Posted January 16th, 2018 by Bill Apter


Monday Night Raw opens up with a video package highlighting the events between Braun Strowman, Kane, and WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar over the last two weeks.

Raw is live from San Antonio, TX and we are greeted by the familiar voice of Michael Cole. The show starts with Braun Strowman coming to the ring after he tore down scaffolding on Lesnar and Kane at the end of Raw last week. Strowman says he has a short story about how a “Machine” and a “Beast” met a “Monster Among Men” at the Royal Rumble and the Monster was the last one standing. GM Kurt Angle’s music hits and he heads to the ring with security. Angle is not happy at all about Strowman’s actions last week. Angle claims that Strowman is creating “an unsafe working environment”. Kurt is adimate that Strowman needs to settle his scores in the ring, to which Strowman is extremely defiant – He claims he will tear down the walls of Suplex City and kick in hell’s door. Kurt Angle FIRES Braun Strowman! Braun is infuriated! He stares Angle down with a vengeance and the follows him to the back right past the security.

The announce team informs us that Asuka will take on Nia Jax later in the night. Also, Roman Reigns will take on “The Miztourage” in a 2-on-1 handicap match.

We see Strowman in the back talking to himself and seemingly looking for Kurt Angle because he was just fired by him. The security flanks him and tells him he has to leave. Strowman becomes even more enraged and tells the officers that they will have to make him leave!

We return from commercial to Braun in the back with security. Strowman completely decimates the entire team with brute force. Strowman screams that “he isn’t finished yet!”

He says he won’t leave until “everyone catches these hands!” Michael Cole claims that Strowman is out of control and Booker T believes that someone needs to call the police.

Next, “The Bar”, Sheamus and Cesaro come out to face Apollo Crews and Titus O’Neil. “Titus Worldwide” enters the arena with Dana Brooke. The match starts with Crews and Sheamus. The Bar starts a double team on Crews immediately in their corner. Crews mounts a quick comeback with some dropkicks and a tag to Titus. Titus shoulder tackles Sheamus to gain the upper hand. Sheamus fights back with a knee and tags in Cesaro, who uppercuts and chops Titus. O’Neal manages to throw Cesaro into the corner and begins slapping his chest. The men go back and forth chopping each other in various corners. Crews gets tagged in and slams Cesaro, followed by and elbow and a pin. Apollo catches a boot to the back from Sheamus on the apron as he runs to the ropes. Cesaro tags Sheamus in off the illegal blow and Sheamus climbs to the top rope for a flying clothesline on Crews. We return from commercial with Crews fighting back against Cesaro with no success. Sheamus gets tagged in and The Bar performs a double team and a pin. Crews kicks out and then eventually fights out of submission from Sheamus. A double tag is made and Titus starts beating Cesaro all over the ring. Titus is fired up and hits the big splash and powerslam on Cesaro. Sheamus gets tagged in and they attempt to double team Titus. After a brief melle between all men, Crews gets tagged back in but eventually falls to the double team maneuvers of The Bar again. Jason Jordan’s music hits and he starts walking to the ring for the distraction. Crews rolls up Sheamus for the 1-2-3 win. Seth Rollins comes out and is upset with his partner Jordan. Cesaro and Sheamus are absolutely livid!

Apollo Crews & Titus O’Neil defeat Cesaro & Sheamus via pinfall.

Strowman is now in the back again looking for Angle’s office and he kicks a door down and destroys Angle’s office very quickly, screaming “ You want to fire me?!?!”

We return from commercial to various superstars in the catering section backstage. A man in a suit comes up screaming that Strowman is coming and then he runs away. Strowman destroys the catering area and chokeslams Curt Hawkins through a table!

Cruiserweight Champion Enzo Amore’s music hits and he comes out with Tony Neese. They enter the ring as Amore spits his magic on the mic. Enzo has an injured ankle and he’s limping. He claims he will walk away from Royal Rumble still the champion, no matter how banged up he is. Amore claims that Cedric Alexander has to go through Tony Neese first. Alexander comes out with Goldust. Goldust claims that Alexander will defeat Amore at the Rumble because he is “a box office smash.” Alexander tells Amore that he is “SAWFT!” Cedric Alexander will face Tony Neese.

We return from commercial to Strowman ripping up the backstage area even more.

Neese and Alexander are exchanging locks in the ring, until Neese gets the upper hand with a dropkick. Alexander mounts a comeback with a head scissor and a dropkick. Alexander gets tripped up on the top rope and then Neese delivers a devastating gut buster. Neese pins, but Alexander kicks out. Neese taunts the crown while his opponent is down. Neese then hangs Alexander in the “Tree of Woe” and begins kicking him with bicycle kicks. Neese is maintaining control with submission holds. Goldust is taunting Enzo outside the ring. Neese misses a splash in the corner and catches an uppercut. Cedric kicks him in the face and lands a faceplant maneuver off the middle rope. Alexander hits a springboard flying clothesline and pins Neese, but Neese kicks out. Neese mounts a quick comeback after Cedric goes for his finisher. Alexander escapes a pumphandle slam and lands the “Lumbar Check” on Neese for the 1-2-3- pinfall win!

Cedric Alexander defeats Tony Neese via pinfall.

Angle is backstage and thinks he has to call the cops to get a SWAT Team for Strowman’s rampage. A man comes in and tells Angle that Braun is now going for the television trucks. We cut to a commercial break.

Returning from the break, Strowman is entering the television truck. He is terrifying the team inside and threatening to smash everything and stop the show. He kicks everyone out of the truck and they all hide as he exits the truck. They believe they are safe, until Strowman disengages the tractor from the trailer. He tries to flip the massive truck and Angle comes out and tells him to leave because he called the cops. Strowman flips the truck and marches off kicking and stomping more stuff! Strowman enters the arena and grabs Michael Cole. Angle comes out and tells Strowman he now called off the cops. Stephanie McMahon advised him to do so and rehire Strowman. Braun tosses Cole off the stage onto the security team anyways and Angle looks completely bewildered. We cut to another commercial break.

Returning from commercial, Todd Phillips joins a disgruntled Booker T and Corey Graves. They are all very upset of this Strowman situation.

Nia Jax’s music hits and she enters the arena for her match with Asuka. Asuka makes her entrance. Asuka shows no fear as she enters the ring and immediately begins using her speed as the bell rings. Nia tosses Asuka across the ring and shrugs off an armbar attempt. Asuka manages to lock in a nasty submission, but Nia breaks the hold and delivers a nasty backbreaker. Nia tosses Asuka across the ring, Asuka tries to fight back but catches a huge clothesline. Asuka pulls Nia into an armbar while shes on the ground and transitions it into a triangle, but Jax picks her up and throws her into the corner like a ragdoll. We cut to a commercial break. Returning, Nia has Asuka locked into a vicious bearhug. Asuka gets out and goes for the sunset flip. Nia attempts to sit on Asuka, but she moves out of the way. Asuka begins to mount a comeback but gets an incredible powerbomb from Nia. Asuka manges to kick out from the pinfall attempt and Jax is obviously frustrated. Asuka gets Nia in a kneebar, but Jax gets the bottom rope to break it. Nia tosses Asuka out of the ring and smashes her into the apron back first. Asuka kicks Nia off the steps but beats the countout back into the ring. Her leg is damaged from the fall on the stairs. The referee calls off the match because Nia Jax cannot stand and is unable to compete. Asuka’s undefeated streak stays alive. A few trainers and Alexa Bliss all come out to check on Jax. She is helped away from the ring.

Asuka defeats Nia Jax via referee stoppage.

We cut to Angle in the back picking up the pieces of his office. Jason Jordan comes in to thank his father for all of the opportunities he’s granted him. Jordan tells Angle he would protect him from Strowman if it came down to it. Jordan tells Angle that he should put Seth Rollins in a singles match against Finn Balor – Angle agrees and makes the match.

The announce team informs us that Michael Cole is very shaken up. Corey Graves believes that Stephanie made a huge mistake rehiring Strowman.

A video package is played to pay tribute to the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and it is a very beautiful and inspiring short video.

We return from the commercial break and Alexa Bliss is consoling Nia Jax in the back as Nia massages an ice bag into her damaged knee. Enzo comes in and asks Nia how she’s doing, then basically makes Bliss leave because he was mouthing off to her.

The Revival is now in the ring to face an underdog team. Scott Dawson is manhandling the opponent and tags in Wilder. Dash lands a nasty backbreaker and tags in Dawson. They perform a double team move on the opponent, and then perform the “Shatter Machine” for the pinfall victory less than a minute later!

The Revival wins via pinfall against a relatively unknown team.

Charley enters the ring with a microphone and let’s Dawson proclaim how great The Revival is and that they are tag team excellence! She asks them which legends they would love to meet next week at the 25th Anniversary of Raw. The Revival claims that those men killed wrestling and that they are “professional wrestlers” and not “sports entertainers”, or a creation from the WWE board room. Dawson claims that they are the future of tag teams. We cut to Elias in the back with his guitar and he will debut a new song after the commercial break.

After the break, Elias is in the ring with his guitar. He strums a chord and greets the crowd with a, “Hello, I am Elias.” He has one question, “Who wants to walk with Elias?” He claims he is there to teach everyone a lesson… that WWE stands for “Walk With Elias!” He is also reminding everyone that, even though many great stars are involved with the Royal Rumble, he has a song for one Superstar that’s in the Royal Rumble match. He begins to sing about how he hopes to eliminate John Cena from the Rumble because he hasn’t forgotten about what Cena did to him on Christmas. He also upsets the crowd because he is talking badly about the San Antonio Spurs. He introduces The Miz and The Miztourage with a song and they enter the arena. They come into the ring for the handicap match with Roman Reigns and we cut to a commercial.

We come back and The Miz is gloating about how he was the best thing missing from Raw over the last six weeks. He tells how awesome it felt last week to be granted a rematch for the Intercontinental Championship. He declares that next week he will reclaim his title against Reigns and will “over deliver” with a moment that will be remembered for years to come. Roman Reigns’ music plays and he enters the arena.

The handicap match starts with Curtis Axel and Reigns. Reigns immediately lands uppercuts on Dallas and Axel and goes outside to get The Miz. The Miztourage attacks him from behind and slams him into the steps. Axel tries to pin him twice in the ring, he kicks out of both attempts and they begin tagging in and out while repeatedly kicking Reigns in the corner. Bo Dallas works Reigns in the middle of the ring with a chin lock. The Miz is very animated outside the ring, rooting his men on and trying to distract Reigns with any chance he gets. Reigns begins to fight out of the lock, but eats about 6 knees from Dallas to his chest. Reigns blocks a suplex, but Axel saves Dallas from getting reversed. Bo Dallas lands a big DDT on Reigns. Dallas tries to drag Reigns to his corner to tag Axel but Reigns blocks him and starts to fight out. Axel manages to tag in but falls victim to a Samoan Drop. Both men are down. Axel runs for a tag, Roman catches him and drives him into the corner. Reigns takes out Dallas off the apron to prevent a tag and Roman is fired up, completely unloading on Axel. He gets Curtis to the corner and hits 10 clotheslines. Roman begins to beat on both members of The Miztourage in the ring. The Miz distracts, but Reigns still tosses Dallas out of the ring and hits a Superman Punch on Axel. He slips out of the ring and lands a powerful Superman Punch off the stairs to Dallas! He tries to get The Miz in his grasp but to no avail, as The Miz escapes. Axel goes for a roll up, Reigns kicks out and lands the huge spear for the victory. Reigns stands tall in the ring, but The Miz and The Miztourage exit as a damaged unit.

Roman Reigns defeats The Miztourage via pinfall.

The announce team highlights that Braun Strowman is back in the WWE Universal Championship match at the Royal Rumble. We cut to a commercial break after being re-informed of the impending matchup of Seth Rollins and Finn Balor later in the night.

We return to Sasha Banks entering the arena accompanied by Mickie James and Bayley. Next, Absolution enters the arena and we see a video of last week’s match when Sasha made Mandy Rose tap out. Sasha Banks and Sonya Deville start off hot and Sasha goes for a “Banks Statement” quickly but Deville escapes. Deville lands some nasty knees to Sasha before getting her in a submission hold. She is wearing on Banks in the ring, but Sasha escapes and begins landing shots of her own. She lands a dropkick and then some double knees on Deville in the corner. Sasha climbs up the ropes for a high risk maneuver but gets kicked in the chest while in mid-air! Sonya Deville pins her for the 1-2-3 victory.

Sonya Deville defeats Sasha Banks via pinfall.

There is another video package about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. featuring many superstars reflecting on his life and achievements,

The camera cuts to Seth Rollins taping his wrist in the back and Jason Jordan enters the frame. Rollins warns Jordan about stepping outside of his zone by talking to Angle to set up a match for him and distracting Cesaro and Sheamus earlier in the night. He reminds him that they are teammates and Jordan is not his spokesperson.

“Woken” Matt Hardy’s music hits and he enters the arena before we cut to commercial. We return and Hardy is battling Heath Slater in the ring. Hardy is getting the better of Slater and lands a big splash to Slater’s back while he’s on his stomach laying on the mat. Hardy unloads with a barrage of wild punches and works Slater to the corner. Hardy begins to taunt Slater in the corner and sends him out of the ring with a punch. Rhyno has to fire Slater up to get back in the ring and Slater starts hammering Hardy as soons as he gets back in. He works Hardy into an arm lock but Hardy bites Slater’s arm to escape and suplexes Slater into the corner. He lands more wild punches, a clothesline, and a “Side Effect”. He then smashes Slater’s head into the turnbuckles repeatedly before landing the “Twist of Fate” for the pinfall victory!

Matt Hardy defeats Heath Slater via pinfall.

The announce team introduces us to the first member of the 2018 WWE Hall of Fame, Bill Goldberg. They show an excellent video package highlighting Goldberg’s incredible career. The fans are absolutely delighted and chant “Goldberg, Goldberg…”

Up Next, We have a rematch of the first Universal Championship match ever, Seth Rollins vs. Finn Balor. After a commercial, we see a video package showing the events involving Braun Strowman from earlier in the evening.

The music of Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson plays and they enter the arena. Next, Finn Balor’s music hits and he makes his entrance. During the entrance, we see a short video promo of Balor claiming he will defeat Seth Rollins again before we go to another commercial break. Returning, Seth Rollins makes his entrance and enters the ring. The two men lock up and Rollins gets Balor in a headlock. He works him for a minute until Balor lands a series of arm drags and wrenches Rollins with an arm lock. Rollins mounts a comeback with a lariat and a kick to the downed Balor. Rollins works him with boots in the corner and Jason Jordan claps from outside the ring. Balor gains the upper hand after a dropkick and sends Rollins out of the ring with a clothesline. Balor lands a kick to Rollins from the apron and we cut to a commercial break. We return as Rollins is battering Balor in the corner with punches and then lands a blockbuster from the middle rope. The landing appears to have tweaked Rollins’ knee, but he still lands a jumping knee to Balor’s back that sends him out of the ring crashing to the floor! Rollins leaps through the middle rope and takes out Balor at ringside, but clutches his knee again. Jordan cheers him on that he’s still in it. Back in the ring, Rollins lands a neckbreaker and works a headlock on Balor. He’s wearing on Balor and then lands a jumping elbow to the back or Balor’s neck. Finn manages to mount a comeback with a few short lariats and a double stomp to the chest of Rollins. Balor lands a kick to Rollins after he sat up on the turnbuckle and follows that with a neckbreaker style slam and a pin, Rollins kicks out. Balor is favoring his neck and gets his “sling blade’ countered by Rollins with one of his own before he pins Balor, Balor kicks out. Rollins lands two running forearms on Balor in the corner before Finn finally lands the “sling blade” on Seth. Rollins manages to catch him with a superkick as Balor charges him, but Baor kicks out of Rollins’ pin attempt. The two men exchange shots in the middle of the ring until Rollins lands the enziguri kick on Balor’s skull and floors him. Seth climbs the turnbuckle on one leg and misses the “Phoenix Splash.” Balor catches him with the “basement” dropkick to the corner. Finn climbs the turnbuckle but Seth scales the ropes and gives Balor the superplex, follows it with the “Falcon Arrow” into the pin, but Balor kicks out again! Seth attempts the “Frog Splash” but eats the double knees and just barely kicks out of Balor’s pin attempt. Sheamus and Cesaro come out and a brawl ensues between them and The Club outside the ring. Balor does a suicide dive from in the ring and wipes everybody out before catching Rollins with a kick to the head from the apron. Balor climbs the turnbuckle and goes for the “Coupe De Grace”, but Rollins gets out of the way. Jordan then trips Balor from outside the ring and allows Rollins to land “The Blackout.” He pins Balor for the 1-2-3 victory! Rollins and Jordan celebrate on the stage. The Club helps a wounded Balor up from the mat and he looks seriously shaken up.

Seth Rollins defeats Finn Balor via pinfall.

Category: Wrestling.

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