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WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW PRIMER
FEBRUARY 8, 2021
TAMPA, FL. AT THE THUNDERDOME IN TROPICANA FIELD
AIRS ON USA NETWORK, 8:00 p.m. EST
BY FRANK PETEANI (@FrankPeteani), PWTORCH.COM CONTRIBUTOR
Announcers: Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe
Match Results and Exclusives from Last Week
- Riddle defeated Bobby Lashley via DQ when Lashley refused to release the Hurt Lock with Riddle on the ring apron. Lashley retained the U.S. Championship.
- Xavier Woods of New Day defeated Mustafa Ali of Retribution.
- Damien Priest (w/Bad Bunny) defeated the Miz (w/John Morrison). It was announced that Priest is officially part of the Raw roster.
- Shelton Benjamin & Cedric Alexander of the Hurt Business defeated Lucha House Party (Gran Metalik & Lince Dorado) to retain the Raw Tag Team Championship.
- Naomi & Lana defeated Charlotte Flair & Raw Women’s Champion Asuka and Mandy Rose & Dana Brooke to earn the right to face Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax for the Women’s Tag Team Championship.
- Jeff Hardy & Carlito defeated Elias & Jaxson Ryker. Carlito made his return to the WWE the previous evening during the Royal Rumble.
- Alexa Bliss defeated Nikki Cross.
- Edge defeated Randy Orton thanks to interference by Alexa Bliss.
Items Advertised by WWE
Our attention is now focused on Elimination Chamber which comes to us in less than two weeks on February 21. Ironically, that event will be 11 years to the day that the first Elimination Chamber PPV took place. Check out the latest edition of my VIP podcast WWE Then and Now which dropped last week. Tom Stoup from “PWT Talks NXT” on the PWTorch Dailycast and the VIP-exclusive “NXT Eight Years Back” joined me and he did a stellar job reviewing that event. We looked at how the characters that took part in that event performed through the years and also went in-depth on Shayna Baszler, who was a central figure in last year’s event. I highly encourage you to check out that show. As far as tonight goes, here is what’s advertised:
- WWE Champion Drew McIntyre to address Sheamus on Raw
- Drew McIntyre and Randy Orton set for Monday Night showdown
- Charlotte Flair and Lacey Evans will come face-to-face on Raw
Drew addressing Sheamus was advertised several days ago. Yesterday, WWE tweeted out the match between Drew and Randy. I’m sure we’ll have both items and they’re likely going to be intertwined.
Drew McIntyre Addresses Sheamus, Takes on Randy Orton
Last week, WWE Champion Drew McIntyre opened Raw and talked about his retaining the championship over Goldberg at the Royal Rumble. He talked about other happenings at the show, pointed to the WrestleMania sign, and then Royal Rumble winner Edge showed up. Drew said he was a mentor to him back in the day, how awesome it was to see Edge last year and how proud he was to see him win the previous night. Edge appreciated it but questioned why Drew wasn’t kicking his head off. Later, Sheamus showed up. After some back and forth, Edge told Drew he was playing a “dangerous game” while looking sideways at Sheamus. He didn’t like that. After the exchange was done and Edge left, Sheamus Brogue Kicked Drew. Later, Sheamus told Charly Caruso that he was tired of being referred to as Drew’s friend and wanted to be WWE Champion.
Drew was interviewed and appeared shaken up at Sheamus’ actions, but said if he wanted the match, he’s got it. Tonight, Drew addresses his longtime apparent former friend. Sheamus did some trash talking on Twitter. Here’s one of those tweets:
Drew’s dance card is full tonight as he takes on former rival Randy Orton one-on-one in a non-title match. The feud between these has been well documented. At one point in 2020, Randy took the title from Drew in a Hell in a Cell match at the titular PPV. Drew got it back the week before Survivor Series. Randy is coming off losing to Edge in what was seemingly the last match in their feud. That loss was attributed to Alexa Bliss inserting herself in the match, furthering the feud between herself and Randy with “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt looming. Randy burned Bray alive at TLC, but we all know he’s still around. It’s only a matter of time.
Frank’s Analysis: I appreciate that Sheamus is trying to make this personal on social media. It’s simply hard to get on board with the story. If you go back two or three months or however long they’ve been emphasizing the friendship with Drew and Sheamus, it’s hard to find a point where you can understand why this happened. It’s just another example of WWE doing a turn between friends because they want these “big moments,” yet they fail to put context behind it and thus it doesn’t feel like a big deal. Maybe people are on board with this, but there’s truly little resonation with me. As far as the match with Randy goes, I expect shenanigans. WWE likes to use old feuds to serve new or current feuds and we all know business is not over between Bray and Randy.
Charlotte Flair vs. Lacey Evans (w/Ric Flair)
Charlotte Flair goes one-on-one with Lacey Evans tonight. Things have been going on for a while between these two women what with Charlotte’s father Ric having inserted himself by the side of the marine and happily married with a daughter Lacey Evans. Last week, Ric and Lacey distracted Charlotte as she and Asuka were attempting to win a triple threat match to earn the right to challenge Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax for the Women’s Tag Team Championship. Baszler & Nia took the titles for Charlotte & Asuka during the Royal Rumble kickoff show. Charlotte assured Asuka before the match last week she would not allow herself to be distracted.
Here’s some tweets from Lacey, who’s never too shy on social media:
Frank’s Analysis: Again, the problem with this feud is that I just can’t get invested in it for two reasons. One, I know Charlotte and Ric have a great relationship and he gushes over how proud he is of his daughter. Two, Lacey was presented as a proud mother, wife, and former marine that it’s hard for me to get into her aligning with the womanizing Ric. In addition, I don’t think a lot of people like Charlotte enough to make me want to see her get revenge on Lacey. Count me on that list.
Other Expectation and Final Thoughts
My focus is on Drew McIntyre and what the plans are for the WWE Championship. With Edge appearing on all three shows last week, Elimination Chamber happening in less than two weeks, the falling out between Drew and Sheamus, and Miz still holding Money in the Bank (can’t forget that) there are a lot of irons in the fire that make for an interesting (dare I say) road to WrestleMania. There are intriguing possibilities and honestly, I think I can make a case for Edge facing any one of the champions Drew included. I’m sure most of the focus will be on Elimination Chamber tonight and we will likely get a better idea of the plans for the championships once we learn WWE’s plans for that event.
Follow Frank on Twitter @FrankPeteani. Thank you for reading!