This week’s episode of Raw made official what’s been reported for a while: Goldberg will challenge Kevin Owens for his Universal title in the main event of WWE Fastlane.
It was Chris Jericho who accepted the match on KO’s behalf, planting the seeds of their inevitable split, but Owen’s best friend forever isn’t the only person he has to worry about. Because KO’s started a new feud. The Universal Champion Kevin Owens vs WWE’s Promotional Graphics department.
WWE tweeted the above image hyping the Fastlane title fight, with Owens looking a little bit sweaty and Goldberg looking a little bit 20 years ago. Specifically his beard, which going by how Goldberg has looked since he made his WWE return in October last year, nose-dived into a bucket of Just For Men shortly before the photo was taken. Owens took issue with this, replying to WWE’s tweet:
“Can you guys photoshop my beard too? You don’t need to change the color though. Maybe just make it thicker.”
Not even all the beard dye in Kevin Nash’s bathroom could help Raw this week, though. After last week’s post-Royal Rumble high of 3.61 million viewers, Monday’s episode dropped off to an average of 3.11. The show lost almost half a million viewers by the third hour. Remember, tweet #MakeRaw2Hours to @USA_Network on twitter to save WWE from its own greed.
One of the leading theories for the big drop off in viewership on this week’s Raw is a severe lack of handsomeness. Handsomeness in the form of Handsome Rusev, who has sarcastically tweeted:
“Watch me on main-event this week agains sin Cara. No spoilers. #Raw”
Another potential reason the Raw ratings suffered might have been the disappointing payoff for the BIG SETH ROLLINS INJURY AND WRESTLEMANIA STATUS ANNOUNCEMENT, which can be pretty much summed up as, ‘yeah, Seth’s injured, and we don’t know his Wrestlemania status’. Which we already knew.
As I noted in yesterday’s Raw review, which you should totally watch on this very channel, there were conflicting reports over what was actually happening backstage with Rollins. PWInsider reported he missed this week’s Raw because he flew back to Alabama for another visit with Dr. James Andrews, which Mike Johnson speculated “is not a positive sign”. Whereas Dave Meltzer revealed on Wrestling Observer Radio, “Seth is considered good for Wrestlemania. Triple H and Seth is on.”
PWInsider have now backed up Meltzer’s version, reporting that pending any further complications, Rollins will be back in time to compete at Wrestlemania 33.
There’s a lot of injury status news going around in WWE at the moment. As seen on last night’s 205 Live, the previously injured Tajiri made his return, but to restore the balance, both Tony Nese and Tony Nese’s washboard abs have taken his place on the shelf. He presumably suffered an injury in his six man tag on this week’s Raw.
In addition to this, PWInsider are reporting Erick Rowan is at the WWE Performance Centre this week to hopefully get medically cleared after suffering a torn rotator cuff in September last year – which would be interesting to see how he fits into the current Wyatt Family storyline – and Shinsuke Nakamura’s ‘injury’ appears to be a storyline work, as NXT tweeted:
“BREAKING: @WWEPerformCtr staff have evaluated @ShinsukeN and have found no tear in his knee; will not require surgery.”
Pro Wrestling Sheet have reported that Nikki Bella is also working through wear and tear, revealing her neck pain “often causes numbness to one side of her body.” Apparently her contract is up around Wrestlemania time, and she’s looking to take a break from the company to heal up. She’s then expected to work out a new deal that’ll keep her around “to wrestle every once in awhile for WWE at big events in the future.” So that pretty much secures her a main event title shot at Wrestlemania 34. Come on, part-timers!
How would you keep Triple H and Seth Rollins’ feud alive while The Architect is injured? Tell me by doing exactly what the program did for its first several months – completely ignore itself – in the comments below.