03rd Feb2015

WWE RAW: Results & Review (03.02.15)

by Chris Cummings


Michael Cole began this week’s RAW with a sentence something like “we are only 50 days away, on this Road to WrestleMania”. 50 days. That’s a decent amount of time for WWE to put the hype machine behind the entire roster in order to assemble a fantastic card for their annual extravaganza. We have all heard the rumours of matches that WWE may have planned, but there is only one confirmed as we head into this episode of RAW, being the main event between Brock Lesnar and Royal Rumble winner, Roman Reigns, for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. With Triple H hyping a “huge announcement” for tonight, the question is… will things take a swerve on the road to the grand-daddy of them all.

RAW opens with Triple H and Stephanie McMahon heading to the ring, jovial and smiling. They talk about the Superbowl a little, and discuss the conteroversy that ended the Royal Rumble, specifically, The Rock assisting Roman Reigns in his victory. The fans boo throughout, booing mentions of Royal Rumble and Reigns. When they question whether Roman is worthy of main eventing WrestleMania 31, he interrupts to a mostly-negative reaction, and makes his way to the ring. Reigns says he “earned” his shot at Brock Lesnar. Triple H disagreed and pondered that maybe Reigns would be removed from the match. Daniel Bryan came out next to the biggest pop of the night, and he vented about not receiving his title rematch after returning to WWE recently, after being stripped of the WWE World Title last year. He said he was throwing his name into the hat for guys who should take on Lesnar at WrestleMania in the main event. Reigns looked angry and confused. Seth Rollins then made his way to the ring and disagreed that Reigns or Bryan should compete against Brock, and that he, Mr. Money in the Bank, should take on Lesnar for the title at ‘Mania. Triple H made his announcement at this point, stating that Daniel Bryan would face Seth Rollins in the main event of tonight’s show, with the winner going on to Fast Lane, the next PPV, and facing Roman Reigns. The winner of THAT match, would earn the right to face Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 31. The fans cheered this development, while Rollins and Bryan looked pleased, and Reigns looked pissed off. A decent opening that adds intrigue to the main event section of WWE television.

Match Results;

  • The Big Show defeated Roman Reigns
  • The Ascension beat Gold & Stardust
  • Ryback beat Luke Harper
  • Cesaro defeated Jey Uso
  • Sin Cara beat The Miz
  • Bray Wyatt beat Dolph Ziggler
  • Paige beat Alicia Fox
  • Rusev beat Erik Rowan
  • Daniel Bryan defeated Seth Rollins

Roman Reigns stays in the ring after this segment for a match against Big Show. I’m not sure about you, but I think it’s about time for Big Show, Kane and Mark Henry to hang up their tights and singlet’s and give other guys a chance to shine on the roster. They take up spaces that should be offered to younger, more athletic talent who are yet to be given a shot. The match was boring, went for too long, and had a predictable finish, with Rollins and J&J security interfering and causing Reigns to fall to the giant bore. Not a great in-ring start to RAW.

Curtis Axel comes out next and cuts a short promo about how he was never eliminated from Royal Rumble (he was attacked before entering, and his spot taken from him, so he never materialized) and how he should be going to WrestleMania to face Brock Lesnar. Cole and JBL laughed and mocked Axel on commentary, proof that the announce team couldn’t get a leg over, let alone a WWE performer. It was frustrating to hear, regardless of whether they were “in character” or not. Dean Ambrose interrupted and attacked Axel, throwing him over the top rope. Ambrose then cut a promo about deserving a shot as Bad News Barrett for the Intercontinental Title.

Gold & Stardust took on The Ascension next in what was more or less a reason to have Connor and Viktor get a win, and to promote the seemingly inevitable break-up of the brothers’ Rhodes. It is well publicised that Dustin and Cody Rhodes have been asking for a match against one another at WrestleMania for a few years, and it looks like it may occur this year. I hope so, they deserve it. It would be a nice way for Goldie to bow-out (even though he has plenty left in the tank, in my view), and would allow Cody to go back to being a singles wrestler again, something he likely wants to succeed in. We’ll see. The Ascension wins here with their “Fall of Man” finisher. JBL continued to bury The Ascension on commentary throughout the match.

John Cena comes to the ring to welcome Dolph Ziggler, Erik Rowan and Ryback back to WWE, after beating Seth Rollins a couple of weeks ago in order to win them their jobs back. Cena talks about Rusev and his upcoming match with “The Bulgarian Brute” at Fast Lane. Zigs, Erik and The Big Guy come out to a pop and shake hands with Cena. Stephanie McMahon interrupts the segment and announces that the three returning Superstars will be in matches tonight. Ziggler will face Bray Wyatt, Rowan will face Rusev and Ryback will take on Luke Harper.

Ryback’s match with Harper wasn’t too bad, but not great either. Harper is treading water and deserved better than a random loss to Ryback and not being involved in a feud or storyline. Cesaro picked up a win against Jey Uso, pointing towards a tag match going forward between The Uso’s and Cesaro & Kidd. Should be good.

Backstage, The Miz argues with Mizdow for over-shadowing him, and he fires him as his “stunt double”, saying that Mizdow is now his “personal assistant”. The Miz had a match, later in the show, with Sin Cara where Miz continued to berate Mizdow who stood at ringside. Another inevitable tag-team split, looks like WWE will need to inject some new life into their tag division soon then. Cara won when Miz was distracted by a posing Mizdow.

It is announced that the legendary, late “Big Cat” Ernie Ladd will be inducted into the 2015 WWE Hall of Fame. They showed a nice video presentation of Ladd’s contributions to professional wrestling.

Bray Wyatt and Dolph Ziggler had their one-on-one match. This was a top notch contest between two talented guys. The fans were split in their cheers between the two men. There were “this is awesome” chants at different times in a match that had a variety of near-falls and exciting spots. Bray Wyatt won the match after hitting his “Sister Abigail” finish on Ziggler. Paige had a short match against Alicia Fox, with the Bella Twins on commentary. Paige won this match, and the Bella’s played heels afterwards, spraying hairspray into Paige’s eyes. Bray Wyatt popped up on the screen again, and cut a promo in a dark room. There was no denying that the promo was hinting at the rumoured match for ‘Mania between Bray and The Undertaker. Wyatt spoke of “fear” and being the “new face” of it. He spoke about how “he”, whomever he is speaking to, has become loved instead of feared.

Rusev had a short match with Rowan. I thought Rowan would put up more of a fight, but they obviously want Rusev to look as strong as possible as he walks into Fast Lane to lose to, erm, I mean… wrestle John Cena. Daniel Bryan and Roman Reigns have a backstage segment where Bryan talks about how he will beat Rollins tonight, and then beat Reigns at Fast Lane. Reigns tells Bryan to “get the hell out” of his locker room.

We are now at the main event of RAW. Seth Rollins against Daniel Bryan, with the winner taking on Roman Reigns at Fast Lane to decide who will face the reigning, defending WWE World Heavyweight Champion, Paul Heyman’s client, the man who put the 1 in 21/1, The Beast, Brock Lesnar. Okay, now I have that out of my system, let’s talk about the match. Rollins and Bryan put on a masterclass here in what is the best WWE match of 2015 so far. They showed intensity and passion and the crowd were fully invested by the time the match came to a close. Bryan doesn’t look to have gained even a speck of rust in his time away from WWE from injury, and Rollins proves once more why he is one of the best performers in WWE today. The match was great. It had mat wrestling, high spots and close falls, and it told a story of desperation and a vehement need to main event WrestleMania, which is surely the point. The end of the match saw Big Show cheering on Rollins and hinting he may interfere, which brought out Roman Reigns. Reigns laid out Show with a spear, and did the same to Jamie Nobel, before smacking Rollins in the head with the Superman Punch. Bryan then hit his flying knee on Rollins in the ring for the three count. The fans popped loudly for Bryan, who will go on to Fast Lane to face Roman Reigns. I’m surprised that Bryan won. Surely WWE are aware that Bryan will be cheered over Reigns, and if Reigns wins, he will be booed even more. This means, in my mind anyway, that it looks likely that Reigns will turn heel before ‘Mania. I think WWE will still have Reigns vs. Lesnar in the main event, but I think Brock will be the “good guy” come crunch time. We’ll see though. Regardless, this was one of the better episodes of RAW in a while. The Road to WrestleMania has seen its first streetlight.

RAW: Best Match: Daniel Bryan vs. Seth Rollins

RAW: Best Talker: Stephanie McMahon

RAW: Worst Match: The Ascension vs. Gold & Stardust

RAW: Surprise of the Night: Triple H reveals that Roman Reigns’ WrestleMania Title Shot will be on the line at Fast Lane.


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