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Raw Rollup – “Round of drinks in Roppongi” Edition (May 23)


The WWE has it’s detractors (who will still come back to watch), but there’s no reason to berate their efforts from the past 48 hours. This show was an excellent follow up to a solid PPV.

Opening Segment

I’ve missed the way Seth used to open up Raw. There’s no denying that I had a huge grin on my face. He didn’t try to appease the audience, and I liked how he only cared about getting his title back. As much as certain fans wanted to see him return as a babyface, he still needed to come back as who he left as, to an extent. Story wise, it might have been odd if he just stopped being a sleaze ball.

Instead of having Rollins run out when Reigns came in, it would have been better if Shane injected before they could even tease that moment. While Seth is still the clear heel, I don’t he needs to be booked as a coward. The WWE is clearly going all out for Money in the Bank, because I didn’t think they’d book that match right away.

Sami Zayn vs Sheamus

This was only one of the many great match ups that were announced at the start of the show. These two wrestle different styles, but I only imagined they would mesh well together.

I enjoyed the tempo of this match. It managed to pick up at the right time, and finish at the right time. On top of that, the crowd was given the result they wanted to see. I loved how Sheamus started to throw a temper tantrum after his loss. Why shouldn’t he? His character was on top of the mountain back in January, and now can’t manage to win a match. Small things like that do wonders for story telling.

The New Day vs Social Outlasts

I couldn’t stop  laughing while Big E was threatening to throw the cake in someone’s face. His face looked so creepy yet comical.

For what it was worth, I enjoyed this match. It was kept short, and funny. In a night filled with serious matches, we needed one like this.

Cesaro vs The Miz

Kudos to the Miz for making his title seem more important than the rest. While he’s competing to qualify for a WWE WHC title shot, it’s essential he keeps his title relevant.

This match moved slow, but I didn’t mind. At no point was it boring, because they allowed for each move to carry significance. That type of pace let crowd develop an organic excitement. I never like to see champions lose, but it was only right for this match. I also wouldn’t mind if this ended in a DQ.

Chris Jericho vs Apollo Crews

Oh wow, there was absolutely no reaction for Apollo Crews. It only got worse for him, as the crowd was chanting for Y2J for most of the match.

Out of all the qualifying matches, I found this to be the least interesting. Even Jericho toned down the trash talk, which is one of the reasons I enjoy watching him. I didn’t help that Crews blatantly botched the lionsault. Thankfully Jericho came out with a clean win, because I don’t think Crews is ready to make that step yet.

Big Cass vs Bubba Ray 

I was extremely happy to see Enzo back in action. More than anything else, I’m glad to see that he’s okay.

We needed this segment as a buffer for the qualifier matches, and it worked well in that role.

Charlotte Promo

This promo was perfect at executing the break up angle between Charlotte and Ric Flair. Charlotte was excellent at playing the jerk, and that was able to generate some real emotion. Ric also deserves a ton of credit for becoming a sympathetic figure.

I would have loved if they allowed Dana Brooke speak more than she did. Also, Charlotte should have actually addressed the women’s title picture. In that sense, this promo was underwhelming.

Dean Ambrose vs Dolph Ziggler

Why was Dolph Ziggler in this match?  He lost clean at Extreme Rules (based on the match rules), so it should have been Corbin in this contest. This alone took me out of the match. It didn’t hold much weight.

Due to Ziggler’s low spot on the card, I had a difficult time taking this match seriously. Ambrose is basically a main eventer, and there was no way he’d lose the match. I thought this match could have ended sooner.

AJ Styles Promo/AJ Styles vs Kevin Owens

Honestly, I wasn’t expecting Styles to wrestle after what he told Gallows & Anderson. In that moment, I was expecting a full out attack on AJ.

Right off the bat, Styles and Owens showed us why they deserved the main event spot. Within a few minutes, these two developed a quick dislike for one another. From the opening moments, these two delivered in terms on action. Based on how strong these two have been booked, I thought the outcome was quite unpredictable. With all the great inring work, my favourite part was definitely Owens yelling at Cole. I laughed quite hard. However, the spot of the match was KO powerbombing Styles into the steel steps.

Towards the end, I truly thought that the Club would cost Styles the match. With Owens winning clean, my jaw dropped. I just wasn’t expecting for AJ to drop two consecutive matches, clean. With all the money they’re paying AJ, I hope he has something better in store. Regardless, I highly enjoyed this main event.


There were a lot of expectations heading into this show. After a strong PPV, the WWE needed to deliver a competent product for this show, and they did. Immediately, they started to build towards the next PPV, which gave this show substance. The low point was Dolph vs Ambrose, while the high point was the opening promo. Overall, I give this show an 8/10.



3 thoughts on “Raw Rollup – “Round of drinks in Roppongi” Edition (May 23)

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