Title This: WWE Raw Reaction 1-21-13

Josh Isenberg

WWE RawThe Undercard:

There were a series of Beat The Clock Challenge matches, and it kicked off with Randy Orton defeated Antonio Cesaro in an excellent bout. I was really interested in seeing more of these two in the ring, especially after a physical match on WWE Main Event last week. Orton and Cesaro exchanged blows like it was a heavyweight bout. I was really happy to see Cesaro control the offense for the better part of the match. After a pretty long stretch, Orton finally came back fighting hard. He would hit a DDT onto Cesaro. Cesaro connected with a beautiful uppercut, and got back onto the offensive. The ending of this physical match came when Cesaro was hit with an RKO out of nowhere. This was an excellent bout with the perfect timing, chemistry, and really showcased what both men can do when given time in the ring. Grade: A-

Dolph Ziggler knocked off The Miz in the second BTC match. Ziggler and Miz got over 10 minutes to work here, but we got hit with a commercial break. When we came back from break, Miz took over on Ziggler by pounding away in the corner. The Miz needs to continue to be aggressive and ruthless, as he comes off weak and a wuss from his heel run prior to turning face. Ziggler struggled to get over the hump in this match, but did hit an incredible dropkick right to the face of Miz. I like the involvement with AJ Lee and Big E Langston. It has not been much, but has been effective to the point where Ziggler finds an open window and picks up the victory. He did that again, with a slight distraction, and connected with Zig Zag for the victory. I would love to see a main event feud with these two in the future. They both can tell a good story in the ring, and are not mechanical and predictable. Grade: B+

Sheamus and Wade Barrett end in a draw. Neither man was able to beat Ziggler's time, so the match was called after the 10:38 mark. During the match, Wade Barrett showed why he is going to be a player for a long time in the WWE. He is a big and physical guy, but surprises you from time to time with his risk taking. He hits a beautiful elbow from the top rope, continued the assault, and his kicks to Sheamus were AWESOME. I thoroughly enjoy seeing these two similar opponents face off, and should be a main event at a major PPV in the future. They brawl, they are intelligent and precise, and both guys know how good the other one is. I cannot say enough about how great Sheamus and Wade work together in the ring. Ziggler, AJ, and Big E helped Ziggler pick up the victory for the BTC Challenge. Grade: A-

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