Monday Night Raw
Date: March 28, 2022
Location: PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton, Michael Cole
It’s the last Raw before Wrestlemania and since this company doesn’t have the best ideas, that means this is Wrestlemania Raw. Hopefully that means we get some juice added to what has already been set for the card, because this isn’t looking like the strongest Wrestlemania so far. Let’s get to it.
Here is Brock Lesnar to get things going (with Michael Cole being heard saying “yes sir” during his entrance). After a look at Lesnar taking over Roman Reigns’ dressing room on Smackdown and beating up a bunch of security, Lesnar gets to do his own introduction. Lesnar: “That might have been good but it sounded like it sucked.” We are on the way to Wrestlemania so Lesnar is going to give us his game plan for his match with Roman Reigns.
They are going to go down memory lane in Suplex City and then go to the carnival. Reigns is taking a ride on the F5 and no one survives that. After that (and mocking the WHAT chants by saying Steve Austin will be there too, even if he couldn’t beat Lesnar), they’re going to a wedding. Their titles are getting married and having a baby, but Lesnar gets sole custody. See you on Sunday. For someone who doesn’t do this very often, that was at least an original promo and Lesnar sounds like he is having a blast.
Here is Miz for his match with Rey Mysterio, but first he wants to introduce us to the greatest luchador of all time: LUCHA LOGAN! This would be Logan Paul in a stolen Rey mask, with Miz explaining how horrible it was to take Rey’s mask. Cue the Mysterios, but Dominik gets ejected before the bell for jumping Miz.
Miz vs. Rey Mysterio
Logan Paul is here too and an early distraction lets Miz take it to the floor. A DDT on the floor drops Rey and we take a break. Back with Miz ripping at Rey’s mask but getting sent off the top so Rey can hit a top rope seated senton. Rey seems to tweak his knee so Miz grabs a slingshot powerbomb, which is countered into a sunset flip to give Rey the pin at 5:25. Ignore Miz’s shoulder being up.
Post match Dominik is back to steal the mask back from Paul. He also helps beat up Miz, with a double 619 and some frog splashes with his dad. Paul looks on without doing anything to help.
Veer Mahaan is here next week.
We look at Seth Rollins attempting to find a path to Wrestlemania and going a bit nuts at his failures.
Earlier today, Rollins was summoned to Vince McMahon’s office, because he was going to get a Wrestlemania match. Rollins was told to be there at 7am but didn’t get in until after 9 for no apparent reason. He was rather excited anyway and put his feet on the table, which didn’t sit well with McMahon.
After being told he wouldn’t be fired, Vince tells him that he didn’t have to jump through all of those hoops. All he was going to have to do was ask but he would have to have his own main event. McMahon says Rollins is going to Wrestlemania against an opponent of his choosing, who he will not know until he is in the ring. Rollins runs around the office.
To recap, after a month of this idiotic story involving Rollins desperately trying to get to Wrestlemania, all he had to do was ask the boss and everything was going to be fine. That is about as lame of a conclusion I could think of and that means I’m not even surprised that they went that way.
Omos vs. Viking Raiders
Erik gets hit with a clothesline to start and rolls outside…..where it’s a countout at 45 seconds. That clothesline was the only move of the match.
Post match, Omos kicks Ivar in the face. Omos is asked about wanting a Wrestlemania opponent….and Bobby Lashley is back. A shove sends Lashley into the corner and he bounces off of Omos. Lashley shoves him away and knocks him down with a flying shoulder. Omos bails to the floor so they can both point at the sign, setting up a Wrestlemania match.
Reggie proposes to Dana Brooke and she says yes. Tamina comes in to try and win the 24/7 Title but Reggie makes the save. Reggie and Dana leave so Akira Tozawa pops up to propose to Tamina as well. She threatens to hit him but then says yes, though he has to wedge the ring on her finger. R-Truth, watching from about five feet away (with binoculars of course), has an idea.
Here is the Bloodline for a chat. After having Pittsburgh acknowledge him, Roman Reigns talks about how he has met Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania before. Lesnar beat him up and left him so bloodied that his family didn’t want him in this business again. Well now we have changed the game. Reigns has taken the advocate and made him a wise man, he has taken the moniker of the longest reigning champion in 35 years and now he is taking the title. Now he is making it personal, because it has always been personal to Reigns. This was the intense Reigns and he was awesome in the role, as usual.
We recap Carmella/Queen Zelina having issues.
Carmella and Zelina seem to be fine during their photo shoot. They remember taking out Shayna Baszler and Natalya, so here are the two of them, with Shayna saying just stay in line tonight with the eight woman tag. Then they’ll take the titles at Wrestlemania.
The Steiner Brothers are going into the Hall of Fame.
Sasha Banks/Naomi/Liv Morgan/Rhea Ripley vs. Carmella/Queen Zelina/Shayna Baszler/Natalya
Natalya takes Liv down and tries an early Sharpshooter but gets caught with a headscissors into the corner. Ripley comes in with a basement dropkick to Natalya and it’s off to Zelina instead. Naomi and Banks hit running corner dropkicks and it’s time for the parade of shots to the face. We take a break and come back with Banks knocking Carmella down and making the VERY slow crawl over to Naomi, with Baszler managing to run in for the save. A stretch muffler keeps Banks in trouble but the villains get in an argument. Graves checks on Carmella and it’s the Backstabber into Riptide to pin Vega at 9:19.
Rating: D+. The women’s division is becoming more of a mess every week, as there are almost no stories to be seen aside from the title matches and women being either best friends or hating each other. It feels like the whole thing is designed to be as low level as possible and that makes matches like this, where no one gets to shine, all the worse. I’m not looking forward to the title match, and Carmella/Vega retaining will make it even worse.
We look back at Kevin Owens’ Steve Austin impression from last week.
Video on Steve Austin, set to Bawitaba by Kid Rock. In 2022.
Here is Kevin Owens to talk about how the Kevin Owens Show with Steve Austin will be the main event of Wrestlemania. Owens talks about how Austin is here to have one more talk about the old days instead of a fight, because it has been NINETEEN YEARS since he had a match. They’ll have a beer together at Wrestlemania, even though Owens hates it. Then Owens can finally receive the torch of having the best Stunner in the world because it is better than Austin’s. Owens hits Austin’s catchphrase to wrap it up. He was feeling it here, as has been the case since the segment was announced.
Austin Theory vs. Ricochet
Non-title. Ricochet kicks him down to start and hits a standing shooting star press for an early two. The ATL is countered and Ricochet dropkicks him down as the fans want Pat. Ricochet goes up top and gets crotched, setting up the ATL for the completely clean loss at 1:44. I guess there was just no one else in the world that Theory could beat.
Commentary talk about HHH suffering a cardiac moment, which has led to the end of his in-ring career.
Here is Bianca Belair, returning from a throat injury (And doing her dance, because SHE MUST DANCE!) and ranting about how Becky Lynch has knocked her down over and over again but there is nothing that can keep her down. Belair is going to keep fighting no matter what and come back every time.
So Belair will be waiting for her on Sunday, but here is Becky to interrupt. Becky gets in a chair shot and pulls out some scissors to cut Belair’s hair. That takes way too long of course, so Belair reverses into the KOD. Another KOD leaves Becky laying again….so Belair hacks off Becky’s hair. Belair leaves so Becky wakes up and snaps as the fans tell her she deserves it.
Becky Lynch is asked her thoughts about Bianca Belair. Becky: “Bianca, you b****!”
Drew McIntyre vs. Happy Corbin/Madcap Moss
Corbin and McIntyre shove each other to start but it’s off to Moss, who gets hammered down in the corner. An overhead belly to belly and a neckbreaker drop Moss, allowing McIntyre to nip up. Corbin walks off and the Claymore finishes Moss at 1:45.
Post match Corbin jumps McIntyre and steals Angela the sword.
Edge is sitting at a desk with a scale next to him. Edge talks about how he wasn’t sure what to do to AJ Styles so he pulled off the veil of mediocrity. Sunday is AJ’s judgment day, so Edge puts a ring on the scale and smiles.
Post break, AJ Styles says if Edge wants the pitbull, that’s what he’s going to get at Wrestlemania. AJ is going to give Edge a beating that he will never forget on Sunday.
Usos vs. RKBro
Non-title with Rick Boogs and Shinsuke Nakamura at ringside. The threat of a double RKO sends the Usos bailing to the floor to start so it’s a double belly to back drop onto the announcers’ table. We take a break and come back with Riddle suplexing and backsplashing Jimmy for two. A Samoan drop cuts Riddle off though and the stomping has him down in the corner.
Orton gets drawn in as Riddle gets caught with a cheap shot as the beating continues. Riddle is taken outside for a whip into the timekeeper’s area as we take a break. Back again with Riddle fighting up again and managing the tag to Orton. House is cleaned and the snap powerslam plants Jey. The hanging DDT connects as Riddle takes out Jimmy on the floor. The RKO is loaded up but the Street Profits run in to jump RKBro for the DQ at 15:25.
Rating: C+. I was pleasantly surprised by the ending there as I would have bet on one of the teams taking a loss. The DQ is the right call to protect both champions so this could have been worse. It’s still weird to see a match like this as the main event on the go home show for Wrestlemania, but you have two good teams and the most popular act on Raw, so it went fairly well.
Post match the brawl is on with Boogs and Nakamura brawling to the back with the Usos. RKBro gets it together to take out the Profits with an RKO each.
One more Wrestlemania rundown ends the show.
Overall Rating: D+. This year’s Wrestlemania is missing emotion. Reigns vs. Lesnar and Austin vs. Owens have been well set up, mainly because it feels like there is emotion. Other than that and maybe one or two other matches, the show feels like it has all been thrown together in something resembling a major event. Almost nothing feels like it has been given time to develop, with celebrities being added in to make up the difference.
Instead of matches I feel like I need to see, it feels like people are doing things to each other and then they’ll do something big at Wrestlemania. That was on full display here, as two matches were added to the card tonight, plus other matches where some people didn’t even appear. As usual, the action was good but everything else just came and went with no particular reason to get interested. That shouldn’t be the case with any show, let alone the one designed to get me to want to watch Wrestlemania.
Rey Mysterio b. Miz – Sunset flip
Omos b. Viking Raiders via countout
Liv Morgan/Rhea Ripley/Sasha Banks/Naomi b. Shayna Baszler/Natalya/Carmella/Queen Zelina – Riptide to Vega
Austin Theory b. Ricochet – ATL
Drew McIntyre b. Happy Corbin/Madcap Moss – Claymore to Moss
RKBro b. Usos via DQ when the Street Profits interfered
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