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Raw Review: Daniel Bryan Occupies Raw, More Matches Announced For WrestleMania XXX


Raw on Monday was a huge show as the build to WrestleMania XXX was ramped up. Two more matches were announced for The Show of Shows, and possibly a huge change to the main event.

Hulk Hogan, John Cena and Bray Wyatt promo

Hogan announced the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal that will take place at WrestleMania XXX, which is an excellent way to get more guys on the show, and it has more meaning than a traditional battle royal. Cena comes out to enter the Battle Royal, but The Wyatt Family interrupts. Bray says that pride is a funny thing, because it is a lot like sin, and both Hogan and Cena have fell victim to that. Bray used “Say your prayers and take your vitamins”, and “Hustle, Loyalty and Respect”, in a way to mock both icons. Bray said there are many ways for Cena to look at Wyatt, but if he chooses to look him in the eyes, then Cena will see Wyatt is a god. Cena issues a challenge to Wyatt for WrestleMania. Good segment, Hogan and Cena was unexpectedly corny, but that’s always okay when Hogan is involved.

John Cena vs. Erick Rowan

Hogan was in Cena’s corner. Cena won with a roll-up after Rowan dominated most of the match. Cena did a good job of selling Rowan’s strength as Rowan tossed him around most of the match. Afterwards, Hogan played to the crowd and had Cena join him. Good match, good to see Rowan get the spotlight and look really good in that opportunity.

The Authority promo

All Stephanie here. She apologizes for what happened last week with Daniel Bryan. She says that they should fire him, but they see his value, even if it’s not as high as Batista’s, or Randy Orton’s. She threatens that action will be taken against Bryan if he does not publicly apologize at some point in the night. Steph has been fantastic with her promos the past few months, no exception here.

Ryback pre-taped promo/The Usos vs. Rybaxel

Ryback enters the Battle Royal at WrestleMania, so don’t expect any title shots for Rybaxel.

The New Age Outlaws were on commentary, and Road Dogg is really good at that. Billy Gunn, as usual, was pretty useless.

The Usos dominated the whole way and won with their superkick-jump over the top rope-top rope splash combo. The Usos are a lot of fun, hopefully they get a good meaningful feud over their titles.

Kane and The Shield backstage

Kane is pointing out all the mistakes The Shield have made in recent weeks. He then blames it on when Roman Reigns and Seth Rollins lost the tag titles to Cody Rhodes and Goldust, so he puts them in a match with the Rhodes brothers. Rollins asks Kane if he is just trying to take attention away from the losses he suffered to Daniel Bryan last week. Reigns then says that they will exercise their demons, the Rhodes brothers, or any demons that get in their way, an obvious threat to Kane. The Shield just continue to grow and impress.

Big E pre-taped promo/Big E vs. Jack Swagger

Big E enters the Andre Memorial Battle Royal. This promo actually aired split-screen with the match, so it actually distracted from a near-fall.

Just before the match, Swagger told Cesaro not to get involved. When Swagger got in trouble, Zeb told Cesaro to get involved, but he refused and Swagger lost. Cesaro had a good laugh about this, but Swagger was upset and Zeb took his frustrations out on both men. It’s a shame that Big E continues to be a pawn in two other guys’ feud.

The Undertaker and Paul Heyman promo

After The Undertaker’s entrance, Heyman appears and talks up The Streak. Heyman says he respects and idolizes The Streak as much as anyone because he saw it up close last year, that’s why he hopes that The Undertaker won’t face Lesnar, so that The Streak will stay intact. Heyman is so good, he spoke with a quiver in his voice to sell his fear for The Undertaker, but The Undertaker’s the only man who didn’t buy it. ‘Taker grabbed the mic and tole Heyman to tell Lesnar, that if he shows up at WrestleMania, he will “Rest…In…Peace.” Awesome.

The Shield vs. Cody Rhodes and Goldust

During the match, the crowd was really buzzing as Seth Rollins set Goldust up to take Roman Reigns’ dropkick on the apron. Two things of interest to note: Cody got the hot tag, Reigns has got it in most matches he has been in recently, but not here. Also, Rollins gets the win here after hitting the turnbuckle powerbomb, followed by the Blackout. It was a really good match, but it’s very interesting to see Reigns take a backseat. It’s done to buildup Rollins for The Shield’s breakup, but still interesting.

AJ and Tamina vs. The Bella Twins

Natalya was on commentary, as she will be receiving a title shot tomorrow on a live episode of Main Event on the WWE Network. She was better than expected, but she’s usually really bad, so that’s not saying much. She sold Total Divas more than her title shot.

Good match here, really. The Bellas deserve recognition of how much they have improved. Nikki hit the Rack Attack on AJ for the win. She then grabbed the title and stood over AJ, then Natalya joined in to tease some tension between her and the Bellas.

Daniel Bryan and The Authority promo

Bryan comes out refusing to apologize, wanting his match with Triple H at WrestleMania XXX. He then promises that he will “Occupy Raw” until he gets what he wants. It seemed like a corny speech, until planted fans started jumping the guardrail to join him in the ring. There was about 10 people when WWE went to commercial. When they came back, it seemed like 1000 surrounded Bryan as he stood on the turnbuckle, very impressive visual. The Authority calls for Security to end this spectacle, two guys in suits come out with no plan and they give up very quickly. Triple H calls for the next match to begin, so Damien Sandow comes out, but has nowhere to go so he leaves. Triple H and Stephanie are very upset with him, but Bryan regains their attention. Bryan says they will all leave if they get what they want. Triple H then calmly cuts a very good heel promo. He says that he has protected Bryan the past few months, he held Bryan down because he knew Bryan wouldn’t last at the main event level. He says but if Bryan wants it this bad, he can have the match at WrestleMania, but nobody should feel bad for Bryan after Triple H destroys him.

The Authority begins to leave, but Bryan says that’s not all that he and the people want. He says the people want to see Bryan destroy Triple H, but they also want to see him win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. He then tells Triple H that he wants a stipulation added to their match; if Bryan wins, he gets added to the title match at WrestleMania, as well. Triple H becomes incensed with Bryan and gives him the stipulation as Security is forced to stop him from entering the sea of people at ringside. Awesome segment, awesome outcome. Exactly what the WWE Universe has been waiting for, WrestleMania XXX just got a lot more interesting.

Sheamus vs. Christian in a Memphis Street Fight

Really good match here. Sheamus wins after hitting Christian with the Brogue Kick through a bass drum, it sounds weird but it looked really good. The problem is this has happened so many times, this needs to be it.

Batista, Brad Maddox and Randy Orton backstage

Batista seems ready to take his anger with Daniel Bryan out on Maddox. Maddox is calming him down though, until Orton walks in. He is looking for The Authority, but Maddox informs him that they left. Maddox pleads with both men to put their differences aside and take out Bryan in the tag team main event. Good segment, I’m always disappointed with how little screen time Maddox gets.

Lana and Alexander Rusev promo

More nonsense. This gimmick won’t get over, it’s too late 80s-early 90s.

The Wyatt Family promo

Luke Harper started off and continued to impress with his speaking ability. Bray then started speaking, and he accepted John Cena’s challenge for WrestleMania.

Daniel Bryan and Big Show vs. Batista and Randy Orton

Good match. Tag matches really allow Bryan to show how much he brings to a match. It was incredible to watch this match live or die based on whether or not Bryan was in. At the end, Bryan and Orton were the legal men. Batista went after Bryan, but Show took him out, Orton hit Show with the RKO, then Orton was ready to hit the RKO on Bryan, while Batista was lining up a spear. Bryan sidestepped Batista, so he speared Orton. After a little back-and-forth, Bryan then hit the Knee Plus on Orton for the win. Entertaining finish.

Overall Impression

Two more matches made for WrestleMania. That makes three, The Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar, Triple H vs. Daniel Bryan, and John Cena vs. Bray Wyatt. We also know that Randy Orton will defend the WWE World Heavyweight Championship against Batista, but they may be joined by Bryan if he defeats Triple H. There is also a 30-man battle royal, with Ryback and Big E the first two announced participants for that. So, Monday’s Raw sparked a lot of intrigue in the Road to WrestleMania XXX. Not a great show, but certainly the most important in quite some time.

Tags: Featured Popular RAW WWE

  • Terri

    I just enjoyed the Shield