This episode of WWE Raw kicked off with Seth Rollins, Murphy, Akam and Rezar in the ring as Rollins held a promo. He said that he has a message and that they wouldn’t leave the ring until everyone would hear their message.
Then, Kevin Owens’ music hit, and he came out on the stage but Rollins told him to not get in over his head since Samoa Joe did so two weeks ago and Ivar last week and now both are taken out. Owens answered that he’s not alone and the Viking Raiders duo Erik and Ivar came out. Rollins said that KO’s problem would be that his partners don’t stay upright, but Owens shoved both of his partners to then explain that they look solid to him and also as sick of Rollins talking as he is. Owens, Erik and Ivar made their way to the ring where they started a brawl at ringside with Murphy and the AOP duo.
Rollins was alone in the ring and got surprised from behind by Samoa Joe who put him into the Coquina Clutch. The other six men joined them in the ring where the brawl went on until the faces cleared the ring to head into the break.
Opinion: Good segment to set up the main event what is an eight-man tag team match between the two groups. However, that was just typical Raw stuff how they set up a main event with two big groups.
Becky Lynch (C.) vs. Asuka (w/ Kairi Sane) for the Raw Women’s Championship
It was good to see that these two women get enough time to work a solid match as it took almost 20 minutes. Of course, Kairi Sane tried several times to get involved in any way, but in the end, it was Becky Lynch who performed a Uranage for the three count.
After the match, she got attacked by Shayna Baszler from behind who put her in the Kirifuda Clutch for a very short time, but then bite her in the back of her neck. When she stopped, her mouth was covered in blood and Lynch sold it by screaming and holding the back of the neck. She told the refs and EMTs that she would be fine as they checked on her and went with Lynch to the back where she shoved away the EMTs to drive on herself away with the ambulance.
Opinion: The match between Asuka and Lynch was really good since both are great in-ring talents while they received enough time to work together. The post-match angle was okay since a feud between Baszler and Lynch has already the necessary heat and I’m not sure if this was necessary. However, it’s great to see Baszler finally on Raw and so we already have two outstanding women’s matches for WWE’s WrestleMania.
“The Street Profits” Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins vs. Mojo Rawley and Riddick Moss
Ahead of this match, Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins explained during their entrance that Mojo Rawley would hide behind Riddick Moss. However, after not even one minute the Street Profits pinned Moss after their typical combination of a Spinebuster and a Splash from the top rope.
After the fight, the Street Profits left through the crowd while Rawley entered the ring to bark at Moss who suddenly rolled him up for a quick three count to become the new WWE 24/7 Champion.
Opinion: In truth, I thought that they would now really use Rawley to be a permanent 24/7 Champion and now he already lost it to Moss who did in truth until now nothing on Raw.
Drew McIntyre joins MVP in the VIP Lounge
MVP logically first came out as the host and entered the ring to then introduce Drew McIntyre who joined him in the ring. MVP brought up that some people say that McIntyre is with all his tools not ready yet to become WWE Champion. He then added, “you and me, we are going to change all that.”
McIntyre questioned the word “we” and asked if “we” won the Royal Rumble and MVP answered that McIntyre would need a guy to guide him and handle things like interviews. McIntyre explained that unlike Brock Lesnar he doesn’t need someone thinking or talking for him. MVP answered, but McIntyre turned away why MVP told him that he should never again turn his back on him when he talks. MVP added that McIntyre would need him who just gave him a headbutt followed by a Claymore Kick.
Opinion: This segment wasn’t absolutely perfect, but it perfectly worked off since they just wanted to get McIntyre a bit more over as they do every week. I’m not sure yet if they want to have MVP’s VIP Lounge now on a regular base on Raw or if this was just for this segment.
Angel Garza (w/ Zelina Vega) vs. Cedric Alexander
Angel Garza and Zelina Vega came out when Cedric Alexander already made his entrance and suddenly Humberto Carrillo attacked Garza. Security separated them and then the match started. After not even four minutes, Garza performed the Wing Clipper fort the clean pin.
Opinion: Garza continues to show good performance and prove why he deserves to be on Raw even though I’m no fan of such squash matches.
NXT Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley vs. Sarah Logan in a non-title match
Then, we saw Rhea Ripley in the backstage area who got interviewed by Charly Caruso and suddenly Sarah Logan showed up who asked the NXT Women’s Champion who she thinks that she is. “I’m Rhea Ripley. Who are you?”, Ripley replied before and then walked away.
Backstage, Sarah Schreiber interviewed Bobby Lashley while Lana was standing next to him. Lashley explained that after his fight tonight with Ricochet, he won’t make it to the Super ShowDown to take on Lesnar for the WWE Championship.
After that, Logan came out and called out Ripley who then made her entrance and the two women had a match while Charlotte Flair was watching from the stage. Ripley put away Logan after less than one minute and after that asked Charlotte for an answer to her challenge as she didn’t answer on last week’s Raw and neither on NXT. Charlotte answered that this would maybe be the way how the Queen operates. She also added that Ripley might even isn’t anymore the champ after the upcoming NXT TakeOver: Portland.
Opinion: This feud between Ripley and Charlotte is quite interesting since we have finally a new opponent for Flair as I have the feeling that she already fought with everyone on Raw and SmackDown. This might be the “revival” of the Queen.
Ricochet vs. Bobby Lashley (w/ Lana)
There was no real reason for this fight to take place, but logically they used it to give Ricochet some momentum ahead of his big match against Lesnar for the WWE Championship at Super ShowDown. The fight took about 11 minutes and in the end, it was the 630 Splash which helped Ricochet to win the match.
Opinion: A good match even though it doesn’t make that much sense to let Ricochet look strong since we know that he will have no chance against Lesnar.
Randy Orton continues to act as an outstanding heel
Randy Orton made his entrance and one more said that he would owe everyone an explanation. “What I did to Edge hurt me more than it hurt him,” Orton explained before suddenly the music of Matt Hardy hit and he joined Orton in the ring. He also asked him why he did this, but then added that he would know Orton and wonders why he gives a damn about Edge.
Hardy added that he hated Edge back then during their feud more than everybody else but before that, they were best friends. He added that Edge, Christian, Jeff Hardy and himself shared the same hotel room to save some bucks while they were all just kids who wanted to be WWE superstars.
He noted that they invented the TLC match and that they stole the show several times. And all the hate he had for Edge disappeared when he heard that Edge would have to retire. Hardy went on by saying that he couldn’t imagine that the performing for the WWE Universe would be taken away from him before he was ready. He explained that after nine years Edge made a miraculous return and Randy took that away from him. Hardy asked Orton what the hell would be wrong with him.
The Viper went for an RKO which Hardy countered and was able to fight back just to eat an RKO seconds later. Orton placed Hardy’s head on a chair to then slam another one down on his head before walking backstage.
Opinion: This was clearly the best segment of the whole episode of Raw. Hardy did an incredibly great job and since it’s rumoured that he will leave the WWE soon, this might be his last appearance. Some media outlets reported within the last weeks that Matt Hardy permanently pitched Vince McMahon ideas for segments and storylines and none of them got accepted. I’m sure that this was one of the ideas and if all others were that good…
Aleister Black vs. Akira Tozawa
First, Ruby Riott got asked in the backstage area why she attacked Liv Morgan last week. She explained that Morgan was always a puppy and a follower and that she’s here to put her in her place.
The match between Aleister Black and Akira Tozawa was as short as expected. After not even two minutes Black performed the Black Mass Kick for the win. After that, he held a short promo in which he said that he would feel like an animal inside a cage. He finished his promo by saying that those who venture out there know that it’s not him who is in there with him, but it is them who will be strapped inside the metaphoric cage with him.
Opinion: Honestly, I’m not sure what I should think about Black’s new post-match promos. Hopefully, they find a good opponent and storyline for him until WrestleMania. Besides, I hope that they use Riott to bring Morgan even more over since I like Morgan way more than Riott.
Seth Rollins, Murphy and “AOP” Akam and Rezar vs. Samoa Joe, Kevin Owens and “The Viking Raiders” Erick and Ivar in an eight-man tag team match
Ahead of this match, we saw Lynch who came back with the ambulance, parked it outside the arena and then made her entrance. She grabbed a mic in the ring and said that they numbed her up and gave her something nice for the pain. She said that if Baszler did it just to get her attention than her plan worked off and warned Baszler that she better finds her before Lynch finds Baszler.
Then the eight men made their entrances for the main event of this episode of Raw. When all eight men were in the ring, Rollins grabbed a microphone as he wanted to say something. However, a brawl broke out as the faces attacked him and after the brawl was over, the actual match started.
In the final phase of the match, Joe applied the Coquina Clutch against Murphy who tapped out, but the ref didn’t see it since he tied up by Rezar. Suddenly, Rollins hit the Curb Stomp against Joe and Murphy pinned him for the win.
Opinion: They are already on the edge that this feud is too boring since week in and week out we see almost the same matches. The match was definitely good, but I’m no fan of these six or eight-man tag team matches every single week.
All in all, it was a good episode of Raw and the two highlights were in my eyes definitely the appearing of Baszler (not the kind of the segment but just that she’s on Raw) and the promo by Matt Hardy and Randy Orton. I think that they should come to an end with the feud between Rollins’ stable and KO and his friends. Anyways, the show was enjoyable and you have to admit that in 2020 Raw is clearly better than SmackDown.