Last week’s RAW saw the progression of the King of the Ring continue with Baron Corbin defeating Cedric Alexander with Ricochet and Samoa Joe going to a tie. The show also saw a beatdown of both Seth Rollins and Braun Strowman through the contract signing and the shocking betrayal by Bayley attacking fan favourite Becky Lynch to side with long term ally Sasha Banks. The duo repeated their attack on Charlotte Flair only 24 hours later.
Confirmed for RAW tonight is a contract signing for the WWE Universal Championship with Stone Cold Steve Austin as moderator, Cedric Alexander vs AJ Styles, Baron Corbin vs Ricochet vs Samoa Joe in a triple threat RAW final for the King of the Ring tournament final spot, Rey Mysterio vs Gran Metalik and Charlotte Flair teaming with Becky Lynch against Sasha Banks and Bayley. RAW takes place from the world-renowned Madison Square Garden.
Universal Championship Contract Signing w/ Stone Cold Steve Austin
RAW kicks off as hot as possible with the ‘Rattlesnake’ making a grand entrance at MSG to deal with the contract singing. Austin focused on his history in MSG at Survivor Series 1996, stunning Vince McMahon for the first time and being KO’d at Summerslam 1998. After both Braun Strowman and Universal Champion Seth Rollins are introduced Rollins grabbed the mic telling Austin that Strowman doesn’t trust him and that due to Austin being there “He loves the what chant”. Strowman responded by telling Austin “A rattlesnake is a rattlesnake” and “That he’ll love being a Universal Champion”. The contract is signed but before the RAW Tag Team Champions are able to shake hands the O.C. arrive mimicking Steve Austin asking “If anybody cares about that anymore”. Styles and Austin would go back and forth with the fans calling Aj “Soccer mom” after the United States Champion called Austin an “Old fart”. The O.C. and RAW Tag Champions brawl with Austin laying out AJ with a Stunner to finish.
AJ Styles vs. Cedric Alexander
AJ was still recovering from his stunner at the start of the match with Alexander wanting revenge over injuring his shoulder last week costing Cedric against Baron Corbin. Alexander started the match at a high tempo throwing AJ into the ring post and connecting with a uppercut. The former Cruiserweight Champion carried this momentum forward with a springboard enziguri followed by a suicide dive with AJ taking control by attacking Cedric’s injured right arm. The former 205 Live star nearly captured a win with a Michinoku driver before the O.C. interfered attacking Cedric Alexander in a 3 on 1 situation before the Viking Raiders hit the ring laying out the whole O.C. to help Cedric Alexander. Alexander vs AJ and Viking Raiders seem to be two potential matches for Clash of Champions with the first being certain.
Sasha Banks and Bayley cut a promo backstage claiming “They’re glad to be back together” and that Charlotte and Becky Lynch will be getting the same treatment as last week.
Roman Reigns of Smackdown is brought out to promote Connor’s Cure with Reigns being an ambassador being a two time Leukaemia Survivor. Reigns claimed that the platform he has is not just in the ring but to help spread the message of hope and guidance before bringing out children from the NY/NJ area who are current cancer patients with their wrestling names.
Becky Lynch & Charlotte Flair vs. Sasha Banks & Bayley
A promo package is shown over Bayley’s actions the last week with Bayley claiming “Sasha is my best friend” and “That’s nothing changed” in her being a role model.
Before the match even started all four Women brawled outside the ring with Charlotte breaking up the brawl with the introduction of a steel chair. Lynch and Banks started the match before the RAW Women’s Champion took control over Bayley throwing the Smackdown Women’s Champion into the barricade multiple times. Bayley and Sasha Banks the inaugural Women’s Tag Team Champions garnered an advantage over Charlotte for a short period before Lynch was targeted 2 on 1 with the #Blueprint taking control until a reverse DDT brought in Charlotte Flair against Sasha Banks. This being the first time the two have squared off since 2017 with Flair in control reversing a ‘Bankrupt’ into a neckbreaker. Both locked in their submission finishers with Bayley throwing Becky Lynch into Charlotte to stop her partner from tapping. The finish saw Becky Lynch come in with ‘Straight fire’ after minutes of domination over Charlotte, this would lead to all 4 brawling with Lynch and Charlotte taking control gaining a two count off a moonsault. Bayley gained some momentum on the outside leading to a failed elbow drop which Charlotte capitalised on with a Natural Selection for the win.
AJ Styles and the O.C. tell Sarah Schreiber despite what happened tonight “They still run the place”. Ziggler and Roode appear and seem to have made an alliance.
Rey Mysterio vs. Gran Metalik
This is a big opportunity for Metalik being his dream match and a chance to showcase his abilities on a higher platform. This is also the ‘Return’ of Rey Mysterio with the former World Heavyweight Champion moving past his retirement thoughts. The two luchadores started off the match quickly countering each other move for move with Mysterio nearly connecting with a 619 and Metalik with a schoolboy. The Cruiserweight Classic runner up took advantage with a superkick on the outside before a tope con hilo and senton for a two count. The two carried on hitting each other with their big moves with Metalik hitting a twisting uppercut followed by a second rope headscissors. The finish saw Mysterio hit a sunset bomb before connecting with a 619 and frog splash for the win against the 205 Live superstar. Post-match, Mysterio shook the hand of Gran Metalik.
Rollins, Strowman and Cedric Alexander are shown talking backstage in the same manner as the O.C. with Ziggler & Roode. O.C., Ziggler & Roode vs Rollins, Strowman, Alexander and Viking Raiders announced for the Main Event.
Street Profits backstage focusing on promoting Clash of Champions where Dawkins supports Sasha and tells the ‘Legit Boss’ that “Blue is her colour”. Ford claimed Clash of Champions will be “Full of the smoke”.
King Of The Ring Tournament Semi-Final Triple Threat Match
Samoa Joe vs. Ricochet vs. Baron Corbin
This is a first time in the King of the Ring moment with a triple threat being used. The fans at the start of the match were very invested with the NY crowd being very supportive of both Samoa Joe and Ricochet. Joe and Ricochet started the match with Corbin being tactical only getting involved when an advantage opens before Ricochet gained momentum with a standing shooting star. The former NXT North American Champion took control of the match with multiple dives on both opponents before the momentum is halted with a reverse powerbomb by Corbin. Samoa Joe then took control of the match gaining the upper hand against his Takeover Brooklyn I opponent with a big boot/senton combination. Samoa Joe carried on this momentum with a powerslam on Ricochet gaining a two count before Corbin and Joe then took quick advantage of each other and Ricochet leaving all three semi finalists down. Ricochet came close to winning with a sunset flip before Joe put Corbin into a Coquina Clutch on the outside after a massive deep six on Ricochet. Ricochet connected with the recoil on Samoa Joe followed by the 630 but have his win stolen by Baron Corbin. RAW FINALIST BARON CORBIN!!! Post-match, Corbin posed with the crown on the throne.
Lacey Evans vs. Natalya
Natalya after a month of bad luck including a loss to Lacey last week looked for a form of revenge against the ‘Sassy Southern Belle’. Natalya started the match in control firing off on Lacey targeting the left leg of Evans. The fans turned on this match shortly chanting “CM Punk” before a discus clothesline got a two count for Natalya. Evans used her unique arsenal to an advantage bringing the ring apron into play strangling Natalya before a bronco buster for a two count. The finish saw Lacey miss a moonsault giving Natalya ample opportunity to lock in the sharpshooter and get the win and revenge on Lacey.
Footage is shown of Boston Celtics player Enes Kanter winning the 24/7 Championship before R-Truth regained the Title for the fifteenth time.
Firefly Fun House
The focus would be on “Stranger danger” with it being about Steve Austin getting involved in Seth Rollins and Braun Strowman’s business. Steve is called a “Simple old rattlesnake” and that “Strangers are friends you haven’t met yet”. Wyatt warns friends forget but the Fiend doesn’t before finishing by telling who the Universal Champion is “To see you in Hell”.
The O.C., Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode vs. Seth Rollins, Braun Strowman, Cedric Alexander & The Viking Raiders
Styles and Alexander in their second matches of the night it is time for the go home show main event for Clash of Champions. Rollins and Ziggler started the match with the former 2x World Heavyweight Champion going toe to toe with the Universal Champion before a hip toss and arm drag combination put Rollins in control. The match quickly turned into a brawl with Alexander pounding on the United States Champion and Strowman connecting with a massive chokeslam on Ziggler. The match swung into the favour of the O.C. targeting Cedric Alexander with quick tags and focusing on the injured arm of Alexander. The MSG crowd turned on this match pretty quickly by starting a Mexican wave and then chanting “Yowie Wowie” throughout the match. Roode once tagged put Alexander in an armbar but after a spinning back elbow allowed Rollins to be tagged in vs Anderson. The Universal Champion took control after a falcon arrow before Rollins and Strowman stood tall following a barrage of massive moves. Strowman and Rollins then had a moment of tension after Rollins would be pushed by Ziggler and Roode onto a winning Strowman pin which the ‘Monster Among Men’ failed to see. The finish saw Strowman tagged in who cleaned house on all 5 members before the Viking Raiders took control cannonballing over all the competitors, Alexander connected with a Lumbar Check on the United States Champion to get a huge win and Title shot at Clash of Champions. Post-match, Steve Austin returned to celebrate and drink beers with the winning team.
Overall, Raw was a mediocre show for a go-home into a PPV. Despite having two very good matches in the triple threat and Women’s Tag the show other than Alexander pinning AJ Styles did not feel as if it built towards the PPV in any way. The use of Stone Cold was also done very well throughout the show and got as expected the desired reaction from the MSG crowd.