Monday Night Raw
Date: January 29, 2024
Location: Amalie Arena, Tampa, Florida
Commentators: Pat McAfee, Michael Cole
We’re done with the Royal Rumble and officially on the Road To Wrestlemania. That means it is time to start getting ready for the big time of the year. Almost everything is going to matter now, but that is going to be more complicated because CM Punk has reportedly torn his tricep. Odds are we’ll hear something about that tonight so let’s get to it.
We open with wrestlers coming to work.
Pat McAfee is here, and apparently will be every Monday night going forward. No word on what that means for Wade Barrett.
We get a long recap of the Royal Rumble.
Here is CM Punk, with his arm in a sling, for a chat. He talks about how close he got to winning the Royal Rumble and had it in the palm of his hand. Punk doesn’t feel mad at Cody Rhodes, who earned the win. On Saturday, he tore his tricep and is going to be out for a long time. That means that main eventing Wrestlemania just isn’t happening this year, and the fans are not pleased.
Punk talks about a friend of his who is battling cancer and he never says a bad word and he’s the kind of person that Punk wants to be. We hear about other people Punk know who work day to day jobs and they keep going, which is what he wants to do. He’s a Chicago Cubs fan and guarantees us that there is always a next year…but here is Drew McIntyre to interrupt (Punk: “Not what I was expecting.”).
McIntyre seems to feel sorry for Punk and talks about how he’s going to headline Wrestlemania. He got his hands on Punk and still doesn’t like him, which has Punk promising to be back next year and then getting his hands on McIntyre. The fight is on with Punk using the bad arm, which is quickly taken down. Sami Zayn makes the save.
Judgment Day is happy with how things are going and ready to take out DIY.
DIY is ready for Judgment Day and have been waiting for years for this chance.
Tag Team Titles: DIY vs. Judgment Day
Judgment Day is defending. Priest takes Ciampa into the corner and hits him in the face to take over. Everything breaks down in a hurry with DIY hitting stereo dives to the floor, meaning stereo pats on the back. We settle back down to Priest dropping Ciampa face first onto the apron.
Back in and Balor’s ax kick gets two so Ciampa goes over for the tag…which the referee doesn’t see. Ciampa finally gets in a reverse DDT for the breather and the tag brings in Gargano to clean house. The slingshot spear gives Gargano two and everything breaks down. Ciampa assists Gargano for an assisted Sliced Bread to Priest for two but can’t hit the Fairy Tale Ending.
A heck of a clothesline gives Priest two and he throws Gargano outside for making a save. South Of Heaven is broken up though and Ciampa hits a super White Noise for two. Meet In The Middle connects but Priest makes the save. That makes Ciampa send Priest over the announcers’ table as Balor knocks Gargano into the corner but misses the Coup de Grace.
The Gargano Escape and Sicilian Stretch go on at the same time until Priest drops Ciampa onto the other two for the save. We settle back down to Gargano escaping the Razor’s Edge and handing it back to Gargano. A superkick drops Balor so Priest loads up the Razor’s Edge to Ciampa, only to be cut off by Gargano. Back in and Ciampa rolls Priest up for two but it’s a Razor’s Edge into the Coup de Grace to retain the titles at 12:49.
Result: Judgment Day b. DIY – Coup de Grace to Ciampa (12:49)
Post match Dominik Mysterio and JD McDonagh come in to celebrate, with Damian Priest saying we have seen a different side to the team in recent weeks and it’s time to thank someone for making it happen. That would be R-Truth, so here he is for a chat, albeit after Priest assures him that he’ll be safe. Truth comes in and talks about doing Priest’s taxes, with Priest saying Truth doesn’t know what any of that means.
They’re a family, with Balor as the weird uncle. Then you have Tom and Nick, but there is nothing else to say about them. McDonagh is like that step brother you don’t want to admit is in the family. Priest says they’re family, but Truth isn’t part of the team. He likes Truth though, which is why Dominik and McDonagh are doing this. The beatdown is on but Miz runs in for the save, only to get beaten down as well.
Chelsea Green/Piper Niven vs. Shayna Baszler/Zoey Stark
Niven runs Stark over to start but it’s quickly off to Baszler to work on the arm. Green comes in to takeover on Stark, who hits a Z360 for a VERY quick win at 2:01.
Result: Shayna Baszler/Zoey Stark b. Chelsea Green/Piper Niven – Z360 to Green (2:01)
Here is Cody Rhodes for a chat and yeah the fans really like him. The fans say he deserves it, so Cody asks Samantha Irvin to introduce him as the back to back Royal Rumble winner one more time. Cody talks about how this place is supposed to be an escape for people but the last few days have been challenging. He needed the fans since then but let’s make Wrestlemania official.
Cue Seth Rollins to interrupt, saying he agrees with the fans: Cody deserves it. They might not see eye to eye, but Rollins is getting serious now: if Cody chooses to face Roan Reigns at Wrestlemania, he’s making a mistake. Cody should face Rollins instead and wants the fans to hear him out. At the Royal Rumble press conference, Cody said he was the guy, but neither he nor Roman Reigns is the guy anymore. Rollins is the guy, because of the World Heavyweight Championship.
It made sense to go after Reigns when there was only one champion, but Rhodes and Rollins have been on this ride together. They have made town after town and Rollins was defending the title every night. Why did the World Heavyweight Championship come to be? It’s because people were tired of Reigns barely being around to defend the title, but that’s not what Rollins does.
We don’t need to pretend that Reigns is something special anymore because we don’t need him at all. Does Cody want the Hulk Hogan Title, or does he want the Dusty Rhodes workhorse title? It doesn’t matter what Dusty would do because this is about Cody and his decision. Rollins can wait on an answer, but what kind of a man does Cody want to be? An emotional Cody says he respects Rollins and did not expect to be talking about this tonight. He’ll think about it.
New Day is ready to win another title when Kofi Kingston beats Gunther for the Intercontinental Title.
Jey Uso vs. Bronson Reed
Reed runs him over to start and hits a hard clothesline. Back up and Jey manages to knock him outside for the suicide dive. We take a break and come back with Uso punching away and getting two off a high crossbody. The enziguri is knocked away though and Reed’s backsplash gets two. Reed goes up but gets knocked down, only to avoid the Superfly Splash. Reed’s Death Valley Driver gets two but he misses the Tsunami. Uso spears him down and hits the Superfly Splash for the pin at 9:17.
Result: Jey Uso b. Bronson Reed – Superfly Splash (9:17)
Andrade officially signs with Raw but Nick Aldis interrupts. Adam Pearce introduces the two of them and runs down Andrade’s resume, though Aldis said Smackdown had its own contract offer. Andrade says say hi to Zelina Vega for him and leaves. Aldis says Bayley has been loaded to Raw for tonight, but before they can talk about the Elimination Chamber, Aldis takes a phone call from Bron Breakker.
Gunther talks about being glad Kofi Kingston challenged him because Kingston will remember this night for the rest of his life. After tonight though, Gunther will forget about Kofi and remember Gunther’s record setting title reign.
Becky Lynch is disappointed in losing but she’s not done fighting until she takes the title back to the main event where it deserves.
Intercontinental Title: Gunther vs. Kofi Kingston
Kingston is challenging and charges right at him to start. Some early shots to the face stagger Gunther but a backbreaker puts Kingston down. Gunther grabs the Boston crab and we’re off to an early break. Back with Gunther pounding away and telling Kingston to bring it. Gunther shrugs off a comeback attempt and grabs another Boston crab as we take another break.
Back again with Kingston hitting a jumping knee but getting caught in the sleeper. The powerbomb is broken up and they head outside, with Kingston countering another powerbomb attempt into a hurricanrana into the post. Back in and Kingston hits Trouble In Paradise but Gunther rolls outside before the cover.
Kingston drapes him over the steps for a jumping shot to the back, followed by the top rope Boom Drop for two back inside. Another Trouble In Paradise is countered in a failed Boston crab attempt so Gunther hits the big clothesline. Another clothesline is countered into the SOS for two and Gunther has had enough. The dropkick and powerbomb retain the title at 16:18.
Result: Gunther b. Kofi Kingston – Powerbomb (16:18)
Post match Xavier Woods comes in to check on Kingston but Imperium comes in for the beatdown.
We look back at Drew McIntyre injuring Sami Zayn last month.
Sami talks about how he keeps getting things taken away by McIntyre, who is now targeting other people. Tonight, Sami is giving him a reality check.
Kabuki Warriors vs. Natalya/Tegan Nox
Non-title. Natalya runs Sane over to start so it’s off Now for some running shots to Asuka in the corner. A Cannonball keeps Asuka in trouble and it’s Natalya coming back in for the double running kicks to the face. We take a break and come back with Natalya fighting back on Asuka. A German suplex and discus clothesline look to set up the Sharpshooter so Asuka screams for Sane to save her. Natalya reaches for the tag to Nox but instead she goes to the floor to brawl with Sane. That goes badly, leaving Natalya to roll Asuka up for two. Asuka kicks Natalya down and the Insane Elbow finishes for Sane at 9:50.
Result: Kabuki Warriors b. Natalya/Tegan Nox – Insane Elbow to Natalya (9:50)
Kayden Carter and Katana Chance are ready for their rematch for the Women’s Tag Team Titles next week.
Here is Bayley, with the rest of Damage CTRL, for a chat. Bayley talks about how everyone was saying she wasn’t as good once she came back from her injury but now she is back as the Royal Rumble winner. She beat the best women’s division ever and even broke Rhea Ripley’s Iron Woman record.
Cue Ripley to interrupt but Nia Jax jumps her from behind. The fight is on and they get in the ring, with Jax running her over and dropping the big leg. Jax drops two more plus the Annihilator before staring Bayley down in the corner. Ripley isn’t making it to Wrestlemania, but Bayley says she’s making her announcement on Smackdown.
Drew McIntyre says Sami Zayn has never beaten him and that isn’t changing tonight.
Sami Zayn vs. Drew McIntyre
McIntyre jumps him to start and they go to the floor for an early break. Back with Sami hitting a sunset bomb for a much needed breather. Zayn fights back again but gets run over with a hard shot. McIntyre goes up top, only to get superplexed back down in quite the big crash.
The Helluva Kick is cut off with an elbow to the face, followed by the overhead belly to belly. White Noise plants Sami for two but he knocks McIntyre into the corner again. Another Helluva Kick is blocked with what appears to be a low blow. The Claymore finishes for McIntyre at 12:56.
Result: Drew McIntyre b. Sami Zayn – Claymore (12:56)
Judgment Day b. DIY – Coup de Grace to Ciampa
Shayna Baszler/Zoey Stark b. Chelsea Green/Piper Niven – Z360 to Green
Jey Uso b. Bronson Reed – Superfly Splash
Gunther b. Kofi Kingston – Powerbomb
Kabuki Warriors b. Tegan Nox/Natalya – Insane Elbow to Natalya
Drew McIntyre b. Sami Zayn – Claymore
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