Paul Heyman/Brock Lesnar
The Monday after WrestleMania SUPPLEX CITY got a chant and Paul Heyman used the word b*itch too many times without any censoring. Needless to say, the fans loved it. They also loved the idea of seeing Brock Lesnar wrestle on RAW for the first time in over a decade but that was too far in fantasy land.
Stephanie promised that Seth Rollins will fight that night only that he wasn’t there yet. With that start, I had no doubt the excuses had just begun.
The funny thing is that the fans reacted positively to both Rollins and Lesnar but neither of them is face. I like it when the audience show support for whoever deserved it and not whoever they are told to like.
Daniel Bryan def. Dolph Ziggler
While this IC Title match was going on, I knew I was watching the champion and the #1 contender and I was fine with that. Ziggler and Bryan are such a good combination in the ring that I kept forgetting Barrett still exists and he’s meant to take part in this rivalry at some point. The way BNB was booked before Mania made it so that the title felt vacant, rather than his and now the fans don’t see Barrett as deserving of a championship opportunity.
The only criticism I have for this match is that Bryan and Ziggler need to stop this head-butting business. It looks ridiculous. They are wrestlers, not ruminant animals, fighting over a female.
After the match BNB decided to make himself visible again and attacked DB. Then Sheamus ran out with a mohwak and braided beard. The Celtic Warrior with his Viking look brogue kicked both Bryan and Ziggler and then soaked in the “YOU LOOK STUPID” chants until he finally announced he was back.
This questionable new look that Sheamus is sporting at least gets him some heat if nothing else. Also, the heel return was a good move. That’s how Sheamus debuted to begin with –as a non-apologetic heel and the crowd loved it.
The Lucha Dragons & New Day def. Cesaro, Tyson Kidd & The Ascension
Seeing the Lucha Dragons face the Ascension on RAW made my night. NXT talent getting called up and the getting appreciated by the main show audience gives me a gratifying feeling.
We can’t say that the New Day enjoyed the same sort of a reception. There were loud NEW DAY SUCKS chants that just couldn’t be ignored. The ironic thing is that these chants started exactly when Kofi Kingston was actually impressive in the ring.
Kalisto absolutely stole the show. There is a gap for a luchador to be filled on the main roster and Kalisto is the guy for the job. I just hope that what happened to the Ascension won’t happen to the Lucha Dragons. Terrible booking ruins careers.
Brock Lesnar/Seth Rollins
Rollins refused to have a match with Lesnar because he was jet-legged and the entire WWE crew paid for it. The commentary team got dismantled by a flying announce table and an F5 to Cole, while one specific camera man can now boast for life that he survived two consecutive F5s from Brock Lesnar. The crowd enjoyed the sight greatly, unlike Stephanie McMahon, who decided to fine Brock and suspend him indefinitely.
I want to point something out. When Rollins and Lesnar met for a few seconds in the ring and the Beast went for a suplex, Rollins responded with a beautiful standing drop kick. Granted it didn’t take Lesnar down but it was a quick counterattack. It’s just a snippet of what we can expect from Rollins vs. Lesnar in the future.
Suspending Lesnar indefinitely was a smart move. The WWE will protect Lesnar’s invincible image as long as possible.
Mizdow def. Stardust
Mizdow had his first singles match away from the Miz. Stardust was too obsessed with the CODY chant to pay attention to the match and got hit with the Skull Crushing finale.
Miz wasn’t happy with Mizdow using his finisher so he cut his former assistant’s celebration with a Skull Crushing Finale of his own.
Hopefully, this feud won’t get forgotten, because it’s in the bottom of the card. The fans are into it and they love Mizdow but if the rivalry is kept to 5 min matches and no mic time, they’ll quickly lose interest.
Adrian Neville def. Axel
Last night we witnessed Neville’s RAW debut and it was pitch perfect. The crowd gave him all the respect and support he deserves. The speed and athleticism were impressive as usual. This was the moment when the NXT chants were equivalent to THIS IS AWESOME chants.
As epic as that debut was, I can’t help but feel concerned about Neville on the main roster. The WWE doesn’t exactly have a great record of booking smaller guys.
John Cena def. Dean Ambrose
This might have been the best match of the night. Cena issued an open challenge for the Us title, expecting Rusev but got Ambrose. When the Lunatic Fringe came down the ramp my initial reaction was joy but by the time he got in the ring I went cold because I’ve learnt my lesson – the WWE will only tease and then pull the rug under Ambrose’s feet.
The match was PPV-worthy. AAs, STF & Dirty Deeds didn’t end the fight. The crowd went nuts when Ambrose locked the STF on Cena. It was an amazing showing. Yes, there was a tiny botch in the corner on the part of Ambrose but it cannot be denied it was a championship worthy performance from the Lunatic Fringe.
Obviously Cena retained. No surprises here. And while the fans are fuming over Ambrose’s loss, the WWE is probably planning to swiftly move on. My guess is that the Lunatic Frigne was once again used to draw attention to a certain title/person and then stepped over to move on once the job’s done. Cena will continue feuding with Rusev and Ambrose will continue being lost and misused.
Naomi, AJ & Paige def. Natalya & The Bella Twins
That was one good tag match. I can’t fault either of the women on their in-ring performance. These the 6 divas on the main roster than can actually wrestle. The only one capable women, who wasn’t present’s Alicia Fox.
AJ came out wearing an “I’m a HUGGER” t-shirt as tribute to NXT’s Bayley. It’s always worth mentioning when a main roster talent shows support for one of their NXT colleagues.
Rusev def. Goldust
This was a short squash match,in which Goldust tapped out to the Accolade. Rusev didn’t talk. The only difference was that Lana was not around. The Bulgarian Brute will balem her for his loss and I imagine the WWE will get him on another winning streak before he gets back to wrestling Cena.
The only thing I fear is an “I QUIT” match between the two. It makes sense since neither has ever tapped out. However, the outcome is predetermined and I don’t fancy the idea.
Randy Orton, Ryback & Roman Reigns def. Seth Rollins, Kane & Big Show
Earlier on the show, Orton was tasked with finding himself two partners. I think we could have all guessed who they would be.
The match was actually good but since there was no real meaning to it, the whole attention was stolen by the crowd in San Jose. There were all sorts of odd post WM chants and a Mexican wave throughout the arena. Somewhere, in-between all that Roman Reigns dove over the top rope to take out the entire opposing team.
The exchange between Reigns and Rollins was also interesting. It had Rollins jump over a spear. I’m excited to see a match in which Rollins outruns and outsmarts both Reigns and Lesnar. I know I won’t wait too long for this.
I also want to mention the Big Show. He won the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle at WM but it barely got mentioned on Raw. If the fans are to ever take this trophy seriously, the WWE needs to show that it makes a difference to the winner. Otherwise, they might as well get rid of the match.
The RAW after Wrestle Mania didn’t disappoint. It was an outstanding show with an amazing crowd. We’re yet to hear from Bray Wyatt by the way. I wonder what he’ll do next, since losing to Taker derailed his New Face of Fear Gimmick.
What did you think of last night’s RAW? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on FB or Raw!