One night after an unforgettable Royal Rumble, the fallout from the Rumble would be handled in a very unique way as, with a severe winter storm ravaging the Northeast, the 1131st edition of WWE Monday Night RAW came to you, live, for the first time ever from WWE Headquarters in Stamford, CT. While several WWE Superstars and Divas are stranded in their hotel rooms due to a statewide ban forbidding any non-emergency vehicles from traveling in the hectic weather, four key Superstars will appear live in WWE Headquarters.
After last night’s Royal Rumble, the main event of WrestleMania 31 is set as, after a punishing and incredible title defense against John Cena and Seth Rollins in a Triple Threat Match, Brock Lesnar is still the WWE World Heavyweight Champion and, now, “The Beast” must look ahead to his next challenger as, on “The Grandest Stage of Them All”, Brock Lesnar will defend the WWE World Heavyweight Title against the winner of the 2015 Royal Rumble, Roman Reigns! With Brock Lesnar scheduled to appear live on RAW, what will “The Beast” have to say regarding his challenger at WrestleMania? What will 2015 Royal Rumble winner Roman Reigns have to say about the biggest win of his career, as well as The Rock’s surprising appearance to help him combat Kane & Big Show?
Also scheduled to appear on the special episode of RAW are Daniel Bryan and “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Seth Rollins, who both had disappointing nights at the Royal Rumble. Despite being a favorite to win the Royal Rumble Match, Daniel Bryan and his fans would be left in shock and disappointment when teamwork from Bray Wyatt and Rusev would result in Bryan being eliminated in less than ten minutes. The Philadelphia fans certainly voiced their disapproval with Daniel Bryan’s brief performance, booing the remainder of the Royal Rumble Match and repeatedly chanting for Daniel Bryan. With the world in an uproar over Daniel Bryan’s night at the Royal Rumble, what will Daniel Bryan have to say on the subject? With his dream of being in the main event of WrestleMania crushed, where does Daniel Bryan go from here?
In a Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at the Royal Rumble, Seth Rollins proved that he is ready for the spotlight, giving both Brock Lesnar and John Cena a run for their money in the brutal title match, but in the end, it was Brock Lesnar surviving the grueling match with the WWE World Heavyweight Title intact. With the Money-in-the-Bank briefcase still in his possession, Seth Rollins still has a guaranteed title opportunity at any time he sees fit, but after emerging unsuccessful at the Royal Rumble, what is next for the self-proclaimed “future of WWE”?
In addition to these live appearances, fans will get to relive the two biggest matches from last night’s Royal Rumble event as RAW will also air last night’s Royal Rumble Match, as well as the Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, in their entirety, courtesy of the WWE Network!
The unique edition of RAW kicks off with Michael Cole and WWE Hall of Famer Booker T live in WWE World Headquarters as Cole explains the statewide travel ban for the state of Connecticut due to the Blizzard of 2015 ravaging the Northeastern United States. Cole then says that, as WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon says, “the show must go on”, touting what is in store for RAW. Cole & Booker then throw to the legendary John “Bradshaw” Layfield, who is serving as their “meteorologist” for the evening. From the top of WWE World Headquarters, the disgruntled JBL says that his “forecast” is for a RAW that they will never forget, proclaiming the WWE version of the Weather Channel to be “cancelled”. Cole then throws to the encore presentation of the Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship from last night’s Royal Rumble where Brock Lesnar defended the title against John Cena and Seth Rollins, shown in its entirety courtesy of the WWE Network.
After an impressive performance in the Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, where he was unsuccessful in winning the title in a match that also involved Brock Lesnar and John Cena, “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Seth Rollins sits down for a special interview with Michael Cole. Cole first brings up Rollins getting “rewarded” for bringing back The Authority by getting added to the title match at the Royal Rumble, asking Rollins if he feels as though he deserved to be in the title match. Rollins says that his performance at the Royal Rumble will “speak for itself”, saying that he did everything he could to win the match and walk out as the champion. Cole then asks if Rollins thought that the two Curb Stomps he delivered to Brock Lesnar were enough to beat “The Beast”. Rollins states that he has put everyone else down with the Curb Stomp, so he expected to beat Brock Lesnar with the move at the Royal Rumble. Cole then brings up Seth Rollins’ death-defying dive off of the top rope that put Brock Lesnar through the Spanish announce table and broke one of the champion’s ribs, asking if Rollins thought it was over at that point. Rollins says that all he was thinking about at that moment was taking Brock Lesnar out of the match. Cole then asks Rollins how shocked he was when Brock Lesnar somehow managed to come back into the ring, bring the fight Rollins, and ultimately retain the WWE World Heavyweight Title. Rollins says that, after he hit the Phoenix Splash, he “knew” that the match was over and he had John Cena beat.
Michael Cole then asks Seth Rollins what would happen if Rollins ever met Brock Lesnar in a one-on-one match and Rollins admits that he may have “underestimated” Brock Lesnar, but Lesnar also “underestimated” him. Rollins then says that Brock Lesnar may still be the WWE World Heavyweight Champion, but he still has “plan B”, his Money-in-the-Bank briefcase. Michael Cole then says that WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar will be doing his interview next, thanking Rollins for his time. However, the brazen Rollins says that, if Lesnar wants to come in there and take his seat, he is going to have to force him off of it!
With Seth Rollins still refusing to budge from his seat, WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar arrives on the scene with Paul Heyman by his side as Seth Rollins dusts off Brock’s seat before knocking the chair over and walking out. Not fazed by Seth Rollins’ actions, Brock Lesnar & Paul Heyman take their seats with Brock commenting that Rollins seems “angry” after getting beat last night while he feels “rather good”. Michael Cole congratulates Brock Lesnar on his successful title defense before asking about the broken rib that “The Beast” suffered at the Royal Rumble. The champion says that he has had a lot of different injuries throughout his career, but when the time comes to “win”, he pushes himself through it and that is what he did last night. Cole then asks if the whole situation came about because Lesnar & Heyman are at “odds” with The Authority. Paul Heyman says that, as long as The Authority continues to pay what Brock Lesnar is worth, then Lesnar is “for hire”, saying that they “exploit” The Authority and The Authority “exploits” them.
Michael Cole then says that Brock Lesnar will forever be known as the man who ended the undefeated streak of The Undertaker at last year’s WrestleMania. Cole then shows the footage of Brock Lesnar conquering the streak last year, asking Lesnar how he overcame the “intimidation factor” from The Undertaker. Lesnar says that he “respects no one at any time” and he is “The Beast”, plain and simple. Paul Heyman then says that Brock Lesnar is a “once in a lifetime athlete” and what Brock brings when he enters the ring makes them “must-see”. Heyman continues, saying that there are only a handful of opportunities that a person will get to see Brock Lesnar compete. Cole then brings up the winner of the 2015 Royal Rumble Match, Roman Reigns, who will challenge Lesnar for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at WrestleMania. Lesnar says that he is “happy” for Roman Reigns and he hopes that Roman is “up for the challenge”, saying that he is on a roll and people had better get out of his way. Cole then asks Heyman if Heyman thinks that Roman Reigns can beat Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania and Heyman responds with a simple “no”. Heyman then asks if Cole is going to interview Roman Reigns and Cole mentions that Roman will be there later tonight for his interview. Lesnar then comments that maybe he will stop by and meet his #1 Contender later tonight.
RAW then presents the encore presentation of the 2015 Royal Rumble Match in its entirety, courtesy of the WWE Network. After the world got to relive the biggest night of his career, 2015 Royal Rumble Winner Roman Reigns would sit down for a live interview with Byron Saxton. Byron first congratulates Roman on winning the Royal Rumble Match before saying that there are some people out there who believe that Roman is “not yet ready” to be in the main event of WrestleMania, especially against Brock Lesnar. Reigns says that he has never claimed to be the most experienced guy in the locker room, saying that he has always been willing to “swim with sharks”. Saxton then brings up the Philadelphia crowd, saying that some believe that they treated him “unfairly”. Roman says that he was hoping for a “warmer response”, saying that “life isn’t fair” and the fans paid to be in the crowd, so they can do whatever they want.
Byron Saxton then says that there are “critics” who believe that Roman Reigns has been “hand-picked for success” by the “higher-ups” in WWE. Roman says that, even if he was hand-picked, then he would say “thanks for the opportunity”, but no matter what, he has to “perform” and he has to “deliver”. Reigns then says that only time will tell if he has fully capitalized on his opportunity. Saxton says that, when Roman was getting assaulted by Kane & Big Show at the Royal Rumble, Reigns got help from none other than The Rock. Roman says that he wanted to carve his own path so he never really brings up his family, saying that he is “proud” of his family, bringing up the likes of The Rock, Yokozuna, Rikishi, Umaga, The Usos, and The Wild Samoans, among others. Reigns then says that he was born in this business WWE has “fed” him throughout his life and the least he could do is return the favor to his family. Roman continues, saying that he is looking forward to being in the main event of WrestleMania in front of his father and he is also looking forward to meeting Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania and meeting him face-to-face tonight.
RAW then shows an exclusive interview with John Cena that took place after the Royal Rumble last night. John Cena comments on the Triple Threat Match, saying that he doesn’t know who can stop Brock Lesnar. Cena’s interview is then interrupted by Rusev, who takes the microphone, leading to the two men shoving each other and having to be pulled apart by several Superstars. The announcement is then made that, per the orders of The Authority, John Cena will go one-on-one with Rusev in four weeks at WWE Fast Lane! Not only that, but after Sting once again got involved in The Authority’s business on last week’s RAW, WWE COO Triple H has announced that, at WWE Fast Lane, he will call Sting out for a face-to-face confrontation!
Renee Young then sits down with one of the most unintentionally newsworthy Superstars coming out of last night’s Royal Rumble, Daniel Bryan. Renee says that it was around this time last year that the “Yes Movement” was created that led to Daniel Bryan being in the main event of last year’s WrestleMania. Bryan says that the “people” have the “power” and they used that power to get Bryan into the main event of WrestleMania, where Bryan won the WWE World Heavyweight Championship. Bryan then says that his injury last year and being stripped of the championship was “devastating”. Renee then asks about Daniel Bryan’s shorter than expected performance in the Royal Rumble Match and the reaction from the Philadelphia fans that followed. Bryan says that the fans were “disappointed” that Roman Reigns won and he was disappointed too because it wasn’t him in that spot. Bryan then says that Brock Lesnar was the perfect opponent for him to face at WrestleMania, saying that he never lost the title and facing Lesnar would make for the “perfect story” on the grand stage, but he “failed”.
Daniel Bryan then says that Roman Reigns had the opportunity to win the Royal Rumble Match and he “took it” while Bryan had the opportunity and he didn’t take it. Bryan continues, saying that he didn’t have The Rock helping him and he wasn’t “fed” by WWE throughout his life, but if Roman can make the same “sacrifices” that guys like himself or Dolph Ziggler or Dean Ambrose have made, then he has no doubt that Reigns can put on a good show against Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania. Renee then asks Daniel Bryan about his Casket Match against Kane this Thursday on SmackDown. Bryan says that a Casket Match clearly favors Kane, but he is not going to be denied. Bryan then admits that he is “mad as hell” right now and he needs to end this thing with Kane so he can move on and focus on the WWE World Heavyweight Championship.
Michael Cole then sits down with both WWE World Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar and the 2015 Royal Rumble Match winner Roman Reigns. Before Cole can ask his first question, Paul Heyman reaches over and shakes Roman Reigns’ hand, saying that he has always “respected” Roman. Heyman then asks if Roman minds if he asks the questions and Reigns says that he has “nothing to hide”, so Heyman shoos Cole away and takes his seat. Heyman says that he has known Roman’s family longer than Roman, saying that he has known Roman’s father, Sika, since he was a little kid and The Wild Samoans were tag champions. Heyman continues, saying that he took Yokozuna’s first publicity pictures and he managed Roman’s uncle, Fatu, before he was known as Rikishi. Heyman says that it’s in the Samoan bloodline to be a wrestler, saying that he has known Roman since he was a little boy and he was proud of Roman’s win last night. Heyman then says that he also knows The Rock, but more importantly, The Rock is familiar with Brock Lesnar, bringing up The Rock getting defeated by a “rookie” by the name of Brock Lesnar in 2002. Heyman continues, saying that, after Lesnar took the title away from The Rock, The Rock never asked for a rematch with Brock Lesnar because one match with Lesnar was all that The Rock could “handle”. Heyman then says that he doesn’t understand why Roman’s family has not warned him about Brock Lesnar, asking how Reigns is going to handle “disappointing” his family when he fails to beat Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania because he cannot beat Lesnar.
Staring daggers at Paul Heyman, Roman Reigns tells Heyman that he will tell Brock Lesnar his answer, turning to face the champion. Roman then says that he knows “who” and “what” Brock Lesnar is and he knows what he signed up for, but Brock does not. Roman then vows to beat “The Beast” at WrestleMania and take the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, but if he does not, then he is going to take a “piece” of Brock Lesnar with him, saying that he believes that and so should Brock. Both men then get out their seats as Brock Lesnar offers his hand to Roman Reigns, who takes it before Lesnar pulls Roman in, saying that, unlike Heyman, he does not “respect” Roman, but Reigns promises that the champion will respect him come WrestleMania.
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