J.R.'s Superstar of the Week - Jeff Hardy
Greetings from under the 200X, black Resistol hat from your barbecue lovin' Okie, who is busier than a fruit merchant (and loving every minute of it) with the opening this week of "J.R.'s Family Bar-B-Q" Restaurant in Norman, Okla. The piece written by WWE.com earlier this week was awesome, and my thanks to all who made it happen. But Monday we are back at it on Raw, and we return to Corpus Christi, Texas, this week under much better circumstances than our last visit to one of Texas' most beautiful areas.
This week our guest panel could have included Bill O'Reilly (who never managed the Masked Medics), Geraldo (another one name star akin to Charo), Nancy Grace (who was heard humming the song "Redneck Woman" recently), Hannity but not Colmes, Greta Van Susteren (if that is her real name but once considered training with the Fabulous Moolah) and Paul Goodloe of the Weather Channel (Jonathan Coachman's alleged brother of another mother). They were all invited to provide input on this week's Raw Superstar of the Week, but because they were all predisposed I am sailing the ship solo.
Drum roll please….this week's Raw Superstar of the Week, who will receive dinner for two at J.R.'s Family Bar-B-Q and lovely parting gifts is…The Rainbow Haired Warrior, Jeffrey Hardy from Cameron, N.C.! Jeff is arguably one of the most popular Superstars on Raw, and it just feels like he could be a future champion at any time. Jeff is so much better in the ring (not that he was ever bad) since returning from his hiatus quite some time ago, and his in-ring style is unique just like the individual. Let's hear it for Jeff!
John Cena was not in Lafayette, La., this past Monday for Raw (much to the chagrin of many Cena fans in the arena) as The Champ was appearing on Larry King Live (WESTVILLE…HELLO!) in Los Angeles. Rumor has it Cena got a pair of autographed Larry King suspenders while on CNN. Cena will be back live on Raw from Corpus Christi this Monday as the countdown to The Great American Bash begins in earnest, as does the countdown to Cena vs. Lashley for the WWE Title at the Bash. This match will no doubt provide some unique live audience reactions in San Jose, Calif.
Umaga welcomed Santino Marella to the ring with about as much love as Britney Spears seemingly has for her immediate family. As a mater of fact, this Intercontinental Championship blowout might have resembled a Spears family reunion down in Louisiana back in the day. Santino got a lovely consolation prize with Maria showing concern over the Italian athlete, so the night couldn't have been a total disaster for the benefactor of the Milan Miracle.
Ok, Cade & Murdoch are a great tag team and have the same in- ring qualities of several of the great teams I have seen over the years. I like the fact that they are a basic, mat wrestling duo and not a trapeze act, BUT this business about these two being "role models" for sportsmanship is about as likely as the redneck duo going on a cruise with Rosie O'Donnell. This ain't gonna happen, friends and neighbors. Not that there is anything wrong with Rosie "cruising."
If the old toothpaste commercial "You'll wonder where the yellow went when you brush your teeth with Pepsodent" ever resurfaces, Snitsky is in! Snitsky went through Super Crazy like a hungry trucker at a Mexican buffet. And then, Mr. Kennedy assaulted Super Crazy like the Democrats are attacking the President's immigration bill.
I loved the genuine passion I saw from Dusty Rhodes, who the late Ernie Ladd used to call "Dirty Rhodes," Monday night when the WWE Hall of Famer confronted handsome young mirror worshipper Randy Orton. I hope "The Dream" knows what he is getting into at The Great American Bash, but I can assure you that Orton will take a trip (albeit perhaps a short one) to the woodshed at the Bash thanks to Dusty's bull rope. Orton has evil intentions in store for the veteran Rhodes just as sure as Kenny Rogers' facelift made "The Gambler" look like My Favorite Martian.
Nice match Monday between London and Benjamin, two talented young guys who should get more TV time for my money. Benjamin seems comfortable in singles matches, maybe too comfortable, sort of like John Travolta's spooky comfort level while dressing in drag in Hairspray.
Beth Phoenix made an impressive return to WWE Monday night, and is a physical and motivated young woman. Of course, this news was overshadowed by the national media covering Brooke Hogan's new breast implants, which seem to be all over the media this week for some reason.
Sandman has a two-game hitting streak going. Sandman compulsively needs to swing his cane about the same as Nicole Richie needs a plate full of pork ribs and a nap.
For the record: Booker T is a "King," Triple H is the "King of Kings," Jerry Lawler is "The King of Memphis" and WWE once produced a pay-per-view called King of the Ring. That's just a little "Kingly" clarification for those of you keeping score at home. This also includes the New York Yankees' A-Rod, who will forego a king-sized divorce settlement if the Bronx Bombers' third baseman isn't careful.
Bobby Lashley seems to be building momentum for his Bash bout for Cena's WWE Championship. That will give some Cena haters cause for celebration…but not so fast my friends. This will be a helluva match that I am not sure Lashley will win as I write this column. Lashley CAN win, but will the former amateur great get his hand raised? Cena has and does overcome heavy odds on a regular basis, and the WWE Champion's will to win is pretty impressive whether you like him or not. Cena has performed under great duress and pressure in his WWE career more times than Lashley has, so for some to consider Cena a significant underdog as some have speculated is a little premature.
Continue to count your many blessings and thanks for checking out my weekly column here on WWE.com. I also appreciate all your support with our restaurant opening which we have documented at www.jrsbarbq.com. Thanks!!