Edge Set for Royal Rumble, Randy Orton RKOs Alexa Bliss, More WWE Raw Fallout
As hard as it can be to sit through all three hours of WWE Raw in recent months, the show usually provides us with a few segments worth talking about every week.
Monday's show featured plenty of questionable booking decisions and storyline choices, but it also gave us a passionate promo from Edge as he declared his entry into the men's Royal Rumble match.
Mustafa Ali also declared his spot in the men's contest on Sunday as a replacement for Kofi Kingston, who is out through injury.
Ric and Charlotte Flair continued to have problems that center around Lacey Evans, and the show ended with Randy Orton getting a small measure of payback against Alexa Bliss.
Let's look at each of these segments and what they mean for the future.
Mustafa Ali Takes Kofi Kingston's Rumble Spot
Xavier Woods defeated Slapjack in a singles bout this week, but Retribution then beat The New Day man down and humiliated him in the middle of the ring.
Mustafa Ali grabbed a mic and informed Woods that he was taking Kingston's Royal Rumble spot as payback for what he felt was an injustice from a couple of years ago.
When the former 205 Live star was first gaining ground on SmackDown in 2019, he was set to participate in a gauntlet match to decide the last entrant into the men's Elimination Chamber match and earn a potential shot at the WWE title.
When he was unable to participate, Kingston replaced him and went on to last almost an hour. That performance earned him a massive push that eventually led to a WWE title win at WrestleMania 35. It was the feel-good story of the year, but the Retribution leader felt it should have been him.
It's great that WWE is bringing these details into the feud between Retribution and The New Day because it means somebody in the creative team is paying attention to detail. The company often ignores its own history during feuds, so it's always satisfying to see it used in a meaningful way.
Ali is not one of the heavy favorites to win the men's Rumble, but he will likely give a great performance that sees him last some time before being eliminated. If the rest of his faction is in the ring with him, he will be a hard man to throw over the top rope come Sunday.
Tensions Grow Between Ric and Charlotte Flair
Ric and Charlotte Flair have had a rocky relationship for a few years, but the 16-time world champion always appeared to be himself. These days, it's like we are seeing a completely different person.
This all started on January 4 when The Nature Boy appeared to accidentally trip his daughter during a tag match that also included Evans. He clearly helped The Sassy Southern Belle the following week, and they appeared to enter into some kind of relationship.
This week, Ric watched as Evans attacked his daughter backstage. It looked like he wanted to help but as soon as The Lady started flirting with him, he left The Queen on the ground and walked away with his new girl.
This whole storyline is not only repeating something we have seen before, but it is also doing it in a way that betrays The Nature Boy's intelligence. He used to be the smartest and craftiest guy in the ring, but now he's being manipulated by a relative stranger to betray his daughter.
This is obviously leading to another showdown between Charlotte and Evans that will likely end with The Queen besting her rival once again. It's all very cut and dry. Let's hope it ends soon so everybody can move on from this ridiculousness.
Edge Is Returning at the Royal Rumble
After months of speculation, Edge confirmed he will be returning to action in the men's Royal Rumble match on Sunday, making it the second year in a row he has come back from an injury at the event.
The Rated-R Superstar delivered a fantastic promo during Mondays 'Raw to let everyone know he still wants to get back the title he never lost when he had to retire 10 years ago.
While last year's Rumble felt like it was designed to kick-start his feud with Randy Orton, it seems like this could be the year when he actually wins the whole thing.
Edge is only available for so many dates but he will probably be around more than somebody like Goldberg, so fans will be more willing to accept him as a part-time champion.
Whether he chose to battle Roman Reigns or Drew McIntyre, Edge being in the main event of WrestleMania 37 might be one of the few things that would make this year's pay-per-view special.
Randy Orton Costs Alexa Bliss the Raw Women's Championship
Two weeks ago, Alexa Bliss shot a fireball at Orton's face. Last week, he appeared in a mask to hide his burns. This week, The Viper showed up at the end of Raw to cost The Goddess her match against Asuka for the Raw Women's Championship with his burns exposed for the world to see.
Social media jumped on his makeup immediately and began making jokes, but a lot of people are ignoring the fact that Orton hit Bliss with an RKO. This is the first time he has laid a hand on her during this feud and illustrates how far he is willing to go to draw The Fiend back out into the light to face him.
The Goddess transformed a few times during the match, and one of the personalities we saw appeared to be a scared and confused Bliss from her time before she joined forces with Bray Wyatt and his alter ego.
This would seem to indicate The Fiend is manipulating her and deep within her psyche, she wants to escape. This is the kind of story thread WWE could explore further or completely ignore.
Two good things came out of this segment: Asuka retained her title so she will continue to look strong as a double champion and Orton ditched the mask. His makeup might not have looked great, but at least we know it will be gone soon.
With The Legend Killer already in the men's Rumble, we should keep an eye out for Wyatt popping up and costing him the win.