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Raw: Nexus dominates, Team Cena disintegrates

When the Nexus angle began on Raw seven weeks ago, I wrote that it was going to be a challenge to get fans to buy into the idea that the NXT Season 1 "rookies" posed a legitimate threat to established WWE stars in the ring.

Yes, The Nexus has come across as a dangerous gang of thugs when attacking people seven-on-one, but that doesn't necessarily mean that Wade Barrett and company can be taken seriously in a fair fight against the WWE's elite.

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The main goal of Monday night's Raw was to drive home the point that The Nexus are indeed worthy adversaries for the team of Raw stars they are facing in the main event at the SummerSlam pay-per-view on Aug. 15. To that end, The Nexus totally dominated a team of Raw mid-carders in a seven-on-seven elimination match (not one Nexus member was eliminated).

So, was WWE's effort to build The Nexus' credibility successful? Well, from a booking standpoint, the company had the right idea, but I have to admit that I had trouble suspending my disbelief enough to accept that the likes of Michael Tarver, David Otunga, Heath Slater and Darren Young could so easily destroy a team that included Evan Bourne, Mark Henry and WWE unified tag team champions Tyson Kidd and David Hart Smith.

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However, I do think the other plot device WWE is using to make the SummerSlam elimination bout not seem like a mismatch is working – that being that The Nexus is 100 percent united while the John Cena-led Raw team is in disarray. The members of Cena's team bickered amongst themselves throughout the show.

Other thoughts on Monday's show:

I liked how the issue between WWE champion Sheamus and Money in the Bank winner The Miz intersected with the Nexus/Team Cena story line, as the main event pitted Cena and Chris Jericho against Sheamus and The Miz. The finish saw Jericho turn on Cena, leading to The Miz pinning Cena for the victory. After the match, all of the members of Cena's team (except Bret Hart, who wasn't there) were shoving each other. …

After Hart was revealed as a surprise member of Cena's team at the end of last week's Raw, it seemed strange for him not to be on the show this week. …

I get it that Yoshi Tatsu is not very high in the pecking order, but he has been established as a solid wrestler and was coming off a competitive match against Jericho on WWE Superstars, so the fact that he was pinned a minute into the elimination match with a powerslam by Tarver of all people was a joke. I also thought Bourne and The Hart Dynasty were made to look weak in the match. …

The verbal exchange between Cena and Jericho at the top of the show was good. I especially liked when Cena used Jericho's "do you understand what I am saying to you" phrase against him. The only thing I didn't care for about the segment was when Cena started doing lame comedy right in the middle of his serious promo. His "Superfriends" jokes were totally wrong for the situation. Jericho, however, successfully managed to inject some humor into the segment without taking anything away from it. I loved when he said to Cena, "Don't you ever … denigrate me with your sarcasm." …

The fans are dying to cheer for Jericho. There was a "Y2J" chant when he interrupted Cena's promo, but he quickly squelched it by insulting the fans. It was made clear that Jericho is not turning babyface just because he is a member of Cena's team for the match against The Nexus. …

Randy Orton was nicely showcased, as he scored an impressive win over Jey Uso and then took out both Sheamus and The Miz with RKO's after the match. Miz was about to cash in his Money in the Bank contract on Sheamus when Orton hit the move out of nowhere. …

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The Miz has teased cashing in his MITB contract two weeks in a row now. WWE has to be careful not to go to the well too often or it could make it anti-climactic when Miz finally does cash in for real. …

When Edge said that The Great Khali would be booted from Team Cena if Edge defeated him, I bet a lot of fans were rooting for Edge. The match ended in a no-decision, so for now at least, the big guy is still on the team. …

It was odd that The Nexus allowed The Great Khali to leave the ring unscathed after they had surrounded him and were seemingly about to pounce. I wonder if it will be explained that they see him as a weak link and thus want him to remain on Cena's team. …

This week's Raw general manager tease was that it could be Shawn Michaels or Triple H, as one of the anonymous GM's e-mails had the "I've got two words for you" line. It was probably not a coincidence that WWE went for a DX reference on a night that the show was in San Antonio, where Michaels lives. …

I like R-Truth but he definitely does not have a future as a color commentator judging by his performance during the Ted DiBiase Jr.-John Morrison match. …

Alicia Fox continues to be put over as a dominant champion, as she easily defeated Brie Bella. …

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Young's hair has gone back to terrible after a one-week stint as being just bad.


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