WWE: Monday Night RAW was LIVE from the Laredo Energy Arena in Laredo, TX on 1/30/17!
Raw starts out with the Universal Champion, Kevin Owens, accompanied by his best friend, the US Champion, Chris Jericho and they are in the mood to celebrate. Owens calls out his doubters and he says that he bested a stacked deck put there by the Raw GM, Mick Foley. He thanks Chris Jericho for his help and friendship and they share an embrace. KO puts over Jericho’s history making performance in the Royal Rumble match. KO says that Jericho is the greatest Rumble competitor of all time with a record breaking time and the all time record in the Rumble over the years as well. He was in there for one hour and a minute, the “61 Minute Man”. He gloats and tells us all to go to our twitter account and get #61minuteman trending and I’ll do it right here for the Scrum Sports. He didn’t win it because he was still suffering the effects of vertigo from being in the shark cage and BRAAAAAAAUN! Here comes the big man after an impressive performance in the Rumble himself before his elimination by Baron Corbin after a Helluva Kick from Sami Zayn. KO thanks Braun and Strowman gets a “Thank You Strowman” chant from the crowd. He cost Roman the match because he doesn’t like Roman and he wants a title match that Kevin Owens promised him. KO denies him the title match and that infuriates the big man who provides footage of a clip from last month where KO did in fact promise him the before-mentioned shot. Strowman wants the shot tonight or he’ll break Owens in half tonight! Here comes Mick Foley looking awful in horrid choice of suit, classic Foley. They blame the promise of doctored CGI footage and KO pleads for the match not to happen. Foley says he understands that KO went through hell, but he’ll go through hell again as he defends the title right here in Laredo, TX! We also find out that Chris Jericho is going to be in singles action next in a non-title match against Sami Zayn! That’s big time!
Sami Zayn defeats Chris Jericho via pinfall with the Helluva Kick in a non-title match. Looks like we’re about to setup one match for the Fastlane PPV before ‘Mania after these two put on a great match in front of the Laredo crowd. After missing several attempts at the Helluva Kick, Zayn shows his intestinal fortitude as he battled out of a Walls Of Jericho and was able to nail Y2J with an exploder suplex. He then finished things off with a Helluva Kick that met its mark for a clean three and a victory! Great opening bout as Sami continues his forward momentum!
Cesaro and Sheamus are arguing backstage about losing the tag team titles to The Club. Sheamus has a grievance against Cesaro for almost hitting him with the big swing and Cesaro has beef with Sheamus after he tried to dump him out of the Rumble. Bayley comes into the segment and says they all need to get on the same page for a six man tag match against Charlotte and The Club tonight. Gallows, Anderson and Charlotte mock the faces, calling them nerds and losers and they say they’ll beat them again tonight and Charlotte says Bayley can scrapbook about it. They head back to ringside and we get highlights of the Seth Rollins/Triple H history, which will ultimately lead to their collision at ‘Mania that’s as good as booked.
Stephanie McMahon is backstage on the phone as Kevin Owens walks in and asks her why in the world Mick Foley was allowed to book this title match after everything he went through last night? She says that after she deals with the business of Seth Rollins, she’ll talk to Foley about getting the match cancelled. They head to commercial.
Tony Nese defeats Mustafa Ali via pinfall with a running knee strike. “The Premiere Athlete” win a big win against the promising young Ali after a good match for the time allowed. The crowd was more into this than recent crowds have been with the 205 athletes because of the booking or lack thereof. Ali gave him hell, but Nese comes roaring back, thwarting an attempt at Ali’s brilliant inverted 450 splash and he grounds him before lowering the knee pad and delivering the strike. After the match, “The Greatest Man That Ever Lived” Austin Aries, who was on commentary, question’s Nese about his charisma. He compares Nese to a washboard and Nese says he doesn’t answer to his critics. Aries says that Nese will leave his critics with nothing. Seems like a potential match as soon as Aries is cleared. I’d be okay with that. We’ll have Steph and Seth’s confrontation after the commercial break.
“The Architect” is out and he gets a huge pop. Seth says he might have been banned from the building last night, but he says he’s live tonight. He says he knows Steph was gonna call him out later, but he says billion dollar princesses don’t always get their way and he tells her to “suck it up, buttercup” and to get out there now. Steph’s music hits and she obliges the request, not looking very happy. She says she is out there to disappoint him, and he says, like she does to her husband every night. The crowd likes that one. Steph says Triple H isn’t there and Seth says that he doesn’t care about her and he’s done with it. He asks when she’s gonna let him off the leash. Steph says Triple H is afraid, afraid of that dark side he’ll unleash on his “greatest creation”. Steph says she asked Triple H to stay away. Seth says she’s delusional if she actually believes that. She says really? He hasn’t touched gold since he turned on the Authority. He held the belt for a cup of coffee at Money In The Bank. He was injured during last year’s ‘Mania and she demands an apology from him and for the fans. Steph says she wants an apology and she’ll have it. Seth says he’s sorry. He’s sorry that he’s exposed her husband for the gutless snake he really is. He’s sorry that his entire legacy is gonna go up in smoke because he won’t face Seth. Seth says he called him out and instead of manning up, plainclothes security did his bidding. Seth says the stuffed shirt is a scared dude and not the cerebral assassin. Seth says he is the greatest threat to his legacy that Trips has ever seen. Seth says judging by the way that Steph looks at him, she knows it too. She says he doesn’t measure up to Triple H as a man, he’s a creator, he’s a king. She says he’ll be the “architect” of his own demise. Seth says he’s got nothing left to lose, and if she thinks him going to NXT was bad, what happens when he goes to WWE Headquarters? What happens when he shows up at her front door and one of their kids answers the door? It ends when he slays the king. She says she lied, Triple H is on his way to the arena and he’s coming for Seth! Wow. That was a great promo. That’s how you hype a program. Kudos to both of them.
Bayley/Sheamus/Cesaro defeat The Club/Charlotte via pinfall after Bayley pins Charlotte with the Bayley-To-Belly Suplex. Enjoyable six man with high spots from all involved. Cesaro hit a beautiful springboard off the ropes onto the heels on the floor and there was a cool spot where Bayley leapt off Cesaro’s back, spearing Charlotte. Bayley caught Charlotte coming out of the corner with the finish and that was on she wrote!
Mick Foley is being grilled backstage by Stephanie McMahon about the Strowman title match and Foley asks Steph to trust his judgement. Steph says she is a woman of her word, Triple H is in the building tonight. Foley asks that he be allowed to keep his title match booking for the night and she agrees. Foley says it should be a great match unless Triple H’s music plays and he doesn’t show. There’s a heavy silence. They show a graphic of the new Cruiserweight Champion, Neville, and he’ll have his coronation as “The King Of The Cruiserweights” and it’s next!
Neville comes out after the break for his coronation, saying the title is his crown. He says 205 Live belongs to the king. Neville says he did more then win a championship last night, he proved all the sniveling, little peasants wrong. He says they never believed in or supported him. He is interrupted by “The Outlandish” Rich Swann before he can go off on a tangent. Rich says as much as it pains him to see Neville with his title, and as much as he wants to get into the ring and throw fists, he’ll wait on his opportunity. Rich says he’s got a rematch coming, and he came down to end his little coronation. He says the fight between Neville and the universe is going on in his head. Swann says Neville is one of the very best and last night at the Rumble, he proved that. He respects Neville for that and Swann extends his hand. Neville asks when Swann is gonna get it, you don’t just offer your hand to the king, you take the knee and bow. Swann turns and Neville says you don’t turn your back on the king. Swann and Neville come to blows and Swann eventually gets the upper hand with a spinning hook kick and Neville is driven from the ring, his coronation ruined. They head to a break.
Back from the break, they show highlights of Nia Jax and Sasha Banks from the Rumble as well as Goldberg eliminating Brock Lesnar. KO is backstage and Jericho delivers the bad news about his title match still being on this evening. Jericho says no matter what happens, they are still the US Champion. KO says if they are gonna keep the title, team Chris and Kevin need to be on the same page tonight. Jericho says KO wasn’t out there when Sami Zayn beat him earlier. KO says he was frantic with the thought of being in the match and the two best friends are on the same page about handling Strowman. The title match is next!
Braun Strowman defeats Kevin Owens by DQ after interference from Roman Reigns. Before Strowman gets to the ring, he sees Chris Jericho at the commentary booth and he boots him straight to hell. He then puts Jericho through the announce table, completely taking him out of the match! Wow. Whoever is booking Braun, keep doing it, because it’s being done right. They actually got off to a pretty good start with the match, but even though KO put some work in on Braun, Strowman eventually set him up for the big powerslam only to have “The Big Dog” Roman Reigns interfere and cost Braun the title, even though he gets the DQ victory. They brawl and Roman takes him down with a superman punch and then a spear. He spears KO for good measure and leaves as Strowman gives chase. The expected result of the match, setting up Fastlane programs.
They highlight the events from earlier featuring Steph and Seth as a truck pulls up outside the venue and Michael Cole questions whether or not it’s Triple H. The door opens and it’s “The Beast” Brock Lesnar and his advocate, Paul Heyman! The crowd goes nuts! Brock is headed to the ring and he’ll be there after the break! They arrive to a huge ovation and Paul says he is there to represent the humbled, crestfallen beast and before he can get started, a “Goldberg” chant breaks out. Paul thanks those in attendance for their irrelevant opinion. Paul says every great has that one opponent who has their number. Andre had Hulk. Rousey had Holly Holm. The Undertaker had Lesnar. Last night, Cena won his sixteenth title, but he had Brock Lesnar. Kurt Angle is going into the Hall of Fame, but he had Brock Lesnar. He goes to his kids, he advocates for Lesnar and they say, yeah but Goldberg beat him in a minute and twenty six seconds at Survivor Series. He walked down the street today and people say Lesnar was speared and eliminated in the Rumble by Goldberg with ease. The chants start up again. He says “Yeah, but” is the argument against Lesnar’s greatness. Paul proposes that we hit the record button because Lesnar challenges Goldberg one final time at Wrestlemania! Heyman says the odds are in Goldberg’s favor, but Lesnar will answer the “yeah, but’s” finally. They make their exit and the challenge is on the table.
Nia Jax defeats Sasha Banks via referee stoppage. Sasha was still favoring the knee and Jax straight up rag-dolled her. She slammed the knee on the post outside the ring and Nia put her in a grounded kneelock. The bell sounded before the ref gave the signal, an apparent botch, but it was decided that was the ending. Nia kept the submission applied and it eventually led to Bayley running down to the ring to aide her friend. Jax finally broke the hold and she took her leave, the damage having been done. “The Boss” lays unwavering in the ring and she’s tended too as they show a graphic for a tornado tag match up after the break. It’ll be Enzo Amore and Big Cass against Rusev and Jinder Mahal.
A great pre-match promo where Enzo and Cass trash Rusev’s face mask for his broken nose and Mahal’s figure. They mock the veins on his skin, calling him a road map that’s going nowhere. How U Doin? They make a few Wizard of Oz references, calling Lana a witch, and Enzo has seen her melt before. Cass says the lollipop kids are gonna suck so much tonight, they’re gonna be lollygaggin’. Savage. They hit the ring and the action is underway.
Enzo Amore and Big Cass defeat Rusev and Jinder Mahal via pinfall with a Bada-Boom Shaka Laka in a tornado tag match. The action was fast and frenzied with Cass handling most of it. The end came when Mahal and Rusev had a double team on Cass with Enzo outside the ring. Mahal hit the ropes, but Enzo grabbed the feet and pulled him out. Mahal was dropped onto the ring steps by Enzo and Cass nailed a boot on Rusev after a rope jawbreaker by Enzo. The finish followed and then the three count. We are then shown a clip of a limo pulling up outside the arena and “The Game” Triple H gets out in a fine suit. He is headed towards the ring for the Rollins confrontation!
Back from the break and we are told that Goldberg will be live on Raw next week! Lemmy’s vocals lead “The Game” to the ring as The “Cerebral Assassin” is ready to handle his business. Mic in hand, Trips starts off by talking about plucking Rollins from obscurity, singing his praises, and he became the first NXT champion. He’d go on to become the leader of the Shield and then he made him an offer. Standing at Trips side, he’d become the man and Seth Freakin’ Rollins would become the world heavyweight champion. He’d get everything he wanted out of the business. He couldn’t hold up his end of the bargain, he collapsed and his leg gave way. He shed tears and he relinquished the title and he handed back everything ever handed to him. He spit in the Game’s face. He hobbled up the ramp and back to obscurity. The world kept turning without Seth Rollins. When Seth stood in the ring without The Game, he was an abject failure. Seth didn’t own his failure, it was blamed on Triple H. He’s supposed to apologize, if anything, Trips is owed one. He gave him the world and Seth spit in his face. He didn’t answer the challenge because Steph asked him not too, because it’s best for business. He is trying so hard not to be “that guy” anymore. He doesn’t wanna end careers and crushes dreams and who doesn’t give a crap what anybody thinks. Everyday he puts on the suit and ties the tie and goes to the office and be a “creator”. He tries to do more for everybody here, and then Seth Rollins goes to NXT. He interrupts the creation process, where The Game is trying to make the next Seth Freakin’ Rollins. He’s done. He takes off the jacket and tie as the crowd goes nuts. Triple H says Seth doesn’t need to worry about coming to his house, he tells him to get down to the ring to meet his destroyer. The call is answered and Rollins makes his way down the ramp and holy you know what, it’s JOEY HEADROCKER! SAMOA JOE is beating the holy hell out of Rollins. I knew it would be him or Balor! Triple H leaves his hired gun to the task and Joe beats Rollins six ways to Sunday. Three sentons and the show goes off the air as Rollins is trapped in the Coquina clutch, flailing, and clamoring for oxygen. The crowd is going bananas with “Joe’s Gonna Kill You” and “Joe” chants before the quintessential “this is awesome” chant. Looks like we’ve got another Fastlane match and Raw ends on a high note! Wow!
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