RAW abruptly begins with a Bray Wyatt titantron promo.
Roman Reigns fires back with his own titantron promo from the locker room.
Wyatt vs. Roman Reigns
Slow, sluggish start to this match. Wyatt showed good offense and seemed to carry Roman at the beginning. Towards the middle of the match things evened out and Roman got in his groove. Big take aways from this match were a Superplex reverses into a Sit-out powerbomb, the Superman punch reversed into a Ura-nage, Roman powering up to super sayian after looking at the Wrestlemania sign, and the eventual finish of Roman powering out of a Sister Abigail and hitting a spear. Roman pins Wyatt for the win and a spot at Elimination Chamber. All in all a great match to start Raw.
Matt Hardy appears after the match to hit Bray with a Twist of Fate and laugh a little bit.
Jason Jordan and Seth Rollins are back in the locker room. Seth asks about Jordan’s health. He gives a rousing speech about how they’re a team and how they’ll win the tag titles back. It’s mentioned that it’s their FINAL time to challenge for the tag titles.
Balor club walks to the ring. Revival follow shortly there after and say that they are tag specialist. They insist on a tag match instead of the planned singles match and tell Finn Balor to choose a partner. He picks Karl Anderson and the match begins. This was a relatively short match and with good in-ring work at the beginning by the Revival on the Anderson but it turns around rather quickly. Highlights of the match were the comeback from the Club and a “HIYAH!” From Anderson. Finn hit the coup de gras for the win. Everyone “Too Sweets” and that’s it for them.
Break to the back and we have Sasha Banks watching her loss to Asuka from last weeks Raw. Bayley comes over and asks Sasha for tips on facing Asuka. Sasha doesn’t want to help her since they’re “competing” with each other. This leads to a very interesting exchange between the too and continues to build up on their rivalry. Tension!!!
Out to the ring and we have a 205 live match. Cedric Alexander and Mustafa Ali vs. Drew Gulak and Tony Nese. Drake Maverick (Rockstar Spud for you Impact fans) was on commentary. Initially, Drake’s voice overshadowed the fact that wrestling was going on. This really was a typical 205 Live match in the start. Drew Gulak was clobbering everyone with nasty close lines and we end up seeing Cedric take one, with a nasty bump to his shoulder as the results. Mustafa looked impressive as usual, with a beautiful tornado DDT to Gulak that had me feeling it at home. Cedric ended up winning with a Lumbar Check to Gulak. The end of the match was exciting and the crowd seemed to respond well to it.
They show the Cruiserweight title, held by its current champion “Vacant”.
Kurt Angle comes to the ring to announce the competitors for the first ever Women’s Elimination Chamber!
They are as follows:
- Mandy Rose
- Mickie James
- Sonya Deville
- Sasha Banks
- Alexa Bliss
Kurt is all smiles while announcing this but seems to be lacking real enthusiasm in announcing this or anything for that matter. He goes on to announce Asuka will face Nia Jax at EC. If Nia wins she’ll be added to the Women’s title match at Mania. Bliss immediately comes out and begins to raise hell. She says she’s not seen as equal to other champions, specifically Brock Lesnar. The crowd has mixed reactions about this. Kurt goes on to say that she hasn’t defended her title since October and then asks the audience if they want to see her defend at EC. The crowd mildly erupts. He asks again to a slightly louder response. Bliss walks to the back.
There’s a Cena Selfie promo about his match later on that night. This is now a thing...
Asuka vs Bayley is next. Bayley spent a good amount of this match in control. This is the Bayley I remember from early on. She looked like a serious contender for Asuka which made the match enjoyable and exciting. Asuka ended up winning with an arm bar but shook Bayleys hand after the match. A great show of respect for a great competitor.
We get a Selfie Promo from the Bar. Yep, it’s not going away people.
The Miz vs. Apollo Crews follows that. Miz cuts a quick promo saying it’s the Year of the Miz and says he’ll win the Universal Title from Brock. Apollo comes out and the match begins. While no program exists between these two, they told a great in ring story. The Miz used his usual heel tactics and Apollo showed off his ridiculous strength and agility. Important points from this match were Apollo Crews and his standing shooting star press, Miz and his dastardly move set and Curtis Axel not being a ringside. He could just be taking the night off but he wasn’t there and they didn’t mention it. The match overall was good and showed off Apollo Crews without having the Miz lose. Miz goes on to victory with a Skull Crushing Finale.
Backstage we have Seth Rollins walking up to Kurt Angle, Jason Jordon, and a random doctor person. Jordan tells Seth he’s hurt and can’t compete. Seth is understandably upset. Kurt says he can’t compete if he doesn’t have a partner. In walks Roman Reigns. Seth visibly looks better about his situation and they head off.
The Bar vs. The Shield. The Bar dominates from the beginning. We don’t get a good back and forth until a few minutes into the match. This match wasn’t as exciting as hoped. Everyone hits a few big spots. At some point, Jason Jordon comes down to ringside. He cheers on his buds as they try to win the titles back. He grabs Cesaro’s leg while he was running the ropes to try to give the Shield the advantage. Roman sees this and tries to shoo Jordan away. Sheamus and Cesaro end up outside the ring where they try to grab their belts and just take the count out loss. Jordan is there to meet them and stops them. He ends up brawling with the Bar and gets Rollins and Reigns DQ’d. Both Seth and Roman are pissed. Jordan looks sorry on the outside, like he didn’t realize that would happen. The match was okay over all. It continues the Jordan/Rollins storyline and finally frees up the Bar to go forth and do other tag team things.
A Braun Selfie Promo! He says get these hands and that’s all we need to hear.
Backstage we have Seth going off on Jason Jordan, then Kurt sends Jordan home till he’s medically cleared. Not sure if this injury is storyline or not so stay tuned for more details.
Nia Jax vs Savanna Stone. Basic Nia squash match against a local indie wrestler. Good show of strength for Nia and it gets her on the show.
Renee Young is in the ring with Nia. She says Asuka can’t beat her and that she’ll be the Empress of Yesterday.
Main Event time! We have Elias vs. Cena vs. Braun! Elias is out first to sing a song and get some heat from the crowd, which he does. Cena and Braun come out next. Elias rolls out of the ring and let’s the two start it out. Braun has control early as to be expected. He beats down Cena for a minute then goes after Elias. Both Cena and Elias team up to take on the big man. Cena hits Braun with an AA on the steel steps and the crowd loses it. Elias then turns his attention to Cena and gets the advantage. Cena starts his comeback but is caught mid stride by Strowman and subsequently power slammed for his efforts. Elias almost catches one as well but ends up pushing Strowman out of the ring and get the pin on Cena. Elias wins and will be the last man to exit the Elimination Chamber! Overall the show was entertaining, building on storylines leading up to the Elimination Chamber in a few weeks. My only criticisms are the Selfie Promos and the lack of fire between the Club and Revival. All in all a good show and worth the watch. That’s all for this week, until next time folks.
This article was written by @Buuurch1 please follow me on twitter.