Welcome to WWE Raw Reaction, where I offer my take on this week’s show in Columbia, SC for what was the 1500th episode of Raw.
As always, you can check out John’s full in-depth report here.
Before we start off, I would like to congratulate Raw for reaching episode number 1500. That’s a fantastic milestone that they did not mention on air. Next year, Raw turns 30 years old in January and I suspect that there will be a nice celebration for that.
A video recap from Elimination Chamber (my thoughts on that are here) opens the show before Promo Time with the new WWE Champion, Brock Lesnar. Before Lesnar can speak, Paul Heyman interrupts. Heyman still can do things for Lesnar now so he booked a title match in Madison Square Garden at Not Saturday Night’s Main Event in two weeks. That’s quite disappointing I must say. This face Brock has been really fun and he’s going to Smackdown on Friday.
Our opening contest is tag team action between Alpha Academy and The Street Profits. It was a great effort from all four guys. They mesh well together and have quality matches. Dawkins did an impressive somersault dive to the floor that Ford usually does. The ending was a bit of a shocker though. Otis picked up the win for his team in this non-title affair after Ford collapsed trying to body slam Otis. That was a unique finish for sure.
NXT’s Tommaso Ciampa is backstage getting interviewed by Kevin Patrick. Ciampa was ready for Monday night and the upcoming tag match. Ciampa’s partner is Finn Balor! The tag match against Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode is up next. It was a great match. Balor and Ciampa worked really well together as a team and I could see them as Raw Tag Team Champions if Ciampa gets bumped to the main roster. Ciampa picked up the win for his team by pinning Roode. Ciampa and Ziggler have a date on NXT this week. (This was written after the NXT match and it did not disappoint. If you missed NXT, watch that match.)
MizTV is up next and Miz is going to announce his tag team partner to face the Mysterios at WrestleMania. The Mysterios come out and say it doesn’t matter who it is, since Miz has no friends in the locker room. Miz announces Logan Paul as his partner in a bit of a letdown. Miz had hinted Cody Rhodes, but he deserved better. So do the Mysterios, but at least they’ll make the card this year.
Veer Mahaan is ready to rule the kingdom whenever he shows up on Raw. Maybe he’s trying to reform The Kingdom first?
Rhea Ripley is out to squash Nikki A.S.H. yet again. At least Ripley didn’t have issues with her top this week. Maybe Nikki can find her Sanity soon.
The United States Champion Damian Priest has a tune-up match with Shelton Benjamin. This would have been a great match several years ago, but Benjamin isn’t taken really seriously anymore. After the match, Priest issues an open challenge for a title match next week and Finn Balor accepts it. That is going to be a great match.
Since Raw is three hours, we have some time to kill so 24/7 Champion Reggie comes out to kiss and make up with Dana Brooke. Reggie lays down so Dana can pin him to regain the 24/7 title. Why is this title still a thing?
Promo Time with Bianca Belair is next. Belair talks WrestleMania to bring out her WrestleMania opponent, Becky Lynch. Good dueling promos to lead into the scheduled match between Belair and Doudrop.
The match between Belair and Doudrop was really good as we’ve seen over the past month or so from these two. It was competitive with some back and forth. Belair continues to impress me with her power, tossing Doudrop for a powerbomb and KOD to end the match. Lynch looked upset while Belair was heaving Doudrop around.
Promo Time with Edge is next. Edge shared some WrestleMania memories of his and he’s looking for a phenomenal challenge for WrestleMania, so somebody needs to step up. Nobody stepped up this week, but I’ll pencil in AJ Styles as the one who steps up in a week or two.
Main event time with RK-Bro taking on Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens. If Rollins/Owens win, they are added to the Raw Tag Team Title match in two weeks. I think that tells us how this is going to go. The match was great and given sufficient time. Owens and Rollins work really well together as a team and I could see them capture the tag titles. They just click together. The ending was a great divide and conquer strategy from Rollins and Owens. Rollins eliminated Orton on the floor so they could double up on Riddle to earn a spot in the tag title match in two weeks to close us out.
Let’s take a look at tonight’s highs and lows.
Tonight was a really good night for tag team action. All three tag matches were given sufficient time and were all solid bouts. I’m sure Teddy Long would be proud.
I can’t wait to see who answers Edge’s WrestleMania challenge. I’m really hoping it will be AJ Styles. That would truly be phenomenal.
Can we just make the 24/7 title just go away? The novelty of the title has worn off.
Let’s hope Logan Paul can put in a decent performance at WrestleMania. I feel bad for the Mysterios for having to sell for this guy.
You can hit me up on Facebook or Twitter (@ciscowebwiz76) with any comments or discussion.
That’s all I’ve got, until next time.