The John Report: WWE Raw Deal 04/08/24 Review

WWE Raw Deal April 8

It’s WWE Raw after WrestleMania featuring new WWE Champion Cody Rhodes and new World Heavyweight Champion Damian Priest.

I enjoyed a great time in Philadelphia over the last six days during WrestleMania week. I haven’t written a review of WrestleMania yet because I got home earlier today and have yet to find the time to review the actual show. I did give my thoughts on the WrestleMania Saturday event, but those are abbreviated and not a full review. The full review is probably going to be done later on Tuesday, so be on the lookout for the full WrestleMania 40 review soon. For now, I will focus on this Raw after WrestleMania review in front of what should be a hot Philly crowd.

It was announced earlier on Monday that the first hour of Raw will be commercial-free for the second week in a row.

This is the Raw Deal for episode #1611 of Monday Night Raw. It’s taking place at Wells Fargo Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Follow me on Twitter/X @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

Raw started with the entrance of the WWE Chief Content Officer Paul “Triple H” Levesque in a suit. Michael Cole and Pat McAfee were on commentary talking about how we are in the Triple H Era. Damn right. Glad to be in this era.

Let’s Hear from Triple H

There were “Triple H” and “Thank You Hunter” chants from the loud crowd in Philly. Triple H said that he came out there to thank the fans. Hunter said that less than 24 hours ago, you all made something very special happen. Triple H said that was the greatest WrestleMania of all time by every metric there is and said it was the biggest WrestleMania ever. Hunter said he simply came out there to say thank you. Hunter talked about how on Saturday night he welcomed us to WrestleMania and now he is here to welcome you to Monday Night Raw. Hunter said he also welcomed us to a new time and a new era, so right now he would like to introduce us to the man who will lead us into that era. It’s the brand new Undisputed WWE Champion, the “American Nightmare” Cody Rhodes.

Analysis: Thank you Triple H for that start to the show. We have been in this Triple H Era really for the last year and a half, but Vince McMahon still had his fingerprints on things until earlier this year in January when Endeavor pushed him out. Now it is truly Triple H’s time to run the company, but he has a great team around him too.

Let’s Hear from WWE Champion Cody Rhodes

Cody Rhodes made his entrance with the WWE Championship while wearing a grey suit. The crowd popped huge for Cody while singing along with the song and doing the “WHOA-OH” chants right on cue. Cody shook hands with Triple H, who also raised Cody’s hand for the crowd. There were loud “Cody” chants before Cody said a word. There were also “you deserve it” chants.

Triple H congratulated Cody saying that he absolutely deserves it. Hunter said that Cody put an end to one of the greatest title reigns of all time by Roman Reigns. Hunter called it the greatest WrestleMania ever. Hunter talked about how they had over 20,000 fans there and the largest gate in the history of Raw. Hunter said before he goes, he got a call from the guys in the studio who made a tribute video for Cody. Hunter said they don’t have the usual tron in the arena due to the size of the crowd and wanting to get more fans in, so they had some screens set up around the ringside area for fans to watch.

A video aired about Cody Rhodes showing his long journey to the top of WWE. That included clips of Cody being the ultimate babyface who was always so great to the fans in the crowd. They showed video from Cody’s early days of his career along with some images from outside of WWE. They also had footage of the last two years since Cody returned to WWE. That included his 2022 comeback, his 2023 WrestleMania 39 loss and then last night’s triumph at WrestleMania 40 that saw Cod become the WWE Champion for the first time. They showed Cody watching the video and of course he was emotional because he’s an emotional guy. It ended with the image of Cody holding the WWE Title after showing images of Cody with his wife Brandi, his daughter Liberty and a photo of his late father Dusty Rhodes. Cody hugged Triple H, who said something to him, but we couldn’t hear it. Hunter left.

Analysis: Incredible video. Wow. That’s amazing. I think those of us who have watched Cody’s career over the last 18 years certainly felt the emotion of that title win at WrestleMania. It was a great story, a terrific match and an even better moment. I’m so glad I was there for it.

Cody put the WWE Title (with the American Nightmare logo on the sideplates) on the mat and kissed it. Cody got back up. Cody asked Philadelphia what do you want to talk about? Cody called on ring announcer Samantha Irvin to announce him one more time. Samantha did a terrific job of announcing the new Undisputed WWE Champion Cody Rhodes. The fans popped. Samantha is so great and that was a cool moment.

Cody said that two years ago on the Raw after WrestleMania, he laid out his goals and dreamed in the open. Cody said that at WrestleMania 40, that dream became a reality. Cody said that he along with the fans are standing on top of the mountain. Cody spoke about how the champion previously on top of the mountain, The Tribal Chief, “The Head of the Table” Roman Reigns held this title 1,316 days as champion. Cody said we don’t have to like him, but he acknowledges what he’s done. The fans chanted “Thank You Roman” for the Tribal Chief. Cody said that maybe Reigns is the most important superstar of his generation while Cody was the man destined to defeat him.

Cody spoke about how people like to ask why you are doing this and why you are motivated to do this. A clip aired of Cody’s young daughter Liberty telling Cody to finish the story. Cody said that when he goes to work, he goes to work in the main event. Cody said he is no longer fighting as challenger because he is fighting as champion. Cody said he always stood in the line, but now the line is for him. He told us his name is Cody Rhodes – once undesirable, become undeniable and now Undisputed Universal WWE Champion. It’s interruption time from…The Rock!

The Rock Talks To Cody Rhodes

The Rock walked out wearing one of his colorful vests along with the People’s Champion Title that was bestowed upon him by Muhammad Ali’s wife. The Rock wasn’t advertised to be here, so it was a nice surprise. It’s also worth noting that in the WrestleMania 40 Saturday tag team match, Rock pinned Cody with a People’s Elbow to pick up the win. The Rock did his slow walk in the ring followed by posting in the ring.

The Rock was greeted with “Rocky” chants from the crowd while some fans were booing him. There were some fans chanting “Undertaker” since The Undertaker gave Rock a Chokeslam during the Cody Rhodes-Roman Reigns match on Sunday night. When Rock tried to speak, the fans booed him loudly. The crowd also chanted “shut the f**k up” at Rock as well. The Rock said he is a lot of things but “sucks” isn’t one of them. The Rock said he came out there to give flowers to Cody Rhodes while also saying that Philadelphia broke a record for the largest gathering of trailer park trash. The fans booed that loudly. The Rock shouted at the fans to chant “shut the f**k up” now so that drew more boos. Cody held up the WWE Title to the fans, so the fans cheered. When The Rock held up his People’s Title, the fans booed him loudly.

The Rock told Cody Rhodes he wanted to give him his flowers because he did it. The Rock told Cody that he completed his story, he faced all odds and beat Roman Reigns in the middle of that ring 1-2-3. Rock made Cody bleed, split his skin and Rock even whipped him like a belt, but Cody still won. Rock said he put a special name on that belt – Mama Rhodes. Rock said that Mama Rhodes had a big smile on her face while Cody’s daddy in heaven (Dusty Rhodes) also had a big smile on his face. Rock said that Dusty was his hero while saying that Dusty was good friends with Rock’s dad Rocky Johnson. Rock isn’t sure if his dad was proud of him due to the bad stuff that Rock did to him, but then Rock realized he didn’t care. Rock told Cody that he did it and he finished his story. Rock said when he was People’s Champion years ago, Muhammad Ali gave him that moniker. The Rock asked Cody if he could hold that title? The fans chanted “no” to that. Rock said that no fireworks and no harm. Rock said he’s held so many titles, but he has never held that one.

Cody told Rock he could hold this title for a moment just as long as Cody could hold Rock’s title. Rock agreed to that. Rock handed Cody his title while Cody handed the WWE Title to Rock. The fans chanted “this is awkward” while Rock put the WWE Title on his right shoulder. Rock said that this feels right. Rock gave the title back to Cody, who handed the People’s Champ title to Rock. The Rock said that meant a lot.

The Rock said that as you know and many people know, The Rock has to go away for a little while now. The fans cheered. The Rock said he doesn’t want to leave because he loves professional wrestling while claiming he made it cool again and said that Cody made it cool again. The fans sang “na na na hey hey goodbye” for The Rock. The Rock said that when he comes back, he’s going to come back for Cody whether he’s champion or whether he is not champion. Cody told Rock he is looking forward to it. The Rock said he’s looking forward to it too.

The Rock said that Cody Rhodes beat Roman Reigns in the ring 1-2-3 on WrestleMania Sunday. However, it was 24 hours before that when The Rock beat Cody Rhodes. Rock told Cody that his story with Roman Reigns may be over because Cody did it, but their story has just begun. Cody said that he believed that because The Rock is The Final Boss and is on the board with TKO, so Rock is his literal boss, right? Rock said that was right. Cody said that he is the champion. Cody said that he was the fan’s champion and he told “Boss” that it meant he was Rock’s champion. The Rock agreed with all that.

The Rock said that he had something to give him. Rock said no fireworks. Rock put his hand in his pocket. Rock put something in Cody’s hand. Rock told Cody he didn’t have to open his hand to know what this was. Rock told Cody to never break his heart again. Rock: “If you smell what The Final Boss is cooking.” The Rock left while we never saw what Rock put in Cody’s hand. We just saw Cody’s face as he put the object in his pocket.

Analysis: That was 45 minutes to start the show, which is why they had a commercial-free first hour. As The Rock said, he pinned Cody on WrestleMania Saturday, so that’s going to lead to a Cody-Rock match at some point in the future. The Rock is off to film a movie soon. I don’t know if he’s going to wrestle again this year or if WWE will build to this Cody-Rock match for WrestleMania next year. It wouldn’t shock me if it was at WrestleMania next year by having The Rock win the Royal Rumble and have Cody still holding the WWE Title. I don’t know if that’s the plan or anything like that, but it certainly could be. Anyway, the crowd reaction to Rock was pretty special and I enjoyed a lot of the talk between Rock and Cody there.

The Judgment Day was shown arriving earlier in the day including new World Heavyweight Champion Damian Priest. They showed Awesome Truth arriving earlier in the day as well. The brand new Intercontinental Champion Sami Zayn was shown walking with his family earlier in the day.

Shinsuke Nakamura entered for the first match. Ilja Dragunov, the NXT Champion, was his opponent. Good reaction for Ilja appearing in a rare Raw match. It was announced by Cole that the April 26th Smackdown and April 29th Raw will be the WWE Draft. Cole said that Dragunov would be part of the Draft.

Analysis: That means the WWE Draft is coming right after the Backlash in France PLE, which is a good time for it.

Ilja Dragunov vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Nakamura worked over Ilja with knees to the ribs. Ilja got some offense going with a kick along with a knee attack. Ilja hit two German Suplexes. Nakamura tried a move, but Ilja got away leading to the spin around the ropes leading to a clothesline. Nakamura got some offense going by trapping Ilja against the ropes leading to a German Suplex followed by a knee strike. Ilja avoided a charging knee attack and Ilja hit a German Suplex of his own. Nakamura came back with a running knee to the back of the head for two. Nakamura hit a running knee again, but Ilja came back with a kick to the face. Ilja hit a Powerbomb along with the H-Bomb forearm smash to the head. Ilja hit the running Torpedo Moscow headbutt for the pinfall win after about five minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Ilja Dragunov

Analysis: **3/4 A good match for the time given. They could have had a longer match that was more competitive, but I think having Dragunov win in impressive fashion is a better way to book it. This crowd reacted strongly to Dragunov and I’m not sure an average crowd would do that.

A video aired from WrestleMania 40 Sunday when Drew McIntyre beat Seth Rollins clean to win the World Heavyweight Title. After the match, Drew taunted CM Punk, so Punk attacked Drew with his arm brace and knocked him down. That led to Damian Priest cashing in Money in the Bank on Drew. Priest hit the South of Heaven Chokeslam on Drew to become the World Champion. CM Punk was laughing about it.

Drew McIntyre was shown arriving earlier in the day and Drew was angry.

Damian Priest, the World Heavyweight Champion, was shown walking with The Judgment Day backstage for a promo up next. It was 57 minutes into the show when they went to a commercial break.


There was a video package about WrestleMania 40 featuring the Tag Team Title Ladder Match and Rhea Ripley beating Becky Lynch to keep the Women’s World Title

Let’s Hear from The Judgment Day

The Judgment Day’s Finn Balor, Dominik Mysterio & JD McDonagh were in the ring. Balor had a message for the doubters and haters by letting them know that they were all wrong. Dominik Mysterio mentioned (over loud boos) that Rhea Ripley was still the Women’s World Champion.

Rhea Ripley made her entrance as the Women’s World Champion. She has been the champion for over one year at this point. Ripley is a heel, but the fans cheer her a lot and see her as a big star with good reason. Ripley did a promo to remind us that Mami is always on top. Ripley said that this is a new era for The Judgment Day. Finn Balor introduced the new World Heavyweight Champion, Damian Priest.

Damian Priest made his entrance in a red suit along with the World Heavyweight Title on his shoulder. Priest hugged The Judgment Day group in the ring.

Analysis: I thought the Money in the Bank cash in by Priest was booked really well. I liked that segment a lot. I’m happy for Priest becoming the World Heavyweight Champion.

Priest held up his title with Ripley’s title. The fans chanted “you deserve it” and Priest said he did. Priest said that the Terror Twins are both World Champions. Priest said that you should all rise for The Judgment Day.

R-Truth walked into the ring with the Raw Tag Team Title. Priest complained about that. R-Truth said that he brought the Raw Tag Team Titles back to The Judgment Day.

The Miz made his entrance as the other half of the Raw Tag Team Champions and Miz was in his wrestling gear. The Miz got into the ring, Miz pulled Truth away from The Judgment Day and introduced Awesome Truth as the new Raw Tag Team Champions.

Balor told Miz that Awesome Truth will have the shortest title reign in history. Balor wanted them to put the titles on the line right here and right now. Truth said that we can’t because there are only three of them. Miz told Truth he was talking about a real person and not Little Jimmy. Truth told them they can have six six-man tag team match with Judgment Day against Miz, Truth and the guy you can’t see. McDonagh says you’re on. Truth said that he wanted this guy to celebrate with them, but he wanted to tag with them instead. The Judgment Day attacked Miz & Truth from behind and tossed them from the ring. They went to break.

Analysis: The Damian Priest promo was basic, but that’s all it needed to be. They did a good job of incorporating R-Truth into it due to his history with The Judgment Day. It was pretty obvious who they were talking about and the fans were chanting about it, but waiting until after a break is certainly a fine way to keep the audience tuned in.


The Awesome Truth – The Miz & R-Truth vs. The Judgment Day – Finn Balor, Dominik Mysterio & JD McDonagh

It started as a 2-on-3 handicap match. JD was in control of Truth with a knee to the back followed by a chinlock. Dominik tagged in with stomps on Truth. Dominik charged, Truth avoided it and Miz tagged in with a cross body block off the top rope. Miz worked over Dominik with kicks along with a corner clothesline. When JD went into the ring, Miz hit a double DDT on Dominik & JD at the same time. Miz went for the Skull Crushing Finale, but Dominik got out of that and Balor clotheslined Miz on the apron. Balor and JD beat up Miz on the floor leading to JD throwing Miz into the barricade. They went to break there.


The match continued as JD held onto Miz’s foot to prevent a tag and Dominik pulled Truth off the apron. Balor and Truth attacked Dominik at ringside. JD worked over Miz with punches. John Cena made his way down to the ring to join this tag team match. The fans popped huge.

Cena got the tag from Miz leading to Cena hitting JD with two shoulder tackles and the spinning slam. Truth and Miz also hit spinning slams on Judgment Day members. The trio of Cena, Miz and Truth each hit Five Knuckle Shuffles at the same time. The babyface trio all hit triple Attitude Adjustments and all three guys pinned their opponents at the same time. It went about ten minutes. Cena pinning JD was actually the legal pinfall in the match. It went about 10 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: John Cena and The Awesome Truth – The Miz & R-Truth

Analysis: *** That was a cool moment. John Cena got the hot tag, hit a few moves and that was it. The fans were into it. Cena didn’t have to take a bump or sell anything. It was pretty basic and all that it needed to be. This was a fine example about how anything can happen on the Raw after WrestleMania and it’s about giving us some fun moments like that.

After the match, John Cena celebrated with the Awesome Truth team. The fans popped for all of this.

Analysis: That was John Cena’s first match in about five months since Crown Jewel last November. I don’t know when his next match will be, but it’s always good to see him.

A clip was shown of Bronson Reed winning the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal last Friday on Smackdown.

Bronson Reed was shown backstage saying that winning the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal was just the beginning. Reed said that he’ll prove to Ricochet, Jey Uso & Drew McIntyre who the real World Heavyweight Champion should be. Those four have a match later on Raw.

This Friday on Smackdown will feature WWE Champion Cody Rhodes and WWE Women’s Champion Bayley.


It was announced attendance was 201.924 for the five events during WrestleMania weekend.

Rhea Ripley was shown backstage talking to Dominik Mysterio. They were chatting about something and it led to Dominik saying he would go talk to Pearce. Liv Morgan attacked Rhea Ripley with a steel chair by throwing a chair at Ripley. Morgan kicked at Ripley while she was on the ground. The attack was broken up by WWE Officials backstage.

Analysis: That should continue the Rhea Ripley-Liv Morgan feud as Liv continues to try to get revenge on Ripley for Ripley injuring Morgan last year.

Roxanne Perez vs. Indi Hartwell (w/Candice LeRae)

Perez is the NXT Women’s Champion. Perez slapped Indi in the face to start the match. Perez dropkicked Indi in the left knee. Perez hit a Russian legsweep on Indi for two. Perez did a knee twist leading to Indi pushing Perez off her. Indi punched Perez a few times, but Perez came back with a running uppercut. When Perez ran off the ropes, Candice tripped up Perez, which the referee didn’t see. The referee was talking to Candice, so Perez did an eye gouge that the referee didn’t see. Perez hit Pop Rox for the pinfall win after three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Roxanne Perez

Analysis: *3/4 An easy win for Perez thanks to some eye-gouging while the referee wasn’t looking. The story is that Candice wanted Indi to cheat, but Indi doesn’t like doing that and that led to Perez taking advantage to win.

A video aired showing WrestleMania 40 highlights including Sami Zayn’s Intercontinental Title win.

Sami Zayn, the Intercontinental Champion, was shown walking backstage where Jey Uso congratulated Zayn on his big win. Zayn also congratulated Jey on his WrestleMania win. They did a fancy handshake together and Zayn kept on walking for a promo up next.


Roxanne Perez was shown walking backstage with the NXT Women’s Championship. She walked up to Natalya, who told Perez that she would see her on NXT tomorrow night. Perez said that she would see Natalya on her (Roxanne’s) show and Perez left.

Let’s Hear from Sami Zayn

Sami Zayn made his entrance as the Intercontinental Champion. Zayn was wearing a shirt saying: “Yo Khadija, I did it.” That is his wife’s name and it’s a reference to Rocky Balboa saying that about Adrian in the Rocky movies. At WrestleMania 40, Sami Zyan ended GUNTHER’s 666-day reign (a number we’ll remember) as the Intercontinental Champion. Zayn has held the IC Title three times before, but it felt like his first title win. There were “Sami” chants.

Zayn thanked the fans. Zayn said Gunther held the Intercontinental Title for 666 days and that makes him the best Intercontinental Champion of all time. Zayn reminded us that he beat Gunther. Zayn said that he had a lot of help with this because he got a lot of help from the fans. Zayn talked about how there were times when he didn’t believe himself while the fans did. Zayn said that seeing his wife and son at the curtain before he went out, that helped him. Zayn said seeing his brother/friend Kevin Owens helped him. Zayn talked about how there was one other guy that helped him…and here’s Imperium.

It was Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci from Imperium. Kaiser talked about how Gunther made the Intercontinental Title the most prestigious championship in WWE for the last two years. Kaiser said it breaks his heart to see Zayn holding the IC Title. Kaiser said that Zayn looked like the peasants in Philadelphia and said that Zayn looked like a bum. Kaiser said they are there to make this right.

Chad Gable made his entrance to join Sami Zayn in the ring. This sets up an obvious tag team match after the break.

Analysis: Sami Zayn remains one of the most likable people in WWE. I loved that match. I like Gunther a lot and I think he’ll probably move into the main event title scene soon. Anyway, this was a simple way to set up a tag team match.


A video aired about Sheamus that likely means he is coming back soon. They didn’t specify when that would be.

Chad Gable & Sami Zayn vs. Imperium – Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Vinci

Gable used his technical wrestling skills to get a rollup on Vinci. Gable hit a cross body block followed by an armbar. Vinci ran the ropes leading to his running cross body block. Kaiser tagged in with an uppercut punch on Gable. After Gable hit a back body drop, Zayn tagged in with an elbow smash to Kaiser. Imperium worked over Zayn a bit in their corner. Vinci was legal, Zayn dumped him out and Kaiser tagged in, so Zayn sent him out of the ring too. Gable got the tag leading to a cross body block onto both opponents on the floor. Back in the ring, Gable hit a cross body block off the top for two. Zayn was back in leading to Imperium doing a double team attack. Imperium trapped Zayn against the ropes leading to a double dropkick on Zayn.


The match continued with Gable getting the tag from Zayn as he worked over Vinci with a flipping neckbreaker. Gable hit overhead suplexes on both opponents. Gable sent Kaiser out of the ring followed by a flipping dive onto Kaiser on the floor. Gable went up top and hit a top rope headbutt on Vinci for two. Gable went up top, jumped off with a moonsault, Vinci moved and Gable went for a pin attempt, but Kaiser made a blind tag. Kaiser kicked Gable leading to a slam by Vinci. Kaiser & Vinci hit a Powerbomb/Uppercut combo on Gable for two because Zayn made the save. Gable did a back body drop to Vinci and caught a leaping Kaiser with an overhead suplex. Gable and Zayn each hit three German Suplexes on each of their opponents. Zayn tagged back in leading to a trip and an Ankle Lock submission. Kaiser pulled Gable off the turnbuckle and Kaiser hit a jumping kick to Zayn’s head. Zayn clotheslined Kaiser out of the ring. Zayn gave Vinci an Exploder Suplex into the turnbuckle. Gable got the tag as Zayn hit Vinci with an enziguri kick and Gable hit the Chaos Theory on Vinci for the pinfall win after 13 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Chad Gable & Sami Zayn

Analysis: ***1/2 Thank you! Great tag team match. They got a good amount of time and they are all tremendous performers, so they put on a terrific match. I thought that it was cool how Zayn tagged in Gable to get the win for the team. I wonder if this will lead to Gable asking Zayn for an Intercontinental Title match, which would be an awesome match between two of the best in WWE.

There were more WrestleMania 40 highlights shown including Jey Uso’s win over Jimmy Uso.

Jey Uso did a promo backstage saying tonight it’s a Fatal 4-Way with Drew McIntyre, Ricochet & Bronson Reed all getting “Yeetdown.” Jey got the fans to shout “Yeet” to end it.

Andrade was shown backstage talking to the Raw, Smackdown & NXT GMs Adam Pearce, Nick Aldis & Ava. They all talked about the WWE Draft upcoming. Chelsea Green walked up to them complaining about how she wasn’t involved in WrestleMania. Pearce said they had a special match for her tonight. Pearce told Green if she went to the ring now, her moment awaits so Green left.


A graphic was shown about how WWE has had 17 consecutive sellouts for TV events.

After Chelsea Green made her entrance, she found out her opponent: Jade Cargill. Jade is a Smackdown regular.

Jade Cargill vs. Chelsea Green

Green said that this match is not happening. Cargill hit a pump kick. Cargill held up Green and hit the Jaded slam for the pinfall win after about 20 seconds.

Winner by pinfall: Jade Cargill

Analysis: Squash city to put over Cargill in a big way.

There were more WrestleMania 40 highlights shown including Stephanie McMahon hyping up the crowd talking about how it was the Paul Levesque Era talking about her husband Triple H.

Sami Zayn was shown walking backstage with the Intercontinental Title. Chad Gable was with Alpha Academy, so Zayn asked to talk to Gable alone. Zayn said he had the match won and he handed the win to Gable. Zayn said he knows what Gable wants – the Intercontinental Title. Zayn said that Gable deserves a chance at this as much as anybody. Zayn said he’ll defend the title against Gable next week in his hometown of Montreal and Gable agreed to it. Gable said, “I can’t wait.”

Analysis: That’s going to be an incredible match in front of a hot Montreal crowd.

Drew McIntyre made his entrance looking angry. Drew said that what happened last night was complete and utter BS. Drew said that his moment lasted 5:46 at WrestleMania 40. Drew told the fans that it was five minutes longer than most of you last in bed, so shut it. Drew said that he respected Seth Rollins and said that they shared a moment that only warriors know about, so thank you for that. Drew called Damian Priest “Bondage Undertaker” and said he screwed it all up. Drew complained about the Money in the Bank being a joke saying it has cost him the title twice. Drew said that Priest is nothing but a transitional champion and that belt will belong to Drew. Drew said that the man who caused that finish was that prick CM Punk. Drew talked about how he would rub the title in Punk’s stupid face and Punk did nothing at all about it. Drew said Punk tripped up Drew when Drew wasn’t looking and then Punk took off his arm brace to bash Drew in the head with it. Drew said he knew that Punk was going into hiding, but Drew made it clear that he was going to take Punk out.

Jey Uso made his entrance for the 4-Way #1 Contenders match.

Analysis: Drew did what he said he would do to become the World Heavyweight Champion, but then he had his moment ruined. That set up angry Drew here and he is great in that role. I’m definitely interested to see what comes next for Drew because he needs to continue to be a focal point of whatever show he is on.


A commercial aired about a WWE documentary covering how Triple H, The Rock, and others came up with the plan for WrestleMania 40. It’s called “WrestleMania XL: Behind The Curtain.” It will air on WWE’s YouTube channel on Wednesday.

Analysis: That’s going to be very interesting to watch. They are really going to take us inside into the creative process.

Next week on Raw:

* Andrade vs. Dominik Mysterio

* Intercontinental Championship: Sami Zayn vs. Chad Gable

Fatal 4-Way #1 Contenders Match: Drew McIntyre vs. Jey Uso vs. Bronson Reed vs. Ricochet

The winner of this match will earn a World Heavyweight Championship match against Damian Priest. After the introductions, the trio of Drew, Reed & Jey were out on the floor. Ricochet jumped to the top and dove onto the three guys on the floor. They went to a break.


I missed about a minute coming back from break. There was a table set up against the turnbuckle as Jey and Reed battled by the table. Reed had Jey (who had taped ribs) in his arms and Reed hit a running powerslam on Jey through the table that was propped up against the turnbuckle. Another commercial followed that.


The match continued with Ricochet bouncing off the ropes going for a move, but Reed caught him. Ricochet hit a jumping kick on Drew. Ricochet tried fighting Reed and Drew at the same time, but Drew suplexed Ricochet across the ring. Reed tossed Ricochet over a kneeling Drew. Reed got into a chop fest with Drew followed by Reed hitting a corner splash. Drew showed off his power by hitting a Michinoku Driver on Reed for two because Jey broke up the pin. Jey superkicked Drew, so Ricochet joined in for a double superkick on Drew. Reed joined in for a triple superkick on Drew. Ricochet and Jey hit double superkicks on Reed. Reed knocked down Ricochet with a clothesline. Jey ran the ropes leading to a spear on Reed for a two count because Drew broke up the pin. Jey battled Drew on the turnbuckle where Jey hit a couple of headbutts. Drew slammed Jey down. Reed gave Ricochet a Buckle Bomb into the turnbuckle and a Death Valley Driver for two. Reed hit a senton splash onto Ricochet. Reed went up top, Drew grabbed his foot and Reed knocked down Drew with a shoulder tackle on the floor. Reed cleared off the Spanish announce table, but Drew sent Reed into the ring post. Jey hit a suicide dive on Drew on the floor. Jey went up top, Ricochet popped back up and Ricochet kicked Jey off the top to the floor. Ricochet spotted Reed on the Spanish announce table. Ricochet did a springboard 450 Splash to splash Reed through the table. Ricochet was selling a rib injury since he hit the edge of the table. Jey was in the ring with Drew, so Jey hit some punches and then Drew came back with a Future Shock DDT. Drew went for a Claymore Kick, but CM Punk was at ringside to hold onto Drew’s foot. Jey hit Drew with a superkick and Spear. Jey went up top and hit an Uso Splash for the pinfall win after 18 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Jey Uso

Analysis: ***3/4 A terrific match with a controversial finish since CM Punk decided to interfere in a Drew McIntyre match and cost him the victory for the second night in a row. Good storytelling since Drew was such a jerk to Punk, so Punk has got payback on back to back nights. Jey capitalizing on that to pick up the win was a good choice. Ricochet had the move of the match with the springboard 450 Splash through the table while Reed was impressive throughout the match as well.

Jey Uso celebrated the win while CM Punk was on the commentary table laughing about how he screwed Drew McIntyre again. Jey looked over at Punk on the table. That was the end of Raw.


Three Stars of the Show

  1. Cody Rhodes
  2. The Rock
  3. Jey Uso/Drew McIntyre


The Scoreboard

7.75 out of 10

Last week: 7.5

2024 Average: 7.63


Final Thoughts on WWE Raw

I thought Raw was a very good show overall. The Philly crowd was hot for a lot of it. The segment with Triple H introducing Cody Rhodes leading to Cody’s speech and right into The Rock confronting Cody was awesome. The fans shouting random things at Rock was really entertaining and Rock responding to them was funny too. It’s obviously going to set up a big Cody-Rock match down the road whether it’s later this year or perhaps at next year’s WrestleMania. That match is coming at some point since Rock beat Cody in the tag team match on WrestleMania 40 Saturday. Also, I loved that Cody Rhodes career retrospective video package too. That was outstanding.

I liked the John Cena surprise in the tag team match with Awesome Truth beating The Judgment Day. It wasn’t a great match or anything like that, but it was a memorable moment for the fans. Cena kept it simple by not bumping and he hit his signature moves to the win. Simple enough.

The main event 4-way match was very good. CM Punk screwing Drew McIntyre over for the second night in a row was really well played. That rivalry is going to be one of the best of the year when Punk is healthy in a few months. I’m also looking forward to Zayn vs. Gable in Montreal next week. That will be amazing.


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