On last week’s RAW the main takeaway was the Money in the Bank entrants for both the men and the Women announced. These were for the men Drew McIntyre, Braun Strowman, Ricochet and Baron Corbin whilst for the Women it was Natalya, Naomi, Dana Brooke and Alexa Bliss. Also announced was last week was the Miz getting another opportunity for revenge against Shane McMahon inside a steel cage a week on Sunday.
Raw took place from Cincinnati, Ohio.
Vince McMahon/ Roman Reigns/ Daniel Bryan/ Kofi Kingston/ Drew McIntyre/ AJ Styles/ Seth Rollins segment
RAW kicked off with a big announcement this week with the chairman of the company starting the show. Before Vince was able to make said announcement though he was interrupted by the ‘Big Dog’ Roman Reigns, after some back and forth between the two Vince was able to make the announcement of the ‘Wildcard’ in which three RAW Superstars are able to go to Smackdown and vice versa. This would lead to Daniel Bryan then WWE Champion Kofi Kingston to appear and make their claims on the red brand, Drew McIntyre would then challenge Roman Reigns to a match later on tonight leading to Vince announcing two Wrestlemania rematches in Roman Reigns vs Drew McIntyre and Kofi Kingston defending the WWE Title against Daniel Bryan.
Once the ring cleared, AJ Styles would then confront Vince asking what many of the IWC were wondering in “What are you doing?“, this brought out the Universal Champion Seth Rollins who claimed this is not Aj’s show and that Smackdown was doing fine without him. AJ would retort by bringing up last week and laying out Seth through a table promising to do the same at Money in the Bank. This would lead Vince to create a tag match where Rollins and AJ would team up to face…
Seth Rollins and AJ Styles vs Baron Corbin and Bobby Lashley
This was a pretty standard TV tag match with a focus on if the two Universal Title match participants could ‘Co-exist’?? For the majority of the match that was the case with AJ and Rollins having each others back with a highlight being Aj doing a low dropkick to the outside to prevent a Lashley intervention. Another big spot would also see Lashley do a spear through the second rope like Big E onto Aj Styles. The finish would see miscommunication between AJ and Seth leading to AJ accidentally hitting Rollins with the Phenomenal forearm, Aj would walk off and Corbin would be able to gain a huge amount of momentum hitting the End of Days for the win.
The Miz is shown backstage waiting outside Shane McMahon’s office.
Sami Zayn/Braun Strowman segment
This segment started off as the last few have with Sami Zayn having a go at WWE management and the fans, however this time Zayn would be interrupted by the ‘Monster Among Men’ Braun Strowman who was licking his lips in anticipation over destroying Sami Zayn. This would lead to a game of cat and mouse that went around the whole arena until Strowman caught up to a cornered Zayn. Strowman would then put Zayn in a trash disposal only for a dumpster truck to arrive and seemingly put Sami Zayn and ‘Kill him’. This would seem to suggest Sami Zayn will be going off TV for the forseeable future.
Lucha House Party vs ?, ?? And ???
Following on from the segment before this was very much filler to showcase LHP. The finish to this match would see all three members hit their respective finishers with a Salida Del Sol into an elbow drop followed by a Lince Dorado shooting star for the win.
MitB spot on the line
Robert Roode vs Ricochet
This match was very logical in actually occurring, this is due to Robert Roode beating the former NXT North American Champion on TV two weeks ago and then not being given the Money in the Bank opportunity. Before the match started, Natalya, Dana Brooke and Naomi (+ Alexa Bliss who was not shown) were invited to Lacey Evans match for later in the show. Back to Roode vs Ricochet and this match was a good TV match. The focus of the match would be Roode trying to keep Ricochet off the ropes and take control of the match which he would be able to do with a short handed lariat and a close 2 count with the spinebuster. However, Roode would be unable to stop the new singles star on RAW who would be able to hit the 630 and retain his place in the Money in the Bank match.
The show then turns to Rey Mysterio and his son Dominic backstage. Dominic after being separated by Mysterio would be cornered by Samoa Joe, Joe promised that he would choke out Dominic’s “Papi again just like in front of 82,000 people” and told Dominic to give Rey the news he has a US Title match at Money in the Bank.
Lacey Evans vs ?
This like the LHP match was a showcase match for Evans. After inviting the RAW Women’s participants for the Money in the Bank match to ringside to watch, Lacey would make quick work of her opponent winning with the Women’s Right. Lacey would then cut a promo on the Superstars on the outside which would be interrupted by Becky 2 belts herself, the two would brawl with Lacey escaping the clutches of the Irish Lass Kicker seconds before the disarmher was locked in. This feud is going under the radar but is really helping introduce Lacey near the top of the card.
Viking Raiders vs Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder
After their win over the RAW Tag Team Champions a handful of weeks ago, the Raiders got a two on two matchup. The Uso’s are shown backstage clowning around and trying to hide. This match was a complete domination by the Viking Raiders in which all their power moves were took in and any momentum in which the Tag Champs were able to get such as a diving elbow by Hawkins to the outside were cancelled out almost immediately. The Viking Raiders would win the match with the Viking Experience on Ryder.
Firefly Fun House
These segments are very hard to explain other than they are really good and need to be watched if wanting to understand what is being portrayed. All that needs to be said is R.I.P Rambling Rabbit, you were took soon from us.
Seth Rollins would cut a backstage promo claiming that after Aj’s actions tonight he will at Money in the Bank be on the receiving end of “2 black eyes and a broken face”.
Roman Reigns vs Drew McIntyre
In the first rematch from Wrestlemania tonight we got a pretty good hoss fight between two of the bigger wrestlers on the red brand in which could be argued is a match much better than they did at Wrestlemania. Drew dominated the majority of this match hitting some very nice manoeuvres including a spinebuster into a jackknife cover and a rebound Glasgow kiss. Roman was not to be outdone and also hit a very nice looking snap DDT and caught a Drew from the top rope with a Superman punch. The finish would see Reigns hit the spear but win by DQ due to Shane McMahon and Elias interference.
This would bring the Miz out to chase after Shane who after being caught and hit with a steel chair would escape via a limo by going low on the Miz, back in the ring Elias and McIntyre would lay out Reigns.
Revival vs The Club
This is listed as a match but the bell actually never rang, this is due to the Uso’s coming out. The Uso’s would claim the Revival needed “Ucey hot” for the Revival’s lower regions. This would lead to a comedy segment of sorts in which you laugh along with the Revival and their screams after taking ‘Ucey hot’ or moan.
No Way Jose vs Lars Sullivan
Like the match prior this would not start either as Sullivan would lay waste to the whole conga line and then No Way Jose with a running sit down powerbomb.
Post-match we cut to Vince McMahon in his office who is interrupted by Lars Sullivan, Vince makes the Wildcard 4 Smackdown stars.
Kofi Kingston (C) vs. Daniel Bryan
For the main event of RAW we got arguably the rematch to the best match on the Wrestlemania 35 card for free on TV. These two have very good chemistry and were able to tell a great story with the focus of the match being Kofi’s right shoulder. After a quick start from Kofi including a trust fall to the outside Bryan would target the shoulder using the ring post and his own technical skills including a Danielson special, (Double underhook into a arm bar), and a German suplex with a pi combo for a close win. Bryan would also be able to lock in the labell lock on Kofi but the New Day member would reach the rope, Kofi would go on to hit the trouble in Paradise for the win and garner a huge amount of momentum for his WWE Title defence against Kevin Owens at Money in the Bank.
Overall, RAW was a very mixed show. There was slight progress to Money in the Bank and there were 2 very good matches on this show which seem to have been overlooked. The use of the ‘Wildcard’ needs to be given time first before full criticism as well especially as it will unlikely last for long.