All posts tagged Randy Orton

The Day After: Raw 6/30/14

Damien McMahondow Image Credit:WWE.com

Damien McMahondow
Image Credit:WWE.com

Did you skip Raw last night out of some misguided protest of John Cena winning his 15th world title?  If so, you missed one hell of a show.  The WWE writers took their Limitless pills sometime on Monday morning.

First of all – Dean Ambrose.  Holy hell, here’s a guy on the cusp of being something special.  He elicits such a genuine response from the crowd whenever he appears on-screen.  The former United States Champion appeared on the Titantron early in the show to let Seth Rollins know that his MITB briefcase contained not a contract, but TNT; whenever the Authority’s… “Chosen One” would attempt to cash it in, Ambrose would be there to thwart the effort.  Foreshadowing.

Rewind to the show’s beginning, which kicked off with the Champ telling the Authority that he preferred the “hard way” rather than being “in their pocket” like Orton, Kane, and Rollins.  Trips then announced that Cena would defend his title at Battleground in a Fatal Fourway against Orton, Kane, and Roman Reigns.  The faces would team against the heels in tonight’s main event.

The show’s grand finale was a great match, with the wrestlers seemingly fired-up by a crowd that had been hot all night.  One of the main purposes of the match served to continue Reigns’ elevation to main-event status.   Battleground will be his second consecutive show-closing match as a pay-per-view star.   At Money In The Bank, it was in an eight-man match.  Now, it will be a four-man match.  He may not be ready to carry the show in a one-on-one capacity quite yet, but the end of Raw last night (keep reading…) showed that day is in the not-too-distant future.

The match’s ending was a means to an end.  Kane hit Cena with a chair to cause a DQ as Orton and Reigns brawled to the back.  The Demon tombstoned the Champ, at which point Hunter waved out Rollins to cash-in.  The crowd popped, eager to see the special moment.  However, the BIG pop came when Ambrose hit the ring and attacked Rollins, fulfilling his promise to blow-up the Architect’s spot.  Crescendo… Kane raises a chair to hit Cena again, but was met with a Spear by Reigns.  Roman let out his battle cry, and stared down Triple H from only a few feet away.  For the first time that I can remember, the crowd chanted “This is Awesome!” as Raw faded to black.

Subtle note: Reigns sprinted back towards the ring.  Orton did not.  Do the math on who won the brawl.

Further – For those keeping score at home, the true stars of last night’s main event were Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose, and Seth Rollins.  Cena may have the belts, but he does not own the spotlight.

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The Morning Roundup 6/30/14

MNR-2

What a night. If you didn’t see MITB last night, you’re missing out. Stayed tuned later today for our reactions in The Day After.

JR’s Talks MITB, Ross Report, and Stone Cold – JRsBarBQ.com

The usual blog, this time with MITB predictions. I don’t know about you, but I love going back and seeing everyone’s predictions and who got what right and wrong.

WWE Storylines – SEScoops

If you’re like me, you lie awake at night wondering what ever happened with certain storylines. Well here’s a list of 9 of them that went by the wayside far before they should have. Or in some cases, far too late.

Orton’s Head Wound – LordsofPain

As I’m sure you’ve all heard, The Viper sustained a pretty big laceration to the top of his head last night. It was pretty nasty. Doctors give the rundown of what exactly happened, and what they did to fix up Mr. Orton. If you haven’t seen it yet, and you don’t have a sensitive stomach, the pics can be viewed here.

Savior in the Bank

When the WWE Championship and World Heavyweight Championship were unified at TLC last December, the ramifications were felt all down the WWE roster.

The idea behind unification was to consolidate the “power structure” at the top of the card. Instead of having main eventers divided, with some chasing the WWE title and some chasing the WHC, they would all have a singular focus. As added motivation, despite protestations from WWE superstars that one title wasn’t superior than the other, the truth had been clear for some time: the WHC would always be the number two belt. Having one main belt for all the top guys to pursue just made more sense.

An added benefit was that wrestlers who existed on the fringe of the WWE and WHC title pictures could now serve to elevate the long-diminished Intercontinental and U.S. Championships. Unfortunately, the flip side of that notion is that these guys were essentially being demoted relative to the WWE World Heavyweight Championship (“WWEWHC”), and were more or less devalued as serious contenders. Since December, Dolph Ziggler, Alberto del Rio, Sheamus, Mark Henry, Big Show, and Rob Van Dam have all been moved away from the title picture, to varying degrees.

Since Randy Orton and John Cena had their unification bout seven months ago, nine WWE superstars have either had a shot at the WWEWHC or have seriously associated themselves with the strap. While nine guys orbiting around the WWEWHC sounds like a perfectly adequate title picture, five of those nine are no longer actively wrestling.

Daniel Bryan: indefinite injured reserve
Batista: indefinite hiatus
Triple H: returned his focus to Authority-related matters following his conditional Wrestlemania XXX title shot
Brock Lesnar: on a super-part-time schedule (never got a title match, but declared his desire for the belt)
Christian: he’s injured, right? Probably.

This doesn’t even take into account the surprise vaporization of title picture mainstay CM Punk.

Furthermore, the four remaining guys aren’t without their own issues.

Randy Orton: The top heel in the company after a SummerSlam MITB cash-in, his character has been undermined since being christened the “face of the company” by Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. Orton’s primary issue is that once he became the Authority’s hand-picked champ, he lost all autonomy. Instead, Orton is merely a stand-in for the Authority’s wishes and Triple H’s seemingly constant flirtations with other potential “faces” (Batista, Seth Rollins, Trips himself, and even John Cena), give credence to the notion that Orton really can’t hack it as a top guy. Naturally, being cast as desperately clinging to his “favorite son” status, Orton has come off as insecure. That insecurity has manifested itself in the worst ways, as he’s needed help from every Triple H crony from Billy Gunn to Shawn Michaels to retain his title.

Recently, while the Evolution reunion was cool, it further damaged Orton’s status. Triple H was the unquestioned leader and Batista got over as a somewhat-fresh face with a hilariously trollish attitude. This left Randy Orton to be the “third guy,” and without a specific role other than to round out the numbers. Furthermore, as Triple H has proven that he can still go (and go hard) in the ring, as long as Randy Orton serves as an arm of the Authority he can never be a true top heel, as Triple H will have the final say-so, backstage as well as between the ropes.

Kane: Everything said about Randy Orton goes double for Kane. All the issues Orton has due to being an underling for the Authority, apply even moreso, as Kane is even lower on the totem pole than Orton. Kane did manage to get a bit of his mojo back with his re-masking and title shot against Daniel Bryan, but the fact remains that he’s spent the better part of his post-Wyatt return having his hands full playing office politics with Brad Maddox.

The bottom line is that Kane looked way too at home getting squashed alongside Road Dogg and Billy Gunn at Wrestlemania XXX at the hands of the Shield.

Hit the jump for a look at the last two main event guys and how this could all change at Money in the Bank. Continue reading →

Who will take the final spots in the Money in the Bank Championship Match?

Money

Money. Money, Money, Money, Money! It’s all about the MON-AY!

With the “blockbuster” announcement of the vacating of the WWE World Heavyweight Championship Monday on Raw, the Money in the Bank ladder match has taken on an increased importance this year and the field of contenders for the championship is taking shape.

Already qualified for June 29th’s Money in the Bank match for the Vacant WWE World Heavyweight Championship in Boston:  Alberto Del Rio, Randy Orton, United States Champion Sheamus, & Cesaro. This Friday on Smackdown Bray Wyatt & Dean Ambrose will tussle for the 5th spot in the bout leaving only two spots in the match left, if WWE’s own match graphic shown on Raw is to be believed.

While, it doesn’t take a genius to surmise that with a match of this profile John Cena won’t be far behind, but forecasting who will fill the final spot this Monday on Raw from Cleveland is a bit trickier. Let’s examine the candidates.

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The Day After: Raw 6/3/14 “Why Seth Why!?”

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Say it ain’t so Seth!
Image Credit: WWE.com

In a completely unexpected turn of events, Seth Rollins betrayed Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose to join Evolution in place of Batista, who quit the group earlier in the evening. The angle, which turned an uneven edition of Raw into a buzz-worthy event also set the internet ablaze with chatter.

To those decrying the move, I don’t have much for you. I loved it. When pro wrestling makes me feel something, be it joy, be it anger at a performer, it pulls me in like it did as a child for the first time. If you’re angry at Seth Rollins, it succeeded. Embrace it. You’ve been worked and so was I. Completely shocked. I love being surprised. I love losing myself in the story. Sitting up after Raw for hours wondering where the story will go next. Call me a mark but it’s exhilarating and tonight’s ending was just that. No one expected after last night that any member of the Shield would defect to the crew they spent Sunday night at war against. If they said they expected Rollins to turn especially, they were lying.

Whatever Evolution offered Seth Rollins to betray his comrades: cash, lifetime memberships to every Cross Fit in the USA, unlimited indie rock music on iTunes, a WWE Championship match; it was worth it. After Elimination Chamber, it appeared to be foregone conclusion we’d be losing our Hounds of Justice. They were bickering the cracks were evident. However, calmer heads prevailed and the group seemed more unified than ever over the last 3 months. That’s what made Seth Rollins’ turn such a gut punch.

Had they pulled the trigger back in February, would we have talked about the dissolution of the Shield with the same fervor that the internet has last night and this AM? I’m doubtful. At that point, it appeared the end game for dissolving the team was to launch Roman Reigns. This situation is a much more impactful launching pad for the singles careers of all three members of the Shield. With the unexpected turn of Rollins, Seth immediately gets elevated to the VIP villains section by hooking up with Triple H & Orton. By proxy, Ambrose and Reigns have a new challenge (Evolution WITH Rollins) and the contentious dynamic between those two can be explored without the calming influence of the Architect.

It remains to be seen if Reigns and Ambrose will seek reinforcements from NXT or if we’re looking at a 2 on 2 war at Money in the Bank, but moving forward long-term, the prospect of Ambrose vs. Rollins is real and Roman Reigns is one pissed off Samoan ready to rampage through the Summer. I just went from six to midnight.

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