It’s time for another RAW In A Nutshell, and this one has a simple mission: ramping up for WrestleMania.
Because, unless you missed it, Elimination Chamber has concluded.
There isn’t another premium live event left between now and WrestleMania.
Which is why, beginning tonight, we can expect the red brand (and the blue one on Friday) to begin ramping up.
Oh sure, we know the big title matches. Those are the easy ones.
So then what needs ramping up for? How about the rest of the card.
The mid-card, the special attractions…after all, we are talking about a two night show, so there needs to be a few more matches.
And, if I were a betting man-and I am not-I would say that we see things beginning to be ramping up for WrestleMania, starting this week on RAW.
So, let’s not delay any further…it’s time for…
RAW In A Nutshell: Ramping Up For WrestleMania
Let’s crack open this Nutshell and see what happens!
Best Match of the night:
Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens versus RK-Bro.
Now, instead of just a regular tag title match, it becomes a triple threat.
Worst match of the night:
Rhea Ripley versus Niki A.S.H.
Think this one felt like a blow-off, way too short and kind of almost meaningless.
Not a fun three minutes or so. I wouldn’t mind if somehow we got the old Niki back…
Crowd Chants of the Night:
Seriously…the fans are eating up baby face Brock right now, aren’t they?
Star of the Night
Now, this is a tough one.
I could go with Brock, who was strong (as was Heyman) to open the show.
Then again, Rollins and Owens wrapped the show up by getting in on the RAW tag title scene.
Honestly, I could even throw Edge into the mix.
See what I mean? I feel like we had a lot of strong showings this evening.
Jobber of the Night:
I guess, by virtue of his loss to Damian Priest, that can be Shelton Benjamin.
Or, really, perhaps Reggie, for doing the job for Dana?
Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:
In a bit of a stunner, it looks like a March 5th Madison Square Garden show could be pivotal.
It is a Saturday house show, and it has been announced (and discussed on RAW) that Lesnar will be defending his WWE Championship.
Now, the current plan is the opponent is Lashley, but that seems unlikely if the shoulder surgery reports are accurate. Those indicated that he’d miss upwards of four months.
The popular guess here would be Cody Rhodes…but his return to the company should happen on a live broadcast.
LOL Moment of the night:
Who would have thought an actual kiss could seal a match…
— WWE (@WWE) February 22, 2022
Well, there could have been a few subtle teases tonight.
If you follow the social media buzz, and/or remember a certain free agent’s early run with WWE, “dashing” has a connection to Cody Rhodes.
“Someone who comes from a fighting family, a pioneer, someone who’s very … DASHING!”
— WWE (@WWE) February 22, 2022
And, unless you didn’t know Logan Paul was going to be The Miz’s tag partner, the talk leading up to that reveal sounded quite similar to describing Cody.
Then you have Edge, with his WrestleMania open challenge…seemingly begging for a Phenomenal challenger.
And then there was Finn Balor, returning to RAW and teaming up with Tommaso Ciampa. Nice match, too.
The evening gave me two iffy moments.
Ripley and Niki A.S.H, and then Damian Priest versus Shelton Benjamin.
Rhea needs to do more and get back to the top. Damian…either he’s turning, or dropping the belt.
Lots to love, from start to finish.
Seems like the creative team recognizes we have a month or so until WrestleMania, and they need to get a strong card established.
We saw quite a few either locked in, or the groundwork for them established.
After the final bell:
Overall, a solid show.
No, not the best RAW ever…but that is fine.
It was a strong show, did what it had to do.