With Braun Strowman out of the picture, WWE had to move quickly.
Tonight’s (Jan. 14) episode of Raw fell less than two weeks away from the 2019 Royal Rumble. After Vince McMahon booted Braun from his Universal title match with Brock Lesnar, there were a few hours where the biggest prize in the promotion didn’t have a showcase at the Royal Rumble.
McMahon would go on to book a fatal four way match between Baron Corbin, Drew McIntyre, Finn Balor, and John Cena, with the winner getting their crack at Lesnar at the end of the month.
In the main event of Raw, all four men brought their ‘A’ game.
.@JohnCena isn't going down without a FIGHT in the #Fatal4Way Match to determine @BrockLesnar's new #UniversalChampionship opponent at the #RoyalRumble! #Raw pic.twitter.com/1EH0ITQ24v— WWE (@WWE) January 15, 2019
Let the record show, that earlier in the night Balor had to face-off with Jinder Mahal for the right to even be in this match. Balor beat Mahal but did appear to injury his shoulder during the win.
Following a frantic ending, Balor got the best of long-time rival McIntyre, then hit the Coup de Grace on Cena to earn the three count.
.@FinnBalor TIME! pic.twitter.com/XBY4tziqRo— TDE Wrestling (@totaldivaseps) January 15, 2019
The Royal Rumble pay-per-view (PPV) takes place on Sun., Jan. 27, 2019, at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona.
Demon versus Beast in 13 days at the 2019 Royal Rumble.
Does Finn Balor have a real shot to win back the Universal title he briefly held? Was Balor the correct choice by WWE to step in for Braun Strowman?
Get complete Raw results and coverage here.