Notes In Observance – WWE Raw 6/27/16: Let’s Talk About Roman Reigns
By Nicholas Jason Lopez
“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
Let’s Talk About Roman Reigns
– Just when we thought maybe WWE would duck their way around a month without Roman Reigns with no mentions, they went right to it thanks to Seth Rollins and the opening segment that also involved WWE World Heavyweight Champion Dean Ambrose, AJ Styles, John Cena and Stephanie McMahon. Now, the way Rollins did it was fine, but WWE relies on big screen graphics a little too much. Took the fun out of that, but at least it grabbed our attention. Rollins milked himself up at Reigns’ expense to get cheers and tried to push for a one-on-one rematch which drew out Ambrose, who stood by Reigns and said everyone made mistakes. Styles was a good fit in the segment since there was a chance now to add more people to the Battleground match and once Styles was out, Cena was only going to be next. Styles and Cena also had valid reasons for being added separately. It also fit Steph’s character to despise Ambrose as Champion since he goes against the “corporate image” and anything to increase his odds of losing wasn’t unheard of. Plus, it gave us two matches to make the show more interesting as we learned Cena and Styles would be added respectively to the match if Cena beat Rollins and Styles beat Ambrose. Everyone essentially got what they wanted.
– Ever since Sasha Banks made her return, she had gone in guns blazing at WWE Women’s Champion Charlotte and her “protege” Dana Brooke. The blaze continued here in a pretty good tag team effort as Banks teamed with Paige (back in relevancy again) to take down Charlotte/Brooke. The crowd was pretty responsive for eight minutes of strong action that eventually ended with Banks making Brooke tap out to the Bank Statement. It sent the message that she was a clear threat.
– With Titus O’Neil in his hometown and in a rematch against WWE United States Champion Rusev, we got the best situation to make both guys look good. Rusev tried to take his Title and go home, but O’Neil didn’t have any of it and wiped him out hard with a clothesline and as the ring-out count began, avoided Rusev’s collision attempt and threw him over the barricade to enter the ring and beat the Champ by countout. Smart, because O’Neil gets a hometown victory, another likely Title shot and Rusev stays protected by not losing by pinfall or submission.
– The backstage segment with Steph, Corporate Kane (yeah, him again) and WWE Intercontinental Champion The Miz and Maryse continued Kane’s agenda to try to run SmackDown with Steph’s approval and she didn’t want any of it. Miz/Maryse were hilarious here in their return, as they complained about the lack of red carpet treatment and Steph brought them back to Earth as she promised a “surprise” opponent for Miz to defend his Championship against when Kane reminded us of the “Every Champion Must Defend Every 30 Days” rule. Wonder who he’ll face.
– The Rollins-Cena match where if Cena won, he’d get added to the Battleground main event was actually pretty good for television. Also liked how commentary talked about it being Cena’s 14th anniversary of when he debuted against Kurt Angle. The bout started with huge dueling chants as both men played to them and the action began a little slow, but as it progressed, it became a hard-fought effort and the crowd was hot the whole time. Some great near-falls for Rollins (Superplex/Falcon’s Arrow combo) and Cena (Attitude Adjustment) and then we figured the inevitable – The Club and outside interference to cost Cena, but it was perfect. The fact that Rollins beat Cena probably meant that Cena would cost Styles later on in the main event.
– It seemed a little forced to get Enzo Amore/Big Cass to have the crowd do a big wave during their squash of two local jobbers, but it did work on some level thanks to Enzo’s charisma. As far as their interaction with Social Outcasts, we’re “hardly” excited. At least they’re easy pickings for Team SAWFT and couldn’t miss the subtle innuendo here. Safe to say nobody missed SO.
– Becky Lynch was set to have a match against Summer Rae and just the sight of Natalya on commentary was enough to enrage her to attack her for revenge on her past two attacks. Natalya could’ve came off more heelish but her “I’m tired of being nice because it gets you walked on” line seemed justifiable and she didn’t necessarily side with Charlotte/Brooke, but used them as part of her reasons. A nice revenge attack for Lynch as Natalya backed up the ramp. Good use of the ladies here.
– The “Highlight Reel” segment with Chris Jericho, Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens was entertaining while it lasted with the purpose of having Jericho purposely try to stir the pot between the two rivals and it set the next stage for their feud to happen at Battleground. We all saw it coming more or less. Jericho’s such a great heel in that all he has to do is say “Quiet” and gets near monster heat. This was almost the same territory as some of their past NXT segments which focused on the reasons of betrayal in contrast to their friendship. Zayn saw Owens as a lying coward who resented him for his success, while Owens saw Zayn as someone who threw friendship away for his own success. This was some of Zayn’s best mic work to date as he was so enraged, you could believe it. Also liked how the segment built up to a climax of Jericho putting himself over so much to the point that even Owens/Zayn couldn’t take it and simultaneously superkicked him before Owens hastily departed.
– The WWE Intercontinental Championship match between Champion Miz and his revealed opponent “Demon” Kane was hardly a shock based on the last segment. Not much of a match here as Kane beat Miz up, but Maryse was injured at ringside and provided an easy countout finish so that Miz could still retain. How anticlimactic was that?
– We went backstage to find that Maryse “faked” it and Miz was amazed. It was kind of funny, yet expected. Oh god, that means this finishes on SmackDown?
– With Cesaro-Alberto Del Rio and Sheamus-Apollo Crews in separate feuds (the latter definitely), it was a clever mesh to have Cesaro/Crews team up against Del Rio/Sheamus, using the heels’ past as League Of Nations members as a hook of sorts. Their disagreement was the match’s story, as it lasted throughout until Del Rio finally kicked Sheamus off the apron to a nice reaction and he played to the crowd and the finish where Crews got revenge with the steel steps and a Sit-Down Powerbomb was a good next step.
– Just in case you were unsure if Steph disliked Ambrose, she crashed his backstage promo where he put over the Championships’ importance in that it was a hot property while she expressed how offended she was at the company’s image with him at the forefront and desperately hoped to end his reign.
– We first shuddered when we saw WWE World Tag Team Champions The New Day in mock Wyatt Family attire as we knew a satire segment was coming. Luckily, they were funny enough to pull it off and they downed the Wyatts for being so negative, which eventually drew out the crazed trio to have Wyatt lead a promo where they compared themselves to ND in that while ND said what the people wanted to hear, they said what the people needed to hear. It was sort of hard to argue his point that the “power of positivity” couldn’t help someone who lost a job. The key component to the segment was Xavier Woods, who seemed to be intrigued by Wyatt’s points and Bray utilized that some. At least there are other aspects to this feud than comedy.
– ND’s backstage promo again followed up on the last segment as Kofi Kingston/Big E didn’t see the harm in the comedy, while Woods remained stone-faced and befuddled. Wonder where it’ll go. Will we have a similar angle like they did with Daniel Bryan? Will Woods turn?
– The main event match between Styles and Ambrose where if Styles won, he’d be added to the Battleground main event and with Rollins on commentary was actually pretty good for TV. This was a new matchup, so there was that. There was some third hour fatigue with the crowd so they weren’t as hot as we thought, but this was more about the finish than the action. Like we predicted, to get revenge for earlier, Cena stopped Karl Anderson/Luke Gallows when they tried to help Styles and that caused Dirty Deeds to end the match. The post-match angle where Cena got hit with the Magic Killer and Ambrose with two Pedigrees was a defining statement to end the show. All in all, Battleground stays the same despite the teases, but it was a fun way to further the Cena-Styles feud.
- Sasha Banks/Paige def. Charlotte/Dana Brooke via submission
- Titus O’Neil def. Rusev (w/Lana) via countout
- If John Cena Wins, He Gets Added To The WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match At Battleground – Seth Rollins def. John Cena via pinfall
- Enzo Amore/Big Cass def. Two Unnamed Jobbers via pinfall
- WWE Intercontinental Championship – The Miz (Champion) (w/Maryse) def. Kane via pinfall
- Apollo Crews/Cesaro def. Sheamus/Alberto Del Rio via pinfall
- If AJ Styles Wins, He Gets Added To The WWE World Heavyweight Championship Match At Battleground – Dean Ambrose def. AJ Styles via pinfall
Posted on July 28, 2016, in WWE and tagged AJ Styles, Alberto Del Rio, Apollo Crews, Battleground, Becky Lynch, Big Cass, Braun Strowman, Bray Wyatt, Byron Saxton, Cesaro, Charlotte, Chris Jericho, Corporate Kane, Dana Brooke, Dean Ambrose, Enzo Amore, Erick Rowan, JBL, John Cena, Kane, Karl Anderson, Kevin Owens, Lana, Luke Gallows, Maryse, Michael Cole, Natalya, Paige, Rusev, Sami Zayn, Sasha Banks, Seth Rollins, Sheamus, Stephanie McMahon, Summer Rae, The Miz, The New Day, Titus O'Neil. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.