Monday Night Raw – March 30, 2015: Title This Whatever Mr. Lesnar Prefers It To Be Called

Monday Night Raw
Date: March 30, 2015
Location: SAP Center, San Jose, California
Commentators: Michael Cole, Booker T., John Bradshaw Layfield

Things have certainly changed last night as we have a new WWE World Champion in Seth Rollins, who cashed in his Money in the Bank contract and made the main event a triple threat, allowing him to pin Reigns and win the title. Tonight is always one of the most eventful nights of the year and it’s always interesting to see where things go from here. Let’s get to it.

Opening sequence with no recap from last night.

Here are a livid Heyman and Lesnar, with the beast in his fighting gear and cuts on his face. Something I noticed last night: for a guy as terrifying as he looks, Brock Lesnar has some skinny legs. Heyman says he’s the advocate for the most non-PG killer of the PG Era. Last night Brock laid a beating on Roman Reigns, just like they promised they would. Heyman’s voice sounds like it’s about to go out. He talks about all the suplexes and has to stop for the Suplex City chant.

Last night, Reigns almost gained Lesnar’s respect but the kid still has a long way to go. Lesnar got bored last night and wanted to go to dinner, so he hit the fourth F5, but here came Seth Rollins (big reaction for that). Seth came out and stole the title by pinning the challenger instead of the champion. Heyman talks about his father being a prominent New York attorney and says he can have the decision reversed in court with the title being held up, but Brock thinks all lawyers are scumbags. He doesn’t want litigation, because he wants his rematch clause.

That rematch will not happen at Summerslam, Wrestlemania XXXII, Extreme Rules or Payback, but it’s being invoked RIGHT HERE AND RIGHT NOW. Cue Stephanie and she’s as popular as John Cena was in New Orleans last year. She praises Brock for a great main event but the fans chant for Ronda Rousey as Stephanie’s arm is held close to her ribs.

The fans won’t get what they want if they make her angry and they calm down. Rollins got on a plane to go to New York for the Today Show and he’s not here yet. Once he gets here though, he’ll be up for the challenge. Heyman says Lesnar wrestles live tonight on Raw for the first time in over ten years. Tonight there’s going to be a new World Champion.

John Cena has issued an open challenge for the US Title and Daniel Bryan is defending the Intercontinental Title against Dolph Ziggler.

Intercontinental Title: Daniel Bryan vs. Dolph Ziggler

Bryan won the title last night in a ladder match and both guys get jobber entrances here. Ziggler has a new jean jacket vest and Barrett is on commentary. Feeling out process to start as the fans are split. Bryan cranks on the arm as Barrett talks about getting the title back when it’s convenient for him.

Daniel wrestles him to the mat for some hard forearms but Ziggler changes control and hammers away, only to get kicked in the face to break it up. This is starting to get physical. They head into the corner with Bryan firing off some kicks and a hard forearm to the face, setting up the surfboard. Back up and Ziggler fires off a cross body to put both guys on the floor as we take a break. We come back to Bryan fighting out of a chinlock and hitting the running dropkicks in the corner. Those things just look good.

Both guys crotch themselves on top and Bryan nails a belly to back superplex for two. The YES Kicks look to set up the YES Lock but Ziggler counters into a pinfall reversal sequence, followed by sending Bryan shoulder first into the post. The running knee is countered by a superkick for two and the fans give them a standing ovation. It was good but a standing ovation? Really? They slug it out from their knees before turning to headbutts, only to have Bryan get knocked backed and come back with the running knee to retain at 11:53.

Rating: B-. Good match but a standing ovation? I’m fine if this is the kind of match we’ll be getting in the future but I really need more long term proof before I believe the title is back to meaning something. Bryan winning his first title defense is a good sign and it’s nice to see a match not getting interrupted for a change.

Post match Barrett goes after Bryan but Sheamus, with a mohawk and a braided beard, runs out for the save. Barrett leaves but Sheamus Brogue Kicks Bryan and White Noise to Ziggler. Fans: “YOU LOOK STUPID!” Oh that’s an understatement. Sheamus: “I’m back.”

Seth Rollins has arrived.

We recap the Hall of Fame inductions.

Cesaro/Tyson Kidd/Ascension vs. New Day/Lucha Dragons

Woods is the odd man out here. We have our first NXT callup of the night with the Lucha Dragons of Sin Cara and Kalisto. The fans of course chant NXT as Cara and Cesaro get things going with the fans switching to Cesaro. He takes Cara down to start but gets caught in La Mistica for two. Off to Kalisto for some kicks at the arm before a HUGE backflip into a multi-spin headscissors, sending Cesaro out to the floor.

Big E. comes in to a “New Day sucks” chant as he gets to face Konnor. Kofi quickly tags in for a middle rope clothesline before it’s already back to Cara to work on the arm. Ascension gets their act together and slams Cara down as we take a break. Back with Cesaro swinging Cara into the dropkick from Kidd but Cara is able to dive over for the hot tag to Kofi. House is cleaned but the fans still hate the New Day.

The Boom Drop and a spinning cross body get two as the announcers acknowledge the chants. Kidd throws Kofi into a European uppercut but Viktor tags himself in. The real hot tag brings in Kalisto to clean house with a rolling kick to Viktor’s face and a headscissors faceplant. Everything breaks down with Big E. belly to belly suplexing everyone he sees. Cara backdrops Kofi onto the champs and Konnor, setting up Salida Del Sol on Viktor for the pin at 10:08. Booker: “We may have to get every talent from NXT on this roster right now!”

Rating: C+. Total star making performance from Kalisto as he was flying all over the place and making everyone forget Rey Mysterio ever existed. I wish Ascension hadn’t been crushed so much but it’s nice to see the Dragons still having their number as they’re both on the main roster. Hopefully this is just the first of a few debuts tonight.

Heyman tells Lesnar that he’s here.

Video on Neville (no Adrian) but no date for his debut.

WWE World Heavyweight Title: Brock Lesnar vs. Seth Rollins

The belt looks huge on Rollins. We get big match intros and Rollins goes over to get in front of Brock as he holds up the title. Seth doesn’t hand over the title and the opening bell never rings. Instead he drops to the floor and says he’s too jetlagged. Plus he has a sore foot from Curb Stomping Lesnar last night so the rematch isn’t happening tonight.

Lesnar goes after him and throws Rollins down before blasting him with a clothesline. They get inside but Rollins flips out of the German suplex. The kick to the face just ticks Brock off though so Rollins tries to bail again, only to get caught in the F5. The Stooges’ save doesn’t work as they get clotheslined and send Rollins running to the crowd. No match as the bell never rang.

Brock throws the announcers’ table over to crush all three of them and beats up the Stooges as a consolation prize and F5’s Cole to a huge reaction. Heyman thinks Brock has gone too far so Brock takes out a cameraman until Stephanie comes out to tell him to stop (her arm seemingly fine already) but Brock hits another F5. That earns him a suspension and he’s out of the building. Brock F5’s the cameraman one more time and finally leaves.

Back with a replay of Lesnar’s rampage and still no commentary. Stephanie says she’ll fine Brock because he’s signed long term so she owns him.

Stardust vs. Damien Mizdow

Byron Saxton is a one man booth now and the table still overturned. Mizdow comes out to the same entrance and music he had with Miz but alone this time. Stardust jumps him to start but Mizdow explodes with a clothesline out of the corner and hits the Reality Check. That’s fine with Stardust who hits a release gordbuster and cranks on a cravate, only to get annoyed at the CODY chants. Back up and a Skull Crushing Finale is good enough to give Mizdow the pin at 2:24.

Miz runs in and hits the Finale on Mizdow before talking a lot of trash.

Video on how Wrestlemania took over the Bay Area and the media appearances last week.

Curtis Axel says the entire roster is jealous of Axelmania. It took 29 men to eliminate him from the battle royal, but the road to Axtreme Rules stars right now.

Neville vs. Curtis Axel

Neville now has a hooded cape and is billed as the Man That Gravity Forgot. Axel goes right for him before the bell and gets a HUGE springboard moonsault to the floor. Back in and we get the opening bell as Neville starts speeding things way up with the front flips and some running forearms. Kicks to the ribs and a running kick to the face set up the Red Arrow for the pin at 1:13. Total squash.

We recap Lesnar attacking the announcers.

Here’s John Cena for an open challenge for the US Title. The fans chant John Cena Sucks in time with the music so Cena does the entrance twice with a smirk on his face. Cena says you’re going to hear about Wrestlemania moments all night but stops to praise the crowd for being so vocal. He mentions them singing and the fans strike up the band again. That means the fans aren’t going to like this: THE CHAMP IS HERE! The challenge is open so come get some.

US Title: John Cena vs. Dean Ambrose

Oh now that’s a surprise. Saxton thought it would be Rusev and even said his name before Dean came out. Ambrose gets taken down with a headlock to start as the fans are all over Cena. Back up and Dean hiptosses him down for one and Cena bails outside as we take a break. We come back with Dean fighting out of a chinlock and Jerry Lawler joining Saxton on commentary. Cena slams Dean down but a kick to the face breaks up the Shuffle. A big boot sets up the rebound clothesline but Cena ducks into the ProtoBomb.

Now the Shuffle connects but the AA is countered into a sunset flip for two. The second attempt at the rebound clothesline gets two and a tornado DDT gets the same on Cena. The champ bails outside and gets taken down by the top rope standing elbow (that’s still cool looking). Back in and a quick AA gets two and a nice reaction from the crowd on the kickout. A top rope AA is countered as Dean hammers away, only to botch a sunset bomb. Instead it’s a Batista Bomb but Cena rolls out and puts on the STF but Dean makes the long crawl to the ropes.

Another AA is countered into the STF on Cena with John’s face being far more shocked than in pain. Dean lets go as Cena is getting close to the ropes and another AA is countered into Dirty Deeds for two. This is getting good with the drama and near falls. Cena wins a slugout and they trade finisher counters until Dean hits a cross body, only to have Cena rolls through into an AA for the pin at 14:23.

Rating: B. This took its time to get going but once they started trading finishers you actually believed Ambrose could pull off the upset. It’s a good sign that he’s in a match like this after all those big losses in recent months. He’s still way over and that’s more important than any win or loss he can have.

Post match Cena stands over Dean, who is shaking his head. They slap hands and there’s no heel turn.

Stills of last night’s main event.

Rollins says he earned the right to cash in at any time and that’s exactly what he did last night, when no one expected it. Let’s forget about Lesnar, because he walked out of Wrestlemania as the new World Heavyweight Champion. Orton comes up and says he wants the title, so here are Kane and Big Show to stand behind Rollins. Seth gives Randy until the end of the night to find two partners.

AJ Lee/Paige/Naomi vs. Bella Twins/Natalya

AJ is wearing a Bayley shirt. Natayla headlocks Naomi down to start before firing off some forearms. Naomi comes back with a running dropkick, only to have Natalya take her down for a basement dropkick. Off to Brie for the third dropkick of the match as the fans want Bayley. Brie takes her down with a fireman’s carry into an armbar, followed by taking her down with a fireman’s carry into an armbar. Back up and the tag brings in Paige for some headbutts. Brie calls her a loser and gets speared to the floor as we take a break. IN THIS MATCH???

Back with Brie holding AJ in a chinlock before it’s off to Natalya for some suplexes for two. Nikki puts on a chinlock of her own and keeps AJ from diving over for the tag. A hard forearm puts Paige down and we keep the match going with a modified Indian deathlock. AJ finally gets free and sends Nikki into the buckle for the hot tag to Naomi. Nikki plants her with an Alabama Slam but Paige comes in as everything breaks down. Bella miscommunication sees Nikki hit Brie by mistake, setting up the Rear View to pin Nikki at 13:35.

Rating: C. This was a good example of the problem with the Divas: most of them have a horrible lack of presence. The Bellas are really bad about this. They’re good at doing heel stuff, but the charisma isn’t there and they feel like they’re just playing characters. Yeah they’re playing those characters well enough, but I don’t buy it as anything more than them doing what they’re told to do. Natalya can have that presence, or at least can be good enough in the ring to make up for it. I don’t buy that from the Bellas and I never have. Hopefully this leads to Naomi getting a title run.

We look at Lesnar’s destruction again.

Ryback offers to be Orton’s partner and Randy shakes his hand.

Sheamus/Barrett vs. Bryan/Ziggler on Smackdown. Cena, Orton and Reigns will be there in some capacity as well.

Rusev vs. Goldust

No Lana or tank tonight. The announcers bring up Rusev not answering the open challenge earlier if he’s here. Cole might need neck surgery after the attack earlier. That sounds like a way to write him off TV for a bit. Rusev catches Goldust coming out of the corner and the beating is on early. Some slow stomps set up a knee to the back of the head The jumping superkick and the Accolade end Goldust quick at 2:16.

Ryback/Randy Orton/??? vs. Kane/Big Show/Seth Rollins

In a very obvious choice, the third man is Roman Reigns. Kane and Ryback get things going with Ryback shrugging off some right hands and hitting the spinebuster. An early Meat Hook attempt sends the Authority to the floor but Reigns dives on all three of them for a huge crash (beating from Brock Lesnar anyone?) as we take a break. Back with Kane getting stomped in the corner before Ryback suplexes him for two. Off to Rollins vs. Orton with the new champ getting uppercutted in the corner. A spinning kick to the face gets two on Randy as the fans chant HOW YOU DOIN.

Big Show comes in and gets a PLEASE RETIRE chant. Back to Kane for a chinlock followed by a big boot for two. The Wave breaks out and the camera actually follows it around. Rollins tells the crowd to suck it but Orton counters what looked to be a tornado DDT into a superplex. Fans: “WE ARE AWESOME!”

The hot tag brings in Reigns and he’s booed out of the building as he cleans house. In a cool spot, Big Show intercepts a Superman Punch (fans LOVE that) and throws Reigns at Kane, only to have the Superman Punch connect out of midair. Ryback picks Big Show up in a dead lift for the Shell Shock but eats a Curb Stomp. Rollins bails from Reigns and the RKO into a spear is enough to pin Kane at 13:00.

Rating: C-. This was the match where the crowd gave up and I can’t say I blame them. Of all the people they can put in the main event of THIS SHOW, they picked the two old giants? That was the best idea they had? This felt like the end of any given Raw and that’s not how you want to end this show. Last year it ended with Shield’s face turn, here it ends with a generic six man tag. That’s kind of stupid but the rest of the show was good enough that I can forgive it.

Overall Rating: B+. I had a good time with this show and they focused a lot more on the wrestling this year than last. The show completely ran out of gas with the main event as it went out with nothing instead of something big, but at least we had some good debuts, Lesnar just massacring people and a hot crowd. Stephanie continues to be the most annoying person on the roster but that’s something you just have to live with. Also, no HHH? Still though, really fun show which has become the standard for the night after Wrestlemania.

Results

Daniel Bryan b. Dolph Ziggler – Running knee

New Day/Lucha Dragons b. Ascension/Tyson Kidd/Cesaro – Salida Del Sol to Viktor

Damien Mizdow b. Stardust – Skull Crushing Finale

Neville b. Curtis Axel – Red Arrow

John Cena b. Dean Ambrose – Attitude Adjustment

Paige/AJ Lee/Naomi b. Bella Twins/Natalya – Rear View to Nikki

Rusev b. Goldust – Accolade

Roman Reigns/Randy Orton/Ryback b. Kane/Big Show/Seth Rollins – Spear to Kane

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book of 1998 Pay Per View reviews at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

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28 comments

  1. Dave says:

    Anyone else think the last half of this show sucked? I enjoyed the first half so much but that last half was awful.

  2. SamualDude says:

    We didn’t get any Wyatt either which was like what?

    klunderbunker Reply:

    His ankle might have been too banged up to walk to the ring.

    Jacob Jones Reply:

    Probably explains why his match against Undertaker wasn’t exactly masterpiece worthy. That being said, Deadman’s spoiled us with so many classics at WrestleMania…..

  3. Jacob Jones says:

    The night after WrestleMania is always so much fun! While not on the level of 2013, this was still a very exciting show of great matches and impressive highlights.

    Also Kalisto is the next Mil Mascaras. End of story.

  4. CrazyHorse says:

    So, did Lesnar turn tonight? Or is he just still kind of in between…I did like what I saw, that decimation of announce team/Cole/cameraman/J&J was epic, lol

    klunderbunker Reply:

    Kind of, but he’s going to be gone for months anyway. It seemed like he did though.

    Jacob Jones Reply:

    It’s likely he did. And yes, him taking out the entire announcing team/cameraman and J&J security was awesome.

    Eric Reply:

    He’s not a heel or a face, he’s an attraction. You can put anyone against him, face or heel and make it work. It’s like Cena in that sense only he only shows up a few times a year.

    Jay H (the real one) Reply:

    Yeah I would say Brock turned Face tonight. I love it when he starts killing people and going nuts.

    Fun RAW tonight as the Post-Mania episodes continue to deliver. 2 Title Matches and a couple NXT Debuts plus Brock Lesnar killing people makes it a win in my book.

    Mike M. Reply:

    He took out the announce team. That makes him a face in my book.

  5. Aeon Mathix says:

    Not much reason to tune into Raw now. My opinion is not popular at all but i loathe Rollins and still think his heel turn was just to swerve us and after a while they just ran with it. Its not that he sucks or anything close to it its just like damn im burnt out on him and bored to shit with his cowardly heel antics 101 hes done for the better part of a year now

  6. F5 says:

    Much better show overall than Wrestlemania, and with a much better crowd. No idea why they only seem to try once a year, and AFTER their biggest show, but who knows.

    Considering all the NXT stuff if HHH was the one running the thing here, I don’t think I’d ever say another bad word about him if he takes over immediately. Even via the use of some Hamlet style ear poisoning…

  7. #MrScissorsKick says:

    I’m down for a Naomi WWE Divas championship run….

    Seriously, that would be dope.

    KB, how long does Cena hold the U.S. Championship?

    Would you be down for a Naomi Divas title run?

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I’ll go with three months.

    Sure.

    #MrScissorsKick Reply:

    By the way, it was cool to see the U.S., Intercontinental. and WWE World Heavyweight Championship defended on RAW. Why won’t the WWE do that more often?

    Jacob Jones Reply:

    Probably because the championship titles get defended a lot on PPV. Maybe.

    Hubcap Dave Reply:

    Naomi is totally deserving of a title run.

  8. larisano says:

    Great Show until the ending, full of energy throughout.

    But that ending/Main Event… that sucked all the energy out and the Wave was hilarious to say the least.

    I was afraid they were gonna have Reigns no-sell big time, and they did exactly that. I’m honestly not sure what they are trying to achieve with him in terms of booking like Superman… Try Batman, Vince… BATMAN!!!

    Jacob Jones Reply:

    I don’t know if Vince has ever heard of Batman.

  9. Dwight says:

    I’m also not a Rollins fan at all. I wouldn’t be upset if he has a very short title reign.

    Jacob Jones Reply:

    I respect your opinions.

  10. ted says:

    This Stephanie McMahon thing is NOT funny anymore. She is just a terrible actor and with over 15 years experience she has not improved one iota. In the last few months she has talked down Randy Orton, Sting, Rock, Rounda Rousey and now Brock Lesnar. I just don’t get it?

    Even if you explain it with nepotism
    1. That’s not a good explanation
    2. It makes everyone before mentioned look terrible.

    I don’t understand what she brings to the show

    I’ve heard people say she’s a good heel. Is she really? I’ve seen many fans change the channel when she shows up because her promos take wayyy to long, not to mention that voice. Also heels tend to lose she hasn’t seemed to master that part either.

    Is it because of her skills in the ring? I’ve seen people with half the experience fair much better.

    Even if you want to go primitive and say it’s because of looks. She is average looking at best. Even back in the early 2000’s when they were claiming she was better looking than the females wrestlers of the day. Anyone with eyes could see this was just not true.

    So that leaves with a terrible personality that is only on the show because of her family tree. Who gets to cut the heels and faces balls off, Bring the shows to a screeching halt with her horrific acting and well screeching. Never show ass and be the worst part of every show she’s on.

    Well done Vince you must be so proud.

  11. james gracie says:

    Oh man other than the Brock Lesnar stuff, how bad was that? This show fucking sucked! THAT is what we got for a post Wrestlemania RAW? COME ON!

    The first hour was very refreshing and actually pretty good, but then as the show went on, it slowly morphed back into every other boring, predictable, formulaic RAW we’ve seen for months now. Take out the Lesnar stuff and the hot crowd and you’ll see what this RAW truly was. Pretty uneventful and boring. I mean that six man tag was the main event? Really? Is this Smackdown or the RAW after Wrestlemania?

    AND GET STEPHANIE OUT OF THIS FUCKING COMPANY! I made the loudest groan when her fucking music hit. She adds nothing and makes everyone look bad. Anytime she inserts herself in an angle she makes it much worse. And nepotism is the reason cause she is so talentless that if she wasn’t Vince’s daughter she wouldn’t be on this show.

    Awful show tonight besides the Lesnar stuff and it’s clear that “suspension” is their way of getting him off TV which sucks cause everything else on this show sucks without him and he’s clearly gonna be on a limited schedule again. #VinceIsSoftAnOutOfTouch #FireStephanie #HaveFunBeingSheamus’WhippingBoyDanielBryan #OhManBesideTheLesnarStuffHowBadWasThat

    Jay H (the real one) Reply:

    So 2 Title Matches and 2 Debuts from NXT is boring & predictable to you? Ugh you are just hopeless and its pretty obvious you are just a hypocrite at this point.

    james gracie Reply:

    3 of those things happened in the first hour which if you read I said was good and refreshing. With that said, I’m gonna need a little more than a few guys doing some flips in the ring to get me excited.

    Not to mention the post Wrestlemania crowd has become a parody. It was original and organic a few years ago. Now it is forced and it’s just a “LOOK AT ME” crowd. I mean all these fans bitch about the Divas not getting a chance, so WWE gives them 10 minutes and look at the disrespectful chants that stupid crowd gave them. That’s why Vince doesn’t give the Divas a chance cause crowds like last night tell him that they don’t take them seriously.

  12. Brian says:

    Oh boy, that sure was a lot of class shown by the crowd during the diva’s match tonight. Also, I can’t be the only one baffled with the recent obsession with single-name wrestlers? Thank God it didn’t exist in the ’80s/’90s or I’d have been stuck cheering for RIc and Piper.

  13. M.R. says:

    Why wouldn’t they just flip the table back over?