The April 3, 2017 Edition of RAW is a Professional wrestling television show of the WWE's RAW brand, which took place on April 3, 2017 at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. This was the Raw after WrestleMania 33.
The Undertaker is gone. Maybe. At least that's how it appeared following The Phenom's defeat at WrestleMania last night, when the legendary Superstar left his gloves, hat and duster in the ring and vanished into the void from whence he came.
And while social media has been flooded since his sudden departure with #ThankYouTaker sentiments, Raw opened with an appearance by the Superstar who seemingly sent The Last Outlaw off into the sunset: Roman Reigns.
While Reigns did offer his own tribute to The Deadman on Twitter earlier in the day, The Big Dog took a long time to speak on Raw, in part because the rowdy #RawAfterMania crowd wouldn't let him get a word in edgewise. When he finally spoke, it was to only offer one sentence with a matter-of-fact finality: “This is my yard now.”
Short and sweet. The Deadman would approve.
Perhaps the most unexpected moment of WrestleMania was the return of The Hardy Boyz, who entered the Raw Tag Team Championship Ladder Match and immediately won said titles, re-attaining championship status after all of 20 minutes back on the roster. Of course, ousted former champs Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson were quick to call in their rematch clause on Raw, looking to thwart the Hardys’ comeback before it even has a chance to get going.
Alas, they did not. The (literal) brothers were all over the (good) brothers from jump, though the match was not without its rough spots. Matt was isolated by Gallows and Anderson for minutes on end until he tagged in Jeff, but The Charismatic Enigma immediately lit the place up, administering Poetry in Motion to Gallows off the ring steps and kicking out of the Boot of Doom. A Twist of Fate to The Suntan Biker Man from Matt allowed Jeff to hit the Swanton Bomb, at which point Matt covered Gallows for the three.
The King stayed the King at WrestleMania Kickoff, and if you thought Neville would react to his WWE Cruiserweight Title retention against Austin Aries with humility, you clearly don't know who you're dealing with. While the champion did promise a proper celebration on tomorrow's 205 Live, he couldn't resist a minor victory lap — only Mustafa Ali wasn't quite having it.
The dynamic Cruiserweight interrupted Neville's crowing and mixed it up with him right away in a match, taking The King of the Cruiserweights to the limit and capitalizing off Neville's frustration with the audience. A springboard Spanish Fly off the ropes seemed to give Ali some daylight, but Neville dodged the inverted 450 Splash and seemed ready to uncork the Red Arrow ... until he decided to deny the WWE Universe the spectacle and simply lock in the Rings of Saturn. Well played, Your Grace.
The great Raw General Manager drought of 2017 has ended. With Raw Commissioner Stephanie McMahon out of action after being accidentally put through a table at WrestleMania, Mr. McMahon arrived unexpectedly at Raw to name the replacement for the recently ousted Mick Foley. He only offered the hint that the new GM was a 2017 WWE Hall of Famer, and, at first, it appeared to be Teddy Long. But The Chairman quickly revealed The Mac Militant Playa was getting ahead of himself, and the man named to the post was none other than Kurt Angle. Oh, it's true.
Oh, and this also is true: Mr. McMahon made it a point to announce that that next week would feature what he referred to as a “Superstar shake-up.” Hmmm ....
One downside to The New Day’s WrestleMania hosting gig was that they didn’t have a match, but ya boys’ efforts to have a Raw-After-WrestleMania moment went awry in a hurry when they issued an open challenge and found themselves face-to-face with The Revival.
The NXT “top guys” and self-proclaimed “greatest tag team on the planet” did not hesitate to antagonize The New Day, knocking over the New Day Pop-cycle on their way to the ring.
When the match started, The Revival isolated Xavier Woods from Big E. Woods found himself in a slugfest with Scott Dawson after Big E whiffed on a suicide spear, but Dash Wilder tagged in without the former WWE Tag Team Champion noticing.
When Xavier attempted the Honor Roll, The Revival was right there to catch him with a Shatter Machine in midair for the win. After their victorious debut, The Revival put an extra hurting on Kofi Kingston by attacking his ankle. Say yeeeeaaahh.
This is not a drill: Emma — not Emmalina, Emma — is back, and she wasted no time in throwing herself right back into the Women's division mix, teaming with Charlotte Flair & Nia Jax against a formidable trifecta of Bayley, Sasha Banks & Dana Brooke. Unfortunately, she might have thrown in with the wrong lot on the wrong night.
While Emma made it a point to go after the biggest Superstar in the match — Bayley, with great relish — her teammates found themselves on the wrong end of a giant brawl at the end of the match. Charlotte, specifically, was forced to submit to the Bank Statement after she whiffed on Natural Selection. Nia didn't take kindly to Charlotte's attempts to shift blame, brutalizing The Queen after the match while Emma made herself scarce.
Goldberg is gone, long live Goldberg. In his place has risen BRRRRROCK LESNAR, Universal Champion and once again the reigning, defending, undisputed king of the WWE mountaintop. And Paul Heyman had plenty of words for any Superstar who would presume to challenge The Conqueror, be it Seth Rollins, either or both of the Hardys, and, in particular, Roman Reigns, the other half of "The Two in 23-2" and Heyman's pick for Lesnar's challenger of destiny.
In fact, Heyman seemed to be about two seconds away from issuing a challenge to Reigns outright, but Braun Strowman had other ideas in mind. The Monster Among Men was noticeably absent from Heyman's list, but he made sure Lesnar knew his name quickly enough, interrupting The Advocate and staring down The Beast Incarnate to deliver a message: Once he was finished with Reigns, he was coming for Brock.
Raw's fairy-tale comeback is about to go head-to-head with its unlikeliest set of allies: Cesaro & Sheamus are knocking back on the door of championship glory thanks to a win over Enzo Amore & Big Cass that named them the Hardys’ No. 1 contenders. Ironically, The Realest Guys in the Room were the ones got the match made in the first place by pleading their case to Raw GM Kurt Angle, but Cesaro & Sheamus had almost all the momentum in the world.
It couldn't have helped Enzo & Cass’ mindset that the crowd was chanting for The King of Swing from jump, but Big Cass did almost save the match by freeing Enzo from a Sharpshooter and setting up for Bada Boom Shakalaka. Sheamus was right there to repay him, Brogue Kicking Don Parmesan and launching Amore straight into a waiting European uppercut.
For a man who supposedly comes in peace, Jinder Mahal found himself in quite a fit after “the intruder with the absurd name of Gronk” cost him the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal and made that quite clear to Raw GM Kurt Angle. Unfortunately, he interrupted Sami Zayn’s own meeting with The Olympic Hero to do so, which led to a match between the two.
Jinder wasn’t about to be hindered, though, jumping Sami before the bell and beating him about the ring to such a degree that the ref almost called match off. Sami insisted he continue and followed through on that gutsiness, hitting an exploder on a rampaging Mahal and connecting with the Helluva Kick for a win that’s sure to increase his stock in next week’s shake-up.
United States Champion Kevin Owens thought he was out of the woods when he and Samoa Joe attacked Chris Jericho before Raw’s planned tag team main event, but all that did was clear new Raw General Manager Kurt Angle to summon a returning Finn Bálor (!!!) to take the G.O.A.T.’s place, giving Seth Rollins a fresh partner and placing Owens and Joe square in the path of a Superstar hungry for redemption.
In other words: Kevin? Bad move, maaaannnn.
Rollins handled the load in the early goings of the match, which featured four former NXT Champions and two former Universal Champions. The Architect unleashed a high-risk offense that did damage to Owens and Joe at the expense of his own well-being. That left him no recourse but to tag in Bálor after being picked apart by Joe and Owens, and Finn quickly put the match away, spiking “The Face of America” with a Coup de Grace after Rollins helped free him from the Coquina Clutch.
Welcome back, Finn. See you (next) Monday.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- The Hardy Boyz (Matt & Jeff Hardy) (c) defeated Gallows and Anderson (Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson) to retain the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship (10:45)
- The Revival (Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder) defeated The New Day (Big E & Xavier Woods) (w/ Kofi Kingston) (8:00)
- Cesaro & Sheamus defeated Realest Guys (Enzo Amore & Big Cass) in a #1 Contendership Match for the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship (8:45)
Debut on main roster:
Other on-screen talent