HEYDORN’S WWE RAW RECEIPT 2/20: Cody Rhodes swings and misses with WrestleMania promo


WWE Raw hits and misses analysis
Photo credit: All Elite Wrestling


This week’s episode of WWE Raw has wrapped. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and relive some of the madness.

-A smart move to have Sami Zayn start the show this week coming out of a crazy successful Elimination Chamber event on Saturday night. Zayn balanced soaking in the adulation from the audience, showing disappointment in losing his match against Roman Reigns, and progressing his next story successfully, which was the goal.

-Amen, Kevin Owens. WWE is dragging out the Zayn and Owens reunion and it’s the exact right damn call. Owens went through a lot while Zayn was in The Bloodline, so the fact that he isn’t turning over right away to Zayn should be expected. It also will provide WWE with weeks of storytelling on television.

-I really like the sit-down interview with Rhea Ripley and Dominik. Both were believable in how they presented themselves and Ripley stood out as an alpha as she addressed the ultimate alpha in the women’s division in Charlotte Flair. This interview was a good example of the progress Ripley has made as a star. She isn’t doing something like this three years ago.

-I guess Mustafa Ali is trying to be unlikable? Maybe? It seemed like it this week — not so much in other weeks. That said, if that’s the case, this worked nicely because he was supremely annoying. If not? Uh oh.

-Soooooooooooooo, what the hell is in that golden envelope. Who wants to venture a guess? Something to do with WrestleMania to be sure, but what?

-A swing and a miss from Cody Rhodes on WWE Raw this week in what was his first real promo for his WrestleMania match with Roman Reigns. First off, Cody, enough with the “what do you want to talk about” bit. It’s not over. Not even close. Ditch it. If you don’t, fans will be booing it just in time for WrestleMania. Mark my words. Anyway, this didn’t work. The idea here was to plant a seed of doubt inside of Cody’s head regarding whether or not he wants to be away from his family due to what the champion’s obligations are outside of the ring. Fans don’t want to get behind a Cody that is doubting whether or not he wants to be the champion. That runs counter to the entire story they’ve told to this point. This about getting behind Cody winning and achieving something he has 100% wanted for year and years and years. That was working, too. It’s a swing and miss, so strike one. Plenty of time to course correct on it and this won’t derail anything for him permanently, but its a miss nonetheless and a confusing one at that.

-Sometimes you have to wonder whether or not WWE officials even watch their shows. Do they not remember what happened when Seth Rollins looked scared of the supernatural weird stuff that happened when he worked with Bray Wyatt? Right. Nothing good. Same thing with Bianca Belair this week. So, Asuka has black blood or goo or whatever coming out of her mouth — who cares? This is nothing something that should phase Belair and it did. Not a fan.

-A fine Miz vs. Seth Rollins this week. Rollins got the very, very clean win and is striking the right tone in talking about Logan Paul. He’s been able to convey a sense of seriousness that improves what is just a celebrity match.

-I about spit out the cold beverage I was drinking when Alpha Academy was shown posing in the mirror. You guys know that this type of thing is not my cup of tea, but that was freaking hilarious. Gable and Otis have a place on WWE Raw each week.

-Well, Becky Lynch & Lita are going to be wrestling for the WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships and with Ronda Rousey & Shayna Baszler on a tear over on the blue brand, you have to assume they are building toward a tag team title clash between those teams at WrestleMania. Not sure what was wrong with doing Lynch vs. Rousey straight up, but this works nicely too.

-Wait, Brock Lesnar is going to accept a WrestleMania challenge from Omos next week? Not buying it.

-Bobby Lashley couldn’t get the fans back on his side after his debacle with Lesnar at Elimination Chamber. Lashley is going to do something at WrestleMania, but I can’t see it being all that relevant at this point in time. Fans don’t know how to feel about him and it comes across like Levesque and the writers aren’t sure either.

-The promo that Edge cut before his main event against Austin Theory was maybe his best mic work since the Randy Orton feud. This felt incredibly real and was delivered in a non-stereotype wrestler way. He stuck the landing. Great stuff.

-A good little match between Edge and Austin Theory, but one that ended exactly the way everyone thought it would. Finn Balor’s attack on Edge made perfect sense and was a strong way to catapult their feud into something WrestleMania worthy.

CATCH-UP: 2/20 WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW RESULTS: Keller’s report on Theory vs. Edge, Seth vs. Miz, Elimination Chamber fallout, pivot to WM hype

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