Welcome to the live commentary for this week’s episode of RAW. Here is the Lineup for this week:
FINN BALOR PREPARES FOR BROCK LESNAR
BANKS AND BAYLEY VS. ROUSEY AND NATALYA
BOBBY LASHLEY BEGINS HIS IC TITLE REIGN
WHAT’S NEXT FOR BRAUN STROWMAN?
THE NXT CALL-UPS LOOK TO MAKE AN IMPACT
MORE BUILDUP FOR THE ROYAL RUMBLE.
Everybody keep interfering in the promo
Raw opened with a tribute for Martin Luther King Jr. Brock Lesner and Paul Heyman made their way to the ring and Heyman went on about his usual rant hyping Lesner. He put over Finn Balor. Any time Balor’s name was mentioned, the crowd went wild. He talked about how Balor seized the moment, so much so that John Cena, “the second greatest of all time” endorsed him. Mr. McMahon interfered and the match between Lesner and Balor is like David vs Goliath situation. He told the crowd that if the crowd actually believe that Finn Balor can beat Lesnar, then they probably believe in fairytales. Now its Braun Strowman’s turn to interfere. He said Lesner got away from the beating he would get. He vowed to rip Lesnar apart if he would still be champion after Royal Rumble. Finally, Balor showed up and reminded that he actually won over 3 other superstars to earn the opportunity. He told Vince that he knows he doesn’t believe he’ll beat Brock Lesnar, and McMahon replied he doesn’t believe in the fairytale. Brock Lesner was walking away when McMahon asked him to see a real David vs Goliath Match between Balor and Strowman.
Finn Balor vs Braun Strowman
Balor started with a dropkick. Strowman got distracted by Lesnar and Finn slapped him in the face. Strowman swatted him down with one hand. Strowman countered the sling blade with a clubbing blow to the chest. He kicked Finn right out of the ring. Braun continued to dominate with Lesnar smiling at the ringside. Finn took Braun down at ringside with a sling blade. Balor started building some momentum by applying sleeper but Braun threw him out of the ring where Brock caught him and hit a belly to belly suplex (this should have caused a DQ, but surprisingly it didn’t). Lesnar got on the apron staring at Braun until Finn pulled him off the apron and took him out with dropkicked into the ring post and then with a dive over the top rope. Balor hit Braun with a sling blade and took out Lesnar with another running dropkick into the barricade. He avoided a charging Strowman in the corner and hits him with the Coup de Grace. Lesnar grabs him before he can make the cover and hits an F-5 to cause a DQ.
Bobby Lashley celebrate IC title and match vs Apollo Crews
Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush come out after the break. There is a small stage set up in the ring for Lashley to stand on for his IC title celebration. Rush said Lashley is better than Rollins and Ambrose and open challenges are for kids. Lashley posed for the crowd as Lio held the belt around his waist. Apollo Crews eventually interrupted saying no one came to see Lashley pose him. He challenged Lashley to a match. Rush said Crews isn’t on Lashley’s level. Apollo does his best pose in response.
Lashley hit a flat line for a near fall and a shoulder in the corner. Crews hit a dropkick from the middle rope and started building momentum with another dropkick and an enziguiri. Lio Rush kept causing a distraction. Crews deadlifted Rush until Lashley hit a spear on him. The IC champ gets the pin and the win.
Winner- Bobby Lashley via pinfall
Seth Rollins vs Drew McIntyre
As soon as Lashley got the win, Rollins came out for his match against Drew McIntyre. He got into the ring and Lashley and Rollins had a staredown for some seconds before parting ways. Rollins cut a promo about his passion for the wrestling business, vowing to win the Royal Rumble despite his odds. McIntyre came out saying he doesn’t stand a chance of winning the Royal Rumble.
Rollins clotheslined McIntyre out of the ring and then hit a suicide dive. He took Drew down with a springboard clothesline. McIntyre took control. A belly to belly suplex gets McIntyre a two count. McIntyre hits a reverse Alabama Slam on the floor at the ringside. Rollins hit a sling blade, a blockbuster for a near fall and hit a falcon arrow for a close two count. Drew avoided The Stomp but Seth sent him into the corner with a knee to the back. He put McIntyre on the top rope and knocked him into the tree of woe with a kick to the face but he got up and threw Rollins in an incredible feat of strength. But Rollins lands on his feet and countered the Claymore with a superkick for two. Both men went down hard after McIntyre connected a Glasgow Kiss. McIntyre hit White Noise from the middle turnbuckle followed immediately by a powerbomb, but Rollins kicked out both times. Rollins caught McIntyre in a bad position and used his body pressure to pin McIntyre. It was a great match. The crowd was chanting “This is awesome!” during the match.
Winner- Seth Rollins via pinfall
Backstage, The Revival was complaining to Mr. McMahon about the controversy in their title matches previously but McMahon didn’t seem too interested. Curt Hawkins came in but McMahon told him he loses too many matches and asked him to go. McMahon then agreed to make Hawkins the special guest referee in the upcoming RAW Tag title match between Champions Rood and Gable vs. The Revival. This is out of the blue.
The Singh Brothers and Jinder Mahal vs. Lucha House Party
Mahal took control early over Dorado. The Singhs took a shot at Lince before Kalisto got the tag and Lince and Kalisto double team Sunil. Sunil threw Kalisto out of the ring before tagging Mahal so he can take control. Kalisto eventually managed to tag Gran Metalik who took down all three opponents. He hit a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker on Sunil and pinned him. Samir is late breaking up the pin which allowed Metalik to win.
Winner- Lucha House Party via pinfall
Baron Corbin vs. Elias
Elias in the ring, ready to play his song but he’s interrupted by Baron Corbin. Corbin told him that he can’t play his song and insulted the crowd. Elias reminded him that he’s not the GM anymore and he would play his song anyway. He got Corbin’s mic cut. Elias started to sing, mocking Corbin for continuing dressing like a GM. Corbin came in the ring, only to avoid a guitar swing from Elias.
Elias took Corbin up walking across the top rope from one turnbuckle to another before taking him down with a move similar to Old School (the Undertaker used this move). They traded strikes on the apron until Elias was sent into the ring post. Corbin nailed a clothesline before Elias hit a swinging neck-breaker. Corbin hit The End of Days for the pin and the win.
Winner- Baron Corbin via pinfall
A Moment Of Bliss: Royal Rumble edition
Nia Jax is Alexa Bliss’ guest. Nia got interrupted by Ember Moon the moment she started talking. Ember Moon claimed that she will win the Rumble. This started a trend where Alicia Fox, Mickie James, the Riott Squad, Tamina, Nikki Cross, all came out to declare that they will win the Rumble. Bliss stood on her chair and yelled at everyone to respect her show and support each other so they don’t ruin her reputation as a talk show host. Jax started a brawl by shoving Moon into everyone else.
The brawl spilled to backstage. Alexa Bliss officially announced her return at the Royal Rumble Match. She was then interrupted by Lacey Evans, who debuts on RAW tonight. She then announced her own entry to the Royal Rumble match.
The Ascension vs Heavy Machinery
Heavy Machinery also debuts on RAW tonight. They started with Otis Dozovic and he soon tagged in Tucker Night. They completely dominated The Ascension. They double team on Viktor and Konnor and are looking to finish things. Otis danced a bot before hitting an elbow drop.
Winner- Heavy Machinery via pinfall
Chad Gable and Bobby Roode vs. The Revival – RAW Tag Team Championship Match
The Revival took control of Gable early on. Dawson hit Gable with an uppercut before Gable and Roode sent sending both men out of the ring with double t-bone suplexes. Dawson laid out Gable with a clothesline. Roode got the tag and cleared the ring. Hawkins caught Wilder trying to cheat and stopped a pin. Wilder kicks out of a roll-up. Hawkins catches Wilder trying to cheat and stops another pin. Gable made a blind tag and hit a crossbody. Dawson rolls through and tried to use cheat but Hawkins stops his count again. Gable ended up getting the pin to retain the titles.
Winner- Chad Gable and Bobby Roode via pinfall
Hawkins pointed to the replay to justify stopping the pin to The Revival after the match. They ended up attacking Hawkins but Zack Ryder made the save. The crowd pops for Ryder as he saved his friend. It looks like Hawkins and Ryder have reunited after 10 years.
Ronda Rousey and Natalya vs Sasha Banks and Bayley
Before the match, Ronda Rousey was talking trash about Sasha. In the ring, Sasha responded harshly to Ronda. Bayley and Nattie have to keep them apart until the ref calls for the bell. Natalya and Sasha began the match, and Banks cheapshots Rousey down. Banks and Bayley dominated Natalya with good double team work. Rousey got the tag and judo throw them both. Natalya was beating Bayley outside the ring. Bayley managed to tag Sasha in a
Winner- Sasha Banks and Bayley via Submission
This is Ronda Rousey’s first ever defeat in WWE. The show ended with a standoff between Ronda Rousey and Sasha Banks.