From the NAI Archive - April 28, 2015 - The Chief's Briefs - 4/27 RAW Response

While I was not able to sit down and enjoy Monday Night RAW last night with the rest of the NAIborhood, there is something rather peaceful about waking up in the wee hours of the morning and turning on, in my case, Tuesday Morning RAW.  Maybe it’s the fact that I have to stay off Twitter in order to be #SpoilerFree, or maybe its just that I am the very model of a modern major morning man, but its become one of my favorites times of the week.

Let’s air out some RAW Response Chief’s Briefs, shall we?

How good is Seth Rollins?

He’s so good that he’s made Kane relevant and enjoyable again, to such a degree that I’m a little disappointed Kane isn’t part of the Payback main event.  Rollins vs. Reigns vs. Orton vs. Kane?  I’d be down with that.

Clap for the Champions!

Your NEW tag team champions and my psychic meal ticket, New Day, are currently riding atop the tag team division, and while I don’t need them cheating in every match, I don’t mind what I’ve been seeing.  A lot of fans remembered (not realized, they knew it before) that Kingston and Langston are excellent wrestlers, and Xavier Woods is opening some eyes as the annoying manager, almost stealing the entire show Sunday night with his “What is wrong with you? We’re WINNING!” line.

I said this on Twitter, but Woods needs to be mic’d up as a manager, just like Abraham Washington was for the Prime Time Players back in the day.

As excited as I am for the new champs, this division still needs some firepower.  Outside of KiddAro and Lucha Dragons, where do the next challenges come from?

Well, as I watched RAW, a number of prospective duos popped into my head, which really is going to steer the rest of the Briefs.  You’ve been warned.

Where do they go from here?

The big story of RAW was the quarterfinals of the King of the Ring tournament, and though my prediction of a Sheamus and Ziggler main event fizzled out, I still think we’re heading towards a Celtic victory, unless Dolph somehow interferes to get Neville the win.

Honestly, looking at the bracket right now, scratch that Sheamus prediction - that’s totally what’s going to happen.  Dolph interferes, Neville wins, we get an Extreme Rules pre-show rematch as a KOTR final.

More importantly than all that, though, is what this tournament says about those who lost their opening round matchup, speaking of course of Ziggler, Ambrose, Harper and Stardust.  Four incredibly talented performers who seem destined for mid-card (if they’re lucky) stagnancy.

Is this the ceiling for these guys?  I can understand if the answer is “yes” for Dolph, what with the injuries and all.  I don’t know that I’d trust him with a main event run again either, if I’m being truthful.  But Dean, Luke and Cody?  These guys should be doing far more with their careers than this.

How do I fix it?  Well, in the short-term, since none of them are seemingly destined for big singles success, let’s make some tandems.  Are you telling me that you wouldn’t enjoy the hell out of an Ambrose and Harper team?  The Crazy Ones?  The story essentially writes itself.

Meanwhile, Dolph and Cody would make a good duo as well, if only so JBL could go crazy with the Ziggy Stardust references.  Not that anyone would get them, but still…

The Party Boyz

I was glad to see a Fandango and Adam Rose match on RAW instead of on Superstars or Main Event, and I was happy to see some story development with them as well.  The only way your lower-tier guys are going to accomplish anything is if the creative team is behind them, and this seemed to do .  .  . not much, but SOMETHING for these two.

Despite that, long-time fans of mine and of NAI in general know that the preferred end game would be for these two to team up.  Unlike the four guys I mentioned before, you know...I mean, you KNOW...that Adam Rose and Fandango are NOT going to have successful singles careers in WWE.  So why treat them as singles competitors?  Put them together and let them ply their trade in the tag division.

In the late 90’s there were two other talents, neither with big singles success, who teamed up in a very random, at first, pairing.  They were known, at the time, as The Roadie and Rockabilly.  We know them today as future WWE Hall of Famers, the New Age Outlaws.  I’m not saying that rose and Fandango are the next Outlaws, of course, but I am saying that stranger things have happened.

A Tale of Two Sandows

Damien Sandow on RAW this past week was a double edged sword.  The first part was some of the most captivating television I can remember watching from WWE in some time.  You can almost always tell when a wrestler is speaking from the heart rather than cutting a promo, and Sandow was as honest as he could be last night while also managing to throw in some callbacks to the Intellectual Savior persona.  I enjoyed seeing THAT Damien Sandow, which made what followed even sadder.

When Curtis Axel came out, Damien was reduced to what WWE, in my opinion, truly thinks he is, a comedy act, and not even a very good one at that.  Mocking Axel was funny at first, but got old quickly.

I was sincerely hoping that, when Axel said “You think this is funny??”, Sandow would have dropped the aping and gone back to being his honest self, talking about what jokes their careers had become.  Sharp eyed fans would recognize this as being the same thing I had hoped Rose and Fandango had done a few months back.

This, of course, would have led to Axel and Sandow becoming a “serious” tag team, or at least one that doesn’t solely revolve around the “comedic jobber” schtick.  Alas, it was not to be.

Bold Statement of the Day: Damien Sandow will not be nearly as “over” as Damien Mizdow was.  As Roddy Piper is so fond of saying, every great hero has a great villain, and in Sandow’s case, without Miz there to “fight”, Sandow is just going to become another Santino.

The Brothers Wyatt

I am beyond disappointed that between Extreme Rules and RAW last night we saw nothing. . .NOTHING. . . happening between Bo Dallas and Bray Wyatt.  This was THE moment to do something - even just allude to their fraternal bond, and WWE, seemingly, dropped the ball.

Still, as it seems to happen more and more of late, I have faith.  The signs are perfect for a Bo/Bray pairing - Bo’s “shaggy” facial hair, the dual focus on Ryback. . . Well, that might be it, I guess, but its enough for me.

PLEASE, WWE, do the right thing.  Put these two together - the Bo-Liever and the New Face of Fear.  I promise, they’ll make it worth your while.

Crazy idea of the Day:  We all assume Bray has been talking about Ryback.  (Well, technically I’ve been thinking he’s talking about Reigns, but apparently not…)

What if he’s talking about Bo instead?  Fear of failure, seeing right through him, calling him “friend” over and over again…  What if this is Bray’s twisted way of showing brotherly love?

. . . Yeah. . . On second thought, maybe I don’t have THAT much faith.


What did YOU think of RAW?  Where are we headed with these talents?  Could some tag teams be built from this?  Be Heard.
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