Raw airs tonight (Mar. 27) with a live show from Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona. This is the final episode of Raw during the six week build towards WrestleMania 39, which takes place this weekend (Apr. 1 & Apr. 2).
Solo Sikoa isn’t ready for Cody Rhodes
Sami Zayn’s story with The Bloodline has been an all-time great, but there was one misfire that showed he was not a serious threat to defeat WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns last month at Elimination Chamber; Sami needed to beat someone important between Royal Rumble and Elimination Chamber to prove that he could hang with Reigns. To that end, I thought maybe Sami would become the first guy on the main roster to finally pin Solo Sikoa, but it never happened. In fact, Sikoa went on to defeat Zayn on SmackDown in early March.
One reason why it didn’t happen might be because WWE was saving that first pin on Sikoa for the actual WrestleMania main event babyface star, Cody Rhodes.
Cody was spitting fire on the mic last week opposite the Tribal Chief on Raw. As part of that promo, he told Sikoa that he knows all too well what it’s like to think you’re invincible as a second generation star who is flanked by the world champion. Cody knows from his own experience as Randy Orton’s ally in 2009 that even though Solo thinks he’s ready for this, he’s not.
Cody now has the chance to prove the truth of those words tonight when he goes one-on-one with Sikoa. Cody already has a bunch of PPV wins against a top star like Seth Rollins to prove he can hang with Reigns. Cody is also undefeated since he returned to WWE one year ago. Cody isn’t losing on the WrestleMania go-home show, so the real question is if WWE goes all the way with Cody’s push and has him actually pin Solo’s shoulders to the mat, or instead win by disqualification.
Either finish can work here. If Cody becomes the first guy to pin Solo, then Roman should be quaking in his boots. Alternatively, The Bloodline has yet to beat the shit out of Rhodes. It might be a hell of a go home angle for The Bloodline to interrupt the finish as Cody is about to win, and leave him for dead with an uncomfortable beating. This finish also leaves a future rematch with Solo (for the title) on the table, if Cody wins at WrestleMania.
Which choice do you think WWE will make tonight?
The rest of the title scene
The WWE women’s tag team titles won’t be defended at WrestleMania because Lita and Becky Lynch are booked in a six-woman tag team match (along with Trish Stratus) against Damage CTRL. We’ll hear from the babyface side tonight when they are guests on Miz TV, but the host might be setting a trap for Becky and friends. Bayley was screwed over by them last week in a match against Rhea Ripley, so one final ambush before WrestleMania might be in order.
Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair was finally attacked by Asuka last week. This lackluster feud sure could use a killer promo segment to heat things up before they clash for the gold at WrestleMania.
United States Champion Austin Theory will be in the opening match of WrestleMania in a title defense against John Cena. Cena is a part-timer who only showed up for one episode of Raw to build the feud, so Theory has spent the last few weeks beating up the Street Profits in his place. Will Theory cut one final promo on John before the big match this weekend in Hollywood? Or will Cena appear via satellite to verbally bury Austin one more time?
The Usos will defend the WWE tag team titles against Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens at WrestleMania. Jimmy and Jey are the longest reigning tag team champions in WWE history, but it feels like they are almost a sure bet to lose the titles at the biggest pro wrestling show of the year. Will they do something tonight that significantly changes the equation?
Other stuff to keep an eye on
- Omos and Brock Lesnar will have a WrestleMania weigh-in tonight. I think the idea is to once again try to make everyone think Omos has a huge advantage over Lesnar. That’s a tough sell because the only wrestlers Omos has defeated since he lost to Braun Strowman last year are Elias, Mustafa Ali, Dolph Ziggler, and Johnny Gargano. In other words, Omos is good enough in kayfabe to beat low card wrestlers who have been dumped into the Andre Battle Royal, but he’s in way over his very tall head when it comes to facing an athlete of Lesnar’s caliber.
- Tonight’s card includes an 8-man tag team match. It will be Braun Strowman, Ricochet, and the Street Profits vs. Alpha Academy and the Viking Raiders. This is something of a preview of the four way tag team match at WrestleMania that features all of these men. Will Maximum Male Models show up and pull Otis away from the fight?
- As of right now, Bobby Lashley is surprisingly one of those wrestlers who has been dumped into Andre Battle Royal. Will Bray Wyatt finally return tonight to give Bob something to do on Apr. 1 or Apr. 2 in Hollywood, or will Lashley be tasked with cutting a promo to explain how much it means to him to win a filler Battle Royal that’s not on the WrestleMania card?
- YouTube star Logan Paul knocked out Seth Rollins again last week. Will Seth respond by laughing it off again, or he is finally going to get serious about what he’s dealing with at WrestleMania? There’s a rumor that Seth will have a match against Ali tonight, for what it’s worth.
- Edge was a spooky floating head last week and dared Finn Balor to bring his Demon form to face the Devil inside Hell in a Cell at WrestleMania. I don’t know that these guys need to do anything else to promote their match, which should be amazing, but maybe Finn will have an ominous response for Edge tonight.
- Dominik was punched in the face by his father last week. Will Rey be in the house tonight to face the wrath of Mami?
- Now that Alexa Bliss has been unmasked, when will she return to WWE television?
What will you be looking for on Raw?