WWE Monday Night Raw kicked off with the appearance of Brock Lesnar and his advocate Paul Heyman. Lesnar was given the opportunity to be reinstated, but only if he apologized directly to Michael Cole and JBL. Lesnar did just that, and actually gave Cole a grade school noogie for good measure. Hilarity ensued shortly after the apology.
How awesome is Lesnar’s “Suplex City” shirt? Vince McMahon and the WWE organization continue to be marketing geniuses.
[adinserter block=”1″]Heyman then waxed poetically about what Lesnar is going to do to WWE World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins when they meet in their title match at the Battleground PPV. Words simply can’t do Heyman’s mic work justice. He epitomizes everything a promo should be.
For those wondering, Booker T hasn’t been at Raw due to his involvement in the “Tough Enough” series. Anyone notice that Byron Saxton (Booker T’s replacement) suddenly turned into a face on commentary? It is pretty random, considering he played the heel on Smackdown for the entirety of his inclusion on that show.
First match last night featured Dean Ambrose against Kane. Say what you will about Kane, but at the age of 48 the guy is in great shape and can still put on credible matches.
Towards the end of the match Seth Rollins came down the ramp, which distracted Ambrose and eventually cost him the match. A rare win for Kane.
In a backstage encounter, Rollins acted like he wanted to help Kane and reestablish their working relationship, but Kane didn’t buy it and knew Rollins was just looking for a backup in his upcoming match with Lesnar. Kane walked away, leaving Rollins distraught.
Next match was the newly crowned tag team champions The Primetime Players taking on The Ascension in a non-title match. The powers that be deciding to take the tag titles off The New Day is still puzzling, considering how hot they are.
The Ascension hasn’t exactly received the push that was anticipated when they entered the WWE from NXT. For the most part, they have been used as jobbers. In my opinion, they’re mediocre at best and I think the WWE sees just that.
After the Primetime Players picked up a win in a very forgettable match, it was announced that they will take on The New Day in a rematch at the Battleground PPV. Don’t be surprised if you see The New Day regain their tag titles.
The match came between Roman Reigns and the Money in the Bank winner, Sheamus. Is anyone else still trying to understand how Sheamus was the creative idea to win the Money in the Bank contract? Although it was anything but predictable, it was still an odd choice nonetheless.
The Reigns and Sheamus match was better than expected. The match ended with Bray Wyatt appearing on the big screen, pretending to have tea with Reign’s daughter, which was an empty rocking chair. Needless to say, Reigns left the ring to find Wyatt.
Next match was between Kofi Kingston, representing New Day, and Neville. It was a rather quick match that ended with the red arrow. Neville picked up the win, with New Day appearing to be on a losing streak.
King Barrett got an easy day at the office with a win over Zach Ryder. You ever wonder why Ryder has never received even one push in his career? He’s got a good look, he’s solid in the ring and the fans generally like him. Oh well, at least he’s recently been getting more TV time.
John Cena was back after a one week absence following the brutal attack by Kevin Owens following their match at Money in the Bank. WWE could have probably sold Cena’s injury a little better by giving it at least another week. I guess ratings and the almighty dollar factor into that decision.
I’m not a fan of this feud being so rushed. How about just a little more time between matches? Unless WWE creative decides on a disqualification finish, Cena is likely to get the win via pin fall in the proverbial rubber match.
The Bella twins defeated Naomi and Tamina in what was quite a hasty win.
Ryback defeated Mark Henry via a spectacular frog splash, an underutilized move that is not seen in the wild much. WWE is doing their best to protect Ryback by literally being fed scraps to keep the meaningless IC title.
They gave Adam Rose a mic? He proceeded to cut to a bizarre promo about his love for Rosa and her love for him. Was that the best creative the WWE has for him?
Dolph Ziggler defeated Adam Rose via a tremendous superkick to the chest. That was the second match of the night in which the presumed winner wasn’t able to pull off a victory. It’s good to switch it up every once in a while.
[adinserter block=”2″]WWE wasn’t short on its technical issues last night. During a Ryback promo we saw a Tough Enough promo, and during a backstage conversation with the Authority we saw a green screen for 5 seconds. Someone will most likely get a stern talking to from topside.
In stellar commentary by Triple H, he said Kane understands the pressures of being champion. This is pretty hilarious, considering Kane won it in 1998 and only held it for one day.
In the final segment we witnessed Seth Rollins pleading with Kane and J&J Security to forgive and rejoin him. When Brock Lesnar came down to the ring, Kane and J&J Security left Rollins in the ring alone. As Lesnar was about to enter the ring he was attacked from behind by Kane and J&J security.
Lesnar then decimated everyone, including Rollins. Suplex City was in full force. That was until Kane came back and blindsided Lesnar. From there it became a mugging, as Rollins, Kane and J&J security pummeled Lesnar until the show ended.
It makes you wonder if Rollins will retain the title in their match at Battleground. Or will Lesnar overcome the odds to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship?