WWE RAW – Review, Highlights & Analysis From 22/02/2016

Lesnar Attacks Ambrose In The Parking Lot

Usually those backstage attacks look terribly orchestrated but this one looked as brutal as it could be. Brock Lesnar has the natural ability to make a beat down look realistic (in the wrestling context, of course). Immediately the crowd’s excitement levels went up.

Shane Returns On RAW

It wasn’t enough that we got Lesnar vs. Ambrose for Mania. The good news kept coming. Shane McMahon returned on RAW to take over and the fans could not have been happier.

I don’t remember the last time when I didn’t feel like fast forwarding through an Authority segment. Shane, however, brought the change we’ve been asking for. The last couple of years have been dominated by the rule of the Authority and it was getting repetitive. There is so much you can do against a heel boss. Having Shane take over will change the entire complexion of the program.

Shane vs. Taker at Mania was undoubtedly a blockbuster announcement. I’ve heard many names being tossed around but Shane came as a surprise. I don’t know how good this match will be from a technical standpoint because Taker’s getting old and Shane must have a lot of ring rust. However, from a marketing point of view, this will undoubtedly boost ticket sales.

The New Day def. The Lucha Dragons & Neville

The New Day are a bizarre case. They cut a believable promo on the League of Nations without sounding any less heel.

Close to the end, the match got intense. The exchange between Neville and Xavier Woods was simply beautiful. There was so much energy in it that the pointlessness of the match was forgotten and the fans got cheering.

The thing I don’t understand is why Kalisto is still in these tag team matches, instead of doing something with his US Championship. I guess midcard titles had no place on this RAW.


Oh, what a beautiful feud this will be! This is the rivalry that will bring the best out of Ambrose. The last few months something had been missing in him. The Lunatic Fringe was goofier and less edgy. Against Brock, Ambrose needs to become the hardcore fighter we all know him to be.

We’re back to Ambrose’s roots. He is the guy that gets beaten down and smiles as it happens. He didn’t show up with the ambulance, magically healed. No, Ambrose was hurt but he still dragged himself out. That’s the spirit the fans want to see.  WrestleMania will be brilliant!

We have to give it to the WWE Creative. This time they made the right decision. It seemed like Lesnar was meant to face the Wyatts at Mania but seeing the amazing reaction Ambrose vs. Lesnar got, plans changed.  This is better than Ambrose vs. Triple H. Even though there is not title on the line, this is Ambrose’s chance for a big break.

The Usos def. The Ascension

This match was so short that I wonder why the Ascension even bothered coming out. The entire segment was based on the Dudley Boyz vs. The Usos feud.

What’s sad here is that the Usos were actually over a few years back. Now, they are struggling to get a reaction. All the chants in this match were aimed at the Dudleys.

Jericho & AJ Styles vs. Axel & Slater

Jericho and AJ Styles had a cheesy moment of making up. AJ got Y2J’s stamp of approval and hugging was on the cards. Luckily, the Social Outcasts came out. I know that they are heel but what they said was true. Jericho and Styles, becoming friends was a bit forced.

It’s no surprise that the Social Outcast stood no chance to AJ & Y2J. The match was short and unimpressive. We were supposed to be excited about it because Jericho and Styles were involved but in reality it was only a filler.

I hope this Y2AJ story is one off thing.  AJ Styles is far too good to be stuck in a tag team, especially one where he’d have no voice whatsoever. AJ couldn’t possibly get a word in edge-wise around Jericho.


There was yet another segment showing Goldust’s futile attempts to convince Truth to be his partner. I agree with Truth on what he said. This was cute in the beginning but it’s soon getting old.

The Wyatt Family def. Ryback, The Big Show & Kane

We got a boring rematch of Fastlane’s collision between The Wyatts and “The Giants”.  As the Wyatts were about to lose, Ryback abandoned his team and this somehow led to Kane getting pinned. It was completely illogical.

The booking should have gone this way. The Wyatts should have won at Fastlane. They need some momentum. The faces would’ve asked for a rematch and just as they were about to lose, one would’ve reached for a tag to Ryback and Ryback would’ve ditched him. That way Ryback’s retreat would have made sense.

It’s horrible how badly the Wyatts have been buried. Bray is one of the best speakers in the company and his stable could have been massive. Instead, due to inconsistent booking, the fans don’t care anymore. It’s so bad that the one guy who got chants going on RAW was Big Show.

Sasha Banks def. Naomi

I like the rivalry between Sasha and Naomi. The matches are great and the animosity between the two feels real. They do a good job of telling a story between the ropes.

Charlotte put a ledge between Sasha and Becky. I’m not sure how necessary that was. The two of them were always clear on the fact that they were partners and not friends.

I wonder why Charlotte was ripping off the Bellas’ attire. It’s either because she wants to get heel heat from mocking DB or because Nikki is coming back soon for her title.

Sheamus vs. Roman Reigns

We all knew Sheamus vs. Reigns was never going to be the real main event. Even the entire League of Nations could not have achieved the same results as Triple H on his own.

The beating Roman received was brutal. It was bloody and gory. That didn’t stop The Game, who disregarded the blood, took Reigns and delivered a savage Pedigree on the steel steps. It was easily a scene that should not be seen by children. However, it was the best that could have happened to this feud.

After all, despite what the fans say, it makes sense to end the Authority vs. Reigns story arc with Roman vs. Triple H, one-on-one.  Hunter just showed us that he is not just a suit and that the Game is still alive, which immediately made WrestleMania that much more interesting.

The crowd reaction was brutal. Roman had to once again play a face, get a beat down and listen to the fans cheer his attacker. He must have a really thick skin to keep going with this.


What are your impressions from RAW? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on FB or Twitter!


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