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WWE Raw preview (May 16, 2022): Alexa Bliss’ return is a big deal

WWE.com

Raw airs tonight (May 16) with a live show from the Scope Arena in Norfolk, Virginia. This is the second Raw episode during the four week build towards Hell in a Cell, coming up on June 5.

Alexa Bliss’ return to WWE is a big deal

Alexa Bliss returned to Raw last week with a quick squash win over former WWE Official Sonya Deville.

This is the second time Bliss has returned to WWE in 2022. The first return was a complete disaster. It focused on awful therapy segments where Alexa was largely playing the same supernatural evil doll-obsessed character from 2021. She wrestled one match and then immediately disappeared from television, and that includes missing out on WrestleMania 38.

In just one night back on TV, WWE undid a lot of the damage from her earlier return this year. Those cringe supernatural elements of her previous gimmick appear to be reduced or completely gone. Her entrance music was much closer to her original music before she was ever corrupted by Bray Wyatt. She still has that stupid doll Lilly with her, but that’s fine as a prop to sell a bunch of merch with as long as it doesn’t become anything more than that in kayfabe.

The Raw women’s division has been significantly bolstered in recent weeks with the additions of Asuka and now Bliss, along with Rhea Ripley turning heel. And WWE should rely on the strength of that division to carry more of the show given the likelihood that Raw won’t be featuring the top men’s champion in the company all that much for the foreseeable future.

The title scene

Bianca Belair and Asuka wrestled in the main event of Raw last week, but their match was ruined by Becky Lynch. Are we heading to a triple threat match for the Raw women’s championship at Hell in a Cell?

WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns apparently has better things to do with his time than actually defend his title, so he’s instead taken interest in helping the Usos deal with RK-Bro. The SmackDown tag team titles and the Raw tag team titles will be unified later this week on SmackDown. As far as tonight is concerned, the Usos will probably crash Raw looking for payback after Matt Riddle blasted Roman in the face on SmackDown last week.

Theory is lucky that Seth Rollins was around last week to keep him from losing the United States championship to Cody Rhodes. Is Mustafa Ali still looking for a shot at Theory’s gold, or is he too preoccupied with Miz and Tommaso Ciampa at the moment?

Sasha Banks and Naomi successfully defended the Women’s tag team champions against Natalya and Shayna Baszler on last week’s SmackDown. They also beat the team of Nikki A.S.H. and Doudrop earlier in the week on Raw. There aren’t really any teams on Monday night that pose a threat to the champs.

The 24/7 title scene is all about divorce these days. Who could have predicted that the extremely rushed marriages of Akira Tozawa & Tamina and Dana Brooke & Reggie wouldn’t last?

Other stuff to keep an eye on

- Omos is stepping foot inside a steel cage with Bobby Lashley tonight. Bob specifically requested this gimmick in order to keep MVP from interfering, but heel managers usually find a way in regardless.

- Seth Rollins snapped last week after losing yet another PPV match against Cody Rhodes. Rhodes was hoping to move on from his feud with Seth, but now it looks like the only way to settle this one is with a Hell in a Cell match.

- Edge cut his hair and now has Rhea Ripley by his side as part of The Judgment Day. Finn Balor might want to reconsider his alliance with AJ Styles because it’s much better to be Edge’s friend than his enemy.

- Is Lacey Evans really a member of the Raw roster now?

- Veer Mahaan loves squashing local talent, and he also loves having amazing hair.

- There was a lot of drama going on last week with Ezekiel, Ken Owens (who was clearly Kevin Owens in disguise), and The DNA Lab. The end result was Ezekiel eating a Stunner from that liar Kevin after Alpha Academy got involved.

- Is Nikki A.S.H. ready to heed Doudrop’s advice and start getting serious?

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?