WWE Raw results, recap, grades: Brock Lesnar appears, Becky Lynch and Shayna Baszler brawl
Paul Heyman expressed little worry for Lesnar's upcoming matches with Ricochet and Drew McIntyre
With WWE Super ShowDown in Saudi Arabia just days away, WWE Raw remained primarily focused on March's Elimination Chamber event and the ultimate final destination of WrestleMania. WWE champion Brock Lesnar made a somewhat rare appearance on the show, which took part at Bell MTS Place in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, though he did not lay hands on upcoming Super ShowDown opponent Ricochet nor did he directly interact with likely WrestleMania opponent Drew McIntyre.
Two top stars who did get physical on the show, however, were Becky Lynch and Shayna Baszler, who engaged in their first direct confrontation since Baszler took a bite out of Lynch's neck just a few Mondays ago.
Let's take a look now at what went down on the Super ShowDown go-home show Monday night in Winnipeg.
Heyman guarantees future Lesnar victories
Paul Heyman, speaking for Lesnar as always, said "The Beast" needs no catchphrases or any other frills because he reigns as champion whenever he decides dating back to 2002. Heyman said Lesnar owes Ricochet payback for the Royal Rumble low blow that set up the Drew McIntyre Claymore Kick which eliminated a dominant Lesnar from the match. According to Heyman, Lesnar's match with Ricochet at Super ShowDown is one of the most high-stakes contests of Lesnar's career because of the possible repercussions of Ricochet main-eventing WrestleMania should he manage to pull off the upset in Saudi Arabia. Heyman then guaranteed that would not happen, nor would Lesnar lose to McIntyre at WrestleMania as he continues his title reign "forever."
Drew McIntyre took part in a sit-down interview later in the show where he was asked about Heyman's earlier comments. McIntyre said he ultimately doesn't care about Lesnar's match with Ricochet, saying all that matters is that he will main event WrestleMania. McIntyre recalled his WWE debut years ago and Vince McMahon anointing him a future world champion, something he has yet to accomplish in his career. McIntyre said his three years outside WWE led him to realize he had no one to blame for being remembered as "an idiot playing air guitar" but himself. He added that when he left WWE after being fired, he was a boy but he returned as a man, and is now seeking to be more than someone viewed as just potentially great.
On one hand, what aired with Heyman and Lesnar was just a standard Lesnar TV segment. Heyman promised awful things would happen to Lesnar's future opponents and ran though his standard shtick. On the other hand, Heyman remains outstanding at that exact shtick. Lesnar, for better or worse, is never overexposed, and any possible weakness on the mic has been hidden behind Heyman's golden tongue for years. McIntyre's interview was maybe the best look into him as a man that WWE has managed to air since placing him into the hugely-important position of WrestleMania main event star. Did anything that aired add anything to Lesnar's upcoming matches with Ricochet and McIntyre? Nothing at all. That doesn't mean they weren't a couple of entertaining bits of pro wrestling television, though. Grade: B
Becky Lynch and Shayna Baszler brawl
A contract signing was held for the Raw women's Elimination Chamber match. However, only five competitors were in the ring with Jerry Lawler, with Shayna Baszler, who had been confirmed as in the arena, missing. After Asuka demanded to know where Baszler was, Lawler suggested that maybe the former NXT champion was running late. As the rest of the competitors were signing the contract, Baszler's music hit and she walked to the ring through the crowd.
Baszler signed the contract and stared down the rest of the competitors before Natalya got in her face. Asuka shoved Natalya down and told Baszler "bite me." Liv Morgan brawled with Ruby Riott before Natalya took Asuka down as Baszler looked on at the chaos while smiling and clapping. Then, Becky Lynch's music hit and the Raw women's champion made her way to the ring before immediately attacking Baszler. Officials were eventually able to separate the two as the show went to commercial.
Lynch got some measure of revenge on Baszler, but not in a way that is likely to satisfy her in the short or long term. Yes, she got some shots in but so did Baszler, and things couldn't be settled in a matter of moments. Then again, Lynch should not get pure revenge any time soon. Baszler is a new type of threat to Lynch's dominant run, and it should not be an easy task to physically retaliate by charging in head first. Any Lynch opponent for WrestleMania other than Baszler would be a clear misstep. Grade: B
What else happened on Raw?
- Randy Orton opened the show with an in-ring promo. Orton again issued an apology for his emotions "coming unbalanced" in recent attacks on Edge and Matt Hardy. Kevin Owens eventually interrupted the promo, talking about idolizing Edge before he was signed to WWE and challenging Orton to a match. Orton accepted before saying, "but not right this minute" and leaving the ring.
- Angel Garza def. Humberto Carrillo via pinfall after a victory roll. Before the match, Zelina Vega said Garza's "unfinished business" with Carrillo was putting his cousin in his place before taking the "top spot" on Raw. Late Vega distraction helped lead to Garza's win in a solid showcase match for both men.
- Ricochet def. Luke Gallows via pinfall with the Recoil followed by a Shooting Star Press. Paul Heyman was watching the match from backstage ahead of Brock Lesnar's title defense against Ricochet at Super ShowDown.
- Aleister Black def. Erick Rowan via pinfall after two Black Mass kicks. Prior to the match, The OC put a backstage beating on Black as a "reminder" of who the team is and what they're capable of. A battered Black eventually threw Rowan into the ring steps, sending Rowan's covered cage flying. After Rowan violently attacked Black, he fell victim to the distraction of recovering the cage and moving it back to safety, allowing Black to recover and hit Black Mass twice for the win. After the match, Black vowed revenge on AJ Styles in a match on next week's Raw.
- Bobby Lashley def. R-Truth via pinfall after a spear.
- Angelo Dawkins def. Murphy via disqualification after Seth Rollins interfered moments into the match.
- Seth Rollins def. Montez Ford via pinfall after a stomp. This match began immediately after Dawkins vs. Murphy, with both men ejected from ringside shortly after the things got started.
- Randy Orton def. Kevin Owens via pinall after a quick count from the referee. During the match, Rollins, Murphy and AOP surrounded the ring. Eventually, The Street Profits and Viking Raiders ran down and brawled with Rollins' crew to leave the match back to Orton vs. Owens, though Rollins made one final attempt to run back in and interfere. The referee then gave a sudden, very quick three count to end the match in Orton's favor. Rollins immediately grabbed two ringside chairs and slid them in to Orton and implored him to do "what you know you want to do." Owens was able to recover and grab a chair before Orton could strike, but the referee who had executed the quick count disarmed him. Owens then attacked the official and ripped open his striped referee shirt to reveal a Seth Rollins t-shirt. Owens hit the ref with a Stunner and a powerbomb through a table to end the show.
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