Monday Night Raw
Date: March 30, 2020
Location: WWE Performance Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton
It’s the go home Raw for Wrestlemania, which happens to have already taken place. This is one of the weirdest situations in history and I have no idea what to expect from almost anything involved. There are some changed that need to be announced and hopefully those announcements take place tonight. Let’s get to it.
We open with a long video on AJ Styles vs. Undertaker.
Undertaker says that Allen Jones’ (AJ Styles’ real name) mouth is writing checks he can’t cash. AJ has been a big fish in a small pond for most of his career and now he’s saying that fifteen years ago, he wouldn’t have done this. Undertaker lists off a lot of legends from around that time and thinks it was smart of Allen to wait for them to be gone, except for him.
He gets what AJ is doing, but mentioning Michelle McCool is crossing the line. Is it because the Faithbreaker is better than the Styles Clash? Undertaker: “She got it over.” They’ll be in the bone yard and AJ should try him because Undertaker will make him famous. Anderson and Gallows can come too because they can all get hurt and rest in peace. The camera pans back to show an AJ tombstone. Good promo, with Undertaker showing some fire.
We look at Becky Lynch attacking Shayna Baszler last week.
Here’s Becky for a chat. She beat two champions last year at Wrestlemania and walked out with two titles. Ever since then she has walked a razor blade lifestyle….and here’s last year’s Wrestlemania main event.
Raw Women’s Title/Smackdown Women’s Title: Ronda Rousey vs. Charlotte vs. Becky Lynch
Ronda is Raw Women’s Champion and Charlotte is Smackdown Women’s Champion….and she comes in via helicopter and lands in the parking lot, where a red carpet is rolled out for her in a Horseman homage. Since she has to walk a good ways into the stadium, here are Joan Jett and the Blackhearts to play Ronda to the ring. The bell rings at 12:01am and Becky goes straight for the Disarm-Her on Ronda but gets shoved away so they can all head outside.
That means a Piper’s Pit for both of them and Ronda starts the trash talk. Charlotte gets up and sends Rousey into the barricade, setting up a showdown with Charlotte inside. The Disarm-Her to Becky is broken up and it’s Ronda coming back in to kick Becky in the face. A double powerbomb over the top is countered into a double armbar on Becky and Charlotte. Becky escapes and dropkicks Ronda to the floor for a NASTY crash on her back. Charlotte Downward Spirals Becky into the buckle for two as we look at Rousey landing square on her back again.
Becky is right back with the Disarm-Her but Ronda comes back to life and makes the save. A running knee breaks up the armbar on Becky and Charlotte hits a double Natural Selection for two each. Becky gets sent outside so Charlotte chops Ronda, who tells her to bring it. That’s just what Charlotte does with a backhand to the face so Ronda hits a jumping knee, which is countered into a Liontamer. Becky breaks it up with a bulldog and hits a double DDT for two each.
A super Bexploder gets two on Charlotte, setting up a double high crossbody from Rousey. The double armbar is countered with a double powerbomb Ronda is done for the moment. Becky calls Charlotte to her and avoids a charge, letting Becky kick her to the floor. The Disarm-Her goes on and Rousey uses the ropes to stand up for the break. A missed charge lets Becky get the Disarm-Her in the corner until Charlotte’s big boot breaks it up.
Charlotte starts in on Rousey’s knee and gets the Figure Four but Becky comes off the top with a legdrop for the save. And now, a table because that’s what this match was calling for. Rousey breaks up a powerbomb through the table and turns the table over, saying tables are for b****** (at least the third time she’s used that word so far). Charlotte comes back in for a double spear as Cole’s voice is almost gone.
The table is set up in the corner and Charlotte gets two off a spear to Becky. Rousey gets back up and helps Becky drive Charlotte somewhat through the table to knock her outside. The fight is on and Rousey goes with a Shining Wizard and tries Piper’s Pit….but gets reversed into a crucifix to give Becky the pin and the titles at 22:27!
Rating: B. The ending was straight out of Angle vs. Benoit at Wrestlemania XVII with the submission attempts all match until the quick pinfall. What matters here is Becky defeated Rousey to win the titles as she should have. That was how this show needed to end and it did, even if the ending could have been a bit smoother. Charlotte will be fine and I’m curious to see who goes after Becky as the first victim.
Replays show Rousey’s shoulders were WAY up so there’s your story going forward (if Rousey sticks around). Cole: “Tonight will forever be known as WrestleMANia!” Oh just stop dude. Pyro and posing takes us out.
Back in the arena, where Becky has apparently been standing for 45 minutes, and Becky talks about how she doesn’t know who she is if she loses the title. She knows she’s getting in Shayna’s head too though. Shayna has always wanted to be out of Ronda’s shadow and if she wins at Wrestlemania, she can get out of that shadow forever. If she loses though, she’s right back in there for good. Cue Shayna to choke Becky out and then swing her hard into the announcers’ table.
Aleister Black vs. Jason Cade
Cade was a midcarder in MLW for a bit. Black trips him down, shrugs off an enziguri, and finishes with Black Mass at 49 seconds.
We look back at last week’s Seth Rollins/Kevin Owens segment.
Seth Rollins/Andrade/Angel Garza vs. Kevin Owens/Street Profits
Hold on though as Zelina Vega says that Andrade is injured and can’t wrestle. She has access to a lot of talent though, so here is his replacement.
Seth Rollins/Austin Theory/Angel Garza vs. Kevin Owens/Street Profits
Owens takes Theory into the corner to start and hammers away, allowing the Profits to come in and beat on Theory even more. Ford hits the big running flip dive and we take early break. Back with Garza dropkicking Ford down and TAKING OFF HIS PANTS. Theory comes in for a quickly broken chinlock before Ford flips out of a belly to back suplex. The diving tag brings in Dawkins to clean house until Theory sends him outside. Back in and Rollins superkicks Dawkins down, meaning it’s time for the staredown with Owens.
The chinlock goes on to keep Dawkins in trouble and Garza makes it worse with a camel clutch, including some fish hooks to the jaw. Dawkins rolls Rollins up for two but gets taken right back down with the Sling Blade. A right hand allows the hot tag to Owens so house can be cleaned, including the Swanton for two on Garza. Everything breaks down and Ford misses a big running flip dive, landing HARD on his back with no one to catch him. Back in and the Stunner finishes Garza at 13:24.
Rating: C. Pretty standard main event style tag here and you can see how the AOP would have fit in there if not for the injury. I can get not putting Akam in there on his own, though a big power guy could always fit in somehow. What we got was fine enough though and it’s nice to see Theory getting such a big spot while he can.
Post break, Rollins gives Owens a Stomp.
Here’s a look at the Big Show Show, debuting on Netflix next week.
Post break, Owens is still in the ring and has something to say to Rollins. Last week, Rollins took credit for building the Performance Center because he gave everything he had to make it work. Owens has heard otherwise though, because Rollins was a nightmare who knew everything about everything when he got to Tampa in the first place. Rollins has talked about all those Wrestlemania moments that he has had but Owens can claim a lot of the same accolades that Rollins has.
Owens has won a lot of titles of his own, including the Universal Title before Rollins ever got his. The difference is that he had someone watching his back or helping him every time. So did Rollins though because those Wrestlemania moments all came with help or some underhanded assist. Rollins accomplished things but he needs to think about how he got here. At Wrestlemania, he is going to prove that Rollins is nothing more than a fraud.
We get a long video on Edge vs. Randy Orton, showcasing their entire feud.
Edge talks about how he loves every bit of this. Orton has called him a junkie for this and he’s right. Edge always has been a junkie and everyone else who does this is too. He was sitting in the 11th row at Wrestlemania VI and that was a rush for him. Orton has been talking about grit and that means different things to the two of them. Maybe it means being handpicked by Evolution and doing ok for the rest of his career. Now that has given Orton a Hall of Fame career but Edge has done something else.
To him, grit means saying no to Evolution because he didn’t want to be a lackey. Grit is doing everything you can to get back here for nine years and now he understands something. Orton isn’t jealous of Edge himself, but he’s jealous of Edge’s passion. The only time Orton shows that kind of fire is when Edge is around because Edge makes him better. Orton hasn’t been this good since Edge left in the first place and he knows it.
Edge knows Orton listens to the voices in his head and he almost had Edge believing that the Royal Rumble was enough. Then Orton attacked his wife and mentioned Edge’s daughters. He accepted a Last Man Standing match with a man who will dive through a flaming table. Orton has gone into a hole and this time, Edge isn’t pulling him out. Instead he’s going to push Orton so far in that he is never getting out. Edge was feeling it here.
Asuka vs. Kayden Carter
Much like last week, this is a Main Event rematch. Asuka rants in Japanese before the bell so Carter kicks her down. A bottom rope springboard dropkick gets two on Asuka but she’s right back with an ankle lock. The German suplex drops Carter and there’s a hard kick to the head. The Asuka lock finishes Carter at 1:04.
Earlier today, Charlotte attacked Rhea Ripley outside. Charlotte said she’ll see Rhea at Wrestlemania. Rhea: “Yeah. You will.”
From Survivor Series 2019.
Raw World Title: Rey Mysterio vs. Brock Lesnar
Lesnar is defending and anything goes. Rey is dressed as the Joker (again) and that might not be the best visual for a match that is supposed to be rather serious. Paul Heyman introduces Brock as weighing about two and a half Rey Mysterios for his funny line of the night. Rey goes straight to the floor and pulls out the pipe so Lesnar bails to the floor in a smart move.
Brock gets Rey to chase him and the big clothesline makes him drop the pipe. The beating begins as Rey is sent outside and over the announcers’ table in a crash. The announcers’ table is loaded up and Brock throws him into the cover. Rey is beaten down so badly that Brock can even stop to tie his boot. It takes so long that Rey can get in a posting but Brock won’t let him grab the pipe. A release German suplex drops Rey onto the pipe (geez) and another (no pipe) makes it even worse.
There’s a third suplex so here’s Dominick with a towel. Brock takes that away and throws it out (maybe in a shot at the ending to Cody vs. Chris Jericho at Full Gear). Brock grabs Dominick so Rey hits him low and even Dominick gets in his own shot. Some pipe shots set up a double 619 (sweet) and Dominick adds a frog splash (in a nice tribute to his dad). Rey adds his own frog splash for two and the fans know it isn’t happening. Dominick gets suplexed down and the F5 retains the title at 6:54.
Rating: C+. This was all about that one short stretch and man alive did they make it work for about a minute. There’s more to it than that though and the rest of it was Brock’s standard operating procedure. Brock can do good things when he’s motivated and that…wasn’t exactly happening here but the comeback and near fall were great so it’s more good than bad.
Wrestlemania rundown. Goldberg vs. Roman Reigns is still listed.
Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar are in the ring for a chat. Heyman talks about how this is the go home segment on the go home Raw for Wrestlemania. For the better part of twenty years, it has been Brock Lesnar int his spot and that is because he is the beast to slay. This year, Drew McIntyre has stepped up and compared to most people, he is special. Compared to most wrestlers in that locker room, Drew McIntyre is special. So were the Rock, Hulk Hogan, Shane Carwin, Randy Couture and the Undertaker and they all went from special to Brock’s b****.
The Claymore Kick is good but so were the Rock Bottom, the legdrop, the Tombstone and the Attitude Adjustment, because none of them mattered against Brock when it mattered. At Wrestlemania, Brock will survive the Claymore Kick and then next year, Brock will be standing here with the title again because Drew is the latest great story to tell. This year, Drew walks in special and then walks out just like everyone else.
Overall Rating: C-. I liked the promos a lot and I want to see some of this weekend’s matches but EGADS these things are a nightmare to watch anymore. I don’t even want to imagine what it would be like without the hour break between the two matches (including the seven minute match that they stretched to three segments). Things are going to have to be different after Wrestlemania and I have a grand total of no confidence that they will be. This is what they do when they have a target in sight. What in the world are they going to be when they’re directionless?
Aleister Black b. Jason Cade – Black Mass
Kevin Owens/Street Profits b. Seth Rollins/Austin Theory/Angel Garza – Stunner to Garza
Asuka b. Kayden Carter – Asuka Lock
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