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After a Fastlane event that exceeded my low expectations, we are on our way to WrestleMania! Fastlane featured a triple threat main event between Brock Lesnar, Roman Reigns, and Dean Ambrose. The winner of said main event will go on to face the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, HHH, in the main event of WrestleMania 32! And that person is... Roman Reigns! Roman will main event WrestleMania for a second year in a row, and will do battle with HHH. Charlotte retained her WWE Divas Championship in a surprisingly decent match. AJ Styles earned Chris Jericho's respect after getting another win against the future hall of famer. Kevin Owens fought off Dolph Zigger to retain his IC Title. And then with the preshow festivities, Kalisto beat Alberto Del Rio in a 2-out-of-3 falls match. Also, at the beginning of tonight's show, the Vincent J. McMahon Legacy of Excellence Award will be handed off at the beginning of the show! All we know is that "there has been no one who has deserved this award until now" according to WWE. What more will we see as we are on a direct path to WrestleMania 32? Tune in right here to find out!
Before the award ceremony they show video footage of Dean coming into the arena earlier in the day, but savagely attacked by Brock Lesnar. You can watch the video on WWE.com or their social media outlets. They say Dean was stretchered out of the building, and will be undergoing tests most of the evening. So we will see him sometime tonight I'm sure.
VINCENT J. MCMAHON LEGACY OF EXCELLENCE AWARD: Announced last night this award would lead the show. This is the first ever Legacy of Excellence Award and we've been told several times that it is because "there has been no one who has deserved this award until now". Which definitely helps take my interest. We start off with a view of the gorgeous award in the middle of the ring, they are really playing this up as a big deal and they're doing it well. Out comes Mr. McMahon! He speaks about his family, his father, and his grandfather who started the business. He says the person he honors tonight has the same qualities of his father. The winner is... STEPHANIE MCMAHON! I love it. This was brilliant. Absolutely freaking brilliant. Of course they hug and live it up in the ring. Just a great great job by WWE here. The crowd is booing like crazy while they have an emotional moment in the ring. Just such loud boos. I cannot express how much I love this. SHANE MCMAHON IS IN THE BUILDING!! SHANE FREAKING MCMAHON LADIES AND GENTLEMEN. The long lost first son! He joins his family in the ring with his classic dancing, and grabs a mic. I definitely freaked out a little bit I won't lie. The crowd is in a frenzy over what might be the best start to Raw we've seen in a long time. He is definitely welcomed back with open arms. Vince goes for a hug, but gets nothing. "Shane-O-Mac" chants pour out of the building as he then denies his father a handshake. Shane explains how the award idea was great, but Stephanie does not deserve it. Vince, like a father, tells his son to be nice and offers to chat backstage. In true McMahon fashion Shane says its all going down in front of the people. Stephanie intervenes, obviously upset. Shane says she hasn't earned it. Shane looks at Vince and says "she doesn't know does she?" pointing to Steph. Shane then says she's run the company to the ground. Stating roster injuries, ratings, and loss of money all on her. Shane then drops the bombshell that he and Vince cut a deal. Saying he never lost his place in line. Saying the only reason she climbed that high in business is because Shane let it happen. Steph asks her dad if its true, to which he avoids the question. Vince asks Stephanie to leave but she keeps asking if its true. He keeps avoiding the question, and Shane says its all true because it is "Best for Business". Shane says his return is about legacy. Saying he and his wife created the next generation with his boys at home. He wants the business to be around for them. So he wants control of Monday Night Raw! #savetheratings Vince does not agree obviously. Shane states he wants to change things for the better. Vince says he is out to embarrass him and his daughter. Vince says he'll make him a deal. He gives Shane control if he has one match, one night. He has to win, and he gets his control. If he loses Vince gets a lockbox so Shane can't hold it over his head anymore. Vince names the time, the place, and the opponent for control of Raw. Shane agrees! Vince says the match will take place at WrestleMania and the opponent is The Undertaker!!!! And the match will be Hell in a Cell!!
MATCH: Neville & Lucha Dragons vs. The New Day
Thankfully this tag team match is next. I need to settle down after that bombshell of a first segment. I'll let you know who wins and how!
Kofi hits a trouble in paradise for the win!
RESULT: The New Day wins via pin fall.
THOUGHTS: Great tag match! That's how a tag match is supposed to be in my opinion. Fast paced action and quick moves. Loved it.
PROMO: Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar come out to explain the attack on Dean Ambrose. Paul Heyman and his client are not happy with how the main event went at Fastlane last night. They believe that Roman was seconds away from tapping out to Lesnar, but Ambrose stopped that very quickly. This obviously pissed off Lesnar. He took that frustration by attacking Ambrose on his way into the arena tonight, and they show that footage. "There is no shield that can protect Dean Ambrose from the wrath of Brock Lesnar." Heyman says that the only reason people like Dean is because he is part of the new rebellious attitude. Heyman says that Lesnar is even more destructive than he is right now, because Lesnar needs a new opponent. Heyman says that there is an F5 getting ready to tear through the locker room. As they are leaving a horn sounds outside and the door opens up to an ambulance. That ambulance drives all the way into the arena. The door opens and out comes Dean Ambrose in a neck brace! He rips the brace off and stumbles down to the ring. Lesnar meets him outside the ring as Ambrose is crawling towards him. He walks right over him and stomps on him as he leaves. Before they can leave the stage, however, Ambrose grabs a mic and says he is indestructible and wants Lesnar at Mania in a street fight! Lesnar then heads right toward Ambrose and hits an F5 on the floor. Heyman grabs the mic and says "My client accepts your challenge."
MATCH: The Usos vs. The Ascension
I'll cover this the same way I cover all tag matches!
Before the match The Dudley Boyz come out. Bubba says to not take the attack personally, they just needed to remind the WWE Universe that The Dudley Boyz aren't a nostalgia act. They are the most decorated team in history. They won't let tables define them. Their accomplishments will. That's why we will never see the tables again. D-Von then says their dad should have spent less time buying thongs and more time teaching respect.
The Usos pick up the victory! Then the Dudleys start coming to the ring, but they stop and back up.
RESULT: The Usos win via pin fall.
THOUGHTS: Remember when The Ascension used to be the most feared team in NXT? They've come a long way huh?
PROMO: Jericho is in the ring and pumping up the Detroit crowd. He then talks about AJ Styles. Saying he has always heard that he phenomenal, and making noise all around the world. He then says he didn't like AJ at first. But after their three matches he's come to respect him. He then invites AJ to the ring so he can tell him face to face. Out he comes to the ring! Jericho acknowledges the fact he was beaten, and accepts that. He then congratulates AJ for proving something to him and to proving it to the WWE Universe that he has what it takes to be WWE Champion. He proved he isn't good, he isn't great, he is phenomenal. They shake hands, and out comes The Social Outcasts! Yes! Perfect moment for these guys. Heath mocks the two sharing a memorable moment. All 4 members mock both AJ and Chris. Heath then calls the two of them cowards, and Adam Rose is saying that no one is buying the fact that they are "friends". Bo Dallas says that The Social Outcasts are a true team, and Slater says they need to leave the ring. Jericho then says "We weren't planning on being a team, but maybe we should be. And we will start with you guys right now!"
MATCH: AJ Styles & Chris Jericho vs. The Social Outcasts
Another tag match here tonight. I'll cover this the same way!
Curtis Axel and Heath Slater are teaming up for The Social Outcasts tonight!
Chris Jericho locks in the Walls of Jericho on Axel for the win!
RESULTS: AJ Styles and Chris Jericho (Y2AJ) win via submission.
THOUGHTS: Seeing those two team up is something I thought I'd never see in my life. And I loved it.
PROMO: HHH and Steph are backstage. HHH tells Steph to let it go with what happened with her brother. HHH says that Shane has always been a loser. Even thought the night didn't start as they wanted, it'll end how they wanted. He says "Do you want to go tell Roman, or should I?" Stephanie says she will, and then leaves.
PROMO: Stephanie cuts off Roman in the hallway to tell him he has a match. Against Sheamus. She then adds that the League of Nations will be ringside for that match. Hoping that Reigns doesn't get injured in tonight's match in a sarcastic manner.
PROMO: Goldust and R-Truth are backstage. Goldust made R-Truth a cake that says "I'm sorry." to apologize for costing Truth his match last night. After a nice talk R-Truth shoves the cake back in Goldusts face.
MATCH: The Wyatt Family vs. Ryback, Kane, & Big Show
This a rematch from last night at Fastlane.
Ryback just leaves in the middle of the match, Wyatt hits Kane with the Sister Abigail for the win.
RESULT: The Wyatt Family wins via pin fall.
THOUGHTS: Meh. This was like the match they had last night. Rather boring.
PROMO: Ryback is asked why he walked out on his team. He said he won the match last night so he has nothing to prove. He is done with tag teams. Its nothing personal with Kane and Show, he is just looking out for himself.
MATCH: Sasha Banks vs. Naomi (w Tamina)
This match starts off very evenly between the two with no one gaining an upper hand. Sasha gets a quick roll up pin for two, and then another one for two-count. The Naomi takes control with a hair pull and huge kick to the face. Tamina then pulls Sasha off the apron with the refs back turned.
We come back with Sasha taking control after a quick slam. Sasha then adds tons of forearms and a big boot then a double knee slam for a two-count. Sasha goes to the top rope as Tamina distracts her. Naomi gets to Sasha, but then Becky comes out to take out Tamina and Sasha locks in the Bank Statement for the win as her and Becky shake hands in the ring.
Out comes the Divas Champ, Charlotte! Who is dressed exactly like a Bella after beating Brie last night. Charlotte sarcastically comments on how the two have bonded over recent weeks, and then her match against Brie last night. She then announces that The Authority has announced Sasha Banks vs. Becky Lynch to see who will go on to face Charlotte at WrestleMania for the Divas Championship!
RESULT: Sasha Banks wins via submission.
THOUGHTS: Good match! I love watching Sasha! Best in the business.
PROMO: Steph and Vince are backstage talking about Shane. Steph says that she will refuse to work for Shane, and Vince says that there is no way Shane will win but now they have a second main event. A calculated risk.
They then announce The Godfather will be the next entrant in the WWE Hall Of Fame and will be inducted by the APA.
MATCH: Roman Reigns vs. Sheamus (w League of Nations)
We start off with Sheamus getting the upper hand. Seemingly targeting Romans arm that Lesnar put in the kumora lock last night. He keeps the pressure on that arm, but Reigns gets back to his feet and lands some punches. Reigns continues to surge back and knocks Sheamus out of the ring over the top rope. Roman goes to the outside and hops off the steel steps to clothesline Sheamus. After Sheamus distracts the ref, Rusev hits a mean superkick to the jaw of Roman Reigns.
We come back to both men on the mat, and The League of Nations was thrown out of ringside! Sheamus hits the Irish Curse Backbreaker, but Roman hits a Superman Punch out of nowhere to an array of boos from the Detroit crowd. He then hits a spear on Sheamus after he rolled out of the ring. Both men are down on the outside, and Roman barely makes it in by 9. But when he does out comes our WWE World Heavyweight Champion who is dressed to fight. Taped fist, jeans, leather jacket. HHH is ready to fight.
The two then begin to brawl at ringside. HHH is taking it Roman as he tosses him back in the ring. Roman hits another Superman Punch out of nowhere, and that forces HHH to roll out of the ring. HHH then takes a trip into the time keepers area at the hands of Reigns. Then HHH uses the ring bell right to the face of Reigns. Looks like he actually hit Roman in the throat with the bell. Then HHH puts Romans head to the announce table nearly 20 times. Maybe more. Roman is busted open, and bled all over the announce table. The refs come out to separate the two men as Reigns lay bloody and beaten on the floor. Triple H then takes apart the steel steps, and he Pedigrees him face first on the bottom half of the steel steps. Roman is busted open like crazy, and then to add insult to injury HHH gives the classic DX "Suck It" and grabs his belt to show he is STILL the man.
RESULT: Reigns wins via DQ.
THOUGHTS: The match was boring. But the brawl was fantastic. HHH has still got it, man.
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