WWE Raw Review – 3.30.20
Hard to believe, but this is the go-home episode of Raw before Wrestlemania. Usually, there is quite a bit of excitement surrounding this show, but given what is going on in the world, the hype for this year’s “Showcase of the Immortals” is significantly less.
Raw began with a video package hyping the Undertaker/AJ Styles match. Following that video package, Taker cut arguably the best promo in years.
He starts off by calling his opponent “Allen Jones” and then tells Styles that he has heard a lot worse from a lot better. Taker says that while there’s some truth to what AJ has been saying, he was content being a big fish in a small pond 10-15 years ago because he knew he couldn’t hang with the top names in WWE.
Taker then goes on to say AJ crossed the line when he mentioned his wife and then told Styles his wife, Michelle McCool, does the Faith Breaker (aka Styles Clash) than he does.
At the end of the promo, a grave with Styles named etched in it illuminated in the background. Again, this was a FANTASTIC promo from Undertaker.
Shayna Sends a Message:
Becky Lynch was then seen in the parking lot pulling into the Performance Center in her custom-designed truck. After Lynch made her entrance, a replay of the women’s triple threat main event from last year’s Wrestlemania.
After that match aired (still think the ending was terrible), Becky went on to cut a promo on Baszler, saying that she is right that taking the title from Lynch would destroy her, but she can tell that she is starting to get to Baszler.
Becky then brings up Baszler’s real-life friend Ronda Rousey. Lynch states she can see the relief that Shayna would get from beating her because, for once, she would steal Ronda’s spotlight rather than it be the other way around. But if she fails to get the job done, it is right back into Ronda’s shadow.
But, as Becky was finishing her promo, Shayna snuck up behind her and locked in the Kirifuda Clutch. Baszler then swung Becky around, and her head connected with the side of the announcer’s desk.
Things have gotten pretty personal, and these women are chomping at the bit to get in the ring and fight. After holding the belt for nearly a year, Lynch may have met her match.
Black remains locked in:
Aleister Black was in action next, as it took over an hour for WWE to have their first wrestling match on Raw. Black, who is set to face Bobby Lashley (still don’t understand that match) this weekend, made quick work of a local competitor. For Raw being a wrestling show, even in these times, I’d really appreciate some wrestling in the first hour.
Six-man tag team match:
Kevin Owens and the Street Profits were set to take on Seth Rollins and Angel Garza/Andrade. However, Zelina Vega announced Andrade was injured and unable to compete.
Vega replaced the United States champion, with 22-year-old Austin Theory. This weekend Theory will also team up with Garza and battle for the Raw tag team championships.
Even though this six-man tag match intertwined two Wrestlemania matchups, these men had a rather good match. This is the kind of wrestling I would expect to see on Raw every week.
Montez Ford took a rather nasty bump on the outside when he went for a dive, and missed, but landed on the steel part of the entrance ramp.
Owens picked up the win, but Seth was waiting in the weeds and delivered a stomp to his Wrestlemania opponent.
After the break, Owens was on the mic and cut a promo on Rollins, saying that he’s heard otherwise about what Rollins has done for the company.
KO exclaimed this place was built despite him and that from the moment Rollins set foot in that warehouse in Tampa (FCW), he was a nightmare to deal with according to some of the wrestlers in the locker room.
Owens then stated he is aware of his past, and how he took advantage of others helping out (Chris Jericho, Triple H, Sami Zayn). However, Owens pointed out Rollins also seemed to always have backup or found an underhanded way to capture his Wrestlemania moments.
KO finishes off his stellar promo by telling Rollins that neither of their pasts will matter come Wrestlemania, and he will show Seth that he is not a profit, a messiah, or a god because this Saturday, Owens will be the one to burn it down.
Edge makes it personal:
We then saw an excellent video package hyping up the Randy Orton/Edge match this weekend. After that, Edge was backstage to cut a promo. He began by saying Randy is right that Adam Copeland is a junkie for Edge, but it is not about his ego, it is that he loves the feeling that happens in an arena, that explosion when his music hits, that raw connection with the audience because Edge is one of us, a fan.
Edge then goes back to the magic word both he and Randy have used throughout this feud, grit. Edge believes they have different definitions of the word. For Randy, it seems to be being hand-picked and resting on the laurels of his family name.
While Edge’s view of grit is being the kind of man that’ll reach into a hole and pull somebody out that doesn’t deserve it. This obviously is referencing Edge’s story about saving Randy when he first began in WWE.
Edge then says he lights a fire under Randy, and everybody sees it except for him, and the last time Orton scratched being this good was nine years ago, the last time Edge was in the WWE. The Rated-R Superstar finishes off this whale of a promo by telling Orton that he dug himself another hole, and this time he won’t pull him back out, he’s gonna push him so far in that he’ll never get back out.
As I’ve said several times before, this feud is far and away the best-built feud leading up to Wrestlemania. It’s just a shame that we won’t get to see it in a stadium full of WWE fanatics.
A women’s division does exist beyond Lynch & Baszler:
Asuka was next up, who took on Kayden Cross of NXT. The Empress of tomorrow did not take much time to apply the Asuka Lock and pick up the win.
After the break, we saw a video from earlier in the day when Charlotte Flair blindsided her Wrestlemania opponent, Rhea Ripley, outside of the Performance Center.
The Beast on Raw:
Before Brock Lesnar made his final appearance before Wrestlemania, we got a replay of Lesnar’s no holds barred match with Rey Mysterio from Survivor Series. Looking back, that was one of the better matches Lesnar has had over the past year. It’s crazy how, at least to me, Lesnar seems to have better matches with smaller wrestlers.
To close the show, we had Brock with Paul Heyman doing what he does best, talk. Once again, Heyman hypes up Drew McIntyre but then reiterates all of the competition Lesnar has run through in WWE and UFC. But Heyman says at the end of the day when all of these legends got into the ring against a once-ever athlete like Lesnar, they all ended up like everyone else, just being Brock’s bitch.
I was hoping we’d see McIntyre involved in this go-home segment of Raw, but I guess asking for that is too much.
Don’t get me wrong, the promo Heyman cut was good. But, with Wrestlemania this weekend, you’d ideally like to see champion and challenger go face-to-face.
Overall, the promo work on the show I thought was phenomenal. I hope once the world returns to normal, we will see these same level of promos because, over the past few weeks, they have primarily been great.
The only true wrestling match on this show that was any good was the six-man tag team match. As I have stated before, Raw is doing the best they can, given the circumstances, but re-airing two matches may not be the best way to fill time.
With superstars reportedly dropping out of Wrestlemania, give the lesser-known names time to shine. I was glad to see Austin Theory get some time, there should be more of that in the coming weeks, especially if they are going to continue filming in an empty building.
This week I give Raw a 3 out of 5.