The John Report: WWE Raw Deal 02/26/24 Review

wwe raw deal february 26

This week’s WWE Raw featured Cody Rhodes in action against Grayson Waller, The New Day taking on Imperium, Sami Zayn facing Shinsuke Nakamura, and more.

It’s the Raw after Elimination Chamber, which was Saturday in Australia. One of the big winners on that show was Drew McIntyre, who won the Men’s Chamber match to set up his World Title match against Seth Rollins at WrestleMania 40. Another big winner was Becky Lynch, who won the Women’s Chamber match, which will lead to her match against Rhea Ripley at WrestleMania 40. Those are two huge matches added to the WrestleMania 40 card. WrestleMania 40 is less than six weeks away.

This is the Raw Deal for episode #1605 of Monday Night Raw. It’s taking place at the SAP Center in San Jose, California. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

They showed Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, which is the home of WrestleMania 40 in 40 days. There were arrivals shown from earlier in the day: Drew McIntyre and Becky Lynch.

A video package was shown with highlights of the Elimination Chamber PLE from this past Saturday.

Let’s Hear from Rhea Ripley…And Becky Lynch

Dominik Mysterio was in the ring as the fans booed him loudly. Dominik introduced the greatest Women’s World Champion of all time…Rhea Ripley. The fans cheered for her after booing Dominik loudly.

Rhea Ripley welcomed us to “Monday Night Mami” leading to “Mami” chants. Ripley said that this weekend she walked into her home country as the Women’s World Champion and walked out as your Women’s World Champion. Ripley mentioned Nia Jax was a threat, but even though Ripley is from Down Under, she is still on top because she is Rhea Bloody Ripley.

Becky Lynch interrupted the promo to a huge pop from the crowd. Lynch was dressed in the red and black colors of Raw. Lynch said that she is coming around to WrestleMania to fight Ripley. Lynch congratulated Ripley for the night she had and Lynch said they both had a good night while recapping their wins. Lynch said that it was such a great moment for Ripley’s family. Lynch said now they don’t have to fly to WrestleMania to watch Ripley lose and the fans booed that. Dominik said nobody talks to Mami like that. Lynch told him to shut up using a unique name. Lynch said that while Ripley has been the face of the company, she has been fed grapes by this loser Dominik. Lynch talked about how she’s the backbone of this company.

Ripley told Lynch to never disrespect her Latino Heat like that ever again. Ripley congratulated Lynch on winning the Elimination Chamber match and said Lynch actually won something to get close to Mami’s level. Ripley said that Lynch may be The Man and behind every great man is a greater woman, but she is not behind Lynch because Mami is always on top. They had a staredown as Ripley’s music played to end it.

Analysis: It was a solid promo exchange to set up their WrestleMania 40 match. Lynch made good points about being the backbone of the division, but Ripley has every right to brag about being the champion. The crowd reactions are very telling because the fans are solidly behind Ripley in this matchup even though Lynch gets cheered too. I think both women are considered babyfaces in the eyes of the fans and the fans like Ripley more.

After Ripley left the ring, Nia Jax attacked Lynch from behind with a forearm to the back. Jax headbutted Lynch and Jax hit Lynch with a leg drop. Jax hit another leg drop. Jax wanted to do the Annihilator, but Raw GM Adam Pearce and officials made Jax stop, so Jax left.

Analysis: That likely set up another Becky Lynch-Nia Jax match. Jax beat Lynch on New Year’s Day so I would expect Lynch to get the win when they have that match.

It’s Michael Cole and Pat McAfee on commentary as usual. Sami Zayn made his entrance for singles action.


It was mentioned that The Rock will be on Smackdown this week as well as the two weeks after that. That’s great to see.

Nia Jax was interviewed by Jackie Redmond, who asked why Jax attacked Becky Lynch like that. Jax said it should be her going to WrestleMania since she beat Becky Lynch and said Lynch won’t make it to WrestleMania. Jax said she’ll destroy Liv Morgan in her match later.

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Sami Zayn

Zayn got an armdrag takedown leading to an armbar. They left the ring leading to Zayn hitting a moonsault off the barricade onto a standing Nakamura on the floor. They went to break about one minute into the match.


Nakamura had Zayn grounded by pulling back on the arms. Nakamura whipped Zayn hard into the turnbuckle followed by a running knee lift to the ribs two times in a row. Zayn jumped over Nakamura and nailed him with a clothesline. Nakamura went to the injured ribs again, but Zayn came back with a Michinoku Driver for two. Zayn sent Nakamura out of the ring and charged toward the ropes, but Nakamura came back with a knee to the ribs. Nakamura gave Zayn a front suplex on the apron for the second break in the match. Two commercials in the first eight minutes.


Nakamura remained in control with a spinning lefty kick to the head. Nakamura charged, but Zayn caught him leading to a Blue Thunder Bomb for a two count. That’s the usual for that move although Zayn has won with that move a few times at least. Zayn charged, Nakamura hit him with a knee and Nakamura hit a jumping knee smash to the back of the head for two. Zayn left the ring, Nakamura set him up against the top of the barricade and Nakamura delivered a knee strike to the back of Zayn’s head. Zayn got back in before the referee’s ten count. Nakamura hit the Kinshasa knee, but Zayn’s right foot was on the bottom rope for a two count. Nakamura stomped on Zayn’s head a few times. Nakamura charged, Zayn sidestepped him and sent Nakamura into the turnbuckle. Zayn hit a Helluva Kick to the back of the neck. Zayn charged and hit another Helluva Kick to the face for the pinfall win after 15 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Sami Zayn

Analysis: ***1/2 It was the usual great match between these guys. The story was about how Zayn hasn’t picked up a meaningful win in a while, so Zayn getting this win gives him some positive momentum. Nakamura is booked well as a heel, but he’s not beating the top babyfaces in WWE and is mostly used to have those faces get a win. I’m not sure what the plan is for Zayn at WrestleMania although maybe a match with GUNTHER for the Intercontinental Title could be the right spot for him. Zayn has had the IC Title before, but maybe he’ll be the guy to beat Gunther for it.

A video package aired about The New Day’s rivalry with Imperium that has been building for a couple of months.

Chelsea Green made her entrance for singles action. She’s a hot mess. It’s in the song.


There was a video message from CM Punk saying he’ll be in the WWE 2K24 video game season pass. Pat McAfee is in the game too, so Pat said he was lucky to be there.

Chelsea Green did a promo about being eliminated in the battle royal last week by Raquel Rodriguez. Green called the San Jose Sharks losers and here comes Raquel for the match.

Raquel Rodriguez vs. Chelsea Green

Green tried to run away and Raquel hit a clothesline. Raquel hit a fallaway slam two times in a row. Raquel hit the Tejana Bomb for the pinfall win. It went about one minute.

Winner by pinfall: Raquel Rodriguez

Analysis: 1/2* A squash match to give Raquel an easy win. Green is there as a comedy figure and she does it well.

Sami Zayn was interviewed backstage by Jackie Redmond. Zayn said that he needed that win because if it was a loss tonight…he can’t even tell you what it would have done to him. Zayn said that win reaffirmed the belief he has in himself and that path at WrestleMania will come his way. Zayn said if it doesn’t come at him, he will find it. Ludwig Kaiser, Giovanni Vinci and GUNTHER of Imperium all stared at Zayn. They said nothing while GUNTHER laughed at Zayn and left.

Analysis: There’s the GUNTHER-Zayn tease. Maybe it’s too obvious that it will be the WrestleMania match, but clearly, it would work as a big match.


Cody Rhodes was interviewed backstage by Cathy Kelley. Cody said that The Rock slapped him in the face and Cody challenged him to a match any time and any place, so he awaited his response on Smackdown. Cody asked if you liked Grayson Waller and said he has tons of talent. Cody said Waller should be thankful for what Cody’s done for him due to his big announcements on the Grayson Waller Effect in the past like bringing Jey Uso to Raw and challenging The Rock. Cody said tonight, Waller gets his Monday Night Raw main event and he gets to find out what it’s like being in the ring with him.

Let’s Hear from GUNTHER

Gunther was in the ring with the Intercontinental Championship along with his Imperium buddies Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci. Gunther said after successfully defeating Jey Uso last week, he is standing there as the greatest Intercontinental Champion of all time. Gunther spoke about how Jey almost had him beat and he felt it slipping away from him for the first time as Intercontinental Champion. Gunther said he got lucky, nobody’s perfect, but he is very, very close. Gunther said before Kaiser and Gio outclass New Day later on, he wants to address his future.

Gunther said for over 600+ days, he has worked his heart, soul and body to make this title the most prestigious in this company. Gunther talked about how he has beaten everybody along the way to achieve this. Gunther wondered who would be his opponent at WrestleMania? Gunther said he sees ridiculous claims from people like Sami Zayn, Chad Gable, The Miz and he even sees people requesting R-Truth, which drew a big pop.

The Judgment Day’s Damian Priest, Finn Balor, Dominik Mysterio & JD McDonagh showed up for the interruption. I wasn’t expecting a heel group to interrupt this. They got into the ring with Imperium.

Priest spoke to “big, bad Gunther.” Priest said they don’t sweat him. Priest said Gunther’s run is second to the run that The Judgment Day is on. Priest said they ran the table at Elimination Chamber and they’ll do the same thing at WrestleMania. Priest said they’ll add more gold at WrestleMania – that includes that gold.

Gunther said since Priest isn’t looking like he will cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase, Gunther asked who is it going to be? Finn Balor, the one with the big head (JD McDonagh)…and Dominik Mysterio stepped up to Gunther. The fans booed Dominik loudly. Dominik said when they say they’re going to do something, they mean it, so that means that title belongs to them. Gunther lightly shoved Dominik in the chest and Priest stepped up, but the other J-Day guys held Priest back. The Judgment Day left, which led to boos because the fans wanted to see a fight.

Analysis: I thought Gunther did a nice job as the confident heel champion who admitted he got lucky last week since Jimmy Uso cost Jey Uso in that match. At least Gunther is an honest champion. I didn’t expect The Judgment Day to interrupt like that. They certainly teased the idea of Damian Priest facing Gunther. Perhaps we’ll see a multi-man match at WrestleMania instead of just Gunther against Sami Zayn in singles or somebody else. I don’t know yet. It will be interesting to see what happens.

The New Day were shown walking backstage for their match up next.


The Judgment Day was shown walking backstage. Rhea Ripley walked up to them saying “GUNTHER?” and Dominik said he’s got this. Ripley looked concerned and left, so Finn Balor told Dominik to go smooth it over with her. Andrade was shown walking backstage where Dominik talked to him. Andrade said that he was meeting with Pearce to find out his first opponent as Dominik left.

The New Day entered wearing San Jose Sharks jerseys.

Street Fight: The New Day – Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods vs. Imperium – Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci

In a WWE Street Fight, there are no rules, but the pinfall or submission has to take place in the ring.

The Imperium guys attacked New Day in the aisle. Woods was sent into the big screens by the entrance area. Woods used a trombone to attack both opponents. New Day grabbed a table from under the ring, but Imperium blocked that. Kofi hit a dive over the top while Woods hit a dropkick through the ropes and the show went to break there.


The match continued with the four wrestlers fighting around the ringside area. I should point out that Imperium was in their regular wrestling gear while New Day were in jeans at this point. Kaiser & Vinci were in control at ringside. The fans chanted for tables, so Kaiser pulled a table out and Kaiser put a table back under the ring. Kaiser brought a steel chair into the ring and hit Woods in the back. Kaiser hit a running kick to the body. Kaiser and Vinci hit a double team dropkick to Woods, who had a chair against his ribs. Kofi got back into it with a couple of kicks followed by a cross body block off the top. Kofi hit an SOS on Vinci followed by a body slam on Kaiser onto top of Vinci. Kofi hit the Boom Drop leg drop on Vinci. Kofi set up a table on the floor. Vinci & Kaiser gave Kofi a double team suplex. Woods was back in with a dropkick followed by a kick to the gut. Kaiser nailed Woods with a double kendo stick to the back. Kaiser charged at Woods, but Kofi hit a jumping knee to block. Vinci clotheslined Kofi on the floor. Vinci hit the running cross body block on Woods. Vinci hit Woods with kendo stick shots to the body. Kaiser used a chair that he used to hit Woods in the left knee. They went to break there.


Imperium remained in control as they sent Woods into the barricade. Kofi threw McAfee’s chair into Kaiser’s face and sent Vinci into the steel steps. Both New Day guys were in the ring as they beat up Kaiser with repeated kendo stick shots to the back. Woods shouted “Get The Tables” as a bit of Dudley Boyz tribute. New Day set up another table at ringside. Kofi put Vinci on a table, Woods went up top, Kofi held Vinci in place and Woods hit an elbow drop off the top through the table. The fans were going wild for it. They loved it. Back in the ring, Kofi held Vinci as Woods jumped off the top with a leg drop for two because Kaiser pulled the referee out. Kofi used a kendo stick to dive onto Kaiser on the floor. The fans chanted “this is awesome” for them. Woods held Kaiser on his shoulders, Kofi went up top and Vinci shoved Kofi off the top through a table at ringside. That was the first table set up in the match. Vinci hit Woods in the head with some object that I didn’t see and Kaiser sent Woods into the chair that was set up against the turnbuckle. Kaiser did the ROLLUP OF DEATH~! on Woods with a handful of jeans as well. It went about 18 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Imperium – Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci

Analysis: ***3/4 I thought it was a terrific match. They used plenty of weapons throughout the match, they got a lot of time and all four guys had big spots. The key spot was obviously Kofi going up to for a double team Big Ending, but Vinci was there to shove Kofi through the table and that took Kofi out of the match. That left Woods all alone for Imperium to finish him off. It’s a big win for Imperium in a match that really could have gone either way. That’s what I liked a lot about the match – it wasn’t obvious who was going to win. A lot of matches in today’s pro wrestling business have obvious outcomes, but when you are in an even matchup like this, it makes the nearfalls mean more because you don’t know who is going to win. I’m glad that they got nearly 20 minutes too. It’s great for the tag team division.

They didn’t show any replays after the match, which is disappointing after such a great match. I get that you have to move on to other things, but let’s see some replays of the great action in that match.

A video aired about Grayson Waller.

Adam Pearce was in his office talking on the phone to Bronson (Reed) and congratulated him on the new baby. Chad Gable was shown talking to Raw GM Adam Pearce in his office. Gable said that he wants to face GUNTHER at WrestleMania 40 because the last time he faced him, Gunther made Gable’s daughter cry. Gable said that this match would mean more to him. Pearce made it seem like he would think about it. They shook hands.

Analysis: It’s a good pitch by Gable. I’m not sure what they are going to do, but I like all the attention given to the IC Title.

Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark entered for tag team action.


There was a pre-tape promo from Baszler & Stark about going after the Women’s Tag Team Titles.

Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell vs. Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark

LeRae with a kick to Baszler’s head and a splash onto the back. LeRae splashed Baszler in the corner and LeRae dove onto Stark on the floor. Baszler caught LeRae in the ring and Baszler hit a knee to the jaw. Baszler stomped on LeRae. Stark wrenched on the left arm. Stark hit a Full Nelson suplex for a two count. Indi tagged with punches along with a spinebuster on Stark, but Baszler made the blind tag. Baszler applied the Kirifuda Clutch and Indi tapped out quickly. It went three minutes.

Winners by submission: Shayna Baszler & Zoey Stark

Analysis: *1/2 A quick match to put over the heel team of Baszler & Stark in dominant fashion. The crowd was so hot for the match before this, but then they were dead quiet for this match. It’s tough for the women’s division sometimes because they don’t get that much time, nor are there ever interesting stories.

Drew McIntyre was shown walking backstage with a grin on his face. He’s up next.


R-Truth was shown backstage in The Judgment Day’s clubhouse when Johnny Gargano, Tommaso Ciampa & The Miz showed up. Truth said that The Judgment Day was gone. They said they would get revenge on The Judgment Day. Ciampa asked “Are you ready?” and that was a D-Generation X reference. Anyway, they left to talk. Truth took a small TV monitor with him as well.

Let’s Hear from Drew McIntyre…And Seth Rollins

The “Scottish Warrior” Drew McIntyre made his entrance with a big smile on his face as the man who won the Elimination Chamber match. The graphic was shown that at WrestleMania 40, McIntyre will challenge Seth “Freakin” Rollins for the World Heavyweight Title.

Drew: “We did it.” Drew said you don’t achieve success alone. Drew thanked the fans for praying while saying because of you, this happened with Drew facing Seth Rollins at WrestleMania. Drew said that he felt like absolute hell, he was jetlagged and he was hurting. Drew said that his eardrum burst. Drew said that a doctor told him he was hurt and there was a chance he could miss WrestleMania. Drew asked the doctor: “Who do you think I am, CM Punk? Nothing is going to make me miss WrestleMania.” The fans booed that.

Drew sat in the ring like CM Punk and said that it probably hurts CM Punk to see Drew win like that. Drew said he knows CM Punk doesn’t drink alcohol, so Drew drank twice as much for both of them on the way home. Drew called out Seth Rollins to come on down.

Analysis: That was a great line about what Drew said to the doctor regarding CM Punk. It is pure evil for Drew to continue to mock CM Punk for getting hurt and it’s only going to make the fans care about that feud even more when Punk is back.

Seth “Freakin” Rollins made his entrance as the World Heavyweight Champion with the fans singing his song as usual. Rollins did his usual bit to welcome us to Monday Night Rollins.

That led to Rollins congratulating Drew McIntyre saying that he did it and he clawed his way back into a title match with him for the second time. I believe it’s the third time. Rollins said that this time it won’t be at an empty warehouse because this time you can win a World Title in front of a capacity crowd at the biggest WrestleMania of all time. Rollins mentioned standing in his way is himself while going over his nicknames as usual. The fans sang Seth’s song again.

McIntyre talked about how he wants Rollins at 100% for their match. McIntyre said that he can’t understand why Rollins gets involved in other people’s business like Cody Rhodes or The Rock & Roman Reigns. McIntyre said that he only cares about Raw and the World Title. McIntyre told Rollins to not get involved with The Bloodline because we knew what they were going to do. Drew said they’ll have a killer match, The Bloodline will get involved, cost you the match and taint Drew’s victory, so Drew wanted Seth to back off.

Rollins said that he respects what Drew said, but respectfully some risks are worth taking. Rollins said that Drew might be right. Rollins spoke about how his knee may not be right, his back might give out and The Bloodline might take him out while saying that WrestleMania might be an easy night for Drew. Rollins said Drew might be right, but what if he’s wrong? Rollins said some risks are worth taking. Rollins admitted he’s been selfish in his career and selfish in his life, but whenever he got to that point he felt empty inside. Rollins said after his daughter was born, he realized that not everything is about him. Rollins said that the World Championship is bigger than them and taking down The Bloodline is bigger than them. Rollins wondered if they don’t take out The Bloodline before WrestleMania, it doesn’t matter who is champion because it’s only a matter of time before they come for the World Title. Rollins said what if his knee is 100%, what if his back is ready to go and what if they can rip apart The Bloodline to secure the future of this industry because if they can do all of that then it’s just you, me and the World Heavyweight Title. Rollins said he told him before Crown Jewel and he’ll tell him again: “May the best man win. Some risks are worth taking.” Rollins left the ring while Drew was left standing in the ring.

Analysis: This was the usual promo from Rollins about wanting to do what’s right about what’s good for the company and he feels that stopping The Bloodline is important. What Drew said to him made a lot of sense from his perspective and also what he said about The Bloodline was true as well. What Rollins said about needing to stop The Bloodline for the future of this business is a bit over the top and silly, but I get why he would say it as a babyface wrestler to get the fans to cheer him. I think McIntyre beating Rollins is very possible and I’d like to see it because this heel McIntyre character is among my favorites in WWE right now.

Nia Jax entered for her singles match.

This Friday on Smackdown: The Rock is back again.


A video aired letting us know WrestleMania is 40 days away. I’m looking forward to it and my first trip to Philadelphia.

Liv Morgan vs. Nia Jax

Liv attacked with strikes against the turnbuckle, but Jax came back with a Samoan Drop. Jax sent Morgan into the turnbuckle followed by a splash against the turnbuckle. Jax nailed Morgan with an elbow smash. Jax swung Morgan face first into the middle turnbuckle. Jax went for a leg drop on the apron, Morgan moved and Jax was in pain. I’m glad Jax didn’t yell “MY HOLE” after that move. Morgan hit a suicide dive onto Jax on the floor.


The match continued with Liv getting a kick, but Jax ran over Liv with a running body attack. Liv avoided a running splash attempt by Jax. Liv did a neck snap across the top rope and Morgan hit a missile dropkick off the middle turnbuckle. Liv hit the Codebreaker double knees off the middle turnbuckle for two. Jax came back with a headbutt. Jax charged, Liv moved and Jax hit the ring post leading to a bump to the floor. Jax caught Liv on her back and Jax sent Liv into the ring post. Becky Lynch arrived at ringside and attacked Jax with punches for the DQ. It went eight minutes.

Winner by disqualification: Nia Jax

Analysis: **1/2 They were on their way to having a good match with Jax using her power and Liv fighting back well. Lynch attacking Jax ended it abruptly, but it does fit the story from earlier in the show.

After the match, Lynch rammed Jax’s head into the hood of the commentary table repeatedly. Lynch sent Jax into the ring, Jax bailed to the floor and the referee held Lynch back. Lynch’s music played to end it.

Analysis: It was some revenge for Lynch and like I said earlier, it seems like another Lynch-Jax match is coming.

Grayson Waller, with Austin Theory, was interviewed by Cathy Kelley. Paul Heyman was in the background with his cell phone. Waller said that Cody was never going to finish the story.

Cody Rhodes was shown getting ready for the main event.

The announcers gave their condolences to Ole Anderson, who passed away at 81 years old. They showed a graphic for Ole Anderson as well. Rest in peace, Ole.


Becky Lynch talked to Adam Pearce backstage saying that she can’t move on to her WrestleMania match until she ends Nia Jax. Pearce asked how does next week sound and Lynch was fine with that. Liv Morgan walked up to Lynch saying that she was in the middle of something out there, but Lynch didn’t care. Morgan told Lynch that not everything has to be about her.

Analysis: There’s the official match announcement for next week. Good for Morgan being angry with Lynch too. I like that.

Jey Uso was interviewed by Jackie Redmond, who asked how Jey planned on getting back to the championship picture. Jey said he was this close to having his first Intercontinental Championship, but he fell short. Jey said that when he tries to pull himself up, he comes up short whether it’s his past enemies from Raw or his own family members. The fans chanted “YEET” when Jey ended his sentences. Drew McIntyre interrupted the promo saying he’s in a good place and riding high. Drew said that Jey deserved this. Jey punched Drew, so Drew punched back and they got into a fight. There were WWE Officials there to break it up.

Analysis: That should also set up a match. I’m surprised Jey didn’t say anything more aggressively about Jimmy Uso costing him the IC Title. I think Jey against Jimmy at WrestleMania 40 would be a lot of fun although I’d like to see Jimmy get some wins on Smackdown because he loses nearly every match he has.

Grayson Waller made his entrance for the main event joined by his buddy Austin Theory.


Next Monday on Raw:

* Jey Uso vs. Drew McIntyre

* Becky Lynch vs. Nia Jax

Cody Rhodes made his entrance to a huge ovation as usual. The fans popped for the song and the “WHOA-OH” parts of the song were very loud as usual.

Cody Rhodes vs. Grayson Waller (w/Austin Theory)

Waller sent Cody hard into the turnbuckle followed by knee lifts to the head. Cody drops down to deliver a punch along with a delayed vertical front suplex. Cody clotheslined Waller over the top to the floor. Cole said there was breaking news that Paul Heyman was backstage at Raw. Yes, we saw him in the background earlier. Anyway, the show went to break.


The match continued with Waller holding Cody with a headlock. Waller with a lift, Cody got out of that and Cody hit a powerslam. Cody hit the Disaster Kick off the ropes for a two count. Theory went on the apron, Cody went after him, Theory dropped down to the floor and Waller punched Cody in the face. Theory: “That’s teamwork!” Cody ran to the ropes and dove onto Theory on the floor. Waller knocked down Cody with a clothesline. Cody avoided a rolling flatline and Cody hit a Coady Cutter off the ropes. Cody hit Cross Rhodes for the pinfall win after about seven minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Cody Rhodes

Analysis: **1/2 Easy win for Cody to give him some momentum going into WrestleMania 40 season. Waller didn’t have a chance here, which is fine because Cody needed a decisive and dominant win like this.

Let’s Hear from Paul Heyman and Cody Rhodes

There were about nine minutes left in the show, so there was plenty of time for some promos. Paul Heyman arrived in a suit with some security guys in black attire. Cody grabbed a steel chair along with a microphone. Cody said he didn’t give a damn about his name and said if it’s The Bloodline setup, he wants them to come and get him.

Heyman said that the only member of The Bloodline there tonight is him. Heyman claimed that the gentlemen from the NYPD that are off duty officers, but technically they’re suspended and it’s a whole different story. Heyman said that he came out here to California here tonight to let Cody know that nobody is asking for an apology. Heyman said he understood how it must have felt to get slapped across the face, but Cody needs to take The Rock’s name out of his freakin’ mouth. Heyman said that Roman Reigns has authorized Heyman…and he was ranting about something after that. Heyman was pleading and begging with Cody to pretty please (with a cherry on top) withdraw this challenge to The Rock…or else.

Cody: “Or else? Or else what, Mr. Heyman?” Cody said that he hasn’t trashed The Rock in the media is because it’s simple. Cody said that he was a fan of The Rock just like the fans in this arena. Cody said that his family was fed by selling tickets and nobody sold more tickets than The Rock. Cody said that he was done with being nice, but if it’s a Bloodline setup then they can come and get him. Heyman got onto the apron while the “cops” went on the apron too. Cody threatened the “cops” to not get close to him. Heyman said he respects that. Heyman took a step, so Cody beat up the “cops” with a steel chair. Cody hit the Cross Rhodes on the last guy.

Heyman was shown outside the ring on one cell phone to call Roman Reigns and on another cell phone to call The Rock.

Cody told Heyman to call them because The Bloodline isn’t hunting him because Cody is hunting The Bloodline. Cody beat up the three “cops” again and cleared them from the ring. Cody stood tall to end the show while Heyman was talking into his two phones. Cody’s music played as he stared at Heyman to end it.

Analysis: I liked the intensity shown by Cody Rhodes throughout that segment. By having Cody say he’s going to hunt The Bloodline it makes the fans want to cheer him even more. I thought they would use this to say Cody would be at Smackdown to confront The Rock, but it wasn’t mentioned. Perhaps that will happen at one of The Rock’s other appearances. Anyway, I thought it was a good way to end the show with Cody looking strong and as confident as ever. It’s really easy to like Cody right now, which is how you want it to be for the top babyface in the company.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Imperium and The New Day
  2. Sami Zayn
  3. Cody Rhodes


The Scoreboard

7.5 out of 10

Last week: 8

2024 Average: 7.56


Final Thoughts on WWE Raw

I thought it was a pretty good Raw that was a nice balance between promos and in-ring action. It’s WrestleMania season, so if it seems heavy in terms of promos that’s just how it is this time of year. I thought the Drew McIntyre promo was terrific again while continuing to take shots at CM Punk as well. Becky Lynch and Rhea Ripley built their match while Lynch still has issues with Nia Jax. We also had Cody Rhodes standing strong against Paul Heyman to end the show saying that he was coming for The Bloodline. I liked that.

In terms of matches, the Street Fight with Imperium beating New Day was excellent. They worked hard and had a great brawl for nearly 20 minutes. I liked the Sami Zayn win over Shinsuke Nakamura as well. Most of the rest of the matches were okay and sometimes kept short for obvious reasons just based on who were in the matches.

Lastly, I liked how much the Intercontinental Title was focused on. They had Gunther brag about his title reign but also had several top contenders being teased. That may mean a multi-man match at WrestleMania for the IC Title or some sort of way to determine the next challenger. I just like that there’s a lot of attention put on the IC Title.


Thanks for reading. Please check out my reviews of every WWE PPV ever listed in order. Go Toronto Blue Jays, Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs. My contact info is below.

John Canton


Twitter/X @johnreport