Brad freaking Maddox.
He’s the new GM of Raw and, while I initially rolled my eyes, I think the guy actually stands a chance. I think what makes him seem like he could hack is that he is a little unorthodox. Sure, they could have gone with a Booker T or Teddy Long but choosing someone who appears to be fairly inexperienced was a bold move. It opens things up for a certain level of unpredictability and that’s what he brought to the show last week. He let John Cena choose his own opponent for Summerslam, out of everyone on the entire Raw roster. Cena could have chosen anybody that he wanted. He picked Daniel Bryan. I am glad he didn’t go for the cheap pop and pick RVD. I feel like there is more to why he is back and another feud is meant for him,
This week, Maddox made Cena justify why he chose Bryan. Obviously it was because the crowd was the deciding factor but Cena said it was because no one would give Daniel a chance. That may be just coincidental writing or actual feelings but either way, there is some truth to it. Unsatisfied with that very passionate answer, Brad made him prove his worth in a gauntlet (even though they didn’t actually use that term on television) match. Bryan had to face Jack Swagger, Antonio Cesaro, and Ryback. I was reading online that many hoped the Big Show would be the final champion, as to why he didn’t appear I’m not sure but it would have spiced things up quite a bit. I actually thought the Swagger/Daniel match was decent, some good moments but kind of mediocre in comparison to what came next. I feel so bad for Antonio Cesaro for being saddled in the Real Americans group and I hope that they put him there because they have bigger plans for him. Cesaro helped Bryan put on a master class in wrestling.
This match was so enthralling. Counter after counter and near fall after near fall, it was pure magic from start to finish. You couldn’t have asked for a better match or a better finish, which involved Daniel Bryan countering Cesaro’s European uppercut. One word can describe it, and that word is beautiful.
What we got on this week’s Raw is what most would consider filler, but this week was focused on Daniel Bryan. We got to see the following matches:
- Sheamus vs. Alberto Del Rio
- Christian vs. Titus O’Neil
- Darren Young vs. Dolph Ziggler
- Fandango vs. Cody Rhodes
- Wade Barrett vs. Rob Van Dam
I thought they were all really well put together matches, but they didn’t really advance any stories. That’s fine by me because next week they are going to kick the build up to Summerslam into high gear. I’ve said it before that the events that the WWE put on for their fans just keep getting better and better. The quality of wrestling we are getting to see is just out of this world.
What would really be out of this world is seeing someone finally dethrone King Cena from the championship throne. I love the guy but it’s getting a bit ridiculous. Daniel Bryan really does have a hard task at hand, he’s going to have many roadblocks in his way (including Kane next week) but the reaction from the crowd when he wins will be electric. I hope whoever is attending Summerslam this year will be bringing earplugs with them, it’s going to be a loud one.