Following a ratings collapse for both Monday Night Raw and SmackDown LIVE last week, it became clear that the WWE may enter a panic and do something to boast the ratings back up. With that said, the move was made to kick off the show with “The Big Dog” himself, but he certainly wasn’t the only SmackDown LIVE roster member to do so. Here’s the Raw highlights:
Raw Highlights Rundown
Vince McMahon Introduces “The Wild Card Rule”
While everyone was prepared to hear the music of Roman Reigns to kick off the show, it was instead the Chairman, Vince McMahon. Vince would head to the ring and make it be known that this would be a Raw no one would ever forget. As soon as he looked to continue, “The Big Dog” would finally make his way to the ring and bring up how months ago while he was gone, it was said that the WWE Universe was in charge now, not the McMahon’s. So, for now on, he would only listen to them and no one else. Who would follow would be Daniel Bryan, returning after a month of hiatus which he would account to being in solitude while trying to understand how he lost the WWE Championship to Kofi Kingston. And of course, this would lead to Kingston appearing on Monday Night once again with WWE Championship around his waste and gunning for Bryan. He would tell Bryan to just ask if he wanted a rematch so bad, because he is sick of being told he wasn’t championship worthy. Vince would happily take credit for the idea of SmackDown stars going to Raw every week and Raw going to SmackDown LIVE every week, announcing “The Wild Card Rule” which would send three stars at any given time from each show to surprise the live crowd week in and week out. Drew McIntyre would enter the fold, saying that if no one in the back would shut this SmackDown stuff down, he would. Vince would then set up two matches for later in the night. A WrestleMania rematch between McIntyre and Reigns and another WrestleMania rematch between Kingston and Bryan for the WWE Championship. And interesting start to a show that unfortunately could not deliver all throughout.
Rollins and Styles Continue Their Rivalry
As the two main matches of the show were made, AJ Styles would make his way to the ring to confront Vince McMahon next. He would bring up and discuss how just after he finally gets drafted to Raw, “The Wild Card Rule” entered the fold. Styles would the bring up how Reigns coming over became unfair to him since that was Seth Rollins’ buddy. This would trigger the Universal Champion as Rollins would be on a mission as he’d make his way to the ring. Rollins would call out Styles, questioning why he built SmackDown when it has been around for 20 years and 1000 episodes. Styles and Rollins would discuss last weeks contract signing and as it would get heated, Vince would step in and announce that these two would compete tonight… but the catch would be as partners.
Seth Rollins / AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin / Bobby Lashley
These two remained heated as Baron Corbin and Bobby Lashley made their ways to the ring to face the Universal Championship opponents. For much of the match, these two men would compete together as a pretty solid tandem, more so trying not to lose than anything else. However, as the match came to a close, the Universal Champion would be in control after hitting a Superkick on Corbin. As he would prepare to “Burn It Down” with The Stomp, Styles would hit Corbin into Styles, which would lead to Styles trying to hit the Phenomenal Forearm on Corbin, but instead hitting Rollins. Styles would get to his feet and not look shocked, but instead, walk away from the matchup. This would allow Corbin to hit the End of Days on Rollins and pin the Universal Champion. It is clear that the respect between these two competitors is diminishing more and more, as Styles takes on the role of the heel seemingly and Rollins looks to take down his first challenger in Styles at Money in the Bank.
Firefly Fun House: Episode 3
Bray Wyatt was back once again to make the world wonder what would be next in the Fun House. To say the least, we saw the death of a friend in the Fun House and a picnic that would make anyone worry what was next for Wyatt. Regardless, it can only continue to grab the eye of the viewer while everything else does not. Here’s the third edition of Firefly Fun House:
The Story So Far: Becky Lynch vs Lacey Evans
Lacey Evans would welcome all the Raw Women’s Money in the Bank competitors to ringside to watch her match as she would hit the Women’s Right on her opponent for a quick victory. She would then put them on notice that when she wins the Raw Women’s Championship, they better not cash-in on “The Lady of the WWE”. This would get the attention of Becky Lynch, who would go straight to the ring and enter another brawl with Lacey Evans. Evans would eventually escape, but this rivalry continues to lead to less words and more fighting, which is a good look for this feud as they continue to build toward their story finish at Money in the Bank.
The Story So Far: The Miz vs Shane McMahon
— WWE (@WWE) May 7, 2019
The Miz and Shane McMahon’s feud would continue last night as The Miz would sit by Shane’s dressing room all night long. Finally, Shane would appear but only to attack Roman Reigns to disrupt his match with Drew McIntyre. The Miz would sprint to the ring with a steel chair in hand and chase The Miz through the crowd and into backstage. As Miz would run after him, Shane would manage to hide around the corner, and it’d look that he could get away from his rival. Charly Caruso would attempt to get an interview, but Shane would look to get to his limo and escape. The Miz would instead find Shane and attack him with the chair. The two would battle before Shane would hit Miz with a low blow and manage to escape. The rivalry only continues to heat up between these two as the Steel Cage match moves closer.
Raw MVP: WWE Championship Match
Daniel Bryan would wrestle his first match since WrestleMania as he would get his WWE Championship rematch against Kofi Kingston in the main event of Raw. Yes, two SmackDown stars battled in the main event of Monday Night Raw. These two would far and away have the best match of the night, showing their great chemistry inside the ring once again. Bryan would attack the left arm of the champion all match long, preparing him for the LeBell Lock later on in the match. The self-proclaimed “Planet’s Champion” would dominate much of the match as it’d seem that Bryan would win back the WWE Championship and bring back the hemp title. Bryan would lock in the LeBell Lock finally as it seemed there would be no hope for Kofi Kingston. Kofi would ultimately get to the rope and show the heart of a champion. The final segment of the match would see Daniel Bryan preparing for the Running Knee in which Kofi would miss and go for the Trouble in Paradise, which Bryan would then counter into the LeBell Lock attempt. This would be fought off by the champion, who would roll it into a Trouble in Paradise to successfully defend his championship and end Monday Night Raw on top.
With the Fox deal coming closer and closer, SmackDown LIVE will have to get their ratings back up. The question is for tonight is simple. How does the show improve and who from Monday Night Raw will come on by as part of “The Wild Card Rule”? Be sure to check back tomorrow for the highlights.
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