NXT TakeOver: New Orleans and WrestleMania 34 have already come and gone, but there is no stopping in WWE. This week acts as the “season premiere,” full of surprises and hints at how WWE is planning their near future. Let’s take a look at each show for this week.
Monday Night Raw (4.9.18)
Tonight marks the most exciting episode of Monday Night Raw of the year. Anything could happen from NXT call-ups to surprise returns and impromptu title matches. First, let’s look at Raw based on WrestleMania 34.
Raw saw three title changes, with the Intercontinental, Raw Tag Team, and Raw Women’s Championships changing hands. Of course, Brock Lesnar retained the Universal Championship against Roman Reigns. Tonight will indicate whether the rematches will happen soon or if the champions will be defended at Backlash in a couple weeks.
One of the biggest questions going into Raw is regarding Nicholas, the child who became one half of the Raw Tag Team Champions alongside Braun Strowman. He clearly cannot work as a full-time Superstar, so will Strowman have to drop the title or find a new partner?
Of course, there is also speculation for NXT call-ups, returns, and trades with SmackDown. The most obvious additions to Raw seems to be Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, who are banned from SmackDown Live after losing to Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon last night. It is also rumored that Samoa Joe and Big Cass are 100%, meaning that they could return to Raw tonight.
SmackDown Live (4.10.18)
Of course, Raw was not the only brand to have a big WrestleMania. Two titles changed hands, the United States Championship and the SmackDown Tag Team Championships. The bigger stories, perhaps, come with the championships that were retained.
First, Asuka’s streak was finally broken when Charlotte Flair retained the SmackDown Women’s Championship in what was arguably the best match of the night. Does this mean that Asuka goes back to Raw, and what happens with the SmackDown Women’s Championship?
The dream match between AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura did not live up to the insane expectations it had, but it had a memorable moment at the end where Nakamura turned on Styles by giving him a low blow. Are Styles’ emotions going to give Nakamura a rematch or will the King of Strong Style have to work his way back to the top?
There were not any SmackDown stars who were injured, but this is hopefully the return of Daniel Bryan being a full-time Superstar. There could be a couple call-ups from NXT as well, with the most probable being the Authors of Pain.
205 Live (4.10.18)
For the first time since January, we have a Cruiserweight Champion. Cedric Alexander and Mustafa Ali battled for the vacated title on the WrestleMania Kickoff Show and Alexander finally won the big one. This week could see the introduction of the rumored Tag Team Championships as well as confirmation of whether or not Buddy Murphy is actually the #1 Contender.
WWE NXT (4.11.18)
Perhaps the “low point” of the week is NXT, which always uses the week after TakeOver as a cooldown. According to fans on Twitter, War Machine will debut as the War Raiders, and Lacey Evans is expected to take on Kairi Sane. Otherwise, this is probably just a highlight reel with some matches thrown in.
- Raw Recap: Sasha Banks Headed to Money in the Bank - May 28, 2018
- SmackDown Recap: Daniel Bryan vs. Jeff Hardy - May 23, 2018
- Raw Recap: Ronda Rousey and Nia Jax, Face-to-Face - May 21, 2018
- WWE Backlash Recap: A Co-Branded Mess - May 7, 2018
- WWE Backlash 2018 Odds - May 5, 2018
- WWE Weekly Preview, 4.23.18-4.29-18 - April 23, 2018
- WWE Greatest Royal Rumble Odds - April 22, 2018
- SmackDown Recap: Superstar Shake-Up Night Two - April 17, 2018
- Raw Recap: The Superstar Shake-up Begins - April 16, 2018
- WWE Weekly Preview, 4.16.18-4.22.18 - April 15, 2018