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The Good, the Bad and the Ugly: Monday Night Raw 8.16.2010

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Quick Results:
John Cena confronted Nexus and the Anonymous GM arranged individual rematches between Team WWE and The Nexus. Any Nexus member who lost would be jettisoned from the group
- Wade Barrett defeated Chris Jericho
- Michael Tarver defeated Daniel Bryan after The Miz and Alex Riley distracted Bryan
- Justin Gabriel defeated Randy Orton (Bret Hart was subbed out by the GM) via countout after Orton and Sheamus brawled into the crowd
- David Otunga and Skip Sheffield defeated R-Truth and John Morrison
- Jillian, Alicia Fox and Maryse defeated Divas Champion Melina, Eve amd Gail Kim
- Heath Slater defeated Edge via countout
- John Cena defeated Darren Young. After the match Cena was allowed to leave the ring before Nexus administered a beat down on their former comrade.

The Good

  • "That Which Doesn't Kill Us Will Only Make Us Stronger" - A lot of us last night were wondering how exactly Nexus would be able to get their heat back after the questionable ending of the SummerSlam main event. Well, if the opening segment of Raw was any indication it looks like the WWE Universe is still red hot for them. I thought Cena absolutely killed it on the microphone as he is the master of poking fun at his foils without outwardly burying them (Triple H being the exact opposite). I may not like when Super Cena shows his his face but I must say that I do find him entertaining for the most part. The individual matches that our anonymous GM set up was something that a few of our commenters predicted and it looks like it will be a way to trim some of the fat from Nexus, if you will.
  • "If those trunks get any smaller we'll have to change the rating of this show." - Well played, Cena.

More after the jump!

  • Wade Barrett vs. Chris Jericho - Very good television match between these two despite the fact that the result was never really in question. Both individuals got an equal amount of offense in on one another and displayed good chemistry. The finishing sequence was especially awesome as Wade Barrett countered the Codebreaker into the Wasteland to pick up a big win over the former seven time World Champion. Barrett looked very strong but I am certainly looking forward to seeing him work more as his moveset is kind of lacking. That is something that will come with time (unless you're Daniel Bryan, of course!). 
  • Daniel Bryan vs. Michael Tarver - Again, a predictable ending but Daniel Bryan looked like an absolute star against Tarver tonight. He dominated most of the match and only lost thanks to a distraction from The Miz and Alex Riley. Tarver certainly did not look like anything special but this match was more about advancing the Miz/Bryan program. I'd be interested in seeing these two given a little more time as their styles are intriguing: Bryan's MMA influenced style and, of course, the boxing prowess of Tarver. Who needs Couture vs. Toney when we have these two? Bonus points go to The Miz for an absolutely brutal Skull Crushing Finale on the Money in the Bank briefcase.
  • Alex Riley - Awesome promo work. I think he has a future as Miz's lackey after his time on NXT comes to a conclusion.
  • John Morrison and R-Truth vs. David Otunga and Skip Sheffield - The wrestling may not have been very good but the match served its purpose: to make Sheffield and Otunga look like legit forces. Sheffield looked like a monster in the ring as there is no question that he is the muscle for Nexus. I can't decide which I like better: Sheffield's clothesline or JBL's Clothesline from Hell. Obviously Stan Hansen's lariato reigns supreme but the hierarchy needs to be established. Help me out in the comments.
  • The Fat Has Been Trimmed - And then there were six. Darren Young has been the odd man out since the start of this angle so it makes sense that he was the causality of tonight's self-imposed elimination matches. The match with Cena and Young wasn't too bad as Young got a surprising amount of offense in but it felt as though every one of Young's moves was followed up by a pin attempt. It made sense from a storyline point of view but it was just a tad bit boring to watch. I'll be curious to see how Darren Young moves on from here: will he fade off into the sunset or accept his destiny and form a tag team with his half-brother and Caucasian doppelganger John Cena?

The Bad

  • WWE Tag Team Championships - So the World Tag Team Championships and the WWE Tag Team Championships were unified and now have been consolidated into one set of belts known as...the WWE Tag Team Championships. Interesting, very interesting. Also, the new belts are ugly as sin. They kind of resemble the Diva's butterfly title belt.
  • Randy Orton vs. Justin Gabriel - I wasn't sure how the WWE would weasel Bret Hart out of wrestling tonight but once the switch was made to Randy Orton the ending became painfully obvious. The match really wasn't anything special as Gabriel got some token offense in before being sent to clown school by Orton. Gabriel may have earned the countout victory thanks to interference from Sheamus but he really looked like just another guy after all was said and done. A far cry from being the next to last survivor for Nexus just 24 hours ago.
  • Six Diva's Tag Match - I don't hate women's wrestling, I swear. I just don't like the current crop of Divas for their in-ring ability. Cole saved this segment from being a complete disgrace by mentioning the Boogeyman biting Jillian's growth off of her face a few years back. Respect.
  • Heath Slater vs. Edge - The match itself wasn't too bad but the ending was absolutely dumb. Obviously the writing team wanted to but Slater over Edge without actually putting him over! The ending would've been a bit more believable if Edge would've crashed into the steel steps after Slater sidestepped the Spear. Edge going head first into the ring steps is probably TV-14, though, so that wouldn't fly. Oh my.

The Ugly

  • I Have Received An E-Mail - And I quote, "Please end this talking computer angle sooner rather than later. It's brutal."
  • Jason Sudeikis, Charlie Day and Justin Long - Super pointless...and I'm a huge Charlie Day mark.
  • Vicious Chair Shots... - ...aren't so vicious when they are delivered to a person's back and not their head. I'm not advocating unprotected headshots but the ban on chairs to the skull is just plain stupid. 
  • Justin Long and the Great Khali Talk Relationships - Wow.

To paraphrase Wade Barrett: rumors of Nexus' demise have been greatly exaggerated. Despite picking up some victories vi nefarious means the Nexus look to be stronger than ever after dropping Darren Young from their ranks. Hopefully over the next few weeks the remaining members of Nexus will be involved in more singles matches so that they can really cut their teeth against the best of the best. 

I am concerned with the chances that either John Cena will work his way one by one through Nexus until they are all vanquished or that the group will continue to downsize after members fail to prove their worth on a weekly basis. Unless one of the members of Nexus manage to win a title between now and Night of Champions their next pay-per-view appearance will be at Hell in a Cell. That gives the WWE about a month and a half to plan out their next moves.

Not a bad show overall. It went a long way in calming some of my fears about the future of the Nexus. Definitely looking forward to next week's episode.

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