WWE Fastlane 2017 Results: Biggest Winners and Losers from Raw PPV

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistMarch 6, 2017

WWE Fastlane 2017 Results: Biggest Winners and Losers from Raw PPV

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Sunday's Fastlane was the final pay-per-view stop on The Road to WrestleMania and, as such, the last opportunity several stars of WWE Raw had to leave a lasting impression and give fans a taste of what they can expect out of them in the weeks preceding the biggest show of the year.

    Some seized that opportunity, delivering magical performances and benefiting from extraordinarily strong booking.

    They roll into the March 6 episode of Raw riding a wave of momentum, the biggest winners from Sunday's spectacular.

    Others did not.

    They were the victims of poor booking decisions that ultimately hurt their aura and cost them the chance to further establish themselves as the elite on Monday nights.

    Which Superstars fell on which side of the argument and why?

    Take a look with this exclusive revisiting of Sunday's Fastlane presentation.

Winner: Jack Gallagher

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    Credit: WWE.com

    A novelty act leading into Fastlane, "Gentleman" Jack Gallagher emerged from Sunday's loss to cruiserweight champion Neville a bigger, more believable threat to the title than he was entering the show.

    Gone were the over-the-top antics and comedic spots. In their place was a double-tough Englishman who overcame a relentless onslaught by Neville throughout their match to put himself in position to score the monumental upset.

    Unfortunately for Gallagher, that did not happen yet, and he may be better off for it.

    Had Gallagher won the title, it would have made for a fun moment, but one he was not ready for. Putting that win off, allowing Gallagher to prove himself as a tough man, is the type of character development the cruiserweight division can use.

    Let him survive sickening German suplexes to continue fighting. Let him come one front suplex from the top rope away from dethroning the self-proclaimed King of the Cruiserweights.

    It will benefit him in the long run and gives fans a reason to get behind him rather than hot-shotting the title to him after a few weeks of setup and incurring the wrath of internet smart marks fully behind Neville right now.

Loser: Kevin Owens

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    Credit: WWE.com

    In mere seconds, the eight-month reign of Kevin Owens as universal champion came to a screeching halt at the hands of Goldberg.

    After months spent as the straight man to Chris Jericho during their run as besties, it appeared as though Owens was back to being the remorseless badass that grabbed the WWE Universe's attention upon his debut with the main roster in 2015.

    That was flushed down the toilet with the manner in which Sunday's main event unfolded.

    Sure, he was treated exactly the same way Brock Lesnar was, but unfortunately for him, he was never booked as strongly or protected in the manner The Beast Incarnate was. Whereas Lesnar could absorb the 85-second loss at Survivor Series and still be the monster that he has always been, Owens is officially a loudmouth whose words will fall on deaf ears, regardless of whether or not he was distracted by Jericho.

    Owens, a weakly built champion who never competed in a match during his time with the strap that he did not cheat to win, saw his run at the top of Raw come to an end in the same manner it existed: disastrously.

Winner: Roman Reigns

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Anyone who still questions why Roman Reigns is the top babyface on Monday nights, the star whom Vince McMahon and Co. are so incredibly determined to push to the top of the industry, must look no further than his match with Braun Strowman Sunday night.

    The Big Dog bumped around the ring, making Strowman look like the unstoppable force. He endured a big announce table bump and looked well on his way to defeat. He did everything he could to put Strowman over as The Monster Among Men he had been billed as.

    His facial expressions, primarily after his first spear failed to put Strowman down for the count, were on point and reflective of the story being told.

    When it was time for him to mount his comeback, he delivered a Superman Punch and finished Strowman with another rib-crushing spear. 

    The master of working main event-style matches featuring brawling, high spots and dramatic near-falls, Reigns has steadily developed into the most consistently great marquee star on the Raw brand.

    Yes, even more consistently superb than Rollins and Owens.

    Like John Cena, fans will one day appreciate the quality of his performances and the in-ring mastery he delivers in high-profile situations.

    Like Sunday's show-stealing presentation.

Loser: Charlotte

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Charlotte rode a 16-match winning streak into Fastlane. For 16 straight pay-per-view events, she won every championship match she competed in, defeating the greatest female stars of this generation in the process. She made history, firmly establishing herself as elite in women's wrestling.

    Sunday night, that streak came to an end.

    Not with a bang, but with a whimper.

    Charlotte thwarted interference from Sasha Banks only to fall victim to Bayley's Bayley-to-Belly suplex. On a night where she was clearly superior, losing only after two best friends colluded to end her reign of dominance, Charlotte was clearly one of the night's biggest losers.

    Much like The Undertaker, whose streak came to an end under controversial circumstances, Charlotte's defeat was unceremonious. It was an afterthought, shoved to the background in favor of telling the Bayley-Banks story.

    It was a great disservice to a woman who had built an incredible resume over the last two years.

Winner: Braun Strowman

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Braun Strowman may have lost his match to Roman Reigns at Fastlane, but in the process, he delivered a performance that confirmed he is ready to succeed at the top of the Raw roster as one of its marquee villains.

    Fast, agile, powerful, with an understanding of spot placement, The Monster Among Men has exceeded every expectation fans and critics had of him to become one of the surprise breakouts of the latest brand extension.

    Big things await the heavyweight, whose work deserves the praise it currently elicits.

    Hopefully, the strong booking that has accompanied him over the last few months continues, even with his first major loss now on the books.