Traditionally, the WWE RAW following WrestleMania is a change of the guard. New blue prints are laid out following WrestleMania which ultimately are to lead to next year’s WrestleMania. Unfortunately the last few years of RAW have been nothing more than WrestleMania Part 2. Last night’s RAW saw a lot of storylines continuing with a brand new twist added to an old mix.
RAW opened the show with Vince announcing a six-man tag team match between he, his son Shane, and Triple H against the Legacy for Backlash. I saw that one coming last week at the end of RAW. McMahon and Orton had a back and forth between one another. Orton challenged McMahon to a singles match at the end of the show. Vince accepted and we were off to the races.
WWE superstar Batista returned to close the show and tip the side of the McMahons in their feud with the Legacy. Randy Orton wrestled Vince McMahon in the main-event which turned into a brawl. All three members of the Legacy were beating on Triple H until the familiar music hit. Batista ran down the aisle, speared Randy Orton, Batista Bombed Cody Rhodes, and aligned with Triple H and the McMahons to close out the show.
It looks like unofficially Backlash will now be Shane McMahon, Triple H, and Batista vs. Randy Orton, Ted DiBiase Jr., and Cody Rhodes. I don’t like it at all. For one thing, the controversial finish of Orton-H from WrestleMania was barely acknowledged last night. Secondly, Rhodes and DiBiase have looked more like jobbers the last few weeks. The two have been beaten down week after week and are about as threatening as Brisco and Patterson circa 1998.
Batista has been out of action since injuring his hamstring at SummerSlam. Originally it was rumored that Batista and Triple H would wrestle at WrestleMania. Those plans would have changed regardless due to injury. It is not inconceivable at some point that this is all pointing towards the match again. Batista has expressed thoughts about retiring in a year during some recent interviews. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Ric Flair back in the mix at some point to give it the full Evolution flavor.
In other news on the show, Ricky Steamboat wrestled once again and looked great. I was hoping to see Steamboat wrestle again after WrestleMania, and I was really impressed. Vickie Guerrero announced herself as General Manager of both RAW and SmackDown. I really don’t understand the logic behind this as Vince McMahon was obviously in the building and making matches at the beginning of the show. Edge and John Cena will wrestle their 2,000th match in a title rematch at WWE Backlash.
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