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I Went to “Monday Night Raw” so You Didn’t Have To

by Bailey Weber

Photo by Bailey Weber.

On March 28, I went to “Monday Night Raw” in Pittsburgh at the PPG Paints Arena. It was the Raw before WrestleMania, so I had high expectations. Seth Rollins threatened the previous week to take over the show, a debut was on the horizon, and both champions were slated for the show. 

I quickly realized my mistake once the show began. 

During the dark matches before the show, a child behind me was screaming and standing on my seat. I put my arm behind my boyfriend’s seat so the child wouldn’t kick his head, and throughout the show he stood on my arm in front of his parents. 

The United States Champion, Finn Balor, was in a dark match taping for WWE’s developmental main roster show. Instead of getting a match on the main card, he was placed here where no one except those in attendance would see him wrestle.

After the dark matches, WWE Champion Brock Lesnar opened the show. He stood in the middle of the ring and cut a promo about “Being the parent of both titles, and Roman wouldn’t get partial custody.” 

This set the tone for the rest of the show. 

The Miz came out next and explained why he stole Rey Mysterio’s luchador mask the previous week. It was because his tag team partner, Logan Paul, wanted it. Paul then came out and was introduced as “Lucha Logan.”

Bianca Belair had a segment next. She explained how she was going to beat Becky Lynch at WrestleMania and win the Raw Women’s Championship. 

Lynch tried to sneak up on Belair and hit her with a chair, and then cut her signature braid off. Belair avoided all of this and cut Lynch’s hair in the ring for a significant amount of time. 

The main reason my boyfriend and I went to the show was to see our favorite wrestler, Edge. We never got to see him wrestle live growing up because he retired before our parents would take us to shows. 

Edge had a recorded promo that was played on the big screen after the whole hair cutting fiasco. We considered leaving after this because of how disappointed we were. 

Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs came out next, and their entrance was so exciting in person. Boogz played Nakamura’s entrance on guitar and the crowd was super into it. 

The match that followed the entrance was so unmemorable that I cannot recall who Nakamura’s opponent was. 

Roman Reigns was slated next, and he cut a promo about why he was the best wrestler in the WWE, and why he was going to beat Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania. It was interesting seeing Reigns in this bad guy role for the first time in person. 

Drew McIntyre, one of my other favorite wrestlers, came out to wrestle in a 2-on-1 handicap match against his WrestleMania opponent, Happy Corbin, and his sidekick, Madcap Moss, next. 

The match was short and sweet. Nothing exciting happened, and McIntyre won the match by pinning Moss. The fun was after the match. 

Corbin came back to the ring and hit his finisher that no one has kicked out of, The End of Days, on McIntyre, and left him lying in the ring. 

The final match of the show was Raw Tag Team Champions, RKBro, up against the Street Profits, who were one of their opponents at WrestleMania. 

We left about halfway through the match. We were fairly disappointed that this was the main event of the Raw before WrestleMania, as it was one of the least important matches on the card. 

The show left a lot that was promised out. Seth Rollins had a video package instead of crashing Raw, Edge and AJ Styles didn’t appear, and a debut didn’t happen. 

While I had a lot of fun, if I had gone with any other person, I would have unfortunately regretted buying tickets to the show. 

This show made me lose a lot of faith in how WrestleMania weekend was going to go. Wrestling is weird sometimes.

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