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RAW has the depth to survive Braun Strowman’s injury

Tuesday’s Rude Awakening looks at what’s left on RAW, WWE’s locker room watching Final Deletion, and a look back at an incredible 90s pay-per-view.

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We publish a whole lot of content here at Cageside Seats. We’re also [looks around and whispers so the bosses can’t hear] not the only place producing wrestling content on the internet. So, as a service to you on the weekdays, we’ll be producing a wrestling newsletter, "Rude Awakening." Well, it will be a newsletter eventually: for now, it’ll just be part of your experience here at Cageside, collecting the news, recaps, and social moments from the greater wrestling universe daily so you won’t fall behind, with a newsletter format to come.

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Losing Braun Strowman for any length of time is a downer. Losing Braun Strowman for six months just flat-out sucks. RAW was building around the big man to the point where it was believable that he could defeat Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam, or at least get the opportunity to look better in defeat than, say, Randy Orton did at last year’s event. However, not all is lost with Strowman out, even if it’s going to take some time to all shake ourselves out of the Braun-less malaise we find ourselves in. And that’s because RAW still has the depth in the main event to make up for Strowman’s unfortunate absence.

Brock Lesnar is supposed to start showing up again next month, and RAW has already made that a central focus of the show with Strowman gone. Roman Reigns, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe, Seth Rollins, and Bray Wyatt will fight for the right to be the number one contender to the WWE Universal Championship at RAW’s next pay-per-view, Extreme Rules. These five will face off against each in different configurations until then, which gives us plenty of wrestling to look forward to and stories to spin out of their eventual five-way match, and in the end, we’ll also know who Brock’s first victim opponent is going to be.

Bray’s last feud (or at least the matches it spawned) were a real downer, but he’s always just a little refocus away from being a huge star. The return of Finn has ramped up into him wrestling more than just squashes, and Reigns is money, regardless of how you feel about his pushes. Joe vs. Rollins hasn’t set the world on fire yet, but they’re two supremely talented performers who could step up. And let’s not forget that Alexa Bliss is out here changing the entire structure of the RAW women’s division, Cesaro and Sheamus are inching toward breaking the Hardys, and RAW even managed to give us a spotlight Goldust feud in the year 2017 — that’s a compliment, not a complaint.

RAW will be fine, even if it lacks Strowman. And who knows? Maybe Braun won’t be out the full six months, and we’ll see Monday’s show lean on their depth in his absence before he shows back up to smash it all.

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