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5 Big Takeaways from WWE Monday Night RAW - May 1, 2023: It's May Day for The Bloodline


The WWE Draft and the launch of a new World Championship were important factors on another solid episode of Monday Night RAW. And while The Bloodling angle continues to be the main storyline of the company, these two huge developments have been a nice change of pace for at least a couple of weeks now.

The future of The Bloodline has never been so uncertain, and many questions will be answered at Backlash. And right now? It feels like May is going to be a make-or-break time for the faction. That's something that everyone will be watching closely.

While we regularly reside on the Island of Relevancy, we're getting a little bit of a vacation from it right now. The selection process and the new title have taken center stage in a big way recently. Of course, that won't last much longer. When the dust settles, we will be getting right back to The Bloodline - the most important WWE angle of this century.

For now, however, this transitional phase has been surprisingly fun to watch.

The Red Brand had a good three-hour block this week on USA, but as typically happens, there were several lulls. Even though we should be used to the length of RAW after all these years, there are still a few moments every week that remind us just how much of a marathon it is.

Luckily, this show didn't fall into that trap too often and kept things coming at a decent pace. With it being another WWE Draft episode, there was sure to be a lot of movement and surprising choices. Here are five factors that stood out about this episode of RAW:

#1 - Is it Drafty In Here?

Things started off fast, with Triple H kicking things off in the initial segment of Night 2 of the 2023 WWE Draft. He didn't waste time in getting the FT. Worth faithful fired up. He discussed some of the ground rules to clarify all the roster moves, and The Game talked about the upcoming plans for the new WWE World Championship.

Perhaps there's no woman on a hotter streak in the promotion right now, so picking Smackdown Women's Champion Rhea Ripley was a no-brainer. This will likely result in a title swap with Bianca Belair as the two ladies switch rosters. Austin Theory and Seth Rollins were also announced to be remaining on RAW, so there wasn't a whole lot of turnover here.

Most of the Smackdown selections were also predictable, and the FOX Network usually gets their pick of the litter when it comes to the Blue Brand's featured prime-time performers. Having said that, it was still the perfect way to kick off the show. While some may have been skeptical when Triple H originally announced the decision to shake up the rosters, it seems to have been met with approval by the majority of the WWE Universe,

#2 - The Wise Man Speaks, The Innovator Arrives

The Cerebral Assassin finished just in time for Paul Heyman to come out and grab a microphone. An absolute wizard on promos, we have almost come to take it for granted that The Wise Man is going to deliver another flawless filibuster. He's that good of a talker, and it's one of the reasons why he will go down as one of the greatest managers in professional wrestling history.

Heyman was on point once again here, as he lamented that Roman Reigns should be allowed to compete for the company's new title.

The Bloodline's representative said that it would truly define the term 'undisputed' for The Head of the Table to gobble up a third cham[ionship. Then, Heyman ridiculed the locker room, belittling all the WWE Superstars by saying they were inferior to the Universal Champion.

That didn't sit too well with Reigns' former Shield mate, Seth Rollins. The Architect addressed Heyman and threatened a beatdown. Then, Paul got on the phone with Roman and set up a match for later in the night. Rollins would be taking on the faction's 'problem solver' Solo Sikoa, later on in the show.

More hints here regarding Solo's mysterious standing as a henchman for Heyman. How he's going to factor in at Backlash when he teams with the Usos is making for an interesting side story and icing on the angle.


As Adam Pearce and Shawn Michaels were about to deliver the third round of picks, Brock Lesnar emerged. His music spawned an amazing reaction from the crowd and some cartoonish mugging for the camera by HBK. Or, as Michael Cole might call it: "Vintage Michaels!"

Like he normally does, The Beast meant business. He started off by insulting the crowd, asking them how it felt to see the only real cowboy in the place. That didn't go over too well in The Lone Star State.

It didn't sit well with Pearce, either, who came to the squared circle and implored Lesnar to make his exit.

Someone else was getting tired of Lesnar's act, too. Cody Rhodes distracted The Beast Incarnate with his theme playing. As Brock was looking for him to come down the ramp, The Grandson of a Plumber attacked from behind.

It was a nice bit of payback for Cody and it furthers this storyline between these two. This should result in a win for Rhodes, as he attempts to recover from his WrestleMania loss. But then again, no one expected him to get beaten by Roman Reigns out in Hollywood, so anything is possible. Lesnar isn't known for doing a job for just anyone. However, given Rhodes' level of respect and his stature in sports entertainment, it's likely that Brock would be willing.

(Side Note: While this draft segment featured company regulars Pearce and Michaels, the promotion did another great job paying homage to its past. Such WWE Hall of Famers as Eric Bischoff and Molly Holly along with - returning from this week's Smackdown - Rob Van Dam, Road Dogg, Teddy Long, and JBL, all got great ovations from the audience. While WWE is sometimes criticized for using nostalgia too often, it was perfectly tied into the Draft. A nice tip of the cap, without being overdone.)




#4 - Blood In, Blood Out?

The Usos have been living on The Island of Relevance for quite some time. But now? It's as if the roof has holes in it and the plumbing is leaking. It has often centered around Jey's frequent disobedience, which has been a part of the angle since its inception.

Now, it appears that both brothers are being moved from the penthouse to the outhouse. Their standing is in dire need of repairs, and the only way the pair can get back in Roman Reigns' good graces is to get back their gold.

And even if they do, it still looks like it might be too little, too late. The brothers can't seem to get anything right in the eyes of The Tribal Chief and his wise man. And the fact that they have Jimmy and Jey's own sibling, Solo Sikoa, under their collective thumb spells trouble at Backlash on Saturday.

That's why the events of RAW were so foreboding. In Jimmy's match against Matt Riddle, confusion reigned for the Samoan stars. Jey was eventually ejected from ringside by the ref. That left Jimmy in the ring with The King of Bros, with Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens at ringside.

Those were some long odds. It proved to be too much, as the streak of bad luck continues for the Usos. Jimmy took another loss, and that won't help the team out in the eyes of their leader. The odds are stacked against this legendary duo right now; it will be interesting to see how they respond.

#5 - Solo vs. Seth adds more sizzle to the storyline

One of the favorites to be the very first holder of RAW's new World title, Seth Rollins stepped into the main event with a ton of momentum. In fact, you could argue that The Architect is as over as he's ever been during his illustrious WWE tenure.

Always admired as a great athlete and one of the industry's best in-ring performers, his latest incarnation has taken him to a whole new level. Critics and hardliners may hate his current gimmick, but the WWE Universe eats it up. This kooky character has them singing along to his theme song.

As would be expected, it became the stealth of Seth vs. the strength of Solo, with Rollins selling really well. He's a master at making his opponent look dominant, and he did that here for The Street Champion.

As WWE continues to whet our appetites for the next premium event, it was a perfect storm to close the show. The Usos would come out to assist their brother, which in turn brought out KO, Sami, and Riddle. There was a nice brawl at the end, but you have to think that Reigns won't be happy that Jimmy and Jey got involved here.

All of this should lead to a fantastic go-home edition of Smackdown and then a promising 'B-level' event at Backlash. This isn't a blow away time of their annual schedule, but WWE is regrouping for the remainder of 2023. That showed with another solid effort on RAW.


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