Wednesday Morning Backlash: Taking a Look at Team Raw for WWE Bragging Rights (Sheamus, Miz, John Cena)

Team Raw is filled besides on spot for the Bragging Rights PPV in two weeks, so that allows us to look over and analyze who made the squad. Smackdown’s team was formed (the spoilers are up!), but since the show doesn’t air until Friday, we’ll save their analysis for Monday. Team Raw, thus far is The Miz, CM Punk, Sheamus, John Morrison, R-Truth, Santino Marella with the last spot, according to advertising, going to John Cena.

Sheamus – Sheamus is the most important member in that his joining the team actually has a mini-feud attached to it and he’s the only pure main event star on the Raw team. The mini-feud is accomplishing quite a lot actually despite pissing off the internet. As it’s being handled, Sheamus, after losing to Orton, needed to get some heat back. To do so he attacked the hugely over Daniel Bryan. This clearly does more for Sheamus than Bryan, but, assuming this feud doesn’t die out until the PPV, Bryan gets to continue to look better and better against a full accredited top guy. Bryan will clearly not win this time, but if next week the two have a match that gets 10-15 before Bryan loses with several near falls, he will be elevated in defeat. Of course, this being WWE, they could just crush Bryan and forget to use him for several months, but the near-falls on Monday made me feel like that’s less likely. In fact, the only person to not look great from this is…

The Miz – So, the Miz is supposed to be a main event player, but he loses to Bryan. In and of itself, this isn’t a real issue. The issue is that the Miz moves on to punking John Cena while Bryan gets crushed by Sheamus. Why should we believe Miz has a shot against Cena if he can’t beat Bryan, who clearly is a class below Sheamus? Fortunately, the great mic work of the Miz and being team captain ensure that this shouldn’t be too huge of an issue. The Money in the Bank brief-case and Alex Riley, as well, mean he doesn’t have to be a force on his own, but can evil his way into what he wants. All of this backing into successful situations make him really hated, which makes fans willing to pay to see him beat up when the time comes. In the end that, and not who he beats, are what make him a potential top heel.

CM Punk – Punk really doesn’t belong here. He’s a third major heel on this team and doesn’t really fit, unbalancing the entire group in favor of top heels and really undercard faces. Still, his awesome promos give the group another talker and he’s probably the best worker in the match, so he can help hold things together. On Raw, he’s suddenly Chris Jericho where he can look great without needing to win too much and retain his heat. He needs to look good for now on his new brand, though, so he was added in here. I’d bet he manages to eliminate Team Smackdown captain the Big Show here mid-match to regain some heat for losing that feud so thoroughly.

R-Truth – Much like at Summerslam, he’s here to job. Nothing is being done with him because, well, WWE seem to have noticed he’s a bad worker, but he’s still over enough to add some minor face credibility to the Raw group.

John Morrison – With his new finisher, he’s getting a bit of a push, so he should eliminate someone without much of a name on Team Smackdown before falling to a guy like Alberto del Rio (assuming he’s in the match) who can gain a bit of credibility for eliminating. It’s that or the Big Show is very bad news for Truth, Morrison and Santino. Show isn’t especially lethal to other top guys, but due to his size making him need to seem dominant, he absolutely eats up mid-carders and below, which is firmly where Truth, Morrison and Santino reside, if not lower for the comedy relief character.

Santino – I hardly believe he’ll be on the team at all, unless this is a payday thank you for being comedic and humiliated so consistently. Even with this, someone will injure him or something to get him replaced by someone more suitable. My guess is a last second John Cena replacement. Why Cena?

John Cena – Raw is quietly almost entirely devoid of top faces since they are unwilling to put anyone new like Bryan or Morrison truly over and Triple H is gone, all they really have are Cena and Orton. On the heel side there, Punk, Miz, Nexus, and Sheamus. The next face on Raw is probably someone like Mark Henry, though if they want to go with a heel, there’s always Ted Dibiase or Goldust (I think they have a singles match instead). So, the team has three top heels and no face to even nearly balance it. The only real option at all to balance things is Cena and even then, Team Raw basically has to lose to make Smackdown look equal. The only exception? Cena is the last member and then Triple H replaces Santino. We’re then too big on Raw to lose. As is? This is a team built to get Smackdown over by losing.

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