Raw Recap and Reactions (April 1, 2024): Rock & Roll

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The Go Home program before a PLE carries weight. one before Wrestlemania It carries enough tonnage to weigh more than an elephant. Taking this into account, consider it essential that Raw It started with The Rock heading to Brooklyn and the world.

That set in motion the rest of the night, which seemed like the perfect final show from start to finish.

There is a strange energy when Rock enters an arena because he is The Rock. As I said a few weeks ago, fans want to root for this cat. How can you not? And he played on it too much during his opening promo, but I understand why in this case. Rocky showed videos of kids reacting to Cody Rhodes’ beating and for a moment I thought he might bathe in his innocent tears. But he declared himself a proud father who knows what it feels like to see children cry. “Uncle Rock” then spits out some simple advice:

A man has to do what he has to do.

While I wanted him to go all out and do his “f those kids” verse, I remembered that this guy is still part of the Disney empire. When the next moana falls, has to sell tickets. On the other hand, the tweener’s behavior showcased one of Rock’s talents that arguably makes him the best to ever do it with that microphone: his ability to change the crowd’s response in the blink of an eye. The moment Roman Reigns, Paul Heyman and the rest of Bloodline entered the ring, he sped away. He read the crowd and reacted accordingly. That only intensified once Seth showed up with harsh words and a challenge in mind.

I loved the little touch of Seth appearing in the crowd as a nod to the Shield days of yesteryear (yes, I said yesteryear). Besides looking cool, it served as a reminder that Seth taught Roman everything he knows. The Bloodline has strength in numbers, which was the whole style of The Shield. And that idea of ​​Seth being one step ahead of his former partner continued for the rest of the night until the main event where Seth faced Solo Sikoa in a Bloodline Rules match.

WWE kept it simple when explaining why Seth challenged Roman, Rock, or anyone from Bloodline to a match just days before working double duty on Wrestlemania. One, as Seth said, only knows one speed. Two, always have a backup plan. They showed him devising a strategy with Jey Uso but in secret.

That clearly meant that Seth had something the rest up his sleeve because Jey’s support is neither a surprise nor a true draw.

At the same time, Roman and Heyman left the building. Roman left Rock in charge and went home to work on his induction speech.

So for those playing at home, that’s Seth & Jey vs. Solo & Jimmy Uso if it gets that far.

But during the main event is when the twists happened. And yes, that is plural. Like I said, it was about Seth proving that he’s still the “architect”; he is still the smartest man in the room and much smarter than his former accomplice.

Well, it turns out it’s not Seth’s story yet.

Seth put the finishing touches on Solo, but before he even went for the pin, Jimmy appeared. Jey followed him and those two did their thing in the backstage area. During a beautiful transition, it went from Jey giving Jimmy that job behind the curtain, to Jey being thrown back into the arena. The Rock emerged from the shadows and was booed by Brooklynites like he was Suge Knight at the 1995 Source Awards.

For a brief moment, it seemed like Rock had Seth in the same spot as Cody. But Seth sprung the trap on him and Cody, without medical clearance, ran to the ring and put the odds in his favor for once. They yelled at The Rock as if he had stolen their lunch money. Looking for that whole insult to injury thing, Cody put Rock for a Rock Bottom on the announce table. That disappeared because The Bloodline came about. his trap: Roman never left!

The show ended with Rock & Roman spanking their Wrestlemania opponents with another weight belt from Rock’s seemingly endless collection. He illustrated a very important point: Seth and Cody can’t count on outsmarting these two.

The important thing about Seth is that he strategizes better than anyone. What happens when he loses that advantage? WWE once again played smartly against expectations with Roman and made this surprise attack really feel like one. He raised the stakes for the match and at the same time provided a great image of the big heels and in charge.

Great shows come with great expectations. This one delivered on that while also making the threat to the heroes even greater than it was before the show started.

*As an aside, I’m not a fan of the song I chose for this section. I chose it because of the title, JAY-Z, and it features Lil’ Wayne. Read on to learn why that’s important.


B-sides

eye of the tiger

Thank God. Finally they leaned completely towards the rocky iii in reference to Chad Gable and Sami Zayn. During their grueling training segment, we had the moment where Sami, like Rocky in that movie, admitted that he’s scared. “Is that what you want to hear?!” He felt a little more serious here than how Sylvester Stallone portrayed him, but it worked wonderfully. Sami came to Chad hoping to change his style and approach. and in another rocky iii Hello, Chad noticed that Sami shook last year Wrestlemania event in which he had that hunger. Chad didn’t see that tiger’s eye anymore, so yeah, we got a training montage! Instead of waiting until Wrestlemania, Sami came out this week for a match against Bronson Reed.

The game was all a smokescreen. During the third act, when Sami found some momentum and nearly eliminated Bronson, something he didn’t do the last time they fought, GUNTHER threw Chad onto the entrance ramp to play the role of the sacrificial lamb. In typical Rocky fashion, Sami helped his friend instead of focusing on the match.

I loved all of this. GUNTHER showed up the moment Sami had confidence in the ring, then did everything he could to eradicate that confidence. Sami lying on his back after GUNTHER’s beating as he stomped his feet indicating that his heart was a good time. This all started when Sami rediscovered his charm and it seems he did just that. Yes, GUNTHER knocked him down again, but it was with a championship belt. That he didn’t stay down is something important to the story and a preview of, hopefully, a big conclusion in Mania.

Individual

A very oriented story. Raw Many notes in the singles section.

  • I guess Lil’ Wayne is just lurking backstage waiting for someone to notice him. Jey met up with Weezy, who announced that he would be performing at Mania with his new single. Wayne has been crying for the past few years, so I’m really curious what this sounds like.
  • Maxxine Drupe pinned Indi Hartwell during a match. Candice LeRae didn’t like that at all and she basically told her best friend to kill herself. I’m looking forward to this explosion because I imagine Indi has a lot of mixed emotions towards Candice.
  • Judgment Day asserted their dominance in an eight-man match against New Day & DIY. But they also showed their lack of patience with Dom. El Sucio invited the LWO to his clubhouse and that fell like a brick. But Dom did something good: if Andrade takes care of Ricochet, then he enters the cool kids club. Is that what Andrade wants? We will see.
  • Speaking of Ricochet…just look at his match with Ivar. Both men came to play but they are clearly planning something for Mr. O’Shea. At least I hope so. The man acts like this routinely and needs something to solve his problems.
  • Damage CTRL got the job done with a warmup before their six-woman tag on Mania. I love Dakota’s energy as a leader.
  • Rhea Ripley and Becky Lynch had the usual fight, which is appropriate. Like Becky said, they’ve talked enough at this point.

That’s all he wrote, guys and friends. I loved this episode and I’m excited for it. Mania. What more is there to say?

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