Raw airs tonight (Jan. 24) with a live show from Huntington Center in Toledo, Ohio. This is the final Raw episode during the four week build towards Royal Rumble on Saturday, January 29.
The Miz is throwing a birthday party for Maryse
The Miz returned to Raw on the Nov. 29 episode, where he kicked off his current feud with Edge. Here we are nearly two months later, and Miz has somehow found a way to avoid wrestling a single match on Raw during this time. It looks like tonight will be the 9th consecutive episode of Raw where the Edge/Miz story is told through dueling microphones rather than a wrestling match. That’s because The Miz is throwing a must-see birthday party extravaganza for his wife, Maryse.
The Miz has to know this won’t end well for her, right?
I got a sense of déjà vu when this segment was announced, because The Miz and Maryse already had a big celebration ruined last month on a PPV go-home show when they tried to renew their wedding vows. Edge interrupted that one to cover them in black liquid.
After Maryse knocked Beth Phoenix out with a brick last week, you know the babyfaces are crashing the party tonight. Will Miz and Maryse learn from their mistakes and have a good plan in place to thwart Edge and Beth, or will the heels be humiliated once again on the eve of a PPV match?
While all of this has been playing out, The Miz has successfully distracted Edge enough where the Rated R Superstar has yet to declare for the Royal Rumble match. Isn’t it strange that the man who won last year’s match and isn’t involved in a current title program has forgotten about one of the most important matches of the year and the best way to headline WrestleMania? For now, the only match on Edge’s slate at Royal Rumble is this mixed tag team match with Beth against Miz and Maryse. Will Edge pull double duty on Saturday night?
The title scene
Bobby Lashley and Brock Lesnar will have an official weigh in tonight as they share the ring one final time before their WWE championship match at Royal Rumble. WWE’s web site is using the awkward tagline of “Collision with Consequences” for their match, so we’ll see if the Raw commentators follow suit. Lashley dominated Lesnar every time they crossed paths in a 5-Way match at Day 1; the All Mighty can send a very powerful message if he traps the Beast in the inescapable Hurt Lock after both men step on the scale. But if Bob doesn’t get his hands on the champ tonight, well, I’m sure Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin are hanging around somewhere waiting to get their asses kicked one more time.
Alpha Academy are willing to grant RK-Bro a rematch for the Raw tag team titles, but only if Randy Orton and
Matt Riddle can first beat them in an Academic Challenge tonight. Who wants to bet that Riddle ends up being the smartest goofball in the room?
Doudrop will challenge Becky Lynch for the Raw women’s championship at Royal Rumble. Dou has pinned Liv Morgan on consecutive episodes of Raw to show that she belongs in this match, but the early betting odds rightfully indicate she is a giant underdog. Maybe Doudrop needs to pin Morgan one more time to turn those odds around.
Kevin Owens pinned United States champion Damian Priest last week in a non-title match. It’s the first time Priest has ever been pinned in a singles match on the main roster. Owens will probably get a future title shot as a result of his cunning efforts, but both men should be more focused on winning the men’s Royal Rumble match right now.
Queen Zelina Vega and Carmella are the Women’s tag team champions. Now that Nikki A.S.H. and Rhea Ripley are split up, there are zero women’s team left to challenge the champs.
Reggie was obliterated by Omos last week. Will that affect his ability to help Dana Brooke escape from Raw tonight with the 24/7 title? Probably not, because R-Truth, Tamina, and Akira Tozawa are not very effective at chasing down the jobber belt.
Other stuff to keep an eye on
- Rey Mysterio decided to remind everyone about the rules of the Royal Rumble match by throwing his own son over the top rope last week. It’s not the best way for a father to conduct himself, but Rey is at least a man of his word.
- The Mysterios don’t have much of a chance to actually win the men’s Royal Rumble match, but Big E, Omos, and AJ Styles do. If WWE is planning to book a segment where the entire locker room gets in the ring for a brawl, look for one of these men to be the last one standing as everyone else is tossed over the top rope.
- Bianca Belair is one of the strongest contenders to win the women’s Royal Rumble match. Can anybody on Raw stop Belair from winning that match in consecutive years?
- Finn Balor returned to Raw last week and was beaten by Austin Theory. I’m sure Vince McMahon will have more hard-to-understand words of wisdom for Theory after his latest encounter with Finn.
- Seth Rollins doesn’t really need to be at Raw tonight considering his focus should entirely be on the Bloodline over on SmackDown. But Raw is 3 hours long, and a Seth Rollins match is usually one of the better ways to fill that way-too-long run time.
- Alexa Bliss is on the road to recovery with her recent therapy sessions, which hopefully means WWE is planning to move her away from all of the supernatural Lilly nonsense. But she’s running out of time if the idea is to get back in the ring for the women’s Royal Rumble match, which is just five nights away.
What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?