With SummerSlam just 13 days away, WWE had to keep their momentum rolling with a strong episode of Raw. Whether or not they accomplished that is a matter of personal taste, but watching Ronda Rousey and Paul Heyman was enough to get me excited.
Raw was fine last night. There are still a few things I don't understand—Banks and Bayley for starters—but the important chunks of SummerSlam are easy to digest. For the first time ever, there's a huge gap between Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar. Roman Reigns is fighting not just for himself but for the health of WWE's future. Seth Rollins needs help. Kevin Owens is smart. And Ronda Rousey is ready to run the company.
WWE did a decent enough job of keeping us tuned in and by the time SummerSlam arrives, we'll all be anxious to see what happens.
Anyways, here are Seven Tiny Thoughts on Raw:
WWE spent a hefty amount of Raw boosting Roman Reigns. I'm sure some people hated that but
No matter the outcome, SummerSlam's Universal Championship match feels like a pivotal moment for the current WWE era. This is something WWE officials are clearly aware of and it's in their best interest to make both Reigns and Lesnar look like they're fighting for control of the company.
If not for Ronda Rousey, Paul Heyman would have taken home the Raw MVP award. I've always thought that Paul Giamatti would make for a great Heyman stand-in, but now, I think it's Heyman who may be the better thespian.
That might be an exaggeration, but Heyman was great last night. I'm not sure how his eyes looked so injured, but I don't really care—it was a great performance. While Heyman conveyed sincerity and even made an ominous prediction, most of his performance was simply entertaining, if not funny.
Heyman is one of today's treasures. Let's hope he sticks around for a while.
She may not be ready to compete, but Ruby
Once healthy, look for
As Seth Rollins searched for a tag team partner, it was the first time in 2018 that it felt like Dean Ambrose could show up on WWE TV. He didn't, but Michael Cole did say his name and I don't think that was an accident.
On Monday, a new report surfaced indicated Ambrose would be back this month, possibly at SummerSlam. By Rollins getting double teamed by Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre, he's going to need a little help and it looks like Ambrose will be that guy.
For most of 2018, Braun Strowman has done as he pleased. Luckily that involved destroying things—something we all love to watch—but that act can only hit for so long. Eventually, he'll need a real enemy.
Now, we know that
Owens has found a way to rattle the Monster Among Men and at SummerSlam, Strowman faces a real possibility of actually losing something. Win or lose, we're in the process of seeing a new Strowman, and it's all because Owens is dragging it out of him.
It's impossible to say a bad word about Elias at this point—even his guitar playing is exceptional!
I have no idea what WWE plans to do with this guy, all I know is that he's one of their best commodities. I'll keep my fingers crossed for a WrestleMania match with The Rock, but I'll be happy watching him hit guitar licks and insult the locals.
Ronda Rousey is the most important WWE Superstar on the roster. Sure, John Cena has more reach, and Roman Reigns has the gilded path, but for everything, WWE is trying to accomplish in the next few years (global domination) Rousey is their vehicle.
Her match on Raw went exactly as expected, but despite the predictable outcome, I found myself gobbling up every second. I can't believe she's only wrestled three times on tv. I can't believe how good she is. And I refuse to believe that there are people out there who still haven't bought in.