WWE RAW RESULTS: Only The Chosen Will Meet at WrestleMania (March, 6th 2017)

With Fast Lane closed off, the Road to WrestleMania is officially open, meaning RAW will (if they havent already) lay out their plans for the 33rd WrestleMania extravaganza right from NXT central aka Orlando, Florida. RAW wastes little time this week with revealing those plans for their women’s division, per the planning of Mick Foley….or maybe Stephanie McMahon. Uh Oh, Tantrums again…

RAWs GM Mick Foley is poised in the ring, fairly quickly introducing the still RAW Women’s Champion Bayley, who has become the one to end Charlotte’s Lengthy Pay Per View streak, on controversial terms once more per the assist of Sasha Banks, which Bayley addresses once she appears before the WWE Universe. Regardless of what Banks had done, Bayley is wanting to focus on WrestleMania, to get a moment that she couldn’t last year that her fellow Horsewomen grabbed the chance at instead. Foley assures Bayley amongst all her worries that she will be at Mania, and hes taking it upon himself to decide who Bayley will go up against at the biggest wrestling pay per view of the year.

However, it appears one certain person has already taken the allocated spot of being the opposition for Bayley on the big stage, Sasha Banks. After assuring Bayley that her intervention was only because she was certain that Dana Brooke wouldn’t have held herself off from helping Charlotte at Fast Lane, she jumps right to the topic of WrestleMania, suggesting to be Bayleys WrestleMania opponent. The Crowd are elated themselves at the suggestion. But there’s one person in the back who isn’t going to agree at missing out on her chance to regain the title, Charlotte, and the Nature Girl appears before the audience with Dana Brooke at her side. Shes adamant Sasha had this planned all along due to not being able to regain the title while its in the hands of Charlotte. Still furious at Sasha playing a part in breaking her streak, she tries to make herself out to be the victim to Foley. Foley tries to address Sasha’s Fast Lane interference, but out comes someone who hasn’t really been pleased with him as of late, Stephanie McMahon, and the CM Punk fans, whether knowledgeable of the Punk/McMahon heat or not, burst instantly into Pro Punk Chants, which she handles effectively.

Moving on from addressing the former WWE Champion to the Chicago crowd, Stephanie goes back to Kayfabe and sides instantly with her fellow heel, Charlotte. Backing the claims made from Charlotte, Steph accuses Sasha of cozying up to Bayley just to eventually get her hands on the RAW Women’s Title. She demands Foley takes more action, stating that despite their disagreements, there’s no denying Sasha’s interference is the reason Charlotte lost on Sunday. Because of that, Charlotte is entitled to one more go at getting back the Women’s Championship in the eyes of Steph, and thus she makes the two go head to head again at WrestleMania. Mick goes against Stephs beliefs and one sidedness with his own, screeching at his own boss over Sasha being entitled to her own shot after all the hard work she has put in over the year. Because of this, he proposes to the Principal Owner that Charlotte and Sasha meet again next week to decide a contender for the championship, but Steph isn’t waiting that long to decide a contender, and puts her own twist into it, throwing Charlotte out of the equation as an already crowned contender and making Sasha face Bayley tonight to earn her spot.

The NXT Takeover Brooklyn Rematch, only obviously without the particular title then gets underway, while Dana and Charlotte perch at the commentary table, also as fellow witnesses. A Show of respect is given between Bayley and Banks before any form of physicality. Bayley and Sasha then lock up, with Bayley overtaking via a reversal into a side headlock. Bayley reverses back into the side headlock upon Sashas attempt to apply a hammerlock, continuing the momentum as she takes Sasha to the mat, headlock applied. Both break off and end up in a standoff before returning to physicality, as Sasha applies a waistlock on Bayley that is near reversed into a drop toe hold, due to Sasha not losing her footing. Sasha goes on the attack, inflicting damage mid arm wringer before shes taken to the mat by Bayley, who tries to pin her right after, resulting in a one count.

Another standoff ensues as Sasha gets back to her feet, and as Sasha attempts to lock up with Bayley, Bayley overtakes, keeping her bestie busy in a side headlock. Sasha shoves Bayley towards the ropes, only for the champ to come back with a shoulder block to take her down. Bayley arm drags Sasha but doesnt even get to cover as Sasha swiftly moves off the mat within seconds, attempting soon to reverse momentum as a shoulder block from Sasha sends the champ down to the mat. She also matches the earlier offense of Bayley with an arm drag/hip toss variation, and a second arm drag after this takes Bayley to a corner. Bayley regroups, returns to an upright position and returns to using offense, blocking Sashas oncoming attack and targeting her left arm. Sasha reverses Bayleys whip, sending her to an opposite corner but the follow up assault is diverted via a back elbow by Bayley. Bayley arm drags Sasha into her earlier corner, connecting with a running elbow to the fellow competitor in that corner before sending her away from the ropes, ready to pin. Bayley gets a one count on Sasha. Sasha takes Bayley down within moments, also getting a one count. Sasha is back up and rolls up Bayley but its yet another one count on the champ.

Sasha delivers a hard slap to Bayley, following with her top rope arm drag then a hurricanrana by the center. Bayley heads out but manages to roll back in to avoid the possible double knees from Sasha off the apron. Bayley goes for a baseball slide dropkick under the bottom rope, but Sasha bounds back into the ring. Bayley does the same, charging back to the ring as Sasha takes her eyes off her to run the ropes, avoiding a clothesline from the fellow competitor though taken down quickly by another. The momentum continues for Sasha as she uses the ropes to escape a waistlock, then rolling over Bayley and seemingly trying to hook by the tights, only for Bayley to reverse into her own roll up within moments, only enough to get a one count. More roll ups between the two ladies end in one counts and eventual near falls.

Bayley goes for her finisher, but Sasha makes use of the corner to prevent taking the move, then hitting a big forearm to knock Bayley from the corner. More follow from Sasha until Bayley reverses with a back suplex. As the two try to regroup it appears Dana and Charlotte have removed themselves from the commentary table and are heading to ringside for either a closer inspection or for possible meddling. Meanwhile back in the ring, Sasha hits double knees, attempting to return to the corner for another attack only to be kicked by Bayley. Bayley sunset flips into a pin attempt but Sasha rolls through hitting double knees to both shoulders for a near fall. Sasha uses her legs to then drive Bayley into the middle turnbuckle in an opposite corner mid floating, hanging her on the ropes above the same turnbuckle to ready double knees, which doesn’t connect as Bayley moves to the apron. Bayley misses big time with a top rope crossbody, and Sasha tries to capitalize over a fallen Bayley, darting over to her fellow former NXT Women’s Champion and hooking her in the Bank Statement. Bayley uses the top rope to force the break, but ends up again in the submission courtesy of a backstabber beforehand. As Bayley tries to force herself to the ropes, Dana dashes onto the apron to seize the attention of the referee, allowing for Charlotte to meddle on an opposite side. However Sasha knocks her off, in turn bringing Bayley back to the middle with the Bank Statement applied still. Bayley taps and Sasha wins the match, earning her own shot at WrestleMania, in the form of a Triple Threat.

Sasha’s Celebration over heading to Mania is pretty much short lived, as Charlotte hits the ring and attacks her as well as Bayley. Seizing back the RAW Women’s Title, Charlotte stands above the fallen horsewomen, indicating shes soon coming back for her championship.

While there’s yet no answer as to whether there’s any inclusion for Nia in this Match, one person will soon be included in the RAW Women’s Division, the originally Evil Emma, whose transformation from the quickly ended Emmalina to Emma is highlighted in the first video package leading up to the return of the gimmick invented in NXT.

(Mick Foley, Bayley, Sasha Banks, Charlotte, Dana Brooke and Stephanie McMahon Segment)

(Sasha Banks vs Bayley feat Dana Brooke and Charlotte)

(Emma Coming Soon Promo)

Thoughts On This Match:
A More technical affair between Sasha and Bayley in comparison to what was presented on NXT, only getting more competitive towards the end. I Was sort of stunned to see the match given on RAW than saved for their fated feud in the future, but it made sense in kayfabe to test their possible breaking friendship. However, again negatives come with it, one being how Bayley acted down over Sasha playing a part in her Fast Lane victory in the pre match segment when she was all joyous about still being champion on RAW Talk (Fast Lane Post Show), Dana’s lack of importance again, from no presence on commentary to just being an outside lackey while Charlotte took the spotlight upon executing an attack on her fellow Horsewomen post match and Nia seemingly having her Mania Status thrown away. Sure Clash of Champions has shown us people can be thrown into the title picture later on, and it would make sense for Nia to be in it not only due to needing revenge on Sasha, but because of her imposing status and because of the segment that teased her challenging for the title not only at Fast Lane but following her last squash. Are we just going to be forced to forget all that like the Emma/Dana Brooke alignment or like Dana and Charlotte having any issues? While the Horsewomens efforts in the ring come with much respect, them taking the mania spot again this year means waiting until after the Pay Per View (maybe) for fresh women such as Emma etc to step up. But even if Asuka is promoted to RAW, that doesn’t promise that any of them will be dejected from the title picture, but RAW is in dire need of fresh feuds, even if the story of Sasha’s ongoing quiet manipulation plants seeds of interest in the current title picture.

– Catherine


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