Monday Night Raw will have its third WWE Championship match in as many weeks tomorrow night as Big E will defend his title against former champion Bobby Lashley. After "The All Mighty" sabotaged The New Day's six-man tag match with The Bloodline on last week's Raw the big man jumped Big E as the trio entered the Nationwide Arena during the Extreme Rules kickoff show. This led to a six-man tag match involving AJ Styles & Omos, which E won after hitting the Big Ending on Styles.
Lashley, still fuming from E cashing in his Money in the Bank contract on him a few weeks ago, then cut a backstage promo calling the world champion a coward. He demanded the two meet in a one-on-one match with the title on the line on this week's Raw. E eventually accepted and confirmed the match would open the show.
Kofi Kingston spoke with ComicBook ahead of the New Day's reunion on last week's Raw, where he compared E's title win to his own. He said, "Well, for me, it was totally different. Number one, because I was 10 times more nervous for E than I was for myself. Because like I said before, everything is always changing. I was sure that something at the last minute was like, "Okay, we're going to go this route now, we're not going to have you go out and cash or whatever. So sitting in Gorilla, I'm just sitting there with butterflies in my stomach, nervous, rocking back and forth. I look over at E and he's cool as a cucumber, just ready for what is about to come. And it was just so awesome to see, because at that time, and especially once he beat Bobby, you can see it in my eyes, first of all I couldn't contain my excitement. I couldn't stop moving, I couldn't stop jumping around. But then a few times I really had to take a step back and just look at him. And just be like, 'Wow, he did it, man. All the hard work that he has put in over the years has finally paid off.'"
"He is a guy who never rests on his laurels," he added. "He's a guy that is always trying to get better, literally every single day, not only as a performer, but as a person, it was just awesome to see that culminate, and in my hometown nonetheless. So a little extra icing on the cake, man. It was awesome. It was awesome and so well-deserved. And when we got back through Gorilla, we came through the curtain, all of his peers were there, all the roster was there. Everybody was just so happy. And that's just a Testament to show you the kind of impact that Big E has on the roster and what kind of person he is, that he has a personal connection with everybody. Not a single person was mad that E was champion. Everyone was extremely elated and happy that he got what he deserved."