WWE RAW – Review, Highlights & Analysis From 14/03/2016

The New Day def. The League of Nations

This was the best segment of the night. The match, unlike the one at Roadblock, properly painted the League of Nations as heels. It was about time the League of Nations became the heel power stable they should have always been.

The New Day were applauded for cheating because they were suffering from the numbers game being reversed. The crowd went nuts for the tag team champs like never before. It seems like the New Day are ready for the face turn.

The beat down after the match reminded me of the time The Shield were turning face. They used to be a dominant trio, using the numbers in their advantage and yet their popularity grew until someone more heel than them stacked the odds against them and broke them with relentless viciousness in the ring. The New Day, despite their quirky, fun nature, are taking the same route to a face turn and it’s working.

Ambrose/Lesnar

That was the segment with the fight that almost happened and the ad that Paul Heyman almost didn’t manage to deliver.

Ambrose swiftly moved past Roadblock and is back on track, winding Lesnar up. The feud is still as hot as it was before the additional rivalry against Triple H.

The crowd wants to see The Beast vs. The Lunatic Fringe because Ambrose’s past promises a really brutal match. If that was a normal fight, Dean wouldn’t have had a chance but in a No Holds Barred, the fans might be in for a treat.

Ryback def. Sin Cara

Ryback squashed Sin Cara in about 5 minutes in an attempt to get Kalisto’s attention. I’m not sure I’m totally sold on the Big Guy vs. Small Guy storyline, especially knowing that it seems unlikely Kalisto will win.

Then again, I couldn’t help but notice Sin Cara’s black outfit, compared to Kalisto’s pure white gear. Could this be a blatant hint to a good vs. evil comparison that’s about to happen? Ryback did talk about partners dragging you down…

The Authority/ Dolph Ziggler

Here we saw another great performance by Ziggler. He can cut a promo against anybody and he’s over with the fans. Then again, Stephanie’s promise to give him hope and then crush him sounded way too realistic. It’s a shame that the Show Off is forever stuck just under the main event scene.

Sami Zayn def. The Miz

This was a strange match, hardly a match, actually. Kevin Owens got involved very early on and got taken out by none other than the Miz. So, in the end of the day, KO cost Miz the match, giving Sami Zayn the victory.

The A-Lister is not just a third wheel in this, he’s a wild card. His addition to the Owens vs. Zayn feud might mean nothing but it could also cause chaos, especially if the Miz is willing to go after the heel too.

Team B.A.D. def. Team Bella

Lana distracted Brie and so Team B.A.D. won. That might have been taken as just another way of annoying Brie but it seems to indicate the start of a long-term partnership.

After the match there was a backstage segment, showing a verbal altercation between Paige and Lana, in which Lana was supported by Team B.A.D.

 

The way things are going, it seems like the WWE is also scared of Lana vs. Brie being a terrible flop, so they are planning to add Paige to Team Bella and Team B.A.D. to Lana, in order to get a somewhat decent fight. And, they’d get a Total Divas spin on it too! Killing two birds with one stone, are we?

The Usos def. The Social Outcasts

This was barely a match. Regardless of The Dudelys’ attempts to sabotage the Usos, the Social Outcasts stood no chance.  It felt like Heath Slater and friends got more action in their KFC ad than in the match itself. Simply pathetic.

The Dudely Boyz vs. The Usos feud seems to be going down the drain fast. Almost as fast as the Social Outcasts’ chances of success.

Mick Foley/ Dean Ambrose

This was a good segment. Now, it’s not only an IWC thing. Mick Foley did a literal passing of the hardcore torch to Ambrose. Seeing that barbwire around the bat might have raised a lot of people’s hopes.

The one thing that worries me is that this could be just a marketing strategy. I don’t see the WWE actually going hardcore. Not that Ambrose can’t, we know he’s done a lot of bloody fights before but the program isn’t ready for this. It’s PG after all.

Triple H def. Dolph Ziggler

The match was great. It kept the fans on their feet for most of the time, thanks to Dolph’s quickness.

I have to admit, even I had a couple of moments when I thought for a second that Dolph could have won. The close calls in this fight were really, really close.

Again, it’s a shame that Ziggler’s only used for a stool to step on. He’s more than that. He’s a like a trampoline. He’ll make you look good, he’ll get your momentum flying high but you’ll still only step over him.

Roman Reigns Returns

I was glad to see Reigns back. He acted the way he should have always acted from the start – silent and brutal.

There might have been a bit too much slow walking without action but it created the atmosphere of the brawl. Triple H was almost out, still trying to fight back, despite his injuries slowing him down and Reigns wasn’t in a hurry. He was just systematically dissecting the Game.

Backstage the brawl got as intense as it could. What made it look realistic is that Triple H was looking for weapons but Roman simply found bigger and better props to use against him. The full trash can was a good choice.

Having friends and family stop Roman was a good touch. It fits his personality. In the state that he was, no official or security guard could have survived him but he’d never hurt his family, even if he seems to have lost it. It was a well-executed return for Reigns.

Golden Truth

I’m tired of these repetitive segments. Then again, I guess, we’ll have to wait till Mania for this team to finally form officially.

Neville def. Jericho /via DQ/

It was a sad, unfortunate event. The Man Gravity Forgot lost his shot at his first WrestleMania just a couple of weeks before the event.

Neville got legitimately hurt.  Y2J noticed and DQed himself, in order to save the segment. As the amazing heel that he is, he managed to paint the man, torn by jealousy, perfectly. Respect for Jericho.

AJ Styles’ involvement was a bit anticlimactic. I didn’t expect a single Phenomenal Forearm to end the argument. Even the superman Punch asks for a Spear after that. Then again, the WWE’s probably trying to save as much as they can for the actual match.

Vince/Shane/The Undertaker

Shane’s delivery was shaky last night and his punches looked far more fake than I remember from his wrestling days. But when it comes to strategy, good on Shane O’Mac, he might have gone down but he played the mind games well. He, being the son of Vince, has the art of manipulation in his blood. The thought is already planted in Taker’s head.

I won’t be surprised if the Undertaker turns on Vince at WrestleMania, allowing Shane to take control of the company. That way, the Deadman doesn’t need to suffer another Mania loss and the anti-Authority storyline can continue.

 

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

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