Welcome to the WWE Raw Deal review right here on TJRWrestling. It’s the follow up to The Horror Show at Extreme Rules, which had one of the worst names of any PPV in WWE history. It also wasn’t a great show (in my PPV rankings of 2020 it was second-worst so far), so let’s try to forget it. There was also some controversy regarding some Raw matches, so we’ll see how WWE tries to move forward. The good thing is that we’re on to SummerSlam and that’s usually one of the biggest shows of the year. This Raw was taped earlier on Monday and they taped next week’s Raw right after.
If you’re wondering about the banner up top, Orton vs. Big Show was the main event of Survivor Series 2013 and it was terrible. I gave it one star out of five. Awful match.
(* I posted this in the Extreme Rules review and I’ll post it here too: “I’m sorry if you have had problems accessing TJRWrestling lately. It’s not just you. The old site design has had problems and I don’t know how to fix it, nor do I even want to try for fear of losing things. It’s not worth me paying somebody to fix it because we are doing a complete redesign that also involves moving the five-plus years of content on a new server, so it takes time. I’ve got a web designer working on a complete rebuild of the entire site with a new look. We hope to have a new look ready by next weekend. I’m excited about the new look. Faster site for all, especially on mobile devices. I anticipate writing a bit less in this coming week due to the website not functioning properly. TJRWrestling is my career and I hate that we’re going to go through this rough patch for another week, but it’s going to be fine in the long run. Thanks for staying with us and supporting the site.”)
From the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, this is the Raw Deal for episode #1417 of Monday Night Raw. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Please visit TJRWrestling.net daily for our regular updates on the wrestling business featuring WWE news coverage, insightful columns from our team along with reviews about wrestling’s past and present. Let’s roll.
The opening video package summarized the feud between Seth Rollins and Rey Mysterio, which led to the Eye for an Eye Match at Extreme Rules. Rollins won by jamming Rey’s right into the steel steps, which led to Rey’s eye coming out although we never saw much of it. It was cheesy, but also put over how vicious Rollins was. Rollins sold it by puking out some yellow liquid at ringside. The Raw intro video aired.
There was a shot of the WWE Performance Center with some developmental wrestlers in the crowd standing behind the plexiglass. The announce team of Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton and Samoa Joe welcomed us to the show by mentioning Randy Orton vs. Big Show in the main event.
Let’s Hear from Seth Rollins
The “Monday Night Messiah” Seth Rollins entered in his ring gear along with a black leather jacket. Phillips let us know that the optic nerve of Rey’s eye was not severed, so it’s expected that he’ll get his vision back and make a full recovery. There’s the storyline update. Rollins was booed by the crowd as fans chanted “Rey” for Mysterio.
Rollins said it is referred to as globluxation when you remove an eye from a socket. Rollins said that the image of Rey Mysterio holding his own bloody eye in his hand will stay with him forever. Rollins said that it was more than he expected and it made Seth sick to his stomach, figuratively and literally. Rollins said he has been asked if he regrets it and he asked the WWE Universe if they regret what they have done to him? Rollins said this was not his decision. Rollins said that the fans that made him the Monday Night Messiah and made him become a person that you refer to as a monster. Rollins asked do you regret what you’ve done to Seth and by proxy to Rey and his family? Rollins pointed out that Mysterio asked for this match to be Eye for an Eye. Rollins said that actions have consequences. Rollins said that what happened to Mysterio was unfortunate, but we cannot afford to dwell in the past. Rollins said that the beauty of all of this is that Rey Mysterio is out of sight and now Raw is free to fill its potential. Rollins said that the greater good of this show can happen, will happen and there’s nobody left to stand in the way…here’s Aleister Black.
Aleister Black told Rollins to not deflect the blame because Rollins orchestrated all of this and it’s on his hands. Black said that he’s there to rectify this. Black charged, Murphy went after him and Black kicked Murphy in the chest. Black sent Murphy into the barricade and into the ring post. Black sent Murphy into the barricade and over the announce table to take care of him. Rollins bailed when Black got in the ring.
Analysis: It was a good promo from Rollins that was fitting for his character. I think he’s doing an awesome job as the Monday Night Messiah character. I also know some people don’t like it, but to me what makes it work is that it’s different from everybody else, so it makes Seth stand out. The Black vs. Rollins match was advertised before the show.
Seth Rollins (w/Murphy) vs. Aleister Black
Rollins was in control as he attacked Black with punches against the turnbuckle. Black came back with a running knee to the ribs. Black with a running back elbow to the face, Rollins bailed to the floor and Black sent Rollins into the ring apron. Rollins avoided a punch, so Black punched the ring post with his right hand. Back in the ring, Rollins hit the Slingblade neckbreaker. Rollins kicked the arm of Black, then a snapmare into a kick to the back. Rollins sent Black arm first into the turnbuckle followed by a snap suplex for two. Rollins shoved Black’s right side into the turnbuckle. Black with a punch, two kicks to the head and Black ducked a charge to send Rollins to the floor. Rollins went for an attack off the top, Black moved and Black with a sweep kick followed by running knee. Black punched Murphy off the apron, Black went for a moonsault, Rollins moved, Rollins went for The Stomp with Black moving and then Black hit a Black Mass kick, but he was too hurt to cover. Murphy into the ring, knee by Black to Murphy (who did not touch Black) and Rollins rolled outside the ring. Black with a Black Mass on Murphy leading to a break.
Black was in control with a hard kick to the chest while selling the right arm injury. Rollins managed to avoid a Black Mass attempt and then hit two superkicks as both guys were down. Rollins was screaming for Murphy, who was down against the announce table. Rollins did a slow climb to the turnbuckle, Black stopped that and Rollins pulled the right arm of Black against the top rope. Rollins jumped off the top with a knee strike, Black avoided it, Black with a kick to the face and Rollins did an arm wringer on the bad right arm. Rollins hit The Stomp on Black for the pinfall win after 13 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Seth Rollins
Analysis: ***1/4 That was a very good match as you would expect from two of the best in-ring performers on Raw. Rollins working on the right arm the whole match played a part in the finish thanks to the arm wringer that led to The Stomp for the clean win. Black got in plenty of offense, he got a few nearfalls that were believable and ultimately it was another win for Rollins. I think at some point they will need to give Black a big win to try to elevate him, but for now he’s at a certain midcard level and it’s hard to know when or if he’ll be elevated from that spot. I want to see Black doing more than he is.
Post match, Rollins was about to leave with Murphy, but then Rollins felt like they needed to do more damage. Rollins and Murphy stomped on Black with Rollins sending Black out of the ring. Murphy whipped Black into the barricade three times. Rollins slammed Black’s arm into the ring post and did an arm wringer on the floor. There was one referee there to try to calm Seth down, but nobody else. Rollins slammed Black’s right arm into the announce table repeatedly. Rollins: “Do you think I want to do this?” Rollins stepped on Black’s right hand while asking who is here to save you? Rollins stomped on the hand on the hood of the announce table. Black screamed in pain and apparently that was enough for other referees to come down to check on the guy after taking a beating for three minutes.
Analysis: Another injury angle on Raw. There are a lot of those going around these days since Rollins also took out Humberto Carrillo with The Stomp on the steel steps, plus others on the show in other storylines. It will probably lead to Black being off for a few weeks to sell the right arm injury.
A replay aired from Extreme Rules with MVP declared himself the new US Champion since Apollo Crews was not cleared to compete. Crews is still the champion.
Analysis: Crews is apparently dealing with Coronavirus. It has not been acknowledged by WWE. We don’t know if it’s in the early stages, if Crews has nearly recovered or what the situation. I wish Apollo the best.
MVP and Bobby Lashley were backstage with Ron Simmons there with him. Simmons said there was a better way as they touched fists. Simmons left. R-Truth walked up to them (with a frying pan) with the 24/7 Title, he said MVP had a replica while noting that Apollo was the new US Champion and MVP said he was the champion. MVP and Lashley wondered if Truth wanted to join them in the ring, Truth said no he didn’t want Lashley put him in the “Nelson from The Simpsons” and Lashley said it was called a Full Nelson. That was really funny by Truth. Anyway, Shelton Benjamin walked up to Truth, kicked him in the face and a referee was there to count the pin.
Winner by pinfall AND NEW WWE 24/7 Champion: Shelton Benjamin
MVP and Lashley asked Benjamin if he wanted to join them in the ring and Shelton said he would, so off they went.
Analysis: Poor R-Truth losing the “coveted” 24/7 Title. At least the “Nelson from The Simpsons” line was funny, so I enjoyed that.
This Wednesday on NXT: Karrion Kross vs. Dominik Dijakovic and NXT General Manager William Regal has a huge announcement.
Let’s Hear from MVP And Friends
The trio of self-proclaimed US Champion Montel Vontavious Porter, Bobby Lashley and 24/7 Champion Shelton Benjamin made their entrance.
MVP said that last night at The Horror Show at Extreme Rules, he emerged as your new United States Champion. MVP said that the CEO of the Hurt Business, Bobby Lashley, ragdolled Apollo Crews so badly that Crews had to stay home and nurse his injuries. MVP said he didn’t make excuses, he makes history. MVP claimed his victory was a foregone conclusion, so it didn’t matter that Crews missed the match. MVP said after they beat Ricochet and Cedric Alexander aka Dumb & Dumber, they will celebrate this victory.
Ricochet and Alexander ripped on MVP for saying he acted like a champion while holding a title he didn’t win. Ricochet called him a chump. Alexander said that they’ve been champions before and they will be again. MVP said that they see the Hurt Business in the ring including the new Executive on the Board, Shelton Benjamin while Ricochet and Alexander belong in catering. MVP wanted them to pick two of their guys to have a match with. Ricochet and Alexander said they had a friend to join them…and it’s Mustafa Ali. He was moved to Raw from Smackdown, so here he is.
Bobby Lashley charged, the three faces all hit him with superkicks. Ricochet, Alexander and Ali all posed in the ring while the heels left.
Analysis: It’s nice to see Mustafa Ali back on television after sitting out for months with nothing to do. That stalker angle on Smackdown never materialized, so maybe he’ll do something productive on Raw. Also, it seems like MVP’s stable is going to use the Hurt Business name going forward, which is fine with me because I think it works for what they’re trying to do together. Benjamin is a good fit with MVP and Lashley because they’re all close friends that have known eachother for a long time. I think they’ll do well as a group. As for Ricochet and Cedric’s lines, they were not good. Get better writers or let these grown adults sound more normal.
The six man tag team match was made official. I saw a stat that said this was Mustafa Ali’s first TV match since December 13, 2019 when he was in a tag team match against The Revival. There was no significant injury that sidelined him. It’s just a case of WWE not using him. I don’t know why other than creative had nothing for him.
The Hurt Business (MVP, Bobby Lashley and Shelton Benjamin) vs. Cedric Alexander, Ricochet and Mustafa Ali
Lashley with a clothesline on Alexander, who sold it with a flip bump. Benjamin with a shoulder tackle on Alexander. MVP with knees to the ribs, a body slam and a knee drop for two. Benjamin tagged back in with a clothesline followed by a forearm to the face for two. Lashley tagged back in with a delayed suplex on Alexander. Lashley with a running shoulder tackle to the ribs against the turnbuckle. MVP with the running boot to the face on Alexander and the Ballin’ Elbow drop for a two count. Alexander with forearms, but then MVP stopped him with a boot to the face. Alexander with a boot to the face of Benjamin, Ricochet with a kick to Benjamin and Ali tagged in with a senton splash on Benjamin. The heel side retreated as the match went to break.
The match returned with Ricochet as the face in peril for this portion of the match as Benjamin grounded him with a chinlock. Ricochet with a jawbreaker on Benjamin. MVP tagged in with forearms to the face of Ricochet. Lashley tagged in and he whipped Ricochet back first into the barricade. Lashley choked Ricochet against the turnbuckle, Lashley distracted the referee and MVP got in a cheap shot. Ricochet with a boot to the face followed by a roll through into a dropkick on Benjamin. Ali got the hot tag against MVP with Ali hitting two forearms followed by a dropkick. Ali with a kick to the face and roll through into an X-Factor for two on MVP with Lashley breaking it up. Ali avoided a slam by Lashley, then he sent Lashley out of the ring. Ricochet and Alexander jumped on Lashley, but Bobby caught them and Ali hit a suicide dive on Lashley to knock him over the announce table. Benjamin with a kick to Alexander and Ricochet hit a moonsault on Benjamin on the floor. It was back to MVP in the ring with Ali with MVP missing a boot in the corner and Ali hit a neckbreaker. Ali went up top with a 450 Splash on MVP for the pinfall win after 16 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Cedric Alexander, Ricochet and Mustafa Ali
Analysis: *** A fun tag team match with Ali picking up a big win after a long layoff. It was booked in a smart way with Alexander and Ricochet taking turns as the face in peril before they made the hot tag to Ali. The match felt like it was a bit too long, but that’s because they wanted all six guys to get in there and for Ali to get the definitive pinfall on MVP. A mini-push for Ali would be nice to see. It’s the right call to not have Lashley take the pin since WWE always wants him to look strong, even in defeat.
Randy Orton was backstage doing a promo talking about moments in his history like being in Evolution, beating Mick Foley at Backlash and being the youngest World Champion in 2004. Orton was talking about a moment from 175 days earlier when he swung a steel chair onto Edge’s surgically repaired neck. Orton thought he had friendships etched in stone like Edge, Christian and Big Show, but now those friendships are gone. Orton said those men saved him from himself. Orton talked about how he felt fantastic knowing how he ended Edge’s career and put a stop to Christian’s chance at one last match. Orton said he will punt Big Show in the skull and enjoy immensely as he ends his career once and for all.
Analysis: Excellent promo from Orton as usual for him in 2020. I say it every week that Orton has been doing the best promo work of his career this year. I don’t think it’s his best year in terms of matches, but the matches have been pretty good when he has had them. He’s had a lot less matches than he did in his best years like 2007 and 2009, for example.
This week on Smackdown: Sheamus faces Jeff Hardy in a Bar Fight.
They showed Ron Simmons backstage where he was talking to the Viking Raiders. We couldn’t hear them.
There was a Big Show video package showing his dominance, but not replays of the 50 times WWE booked him to cry like a goof. Okay, so I may have over-exaggerated with that number.
Interview with Christian
They showed Christian in his home talking to the announce team. Joe asked how Christian has been since Randy Orton beat him up last month. Christian said he knew what he was getting himself into, but he didn’t expect that to happen. Christian complained about Orton using Ric Flair against him and he’ll never look at them the same. Christian said he’s not sure he’ll ever be the same. Joe asked how Christian felt about Orton vs. Big Show. Christian said that the healing process is steady, some days are better than others, but he doesn’t feel good – not at all. Christian said he goes through every single second of pain again and he’d endure it one more time if it guaranteed that Orton got what was coming to him. Christian said that Big Show is ready for the traps and tonight he can’t wait to watch Big Show knock Orton out cold.
Analysis: Christian did a nice job of putting over Orton here. When you have a guy saying that Orton taking him out has given Christian problems, you’re telling the audience that Orton is on another level of violence right now and that’s why this was an effective interview.
Bianca Belair was interviewed backstage from Sarah Schreiber. Bianca said that she’s the EST of WWE, she wanted to help Ruby out last week and then Peyton Royce of The IIconics showed up to interrupt. Royce said Belair was the dumbest for helping Ruby last week. Ruby Riott walked up for some trash talk to talk to Peyton while Billie Kay was not there. Royce said that Kay was off handling some business. Royce brought up Liv Morgan, which pissed off Riott and then Bianca tried to break it up. Bianca did a nice IIconics impression. It led to some bickering between the three women as Belair and Riott left together.
Analysis: Whenever somebody is absent, like Billie Kay here, people are going to wonder why. I’m not sure if Billie is dealing with a sickness, but I hope she feels better soon.
Peyton Royce entered for a singles match alone because Billie Kay wasn’t there. Ruby Riott entered as the opponent. Royce beat Riott in singles previously. Last week, Riott and Belair beat The IIconics in a tag team match.
Ruby Riott vs. Peyton Royce
Riott worked over Royce with shoulder tackles, but then Royce hit a spin kick to the head. Royce with a back elbow for two. Royce pulled back on Royce’s arms against the top rope. Royce connected with elbow strikes to Riott for a two count. Riott to the apron, shoulder to the ribs and Royce tried to cheat on a pin attempt, so Riott got a rollup for two. Royce with a jumping kick to the head. Royce went up top, she jumped off, Riott moved and Riott came back with a Riott Kick for the pinfall win after three minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Ruby Riott
Analysis: * It was a much-needed singles win for Riott. Royce was on offense for about 90% of the match and Riott winning after Royce missed a big move made sense for the finish.
Riott had a stunned look on her face, but also a happy expression.
Analysis: That was Riott’s first singles match win since February 11, 2019 since she missed a year due to shoulder surgery and wasn’t booked well since she returned.
They showed a clip of Andrade and Angel Garza attacking the Street Profits last month to set up this match.
The trio of Angel Garza, Andrade and Zelina Vega were walking backstage as Charly Caruso walked up for an interview. Vega said that the Street Profits have been in hiding. Andrade said that when they win they’ll be one step closer to becoming Raw Tag Team Champions. Garza said he was ready for the opportunity to arise (as he stared at Charly) and The Street Profits showed up to attack their opponents. That match is next.
The Street Profits made their entrance as the Raw Tag Team Champions for this non-title match. It was mentioned that Dawkins recently became a father for the first time, so congrats to him. Andrade and Garza entered with Zelina Vega as we saw highlights of them beating Viking Raiders last week. Vega looked great in black leather at ringside.
The Street Profits (Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins) vs. Andrade and Angel Garza (w/Zelina Vega)
Andrade and Garza attacked both champions early and then they isolated Dawkins. Garza pulled back on Dawkins’ right arm, Dawkins with a punch and Garza hit a knee to the face. Ford tagged in against Andrade with two leapfrogs followed by an impressive dropkick. Ford hit a somersault dive over the top on Andrade leading to a break. Ford’s such an awesome athlete.
The match returned as Dawkins got the tag with a shoulder tackle on Andrade. Ford tagged in with a dropkick, but then Andrade and Garza took control with Garza hitting a kick to the face. Andrade with a snap suplex on Ford. Andrade grounded Ford by pulling back on the arm almost like an abdominal stretch and Ford turned it into a hiptoss. Ford with a kick to the head of Andrade led to Dawkins getting the hot tag. Dawkins with clotheslines, a back elbow, a flapjack and an overhead suplex as Vega did a nice job of making facial expressions at ringside. Dawkins with a spinning splash and a bulldog for two with Garza breaking up the pin. Ford went up top, Andrade shoved Dawkins into the ropes to take out Ford, Garza tagged in with a superkick on Dawkins and Ford blocked a superplex attempt. Ford went up top and jumped off with a Frog Splash for the pinfall win on Garza after 11 minutes. It wasn’t just a regular Frog Splash either. He got amazing height and adjusted in the air.
Winners by pinfall: The Street Profits
Analysis: **3/4 It’s nice when champions win non-title. It should happen more often, so that’s why I try to point out when it does. This was a standard tag team match with the heels isolating Ford for the second half of it and Dawkins did a nice job after the hot tag. Ford really stood out with his athleticism while Andrade and Garza are technically very sound as usual. I don’t know if the Street Profits were off because of the health crisis or because of Dawkins having a baby, but I’m glad they’re back.
Here’s a shot of Ford’s incredible leap on that Frog Splash. They did a nice job of showing the replay and putting over how impressive it was.
Analysis: I can remember Rob Van Dam changing in air like that a lot, but the height Ford gets is amazing.
There was a replay of the confusing Raw Women’s Title situation from Extreme Rules with Asuka spitting the green mist on referee Eddie Orengo and then Bayley put the referee shirt on to count the pin. Banks and Bayley are up next.
Andrade and Angel Garza were backstage talking about the loss. Zelina Vega yelled at them and said that she has to fix the problem. Garza said that he and Andrade are on the same page. Andrade noted that things are fine.
Analysis: Raw is lacking in heel teams, so I think Andrade and Garza will continue to get a mild push.
Bayley and Sasha Banks entered with four titles. Bayley is the Smackdown Women’s Champion and both women are the Women’s Tag Team Champions. Banks had the Raw Women’s Title even though she didn’t win it. Asuka is still the champion.
Banks and Bayley did their usual promo about bragging about their success. Banks said that people are accusing her of stealing that Raw Women’s Championship. Banks said that she fought for the championship while Asuka was handed the title because Becky Lynch went on maternity leave. Banks said that at Extreme Rules, Asuka spit the green mist in the referee’s face and Bayley didn’t steal the referee shirt, she just borrowed it. Bayley said she had to see make a decision and do the right thing, so that’s why she made the count. Bayley reminded us she is our role model. Banks and Bayley went over all their nicknames while mentioning that they have all the gold.
Asuka made her entrance with Kairi Sane by her side. Asuka yelled at them that this is her title, so Banks told her to come and get it.
There was an interruption by Stephanie McMahon at her home or wherever she was. Stephanie told Sasha that the match at Extreme Rules was a horror show. Stephanie told Banks that she didn’t win, but neither did Asuka. Stephanie said that next week they’ll have a championship match to determine who is the Raw Women’s Title holder. Stephanie said you can lose by pinfall, submission, disqualification, countout or if Bayley tries to get involved. Asuka and Sane charged the ring while Banks and Bayley left the ring.
Analysis: It is rare to see an authority figure on WWE TV these days, but at least they got somebody there with Stephanie. It would have made sense for her to say that Banks had to give the title back to Asuka, but they didn’t do that. There were reports that came out saying that Asuka was going to beat Banks at Extreme Rules to retain the title, but then Vince McMahon changed his mind and we got the confusing finish. I think they did it because they want to help Raw ratings from going down again, so now we get a Raw Women’s Title match next week between Asuka and Banks again. It doesn’t bother me. I also think Asuka will win because Banks isn’t even a Raw wrestler anyway.
The Bayley vs. Sane match was announced earlier in the day. This is not for Bayley’s Smackdown Women’s Title.
Kairi Sane (w/Asuka) vs. Bayley (w/Sasha Banks)
Sane was aggressive early on with a dropkick and she got a rollup. Bayley backed off, then stomped on the foot and did a hair whip. Sane with a headscissors that sent Bayley out of the ring. Sane with a running hip attack on Bayley on the apron. Bayley sent Sane face first into the top turnbuckle. Bayley grabbed a headlock, Sane broke free with punches and hit a cross body block. Bayley hit a running clothesline followed by weak looking punches. Bayley with a suplex for two and then Sane countered a suplex into a cradle for two. Bayley worked over the back of Sane with forearms to the back. Bayley with a suplex on Sane. When Sane charged in, Bayley hit her with a shoulder tackle. Sane with an axe kick to the back while Bayley was on the top rope, then Bayley had to hold herself on the ropes with Sane going to the turnbuckle and hitting a double foot stomp. Bayley went to the floor as the match went to break.
Bayley was in control with a single arm DDT for a two count. Bayley worked on the right arm of Sane as Shayna Baszler was shown watching the match on a TV backstage. Charly Caruso asked Baszler if she had a vested interest in this match. Baszler said nobody deserves that spotlight more than her and she had a vested interest in this match the same way that a shark has a vested interest any time it sees prey in the water. Meanwhile back in the ring, Sane countered a suplex with a DDT. Sane followed up with a neckbreaker and a dropkick while Banks looked sad at ringside. Sane with a sliding clothesline on Bayley against the turnbuckle. Sane went up top, Bayley stopped her and wrenched the arm against the top rope. Sane managed to trip up Bayley by the turnbuckle. Sane went up top with a double foot stomp onto Bayley for a two count. Sane charged, Bayley avoided, Sane with a spinning back fist and a Spear. Sane went up top and jumped off with an impressive Insane Elbow for a two count as Bayley got her foot on the bottom rope at two. Bayley came back with a rising knee to the face and a belly to back suplex. Bayley went up top, she jumped off with an elbow drop of her own (Sane’s looked a lot better) and that got a two count. Bayley went for the Bayley to Belly, but Sane countered that by flipping over and rolling Bayley up with a ROLLUP OF DEATH~! where Sane used her body to cover Bayley.
Winner by pinfall: Kairi Sane
Analysis: ***1/2 This was really good with a clever finish as Sane showed off her athleticism. There’s that booking trend I mentioned earlier with a champion losing non-title. In this case, it’s probably not going to lead to a title match. Sane is such a natural babyface and it makes me wish she was a face the entire time on Raw instead of being a heel. I also liked how well Sane sold the arm injury throughout the second half of the match, Bayley was relentless going after it and when Sane got the win, it felt like a big deal. It was not a traditional ROLLUP OF DEATH~! because of how much Sane used her body on the pin attempt. I thought it was executed perfectly.
Post match, Sane and Asuka celebrated the win while Bayley and Banks looked frustrated.
Analysis: This was potentially Kairi Sane’s last match on Raw. They did tape another episode of Raw after this, so maybe there’s another Sane match to looking forward to. The rumor is that Shayna Baszler is going to attack her and injure her to write Sane off TV. Sane’s contract is up and she’s moving back to Japan with her husband after she got married earlier this year. Sane is leaving on good terms, but she wants to live in Japan, which is understandable. There’s also a possibility that Sane may return to WWE in the future. It’s up to her.
Drew McIntyre was interviewed backstage by Sarah Schreiber. Drew talked about he took a beating at Extreme Rules, but he is still WWE Champion, so that feels good. He was off to the ring.
This week that on Raw Talk that aired after Raw had these guests: Seth Rollins, Shayna Baszler and Mustafa Ali.
Let’s Hear from Drew McIntyre
The WWE Champion Drew McIntyre made his entrance in a dress shirt and slacks along with the WWE Title in his hands. I guess he wants to be different from wrestlers that wear their own merchandise. The crowd gave him a nice ovation. They showed images from Drew’s win over Dolph Ziggler at Extreme Rules.
Drew said that stipulation by Ziggler was brilliant because it swayed the match in Ziggler’s favor. Drew talked about the beating that he took and said that Ziggler almost had him, but almost doing things is the story of Ziggler’s career. Drew said that the next big event is SummerSlam, which is the biggest show since WrestleMania and Drew McIntyre wants a worthy opponent. Here comes Dolph Ziggler.
Dolph Ziggler said last night at Extreme Rules he saw something in Drew that he hasn’t seen in a long time. Dolph claimed he saw fear and Drew said he was sick of the sight of him. Dolph said that of course the stipulations were in his favor, but he was “this close” to having that WWE Title. Drew noted that he literally beat Dolph 24 hours ago, the answer is no and “bugger off.” Ziggler said he was this close his entire life and it was a long time coming. McIntyre said he’ll save him the embarrassment by leaving. Ziggler touched him, but then McIntyre hit him with a headbutt. McIntyre went to walk away, but Ziggler had more. Ziggler: “Don’t you walk away from me, you son of a bitch!”
Ziggler said that he was deserved that match. Ziggler said he doesn’t care, Drew can name the stipulation, the time and place and Dolph claimed he deserved to have another match. Somebody yelled: “Eye for an eye!” That was funny. Drew said all those years of law school weren’t wasted, so now Dolph has changed his mind. Drew said he gets to pick the stipulation and he accepts. Ziggler asked what’s the stipulation? Drew said he didn’t know and if he had two weeks, he couldn’t tell him. Drew said he’ll do exactly what Ziggler did to him and said he’ll tell Dolph the stipulation right before the bell rings. End promo.
Analysis: A rematch is fine with me because they did a good job at Extreme Rules. The problem with the previous match was that nobody really believed Ziggler had a shot at winning and that’s going to be the same issue next time. It was mentioned elsewhere that McIntyre vs. Ziggler for the WWE Title is on Raw next Monday.
Big Show did a promo in the backstage area as he looked into the camera. Show talked about how Randy took out Edge and Christian and Show knows that he is on Randy’s list now too. Show said he knows his career is jeopardy now. Show said he hoped and prayed that the sadistic “Legend Killer” Randy Orton never showed his face again, but I guess the voices in the head got too loud. Show said that whether Ric Flair turned the voices up or Randy did it himself, but now Randy thinks he has to take everything out permanently. Show said when he would tag in with Orton they would call themselves Hammer (Show) and Chisel (Randy). Show said that they bonded. Show said no matter what a tiger does, they can’t change their stripes. Show said that they became friends because they each knew inside what the other is dealing with, but that’s changed now because Randy’s brought back the sadistic Legend Killer. Show said that Randy’s got a boot with Show’s name on it. Show said he’s spent the last week thinking this might be the end of the line for the Big Show. Show said that a tiger is the most fierce when it senses the end, so it will do anything just to survive. Show said he’ll do everything and anything to make sure that Orton doesn’t write the end of his story.
Analysis: Solid promo from Show, who really became a great talker in the second half of his career. In the first half, promos were hit and miss, but as he got more comfortable, he got better especially at doing the serious promos.
It’s official for next week on Raw: Asuka vs. Sasha Banks for the Raw Women’s Championship. The title can change on pinfall, submission, countout, disqualification or if anybody interferes.
Here’s the tweet to say that McIntyre vs. Ziggler is next week. As mentioned earlier, next week’s Raw was already taped.
— WWE (@WWE) July 21, 2020
Big Show made his entrance for the main event with Randy Orton up next as the opponent. No Ric Flair with Orton, which is good because an older man like Flair shouldn’t be at shows. Flair’s wife has Coronavirus as well, so it’s smart for him not to travel. I hope she is okay and that Ric doesn’t get sick either. They started this match with about 16 minutes left in the show.
Unsanctioned Match: Randy Orton vs. Big Show
Show was in control early on as he worked over the arm of Orton and then connected with some big chops to the chest. Show went after Orton’s shoulder with punches to the shoulder, Orton was sent into the ropes and Show sent a Spear. It was more of a standing Spear rather than Show running into it. Show brought a table into the ring followed by a chop. Andrade and Garza showed up at ringside, they sent Show knee first into the steel steps. Orton was happy about that, but then the Viking Raiders showed up to take out Andrade and Garza. That led to a break.
Orton was in control with a chinlock, Show powered out of that and hit a headbutt to the chest. This is where they announced McIntyre vs. Ziggler next week on Raw. Show with a running corner splash, but then Orton took out the knee with a dropkick. Orton charged, Show caught him and hit a Chokeslam for two. At one point in his career, that was Show’s finisher. Show set up for the KO Punch, so Orton bailed to the floor. Show set up Orton on a table in the ring. Show went to the turnbuckle, jumped off, Orton easily avoided it and Show splashed through the table while Orton smiled about it. Orton charged in with an RKO for a two count. There are not a lot of RKO countouts, but Orton is still going to look strong in the eyes of the fans. Orton brought a chair into the ring. Orton jabbed Show in the ribs with the chair followed by a chair shot to the back. Orton with a hard chair shot to the back. Orton instructed the referee Rod Zapata to get the table out of the ring as Orton hit Big Show with two more chair shots. Show was on the apron, so Orton held him (with Show locking his hands on Orton’s back for some balance) and Orton hit the draping DDT. Show stumbled back up to his feet and Orton hit another RKO for the pinfall win at 14 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Randy Orton
Analysis: **3/4 It was everything that most people likely expected it to be as they worked at a slow place and Orton methodically beat down Show for the clean win. There was a lot of “hit a move, then walk around” moments, so it wasn’t that exciting to watch. It was what it needed to be with the veteran part-timer Big Show putting over the regular star Orton, who is getting a huge push once again.
Post match, Orton stalked Big Show, who struggled to his feet and looked like he was dazed. Show was on his knees by the ropes, right in position and Orton charged with The Punt complete with a loud leg slap for effect. I like the angle where they shot it from because if you shoot it from another side you can tell that Randy doesn’t even touch the guy, but from the angle they used, it looks devastating. Show sold it like he was knocked out.
Analysis: The sell is the key thing. Show did a nice job of that. It’s all about putting over Orton in a big way.
Orton went over to Show: “I told you! I told you! One more legend down!” Show was turned over to his side looking like he was knocked out while Orton posed as his music played. That was the end of the show.
Analysis: The plan is to have Orton challenge Drew McIntyre for the WWE Title at SummerSlam. We will probably get the first indication of that next week. I think Drew will beat Ziggler and then Orton shows up for an RKO out of nowhere to set it up.
Three Stars of the Show
- Kairi Sane – This might have been her last match on Raw unless she had a match taped for next week. Great showing by her.
- Seth Rollins
- Randy Orton, Bayley and Aleister Black
7 out of 10
Last week: 6.5
2020 Average: 6.44
It was a pretty good edition of Raw. There were several matches that got a lot of time and they all delivered in terms of being competitive matches that were easy to watch. I thought Kairi Sane and Bayley had the best match while Seth Rollins and Aleister Black did well too. The tag team matches were solid. Randy Orton beating Big Show was exactly what you would expect it to be with a post match Punt as well.
They also set up two big Extreme Rules rematches next week with Asuka facing Sasha Banks (I assume Asuka wins that) and Drew McIntyre facing Dolph Ziggler again. After Drew beats Ziggler, that’s when we should see the start of Drew vs. Randy at SummerSlam aka THE SUMMERFEST (hey Jeremy Piven). I think from an entertainment standpoint, Raw was easy to watch this week. They didn’t really do the goofy shit that can frustrate us as viewers. Plenty of matches got time and the stories were easy to follow.
The next WWE pay-per-view event is SummerSlam on August 23 on WWE Network. Nothing has been announced yet.
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