Heading into Raw on Monday night, the only advertised segment was a match between United States champion Theory and Cody Rhodes with the title on the line. The match would not see a clean finish, however, thanks to interference from Seth Rollins.
Rollins was still biter over having lost to Rhodes at both WrestleMania and WrestleMania Backlash. The attack concluded with a stomp on the commentary table and Rhodes having to deal with the fact that he was cheated out of the championship because of Rollins' interference leading to a disqualification.
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Seth Rollins screws over Cody Rhodes
Theory cut a promo saying the late-notice match with Cody Rhodes for the United States championship was no problem for him. Theory said he didn't care about Rhodes, the past or respecting history because nothing matters but the future. Rhodes, of course, would later describe his own intentions to dethrone Theory and become champion.
United States Championship – Cody Rhodes def. Theory (c) via disqualification after interference from Seth Rollins. Rhodes appeared moments from winning the title when Rollins ran in and attacked Rhodes. The disqualification meant that Theory would retain his title. Rollins continued his attack after the match, eventually hitting Rhodes with a stomp on the commentary table. Rollins repeatedly screamed that Rhodes would "never take anything" from him ever again.
A classic case of WWE booking themselves into a corner. Rhodes winning the title here made no sense but Rhodes couldn't eat a clean loss. That left WWE needing the obvious cheap finish to the only match they announced heading into the show. It's not an ideal situation, by any means. That said, it's hard to get mad at classic professional wrestling booking. The bigger problem is that there's no real reason to want to see Rhodes vs. Rollins continue. Their matches have been very good but Rhodes has won them both. Why should anyone care to see it again? That, however, is where we're heading. Grade: B-
What else happened on WWE Raw?
- Raw Tag Team Championship – RK-Bro (c) def. The Street Profits via pinfall to retain the titles. RK-Bro were out to open the show when the Profits entered the scene, taking a shot at RK-Bro for losing their six-man tag match against The Bloodline at WrestleMania Backlash. This led to an impromptu tag match that was won by the champions when Riddle countered a Montez Ford frog splash with an RKO.
- Rhea Ripley def. Liv Morgan via submission with a reverse Texas cloverleaf. The match came after a promo where Edge, Damian Priest and Ripley explained her joining the group, with Edge saying he told Ripley she was wasting her potential.
- Finn Balor def. Damian Priest via disqualification after interference from Edge. The match started after Ripley vs. Morgan and Edge snuck into the ring to hit Balor with a spear. AJ Styles was at ringside and helped Balor fight off Edge and Priest before Ripley stopped Edge, knowing he couldn't strike her, which allowed Edge to hit Styles with a spear as Priest also hit a leg sweep.
- Bobby Lashley crashed The VIP Lounge. Lashley attacked MVP, Omos and Cedric Alexander as they celebrated Omos defeating Lashley at Backlash.
- Alexa Bliss def. Sonya Deville via pinfall with Twisted Bliss. Before the very short match, it was announced that Deville had been fired from her position as a WWE official.
- Kevin Owens and Alpha Academy attacked Ezekiel. Owens posed as his brother "Ken Owens" trying to get Ezekiel to admit he is actually Elias. After Elias attacked, Alpha Academy ran to the ring to help Owens hit a stunner.
- Veer Mahan def. Frank Loman via submission with the cervical clutch.
- Sasha Banks & Naomi def. Doudrop & Nikki A.S.H. via pinfall when Naomi hit Nikki A.S.H. with a facebuster.
- Ciampa def. Mustafa Ali via pinfall with a reverse DDT. The Miz was special guest referee and gave Ali very slow counts before making the fastest count possible on the final pin to give Ciampa the win.
- Bianca Belair def. Asuka via disqualification after interference from Becky Lynch. Lynch, who was on commentary, attacked Belair during the match before attacking Asuka and hitting her with the Manhandle Slam, marking the third of eight matches on the night that ended via disqualification via outside interference.