Too much Raw power?

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August 07, 2009

"Power corrupts -- absolute power corrupts absolutely."

That old axiom, first attributed to England's Lord Acton in the 19th century, has borne true throughout history. And while the reign of Raw guest hosts over the past month have been brief, some critics argue that the power these hosts have wielded on Monday nights has been far too great.

Exhibit A: Jeremy Piven.

The Emmy Award-winning actor, honored as Raw's guest host, had the audacity to jeopardize John Cena's title match opportunity against WWE Champion Randy Orton at SummerSlam. In Cena's Lumberjack Match against The Miz, The Goods star hand-picked a forest of Lumberjacks who were out to hurt the No. 1 contender. Fortunately for Cena, he managed not only to emerge healthy and victorious, he also punished Piven and his cohort, Dr. Ken Jeong, for their abuse of power.

Piven, however, is hardly alone. On the night that Mr. McMahon announced the controversial "special guest host" initiative more than a month ago, it was Batista who took the reins. The Animal wasted little time throwing around his muscle, forcing the Superstar who injured him, Orton, into a 3-on-1 Gauntlet Match against a contingent of new Raw Superstars: Evan Bourne, Jack Swagger & Mark Henry.

After clearing the first two hurdles -- actually, Swagger refused to compete -- The Viper found himself losing to The World's Strongest Man with punishing results, a conclusion Batista no doubt relished.

Two weeks later, it was actor and Robot Chicken co-creator Seth Green who found himself drunk with power. How else to explain the Raw guest host including himself in a Six-Man Tag Team Match against Orton & The Legacy?

The ring has proven no place for an individual without training, and yet, the diminutive daredevil teamed with Triple H & John Cena to challenge The Viper & his henchmen. Fortunately for Green, he narrowly managed to escape with his body parts still intact and a hard-earned victory under his belt.

And finally, when NBA great Shaquille O'Neal ran with the ball two weeks ago, he immediately exchanged heated words with Big Show. While Shaq may be adept at driving the lane in basketball, it could be disputed that unchecked power convinced him he was an expert in the squared circle. With the invaluable assistance of Cryme Tyme, Shaq dodged the wrath of The World's Largest Athlete, even shoving Big Show out of the ring.

As the "special guest host" initiative continues, there's no telling how such unchecked power will continue to affect the Monday night landscape. One thing is certain, though: The issue is not whether power will be used to rule Raw, the issue is whether that power will be used wisely.

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