For Raw, their main event was a falls count anywhere match between Dean Ambrose and Drew McIntyre and this was awesome to watch. This match was created after McIntyre sneak attacked Roman Reigns before his match with Baron Corbin, which angered Ambrose and made him demand that match. These two fought all over the arena and McIntyre ended up winning after hitting a claymore kick on Ambrose, who’s arm and head were pinned against a rail. It is looking like McIntyre face off against Roman Reigns at Wrestlemania, which should be a solid match.
For Smackdown, the ending segment with Kofi Kingston and Vince McMahon is really making the story for the WWE Championship match at Wrestlemania intriguing. After Kingston confronted McMahon about not getting a championship opportunity after 11 years with WWE, McMahon said he will give him his opportunity, if he can survive a gauntlet match on Smackdown next week. This gauntlet includes Rowan, the Bar, Randy Orton, and Samoa Joe.
For Raw, they had a segment between Nia Jax and Natalya, which felt rushed from the beginning. After Natalya announced that Beth Phoenix would accompany her for her match against Jax, the match didn’t last longer than a minute before Phoenix interfered and got Natalya DQ’d from the match. This may led to a tag match at Wrestlemania, but having segments that don’t last longer than five minutes is not a proper way to build up a match.
For Smackdown, there was a five minute match between Asuka and Sonya Deville and it was not very good. The ending was similar to the PPV match between Asuka and Mandy Rose, but it was very poorly executed this time around. Asuka has been more involved in a storyline between Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville than her actually being champion, which is not how she should be handled.
The Final Verdict
Overall, both shows were solid again this week. Both brands focused heavily on Wrestlemania as well as the fallout from Fastlane. There are lots of exciting stories going into Wrestlemania so hopefully both brands continue to ramp up the intensity of each one. With that said, I will have to say that Raw had the better show this week. A great promo between Batista and Triple H, an entertaining main event, and an emotional goodbye to Kurt Angle is what gave Raw the better show this week. In conclusion, WWE has been doing really good building up the road to Wrestlemania, so hopefully they keep this momentum going after this PPV too.
Adam Cole Discusses Troubling Injury Recovery
AEW superstar Adam Cole has opened up about what he calls a “scary” recovery from a second concussion that he suffered at AEW and NJPW’s ‘Forbidden Door’ event back in June 2022, with Cole set to make his return to the ring soon.
Cole specifically talked about memory loss as the most troubling aspect of his recovery:
”The memory stuff is the really, really scary part to me” Cole said, during an appearance on Wrestling Observer Radio (h/t CagesideSeats). “When you’re in the middle of a ring and there’s thousands of people around you and I have no idea what I’m supposed to be doing. That was really scary. So, I knew pretty early on after my memory started going that something was wrong.”
Cole’s road to recovery as an especially long one.
“The crazy thing was that after even a month, it was like that’s when real serious side effects started happening” he said. “Everything I said in my return in-ring promo that I did all of that was true, and more. There was a lot of stuff that was happening very late into the healing process, or, what I thought was late, like a month-and-a-half, two months.”
Cole is gearing up for his return to AEW, with all signs pointing to him stepping back into the ring at Revolution next month.
Donovan Dijak Suffers Injury at NXT Vengeance Day
NXT Vengeance Day was a rousing success for WWE on Saturday which saw a number of headlines come out of the event that was well-received by fans, including an injury suffered by Donovan Dijak during his match with Wes Lee for the North American Championship.
Dijak suffered an apparent broken finger during the match, which was seen on camera and shared on social media.
Following the event NXT general manager Shawn Michaels provided an update on Dijak, stating he did not suffer a broken finger – “Yeah, everybody is good” Michaels said. “I announced it at gorilla, it’s got to be a miracle, It’s not broken.
“We got him x-ray, they said it’s not broken and so yeah, I guess what you do is you kind of numb it and put it back in place and that’s what’s happening now. But it is, again, a modern miracle because we all saw it, it was pretty gnarly looking. But, apparently, he’s going to be okay, which is obviously fantastic news for us and him.”
Tony Khan Open to AEW/WWE Crossover
AEW owner and booker Tony Khan is certainly open to the idea of AEW and WWE working together for a potential crossover supershow, despite Khan’s consistent blasting of WWE over the last few years.
“It’s something I would certainly be open to and I think it’s an interesting thing for the future” Khan said during an appearance on WTF with Marc Maron. “It’s not something that’s ever really been done. They’ve kind of existed in their own space. We are working with a lot of wrestling promotions.”
Khan’s AEW has already worked with a number of promotions such as Impact Wrestling and NJPW, and WWE has even warmed to the idea of working with other promotions, as they have with Impact Wrestling, NJPW, and NOAH recently.
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