With the Royal Rumble in the books, it was up to Monday Night Raw to answer some of the many follow up questions. We appear to have got the big ones answered, though they were pretty easy to see.
Another good episode of Monday Night television programming, quite a few storylines were advanced in pretty sensible fashion. We saw a fantastic match, and some qualifying bouts as well.
Here are five of my takeaways from the Raw after the Rumble.
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5. The Riott Squad and Nia Jax & Tamina Qualify For the Tag Title Match
In three weeks, we will have the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. One of the main draws for the 2019 rendition will include the Women’s Tag Team titles. With three teams from Raw and three from Smackdown, that match promises complete chaos.
Of course, to logically decide the competing teams, it makes sense to have qualifying matches take place. The duo of Nia Jax and Tamina beat Alexa Bliss and Mickie James, and the Riott Squad (Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan) got the win over Natalya and Dana Brooke.
The outcome of the two matches were never in doubt, as WWE only has so many established women’s tag teams. Jax and Tamina are cringy to watch, and the Riott Squad are improving, so it will interesting to see the teams interact inside of the Chamber.
4. Finn Appears to Be An Intercontinental Title Contender
Finn appeared oddly chipper about losing his match with Brock Lesnar on Sunday. Instead of calling out the Universal champion about getting lucky and playing mind games, Bálor seemed perfectly fine with finishing in second place in that match. I’m not a fan of losing a major contest like that, then coming out with smiles the following night, like John Cena.
He was interrupted by Intercontinental champion Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush. They talked about how Lashley is bigger and better than Lesnar, so Bálor wouldn’t stand a chance against him. The IC champion proceeded to beat him down over and over again.
On one hand, going from a major match with Lesnar to a potential feud with Lashley is a definite step down. However, it’s better than what I feared – which was a free fall down to a pre-show level rivalry. The build up should be pretty good, so I won’t crap on this feud… for now.
3. Ronda Rousey Barely Survives Bayley In An Incredible Match
Ronda Rousey came out to speak on her great match with Sasha Banks, but the crowd made it impossible for her to get a word in, as she was showered in “boos”. Luckily for her, Bayley came down and asked for a title match.
This bout was almost as good as the aforementioned Royal Rumble match. Bayley took Rousey to her limit, much like her partner did. Taking advantage of the champion’s injured knee, Bayley locked in a REALLY nice looking kneebar that nearly got the submission. However, Rousey eventually got the tap out victory with her signature Armbar.
Bayley proved here that she (much like Banks) can more than hold her own against top competition. We should see plenty of Women’s title matches involving Bayley in the future.
2. Becky Lynch Officially Makes Her Decision
Following the Raw Women’s title match, 2019 Women’s Royal Rumble winner Becky Lynch made her appearance to a ridiculous ovation from the crowd. The Irish Lass Kicker is still without a doubt the hottest character in WWE right now.
She made no bones about her decision, as she laid out the challenge to Ronda Rousey for Wrestlemania. This is a matchup that should be the main event for the grand stage – no excuses.
1. Lesnar Decimates Rollins
Much like with Becky Lynch, there wasn’t really any doubt who Seth Rollins would decide to face at ‘Mania. Given their history (Lesnar never got a clean rematch when he cashed in his briefcase at Wrestlemania 31), that is a neat story they can play off of.
Paul Heyman was with the champion in the ring when he said it would be in Rollins’ best interest if he challenged Daniel Bryan. That would be a fantastic match for sure, but Rollins appeared to make his decision by attacking Lesnar – big mistake.
The Beast Incarnate laid out the Architect with FIVE F-5’s. Rollins wouldn’t stay down, however, as he challenged Lesnar with “is that all you got?” before Brock took him to town with one more finisher.
This is a great way to showcase Rollins as a gutsy underdog, although it’s extremely unrealistic in the WWE world for him to not be unconscious after three F-5’s, let alone five. Nevertheless, the buildup to this huge title match will be something to keep an eye on for sure.
Those are my takeaways from the Monday Night Raw following the Royal Rumble! Be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments section, and share this article with fellow wrestling fans. Thank you very much for reading!