Overall, Raw had a lot of good things this week. Brock and Paul Heyman’s back and forth was outstanding, and the strength displayed by Lesnar was off the charts when he F-5’d Otis through the announce table. Seth Rollins and Theory were an interesting tandem given their history, and their match with Lashley and Riddle was definitely exciting. Dolph Ziggler’s surprise return was cool during the match and his costing Theory the match was an interesting move. Bianca Belair was able to retain her Raw Women's Title against Carmella, and Finn Balor beat Rey Mysterio in a rematch from last Monday. Oh yeah, Brock Lesnar took his cowboy hat off to be polite.
Tonight’s Raw is live from San Antonio, Texas this week and there are some exciting things on tap this Monday. Brock Lesnar is in attendance and will make an appearance for a promo. Theory is in action teaming with Seth Rollins against Bobby Lashley and Riddle, and Bianca Belair defends her Raw Women’s Championship against Carmella.
AMAZING Brock Lesnar Promo: The crowd in San Antonio gives a massive pop to Brock Lesnar as he enters wearing a cowboy hat. He welcomes us to Monday Night Raw and he puts his hat on the ringpost. Brock calls Roman Reigns a hog and then is interrupted by Paul Heyman. The Special Council for the Tribal Chief is booed heavily by the crowd before Brock calls Heyman a hog as well. Paul Heyman speaks without looking at Brock Lesnar until he addresses the fact that the Last Man Standing stipulation actually favors Brock. Next he actually says many more great things about Lesnar before slowing back down and letting Brock know that he will have Roman Reigns beyond ready for Summerslam. Before Brock can respond, Theory’s music hits and he walks out carrying the MITB briefcase. Theory explains that at Summerslam he’s going to win back the United States Championship, and then cash in his MITB contract to win the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship. Lesnar invites Theory down to the ring right now to fight, but Theory isn’t having it. He shows footage from Elimination Chamber of Brock throwing him off the top of one of the pods. Alpha Academy comes down to the ring and surrounds Brock, and it looks like we’re about to see Brock Lock up with Otis. Gable hits him with a chop block but The Beast laughs in his face and then clears the ring of both Otis and Gable. He follows them to the outside and decimates both men with the ring steps and then a steel chair. To cap things off Brock Lesnar F-5’s Otis through the announce table and then is showered with cheers by the crowd.
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 4.25 Stars
GOOD Rey Mysterio vs. Finn Balor: Rey Mysterio is beloved by the fans and the pop as he makes his entrance is nearly as loud as it was for Brock. Finn Balor makes his entrance accompanied by Damian Priest. Video is played of the finish of last week’s match followed by the post match beatdown from afterwards. Priest cuts a promo in the ring saying that Rey has nothing left to offer Dominik and that he’s holding him back. Then he offers him a spot in the group, and suggests that Dominik step out of his fathers shadow. Finn Balor takes the microphone and they show footage of Edge being destroyed by the Judgement Day a few weeks ago. Rey has finally had enough and he and Dom both throw right hands at Judgement Day. The match will happen next. The match starts after a commercial and Rey is all over Finn Balor to start. He knocks Finn to the outside and then hits a springboard crossbody. They get back in the ring and Balor flips the momentum back in his direction with a backbreaker. He stays on Rey mixing up strikes with more grappling offense including a snap suplex. Rey has a brief flurry but is hung up on the top rope and his left knee comes down awkwardly. Balor immediately takes advantage and stomps all over Rey’s compromised knee. We head to a break however, and right before Mysterio is able to use the good knee to knock Finn off his feet. Out of the break Balor is back in control and he hits a massive Coup de Gras to pick up the victory. Dominik enters to tend to his father and that is when the Judgement Day delivers another sales pitch to the young Mysterio. The segment ends with both priest and Balor smiling at Dominik.
Result: Finn Balor by Pinfall via Coup de Gras
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.00 Stars
ABOVE AVERAGE Bianca Belair vs. Carmella Raw Womens Championship Match: Becky Lynch is a surprise guest on commentary for this Championship match. Before the match starts Lynch stands on the announce table and cuts a promo complaining that she is not the number 1 contender for the Raw Womens Title. She demands a Championship Match at Summerslam and spikes the microphone as Bianca Belair makes her entrance. Carmela enters second and the highlight video of their match at MITB is replayed. Bianca dominates the opening moments of the match and then as we head to comercial she gets right in the face of Becky Lynch. Out of the break, Carmella is in control and she climbs the top rope and tries a crossbody. Bianca catches her out of the air and then scores on a stalling suplex. Carmella is hit with what looked a lot like Jade Cargill’s Jaded. Bianca tries for her handspring moonsault but Mella gets her knees up and then lands a superkick to nearly win the title. She tries for another one but Belair catches the foot. She throws Carmella into the corner and then tries for a KOD. Carmella has it scouted and she hits a facebuster and then fires right hands at the champion. Bianca responds with a spinebuster and then throws Carmella into the ringpost. Becky Lynch nearly hits Belair with a right hand and Bianca is counted out. Carmella celebrates while holding the title that still belongs to Belair, so Bianca hits a KOD to end the segment.
Result: Carmella by Countout
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 2.50 Stars
ABOVE AVERAGE Miz TV segment: Ciampa is tonight’s guest on MIz Tv, and the crowd boos but it’s also one of those, “I can’t believe it,” type of gasps. We head to a break mid way through their entrance and then out of the break there is another Edge Vignette. Miz addresses the fact that Ciampa has ruthlessly attacked multiple superstars on Raw in recent weeks, but then he asks the crowd to cheer for him. The crowd doesn’t and Ciampa is asked about what his intentions are. He responds that he wants all eyes on himself and he has associated with The Miz because of how many people watch him. A video from Logan Paul is played and he’s calling out The Miz still. Miz says he’ll give Logan Paul a chance to re-team up, but that if he doesn’t, Ciampa will be waiting for him. AJ Styles then interrupts and he insinuates that the partnership between Ciampa and The Miz has to do with Miz being a, “coward, with tiny, tiny balls.” Styles then storms the ring as both Miz and Ciampa scramble back to the outside, just then, Ezekiel enters and puts AJ Styles over on the microphone. He suggests a tag team match. It will be Ezekiel and AJ Styles against The Miz and Ciampa, and it’s next.
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 2.75 Stars
AVERAGE AJ Styles and Ezekiel vs. The Miz and Ciampa: Ezekiel and Ciampa start the match immediately out of the commercial break. Ciampia is dominant in the early going until Ezekiel hits a donkey kick. Miz is tagged in and Ezekiel brings in AJ Styles who goes back and forth with The Miz before landing a dropkick. Miz and Ciampa then regain control with a series of underhanded tactics and Ciampa ends up back in the ring against Ezekiel. There is more back and forth but it is mostly dominance from the heel side. Styles is tagged in and he hits Miz with a Phenomenal Blitz and then follows with a gutbuster for a near fall. Miz hits a DDT on Styles for a near fall of his own almost immediately after. AJ retaliates and then Ezekiel goes after Ciampa. Styles locks in the calf crusher but Ciampa is there to save him. He doesn’t stop hitting Styles with right hands and the match is declared a Disqualification.
Result: Aj Styles and Ezekiel by Disqualification
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 2.25 Stars
ABOVE AVERAGE Alexa Bliss and Asuka vs. Doudrop and Nikki ASH: Bliss and Asuka are clearly beloved by the San Antonio crowd but this match will have a very odd dynamic considering how all of these women are contenders for Bianca Belair’s Raw Women’s Championship. Asuka and Nikki ASH start before Alexa Bliss is brought in to face her former tag team partner. Alexa gets the better of Nikki ASH until Doudrop is brought in. Bliss is thrown around by Doudrop and then Nikki ASH is tagged in for some offense. They hit each other with dropkicks and then tag in their partners at the same time. Asuka hits Doudrop with vicious strikes and then goes to work on Nikki ASH. Eventually Alexa is brought in and she hits her Spike DDT for the win.
Result: Alexa Bliss by Pinfall via Spike DDT
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 2.75 Stars
GOOD Uso’s promo segment: The Uso’s make their entrance before another break and then talk a ton of trash about The Street Profits before being interrupted by their challengers. The Profits are ready for Summerslam and they have no problem getting in the Uso’s face right now. R-Truth interrupts, and he’s got some kind of a certificate in his hand. He is certified to be a tag team counsellor and he asks everyone to get along. The Uso’s are not having it, but R-Truth presents another certificate, and the shirt, he’s a certified WWE referee. R-Truth does not like the way the Uso’s are talking to him and he is now more serious than I’ve ever seen him. After he removes his shirt, Omos and MVP interrupt the proceedings and he suggests Omos be the partner of the Uso’s in a 6 man tag match tonight. The Uso’s gladly accept and we have ourselves a 6 man tag.
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.00 Stars
GOOD Omos and The Uso’s vs. R-Truth and The Street Profits: The match starts with Truth already compromised due to the onslaught from Omos before the commercial. The opening moments of the match feature all 6 competitors before Omos and Truth face off again. Truth is hammered with a chop and then Jimmy Uso is tagged in. Jimmy is all over truth, stomping on his hand and then tagging in his brother Jey. They try for some tandem offense but Truth has it scouted and the Street Profit’s have his back. A sequence of dives from Dawkins and Ford follow but Truth is caught by Omos when he tries a dive of his own. We head to the break with Omos standing over R-Truth. Back from commercial and Omos is still all over Truth. He knocks Dawkins off the apron and then slings R-Truth back into the corner by the Uso’s. Jey is tagged in and he hits Truth with a superkick but he celebrates a little too long, and when he tags back in Jimmy, Truth is able to slip away and bring in Montez Ford. Jimmy Uso is the legal man but Ford and Dawkins have to team up to remove Omos from the equation. They hit a doomsday device on Jimmy and then R-Truth tries for a five knuckle shuffle but misses. Omos is tagged back in and he Two Handed Chokeslams Dawkins for the victory.
Result: The Uso’s and Omos by Pinfall via Two Handed Chokeslam
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.25 Stars
GREAT Bobby Lashley and Riddle vs. Theory and Seth Rollins: Lashley and Riddle both receive enormous pops from the crowd for their entrances. Theory is booed heavily as he joins Rollins at ringside. They’ve yet to mention that Theory is actually a former disciple of Seth Rollins. Theory attacks Riddle to start things off, and then tags in Rollins for some striking before Theory is quickly back in. Riddle makes it across the ring to bring in Lashley and he hammers both Rollins and Theory. Lashley throws Seth Rollins off the ringpost but then Dolph Ziggler’s music hits and he makes his way down to the ring as we head to commercial. Back from the break Dolph is just sitting at ringside in a suit. Rollins hits Riddle with an inverted superplex and then stomps on his hand as he reaches for a tag to Bobby Lashley. Ziggler continues to look on at ringside and also Theory’s MITB briefcase is sitting on the apron. Seth Rollins has a tight face lock on Riddle but Lashley is trying to will his partner to get to the corner. Riddle gets Theory in a sleeper but it is countered. Thankfully there’s enough of an opening that Lashley is tagged in by Riddle. The US Champion hits a huge running powerslam on Rollins but the pin is broken up by Theory. Rollins is still the legal man and he hits Lashley with a huge forearm to the back of the head. He follows with a frog splash but Lashley kicks out! He tags Riddle back in for a powerslam and then draping ddt on Theory. Riddle coils for an RKO but Seth Rollins pulls Theory out of the way. Lashley spears Rollins through the barricade! Theory rolls up Riddle in the ring but Dolph Ziggler shoves Theory’s feet off the ropes. The distraction allows Riddle to hit an RKO on Theory for the win. The show ends with Dolph Ziggler landing a huge superkick on Theory.
Result: Riddle and Lashley by Pinfall via RKO
Clark Taylor’s WR Star Rating – 3.50 Stars
Overall: Overall, Raw had a lot of good things this week. Brock and Paul Heyman’s back and forth was outstanding, and the strength displayed by Lesnar was off the charts when he F-5’d Otis through the announce table. Seth Rollins and Theory were an interesting tandem given their history, and their match with Lashley and Riddle was definitely exciting. Dolph Ziggler’s surprise return was cool during the match and his costing Theory the match was an interesting move. Bianca Belair was able to retain her Raw Women’s Title against Carmella, and Finn Balor beat Rey Mysterio in a rematch from last Monday. Oh yeah, Brock Lesnar took his cowboy hat off to be polite.
Matches: 0.50/1 Stars
Show Structure: 0.50/1 Stars
Atmosphere: 0.75/1 Stars
Storytelling: 0.75/1 Stars
Production/Theme: 0.75/1 Stars
Overall Rating. 3.25/5 Stars
Photo Credit: WWE
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