In what seemed to be more of a filler show moving into Clash of Champions RAW last week had a few but important events. These were Sasha Banks having her first match and win since April, Ricochet and Corbin moving into the next round of the King of the Ring tournament and the unlikely duo of Dolph Ziggler with Bobby Roode becoming number one contender’s for the RAW Tag Team Championships.
Announced segments for RAW include the two RAW semi finals of KOTR in Ricochet vs Samoa Joe and Baron Corbin vs Cedric Alexander, the return of Rey Mysterio as well as RAW and Smackdown Women Champions Becky Lynch and Bayley take on WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross. The return of Firefly Fun House and a contract signing between Braun Strowman and Seth Rollins are also announced for RAW. The show takes place from the ‘Royal Farms Arena’ in Baltimore, MD.
Universal Championship Contract Signing
RAW kicks off with the current Tag Team Champions having their contract signing for the Universal Championship. Both competitors received huge cheers from the Baltimore audience especially Rollins before Michael Cole brings up the Tag Titles defence on the same night. Seth Rollins makes the claim that he’ll “Walk into Clash of Champions as a double Champion and walk out as a double Champion” before Strowman makes the statement that Rollins will be “Embarrassed” at Clash of Champions. The Universal Champion signed the contract telling Braun that he’ll be a “Monster slayer” leading to an O.C. appearance. AJ demands to know why Braun Strowman is given the Universal Championship shot and that by proxy of being US Champion he’s number one contender. The O.C. entered the ring telling Michael Cole to “Shut up”, before AJ ripped up the contract for the Universal Championship. All 5 would brawl with the tag team Champions standing tall.
Braun Strowman & Seth Rollins vs. The O.C.
Returning from a commercial break this match is already underway with Rollins taking control of the match connecting with a slingblade on Anderson before Strowman tagged himself in against Gallows. The Universal Champion Rollins took control of the match against Anderson again connecting with a dropkick in the corner on Anderson but would also be double teamed by the former RAW Tag Team Champions with the weakened ribs being a focus assisted by AJ Styles cheap shots. The tide turned after Strowman made the tag taking out Gallows allowing Rollins to rollup Anderson foe the win. Post-match, The O.C. as well as Roode & Ziggler would lay out Strowman in the numbers game after an accidental shoulder tackle by Strowman on the Universal Champion. Rollins would attempt to help but fall victim to a Glorious DDT, The O.C. and the number one contenders stood tall after a Phenomenal forearm to the ‘Monster Among Men’.
Announced for later tonight is a Becky Lynch response to Sasha Banks actions last week as well as the Champions showcase of Becky Lynch and Bayley vs Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross.
Connor’s Cure sponsor is shown for the month of September in the fight against paediatric cancer.
Charly Caruso interviews Cedric Alexander over the King of the Ring tournament, as Cedric is about to answer the O.C. attack the former Cruiserweight Champion throwing him into a equipment box injuring the right arm. This is seemingly taking Cedric out of the semi final due to an injury suffered in the past few weeks.
Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode vs. Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder
In a rematch from last week this is a showcase for the number one contenders for the RAW Tag Titles. After early momentum from Hawkins and Ryder against Ziggler the introduction of Roode changed the match with the former US Champion taking both Hawkins and Ryder out. After a sudden comeback from Ryder a superkick and Glorious DDT combo on Hawkins got a fifth straight victory for Ziggler and Roode.
The ‘Sassy Southern Belle’ Lacey Evans is shown backstage on the way to the ring to face Natalya.
Lacey Evans vs. Natalya
Before the match starts Natalya would attack Lacey with a forearm. The ‘Queen of Harts’ took control of the match early through her technical ability and focus on the right arm restricting the ‘Women’s right’. Commentary described Natalya as being much more “Aggressive” due to multiple betrayals by friends and having nothing to lose. After a failed moonsault by Evans the South Carolina native used her hankie as a distraction hitting the ‘Women’s right’ for the win leading to a crying Natalya.
RAW Women’s Champion Becky Lynch is shown backstage in preparation for the response to Sasha Banks actions last week.
Becky Lynch Segment
To a big applause from the crowd ‘The Man’ Becky Lynch makes her way to the ring over Sasha’s actions since returning revealing what Corey Graves calls “Her true colours”. After praising the hometown Becky Lynch calls Sasha’s response from last week “A load of crap” and that she’s the “Centrepiece” of the Women’s division with Charlotte Flair. Lynch claims Bayley’s success “Stings” Sasha as well as claiming that Banks should be in “My position”. This brought out Sasha Banks who agreed that she should be in Becky’s position that she got “After Nia Jax broke her face”, Becky asked for a fight for the crowd which Sasha claimed won’t be for tonight as she “Fights for the pay check and for a Title match at Clash of Champions”. Sasha closed the segment calling Becky Lynch “The Boss’s bitch” after Clash of Champions.
The Street Profits appear backstage sending the show to commercial.
Becky Lynch vs Sasha Banks for the RAW Women’s Championship is announced for Clash of Champions.
King Of The Ring Tournament Quarter-Final Match
Baron Corbin vs. Cedric Alexander
Following the attack by the O.C. earlier in the night the advantage was in the hands of Baron Corbin going into the match with Cedric’s injuries. Alexander took control of the match early with his speed and athleticism before a massive clothesline and Ax handle to the back put Corbin in control. Cedric showed resistance with a suicide dive and springboard clothesline leading to Baron Corbin using the ringpost swinging the momentum. The former MitB winner kept this control for a couple of minutes until an enziguri and corner dropkick as well as a kick out of a catch spinebuster. The finish saw Alexander come close to winning with a school boy and Michinoku driver before Corbin faltered with the ropes tripping Alexander and connecting with the End of Days to progress to the semi finals. This was a huge performance for a less than 100% Alexander with a match against AJ Styles seemingly in he near future. Corbin post-match sat on the crown lifting up the Crown.
Recap video is shown over the Roman Reigns saga with Bryan and Rowan on the Smackdown brand which can be seen on our Smackdown reviews. Coming from a fan of both Reigns and Bryan especially this feud has potential once it gets to the ring.
Stone Cold Steve Austin is announced as the guest moderator for the Universal Championship match contract singing next week at MSG.
Bayley is interviewed backstage about Sasha Banks with Bayley claiming that she’s “Took all her opportunities”, and that the Smackdown Women’s Championship is worth just as much as the RAW Women’s Championship.
The Viking Raiders vs. Brian Thomas & Tyler Hasting
Brian and Tyler were given an interview beforehand where Brian claims “It’s an opportunity travelling from Pittsburgh” and Tyler claiming that the Raiders will be a bunch of “Baltimorons”. Renee and Michael Cole would joke with Graves who’s from Pennsylvania before the match began. Viking Raiders won in 2 minutes throwing Thomas and Hasting around the ring including a powerbomb on Hasting connecting to Tyler and outside before Tyler felt the Viking Experience for the win.
Sarah Schreiber interviews Sasha Banks asking the ‘Legit Boss’ over her friendship with Bayley and if that affects if she supports Becky Lynch. Banks responds telling Sarah to “Get the hell out of my face”.
King Of The Ring Tournament Quarter-Final Match
Ricochet vs. Samoa Joe
With the winner of this match going one on one vs Baron Corbin this would be a MitB rematch between the two former United States Champions. Samoa Joe has a promo before the match claiming there to be one universal truth in that “King Samoa Joe sounds just right”. Ricochet also had a backstage video segment claiming that he’s always been one to overcome the odds.
The ‘Samoan submission machine’ took control early on wearing down Ricochet with the power game with both competitors focusing on the left arm. Joe changes target to he legs of Ricochet connecting with a knee bar and dragon screw before Ricochet changed the momentum with a moonsault off the barricade. Joe continued the leg attack with a cross legged sit down spinebuster before a high Boston crab for an extended period of time. The leg attack gave Samoa Joe the opportunity to stop Ricochet momentum with a uranage and exploder into the barricade. The finish saw Ricochet connect with an asai moonsault but be trapped into a Coquina Clutch on the top rope, Ricochet pushed himself and Joe off the top rope leading to a double pin and no announced winner. Post-match, Ricochet and Samoa Joe brawled with the former NXT North American Champion connecting with the recoil.
Rollins and Strowman discuss the Austin appearance next week with Strowman believing the two are going to conspire against him. Rollins tells Strowman the beatdown earlier tonight is more of a threat than Austin and that he won’t turn on Strowman. Braun threatens Austin claiming that “If Austin gets in my face he will get these hands”.
Firefly Fun House
Bray Wyatt starts by apologising to Finn after the Fiend “Was super duper rude”, this is followed by Devil Vince demanding to know why Wyatt asked for a World Title match but was fed ‘merch money’. Wyatt claimed his team cope “with pain” whilst the Fiend “Inflicts it” before telling the audience “See you in hell”. Wyatt also pushes Rambling Rabbit with a help sign away from the camera.
John Cone tells Graves and Corbin that next week’s King of the Ring tournament – semi final will be a triple threat match between Samoa Joe, Ricochet and Baron Corbin.
Charly Caruso interviews Rey Mysterio over the issues Rey was dealing with two weeks ago. Mysterio claims that “He can’t thank his son enough for believing in him continuing his dream”. Mysterio claims he still has more to accomplish and that he’s doing it for his son.
The Miz vs. Cesaro
Fair play to Cesaro here who just over 48 hours ago was at NXT Takeover Cardiff against Ilja Dragunov and now in Maryland against the Miz. The ‘Swiss cyborg’ dominated early on with two huge running uppercuts and a gorilla press onto the barricade. Miz swung the momentum dodging a clothesline to connect with a backbreaker – neckbreaker combination but would be short lived after Cesaro connected with another uppercut and second rope superplex. After near falls for both competitors Miz connected with a Skull crushing finale out of nowhere for the win.
Becky Lynch & Bayley vs. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross
Now it’s time for the Main Event with all the main roster Women’s Champions involved. This is also the biggest challengers to Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross’s recent undefeated streak since becoming Champions 4 weeks ago. Cross and Bayley started the match with the Smackdown Women’s Champion in control of Cross hitting the sliding dropkick around the ringpost before Sasha Banks music would play. This gave Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross control over Bayley with a dropkick to a trapped Bayley in the ring apron being a key moment as well as a Nikki Cross headbutt to the midsection of Bayley. Momentum of the match would change after Bayley got momentum out of a school boy. The tag was made to Lynch who took control of the match until Sasha Banks blindsided Becky. After throwing Becky into the ring post Sasha grabbed a steel chair and attacked Becky only for Bayley to stop Sasha…or so we thought as Bayley attacked Sasha siding with her best friend Sasha Banks making sure that Becky Lynch no longer overshadowed her.
Overall, WWE Raw was a solid show with the opening segment, the KOTR matches and the main event angle being the highlights. There was solid build up going into the go home show for Clash of Champions at MSG but the Women’s Tag Team Champions need a feud very soon. The Firefly Fun House was also a great return to put back on the show enhancing the Fiend character even more without being there in person which is the mega benefit of the double personality of Bray Wyatt and his darker side in The Fiend.