In this episode of Wrestling Night in America, PWTorch columnist Greg Parks breaks down both nights of WrestleMania with callers and emailers. Topics include the quality of the Firefly Funhouse match, the decision to put Charlotte over Rhea Ripley, the potential of wrestlers getting more creative freedom in the current environment, and more.
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WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW PRIMER
ORLANDO, FL. AT THE PERFORMANCE CENTER
MARCH 23, 2020
AIRS ON USA NETWORK, 8:00 p.m. EDT
BY FRANK PETEANI (@FrankPeteani), PWTORCH SPECIALIST
Announcers: Tom Phillips, Jerry “The King” Lawler, Byron Saxton
Top 10 Moments from Last Week’s Show:
Arena, and Items Advertised by WWE
The trend of audience-free shows continues as Raw will emanate from the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Fla. This will be the second edition of Raw in this facility following Smackdown having their last two shows as well as NXT.
Here is what’s on tap for tonight:
- How will Randy Orton respond to Edge’s WrestleMania challenge?
- Drew McIntyre set to appear
- WWE Champion Brock Lesnar to appear
Randy Orton Response to Edge’s WrestleMania Challenge
Last week, Edge came out to address Randy Orton. He talked about meeting him and his father several years ago, their battles for the Intercontinental Championship, teaming up as Rated-RKO and battling DX (Shawn Michaels & Triple H), and the man whom they both considered a mentor in WWE Hall of Famer Mick Foley. Edge said that Randy didn’t love him and his family. Instead he was jealous seeing as Edge worked for everything being raised by a single mother while Randy was born into the business and was an entitled brat.
Edge said that his wife, Beth Phoenix, came out to announce his re-retirement a few weeks ago. Since Randy didn’t let her finish, he challenged him to a last man standing match at WrestleMania. He said he wants to write this story, a redemptive story, and Randy will not stand back up. Tonight, we get Randy’s response to this challenge. Here’s a little Twitter talk from Edge where he retweets Roman Reigns:
Aw that’s cute Big Pup. But whether you realize it or not, if @RandyOrton has the nads to accept my challenge for #WrestleMania we’ve already marked our territory on what the real main event is. After 9 years the wolf is back in the yard. #LastManStanding #MainMainEvent https://t.co/MZ4umW1NYB
— Adam (Edge) Copeland (@EdgeRatedR) March 19, 2020
Frank’s Analysis: We could see a match with Reigns and Edge down the line seeing as they both use the spear as their finisher, correct? Anyway, as far as Edge and Orton, their story feels like the biggest of WrestleMania. Edge was intense and great last week and I expect the same from Randy tonight. It’s just too bad all of this, Edge’s comeback in particular, is happening in front on no fans. How amazing would it have been to have his first WrestleMania match in nine years be in front of 70,000+ fans?
Drew McIntyre and Brock Lesnar in the Building
2020 Royal Rumble winner Drew McIntyre is set to challenge Brock Lesnar for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, which will be now pre-recorded in the Performance Center and aired over two nights (April 4 and April 5). Last week, they replayed the Royal Rumble match itself which saw Brock eliminate 13 wrestlers including 2006 winner Rey Mysterio and 2018 winner Shinsuke Nakamura (remember that?). Drew entered at #16 and eliminated Brock and of course would go on to win the match. He announced on Raw the following night that he would challenge Brock at WrestleMania.
In addition to replaying the rumble they replayed Drew giving Brock two Claymore Kicks on Raw several weeks ago at the Barclays Center (I kinda wish I went to that Raw now.). According to WWE.com, both Drew and Brock will be on Raw tonight.
— WWE (@WWE) March 13, 2020
Frank’s Analysis: You can’t help but wonder if they hold off on Drew beating Brock if that was the original plan. Ideally Drew’s first WWE Championship victory should be in front of a crowd, but what can you do? Who knows with anything right now, which makes it difficult to have real discussion about current and future storylines.
Other Match Results and Segments from Last Week
- The Undertaker and A.J. Styles signed the contract for their WrestleMania match. A.J. and Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson were on the Titantron while Undertaker was in the ring. Gallows and Anderson brought the contract out and were beaten down by Undertaker.
- Rey Mysterio defeated Andrade. Here’s Rey in a WWE exclusive:
- Kevin Owens challenged Seth Rollins to a match at WrestleMania.
- Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch arrived at the P.C. in a truck and cut a promo in regard to her upcoming WrestleMania match against Shayna Baszler. In a pre-taped interview, Shayna said she was taking the title and there wasn’t a damn thing you can do about it, bitch. Becky said she would prove Shayna’s life was a lie and it’s going to hit her like a truck.
I see everything. pic.twitter.com/ci1rdV4Ka2
— The Man (@BeckyLynchWWE) March 18, 2020
- “Stone Cold” Steve Austin appeared and declared 316 Day a national holiday. He stunned Byron Saxton and shared a beer with Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch.
Once again this report is shorter than normal, because it is tough to preview what we don’t know outside of what is advertised. It’s funny watching the Royal Rumble match and the Cena vs. Wyatt match on Smackdown and seeing the huge crowds. A concept like that – meaning a match in front of a crowd – seems like a lifetime ago. I’ve enjoyed rewatching matches. Let’s see what they come up with tonight.
Follow Frank on Twitter @FrankPeteani. Questions and discussion are welcome! Thank you for reading.