Top 10 Wrestling Stories of the Week 1/27: WWE Raw Celebrates 30 Years, Jay Briscoe AEW Dynamite Tribute, Royal Rumble, More

wwe raw 30 roman reigns sami zayn

Welcome back, TJR readers! Did you spend all day Friday waiting for a phone call to be in the Royal Rumble, and missed WWE Smackdown? Perhaps you spent all day Monday reminiscing about the last 30 years of wrestling, and missed Raw.

Worry not for I have returned with another edition of the Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week.

10. Timothy Thatcher to Debut on AEW Dynamite

Apparently, none of the 150 wrestlers on AEW’s roster were able to face Bryan Danielson next week. This past Wednesday on Dynamite, Danielson defeated Brian Cage to continue his quest to challenge MJF for the AEW World Championship at AEW Revolution. After the match MJF attempted to attack and injure Danielson, but Konosuke Takeshita made the save. Later in the evening, MJF showed a video package of Danielson’s next opponent, featuring former NXT star Timothy Thatcher. Thatcher was a part of NXT from April 2020 to August 2021, and is best remembered for winning two Fight Pit Matches against Matt Riddle and Tommaso Ciampa. After the match, Thatcher will likely enter another Pit, known as AEW Dark. (TJRWrestling)

9. Nikkita Lyons Suffers Serious Injury

NXT will be without one of its biggest ASSets for quite a while. This week on Twitter, Nikkita Lyons announced that she had torn her ACL and meniscus. Lyons was last seen on January 20th, on NXT’s taped Level UP program. There is no timetable for her return, but these injuries will likely keep her out of the ring for 7-10 months or more. Lyons may be able to recover quicker, however, as she never does anything half-assed. (TJRWrestling)

8. Tag Tournament Begins on Smackdown

The Tag Team Tournament to crown the new number-one contenders for the Usos Smackdown Tag Team Championships began in a big way this week. This past Friday on Smackdown, a total of four tournament matches occurred. The team of Drew McIntyre and Sheamus defeated The Viking Raiders. Hit Row was victorious against Los Lotharios. The Brawling Brutes advanced by beating Imperium. Finally, Legado Del Fantasma advanced by defeating the Maximum Male Models. Drew McIntyre and Sheamus will now face Hit Row in the semifinals, where Legado Del Fantasma will face The Brawling Brutes. Upon watching Smackdown, Tony Khan responded by saying, “Wow that is a lot of tournament matches.” (TJRWrestling)

sheamus drew mcintyre wwe adam pearce

7. Vince McMahon Faces Third Lawsuit

Vince McMahon’s legal issues grew even more this week. After already facing Lawsuits from investor Scott Fellows and the pension fund for the Detroit Police and Fire Department for how McMahon forced himself back onto the Board of Directors, another lawsuit was filed against McMahon this week. This new lawsuit does not focus on McMahon’s return however, instead, they are suing over McMahon’s alleged history of paying to cover up sexual harassment accusations. With all of these lawsuits and allegations, Saudi Arabia may have second thoughts about trying to purchase the company, as they don’t want to deal with the bad publicity. (TJRWrestling)

Vince McMahon arrested WWE

6. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin Reportedly Offered Two Huge Matches

WWE reportedly really wants Stone Cold Steve Austin to wrestle another match. This week it was reported that Austin has been offered matches against both Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns as well as Brock Lesnar. Austin memorably competed for the first time in almost 20 years, when he defeated Kevin Owens in a Street Fight at WrestleMania 38. It is unclear if Austin has accepted either of the matches offered to him, or if he is holding out for the chance to wrestle Mandy Rose. (TJRWrestling)

steve austin roman reigns wwe

5. The Undertaker Brings Back American Badass Persona

This past Monday on Raw, WWE celebrated 30 years of their marquee program. WWE brought back multiple legends for the occasion, including Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Kurt Angle and DX. One legend who perhaps made a bigger impact on the show than any other however, was the legendary WWE Hall of Famer The Undertaker. Taker appeared to interrupt an in-ring promo by LA Knight. For the first time in 20 years, however, The Undertaker came to the ring in his ‘American Badass’ persona. Knight attempted to leave the ring and avoid Taker, but was then met by Bray Wyatt. Knight then got back into the ring, and proceeded to walk right into a Chokeslam by Taker. Instead of Chokeslamming Knight however, Taker passed him off to Wyatt who hit a Sister Abigail on Knight. Taker then whispered something into Wyatt’s ear to end the segment. It is unknown what Taker said to Wyatt, but it could have been, “Did you see Mandy Rose is having a sale this week?” (TJRWrestling)

4. Brock Lesnar Returns on Raw

Brock Lesnar clearly is not done with Bobby Lashley. This past Monday on Raw, Lesnar appeared during the Main Event match between WWE United States Champion Austin Theory and Bobby Lashley. Lesnar then proceeded to give Lashley an F5, before then giving Theory one as well. Lesnar however purposely threw Theory on top of Lashley, allowing Theory to get the win. Theory and Lesnar wrestled each other twice in 2022, with each of them winning one match. It now appears that Lashley will face Lesnar one more time, which is still like thirty fewer times than Roman Reigns faced Lesnar. (TJRWrestling)

3. The Bloodline Puts Sami Zayn on Trial

It was a very tense night for Sami Zayn this past Monday on Raw. During the special 30th anniversary episode of Monday Night Raw, Zayn was put on trial by his fellow Bloodline members. Paul Heyman acted as the prosecution for the proceedings, showing a video of perceived slights by Zayn to the rest of the group. This was a first enough for Roman Reigns to set Solo Sikoa on Zayn but in a huge twist of fate, Jey Uso stopped his younger brother. Jey Uso then showed a video of numerous times Zayn had helped out The Bloodline. Reigns then found Zayn “Not Guilty…for now”, before telling him he will face a final test at the Royal Rumble this Saturday. It is unknown at this time what the final test will be, but hopefully for Zayn it is not on the Imperial System of Measurement. (TJRWrestling)

2. Mark Briscoe Wrestles on AEW Dynamite in Jay Briscoe Tribute Match

Lots of tissues were needed for this week’s episode of Dynamite. Mark Briscoe, on the 39th birthday of his recently deceased brother Jay, competed in the main event. Briscoe wrestled and defeated his long-time ROH co-worker/friend Jay Lethal, in a very good and very emotional match. After the match, Lethal and Briscoe hugged while the entire locker room emptied to pay tribute to Jay Briscoe. It was reported that AEW wanted to have the tribute to Jay last week on the show, but Warners Bros Discovery would not allow it. It is unclear what caused WBD to suddenly change their mind, but it could have been that they mistakenly heard that someone involved had slapped their wife. (TJRWrestling)

1. The WWE Royal Rumble to Take Place This Saturday

The Road to WrestleMania officially begins this Saturday. The WWE Royal Rumble is set to take place this Saturday night at 8PMET. So far five matches have been announced including Bianca Belair defending the Raw Women’s Championship against Alexa Bliss. Bray Wyatt will face LA Knight in a Mountain Dew Pitch Black Match. Roman Reigns will defend the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship against Kevin Owens. Finally, both the Men and Women will both compete in their respective Royal Rumble matches. Like always rumors are running wild on who will make a surprise appearance in the Rumble this year. I have no insight on who the surprises may be, but I can confirm that John Canton is likely way too busy “researching” Mandy Rose to compete this year. (TJRWrestling)

That concludes another edition of The Top Ten Wrestling Stories of the Week. Although I often joke, I have recently started refereeing with NYCW and FCWA, and respect more than ever what wrestlers do every week. I wrote an article all about it all right here. If you like what I do, despite my jokes being almost as bad as drawing number 1 in the Rumble, then follow me on Twitter @Fowlerwrestlin1.and listen to my Podcast The Smark and the Noob. Thank you to all of those who read this every week.