Bobby Fernandes reviews WWE Raw for 2/11/19 in the Good, Bad, and Ugly format. How did the show rank?
With Elimination Chamber approaching, Raw is tightening up everything. Recent trends say there will be a lot to watch tonight although it doesn’t seem like any surprises are in story, anything can happen in the WWE. Elimination Chamber could have some major changes headed toward WrestleMania. There is a lot of time left before the big show. Will they go on auto-pilot, or will they hit us with a stunner?
Stephanie McMahon and HHH w/ Becky Lynch
This according to everyone is being sold as a carbon copy of Stone Cold vs The McMahon’s Part 2. There are a lot of similarities and of course an easy bridge between the two. It is also appropriate as Becky Lynch, much like Stone Cold has become a firebrand for the current roster and carrying a huge burden by leading the pack as the overall beloved #1 Fan Favorite. There are no better villains than the McMahons. Anyone and everyone can get knocked down by them. The Man loves the fight and her new enemies will oblige. Lynch doesn’t just poke the bear, she slaps it in the face. Her knee is cleared per HHH. She is no longer suspended and will face Rousey at Wrestlemania. But, she will have to apologize to HHH and Stephanie McMahon if she wants her shot. The Man will not apologize and in fact will fight anyone who wants otherwise. She will give her final answer by the end of the show. Either she goes to Wrestlemania or it’s gone, and only an apology in her way.
(Loser Enters Chamber First) Sasha Banks and Bayley vs. Nia Jax and Tamina Snuka vs. Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan
With the Tag Team Championships being a reality, we will see more and more Women’s action which isn’t a bad thing. They are really pushing Nia Jax right now, and the other wrestlers are playing along. They are intimidated and love to instigate. Sarah Logan looks Good in there. She really has a lot of energy and a decent style. Honestly though, it will be plain shocking if Bayley and Sasha Banks lose the whole thing, they were made for those titles but they have to surprise us somehow. That is of course if Bayley doesn’t have to go at it alone the entire time. The Riott Squad really dominated toward the end of this match but Jax and Tamina overpowered them. No one could take over, until Bayley not only regained herself but then destroyed all comers, until Nia Jax finally finished her for the win. Nia Jax and Tamina Snuka Win! Sasha and Bayley are now 1st team in the Elimination Chamber.
Finn Balor vs. Drew McIntyre
IC Champion Bobby Lashley with Lio Rush made their way down to ringside before the match to scout his opponent at Elimination Chamber, Finn Balor. McIntyre and Balor are just insanely Good, and everytime they fight, there is potential for a classic. McIntyre dominates, and Balor fights back with everything he has. It is a proven method. Of course we all knew Balor would get some of Lashley and Rush as he owed them. Lashley went too far and got McIntyre DQ’d. McIntyre and Lashley then destroyed Finn Balor until Hall of Famer, Kurt Angle ran in for the save. Angle took full control but was blindsided by rival Baron Corbin. Braun Strowman had enough and stormed the ring. The wrestling Gods have spoken and we sense a 3 on 3 coming.
Nikki Cross vs. Ruby Riott
Here we go! We have ourselves some potential here. A nice little NXT like match that is fun and different with some good raw talent. It was a little disappointing that they cut to a Rousey/Lynch showdown. Ruby Riott is just amazing and goes hard in there. Nikki Cross has been nothing but impressive and seems to be able to go with anyone. Ruby being a great opportunist hit a sudden “Riott Kick” for the Win! Good, solid match.
Monday Night Rollins
The Beloved, King Slayer is one of the most over talents in the Professional Wrestling World. He is to battle the Beast, the Champion, Brock Lesnar at Wrestlemania. The un-accomplishable feat. Rollins is hyping his uphill battle, pleading his case. Truthfully, it is always better to see Rollins fight rather than talk. The Advisor faked out everyone, as Lesnar was a no-show as usual. Heyman always has something to say and everyone unapologetically listens. Heyman hyped as he always does, Rollins stood and waited for his moment. He again restated his case and got the crowd loudly behind him.
Dean Ambrose then came out w/ Rollins still in the ring. Anytime Ambrose and Rollins are involved with each other, there is tremendous potential. It was quick this time around though with Ambrose grabbing a seat at ringside.
Dean Ambrose vs. EC3
EC3 is going to always be a welcome Superstar on Raw. The more the better, this guy needs a big push. What better person than Dean Ambrose who has as much décor and clout as anyone. Ambrose went right at him as he lost last week. EC3 fought back though and would not be denied. EC3’s reputation and history from Impact is well known and respected across the board. He is a star and needs to be used that way. EC3 got ahead of himself and Ambrose recovered. Ambrose got the quick “small package” for the big rebound victory.
Raw Tag Team Championship Match- Bobby Roode and Chad Gable (C) vs. The Revival
Ever since The Revival voiced their discontent, they have had a lot of TV Time. The nostalgic, tag team specialist are a plus almost every time. Roode and Gable are mega talented, Roode being a potential locker room leader if used more. Being the Tag Team Champions isn’t Bad but he should be doing bigger things. Tag team wrestling at its purest, this was textbook action. Gable and Roode rallied hitting a series of offense. These guys make the hot tag look so Good. Gable came in and went hard against the challengers. Both teams had close falls and a lot of back and forth action. After Gable got worked over Roode was ready to go but was pulled off the apron. Revival still couldn’t finish Gable. Roode finally back in took out The Revival. Again though back and forth near falls. It was just insane how many false finishes there were. Then just when you thought it was over, The Revial hits a huge “Shatter Machine” on Gable to win the Raw Tag Team Championships! Big Win! Great Match! Good Team!
Becky Lynch Apology?
What will “The Man” do? HHH is a presence himself and with his wife, the “Billionaire Princess” he is even more dangerous. Becky has aggressively provoked both of them even striking them last week. She made the smart move and apologized. Becky made the best move and still stood her ground. HHH and Stephanie then congratulated her and Lynch took over hyping what will be a showdown. Rousey then stormed down belt in tow. This was getting red hot, even Mr. McMahon came out. Vince is “The Man.” Vince then suspended Becky Lynch for 60 days which takes her out of Wrestlemania. He then interjected Charlottle Flair into the Raw Women’s Championship Match in her place. Charlotte is Vinnie Mac’s Champion. This is obvious and shocking at the same time. Speechless.
Braun Strowman, Kurt Angle and Finn Balor vs. Bobby Lashley w/ Lio Rush, Baron Corbin and Drew McIntyre
There is a lot of beef in that ring. Tons of fight, guts and talent. The pace was a little off at times but nothing completely detrimental early on. A lot of back and forth leaning toward the heels having control. Bobby Lashley has been impressive and continues going in that direction. He has taken control and looks sharp in there. This match was a safe bet. It showcased a ton of talent in a compacted setting including the Intercontinental Champion, and kept them all fresh due to having a tag setting. The power stuggle was awesome all around. McIntyre and Strowman clashing, Lashley dominating, and Finn Balor fighting back. Lashley got the pin even though Balor had his foot on the rope. Referee Chad Paton came out and explained what happened and the match restarted.
This has been a long match, and not smooth sailing considering the talent and format. Again Finn Balor got beat down and grouped up on. Lashley vs Balor is shaping up to be pretty Good. Perfect timing, Strowman recovered, tagged in by Balor and let loose. Complete Demolition of his opponents. Strowman killed Lashley and tagged in Balor to finish the job with a “Coupe De Grace.” This was okay but leaned toward the Bad side.
Walk With Elias
Strangely Elias was immediately interrupted by Lynch on the big screen having a promo with Finn Balor. Balor and Lynch go way back and are always gold in any capacity but what a weird placement. Follow that up with a commercial break/promo for Seth Rollins and you have horrible production value. Interrupting Elias is a thing, granted we know and expect it but to do it as if we aren’t watching and paying attention, just mangling content together haphazardly is rough to watch. Third times a charm, except this time he is interrupted by Lucha House Party. Overkill much. Elias’ Grammy Snub was the last straw. LHP wants to Walk With Elias. Elias is such a pure heel but he is over, and the inner struggle amongst the fans is intense. Lucha House Party led by Kalisto had their fun with Elias but was hit by a guitar for their trouble. Elias got out of harm’s way. This was not Good by any standards. Even a bit Ugly.
- Good – 8
- Bad – 1
- Ugly – 1
By the numbers and the action, we all had a pretty Good Raw. This week flew by, and had a great amount of action, twist, turns and craziness. Honestly, WWE took the audience for a spin and got our attention. Successful week so far, and a slam packed Monday Night.
SmackDown is slated next. The 2-hour action packed “better” brand of WWE. They seem to be on the Good side of things almost always and followed the next night by the spectacular NXT Brand. There is a lot of action left on the agenda this week setting up everything for the big upcoming PPV’s, what will happen next?
Tiffany’s Takes: WWE Monday Night RAW (4/22/2019)
Tiffany offers her real-time takes on WWE Raw, including AJ emerging as #1 contender and Bray Wyatt…emerging…
Tiffany takes a look back at WWE Raw in the first (official) edition of Tiffany’s takes!
At Greg DeMarco’s suggestion, we’re trying something new, so let’s see how it goes starting with Monday’s edition of WWE Raw!
WWE Universal Championship
The Seth Rollins Era of RAW kicked off with two HUGE triple threats to determine just who would be the first challenger for Seth Rollins’ Universal title. I LOVED the interaction between Triple H and Rollins, it felt KIND of like the old Authority, but they were on more equal terms. Everyone coming out to run their mouths was funny considering that, except for Styles, Rollins had faced and beat all of them either one on one or as part of the Shield.
The first Triple Threat was AMAZING and could’ve easily been the main event. Styles vs Mysterio lived up to the Dream Match hype, so poor Joe felt like a third wheel, and the final sequence was amazing.
After that, the second triple threat was pretty much a ‘meh’ for me. Corbin stealing the win from McIntyre wasn’t surprising and would probably lead to a feud if one of them was a face. Other than that, it was just blah.
I’m honestly surprised that Styles won tonight. Styles vs Rollins is a Big Four level match and I don’t see why it’s being put on a B-PPV, especially Money in the Bank, but we’ll see but it should be a great match.
Naomi vs Billie Kay
I’m not sure what to make of this match. The IIconics running their mouths took longer than the actual match. That said, I’m glad that the Women’s Tag Titles aren’t exclusive to SmackDown after all, but since Naomi doesn’t have a partner, I don’t see what the point was.
Elisa looks great in her Chairshot gear.
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Bray Wyatt’s Promos
Well, we’ve finally gotten an answer to who was behind the creepy puppet promos and it was resident creep Bray Wyatt. This was just super fucking creepy and the fact that they were spoofing PBS children’s programming was just…ugh. This is another ‘wait and see’ but honestly, I’d burn the tape and forget that promo ever happened.
With Owens being a babyface now, apparently Zayn feels he needs to be an extra obnoxious heel and nothing is more obnoxious than forcing people to sit through your vacation photos. That said, this new gimmick seems to be a clapback about all the ‘Unhappy Wrestler’ reports that the dirt sheets are so fond of reporting. The most intriguing part of the segment was the staredown between Cedric Alexander and Zayn because that’s a match I’d love to see.
Cedric Alexander vs Cesaro
Well, either the Bar is no more or Sheamus will be joining Cesaro on RAW as soon as he’s back from injury. Either way, we got a FANTASTIC match between Cesaro and Cedric Alexander. I’m very disappointed that Alexander lost, but he definitely showed that he can hang with the vets.
The Usos and The Revival
Jimmy and Jey didn’t have a match this week, but we got another tease of a feud with the Revival along with a bangingly funny promo that managed to be a little self-deprecating, but still fun.
Viking Raiders vs Lucha House Party
What’s Viking for ‘squash’? Seriously, that was a brutal as hell non-match (bell never rang). Sadly, the crowd was either worn out from all the good matches thus far, or they had no idea what to make of the Viking Raiders, which is a more interesting name than ‘Viking Experience’.
Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins
Talk about success going to your head! Ryder and Hawkins have only won two matches as a re-formed team, but the way they talk, you’d think they’ve been hugely successful and relevant for the ten years they’ve been in WWE, or Ryder has, anyway. I honestly want Viking Experience to squash the hell out of them because they are annoying me.
Becky Lynch vs Alicia Fox
So the Becky Lynch vs Lacey Evans feud has barely started and I’m already over it. I don’t like Lacey Evans and don’t like what she claims to represent. I’m also confused as to why Alicia Fox, who supposedly went AWOL after showing up to a house show drunk in an incident that cost Arn Anderson his job, was give a match against the RAW Women’s Champion on her first night back. I’m glad that Becky won, but WWE is risking making her look bad by letting Evans get the jump on her with that horrible finisher of hers. Hopefully, this will end at Money in the Bank.
Robert Roode vs Ricochet
With Aleister Black sadly gone to Smackdown, Ricochet was left on his own on RAW against Robert Roode and his porn-stache. The match was really good, and I’m glad to see Roode regain his edge, but I just couldn’t get into it and I’m mad Ricochet lost, but I don’t think it’ll hurt him long term, but we’ll have to see.
The Rollins Era kicked off with a bang and did a pretty good job of delivering on the potential of the Shakeup with the two Triple Threats. I’m not really sure giving us Styles vs Rollins so soon is a great idea, but it’ll definitely be a huge match.
I think Rollins will be fine as THE Man on RAW, even without the Shield, he’s come a long way from where he was in 2015 and it shows in his confidence in speaking to Triple H. Gone is the whiny, over-confident, eager-to-please, Seth Rollins of 2015. 2019 Seth has hit rock bottom and found his way back to the top with the help and support of the fans and his Shield brothers and became a better person for it. He doesn’t NEED Triple H’s approval anymore and that made their interaction much more interesting.
Click in tomorrow for SmackDown coverage and Use your head!
WWE Week in Review April 15-April 21, 2019, Non-Shake Up Edition
Aside from all the Superstar Shakeup action, what happened on the non-main roster WWE shows? Tiffany breaks it down!
Aside from all the Superstar Shakeup action, what happened on the non-main roster WWE shows? Tiffany breaks it down!
Gran Metalik vs Ariya Daivari vs Mike Kanellis vs Akira Tozawa: I have no idea why this match happened since it wasn’t an official #1 Contender’s match, but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t a great match and Daivari winning it was a HUGE surprise to me, and I can’t wait to see if he can back up his mouth.
The fact that Mike Kanellis had the match won and it was stolen by Daivari revives my hope that Mike Kanellis will be turning babyface, especially since Cedric Alexander has been drafted to RAW. I think Kanellis has what it takes to be a great underdog babyface, he just needs the right opportunity to do it and 205 being without its other TOP babyface is the perfect opening.
Oney Lorcan vs Cedric Alexander: One thing I hated about this match is that the feud leading up to it wasn’t given more time. This could’ve been a blockbuster non-title feud if WWE had left Cedric on 205 Live, where he belongs.
All that said, it was a fantastic match and it gave Cedric the send off from the fans that he deserved, I just wish it hadn’t happened because I think the cruiserweight guys are going to get lost on RAW and SmackDown, which is what 205 was supposed to keep from happening.
Gallus vs Humberto Carrillo and Raul Mendoza: This week’s shows were done at WrestleMania AXXESS, which is why 205 Live’s own Humberto Carrillo got to team up with his sometime partner, Raul Mendoza, to take on Gallus in a fantastic match that actually went better than expected, in my opinion. Matches with wildly different styles can be a slow going trainwreck, but this was a wonderful match to watch and drives home that Gallus aren’t just big blowhards, they’re also great athletes. I was a little disappointed that Carrillo and Mendoza lost, but it’s clear that NXT UK has big plans for Gallus, which I’m thrilled to see unfold.
Kassius Ohno: As someone who HATES it when people mispronounce things, I applaud Ohno for his pronunciation correction. Other than that, I wasn’t impressed by the promo. Ohno’s playing the role of arrogant heel very well, especially discounting Ligero because someone who has a crazy schedule can’t possibly put on a quality match every night, is just silly for an indie guy to say. Guess we’ll see what the Leeds Luchador has to say.
Dunne vs Walter: I think I’ve been pretty clear about the fact that I’m a big Jordan Devlin fan, so I was thrilled with his promo on Dunne vs WALTER. I’m still hopeful that he’ll get another title shot, whoever has the title.
Dave Mastiff vs Kona Reeves: This was an odd one because Kona Reeves hasn’t exactly been a NXT mainstay since his debut and his job this week seemed to be becoming Dave Mastiff’s dinner. To give the Keanu Reeves wannabe his due, he did try to compete, but the Black Country Bomber was a little too big for him. Mastiff winning wasn’t a shock, but it needs to lead to something bigger sooner or later.
That said, I’m intrigued by the possible Mastiff/Wolfgang feud being teased. A brawl between two huge men, who can move like cruiserweights sounds like a lot of fun.
Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster: So, the challenge has been accepted and we’ll get The Flying Welshmen vs Moustache Mountain next week!
Rhea Ripley vs Kacy Cantanzaro: This should’ve been a great rematch from the Mae Young Classic, instead Kacy got squashed like a bug by Ripley, who seems to have a bigger chip on her shoulder than normal. At least Kacy has a…friend, of sorts, in Piper Niven, who scared Ripley off.
Grizzled Young Veterans vs Amir Jordan and Kenny Williams: Did that just happen?! Did I just watch Jordan and Williams, the most unlikely to succeed tag team get a win, even on a technicality, over the NXT UK Tag Champs? Did that just happen?! It did and it was FANTASTIC! I’ve become a big fan of Jordan and Williams, and while they didn’t get a pinfall victory over the champs, the fact that GYV took the loss rather than be pinned is enough for me! Go Lucky Bad Boys!
Velveteen Dream vs Buddy Murphy: I think I’ve said before that I’m not a Velveteen Dream fan, but that doesn’t mean I don’t think he’s talented and he definitely showed it against Buddy Murphy. I was a little puzzled by Murphy going back to NXT and I still am, but it was a great match by both guys and that’s really all that matters.
Street Profits vs War Raiders (or whatever they’re called): This is another ‘What’s going on here’ moments because the Street Profits haven’t been on NXT all that much, but they’re getting a title shot next week. I guess the Undisputed Era is going to have to wait for another go.
Johnny Gargano vs Undisupted Era: At least Gargano got the hero’s welcome he deserved as NXT Champion. I do like Cole’s whining that Gargano got lucky, completely ignoring the fact that he and Gargano knew that they would have to beat the other man twice to win, it was funny, as was Gargano’s pointing out that Cole was being an idiot for the same reason. It’s nice to have a smart face that can rile up the heel once in a while.
I also liked that we got more signs of unrest in UE with Gargano and Regal stirring the pot. I’m stoked for Gargano vs Strong, especially to watch Cole seethe.
Dominik Dijakovic vs Aaron Frye: There’s not much to say about this since Dijakovic hit one move and it was done. The promo was much more interesting given that Dijakovic has Velveteen Dream in his sights.
Aliyah and Vanessa Borne: I love these two because they’re so obnoxious, but not in the annoying way the IIconics are and I loved their excuses for Aliyah’s loss last week. I can’t wait for next week’s tag team match since it seems like Candice LeRae seems to finally be being treated as more than Gargano’s perpetually worried wife.
Shayna Baszler vs Kairi Sane: This was such a good match and allows Sane to be written out of NXT to got to SmackDown, while maintaining Baszler as a heel. It also paves the way for Baszler vs Shirai by having Shirai by having Shirai save her friend, even if it meant Sane lost any more chances at the title. It was the perfect way to end the Baszler/Sane feud while creating a new feud, so no complaints.
Shield’s Last Ride
After six and a half years, two reunions, two betrayal, and twenty-three cumulative championship reigns, the Shield has come to the end of the road…at least for now. Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns are heading to different shows, while Dean Ambrose has chosen to walk away from WWE and find a new path. In honor of the moment, WWE chose to air Ambrose’s last WWE match and let the WWE Universe say goodbye to one of the greatest factions in the history of Professional Wrestling.
Advanced Warning: If you haven’t figured out that I’m a huge Shield and Dean Ambrose fan, I’m not sure where you’ve been, but I will be a blubbering mess and this might not be very coherent, but I will not apologize for that.
Elias: Gotta love Elias’ never say die attitude towards performing. He managed to throw PLENTY of shade at the Shield and everyone else. Him being a primadonna to Balor about the interruption was fun and we found out Balor can wrestle in a leather jacket, but he still needs a more supportive jock strap. Balor getting the win wasn’t a surprise but it was a really great, if odd match due to some spots.
Riott Squad vs Bayley and Ember Moon: God, I’m going to miss the Riott Squad together! Why did WWE have to split them up?! Them ‘singing’ with Elias was hilarious! The match against Ember and Bayley was great, but I missed what Liv did to get expelled from the match, and costing her team the win. Still, great match and we get to see a great potential team in Bayley and Ember.
Shield Promo: For old time’s sake, we got a vintage Shield promo. It doesn’t matter what they said, because it was just nice to get that promo.
The Shield vs Drew McIntyre, Bobby Lashley, and Baron Corbin: Well, it’s come down to this. After six and a half years, the Shield rode into battle together one more time.
To be honest, this match was too hard to watch. The Shield renewed my active interest in WWE, rather than just half-heartedly watching it when I remembered or not at all. Dean Ambrose has been my hero since I laid eyes on him because he wasn’t what I expected a WWE Superstar to look or sound like. I was intrigued and then I fell in love, in a platonic, non-creepy, sense, with him. My online friends will attest to my cheering, ranting, raving, and screaming for Dean when it looked like he was getting gypped by WWE. That renewed interest lead me to becoming a writer about wrestling, something I never thought anyone would ask me to do. The idea that the man that reactivated my interest and love in wrestling is leaving, even if it’s just for now, has been hard to take and accept.
That said, it was a great match, with everyone hitting their best moves. The fact that it was about the Shield as team, rather than Ambrose, which lead him to letting Seth get the pin and making the final speech about Roman, Seth, and the Shield, rather than himself, makes me respect Jonathan Good all that much more.
I wish Dean all the best, he’s come a long way from his days of nearly bleeding to death for $20 and it looks like he’ll have a great future ahead of himself, whatever happens, but I fervently hope that I will see him again in a WWE ring. Thanks for the memories, Dean, and ALWAYS believe in the Shield!
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