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WWE Raw preview (April 9, 2018): Being wrong

This is usually the biggest Raw of the year, and coming off the heels of a shocking WrestleMania 34, WWE’s fourth straight night of shows from New Orleans is something you don’t want to miss.

The Headliner(s)

There were a lot of big angles at The Showcase of The Immortals, but let’s start with the game-changer which ended the night. Actually, game-changer may be the wrong term, but the fact we’re still talking about Brock Lesnar - and not Roman Reigns - as Universal champ... well, that’s the same thing we’ve been typing in this space for the last year.

We all knew - KNEW - Lesnar was losing. Every rumor and insider report told us the plan to crown Reigns was locked in place. Each piece of the puzzle and twist of the story was designed to get Roman cheered as he ascended to the spot Vince McMahon decreed he should have. One of the latest wrinkles of the story - that Brock was leaving after WrestleMania 34 for UFC - was both real and kayfabe at once. But we KNEW it was true.

Until we didn’t.

Now that The Big Dog didn’t slay The Beast, after The Guy failed to represent for the locker room and fans who were tired of WWE being “held hostage” by a “part-timer”, it’s worth asking if we know, or KNOW, anything.

Is Brock staying? For how long? Could he remain in WWE while re-entering the USADA testing pool and fight in the Octagon at the same time he performs in the squared circle?

Does this mean Vince has given up on Reigns as the face of the company? As a babyface? Both? If a wrestler built the way Roman’s been over the past year can’t dethrone the champ, who can?

Lesnar isn’t even advertised to appear, and one of those reports the “knowledge” we carried into ‘Mania said he was out of dates after Sunday night. We’ll have to start learning new things based on what he, Roman and others do and say tonight.

The title scene

Every title on Raw (Editor’s note: except the one discussed above - sorry, a little tired over here) changed hands, so we’re either set for a bunch of rematch clauses, or this really might be the start of a new “season” in WWE...

Delivering the story most of us wanted to see, Alexa Bliss got her comeuppance for being a horrible, shallow person and Nia Jax now holds the Women’s title.

Reigns might be in limbo, but his old faction now consists of nothing but Grand Slam Club members, now that Seth Rollins won the Intercontinental champioship from The Miz, and defeated Finn Bálor’s in the process. The A-Lister, who contined his recent string of babyface behavior when he sent Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel to the back before Sunday’s Triple Threat, has the rematch clause. But it’s doubtful too many people would complain about The Extraordinary Man and The Kingslayer continuing their rivalry.

If General Manager Kurt Angle sticks to his “a tag team is two people” decree, Braun Strowman better hope his new buddy Nicholas gets permission from dad John Cone to stay up late on school nights. Also, Cesaro and Sheamus probably want their tag belts back.

For the first time in months, there’s a Cruiserweight champion again. Will Raw have time for Cedric Alexander and the roster of guys who will be wanting a shot at the new champ?

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- We mentioned The GM above, but there are no guarantees Angle will stay in that post. He did just take part in a humiliating defeat of his bosses, commissioner Stephanie McMahon and COO Triple H. A good old fashioned “YOU’RE FIRED” probably isn’t out the question.

- Angle’s partner, Ronda Rousey, was the breakout star of ‘Mania on Sunday night. And now that she’s taken Steph’s arm and proved she’s got more than a few sports entertainment tricks up her sleeve, what’s next for Rowdy?

- Woken Matt Hardy has a couple new allies. One is an inanimate statue of Andre The Giant. That will probably make for some fun bits, but the really intriguing new friend Matt revealed on the Kickoff show is Bray Wyatt. We’ll be hoping to learn more about the Abigail-less Eater of World, er, we mean Consumer of Terrestrial Entities, tonight.

- Bayley thought she’d claimed a trophy when she turned the tables on Sasha Banks with a call back to The Boss’ Rumble friendship-fakeout, but she got caught up in the ‘Mania moment and missed Noami, so it didn’t work out well for her. We’ll see how if works out well for her feud with Banks.

- It’s the show some call Smark-A-Mania! There will be beach balls! There will be surprises! Will those include returning stars, like Lashley? Comebacks from injury... maybe a Samoa Joe, or a Jeff Hardy? Call-ups, such as Ember Moon? Authors of Pain? Andrade Almas? Or maybe new champs, like Lashley?

- Mr. McMahon’s been known to show up and shake things up on shows like this one. We’re just sayin’.

It’s the WrestleMania 34 fallout show!

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?

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