I typicall don’t cover SmackDown, but I saw John Cena’s recent promo about how he is sick of the new era and called it “bull.” You know, he was part of a new era about a decade ago. Is WWE doing the slow heel turn by making Cena into a grumpy old man?
RAW starts off in typical WWE fashion, by confusing us with a weird segment featuring Stephanie McMahon giving Mick Foley a performance review. Foley teases The Undertaker. Ooh boy. Seth Rollins enters to announce his entry into the Royal Rumble. Braun Strowman arrives demanding a match with Roman Reigns, or Goldberg. I would want the latter.
I will say, Foley looks better this week. Wearing clothes which appear to fit better than the baggy clothes from last week. Rollins and Strowman inevitably fight.
Roman Reigns is set to defend the United States Championship, but Chris Jericho, Kevin Owens, and Braun Strowman beat the crap out of him, until Seth Rollins arrives and two-thirds of the Shield brandishing chairs chase them off.
Instead, Seth Rollins gets a match with Braun Strowman, which goes to a DQ. I have to say, Strowman continues to impress me. He plays the big man role very well. I hope now that he is facing top tier challengers, WWE doesn’t squander the opportunity to make him a headliner.
Backstage, Bayley and Sasha Banks chat about the Women’s Championship, until Charlotte comes in to be the typical heel, and then Nia Jax shows up because she can and the faces get beaten up, until Jax turns on Charlotte. Hmm… women’s fatal-four way possible?
Jack Gallagher defeats Drew Gulak because Gallagher is the most awesome thing on RAW. Post match hilarity, interview style where Jackie Boy challenges Davari to a Parlay on 205Live. I think it was Corey Graves who said Gallagher’s dropkick would knock the personality out of you. Except Gulak needs to finish developing his before it can be knocked out.
Backstage, SHAWN MICHAELS is talking to… TJ Perkins. Perkins is shown teaching HBK how to dab. Well, then.
Backstage, Mick Foley is searching for the Undertaker, because he might just be hanging out with some interns by the watercooler. Stephanie threatens the performance review.
Shawn Michaels comes out to the ring, shares his excitement for the Royal Rumble, which prompts the chant of “one more match.” HBK then refuses to succumb to peer pressure, and talks about his upcoming movie, The Resurrection of Gavin Stone. Things take a turn when Rusev and Jinder Mahal, with Lana interrupt. Rusev comically demands Lana be put in the movie. Michaels informs him, it’s not possible, because the movie is done filming. Rusev then references Lana and her Golden Globes which makes HBK uncomfortable. Rusev takes a jab at Star Wars using CGI. The banter is pretty damn funny, and then gets crazier when Big Cass and Enzo Amore show up. The segment gets bonkers, I’m laughing my ass off. When Big Cass wants a match, Rusev agrees… To put Jinder Mahal in it. Short match which sees HBK deck Rusev with the Sweet Chin Music as Cass puts Mahal away with the Empire Elbow.
I love when segments go off the walls.
Cruiserweight burial continues as Neville defeats Lince Dorado. I don’t mind seeing cruiserweight matches, but man, we’ve been getting some duds lately. This one was all standard spots by Dorado, until Neville ramps up and ends it via Rings of Saturn submission.
I like Neville, he’s got a personality now, and showing off an expanded move set. I wonder though, if this build is temporary or will he actually dethrone Rich Swann. I’m starting to get a villain of the month vibe.
Backstage, Banks and Bayley confront Stephanie McMahon to get a match with Jax and Charlotte. Stephanie goes full nasty on them, but gives the match anyway.
Sheamus defeats Luke Gallows.
Good match, Cesaro and Karl Anderson on commentary was entertaining. Hopefully this feud will go longer than the next PPV.
Backstage, Roman Reigns blathers on about being responsible for the U.S. Title.
In the ring, Foley tries to coax the Deadman from beyond, until Stephanie interrupts and threatens punishment. Before she delivers something scathing, the lights go out, the gong strikes, and The Undertaker arrives. He is entering the Royal Rumble. Best line, I’ve dug 29 holes for 29 souls. Does this mean when you are eliminated from the Rumble, you have to fall into an open grave?
Backstage: Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho cut a funny backstage promo. Owens says to “random stranger” interviewing him, he doesn’t care about Undertaker and Goldberg. He then tells Jericho, “Okay, you go say things now.” So much funny. Please don’t break them up.
Nia Jax and Charlotte defeat Sasha Banks and Bayley
Geez. That finish. That legdrop by Jax. Freakin’ scary.
Backstage, Alicia Fox forcibly makes the smoochie with Noam Dar.
Uh… these gimmicks just aren’t working for me.
Coming down to the ring, The New Day spill Booty-o’s all over fans. The cereal. I’m talking about the cereal. Titus O’Neal apologizes for his actions. Xavier then ridicules Titus some more. Titus asks for a chance to be in the New Day. They wind up showing footage from the NXT contest in 2010 where he trips and falls during one the barrel carrying contest. Kofi then reveals a New Day colored keg for Titus to earn redemption. Apparently, it’s called Booty-Juice, and they improve some catchphrase. He appears to complete the challenge, but apparently lets go of the keg before crossing the finish. Kofi pisses him off, and we get another singles match.
Kofi Kingston defeats Titus O’Neal
Good match, Titus dominated majority of it, until a distraction and a chase around the ring resulted in Titus getting clocked with Trouble in Paradise.
Going to be honest, I feel like this is a New Day heel-turn, but they do it with such humor, they still remain face. To be honest, they come off as some school-yard bullies. Titus isn’t coming off as heel these days, WWE is making this guy look like a chump. Which I think, sucks. If they don’t need him on TV anymore, just put him on NXT.
Hype for 205Live, the UK Tournament, and Brock Lesnar air before the main event.
Main Event: Chris Jericho & Kevin Owens vs. Roman Reigns for the United States Championship in a 2-on-1 Handicap Match
Pretty good match. The result sees the duo teaming up and hitting some big moves, Codebreakers, and a huge Powerbomb on the ring apron, leading to Chris Jericho pinning Roman Reigns to become the NEW United States Champion.
I have to say, for a moment, I did not think they would win, that somehow Roman Reigns would hulk up and win. I was honestly surprised. Happy too. Glad to see Jericho get a big win.