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WWE Raw preview (Aug. 8, 2016): Old rivalries

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Welcome to Anaheim, where the Ducks are MIGHTY and Raw is DIDDY.

The Headliner

It only took a week for the artificial barriers between the red and blue brands to break down, requiring a sitdown meeting between General Managers. Needing to build their upcoming SummerSlam showdown, Randy Orton crashed Raw, Brock Lesnar returned the favor 24 hours later, and here we are.

Mick Foley has invited his SmackDown Live counterpart, Daniel Bryan to appear on Monday night. Why? We don’t have a lot of answers there.

Maybe to hash out the free agency situation?

Perhaps to wager on Orton/Lesnar like a couple of mayors before the Super Bowl?

We’ll find out tonight. And, if you’re like me and ready to bemoan more authority figure-centric storyline... at least it’s not Authority-centric.

The Title Scene

Will we see more history in the Women’s championship picture this week? A segment which started with new titleholder Sasha Banks and ended in the first mixed tag match of the ‘new era’ got people talking last week. It also saw The Boss take the first pinfall loss of her new reign, at the hands of previous champ Charlotte no less. Regardless of whether or not they break new ground tonight, both ladies will be looking for the upperhand with just two weeks until their rematch on pay-per-view (PPV).

No man has worn - or possibly even seen - the new Universal title yet. But for two weeks running, Finn Bálor has given Seth Rollins reasons to take him very seriously. What will the Architect do to get momentum back on his side, especially now that we know it’s possible Finn’s Demon persona will show up in Brooklyn?

A very interesting and exciting development in the Roman Reigns story happened recently... and, no, I’m not talking about my boss ridiculing his grammar. His post-suspension move down the card has given us a program which should produce great matches and elevate the United States championship... and, no, I’m not talking about the “for however long John Cena holds it” type of elevation. It’s not official yet, but Aug. 21 should bring us The Guy vs. DA GAWD. Will Rusev udrea, or will Roman machka?

The stakes have never been higher for tag titleists The New Day. The Club is coming for their belts, and Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows may have already taken Big E’s deal.

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- Let’s speak no more of Jimmin Marvinluder. JericKO is back together, and nothing can stand in their way. Except perhaps Enzo Amore & Big Cass, in the midst of their push, or the fact that Y2J already turned his back on Kevin Owens once, and the Prizefighter has a history of walking out on tag partners.

- Both Nia Jax and Braun Strowman will likely enjoy some of their favorite vegetable tonight.

- Cesaro earned a future title shot with a win over Sheamus last week, but I guess he has to wait until after SummerSlam if he wants to try and claim the Universal belt. In the meantime, he and Sheamus looked like they still wanted to be violent with one another, so they have that going for them.

- Which is more than Sami Zayn can say, although he did look good in losing to Rollins last week.

- Titus O’Neil can beat Darren Young, but if he lays another hand Bob Backlund, he’ll see what turns his former tag partner angry again.

- Golden Truth. Pokemon Go. You can probably figure out the rest.

- He sent Heath Slater to SmackDown looking for work... how will Jinder Mahal follow-up on the win which earned him a Raw contract last Monday?

Two weeks until SummerSlam!

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?

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