For Raw, all of the nostalgic acts during the 25th anniversary were great. From Stone Cold, to the Undertaker, to John Cena, etc. all of these moments really showed how far WWE Monday Night Raw has come. Out of all the moments though, the segment with Stone Cold was the best because not only was it great to see Stone Cold back in a WWE ring, but they also threw some humor into it as Stone Cold gave a stunner to the McMahons just like the old days.
For Smackdown, while Randy Orton wasn’t really mentioned during the WWE Raw 25th anniversary, he definitely made his presence known during Smackdown this week. During a match between Shinsuke Nakamura and Baron Corbin (which was a good match too), he came out of nowhere and hit RKO’s on both Nakamura and Corbin. Segments like this show that it truly is any man for them self at the Royal Rumble and it was a good preview to see what’s going to be in store. Lastly, it was just flat out entertaining to see RKO’s out of nowhere.
For Raw, the match between Woken Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt was a disappointment. For starters, after all the weeks of buildup between these two, you think that WWE would put a little hype behind this match before presenting it, but that wasn’t the case. Along with that, the match only took about five minutes and Bray Wyatt won clean. While I do understand that they needed to show that one of these guys have momentum going into the Royal Rumble, the fact that it came in the form of a five minute victory when this rivalry has been building for weeks is not right.
For Smackdown, last week on the Fashion Files, they said that Rusev Day was going to face off against them. But, when the time came around to this week, the match didn’t happen. Instead, Rusev Day took part in a 6-man tag match and Breezango had another backstage segment that didn’t make it to live TV. Don’t say one thing and then do another WWE. It makes the fans think that we don’t pay attention to small details like that when they do.
The Final Verdict
With this being the week before the Royal Rumble, both brands had to put on good shows to get fans excited for the PPV. Since Raw hosted its 25th anniversary, you knew that they would go big with that. Because of this, I would have to say that they had the better show this week. Not only seeing all these legends back was great, but WWE was also able to fit in time to build up the Royal Rumble as well. Raw had a great segment to hype up the Universal Championship match more as well as the tag team championship match scheduled for the PPV. Lastly, they crowned a new Intercontinental champion! Overall, WWE did do a good job building up the Royal Rumble this week, but when it came to who made things more intriguing, that is where Raw got the upper hand this week.