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Monday, January 26, 2015

Tagged under:

RAW Preview: 1/26/15

Or "Maybe I'll Watch Some NJPW Instead"

By Speed on the Beat (Twitter: @SpeedontheBeat)

Photo Credit: The GOAT "Rock 4 WM32 ME" of the WrestlingInc. Disqus feed

So, I won't go into a rehash of the Royal Rumble. Jon does a great job summing up my feelings on it. However, tonight's Raw (weather permitting) will probably be one that makes or breaks the WWE for the next few months. If you're one of the people who's going to be able to sit through three hours of this and not have an aneurysm, here are some things you have to keep in mind.

We Will See Some Wrongs Righted: 
Now, that's not to say that WWE will open their eyes and see that even a yum-yum with an IQ of two doesn't want to see Reigns/Lesnar at WM31. However, given the giant "fuck you WWE" that fans gave last night, we'll see some semblance of change. I mean, Vince can't ignore his fans forever...right? A Reigns heel turn won't right this. If WWE was smart, they'd do something like have The Authority say "hey, Curtis Axel didn't enter the ring. Therefore, we have to have a do-over." I mean, for fuck's sake, even that's better than Reigns' win.

Lesnar is NOT a Babyface:
The WWE doesn't do Babyface vs. Babyface that often, especially with regards to Wrestlemania. 28 and 29 are exceptions, since Rock vs. Cena was something new and fresh the first time and we needed a blow-off to recoup Cena's loss the second time (I'm not a Cena sympathizer, but think about it: Cena in 2012 had a shit year. He's still, for better or worse, the face of the company. Having him lose two WM matches in a row wouldn't be all that great should the WWE, in their infamous moments of panic, want to involve Cena in a feud to elevate a star like Daniel Bryan or a belt like he may be doing with Rusev). Brock Lesnar's use in WWE is best kept as a tweener who just kicks everyone's ass. Don't put labels on the guy.

The Crowds Will Lose Their Shit:
Now, Hartford, Connecticut isn't Philly or Chicago or Jersey. However, fans aren't happy with the product. If WWE is stupid enough to shovel crap down the throats of the audience again, the fans are going to turn en masse (even more than just some Network cancellations). Expect "YES!" chants, "CM Punk!" chants, and more. Yeah, the WWE will sweeten the crowds so most of these aren't heard...but the internet doesn't lie (most the time).

Seth Rollins is a part of the WWE's future:
Seth Rollins cemented his place as this new generation's CM Punk-esque talent. He's a crazy worker, he sells for everyone, and his offense is believable. He's not suplexing guys bigger than him. He's cagey, he's manipulative, he's a mix of CM Punk circa "Pipebomb" and Edge's "Ultimate Opportunist" gimmick. Hell, the fact that he tried to cash in several times during his match shows that WWE has faith in the guy. His match with Cena and Lesnar was MOTN and a possible MOTY candidate. It was something that keeps a little flicker of faith in WWE alive.

We could be on the prepuce of another era:
Yes, the WWE is where a majority of "big names" are. However, with TNA still floating (regardless of how shit their show's been recently), ROH making strides, and other indie promotions stepping up, WWE cannot afford to rest on its laurels. We're starting to see "edgier" content (even though we still have Reigns doing worse-than-Cena-level promos). Hell, we're even seeing Cena gain an edge and showing human-like features such as regret, emotion, etc. However, if we continue to see Reigns and others (it's not just Roman's fault, guys) bumble through promos and matches, people will go elsewhere. It's already happening. So, Vince, being Vince (i,e. he loves the fuck out of money), he's probably going to say fuck it and pull the trigger on something that'll keep WWE in the minds of those debating seeing what else is out there.

But, be that as it may...see what else is out there.
There are other promotions who do some pretty awesome things. If you like stiff wrestling over stories, check out NJPW and other Japanese-style promotions. If you want to see WWE Lite in a way that's starting to become more of its own product, check out TNA. If you want to see where Daniel Bryan, CM Punk, and more got their start, check out promotions such as ROH, PWX, PWG, and more. WWE isn't your only option, so don't let that fear of the unknown scare you away.


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