Good evening wrestling world! Tonight’s Raw comes to us live from Chicago, Illinois, a city famous for its intense fanbase. On tonight’s episode, the WWE Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar, return to Monday Night Raw. We will also see the reveal of Kurt Angle’s WrestleMania opponent, Ronda Rousey defend her Women’s Championship, and Seth Rollins face the “Scottish Psychopath,” Drew McIntyre. All this and more to come in the coming moments!
We kickoff the show with the arrival of the Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar, accompanied by Paul Heyman. In the ring, Heyman and Lesnar are blasted by a ring of boos. Heyman says Rollins says that Lesnar has a problem has with competitors with the same size as him. Heyman brings up the fact that although Lesnar has faced opponents of his size, Lesnar has been the victor in all of the matches. In the middle of his soliloquy, he is interrupted by Drew McIntyre.
McIntyre says that it is refreshing to get the respect that he deserves, after Heyman gives him a number of compliments. McIntyre tells Lesnar that he suggests he finds a new opponent after he brutalizes Rollins tonight. Out of nowhere, Rollins blindsided McIntyre with a chairshot to the back. He continues to completely unload chair shots to the back of Mcintyre. After the assault, Rollins makes his way into the ring, but Lesnar slides to the outside of the ring.
The announce team recaps the Intercontinental Championship match that happened last week, which saw Bobby Lashley defeat Finn Balor to become champion once again.
Finn Balor makes his way to the ring. Up next, he and a partner of his choosing will take on Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush. (Commercial)
We come back as Finn stands in the middle of the ring. Balor says that he does no plan on being a former champion for too long. He is then interrupted by Bobby Lashley and Lio Rush. The two make their way to the ring. Finn then reveals his partner, who turns out to be Braun Strowman.
Bobby Lashley & Lio Rush vs. Finn Balor & Braun Strowman
Lashley and Strowman start that match and lock up in the middle of the ring. Strowman shoves Lashley into the corner. Lashley gets up and tries to attack Strowman, but is met with a shoulder tackle that sends him to the outside of the ring. (Commercial)
The match continues as Balor and Lashley fight in the ring. Lashley has control as the match, as he delivers a reverse STO to Balor. Rush makes the tag in and begins to attack Balor. Lashey makes the tag back in after Rush delivers a dropkick to Rush. Balor attempts multiple times to make the tag to Strowman, but Lashley stops every attempt. Lashley sets Balor up in the corner and attempts a spear to the midsection, but he runs into the ring post shoulder first. Rush tags into the match, as does Braun. Braun begins to manhandle Rush, throwing him into each corner of the ring. Strowman goes for a running slam, but Lashley hits Strowman with a spear. Balor sends Lashley to the outside of the ring. Rush is able to get up and land a frog splash onto Strowman. He attempts a pin, but Braun kicks out and stands up immediately. Braun chases Rush to the outside of the ring, where he is eventually able to get his hands on Rush. He brings him back into the ring and delivers a huge running powerslam as Lashley watches from the outside. Strowman is able to pick up the pinfall on Rush. Braun Strowman and Finn Balor win
Backstage, Rousey and her husband arrive to the arena. She is told that there is extra security tonight because management wants to prevent another incident with her. She continues to walk, shrugging off the extra security.
Up next, Alexa Bliss hosts her show, A Moment of Bliss, with special guest, Elias. (Commercial)
We return as Bliss begins her show. She says that the WWE Universe is buzzing with WrestleMania just three weeks away. She talks about how she will be the special host of this year’s WrestleMania. She proceeds to bring out her guest for this week’s show. Elias comes out and says he is here tonight to announce that he will be the headlining musical act of WrestleMania. Bliss asks Elias what happened at last year’s WrestleMania, when he said that last year would be his greatest performance. He says that last year set him up for his performance this year. He says that it is going to be the best performance by anyone ever. He is then interrupted by Heavy Machinery, along with No Way Jose’s conga line.
Bliss stops them and asks why they interrupted her. Bliss apologizes for the interruption. As Elias begins to give his rebuttal, he is blindsided by a masked man, who turns out to be No Way Jose. Jose makes his way to the ring, appearing to challenge Elias to a match. (Commercial)
Elias vs. No Way Jose
The match has begun during the break and we come back as Jose delivers and airplane spin, followed by a big knee to a grounded Elias. Elias is brought to the corner, where Jose delivers a huge right hand. Jose follows with an arm drag. The two stand, and Jose delivers another arm drag. The two stand again, and Elias hits Jose with a big chop to the chest. He whips Jose to the corner and attempts a splash, but he misses. Jose answers with a big clothesline to Elias. He whips him to the corner, and he delivers a splash. He goes to the top rope and attempts a cross body splash, but Elias avoids it and Jose crashes to the ground. Jose is picked up and brought into the corner, were Elias delivers a barrage of punches. Jose begins to fight back, but is sent to the mat with a powerslam, followed by a jumping knee. Elias goes to the top rope and delivers a huge diving elbow. He stands Jose ad delivers the Drift Away. He is able to pin Jose and pick up the victory. Elias wins
Up next, Kurt Angle will reveal the identity of his WrestleMania opponent. (Commercial)
We return as Angle stands in the ring. He says that his farewell tour continues and he gets to have a match here tonight. He thanks the McMahons for allowing him to choose his WrestleMania opponent. He says that his opponent will be Baron Corbin.
Kurt Angle vs. Chad Gable
The two lock up in the middle of the ring, but Gable is able to deliver a shoulder tackle that sends Angel to the mat. He stands and the two lock up once more. The two trade wrestling holds.
The two engage in a highly contested back and forth match that saw Gable take Angle to the limit. Angle was able to capitalize on a missed moonsault by Gable and lock in an Ankle Lock, forcing Gable to tap. Kurt Angle wins
After the match, Corbin makes his way out. He says that he is going to enjoy the opportunity to end Angle’s career at WrestleMania.
The announce team recap the actions of Drew McIntyre form last week, taking out both Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose.
Up next, Bayley and Sasha Banks will be in action! (Commercial)
We come back as the Revival, Baron Corbin, and Apollo Crews talk backstage. Apollo challenges Corbin to a match, and Baron accepts.
The Women’s Tag Team Champions are interviewed by Charly Caruso. They are asked if they are really avoiding the IIconics. They say that they are not and they are willing to challenge any team, anywhere. They are interrupted by Natalya and the returning Beth Phoenix. They join the champions in the ring.
Phoenix says that she respects the Boss and Hug Connection. She says that she appreciates everything they’ve done to bring the titles into existence. She also says that she and Natalya would’ve loved to be able to bring those titles into existence. The hall of famer claims that Tamina and Nia Jax awakened something inside of her last week. She says that her and Natalya want to challenge them at WrestleMania.
Bayley says it would be a huge honor, but she asks Phoenix if she really wants to challenge them at WrestleMania, seeing as how she has been retired for a number of years. Natalya says that Phoenix is of course willing to face her anywhere. A couple of verbal jabs between Natalya and Sasha Banks lead to the women trading blows in the middle of the ring. Phoenix separates the two women, which leads to an altercation between her and Bayley. The two get into each other’s face, and Phoenix ends up shoving Bayley to the mat. The four women are separated by officials as we go to commercial. (Commercial)
As we return, officials have put together a match with Banks and Natalya.
Sasha Banks vs. Natalya
The match begins and the two women square off. Natalya is able to floor Banks and deliver a dropkick to her on the ground. She gets Banks up and locks in an abdominal stretch. Banks fights out, and rolls Natalya up for a pinfall. Natalya kicks out, but is sent into the corner. Banks delivers a double knee strike. She goes for another, but Natlaya avoids it and delivers a discus clothesline. With both women down, Nia Jax and interrupts. She says that in her three years in the WWE, she has done more than Beth has done in her entire career. She says that she is the prettier, stronger version of the Glamazon. Beth is then attacked from behind by Tamina as she is sent into the ring post. Tamina then attacks Banks, and then referee decides to ring the bell. Sasha Banks wins by DQ
Backstage, Mojo Rawley says that potential means nothing if you do not do anything with it. He yells at himself to figure out how to break out of his funk.
Ricochet makes his way to the ring with a huge ovation from the Chicago crowd. He will be in action when we return. (Commercial)
Ricochet vs. Jinder Mahal
The bell rings and Mahal immediately carries Ricochet into the corner. The referee seperates the men and Ricochet begins to go on his attack. He shows off his aerial attack, but a distraction from the Singh Brothers allow Jinder to gain control of the match. Jinder delivers multiple knee strikes to Ricochet in the ring. A powerslam allows Jinder to deliver a oinfall onto Ricochet, who kicks out at two. He puts Ricochet in a chinlock, but Ricochet fights out. Mahal goes for a back suplex, but Ricochet reverses into a crossbody. However, before Ricochet can again any momentum, Mahal puts Ricochet into a side headlock. Ricochet is able to fight out, momentarily, but he is sent into the corner of the ring. Mahal proceeds to deliver a couple of kicks to the midsection. He stands Ricochet up, but floors him again with a big right hand. He stands him up again, and delivers a couple of more strikes. The former WWE Champion puts him into another side headlock. He sends Ricochet into the corner, where Ricochet delivers a big enziguri and create separation. The men stand and trade blows. Ricochet sends Mahal into the corner. He slides to the ring apron and hits Mahal with a springboard back elbow. Mahal slides to the outside, but is hit with a splash from Ricochet. He brings Mahal back into the ring and delivers a 630 splash. Ricochet is able to pin Jinder Mahal for the pinfall victory. Ricochet wins
Michael Cole announces that the recipient of this year’s Warrior Award is Sue Aitchison, a member of the WWE who been with the WWE for more than 30 years. She has been credited for being the leader for WWE’s outreach programs, including the Make A Wish Foundation.
Ronda Rousey makes her way to the ring, and she will be facing Dana Brooke for the Women’s Championship next! (Commercial)
Backstage, Rollins is asked about his attack on McIntyre. He says that tonight is for Dean and Roman. He also says that tonight, he will be sending a message to Brock Lesnar.
Dana is asked, backstage, if she knows what she is getting herself into. She says that she may not be better than Rousey, but all she has to do is be better than her for three seconds.
WWE Raw Women’s Championship Match: Dana Brooke vs. Ronda Rousey
The bell rings and Brooke slaps Rousey. This sends Rousey into a fury, as she hits Brooke with a knee to the face and locks in an armbar. Dana Brooke taps immediately. Ronda Rousey wins
After the match, Rousey keeps the armbar applied until a couple of officials come to the ring and break it up. She breaks the hold and knocks down one of the officials. She makes her way to the outside of the ring and is bombarded by a number officials. She is surrounded on the outside of the ring when all of a sudden, one security guard attempts to contain Rousey. Rousey snaps and begins to unload on him. Another guard attempts to separate the two, when he is pulled off by Rousey’s husband, Travis Browne, and is laid out with a right elbow. The two leave the arena through the crowd. (Commercial)
Apollo Crews vs. Baron Corbin
The match begins quickly, with neither man gaining the upper hand in the match. Corbin does go to the outside of the ring, but he is met with a splash by Crews. The two men return to the ring, and Crews is sent to the mat with a huge right hand from Corbin. Corbin take Crews into the corner, where he misses a running right hand, goes to the outside of the ring, comes back in, and goes for a clothesline, but he misses. However, he is able to still ground Crews and put him in a headlock on the ground. Crews fights out of the hold with a couple of punches. He goes for a double axe handle from the middle turnbuckle, but Corbin catches him mid air. He goes for a Deep Six, but Crews reverses out. Crews runs to the ropes, but Corbin catches him and hits a Deep Six. Corbin goes for a pin, but Apollo kicks out at two. Corbin stands him up and attempts to deliver an End of Days, but Crews reverses into a rollup pin, and gets the pinfall victory. Apollo Crews wins
Up next, Batista plans to talk about his relationship with Triple H. (Commercial)
We come back as Batista gives his interview via satellite. Michael Cole asks Batista why he is so angry with Triple H. Batista says that he just doesn't like Triple H. He says that since he came back, he’s just wanted to have the match. Cole asks if this goes back to his days in Evolution. Batista says that it goes further back than that. He says that he groomed Batista to be his “muscle,” to protect him in his career. He says HHH has done this his whole career. Cole brings up that Batista quit ten years ago, and if he blames HHH for that. Batista says yes. He says that he left because HHH held him back and did not think that he was a big enough star to be in the WWE.
Cole says HHH has been nothing fair to him since the beginning of his career. Batista interrupts and says that HHH has all of the WWE fooled. He says that he has two predictions for HHH. He says that one day, Vince will fire him, and at WrestleMania, he will end his career. Batista then ends the interview.
Backstage, Charly Caruso recaps the events between Braun Strowman and the special guests of WrestleMania, Colin Jost and Michael Che. She welcomes Strowman. Strowman says that the two came to WWE and disrespected him. He says that he is going to enter the men’s battle royal and hurt as many men as possible. Alexa Bliss interrupts and says that she can't have that chaos at WrestleMania. She says that she will try to bring peace between the three men.
Drew McIntyre makes his way to the ring to go one on one with the “Kingslayer” Seth Rollins. (Commercial)
In the ring, McIntyre says actions speak louder than words. He shows the footage of him taking out both Roman Reigns during last week’s Raw. He says that at Fastlane, he could tell that Reigns wasn’t the same person. He says that he relied on the other members of the Shield to do the work, but now the Shield no longer exists because of him. He says that it is his yard now. He says that he wants to take a second to talk to Joe, not Roman. He tells him that if he wants to be an inspiration to the people, then he has a challenge for him. He challenges Reigns to a match at WrestleMania. He tells Joe to say no. He tells him if he fights him at WrestleMania, what he did last week will look like nothing. He tells him he may have beaten leukemia, but he will not beat him.
Backstage, Rollins says that the speech he just gave is why he did what he did to him earlier in the night. He says what comes next is for him
Drew McIntyre vs. Seth Rollins
The two men meet at the entrance ramp and trade blows. Officials attempt to separate the men. They are eventually pulled apart and Rollins awaits for McINtyre in the ring. (Commercial)
The match begins during the break, and the two men trade blows in the ring. McIntyre sends Rollins to the ground and locks in an armbar type hold. Rollins attempts to fight out with a couple if right hands, but McIntyre answers his attack with a big back elbow. McIntyre once again puts Rollins into the armbar. Rollins is sent into the corner, where he delivers a big boot to McIntyre. Rollins attempts to fight back, but McIntyre stops him and delivers a big suplex. He picks Rollins up and delivers a big chop to the chest. He locks Rollins up in the hold, again, but Rollins fights out. He sends McIntyre to the outside of the ring. He drags Rollins to the outside, and the two begin to trade blows. Rollins is able to get the better of the exchange. He goes onto the steel steps, where he attempts to deliver a moonsault. However, McIntyre is able to sidestep and send Rollins stomach first into the mat outside. (Commercial)
We come back as Rollins kicks out of a pinfall by McIntyre. Drew picks him up and delivers a huge chop to the chest. He sets Rollins up for a powerbomb, but Rollins delivers a hurricanrana. It sends Drew to the outside. Rollins attempts a suicide dive, but he is caught and sent back first into the barricade. McIntyre grabs a chair and makes his way towards Rollins. However, Rollins is able to deliver a huge superkick to the chin of McIntyre. Both men are able to get back into the ring before a count of ten, but Rollins sends McIntyre to the outside of the ring with a clothesline. He hits McIntyre with two suicide dives. McIntyre comes back into the ring and is hit with a sling blade. Rollins attempts a pin, but Drew kicks out at two. Rollins is sent into the corner, where McIntyre delivers an elbow, and he follows it up with an Alabama Slam. Rollins is able to kick out of a pin at two. McIntyre positions Rollins on the top rope. He attempts a back body drop, but Rollins is able to reverse. Rollins attempts to get McIntyre in a powerbomb position,but McIntyre delivers a couple of big shots, stopping the attempt. However, Rollins is able to get back up and deliver a superplex, followed by a Falcon’s Arrow. McIntyre is able to kick out of a pin at two. Rollins stands McIntyre up and delivers a superkick to the midsection, when Brock Lesnar’s music hits and he makes his way to the ring. The distraction allows for Drew McIntyre to land a huge Claymore to the face of Rollins. McIntyre is able to pin Rollins for the pinfall victory. Drew McIntyre wins
We end the night with Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman looking on in approval. With WrestleMania looming, what will tonight's episode have on the impact on the road to WrestleMania? Tune in next week to find out!