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Acero’s WWE Raw Review 2.22.21

February 22, 2021 | Posted by Tony Acero
Bobby Lashley WWE Raw 2-22-21
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Acero’s WWE Raw Review 2.22.21  

Smell that? Smells like Mania.

It’s Monday…you know what that means.

RAW starts with a recap of what happened last night, then goes to Morrison in the middle of the ring to introduce our NEW WWE Champion.

Out comes The Miz, all smiles. He gets some massive pyro before heading to the ring to join his tag team partner and friend.

Miz welcomes us to Miz TV. He’s curious; how do we like him now? 16 years ago, he stepped foot into a WWE ring, and all of us said he would be fired in three months, and today, sixteen years later, he stands as the WWE Champion. All the top superstars of his era have come and gone. Batista and Cena are gone. You name them, and they just don’t measure up. HHH, Big Show, Bobby Lashley, Daniel Bryan, and Edge. No one measures up to his longevity and tenacious attitude. Speaking of Edge; if he wants to play High Stakes Poker, he’s his Royal Flush…he called his shot. Miz warned us all. He told us all what would happen. He is a main event caliber superstar. He is holding this title because he deserves it. He didn’t ask for our respect; he demanded it.

MVP and Lashley have heard it all. They come out to congratulate Miz on his title win. Let’s not forget who allowed Miz to cash in. Miz says he was getting to that. He wanted to thank both of them. He says that he and Morrison have more celebrating to do and offer the stage to MVP and Lashley. MVP says this meeting isn’t over yet. They have an arrangement. Morrison cost Lashley his title, and Miz has to make things right. Lashley helps Miz, and Lashley is first in line. Miz says he is busy; has interviews, Fastlane is coming, Mania is coming. Too many stresses. They may not understand, but look – there’s just no time. MVP says Miz had time to mention Lashley’s name. He doesn’t measure up to The Miz, right?

Lashley grabs Miz by the tie, says they made a deal. Miz has one hour to give Lashley what he wants or Lashley is going to go screw Maryse. Or something to that effect.

Lucha House Party are backstage to give some love to Riddle. Riddle talks about his time in Verdansk. Riddle loves the eagle on the title, and wants to name him Travis. Lince goes full American Me with his lines and wonders how Riddle will get to the other side of the arena. Fear not, Lince, for Riddle has a Razor Scooter.

We are back and there’s a countdown for “Lashley’s Ultimatum.” Nice of him to know people in the truck that are able to make him that cute little graphic counting down the hour.

Match 1:

Morrison gets the upperhand from the start with a kick to the head then an unnecessarily overspun elbow. Morrison tries for a bunch of kicks, but Riddle is able to evade them all, tries for an ankle lock. Morrison goes full heel, gives Riddle a thumb to the eye, lokcs the head from above, then goes for an akward looking Dragon Sleeper, pulling Riddle up to suplex him to the apron. Morrison turns and kicks Riddle to the side of the head. Morrison hops on the top rope and spins down onto Riddle on the outside. Morrison grabs his knee in pain. He sends Riddle into the ring, heads to the top rope, but Riddle is up on his hands and knees. Morrison ollows, tries to clothesline Riddle, but Riddle locks the head with his legs and sends Morrison to the outside. Morrison hops ot the apron. Chop to John, another, kick from Morrison, so Riddle hits a suplex to Morrison on the apron!

We return, and The Miz has only 34 minutes. We get to the ring, and Riddle lands on the knees of Morrison. Morrison slams him down with an Alabama Slam and a pin for 1..2..NO!!!Cravat from behind. Morrison Morrison punches into the corner, hits a back elbow, tries for some more, but Riddle punches out of the corner. Morrison whips him, Riddle holds on and kicks the side of the face. Running forearm into the corner, another off the ropes. Exploder to Morrison! Riddle hits the ropes, misses a kick, misses a moonsault, Morrison rolls to the outside. Riddle hops to the apron and hits a running kick then a Floating Bro off the springboard! Riddle sends Morrison back into the ring, Morrison misses a punch. German from Riddle for 1..2..NO!!! Riddle up first. He grabs Morrison, gets backed into the corner, Morrison hits some shoulders. Morrison runs up. Spanish Fly to Riddle and a cover for 1..2..NO!!! Morrison grabs the head of Riddle, spins forward for aMoonlight Drive, but Riddle hits a Bro2Sleep! Kick from Morrison! Riddle on the apron. Shoulder. Riddle floats over, Morrison with a huge knee to Riddle!

Morrison with a split leg, but Riddle blocks, grabs the body, sets up for a Bro Derek, hits it! Pin for 1..2….3!!!

Winner: Matt Riddle
I don’t know what the first few minutes of this match was. Morrison flipped for no reason, and there were about twelve kicks from each man that did jack and shit. After the break, they found their footing and gave the new champ a solid win, but the first half really hurt.
Total Rating: *1/2
Match Time: 10:38

Rhea Ripley is headed to RAW. Oh joy.

BACKSTAGE, YOUR 24/7 Champion is here with Damian. Truth is nearby with a ref. He hugs ihm and sends him away. Truth comes up to Bad Bunny, says he’s not trying to win his baby back, the ref is coming to his upcoming party. This guy and Michael Jordan saved the world from the MonSTARS. Truth says all he wants is an autograph.

Damian Priest takes offense to the mistake, says his name is Bad Bunny. Truth says his bad, Bunny. Lol. Truth runs away.

BACKSTAGE, Miz is mad at Pearce for allowing this savagery with Lashley to happen. Miz says there was nothing in writing with Lashley. It’s bad enough Bad Bunny got to hit him and get away with it. Pearce agrees, so many have doubted him, and everyone is looking at him with the title, which means he needs to take on all challenges. Miz says they need to delay for when the time is right. Pearce will respect whatever decision Miz wants to make, because the clock is ticking.

Match 2: The New Day vs Retribution (Mace and T-Bar)

Woods and T-Bar to start. T-Bar hits a knee to Woods then drops a club to the back of the neck. Woods works the arm. Taf to Kofi. T Bar hits a body slam. Tag to Mace, who stands above the fallen Kofi to grab him by the neck and slam him down a few times. Mace lifts Kofi up and T-Bar runs in to hit a big boot. Tag to T-Bar. He comes in to kick Kofi. Backbreaker to Kofi and a cover for 1..2..NO!!!

This is so boring, even my feed gives out on the match, returning to Kofi and Woods celebrating a victory.

Winners: The New Day
Total Rating: NR
Match Time: 2:59

Ali has a mic, and he is pissed. He wants to know how much longer they are going to do this, and I wonder the same thing. He shoves everyone, wants to know how much longer he must deal with this crap. He tosses the mic. He says they fail over and over again. Ali leaves the ring.

THE ULTIMATUM is Pearce Approved, apparently, because Pearce is in the middle of the ring saying time is up. He introduces Lashley, then Miz. He asks Miz if he has made his decision. Miz says he needs more time. Lashley tell him to quit stalling. He says wasting his time is wasting his money. Miz says he isn’t worried about money. He’s worried about the honor and respect the title deserves. Morrison would love a shot at the title.

MVP says there is no deal with other WWE Superstars. Miz says he doesn’t know what to tell them; he’s saying that he needs more time. Pearce stands in the middle of the men with his mouth agape.

Miz says he wants a week. He thinks it’s best for all parties.

In case you thought this was pointless, let’s add some Braun Strowman!

Out comes the man who, somehow, found a way to make wearing gloves look idiotic.

Braun says he deserves the title match, and it’s clear that Pearce and Shane have a vendetta against him. Braun says he deserves a shot. Miz says you won’t let Braun tlak to Lashley like that, will you? MVP tells Miz he ain’t stirrin shit up, so shut up. Miz says he isn’t stirring anything.

Shane McMahon is here because…why not.

They pipe in Shane-o-Mac cheers for some reason. Shane wants everyone to chill. He tells Adama to tighten things up a bit. As for Braun, he cant just expect a title shot. While he’s no the point, in case Braun is an idiot, the match at EC was for former WWE Champs to compete in, and Braun was never WWE champion.

Braun says that idea sucks, Shane sucks, Miz sucks, and Lashley sucks, too. He wants a title shot tonight. Shane says that idea sucks, so no. Braun says ok, then he wants Lashley. This intrigues Shane even though it makes no sense.
Shane wants to up the stakes. If Braun can beat Lashley, then next week we’ll see Braun vs Lashley vs The Miz.

Watching The Miz’s smile turn into concern is great.

Braun turns to the exiting Shane to tell him that was a smart decision, so Lashley clips his leg from behind.

Match 3: Tornado Tag Team Match
Lucha House Party vs The Hurt Business (Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin)

Oh fun, a tornado tag match. So Cedric has Lince, while Shelton has Metalik. They go with the beatdown until Cedric dropkicks Lince in the back and pins for 1..2.NO!!!! Metalik fights Shelton away, then gets a back body drop for his troubles. Cedric kicks Lince out of the ring, and really just ignores a tornado tag team match purpose by going at it with Shelton in a 2-on-1. Suplex and a cover for 1..NO!!! Lince runs in to stop the pin, so Shelton grabs him, hits some knees, sets up for a Gory bomb special, but Cedric dropkicks Lince off the back of Shelton. Cover for 1..2..NO!!! Outside, Cedric sends Lince into the barricade then the apron. He sends Lince back into the ring while Shelton and Metalik go at it in the corner. Boots from Cedric. He then runs to Metlaik to stop him as Shelton grabs Metalik for a powerbomb. Hits it. Cover from Cedric for 1….NO! Lince stops the pin. MVP yells for the end, Cedric tries to flip for a move, but Lince grabs him and kicks him in the head then hops to the apron. Kick to Shelton. Metalike with a tornado DDT. Lince flies with a splash off the top rope. Both men pin for 1..2…NO!!! Cedric breaks up the pin. Metalik flies to the apron, Cedric hits him with an elbow. Lince chops the chest, flies up and head scissors Cedric down, Metalik tags Lince for no damned reason.

Metalik goes for a stomp. Shelton in for a POUNCE!!! Lince flies, Shelton sends him flying forward, knee from Cedric, Pay Dirt! Pin for 1..2…3!!!

Winner: Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin
Don’t book a tornado tag team match unless you feel you can utilize the specialness of the match. Also, don’t tag your partner while in a tornado tag team match. This was annoyingly lackluster.
Total Rating: ½*
Match Time: 5:47

Match 4: Angel Garza vs Damian Priest

Angel tries for a shock attack, but Priest hits a HUGE clothesline! 1..2..NO!!! Priest attacks Angel in the corner. Right hand to the face. Another to the face. Whip to Garza, Priest with a leg lariat. Cover for 1..2.NO!!! Garza pulls Priest into the middle buckle. Clothesline to Priest, he still stands, so Garza hits another one, sending Priest to the mat. Gara rips his pants off and tosses them at Bad Bunny. Garza attacks Priest, then asks Bad Bunny what he’s going to do about it. Garza mounts Priest. He hits some rights. Priest sends him off, kick from Garza sends Priest into the corner. Garza with a running boot to the face of Priest in the corner. He tells Bad Bunny he’s waiting for him.

Garza sit on the bck of Priest, pulling the arm behind him. Garza lifts the chin! Camel Clutch! Cravat from Garza. He cinches the head, turns to Bad Bunny again. Priest is able to break the hold and stand. He turns and Garza kicks him. Priest is pissed. He blocks a punch with a punch. He catches a kick, slams the shin of Garza, then kicks the side of the head. Priest with a hard right hand. Bell clap, kick to the head, Priest hits the corner, calls for the end. Running back elbow. Broken Arrow. Pin for 1…2….NO!!! GARZA KICKED OUT! Well I’ll be damned. Garza gets himself to the bottom rope. Priest lifts him, hits a right hand to the face. Priest lifts up Garza. Tries to whip, right hand from Garza. Kick to Priest. Double underhook, but Garza looks at Bad Bunny again. Priest hits the ropes, Garza with a running clothesine, sending Priest to the outside!!! Garza talks more shit to Bad Bunny. He invites Bunny into the ring. He sits on the ropes, waiting for Bad Bunny. Bunny walks up the steps. He calls Garza crazy. Priest on the apron.

Kick to Garza. Top rope for Priest. He flies with a spinning leg lariat to the head! Priest calls for the end. Hit the Lights and a pin for 1..2…3!!!

Winner: Damian Priest
Pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed this. For a minute, I thought Garza was shooting, because there’s no way in hell they’d give him this much time, but his continued antics with Bad Bunny were kind of annoying. Still, I enjoyed all things wrestling about this.
Total Rating: ***
Match Time: 6:13

The 24/7 goons try and come to take the 24/7 title, but Priest clocks Akira and Bad Bunny sends Drew Gulak flying over the top rope.

WE RETURN to a recap of last week when Orton got eliminated due to overwhelming Bliss.

Orton is backstage to talk about failure, saying it’s not a word he is familiar with – his track record proves it, but recently he is surrounded by it. He should have won last week, and he would have had an advantage last night. He didn’t win, though. No, he was first eliminated, so what’s going on? What’s the distraction? He set The Fiend on fire, The Fiend is no more – although some think he is coming back, but he is not. Meanwhile, he finds himself in limbo, wondering what the distraction is, why can’t he focus – and he’s figured it out. He is still distracted. He chokes up a bit. Not by The Fiend, though, but by Alexa Bliss.

I would be, too.

Orton starts to choke on some black shit as it spews out of his mouth, and although this is utterly ridiculous, Orton foreshadowing with a few little coughs mid-promo was a nice touch.

WE REPLAY the pregnancy announcement then come to LIVE where Charlotte makes her entrance, probably happy that the storyline with her father piping down Lacey is over.

Match 5: Charlotte Flair and Asuka vs Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler

We come back from commercial, and Shayna is working the fingers of Asuka, putting a boot to the face. Shayna tags in Nia, who comes in to continue the punishment. Stomp to the hand of Asuka. Nia comes in, tags Shayna, Shayna tries for another stomp, but ASuka makes it to her corner to tag in Charlotte. She sends Shayna into the corner, a bunch of rights, misses a splsh, gets kicked in the thigh a few times. Charlotte backs Shayna into the corner. Nia gets a tag, she elbows Charlotte back and looks for a double team to Charlotte. Suplex to Charlotte, she lands on her feet, clothesline to Shyna, chop to Nia. Whip to Nia, reversed and Nia sends Charlotte into the corner. Big Boot to Shayna, Charlotte with a kick to Nia. Nia drops to one knee, Charlotte goes for a leg lariat, but nia catches her and hits a powerbomb. Cover for 1.2..NO!!!! Nia lifts Charlotte, drags her to the center of the ring, stalls for..something? Sleeper from Nia. Charlotte escapes, Nia whips her into the corner. Flair knocks Shayna off the apron, sunset flip into a bomb to Nia. Shayna stands on the apron, gets a tag, Charlotte tries for a tag but Shayna in to stop it and send Asuka off the apron. Charlotte with a surprise Figure Four! Nia in! Leg drop to Charlotte! Nia crawls away to the apron. Charlotte reaches for a tag, kicks Shayna away, tags in Asuka, and here comes the wild one with a drop kick off the top! Tag to Nia. Nia in, Asuka ducks under, high kick to the face, running hip attack to Shayna, one for Nia, one for Shayna, Nia runs, and Asuka sends her into Shayna. Codebreaker to Nia!!! Shining Wizard and a pin for 1..2…N!O!!! ARM BAR!!! Shayan kicks Asuka in the chest and lifts Asuka, but Asuka tries for the ASuka Lock! Charlotte in the ring!

Charlotte hits a big boot, but she HITS ASUKA!!! Charlotte sends Shayna outside. Nia runs with a leg drop. Pin for 1..2…3!!!

Winners: Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax
I just have zero entrance in anything Nia Jax does. The Big Boot to ASuka will inevitably set up the Mania match, and we get Charlotte thrusted into the main yet again, while an Asuka who has done jack shit all wrestling year must pretend to care about tag team titles.
Total Rating: **
Match Time: Timer issues

Match 6: Jeff Hardy vs Sheamus

Sheamus comes out strong, beatin that Hardy ass. Hardy hops off the top rope with a head scissors, but it doesn’t phase Sheamus. He steps on the face of hardy. Sheamus with an uppercut. Hardy with right hands, he tosses Sheamus to the outside. Sheamus back in nd Jeff drops an axe on Shemaus. Kicks form Hardy in the corner .Ref holds him back. Sheamus with a huge clothesine. Sheamus with a fireman’s. Jeff elbows out. He sends Sheamus to the apron, Sheamus attacks the lower back. Jeff hits an elbow. Dropkick to the shin. Another to the face. Jeff leaves the ring as Sheamus backs into the barricade. Jeff runs with a poetry in motion, using the steps.

BACK FROM BREAK and Shemaus hits a trio of Irish Curse backbreakers. Cover for 1..2.NO!!!! Clubs from above to the chest of Jeff. Sheamus lifts Jeff by the hair. Jeff fights back with body blows. Jawbreaker to Sheamus. Jeff kicks, locks the head, goes for Twist of Fate. Sheamus knees the back. Back body drop, but Jeff lands on his feet. He side steps a run, hit Whisper in the Wind. Jeff drops Sheamus, hits the Manhattan, leg drop, dropkick combo. Cover for 1..2.NO!!! Sheamus up, eats a kick from Jeff. Jeff to the top rope. He hits a splash and covers for 1..2.NO!! Sheamus kicks out and sends Jeff into the ropes. Jeff hits a Twist of Fate! Jeff flies! Lands on his feet.

Sheamus lifts, roll over, kick to Sheamus, Twist-No! Brogue is missed, Jeff rolls him up, 1..2…NO!!! Sheamus punches, hits a knee, hits the ropes, BROGUE KICK! Pin for 1..2…3!!!

Winner: Sheamus

Total Rating: ***
Match Time: 10:12

Charlotte is backstage with Ric. She is mad, says she cant focus on what she loves doing. Ric dancing around after she announced her pregnancy. It’s not funny to pretend it was Ric’s. It’s not about who thinks who is better, it’s about protecting their legacy. Why do you think she is busting her ass. This is not the performer she is. Go home, Ric. Please.

Ric says first of all, he never said the baby was his. Ok? Two, he saw a lot of potential in a genuine good human being. Flair calls Ric out for his love of blondes. It’s not funny. Lacey is a co-worker. Flair say potential in her. He thought he could motivate her. Ric didn’t make her the champ she is, but he had some part in it, he’d like to think. Now she’s one of the all-time greats, but how bout the tough love and advice? It’s real. He doesn’t mean bad by it, he wants the best. He was trying to expand the brand!

Charlotte calls out the Flair bs during her time. This is her time to prove that she is Charlotte Flair, not Ric Flair’s daughter. She thinks Ric still wants to be The Nature Boy even on his daughter’s time. So go home.

Charlotte thinks better of this, says thank you for all he has given, but let her try to be Charlotte Flair. She loves him, that’s all.

Charlotte walks away.

This is the most raw emotion Charlotte has ever shown, and it would have been so much more powerful had we not had weeks of shit that made no sense, and made even LESS sense after this segment.

Match 7: Naomi and Lana vs Dana Brooke and Mandy Rose

Naomi and Dana to start but it’s short as Lana comes in with a leg drop and a cover for 1..NO!! Dana tags in Mandy and hits a body slam to Lana. Mandy with a running knee .Cover for 1…2.NO! Mandy sends lana into the corner and kicks her down then tags in Dana. Dana with the springboard back elbow. Tag to Mandy. Whip to Lana into a body-no Lana lands on her feet and reaches for a tag. Mandy stops her, Lana punches. Tag to Naomi. Mandy whips Lana into the corner, sending Dana out.

We get a double X-Factor move from lana and Naomi, showing synchronicity. Pin for 1..2..3!!

Winners: Naomi and Lana
They didn’t try, why should I?
Total Rating: NR
Match Time: 1:36

Match 8: Ricochet vs AJ Styles

Ricochet starts off hot, sending AJ to the outside. Riccohet waits for AJ to re-enter, then hits him with a body slam and an elbow drop. Ric hits the ropes, hits another elbow drop, cover for 1..2.NO!!! Kick to the back of AJ. He locks the head, sends AJ into the corner. AJ kicks Ric own then hits a suplex, sending Ricochet INTO the buckle. Both men up in the center of the ring until AJ hits a dropkick, sending Ric back down to the mat. AJ kicks Ric in the face, in the corner. Another kick. AJ says he can do this all day long, but its 7:45 and we have a main event, so that’s just not true. Ric with some blows to the head. Throat thrust from AJ sends Ric reeling! AJ turns him, kick! Suplex onto the ropes, tries for the Styles Clash like last time, but Ric bounces off the ropes and hits a head scissors! Cover for 1..2..NO!!!! Ric turns hits a high kcik to the head, Half-Nelson suplex, bridge, 1..2….NO!!!

Ric to the top rope! 630, rolls through, sets up for recoil, but Aj grabs the head and just sends a knee right into it! Styles Clash! Pin for 1..2..3!!!

Winner: AJ Styles
Nice to see a bit of an edge from Ricochet, but it didn’t lead to much.
Total Rating: **
Match Time: 3:46

After the match, Omos gets in the ring to stare down Ricochet along with AJ.

Backstage, Miz is upset that this is not the plan. He needs to figure out some other way.

In comes Braun’s nipples. We zoom out, thankfully, and Miz and Morrison walk away.

BACK FROM THE BREAK, and after the big men come out, The Miz and his title makes his entrance.

Match 9: Braun Strowman vs Bobby Lashley

LOCKUP! They tangle along the ropes, neither man overpowering the other. They break in the corner. Lashley with a tackle, sending Braun on his ass. Braun is up and gutwrenches then tosses Lashley down on the mat. Gets a pin for 1. Hammers to Laslhey. Whip out of the corner, Lashley hits the corner hard. Elbow from Braun in the corner. He bounces off the corner and hits a hard splash. Lashley holds onto the ropes to prevent a move, so Braun dumps him to the outside. Braun leaves the ring, rushes the corner, Lashley hops on the apron, and Braun runs his knees into the steps! Lashley up on the steps, flies with a clothesline to Braun. Lashley sends Braun into the ring. He follows, ducks a clothesline, boot to the knee. Lashley with aa Flatliner to the knee’d Braun! Cover for 1..2.NO!!! punches down to Braun! Lashley calls for the end. FULL NELSON attempt, but Braun is a big boy. He elbows out and hits a right, blocked by Lashley. Kick from Lashley. Locks the head, goes for a suplex, doesn’t get it! KIDNEY SHOT FROM BRAUN! Huge clothesline to Lashley! Braun hits the corner, rushes, and another splash! Lifted up. POWERSLAM! Cover for 1..2…NO!!!!!

The Miz is shocked. Braun is pissed. Lashley is up. Braun grabs him for another one, Lashley lands on his feet, SPINEBUSTER to Braun!!!! He hits the ropes, again, SPEAR TO STROWMAN! Cover for 1..2……3!!!!

Winner: Bobby Lashley
Not only was this a lot of action in less than five minutes, but it was a Lashley show if there ever was one. Kudos to Braun for taking the fall, because this gave us the Lashley we’ve been pining for. Solid ending to a lackluster RAW.
Total Rating: ***
Match Time: 4:14

Lashley shows shock but is incredibly happy. He hits the ropes and clips the leg of Braun, dropping him to a knee. FULL NELSON TO BRAUN!!!

Miz tries to attack, but Lashley is ready. SPEAR TO MIZ!!!

End Show

The final score: review Average
The 411
RAW's entire first two hours lacked any type of real energy or severity to even be worth watching, and even though the final hour showed sparks of entertainment, it was far too long into the show to mean anything. I'm all for The Miz cashing in, and it's within Miz's nature to try and weasel out of going against Lashley, but nothing has shown us that Drew would just miss an entire RAW outside of Covid-related reasons. Them having a timer for the ultimatum made little sense, even if Pearce is "annoyed" at The Miz. Just doesn't gel well, and once Shane McMahon came out, the whole thing just became a convoluted mess. The attempt was made more obvious when the main event happened, which saw Lashley not only put on a solid quick with Braun Strowman, but looked like a million bucks in doing so. In other news, Lacey's pregnancy thankfully ended a storyline that probably had no real ending, and was not doing anything for anyone involved except for maybe Ric Flair. Charlotte's promo backstage was the first time I ever saw emotion from her, which means it was the first time throughout all this where something someone said mattered or had any actual weight. There was just not a lot of meat on the bone tonight until the end, and unfortunately for the WWE, that seems to be the case more often than not.

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