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The John Report: The WWE Raw Deal 02/21/22 Review

wwe raw deal feb 21

Welcome to the WWE Raw Deal review. The Elimination Chamber Premium Live Event is in the books and now WWE is officially on the road to WrestleMania in less than six weeks.

Tonight’s Raw is episode #1500 of WWE’s flagship show that has been on the air for 29 years. I thought they would at least try to make a big deal about tonight’s episode. Instead, they barely advertised anything all day going into it until a few things appeared about 90 minutes before show time. I think 1500 is something to be proud of. Next January will be 30 years of Raw by the way, so I figure that will be celebrated when we get to that point. Anyway, here’s the review to my Elimination Chamber review from Saturday as well as a reaction column from Kelly and Joel had five thoughts about the key happenings from the show.

This is the Raw Deal for episode #1500 of Monday Night Raw. It’s taking place at the Colonial Life Arena in Columbia, SC. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

The show began with highlights from Elimination Chamber including Brock Lesnar winning the WWE Title and Roman Reigns keeping his Universal Title.

Let’s Hear from Brock Lesnar

Brock Lesnar made his entrance wearing a sweater and a cowboy hat with the WWE Championship on his shoulder. Lesnar greeted fans all around the ring, stood on the announce table for a bit and then went into the ring. The graphic was shown letting us know that at WrestleMania it’s Winner Take All – Title vs. Title at WrestleMania when Lesnar faces Reigns. The Raw commentary team was Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves and Byron Saxton.

Lesnar took off the heavy sweater as the fans chanted “Suplex City” for him. Lesnar thanked them for that. Lesnar said the new WWE Heavyweight Champion is in South Carolina and that led to cheers. There was an interruption.

Paul Heyman showed up to try to tell us his name, Lesnar interrupted and the fans chanted “you suck” with Lesnar joining them. Heyman said the Special Counsel of the Tribal Chief does not suck. Heyman claimed that Reigns is the real Heavyweight Champion of WWE. Heyman said he knows Lesnar is so myopic right now looking at WrestleMania – Winner Take All in a Title vs. Title Match, but Heyman claims there’s a roadblock in his way. Heyman said that Lesnar may not make it to WrestleMania as the WWE Title holder. Heyman said that Lesnar has to defend the WWE Title on Saturday, March 5th in Madison Square Garden, so Heyman thinks that Lesnar isn’t going to make it to WrestleMania as the champion.

Lesnar said he can still appreciate Paul even though “you’re such a dick.” That was an interesting line. Lesnar said he knew all about what he has coming up. Heyman spoke about Bobby Lashley maybe not being able to clear concussion protocol by March 5 – it’s really a shoulder injury with Lashley out of action. Lesnar said he’s doing just fine without Heyman. Lesnar said that he knows that on Friday night, Heyman is going to be on Smackdown with Roman Reigns and Lesnar asked if you know where he’s going to be on Friday? Heyman guessed: “Saskatchewan?” Nope. Lesnar said he’ll be on Smackdown to confront Roman Reigns. Lesnar’s music played to end it while Heyman left.

Analysis: A simple promo by the happy babyface Brock Lesnar with Paul Heyman trying to ruin Brock’s happiness, but Brock showed that he was ready to fire back. It was a way to promote Lesnar and Reigns facing off on Smackdown this Friday as well as Lesnar’s MSG title defense in a few weeks. It was fine. I assume Brock goes on first so he can jump on a private jet right after and go home. Good for him.

Seth “Freakin” Rollins and Kevin Owens were shown standing there with Kevin Patrick, who mentioned their paths to WrestleMania are not clear. Owens said that they are the best tag team on Raw. They talked about beating RK-Bro two weeks ago, then Rollins beat Randy Orton last week and then when they beat RK-Bro they get to enter the upcoming Tag Team Title match. Owens said maybe if they win the titles, they’ll challenge the Usos in a Title vs. Title match. Owens said knowing possibly going to WrestleMania with his “best friend” Rollins makes it almost bearable to go to that hellhole in Dallas, Texas.

Analysis: A solid heel promo. There’s Owens continuing to trash Texas to tease the likely WrestleMania match against WWE and Texas legend “Stone Cold” Steve Austin.

The Street Profits entered for a match against Alpha Academy up next.

(Commercial)

The announcers had a rundown of what’s to come on this week’s show including Edge’s return and the RK-Bro vs. Rollins/Owens tag team match.

Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis) vs. The Street Profits (Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins)

This is not for Raw Tag Team Titles held by Alpha Academy. Dawkins with a shoulder tackle on Gable, then Gable got a hold of Dawkins on the mat and Dawkins came back with an arm drag. Ford tagged in with an impressive dropkick. Gable managed to send Ford into the heel corner leading to Otis tagging with a forearm to the back. Otis with a punch to the gut along with a hard body slam. Gable knocked Dawkins off the apron, Ford sent Otis out of the ring and a back body drop on Gable over the top to the floor. Dawkins tagged in, the AA guys punched Ford and Dawkins hit a somersault dive over the top onto the three guys. Nice hops by Dawkins there! He landed on his feet. It’s usually Ford that goes to the air for this team. Good work by Dawkins.

(Commercial)

The match continued with Ford isolated by the heels with Otis hitting a lefty clothesline to knock him down. Ford went for a move over the top rope on Gable, but Gable countered it into a Northern Lights Suplex for two. It’s a spot we’ve seen two guys do before and it looks great. Dawkins tagged in with a leap over Gable, then a jumping elbow, overhead suplex and the double underhook neckbreaker. Dawkins with a corner splash. Ford jumped off the top with a Blockbuster on Gable, who was on the shoulders of Dawkins and Otis broke up the pin. Otis whipped Dawkins into the barricade. Ford kicked Otis on the floor. Ford made a blind tag, Ford sent Gable out of the ring, Ford with three kicks to Otis and Ford couldn’t slam Otis, so Otis landed on top. Gable held the food of Ford to help Otis pin Ford for the win. It went ten minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis)

Analysis: *** This was a good match between two teams that are very talented and wrestled many times in the past. It’s nice to see the heel champions get the win since we know champions lose non-title matches in WWE a lot. Good job by Dawkins after the hot tag, Ford did well also, Otis used his power and then Gable got involved in the finish by cheating to give Otis the win. It was booked well.

A video was shown last week’s Raw when Tommaso Ciampa got involved at ringside with Dolph Ziggler.

Tommaso Ciampa was interviewed by Kevin Patrick. Ciampa said this started because Ziggler came on his show and Ciampa isn’t nervous. Ciampa said he’s found the right guy to team up with. Finn Balor talked about how Raw is his home now, but he will never forget where he came from (NXT) and Balor noted he’s faced Ciampa many times in the past. Balor said now they will stand shoulder to shoulder as a team on Raw.

Finn Balor made his entrance for tag team action. Balor has been off for several weeks selling an attack from Austin Theory. Balor was greeted with cheers.

Analysis: There have been reports he had some personal issues that saw him go back to Ireland. I don’t know if he’s got a sick family member or what. I hope everything is okay. I’m glad Finn is back.

(Commercial)

The end of Tommaso’s Ciampa entrance was shown. The Dirty Dawgs duo of Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode were up next. They showed last week at NXT Vengeance Day when Dolph Ziggler hit Bron Breakker with a superkick, then Ciampa showed up and brawled with Ziggler. Ciampa faces Ziggler on NXT on Tuesday.

Finn Balor & Tommaso Ciampa vs. Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode

It was noted by Graves that three of the four guys in this match were former NXT Champions while Ziggler was not mainly because he was never in NXT before. Now Ziggler has his sights set on that title. Ciampa with an elbow on Roode followed by a side headlock. Ziggler tagged in with an eye rake on Ciampa, but Ciampa came back with a clothesline. Balor tagged in, Ciampa with a knee that sent Ziggler to the floor and Balor ran the ropes with a somersault dive over the top onto both heels. It’s the same kind of spot that happened in the previous tag team match leading to a break.

(Commercial)

Ziggler was working over Ciampa as the face in peril with a kick to the leg. Roode tagged in to choke Ciampa against the middle rope. Ciampa fought out of a chinlock and neckbreaker attempt with a clothesline. Balor tagged in with a running forearm, a double foot stomp to the chest and Balor hit an elbow drop to the chest for two as Ziggler made the save. Ziggler sent Ciampa over the top to the floor, Balor clothesline Ziggler over the top to the floor and Roode hit a spinebuster for two. Balor avoided a suplex, then a Slingblade neckbreaker and Ciampa charged right into a back elbow from Roode. Ciampa with a jumping knee to knock down Roode. Ciampa tried a move, Roode fought out and Ciampa covered while using his upper body against Roode’s legs, so Ciampa pinned Roode to win the match after 11 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Finn Balor & Tommaso Ciampa

Analysis: ***1/4 This was a good match with a lot of action with four veterans that are talented. Balor & Ciampa worked very well together while Ziggler/Roode know how to get some heat as the heel team. Ciampa beating Roode clean makes sense since I assume Ziggler will beat Ciampa on NXT this Tuesday. I thought the finish could have been booked better and a more impactful win, but I get why they did what they did to make it look close.

The announcers mentioned the three WrestleMania 38 matches that are official right now:

Winner Take All – Title vs. Title: Universal Champion Roman Reigns vs. WWE Champion Brock Lesnar

Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Bianca Belair

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Ronda Rousey

Plenty of tickets are still available for the two nights on Saturday, April 2, and Sunday, April 3.

The Miz made his entrance for Miz TV. No Maryse this week, which is a shame. I like her more than Miz. I wonder why. Anyway, Miz hosts Miz TV after a break.

A commercial aired for Smackdown on Friday promoting Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns on this week’s show.

(Commercial)

Miz TV

The Miz did his usual promo bragging about himself to start the segment. Miz ripped on Rey Mysterio for cheating at Elimination Chamber because he used Dominik Mysterio to help him. Miz tried to say that Rey was just like him. Miz said that he has come to the realization that the fans are the ones that cannot be trusted. Miz claimed he has found a new tag team partner that he can relate to, he is somebody that comes from a fighting family, he is very “dashing” and is an athlete as well as a celebrity.

Rey & Dominik Mysterio showed up for the interruption. Rey said that they are not the same while adding that nobody in the locker room likes Miz. Rey ripped on Miz some more. Miz said that at their match at Elimination Chamber, it kind of felt like a handicap match. Miz claimed Rey did not deserve to win. Miz ripped on Dominik saying he didn’t belong in WWE while Dominik fired back that he got in Miz’s face saying he’s been part of WWE since he was watching as a kid. Dominik said that this is his blood, this is his family, this is his life and this is everything he knows. Dominik tried to threaten Miz, so Miz cut him off. Miz said he proposed a tag team match with his new tag team partner against The Mysterios at WrestleMania. The Miz introduced “social media megastar” Logan Paul.

Logan Paul made his entrance with the fans booing him while Paul was excited to get into the ring. Logan ripped on Rey for being small. Dominik accepted the WrestleMania tag team match challenge. Miz did a cheap shot on Dominik while Logan tackled Rey along with some punches. Miz and Logan whipped Rey shoulder-first into the turnbuckle. Miz and Logan whipped Dominik into the turnbuckle as well. The fans booed. Miz hit a Skull Crushing Finale on Rey. Paul got a hold of Dominik and gave Dominik a Skull Crushing Finale as well. Miz and Logan celebrated.

Analysis: There’s a new match for WrestleMania. Miz teased Cody Rhodes possibly appearing since he said “Dashing” like the old gimmick that Cody portrayed in WWE, but I’m glad it’s not Cody in this spot. I’d prefer to see Cody as a singles guy if he’s back in WWE. It was a classic way to get some heat on the heels with cheap attacks and they stood tall. I don’t know that much about Logan Paul, but I know he boxes while staying in shape, so with some training, he should be fine as a heel in WWE for one match. The Mysterios should win at WrestleMania.

The Alpha Academy duo Chad Gable & Otis were interviewed while holding their Raw Tag Team Titles. Gable complained about Seth Rollins & Kevin Owens possibly being added to their Tag Team Title match in two weeks. That was pretty much it.

Rhea Ripley entered for a singles match.

A commercial aired for a “reality show” between Corey Graves & Carmella on WWE’s Youtube channel starting next Monday. It looks like the kind of show Corey Graves would make fun of if he wasn’t on it. Just saying.

(Commercial)

A video aired about Veer Mahaan saying your kingdom will become his. This has been going on since October. He was on Raw for months before that, yet they only seem to use him on Main Event.

Rhea Ripley vs. Nikki A.S.H.

I don’t know why we need to see this match again. Nikki said she’s a superhero, she slapped Ripley and Ripley did a headbutt. Ripley hit a delayed vertical suplex. Nikki left the ring, then Ripley sent Nikki into the hood of the commentary table. Back in the ring, Nikki punched Ripley repeatedly, then Ripley came back with a kick to the head and a Riptide slam for the pinfall win. It went about three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Rhea Ripley

Analysis: * A squash win for Ripley. This has happened a few times now. They need to stop booking this match.

The Undertaker’s Hall of Fame announcement is next.

(Commercial)

They showed a video from Elimination Chamber talking about Bobby Lashley’s concussion. It’s actually a shoulder injury that will keep Lashley out of the ring for at least four months, but they say concussion for the storyline.

The Undertaker’s WWE Hall of Fame 2022 induction video was shown. This video was shown on Smackdown, then the next night at Elimination Chamber and again here on Raw. It’s an awesome video, so I don’t mind that at all. “Sad But True” by Metallica was a great song choice with “American Badass” by Kid Rock in there too since Taker used that as well. Anyway, the full five-minute video is here:

The crowd in South Carolina cheered after the video aired. WWE plugged tickets on sale for Smackdown on April 1 that will also be the Hall of Fame ceremony as well.

Damian Priest, the United States Champion, entered for a match.

(Commercial)

Damian Priest vs. Shelton Benjamin (w/Cedric Alexander)

This is not a title match. Priest with punches, Benjamin with a knee to the ribs, Priest wanted a Chokeslam, Benjamin slipped behind him and tossed Priest out of the ring. Alexander with a cheap kick to Priest on the floor. Back in the ring, Benjamin hit an Angle Slam for a two. Team Angle forever! Priest worked over Benjamin with kicks, a punch and a clothesline. Priest with a corner elbow followed by a spin kick to the face. Priest punched Alexander off the apron. Benjamin with a jumping knee leading to a T-Bone Suplex for two. That’s a move Benjamin used as a finish earlier in his career. Priest with a kick to the shoulder followed by a South of Heaven Chokeslam. Priest hit the Reckoning slam for the pinfall win after about four minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Damian Priest

Analysis: *1/2 A dominant win for Priest after Benjamin got some offense including that nearfall after a T-Bone Suplex. Priest is the second champion to win non-title on the show, so that’s good to see.

Damian Priest did a promo saying that there’s a whole list of World Champions that he has beaten. Priest said that he’s fought against serious athletes, serious fighters and he has remained as the United States Champion. Priest said next week he’s putting his US Title on the line against somebody that is World Championship caliber. Priest wondered who is going to try to take his title from him.

Finn Balor showed up for a promo. Balor said if you want to face a serious athlete, serious fighter and a World Champion level opponent, then it sounds like he’s talking about Balor. Finn told him to be careful what he wished for and he’ll see him next week.

Analysis: I think there could be a title change next week. Priest has lost momentum as the champion for about six months now, so maybe it’s time for a title change. Putting the US Title on Balor would be fine with me. They could do it leading to Priest going heel. That would be fresh for Priest since I think the face run isn’t going that well anyway.

A clip was shown from last week when Reggie beat Dana Brooke to win the 24/7 Title while they were in a restaurant.

Reggie entered with the 24/7 Championship around his waist. Saxton talked about what it was like being in the friend zone with a girl. Anyway, Reggie is up after a break.

(Commercial)

There were images shown from the Elimination Chamber PLE from Saturday.

Reggie was in the ring doing a promo and he called out Dana Brooke, who was in a full body outfit. It doesn’t look like wrestling gear. Reggie said that he cared about Dana, maybe more than just as a friend, but he gets that she just wanted to be friends. Reggie said that he saw an opportunity last week and he couldn’t resist. Reggie apologized for what he did by beating her for the 24/7 Title. Reggie said she means more to him. Reggie called for a referee to get out there.

Reggie laid down to let Dana pin him, but then Reggie kicked out at two. Brooke pinned Reggie again and Reggie kicked out at two. Dana covered again and this time she kissed Reggie while on the mat. Reggie didn’t kick out that time, so the kiss was enough for the pin.

Winner by pinfall AND NEW 24/7 Champion: Dana Brooke

Reggie had some makeup all over his face from the kiss from Dana. R-Truth and other 24/7 Title chasers went out there so Reggie dropkicked Truth. Dana knocked Tozawa off the apron into Tamina’s arms, Tozawa wanted a kiss and Tamina dropped Tozawa to the floor.

Analysis: I’m sure whoever thought of this segment believes this was great, but I thought it was lame. I guess it was mildly creative doing a kiss on the mat leading to the title change. I just think it’s a waste of time.

They showed highlights of Bianca Belair winning the Women’s Elimination Chamber match on Saturday and she gets to challenge Becky Lynch for the Raw Women’s Title at WrestleMania.

Bianca Belair made her entrance.

(Commercial)

Let’s Hear from Bianca Belair

It was the top of hour three as fans chanted “EST” for Bianca Belair, who said she is going back to WrestleMania. Belair said last week she walked out of the main event as Smackdown Women’s Champion and this time it will be the Raw Women’s Championship against her opponent “Big Time” Becky Lynch. Belair said there were tough women in the Elimination Chamber match, especially Doudrop but there can only be one “toughest” meaning herself. Belair said she’s the hardest working woman in WWE that has been working so hard for this moment at WrestleMania. Belair said she’ll show Becky Lynch why you can’t spell WrestleMania without a little “EST.”

Becky Lynch arrived with the interruption while carrying the Raw Women’s Championship. Lynch congratulated Belair for making it back to the big time. Lynch said they’re the only two women to win titles in the main event of WrestleMania while Lynch reminded her that she did it first. Belair said she did it better. Lynch pointed out she walked out of WrestleMania with two titles. Belair brought up SummerSlam talking about how instead of going away, Lynch told her to go to the back of the line and then Belair has beaten every woman that stepped in the ring with her. Lynch claimed that she was the victim while noting that the people loved her because she was the “Man of the People.” Lynch got a hero’s welcome at SummerSlam, but because of Belair, they despise Lynch and now Lynch despises Belair. Lynch said you saw what she did to Lita, who she loves so you should see what she does to somebody despises like Belair. Belair threatened to make Lynch the victim.

Doudrop made her entrance for a match against Belair. These two have wrestled a lot as well.

Analysis: Good promo by Belair showing confidence and talking about how she came back from the SummerSlam loss six months ago to earn another title match against Lynch. They didn’t mention Lynch screwing Belair out of a title match on Raw prior to Royal Rumble, but when that happened it was easy to see WWE was going with Lynch vs. Belair at WrestleMania. That’s fine with me. I like both women and it should be a great match.

(Commercial)

A video aired about the most “stupendous” WrestleMania in history taking place in 40 days on April 2nd and April 3rd.

Bianca Belair vs. Doudrop

Becky Lynch was on commentary for the match. Doudrop got a takedown leading to a two count. Belair jumped over Doudrop by the corner leading to a dropkick. Belair worked over Doudrop with kicks leading to Doudrop sending Belair into the turnbuckle. Doudrop rocked Belair with a punch, but Belair whipped Doudrop into the turnbuckle. Doudrop with a headbutt while she was on the apron, Belair knocked her down to the floor and Belair hit a cross body block off the apron onto Doudrop on the floor. Belair got in Lynch’s face, so Doudrop came back with a cross body block on Belair on the floor. That led to a break.

(Commercial)

The action continued in the ring with Doudrop hitting a belly to back suplex with Belair landing high on the back/shoulders. Doudrop charged, Belair with a spinebuster and a handspring off the ropes with a moonsault. Belair tried a suplex, Doudrop fought it off and then Belair hit the suplex showing off some impressive power. Doudrop managed to block a kick attempt and sent Belair to the mat. Doudrop tried a cannonball splash, Belair moved and Doudrop hit the turnbuckle. Doudrop came back with a Michinoku Driver for a two count. Doudrop went to the middle rope, Belair stopped her there and Belair hit a Powerbomb out of the corner. Belair picked up Doudrop by the turnbuckle and hit the KOD slam for the pinfall win. Impressive power display by Belair! It went 11 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Bianca Belair

Analysis: *** A good match with both women working hard. It was another win for Belair over Doudrop. It’s easy to see why WWE booked that match again because Belair looks really impressive hitting power moves like a suplex, powerbomb and KOD slam to win the match. If Belair beats another woman she can look impressive, but when you do those power moves to the biggest woman in the division, it makes Belair stand out even more.

Belair and Lynch exchanged words to end the segment.

Edge was up next.

(Commercial)

The “Rated R Superstar” Hall of Famer Edge made his entrance to a big pop. The crowd popped for the bearded man that was back after three weeks off.

Let’s Hear from Edge

There was a chair in the ring, so Edge sat down for some promo time as the fans chanted “Edge” for him. Edge asked if they can smell it while noting it was the smell of WrestleMania in the air. Edge talked about how at WrestleMania 3, he would sit by Uncle Wayne’s radio and he heard when Hulk Hogan beat Andre the Giant. Edge said he’ll never forget it. Edge spoke about the physical toll and the emotional toll that it takes just to get on the show. Edge spoke about the first WrestleMania he was part of as a talent was WrestleMania 14 (that’s 1998) and said it took him two more years to get on WrestleMania. Edge said he knew had to have a performance to elevate his career for the rest of his career and they did it. Edge said then at WrestleMania 17 against two of the best teams of all time in a TLC match on possibly the greatest WrestleMania of all-time (I think so), they stole the show. Edge gave a shoutout to D-Von Dudley, who had a recent surgery. Edge talked about WrestleMania 21 winning Money in the Bank, stealing the show against Mick Foley at WrestleMania 22 and WrestleMania 24 he main evented against The Undertaker. Edge said he came close while congratulating Undertaker on Hall of Fame saying he deserved it. Edge said at WrestleMania 27, he was World Champion and thought that was the end of his career. Edge said then he fought back and last year, he main evented it again.

Edge said he dreams about WrestleMania and still dreams about WrestleMania. Edge talked about how every year he dreams about WrestleMania to soak in the energy you give him so he can be phenomenal. Edge said he needs WrestleMania and WrestleMania needs him. Edge said: “I need someone to step up. You want to prove yourself at WrestleMania? You stand across the ring at WrestleMania against the man who is still the best in this industry today! A certifiable legend. You fight me at WrestleMania and I’ll make you live forever.” Edge said for somebody to step up because he’ll be waiting. Edge ended up finishing the promo and leaving with his music playing. There was no interruption.

Analysis: Great promo by Edge. He’s so awesome at making you care about every word he says. You don’t hear the crowd chanting “WHAT” at home because they know he’s going to say something meaningful. Obviously, the “phenomenal” usage by Edge makes me think it’ll be AJ Styles against Edge and that’s what I want it to be, so hopefully that’s what it is. The WWE Twitter account mentioned “Smoke & Mirrors” as a reference to Cody Rhodes as well. Since they have six weeks until WrestleMania, WWE probably felt they can save the match announcement for another week or two. As I said, I think it will be Edge vs. AJ Styles.

Randy Orton and Riddle aka RK-Bro entered for the main event tag team match.

(Commercial)

Kevin Owens and Seth Rollins entered for the main event. If Seth & Owens win, they are added to the upcoming Raw Tag Team Title match in two weeks.

RK-Bro (Randy Orton & Riddle) vs. Kevin Owens & Seth Rollins

The fans were humming the Rollins song even after it stopped playing. Owens knocked down Riddle leading to a senton splash. Rollins tagged in with a Slingblade neckbreaker on Riddle. Riddle hit an overhead suplex on Rollins. Orton tagged in with stomps on Rollins and Riddle hit a twisting splash with an assist from Orton. Orton was back in with a knee to the ribs, Rollins with a kick to the body and Orton punched Owens on the apron. Orton with a back body drop on Rollins over the top to the floor. Owens saved Seth from a suplex on the table, so Orton slammed Owens on the table. Rollins went back into the ring and hit a suicide dive on Orton, who bumped over the table. That led to a break.

(Commercial)

The match continued with Orton bouncing off the turnbuckle with a clothesline on Rollins, but then Owens tagged in with some stomps to keep Orton from tagging out. Orton with a belly to back suplex on Owens. Riddle tagged in against Rollins with Riddle hitting a step up kick, two running forearms and an overhead suplex. Riddle with a senton splash on Rollins followed by a running kick and a bridging German Suplex for two. Owens tripped up Riddle on the top rope, so Rollins hit a double stomp to the chest for two. Owens tagged in with a cradle suplex into the knee for two. Owens hit a step up enziguri on Riddle. Rollins got the tag, Owens hit a Senton Bomb off the top and Rollins hit a Frog Splash off the top for two. Orton tagged in with clotheslines on Owens, then a powerslam on KO and a powerslam on Rollins. Orton got a hold of both guys on the apron with Orton hitting the DDT on Owens while Rollins went to the floor. Owens shoved Orton to the turnbuckle, Riddle tagged in, Owens sent Orton out of the ring and Owens stomped on the bare feet of Riddle. Rollins hit The Stomp on Orton on the floor. Riddle wanted an RKO, but Rollins sent him into the turnbuckle with a Powerbomb. Owens with a Stunner on Riddle and Rollins hit The Stomp on Riddle leading to the pin. It went about 12 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Kevin Owens & Seth Rollins

Analysis: ***1/2 A great tag team match here. I like how crafty the heels were by taking out Orton on the floor with Seth giving him The Stomp and then Seth won the match with The Stomp as well. It made Rollins-Owens look like a well-oiled machine instead of just a couple of singles guys teaming up. Now it leads to a triple threat tag team match that could lead to a title change in two weeks.

In two weeks on Raw, it’s Alpha Academy defending the Raw Tag Team Titles vs. RK-Bro vs. Owens/Rollins.

Next week on Raw, Damian Priest defends the US Title against Finn Balor.

Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens continued to celebrate. That was the end of Raw.

 

Three Stars of the Show

  1. Seth Rollins/Kevin Owens
  2. Edge
  3. Finn Balor/Tommaso Ciampa

 

The Scoreboard

7.25 out of 10

Last week: 6.5

 

Final Thoughts

I enjoyed Raw this week. Good in-ring action all show long. Multiple tag team matches that were great, I liked Belair/Doudrop again and that Edge promo was outstanding.

Some people might be mad that there was no Cody Rhodes, but there were some references to him. That makes me think he’s coming to WWE because why else would you reference him unless you have him signed? I assume that’s the case.

The slow build to WrestleMania continues. I expect more matches to be official by next week.

The next WWE Premium Live Event is WrestleMania 38 from Dallas, Texas on Saturday, April 2 and Sunday, April 3. Here’s the lineup so far:

Winner Take All – Title vs. Title: Universal Champion Roman Reigns vs. WWE Champion Brock Lesnar

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Ronda Rousey

Raw Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch (c) vs. Bianca Belair

Rey & Dominik Mysterio vs. The Miz & Logan Paul

WrestleMania 38 is a two-night event steaming LIVE on Saturday, April 2, and Sunday, April 3, beginning at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Peacock in the United States and on WWE Network everywhere else.

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Check out the WWE PPV Review archive right here. You can contact me using any of the methods below. Go Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs. Be safe and smart out there.

Thanks for reading.

John Canton

Email: mrjohncanton@gmail.com

Twitter: @johnreport