Riddle Primed for Successful Solo Run, Becky Lynch Booking Fail, More Raw Takes
The hype for Hell in a Cell is mounting, and the May 23 edition of WWE Raw was glad to fuel that fire.
From announcing new matches to embracing the excitement behind key matchups, Monday night sold the June 5 pay-per-view while delivering some solid wrestling.
Riddle announced Randy Orton was dealing with back issues from Feriday's contest against The Usos, which would leave The Original Bro alone in his fight with The Bloodline. He picked up a big win with The Street Profits against Sami Zayn, Jimmy and Jey Uso.
Becky Lynch pulled out a victory over Asuka to even up their series and book her ticket for Hell in a Cell. Bianca Belair should not need to fight Raw's biggest stars on a lesser WWE show, but the company has hit a panic button following Sasha Banks and Naomi's walkouts last week.
AJ Styles, Finn Balor and Liv Morgan have formed a trio in order to combat The Judgment Day. However, no pairing of this group can get a win, and it seems unlikely they ever will. They need more depth.
Bobby Lashley declared his next fight with Omos would be at Hell in a Cell. MVP managed to pick up a count-out victory that would allow him to pick the stipulation. This feud has shown limited promise, but now The Nigerian Giant will get his biggest test in a feud-ending contest.
Monday's show set the stage for a bigger event on the horizon and made Raw come off bigger than it has in recent weeks.
Riddle Can Rise to Main Event Status If Randy Orton Is Out
Riddle looks to be going it alone based on his promo to open Raw, and the crowd was fully behind him. He has risen immensely from his work with Randy Orton.
If The Viper is out for a while due to a back injury, The Original Bro has a chance to challenge for the United States Championship in a singles run. But he could also be in line for a shot at Roman Reigns.
It is rare for WWE to build a star as naturally as Riddle, who has made the most of some silly angles. He is a great in-ring performer and a popular act.
The company has had a tough task picking out major contenders for the Undisputed WWE Universal champion, but The Original Bro is legitimately ready to contend with Reigns without winning anything more.
If Orton is healthy enough to get back quickly, though, Riddle may need to wait a little longer to become a main event star. The RK-Bro members need to feud before they can move on.
AJ Styles, Finn Balor and Liv Morgan Need More Character to Be Legitimate
While WWE continues to build up The Judgment Day as a dangerous trio, their main competition is falling short.
AJ Styles cannot get a win over Edge, Finn Balor has struggled to challenge Damian Priest since The Archer of Infamy found his new spot, and Liv Morgan can barely compete with Rhea Ripley.
The mismatched group needs more legitimacy. Even if they cannot get a big win over Edge's stable, they could at least gain some character depth.
Styles and Balor tease their Bullet Club history, but none of that matters to WWE. Both men had tried to bring a version of the world-renowned stable to the main roster but failed.
If WWE wants fans to buy into this battle, it's time to give this group a voice. The gimmick does not need to be as seriously defined as The Judgment Day, but what makes the group unique needs to be explained.
Give them a name and use the experience of Styles and Balor to lift the less experienced Morgan. Make this about two veterans taking in a young star, and maybe others, who need a big break.
Biggest Match of Omos' Career Awaits at Hell in a Cell
Omos finds himself in a huge feud with Bobby Lashley. While he has picked up a pinfall victory over The All Mighty, he still feels like the underdog next to the former WWE champion.
He will walk into his third PPV match with Lashley in need of one last big win. He will get a major advantage, fighting alongside MVP in a handicap match.
While his manager may cause some chaos, this will be about Omos ultimately. He needs to prove himself and look like a top contender at Hell in a Cell. He can't just lumber around, waiting for Lashley to catch up.
No matter the result, Omos will fall back in line if he doesn't look like a serious challenger for The All Mighty.
Throwing Becky Lynch in Title Match with Bianca Belair and Asuka Is Desperate
Asuka and Becky Lynch may be the most talented women on Raw, and they showed it in the best match of the night on Raw for the second week running.
Sometimes, though, it's important to let fresh talent shine.
In the wake of Sasha Banks and Naomi walking out last week, WWE had to change booking plans. Bianca Belair needed a major challenger, and The Empress of Tomorrow was set up perfectly to be that threat to her reign.
However, having Lynch beat the woman who defeated her the previous week was a baffling decision on Monday, especially when it gave her a title shot she had already failed to earn.
Big Time Becks has been on a downward spiral since losing the Raw Women's Championship to The EST at WrestleMania 38, and she did not need to get her win back from The Empress of Tomorrow this early.
This is classic WWE booking. The back-and-forth helps no one and makes the rest of the roster look worse. The company would rather choose the same top women every time rather than look at anyone else.
Belair has history with Doudrop that could have been explored on a larger stage, Nikki A.S.H. is far more talented than her booking would indicate, and Alexa Bliss is still waiting for something substantial following her return.
Belair vs. Asuka alone is a great match, and it's likely fans will get that contest before long, and The EST vs. Lynch will happen again at some point soon.
Unfortunately, the immediate future only includes these three women in the Raw women's title scene.