RAW In A Nutshell: Thank You Daniel - Wrestle Newz twitter google

RAW In A Nutshell: Thank You Daniel

Xavier Woods
With the news breaking earlier in the day, via Daniel Bryan’s Twitter feed, that the American Dragon would be formally announcing his retirement in front of his home state crowd, tonight’s RAW takes on a whole new meaning. No doubt because of Bryan’s announcment, we actually open RAW with the contract signing for the Triple Threat Match-which may not be a first, but I can’t remember it happening before.

Best Match of the night:

From what I saw, I have two choices-and neither one really stood out over the other. So, we split it.

Option 1: Kevin Owens and Dolph Ziggler. These two have good chemistry in the ring, and are telling some really good stories when they work together.

Option 2: 8 Man tag team match. This one was a trainwreck, but who doesn’t love a trainwreck? The tables, and apparent heel turn? Those just sealed the deal.

Worst match of the night:

Alicia Fox versus Charlotte. Just such a bland match, especially considering the Divas talent. Fox doesn’t add much, and Charlotte was very vanilla tonight.

But, to be fair, a number of matches left quite a bit to be desired.

Crowd Chants of the Night:

Daniel Bryan

Fight Owens Fight

We want Sasha

You look stupid

Yes! Yes! Yes!

AJ Styles

This is awesome

Feed me more


Suplex City

We want Lana

New Day sucks/rocks


One more time


No! No! No!

Thank You Daniel

That’s what she said

Star of the Night

Daniel Bryan. No, he didn’t wrestle. But the night was all about him, so it seems only fitting that he gets to hold this spot for one final time. And, after one of the longer over-runs in a while (I think since Rock was the surprise guest host a few years back), and one really amazing farewell speech for the ages, he earned this spot. To borrow one of his words, I am grateful for being able to name him the star of the night tonight.

Spot of the Night:

Ryback, with Wyatt lined up to get a Meathook Clothesline, gets it turned into Sister Abigail instead. Pretty nifty.

Jobber of the Night:

Miz. AJ takes him out. Jericho takes him out. He even had to get booted-from his own talk show!

Sure feels like a jobber’s work to me.

Upset of the Night:

Adam Rose pinning Titus O’Neil. That was easy, for a change.

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

Looks like we get a heel turn from Bubba and Devon, as, following their victory alongside The Usos in an 8 man tag against New Day and Mark Henry, the brothers took out Jimmy and Jey and put each of them through their own tables.

And, silly me, I thought Daniel Bryan’s retirement was going to take this spot. Nope. Thanks, Bubba and Devon.

Botch of the night:

Looked like there were some issues with table positioning for some spots in the main event match. Minor stuff, but you saw guys, perched up top, directing their partners to move things a bit.

Commentary of the night:

You may not be able to get anything else in tonight but the Daniel Bryan chants.

LOL Moment of the night:

Mark Henry, being recruited by New Day-donning the unicorn horn and playing the trombone, much to the dismay of Xavier Woods. World’s Strongest Unicorn.

Noteworthy Moment:

Ryback has a new look. And I dig it.

Dean Ambrose may be trying to commit suicide by Brock. Calling Lesnar out is certainly befitting of his lunatic persona.

But, of course, the most noteworthy bit of the evening was announced early in the afternoon on Monday-that Daniel Bryan, having already been off-air since just after WrestleMania 31 last year,was going to be formally announcing his retirement on RAW. More on that later.

Overall lowlights:

That Bryan had to retire after so short a career. Some guys go on for decades and don’t get to accomplish nearly as much as he did, in a much less shorter period of time.

That being said, much of the low points for this RAW? It wasn’t exactly an awesome show. Much like last week, this week just lacked some really great matches. Mediocre ones? It had an abundance of those.

Overall highlights:

The Bryan highlights throughout the night.

Dean Ambrose, re-defining crazy on a daily basis (even if I think the low blow was such a lame way out).

A Dudley turn. If it means making theme a threat for reign number 10, I am all for it.

The Daniel Bryan farewell. Very well done. About the only thing I was surprised didn’t happen, was to have the locker room on the ramp paying tribute to him. But it was an emotional speech, and hard not to fight back tears at times. I am also grateful that this was not a swerve.

After the final bell:

Wow, what else can I say? When I woke up this morning and thought of RAW, I was hoping it wouldn’t be as dreadful as most of last week’s show wound up being. By 1pm, none of that mattered.

Bryan retiring, while it was discussed with more frequency in the last year, still came as a shock. And while he didn’t die (Thank God), you could have easily made this a three hour highlight show of his career, and few would be likely to complain. I expect we will see that on the WWE Network soon enough, so no worries there.

I am curious to see what Daniel does next. I think he did fine in his run on Tough Enough, so he surely could have a future there. I think WWE realizes that the fans love this young man, so if he wants to be around the company in some capacity, I trust they will find a spot for him.

What I don’t like, is that in a way, HHH and Stephanie were proven right. Part of the schtick to get heat on them and the fans behind Daniel heading into his WM30 matches, was that he would never be good enough, he was a B+ player. Part of that was due to his injuries. He was absolutely good enough, but sadly those injuries were too much to overcome.

I leave you with some positives, as he chose to do tonight as well.

First, he leaves somewhat on his own terms. Yes, he’s been told by doctors that his brain just can’t take more shots, but he’s getting that information now, while he appears to still be fine. Some professional athletes don’t stop soon enough and suffer permanent side effects.

Second, he hangs up his boots having never been defeated for the last two championships he held. Minor consolation.

Finally, something I think he’d be proud of, is that the lasting images I will have of him, will be of him embracing the late Conor Michalek. He truly was larger than life, someone willing to use his fame to make someone happier-something he even did tonight, by noting that his new, shorter hair, was done in part for a good cause.

Daniel Bryan, I and many other wrestling fans are grateful for having enjoyed your time in the squared circle.

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  • Bite Me You Loser

    Santa will always have respect for Bryan Danielson and his amazing career.

    • Lisa

      I wish Bryan all the best in his future endeavors, however it’s fair to point out that Bryan’s career was far from “amazing”. He did have a short lived main event run and a ‘Mania main event too but he spent most of his career in the midcard.

      • KingBack

        He had a better career than 90% of the roster…

      • The Shockmaster

        It’s a career of what could’ve been, in regard to that main event run after WM30 :(

  • Orbit Storm

    Sheesh. Life moves too rapidly. You’d think as an avid NFL fan, I’d be accustomed to this sort of thing: talent moving on, retiring, etc. Yet, there’s something different about being a WWE fan; something almost tangible. The relationships we build with the men and women of the WWE, even if fleeting and purely through their on-screen character, makes us all emotionally invested in one way or another. Love them or hate them, their successes or failures ultimately impact our lives too.

    When Daniel Bryan popped into my living room via WWE broadcasting, I was all for the guy: an ultimate underdog; a fan’s wrestler. Sure, as a Brock Lesnar fan I enjoyed seeing big guys beat up on little guys but there was just something about Daniel Bryan that made it virtually impossible not to root for him. There were moments when the YES! Movement annoyed me as I had begun to fear that this anti-Cena was becoming just like John himself by pushing aside other talent for his David vs Goliath moments but as time wore on, I shamelessly didn’t care and just wanted to live in the moment with this guy. I’ll never claim to be the biggest Daniel Bryan fan, obviously, but the respect and admiration I have for him parallels even his biggest fan’s.

    I’m thankful — yes, grateful too! — for having had the opportunity to see Daniel perform. I rank Yes-tlemania and his accomplishments alongside infamous moments in my favored NFL’s teams history; moments that will forever live on in our hearts and minds. I wish Bryan all the best in his life outside the ring. #YesYesYes

  • El Marichachi

    Daniel Bryan, A career akin to a Bret Hart or a Kurt Angle. His ability and personality shined through..that’s why the fans loved him. I’m sad to see him go. Best of Luck GOAT man. Truly The Greatest of all time

  • MEH

    I just finished watching his speech and jeez I can’t believe this guy made a couple drops of manly tears fall out of my eye! I remember hearing about this American Dragon years ago and tuned into an RoH show, ignorantly I saw him and thought really? And tuned out without even watching the match. When he then arrived in WWE years later and I saw him on NXT I realised how great he was and that I had been previously conditioned into the WWE thinking of bigger men are better. D-Bry became one of my favourite guys to watch and that Royal Rumble match between him and Bray won me over even more so. The guy is great and I’m not just talking about his wrestling, he was and still is a class act with Connor and now the wigs for kids movement. I salute you Daniel Bryan and thank you for waking me up and for everything you have done in the ring and moreso outside with the kids! #Grateful

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