Raw opens with a memorial to Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka.
REALLY NO 10 BELL SALUTE?
Then goes directly into a strange MLK/Black History mashup, which is odd, because I am not sure Vince likes black people, after all look at how he treated Kamala.
Roman Reigns comes out to the ring, empty handed after last weeks screw job by Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens. Cuts a promo for the Royal Rumble.
Paul Heyman comes out while Roman is still in the ring and announces the return of Brock Lesner… (yuck…) The crowd is chanting Goldberg… (seriously?) Heyman goes on to explain how the Rumble works… Roman trolls Heyman, and Jericho and Owens come out to the entrance way… nothing but talking. I barely remember what wrestling looks like at this point, and this promo is seriously boring.
Then… Seth Rollins comes out, OH GOOD MORE PROMOS.
At least Seth Rollins sounds excited, like he actually WANTS TO fight!
Then Braun Strowman comes out… at least he doesn’t talk.
Then, of course, out comes Lesner, fake pumped up and as confused looking as ever. Rollins gets his wish and it breaks out in mayhem as Sami Zayn ran out of no where and attacks Strowman. This leaves us with Zayn and Lesner facing off… Lesner suplexes him. Strowman gets back in the ring… sounds like the live audience cares as much as I do… everyone else gets back involved… Lesner gives RR the F5 to end this segment. Meh.
They announce a few of the entrants into the Rumble including The Undertaker.
Rusev and Curt Hawkins are in the Ring, Big Cass and Enzo come out, looking a bit more intense than usual. A short, yet decent match ends with Enzo getting the pin on Rusev.
Ariya Daivari comes to the ring, his opponent is Lince Dorado! Nice. It really makes me happy to see folks who worked hard get to the big time, even if the match ended with him tapping out.
They come back with some highlights from the UK tournament, available on the WWE Network.
Then they show a video of Nia Jax attacking Sasha Banks during her medical evaluation earlier in the day.
Cesaro’s music hits, he comes to the entrace way, then Sheamus’s music hits and they post on the entrance ramp, they are defending the Tag Team titles against Anderson and Gallows, whom I really hate their gimmick, they remind me of neo nazi’s…
Cesaro and Anderson start it off, Anderson gets worked over Cesaro tagged Sheamus in, then Sheamus tags Cesaro back in Anderson takes over and tags Gallows in. Gallows elbows Cesaro in the chest… I guess he doesn’t know how to wrestle? He tags Anderson back in… it goes back and forth for a bit, all the guys are fighting. Gallows kicks Sheamus in the face, and… commercial break. sigh.
They come back from break with Gallows and Anderson in control, do a big double team on Sheamus, no pin. Sheamus finally tags out, as does Gallows, Cesaro unloads on Anderson, near fall. Swiss-1-9… lol, kick out, Cesaro knocks Anderson down again, 2 count. Cesaro gives Anderson the big swing into the sharp shooter, Gallows breaks the hold. Anderson is now in control, but Cesaro fights back, Anderson gives Cesaro a big spine buster but Sheamus breaks the pin. Sheamus runs into the ref… Uh oh… Cesaro gets worked over by both Anderson and Gallows, new ref comes in and Anderson and Gallows get the pin, and the belts… oh no wait… the won by DQ because Sheamus knocked out the ref, so no belts. Ha.
A Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka video montage, with voice overs from superstars, and bits of Jimmy speaking, tweets from WWE wrestlers past and present about Snuka’s passing.
Still no 10 bell salute, which I feel is super disrespectful and shows how out of touch WWE has gotten from wrestling tradition. sigh.
The come back with a locker room promo with Sami Zayn having a awkward convo with Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins… Pointless…
Rich Swann the current Cruiser-weight champion comes to the ring, Neville comes running out of the crowd and attacks Swann. Is this a match or just an attack? There was no bell but there are 3 refs in the ring. Tony Nese comes out and attacks Swann.
I guess this must be a lead up for the Rumble?
The New Day comes out, as happy and shiny as ever. Feeding the crowd Booty O’s on the way to the ring. Crowd seems happier to see them, then anyone else so far, Chanting “New Day Rocks”. They cut a promo about the Royal Rumble and how the 3 of them are entering, as individuals. They insist whoever wins, means they all win. I really hope this isn’t the beginning of the end, I can’t take the pain of the New Day breaking up. Titus O’Neil shows up at ringside, saying he doesn’t want to be in The New day, he wants to replace The New Day. He’s asking them to hook him up with one of their spots in the Rumble. They say no, he says he will take it, hes going to wrestle one of them for their spot. Big E accepts the challenge. Titus and Big E will wrestle after this… I hope Titus wrestles better than he cuts promos.
The match starts after the break, and O’Neil dominates the match, however it comes off like he’s just some big guy they stuck in the ring after training him for the day. Its almost disrespectful to Big E. He finally comes back, and hits O’Neil with The Big Ending, and wins the match. Titus O’Neil is a monster, but he needs a lot of polishing.
Charlotte comes out, cuts a promo about how she achieved her success and won the women’s championship. She then trashes Bayley for being “average” and the fans too. She then shows photos of Bayley back in her Fan days as a kid, and continues to make fun of her. Then goes on about how when Bayley was a poetry writing fan girl, she was training and playing division 1 volleyball. She pulls out an “old essay” from Bayley, and continues to berate her. Bayleys music hits, she comes to the ring, looking really pissed and chases Charlotte out of the ring. Bayley then gets the mic and tells Charlotte this is isn’t necessary. Bayley tells Charlotte, she is not embarrassed of ashamed of her passion and love for WWE. Bayley makes fun of Charlotte for having her dad get her in, when Bayleys dad did whatever he could to get her to shows growing up. This is probably the best promo of the night so far. Bayley made up a poem for Charlotte… Roses are red, violets are blue, at Royal Rumble I will defeat you. She then spits out two more poems off the top of her head about beating Charlotte at the Royal Rumble.
Is this a wrestling show or a talk show? We are 2.5 hours in and only 4 matches!!!
Cruiserweight match, Brian Kendrick vs Cedrick Alexander, Alexander takes control early in the match, Kendrick eye rakes him and takes over, Kendrick struggles to get Alexander into a full nelson but Alexander breaks the hold and takes back over until Kendrick cuts him off with a elbow. Kendrick tries to corner Alexander but it doesn’t work and he takes back over, gets a 2 count, but Kendrick breaks the pin. Kendrick gets Alexander in another submission and Alica Fox comes to the ring. (Alexander broke up with her last week on 205 Live) Kendrick chases Fox outside the ring for a moment, gets back into the ring, but Alexander is read, gets him with the lumbar chuck, and gets the pin.
Promo with Nia Jax about Sasha. Nia is proud she broke her, and the buzz is now about her.
Return from break with Alicia Fox talking about her breakup with Cedrick Alexander, freaks out… walks off…
Hall of Fame Announcement, First Inductee of 2017 is Olympic Gold Medalist and former Champion Kurt Angle.
6 man Tag team match! It’s Kevin Owens, Chris Jericho and Braun Strowman VS Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Sami Zayn.
Match starts, frankly I have no idea whats going on… 3 hrs in I am too tired for this.
Poor Sami Zayn, he is clearly going to take the brunt of the abuse in this match.
Match goes back and forth, I think Roman Reigns and Kevin Owens work well off each other. Forgot Strowman was at ringside, hes a monster, but has zero personality.
Commercial… again… in the middle of a match. I hate this shit. I hate it so much it makes me not want to finish this report… sigh. (Though I complain, I pause it on the DVR, so I can fast forward past commercials… ha!)
They come back and Roman Reigns is getting his ass beat by Owens and Jericho, and the ref if yelling at Rollins. Apparently Reigns got super kicked by Owens during the break. Owens gets reigns into a submission in the middle of the ring, but Reigns fights out of it and gives him a Samoan drop. They both get the tag, Rollins and Jericho, Rollins is in control, Rollins takes out Jericho on the outside, at the same time Zayn takes out Owens, Rollins gets Jericho back in the ring, 2 count on Jericho kick out. Rollins goes for the pedigree, but Jericho counters, they do this twice, Strowman gets in the ring after Jericho tags him in. Zayn runs in attacks Strowman, Rollins tries to Pedigree Strowman, but gets back dropped instead. Reigns gets in on it with a super punch on Strowman, he still doesn’t fall, Rollins takes out Owens and Jericho on the outside, then Zayn takes Strowman out with a high body Lateral press, but only gets the two count. Zayn gets up and runs at Strowman, but Strowman cuts him off with a clothesline, then Strowman power slams Zayn for the 3 count.
After the match Strowman continues to abuse Zayn, but Rollins comes and slaps him with a chair, then Reigns spears him. More mayhem as they tear apart the announce table to throw Strowman through it but Owens and Jericho come to his rescue. more fighting, on the entrance ramp, Kevin Owens gets the chair and wrecks everyone. He then grabs Reigns to set him up for a power bomb through the announce table.
FINALLY ITS OVER!
Final notes: Hella pissed about no 10 Bell Salute for Snuka, it was disrespectful to him and to tradition. Disappointed there wasn’t a women’s match, and lastly, I really want to see more wrestling and less talking.
Make sure you catch the Royal Rumble this weekend on the WWE Network!