Mike Vaughn v. Chris Escobar was a fine indy juniors match. Mike Vaughn is really good, and his fistdrop was down right pretty. Vaughn looked kind of off on some things, especially his missed clotheslines and kicks to the stomach, both of which are pet peeves of mine. He did take a pair of sick bumps, and spin clothesline bump on the floor, and a a crash and burn asai moonsault. I wasn't in love with the finish either as it required Escobar to be up and about way too soon after crashing to the floor. I have no beef with the bell shot finish, but you need to spread out the huge bump and the foreign object shot.
What Didn't Work
Tommy Smallz v. Sean Calloway was close but no cigar. Smallz is pretty close to getting good, and connects with the crowd well considering he is smaller then half of the pee-wee baseball players. Still Calloway was working way too loose for this match to really work. He had to beat the shit out of Smallz for his comebacks to get over, no reason for a guy working in a promotion with Damien Wayne and Preston Quinn to have punches that suck that much. Little kids were really great here getting behind Smallz, although the atmosphere would have been way better if some people weren't as concerned with getting their stupid chant over. I would really like to see Smallz in with Brandon Day or Vaughn at the next show, see what he could do with a good nasty heel. Smallz v. Dragon Frost would probably work too.
The angle with Sharkey in charge needs to go away. I see no reason why you need any "authority figure" at all, but having a heel run some of the matches, and not others doesn't make much sense. Why is he protecting Grail by keeping Escobar away from him, and then punishing him (and the fans) by putting him in with Fat Tony? Also why isn't he given any mike time to explain this? Just have the matches signed, create a fictional board of directors or something, but wrestling doesn't need stupid "guy in charge angles"
O'Brian wasn't nearly as annoying as he had been in the past, but he is back down here this week. Big mistake to have the commentary done live, as he is calling the match he thinks is going to happen, rather then the one in the ring.It worked for the Smallz match, where they were doing this thing where Smallz can't irish whip Calloway, and O'Brian got that over well. However, there is clearly supposed to be something in the main event about Vaughn not going for the pins, but he does keep going for pins, and O'Brian is on commentary making up match psych. This probably wouldn't be a problem if he watched the match first to see what was happening. I have done live commentary before, it is really hard, no reason to handicap Rick even more.
Is it just me, or did ANY of the matches mentioned as being the best in the history of RAW even squeeze into your top five? So what's your pick? My top five are probably as follows, in no particular order: Austin + HHH vs.