The January 26, 2015 Edition of RAW is a Professional wrestling television show of the WWE's RAW brand, which took place on January 26, 2015 at WWE Studios in Stamford, Connecticut. This would have been the Raw following the 2015 Royal Rumble Pay-Per-View but as a result of inclement weather, this was a Special Edition of RAW which featured replays of the Royal Rumble 2015 match as well as the World Heavyweight Championship Match. The event also included interviews from Daniel Bryan, Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Brock Lesnar.
The weather outside is frightful, as John “Bradshaw” Layfield knows all too well: Michael Cole and Booker T, while holed up in the safety of WWE TV studios in Stamford, Conn., instead dispatched the big Texan down the street to WWE HQ, where he was due to give a weather report on the conditions that postponed the planned Raw at Hartford’s XL Center. The brevity of The Wrestling God’s report would have done Ollie Williams proud, but he won’t be getting a spot on NY1 anytime soon. He more or less summed the situation up as “It’s snowing” and signed off. Back to you, Cole.
After Michael Cole and Booker T caught the WWE Universe up on Seth Rollins’ masterful yet unsuccessful performance in the WWE World Heavyweight Championship Triple Threat Match against Brock Lesnar and John Cena, the Universe had the opportunity to hear from Mr. Money in the Bank himself. While Rollins was smarting over coming up short against The Beast Incarnate, he maintained he learned in defeat and would be ready for Lesnar when the time came to cash in his precious contract on “The One in 21-1.” Diplomacy ended, however, when Rollins was asked to give up his seat for Lesnar himself, which was met with stiff refusal that, in light of last night’s events, seemed more symbolic than anything.
As it turns out, it takes more than a broken rib, a snowstorm of historic proportions and the threat of being in the same building as Seth Rollins to deter Brock Lesnar from his victory lap after retaining the WWE World Heavyweight Championship at the Royal Rumble. The Beast Incarnate was nonchalant about his bruised body and utterly forthcoming about the mental fortitude it took for him to overcome The Undertaker’s Streak at WrestleMania 30. As for his No. 1 contender, Roman Reigns? The Anomaly said he’d save his reactions for Reigns himself later in the night.
For the second year in a row, the winner of the Royal Rumble Match came under fire from a hostile crowd, and Roman Reigns didn’t wait nearly as long to address the controversy as Batista did in 2014. The 2014 Superstar of the Year not only defended the Philadelphia faithful’s reaction to his win in an interview with Byron Saxton, but also acknowledged it as their right as paying customers. He also brushed off the notion he’d been “hand-picked” for success and reinforced the idea of himself as a legacy Superstar, pointing to the values his cousin The Rock and the rest of his family instilled in him as the true reason he’s one match away from the ultimate prize.
The sky is falling and yet somehow, Dean Ambrose managed to shamble his way from Philadelphia to WWE TV studios. Who’s surprised? The Lunatic Fringe’s almost Forrest Gump-like trip from The City of Brotherly Love to the Nutmeg State (all that was missing was a detour with a gang) came with a moral, however. Much like the road to Stamford, The Road to WrestleMania is unpredictable and dangerous. And now, Ambrose has some real-world experience to guide him through the potholes.
Roman Reigns, Daniel Bryan has a message: No hard feelings. Despite his status as the in-absentia crowd favorite (again) at the conclusion of the Royal Rumble Match and his disappointment that he didn't win it all, The Beard had nothing but positives vibes to offer the man who’s headed to WrestleMania. He even drew comparisons to Reigns seizing opportunity the same way Bryan himself did last year when he entered the WrestleMania main event by force of will. As for Bryan’s own path to WrestleMania, he’s confident he’ll make it back where he belongs, and not even the prospect of facing Kane in a Casket Match on SmackDown, live from Hartford’s XL Center this Thursday, is enough to deter him.
It’s not in the middle of an arena with thousands of screaming fans, but the inaugural staredown between Brock Lesnar and his No. 1 contender Roman Reigns was almost tenser given that it took place inside a confined space with civilian workers in close proximity. As ever, the meeting of the two monsters did not disappoint, with Reigns standing defiantly before an unimpressed Lesnar after Paul Heyman literally unseated Michael Cole to conduct the interview. For all of Reigns’ calmness in the presence of Lesnar, it was The Anomaly who threw the first salvo, instigating the first nose-to-nose confrontation between the two and offering a hollow handshake to get in his opponent’s head. Reigns got the last word, however, promising The Beast he would respect his challenger before all was said and done. Only 62 days to go.
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