Cena and Reigns went there on Monday Night Raw

Joshua Waddles
Staff Writer

Monday Night Raw gave us a lot of “Oh no he didn’t!” moments. Almost every part of Raw kept the fans interested in what would happen next. But the highlight, surprisingly (and as much as i hate to admit it) was John Cena and Roman Reigns.

These two, in building up for their match, pulled out all of the worst criticisms the fans ever said about the other. Although they pretend not to be frustrated with the fans, real frustration showed and they used that frustration to put on a tense performance. Watching this, fans got the impression that these two really wanted to kill each other. And the things they brought up, Reigns being a Cena 2.0 and Cena being the guy who spent his entire career keeping other wrestlers down, were subjects I really didn’t think Vince McMahon would allow them to bring up on the air. (Cena burying people has been brought up before, but not this aggressively.)

Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson ended up challenging them to a tag match, which Reigns and Cena won. This mostly seemed like a way to avoid the predictable ending to this segment, which would have ended with either Cena or Reigns laying the other out.

Battle Royal for the IC Championship

Intercontinental Champion The Miz got into a little argument with Raw General Manager Kurt Angle. Miz complained before that he didn’t get to defend his title at SummerSlam. This is slightly unusual for a heel like The Miz because they usually act like they don’t want to defend their titles.

The Miz reverted to that sort of heel when he found out wrestlers would decide the number one contender in a battle royal.

This battle royal gave fans a lot of different choices in who to root for. Fin Baylor, Goldust, Gallows and Anderson, both of The Hardy Boyz, Jason Jordan (for those who became fans early) and The Big Show, in addition to a few others.

Bray Wyatt, who was not a contender in the match, showed up to eliminate Finn Baylor. (He was able to do that because it apparently doesn’t matter who throws the wrestler over the top rope. If the wrestler goes over the top, he’s eliminated.)

So the Wyatt vs Baylor feud isn’t over yet. In their first match, Wyatt defeated Baylor. In their second, Baylor came out as The Demon and defeated Wyatt. I think it’s likely Wyatt will win the third match, unless Baylor wrestles as The Demon again. In that case, it’s anyone’s guess.

Jeff Hardy won the battle royal and will challenge The Miz for the IC title. It’s likely The Miz will retain, because Jeff Hardy with the IC title would put him in more singles matches. I doubt the WWE is ready to break up The Hardy Boyz just yet.

Enzo Amore vs Noam Dar

Enzo Amore moved to the cruiserweight devision and defeated Noam Dar. His opening match didn’t make much of a splash, even with his legendary mic skills, but this could still be a good move. Enzo brings something to the table that 205 Live (the cruiserweight show) desperately needs: personality.

The drawback is the cruiserweights are great in the ring, even better than the main roster, on average, because they have to work harder to stand out in an industry dominated by bigger guys. Enzo isn’t very good in the ring. But fans can often forgive that with good booking and good mic skills.


Paul Heyman brought Brock Lesnar out and took hold of the mic. Heyman is spectacular on the mic and always entertains.

Nothing much really happened here. Given how rarely Brock Lesnar is willing to come to work, it seems odd that the WWE wouldn’t have him fight anyone. But then again, maybe Lesnar said, “Ok, I’ll come to work but only if I don’t have to do anything.”

Cesaro vs Seth Rollins

A decent enough match, and it added a little bit of heat between Rollins and Cesaro, with Cesaro stealing a roll-up victory on a distraction.

Sheamus vs Dean Ambrose

Dean Ambrose, the other half of the Raw Tag Team Champions (with Seth Rollins) took on Cesaro’s partner, Sheamus. Seth Rollins interfered and kneed Sheamus in the back when the referee had his back turned. This is usually a heel move and a good sign that The Shield, when it does get back together. will not be a bunch of PG baby faces.

Emma vs Mickie James

Emma works a willfully deluded character. She bragged about trending on Twitter last week, the hashtag she referred to was #GiveEmmaCPR, and she claims to have started the women’s revolution.

Mickie James attempted to shut Emma up and handed Emma a much-needed victory.

Elias Samson vs Pelvis Wesley

Elias Samson designated himself the new Elvis Presley, something that didn’t sit well with Jerry “The King” Lawler. He brought out an Elvis impersonator from the fictional South Paw wrestling league, giving Elias a chance to show his heel viciousness as he beat up an Elvis impersonator in the middle of Memphis.

Sasha Banks vs Alexa Bliss

Sasha Banks defended her newly-won Raw Women’s Championship against former champion Alexa Bliss. Bliss put on her best match so far and beat Banks to get the title back.

Bliss said before that Banks, four-time Women’s Champion, never successfully defended that title. This is sure to add a little frustration to Banks’ character, and I’m suddenly more interested in Alexa Bliss. She looked great defeating Banks, and then suffered a betrayal from her good friend, Nia Jax.

The crowd chanted “Yes! Yes! Yes!” when Jax slammed Bliss against the mat, because Jax is long overdue for a title reign.


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