WWE RAW 3/11/19 Results and Review

RAW was from Pittsburgh, PA this week. The show opened with The Shield coming to the ring via the crowd. Michael Cole told us that they are here to give their “farewell address.” Roman Reigns talked about the situation with all three Shield members. Reigns said that if last night was their last night, he has no regrets. He encouraged Seth about his upcoming Wrestlemania match against Brock Lesnar, saying he will “slay the beast.” All three Sheild members put their fists together, and then Reigns and Ambrose left the ring. It’s hard to tell if that was their split because it felt so nonchalant. Rollins was talking in the ring by himself before Paul Heyman came out. Rollins said he is suited to beat Lesnar at Wrestlemania. Rollins pointed out how Lesnar has lost to Daniel Bryan, AJ Styles and Finn Balor in the past, who are all smaller guys. Heyman made the excuse that all those fights were short notice changes of opponents.

Heyman pointed at the video screen and played a video about Lesnar. This felt lame because the way Heyman talked made it seem like Lesnar was actually coming out. Who wants to see a video package? After the video, Heyman was talking to Rollins, which distracted him from Shelton Benjamin who came from the crowd to attack him. There was no real explanation for this other than maybe Benjamin is friends with Lesnar. Also, just because The Shield split doesn’t mean they can’t run out and help Rollins? Like, did Reigns and Ambrose just turn a blind eye to Rollins getting jumped?

Seth Rollins vs. Shelton Benjamin

We saw after a commercial break that Benjamin and Rollins started fighting. Paul Heyman was on commentary during this. Rollins won the match with a Curbstomp. A huge chunk of this match happened under commercials. I don’t really know why Benjamin is involved.

Finn Balor vs. Bobby Lashley (Intercontinental Championship Match)

The next match was Finn Balor and Bobby Lashley in a championship battle. When Balor did his entrance we saw this weird camera shot of Lashley staring at Balor via the big screen. Balor was ahead in this match and was heading to the top rope for a Coup de Grace, but was then distracted by Lio Rush, who rang the ringside bell. Rush got taken out by Balor, but when he went off the top rope he was given a Spear by Lashley to end the match.

Ronda Rousey In The Ring

Before the next segment, we got a slideshow recap of last night where Ronda Rousey interfered in the match between Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. Rousey was in the ring to talk. Right off the bat, she was very aggressive, being very mad at the crowd. After she cut her promo, which didn’t make a ton of sense, Dana Brooke came out. Yes, Dana Brooke. As Brooke was talking you could hear one person in the crowd very audibly shouting “who are you?” Brooke challenged Rousey to a fight and got beat up. I don’t think beating up Brooke will make Rousey look any more cool or bad or whatever they want her to be.

Aleister Black & Ricochet vs. Bobby Roode & Chad Gable

The next match was Aleister Black and Ricochet versus Roode and Gable. Of course the new guys got the win. They were impressive as usual. The Revival attacked Ricochet and Black on the stage after the match.

A Moment of Bliss With A Big Wrestlemania Announcement

On Alexa Bliss’ talk show, she unveiled who will be hosting Wrestlemania. After tons of build up, she announced that she is actually hosting.

Braun Stroman Hates Colin Jost

Last week, Colin Jost was attacked by Braun Stroman for questioning if wrestling was real or not. This week, Colin had a car delivered to RAW as an apology to Braun. He got in the car with a smile on his face and drove away. Just kidding, of course he destroyed the car. Stroman said Jost will “get these hands” in New York.

Elias Has A Hometown Concert

Elias played in front of the crowd next. This was his hometown, so he had very positive support. Elias made the crowd turn against him by saying that not many people from Pittsburgh aren’t a “waste of life.” No Way Jose came out with his conga line and interrupted the concert. Jose was rocking a new neon green haircut. Elias attacked Jose and that was the end of the segment. Wow, boring, but I guess they wanted to find a way to put Elias on this show.

Nia Jax w/ Tamina vs. Natalya w/ Beth Phoenix

Before the next match, we had Beth Phoenix come out with Natalya to support her in this match. Right as the match started, Phoenix did a run-in to end the match via DQ. We saw backstage that Sasha Banks and Bayley got into a brawl with Jax and Tamina. I don’t know why Phoenix attacked so quickly in the match. This felt very rushed.

Triple H Calls Out Batista

Triple H came to call out Batista. Batista came out in a button up and shiny blazer. Batista had eight security guards with him. Batista stayed on the apron and refused to come into the ring. Batista kept saying that he wants to be given what he wants. After saying “give me what I want” a dozen times, he unveiled that what he wanted was a match with HHH at Wrestlemania. Alright, well he got the match, and HHH made it a No Holds Barred match. While the repeated line from Batista was odd, I thought the last thing he said was a good line, saying that he will have his final match on his own terms, and that it will be HHH’s final match.

Kurt Angle vs. Apollo Crews

Kurt Angle came out to address his future. He announced that at Wrestlemania he will have his farewell match. He also said that he should give Philadelphia one last match. He faced Apollo Crews and got the win. He thanked the crowd and hugged Crews.

Roman Reigns Attacked Before Match

The next match was scheduled to be Roman Reigns versus Baron Corbin. When Reigns got into the ring he was attacked by Drew McIntyre. Reigns was given a Claymore Kick at ringside. If The Shield decided to break up in the final segment of RAW then none of this would have been an issue. Seth Rollins did run out to see if he was okay though. There was some weird skit that they did where Roman convinced the doctors that he wasn’t injured or something. Backstage we saw Dean Ambrose say to HHH he wants to fight Drew McIntyre tonight. HHH granted the wish, with the match happening next.

Dean Ambrose vs. Drew McIntyre (Falls Count Anywhere Match)

Ambrose charged at McIntyre, attacking him on the ramp and then brawling into the crowd. They went up the stairs and into a standing area when Ambrose threw a table. During the break, McIntyre threw Ambrose over a concessions stand table. Back around the ring, McIntyre did an very painful looking vertical suplex onto the floor. They brawled over to the commentary table and were both on top of it. McIntyre did a low blow and then raked the eyes of Ambrose. Off the table now, McIntyre threw Ambrose head first like a dart into the LED entrance screen. Ambrose was wedged in between a barricade and then given a Claymore Kick to end the match. While the final spot was pretty good, I thought the match, in general, was pretty lame. They brawled around the arena but it was just the same thing after a while. Renee Young was being over the top during this segment about Dean being beaten up.

This show had a lot of either boring or just bad wrestling. I can’t figure out one whole segment that I would consider good on this show. I’m not being harsher than usual, I genuinely think this was a lame episode.

WWE RAW 2/11/19 Results and Review

Let’s look at the go-home show for Monday Night RAW before the Elimination Chamber PPV.

Last Week’s RAW Review

Last Week’s Smackdown Live Review

2019 Royal Rumble PPV Review

Monday Night RAW started this week with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon in the ring. They hyped Sunday’s PPV. They reminded us that Becky Lynch was suspended last week after refusing to see a doctor. They tell us that Lynch saw a doctor recently, and before they finished speaking, she was coming down the ramp. HHH issued an apology to Lynch, and lifted her suspension. They shook hands, but then there was a catch. Becky could get her Wrestlemania match if Becky apologized to Stephanie. Becky was on board with this at all, saying she would fight anyone but wouldn’t apologize. As Becky tried leaving the ring Stephanie got in her face. HHH and Stephanie left the ring after telling her that she needs to apologize to get her match.

Sasha Banks & Bayley vs. Liv Morgan & Sarah Logan w/ Ruby Riott vs. Nia Jax & Tamina

To preview the Women’s Tag Team Championship Elimination Chamber Match, the three RAW teams faced each other in a tag team triple threat match. Before the commercial break there was a spot outside where Ruby Riott, who wasn’t in the match, ran Sasha Banks into a ringside barricade. Banks walked to the back after the break. This is to continue their story that Bayley has been doing all the work for their tag team. Tamina is seemingly in a position in her team where she took all the bumps. She was attacked by the Riott Squad for minutes on end, while Nia Jax might have not been slammed once in this match. When Nia was run into a ringpost, Tamina tagged herself in. She tried for a Frogsplash off the top, but Sarah Logan put her knees up to counter it. Liv Morgan and Bayley tagged in. After a big combo of moves, Bayley gave Morgan an Elbow Drop off the top for a pin that Logan broke up. She landed a Bayley-to-Belly, and then Tamina came in and kicked Bayley in the head. Jax was tagged in and hit a Samoan Drop to win the match. I would guess that Banks will do another antics thing during the Elimination Chamber match. Because of a stipulation of this match, Bayley and Sasha Banks will start first in their match on Sunday. So, not the most fan-friendly start to the show so far as a heel team won clean and a segment with Becky Lynch sort of ended boring

Elias Performs

Elias was in the ring. Before he began performing we saw on the big screen Becky Lynch and Finn Balor backstage. Balor implied that Lynch should apologize. We got re-introduced to Elias after. Did they mean to introduce him the first time? We saw a Seth Rollins video package, which cut off Elias this time. After the video package, Elias was introduced a third time. This time he was cut off by the Lucha House Party. Oh, I was duped. This was a comedy bit. Well, I guess you know it’s a good joke when it catches you like that. At this point, I realized that there were two guitars in the ring, so I’m going to predict that one or maybe two would be used as a weapon. Elias mentioned how his album wasn’t nominated for the Grammys. Kalisto says that the Lucha House Party wants to “walk with Elias.” He then performed a song about how he hates Grand Rapids. The Lucha House Party all gave his performance a thumbs down. Kalisto offered to perform. He was given the guitar, played something simple which made people cheer him on. Elias offered to do a duet, and then, of course, grabbed his second guitar and smashed it on Kalisto’s back.

Finn Balor vs. Drew McIntyre

Before Finn Balor’s title match this weekend, he faced Drew McIntyre on this show. His opponents on Sunday, Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush, were at ringside. When Balor went to the top rope during the match, Lashley pushed Balor off the top, making the match end via DQ. Lashley and McIntyre teamed up on Balor until Kurt Angle made the save. Angle cleaned house, putting Lio Rush in an Angle Lock. Baron Corbin came from the back to take down Angle. Braun Stroman came out to join the chaos. The heels stood on the ramp while we went to commercials.

Finn Balor, Braun Stroman & Kurt Angle vs. Bobby Lashley, Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin

Hmm, I wonder what they are going to do with this even number of guys all in ring gear. Of course an impromptu tag match was made. Lashley gave Balor a move to end the match (or so we thought) after Lio Rush played as a distraction. Balor put his leg up to end a pinfall, but the referee did not see it. Another ref came out to correct this, making the match restart. At some point Stroman was thrown over the barricade and stayed there for a long time. He eventually got up and went on a roll against all of his opponents. Angle gave Corbin a German Suplex on the floor. Lashley and Stroman were the legal competitors, with Stroman landing a Running Powerslam and then tagging in Finn Balor for a Coup de Grace that ended the match. It was fun to see how much the crowd loved this ending. But other than that, this felt boring. I’m so over the Kurt Angle thing.

Nikki Cross vs. Ruby Riott

After the next match we saw a promo from Kevin Owens. He was in a bowling alley. He talked about how he doesn’t know what brand he will be on, but will be back in a month. During the match we saw Ronda Rousey tell Becky Lynch to apologize. Riott won the match with a kick of some sort. I don’t understand why Riott had to face Cross. Like, I get that she should win a match since she’s facing Rousey on Sunday, but why against Cross, who just debuted?

Seth Rollins Reflects and Looks Forward

Seth Rollins came out to talk about his recent success and his upcoming match with Brock Lesnar. He was cut off by Paul Heyman, who introduced Brock Lesnar. Well, Lesnar actually didn’t show up despite being called out by his mouthpiece. Heyman cut a promo, and then Seth told him that he will do anything to win. After Heyman left, Dean Ambrose came to the ring and gave Rollins words of encouragement. Ambrose part was weird, but the rest was fine.

Dean Ambrose vs. EC3

EC3 faced Dean Ambrose in the next match. This match was presumably set up because of EC3 being roasted by Ambrose on Alexa’s talk show last week. Ambrose won via roll-up, to no reaction from the audience. Alexa Bliss played the devil on Becky Lynch’s shoulder backstage, telling her to not say sorry. Lynch didn’t buy Bliss’ advice, thinking that only encouraged her to not apologize so that her Wrestlemania spot would be available.

Bobby Roode & Chad Gable vs. The Revival (Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder) (WWE RAW Tag Team Championship Match)

The next match was Bobby Roode and Chad Gable versus The Revival. Gable and Roode are the champions but it doesn’t feel like anyone knows them. It was sad to hear Roode’s music hit but seemingly not have a single person in the audience singing it. Before we went to a break, Gable did a Moonsault off the ropes to the outside onto The Revival. Much later into the match, Roode hit a Spinebuster on Scott Dawson for a two count. Gable went off the ropes but was hit with a Shatter Machine to end the match. The finish was great, and the match was great, but why are The Revival champs? It felt like this was just done so people don’t think that this go-home show was pointless.

Becky Apolgizes

The final segment of the show was Becky Lynch meeting with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon. Just like before, they wanted Lynch to apologize. Lynch eventually apologized, solving the issue between her and the duo. But this didn’t solve her apparent issue with Vince McMahon, who came out and said he wasn’t satisfied by the apology. He suspended her for 60 days, which takes her off the Wrestlemania show. Vince announced Charlotte Flair as her replacement. Okay, I understand that they want to build to a triple threat match, but I don’t get the story behind this. It’s like they started the script for this show today and said “Okay, we need Charlotte in the picture immediately.”

WWE Royal Rumble 2019 Results and Review

It’s time to review what is easily my favourite show every year. Of course I am talking about the Royal Rumble. Along with the men’s and women’s Royal Rumble matches, the third biggest match on the show was Brock Lesnar versus Finn Balor, who is replacing Braun Stroman after Stroman angered Vince McMahon on RAW three weeks ago. On the Smackdown brand, AJ Styles was challenging for the WWE Championship against Daniel Bryan. Also, Asuka faced Becky Lynch for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. Let’s start with the pre-show matches.

Bobby Roode & Chad Gable vs. Rezar w/ Drake Maverick & Scott Dawson

At the analyst desk for the Royal Rumble Kickoff was Johnathan Coachman, Beth Phoenix, Booker T and Jerry Lawler. After 45 minutes of the pre-show, we had our first match. The match that kicked off the show was an odd one. Since Akam, one-half of The Authors of Pain is injured, he teams with Scott Dawson from The Revival for a tag match. I can only assume this is to remind people that AoP exists. There was some sort of stipulation announced that if Rezar and Dawson won they would both get title shots for their teams or something. Early on there seemed to be issues with the team of Rezar and Dawson as Rezar gave a shocked expression when he was involuntarily tagged out. Roode was on a roll late in the match, hitting a Blockbuster. Dawson pulled the tights during a roll-up but it didn’t help him. Rezar got hit with Dawson’s move by accident and then was taken out of the ring by both Roode and Gable. With the help of Roode, Gable hit a Moonsault on Dawson to end the match. This was a dumb match. Why bring back Rezar while his partner is injured just to lose? The finish didn’t feel like it was proper, and the bad chemistry between Rezar and Dawson existed but wasn’t really shown enough, especially at the end.

Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Rusev (WWE United States Championship Match)

The first championship match of the show was Nakamura versus current champion, Rusev. During this match Nakamura wore a very red outfit. Rusev was dominant early on, clotheslining Nakamura out of the ring after a couple of suplexes. He then threw Nakamura towards the steel stairs, but Nakamura dodged it and came back with a kick. He threw Rusev into a barricade and then kneed him in the chest. Back in the ring, Rusev got hit with a knee in the corner for a two count. Rusev got himself back together and got on a roll. He landed a Spin Kick off the ropes for a two count after a combo of moves. They must have cut to Lana 20 times during this match. Nakamura escaped an Accolade attempt and landed some kicks. Was there a “kicks only” stipulation for this match that I missed? Rusev landed a Matchka Kick and than a slam move which got turned into an Armbar by Nakamura. Shinsuke turned the Armbar into a Triangle Choke, and then a Guillotine when Rusev tried escaping. Rusev landed a Suplex to finally escape. The pin attempt following it got a very close count. Nakamura went to the turnbuckle after a near fall and took off a pad. Lana got on the apron and tried to let the ref know. Nakamura got in her face, and Rusev tried to attack him during this. Shinsuke dodged Rusev, and hit Lana instead. This distracted Rusev, letting Nakamura hit a Kinshasa to win the match. This match could have cooled down on the kicks. It’s hard to tell if the crowd is quiet or they are just hard to hear.

Kalisto vs. Akira Tozawa vs. Hideo Itami vs. Buddy Murphy (WWE Cruiserweight Championship Match)

The final pre-show match was a fatal-four-way for the Cruiserweight Championship. Early in the match there was a nice move where Tozawa dove to the outside and hit Kalisto, who Huricanrana’d Murphy. Later on Murphy did a dive onto all three opponents. Hanging off the second rope Murphy was hit with a Huricanrana and seemingly planted his head in the canvas. Murphy landed a Powerbomb onto Kalisto but Tozawa broke up the pin. Kalisto gave Itami a Salida del Sol for a two count. Murphy gave a good knee to Kalisto as he was coming off the ropes. After a combo of moves against Itami he hit Murphy’s Law for the win. This match had some good stuff in it, with a lot of impressive spots.

Becky Lynch vs. Asuka (WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship Match)

Opening the PPV was Becky Lynch versus Asuka. Early on in the match Asuka was kicked off the apron, landing flat on the floor. Outside the ring Lynch did a Beckslpoder onto the barricade. Lynch went off the second rope and was hit with a knee. Asuka landed a close count after a hit attack. Asuka went off the top rope but Lynch avoided her, and then hit a Rock Bottom for a two count. Lynch fell into an Armbar and almost escaped but then got put in an Asuka Lock. Lynch rolled to the ropes to get out. Back on the apron, Asuka gave Becky some sort of Suplex onto the floor. Becky made it back into the ring before the ten count. They traded slaps in the ring until Asuka landed a spinning kick for a two count. The fight found its way onto the top rope, where Lynch landed a Super-Becksploder for a two count. Asuka dodged a Leg Drop off the top rope into an Asuka Lock. Lynch did a Disarmer and then turned it into an Asuka Lock of her own. Asuka got out and then did a kick. After a chain of moves Asuka did a Chokehold to retain. I thought Lynch would win, but she didn’t. This match had good moments but felt like it wasn’t always entertaining. Like I mentioned before the crowd sounded dead, which didn’t help this match.

The Miz & Shane McMahon vs. Sheamus & Cesaro (The Bar) (WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championship Match)

The next match was for the Smackdown tag titles. Right off the bat Sheamus was caught off guard was Shane speared him. Outside the ring Cesaro was put on a commentary table for an Elbow drop but got out of it. Instead, Shane did an elbow drop to Sheamus, who was standing. Late in the match Shane got a hot tag and did a ton of moves, including his horrible punches. Shane was going to give both members of The Bar a Coast-To-Coast, but Cesaro caught him and did his spinning move. Shane put in a Triangle Choke which Sheamus broke up by going off the ropes. The Miz went after Sheamus but was given a Clothesline outside the ring. Sheamus got tagged in, and then the team did a Double Team move for a two count. Sheamus tried for a Brouge Kick but The Miz shoved Cesaro, letting him get hit with it. The Miz gave Sheamus a Skull Crushing Finale, and then Shane surprisingly hit a Shooting Star Press to win the match.

Sasha Banks vs. Ronda Rousey (WWE RAW Women’s Championship Match)

After the Smackdown Women’s Championship match started off the show, the RAW women’s title match was two matches later. Near the start the fight went to the outside where Ronda punched a ringpost because Sasha dodged a strike. Sasha landed a dive and then put Ronda back in the ring. After a Double Knees in the corner Sasha got a two count. After Ronda dodged another Double Knees she tried for a Pipers Pit which was turned into an Armbar. She turned it into a Banks Statement, which Rousey eventually got out of. Rousey landed a Pipers Pit. Rousey was really selling her injured arm from the ringpost spot. Rousey went to the top rope, and Banks went up to it as well. Banks landed a Superplex for a two count and then went right back into another arm move. Ronda did Judo Throws and then got thrown outside of the ring. Rousey put Banks in a move outside the ring after catching a dive. Banks tapped out of this but that didn’t matter since they were outside of the ring. Banks put Rousey in a Banks Statement and used part of her attire to choke Rousey. This was transitioned into an Armbar which Rousey escaped and turned into a Gutwrench Powerbomb. She then landed a Pipers Pit to win the match. This was a good match in my opinion. It’s wild to think that Rousey debuted at the Rumble a year ago and put on a match like this only a year after.

Women’s Royal Rumble Match

The first Royal Rumble match of the evening was the women’s one. Beth Phoenix was a guet commentator for this match. #1 Lacey Evans was the first entrant, starting against #2 Natalya. Evans did a promo before the match started. #3 Mandy Rose was the next entrant. Evans missed a Moonsault while Mandy was coming out. Natalya gave both of them a Sharpshooter. #4 Liv Morgan. Morgan charged at Natalya and was thrown out. Evans gave both Mandy and Natalya a Bronco Buster. #5 Mickie James. #6 Ember Moon. #7 Billie Kay. Kay refused to get in the ring once arriving. She told the English announcing team that she was waiting for Peyton Royce. #8 Nikki Cross. Cross attacked Kay at ringside and then did a Crossbody off the top onto everyone in the ring. #9 Peyton Royce. Royce went in and tried to aid Kay. They teamed up on Nikki Cross. #10 Tamina. Tamina gave Nikki Cross a Frogsplash.

#11 Xia Li. Mickie James was kicked off the apron and eliminated by Tamina. #12 Sarah Logan. Ember Moon resisted elimination by having her feet hung on the bottom ropes. Nikki Cross was taken out by The Iiconics. Cross came off as very weak in this match. #13 Charlotte Flair. Xia Li was taken out with a kick from Charlotte. #14 Kairi Sane. Sane gave Logan an InSane Elbow Drop. #15 Maria Kanellis. Kanellis was hit with a Spear from Charlotte after doing a dance or something. #16 Naomi. Naomi and Mandy fought early on since they are currently in that homewrecker story. On the apron Naomi kicked Rose and then shoved her to the floor. Naomi was almost taken out by Rose but got onto the barricade, and then jumped to the steel steps. Rose shoved her eventually, eliminating her anyways. Charlotte eliminated Lacey Evans. #17 Candice LeRae. #18 Alicia Fox. After Fox gave a few people dropkicks Maria Kanellis tried forming an alliance. This worked, as they both worked on Sane. Maria stomped on Alicia’s hat, which made her freak out. This was a comedy spot that fell flat. Maria was eliminated shortly after #19 Kacy Catanzaro. #20 Zelina Vega.

#21 Ruby Riott. Ruby Riott came out with Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan, who were eliminated previously. They pulled Charlotte out of the ring (still in the match) and then teamed up on her. They did the same thing to Fox. Vega went under the ring on the other side. Fox was thrown out of the ring by Ruby. Candice was Powerbombed into a barricade, brought back into the ring and then eliminated. #22 Dana Brooke. Kairi Sane was eliminated by Ruby Riott. They kept cutting to Vega who was smugly hiding under the ring. #23 Io Shirai. Shirai went after The Riott Squad immediately, who were beating up Sane at ringside. Shirai landed a Moonsault off the top rope to the trio. #24 Rhea Ripley. Catanzaro was given a Baseball Slide to the outside but did a Handstand to the corner and got back in the ring. This match felt like a Best of John Morrison and Kofi Kingston with all of these close call eliminations. She was eliminated only moments later. #25 Sonya Deville. Ripley kicked Brooke out of the ring. Vega poked her head out of the ring again but this time Hornswoggle came out as well. Hornswoggle chased Vega, making her get into the ring and get thrown out by Ripley. #26 Alexa Bliss. Up to until this point Charlotte felt like the only person who had a realistic chance of winning. Deville was eliminated after getting hit with a punch from Bliss. #27 Bayley. Bayley took out Ruby Riott and Rhea Ripley. Not sure where the rest of the Riott Squad went. #28 Lana. Lana was playing up her injury from Rusev’s match. She had to get checked by medical staff halfway down the walkway. #29 Nia Jax. On the way to the ring Nia Jax attacked Lana and her leg. Jax caught a Moonsault from Io Shirai and threw her out of the ring. Shirai sort of folded when hitting the floor. Natalya was thrown out shortly after. #30 Carmella.

Carmella earned her #30 sport because she won the second season of the Mixed Match Challenge. Becky Lynch came out and negotiated with Fitt Finlay, and replaced Lana in the match. Bliss and Ember battled on the apron for some time. Bliss did a leg sweep to take out Moon. Bayley and Carmella teamed up to eliminated Bliss, but got clotheslined by Nia Jax right after. Charlotte kicked Carmella off the apron, making it only four left. Jax picked up Bayley and the got kicked, making her drop Bayley out of the ring. The final three were Jax, Lynch and Charlotte. Charlotte lifted Nia Jax and then dropped her. Charlotte put Jax on the apron, and then Lynch pushed her off the apron since she was outside the ring. Lynch was pushed by Jax which made her fall and get hurt. Just before Charlotte’s hand was raised, Lynch came in and the match continued. Charlotte targeted the injured leg frequently. Charlotte went over the ropes after charging Lynch, and then was hit, making her fall the floor. Becky Lynch won the Women’s Royal Rumble.

I enjoyed this Rumble. I thought it was good that they laid off the legends since they were a big focus of the women’s Rumble last year. Instead they gave many spots to NXT wrestlers. I thought the stars or potential contenders for the Rumble were a little too stacked at the end of the list. In the first ⅔ of the Rumble, Charlotte was the only real big name that came out. Lynch was the right one to win, as she will most likely challenge Asuka.

Daniel Bryan vs. AJ Styles (WWE Championship Match)

The WWE Championship was in the unfortunate position of cool-down. In this match Styles started bleeding through his nose. Bryan got a close pin attempt after a good looking Dragon Suplex. Later on, Bryan stopped a Springboard 450 by putting his knees up, and then put on the Lebell Lock. During the match Erick Rowan came to the ring. The ref was taken out, which gave Rowan the opportunity to give Styles a Chokeslam. Bryan pinned Styles to win. This was very disappointing. For one, the match placement was horrible. Also, the match was way too long and the crowd didn’t like it.

Finn Balor vs. Brock Lesnar w/ Paul Heyman (WWE Universal Championship Match)

Right off the bat Balor jumped Lesnar as he had his back to him. Balor eventually lost control of the match, with Lesnar throwing him around. Lesnar took apart a commentary table, but then was rammed into it by Balor. Balor did two dives to the outside at one point, with the second one looking really good. Back in the ring Finn tried for a Coup de Grace, landing it, but Lesnar kicked out. Lesnar put in a Kimura right after, with Balor tapping. After the match he beat up Balor further. This match also felt like it didn’t have a ton of hype behind it, but didn’t have the cold reaction that Bryan versus Styles got. This was okay, I guess. Lesnar won, which is predictable. They kept it short, which was nice.

Men’s Royal Rumble Match

The main event of the evening was the men’s Royal Rumble match. #1 Elias was the first entrant. He was going to perform for the crowd, but was interrupted by #2 Jeff Jarrett. Elias asked Jeff if he wanted to do a duet with him. Before it start Elias attacked Jeff, making the match start. Elias smashed his guitar on Jarrett’s back and then threw him over the ropes. #3 Shinsuke Nakamura. #4 Kurt Angle. Angle came out to a good reaction. #5 Big E. Nakamura kicked Angle on the ropes and took him out. #6 Johnny Gargano. #7 Jinder Mahal. Mahal was accompanied by the Singh Brothers. Mahal was eliminated very quickly by Gargano via kicks. #8 Samoa Joe. Big E was thrown out by Joe. #9 Curt Hawkins Hawkins came in and out of the ring making weak attacks. He got caught in a Cohena Clutch from Joe, but escaped it because of Elias. Hawkins went under the ring. #10 Seth Rollins. Elias was eliminated by Rollins because he was holding onto a corner post but then got his hands hit.

#11 Titus O’Neil.  When running out to the ring Titus was cautious to avoid falling. O’Neil went under the ring because he saw Hawkins, and then chased Hawkins into the ring and then went over the ropes. Hawkins celebrated, but was thrown out right after. #12 Kofi Kingston. #13 Mustafa Ali. Ali dropkicked Nakamura off the top rope and to the outside. Ali was thrown into a corner by Joe brutally. #14 Dean Ambrose. Kofi got thrown to the outside but avoided elimination by keeping his feet on the apron and rolling to the stairs. Ambrose eliminated Johnny Gargano. #15 No Way Jose. No Way Jose came out with his big conga line. When coming in the ring he was eliminated immediately, possibly breaking the Santino record. He barely missed a beat, partying with the conga line to the back. #16 Drew McIntyre. McIntyre headbutted No Way Jose and threw around a few conga line members on the way to the ring. He took out everybody when entering the ring. #17 Xavier Woods. Kofi avoided elimination by giving Xavier a Sunset Flip but keeping one foot in the air. Xavier held on to Kofi, putting him on the stairs. Once entering the ring they were both taken out by Drew McIntyre. #18 Pete Dunne. Dunne had a good combo of moves on many guys when coming in. #19 Andrade. #20 Apollo Crews.

#21 Aleister Black. Black eliminated Ambrose with a kick. #22 Shelton Benjamin. Joe was thrown out by Ali after being hit with a very nice kick from Benjamin. #23 Baron Corbin. Crews was eliminated by Corbin. #24 Jeff Hardy. Corbin threw out Black, catching him off guard. Dunne almost did a finger breaking spot on Corbin but was hit with a kick from McIntyre. Drew threw out Dunne after. #25 Rey Mysterio. Corey Graves talked about how Rey has had a “career resurgence” as of late, as if Rey was in a slump recently. #26 Bobby Lashley. Bobby Lashley was accompanied by Lio Rush. Lashley was thrown out the match very quickly, and the took Seth out of the ring from the bottom rope. Rush and him took apart commentary tables. Seth was Chokeslammed through the English table. #27 Braun Stroman. Stroman took out Corbin since he costed him the title shot that he was supposed to have. He took out Benjamin shortly after. #28 Dolph Ziggler. Jeff Hardy was eliminated at Ziggler came out. Ziggler immediately eliminated McIntyre. #29 Randy Orton. There was a four man Superplex spot involving Rollins, Andrade, Stroman and Mysterio. #30 R-Truth.

While coming out Nia Jax attacked R-Truth. Nia Jax took R-Truth’s spot. Jax took out Mustafa Ali. She turned around and had a face off with Randy Orton. He tried for an RKO, but was shoved against the ropes by Jax. Jax told Rey to do a 619 but then caught him when running. When Rey was held by Jax she was Superkicked. She then was hit with a 619 and then an RKO. She was taken out shortly after. Orton gave Rey and RKO and then eliminated him. Andrade took out Orton right after. Ziggler and Andrade were duking it out until Stroman came back in the ring. Rollins gave Stroman a Frogsplash. Stroman took out Andrade, making the final three Stroman, Ziggler and Rollins. Stroman threw Rollins and Ziggler over the ropes but they hung on. Stroman charged at them, which eliminated Ziggler. Rollins tried flipping Stroman over but he escaped the perdicament after Chokeslamming Rollins. Both guy went over the top rope and fought on the apron. Stroman was shoved into the post, kicked him and then did a Curbstomp to eliminated Braun Stroman. Seth Rollins won the 2019 Men’s Royal Rumble Match.

This match was okay. I was hoping that there would maybe be one or two more surprise entrants that weren’t NXT wrestlers. One small production thing that ticked me off was how they never showed the entrance stage when someone’s music hit. They would only ever show the stage after someone appeared, like it was a WWE video game.

In general the Royal Rumble had a lot of good stuff. There were some matches that didn’t do as well as they could, with only some of that being their fault (match placement, etc). I know it most likely won’t change so there’s no point in complaining about it, but the show was just too long. Even if it’s great wrestling, more than five hours of it is asking for a lot of viewers.

WWE RAW 1/21/19 Results and Review

Monday Night RAW began this week with a tribute to Martin Luther King since today is Martin Luther King Day in the United States. MLK was given a 10 bell salute. After this, Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman came to the ring. Heyman talked about how Finn Balor pinned John Cena last week. Heyman said that Lesnar trained for Braun Stroman but will be fighting Balor, who is a completely different style. He said that Balor will be a martyr when he faces Lesnar. This was a good promo from Heyman. After Heyman finished his promo, Vince McMahon came out. Vince told Heyman that he should promote the fight as more of a David vs. Goliath story, but doesn’t believe that Finn can actually defeat Brock. Braun Stroman came out shortly after as well.

Of course, McMahon and Stroman are still on bad terms because Stroman flipped his limousine last week. Stroman says that once Brock defends his belt he will be ready to rip him apart like one of Vince’s limos. The talk of the town, Finn Balor, finally came out after this. Finn reminded us that he earned his title match by beating three people last week. After Finn says he will beat Brock Lesnar, Brock left to the ramp. To finally end the segment, Vince booked Braun Stroman vs. Finn Balor for after the break.

This was one of those straining 25-minute openings for RAW. This felt like a step backwards after what was a pretty good opening last week. It’s good that Stroman is still involved in these segments since he is most likely the Wrestlemania program against Lesnar.

Braun Stroman vs. Finn Balor

Brock Lesnar was sitting at ringside for this match. The match was nearing its end when Balor headed to the top rope for the Coup de Grace. Instead, Stroman shoved him off the ropes and sent him to the outside where he was caught and thrown down by Lensar. For some reason, the match didn’t end via DQ, with Balor diving to the outside onto Lesnar on two different occasions, and then reversing Stroman’s momentum for a Coup de Grace. Lesnar came in the ring and landed an F5. The match ended via DQ this time. So, I’m sorry, is Balor so good that he nearly beat Stroman, the original #1 contender, while fighting off the champion Brock Lesnar?

Bobby Lashley’s Championship Celebration

The next segment on RAW was Bobby Lashley’s Intercontinental Championship celebration. Lio Rush wore the title and talked for Lashley. Lashley got on a pedestal and got the championship put on him. His posing session was interrupted by Apollo Crews. Crews was challenged to a pose-off. He took the challenge. Both guys took turns posing, with Apollo’s last pause being broken up by Lashley jumping him. Lashley got taken out of the ring, and then caught Rush, who was thrown.

Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush vs. Apollo Crews

After a commercial break, we came back to Lashley versus Crews, which was already underway. As Crews was ahead in the match, Lio Rush got on the apron. Rush was brought into the ring and picked up by Crews. While still holding Rush, Crews got speared by Lashley to end the match. After the match commentator Michael Cole said: “a lot of leeway given by the referee” as if the first match didn’t let a DQ slide.

Seth Rollins vs. Drew McIntyre

Before the next match, it was announced that the Bella Twins will be on Jimmy Fallon on Friday. Seth Rollins was in the ring and talked about how we could learn a lot from Martin Luther King. He someone tied MLK into his own situation. Seth says that the Rumble this weekend will be a longshot, but his whole life has been a longshot. He cut a pretty good promo. I don’t know if comparing himself to Martin Luther King was the best thing to do though. Drew McIntyre came out and cut a promo of his own after. These two fought an already scheduled match after a commercial break. Late in the match, Rollins tried for a Draping Double Stomp but was thrown off the ropes. McIntyre was hit with a Superkick for a two count. Both wrestlers traded chops, with McIntyre winning the exchange because of a headbutt. McIntyre gave Rollins a Samoan Drop off the second rope but Rollins kicked out. He was given a Powerbomb and kicked out again. Wow, McIntyre must be weak. McIntyre picked up Rollins for a Clothesline but Rollins reversed it into a roll-up for the win. Felt odd to finish a move-heavy match like that with a roll-up.

Backstage we saw Vince McMahon talking The Revival and Curt Hawkins. The Revival was asking for a guest referee for a match. Vince decides to make Hawkins the guest referee for The Revival’s match.

Jinder Mahal & The Singh Brothers vs. Lucha House Party

After the break, we saw a promo from Dean Ambrose, who also quoted MLK and then compared the quote to his situation. Our next match was a six-man tag match with The Singh Brothers and Jinder Mahal facing Lucha House Party. I don’t know the last time I saw the brothers compete, but it was a nice surprise. During this match Corey Graves was in full banter mode, telling people that Kalisto’s mask is fused to his head. Gran Metalik pinned a Singh Brother after a Tilt-A-Whirl Backbreaker. Someone was coming in for a pin but seemingly didn’t get there in time, and that was the finish. I think this was a genuine mistake. You could hear a sense of shock in the commentators after this happened. After this, we saw a video package for EC3 and then saw him talking to Dana Brooke backstage.

Elias vs. Baron Corbin

In the next segment, Elias performed in the ring. Before Elias got to perform a song he was cut off by Baron Corbin. Corbin is no longer in a position of power, but this was yet another week where he came out in formal clothing. Elias got Corbin’s mic cut, and then made a song about him. Corbin eventually charged the ring and dodged a swing of a guitar. Corbin put away Elias with an End of Days.

“A Moment of Bliss” Women’s Royal Rumble Edition

We had another “Moment of Bliss” segment this week. Alexa Bliss announced a list of women’s wrestlers who will be in the Rumble. Her guest this week was Nia Jax. Before Nia got a sentence in, Ember Moon came out to say that she would win the rumble. Then came Alicia Fox, Mickie James, The Riott Squad, Nikki Cross and Tamina. Bliss got fed up with all of the run-ins and stood on her chair and listed reasons as to why they shouldn’t brawl. Of course, they all brawled to the backstage. This left just Bliss, who said that the women in the Rumble are passionate. She then announces that she will also be performing in the Royal Rumble match. Lacey Evans came out, took Bliss’ mic and said that she will win the match. “A Moment of Bliss’ goes 0 for 3.

The Ascension vs. Heavy Machinery

The next match was a quick squash match for Heavy Machinery. The team did a pretty cool finishing move. Otis Doszovic did the worm during the match as well.

The Revival vs. Bobby Roode & Chad Gable (WWE RAW Tag Team Championship Match) (Curt Hawkins Guest Referee Match)

The next tag team match was for the tag championship. Roode was on a roll late into this match but got a move reversed into a Crossbody by Hawkins. During a pin attempt, Dawson was pinning down Roode’s feet. Hawkins caught this. During another pin attempt later, Hawkins had his feet on the ropes. Hawkins saw this as well. Dawson reversed a Crossbody into a roll-up but the pinfall was stopped due to Dawson pulling the tights. Gable won off of a roll-up after Hawkins broke up another cheating attempt from The Revival. It looks like Curt Hawkins is the best referee in WWE history. Hawkins was attacked after the match, which made Zack Ryder come out to help out Hawkins.

Ronda Rousey & Natalya vs. Sasha Banks & Bayley

The main event was a four-woman tag match to promote the women’s tag match. Before this match, Ronda cut a promo backstage where it was hard to understand what kind of tone she was trying to convey. The rivalry between Banks and Ronda is the big story in this. Ronda put Banks in an Armbar but Banks rolled to the ropes. Natalya was tagged in and did a Sharpshooter, but Bayley broke it up. Bayley took Ronda off the apron and then got hit with a Clothesline by Natalya. Banks put Natty into a Banks Statement to end the match. This match was lame for the most part but had a pretty good ending sequence.

WWE RAW 1/7/19 Results and Review

Monday Night RAW started with a brawl backstage between Bobby Lashley and Seth Rollins. The brawl made its way onto the stage, along with the many people who were trying to separate it. After a little while, the fight got finally broken up. What was interesting about this segment was how there was no commentary the whole time. The commentary came in once John Cena came to the ring. Cena mentions that at Wrestlemania you either step up or get left out. He says he will step up because he doesn’t want to risk being left out, like last year. He then announces that he is officially entering himself into the Royal Rumble.

Drew McIntyre came out next and said that he is known for taking out legends. Cena didn’t believe him, so McIntyre said he would come in and show him. Before anything went down, Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush came out and said that this show is cancelled until Seth Rollins is handled. Rollins came from the back and the brawl continued. Seth Rollins and Cena joined the right. Balor did a run-in on McIntyre. We went to commercial break after this.

John Cena, Finn Balor & Seth Rollins vs. Bobby Lashley, Dean Ambrose & Drew McIntyre

As you could probably expect, this segment got turned into a 6-man tag match. Sort of cop-out to book 6-mans like this so often. Cena got a hot tag, against Ambrose, and was in there with him for a long time. Balor finally got a hot tag later on against Ambrose. He hit a Coup de Grace, but McIntyre came in with a Claymore Kick to stop Balor’s streak. Both Rollins and McIntyre got tagged in. Rollins did a Moonsault off the apron onto Lashley and Ambrose, and a Falcon Arrow for a two count. Rollins found himself in a bad position, but Cena came in to help, giving McIntyre an Attitude Adjustment. Lashley came in a Speared Cena, but Rollins Superkicked him. Rollins brought McIntyre back in the ring. He tried for a Frogsplash but McIntyre dodged. Ambrose got tagged in and tried for a Dirty Deeds but got hit with a Curbstomp by Rollins for the victory.

While this match went too long, it was some pretty good wrestling for the final few minutes. The crowd really seemed to get behind the babyface team at the end. I thought it was sort of lame how we had a decent match in McIntyre versus Cena that got pushed out of the way since they wanted to shove all these dudes in one segment. After the match, Rollins sees Triple H backstage talking to Sasha Banks and Bayley. This annoyed him because he wanted HHH to be watching. He went to HHH backstage and asked for a IC title match against Ambrose tonight. HHH books the match, in a Falls Count Anywhere match.

Gene Okerlund Tribute

At the start of the show, we had a tribute photo of “Mean” Gene Okerlund but got a proper tribute here. The segment started with a 10 bell salute for Okerlund. After that, Hulk Hogan came out. He introduced a video package that played. Hogan got emotional while speaking after the video played. For the last time, he cut a promo to Gene.

Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder (The Revival) vs. Bobby Roode & Chad Gable (Lumberjack Match) (RAW Tag Team Championship Match)

The second match on the show was The Revival versus Roode and Gable for the RAW tag titles. The crowd was dead silent during this match, and it felt really weird. There was a nice spot where Gable did a German Suplex into a pin, which was broken up by Dash Wilder who was coming off the top rope with a Frogsplash. The finish was a roll-up from Dawson being reversed into a pin by Chad Gable with the help of Roode. During the pin, Dawson had his foot on the rope but the ref did not see. The match ended in controversy. Renee Young referred to Ambrose as the “moral compass of RAW.” What does that even mean?

After a commercial break, we saw a video package for Lars Sullivan, Lacey Evans, Heavy Machinery, Nikki Cross & EC3. I don’t understand the idea of showing back to back video packages for five different acts. How is one of them, better yet any more than that, leaving a lasting memory for a fan?

Elias vs. Baron Corbin

Elias said before his match that he will win the Royal Rumble. Before he played a song for the crowd Baron Corbin came out, asking him to stop. After a little more of an exchange of words, these two started their scheduled bout. Elias did a dive off the top rope to the outside as the show went to commercials. Elias went to the top rope and tried for a move but Corbin dodged it. Corbin pushed Elias into the ref, and then gave him a punch when he turned around. He sent Elias into a corner-post and then hit an End of Days for the win.

Braun Stroman & Brock Lesnar Face-To-Face

The next segment was Braun Stroman face-to-face with Brock Lesnar. Stroman came out and saw Lesnar and Paul Heyman on the screen. Heyman says that Lesnar isn’t coming to the ring because if he did, he would hurt Stroman before their face off. Stroman tried to anger Lesnar to get him to the ring, but nothing worked. Eventually, Stroman said something that got Lesnar out there. Lesnar never came down to the ring, and that was really the segment.

Jinder Mahal & Alicia Fox w/ The Singh Brothers vs. Apollo Crews & Ember Moon

Before the next match, Jinder Mahal was insulting fans in the crowd. The match was quick, with Crews doing a dive to the outside, and Moon doing an Eclipse to Alicia Fox for the win.

“A Moment of Bliss” with Alexa Bliss

Alexa Bliss debuted her new talk show “A Moment of Bliss” in the next segment. The talk show took place on the stage, instead of most shows, which take place inside the ring. Alexa’s guest for the first episode was Ronda Rousey. During the segment, Nia Jax and Sasha Banks also came out. Banks challenges Ronda to a match. Nia tells her to get in line for a shot, so Banks comes to the ring and challenged her to a match.

Sasha Banks vs. Nia Jax

Despite Nia not seeming interested before the break, we came back and a match was made. This match had tons of crazy parts. There was a point where Banks tried for a Hurricanrana on the apron but instead just got thrown flat on the ground. Looked rough. Back in the ring, Sasha tried for a Banks Statement out of nowhere. Did she get hurt? Cause it felt like they just cut right to the end out of nowhere.

Seth Rollins vs. Dean Ambrose (Intercontinental Championship Match) (Falls Count Anywhere Match)

The main event of the show is Rollins versus Ambrose for the IC belt in a falls count anywhere match. From the start, Rollins was chasing Dean around the arena. The fight quickly went backstage. After a commercial break, the fight was on a staircase in the crowd. During the break, Rollins slammed Ambrose through the commentary table. Around the ring, Ambrose peeled off some of the mat outside the ring. A Dirty Deeds on the floor got reversed into a Back Bodydrop by Rollins. Back in the ring, Rollins did a Superplex into a Bucklebomb, and a Superkick. He then hit a Curbstomp, but when he went for the pin Bobby Lashley appeared to drag Seth out of the ring. He then beat up Seth, delivering a Spear, and then let Ambrose pin for the victory. The crowd seemed absolutely deflated after this.