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Unread 10-17-2018, 07:04 PM
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Raw - Five Point Preview
Champion & Challenger in action...
Ahead of their match at Fastlane, Drew McIntyre and Randy Orton will both be in action, 6 days before their WWE Universal Championship show. Having been challenged by Bray Wyatt last week, the Champion will face “The Eater of Worlds”, while Randy Orton will go up against Robert Roode. Two solid challenges before Fastlane, the competitors will have to be on their A game to come out victorious. Both will hope their opponents don’t take too much out of them, so close to their title bout on Sunday.

The Kevin & Sami Show returns… with Dave Batista!
After coming to the General Manager’s aid last week, when the Raw Main Event was put in jeopardy, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn were rewarded with the return of “The Kevin & Sami Show”. Their guest will be Dave Batista, who will be informed of his opponent for his return match, scheduled to take place the night after Fastlane, on Raw!

Elimination Chamber warm-up
All six competitors in Sunday’s Raw Women’s Championship match will be in action on Raw, with Sasha Banks scheduled to face a local talent, as Shayna Baszler goes up against Natalya, who failed to qualify last week. The newly renamed “Liv Squad” will be in action also, facing the unlikely trio of Alexa Bliss, Ember Moon and Nia Jax. While Alexa Bliss has been reluctant to join forces with the women she was at odds with for so long, she also realises that Raw is her final chance to get revenge on Liv Morgan, ahead of Sunday’s Elimination Chamber match for the Raw Women’s Championship!

Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns team up!
Having been sidetracked by his visit to the home of Brock Lesnar last week, Braun Strowman will return to Raw, and be forced to deal with The Anti-Braun Coilition’s continued crusade against him. This week, he will find back up from the man who the group targeted last week, Roman Reigns. While Strowman and Reigns don’t see eye to eye, and haven’t for some time, they will be the favourites as they face Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley. While Reigns will no doubt be focussed on the match, he has also spoken this week of his WrestleMania ambition, calling on Kurt Angle to reveal his direction for the biggest show of the year.

Ronda Rousey returns to Raw!
Making her return to Raw, having not appeared since the night after she won the Royal Rumble, Ronda Rousey will be informed of her opponent, ahead of her return to the ring at Fastlane. Coming off the back of the successful victory in the Royal Rumble, Ronda Rousey will look for more success, before her Women’s Championship match at WrestleMania!
This Week on Raw
Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley vs. Braun Strowman & Roman Reigns
Bray Wyatt vs. Drew McIntyre
Randy Orton vs. Robert Roode
Natalya vs. Shayna Baszler
Alexa Bliss, Ember Moon & Nia Jax vs. “The Liv Squad” (Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott & Sarah Logan)
Bobby Lashley vs. No Way Jose
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Unread 10-17-2018, 09:58 PM
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Liv Squad lol
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Unread 10-18-2018, 06:56 PM
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Default Raw #1342

Live from Greensboro Coliseum Complex, Greensboro, North Carolina!

After a recap of the shocking moment last week, where Braun Strowman paid Brock Lesnar a “home visit” and ended up tipping a Tractor over, “The Monster Amongst Men” opened Raw. Braun Strowman made his way to the ring, and addressed the fact that police were called to the Lesnar residence last week, proving that Brock was home. Strowman added that while he didn’t get an answer, he did prove one thing… that Brock Lesnar is a coward! Soon, Strowman was joined in the ring by Roman Reigns.
Reigns said that he could have told Strowman that Lesnar was a coward. But Reigns wasn’t out to talk about Brock, he wanted to talk about Drake Maverick’s “Anti-Braun Coalition”. Roman confronted Braun Strowman, saying that because of what he did last week, Reigns was left to clean up the mess known as The A.B.C. It didn’t take long for things to get heated between Strowman and Reigns, who don’t get along at the best of times. Stopping them from coming to blows, Kurt Angle came out and told them to focus on what’s in front of them. He said that Roman Reigns had Fastlane to look forward to, where his WrestleMania opponent will be revealed, and Kurt also had something in store for Braun Strowman Sunday’s show too. He also wanted them to focus on tonight, as they would team up in the Main Event, against The A.B.C’s Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley.

Drake Maverick wasn’t happy with this, and confronted Kurt Angle in the back. He claimed that Angle was jealous of him, and became increasingly personal towards the General Manager.
Drake would soon regret this, as Kurt Angle reminded him that he gave up his position as “Advisor to the General Manager” a couple of weeks ago. That meant that Drake was just like any other talent, and that gave Kurt the power to put him in matches. As a result, Kurt decided if Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns were victorious over Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley tonight, Drake Maverick would go one on one with Braun Strowman at Fastlane. Maverick’s life flashed before his eyes, and his fear forced him into action.

Maverick spent the rest of the night looking for backup, but nobody wanted anything to do with Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns. Jason Jordan, The Authors of Pain and Elias all had their own business to deal with, much to the delight of Finn Balor. Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley told Drake that they had a plan, and that was for Drake to trust them. Maverick clearly wasn’t convinced, but had no choice going into the Main Event.
Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns came out victorious in the Main Event, and with his focus on Sunday, Reigns left the ring. This left a smirking Braun Strowman in the ring, staring down Drake Maverick. Maverick’s instinct was to get as far away from Braun Strowman as possible. As he did this, the General Manager’s music hit, and Kurt Angle came out. He confirmed that Braun Strowman would go one on one with Drake Maverick at Fastlane, “it’s true… it’s damn true!”

Somehow the more turbulent trio in the match, the newly renamed “Liv Squad” had issues before the bell. Hearing the team introduced by the name, Ruby Riott said that she couldn’t do it anymore. Liv Morgan didn’t see the issue, saying it had been “The Riott Squad” for long enough. Sarah Logan came between them, suggesting they go by just “The Squad”. This didn’t sit well, but there was a match scheduled. The clear tension continued into the match, and outweighed the clear antipathy displayed by the opposing team.

Despite Alexa Bliss being disliked by Ember Moon and Nia Jax, the three of them got on with it, and Alexa Bliss scored the decisive victory, pinning Sarah Logan.

Alexa Bliss, Ember Moon & Nia Jax bt. The Liv Squad

After the match, Alexa Bliss made it clear that at this Sunday’s Elimination Chamber match, it would be every woman for herself. Leaving her partners in the ring, “The Goddess” had no interest in celebrating with her teammates.

Also in action during the night, Sasha Banks picked up a victory over a local talent, defeating her in convincing fashion.

As well as the five challengers, Shayna Baszler was also scheduled to compete, a non-title match against Natalya.
Despite the match being non-title, Shayna Baszler still felt the need to send a message, jumping Natalya from behind before the match. When order was restored, Baszler had made her task much easier, and dominated the woman she had sneak attacked. Following the match, Shayna Baszler refused to release the hold that got her the win, until Ronda Rousey ran down to the ring.
Shayna Baszler left the ring, smartly avoiding a physical confrontation before her Raw Women’s Championship defence at Fastlane. Ronda Rousey checked on her friend and mentor, concerned at the damage done by Shayna Baszler. With Baszler out of the picture, Kurt Angle came to the top of the ramp, telling Ronda Rousey that she would team with Natalya at Fastlane, against Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan. He also told Ronda Rousey, earlier in the night, that he needed to know whether she would be challenging for the Raw or Smackdown Women’s Championship at WrestleMania, and he needed to know by Sunday!

The Squad weren’t happy with this, with Liv Morgan having expected the group’s focus to be entirely on her winning the Raw Women’s Championship. It was pointed out that, in the Elimination Chamber, Ruby Riott and Sarah Logan’s ringside presence would have been heavily negated.
After “saving the show” last week, stepping in to the Main Event at the last minute, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn were rewarded by General Manager Kurt Angle, who announced the return of “The Sami & Kevin Show”.
Not only was the show set to return, their special guest for the return episode was Dave Batista! After putting over their victory against The Authors of Pain last week, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn spoke about Fastlane, and the fact that the Kick-Off show would feature a cross-brand Number One Contendership match for the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championship. They were one of four teams in that match, and they were ready to challenge for the titles at WrestleMania!

They then turned the attention to their guest, and welcomed Dave Batista to “The Sami & Kevin Show”.
Continuing their apparent turning over of a new leaf, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn were respectful towards Batista, and put him over during his introduction. Kevin Owens said that it was great to have Batista back, and asked him what his plans were, looking forward to WrestleMania and beyond. Before Batista could answer, the show was interrupted by Golden Alpha.
Having a bone to pick with Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, Jason Jordan told the duo that The Authors of Pain were pissed off about last week, and consider Owens & Zayn to be a couple of corporate suck ups. He put over that Sunday, they were also in the Number One Contendership match, and they would take Owens & Zayn out on their way to WrestleMania. Batista wasn’t happy with Jason Jordan once again interrupting him, saying “I can see I’m going to have a problem with you”. Jordan agreed, saying that Batista saw what he did to Finn Balor last week.

Coming between them, Sami Zayn said this was “perfect”, as they had one more announcement to make on a historic episode of “The Sami & Kevin Show”. Zayn excitedly exclaimed that next week, on Raw, Batista would return to the ring… against Jason Jordan! As Jordan took this in, Kevin Owens hit him with a second announcement, and that was that the two of them would go one on one… next!

Jason Jordan wasn’t pleased with this, but Dave Batista was clearly chomping at the bit. Jordan would have to stay focussed however, as his match kicked off after the break.

With Batista now in the back, Jason Jordan was ready to face Kevin Owens. The commentators put over Batista’s return to the ring next week, before focussing on the match ahead. Looking to build on last week’s win over a weakened Finn Balor, Jason Jordan had the help of The Authors of Pain to rely on. Sami Zayn was at the side of Kevin Owens, but clearly couldn’t match the influence of the huge Akam & Rezar.

This played into the finish of the match, as while they refrained from getting directly involved, The Authors of Pain did take Sami Zayn out at ringside, in fairly brutal fashion. Causing Kevin Owens to take his eye off the ball, the distraction allowed Jason Jordan to hit the Jordan (Angle) Slam from behind, and pick up the victory.

Jason Jordan bt. Kevin Owens

After the match, Golden Alpha were not done with Kevin Owens, and with Sami Zayn out, it was 3-on-1.
The Authors of Pain did much of the heavy lifting, as they looked to take Kevin Owens out of this Sunday’s match at Fastlane. However, before their plan could play out completely, Dave Batista returned to the ring.
Running down the ramp, Batista entered the ring, and clotheslined both members of The Authors of Pain over the top rope, one after the other. This left Batista in the ring with the man he would face next week, and Jason Jordan wanted nothing to do with him.

Jordan tried to get away, but Batista grabbed him. Putting the General Manager’s son in position for the first Batista Bomb since his return to the WWE, Dave looked to send a message to his future opponent. Grabbing the legs of Jason Jordan, Akam managed to drag the leader of Golden Alpha out of the ring, saving him from the Batista Bomb. As the trio headed up the ramp, Dave made it clear just how close Jordan was to being taken down. The commentators suggested that he had just previewed Jordan’s fate next week!

Competing for the WWE Universal Championship on Sunday, Drew McIntyre and Randy Orton were both in action on Raw, winning their respective matches. Randy Orton overcame the challenge of Robert Roode, and promise that at Fastlane, order would be restored in the WWE. Blurring the lines somewhat, Randy Orton arrogantly claimed that a certain type of Champion leads the company into WrestleMania, and Drew McIntyre isn’t that guy. Randy Orton put over his accomplishments, and promised that he would leave Fastlane at Universal Champion!

Drew McIntyre’s victory over Bray Wyatt was expected to be followed by his response to the challenger. However, as he set up with a microphone in the ring, Drew McIntyre was taken out from behind by an RKO!

Coming out of nowhere, the first contact between Champion and Challenge came 6 days before the WWE Universal Championship match at Fastlane. Standing over the Champion, it was clear that Randy Orton would do whatever it takes to go into WrestleMania with the title.
Also on Raw:
  • It was announced that The Bella Twins would return to Raw next week, turning their attention to the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship match at WrestleMania.
  • Bobby Lashley was granted his request of a match with No Way Jose, winning in convincing fashion. His attempts to “kill the buzz” of Titus Worldwide continued, as he challenged anybody else from the group to come and face him in the ring. Akira Tozawa looked to step up, but was held back by the leader of the group, Titus O’Neil.
  • Kurt Angle informed Rey Mysterio that he would defend his WWE Intercontinental Championship on Raw next week, against Elias!

Quick Results
Alexa Bliss, Ember Moon & Nia Jax bt. The Liv Squad
Randy Orton bt. Robert Roode

Jason Jordan bt. Kevin Owens
Sasha Banks bt. [Local Talent] Jamie Anderson
Drew McIntyre bt. Bray Wyatt

Shayna Baszler bt. Natalya
Bobby Lashley bt. No Way Jose
Braun Strowman & Roman Reigns bt. The A.B.C’s Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley
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Unread 10-20-2018, 06:50 PM
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Default This Week in WWE!

This Week on…

Daniel Bryan opened the show, cutting an emotional promo about his return to the ring, and what the last year has meant to him. While it has been rewarding, he explained the struggles he had faced. Bryan firmly believed that going into Fastlane, it was his “time” to regain the WWE Championship. Samoa Joe had other ideas, saying that while it was “sad” that he had to end the fairytail at the Royal Rumble, it was now time for Daniel Bryan to wake up and face reality. Samoa Joe would do that to Daniel Bryan in the Elimination Chamber, but had the opportunity to do it to Kofi Kingston, 5 nights earlier, in the Main Event of Smackdown Live!
Promoting the match, Samoa Joe spoke about what he was going to do to Kofi Kingston, and the rest of the challengers in the Elimination Chamber. Samoa Joe’s interview was interrupted by Paige, as the General Manager wanted to speak to the WWE Champion. Instead of listening to his boss, Joe made took another shot at her, saying that as a former Superstar, Paige should know not to interrupt the Champion. He added that it had been that long since Paige did what she loved to do, she’d probably forgotten what it was like to be a competitor.

Paige clearly took this to heart, and after Kofi Kingston was defeated by Samoa Joe in the Main Event, the General Manager was seen on the phone in the back. Speaking in very strong terms, Paige told whoever she was talking to that they had to “do whatever it takes… just make it happen!” What Paige was referring to wasn’t expanded upon, as Smackdown Live went off air.
When Kaitlyn picked up another victory, ahead of her match with Charlotte Flair at Fastlane, the Champion was interviewed on the ramp.
Strangely, Charlotte Flair swerved questions on Kaitlyn, instead focussing on her challenge to Ronda Rousey. Flair said that she’d heard nothing from the so-called “Baddest Woman on The Planet”, and accused her of avoiding the challenge of the most dominant Women’s Champion in the WWE today.
A “Superstar Profile” focussed on Andrade “Cien” Almas, taking a look at the history behind his name.
Using parts of interviews with both Andrade “Cien” Almas and Zelina Vega, as well as footage of the Mexican Superstar, an in-depth look was taken at the name “Cien” Almas, which translates to “100 Souls”. This was further explained, as a reference to Andrade’s history of winning matches that resulted in his opponents hair being shaved off, or their mask removed. Almas spoke of the significance of this act in Lucha Libre tradition, speaking of the importance of the masks, and the dominion of being responsible for an opponent being forced to reveal their face, or remove their hair!
Also on Smackdown Live:
  • Shinsuke Nakamura’s United States Championship open challenge was answered by Luke Gallows. The Champion picked up the victory, with Karl Anderson checking on his partner, after the match. As Anderson did this, he was sized up for a Kinshasa, which Nakamura hit to leave both men out in the ring.
  • Rusev spoke about his chance to become the WWE Champion at Fastlane, discussing the support of his wife Lana and the success of “Rusev Day”. The Miz also staked his claim as the top contender to the WWE Championship, claims which were disputed by former Champion AJ Styles. This came following AJ Styles’ victory over Harper.
  • The Usos put over the honour of facing The Hardy Boyz at Fastlane, but said that everybody already knew who the greatest tag team of all time were!
  • The dominant team of Sonya Deville & Tamina Snuka picked up yet another victory, extending their winning run to 3 matches.

This Week on…

Episode #8: The Episode with… The Battlebowl (Part 1)!
  • WCW Universe opened with the names of 20 Superstars in a raffle drum, with 10 teams being randomly comprised. This was the basis of the Battlebowl, which would take place over a two-part episode.
  • Blackjack Blake & The Brian Kendrick bt. Garza Jr. & Tye Dillinger, when Blake pinned Tye. This angered Garza Jr., who was very unhappy with his Canadian partner.
  • Tex Ferguson spoke with Chad 2 Badd in the back, explaining the “lucha libre” style he would be adopting in his match tonight against the high flyers. He explained to TJ P that he learned the style when he worked down in Puerto Rico. The team would be successful, defeating Tyler Breeze & Gran Metalik.
  • Tony Nese looked to bond with Goldust in the back, ahead of their match together next week. He didn’t get far, as Dustin Rhodes bluntly explained that he always hated the nWo, and he still does!
  • Robert Roode & Mike Kanellis were delighted to be teamed together, calling it the luck of the draw. Their previous experience working together allowed them to win in the Main Event, defeating Buddy Murphy & Kalisto.

Other Notes:
  • Before Fastlane, WWE released the names of the 16 Superstars who would feature in the first ever Heavyweight Classic:

16 Man Tournament - Exclusively on the WWE Network!

For a place in the "Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal" at WrestleMania!

Last edited by 20LEgend : 10-31-2018 at 01:52 PM.
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Unread 10-21-2018, 06:14 PM
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Elimination Chamber Match for the WWE Championship
Samoa Joe (c) vs. AJ Styles vs. Daniel Bryan vs. Kofi Kingston vs. Rusev vs. The Miz

Elimination Chamber Match for the Raw Women's Championship
Shayna Baszler (c) vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Ember Moon vs. Liv Morgan vs. vs. Nia Jax vs. Sasha Banks

Smackdown Women's Championship
Charlotte Flair (c) vs. Kaitlyn

Which of the Women's Champions will Ronda Rousey chose to face at WrestleMania?

WWE Universal Championship
Drew McIntyre (c) vs. Randy Orton

Natalya & Ronda Rousey vs. The Squad (Ruby Riott & Sarah Logan)

WWE Men's Tag Team Championships
The Usos (c) vs. The Hardy Boyz

Braun Strowman vs. Drake Maverick

[Kick-Off Show] Number One Contendership Match for the WWE Men's Tag Team Championships
Andrade "Cien" Almas & Sin Cara vs. Authors of Pain vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn vs. The Bar

Who will be revealed as Roman Reigns' WrestleMania opponent?

Fastlane Predictions
(Match Card + Bonus Questions!)
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Unread 10-23-2018, 06:21 PM
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Default WWE Fastlane 2019

[Kick-Off] Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn bt. Almas & Sin Cara, Authors of Pain and The Bar to become Number One Contenders to the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships (Kevin Owens pinned Sin Cara)

Live from TD Gardens, Boston, Massachusetts

Opening up Fastlane, a video package promoted the final stop… on the Road to WrestleMania. Putting over the two Elimination Chamber matches, as well as the other contests with huge WrestleMania implications, the package put over Fastlane as “the most important night” on the road to the biggest event of the year. Making it clear that the push towards WrestleMania would go into overdrive during the evening, the commentators soon added fuel to the flame, speaking about the huge events scheduled to take place. As well as the promoted matches, Fastlane would also see Ronda Rousey make her choice regarding her Women’s Championship match at WrestleMania, while Roman Reigns will learn the identity of his opponent for the “Sports Entertainment Showcase” in 5 weeks time!

Elimination Chamber Match for the Raw Women’s Championship

With the four other Superstars inside the “pods”, the Raw Women’s Champion had been drawn to start the match, alongside “The Goddess” Alexa Bliss. Coming straight at Alexa Bliss, from the opening bell, Shayna Baszler made an uncharacteristic mistake early on, and was taken down by Alexa Bliss. Shockingly, Bliss went straight to the top rope, and under a minute into the match, hit a “Twisted Bliss” to the Raw Women’s Champion. Set for an unbelievable upset, Alexa Bliss was split seconds away from eliminating the Champion from the match. At the last moment, Shayna Baszler kicked out, but was shaken from the experience. Looking to get back into the match, Baszler seemed to be getting the better of the challenger, as the next Superstar entered.

Entrant #3

Liv Morgan entered the match, and looked to form an alliance with Shayna Baszler. Liv Morgan mocked Alexa, calling herself “The Real Goddess”, thinking she had Baszler on board. What she thought Shayna would get out of working with her was unknown, and Baszler rejected the proposal, taking Liv Morgan down. Shayna then continued, keeping both of the challengers down, proving her dominance. It was then time for the fourth member of the match to enter.

Entrant #4

Coming into the match, Ember Moon showed the fire that she has become known for recently, taking the fight to Shayna Baszler. Losing her grip on the match, the Champion was caught cold by Ember Moon. Moon took the fight to the rest of the competitors, coming close to taking Liv Morgan out. However, before she could, the next Superstar entered the match.

Entrant #5

As Sasha Banks entered the match, she went straight for Ember Moon, who was on the top rope. Before Moon could hit the Eclipse that she had set up for, Sasha Banks pushed her from the top rope, to the steel panel of the Chamber floor. Sasha Banks then entered the ring, going after Alexa Bliss. On the other side of the ring, Shayna Baszler was in control of Liv Morgan.

Entrant #6

Nia Jax was the final Superstar to enter, and she took out everybody in her path. Dropping the four other challengers, Nia Jax soon came face to face with Shayna Baszler. One on one in the middle of the ring, the two Superstars went back and forth, brawling. Liv Morgan and Sasha Banks looked to take advantage of the distractions, but their attempts to roll up Baszler and Jax predictably failed. Instead, they simply drew the attention away from each other, and resulted in Shayna and Nia focussing on them.

Before long, it was clear that Liv Morgan was in trouble, and it was Alexa Bliss who took delight in eliminating her. Taking the first Superstar out of the match, Bliss hit her long-time rival with a DDT.

Elimination #1: Liv Morgan

The self-proclaimed “Real Goddess” didn’t take her elimination well, and went after Alexa Bliss. Fighting against the referees, Liv may have got the last laugh on Alexa, as she was taken out from behind by Shayna Baszler. Caught off guard, Bliss was unable to escape the Rear Naked Choke, becoming the second woman to be eliminated from the match.

Elimination #2: Alexa Bliss

With just four Superstars left in the match, the contest split into two singles, with Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler returning to each other’s focus. On the outside of the ring, Ember Moon and Sasha Banks continued to go at it. Eventually, they returned to the ring, with Ember Moon looking to take it to the top rope. Sasha Banks joined her, before they escalated to the top of the Chamber pod. Once up there, Sasha Banks had second thoughts, and when she took control, elected to climb back down to the turnbuckle. Seeing Shayna & Nia in the ring, Sasha went for a crossbody, but was caught by the two bigger woman in the match. The two looked ready to throw Sasha out of the ring, but were stopped in their tracks as Ember Moon dived from the top of the pod, taking out all three woman. Feeding off the energy of the WWE Universe, Ember Moon returned to the top turnbuckle.

This time she was successful, following up the huge Crossbody with an Eclipse to Sasha Banks. While the impact took a lot out of Ember Moon, Nia Jax quickly added the finishing touch, hitting a Running Leg Drop, eliminating “The Boss”.

Elimination #3: Sasha Banks

Quickly looking for another elimination, Shayna Baszler came up behind Nia Jax, looking to lock in the Rear Naked Choke. Nia Jax managed to get to the ropes, and sent Baszler to the outside. Following the Champion, Nia Jax was once again caught in the Rear Naked Choke. This time, she had even more ways to escape, first driving Shayna into the side of the Chamber, before dropping backwards onto the steel panel and crushing Baszler beneath her. This took the wind out of Shayna Baszler, and when Nia Jax returned to the ring, it was a two horse race.

Ember Moon had also hurt herself earlier, and Nia Jax focussed on her shoulder. The commentators put over the respect between the two Superstars, but it was clear nothing was going to be held back. Shayna Baszler continued to hold off, as Nia Jax looked to finish Ember Moon. Moon wouldn’t be put down however, and after avoiding a Leg Drop, the comeback was on. Successfully building her way back into the match, Ember Moon went back to the top rope, hitting an Eclipse to the former Raw Women’s Champion. While she had been unable to beat Nia during her record-breaking run with the title, Ember Moon finally managed to score a pinfall over Nia Jax.

Elimination #4: Nia Jax

Having shocked the undefeated Shayna Baszler in the past, Ember Moon had proved that she was not to be taken lightly, having eliminated both Sasha Banks and Nia Jax. Baszler had taken time to regroup, and was straight onto Ember Moon as the match came down to two. Shayna Baszler went straight for the kill, hitting a series of brutal strikes, and taking Moon down to the mat. She appeared to have her opponent exactly where she wanted her, and Shayna Baszler wouldn’t let up. Looking to lock in a submission hold on the mat, the commentators spoke as though the end was near. Despite this, Ember Moon wouldn’t give up.

The final challenger to Shayna Baszler before WrestleMania, Ember Moon came back into the match, looking to pull off an upset. The commentators put over that Ember Moon is the only woman to have “got one over” on Shayna Baszler since her Raw debut, and it appeared she would repeat the feat in this match. Rallying against the dominant Champion, Ember Moon found herself in position to hit the Eclipse. Baszler was dazed, and as Ember came from the top rope, it appeared the match would be over. However, as the two women went down to the mat, Baszler kept hold of Ember Moon. Somehow absorbing the impact of the Eclipse, a move which had previously put down everybody who faced it, Shayna Baszler locked in the Rear Naked Choke to her opponent. Leaving nothing to chance, Shayna Baszler wrapped her legs around the body of Ember Moon, who the referee monitored closely. Eventually, Ember was unable to respond to the referee, and on this basis he called for the bell.

Shayna Baszler (c) wins the Elimination Chamber; STILL Raw Women’s Champion!

Putting over the undefeated Champion, who has now confirmed her place on the WrestleMania card, the commentators questioned if anybody could beat “The Queen of Spades”. While Ronda Rousey had yet to confirm who she would face at WrestleMania, the Royal Rumble winner would be facing the toughest challenge of her WWE career, either way she chose.

Switching gears from the Championship action, an interview was shown (originally from the Fastlane Kick-Off show) featuring Roman Reigns. Reigns put over the fact that his WrestleMania opponent would be revealed to him tonight, saying that he couldn’t wait to see what Kurt Angle had managed to put together.
Out of that, focus turned to Braun Strowman’s match up next, where he was scheduled to face the former Advisor to the General Manager, and current “Chairman of the Anti-Braun Coalition” Drake Maverick. Footage was shown from the night after Braun Strowman lost the WWE Universal Championship, and his rampage that led to Drake Maverick being put in hospital, and “The Monster Amongst Men” being arrested. The package also recapped the motivations of Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley, who joined Drake’s group after being repeatedly tormented by the man who has his eye on a WrestleMania match with Brock Lesnar!
With that match scheduled to be up next, Drake Maverick came down to the ring. Dressed in a black tank top and cargo pants, Drake Maverick had taped his hands. Despite being prepared, Maverick was clearly terrified, as he walked down to the ring, flanked by Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley.
Once he entered the ring, Drake Maverick explained that when he started the “Anti-Braun Coalition”, it wasn’t about violence and fighting, in fact it was quite the opposite. Drake accepted that some things had been said, but suggested that him facing Braun Strowman would prove nothing to anybody. Drake Maverick asked the WWE Universe if anybody really wanted to see Braun Strowman beat him from pillar to post…

Not getting the reaction he wanted, Drake Maverick turned on the WWE Universe, suggesting that they were just as bad as Braun Strowman. In fact, their approval is exactly why Braun Strowman does what he does. Maverick claimed to be so upset with the WWE Universe, that he was refusing to compete. As the excuses added up, Drake Maverick looked desperate to get out of the match. However, now he was in the ring, he stood little chance of escape. Especially as the music of Braun Strowman began to play.
“The Monster Amongst Men” made his way down to the ring. Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley were Drake Maverick’s only line of defence, and were fairly easily dealt with by Braun Strowman. While Maverick’s men had been unable to stop Strowman, they did give Drake Maverick the chance to try and escape. This didn’t end well either. Chasing Drake Maverick up the ramp, and bringing him back into the ring, Braun Strowman ensured that his match would go ahead… whether Maverick was ready or not!

With Corey Graves as the only person in the Universe to suggest that Drake Maverick had a chance of surviving this match, it got under way in unsurprising manner. Drake Maverick tried to evade Braun Strowman, but wasn’t quick enough to get away from “The Monster Amongst Men”. Realising escape wasn’t an option, Drake Maverick faced his fears, and was offered the first shot by Strowman. Braun would allow Drake Maverick to take as many shots as he wanted at the former Universal Champion, with none of them having any effect on him in the slightest.

After a few minutes of this, Drake grew frustrated, and made a huge mistake. Slapping Braun Strowman in the face (while being only just able to reach), Drake Maverick angered his opponent, and was soon reminded what he was capable of. Throwing Drake around the ring at will, Braun Strowman made extremely light work of the former Interim General Manager of Raw. When he’d had enough of this, Braun Strowman hit Drake Maverick with a Running Powerslam… and another… and then a third for good measure. Drake Maverick was out cold on the mat, and Braun Strowman placed a foot on his chest to pick up the victory

Braun Strowman bt. Drake Maverick

Braun Strowman stood tall after the match, but clearly felt no sense of achievement from defeating Drake Maverick. The former Interim General Manager didn’t move after the match, and had to be helped out of the ring by a returning Baron Corbin and Moj Rawley. Carted out of the building by his Anti-Braun allies, Drake Maverick’s group had clearly done little to stop “The Monster Amongst Men”.

Taking a look back the night so far, as Drake Maverick was taken out of the ringside area, the commentators talked about the Kick-Off show, where Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn became the Number One Contenders to the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships. This led into the next match, which would determine the team that Owens & Zayn would face for the titles at WrestleMania. Footage was shown of The Hardy Boyz greatest moments, putting over the idea that the match could be the final chance that Jeff & Matt get to become Tag Team Champions. The commentators explained that the legendary tag team were looking for “one more run”, going into what would likely be their last WrestleMania together.

WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships

Having got surprisingly heated between the two teams, the pressure of the Championship match - so close to WrestleMania - appeared to have got the better of them. When Matt Hardy finally made his appearance, in classic Hardy Boyz gear, it was clear he was fired up. This led to a huge opening the match, which saw the duos get under each other’s skins from the opening bell. While the two teams didn’t have much of a rivalry between them, there was clearly something in the air, as Jey Usos became frustrated at how Matt Hardy was treating his brother. When he got involved, Jeff Hardy did too, and all four men stood in the ring. Soon, a brawl broke out, and ended up spilling to the outside. The referee tried to regain order, but something had clearly gotten into both teams. Crossed words had escalated, and the brawl threatened to spill into the audience. The referee was left with no choice but to call for the bell.

No Contest

An unpopular decision, the referee had been left with his hands tied, by the Superstars’ refusal to follow the rules. This was particularly bizarre from The Hardy’s perspective, as they had cost themselves their final attempt at becoming Tag Team Champions. Luckily, Paige was soon out to restore order.
Paige told the four men to stop, and eventually they listened to the Smackdown General Manager. She order all four men back into the ring, saying that if they wanted to fight… and they wanted it to be lawless, she was more than happy to restart the match with no disqualifications and no count outs!

No Disqualifications Match for the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships

Starting their second match of the night, the two teams once again came out with an intensity that put over the importance of the match. While The Usos were desperate to remain Champions, the desire of The Hardy Boyz, who were potentially teaming for the last time ever, was stronger. This allowed them to take charge of the match, particularly when weapons were involved. Going back and forth after the spell of Hardy dominance, it always seemed like Matt and Jeff had the edge. Either way, both teams took a hell of a lot out of each other, with all four men struggling towards the end of the match.

Exhaustion may slowed the competitors, but it didn’t stop them from taking risks. An attempted Diving Splash to the outside by Jimmy Uso took him out, leaving Jey Uso to fight off both of the challengers. This would of course be a struggle, and eventually Jey was set up on the Announcer’s Table. Intent on marking the occasion with a huge moment, Jeff Hardy set up a Ladder, ready to put the WWE Men’s Tag Team Champions down for good. However, as Jeff Hardy went for the Swanton Bomb off the ladder, Jimmy Uso pulled his brother out of harm’s way. This left Jeff Hardy to crash through the commentary table, taking himself out of the match.

Matt Hardy was now the one left to fight alone, and while he tried his best, there was no way he could recover from what had just happened to his brother. Eventually The Usos set Matt Hardy up on another table, hitting a Double Diving Splash to him. Jey Uso then covered the challenger, securing The Usos’ victory.

The Usos (c) bt. The Hardy Boyz

Following the match, The Usos stood tall in the ring. Despite their victory, the focus was on Jeff Hardy on the outside. He was attended to by medics, and soon his brother exited the ring to show his concern. Despite a stretcher being brought out, Jeff Hardy refused to be carried out, and was instead helped to the back by his brother.

Putting over the heart of Jeff Hardy, the commentators spoke about Drake Maverick being carried out of the ringside area earlier in the night. Maverick was reportedly taken to hospital after the match, and footage was shown of him being loaded into an ambulance.
Focus then turned to the announcement coming next, as Roman Reigns’ WrestleMania opponent was scheduled to be revealed. After the mess of the previous match had been cleared up, Kurt Angle made his way down to the ring. The General Manager had a smile on his face, ready for what had been promoted as a “major announcement”.
Kurt Angle wasted little time, reminding the WWE Universe why he was out there, before talking up the man who has Main Evented the last 4 WrestleManias, Roman Reigns. The General Manager of Raw said that he wasn’t out here to talk, and wanted to get down to the important announcement as soon as possible. At this point, he introduced Roman Reigns, inviting him to the ring.
Roman Reigns was similarly eager to get the announcement out there, and asked Kurt Angle, “who is it then?” Kurt Angle told Roman Reigns that he would love to tell him, but that’s not his job tonight. Roman Reigns wasn’t confused, until Kurt Angle introduced the person who would be making the announcement…
Making an extremely rare on-screen appearance, Mr. McMahon was seen for the first time in almost a year. Roman Reigns hadn’t forgotten the reason for McMahon’s appearance last March, as he suspended him from Raw, weeks before his WrestleMania match with Brock Lesnar. Tonight, Mr. McMahon was all smiles, and offered a handshake to “The Big Dog”. Roman Reigns refused to shake his boss’s hand, but McMahon was fine with it. Refusing to let anything ruin his mood, Mr. McMahon spoke ecstatically about being out to make an announcement that will be remembered for a very long time. Unlike the two men before him, McMahon wanted to milk every second he could out of the announcement, before he eventually confirmed Roman Reigns’ WrestleMania opponent as… John Cena!

John Cena came down to the ring, with a huge smile on his face. Embracing the WWE Universe, and taking in the always audible reaction, John Cena looked delighted to be back in front of the fans. When he entered the ring, he shook hands with Kurt Angle and Mr. McMahon, saying something to each off them off-mic. John Cena then turned his attention to Roman Reigns. In full “fruity-pebbles”, over-the-top smiling John Cena mode, the record-equalling World Champion stood in stark contrast to the stern and stoic Roman Reigns. After the two men stared each other down, John Cena extended the hand to Roman Reigns. There was a brief hesitation from Roman Reigns, who was the only man in the ring without a smile on his face. Reigns looked to Kurt, and then to Mr. McMahon. He finally looked John Cena in the eyes, shaking hands with his WrestleMania opponent!

With the match now confirmed, Roman Reigns left the ring promptly, leaving Kurt Angle, Mr. McMahon and John Cena in the ring. Giving nothing away, Roman Reigns had not had the reaction that those in the ring had expected. The commentators agreed, wondering if Roman Reigns would give more of an indication of his feelings, the following night on Raw.
Speaking about WrestleMania matches, focus turned to Ronda Rousey’s choice, which had been given a deadline of tonight. With Shayna Baszler already victorious, Ronda Rousey had yet to make her decision. Scheduled to be in action next, the commentators suggested that her decision to challenge either the Raw Women’s Champion or the Smackdown Women’s Champion could be made after the match.

The purpose of this match appeared to be based around having time to talk about the decision Ronda Rousey had to make after it. While that wasn’t the focus of the competitors, it did dominate discussion as the match went on. After a good start from Ronda Rousey, Ruby & Logan took control, using shortcuts when Natalya was brought into the match. Once again under a different name, “The Squad” did well at isolating the former Smackdown Women’s Champion, and Ronda Rousey grew impatient on the outside. After a few false starts, Ronda Rousey got back into the match, dominating proceeding. She took down Ruby Riott first, before Sarah Logan was brought in. Logan didn’t do much better, and before long found herself caught in position. Ronda Rousey locked in the Armbar, and Sarah Logan tapped almost immediately.

Natalya & Ronda Rousey bt. The Squad

Having beaten the group who have had a lot to say about her, Ronda Rousey brought Natalya back into the ring to celebrate. They stood together, with Natalya seemingly asking Ronda Rousey if she’d made her decision. Ronda made it clear that she had, but she wasn’t ready to announce it just yet...

Adding more speculation and hype to Ronda Rousey’s decision later on, the commentators eventually switched their focus to the next match. The WWE Universal Championship match between Drew McIntyre and Randy Orton, it was put over that roles were reversed this month. Having sat in a private box, watching Seth Rollins win the Royal Rumble, Drew McIntyre would now have to defend his Championship with Rollins watching over him. Before the match, Rollins was interviewed from the private box.
Seth Rollins spoke about the Universal title match, saying he would be more than happy to face either man at WrestleMania. Rollins added that he’d rather be in the ring tonight, or at least in the crowd with the WWE Universe, but management decided it would be “safer” for him to stay up here. Seth Rollins said that with WrestleMania around the corner, he doesn’t want to ruffle too many feathers, but promised that once he knew who his opponent was, he was coming for the Champion!

WWE Universal Championship

Seth Rollins’ watchful eye over the two men who could face him at WrestleMania played little part in this match, with the entrances and introductions showing how focussed the two men in the WWE Universal Championship match were. Having won the “Beat The Clock” challenge, Randy Orton kept the intensity up in this match, kicking it off by going after Drew McIntyre. Usually the man to take the front foot early in a match, the WWE Universal Champion was taken aback by Randy Orton’s approach. This allowed Randy to control the early parts of the match.

Eventually, after taking a breather on the outside, Drew McIntyre began to reverse the momentum of the contest, and used the ringpost to slow Orton down. From here, the WWE Universal Champion began to dominate proceedings. Randy Orton continued to come back at Drew McIntyre, but was kept at reach by the Champion. McIntyre then raised the intensity of his offence, and had Orton exactly where he wanted him. Feeling the end was near, Drew McIntyre looked to set up for the Claymore Kick, but had misjudged the level of damage done to Randy Orton. As a result, the challenge was able to avoid the move, sending McIntyre into the turnbuckle. When Drew came back around, Randy went for the RKO, but McIntyre escaped. Now on the back foot again, Drew McIntyre struggled with the building wave of Orton’s offence, and found himself stalked for the RKO. Randy Orton was this time the man who mistimed his lunge, and McIntyre found the strength to throw him across the ring. Orton came back at McIntyre, but the Universal Champion ducked, hitting a Big Boot as he came back at Orton.

Drew McIntyre then scraped Randy Orton off the mat, hitting him with a big Lariat to take him back down. McIntyre slowed down, and looked for the correct moment to hit the Claymore Kick. While Randy Orton had a few more attempts at coming back into the match, the Claymore Kick did eventually come. When it connected, Randy Orton was dropped in the center of the ring, and covered for the 1… 2… 3!

Drew McIntyre (c) bt. Randy Orton

After retaining his Championship, Drew McIntyre completely ignored Seth Rollins in the private box, instead focussing on his own victory. Standing tall in the ring with the WWE Universal Championship over his shoulder, McIntyre looked up to the WrestleMania sign, before leaving the ring.

Clearly an underdog going into the match, the commentators put over the comeback story of Kaitlyn, who found herself in the unlikely position as Number One Contender this close to WrestleMania. This may have been a feel good story for the woman who returned at the Mae Young Classic last year, but once the match got underway, she struggled. Despite a valiant attempt, and a solid spell where an upset looked slightly possible, Kaitlyn was eventually taken to school by Charlotte Flair. Showing herself to be a level above, Flair turned the defence in to a somewhat straightforward victory, making the challenger submit to the Figure 8.

Charlotte Flair (c) bt. Kaitlyn

Looking like she had barely had to get out of first gear, Charlotte Flair was handed the Smackdown Women’s Championship after the match. As she took in the victory, and the fact she’d be going to WrestleMania as Champion, Flair’s moment was interrupted by the music of Ronda Rousey.
When Ronda entered the ring, with a microphone, Charlotte Flair raised her Championship in the air. Having been given a deadline of tonight to reveal her decision regarding her Royal Rumble victory, Ronda Rousey addressed the Smackdown Women’s Champion.

Ronda said that when she came to the WWE, if she would have been asked to pick one person to face one on one for the Women’s Championship, she would have picked Charlotte Flair. Since then, circumstances changed and all kinds of things got in the way of them having that match. Rousey said that she looks at Charlotte Flair as a deserving Champion, and someone it would be an honour to face. Off microphone, Flair replied, saying “lets do this then”.

However, Ronda Rousey explained that over the past six months, something else has been at the forefront of her attention, and that’s Shayna Baszler. The two of them had been best friends for years before they were in the WWE, but something changed in Shayna Baszler recently. Not only did she change as a person, she changed as a competitor. When Ronda Rousey looks at Charlotte Flair, she see a Champion who deserves to represent the WWE… when she looks at Shayna Baszler she doesn’t. It is on that basis that, while she knows they will do it down the line, Ronda Rousey will not be facing Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania. “The Baddest Woman on The Planet” admitted that facing Flair was a dream match, but for now she has some personal business to deal with. Ronda added that when WrestleMania comes around, and they both leave as Women’s Champions, maybe then they can talk about finding who the best truly is.

Ronda Rousey then extended her hand to Charlotte Flair, saying “this will go down one day… I promise”. Charlotte was clearly disappointed to have her challenge rejected, but shook hands with the woman who would challenge Shayna Baszler for the Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania!

Elimination Chamber Match for the WWE Championship

Kicking off the Elimination Chamber, Daniel Bryan and The Miz were given the chance to rekindle their deep-seated rivalry, starting the first five minutes of the match off with a heated exchange. Both Superstars were happy to go at each other, with The Miz having something to prove after Bryan defeated him at SummerSlam. The competitors of course had something else in mind, going to WrestleMania as WWE Champion. A man who knows all about that, was the third entrant into the match.

Entrant #3

AJ Styles is a name that became synonymous with the WWE Championship over the last couple of years, and he joined Daniel Bryan in going after The Miz. After the two of them managed to throw The Miz out of the ring, they were left face to face. This gave the two competitors the chance to size each other up, and they had a tentative exchange as they got to grips with each other. Before the two men could really show what they were capable of, the fourth entrant was ready to be released.

Entrant #4

Coming off the best year of his career, Rusev was looking to continue the run that led to him being dubbed “America’s Greatest Import” by Corey Graves. The former Tag Team Champion wasted no time getting involved with the big hitters, going after Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles early on. As has become more evident recently, Rusev’s ability to hang with these elite Superstars has grown by the match. Tonight was no different. Of course, there was also The Miz to deal with, but when the multimedia Superstar took AJ Styles to the outside, Bryan and Rusev were able to exchange blows.

Entrant #5

Having looked to “get serious” in his quest for the WWE Championship, Kofi Kingston recently realised that having Big E and Xavier Woods by his side, his brothers in The New Day, is exactly why he is in the position he is in. This rekindled the fire inside of Kofi Kingston, whose fun-loving nature and exciting in-ring style made him the “wildcard” in the WWE Championship match. By the time he’d entered, all four Superstars were back in the ring. This allowed Kofi Kingston to make a grand entrance, climbing to the top of his pod to dive on all four of the other challengers. Kingston took himself out in the process, and led to an even playing field in the match. This wasn’t the end of his antics, as he followed The Miz to the outside of the ring, diving over the top rope and taking him out.

Kofi Kingston had started the match with a wave of momentum, but had taken a lot out of himself to do so.

Entrant #6

Samoa Joe was ready to take advantage of his opponents’ fatigue, entering the match like a kid in a candy story, picking his victim. He first turned attention to Kofi Kingston, who had got up on the outside, following his dive to take out The Miz. Taking him from behind, Samoa Joe looked to eliminate Kingston quickly, but the New Day member managed to get to the fencing that the Chamber is made up of. This didn’t cause a break, but Kofi Kingston began to climb up the Chamber wall, and Samoa Joe had no choice but to release the hold. Samoa Joe began to follow Kofi Kingston, and a short chase took them up high in the Chamber. By now, Daniel Bryan and Rusev had left the ring, with AJ Styles working on The Miz. This left the four Superstars directly below Kofi and Joe, and when a kick from Kingston sent Samoa Joe back, he crashed into the four Superstars. This was a fairly short fall, but Kofi Kingston had something else in mind.

As the five Superstars got back to their feet, Kofi Kingston climbed higher on the Chamber. Looking back, clearly with something in mind, Kofi hit his biggest “Trust Fall” of all time, taking out his fellow challengers. Samoa Joe had managed to move out of the way at the last moment, and took advantage of Kofi Kingston’s risk taking ways. Throwing Kingston back in the ring, away from the other Superstars, Samoa Joe locked a Coquina Clutch on Kofi Kingston in the middle of the ring. Having put everything into the start of the match, and the momentum he had built, Kofi Kingston didn’t have enough left in him to escape. Caught completely off his guard, Kofi Kingston was forced to nap by the WWE Champion, the first elimination of the match.

Elimination #1: Kofi Kingston

Samoa Joe then stood tall in the ring, as the first of the challengers began to surface. Rusev was the one to step to the Champion, staring him down from outside the ring. As “America’s Greatest Import” entered the ring, the commentators put over the two heavyweights who were about to go at it. The two men began to brawl, and Samoa Joe struggled to keep up with the fired up Rusev. Taking the Champion down, Rusev looked for the upset, but was unable to eliminate the Champion.

In fact, the next eliminations in the match came out of the blue, as AJ Styles returned to the ring, and Daniel Bryan worked on The Miz. When Bryan was done with him, The Miz stayed down for a long time. Not moving, attention almost completely turned away from The Miz, but this played into his hands. Coming down to the ring, Maryse clearly handed something to her husband in the Chamber. This caused an incident with the referees on the outside, and drew Daniel Bryan back towards The Miz. This proved costly, as The Miz sprayed a Pepper Spray into the eyes of his long-term rival. Of course, the blinded Daniel Bryan was now defenceless, and was hit with a Skull Crushing Finale, into the Chamber floor. Covering his nemesis, The Miz picked up a huge scalp with his first elimination.

Elimination #2: Daniel Bryan

Of course, anything goes in the Elimination Chamber, and with the rest of the field occupied, they weren’t aware of The Miz’s secret weapon. As Daniel Bryan left the Chamber, The Miz went to work on another Superstar, but a kick from Rusev sent the Pepper Spray out of his hands. Elsewhere in the ring, AJ Styles had made his way to the top of one of the Chamber Pods, and sized up Samoa Joe for a huge Phenomenal Forearm. When he connected with the move, Joe was clearly out of it, but after pushing Rusev into (but not through) the glass pod, The Miz returned to the ring. Before AJ Styles could crawl over to cover Samoa Joe, potentially eliminating him, The Miz grabbed the former Champion by the hair, and sprayed the Pepper Spray into his eyes. Once again rendering his opponent defenceless, The Miz hit a second Skull Crushing Finale, and added AJ Styles to his list of eliminations.

Elimination #3 AJ Styles

The Miz had now eliminated both AJ Styles and Daniel Bryan, and looked to pin Samoa Joe. Kicking out at two, the WWE Champion was the next in line for The Miz’s Pepper Spray, before Rusev grabbed it out of his hands from behind. Rusev threw the Pepper Spray out of the Chamber, which was still open as AJ Styles left the ring.

Rusev was able to take The Miz down, and eventually locked in the Accolade. Having made himself one of the favourites in the match, The Miz had no escape from Rusev. Try as he might, the man with two huge eliminations ultimately left empty handed, as he tapped out to “America’s Greatest Import”.

Elimination #4: The Miz

The two heavyweights remained, and Samoa Joe sprang into action. Locking in a Coquina Clutch, before Rusev had even released the Accolade, the WWE Champion looked to finish the match there and then. However, he hadn’t anticipated the strength of Rusev, who tossed him over his shoulder and down to the mat. Fired up, Rusev beat his chest, and invited Samoa Joe to come back at him. Looking to get the WWE Universe behind him, Rusev took the fight to Samoa Joe, and appeared to have his number. Taking Samoa Joe down to the mat, Rusev sized up the WWE Champion for a Machka Kick, which he connected squarely to the side of Joe’s head. Sending him back down to the mat, Rusev covered Samoa Joe for the 1… 2… KICKOUT!

At the very last second, Samoa Joe kept his WWE Championship run alive, and appeared to have been fired up by the close count. Rusev looked to stay on top of him, but Joe powered his way back to his feet. This was followed by a back and forth by the two competitors, who exchanged strikes, chops and eventually headbutts in pursuit of the gold. Rusev looked to build momentum off the ropes, but was dropped by a huge Heabutt to the chest by Samoa Joe. The WWE Champion was then back in the zone, and he closed in on victory. Once again locking in the Coquina Clutch, Joe thought he had the match won, until Rusev drove him into the ringpost. The roles were then reversed, as Rusev rolled Samoa Joe through, ending the transition by locking in the Accolade in the middle of the ring.

Samoa Joe appeared to be considering submitting, but eventually used his strength to return to his feet. Clearly struggling with Rusev’s size, he slammed him into the corner, eventually releasing the challenger’s grip. Joe then lifted Rusev onto the second rope, and stumbled forward. Rusev looked to come back at the Champion with what looked like an Axe Handle, but Joe managed to connect with a Inverted Atomic Drop to his opponent. This was essentially a low blow, but there was nothing that could be done about it. Certainly not by Rusev. Samoa Joe then placed Rusev back where he had previously been, bringing out the rarely used Muscle Buster to finish the match. Showing great strength to get Rusev up, Samoa Joe hit the move in the middle of the ring, and covered the final challenger for the 1… 2… 3!

Samoa Joe (c) wins the Elimination Chamber; STILL WWE Champion!

Having been taken to his utmost limit by Rusev, who continues to have star-making performances month after month, Samoa Joe stood tall in the ring. Clearly exhausted, Samoa Joe began to smirk as Rusev was taken out of the ring, and he was handed his WWE Championship. The commentators put over what Samoa Joe had been through, and said that anybody who could make it out of an Elimination Chamber, was more than worthy to hold the WWE Championship going into WrestleMania.

Gloating to the WWE Universe, Samoa Joe faced the hard camera, holding the WWE Championship in the air, smug as ever. Despite his issues with his General Manager, Joe would represent his brand at WrestleMania. The night wasn’t over there however, as behind the WWE Champion, something was going on in the ring. Out of nowhere, with nobody else now in the ring, the top of a blade appeared to be cutting through the canvas. The commentators noticed this long before Samoa Joe, and were clearly confused and concerned for his safety.

Cutting a circle in the corner of the ring, it looked like a scythe blade was responsible for the bizarre incident. Completely oblivious as to what was going on behind him, Samoa Joe would soon be made fully aware. Crawling out from underneath the ring, Dean Ambrose rose from the canvas.
Dressed in his street gear, Dean Ambrose posed behind his victim for a moment, before throwing the blade to one side. Sizing up the WWE Champion, Dean Ambrose’s eyes lit up when Samoa Joe began to back towards him. Grabbing Samoa Joe by the shoulder, Ambrose span Samoa Joe around, with the WWE Champion looking like he had seen a ghost from his past!

Joe didn’t have much time to react further however, as Dean Ambrose kicked him in the gut, hitting him with a Dirty Deeds in the middle of the ring! With no explanation offered, Dean Ambrose left the Elimination Chamber, as Graves, Phillips and Saxton tried to make sense of what had just happened. Ambrose looked back towards Samoa Joe, as he headed up the ramp, with the commentators putting over the fact that the WWE champion had just been through 5 other Superstars to retain his title. That WWE Championship, now draped across his body, was the only indication that Samoa Joe had been a winner of the night. As Fastlane ended, Samoa Joe was left out cold in the middle of the ring, completely motionless, following what had been one of the biggest wins of his career!
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Default Raw #1343

Live from Dunkin' Donuts Center, Providence, Rhode Island!

Raw opened with a video package, which showed still from the action of the previous night. Fastlane was in the books, and Drew McIntyre had retained the WWE Universal Championship. There had also been two major announcements on the show, as John Cena was announced as the WrestleMania opponent of Roman Reigns, and Ronda Rousey chose to challenge for the Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania. This came after Shayna Baszler successful defended the title in an Elimination Chamber match.

Hot off the heels of this decision, Ronda Rousey made her way to the ring, opening up Raw’s final stretch of shows in the build to WrestleMania.
Once she was in the ring, Ronda Rousey put over Natalya, with whom she defeated Ruby Riott & Sarah Logan the previous evening. Rousey’s focus then turned to her decision, as she reiterated last night’s confirmation that she would stay on Raw, and challenge Shayna Baszler for the Raw Women’s Championship at WrestleMania. As Ronda Rousey began to explain her decision, which she stated was in part due to her respect for Raw’s General Manager Kurt Angle, Shayna Baszler’s music hit.
The Raw Women’s Champion made her way down to the ring, looking smug as ever. The dominant Shayna Baszler, who has been undefeated since debuting on Raw, wasted no time in getting into the challenger’s face. Taking a microphone of her own, Shayna Baszler told Ronda Rousey:

”You just made the dumbest call of your entire life!”

Shayna Baszler then shoved her WrestleMania opponent, who took this as an invitation to strike back. This resulted in a huge brawl breaking out between the WrestleMania opponents, as Raw kicked off in complete chaos. The two women brawled all around the ringside area, and had to be held back by at least a dozen security guards. A huge security presence, the likes of which hadn’t been seen since a brawl between Reigns and Lesnar pre-SummerSlam, the WWE Universe got a preview of what to expect at WrestleMania. Still fired up, the two Superstars didn’t stop their attempts to get at each other, breaking free on a number of occasions. Eventually, the General Manager had to intervene.
Kurt Angle said that he loved to see this passion and hunger for the Championship from his Superstars, but they had to stop! Angle said that if they carried on, there would be no Women’s Championship match at WrestleMania. Not because of any sanctions from him, but because there would be nothing left of either of them. As security finally appeared to have things under control, the show went to the first commercial break of the night.
Returning from the break, the commentators showed footage of the opening of the show, putting over the huge brawl between Shayna Baszler and Ronda Rousey.

Out of that footage, Kurt Angle was seen in his General Manager’s office, where he spoke to Ronda Rousey.
Kurt Angle was looking to calm down an angry Ronda Rousey, who showed her respect for the GM, telling him that she understood his decision. Rousey told him that she would keep her cool tonight, but she couldn’t promise she wouldn’t take Shayna Baszler down again before WrestleMania. As Kurt Angle continued to talk to the Number One Contender, Stephanie McMahon walked into the office.
Making a rare Raw appearance, Stephanie McMahon locked eyes with Ronda Rousey. There was clearly a lot of tension between the two, which most recently bubbled over at Royal Rumble. Showing a lack of respect towards Ronda Rousey, Stephanie McMahon said to Kurt Angle “you’re lucky she didn’t jump ship last night… or you’d be out of a job!”

Stephanie was angered that Kurt Angle had allowed Dean Ambrose to make the jump to Smackdown Live, asking for answers as to what happened last night at the end of Fastlane. Kurt Angle said that he’d need to speak to Stephanie McMahon about that privately, which led to Ronda Rousey leaving the office.
Moving on from that, the commentators promoted the Main Event of Raw, which would feature Batista’s first match in the WWE in over 4 years. Dave was shown arriving at the building earlier today, ready for his match with Jason Jordan tonight.

WWE Intercontinental Championship

Talking to the WWE Universe before the match, Elias complained about the fact that he’d have to “perform” for a Raw crowd, rather than last night at Fastlane. But Elias wasn’t going to dwell on that, instead focussing on the fact that he’d be going into WrestleMania as the WWE Intercontinental Champion. He reminded the WWE Universe that he eliminated Rey Mysterio from the Royal Rumble, and took him to the limit in the Beat The Clock challenge. Tonight wasn’t the time for a song from Elias, as he focussed on taking his first Championship in the WWE.

When the match got underway, Rey Mysterio was too quick for Elias, and started well in the match. While Elias eventually took control, overpowering the Intercontinental Champion, he couldn’t get the job done. This didn’t take away from what was an impressive performance against a veteran Superstar, but it did end with a 6-1-9 from Rey Mysterio, which secured the successful title defence.

Rey Mysterio (c) bt. Elias

Rey Mysterio celebrated with his Championship after the match, oblivious to the bitter Elias surfacing behind him. Heading to the outside to get his Guitar, Elias returned to the ring, swinging at Rey Mysterio. His night going from bad to worse, Elias missed his mark, as Rey Mysterio ducked out of the way. The force of the swing caused Elias to slam the Guitar into the canvas, destroying it on impact.

Having avoided that fate, Rey Mysterio left the ring, laughing at the furious Elias, and celebrating with the Intercontinental Championship!

Returning from the break, a recap of the events of Raw thus far was followed by an interview with “The Liv Squad”. This was introduced after the commentators promoted a match between Alexa Bliss and Liv Morgan, up next.
Putting herself over as “The Real Goddess of Monday Night Raw”, Liv Morgan did all of the group’s talking during the interview, saying that Ruby & Sarah had her back tonight. Morgan made it clear that she felt it was the two other women’s job was to serve her, and as she ran down Alexa Bliss, it was clear Ruby Riott wasn’t having any of it. Sarah Logan tried to calm Ruby down, but eventually she had to say something.

Cutting Liv Morgan off mid-flow, Ruby Riott said “enough!”, having reached her breaking point. Riott said that she couldn’t listen to this anymore, adding that if Liv Morgan is as great as she thinks, she can take Alexa Bliss down all by herself tonight. Riott then stormed off, expecting Sarah Logan to follow. Stuck in between a rock and a hard place, Logan was torn as to what to do. Shocked by what she had seen, Liv Morgan was clearly fearful of going it alone, the relief showing on her face when Sarah Logan decided to stay by her friend’s side.
The continued absence of Brock Lesnar, who has repeatedly ignored the challenges of Braun Strowman since the beginning of the year, was the next subject of conversation for the commentary team. Having lost the title to Braun Strowman at SummerSlam, Brock Lesnar hasn’t been seen since the night after the event. Tonight however, WWE cameras were scheduled to return to the home residence of the “Beast Incarnate”, looking to speak to the former Superstar about his unwillingness to return to the ring. This would be shown later, and was promoted as a huge moment, that would likely either open the door for a return from Brock Lesnar, or kill dead any speculation that he was ready to come back to the WWE.
Following that discussion, it was time for an interview with Drake Maverick, who was beaten by Braun Strowman the previous evening. As the show went to a commercial break, Maverick was seen being attended to by a member of the production crew. Drake Maverick was clearly in a lot of pain, as the microphone was fitted for the segment.
Returning from the break, Drake Maverick had notes in front of him, but remained focus on the camera. Issuing a statement about the one sided beating he was on the wrong end of at Fastlane, Drake Maverick claimed that such a match should have never been made by Kurt Angle, nor ratified by the WWE. Maverick spoke of his disappointment in the people who were supposed to be there to protect him, and of an announcement he had been “forced to make”. Ending his statement, Drake Maverick looked directly into the camera, with a stern look on his face:

“It is with great regret, that as of the 4th of April 2019… I retire from in ring competition!”

Making the announcement just 24 hours after his first match in the WWE, Drake’s statement confused the commentary team, with only Corey Graves taking the now retired Superstar seriously.

The second match of the night was a personal one, with Alexa Bliss and Liv Morgan fighting over who the “Real Goddess” of Monday nights was. Before the match, stemming from their issues earlier, Ruby Riott was absent, while Sarah Logan joined Liv Morgan at ringside. Morgan said that she didn’t need anybody to beat Alexa Bliss, and she’d prove it next.

Liv Morgan’s confidence looked to be well placed early on, after a distraction from Logan allowed her to take advantage of Alexa Bliss. However, the original “Goddess” refused to stay down, and came back into the match. Eventually, Alexa Bliss proved herself to still be a level above Morgan, knocking Logan off the apron, before hitting a DDT for the win.

Alexa Bliss bt. Liv Morgan

Having been followed around by The Liv Squad for the last few months, Alexa Bliss stood tall having defeated Liv Morgan. With Ruby Riott nowhere to be seen, Liv Morgan’s quest to prove herself may have come at the cost of, not only a defeat, but losing one of her best friends.

WWE Raw - March 4th 2019 - Live on USA Network!

Returning to Raw for the second hour of the show, the commentators spoke hurriedly, explaining that the WWE cameras had been at Brock Lesnar’s residence, where the following incident took place. They warned that the footage may be distressing to some viewers.

The crew were led by Mike Rome, who would serve as the interviewer, should they be able to get a word with Brock Lesnar.
Almost as soon as the crew reached the gates, a number of security guards were on the scene. Asking for identification, and showing great hostility to the cameras, the guards had clearly been given the heads up regarding the visit. Mike Rome explained that they were there to try and get comment from Brock Lesnar, after what happened last week, when Braun Strowman trespassed on Lesnar’s land, and tipped over a tractor.

The camera crew were desperate for a scoop, and asked if they could speak to Brock Lesnar. The security guards explained that Lesnar’s wasn’t home, and wouldn’t be speaking to the WWE cameras. As they said that, a truck pulled up at the gates, and Brock Lesnar was in it, being drove by somebody else.
Security yelled at the camera crew to get out of the way, but they still attempted to get to Brock, looking to speak to him. Having been silent since his defeat to Braun Strowman at SummerSlam, Brock wanted nothing to do with the camera. However, when he was pressed, an angry Brock Lesnar stepped out of the vehicle, holding a Shotgun in his hands!
Brock Lesnar had been out hunting, and was furious to have his personal life interfered with by the WWE crew. Although he didn’t threaten to use the gun on the crew, he made his displeasure at their presence very clear:

”You’d better get the [BLEEP] off my [BLEEP]ing land right now!”

The sight of Brock Lesnar, with a shotgun in his hand, clearly had the desired effect, as the crew jumped back into their own vehicle and got away from the area as quickly as they could. While they hadn’t got much word from Brock Lesnar, the former WWE Superstar had made one thing clear… he wanted nothing to do with the WWE!
Following that incident, the commentators assured viewers that the WWE crew had vacated the scene, and were all safely on their way back to the United States. The next segment took place in the office of Kurt Angle.

The Raw General Manager was on the phone, speaking to somebody about what had just happened. Once again confirming the safety of the crew, Kurt was relieved to have spoke to Mike Rome, who he told to get home safely. As he hung up the phone, Jason Jordan walked into the office.
Jason Jordan said that Kurt Angle has no control over Raw, laughing at the General Manager. Jordan added that he knows that Kurt was always more suited to being in the ring, rather than using his brain, but now he can’t even do that. Jordan then mocked Kurt, telling him that at least his son could continue the legacy, by beating Batista in the Main Event. Kurt Angle didn’t see much chance of that happening, but that didn’t stop Jordan rubbing in the fact that he could no longer compete. As this exchange continued, Shayna Baszler angrily stormed into the office.
The Raw Women’s Champion was in an awful mood, and made it clear to Kurt Angle that she wanted to get her hands on Ronda Rousey. She called Rousey a bitch, saying that when she next sees her, Ronda is getting what’s coming to her. Kurt Angle looked to appease Shayna slightly, telling her that she was in action later in the night, and would be facing Mickie James. He hoped that would keep her competitive spirit occupied, because he needed Ronda and Shayna to be 100% going into WrestleMania!
Moving along, the commentators spoke over a series of stills from the previous evening, where Drew McIntyre’s victory over Randy Orton, in his final Universal Championship defence before WrestleMania, was recapped.

Following on from that, Seth Rollins made his way to the ring, looking to make his first statement since it was confirmed that he would face Drew McIntyre, for the WWE Universal title at WrestleMania.
Seth Rollins talked about the last 12 months, looking back at the Elimination Chamber match he participated in last year. He said that back then, he was scraping and clawing against 6 other Superstars, looking for the chance to face Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania. This year, he sat back and watched Drew McIntyre and Randy Orton battle it out, knowing the winner would face him. Rollins said he’d always rather be in the ring than watching from the sidelines, but if there was any time to have your feet up, it’s when you know you’re heading into a Main Event match at WrestleMania!

Rollins put over “the best year of his career”, saying that from an in-ring perspective, he’d never been better. From becoming the 65 minute man on Monday Night Raw, to winning the Royal Rumble in January, Seth Rollins has cemented his place as “The Man” once again. This was the comment that drew his WrestleMania opponent out from the back.
Drew McIntyre joined Seth Rollins in the ring, as the Number One Contender told him he was “a little rude, but I guess you can join the party” adding, “I wasn’t quite finished, but…”. McIntyre cut him off, saying “you were”.

Drew McIntyre then spoke over Seth Rollins, telling him that he was still the Universal Champion, and that means that he is the only “Man” on this show. He proved that to Randy Orton last night, and he will prove it to Seth Rollins at WrestleMania. Until then, as far as Drew is concerned, this is a case of “man against boy”, and there will be only one winner. Seth Rollins of course disagreed, but wouldn’t let the Champion get under his skin. Seth Rollins instead took a look at the Universal Champion, saying that it will be so sweet when he takes the Championship from Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania. He said that it would probably even top the “Heist of the Century”, when he became WWE Champion for the first time four years ago.

This caused the Champion to step up to the challenger, and when Rollins stepped up too, a switch flicked. The two men were now hot, and began exchanging words off microphone. As it appeared they were ready to come to blows, both taking off their t-shirts to fight, they were interrupted by a surprising development.
Making his way down to the ring, Braun Strowman - who has had nothing to do with either man recently - came between them. Strowman said that McIntyre and Rollins were free to take this to the back, or to the street, and fight it out, but they needed to get out of the ring. Strowman said that he would be in action up next, and there was no way he was going to let these two delay it any longer.

Returning from the break, Braun Strowman was still in the ring, as his opponents for the evening made their entrance. After the retirement of Drake Maverick earlier in the night, the former Interim General Manager of Raw was nowhere to be seen. However, following the events of Fastlane, Braun Strowman demanded to get his hands of Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley. He saw no reason why he couldn’t face them both at the same time. Corbin & Rawley were on board with these, feeling it would represent their best opportunity at getting one over on Braun Strowman.

Discussion during the match followed the events of earlier, where footage showed Brock Lesnar - who had a shotgun in his hand - threatening a WWE camera crew. The crew made it away from the Lesnar residence safety, but were said to be shook up by the incident. In the ring, Corbin and Rawley managed to fair better than they would have had they faced Braun Strowman alone, but in the end served as more evidence to the superhuman ability of Strowman. Beating down both men, before hitting them with a Double Running Powerslam, Braun Strowman picked up an impressive victory in convincing style.

Braun Strowman bt. Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley

As Baron Corbin and Mojo Rawley rolled out of the ring, Braun Strowman grabbed a microphone from ringside. Having been given a bit of a challenge in a handicap match, Braun Strowman took a moment to compose himself. After that, Strowman was straight on the offensive, firing shots at Brock Lesnar. Throwing some general insults at Brock Lesnar, Strowman had one particular point he wanted to make. He said that Brock Lesnar carrying a gun around, and trying to intimidate people, proves what he has been saying for the last 3 months. Braun explained that Brock Lesnar used to fight with his hands, and what he saw tonight made him realise something. Brock Lesnar wasn’t staying away from the WWE because he was retired, nor because he didn’t like the way things went down at SummerSlam. Instead Strowman believed he was staying away because:

”It looks like Brock Lesnar, isn’t ready… to GET THESE HANDS!”

Braun Strowman then dropped the microphone he was holding, and left the ring. The commentators suggested that Brock Lesnar’s actions tonight appeared to put a line under a potential return for the former WWE Universal Champion, adding that Strowman’s words also implied that he was ready to move on from his pursuit of the Beast Incarnate.

When Raw returned from the break, a recap of what had happened over the last 30 minutes was shown. This allowed viewers to catch up on the incident at the residence of Brock Lesnar, as well as Braun Strowman’s words about the seemingly retired Superstar. This was followed by promotion of an appearance from The Bella Twins later in the night, which would see them discuss the future of the Women’s Tag Team Championships.
Going from one set of Tag Team Champions to the other, the Number One Contenders to the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships were seen in the office of Kurt Angle.
Kevin & Sami were in high spirits, having earned the right to face The Usos at WrestleMania last night. Kevin Owens told Kurt Angle that they were proud to represent Raw at WrestleMania, and would do everything in their power to bring the titles back to the brand. Zayn added that at WrestleMania, they’re going to give the WWE Universe something that they have never seen before! As Kurt responded to the Number One Contenders, who's recent change of attitude has caught him off guard, The Authors of Pain entered the room.
Akam & Rezar were ready to complain about what happened the previous evening, but Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn stepped up to them. Kurt Angle told all four men to step down, but said that he was happy The Authors of Pain had dropped by. The General Manager then told Akam & Rezar that they’d be banned from ringside in the Main Event, meaning Jason Jordan would have to face the challenge of Dave Batista all by himself! The AOP weren’t happy about Kurt’s decision, and stormed out of the office.

Ahead of this match, footage was shown of the intense brawl between Ronda Rousey and Shayna Baszler earlier in the night. The aggression shown at that point, resulted in the match being made. Clearly Shayna Baszler was still fired up from the wild brawl, and took out her energy on the former Women’s Champion, Mickie James. While the veteran managed some offence in the match, Baszler was a level above her in this match, eventually picking up a victory with a Rear Naked Choke.

Shayna Baszler bt. Mickie James

Picking up yet another victory on Raw, Shayna Baszler maintained her unbeaten record, and stood tall in the ring. Raising the Championship in the air, it was put over that the Raw Women’s title would be defended at WrestleMania, as the Royal Rumble winner Ronda Rousey challenges Shayna Baszler!
Cutting away from the shot of Shayna Baszler holding the Raw Women’s Championship, Ronda Rousey was interviewed in the back, asked about what she had just seen.
Ronda Rousey said that everybody knows how good Shayna Baszler is in the ring, but that’s not what WrestleMania is about. Rousey said that the only reason she didn’t go back out and kick Baszler’s ass, is that she respects Kurt Angle too much to go back on her word. She will save that beating for WrestleMania, when she gets to kill two birds with one stone. Not only will she beat Shayna Baszler… she will also become the new Raw Women’s Champion!

Returning for the final part of Raw’s second hour, John Cena made his return to the show. Coming down to the ring, John Cena garnered his usual reaction from the WWE Universe, and had a smile on his face as he took in the reception.
Once in the ring, John Cena enjoyed his usual banter with the WWE Universe, playing on their reaction to him wherever he could. He then got down to business. Cena put over his return to the WWE, saying that there is no better time to return to the ring than WrestleMania season. John Cena talked about his Royal Rumble performance, as well as his impressive victories at SummerSlam and Survivor Series in the last year. He called his defeat to The Undertaker at last year’s WrestleMania a low point in his career, but said that he has come back stronger than ever since then.

John Cena would argue that his last few performances have proved why “that guy up in the booth” (Michael Cole) called him “The Greatest Champion in WWE history”. Whether people agree with that or not, John sees somebody else in the WWE, who likes to see themselves as “The Guy”, and Cena admits he doesn’t like it. Cena said he wasn’t going to let the next generation pass him by, and he doesn’t intend to do that with Roman Reigns. Looking back at the last 4 WrestleMania Main Event matches, and the fact Roman Reigns has been in them all, John Cena says there is a pattern emerging. But if Roman Reigns wanted to make it 5 in a row, there was only one man in the WWE that he could do that with… John Cena!

Seemingly confirming that his match with Roman Reigns would be the Main Event of WrestleMania, John Cena added that when he spoke to Mr. McMahon last night, the Chairman of the WWE told him that there would be an announcement, next week, that would take the match to the next level. John Cena said that he had no idea what the announcement would be, but said he was ready for whatever was in store. As he said this, the music of Roman Reigns began to play.
Making his way down to the ring, Roman Reigns was just as coy as he’d been last night, when the match was announced. He had no response to John Cena, instead telling him “I get it done in the ring… watch and learn!”
WWE Raw - March 4th 2019 - Live on USA Network!

Returning for the third hour of Raw, the brief interaction between John Cena and Roman Reigns was replayed, before the commentators promoted a huge announcement next week on Raw. They said that Mr. McMahon would once again appear, and would personally deliver the WrestleMania announcement to the WWE Universe. While they weren’t sure what that would entail, they did know what was next, as Roman Reigns was ready for singles action.

As soon as the match began, it was clear that Roman Reigns had not let himself become distracted by what had happened the previous night, as he put his entire focus into the match in front of him. Because of this, the match was fairly comfortable for “The Big Dog”, who was barely troubled by Robert Roode. While the presence of The Revival at ringside should have given “The Glorious One” an edge, it didn’t, and Roman Reigns picked up the win with a Spear.

Roman Reigns bt. Robert Roode

Reigns stood tall after the match, as the commentators once again put over the announcement that Mr. McMahon would personally deliver, next week on Raw!

Returning from the commercial break, Dave Batista was interviewed coming out of his locker room, dressed in his ring gear.
Appearing like this for the first time in over 4 years, Batista said that he was feeling better than ever. He mentioned that he may be 50 years old now, but age is just a number. When it came down to being in the ring, he was ready to prove that. As for his opponent, he called Jason Jordan the biggest jackass he’d come across since his return to the WWE, saying there was nobody he’d rather get the chance to beat the crap out of, than him.
Following talk about the Main Event, discussion once again returned to the “Brock Lesnar incident” earlier in the night, where WWE cameras showed up at his home residence. Getting out of his truck, having been out hunting, Brock Lesnar had a shotgun in his hand as he released an expletive laden rant towards the crew.

After cutting a promo before the match, which somewhat pandered to the WWE Universe, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn took the chance to “sharpen their sword”, before the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships match at WrestleMania. What followed was a competitive contest, with both teams laying it all out for victory. As it happened, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn had a little more in the tank than their opponents, and Kevin Owens was able to pin Akira Tozawa with a Pop-Up Powerbomb.

Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn bt. Akira & Apollo

Following the match, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn offered a handshake to Akira & Apollo. The Titus Worldwide members accepted the handshake, following an impressive performance against the Number One Contenders.

Back from the break, it was time for the entrance of The Bella Twins. Making their way to the ring with the Women’s Tag Team Championships over their shoulders, The Bella Twins were ready to address their WrestleMania plans.
Brie & Nikki put over their victory at Royal Rumble, where they won the titles, and talked about what they were looking for in terms of a WrestleMania match. They said that there were plenty of talented Superstars in the WWE, but none could match them when it came to team work and understanding. Nikki Bella then announced that both she and Brie would be in action next week, each taking on singles matches. Nikki Bella would compete on Raw, against an opponent of Kurt Angle’s choosing, while Smackdown Live GM, Paige, would chose the person to face Brie the following night.
Heading to the back, Stephanie McMahon was seen in the office, alongside the Raw General Manager.
The two decision makers of the show discussed the Main Event, which Kurt Angle said was going to be a bloodbath. Stephanie McMahon didn’t join in with Kurt’s excitement, but that didn’t stop him. He said that he’d hate to be on the wrong side of Batista, adding “speaking of which… how is Hunter?” Stephanie McMahon’s look said it all, as Kurt continued to laugh. Stephanie walked away from the General Manager, leaving him to focus on watching the show’s Main Event. It was clear that Stephanie McMahon was in a rotten mood.

The Main Event of Raw had been promoted heavily throughout the night, and Batista looked ready to go at Jason Jordan from the opening bell. Jason had other ideas however, and stalled the start of the match. The arrogant Superstar wasn’t afraid of Batista, and showed this when he returned to the ring. Jordan expected that he would simply be able to out wrestle Batista, but this wasn’t the case. Despite not having competed in several years, Dave had clearly maintained his workout regime, and overpowered Jordan as he attempted a number of takedowns. Realising his strategy had failed, Jordan took more time on the outside.

Eventually, his call seemed to be to leave the match all together, but this turned out to be a method to bait Batista in. Working well, Jason Jordan managed to throw Batista into the guardrail, and enjoy his only dominant spell of the match. Soon, Dave Batista was back on top, having fought back against the son of Kurt Angle. Batista remained in control once he took charge, and cycled through his signature moves, proving he “still had it”. This sequence ended with a Batista Bomb, marking the finish of a fairly one sided match. Covering Jason Jordan, Dave Batista had managed a successful return to the WWE ring.

Dave Batista bt. Jason Jordan

Having his hand raised after the match, a smile spread across the face of the former World Champion. As Dave took in the reception to his victory, the commentators put over the impressive performance. They particularly noted the fact that Batista produced the performance after more than four years out of action. With “The Animal” standing tall in the ring, his music cut off, with Stephanie McMahon’s playing instead. Making her way down the ramp, Stephanie had her eyes on Batista.
Stephanie McMahon gave little away with her expression, but took a microphone as she entered the ring. The Commissioner of Raw cracked a smile as she entered the ring, but Batista clearly didn’t trust her. Stephanie said that her husband wasn’t here tonight, but she knows for a fact that he considers what happened the night Dave returned to the WWE to be “water under the bridge”. Stephanie said that Dave wouldn’t have to worry about Triple H coming back for revenge, or stacking the odds against him, because her husband is a very forgiving and understanding man. He wouldn’t let personal feelings affect business. Batista seemed to loosen up over this, having expected Stephanie to issue some sort of punishment over the incident last month.

However, Stephanie McMahon followed up this statement, saying:

”My husband may be a forgiving boss… but I’m not!”

Stephanie then proved this to the winner of the Main Event, slapping him across the face. Dave was clearly furious about this, and held his face as Stephanie McMahon left the ring. Corey Graves suggested that Stephanie McMahon had done the right thing, but Michael Cole didn’t agree. What was clear however, was the fact that the issues between Batista, Stephanie McMahon and her husband weren’t over, and were unlikely to be resolved without resorting to physical violence between Triple H and his former Evolution teammate!

Quick Result
Rey Mysterio (c) bt. Elias [Intercontinental Championship]
Alexa Bliss bt. Liv Morgan

Braun Strowman bt. Baron Corbin & Mojo Rawley
Shayna Baszler bt. Mickie James

Roman Reigns bt. Robert Roode
Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn bt. Apollo & Akira
Dave Batista bt. Jason Jordan
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Default This Week in WWE!

This Week on…

Following Fastlane, a recap was played of the events of the show, where Dean Ambrose shocked the WWE Universe, appearing from under the ring to attack Samoa Joe. The WWE Champion was caught completely off guard by Raw’s Dean Ambrose, who had appeared after Joe’s victory in the Elimination Chamber.
Samoa Joe was understandably furious about what had happened to him, and gave Paige until the end of the night to give him a good explanation as to why that was allowed to happen. Paige promised that everything would be explained to Samoa Joe, come the end of the night. These answers did eventually come, but not in the way Samoa Joe had expected. Instead of Paige explaining what had happened, Dean Ambrose once again showed up, attacking Samoa Joe from behind.
Having seemingly made the jump from Raw to Smackdown, Dean Ambrose was revealed as the WrestleMania opponent of the WWE Champion, Samoa Joe!
Charlotte Flair was interviewed, following Ronda Rousey’s rejection of her WrestleMania challenge.
Charlotte was asked where she planned on going from this point forward, but was angered by the lack of reference to her victory at Fastlane. Flair said that the Smackdown Women’s Championship was bigger than Ronda Rousey, and suggested the interviewer should be asking her about that instead.
Shinsuke Nakamura defended the United States Championship against Karl Anderson, who had been caught up in an incident between the Champion and Luke Gallows the previous week. Shinsuke Nakamura picked up the victory. Following the match, Nakamura talked about his WrestleMania plans, dragging out it out for as long as he could before issuing his challenge to… The UNDERTAKER!
Like Kofi Kingston earlier in the night, Daniel Bryan spoke of his disappointment following defeat at Fastlane. Bryan was cut off by The Miz, who boasted about pinning Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles in one night.
The Miz claimed that if it wasn’t for Rusev, he would be the WWE Champion going into WrestleMania. AJ Styles also made his way down to the ring shortly after this, feeling like The Miz had gone to far with his sly digs.
This didn’t stop The Miz, who immediately regretted his actions, as it became clear he’d gone too far. But The Miz couldn’t take his words back, and when AJ Styles and Daniel Bryan surrounded him in the ring, it ended badly for the arrogant Superstar. Taken out by both AJ Styles and Daniel Bryan, The Miz was left out cold on the canvas, as the two Smackdown fan favourites turned their attention to each other...
Also on Smackdown Live:
  • The show kicked off with a match between Rusev and Cesaro, which “America’s Greatest Import” won. Rusev’s impressive Elimination Chamber performance was put over during the match.
  • Jeff Hardy put over The Usos as the greatest tag team in the world, after The Hardy Boyz were defeated by them at Fastlane. This moment was overshadowed however, when Sanity came to the ring and began to brawl with all three men. While Jeff Hardy & The Usos were able to fight off Eric Young’s group, Sanity made it clear they wanted the WWE Men’s Tag Team Championships!
  • Bayley picked up a victory over Carmella.
  • Tamina & Sonya Deville’s recent success was profiled, as their new attitude was put down as the main reason behind their upturn in fortunes.

This Week on…

Episode #9: The Episode with… The Battlebowl (Part 2)!
  • James Storm & Zack Ryder beat Lince Dorado & Chad 2 Badd, advancing to the Battlebowl.
  • Dustin Rhodes & Tony Nese put their differences aside, advancing following a victory over Big Cass & Curt Hawkins. During the match, Big Cass turned on his partner, with suggestion made by Tony Schiavone that he may have joined the nWo! Cass was interviewed after the match, asked about why he cost himself the chance to take part in the Battlebowl. This hadn’t occurred to Cass, who instantly regretted his decision.
  • Dustin Rhodes won the Battlebowl, but was informed by TJ P of a new ruling made earlier in the day. While this wasn’t confirmed by an official, the show ended in confusion, as TJ P claimed that throwing somebody over the top rope was now illegal, and by being eliminated first, TJ P was victorious. Of course this didn’t make any sense, but TJ P clearly didn’t care.

16 Man Tournament - Exclusively on the WWE Network!

Bob Holly announced that he had been forced to pull out of the Heavyweight Classic, and would be replaced by WWE legend… Billy Gunn!

Other Notes:
  • Following the events of Fastlane, it was reported that the WrestleMania card was now officially finalised. It was said that some doubt still remained, right up until the day of Fastlane. One alternate plan would have seen Alexa Bliss become the Raw Women’s Champion, setting up Ronda Rousey to face Charlotte Flair at WrestleMania. On the Raw side, Alexa Bliss would have defended against Shayna Baszler.
  • Lacey Lane signed with NXT, while Kaitlyn extended her initial short term deal, and would remain with the company.
  • Numerous sources within WWE have suggested that Sin Cara requested his release from the company after this week’s Smackdown Live. It is as yet unknown as to whether the company will grant the request.
  • With Jeff Cobb already signed to the company, it is believed deals are being worked on for several other members of the Heavyweight Classic roster. Some within the company have pushed for Punishment Martinez to be signed, with WALTER and Brody King also expected to be in discussions with the company.

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Default Raw #1344

Live from FedExForum, Memphis, Tennessee!

Last week on Raw, Dave Batista returned to the ring, defeating Jason Jordan in his first match in 4 and a half years. The show also saw an incident involving Brock Lesnar, after a WWE camera crew turned up at his home residence. Holding a shotgun, as he exploded in an expletive laden rant, Brock Lesnar demanded that the Mike Rome led camera crew left his land.

This was the topic of conversation as the show began, with Kurt Angle seen standing in the ring as the commentators introduced the episode. Michael Cole said that Kurt Angle was there to deliver a statement, speaking on behalf of the WWE.
Kurt Angle read from a prepared statement, apologising to anybody who was offended or disturbed by what aired on the show last week. Angle once again reiterated the safety of the crew involved, but admitted that the reporter and his colleagues had been left shaken up by the incident. Kurt said that Mike Rome has the full support of the entire WWE family, and hoped that he would feel safe enough to return to work soon. Kurt said that as far as Brock Lesnar was concerned, there was little they could do. The former Universal Champion was no longer under contract with the WWE, and as such no action would be taken of their behalf. Kurt Angle once again apologised, and asked that a line be drawn under what had happened. Looking to move this along, Drew McIntyre interrupted the General Manager, coming down to the ring.
The Universal Champion didn’t want to hear about somebody who doesn’t even work here anymore, saying that the GM of Raw should be focussed on him. Especially so close to WrestleMania! McIntyre asked Angle if he’d had any time this week to focus on his Champion, saying that it was about time he was showed the respect he deserved.

Kurt Angle said he’d been thinking a lot about Drew McIntyre, especially the challenge he faces to keep hold of that title against Seth Rollins at WrestleMania. But there is four weeks until that match, and because of that, both men will be in action tonight! Seth Rollins will compete later in the evening, but since Drew is out now, his match would open the show!

One of Drew McIntyre’s biggest rivals since he returned to the WWE, Finn Balor is the only Superstar other than Seth Rollins to have pinned McIntyre in that time. Having been confirmed to be in action later in the night, Seth Rollins found time to join commentary for the match.

Presenting a tough challenge for the WWE Universal Champion, Finn Balor came close to a victory on a number of occasions during the match. However, when it came down to it, Drew McIntyre had a little more in the tank, beating Finn Balor following a Claymore Kick!

Drew McIntyre bt. Finn Balor

Following the match, Seth Rollins left the commentary position, and looked ready to make his way down the ramp.
As Seth Rollins made a beeline for the ring, Drew McIntyre stood over Finn Balor, who was still out from the Claymore Kick. Rollins looked ready to confront McIntyre, but was stopped in his tracks as Kurt Angle returned from the back.
Kurt Angle told Seth Rollins to stay where he was, reminding him that he was in action later in the evening. If Seth Rollins wanted something to get excited about, Kurt Angle was more than happy to give him it, informing him that his opponent for later in the evening would be Rey Mysterio… in a first time even match up!

Returning from the break, footage was shown from during the commercials. As Kurt Angle turned to leave the stage, he was met by a referee, who informed him of something. The commentators had since confirmed that Kurt Angle was being informed by the official of an incident in the back, which had seen Randy Orton attacked from behind. Heading over to the back, Kurt Angle and Finn Balor were shown arriving at the scene.

The two of them were clearly concerned, but were relieved to see Randy Orton conscious. As Randy Orton was carried out of the area by medical personnel, Kurt Angle was once again approached. Being led towards CCTV footage of the attack, Finn Balor was left isolated in the back. This wouldn’t have been an issue, had Golden Alpha not been lurking.
Hurt from his match that had just ended, Finn Balor was even less equipped to deal with the 3-on-1. Making quick work of Balor, the Jason Jordan led group were aggressively taking out their frustrations on the next person they came across. Having been defeated by Dave Batista last week, Jason Jordan directed the assault, that left Finn Balor down and out. Golden Alpha then walked away, happy with what they had done to the former Universal Champion.
Out of that, the commentators looked back at the source of Jason Jordan’s frustration, replaying footage of Dave Batista’s convincing victory over him last week. The commentators then confirmed that Batista would address what happened after his successful return to the ring, when Stephanie McMahon came down to the ring and slapped him across the face.
Next up, “ Exclusive” footage was shown, of something that happened at Smackdown Live last week.
While not airing on the show, The Bella Twins spoke to the Smackdown Women’s Locker Room last week, and expressed their desire to see a tag team step up to face them at WrestleMania. Becky Lynch was offended by this, and stormed out of the locker room. Soon, she was found confronting the General Manager of Smackdown.
Becky Lynch demanded that she be the one to face Brie Bella the following week, and was given the opportunity by Paige. Nikki Bella would also be in action of course, and it was revealed that she would face Ruby Riott up next…
Making their way to the ring before the match, The Squad presented a united front, cutting a promo regarding their intention to become the Number One Contenders to the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions.
Liv Morgan took the lead, as she often has recently, saying that she and Ruby would be more than willing to knock The Bella Twins off their perch at WrestleMania. Ruby Riott agreed with the sentiment, but said that if she was to beat Nikki, it wouldn’t be Liv Morgan who would be choosing who she would team with at WrestleMania. Liv Morgan didn’t like this, but Sarah Logan attempted to laugh it off. Regardless, there was no time to go into it further, as The Bellas’ music began to play.

Ruby Riott looked to take the match to Nikki Bella early on, and was desperate to take the scalp of one of the biggest names in the division. This resulted in a solid start from Riott, who did well before the match began breaking down. In one way or another, all three women at ringside eventually became involved, making the referee’s job much harder. When the contest did eventually settle down, Nikki Bella was able to take advantage, and hit the Rack Attack 2.0, picking up the victory.

Nikki Bella bt. Ruby Riott

Following the match, The Bella Twins posed with the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships, before heading up the ramp. As they left, Liv Morgan entered the ring with Sarah Logan.
Morgan was disappointed with the defeat, but helped Ruby Riott to her feet. The three women looked to have each other’s backs, before Liv Morgan’s demeanour changed. Morgan took a microphone from ringside, and cruelly told Ruby “that’s why we’re called The Liv Squad… you’re a loser!”

Ruby Riott was understandably taken back by this, but stepped to Liv Morgan in response. Sarah Logan came between them, and told Liv Morgan to leave the ring. Sarah Logan then held Ruby Riott back, and went to leave herself. However, as Ruby Riott lowered her defences, Logan turned back and hit her with a Headbutt. Liv Morgan returned to the ring, helping Sarah Logan lay into the former leader of The Riott Squad. The two women left Ruby Riott down and out in the ring, leaving together - hand in hand.

The commentators were shocked by what appeared to be the official break-up of The Squad, suggesting that Ruby Riott wouldn’t take Liv & Logan’s betrayal lightly!

WWE Raw - March 11th 2019 - Live on USA Network!

Returning to the second hour, the commentators turned their attention back to events from last week, this time looking at the moment that Stephanie McMahon slapped Dave Batista in the face. The incident happened after Batista’s successful return to a WWE ring. Despite that victory, Batista was in a fowl mood.

Shortly after this discussion, and the relaying of said footage, the music of Batista hit. Making his way down to the ring, Dave clearly had something to get off his chest.
Batista addressed the slap from last week, but said that he wasn’t out to take issue with Stephanie McMahon. He knew what she was like before he came back, and he expected nothing less from her. Instead, Batista wants to speak to Triple H. Because while Stephanie McMahon had the guts to come out and face him, he can’t say the same for Hunter. Ever since he turned down the handshake, Triple H has been in hiding. Instead of sulking with his tail between his legs, he wants Triple H to come out so they can discuss Batista’s issues man to man. Instead of Triple H, the call out was answered by Stephanie McMahon.
Batista expected another slap, but instead Stephanie McMahon took a different approaching. Speaking down to Batista, she said that “Superstars” don’t get to dictate what happens in the WWE. Especially when it comes to company executives. That’s what she felt Batista needed to learn. Just like the rest of the locker room, he seems to have forgotten who is in charge here. Kurt Angle may be the General Manager, but she and her husband run the brand. What that means is simple, Batista doesn’t tell them what to do, but having signed a lucrative contract, he’d better believe he has to do what she tells him. For that reason, she insisted there would be no more discussion of her husband, and Batista would instead focus on next week. If he truly wants to be a WWE Superstar again, then Batista will have to find a partner for a match next week, where he will face Golden Alpha’s Authors of Pain. Batista was more than happy to do this, and told Stephanie McMahon that he’s sure plenty of his old friends would be happy to team with him next week.
Returning from the break, the commentators promoted Batista’s match next week, before the show headed to the office of the General Manager. Kurt Angle was once again stressed out, concerned about the state of his roster following attacks to Finn Balor and Randy Orton. Looking to “advise” Kurt Angle, Drake Maverick approached the GM.
Drake Maverick suggested that Kurt Angle swallowed his pride, and apologised to his son. Maverick continued to say that Jason Jordan had a legitimate beef with his father, but was cut off by Kurt Angle. Angle said that Drake Maverick retired last week, after one match in the WWE, but that doesn’t mean he gets to take his old job back. Angle reminded Maverick that he stepped down from his “advisory role” when he set up that ridiculous “Anti-Braun Coalition”, and as far as Kurt was concerned, Drake no longer worked for Raw…

Standing up to Bobby Lashley, in response to his treatment of No Way Jose and the rest of Titus Worldwide, Akira Tozawa looked to pick up a huge upset against Lashley. While his speed and tenacity allowed him to do better than expected in the match, he was eventually overpowered by Lashley. Showing disrespect to Apollo at ringside, Bobby Lashley had some words for Akira’s partner, before he hit Tozawa with a Spear. Pinning the former Cruiserweight Champion, Lashley picked up a fairly convincing victory.

Bobby Lashley bt. Akira Tozawa

Following the match, Bobby Lashley stood over Akira Tozawa, clearly trying to antagonise Apollo Crews at ringside. Lashley seemed more than happy to invite Apollo in, and the Titus Worldwide member accepted.
The two men then went face to face in the ring, before Lashley laughed off the threat and left the ring..

Showing an incident from earlier, footage was introduced of a social media exclusive interview with Alexa Bliss. As Bliss spoke about wanting to be on the WrestleMania card, she was interrupted by Shayna Baszler.
Shayna Baszler laughed as Bliss’ ambition, saying that there was no chance Alexa would be placed on WrestleMania. She said this was because since she came to Raw, the bar had been raised. Alexa Bliss fired back, and wanted a chance to prove herself against the Raw Women’s Champion. She said that she would prove to Baszler that she was capable of hanging with the Champion!

Following that footage, the commentators confirmed that Kurt Angle had made a match between the two Superstars for tonight.
In the office of Kurt Angle, the Raw General Manager was seen talking to Rey Mysterio, who would be facing Seth Rollins later on. Kurt Angle spoke to Rey Mysterio about the attacks that had taken place earlier in the night, where Randy Orton and Finn Balor were taken out. Kurt told Rey to watch his back, and be careful out there.
Returning from the break, Seth Rollins was interviewed, talking about how excited he was to face Rey Mysterio.
The Number One Contender to the WWE Universal Championship put over the legendary Rey Mysterio, and said that the challenge of facing a Champion, just before WrestleMania, is exactly what he needed.
Before the match between Rey Mysterio and Seth Rollins, the commentators introduced a look back at last week’s show, and the controversy surrounding Brock Lesnar. Footage was also known of Braun Strowman’s response to Brock Lesnar, as he called out the former WWE Superstar as a coward.

Going into the match, the opening of Raw was shown again, with Drew McIntyre demanding the focus be on the WWE Universal Championship at WrestleMania. This resulted in him going one on one in a match with Finn Balor. Following Drew’s victory, it was revealed that Rey Mysterio would be Seth Rollins’ opponent, for the first time ever in singles competition!

When the match got under way, it was put over as a “dream match”. The two went all out to live up the billing, and put on a match that was designed to “steal the show”. This resulted in a number of nearfalls, with both men kicking out of big moves throughout the match. While that couldn’t continue all night, the commentators did begin to question what it would take for one man to pick up the win. The answer came when Rey Mysterio attempted to follow up his 619 with a Frog Splash. Seth Rollins rolled out of the way, and was up quick enough to hit Rey Mysterio with a Curb Stomp. There was no way Mysterio was kicking out of that, as Seth Rollins picked up an impressive victory.

Seth Rollins bt. Rey Mysterio

As Seth Rollins stood tall in the ring, Golden Alpha came to the top of the ramp. Jason Jordan had a huge smile on his face, as he addressed the WWE Universe.
Jason Jordan confirmed that Golden Alpha had been responsible for the attack on Randy Orton, as well as the one they saw to Finn Balor. Continuing down the ramp, Jordan said that it didn’t matter who they took out next, because there was nothing Kurt Angle could do to stop them. Jason said that Kurt needs to learn a lesson, and they were willing to do it, by cutting his roster down to bare bones.

Looking to take out Seth Rollins and Rey Mysterio in the ring, the trio didn’t react quickly enough, as Seth Rollins dived out of the ring to take all three men out. With all four other men down on the outside, Rey Mysterio returned to his feet, looking to offer back up to Seth Rollins. He didn’t realise that this had been a set up, as Elias appeared behind him in the ring.
With another Guitar (after he broke his other one attempting to attack Rey last week), Elias swung at the Intercontinental Champion, this time breaking the Guitar over his back. Mysterio fell forwards, with Elias standing over him in the ring. The fired up Elias pushed his hair out of his face, and had no time for a funny song, as he looked down on the man he had just taken out completely!

WWE Raw - March 11th 2019 - Live on USA Network!

Returning for the final hour of Raw, a Limousine was shown pulling up at the building. Stepping out of the vehicle, was the WWE Chairman, Mr. McMahon.
McMahon had a huge smile on his face, and strutted towards the entrance of the building. Following McMahon’s arrival, the commentators promoted the reason that the Chairman was appearing on Raw, as he promised a “huge WrestleMania announcement” at the end of the night.
Returning to the ringside area, former WWE Universal Champion, Braun Strowman made his way down to the ring. It was mentioned that last week, it appeared as though Braun Strowman may have been forced to give up his chase of Brock Lesnar. However, as Braun Strowman entered the ring, it was clear he had other ideas.
Braun Strowman told the WWE Universe that he’d heard all the rumours this week, that have said that Brock Lesnar closed the door on a WWE return last week, but added that he doesn’t buy it. Strowman said that Brock Lesnar still had a competitor in him somewhere, but it’s hiding. The reason Brock is unwilling to return to the ring, and face Braun Strowman, is because he is afraid of “The Monster Amongst Men”. Strowman suggested that Brock Lesnar was paranoid, but there was no agenda against him. At SummerSlam, Brock Lesnar lost his title because Braun Strowman was the best man on the night, and until Lesnar returns to the ring, he can’t prove otherwise. Once again appealing to the competitive spirit of Brock Lesnar, Braun Strowman laid down his official challenge to the longest reigning Universal Champion in history. Strowman conditions were simple:

”Brock, I want you at WrestleMania! You name your terms… you choose the rules!

I make it happen, and you… GET THESE HANDS!”

As Braun Strowman looked to have finished, he was met by the music of Bobby Lashley. Making his way down to the ring, Lashley had something to say to the former Universal Champion.
Bobby Lashley told Braun Strowman that instead of looking at somebody who isn’t in the WWE anymore, he should look at the man who came within split-seconds of taking the title from him on two occasions. Lashley said that late last year, he hit the “Spear that SHOOK the Universe!” and introduced Strowman to “The Destroyer”. Lashley wanted to prove he was worthy of having a match at WrestleMania… and he wanted to do it against Braun Strowman next week. Braun Strowman was all too happy to test himself, agreeing to face him on the following episode of Raw.
Moving on, following a look back at events earlier in the night, The Bella Twins were interviewed to promote Brie Bella’s match the next night on Smackdown. As they spoke, Liv Morgan & Sarah Logan cut them off.
Asking The Bella Twins if they saw what they did to Ruby Riott earlier, Liv Morgan said that if that’s what they’d do to their friend… image what they’d do for the Women’s Tag Team Championship. Morgan suggested that The Bellas search for a WrestleMania opponent was over, because Liv & Logan were ready to take the titles!
Returning from the break, Mr. McMahon was seen walking through the back.
He had a huge smile on his face, as he walked past various members of the crew. When Mr. McMahon walked around the corner, he bumped into Braun Strowman. Mr. McMahon had a smile on his face, but Strowman wasn’t in the mood for joking around.
Known for having a good relationship with the WWE Chairman, Braun Strowman called Mr. McMahon “Vince” as he addressed him, telling the boss that he needed him to speak to Brock Lesnar. He said that if even Paul Heyman couldn’t get through to him, Vince was the only hope.

”Make the call, Vince… do whatever it takes, pay him whatever he asks… get Brock Lesnar to WrestleMania”

From Braun’s tone and expression, McMahon could tell just how serious he was. With a gulp, and a sigh, McMahon told Strowman “I’ll see what I can do…”
Coming back to ringside, the commentators discussed the way Braun had spoke to Mr. McMahon, putting over how he laid down the law to the all-powerful Chairman. They said that not many other Superstars in history could get away with dictating to Mr. McMahon, and used it as evidence of how much respect the Chairman has for “The Monster Amongst Men”.

Continuing to prove that they have turned over a new leaf, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn showed great respect towards Cedric Alexander & Mustafi Ali, who in turn gave them a pretty competitive match. The Raw newcomers once again impressed, but were nonetheless defeated in their second match as a team on the brand. Kevin Owens picked up the decisive fall, hitting a Pop Up Powerbomb to Mustafa Ali.

Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn bt. Heart & Soul

Following the match, Owens & Zayn began to cut a promo on their WrestleMania opponents The Usos, having put over Mustafi Ali & Cedric Alexander. As they turned their attention to the Men’s Tag Team Championship match, they were cut off as The Revival made their way to the top of the ramp.
Dash & Dawson had microphones in their hands, and said that Owens & Zayn have gone soft. They said that they deserved to be the ones going to WrestleMania, and vowed to prove it to them next week!

Following that match, Kurt Angle was seen in his office. As the General Manager finished making a note of the match that had just been proposed for next week, he was confronted by Golden Alpha, who were joined by Elias.
Looking to intimidate Kurt Angle, Jason Jordan had brought his friends to help him humiliate his father. Jordan said that Kurt Angle hadn’t take him seriously, and now he was paying the price. He said that Finn Balor, Randy Orton and Rey Mysterio were just the beginning, and by the time they were done, Kurt Angle wouldn’t have a roster left. Kurt told Jason to back off, but of course he didn’t. With strength in numbers, the four men backed Kurt Angle into a corner, telling him that it wouldn’t be long before Stephanie McMahon had no choice but to replace him. AOP hit their fists against their hands, and stepped towards Angle. Feeling threatened, the General Manager hit out at his son, slapping him across the face.

Akam & Rezar were ready to retaliate, but the slap caused a huge smile to grow on the face of Jason Jordan. Realising what he had done, Kurt Angle instantly regretted putting his hands on a talent. He realised the consequences this could have. Jason Jordan did too. Wanting to take advantage of this, Jordan stopped The Authors of Pain from advancing, instead encouraging his three associates to leave the office with him. Left in the office alone, Angle realised he may have just put his position as General Manager in jeopardy!
Returning to the ring for the next part of the show, the Number One Contender to the Raw Women’s Championship made her way to the ring. Scheduled to face Shayna Baszler in just a few weeks time, Ronda Rousey took a microphone and addressed the WWE Universe.
Ronda Rousey recapped the events of the previous week, introducing footage of the huge brawl between herself and Shayna Baszler on the big screen. After the clip was shown, Ronda Rousey talked about the no-contact clause that was put into place by Kurt Angle, who feared that the two women wouldn’t make it to WrestleMania if they carried on the way they were. That means she can’t lay a hand on the Champion, but she can send a message. Ronda Rousey said that Shayna Baszler had nothing to worry about for the next few weeks, but vowed that at WrestleMania, she would let out 6 months of aggression… and make her tap out! These comments resulted in Shayna making her way to the ring.
Shayna Baszler laughed off Ronda Rousey’s threats, knowing she was safe behind the “no contact” ruling. The Raw Women’s Champion then mocked Ronda, saying that she had no idea what she was getting herself in for. Baszler then commented that while Ronda has 5 weeks to prepare for WrestleMania, a “real Champion” has to compete week in, week out. Just like Baszler will up next.

Ronda Rousey told Shayna Baszler that’s exactly where she was wrong, because she’s spoke to Kurt Angle, and next week… she is going to make her Monday Night Raw debut! On that huge bombshell, Ronda Rousey left the ring, leaving Shayna Baszler to focus on her Main Event match.

Coming back from the break, Alexa Bliss made her entrance, ahead of a match where she was considered a major underdog. This billing saw her look to surprise the Raw Women’s Champion, and early on she did so. Having come so close to pinning Baszler at Fastlane, Bliss felt that she stood a chance of ending Baszler’s unbeaten run, but the Raw Women’s Champion had other ideas. Despite the valiant effort, it wasn’t long before Shayna Baszler got into her groove. As every other Superstar who has faced her can attest to, once Baszler enters “the zone”, she is practically unstoppable.

Alexa Bliss intended to test that theory, and did well in stopping the match from turning into a complete landslide. However, an attempted comeback by Alexa Bliss fell flat, and eventually the Rear Naked Choke was locked in. Overpowered, and trapped in the center of the ring, “The Goddess” was left with no choice but to tap out, moments before she would have passed out anyway.

Shayna Baszler bt. Alexa Bliss

Throwing Alexa down like a ragdoll, Shayna Baszler stood over her latest “victim”. Raising the Championship high above her head, Shayna Baszler had proved her dominance once again.
Shown watching the footage of Baszler in the back, Ronda Rousey was approached by Stephanie McMahon.
Stephanie said that she’d heard what Ronda Rousey had said earlier, and she’d found the perfect opponent for her Raw debut. The tension between the two was clear, but Rousey was desperate to know. Walking in from the other side of the screen, Sasha Banks appeared.
Acting cocky towards “The Baddest Woman on The Planet”, Sasha Banks said that Ronda Rousey was about to learn about the week in, week out grind of being a WWE Superstar, and she was going to learn about it from the “Legit Boss”.

Returning for the final part of Raw, Mr. McMahon made his way down to the ring. Taking in the reaction of the WWE Universe, the Chairman looked to be in high spirits as he took a microphone from ringside.
McMahon did a major sell job on the Main Event of WrestleMania, promoting the match as the “biggest Sports Entertainment showcase of all time!” Mr. McMahon put over the fact that he’d picked the two Superstar he felt best represented the WWE brand of entertainment, and was sure the Universe would see why at WrestleMania!

Mr. McMahon then introduced those two Superstars, bringing John Cena and Roman Reigns to the ring, one after the other…

Mr. McMahon put both Superstars over, and told them that they’d have their chance to speak to each other over the next few weeks. However, tonight they were there to listen, as Mr. McMahon made a huge announcement regarding their match at WrestleMania. McMahon said that such a huge match needs a strong referee, and he feels like there was only one man for the job. Mr. McMahon teased that he would be the perfect candidate for the role, but said he’d found somebody even better. Looking to build suspense for as long as he could possibly get away with it, Mr. McMahon revealed that the Special Guest Referee for the Main Event of WrestleMania would be… THE ROCK!

Making his return to a WWE ring at WrestleMania, The Rock’s return was put over by the commentators, as Mr. McMahon pointed to the official confirmation on the big screen. John Cena and Roman Reigns went face to face in the middle of the ring, with a new dimension added to their WrestleMania match!

Quick Results
Drew McIntyre bt. Finn Balor
Nikki Bella bt. Ruby Riott

Bobby Lashley bt. Akira Tozawa
Seth Rollins bt. Rey Mysterio

Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn bt. Heart & Soul (Mustafa Ali & Cedric Alexander)
Shayna Baszler bt. Alexa Bliss
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Default This Week in WWE!

This Week on…

Smackdown Live opened with Dean Ambrose. The Raw Superstar, who has apparently made the jump to Smackdown, explained the attack on Samoa Joe which took place at Fastlane.
Dean Ambrose said that it went back to the start of 2018, where he suffered an injury that kept him out of WrestleMania. Ambrose said that he had to sit home, watching the show. Not only did that injury cost him 8 months of his career, it damn near ended it! Ambrose also revealed that during the recovery, he suffered life threatening complications. That was the first time he’d been out of action in his WWE career, and when he was back to being healthy, there was only one thing on his mind… revenge!

Dean Ambrose put over his challenge for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, but was told by GM Paige that there was a block on him competing on Smackdown, as a result of him still technically being a Raw Superstar. Samoa Joe himself was in action however, and would team with Shinsuke Nakamura against AJ styles and Daniel Bryan. That match would eventually go to a no contest, as Dean Ambrose’s presence at ringside resulted in a chaotic ending to the match.
An enraged Samoa Joe lunged at Dean Ambrose, looking to attack his WrestleMania opponent. The two men eventually had to be separated, as they looked to tear each other apart, more than 3 weeks out from their WrestleMania match.
The Bella Twins cut a promo before their match, putting over the idea that they were above any other potential duo in the WWE. While speaking positively, the two Superstars gave off a vibe which suggested they felt above the Smackdown roster.
These feelings will have dispersed during the match, as Becky Lynch bettered Brie Bella in the ring. Having demanded to be the one to put Brie back in her place, Becky Lynch followed through with the promise, making one half of the Women’s Tag Team Champions tap out to the Dis-Arm-Her. Following the match, Lynch rolled Brie out of the ring with her boot, before making it clear she wanted a shot at the Tag Team titles!
Following his challenge to The Undertaker last week, Shinsuke Nakamura looked to get inside the head of “The Deadman”, and in doing so tricked the WWE Universe. Coming out to the ring, following the sound of The Undertaker’s gong, Shinsuke Nakamura made his entrance dressed as the man he wants to face at WrestleMania.
Kicking off the mind games between the two, Shinsuke Nakamura may be biting off a little more than he can chew. Either way, he continues to pursue the man whose name is most synonymous with the biggest show of the year, WrestleMania!
Following up from the “Fighter Profile” of Andrade Almas, the man of 100 souls made a huge statement on Smackdown.
Coming down to the ring, and explaining his reputation of taking the masks and hair of Superstars in Mexico, Andrade “Cien” Almas turned to his associate Sin Cara, who he was worked with over the last couple of months, and demanded his mask. Showing the influence of Almas, Sin Cara didn’t hesitate in fulfilling the order, removing his mask and handing it over. Usually a huge deal, the voluntary removal of the mask by Sin Cara was put over on commentary as a shocking moment. Sin Cara then put his head down, and left the ring. The triumphant Andrade “Cien” Almas held the mask above his head, as a memento of his power over the world of Lucha Libre. Considered a huge sign of disrespect, Byron Saxton wondered what Almas was trying to prove by humiliating his once close friend.
Also on Smackdown Live:
  • Sanity defeated Jeff Hardy & The Usos. During the match, Jeff Hardy was thrown through the Commentary Table by Kilian Dane.
  • Despite The Miz’s attempt to reignite his rivalry with Rusev, “America’s Greatest Import” still managed to pick up a victory over Sheamus. The Miz had taken issue with Rusev eliminating him from the Elimination Chamber at Fastlane.

This Week on…

Episode #10: The Episode with… The Hat on a Pole!
  • The show opened with Blackjack Blake and James Storm being interviewed on the ramp. It was put over that in the Main Event, they would go one on one, in a Hat on a Pole match! A history of “on a pole” matches was shown later in the evening.
  • Garza Jr. retained the Cruiserweight Championship against Jack Gallagher. After the match, he officially offered Kalisto a place in the L.W.O.
  • Dustin Rhodes beat TJ P, after promising to teach the arrogant youngster some respect.
  • Hidden camera footage showed Big Cass entering the locker room of nWo. While he was greeted by the rest of the group, Kevin Nash walked out of the room when he arrived. Nese & Murphy then teased Big Cass, regarding comparisons between himself and Kevin Nash.
  • Blackjack Blake defeated James Storm in the Hat on a Pole match! As a result, he was put over as “The Last True Outlaw” in WCW!

16 Man Tournament - Exclusively on the WWE Network!

Other Notes:
  • James Storm’s match with Blackjack Blake was said to be his last contracted match with the WWE, following another short run with the company. It is believed an extended deal was offered to Storm, but looking for better terms, Storm turned down whatever was on the table.
  • Reports of WWE ramping up their interest in a number of independent talents has caused concern with a number of promoters. Despite WWE reaching out to several workers, it is expected the potential signees will be allowed to work their WrestleMania weekend commitments, before signing with the company.
  • Another Superstar who is said to be in talks over an extension is Kaitlyn, who also signed a short term deal upon her return. Having impressed enough to earn a new deal, it is believed that a longer term offer is now on the table.
  • The unmasking of Sin Cara was designed as a way to write the character off screen, after the man behind the mask requested his release from the WWE earlier in the month. The company agreed to the request, provided Sin Cara made one last appearance on Smackdown, as a way to bring closure to the character. While the segment had been pitched earlier in the year, it had been nixed due to the potential seen in the Sin Cara character. However, when Sin Cara requested his release, the decision was made to go ahead with the segment.

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Unread 11-09-2018, 05:08 PM
ImWreck's Avatar
ImWreck ImWreck is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2015
Posts: 101

I think one of your surveys should have the question

"Should Drew return to using Broken Dreams?"

Either, the diary is shaping nicely going into Mania and I can't wait for the big show to be up.
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