2 weeks until Payback and Columbus, Ohio hosts tonight’ Raw, with a lot of Payback matches still to be set up. Will Brock be on the card? Will Roman come back from the dead after only 1 week for vengeance on Braun? Who’s Bayley facing for the Women’s Title? Keep it here for all the latest and whether these questions and more will be answered…
Raw opens with a recap of Braun’s destruction of Roman last week.
Live to the arena and Braun comes out to head to the ring. Some boos, but mainly cheers for the man. Braun says he’s proud he broke Roman in half last week, Roman left in an ambulance, and has broken ribs and a separated shoulder and that he’s not here. He’s ready to rip through the locker room to prove he’s a monster among men. Cue Kurt! GM Angle comes to the ring. Kurt says he’s done enough damage, but Braun says more is to come. Kurt says that’s what Roman said to him. Roman faces Strowman at Payback in 2 weeks. Braun wants action. Kurt says he gets the night off. Braun says he wants a fight or else. Kurt wonders what ‘or else’ means. Brau ndrops his mic and leaves.
Later tonight, theres a Fatal 4-way with Bliss, James, Jax & Banks to determine Bayley’s opponent at Payback. Alone with the return of MizTV to Raw with special guest Dean Ambrose. But up next, it’s Jericho vs. Samoa Joe
Seth Rollins’s music plays and he comes out on the stage, he’ll be on commentary for the opening match.
Back from break and the commentators reveal that Seth Rollins is facing Samoa Joe at Payback. Joe is out first for the opening contest, followed by Chris Jericho.
Match 1 – Samoa Joe vs. Chris Jericho
Pretty good match to start tonight. Samoa Joe reverses out of the Walls Of Jericho and locks on the Kokina Clutch. Jericho tried to escape, but eventually had to submit.
WINNER – Samoa Joe
Joe gets a mic and has a word with Seth. He remembers the sound of Seth’s ligaments popping and his screams of agony when he debuted. That was only business. But his client Triple H and Stephanie got hurt, so it’s not business at Payback, it’ll be personal. Seth says of course it’s personal as Joe was the one that nearly ended his career, and you know what they say about Payback… it’s a bitch.
Anderson & Gallows backstage, walking past Elias Sampson set for tag action. R-Truth & Goldust look to be their opponents… until Braun destroys them both. He did say or else… The backstage guys like Finlay & Noble come in and send Strowman away and ask for some help.
Back from ads and they recap Braun’s attack before the break. A ref comes to tell Braun that Kurt gave him the night off. Brawn says he’ll leave when he wants.
Anderson & Gallows say that Truth & Goldust got the United Airlines treatment. They’re left waiting for opponents. Cue Enzo & Cass, who make their usual intro. SAWFT
Match 2 – Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson vs. Enzo Amore & Big Cass
Good match. Gallows wins it for the team, pinning Enzo after throwing him onto the top rope turnbuckle.
WINNERS – Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows
Mickie showcased, as she, Sasha, Alexa & Nia in action later, but up next, it’s MizTV.
Set for Smackdown tomorrow, a 6 pack challenge to determine a #1 contender for the WWE Title for after Payback.
Nia Jax highlight for the 4-way now as we return.
Cue Miz’s music and he and Maryse come to the ring. They recap Dean confusing them for Nikki Bella & john Cena last week. Miz welcomes everyone to his show. He talks about last week and Dean Ambrose to the ring early. He gets the hometown crowd on his side (both are from Ohio of course). He points out Miz’s red suit as looking odd. Miz says that Dean’s descheviled appearance is what’s odd. Plus somehow, Dean’s the fan favorite. He was the first pick at the Draft, he was WWE Champ at Summerslam and he wasted it all, because 6 months later, he was on the Mania pre-show. Dean can never break the glass ceiling because he’s lazy & complacent.
Dean says what matters is your heart. Some care about image and what others think about them. Dean is Dean. He does it because he loves it. That is why he’s the Intercontinental champion. Miz should know that, because he beat him for the belt. Maryse says holding the belt doesn’t make him anything. The man must make the belt. Miz says that now that Dean is champ, he and the IC title is a joke. Dean attacks Miz and Maryse tries to make the save. Miz tries to get the upper hand but Ambrose sens him packing and he crawls away up the ramp.
Braun’s dragging Kalisto backstage and throws him into a garbage container. Braun walks off only to get sideswiped by Big Show, who says that Braun needs to pick on people his own size. Big Show leaves and Braun recovers and heads off in pursuit as we cut to break.
We return and we recap the Braun segment from before the break. Just announced for later, it’s Strowman vs. Big Show
TJ Perkins is out for action, as they recap his heel turn last week. His opponent is Jack Gallagher, so it’s a rematch from last week’s 205 Live. Neville is then introduced, who comes out to watch the match from ringside. Then Aries’s music hits and says that if Nevile can be special, then he can be super-special and grabs a chair to sit next to Neville (who pretty quickly moves his chair to the other side of the ringside area).
Match 3 – TJ Perkins vs. Jack Gallagher
Good match. The brawl goes to the outside and TJ pushes Jack into Aries. Aries gets on the apron and teases a face-off with TJ, only to get attacked by Neville. As the ref is distracted by the outside action. TJ kicks the rope into Jack’s face and follows up with a Detonation Kick for the victory.
WINNER – TJ Perkins
Alexa Bliss video highlight, for the women’s match later. Also later, it’s Jeff Hardy vs. Cesaro.
Tozawa talking with Cruz backstage, but Titus comes in and says if he wants success on Raw, he needs the Titus Brand. Titus comes up with dodgy puns and gives him his card. Apollo’s becoming a father soon, so Titus wants to help him out apparently… probably taking a cut though…
Mike Rome backstage with the Hardyz. Matt says how everything is crazy now in the WWE since they came back. Jeff was excited to be back. Sheamus & Cesaro come in to welcome the Hardyz back to Raw. Sheamus says how he saw the TLC match at Mania 17 when he was young. Cesaro gets a dream match with Jeff tonight. Sheamus adds, however, that when ladders are not around, Cesaro & Sheamus will get their belts back at Payback. Cesaro apologizes for his partner’s rudeness and wants them to be on good terms.
Sasha Banks video now. The Women’s #1 contendership match is next, as Sasha makes her way to the ring.
Back from ads and Sasha’s waiting in the ring. The hometown girl Alexa Bliss is next, followed by Mickie James and finally Nia Jax.
Match 4 – #1 contender’s match for the Raw Women’s Championship – Sasha Banks vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Mickie James vs. Nia Jax
Good match. Nia hits the Samoan Drop on Sasha, but Alexa manges to kick Nia out of the ring and pin Sasha to win. The hometown girl is heading to Bayley’s hometown.
WINNER – Alexa Bliss
Big Show backstage, who says that Braun needs to know what it’s like to be intimidated tonight.
WWE Network promo.
Curt Hawkins is in the ring. He says anyone who gets in the ring with him is a star. He waits for his opponent… who’s Finn Balor.
Match 5 – Curt Hawkins vs. Finn Balor
Quick match. Balor wins with the Coup de grace.
WINNER – Finn Balor
Bray Wyatt’s sermon to the snake is next.
Dule Hill is in the crowd, in a WWE film called Sleight, which they show a clip of, coming out April 28.
Mike Rome backstage with Chris Jericho, who says he lost tonight because he’s sidetracked by Kevin Owens and getting his US title back at Payback. Whereever he goes, the friends of Jericho will follow him. He calls him Tom again and goes to put him on the list… only for Elias Sampson to interrupt walking behind them backstage. Sampson gets put on the list instead.
Bray cuts in, asking Randy what he is afraid of. Is it the dark? Monsters? Pain? Fear is what brings people together. Bray, however, is the one that controls it. At Payback in the House of Horrors, Randy will suffer all his fears. He will punish him to breaking point, forcing him to feel things he’s never felt before. That fear will feed Bray. When Bray leaves the House of Horrors, he will leave alone, burning it down with Randy left in it. The fire will burn. Run! Good promo… I’m still worried that the match will be as crap as the Asylum match.
Alicia discussing Noam’s present with Dana, saying how she’ll get even on 205 Live tomorrow. Emma comes in saying that Dana was joking about it with the other women, and Alicia storms off in a huff. Emma says that if Dana wants to stand on her own two feet, she’d better get used to a balancing act.
Jeff Hardy is out first for our next match, with Matt by his side. Next out is Sheamus & Cesaro.
Match 6 – Jeff Hardy (w/Matt Hardy) vs. Cesaro (w/Sheamus)
Good match. Jeff wins after a Twist Of Fate and a Swanton Bomb.
WINNER – Jeff Hardy
Both Matt & Sheamus check on their respective partners. Sheamus & Cesaro offer a handshake to the Hardyz and Matt & Jeff accept.
They recap Braun destroying people backstage earlier and Big Show dishing out some of his own on Braun. The Big Show vs. Braun match is next.
Mike trying to update on Golden Truth & Kalisto, but Slater & Rhyno interrupt… only for Braun to appear walking behind them. Everyone gets out of his way as he looks to be heading to the ring for the match next.
Tomorrow on 205 Live, it’s Perkins vs. Aries.
Braun is out first for the main event, followed by Big Show.
Match 7 – Braun Stroman vs. Big Show
An OK match here. I guess we know why the ring had no fancy ringposts tonight, because Strowman suplexes Show off the turnbuckle, causing the ring to fall apart and the referee went flying.
Big Show is out of action is seems but Braun is up and celebrates his spot and heads up the ramp saying that Roman has this coming to him at Payback as Raw goes off the air.
That’s all for this week, Raw heads to Kansas City next week for the go-home show before Payback. I’ll be back then so for now… ASHLEY OUT!
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