As a new week begins, WWE presents another new episode of Monday Night Raw!
We are on the Road to WrestleMania, and things are certainly starting to heat up. With just 41 days until the big event, WWE has gone over five points for this episode.
Let’s see what they have in store for the WWE Universe this week!
The Assistant: What Does Brad Maddox Have in Store for Raw?
When AJ Lee became the general manager of Raw on the 1000th episode, one of her new hires was a referee. Going by the name Brad Maddox, he soon started to make some questionable decisions. Then at Hell in a Cell in October, he cost Ryback a WWE Championship match inside the Cell.
He was accused of being a crooked referee who was paid off by Punk and Paul Heyman, but Maddox denied the allegations. He just wanted to make an impact, which is exactly what he did.
After getting destroyed by Ryback, he began to randomly appear and sit in on commentary, and it was soon revealed that he was paid by Punk and Heyman for Hell in a Cell. The big reveal came courtesy of him, though, and his honesty seems to have gotten him a new job.
Last week on Raw, managing supervisor Vickie Guerrero told the world that Maddox was her new assistant, but according to Maddox, he’s the assistant managing supervisor, not her assistant.
Which one is it? Will he be getting her coffee, or can he make decisions? How will Brad Maddox’s presence affect Raw?
Tag Team Champions: Is the End of Team Hell No on the Horizon?
Last summer, Kane and Daniel Bryan were having quite a bit of issues. Then-general manager AJ Lee sent them to anger management as a result, and that soon turned into a tag team. Named Team Hell No, Kane and Bryan went onto win the WWE Tag Team Championship at September’s Night of Champions pay-per-view.
Despite being champions, they kept on fighting. Whether they were arguing over which of them was the champion or over having each other’s backs, Team Hell No was the definition of dysfunctional.
The fighting didn’t stop their success, though, as they have remained champions ever since. Their therapist, Dr. Shelby, declared them cured before the Royal Rumble with a graduation, but “hugging it out” wasn’t going to keep them from wanting to tear each other apart.
During the Rumble match, Bryan would eliminate Kane, but the Big Red Monster helped in the elimination of Bryan. As the Elimination Chamber approached, both of them were considered for spots in the Chamber match. They would distract one another but ultimately both made it into the match.
Their problems continued when they went at it inside the Chamber, and the next night on Raw when Bryan cost Kane a match against Randy Orton.
Their dysfunction is at an all-time high, so could this be the end of Team Hell No? What is the status of the WWE Tag Team Championship? Will they vacate them, or keep trying to put their differences aside for the sake of being champions?
Vince McMahon vs. Paul Heyman
The night after the Royal Rumble saw Vince McMahon confront Paul Heyman about Brad Maddox and The Shield. Heyman and CM Punk had been accused of paying Maddox and The Shield for their help in keeping Punk WWE champion.
Heyman vowed to have nothing to do with it, but footage was then shown of Heyman outright saying to Maddox that that he paid him and The Shield. Despite the evidence, Heyman declared that it wasn’t him in the video. Mr. McMahon wasn’t buying it, but seconds before he fired Heyman, Brock Lesnar made his WWE return.
Lesnar didn’t say a word; He just picked up Mr. McMahon and delivered a big F-5 to the chairman of the board.
It would soon be revealed that it was Vickie Guerrero that rehired Lesnar, whose last appearance was SummerSlam, and that Heyman had nothing to do with it. Last week, Mr. McMahon appeared via satellite. Even though he was still recuperating from the surgery that was required after the F-5, he challenged Heyman to a fight the following week.
What will happen when the head of WWE and the former head of ECW meet in the ring? Is Vince McMahon healthy enough to get into the ring? Since Paul Heyman is being threatened once again, could this situation see the Brock Lesnar make another appearance?
Feed Him Shield: What’s Next for Ryback and The Shield?
At Survivor Series in November, The Shield made their WWE debuts attacking Ryback. The attack left Ryback laid out and gave CM Punk the opportunity to pin John Cena to retain the WWE Championship.
Ryback’s bad luck continued with them at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs when The Shield defeated him and Team Hell No in a TLC match, and they would once again cost him the title on the first Raw of 2013 in another TLC match.
The Shield has been a major thorn in his side, but at the Elimination Chamber event, things were looking up for revenge. Led by John Cena, Ryback teamed with him and Sheamus in a Six-Man Tag Team match against Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins and Roman Reigns.
The Shield shocked the world not only by defeating three of WWE biggest stars, but by getting the victory by pinning Ryback.
The next night on Raw, Ryback suffered another defeat at the hands of The Shield when he teamed Sheamus and Chris Jericho. Jericho suffered the pinfall this time, but Ryback was still not too happy about another loss.
Ryback is angry, and that may not be good for The Shield. What’s next for them in their feud? Can Ryback finally gain some revenge, or will The Shield continue their winning ways against him?
CM Punk vs. John Cena: Winner Faces The Rock at WrestleMania
CM Punk and John Cena have been at each other’s throats since the 2011 Money in the Bank PPV. Since then, Punk went onto have the longest WWE Championship reign in the last 25 years and has defeated the likes of Alberto Del Rio, The Miz, Chris Jericho, Daniel Bryan and more. Cena, on the other hand, just had a terrible 2012.
At the Royal Rumble, Cena turned his luck around when he won the Rumble match for a second time and chose to fight for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania. That WWE Championship, which Cena hasn’t held since October 2011, is currently held by The Rock. He defeated Punk at the Royal Rumble, and in their rematch at the Elimination Chamber.
Last week on Raw, Punk confronted Cena about his title shot. He thought that he deserved it more than Cena, and brought up that Cena has never beaten him. A match was proposed by the No. 1 contender, and that match between Cena and Punk will be happening here.
Who will come out of this match as the No. 1 contender for The Rock’s WWE Championship? Will the fans see The Rock vs. John Cena II, or will CM Punk get one more crack at the People’s Champion?
WWE really steps up their game on the Road to WrestleMania. This episode of Raw should be an explosive one with just over a month away from WrestleMania XXIX. Will it be? Tune in to find out!