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WWE Raw preview (May 11, 2020): Do-overs

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WWE’s back after Money in the Bank with a show they’ll film at some point today at the Performance Center in Orlando.

The Headliner(s)

Getting top billing this week are two feuds we’ve already seen this year. Both featured strong builds that led to highly anticipated matches on big stages. Both have been relegated to to our memory banks as something other than the classics many hoped and thought they would be.

The latest impending clash between Raw Women’s champion Becky Lynch and freshy-minted Ms. Money in the Bank Asuka comes with a built-in twist. Lynch’s plan to confront the briefcase holder not withstanding, Asuka’s in control here. She can either call her shot or hang around the periphery waiting for her moment.

If Becky is about to start a feud with Nia Jax or Shayna Baszler with Asuka looming - the difference between this and their past programs is easily apparent. The issue with that option is... Becky hasn’t been around a whole heck of a lot during the empty arena era. Unless that’s about to change, the Empress won’t be able to tease or threaten cash-ins. But if The Man continues to not come around, it may be a sign WWE is finally ready to end her long reign as she looks to become their next Hollywood success story.

Either way, the big challenge will be creating a memorable match and/or moment to culminate the Asuka/Becky trilogy. Much as I love her, that’s a recurring theme of Lynch’s run at the top. Changing that narrative under the current circumstances will be tough. Maybe they should try the cinematic route?

Edge & Randy Orton didn’t go full cinematic for their WrestleMania 36 Last Man Standing affair, but that was about the only thing they didn’t try in their 40 minutes. Criticisms about length and pace aside, that match did wrap up the story quite nicely... which is why so many people were surprised when WWE started promoting what sounds like its continuation.

“The heated rivalry between Edge and Randy Orton is apparently far from over.

Both Superstars will be at Raw tonight, and The Rated-R Superstar will reportedly be on the hunt for The Viper. Orton, though, is one of WWE’s most cunning competitors. Will he turn the tables on his former friend before Edge finds him?”

First question is, why is Edge hunting Orton when he already won? My guess is he’ll have some regret that he let Randy drag him “to that place”, and be looking for some less violent closure with his former partner. That could give the Viper the upper hand again, allowing him to twist the knife in Edge a little more. The endgame, I suspect, is a chance to end this chapter of their rivalry with something half the audience doesn’t dislike.

Maybe they’ll go full cinematic and leave the P.C. this time? Will it be worth it if they do?

The title scene

Not only did Drew McIntyre successfully defend his WWE championship last night, he was a classy winner, offering Seth Rollins his hand and thanking him for a worthy battle. Is WWE actually booking a top babyface like a hero and not a bully? Fingers crossed Drew doesn’t drop a bucket of poop on Rollins & Murphy tonight. He also needs a new challenger, especially since the men’s Money in the Bank contract is in the meat-covered mitts of SmackDown’s Otis.

After a don’t-call-it-non-title win over Tag titleholders the Street Profits last week, Viking Raiders should be in line for a “championship opportunity” (I believe that’s still the approved vernacular).

No one from Zelina Vega’s squad got the shine I was hoping for last week. But with Money in the Bank in the rearview, Aleister Black is free to start a proper feud with United States champ Andrade. Or Rey Mysterio. Whichever one survived being kind-of thrown off a building last night.

She did double duty last week, so we can only assume NXT Women’s champion Charlotte Flair will continue to do the same this week. Who will fight valiantly but come up short like Liv Morgan did on May 4?

Fresh off a loss to Bobby Lashley that he thinks was a win over MVP, R-Truth is headed to Tampa Bay to get his baby back. Hopefully someone tells him that Rob Gronkowski, not Tom Brady, has the 24/7 title.

Other stuff to keep an eye on

- Speaking of MVP, his boys Shane Thorne & Brendan Vink picked up a big win over Ricochet & Cedric Alexander last week. Will they continue to roll on, or will 50/50 booking prevail?

- We haven’t seen Apollo Crews since a knee injury took him out of Sunday’s ladder match. When’s he coming back? Will he be gunning for El Ídolo when he returns, or could there be something to these heel turn rumors?

It’s the Money in the Bank fallout!

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?