WWE Monday Night Raw comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Jan. 29, 2018) from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, featuring the fallout show from the Royal Rumble pay-per-view (PPV) that took place in the very same building just last night.
Advertised for tonight: We’ll learn more about Ronda Rousey’s future, Braun Strowman is pissed, and more!
Come right back here at 8 p.m. ET when the Raw live blog kicks off once the show starts on USA. It will be below this line here. (REMINDER: NO GIFS OR PICS ARE ALLOWED IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. OFFENDERS WILL BE BANNED.)
WWE RAW RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG FOR JAN. 29
The drum beats on as I fall in trance, stepping away from the endless dance, my enemies in the endless abyss, the snakes slithering out of the mist. No subtleties, truth is all that I ask. No pleasantries, you can take off that mask. This world has left me bruised and callous, empty heart is filled with malice, cold. A blackened hole where there was once a soul, but fortunately, none of that stops me from liveblogging this here wrestling show for you folks.
The show opens with a recap of the closing segment of the Royal Rumble last night, with Asuka called on to pick between Alexa Bliss and Charlotte Flair when Ronda Rousey came out to point at things.
Live in the arena, Stephanie McMahon makes her entrance as commentary brings Jonathan Coachman out to take his spot at the commentary desk. Stephanie welcomes us to the show and reminds us that last week was Raw’s 25th anniversary, saying that tonight we kick off 25 more. Last night was the first-ever women’s Royal Rumble match, and she recaps some of the highlights from that match.
But that was last night, and tonight is about the winner of that match, Asuka. The Empress of Tomorrow makes her entrance and McMahon congratulates her and says normally she’d ask which champion she wants to face, but before she makes that decision, she might want to wait because Alexa might not be Raw Women’s Champion at WrestleMania, since she’s defending the title in four weeks in the first-ever women’s Elimination Chamber match.
Asuka thanks the WWE Universe and continues in Japanese. She points to the sign and explains in English, saying she’ll become champion at WrestleMania because nobody is ready for Asuka.
Enter Sasha Banks. She says she had a chance to make history again after sharing the ring with 29 other women last night and wants to congratulate her on victory. But she keeps saying nobody’s ready for her, but she’s proved she can go the distance and she’s ready for Asuka... TONIGHT!
Steph makes the match official!
Commentary asks the question of who faces Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania and says we’re gonna start figuring that out, with three of six Elimination Chamber qualifying matches happening tonight. Braun Strowman vs. Kane in a Last Man Standing, Elias vs. Matt Hardy, and John Cena vs. Finn Balor.
Braun Strowman makes his entrance for his match and immediately starts getting plunder out from under the ring as we go to break.
Back from commercial and the match is in progress!
Braun Strowman vs. Kane (Last Man Standing Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match)
Kane puts Braun into the post and presses the attack, walking him into the crowd, but Strowman gets a headbutt off and turns it around, smashing the Big Red Machine’s face into the inner barricade a few times. The monster grabs a chair and wallops it across his back, smashing his face into a railing a few times and grabs a road case, smashing his arm between the railing and the case!
Prowling after him, chair in hand, Braun spikes it into his midsection and tosses it aside! He eyeballs the announce table, gives it a nod... AND TIPS THE ENTIRE STAGE ONTO KANE! Referee Dan Engler doesn’t even bother counting!
Braun Strowman wins by referee stoppage, qualifying for Elimination Chamber.
Kurt Angle, referees, and Jamie Noble surround Kane to try and get him some assistance. EMTs arrive with a stretcher and Braun is interviewed on the stage.
He says he did his job. Last man standing, right? Well...
On that bombshell, we go to break.
Back from commercial, commentary survey the carnage that was their announce position, and we get a recap of the flip both because Raw is three hours long and because it was pretty great. They inform us that Kane is being taken to a local medical facility with trouble breathing.
Braun is walking backstage when Angle rolls up on him to yell at him, asking how many times they have to have this conversation and he asks if he can get one break. Strowman tells him he’s right and breathes heavy for a beat before saying he didn’t do more! He said last man standing he got last man standing, and at WrestleMania Braun will be the last one standing over Brock Lesnar!
Elias is in the ring to sing us a song. He informs us that he’s disappointed he got eliminated by Cena last night but John will get what’s coming to him, and as he sits on his electric throne he has to look to the future. Elimination Chamber is on the horizon and the winner of that will face the Universal Championship. He says he’s got WrestleMania on his mind so he wrote a song, and it’s about how he’s got Brock in his sights.
And of course, Matt Hardy’s entrance interrupts him, but we go to break before the match can begin.
Back from commercial we get a still picture recap of the Royal Rumble.
Elias vs. Matt Hardy (Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match)
Collar and elbow, Elias pushes Hardy back in the corner but Matt turns him around, jockeying for position, Elias tries to break dirty and eats a forearm to the head! Bulldog headlock into a takeover, the Drifter back into it but Hardy back suplexes out of the hold and kicks his ribs in. Side Effect denied, sidestep the charge, big Broken chops, neckbreaker connects and Hardy locks a cravate on.
Wrenching it in, Samson gets out with body blows, knee to the ribs, chop, whip across, Matt with a club, Twist of Fate denied and he takes a lariat that wipes him out! Pummelling him in the corner, referee Shawn Bennett having to pull the Drifter off. Elias heads outside and snaps Matt’s arm around the ringpost! A second time, and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Elias has a standing wristlock in on Hardy with a foot to his back for maximum leverage. Whip, off the ropes with a kick but the Drifter uses the arm for leverage and they trade forearms in the center of the ring. Repeated headbutts, back elbow, side Russian legsweep, Matt is rolling but it’s only good for two. Smashing his face into the turnbuckles over and over, charging lariats connect but Elias blocks the bulldog.
Back elbow cuts him off, Hardy off the second with an elbow to the back of the neck, Side Effect... NOPE!
Matt looks around confused and eats a boot! Fisherman clutch...
Elias wins by pinfall with Drift Away, qualifying for the Elimination Chamber.
Bray Wyatt appears on the tron from the smoky room, laughing.
The Miz cuts a promo on handcam, questioning the idea that Roman Reigns is owed a rematch and asking what he’s owed. When he graces us with his words, he’s owed silence, and when he defends his title, he’s owed a standing ovation.
And so we go to break.
Back from commercial, we get handcam promos putting over tomorrow’s episode of Mixed Match Challenge.
Roman Reigns vs. the Miz (c) (WWE Intercontinental Championship)
Miz charges right into a big slicing right from Roman! Headbutt follows, punches in the corner, the A-Lister scrambling over to the next corner and getting clubbed down while the Big Dog jaws at the Miztourage. More big rights from the Big Dog, one knocking the champion to the floor! He rams Miz into the steps and back into the ring before clotheslining him over the ropes on the other side!
Roman gets a steel chair and prowls after the Miztourage, running them off up the ramp! He brings the chair over to Miz and referee John Cone warns him not to do it! Reigns throws the chair aside as Cone counts, so he rolls in and breaks the count but the delay is enough for Miz to recover and throw him into the ringpost to send us to break.
Back from commercial, the Miz is in control with a reverse chinlock on Reigns. Roman posts to one knee and then to his feet, fireman’s carry, Miz slips out, full nelson, Reigns breaks it, Samoan drop! On their knees, punch for punch, to their feet, staggered but not done, Miz pulls ahead, chaining rights and lefts, Roman catches on and clobbers him with a lariat!
Off the ropes, leaping lariat, corner lariats ensue, finishing with the Mafia kick! Calling for it, Miz counters the Superman Punch by going low and taking his knee out! Daniel Bryan chest kicks follow, the Big Dog catches the buzzsaw and deadlifts him into a powerbomb but Miz reverses with a sunset flip and transitions right into the figure four leglock!
Roman rolls it through and reverses the pressure! Reaching for the ropes, he gets them and referee John Cone has to pull the hold apart! Both men worse off for it, Miz nonetheless manages to take Reigns’ knee out from under him again, spinning toehold, Roman counters into a schoolboy, deadlifts him up... SIT-OUT POWERBOMB! NOPE! Miz gets up and unties the turnbuckle pad but Cone catches him this time!
The Big Dog goes to wrench his head off and the A-Lister pokes his eye! Skull-Crushing Finale... NOT ENOUGH! Headed around to try it again, he gets Roman up but is backed into the corner to break! Miz sidesteps a charge and puts him into the post but turns around into the Superman Punch... NOT ENOUGH! The Miztourage back out, the Big Dog goes to take care of them and follows it up with a big right to Miz.
Bo Dallas tries to pull him off the apron and gets hip tossed in the ring! Superman Punch to Curtis Axel, spear on Dallas but Miz is right behind him...
The Miz wins by pinfall with a schoolboy pin and a handful of vest to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship.
Miz celebrates up the ramp while Roman clutches his knee and tries to move on.
We get a recap of Braun Strowman’s great strength of feet great feat of strength from the beginning of the show because Raw is three hours long.
We’re show a Paul Heyman Tweet where he puts over the decision to do a #1 contender’s match in the Elimination Chamber.
Commentary hypes up Asuka vs. Sasha Banks for later and the Revival make their entrance to send us to break.
Back from commercial and their match is in progress!
Beauty and the Man-Beast (Heath Slater & Rhyno) vs. the Revival (Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson)
Rhyno in control on Wilder, he tags Slater in, arm wringer, wrenching the arm a few times. Flying forearm, corner smash, and Dash heads to the floor for a breather. Back in, targeting the arm, beating the hell out of it and he tags Dawson in. More strikes to the arm, hammerlock back suplex, guillotine leg drop, tag back to Wilder.
Top wristlock, Heath trying to fight out with punches but Dash blocks, goes for a suplex and has it reversed into a neckbreaker. Tag made, Scott tries to stop Slater but fails and Rhyno is back in! Whip reversed, elbow up, flying shoulder tackle from the Man-Beast! Corner shoulder thrust, big belly-to-belly suplex and Slater stops Dash from running interference.
Dawson with a wicked chop block, tag to Dash...
The Revival win by pinfall with Shatter Machine on Rhyno.
The Revival are interviewed after the match. Dawson says they just defeated the first-ever SmackDown Tag Team Champions. He asks how they compare to the Graham Brothers but Charly Caruso has to admit she doesn’t know who they are. Dash says she’s just like all these people, too busy chanting ECW and trying to get themselves over. But unlike the two of them, who learn from the past, these people can’t stop living in it.
We see Asuka shadowboxing backstage, commentary hypes up the rest of the show, and we go to break.
Back from commercial we get a hype reel for WrestleMania and the announcement that the Dudley Boyz are headed to the Hall of Fame this year.
Balor Club cut a handcam promo where Finn Balor puts over his Royal Rumble performance and how his shot at the title was taken away by John Cena, so he’s not just going to step up to Cena tonight, he’s gonna step over him.
Sasha Banks is interviewed backstage, saying we’re moments away from her beating Asuka. She’s been waiting for this opportunity for a very long time, and last night she made history, but now it’s her turn.
Sasha makes her entrance and we go to break.
Back from commercial, we get another still picture recap of the Royal Rumble.
Asuka vs. Sasha Banks
Collar and elbow, into the corner and struggling and Banks lights her up with a slap! Schoolboy pin, right out and Asuka grabs a side headlock. Shot off, shoulder block, drop down, hip toss but Sasha rolls through into an armbar! The Boss stomping and choking in the corner as referee Dan Engler admonishes her. To the apron, smashing Asuka’s head into the turnbuckle but she slips out, lands a mule kick, and comes off the ropes with a hip attack that knocks Banks to the floor!
Back inside, standing hip attacks, jawing at her, choking her, putting her in an armbar and dragging Banks to the center of the ring. Sitting back on the armbar, wrenching the fingers, shifting her weight over Sasha’s back but she’s able to get up. Forearm in the corner, catch a kick, front kick, off the ropes, running Meteora, only two and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Asuka is in control wailing on Banks with forearms but she gets her into position and hits the double knee drop in the corner. Cover comes up empty, kneeling surfboard follows, planting a knee in the small of her back. Drawing Asuka up, straight suplex, snapmare, off the ropes with a slap to the face and Asuka gets up slapping!
Off the ropes, the Boss gets the tilt-a-whirl into the Bank Statement crossface but Asuka reverses to a pin! No good, backslide, Sasha reverses back to the crossface! Wrenching back on it, Asuka trapped in the middle of the ring but she’s able to post to her knees so Banks hits her with a knee to the midsection and dumps her to the floor! Off the ropes for a suicide dive... ASUKA CUTS HER OFF WITH A KICK TO THE FACE!
Back inside, Asuka throws forearms, the hip toss knee strike, spinning backfist, spinning backfist, reverse roundhouse, sliding knee, running hip attack! Throwing the Boss aside, the Empress of Tomorrow climbs the turnbuckles for a missile dropkick! Only a nearfall! Banks gets a victory roll pin, only two and Asuka gets the flying armbar! Sasha kicking, reaching, turning it into a pin and forcing the break!
To the apron, Asuka off the ropes for the hip attack but the Boss low bridges her and she clatters to the floor! METEORA OFF THE APRON! Back inside, Banks climbs up top, diving Meteora... NOT ENOUGH! Both women spent, getting to their feet slowly, Bank Statement denied, going for hte Asuka Lock but Sasha throws her into the corner! Lungblower, roll through, the crossface is on!
Asuka crawls for the ropes, reaching out, desperate, but Sasha kicks the ropes to roll back through... AND ASUKA REVERSES TO THE ASUKA LOCK! IT’S OVER!
Asuka wins by submission with the Asuka Lock.
Both women gave so much in the match that they’re still in the ring recovering after the recap, Asuka smiling.
We get a handcam promo from John Cena about how we’re on the road to WrestleMania and only Asuka and Shinsuke Nakamura know how they’re getting to the big show. Everybody else is asking how they’re getting there and he’s not letting his chance to write his ticket tonight. Why is it so important to him? Because all he here is about when he’s done, but he needs us to realize he’s just getting started.
Titus Worldwide are walking backstage ahead of their tag title shot to send us to break.
Back from commercial in time for entrances.
The Bar (Cesaro & Sheamus) (c) vs. Titus Worldwide (Apollo Crews & Titus O’Neil) (WWE Raw Tag Team Championship)
Crews and Sheamus to start and Apollo nearly steals with out the gate with a schoolboy pin! He consults with Cesaro a moment, back in, Crews with an O’Connor roll for another nearfall but the Celtic Warrior grabs a headlock. Shot off, shoulder block, drop down, leapfrog, dropkick connects for one. Apollo takes him in the corner and tags Titus in, he throws a punch, double whip, double team.
Sheamus throwing hands, backing O’Neil into the corner, Titus turns him around, body blows, but Sheamus gets to his corner and tags Cesaro in. Jawing and shoving O’Neil, uppercuts and body blows and stomps but Titus gets a double leg and rams him across for a vicious series over overhand chops and a biel! Stinger splash, going for a slam but Sheamus distracts him and tags in.
Putting boots to Titus and we go to break.
Back from commercial and Cesaro’s in control on Titus but gets dropped with a back suplex! Tag to Sheamus, double lariat wipes him out, Cesaro legal again, blocking the tag, back to Sheamus and the Celtic Warrior dumps O’Neil to the floor. Dragging him up, Titus gets a couple big slaps off and pulls Sheamus into the ropes to get some breathing room!
Sheamus in with a knee but Titus fires a lariat back and both men are wiped out! Tags made, Apollo in hot with lariats, off the ropes with a pump kick, back body drop to the apron but he recovers and perches up top, diving crossbody, only a nearfall! Standing moonsault comes up empty, whip reversed, up and over, handspring into a lariat and he kips up! Standing shooting star press... NOT ENOUGH!
Military press, Cesaro slips out, tag to Sheamus, whip, double hip toss, Crews lands on his feet and gets tossed into a powerbomb, Apollo tries to counter into a Frankensteiner but he can’t get all of it! He recovers, enzuigiri connects, another standing shooting star press... CESARO BREAKS IT UP! Cesaro tags, diving crossbody, again just a nearfall! Cesaro passes him into the post, Sheamus tags in...
The Bar win by pinfall with the spike White Noise, retaining the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship.
Commentary hypes up a look at Ronda Rousey’s debut and we go to break.
Back from commercial we get our promised recap of Ronda Rousey’s debut last night. This is followed by a recap of Braun Strowman wreaking havoc at the top of the show and we’re informed that Kane is in the emergency room, where he sat up and crawled out of the local medical facility.
Balor Club make their entrance, and we go to break.
Back from commercial we get another still picture recap of the Royal Rumble and some hype for the 205 Live general manager reveal tomorrow night.
Finn Balor vs. John Cena (Elimination Chamber Qualifying Match)
Circling, collar and elbow, Cena backs Balor into the corner and referee Dan Engler calls for the break. He gets it clean, back to the lockup, Finn with a waistlock, John breaks into a wristlock and Balor tries a fancy escape but gets blocked by Cena’s strength. Out of it, into an arm drag and the kneeling armbar, wrenching it in, John gets to one knee and forces him into the ropes to break it.
Whip reversed, drop down, arm drag, arm drag, back into the kneeling armbar, Balor keeping the 16-time world champion locked down. Cena to his feet, Finn floats over but gets leveled by a shoulder block. John grabs a side headlock, takes him over, reversed to a headscissors but Cena goes right back to the headlock! Again with the headscissors escape and again he gets taken back down by a side headlock takeover.
Finn reverses to a crucifix pin and John heads to the floor for a breather. Back inside, test of strength, grinding against each other, Cena pulls ahead and pushes Balor to his knees. Finn to his feet, he breaks the hold, goes around, schoolboy pin but John pops up and punches him in the face and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Finn is in control but has a whip reversed and runs right into an elbow strike. Scoop slam gets two, Hammer whips put Balor into the corner hard, but on a third Finn gets the boot up and clobbers John with charging forearms. Duck a lariat, double leg into a double stomp to the chest! Charging chop, whip across but Cena comes flying with the shoulder block!
Shoulder block, miss the lariat, fall-forward Blue Thunder Driver, “You can’t see me!”, off the ropes but Finn has the Five Knuckle Shuffle scouted! “You can’t see me!” returned, and he gets the inverted headlock elbow drop for a nearfall! Fireman’s carry, Balor slips out and they trade punches until John knocks him down! “You can’t see me!”, Five Knuckle Shuffle, fireman’s carry, Balor reverses to the Pele kick!
Sling Blade connects but Cena hits a lariat to keep the fight even! Charging in for Sling Blade again, Cena hosses him up and hits the Attitude Adjustment... NOT ENOUGH! John takes a minute to figure out what he needs to do and heads to the apron, telling commentary he’s just trying to get to WrestleMania. He heads up top for the Kobashi knee drop but Finn cuts him off with an enzuigiri!
Shotgun dropkick, Balor heads up top but misses the Coup de Grace! Cena picks his leg and locks the STF on! Finn gets the ropes! Enzuigiri from the apron lays John out, Balor hobbles up top but Cena rushes over... AVALANCHE ATTITUDE ADJUSTMENT! IT’S OVER!
John Cena wins by pinfall with the avalanche Attitude Adjustment, qualifying for the Elimination Chamber.
Cena poses on the turnbuckles.
That’s the show, folks.