Reflecting on Raw – A Recap for 2/26/18

Raw comes to us from The Honda Center in Anaheim, California.

Two Segments to Ponder

As I recap this show later in the week, there’s two segments that stick out: John Cena’s promo and Roman Reigns.  Let’s start with the incomprehensible one.

John Cena’s Road to the Wrestlemania

John was all over the place.  He hyped the crowd up for a possible match with The Undertaker…and then took it all away a few moments later.  He’s going to go on SmackDown to try to see if he can get on the show from there.  After all, he can’t make matches but he’s the only one that can move freely between shows.

I think the WWE hasn’t locked down anything yet.  Sure, Undertaker is training, but I’m not sure what doctor would tell him it’s a good idea to have a match with his new hip.  There’s also rumors that Rey Mysterio might be a possible challenger.  That would be cool but not the “dream match” everyone was hoping for.

I think WWE is biding time and got lucky with this “Old Man Cena” storyline.  It works, but I don’t know if suggesting an Undertaker match and not paying it off is a good thing.  Wouldn’t be the first time though…

Where in the World is Brock Lesnar?

Brock Lesnar was advertised for Raw on Monday, even by his advocate.  Trouble is, he didn’t show.  Roman pretended everything was fine for a few moments until he admitted that he was stalling.  He then proceeded to drop a “pipe bomb” on Lesnar for showing up only when it suits him and for hiding behind his contract.  (Side note: Miz talked about how he held the highest title on Raw earlier in the night.  He’s not wrong, with the UC off of TV months at a time)

The interesting thing here is whether it’s a work or a shoot.  It’s long been thought that Brock is done with all his contractually obligated dates and is simply not showing up without some more money.  He could also be using it as leverage.  A similar thing happened back for Wrestlemania 31.  Or…it could be WWE using our knowledge of how things went down for that Wrestlemania to their advantage.

And the promo that Roman cut is probably the best of his career.  It didn’t feel scripted, although it probably was.  Roman tapped into what a lot of people feel about Brock.

This is only a problem if it’s a work and there’s not a provision that Brock works Mania in the remainder of his contract.  If we get a vacated Universal Championship with Roman Vs. Braun, it’ll be fine but they really need to pay off this storyline and get the Championship on someone that will be there week after week.  If the Elimination Chamber proved one thing, there’s a lot of great 1-on-1 matches waiting for Roman starting April 9th.

If Brock doesn’t work Mania, what was the point of this last run with the WWE.

The Matches

  • Asuka, Sasha Banks & Bayley def. Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss, Nia Jax & Mickie James.  Asuka made Mickie tap out with an assist from Bayley.  The big news here is that Bayley left Sasha high and dry when Banks wanted to make the hot tag.  It’s payback for the Scar/Mufasa moment from Elimination Chamber.  It looks like we might be on a road to Sasha/Bayley III (I think, right?) at Mania.
  • Bray Wyatt defeated Slater and Rhyno.  Technically he didn’t as the match never even started.  Apparently Bray was mad about last night and won’t rest until Matt’s “woken eyes” are shut.  Hardy, on Twitter, says the ULTIMATE DELETION is coming.   If that’s true, I hope THE SEVEN DEITIES are healing BROTHER NERO in the LAKE OF REINCARNATION to be ready in time.  If it’s just a special match type and not something at the Hardy compound, I’m not interested.
  • The Miz was angry that he’s not promised a Wrestlemania Match, even as Intercontinental Champion.  This would probably be a main story if it didn’t seem obvious where it’s going.
    • Seth came out to challenge Miz to a match to prove he should get a shot at Mania.
      • Seth defeats The Miz with a beautiful Frog Splash 3/4 across the ring.
    • Apparently, Miz had a match scheduled against Finn to determine if he should get a Wrestlemania Match.  So that’s happening next.
      • Finn got ambushed by The Miztourage.  Luckily Finn has friends too as Gallows and Anderson show up to protect their Good Brother.  The match ends in DQ, Angle restarts the match and bans The Club and The Miztourage from ringside.
      • Finn eventually won with a Coup de Grace.
  • The Bar defeated Cesaro and Sheamus in a 2-out-of-3 Falls match.  Nothing to see here.
  • Braun Strowman and Elias went at it after The Monster unfairly called The Drifter’s music “noise pollution”.  Elias played a song as rebuttal and said that everything out of Braun and Corey Graves’ mouth was pure garbage.  That second name got the commentary team riled up.  Elias and Braun is a good matchup.  Elias isn’t against using dirty tricks to win.  He climbed under the ring and when Braun pulled him out, Elias had a fire extinguisher and sprayed Braun in the face for a DQ win.
  • Ronda Rousey was on to get an apology from Stephanie.  Kurt took back everything he said the night before and claimed it wasn’t true.  Still, Ronda wanted that apology.  She got it…but HHH sucker punched Angle in the face for the effort.  The only thing I didn’t really like about this segment is the fact that they ran 330 recaps of the Elimination Chamber moment from the night before.  We get it.  It’s a big deal.