This week’s episode of Monday Night Raw was fascinating, to say the least, because it gave us two segments that showed the very worst way to build to a match, and the very best way.
What Brock Lesnar and Braun Strowman did was the worst.
What Sasha Banks did was the best.
WWE has a very real problem with not allowing its wrestlers to act like real live human beings who respond to conflict the way real live human beings would. A good example of this is what you saw when Lesnar was standing backstage with Paul Heyman and more or less begging for Strowman to say something, anything, to garner some excitement for a showdown between the two. And it failed miserably, because Strowman, for whatever reason, either wasn’t allowed to react normally or simply couldn’t come up with anything compelling to say. What makes it so uncomfortable is how easy this all is to do!
How hard is it for one big guy to talk shit to another big guy to make them want to fight? It’s not!
We know it’s not because Banks showed us how it’s done when she came out after Ronda Rousey made it clear she wanted to wrestle her for the Raw women’s championship. She went right for the best line she could use to poke at Rousey, telling her she’ll help show her how to lose with dignity, a perfect dig considering Rousey’s history. That line alone would have been enough but she went and made it even better when after Nia Jax told her to get to the back of the line, she responded in just the most baller way: “Bitch, what line?”
Then, she told her there’s a ring right there, let’s go get it.
That’s how an actual human being would respond to conflict leading to a fight, and the crowd ate it up, because of course they did, because it was awesome. Banks hasn’t looked this strong since NXT, and she ultimately won said match to set up a hugely compelling match with Rousey at Royal Rumble. That’s how you get someone over on their way to a title shot, and literally all they had to do was allow Sasha to act like a real person.
Amazing, isn’t it?