Photo Credit- WWE
Last week’s episode of Raw proved to be one of the more bearable episodes in recent months. Some good in ring action mixed in with some really fun RKBRO segments, last week’s show was a step in the right direction, albeit with a lot of room for improvement. Can Raw continue that momentum as they head into their last show before Summerslam this Saturday? Let’s find out!
GOOD: The show kicks off with Randy Orton who explains his actions from last week. He says he hit Riddle with an RKO because he needs no friends and that he became a 14 time champion by himself. He owes no one an explanation and says he’ll just do what he wants. Orton finishes by saying that Raw is his territory and that he’s going to show Omos why tonight. He puts over Omos as a monster and a force of nature and says he’s gonna hit Omos with an RKO. Riddle interrupts and says that he realized Randy only hit him with an RKO to teach him a lesson and wants to give RKBRO one more shot. Before Randy can answer, AJ and Omos interrupt and say that no one cares about the RKBRO dilemma. Styles says that Randy beating him last week meant nothing because he cheated and that Omos will beat Randy tonight. AJ challenges Riddle to a match right now to which AJ accepts. A good, fun opening segment to start the show.
GREAT: Up next is AJ Styles vs Riddle. Randy stays in Riddle’s corner for a hot minute before slowly going up the ramp conflicted and ultimately decides to leave. This was a really fun opening match between two fantastic wrestlers. Riddle goes for the Broton but is distracted by Omos. This allows AJ to counter and hit the Styles Clash for the win. A great opening match here.
Result: AJ defeated Riddle via pinfall
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 3.75 stars
POOR: Nikki A.S.H. is backstage and is asked about her upcoming match with Charlotte. She says that she wears the outfit to represent people who need confidence and courage. She says she has the confidence to beat Rhea tonight and retain the championship at Summerslam. This is the exact same promo Nikki has cut for weeks. She needs to do more than this.
GOOD: Riddle is backstage and talks about how even though Randy was gone for a while, he never gave up on RKBRO. But he says that he’s sad that Randy just simply left ringside and made him fend for himself in the match against AJ. Riddle continues to be a highlight for Raw with these backstage promos. They come off really genuine in my opinion and it really adds a lot.
AVERAGE: Up next is Rhea Ripley vs Nikki A.S.H. Charlotte comes out before the match and goes to do commentary. A decent back and forth match that results in Rhea beating Nikki clean. A bit of a shocker and kinda odd having the champion lose clean right before Summerslam.
Result: Rhea beat Nikki via pinfall
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 2.5 stars
AVERAGE: Post match, Nikki is infuriated and attacks Charlotte sitting at the commentary desk. She throws Charlotte into the ring and Nikki and Rhea attack Charlotte. A decent post match angle but nothing special.
AVERAGE: Jinder Mahal is backstage with Veer and Shanky and gives them a pep talk ahead of their handicap match against Drew McIntyre. He says that Veer and Shanky were lucky to be under the tutelage of someone like Jinder and that he’s presented them with a great opportunity. He wants them to get the job done tonight. A decent backstage segment. Jinder doesn’t get enough due for being a decently good talker.
AVERAGE: MVP is backstage and is asked about the face to face later tonight with Lashley and Goldberg. He says that two of the biggest forces are gonna collide and says that the last time Goldberg was here, MVP got speared. Tonight, however, they’re more prepared. Once again another decent short segment. I’m sensing a pattern here tonight.
SATISFACTORY: Up next is Drew McIntyre vs Veer and Shanky. If Veer and Shanky win, then Drew’s sword is barred from his Summerslam match with Jinder. If Drew wins, however, then Veer and Shanky are barred from ringside. This was a very nothing match to be honest but honestly nothing bad. Just a decent showcase for Drew going into Summerslam.
Result: Drew defeats Veer and Shanky via pinfall
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 2.25 stars
AVERAGE: Post match, Drew takes out Veer and gets on the mic to start talking for Shanky saying that Shanky saw the light and now wants Drew to win at Summerslam. Keep in mind Shanky is pretty incoherent and banged up at this point. Drew says that at Summerslam he’s going to embarrass Jinder, but says that maybe he’s underestimating Jinder as he is a former world champion. He takes a fan vote on who’s gonna win the match and the crowd obviously voted for Drew. A decent post match promo from Drew that was honestly much better than the actual match.
SATISFACTORY: Backstage, Charlotte interrupts Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce and says that she wants revenge on Nikki and Rhea. Sonya gives Charlotte an ultimatum and says that she can either wait until Summerslam or find a partner for a tag match later tonight. Charlotte says that she doesn’t play well with others and leaves. A nothing segment to be honest but nothing inherently bad. I’m not really interested in more of this impromptu booking.
AVERAGE: Up next is the debut episode of “Moist TV” with your host John Morrison. The Miz comes out as Morrison’s guest and Morrison asks if Miz was pretending to be injured all this time. Miz says that he would never lie to John, who is skeptical about that statement. Before the segment can go any further Damian Priest comes out. He says that Miz is lying. Miz continues to say that he never faked his leg injury but says that he has been cleared for several weeks, much to Morrison’s anger. Miz, however says that he’s not at 100%, to which Priest is also skeptical. Miz says that Priest is trying to tear him and Morrison apart. Morrison, however, pitches an idea for Miz to face Priest in a match. Priest likes the idea and calls the referee to the ring but Miz doesn’t wanna have the match. Priest pushes Miz into a little kiddie pool to end the segment. The best parts of this segment were easily the tease of finally breaking up Miz and Morrison. However, unfortunately, everything with Priest is what I wasn’t crazy for. I’m really sick of the whole Priest feud with these two. Just focus on Sheamus and the United States championship. You have a title match Sunday.
POOR: Up next is Damian Priest vs Sheamus. Miz is on the mic trying to get out of the match as Sheamus comes out to do commentary. A short, nothing match with mostly fodder from Miz trying to stall. The only highlight was Miz going for the drip stick but Morrison refuses to give it to him. Priest also winning with the Brogue kick was a nice touch.
Result: Priest wins via pinfall
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 1.75 stars
AVERAGE: Post match, Sheamus cuts a short promo saying that Priest has no chance of taking his gold at Summerslam. A good promo but it’s funny seeing Sheamus turn into an actual leprechaun wanting to defend his gold.
SATISFACTORY: Eva Marie and Doudrop are backstage as Eva says that she understands what happened last week and at Summerslam she’s gonna beat Alexa. She asks Doudrop to go to Alexa’s playground to steal Lilly to which Doudrop is very hesitant. Alexa shows up and says that she’s excited that people are coming to play.
AVERAGE: Backstage, The Miz asks Morrison what happened and why he ditched him. Morrison says that he just wanted Miz to know what it’s like to feel hurt. They make up as The New Day hilariously shows up to randomly shill their merch. Miz and Morrison talk about their plans for Summerslam to end the segment.
BAD: Alexa Bliss is in her playground talking with Lilly as Doudrop shows up to try and take Lilly away. She stares at her in a trance until Doudrop puts her down and simply leaves. This was a complete waste of time.
SATISFACTORY: Up next is Mace vs Mansoor. A short, nothing match once again. The finish was kinda cool as Mustafa kicked Mace which allowed Mansoor to get leverage and pin Mace. Other than that, nothing that notable.
Result: Mansoor won via pinfall
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 2 stars
GOOD: AJ and Omos are backstage as Omos says that Orton may be the Legend Killer, but Omos is gonna kill him tonight. AJ also dubs himself the Moron Killer for beating Riddle earlier tonight and proclaims Omos the new Legend Killer when he beats Randy. Honestly, one of the better segments on the show tonight.
POOR: Up next is Omos vs Randy Orton. An ok match to be honest up until the finish where AJ causes the DQ. Way too short to be anything remotely good but not bad for what we got.
Result: Randy defeated Omos via DQ
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 1.75 stars
GREAT: Post match, AJ and Omos beat down Randy. Omos sends Randy flying over the barricade with only one arm. I really like the booking of Omos, he’s presented as such a dominant beast and it’s refreshing. Riddle eventually comes out to make the save to a big pop, sending the heels packing. Riddle helps Randy up, who accepts. Randy talks about how respect is earned and that even after everything Randy did to him, Riddle still helped him. Randy also says that RKBRO is alive and well!! Hooray!!!! Randy hugs Riddle and Riddle officially challenges AJ and Omos to a Raw tag team title match at Summerslam. This was easily the best segment on the show by a mile. I loved everything about this.
AVERAGE: Jeff Hardy is interviewed backstage about his match with Karrion Kross up next and says that while Kross is dangerous, Jeff has dealt with danger his entire career. Kross attacks Jeff and heads to the ring for their match.
AVERAGE SQUASH: Up next is Karrion Kross vs Jeff Hardy for what like the third time in like a month? Oh well. This was less than a minute and a decent enough squash with Kross winning.
SATISFACTORY: Eva Marie is backstage and asks Doudrop where Lilly is, to which Doudrop says she doesn’t have it. Eva is upset and says that this feels like a slap in the face. Eva proceeds to slap Doudrop in the face repeatedly to hammer in the point. Honestly a short, but not that bad segment.
AVERAGE: Reginald is at the park and talks about his childhood getting into gymnastics. In the background Akira Tozawa and R Truth are in the background sneaking around in disguises and try to get the jump on the 24/7 champion. Reginald once again evades them as Truth and Tozawa continue to blame each other for why Reginald got away. A fun short segment that was definitely one of the more enjoyable parts of raw. However, it was way too short to be considered good, necessarily.
AVERAGE: Elias has a short vignette where he’s carrying a tombstone to the site where he burned his guitar last week. He talks about how over he used to be and that it wasn’t that music failed him, but rather that it wasn’t enough. He places the tombstone down that reads “Elias 2017-2021” and reiterates that Elias is now dead. I’m interested to see where this new Elias is heading.
AVERAGE: Up next is a tag team match as Rhea Ripley teams up with Nikki A.S.H. to take on Charlotte Flair and a mystery partner. The mystery partner turns out to be Nia Jax. Ok then. A decent little match and nothing entirely special like most of the in ring action on this show.
Result: Charlotte and Nia won via pinfall after Charlotte pinned Rhea.
John Cerenzio WR Star Rating: 2.5 stars
SATISFACTORY: AJ cuts a quick promo backstage saying that come Summerslam Riddle and Randy will most likely be at odds once again and that he and Omos will retain. Like most of this show, ok but nothing special.
AVERAGE: Finally, we have the face to face with Bobby Lashley and Goldberg. Goldberg introduces his son Gage. Goldberg says that he made his comeback for his son but is interrupted by the WWE champion Bobby Lashley and MVP. MVP says that Goldberg is outmatched and that he’s been acting like the same old Goldberg. However, when he encountered Lashley, all of that went away. MVP hyped up Lashley as more dominant then Goldberg ever was. Lashley says that at Summerslam he’s gonna end Goldberg, to which Goldberg says that that’s bullshit. Lashley goes to hit him but is stopped by a thunderous spear. A decent closer to the show but this wasn’t what the feud needed. The feud needed a heated beat down segment between the two, not a one spot spear.
Man. This was a very underwhelming show. Especially for what was supposed to be the big go home show for Summerslam. Almost every single match on this show was a rematch of some kind that we’ve seen over the course of several months. While some of these matches weren’t bad it’s just hard to keep watching the same match over and over again. It’s just lazy. The only highly redeemable thing about tonight’s show was everything that involved RKBRO. Randy Orton and Riddle are two of the backbones of Raw. A really mediocre go home show for Summerslam.
Show theme and presentation: 6/10
Storyline Progression: 7/10
Crowd reaction: 6/10
Overall Show Rating: 5.9/10