One can’t help but wonder if Vince McMahon arranged the beginning of the Martin Luther King day episode of Monday Night Raw with all of his top competitors coming down at the same time for a greater purpose. At this point rumors are abound that he’s not quite sure what the card for WrestleMania holds. Perhaps Vince McMahon wanted all of his stars in the same ring so he could size them up just to see what they look like standing off with each other.
Braun Strowman vs. Goldberg definitely looks like a match that anyone would want to see. The only question is how would Vince book it? It doesn’t make much sense to have Goldberg go over Braun as quickly as he did Lesnar because they already did that at Survivor Series. Besides, Braun has so much momentum and the ability to do so much more with his size and character. Then again, they fed Baron Corbin to John Cena with a clean loss last week in the middle of Corbin’s hot streak, so who knows what Mr McMahon is thinking?
Goldberg could always go over in a match like that, provided he could get Braun up for the Jackhammer. However rumors have been circulating that Vince wants to book toward the future, which is very refreshing at this point. If he’s not careful, in 10 years Vince won’t have big part-time superstars to call if he doesn’t make big superstars now.
Although Braun has been continually toppled at the end of the night for the past couple of weeks on Raw he is still unbeaten in a definitive sense. Perhaps Vince is using the old story technique where he shows the monster among men taken down to prove that he is human, so fans don’t completely see it coming when he wins big.
Brock Lesnar versus Roman Reigns also looks like an attractive match primarily because Brock could get a win and Roman could lose hard. Because Brock might need a win at this point, however nobody will ever forget that he is the Beast Incarnate. But, they gave him The Undertaker’s streak therefore he needs to be treated more like the monster that he is. Roman could always use an opportunity like that to get a cheap win, and solidify the heel turn that fans want to see.
Kevin Owens makes such a great heel champion and his popularity coupled with his cleverness is turning him face regardless of how Vince would rather it go. His interaction with everyone he comes in contact with on WWE television is always worth watching.
Then comes the main event match which saw a six man encounter dividing the participants of the initial opening segment scuffle in two teams (sans Lesnar). It almost looked like Vince might’ve been trying out a new Shield with Sami Zayn acting as Dean Ambrose’s replacement at one point. Even though Dean never flew through the air quite like Sami can.
Braun Strowman ended up winning the match in powerful form by pinning Sami, however that dominance didn’t last long. Just like the week before, he was ultimately stopped and squelched by Roman Reigns and a partner of convenience. Giving Braun the win really doesn’t mean much if he immediately loses his heat.
Just as Braun was about to drag Sami up the ramp and throw him through the exposed announce table, Roman and Seth ran in for the save and took him out. However, the two best, best friends of the WWE didn’t let that last long as Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho decimated the two former members of the Shield.
Roman ended up going through the announce table during the closing moments of Raw while the crowd broke out in “yes” chants. If Vince doesn’t get the message now, it might never happen. Roman is PWI’s most hated wrestler, but he is still being booked as a face.
There are obviously some miles left on the road to WrestleMania, therefore Vince and company still have plenty of work to do. With the Royal Rumble being two weeks away it will be a good chance for them to make some headway in the right direction if they choose to do so. If Vince decides to be stubborn and ignore the obvious opposition to Roman as a face, then history might not remember this time period fondly.
Then, now, and forever.