Raw managed just a 2,681 million viewers this week, which while it may have been impacted by Memorial Day, is much worse than previous Memorial Day numbers. Smackdown was not all that far behind in the grand scheme of things with 2,350 million which is slightly up from last week’s 2,328 million.
On Raw the WWE have begun to make two storylines that will build some intrigue and mystery. If you read this article last week, you’ll remember I was begging for this sort of addition to the show. Of course the Enzo being attacked storyline had already happened but with it continuing and the ability to see that, plus the addition of the Kurt Angle storyline that begun this week sees some of exactly what I was hoping for. As much as the roster is full of fantastic matches, just throwing matches out there doesn’t draw me in. Because I know I’ll see these matches and combinations again, and they will likely be even better versions when they happen on pay per views. Both storylines could in all fairness end up having really bad payoffs, I would assume especially the Kurt Angle could be in danger of this happening. Of course it could be something excellent, if it can somehow involve Stephanie McMahon and Triple H, who we know will most likely be back on TV sooner or later, then that’s probably the best way to do so. In terms of the Enzo and Big Cass storyline, it would probably be ideal to either have The Revival revealed as the attacker, even if it is a little bit obvious, or to have a major surprise. I wouldn’t say it’s quite the time for Enzo and Big Cass to break up, so I would hope obviously it isn’t revealed to have been Big Cass who has attacked Enzo. Although the tension being built would be perfect for a long term storyline that could eventually lead to the turn from Cass and a breakup of the team.
As I’m sure many other are, I’m excited to see the women on the Smackdown brand get their chance to be involved in a money in the bank ladder match. It has been exciting to see the women be given as equal of a chance as the men in the WWE. This has meant the ability to put them in the same matches. Of course you don’t want to rush these matches, because they are special and will draw a lot of interest, so it would be silly to use them all up too quickly. I think this match could really be a highlight of the Money in the Bank event and could even outshine the men’s Money in the Bank match. Of course it will be easier for the women to draw reactions from the same moves or stunts because they may be a first. The talent they’ve crammed into this match have really impressed me over the past few months and are some of my favourites. In terms of a winner, you’d surly have to hope for a villainous winner. This way the winner will eventually get to cash in on a downed opponent and take all the storylines and character traits that come along with it – for me this is the best way to use a money in the bank winner, but of course with the men who have had multiple amounts of these matches you have to change it up time to time.
With this fatal 5 way match coming up on Raw, it would appear they are setting it up for Finn Balor to be the one to win the match. The segment with Paul Heyman a couple weeks back seemed to indicate towards this and the fact they are giving the likes of Samoa Joe and Roman Reigns victories on TV would normally suggest neither of them will be winning, so they will be giving them the wins on TV so it isn’t such a big deal when both fail to win at Extreme Rules. A Finn Balor match against Brock Lesnar has been one I’ve liked the idea of ever since Balor came to the WWE and it has this perfect David Vs Goliath feel to it. I just hope if and when the match happens that it’s set out as such and not as more of a glorified enhancement match. I remember having high hopes for Brock’s Wrestlemania match with Dean Ambrose and then being let down because it really wasn’t presented in a way a lot of the fans would have hoped. It would be incredibly disappointing for a similar fate to meet this match, although I’d hope there is less chance of that due to the fact the Balor Vs Lesnar match would likely main event the pay per view and therefore such dominance probably wouldn’t be expected, although Brock’s Summerslam match with John Cena a few years ago proves you truly never know with Brock Lesnar and the WWE.
Of course with the men’s Money in the Bank match comes speculation as to who might win the match. To me, Kevin Owens is the kind of guy this match is made for. Carrying around the Money in the Bank briefcase and taunting whoever the champion is, teasing cash ins in perfect for Kevin Owens. Of course, while it might be living in a dream world, there is one way I could see Kevin Owens cashing in that would be perfect. That would be cashing in on Sami Zayn once he had finally won the WWE Championship. Of course this would involve the WWE wanting to put Smackdown’s top title on Sami and have him involved in feuds for the title with Owens following the cash in, but hey – if they can give the title to Jinder Mahal, why not Sami? Of course this whole idea comes with another one. That would be the complete reverse. Sami Zayn would overcome all of the things Owens has put him through in the past, by finally winning the WWE title after cashing in on Kevin Owens, the perfect revenge. This does give the issue that of course once this has happened, there is no longer any revenge for Sami to gain over Owens, and so it wouldn’t give much room for the two to do much for a good amount of time afterwards. I’d say the first option is far more likely and possibly a better idea, but the second is certainly interesting. Should neither happen I’ve been hoping for a potential unwilling tag team partners storyline between the two men for quite a while now and Smackdown may be the right brand to pull the trigger on such a story.
Raw will surly have to improve from this week’s ratings, and you’d assume they’d be looking to have some big stories coming out of the Extreme Rules event to lead into the show. I imagine Smackdown will struggle to maintain this upward movement in the ratings and will have a bit of a drop, however a small one.