As mentioned at the top of the show, managing expectations for the kind of SUPERSTARS being SHAKEN UP can be difficult. It’s important to remember that this isn’t a draft, which represents a massive overhaul of both rosters, but instead closer to that thing where you repick teams during pick-up basketball to evenly split up the people who care too much in pairs with those who literally couldn’t be made to care if you paid them to be. And that can be dangerous: when waiting for the mystery partner joining Raw’s five-man Braun squad, I speculated loudly that Daniel Bryan would be making his way to Raw as a ship passing Miz in the night. Part of this is wrestling-related permutations bounding through my head for the last 30 years – which is why I galaxy brain’d myself into thinking they’d find just as much utility in having one match to tease the eventual Daniel Bryan-Miz confrontation almost a decade in the making, instead of just having the fucking feud already for crissakes – and part of it is hoping that this will be the time something actually exciting happens to the status quo. Instead of exciting, it was just GLORIOUS and that’ll just have to be good enough for now.
The blow-off (or as big of one as we’ll get) for Miz’s secret feud with the Miztourage finally happened at the most opportune time, and Miz’s work in what will be his last Raw match for the foreseeable future was some of his best so far this year. His in-ring acting has long best in the business and, without even really trying, it put in a performance for the ages in the art of selling your body (language) out for a spot. Every step of the process involving Miz’s realization that he was about to be mollywhopped by a crusading Strowman was textbook and the kind of character work which has lifted the Miz to first ballot Hall of Famer in 2018. Now, he just has to get ready to get his fucking head kicked in.