WWE Raw Results: Biggest Winners, Losers and Moments from April 9
The Raw after WrestleMania is an event in itself; a show in which new Superstars debut, old Superstars return and the stories and rivalries that will carry the brand through the next few months are set up in grand fashion.
Monday was no different as NXT competitors saw their stars brightened by way of their major league call-ups, Bobby Lashley returned for the first time in a decade and Samoa Joe sent an ominous message to Roman Reigns.
It was not just new faces who sent a message to the WWE Universe.
Seth Rollins rolled and Paige said goodbye, rounding out the night's most prominent winners.
Not so lucky was The Revival, whose continued uneven booking has doomed them to repetitious monotony, and No Way Jose, whose debut came with many questions about his ability to succeed in today's WWE.
Dive deeper into each Superstar's night and find out why they earned the status they did with this recap of the April 9 broadcast of WWE Raw.
Winners: New Faces
The Raw after WrestleMania has become one of the most anticipated broadcasts of the entire WWE year, thanks in large part to the fresh faces who debut and the beloved Superstars who return to action.
This year was no exception as NXT's Ember Moon, No Way Jose (more on him in a moment) and The Authors of Pain made the leap to the main roster, and Samoa Joe returned from injury to instantly reignite his feud with Roman Reigns.
Perhaps no arrival was more significant to the future of Raw in the long term than Bobby Lashley, who popped up on the flagship show for the first time since 2007.
Once considered the future of the industry, he left the company on less-than-desirable terms over a decade ago and floated between pro wrestling and MMA before turning in some of his finest ring work with TNA Wrestling over the last two years.
Now back in the company that made him a star and pushed him to the forefront of WrestleMania 23 promotion, he has the opportunity to be the performer so many expected him to be a long time ago for Vince McMahon's company.
Along with Moon, Jose, The Authors and Joe, Lashley forms a nucleus of exciting new talent that can freshen Raw up and carry it through the summer months.
Loser: No Way Jose
No Way Jose may have finally made his jump to the main roster, but there is real cause for concern.
In 2014, Adam Rose arrived with momentum, bringing a party atmosphere to the show. Unfortunately, fans rejected the character, and he died a slow, painful death over the course of the next two years.
Jose is a fun-loving character in the same vein. He brings an energy to the arena when he enters, he interacts with fans and wins shorter squash matches. Unfortunately, that is not a formula that necessarily translates to success anymore.
The Superstars are more realistic, they have more real issues, and matches are longer and more competitive than the squash bouts of yesteryear.
Whether that dooms Jose to failure remains to be seen, but after Raw Monday, it certainly appears as though Jose could follow in the footsteps of Rose and endure the same growing pains that plagued the South African.
Winner: Seth Rollins
Seth Rollins rode a wave of momentum into Raw after winning the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania and built on it by the time the loaded three-hour broadcast was over.
The Architect not only delivered a solid promo that set up the night's Six-Man Tag Team match in which he teamed with Finn Balor and Jeff Hardy to battle The Miz and The Miztourage, he pinned The Hollywood A-Lister to win the match.
Rollins was treated like a star in the wake of Raw—and rightfully so.
No one has done a better job of putting over the significance of his role at WrestleMania than Rollins.
Whether he was heartbroken over missing WrestleMania 32, triumphant after defeating Triple H a year ago or bringing credibility to the Intercontinental Championship after winning it in one of this year's best matches, he is vocal about the significance of the marquee show.
It means something to him and that projects through the screen.
Losers: The Revival
It would be great if The Revival's victory over Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows actually meant something.
Sure, it advances them in the Tag Team Eliminator, but unfortunately no one really believes for a moment they will beat Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt next week, and then head to The Greatest Royal Rumble on April 27 to challenge The Bar for the vacant tag team titles.
Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson have been so poorly mishandled since their return as a tag team that one has to wonder if they would not be better off with a fresh start on Tuesday nights.
As it stands, they are a far better team than what they are being given by WWE Creative, and it becomes a little more disheartening with every week to see just how little they are given to do—especially when it is as disjointed as it has been.
Four years after making her main roster debut in New Orleans—defeating AJ Lee to win the Divas Championship—Paige said goodbye to the WWE Universe and announced her retirement from in-ring competition in the same city.
Speaking with conviction and emotion, she thanked her fellow female Superstars, Daniel Bryan for giving her hope of a potential return and Edge for proving there is a life after wrestling.
It was completely heartfelt, often gut-wrenching and always true to the performer.
Ending the promo by reminding the fans that the squared circle will always be her house, she took one last walk up the Raw ramp as the WWE Universe voiced its appreciation for her and her accomplishments.
It was classy, respectful and the type of historic moment this particular episode of Raw has become known for.