Braun Strowman Replaced – New #1 Contender For The Universal Championship – RAW opened with Vince McMahon arriving at the show, via a limo of course. However, it was Braun Strowman who greeted the fans first. He came out and basically said, long story short, that he’s 100% and will defeat Brock Lesnar at the Royal Rumble. That was basically it. He said no one can stop him, not even Baron Corbin now that he’s no longer in charge. That brought out Corbin himself to say a few words that aggravated The Monster Among Men. After a few exchanged words, Strowman proceeded to chase Corbin backstage. Strowman ran into Elias while looking and Elias told him where Corbin was hiding – in Vince’s limo. Strowman then smashed the window as Corbin escaped from the other side. As Braun was walking away, Vince came up and told Braun that due to the damage he caused on his limo Braun will pay $100,000. Braun then called the limo a piece of crap which Vince didn’t take lightly. Vince said since Braun wants to shout at him and not take it seriously, he will no longer have a shot at the Universal Title at the Royal Rumble event. I guess that was the way to write him off, as it was reported that Braun wasn’t quite cleared for competition. I think this is for the best, hasn’t Braun already lost to Brock like 524 times already? Anyway, Vince McMahon later came out to announce the new number one contender, but he was quickly interrupted by John Cena, Drew McIntyre, Finn Balor and Baron Corbin – they all claimed they deserved a shot. Then a brawl erupted between the four, which led to Vince making a fatal four way match to determine Brock Lesnar’s next challenger. In a match that went roughly 20 minutes, Finn Balor picked up the win and will now go on to the Royal Rumble to face The Beast Brock Lesnar for the title.
Sasha Banks And Ronda Rousey Tension Builds – Sasha Banks became #1 Contender for the RAW Women’s Championship last week, defeating Nia Jax. This week, the RAW Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey and Sasha Banks defeated Nia Jax and Tamina in a tag team match. After Sasha made Tamina tap out, both her and Ronda were interviewed and commented on their Rumble match. Ronda essentially said something that Sasha took the wrong way and The Boss was all of a sudden angry with her, unlike last week when everything was sunshine and rainbows. I think this match is going to be great, looking forward to it.
EC3, Lacey Evans And Heavy Machinery Made Their Respective Debuts (Sort Of) – If you watched RAW tonight and missed the debut of EC3, well, quite frankly, it was easy to miss. As superstars were lining up at Vince McMahon’s door to throw their name in the hat to take Braun’s place at the Royal Rumble, multiple superstars were interviewed, with EC3 being one of them – kind of. When the microphone was offered to EC3, he said nothing and walked away. That’s it. Like EC3, Lacey Evans had a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it debut. As Finn Balor was headed to the ring for his match, Lacey, Mickie James and Dana Brooke were seen having a conversation. Finally, Heavy Machinery showed up tonight during Alexa Bliss’ Moment of Bliss with guest Paul Heyman. Otis Dozovic creepily interrupted and basically hit on Alexa until his partner Tucker Knight came out to calm him down and take him to the back. Looks like we have to wait a bit longer to witness the in-ring debuts of EC3, Lacey Evans and Heavy Machinery on RAW.
Nikki Cross Made Her In-Ring Debut – Unlike the previously mentioned EC3, Heavy Machinery and Lacey Evans, Nikki Cross had a match tonight. Nikki competed in a six women tag team match alongside Bayley and Natayla against The Riott Squad. A little weird, but knowing the WWE, not surprising that she was separated from Sanity. I’m not an enormous fan of Nikki Cross, but I wish her the absolute best on the main roster nonetheless.
New Intercontinental Champion – Dean Ambrose defended his Intercontinental Championship in a triple threat match tonight against Seth Rollins and Bobby Lashley. In a match that wasn’t all that bad in all honesty, Bobby Lashley – with help from Lio Rush – came out the winner and is now the new Intercontinental Champion. This is interesting, as I have no idea where they go from here. Seth is seemingly on his way to the Universal Championship picture with bigger and better things on the horizon. Dean could feud with Lashley and try to regain his title I guess, but that wouldn’t quite make sense, as both he and Lashley are heels and automatic rematches are now off the table. Honestly, I don’t know what to think, nor do I care all that much.
Well, that was Monday Night RAW. See you next time.