitting on the edge of your seat as a fan.

The show was built around who will be Sheamus’ next opponent at Night of Champions. There were a series of matches and the participants in the matches had to impress Sheamus who sat on a throne on the stage during each match. To make a long story short, the matches to impress Sheamus were short and nothing to write home about. Here’s a quick rundown of the matches:

Edge defeated R-Truth

Chris Jericho defeated The Great Khali

The Miz defeated John Cena by DQ. Daniel Bryan got his revenge on the Miz for the attack last week.

Randy Orton defeated John Morrison and Red DiBiase in a triple threat match.

At the end of the night Sheamus is supposed to pick the man to face him. Instead, he gives the “opportunity” to a young hot-shot to try and side-step facing a top star. He goes a step further and says the match will happen right here on Raw tonight. He picks Zack Ryder (Long Island was announced as his hometown) and pins him in about four seconds.

Barrett comes out and cashes in his title shot opportunity he earned for winning season one of NXT, which seems like ages ago at this point. The Raw GM then announces Sheamus will defend the title against Barrett, Cena, Jericho, Edge, and Orton at Night of Champions in a six-pack challenge. Each man came to the ring as they were announced and the show ended with Barrett being attacked by every man. Slowly, each man took out the other. Jericho hit the Codebreaker on Sheamus. Edge speared Jericho. Cena hit the Attitude Adjustment on Edge. Orton hit the RKO on Cena. The entire show moved slow, the crowd was dead, and the ending of Raw was about the only good thing. I’m not crazy about the six-pack challenge because I feel that’s too many people in the ring at one time. It is okay for Money in the Bank matches. Not for straight wrestling matches that have no gimmick or stipulation. The ring looks too cluttered and there’s always some level of confusion.

I understand that every match at Night of Champions is supposed to have a title on the line. Therefore, there will not be a lot of room on the card for a basic one-on-one match if there is no title on the line. That’s why there are so many guys thrown into this one match so they all have a part on the pay per view. The question is, will Smackdown do the same or will they go with Undertaker vs. Kane for the title? Seeing as there are not as many main event guys on Smackdown they can get away with a simple one-on-one match for the title as their main event.

Quick Hits:

*Next week’s Raw is the 900th episode. I guessing the WWE will have some surprises on the show. That means that the 1,000th episode of Raw show be sometime in 2012.

*It was good to see Ted DiBiase back in a relevant spot on Raw. He was the one guy who really suffered from the Nexus invasion angle as he was MIA on Raw during that storyline.

*I’m loving this Daniel Bryan/Michael Cole feud. Cole once again bashed Bryan last night when he interfered and attacked the Miz. I’m starting to wonder when Bryan will confront Cole about it on Raw? I usually hate when announcers get involved in angles, but this is one I think people want to see.

New York Sports