Welcome to the WWE Raw Reaction, where I offer my take on this week’s show in Memphis.
As always, you can check out John’s full in-depth review here.
The show starts a little differently this week. We get Saturday Night Main Event style promos from Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens, and Big E to toss us right into the Big E/Kevin Owens Steel Cage Match. The cage match was fantastic as you would expect from these two. They mesh together quite well. We even got the obligatory Seth Rollins cage interference spot. Owens and Big E went to war in the cage and did not disappoint. Big E hit a Big Ending off the top but opted to crawl out of the cage instead of pinning Owens to win the match. After the match, Rollins attacks his two Day 1 opponents before Big E clears the ring.
We get back from the break with everyone laid out to prompt a replay of Bobby Lashley smashing everyone in the ring. I’m cool with a triple threat instead of a fatal four-way.
Up next, Nikki A.S.H. comes out to lose to Queen Zelina with their respective tag team partners in their corner. I wonder if Nikki regrets coming up with the Nikki A.S.H. character yet?
The first match in the RK-Bro-Nament has AJ Styles and Omos taking on the Street Profits in a tag match. The winner of the tournament gets a tag title shot against RK-Bro, likely at Day 1. Riddle and Randy Orton are out at commentary in old-school WWE blazers, a la Vince McMahon circa 1988. The tournament concept is a decent idea but the match was drenched in weak sauce. The only thing noteworthy was Omos chalked up his first actual protected countout loss here. The Styles/Omos split is coming soon and this put it in motion.
The United States Champion Damian Priest is up next with another open challenge title match. Robert Roode answered the challenge and the match wasn’t half bad given the fact there isn’t a feud associated with it. Roode put together a solid match to put Priest over with. After Roode lost, Dolph Ziggler attacked Priest to give their match next week an angle.
The WWE promoted revisionist history as the first-ever women’s main event on Raw happened on this exact date in 2004 with Lita defeating Trish Stratus to capture the WWF Women’s Championship. This was actually the third women’s main event on Raw and the first for the title. At least they got the blonde and redhead part right. Becky Lynch defends against Liv Morgan in the main event tonight.
Bianca Belair takes on Doudrop next. The match was decent but could have been better given the talent in the ring. Doudrop seems to be doing better in the heel role and will likely make the gimmick work as a heel. Belair tried to pick Doudrop up for the KOD, using the ropes for some extra help but couldn’t do it. Doudrop walked out at that point for our second countout decision for the night. I’ll pencil in a rematch for next week.
MizTV with Edge is up next. We got rather basic promos from these two and a challenge for a match at Day 1. At least they built upon what was said last week. For some reason, I’m just not feeling this feud. I’m hoping Edge gets a far better opponent than Miz for WrestleMania.
We are reminded that Veer Mahaan is coming, just like Emmalina.
Dominik Mysterio took on Chad Gable of the Alpha Academy next with Rey Mysterio and Otis shouting words of encouragement from the outside. Oh wait, this was an RK-Bro-Nament match where neither guy tagged out. Dominik busted out the dreaded ROLLUP OF DEATH~! on Gable for the quick win. Odd that we have two faces advancing to the finals, but I’m not on Creative. Riddle indicated on commentary he’d like to face the Mysterios so I’ll pick them to win the tournament next week. At least it’ll be a better match.
Finn Balor is out next to take on T-Bar. Balor gets the obvious win and makes T-Bar look good in the process. Maybe we can do something worthwhile with T-Bar? After the match, Austin Theory attacked Balor to start their feud. I’ll allow it.
There was a pointless 24/7 title segment with the guys trying to figure out how to get the title off of Dana Brooke when Tamina showed up to chase her off.
It’s main event time with Becky Lynch defending the Raw Women’s Championship against Liv Morgan. Morgan sold nervousness in the beginning and the match itself was really good. Lynch got Morgan over more and made her look like she belonged in a championship match. Morgan was able to keep up with Lynch and looked like a champion in the making. Lynch pulled off a tainted victory, of course, by replaying the Survivor Series pin. Morgan was upset after the match as we drew to a close.
Let’s look at tonight’s highs and lows.
Becky Lynch made Liv Morgan into a star tonight. Morgan will fulfill her destiny in one of two ways, winning a rematch at Day 1 or winning the 2022 Women’s Royal Rumble and defeating Lynch at WrestleMania. I originally had Morgan pegged as Miss Money in the Bank 2022, but I am really leaning towards the Rumble win to get her WrestleMania Moment. I believe 2022 will be the year of Liv Morgan.
Our other main event, the steel cage match between Big E and Kevin Owens was also really good. It set up the WWE Championship Day 1 match perfectly. Any of the three could win the title. I just hope Lashley doesn’t get added to make it a fatal four-way match. The triple threat is more than sufficient.
I’m just not feeling the Edge/Miz feud. Perhaps the Mrs’s will get involved at some point. The promo work should be really good though.
The RK-Bro-Nament looked good on paper. It just didn’t really seem to deliver match wise. Let’s hope that the Street Profits/Mysterios can pick things up next week.
You can find me on Facebook or Twitter (@ciscowebwiz76) with any comments or discussion. I really do appreciate good discussions.
That’s all I’ve got, until next time.