async src="//"> The Wrestling Chronicle: RAW Recap - 4/2/18; Final Raw Before WrestleMania

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

RAW Recap - 4/2/18; Final Raw Before WrestleMania

The April 2nd, 2018 edition of WWE RAW was the go-home episode for WrestleMania 34, and aired live from the Philips Arena in Atlanta, GA.

This recap was written by Eric Lynch and was taken from

- RAW kicks off with Jonathan Coachman in the ring. He previews the Angle/Rousey vs. HHH/McMahon match, and then introduces Triple H and Stephanie McMahon to the ring. The ring is setup with Coach at a podium, and the two mixed tag teams have tables and chairs set out. Coach introduces RAW GM Kurt Angle and Ronda Rousey next. They're all seated at their tables now and Triple H starts saying they're going to shut down all of Ronda Rousey's new fans in the WWE Universe. Triple H says he knows Kurt is an Olympic gold medalist, and that he's all about the three I's, but he never thought Kurt had the "intelligence" in the three I's. Stephanie then trashes Ronda and questions who the hell she thinks she is. Kurt says she'll answer for Ronda, she's Ronda freakin' Rousey, a UFC Champion and Gold Medalist, and on Sunday she's going to make Stephanie tap. Triple H and Stephanie says Ronda may have been a big shot in UFC, but they are going to shut down Ronda on Sunday and she, and everyone else, will learn to respect authority. Kurt says no matter what kind of ring Ronda is in, she's the baddest woman on the planet. Stephanie says Ronda's first match in WWE will be a loss to her, and the world knows that Ronda doesn't handle losses well. Ronda asks which arm is Stephanie's writing hand, because she'll break Stephanie's other arm so she can still write her checks. Coach thanks both sides, and tells the photographers to come in the ring, then asks the two teams to pose. The two teams face off. Kurt and Triple H shake hands, but Ronda doesn't shake Stephanie's hand. Kurt separates them, but then Triple H cheap shots Kurt from behind. Ronda grabs HHH by the throat, but then Stephanie grabs her from behind and slams her through the table. Stephanie and Triple H raise their hands in the air before leaving. Kurt helps Ronda up and they stare down Triple H and Stephanie as they walk to the back.

- Still to come: John Cena finds out if he'll get a shot at the Undertaker at WrestleMania on Sunday.

- Bayley is in the back getting ready to come down to the ring.

- Sonya Deville vs. Bayley: The rest of Absolution is at ringside for this one. Sonya hits a leg kick and Bayley backs off. Bayley comes back with a headlock takedown and then a running cross body. Sonya comes back with strikes, but Bayley shuts her down with a snake eyes in the corner and an elbow to the face. Bayley hits a cross body off the middle rope for a two count. Bayley and Sonya brawl on the mat until Sonya takes control with a series of knee strikes. Bayley fires up with elbows to the face then stomps a mud hole in her in the corner. Bayley goes up top and hits a flying cross body, then a running knee to the face. Sonya rolls outside and Bayley follows. They fight back up onto the apron where Bayley hits a shot to the face, but then Bayley gets distracted by Mandy on the apron. Sonya grabs Bayley from behind, but Bayley reverses and rolls up Sonya in a pin for the three count.

Winner: Bayley

- After the match, Mandy hits the ring and starts beating down Bayley with Sonya. Sasha Banks comes out for the save and they clear the ring. Sasha and Bayley start arguing and get in each other's faces. Bayley and Sasha start throwing punches to the face now and Bayley tackles her. Mandy and Sonya hit the ring again and beat down both Bayley and Sasha. Mandy and Sonya leave Sasha and Bayley laying, then head backstage with Paige.

- Finn Balor vs. Seth Rollins: IC Champion The Miz comes out to the broadcast table to do commentary. The opening bell sounds and Rollins and Balor start trading arm holds. Rollins fires up and shoulder blocks Balor down. Balor hits an arm drag takedown and they stare each other down. They go back at it and Rollins throws Balor outside. They fight around ringside and brawl back into the ring.

Balor fights up and starts laying into Rollins with chops. They fight to the corner, and Balor grabs Rollins and hits an inverted DDT for a two count. Rollins fires up and throws Balor back out to ringside, then hits a suicide dive on Balor up against the fan barricade. Back in the ring, Rollins hits a superkck and drops Balor. They fight up to the corner and Rollins hits a superplex. Rollins goes to roll through, but Balor catches him in a small package pin for a two count. Rollins drops Balor again, then goes up top for a frogsplash, but Balor blocks it with his knees. They fight out to ringside again and Rollins looks for a powerbomb on the fan barricade, but Balor escapes and hits the Sling Blade. Balor dropkicks Rollins into the fan barricade. Back in the ring, Rollins starts fighting back and hits the Curb Stomp for the three count.

Winner: Seth Rollins

- We see a replay of the Angle/Rousey vs. HHH/Stephanie segment earlier in the night, and then a promo video for WrestleMania.

- Michael Cole introduces a video package looking at the Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar feud heading into WrestleMania on Sunday.

- Paul Heyman is in the back on his cell phone. Kurt Angle interrupts and says he needs to make sure their main event stays in tact. Heyman says alright, they'll do it Kurt's way, and Lesnar won't cause any drama tonight -- he'll save his energy for WrestleMania. Kurt asks Heyman not to say anything that would antagonize Reigns to attack Lesnar. Heyman laughs, and Kurt tells Heyman to please keep it civil and not ad fuel to the fire.

- RAW Tag Champs The Bar come down to the ring and get on the mic. They cut a promo saying they're not worried about Braun Strowman's partner for Sunday, because they won't be a real team and The Bar will beat them. Braun Strowman comes out to interrupt, and says he does have a partner. Cesaro demands to know who the partner is, and Strowman says he wants to fight one of them first. Sheamus seems to accept, and he'll go get his opponent. Braun goes backstage, and he comes back out in a disguise saying that he's Braun's twin brother. Braun hits the ring and beats down The Bar. Sheamus comes back and hits a big boot to the face of Sheamus, and he starts beating on him with Cesaro. Braun fights them off again, and tells them to bring it, but The Bar retreats up the ramp. Braun's music hits and he motions for the title belts around his waist, then points up at the WrestleMania sign.

- Michael Cole introduces a Shattered Dreams Production from Goldust, who confirms he'll be in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal at 'Mania. We then cut to Matt Hardy's response, who talks about wanting to win the Battle Royal, and planning for Goldust's deletion later tonight.

- Matt Hardy vs. Goldust: The opening bell sounds and Hardy starts off strong. Hardy drops Goldust with a right hand, but Goldust comes back and throws Hardy into the corner. Goldust lays into the Broken One with strikes, then hits a spinebuster for a two count. Hardy fires up and repeatedly slams Goldust's head into the corner as the fans chant "Delete." Matt ducks a clothesline and hits a Side Effect for a 2 count. Goldust comes back with a spinning powerslam for a 2 count of his own. Goldust goes to the turnbuckle and poses before going for a flying elbow drop, but Matt rolls out of way. Matt looks for a Twist of Fate, but Goldust reverses and rolls up Matt for a 2 count. Matt comes back and successfully hits the Twist of Fate for the three count.

Winner: Matt Hardy

- Matt poses next to the Andre The Giant trophy at ringside before leaving.

- Nia Jax is backstage for an interview with Renee Young. We cut to Alexa Bliss and Mickie James, who are also backstage, and they're making fun of Nia's appearance and weight. Bliss says Jax will be "blubbering in her blubber" after she loses on Sunday.

- John Cena is out to the ring next. Cena gets on the mic and says we're out of time -- The Undertaker has not answered. Cena says he did all he could to make the match happen, but he's going to have to go to WrestleMania as a fan. He says he's not entering the Andre Battle Royal, he's just going as a fan. He calls out Undertaker again an says this is his last chance. Cena talks about how great it would be if Taker did accept the challenge and make it a WrestleMania moment. He tells Nikki Bella he'll be home soon. Fans start chanting Undertaker's name, and Cena says he hopes Taker hears them. He talks about how proud he is of the roster who made it to WrestleMania, including Daniel Bryan finally returning to the ring. Cena says it's obvious Taker is ignoring him and ignoring the people. Cena says it's obvious Taker has left his hat in the ring, and his balls at home. Cena plays to the crowd some more and gets the fans to chant Undertaker's name before Cena leaves. Cena shakes his head in disappointment as he leaves.

- We get another replay of the opening segment of the show with Triple H, Kurt Angle, Ronda Rousey and Stephanie McMahon.

- We go to the back where Kurt Angle approaches Roman Reigns. Angle asks Reigns to keep his cool tonight and not get into with Lesnar, because Angle needs his WrestleMania Universal Title match in tact. Reigns threatens to hit the ring if they say one wrong thing about him tonight. Reigns doesn't care what Angle wants, and tells Angle to take his peace treaty to the same pawn shop he took his Olympic Gold Medals too.

- Elias is in the ring for a song. He talks about how everyone will want to walk with him after WrestleMania. He starts trashing the Atlanta crowd, and guarantees his greatest performance ever on Sunday. Rhyno and Slater come out to interrupt.

- Elias vs. Heath Slater: The opening bell sounds and Elias takes the fight to the corner. Elias hits a big lariat then looks for a splash in the corner, but Slater dodges it. Slater starts firing up, but Elias shuts him down with a knee to the face. Elias follows up with the Dirft Away for the three count after a quick match.

Winner: Elias

- Elias points to the WrestleMania sign after the match.

- Braun Strowman is backstage and he runs into Curt Hawkins wearing a "Pick Me Braun" shirt. Hawkins wants to be Braun's partner at 'Mania, but Braun declines and throwsh im through a wall.

- We see a promotional video for the WrestleMania weekend events.

- Nia Jax is backstage for a sit-down interview. She says she's disappointed in herself for letting Alexa Bliss get one over on her and making her doubt herself. Jax says some of Bliss' comments hurt her, but she doesn't take s--t. She says she's strong, confident, different, and big, but she loves who she is. Jax says Bliss is an insecure pathetic fly, and she's going to squash her like the bug she is at WrestleMania.

- Mickie James & Alexa Bliss vs. Asuka & Dana Brooke: Dana and Bliss start things off trading holds. Dana works over Alexa's arm, but Bliss comes back with a shot to the face. Dana starts to come back, but Alexa hits a shot to the throat and tags in Mickie. Mickie and Dana brawl into the corner where Mickie boots her in the face. Mickie taunts Asuka from the apron and continues working on Dana in the corner. Mickie blocks a shot with her knees and takes back control of the match. Dana fires back with a knee to the body of Mickie, and Bliss tags in. Bliss continues working on Dana and connects with several kicks. Dana fights away, and Asuka and Mickie tag in at the same time. Asuka unloads with kicks and the running hip attack. Mickie retreats to the outside and Asuka boots her through the ropes. Back in the ring, Mickie answers with a superkick and pins for a two count. Asuka looks frustrated as Mickie plays to the crow. Mickie goes up top, but Asuka drops her down and puts her in the Asuka Lock for the win.

Winners: Asuka & Dana Brooke

- After the match, Bliss attacks Asuka from behind. Mickie and Alexa double team Asuka and Dana. Jax runs in for the save and beats down Mickie and Alexa. Jax hits a Samoan Drop on Mickie as Alexa retreats and watches from the ramp. Jax stands tall in the ring and stares down Alexa on the ramp.

- Kurt Angle stops Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman backstage, and begs them not to do anything crazy tonight. Heyman says he's going to say positive things about Reigns, and to trust him. We go to commercial break.

- Back from the break, Universal Champion Brock Lesnar comes out to the ring with Paul Heyman. Some members of the RAW locker room are on the ramp with Kurt Angle to wait to do security in case Reigns comes out to start trouble. Heyman gets on the mic and mocks Angle for not having control. He introduces his client and talks about Lesnar beating Undertaker, and Reigns also beating Undertaker. Heyman admits Reigns deserves respect, but LEsnar will hit the F5 and win, and that's the truth.

Heyman says if Lesnar does get hurt and lose, it will be the last time we see Lesnar and Heyman on RAW. Heyman says he'll leave and Lesnar will go to UFC. Heyman continues talking up Lesnar and says Reigns must accept defeat on Sunday. Heyman says Reigns will have to go to his family on Sunday night and admit he got victimized by Lesnar, and that he's just Lesnar's b-tch. Reigns' music hits and he comes down to the stage.

The Bar and Titus try to stop Reigns, but Reigns threatens them and they step to the side. Lesnar taunts Reigns, and Reigns starts walking to the ring. Some fans are chanting "lets go Roman now," as Reigns steps up the ring steps.

Reigns and Lesnar shave a stare down, then Lesnar slides out of the ring and laughs. Lesnar gets a steel chair and goes in the ring, but Reigns hits him with the Superman punch first. Reigns hits two more Superman punches. Lesnar stumbles, and Reigns hits another Superman punch. Lesnar gets up to his feet again and Reigns hits a 5th Superman punch. Lesnar goes down flat on his back now, and Reigns picks up the Universal Title belt. Reigns holds up the belt to a mixed reaction from the crow. Lesnar gets to his feet and grabs Reigns while Reigns is looking at the WrestleMania sign. Lesnar hits the F-5 on Reigns, then takes his Title belt and leaves the ring. Lesnar and Heyman retreat up the ramp as Reigns recovers in the ring and RAW goes off the air.

What did you think of the final RAW before WrestleMania? Did it raise your excitement for the event? Leave a comment below or reach out to us on Social Media:

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