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RAW Recap & Review – Episode 1340

WWE RAW
Episode 1340
#RAW

Original Air Date: January 28, 2018
Event Date: January 28, 2018
(aired live)

City: Phoenix, AZ
Venue: Talking Stick Resort Arena

Commentary: Michael Cole, Corey Graves, Renee Young
Ring Announcer: Mike Rome

 

Ring Area
Seth Rollins heads to the ring. Rollins says he said last week that he would win the Royal Rumble, and now he stands here the winner, and he’s headed to Wrestlemania. Rollins promised himself he wouldn’t do it, but he has to. Rollins points at the Wrestlemania sign.

Now Rollins has a choice to make. One choice leads him to SmackDown where he would take on his good friend Daniel Bryan. His other choice leads him directly to suplex city. It’s a difficult choice, and Rollins needs to take some time to think about it. Triple H heads to the ring.

Triple H is glad that Rollins lived his dream and pointed at the sign. He talks about his challenge to Rollins a few weeks ago to step up and take what he wants. Triple H is proud of Rollins. He also tells Rollins that he has to make his championship decision tonight. Rollins has until the end of the night to choose. Rollins begins to speak when Dean Ambrose comes out and heads to the ring.

Ambrose is sick of Triple H and Rollins getting all emotional with each other. Ambrose tells Rollins that he always believed in him, but Triple H has been very selective in his support. Ambrose says Rollins has changed. He’s a “suck up.” Ambrose hopes Rollins wins at Wrestlemania, but he wants him to remember that Ambrose always supported him.

Ambrose also wants a match with Rollins right now. Triple H starts to walk away, so Ambrose wonders if Triple H has to ask permission from his father-in-law first. Triple H calls for a referee.

 

Match 1
Seth Rollins vs Dean Ambrose
(referee: John Cone)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Seth Rollins wins via pinfall after a curb stomp
Time: 9:03 (1 break)

Match Thoughts
Pretty good match. The action was fine, but it really just felt like an exhibition for Rollins. There was no real drama or tensions. It feels like this is just about Rollins putting Ambrose behind him as he heads to Wrestlemania. For that, it was fine if somewhat unremarkable.

 

Ring Area
After the match, Dean Ambrose is upset. During a commercial break, Ambrose puts a chair in the center of the ring and sits down. When the show comes back, Ambrose is interrupted when Nia Jax and Tamina head to the ring.

Jax gets in Ambrose’s face, and the two talk for a bit. Tamina walks around beside Ambrose. When Ambrose faces Tamina, Jax hits Ambrose and knocks him out of the ring. Referees urge Ambrose to leave. As Ambrose heads up the ramp, Alexa Bliss and Mickie James come out and pass by him.

 

Match 2
Women’s Tag Title Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match
Tamina & Nia Jax vs Mickie James & Alexa Bliss
(referee: Chad Patton)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Nia Jax pins Mickie James after a stacked Samoa drop
Time: 6:41 (1 break)

Match Thoughts
This was fine. Like the first match tonight, it was completely unsurprising. The finish was also really obvious, with Alexa climbing up to the top rope for no reason other than to obviously allow Jax to grab her.

 

Backstage
Earlier today, Dasha Fuentes asked Kurt Angle why he requested a match with Baron Corbin. Angle blames Corbin for him no longer being GM of RAW. He also says he’s not worried about being humiliated like he was when he fought Drew McIntyre in November.

 

Match 3
Baron Corbin vs Kurt Angle
(referee: Dan Engler)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Baron Corbin wins via pinfall after Deep Six
Time: 3:56

Match Thoughts
The commentary on this match was horrible. The RAW commentary team just set a very low bar for 2019. They just yelled at each other the entire time about who was the worse GM, something that hasn’t mattered for months. It was awful. And the match itself wasn’t much of anything. Corbin kicked out of the Angle slam and went on to win in unspectacular fashion. This wasn’t a big moment like when Angle faced McIntyre, it was just a footnote to the downfall of Angle.

 

Ring Area
After the match, Corbin hits Angle with End of Days. Then he gloats.

Backstage
A somber Finn Balor receives well wishes from Heath Slater, Rhyno, Apollo Crews, Heavy Machinery, Sasha Banks, and Bayley.

Video
Still images and short video clips recap the Universal Title match last night between Finn Balor and Brock Lesnar.

Ring Area
Finn Balor heads to the ring. He’s not smiling, and he looks like he’s hurting. Balor makes no excuses for his loss last night. Brock Lesnar beat him. Balor will keep his head high though. Last night, Balor made Brick Lesnar believe. Balor is interrupted by Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush as they head to the ring.

Rush says it’s a disgrace that Finn Balor even got a shot at the Universal Title. Balor might have almost beaten Lesnar, but he wouldn’t stand a chance against Bobby Lashley. Lashley is bigger, stronger, and faster than Lesnar. Balor smiles. He says he lasted longer against Lesnar than Lashley’s twelve seconds in the Rumble.

Bobby Lashley attacks Balor. Lashley slams Balor, but he decides he’s not finished. He slams Balor again before holding up his IC Title. Rush takes off his Bobby Lashley t-shirt and lays in on top of Balor.

 

Match 4
The Revival vs Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins
(referee: Darrick Moore)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Dash Wilder pins Curt Hawkins after the Shatter Machine
Time: 2:52

Match Thoughts
Pretty good match. It was very short, but it seemed like it was just a first step on RAW for the newly reformed team of Hawkins and Ryder.

 

Backstage
Charly Caruso asks Daniel Bryan (with Erick Rowan) if he thinks he can beat Seth Rollins at Wrestlemania. Bryan says that if Rollins chooses him tonight, then he will not wait until Wrestlemania. Bryan says he will end all of Rollins’ hopes tonight.

Video
WWE is working with UNICEF Kid Power.

Ring Area
In the ring, Elias says he has been testing the crowd, and they need to be better. They should be giving Elias a standing ovation as soon they hear the first note of his guitar. But it’s too late now. No longer will Elias write songs for the people. All of his songs will be for himself. He has a song now, and he requests that everyone shut their mouths.

Before Elias can play his song, Jeff Jarrett comes out to the stage. Jarrett is still upset that Elias hit him with a guitar last night. Now, Elias has a problem. Jarrett begins to head to the ring, but the Road Dogg comes out to join Jarrett. Road Dogg tells Elias to play wwith himself on his own time. He also has two words for Elias.

Road Dogg then calls for some music. He and Jarrett sing as they head to the ring. As they sing, Elias hits Road Dogg with a guitar. Elias then attacks Jarrett, but Jarrett fights back. Jarrett grabs a guitar, but Elias takes it away and uses it on Jarrett.

Backstage
Dana Brooke tells Natalya that she knows Ember Moon was Natalya’s first pick as a partner before she got hurt, but Brooke won’t let Natalya down tonight. Natalya just wants them both to try their best. Brooke says she is better than Ember, and she’s better than Natalya. Natalya doesn’t respond.

Backstage
Mojo Rawley blames himself (in a mirror) for the mess he’s in. Soon, everyone will see who Rawley really is.

 

Match 5
Women’s Tag Title Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match
Liv Morgan & Sarah Logan w/ Ruby Riott vs Dana Brooke & Natalya
(referee: Rod Zapata)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Liv Morgan pins Natalya with a schoolboy
Time: 2:52

Match Thoughts
This was short, and the whole point seemed to be to sow division between Natalya and Brooke while getting Logan and Morgan into the Elimination Chamber match. For that, it was fine.

 

Ring Area
Ronda Rousey heads to the ring. She gets booed while she talks about her dreams in WWE. Rousey stutters as she thanks Sasha Banks for the match last night. Rousey then points to the Wrestlemania sign and talks about Becky Lynch’s choice. Rousey goes silent. Eventually, Bayley’s music plays, and Bayley comes out to the stage.

Bayley challenges Rousey to a title match here tonight. Rousey seems to accept, so Bayley heads to the ring.

 

Match 6
RAW Women’s Title Match
Bayley vs Ronda Rousey (RAW Women’s Champ)
(referee: John Cone)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Ronda Rousey wins via submission with a cross arm-breaker
Time: 8:58 (2 breaks)

Match Thoughts
Good match. There was a little bit of oddness early in the match when it was unclear what was hurting on Rousey, but the match got a lot more interesting once it really got going. There was some pretty good drama towards the end of the match when Bayley started hitting some big moves on Rousey. It was a unique situation (having Bayley fresh while the champ was clearly hurting from the previous night), and that made this match the best so far tonight.

 

Ring Area
After the match, Rousey offers her hand to Bayley. Bayley accepts, and the two women shake hands. As they look at each other, Becky Lynch comes out and limps to the ring.

Bayley leaves before Becky enters the ring. Lynch says the last time she was on RAW, she dropped Rousey in the middle of the ring. Rousey never came looking for Lynch though, so now Lynch is here to prove that Rousey is not the baddest woman on the planet. Lynch doesn’t need tome to think about her choice. Lynch chooses to face Rousey at Wrestlemania and kick her ass in front of the whole world.

Rousey says she wants to beat the best version of Lynch that has ever existed. She also invokes that name of Nia Jax, saying she can break Lynch’s face as well. The only thing stopping Rousey from killing Lynch with her bare hands is her decision not to do so. She says that she’s been a household name for a decade while Lynch has been The Man for months. Rousey says she is going own Lynch at Wrestlemania.

Backstage
Braun Strowman shakes Seth Rollins’ hand. Strowman tells Rollins to make the right choice and to make it count at Wrestlemania.

 

Match 7
Braun Strowman vs Drew McIntyre
(referee: Chad Patton)

Show/Hide Results

Result: Braun Strowman wins via DQ when Baron Corbin attacks him at ringside
Time: 3:39 (1 break)

Match Thoughts
This match was an excuse for Corbin to come out and attack Strowman. Otherwise, the match was short, and not much happened.

 

Ring Area
After the match, Strowman fights back against both Corbin and McIntyre. Strowman sets Corbin up on the ring steps, but Strowman gets hit by McIntyre with a Claymore kick. Together, Corbin and McIntyre double-chokeslam Strowman onto the ring steps.

Ring Area
Seth Rollins is introduced, but Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman head to the ring instead. Heyman angrily introduces himself and Lesnar. Heyman thinks the premise of tonight’s show is absurd. Rollins’ choice should be easy. He has only one choice, and that’s to face Daniel Bryan. It’s for Rollins’ own good. The last thing Rollins would want to do is to get into a fight with The Beast.

Seth Rollins heads to the ring. Lesnar laughs in Rollins’ face. Rollins attacks Lesnar, but Lesnar hits Rollins with five F5s. Rollins yells at Lesnar, so Lesnar hits him with a sixth F5 as the show ends.

 

Show Impressions
This wasn’t a great show. Seeing Becky was cool, seeing Hawkins and Ryder together was kind of fun, having the Riott Squad qualify for the tag title match was good, and the women’s title match was pretty good, but a lot of the rest of the show felt kind of empty. I know they’re setting up story lines for the next two months or so, but it just felt like nothing really happened tonight. Plus, the matches, for the most part, were quite uninspired.

Match of the Night
Bayley vs Ronda Rousey
This was easily the most interesting match of the night. It wasn’t great, but I did enjoy it.

 

Official results: https://www.wwe.com/shows/raw/2019-01-28

 

 

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