Thoughts and Deliberations from Monday Night Raw 1-16-2012

Last night on Raw, some interesting and dare I say major events transpired. First and foremost, former Hardcore Champion and all around favorite of mine and many wrestling fans, Mick Foley made his triumphant return to the WWE Universe. He came out and plead his case for a spot in the upcoming Royal Rumble. The crowd went nuts, and I was pretty pumped too…only to have Executive Vice President of Talent Relations and Interim Raw General Manager John Laurinaitis shut the idea down almost immediately. As much of a dope Laurinaitis is, he has been making me laugh the past few weeks and is actually growing on me. CM Punk proceeded to come out and endorse Foley’s case for Royal Rumble, but Laurinaitis wasn’t having any of it. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see on this one, but I really hope Foley makes an appearance at the Rumble.

There was also a huge match in which the United States Championship was on the line. Zack Ryder, who held the belt going into Monday Night, was viciously and brutally attacked by the Big Red Monster Kane last week. Ryder was hobbled by a back injury and was forced to go into a match with Jack Swagger…with his championship on the line. Naturally with his back in the state it was in, Ryder didn’t stand a chance against the bigger Swagger. Swagger targeted Ryder’s back from the start and brutally beat Ryder to take the belt and become the new United States Champion, a title fitting for a man who is known as the All-American American. Personally, I used to love Ryder when he was working his way up the ranks, and in recent weeks I have grown frustrated with who he has become. I hate his pairing with Cena and am getting a little tired of his gimmick. Until he changes things up a bit, I don’t see Ryder getting a big push anytime soon.

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On a totally different note, Brodus Clay had another fun, yet short match, this time matching up with JTG (WHO?!). Honestly, at first I was not a huge fan of Clay and his new alter ego, “The Funkasaurus”, but now I am loving it. The WWE didn’t need another generic big, fat, power wrestler. Brodus Clay as The Funkasaurus is something different and something fun and I am liking it. I wonder how long it takes for him to start getting some real matches, matches that last longer than a minute and a half. His goofy dance moves both in his introduction and during the match are awesome, and although he isn’t the most talented wrestler, he is huge and his power moves are impressive. I wouldn’t be shocked if he makes a run at the Rumble in two weeks.

Last but not least on my thoughts from the latest edition of Raw is the phenomenon that is Chris Jericho. The guy returned a few weeks ago after years of absence from the WWE and his return was met with great crowd reaction and excitement from fans all over the world. Hell, #Y2J was the number one trend on Twitter! However, the crowd eventually went sour towards Jericho. He just came out and went nuts for between 5-10 minutes, running around, screaming, pumping the crowd up…but never once picking up a mic and never performed a single wrestling move. He has continued this gimmick, and last night the crowd in Anaheim was excited because they thought he was going to be featured in the main event match, a 3 man tag match featuring Mark Henry, Dolph Ziggler & David Otunga  against Chris Jericho, CM Punk & Daniel Bryan.

I was real pumped too not gonna lie. Then, when I believe Punk tagged Jericho, Jericho ran in the ring and proceeded to run around and pump up the crowd for a few seconds. Again, he didn’t perform one wrestling move, slapped tag partner Daniel Bryan on the chest for the tag, and walked down the ramp and went backstage. And that was that. Henry, Ziggler and Otunga ended up winning the match, but the real story continues to be Jericho, his arrogance and his insistance on not saying or doing anything week in and week out. How long will this last you may ask? That is a question I simply don’t have the answer to, but I have a sneaking suspicion it will play into the Royal Rumble, a mere two weeks away.

Any thoughts you have from RAW or just the wrestling world in general, feel free to let us know in the comments!