After Kevin Nash cost CM Punk the Undisputed WWE Championship last night, I know I was looking forward to the promo confrontation tonight. It had to happen. Nash was one of the savviest talkers in this sort of environment, and Punk, well, Punk's been proving it every week save one for the last two months. So yeah, I was a bit disappointed with the way Nash didn't show up. Punk ran circles around him, which is okay given that Punk makes everything alright, y'know?
That being said, I liked the way the segment played out. While Nash's delivery was rusty and his "shooty" material felt the most Russo-ish of the insider stuff, I thought nearly everything else surrounding it was interesting. Johnny Ace and Nash as cohorts was a wrinkle that I saw coming, but still welcomed. Stephanie's continued existence is troubling a bit, since I'm still unsure whether she can keep her raging ego in check, but it makes sense.
However, the undisputed star of this show was Alberto del Rio. His promo at the beginning (after shooing Triple H from the ring after a record low seven minutes of promo time) was amazing. People like to knock him for being one-dimensional or "comedic" or whatever, but he's a swarthy, cocky dickhead who just fulfilled his destiny. That gave his promo so much weight, and it was mollified by his awesome facial expressions and body language. One-dimensional? If he's like this in August 2012 or '13, maybe, but right now, he's still technically in his rookie year. It's his first act, and what a first act it's been.
His match with Rey Mysterio was great too. Man, those two don't have bad matches with each other. They really played up Mysterio's title history, and it really put an air of uncertainty on the match. Mysterio took a big bump across the guardrail, and then del Rio said "Heeeeeyy, I can do better!" and leaped out of the ring on a spill of his own. The finish was utter brilliance too. Mysterio landed a 619, making everyone think he was going to win, and then the counter to the Tadpole Splash (lol, love that call) was just the best way to end the match. Seriously, anyone who says WWE doesn't give you wrestling is full of shit.
The post-match stuff worked for me too. John Cena, although many could say that he was hypocritically (although could that be the point?), spat fire, and it was intense and effective.
Of course, RAW wasn't all peaches and cream. Specifically, the Riley/Swagger match segment was dreadful. Vickie Guerrero and Dolph Ziggler bickering didn't click for me (although I appreciated where it was going). Dumping on JR was lame. The match sucked, and yeah, Riley clearly sandbagged Swagger at the end. Credit to Swagger for handling it like a pro and still coming out looking all beast mode, but still, Riley is either a dick (not likely) or just showing how green he is still (more likely). I will say this; the finish of that match made me appreciate that they're maybe going for a Swagger/Ziggler feud in the near future with Swagger moving in on Vickie in the next segment.
All in all, a solid if unspectacular show. They still kept me interested, and the main event was boss though, so yeah, it was more win than loss for me.