NBA

Shaquille O’Neal Slam Dunks WWE RAW

Shaquille O'Neal NBA All-Star Shaquille O’Neal was last night’s WWE RAW Guest Host. Shaq ran the entire show last night and was a WWE natural from the second he entered the ring. There is no doubt by the end of the show that Vince McMahon is already negotiating Shaq’s first official WWE match.

WWE began the gimmick of special Guest Host several weeks back. The Guest Host is in charge of the show in a commissioner role. So far all of the celebrity/non-wrestler Guest Hosts have been duds. Shaq was a huge hit with the fans in D.C. As RAW went on the air, you could sense a big buzz in the air about the night’s Guest Host, Shaquille O’Neal.

Shaq opened up the show by ordering a Beat the Clock Challenge Match to determine Randy Orton’s WWE SummerSlam opponent. Shaq was subsequently confronted by Chris Jericho in a tremendous face to face. Jericho’s partner Big Show joined the party. This is where the fun began.

The fun continued at the end of the night for Shaq Daddy. As Big Show was about to choke slam Cryme Tyme, he dropped them, and called Shaq to the ring. Shaq and Show got physical both going for choke slams. The fans went absolutely nuts as the two had fantastic charisma in the ring together. Neither man took the slam as Cryme Tyme came back in the ring to break up the altercation.

There is no doubt that Vince McMahon saw dollar signs at this moment. Show and Shaq went nose to nose and the fans went nuts. Shaq challenged Show to a match. Show turned down the challenge. The two make for a natural match. Considering that WrestleMania takes place during the NBA season, I would expect the match following Shaq’s retirement.

I found the segment comical for another reason. For years, the WWE has promoted Big Show as the largest athlete in the world. In the ring it was obvious that Shaq had a few inches on Show. I am shocked that they didn’t at least put Show in some lifts. I don’t know if this was done purposely, but if not the myth about Big Show is over.

The big WWE news of the night is that John Cena will be challenging Randy Orton for the WWE championship at SummerSlam. This will be their first singles main-event since WWE No Way Out 2008. The two have fought a lot in Triple Threat and multi-opponent challenges. However, the match will finally give fans a break from the Randy Orton – Triple H feud.

The “Masterpiece” Chris Masters finally made his long awaited return on WWE RAW. Masters returned to wrestle MVP. I thought this was a blown opportunity. Masters hasn’t appeared on WWE television since October 2007. Masters teased his Full Nelson throughout the match to no reaction. To me, that says the crowd had no idea who he was. In my opinion, Masters definitely needed some kind of buildup or video before appearing in such a high profile match.

In other news on the show, it was announced that Jeff Hardy would defend the WWE world title against John Morrison on WWE SmackDown this Friday. WWE also announced that Jeremy Piven will be next week’s Guest Host. Depending upon the audience, Piven may be surprisingly over. Triple H will also wrestle Ted DiBiase and Cody Rhodes in a Handicapped Match next week.

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Eric G.

Eric is the owner and editor-in-chief of the Camel Clutch Blog. Eric has worked in the pro wrestling industry since 1995 as a ring announcer in ECW and a commentator/host on television, PPV, and home video. Eric also hosted Pro Wrestling Radio on terrestrial radio from 1998-2009. Check out some of Eric's work on his IMDB bio and Wikipedia. Eric has an MBA from Temple University's Fox School of Business.

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