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RAW brings fans a step closer to Lesnar vs. Goldberg

Aaron Oster
Contact ReporterFor The Baltimore Sun
Brock Lesnar might be lining up for a rematch with Goldberg.

Last week, the rumor mill started heating up thatWWE was interested in having Brock Lesnar face Goldberg at Survivor Series. Those rumors picked up when Goldberg appeared on ESPN, and specifically mentionedLesnar. Well, after Monday's RAW, Goldberg/Lesnar 2 seems to be a fact.

Paul Heyman came out on Monday's RAW, the first time we've seen the advocate since the night after SummerSlam when he apologized to Stephanie McMahon for attacking Shane. He addressed Goldberg's comments, and said that Lesnar wanted to issue a challenge to Goldberg “any place, any time.” This prompted Goldberg to tweet out that he would appear on next week's RAW.

So it appears that Golbderg is back, and that Lesnar/Goldberg 2 is a go. Let's look at this in two pieces. First off, Goldberg being back could be an interesting thing for WWE. I won't go so far as to say it's a good thing yet. We have no idea what sort of ring shape Goldberg is in.

This isn't Undertaker coming back once a year to have a match. This is a guy who has barely been in a ring, let alone a match, in 12 years. It's very possible that he comes back and looks like the Goldberg of old. It's also possible that he gets gassed after two minutes. So it's hard to say what we'll get there. You also have to wonder how long of a run this is going to be. Will it be a one-appearance run to generate buzz during football season? Will it be a run through WrestleMania that maybe ends with a Hall of Fame induction? I think it's one of those two, but it's a coin flip between the two.

And that brings us to a match itself. The previous encounter between the two has gone down as one of the more infamous WrestleMania matches because of the quality. For those who don't remember, Goldberg and Lesnar were both on their way out, and it would be the last match for both wrestlers.The crowd learned of this fact before the show, and jeered both wrestlers during the match.

The two gave an incredibly lackluster performance, which ended with Goldberg winning, and Stone Cold (the guest referee) stunning them after the match. It's remembered as one of the worst “big” matches in WrestleMania history. And I think both of these guys know this. Lesnar, in particular, has it as one of his few blemishes on his wrestling career. And even though he's not a big legacy guy, I think he realizes that a chance to atone for that could go a long way for him. So I think that these guys know what's at stake here. Can they put on a good match? That's yet to be seen. But I think at least they will try.

So like it or not, Goldberg/Lesnar 2 will be happening. Will it happen at Survivor Series or later? That's yet to be seen. But The Man is coming to town next week, so that's going to be worth a watch.

The Rest of RAW:

* Much of RAW was dedicated to shaping the card for Hell in a Cell, which is just a few weeks away at this point. We already knew that Roman Reigns and Rusev would tangle in the cell. Two more matches were made.

The first that was made will be a first-ever women's title match inside Hell in a Cell between Charlotte and Sasha Banks. This makes sense on several levels. It's a heated feud, so this is a feud that actually belongs in the cell. Also, it would look bad if you've spent the last year talking about how the women are equal to the men, and then pass up on this opportunity.

The second match announced was that Kevin Owens would defend his title against Seth Rollins in a cage. This had the opportunity to be made into a triple-threat, if Chris Jericho could beat Rollins on RAW. However, he fell short in that effort. I love what they did on Monday, as the question on how exactly Owens and Jericho would react to this stipulation. I think many expected Owens to cost Jericho his match in some way, but that didn't happen. In fact, he tried to help Jericho win. So that was an interesting wrinkle. And when it all falls out, It is Owens and Rollins in the cell, which makes sense.

* Roman Reigns and Sasha Banks beat Rusev and Charlotte in a mixed tag match. This was set up because of the interaction between the four (and Lana) at the top of the show. There was nothing fancy about this one; just a solid match that combined the two matches well.

* TJ Perkins and Brian Kendrick had an interaction backstage, where Perkins expressed his disappointment that Kendrick had turned out as bitter as he had. He reminisced about their time together on the indies in the past, and hoped that Kendrick would see the light. He gave a chance for Kendrick to show his “light side” if you will, but Kendrick stood up to try to hit Perkins, and Perkins dropped him with a right hand. It was a strong segment to really establish how Kendrick is legitimately respected by most of the cruiserweights. Kendrick was on commentary later as Perkins beat Ariya Daivari.

* Speaking of the cruiserweights, Lince Dorado teamed with Sin Cara to beat the team of Drew Gulak and Tony Nese.

* Kofi beat Cesaro in a match to hype the upcoming match between The New Day and Cesaro and Sheamus. The underlying storyline was that The New Day were actively helping Kofi, while Sheamus didn't care about Cesaro. However, Sheamus did start getting into it with The New Day at the end. Effective storytelling, that will likely end in Sheamus and Cesaro getting on the same page by Hell in a Cell, even if they don't end up winning the titles.

* Enzo and Cass were supposed to face Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel, but Enzo and Cass were attacked before the match by The Club. This is a logical move while The New Day is busy with Cesaro and Sheamus, to give Enzo and Cass something to do. After this, Dallas and Axel demanded new opponents, and Sami Zayn and Neville came out. Zayn and Neville ended up winning. It is interesting that these two teamed up again after not teaming since SummerSlam. It's partially that they have nothing to do with either, but I wonder if the powers-that-be might test them as more of a team.

* Bayley beat a jobber. This is the issue with the RAW women's division right now. With Nia Jax off on her own path, there's nobody for Bayley to face on a weekly basis. However, it does appear that she'll get a singles match with Dana Brooke, as Dana attacked her after the match.

* Braun Strowman beat a couple of jobbers, which cleverly named themselves the Splash Bros in Oakland. He then demanded better competition, threatening Foley in the process.

* R-Truth beat Titus O'Neil.

Questions? Thoughts? Leave them in the comment section here, email me, or find me on Twitter: @TheAOster. You can also hear my podcast, Jobbing Out, at https://soundcloud.com/jobbingout

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