WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW! (3/27/17)
-Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Charlotte & Nia Jax; Bayley & Sasha win.
-Austin Aries VS Noam Dar w/ Alicia Fox; Aries wins.
-Over the Top Rope Challenge: no contest.
-Neville VS Jack Gallagher; Neville wins.
-The Realest Guys VS The Club; no contest.
-No Disqualification Match: Sami Zayn VS Kevin Owens; Sami wins, keeps his WWE contract and qualifies for the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
PLAY BY PLAY
The Undertaker takes over! Ominous imagery shown, is this just the first message to Roman Reigns?
WWE Raw Women’s Champion, Bayley, comes out to the ring. The Huggable One is “feeling it”, that Wrestlemania kinda mood! She has “butterflies” looking at the Wrestlemania logo. And for once, she won’t be part of the audience but part of the event itself! Though, it’ll be in a Fatal 4 Way Elimination match for the champion but– Bayley is interrupted by previous champion, Charlotte! Bayley dreamed of going to Wrestlemania as a “paper” champion, did she? The Boss, Sasha Banks, made you her pawn! Her last match with Charlotte resulted in Sasha being closed off from the Women’s Championship, but the loophole to get back in was Bayley, “the naive fangirl living in a woman’s world.” Sasha is the only reason why Charlotte lost that title! But, she has to respect how “clever” Sasha was to pull this off. Either way, Charlotte vows to be a FIVE time Women’s Champion, and Bayley will be left with “no friends, no title, and no future!” Bayley isn’t about to believe Charlotte. That’s fine, let Sasha’s own words tell you, in the form of her old tweets: “Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.” Sasha is selfish, everyone else is tossed aside! First was Charlotte, now it’s Bayley. The Boss will only stab Bayley in the back! This prompts Sasha Banks to come out now. This again? Charlotte is so 2015 to use their partnership as an example for Sasha’s and Bayley’s friendship. Banks knows Bayley can separate friendship and business, and Banks will handle business when she wins at ‘Mania.
This prompts NIA JAX to come out. All three of them have their little “high school drama” and title hot potato, it’s “pathetic.” Nia promises to eliminate all of them to give that title a “permanent home”. No offense, Nia, the only reason you got in was because Sasha stopped pretending to care about Bayley. A brawl breaks out! It’s chaos as we go to break!
Bayley & Sasha Banks VS Charlotte & Nia Jax!
While The Queen tries to cast doubt between The Huggable One and The Boss, Bayley has to trust Banks one last time to get through this tag match against Raw’s two highly dominant women. Charlotte and Sasha start, they tumble all the way out of the ring and to the floor. Charlotte shoves Sasha to a barrier, Sasha shoves Charlotte into the apron. They return into the ring, Charlotte whips but is reversed, Thesz Press from Sasha. Tilt-o-whirl into the straitjacket back stabber and stretch! Charlotte powers out and bumps Sasha away, Charlotte whips Sasha but she slides under the ropes. Sasha tries to trip Nia off the apron, but Nia stays up. Charlotte rushes in, Sasha knocks her away. Nia tags Charlotte and shoves Sasha back. Sasha tries the sunset flip but she’s not strong enough. Sasha dodges a stomp, tag to Bayley, double dropkicks merely stagger Nia. Nia headbutts and shoves Bayley, tag back to Charlotte. Bayley fights back but can’t get away, Charlotte puts her in a neutral corner. Bayley turns it around and bumps Charlotte’s head off the buckle again and again! TWO for Charlotte, Bayley goes to whip but is reversed. Flying crossbody misses, Charlotte rains forearms on Bayley. Bayley kicks out right away, so Charlotte wraps on a chinlock. The fans rally for Bayley, who gets to her feet and fights back, but Charlotte throws her down by her hair. Charlotte whips and chops Bayley down, then goes for the Figure Four. Bayley shoves Charlotte all the way out of the ring, tag to Sasha! Sasha rallies on Charlotte, kick counter to knee lift, then she bumps Charlotte against a buckle before hitting a flying crossbody, TWO! Charlotte back elbows Sasha away, tag to Nia before the schoolgirl pin. Nia shoves Sasha to a corner, slings her to the apron and knocks her off to the floor! The referee keeps Nia from pursuing as we go to commercials.
We return as Charlotte gives Sasha a signature Flair Knee Drop. Charlotte styles and profiles before pinning, TWO. Charlotte drags Sasha over, tags Nia, Sasha fires back with forearms before being hip tossed and squashed by elbow drops. Nia puts Sasha in a modified cobra clutch to wrench the shoulder and neck. The fans rally for Sasha now, jawbreaker escape only gets Sasha driven into enemy territory. Tag back to Charlotte, but Sasha fights out again, only to take multiple backbreakers and the backbreaker bend. Sasha knees Charlotte in the head then tilt-o-whirl headscissors away! Charlotte holds Sasha back from the pin, they dosey-do around until Sasha sends Charlotte into Nia! Tag to Bayley and the champ rallies on The Queen! Bayley throws Charlotte to the second rope, hotshot! Shoulder tackle, wacky waving back elbow, but then Charlotte gives a hard knee lift. Charlotte charges in but takes a back suplex, TWO! Bayley climbs up but Charlotte brings her down, springboard stomp to the leg before the Figure Four is locked on! Sasha breaks it with a low dropkick! Sasha dumps Nia out, then apron crossbody that is caught by Nia. Nia puts Sasha on her shoulders, but The Boss slips down to shove Nia to the post. Charlotte kicks Sasha away, Bayley blocks a boot, BAYLEY2BELLY! Bayley and Sasha win! But then Nia blindsides them! Leg drop to Sasha’s back, Samoan Drop to drop Bayley, and then to Charlotte, a bulldozing tackle! Nia promised to eliminate them all, can she do it to gain her first Women’s Championship?
After Mick Foley defied Stephanie McMahon, he was FIRED! As such, Sami Zayn is acted how he feels. It’s been a tough week, and a weird day, since he’s not around now. But they must honor Foley’s legacy and message, that the superstars must stand up for themselves and what’s right. That said, Sami Zayn will take on the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, dedicating his entry to Mick Foley. Stephanie McMahon then appears. He wants to be in the battle royal? Well, you’ll have to earn a spot in that match now that Stephanie is in charge again. She will put Sami Zayn’s spot in that match in a No Disqualification against Kevin Owens, or else he’ll be just like Foley: FIRED.
Austin Aries VS Noam Dar w/ Alicia Fox!
As The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived faces the Scottish Supernova, the King of the Cruiserweights watches from commentary. Neville wishes to finally be impressed by Mr. A-Double once before their match at Wrestlemania for the Cruiserweight Championship. Aries and Dar shake hands as the Philly fans cheer for the #1 contender, which upsets and distracts Dar long enough for Aries to hit a running dropkick into the corner! Dar goes down to the outside, Aries shouts “That’ll be you!” to Neville as we go to commercials.
Upon return, it’s Dar in control now as he stomps away at Aries in a corner. He backs off to gloat before whipping Aries corner to corner. Aries kicks out, Dar wrenches his neck, Aries powers up to his feet and fights out of the hold only for Dar to fire back a left hand. Aries gives a left hand of his own, but then his whip is reversed and he bumps into the buckles hard, Dar follows up with a running uppercut! TWO! Alicia is just as upset as Dar, but Dar keeps control with a stomp and a kick. A corner to corner whip is reversed, Dar bounces off the buckles into a tilt-o-whirl facebuster! Aries slowly fires up before rallying on Dar with back elbows and a chop. Then it’s a modified gutbuster to STO to Pendulum Elbow Drop! Aries grabs Dar for a fireman’s carry but Dar slips out. He trips Aries but is shoved out of the ring, FLYING ARIES! Dar goes down, Aries drags him back into the ring, second rope neckbreaker hotshot. Armband then comes off, Alicia gets on the apron to slow him down. Dar pounces with a school boy, TWO! Aries side steps Dar to give one regular forearm before building speed to give the Discus FIVE-Arm! Aries isn’t done yet, he wants Neville to watch as he puts on the Last Chancery submission! Dar taps out, Aries wins! The Greatest Man Who Ever Lived wants “Evil Neville” to know that both of them can win with submissions. Neville just glares as he clutches on to the title, will he still be champion after Wrestlemania?
More ominous images sent by The Undertaker. Will the Deadman appear to speak before his battle with The Roman Empire?
Seth Rollins IS in the building!
After his daring act of defiance turned into a damaging defeat, Rollins then offered a deal by Triple H: come sign a Hold Harmless Agreement and they can have an unsanctioned match at Wrestlemania to settle their score. Therefore, Rollins makes his way to the ring, knee still in a brace and still leaning on a crutch, to prove to The Game that the Architect is not a coward. Rollins sees there’s two chairs, so he calls out Triple H to “get this done.” And Triple H appears! He has the proposed contract in hand as he heads to the ring. Triple H wants Rollins to understand that any attack on him will lead to H defending himself, and the match will be off. Rollins must let Triple H explain the full contract and what it means when he signs it. Rollins has listened to Triple H enough, just bring the contract to the table. Triple H insists Rollins sit in a chair first. Listening to the fans who say “NO! NO! NO!” is a bad idea so either you sit down or get no match. Triple H moves to leave, Rollins sits down.
Triple H takes his seat as he again explains this contract will mean when the two hit the ring at Wrestlemania, Triple H can take that crutch and once again “wrap it around” Rollins’ knee, until he has completely destroyed his creation. Rollins won’t be able to stand up, won’t be able to wrestle, and won’t be able to sue anyone for the damage. Yeah, just sign it and hand it over. Nothing? Rollins, all you did was make a wise business decision, yet the fans are making him feel bad? Why are successful people seen as evil? Why? Because of “pathetic jealousy”! If you aren’t getting hate, you aren’t doing things right. Triple H would rather live in a mansion, “live the good life”, take life and “make it give you everything you want” than care about what others think. Rollins’ “thrill ride” will result in another trip to rehab, to little arenas of only hundreds, and little paychecks for your family, but if you want to be the literal one-legged man in an ass kicking contest, fine! Not signing means missing Wrestlemania for the second year, sure, he wants to walk into ‘Mania, but signing means Rollins “ain’t walking out. Rollins decides to explain what Rollins learned about himself while rehabbing: he liked himself before he met Triple H. He liked wrestling in those small venues, because he loves pro-wrestling! Yeah, H and Rollins did great things together, but what did that cost him? It’s not about fame, fortune or anything like that, this match is about redemption! Rollins gave up everything he was, “for what?!” So Triple H better be prepared to use Rollins’ own leg to beat him down, because nothing will stop Rollins from tearing Triple H apart to regain himself, so that he can truly be “Seth Freakin’ Rollins!” Contract signed! H kicks the table to hit Rollins’ bad leg! Triple H clears space and takes off his jacket and tie before grabbing the crutch again. PELE from Rollins! Triple H is down now, Rollins picks him up, but H clips the knee with a punch. Triple H wants the Pedigree, but Rollins back body drops him over the top rope! Now Rollins uses the crutch as a weapon! Triple H retreats, but when it’s “anything goes”, who will be left standing?
Over the Top Rope Challenge!
To prove who is prepared for the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, superstars will try to recreate how eliminations go in that match. First is Big Show and Jinder Mahal. Mahal manages to avoid a quick elimination and takes the fight to Show, but the Giant just uses one big hand and shoves Mahal over! Next is Bo Dallas, who runs right into the ring and goes right after Show, only for Show to club him down and put him on a shoulder. Bo slips down but can’t lift Show over, Show bucks him off and throws him out. Then the Shining Stars together head to the ring. 2v1 on Big Show but he’s still too big and strong. He takes one in each arm and dumps them over the top! But without music, it’s Goldust, R-Truth and Curt Axel! 3v1, then the others come in despite being eliminated, they all gang up on Big Show! Only together as seven against one do they throw Big Show over! Big Show gets back in, the seven swarm, he shoves them ALL away. This shifts from a top rope challenge to Big Show knocking down the others one by one! Choke slams and knock-out punches, The Golden Truth chooses not to bother. That’s when BRAUN STROWMAN appears! He claims he could kick Big Show’s ass anytime he wants, but that’s not gonna happen just yet. Strowman is going to make us all wait until the real battle royal. Which of these two titans will be the last one standing in the ring?
The Club and The Realest Guys screwed each other out of taking Cesaro & Sheamus out of the WWE Raw Tag Team Title Match at Wrestlemania. Gallows & Anderson pin the blame on Enzo & Cass for running their mouths. And they’re really stupid, “and you can’t, teach, that.” The Club is and will still be Raw Tag Team Champions, how YOU doin? Better than Enzo & Cass will be.
The Undertaker digs a new grave. Will it become the resting place of Roman Reigns after Wrestlemania?
Roman Reigns responds to the messages. He’s a grown man who doesn’t read into signs or falls for mind-games. He’s go this focus on the big fight, and will go out to the ring to tell everyone what he plans to do to “The Deadman”.
The New Day were all over to advertise for Wrestlemania. They were at the New Your Stock Exchange for the opening bell, they gave out Philly Cheese steaks to fans, and even ran the famous steps in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, just like Rocky. They raced to the top! Though, Big E didn’t seem to worry about it as much as Woods and Kofi did. He somehow gets ahead of them to win? However he did it, Big E and the New Day celebrate their visit to Philly and will roll all the way through the week, starting with an all day takeover of ESPN and Sportscenter!
Cesaro & Sheamus are interviewed about staying a part of the Raw Tag Team Title Match. Odds and numbers mean nothing, as they weren’t going to miss Wrestlemania this year. They’ll also continue to support the message of Mick Foley– The Club ambushes Cesaro & Sheamus! A YAKUZA kick to Cesaro, then a 2-by-4 split across Sheamus’ back before taking a ladder and ramming it into Sheamus’ gut and Cesaro’s ribs! The Club shows no mercy tonight, and won’t show mercy at Wrestlemania if it means keeping those titles.
Neville VS Jack Gallagher!
The King of the Cruiserweights won’t be outdone by the Greatest Man Who Ever Lived, so he has a match with The Extraordinary Gentleman. Gallagher has also challenged for the title in the past, so Neville takes him serious as he pushes and ties up with Gallagher. Headlock takedown, but Gallagher slips out with a handstand! They tie up again, Gallagher backed against ropes only for Neville to throw him to the other corner. Extraordinary handstand turns to a dropkick and roll up, TWO. Gallagher is whipped, shoulders Neville down but Neville kip-ups, only to take European Uppercuts from Gallagher. Neville speeds things up, Gallagher counters with the twist leg bodyscissors toss, only for Neville to then side step and catch Gallagher with a rebound German suplex! Gallagher hits the mat hard, Neville gloats and glares as we go to commercials.
We return to find the two men brawling, Neville kicking the air out of Gallagher with those spinning back kicks. Neville gains speed, only to run into an echoing Extraordinary Headbutt! Both men are dazed, Neville rolls out of the ring while Gallagher uses ropes to stand up. He takes William III, his umbrella, goes top rope, MARY POPPINS SEATED SENTON! Back into the ring they go, Neville pulls Gallagher into a buckle hard, SUPERKICK puts Gallagher to the apron. Neville joins him on the other side of the post, drags Gallagher up, METEOR SUPERPLEX!! Roll over into the Rings of Saturn, Gallagher taps and Neville wins! Neville sees Aries’ submission and raises him one, will one man make the other tap out to claim the Cruiserweight Division’s throne?!
Austin Aries gives a special AANN report! No one believes Aries can win? Aries asks his guests at this time, The New Day! Who who who who who do they think will win that match? “A man’s success in the ring is determined entirely by his ability to move his hips!” So A-Double, move them hips! No no, this is a serious interview. Who do you think will be the *hip swivel* W! W! E! Cruiser, weight, CHAMPION!? Austin Aries, yo! Neville ain’t got no hips! It’ll be “A! Double!” A ringing endorsement, Austin Aries signing off, see you at Wrestlemania!
As promised, Roman Reigns makes his way to the ring. Despite every message The Undertaker has sent him, The Big Dog is unafraid as he stands before the rowdy Philadelphia crowd. Reigns won the 2015 Royal Rumble in this very building to then headline Wrestlemania twice. He thought that was a big moment, but now he gets to be the man to face The Undertaker. And he’ll do what no one, not even Brock Lesnar, could do and “put the Deadman down.” “With all due respect”, it doesn’t matter who you are–Lesnar, Goldberg, Cena or Undertaker himself–“this is MY time now! This is MY house now! This is MY yard.” *GONG* Taker tells Roman he’s made a “grave mistake”. That ring is STILL Taker’s yard. There’s a “special corner of hell” reserved just for Roman now. “At Wrestlemania, The Roman Empire will fall. And the Ultimate Thrill Ride will be your last ride.” Taker advises Roman to live his next six days as if they’re his last. Because “you will…” *GONG* The bell tolls again, and Taker is in the ring! “As I was saying…” Roman will “Rest… In…! PEACE…!!” Taker raises his hands to let the thunder roll. The lights dim slowly as the lightning flashes. Will Roman survive the Phenom’s fury at ‘Mania?
The Realest Guys VS The Club!
The Certified G and the Human Skyscraper take on The Machine Gun & Deacon of Chaos face off before their ultimate face-off for the Raw Tag Team Titles. But you talkin’ ’bout practice? How you doin!? When it’s go time, they don’t wait in line but cross the line to get on that thrill ride of Wrestlemania! However, The Club won’t let Enzo & Cass finish their catchphrases before hitting the ring. But then Cesaro & Sheamus get payback with a ladder ambush! And why stop there? They go after Enzo & Cass, E C W style!! EuroUpper for a flying Enzo, then Sheamus takes it to Cass in the ring. Cesaro joins in and they power him to a corner. That ladder comes back in, squishing Cass in a corner. Cesaro whips Sheamus at Cass, Cass throws the ladder at Sheamus! Cass then takes that ladder for his own, but The Club pounces! They take the ladder once more, and ram Cass’ shoulder before giving Cesaro another shot to the ribs! Enzo climbs in, only to get harpooned by the ladder to send him flying to the floor! The Club stands tall once more, who will stand tall after their triple threat title match?
WWE and Raw celebrates Women’s History Month by honoring Maya Angelou, a “Renaissance Woman” and writer of incredibly inspiring stories and poetry.
Kevin Owens is interviewed backstage. A No disqualification match with Sami Zayn that could get Sami fired, and then a US Title match with another former friend– no no no, Y2J was never Kevin’s friends. So what if Kevin was once a Chris Jericho fan? Jericho was right to make fun of him for it, because fans of Jericho are MORONS. If Kevin knew Jericho back then the way he knows him now, he would have never been a fan. He took Jericho’s “heart and soul” that is The List and tore it apart, and now he can do the same to Sami Zayn. Kevin could be the man that ends Sami’s WWE career and sends him home a failure! He will take Sami’s career away, and then take Jericho’s US title away at “KO-Mania II”. Kevin vows to make the Ultimate Thrill Ride Jericho’s demise.
No Disqualification Match
Sami Zayn VS Kevin Owens!
The Underdog from the Underground must fight his best frenemy that is the Prizefighter to not only get a spot in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal but to also keep his WWE contract! Kevin goes right at Sami from the bell, shoving and stomping Sami in a corner. Sami fires back with right hands, Kevin knees and chops and whips but Sami reverses to fire back with a lariat. Sami gives Kevin corner punches, furiously going past ten. Kevin exits the ring, throws Sami’s own jacket at him, then throws Sami into a barrier. Kevin throws him to another barrier, Sami tries to balance on the edge but Kevin shoves him over. Sami reverses a whip and throws Kevin into the hockey boards. They brawl all the way to the announce table, Sami being thrown face first into the side of it. Kevin tosses Sami onto the stage, Sami kicks back, then STAGE DIVE! Kevin rolls in pain as we go to commercial.
We return with both men on the outside, Kevin having just collided with steel steps. Sami takes the steps apart and drags Kevin over, only for Kevin to rake the eyes and give Sami a DDT to the steps! Kevin then hits a back senton by jumping off the steps! Back into the ring they go, TWO from Sami despite the damage. Sami gets to a corner, Kevin charges in and hits a pair of clotheslines that lift Sami up and drop him to the floor. Kevin runs in again for the cannonball, but gets the Exploder to the buckles instead! Kevin slips out of the ring, as does Sami. Sami spots Kevin on the other side of the corner, lines up the shot, DAREDEVIL TORNADO DDT! Sami then drags Kevin into the ring, Kevin rolls to another corner and Sami lines up a shot from the opposite. Helluva Kick denied by a SUPERKICK, TWO! Kevin doesn’t hesitate as he goes top rope, Bullfrog Splash! TWO! Kevin is shocked and frustrated. He tells Sami to “get out of my life” as he goes for the Pop Up Powerbomb, Sami hops over to hit the Blue Thunder Bomb! TWO! Samoa Joe appears! He’s here to help Kevin as much as he is to hurt Sami, but that cues Chris Jericho to appear, from the crowd! He takes the chair Joe had and hits Joe with it! Kevin punches Jericho down, Sami pounces with a school boy, Sami snags the win! He won’t be fired and he will be entering the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal! Kevin is a sore loser so he attacks Sami, Jericho attacks Kevin with the chair! Jericho then takes the mic and a new clipboard. “You know what happens when you betray Chris Jericho?” Pen raised high, Jericho declares “YOU JUST MADE THE LIST!” That may be the result of tonight’s actions, but who will be US Champion after Wretlemania?
Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman appear! The Advocate of the Beast promises “BRRRROCK, LESNAR” will “derail” the “GOLD~ BERG!” thrill ride once and for all. This argument gets settled “one way or the other” at Wrestlemania. The “reigning, defending, undisputed Universal Champion” Goldberg puts up that “holy grail” against Lesnar to decide who is “The One” on Raw and WWE. Lesnar wants, needs and lusts after that very title. So many have tried and failed to do what Goldberg has done. He has Heyman’s respect and admiration, he IS a real-life superhero, and are truly “The Man”, but “BRRRROCK, LESNAR” is a BEAST. So what is the finale for this epic saga? What is the reason fans should tune in for Wrestlemania? Goldberg is going to “Suplex City”. The chants of “GOLD~ BERG!” will be the final chants of “GOLD~ BERG!” ever heard on Raw or in WWE because “BRRRROCK, LESNAR” does not “Fear the Spear”, and no one can “Survive the F5.” But finally, after all the talk, WWE Universal Champion Goldberg appears! Goldberg knows no one wants to hear them talk, they want to see them fight. And seeing as how not everyone in Philly can see ‘Mania, why not bring some ‘Mania to Philly? Lesnar obliges, only to take a SPEAR!! Goldberg paces the ring with his Universal Title belt while Lesnar catches his breath. Will the third time be the charm for the Beast to finally best the Icon?
After last week’s sloppy episode that felt like the typical Raw go-home filler fiasco, this actual go-home show was actually quite good. Not all the scheduled matches had a finish, but they all felt like they contributed something to the coming matches at ‘Mania. The Raw Women’s Championship segment was really good, Charlotte still working to cast doubt in Bayley’s mind towards Sasha, preparing all of us for The Boss to turn Heel again; Austin Aries and Neville both win their matches with submissions to heavily imply their match could finish with a submission; The Club, Realest Guys and Odd Couple Cesaro & Sheamus imply even heavier that they could end up in a triple threat ladder match for the titles; and the intertwining of Sami, Kevin, Jericho and Joe helps build intensity for their rivalries and puts in another piece towards this H-Joe-Kevin faction.
Being a go-home show, Raw still had lots of review video packages to keep the hype alive for their stacked Wrestlemania card. A retrospective on Lesnar VS Goldberg leading up to tonight’s final face-off to end the show and then the same for Triple H VS Rollins. Granted, if things had gone as scheduled, I bet the contract signing for the “unsanctioned match” would’ve been a couple weeks ago, so that way the video package they played promoting Triple H VS Seth Rollins wouldn’t come off so last-minute. It was just unfortunate that Rollins ended up re-injured when he did, but WWE did well to adjust things and still get the end result desired. As for tonight’s segment, both men are great on the mic, they delivered their side well and then gave us a classic contract signing brawl that puts Rollins over for the moment, but I could see this match going either way.
Speaking of adjusting, WWE has made good with what they have after Shaq VS Show was unceremoniously cancelled. Big Show gets to be part of the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal and can make a big push for being the first two time winner. At the same time, Braun Strowman can regain the momentum he lost in losing to Roman by eliminating a large number of competitors and even be one of the final two for another 1v1 go around with Big Show. Word going around is that The World’s Largest Athlete is considering retirement, so both him going out the winner or losing to “pass the torch” to Strowman make for great moments in what will likely be his last Wrestlemania.
And in regards to “last Wrestlemania”, there is much talk of this being The Undertaker’s last. Given both age and the wear-and-tear on his body, The Deadman can’t do this for much longer, so Roman’s talk of being the one to retire him may be more real than fans would like to admit. The build for this isn’t anywhere near how gripping SmackDown’s Shane VS Styles or Cena-Nikki VS Miz-Maryse builds have been, but we’re still getting the classic Undertaker tropes of graveyard imagery and teleportation into the ring, and despite what fans/haters/smarks think of Roman, he’s at least keeping a consistent character of “The Guy Who Doesn’t Fall for it”.
My Score: 7.5/10