WWE RAW 1.15.18: The Three Key Stories w/Justin C

1. The BRAUN Strowman Hour

The first hour of the show was the Braun Strowman hour. He completely dominated it and came off looking like a star when it was all set and done. Kurt Angle fired him for his actions last week. Of course, Angle let Roman Reigns attempt to kill Braun in an ambulance and let that slide. Braun then went on a rampage backstage. He took out security, he took out people in catering (and ate some cake too), he tipped over a semi-truck, and threw Michael Cole into security guards off the stage. In the end, Stephanie McMahon re-hired BRAUN and put him back in the Universal Title match.

I think BRAUN came out of this whole thing looking great. He is getting over with the crowd and really should be the guy to win the Universal Title at Wrestlemania. And I really thought they were going that way when Kurt fired Braun. But then they went and re-hired Braun and I thought the ending was a bit anti-climactic. They should have kept Braun out of the Universal Title match, had him win the Rumble by stealing someone’s number on their way to the ring, then declare he was fighting Brock at Mania. THAT would have been super bad ass. But instead the WWE decided to just give us one fun hour of TV. It was fine, but it could have been so much bigger.

2. The Miz Continues To Be The Top Performer On RAW

There were a lot of people, myself included, that thought moving the Miz from Smackdown Live to RAW was going to be a huge detriment to his great character development. Thankfully that has been nowhere near the case. And in my opinion, Miz has been the best and most consistent male performer on RAW since the superstar shake-up. His promos continue to be top notch and he delivered another solid one tonight. Miz said he was the spark missing from RAW, not John Cena or Brock Lesnar.

Miz continues to knock it out of the park with his promos and his in ring work is always good. Normally I would advocate for a Universal or WWE Title run here. But as I said last week: Miz should win the Intercontinental Title and keep it for a very long time. Let him break the Honky Tonk Man’s record. Make the IC Title seem like a big deal again. And I think Miz is the exact person that can do that.

3. The Ending To RAW Was Quite Odd

After Seth Rollins defeated Finn Balor (thanks to the CURB STOMP!) to finish RAW, the cameras focused on Balor. And it was kind of weird. Balor sold being hurt/having a concussion as Gallows and Anderson picked him up. If you’re a trained wrestling fan like me you were assuming Gallows and Anderson would turn there. But they didn’t. It just kind of ended with the focus on Balor. Something has to be up with that. It was too odd of an ending for something not to be up. They weren’t stretching for time either because they were already well past the overrun. Could it be the start of a full Finn Balor heel turn? If they are going to keep The Balor Club together it is extremely possible.

Until Next Time,

Justin C

Follow Me On Twitter @JCWonka