Welcome to this week's edition of the top RAW backstage rumours that could have a major impact. With TLC looming right around the corner, there is a lot of speculation on what will happen at the upcoming PPV.
As per certain reports, Braun Strowman was set to face Drew McIntyre for the WWE Championship at the show. However, that may not be happening as Strowman appears to have suffered a legitimate injury during his match at Survivor Series.
In this article, we will talk about why WWE are booking Riddle in an absurd manner, Lana's future, and much more. So without further ado, let us dive in and take a look at the big stories related to RAW.
#5 WWE trying to 'break' RAW Superstar Lana?
Ever since Lana's real-life husband Miro (FKA Rusev) signed with AEW, there has been speculation that Lana is being 'punished' for the actions of her husband by being booked poorly on RAW. Vince Russo, while speaking on SportsKeeda's Legion of RAW, stated that WWE may be trying to 'break' Lana.
Russo said that WWE is trying to make Lana look stupid. He further stated that since Miro 'knows the game', he encourages Lana to no-sell her beating on RAW which results in WWE doing it more often.
''I'll tell you exactly what's going on behind the scenes. They're trying to break her, that's exactly what they're doing. She's married to a wrestler Rusev (Miro in AEW) who knows exactly what they're trying to do. So, Rusev is there saying 'don't sell this, act like this is the greatest storyline you've ever been in and you can't wait to go through the next table.' The first time they (Nia Jax) put Lana through a table that's how she put it over online - 'oh, I've always dreamed of going through a table'. So that's the mind game... this will continue - the more she doesn't sell, the more hell bent they will get on getting her to sell.''
Vince Russo also stated that by not playing along with their narrative, Lana is annoying 'them' even more.
After being brutally put through a table for weeks on end by Nia Jax, this past week on RAW Lana managed to break the streak thanks to some help from Asuka.
#4 Vince McMahon punishing RAW Superstar for backstage antics?
While speaking on SportsKeeda's Legion of RAW, former WWE writer Vince Russo touched upon the possible reason behind Riddle's absurd booking on RAW. Russo commented that Riddle is being portrayed as an idiot just because he says the word 'bro'.
''I'm sitting here and I'm like 'Isn't this R-Truth's shtick?' Doesn't R-Truth play this... is Riddle an idiot now just because he says the word 'bro'? So now they've managed to make Riddle a complete, total idiot. And I thought R-Truth was the village idiot.''
Further talking about RAW's Riddle, Russo said that he has the potential to be a breakout star like AEW's Darby Allin but is probably being punished by WWE for the allegations against him.
''So then again it's stuff like this that I got to really look back, I know Riddle's been in trouble, is this punishment for... You always have to ask yourself that with this company. There always seems to be some kind of motive because you can't be booking that badly. You can't."
Vince Russo said that he believes WWE is going the wrong route with Riddle and turning him into a comedy character would be detrimental.
#3 Uncertainty over Braun Strowman's future on RAW
As per rumors, Braun Strowman was pegged to be Drew McIntyre's challenger for the WWE Championship at TLC. However, these plans are now in a pool of uncertainty as the RAW Superstar allegedly suffered a knee injury at Survivor Series.
Dave Meltzer of WOR stated that Braun Strowman may not be at TLC and his push may be up in the air after his 'suspension' for attacking Adam Pearce on RAW.
"Real quick on Strowman. So Braun Strowman does have a knee injury because he is being treated for it. I don't know the severity of it. The impression I have is that he's not going to be at TLC."
Meltzer further stated that there is still some uncertainty backstage over what could be next for The Monster Among men.
"After Monday, I'd heard that part - the writing team still thinks it's Strowman. You know, it's probably not. So that's the story with Strowman. There definitely was a knee injury involved there, so that's the story."
It seems there are some writers who still believe that Strowman will be the next WWE Championship contender.
#2 Backstage details on botched finish during The New Day vs The Hurt Business on RAW
Last week on RAW, the Tag Team Champions The New Day took on The Hurt Business. However, the match ended in a double count-out and was later restarted.
As per Bryan Alvarez of WOR, this was not the originally planned finish for the match on RAW. Kofi Kingston was supposed to be counted out while Shelton Benjamin was not.
''I was told that the finish of the match was supposed to be that the Hurt Business would win via count-out, but they are supposed to call it like a shoot, and they didn't get in the ring fast enough, and so the referee called it a double count-out.''
He also revealed why WWE Superstar MVP asked for the match to be restarted and how the botch wasn't a major one but still wasn't the original plan.
''MVP the heel cuts the promo saying, 'the fans don't want to see this, you're not gonna take that, are you? Get back in this ring, and let's restart it.' So yes, it was a botch, but it wasn't like a big time botch. It was just one guy who didn't get back in, so instead of a normal count out, it was a double count-out." H/t WrestlingNews.co
Alvarez also commented on the fact that The New Day were acting unnaturally heelish on RAW last week and that may be part of some upcoming angle.
#1 Reason for RAW Superstar AJ Styles being advertised on IMPACT Wrestling
IMPACT Wrestling have been teasing the return of former IMPACT star AJ Styles as of late. However, Fightful Select have reported that the plan is not for AJ Styles to be returning to IMPACT Wrestling but for Swoggle to mimic the RAW Superstar and portray a spoof character.
The storyline is a part of the ongoing feud between The Good Brothers and The North. Swoggle is also a former WWE Superstar but has been making appearances for IMPACT Wrestling as of late.
"As revealed by Fightful, the plan is for Swoggle, aka Hornswoggle, to spoof AJ Styles in IMPACT Wrestling. Swoggle will appear in IMPACT Wrestling and portray an AJ Styles satire gimmick, which would include the former WWE Superstar wearing the complete Styles in-ring gear."
Current RAW Superstar AJ Styles shot to fame during his run in TNA, however the former WWE Champion has stated on many occasions that he will most likely end his career in WWE itself and may never return to IMPACT Wrestling.