On last week’s Raw, the key areas involved AJ Styles overcoming five other men including Baron Corbin, Rey Mysterio and Samoa Joe to become the first Title defence for recently crowned Champion Seth Rollins in a so-called “Dream match”. Elsewhere, the return of Bray Wyatt occurred now within his ‘Firefly Fun house’ and with friends Mercy the Buzzard and Abi the Witch in a must watch segment. For the Women Lacey Evans showed how a Women stands up to “The Man” laying out Becky Lynch with the Women’s Rightfollowing Becky’s quick victory over a returning Alicia Fox.
Announced before the show was Alexa Bliss announcing both the male and female representatives for the Red Brand in their respective Money in the Bank matches. RAW takes place from the Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky.
Alexa Bliss announces Men’s Money in the Bank participants
After an absence off screen last week, the goddess of WWE and last year’s MItB winner opened RAW. Alexa would get to it very quickly announcing the male participants being last year’s Men’s winner and Team Little BIG partner Braun Strowman, Ricochet (Despite losing last week to Robert Roode who was not even on RAW), Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin who Bliss did not read all the accolades for. Once all four men entered the ring they all cut promos on each other with Strowman claiming no one can stop the ‘Monster among men’ and Drew focusing on Ricochet being a boy amongst men and blaming Baron Corbin for stealing his victories and denying him the Universal Title opportunity. This of course would lead to a tag match involving all four participants in the ring for right now.
Braun Strowman & Ricochet vs. Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin
This was a pretty standard tag match overall for TV but told some very good storytelling around Baron Corbin. The match was focused on for most part Corbin and McIntyre dominating Ricochet and throwing the former NXT North American Champion like a ragdoll around the ring. Some big moves included the Glasgow kiss by McIntyre on Ricochet as well as a great headscissors by Ricochet onto Corbin. In the end miscommunication between McIntyre and Corbin would cost them as when McIntyre looked set to win with the claymore Corbin tagged himself in, this would give Strowman and Ricochet enough time to recuperate and win with a powerslam/Shooting Star combo on the former MItB winner.
The Usos vs. The Club
Well this was a match which was unexpected with an unannounced Club moved back to the Red brand against new RAW acquisitions the Uso’s. The Club had a promo beforehand claiming that “The Uso’s are on Lockdown in the Good Brother Penitentiary”. This match was very short and was done more to get the Uso’s on TV for their post-match angle with the Revival. Despite that, there were some cool moves in the match including a pretty scary Payback 2016 Enzo incident with Jimmy Uso and a throw into the barricade. The match would finish with a triple double Superkick three times to keep Gallows down and a tope suicida on Anderson would give Jimmy Uso enough time to hit the splash and get the W.
Post-match the Uso’s would show a video to the titantron of Dash shaving Dawson’s back in the showers. This wold bring the Revival out claiming that Top Guys look out for each other. This seems to be building towards a match at Money in the Bank most likely on the pre-show.
Miz TV with Bobby Lashley
For the first time in over a year on the Red brand Miz TV made its return although according to Corey Graves it might one day be as big as ‘A Moment of Bliss’. With no Lio Rush this segment did seem to drag quite a bit but the Miz was able to get enough out of it to fulfil its purpose. Bobby Lashley claimed he was only going to answer questions he wanted to and that he had reached his potential which Miz denied before listing off his accolades. Lashley would then bring up Miz’s WrestleMania defeat to Shane McMahon and that it proves George Mizanin right in that his son is “Worthless”. Miz would then brawl with Lashley which would lead to…
The Miz vs. Bobby Lashley
This match was a solid TV match and filled its purpose of the conflict between Miz and Shane. Early on the match Miz was in control shown by a through the ropes double leg kick to Bobby Lashley. However, the tides would change with Shane McMahon involvement. The Miz at first was able to deal with Shane on the outside even performing the IT Kicks but a picture of the Miz’s dad would cause enough distraction for a Lashley spear to get the win. Post-match Lashley and Shane would team up (2007 never saw this coming) and laid out the Miz.
This would lead to the Miz calling out Shane McMahon for a steel cage match at Money in the Bank, a challenge in which the ‘Best in the World’ would accept.
Lucha House Party vs. Viking Raiders
This match came about due to the Viking Raiders pre match beatdown of LHP last week leaving them laying. However, this time LHP made sure it would be harder for the former NXT Tag Champions attacking them pre match with synchronised dives from Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik being a big move. Once the match started though the tides turned quickly with the Viking Raiders looking extremely dominate and finishing Kalisto off quickly with the Viking Experience.
Post-match The Viking Raiders would take out the rest of LHP with the elevated springboard clothesline being used in convincing fashion.
Alexa Bliss announces Women’s Money in the Bank Participants
Following the open of the show Alexa Bliss came out again to announce the female participants on the Red brand. These would be Natalya, Dana Brooke (May come as a surprise but the Main Event reviews may disagree), Naomi who is undefeated on the Red Brand since moving over from Smackdown Live and the Goddess herself looking to become a two time winner (Which Corey Graves was very happy about). After bickering between Naomi and Alexa a singles match was made between the two right now despite Bliss not being in her ring gear.
Firefly Fun House
In between Alexa Bliss’s second ‘Moment of Bliss’ and her match against the inform Naomi another Firefly Funhouse vignette appeared with a new character the ‘Rambling Rabbit’. Wyatt would start painting in this segment and we would later find out he was drawing what appeared to be a burning building with people inside. After being told by the witch Abi that he has not learnt his lesson Wyatt claimed that the fans believed he had with a chimed crowd screaming “Yeeeaahhh”. Wyatt would then go on to talk about the word of the day which was ‘Sociopath’ before saying goodbye. Like last week this is a segment that needs to be watched more than explained to someone as there are a lot of visible features..
Alexa Bliss vs Naomi
Returning back to ringside Alexa Bliss was doing her best Baron Corbin impression wearing non wrestling gear in her match. Naomi started hot in this match throwing Bliss all over the place and even delivering a stink face. A constant issue throughout this match would be Alexa’s shoes and how they would be undone constantly, this would factor into the finish as Bliss was distracted by her own shoes flying off giving Naomi ample opportunity to hit the Rear View and get the win.
Becky Lynch segment
In a similar pattern to the last couple of weeks Becky Lynch was interviewed by Charly Caruso. This time it was focused on the two title matches in which ‘Becky 2 belts’ will compete in at Money in the Bank. Becky would put competitors over saying that Charlotte has “Champion blood”and Lacey is “Athletic with a great right hand” but that she has overcome the odds so much in the last year referencing Ronda Rousey and that Lacey Evans is in for a beating. This would bring out the ‘Sweet Southern Belle’ with the two brawling around the ring until referees could successfully intervene. These two are slowly but surely building this match for Money in the Bank.
Hawkins & Ryder vs. The Revival
A rematch from WrestleMania, this match seemed very much like a time filler similar to the Uso’s match earlier in the night but did not really have a plan in place. Ryder and Hawkins do have their own tag entrance music now which is pretty generic. The match was pretty much a repeat from the night after WrestleMania with the finish seeing Ryder rolling up Dawson for the three count giving the Champs some momentum before their inevitable collision against the Viking Raiders
Sami Zayn segment
If you like promos then this RAW was very much one for you as this is not even the last talking segment but is the fifth in the ring already in the night. Zayn would focus on ‘Psychological Entitlement’ and that it is nearly not the fans fault but them believing he owes them something (referencing a five year old fan) is not right. Zayn asked the fans if he should quit WWE but that being the ‘Critics of critics’ will give him “The power he does deserve”.
Rey Mysterio vs. Samoa Joe
Before the match, Joe would cut a promo claiming that Dominic is ashamed of Rey for “Passing out so quick at WrestleMania” and tonight he is in for a “Reckoning”
Another rematch from WrestleMania, this match went a lot longer than that match though and was probably the best in ring part of the show. These two have very good chemistry with each other and play a very good David vs Goliath/Cat vs Mouse story. This is evidently shown when the match nearly finishes early for both men in which Joe nearly locks the Coquina Clutch on a fast paced Mysterio and Rey nearly hitting the 619. In the end, Mysterio would pick up a win with a rollup guaranteeing him a future US Title shot and celebrated with his son Dominic (Shown earlier in a backstage segment with Rey) who lifted him up.
AJ Styles & Seth Rollins Universal Championship match contract signing
The Main Event segment would focus on the “Dream match” between AJ Styles and Universal Champion Seth Rollins. AJ claimed that “Smackdown was the House AJ Styles built” and that he wants what Seth has. When brought up around if Seth Rollins is the next AJ Styles the former two time WWE Champion claimed Seth “Would never be Phenomenal enough”. Seth would retort by claiming he wants to be “The first Seth Rollins” and that it was him not AJ Styles that dethroned the ‘Beast incarnate’ Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania and that AJ is on Monday Night Rollins. AJ claimed Rollins went through Hell at WrestleMania but he is ready to go.
The two would then stare off before a cheap shot by AJ led to a brawl in which AJ would put Rollins through a table to close the show.
Overall, Raw was a good show in moving along the road to Money In The Bank, announcing one full match-up and the competitors for both Money In The Bank matches, but for a three-hour show, there just was not that ‘wrestling’ match which is worth checking out which is an accustom to Raw.