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WWE Raw Review 05/02/2024

Hello everyone, I am one half of your Irn Bruiserweights bringing you your RAW Review. So let's get into it.


Say it with me: and then everything changed, as Royal Rumble winner Cody Rhodes said that he would not be challenging Roman Reigns for the WWE Title at Wrestlemania. Instead, it appears that The Rock of all people will be getting the shot. While that’s a huge deal, the fans are not exactly thrilled with the change and it has to be addressed this week.


We open with a long recap of the Rhodes/Rock/Reigns segment from Smackdown.



Here is Seth Rollins to get things going. He does his catchphrases and makes a Rock reference, which gets the fans booing again. Seth: “I sense that you guys want Cody.” Well, Rollins does too, so he invites Cody out to the ring. Cody asks what the fans want to talk about and we get a ROCKY SUCKS chant. Cole: “Is it 1996 all over again?” Seth: “I didn’t expect to hear that tonight.”



Rollins talks about how he needs this match with Rhodes as well because he needs to know if he’s better than he was when they did this the first time. He gets right to the point: are they going to fight at Wrestlemania? Before Cody can answer, cue Drew McIntyre to interrupt. McIntyre: “I think I speak for everybody when I say what the h***?” He and Rollins both hate Punk and it was time for the two of them to be talking about going to Wrestlemania.



The fans seem to like that and Rollins even has a shirt commissioned…..which he reveals as himself laughing at a tombstone for Punk’s Wrestlemania main event (that’s freaking brilliant). Cody tells McIntyre to finish the story and even says don’t let your dad down. Rollins says McIntyre doesn’t have to go that far, but why does McIntyre think he’s getting the title shot if Cody isn’t the challenger?



They’ve done that twice and McIntyre lost. Rollins: “Didn’t you lose to him three times?” McIntyre talks about how it should be the best man winning but does not stop to cut off Rhodes. McIntyre headbutts Rollins down and Cody decks McIntyre without much trouble. So they didn’t officially announce anything for Cody, which feels like a way to stretch this out which very well may be false hope to avoid some of the booing (which is already here).



Match 1 - Imperium vs. Creed Brothers vs. DIY vs. New Day


The winners move on to face Tyler Bate/Pete Dunne on Smackdown for the title shot at Elimination Chamber. Ciampa takes over on Woods to start but it’s Kingston coming in with a springboard high crossbody. Woods’ fist drop gets two and it’s back to Kingston to work on Ciampa’s arm. Kaiser comes in for the double dropkick to Kingston and we take a break. Back with Kingston dropping Kaiser and the tag brings in Woods as the pace picks up.


The Honor Roll connects and Woods superkicks Vinci. Gargano tags himself in for the slingshot spar and an assisted Sliced Bread takes down Brutus. DIY hit slingshot dives onto the Creeds and we get the applause. Kingston dropkicks both of them to the floor but gets beaten down by Imperium, with Gargano making the save. Julius flip dives onto all of them Ciampa White Noises Woods onto the pile to leave everyone down as we take another break.



Back with Ciampa getting the worst of a Tower of Doom, followed by Brutus moonsaulting Kaiser for two. We hit the parade of strikes until Brutus ankle locks Vinci. Julius cuts off some people with belly to belly suplexes, including one to Woods and Ciampa at the same time. A bunch of people make the save and everyone is down again. The Brutus Ball takes out a bunch of people on the floor but Ciampa tags himself back in. Meet In The Middle hits Vinci for the pin at 17:55.



Official Winners - DIY


Official thoughts - Sometimes the best thing to do is let a bunch of people go out there and do a bunch of wild stuff until someone gets the pin. DIY vs. Bate/Dunne should make for a good match and it could go either way for the title match. Heck of a way to fill in part of the show here though, even if asking us to believe that the referee remembered who was legal for the tag after the melee is a bit much.


Shayna Baszler is ready for Becky Lynch.


Becky Lynch is ready for Shayna Baszler.


Match 2 - Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match: Becky Lynch vs. Shayna Baszler


They fight over arm control to start until Lynch has to escape the Kirifuda Clutch. They go outside where Baszler kicks her in the head and kicks the hand against the steps. We take a break and come back with Lynch striking away despite having a banged up arm. A running knee gives Baszler two but Lynch is back with a missile dropkick.



Baszler goes after the arm again, this time tying it in the ropes and then into Lynch’s gear. That astonishingly doesn’t work and Lynch pulls her off the top so they can strike it out again. Lynch can’t get the Disarm-Her but she can get the Manhandle Slam to put Baszler away at 12:38.


Official Winner - Becky Lynch


Official thoughts - This needed to be five minutes shorter and the extra length hurt it a good bit. The biggest problem here was there was no reason to believe that Baszler had a real chance straight up against Lynch, which made the match feel that much longer. The match wasn’t particularly good, but at least it got Lynch into the Chamber for the first time (it helps when you’ve been champion so many times).


Liv Morgan says no one is about her business but next week, her qualifying match is about revenge.


Shinsuke Nakamura attacked Cody Rhodes at a live event. Tonight, it’s a bullrope match.


Drew McIntyre has been fined for attacking Seth Rollins and Adam Pearce will double it if he keeps wearing that Punk shirt.



Rhea Ripley calls out Nia Jax but Adam Pearce comes to the ring to say the match has been made for Elimination Chamber. Cue Jax to beat Ripley down.



We look at Bayley challenging Iyo Sky for the Smackdown Women’s Title at Wrestlemania.


Match 3 - Akira Tozawa and Maxxine Dupri vs. Ivar and Valhalla


Valhalla sends Maxxine into the corner to start and Maxxine can’t quite get a sunset flip. She also can’t quite time a handspring elbow either but a double high crossbody puts Iva down. Maxxine flirts with Ivar to no effect so commentary talks about Medieval Times. A super World’s Strongest Slam finishes Tozawa at 2:00. This was bad.



Official Winners - Valhalla and Ivar


We look back at R-Truth being kicked out of Judgment Day.


Judgment Day is talking about Rhea Ripley when R-Truth comes in. JD McDonagh wants to jump him but has a match and leaves with Dominik Mysterio. R-Truth thinks last week was a pre-initiation and Finn Balor walks away. Priest does as well, but R-Truth finds a box of shirts that gives him an idea.



Match 4 - JD McDonagh vs. The Miz


Before the match, Miz talks about R-Truth being on the line between genius and crazy. Judgment Day attacking R-Truth was a declaration of war though and it’s time to fight. McDonagh (with Dominik Mysterio in his corner) stomps away in the corner to start and hits a knee to the face.


Back up Miz knocks him to the floor, setting up a suplex from the timekeeper’s area to the floor. We take a break and come back with McDonagh hitting a standing moonsault for two….and here is R-Truth to throw the shirts to the crowd. The distraction lets Miz get his boots up to block a top rope moonsault and Miz kicks away in the corner. A crossbody gives Miz two and he takes out Mysterio for a bonus.



R-Truth puts a shirt around Mysterio’s arms to tie him up, allowing Miz to get in a big boot. The distraction lets McDonagh hit a headbutt into a moonsault for two so R-Truth whips out McDonagh’s cut of the merch money. Works for McDonagh, who gets hit with the Skull Crushing Finale for the pin at 9:44.


Official Winner - The Miz


Official thoughts - There was a lot to this but it wasn’t exactly great action. What matters here is the fact that R-Truth continues to be one of the most over people in all of WWE today. He gets a reaction no matter what he is doing and it’s great to see him getting this kind of reaction. I could go for seeing more of Miz/R-Truth vs. Judgment Day, perhaps for the titles in a Wrestlemania match.


Imperium makes sure that everything is prepared for Gunther’s celebration of being Intercontinental Champion for 600 days. Adam Pearce says it’s cool, and here is Bron Breakker for a meeting. Imperium does not look pleased.



We look back at CM Punk having tricep surgery last week.


Here is Imperium for Gunther’s celebration. Gunther says no one should be surprised that we are here for this celebration. He doesn’t know why he’s here though, because every milestone is a formality anyway. The fact of the matter is he is running out of competition so who is left to challenge for this title?


Cue Jey Uso with the full dancing entrance, which Gunther calls a simple gesture for a simple audience. He doesn’t like this disrespect though, even if Jey is one half of the best teams ever. It makes sense too as you get all the glory for only 50% of the work. Uso lists off his resume (incorrectly saying he was in the first tag team to main event Wrestlemania) and says he wants the title shot.



Gunther likes his moxie and threatens to beat Jey back to the days when people couldn’t tell the Usos apart. Gunther: “UCE!” The fight is on with New Day making the save to chase Imperium off. This is a perfectly logical next challenger for Gunther and Jey winning the title does not feel out of the question. That being said, Gunther is adding some great quips on the mic, just in case he doesn’t have enough tools so far.


Shinsuke Nakamura wants to hurt Cody Rhodes.


Match 5 - Women’s Tag Team Titles: Kabuki Warriors vs. Katana Chance and Kayden Carter


The Warriors are defending and Chance goes after Asuka’s bad ribs to start. The champs are knocked to the floor and we take an early break. Back with Carter fighting her way out of trouble and handing it back to Chance. Asuka gets draped over the middle rope in the corner for some knees to the ribs, setting up the After Party for two. Sane breaks up the Keg Stand though and an Insane Elbow/reverse DDT combination finishes Chance at 9:48.



Official Winners - STILL Woman’s Tag Team Champions - Kabuki Warriors


Official thoughts - The problem here was outside of Bayley interfering to cost the Warriors the titles, there was little reason to believe they were losing the titles. Chance and Carter don’t feel like they’re on the same level and it was showing here. They can do some high flying stuff, but the Warriors feel like far more well rounded stars, both on their own and as a team.


We get a sitdown interview with Sami Zayn in an empty arena. Zayn talks about getting close but not quite making it. He pulled him aside and said he was like Rocky Balboa, which makes him believe that he’ll be a champion one day. It’s about proving to himself and the people that they should have believed in him.


Match 6 - Cody Rhodes vs. Shinsuke Nakamura


Bullrope match and you win by pinfall or submission. The rope is the same one Dusty and Dustin used in their bullrope matches over the years. Nakamura jumps him to start but Cody takes over on the floor as we take a break less than a minute in. Back with Rhodes pulling him into the post but Nakamura uses the rope to break up a springboard.


Nakamura chokes with his boot and hits a running knee to the ribs for two. Cody is back with a dropkick to the knee and Figure Four goes on, only to have Nakamura use the bell for the escape. We take another break and come back again with Rhodes hitting the snap powerslam.


The Cody Cutter gets two and they slug it out until Nakamura kicks him in the head. There’s the reverse exploder suplex but the Kinshasa is countered into a Pedigree for two. Back up and Nakamura uses the mist but the blind Cody hits Cross Rhodes for two more. Kinshasa is blocked and Rhodes hits him low with the rope, setting up Cross Rhodes for the pin at 16:43.



Official Winner - Cody Rhodes


Official thoughts - This felt like a house show main event and that is likely because they’ve headlined house shows with it for the last few weeks. The good idea here was to have Rhodes get a nice win to give the fans something to cheer about. The fans want to cheer Rhodes right now and it would go a long way to calm them down if he gets to beat up a rival like he did here.


Drew McIntyre runs in to jump Rhodes to end the show. Those two could have a heck of a fight at Elimination Chamber.



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