Tonight’s episode of WWE Raw will take place at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio. Last week, the Superstar Shake-up moved a number of names to the Raw brand just two weeks before the brand-exclusive Payback pay-per-view, oddly headlined by the WWE Championship match (currently held by SmackDown Live’s Randy Orton) and the United States Championship match (currently held by SmackDown Live’s Kevin Owens). There has not been a comprehensible amount of clarity on whether the titles will stay on the Raw brand if they change or whether the individuals who win the titles will move over to SmackDown Live. Right now, AJ Styles is waiting for the winner of the U.S. Championship match, which makes it very clear that Owens will retain the title.
One of the reasons why the championships of the blue brand are highlighted on a Raw pay-per-view is due to WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar not scheduled to be at the event. Moreover, with the brutal attack that Braun Strowman gave Roman Reigns, many are wondering whether he will even appear on the show.
One of the top names WWE was expecting to have an impact on both Raw and Payback was Finn Balor. To make his return more important, WWE held him off of the WrestleMania 33 card in order to surprise the Orlando crowd the next night. Balor returned as a mystery partner of Seth Rollins against Kevin Owens and Samoa Joe. Balor and Rollins were able to defeat the villainous duo.
The next week, Balor was showcased in a match against Jinder Mahal. During the match, Mahal got everything he possibly could out of it, on his way to defeat. One of those moments happened when Balor was returning from the ropes and his face ran right into a forearm smash. Balor was able to get up, but he looked dazed for the duration of the bout. It was later reported that he suffered a concussion and might be out for a couple of weeks.
PWInsider is reporting that Balor is indeed in Columbus for Raw, but he needs to get evaluated before he is able to compete in the ring.
“Finn Balor is in Columbus, Ohio and will be at Raw tonight to undergo medical testing to see where he stands following the concussion he suffered while wrestling Jinder Mahal last week in Long Island, New York.
“Balor would need to pass an Impact test in order to be cleared to return to action. Balor was pulled from the WWE live events over the weekend due to the concussion.”
These string of injuries creates a concern of whether Balor can be depended on to carry the banner of the “A-show” for the foreseeable future. Although both of his injuries were at the hands of his opponents, this still does not look good from the standpoint of Balor being a top guy for the company.
As seen on Raw during the Superstar Shake-up, Bray Wyatt appeared on the titantron after Balor’s match, letting him know that he will be watched. This seems to be the first seeds planted for a feud between the two. Unless Wyatt wins the WWE Championship from Randy Orton, which would bring both titles to the Raw brand (highly unlikely), the feud between Balor and Wyatt will be a non-title one.
While this feud could be beneficial to ascend Balor into being a top guy, it seems to be a bit of a demotion for Wyatt. While his character is incredibly eccentric, there are some who feel as if an intangible is missing that would push him to the top. Hopefully, fans can see both Balor and Wyatt gain some stock value after this feud.
[Featured Image by WWE]