WWE is planning a blissful night in Lexington, Kentucky…
Last week we were treated to a “reimagined” version of an existing character. No, I’m not talking about Bray Wyatt (I’ve already written about my hopes and concerns regarding Firefly Fun House here).
Let’s talk about Robert Roode.
WWE gave the former United States and Raw Tag champ’s new singles run a nice boost by making him the first person to beat Ricochet on the main roster. It’s a sign they’re serious about him as a mid-card heel (as opposed to, say, weeks of “talking to the mirror” vignettes which never lead anywhere). Raw, and WWE in general, could stand to have more established players of all alignments beneath their main event scene, so this is a good thing.
Who exactly is Robert Roode, though?
It’s probably a good thing we never really knew who Bobby Roode was – at least as a babyface on the red and blue brands. In NXT, he was a arrogant heel with popular music. On the main roster, they leaned into how much we like his theme song, and… emphasized that he wears a robe?
So now he’s shaved the hair off his jaw line, gone back to the name he used in the aughts while doing Ted DiBiase-adjacent schtick in TNA and become a jerk who wears robes and enters to a fun tune. It’s not much, but it’s more than he had before. And as fans who watched him on Impact or in NXT can tell you, d***head is Roode’s forte.
As with all things on this never-ending variety show, it’s what comes next that matters. Robert Roode got it’s own section of WWE.com’s preview for tonight’s show, and coming off the way he was presented last Monday, that’s a good sign they’re going to give this newest version of the Glorious One time to make an impression. An extended feud with Ricochet could be great for both of them. Let Roode handle the heavy lifting on the mic while providing a solid-but-not-spectacular canvas for the One And Only to paint on in the ring.
Hopefully it works out. If not, we’ll always have DAT STACHE.
The title scene
Ric vs. Roode may not be on a lot of folks’ “dream match” list. But WWE is crossing off one that is on a lot of those lists while AJ Styles is healthy. With wins over Rey Mysterio & Samoa Joe and Baron Corbin last week, the Phenomenal One became the #1 contender for Seth Rollins’ Universal title. We’ll see if the reality lives up to the fantasy at Money in the Bank on May 19.
Becky Two Belts is pulling double duty at next month’s pay-per-view (PPV)… maybe even triple duty if the popular theory about someone cashing in on The Man is part of WWE’s plans. Will a Woman’s Right be part of how she loses the Raw Women’s championship, either to Lacey Evans or a briefcase holder? Alexa Bliss is going to tell us who the red brand representatives in the ladder matches will be, and Becky Lynch will try to fire back after The Lady rocked her with her signature punch last week.
Speaking of double duty, Women’s Tag champs The IIconics have been pulling it a lot lately. Which makes sense since their straps can be defended on any of WWE’s brands. But seeing as Peyton Royce has been having hydration issues and unable to pick-up any singles victories, will her reign with Billie Kay last much longer?
Samoa Joe wasn’t able to earn a shot at the red belt last week, but he did bring his red, white and blue secondary one, the United States title, to Raw. Now he needs a challenger.
Had to double check that Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder still had the Raw Men’s Tag Team titles, so that’s always a good sign…
Other stuff to keep an eye on
– Maybe we forgot about the Major Bros because last week’s interview setting up a feud between The Usos and The Revival got us so excited we convinced ourselves one of those teams are champs?
– We’d be down for another title reign from The Bar, but only Cesaro was moved to Raw in the Superstar Shake-up, so The Bar is no more. Is the Swiss Superman’s ceiling higher as a singles star in 2019 than it was 2015?
– Who do you think Alexa Bliss will reveal for the men’s and women’s Money in the Bank ladder matches?
– Who do you think will be the first poor soul to wander into the Firefly Fun House? And what’s that rabbit who hangs out with Mercy and Abby called?
Three weeks until Money in the Bank!
What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?