Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Best WWE Raw After WrestleMania Moments Through the Years

A photo of Shawn Michaels retiring on the WWE Raw After WrestleMania.

WrestleMania is the big show of the year; this is a fact. It contains the biggest stars and the best matches and is a source of unmatched anticipation among fans. The Grandest Stage is the focal point, but that is not the only highlight of WrestleMania weekend.

When the Showcase of the Immortals is over, many fans turn their attention to what is regarded as the best WWE Monday Night Raw of the year. The crowd is always hot, and it usually includes some great moments that get the next stage of the year off on the right foot. How great have these moments been? Let’s take a look at some examples below.

The Beast Debuts and Makes His Return (2002, 2012)

Brock Lesnar has his big mitts all over the Raw after WrestleMania in two different decades. We first laid eyes on Lesnar when he came out after WrestleMania X-8 and decimated many superstars. It was a great first impression and set him up for his career.

After conquering the UFC, Lesnar once again shocked us with his appearance. He came out during John Cena’s promo, and F5’d the leader of Cenation. It was a return that no one thought they would ever see. It is one of the loudest pops in WWE history.

Dolph Ziggler Cashes In (2013)

The Show Off will always be the biggest what-if story in WWE. He had the look and the talent to be a huge star, but for some reason, it never gelled the way that many would hope, except for one night.

After a grueling match, for the World Heavyweight Championship, a vulnerable Alberto Del Rio was ripe for the picking. Ziggler picked his spot and cashed in Money in the Bank, becoming a World Champion. The pop was thunderous when Ziggler’s music hit and even louder when he won the match. It was one of the best Money in the Bank moments ever.

Once in a Lifetime Begins (2011)

The main event of WrestleMania 27 was an abject failure. WWE Champion, The Miz, was a secondary character in the program. It did nothing for him, but at least it led to an iconic moment the next night on the Raw after WrestleMania.

Everyone wanted to see The Rock and John Cena. That night, the two met in the ring and, over a great promo, agreed to a match at next year’s WrestleMania. It was an unprecedented event and a dream match for many fans. On that historic night, events were set in motion that led to a once-in-a-lifetime game—well, almost.

The Rock Is Next (2003)

Goldberg was one of the biggest omissions from the Invasion storyline. WWE brought in who they could, but money got in the way, and the WCW original stayed at home—that is, until the night after WrestleMania XIX.

The Rock was in mid-heel promo when that familiar music hit, and the man made his way to the ring. Through the fireworks, he came, and to the ring, he marched. He immediately challenged the Great One, declaring that he was next. It was a surreal moment to see Goldberg in a WWE ring. He was a face that we weren’t sure we would ever see.

HBK Turns Face (1995)

Shawn Michaels’ career took off when he turned heel. He had the talent, but it was his Heartbreak Kid gimmick that made him a star. He kept this persona for a while, but in 1995, fans were clamoring for a face turn. We got that turn on the Raw after WrestleMania XI.

Sycho Sid didn’t take kindly to HBK giving him the night off as his bodyguard. He lost his mind and power-bombed Michaels repeatedly. It gained instant sympathy for Shawn and painted Sid as a monster heel. It gave Shawn the support he needed to become a massively over babyface and led him on the path to his boyhood dream.

Mankind Makes His Debut (1996)

The Undertaker was an unstoppable force in his early career. After his 1991 debut, he carved a path of destruction wherever he went, and no one seemed up to the task of taking him down. That is until a deranged man debuted the night after WrestleMania XII.

A wrestler by the name of Mankind made quick work of Bob Holly before setting his sights on The Undertaker. Mankind felt no pain and was unlike any adversary The Undertaker had faced before. He was the Deadman’s greatest rival. A rivalry started on the Raw after WrestleMania..

HBK Says Goodbye (2011)

The career of HBK may never been matched. His body of work includes the best matches in WWE history. No better athlete was on the roster, and he would outwork everyone. It was a career that earned him a Hall of Fame induction. One that, when over, provided one of the most emotional goodbyes in company history.

After losing his retirement match against The Undertaker, HBK came out and delivered a great retirement speech. In it, he showed how he has matured over his career, and we saw a man who was ready to say goodbye, even though we weren’t. He gave credit to wrestlers, ring announcers, and even the production crew. It was a perfect send-off to a great career.

D-Generation X Gets A New Member (1998)

Following WrestleMania XIV, DX needed some new blood. The group had revolved around Shawn Michaels, but he was gone, and it was time to evolve. Their group had been bordering on babyface territory, and an injection of life was needed. Enter X-Pac.

Former member of The KIiq, Pac has spent a few years in WCW. He was a banner member of the NWO, and it was a huge deal to see him jump ship and join DX. It was one of the first bit defections from WCW and was signaling that the balance of the Monday Night Wars was about to shift.

The Nature Boy Calls It A Career (2008)

Ric Flair has had the greatest wrestling career in history. He has won world championships all over the world and has been a major player in numerous promotions. He has won more world titles than any person in professional wrestling and was a match of the night machine. It was an amazing career that was well appreciated when his final match came about.

The closing segment was dedicated to his remarkable career. Various wrestlers whom he encountered throughout his run made their way to the ring to celebrate The Nature Boy. It was awesome to see the outpouring of love for Flair and his heartwarming speech at that year’s Raw after WrestleMania accented everything perfectly.

More From LWOS Pro Wrestling

Header photo – WWE – Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world. You can check out an almost unlimited array of WWE content on the WWE Network and Peacock.


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