Welcome back to our weekly WWE Raw review, with the one and only Super Marcey! With the WWE Brand Split only a few weeks away, and Battleground about a month away, things are going to change. Knowing this, has creative decided to do something interesting or are we dwindling along until this happens? Read on …
Seth Rollins Addresses The Elephant In The Room
Seth Rollins opening Raw has me all smiles, an entire three hours of Seth Rollins would suit me just fine. So after a week of speculation, the Roman Reigns suspension is brought up. Seth even mentions in his speech that he shouldn’t even be talking about it, but because he brought Roman in it makes him look bad. He reads out the tweeted apology and Seth basically says what a lot of us are thinking, Roman should not be in the Battleground Main Event. It should be a one on one match between himself and Dean Ambrose. This prompts the WWE Champion (no longer being called the WWE World Heavyweight Title) Dean Ambrose to come out and confront Seth. Dean says the Triple Threat match is still on …
AJ Styles music hits (currently my favourite theme right now), and out he comes and mentions he thinks Dean is right. At Battleground it should be a Triple Threat Match but not with Roman but with AJ. Dean cares not, he would be happy to face all three of them at Battleground. John Cena then comes out and he wants in on the title picture, as Dean is a fighting champion he should defend the title against him. Rollins is not happy, he wants his one on one match, Stephanie then comes out. Shane isn’t here but she is, so tonight John and AJ need to earn a spot at Battleground. So John Cena will take on Seth Rollins and AJ Styles will take on Dean Ambrose and they John or AJ win they will be added to the Triple Threat. I really enjoyed this opening, some good stuff happening in the promos. I think Rollins needs all the mic time and Dean Ambrose was fine in this position. Adding in Styles and Cena was just fine and it adds more fuel to the fire with them as well.
Charlotte & Dana Brooke vs. Paige & Sasha Banks
Side note, I am not really a fan of Dana’s new ring attire. Her old one suited her a lot more, this one just looks weird. Anyway Charlotte does not want any part of Sasha Banks and she tags in Dana. Some back and forth between the two until Paige gets the tag in. It isn’t long before Charlotte and Dana get the upper hand with Paige, and it isn’t long before Sasha is looking for the hot tag. Paige held her own and looked pretty good out there, Charlotte and Dana both looked vicious and I do think Dana has improved a little bit. Once Paige finally gets the tag, and believe me the crowd were crazy for Sasha, she cleans house. She makes Dana tap to the Bank Statement and our new little team picks up the win. Now I want to see Charlotte vs. Sasha at Summerslam, I would love to see Charlotte try and get out of a match with her at Battleground.
Rusev w/Lana vs. Titus O’Neil
Since this match didn’t happen last week, we are getting it this time. I hate to say this but this feud already is starting to feel kind of stale. It shouldn’t but it is, because we haven’t seen anything really new, it feels like it is on repeat at this stage. The match starts off really quickly and the pair go back and forth for a bit. After it seems like Titus has more of the upper hand, Rusev decides enough is enough and he grabs his title and goes to walk out. Both end up hitting each other on the outside and Titus then throws Rusev over the barrier. Rusev gets counted out and Titus picks up a victory. I suppose a win is a win and a win over the Champion means he gets a title shot?
Backstage Stephanie bumps into Corporate Kane, who wants another shot to prove he can run Smackdown. Stephanie makes it clear she will run Smackdown, and from behind them The Miz and Maryse show up. The Miz complains he isn’t getting star treatment, but Kane cuts him off and makes note that as Champion he needs to defend his title every 30 days. So Stephanie says he will put his title on the line against a surprise opponent. Funny seeing Kane back, and Stephanie is all over the place with whether she is a heel or face but I like the unknown factor.
John Cena vs. Seth Rollins (If Cena wins he gets added in at Battleground)
This match had the crowd going before they did anything, the crowd were chanting for both men and Rollins was soaking it all up. The crowd were mostly really hot for the match, which made it quite fun. The pair went back and forth a lot and they started things off slowly, and built up the momentum. We know these two can have a great match and they did a fine job of putting one on here as well. With both guys back earlier than expected from injuries you could tell they were really trying to take care without compromising the match. After the ad break things picked up a lot more with reversals and finisher attempts, the falcon arrow by Rollins was pretty awesome to see especially as it was from one move to another. Rollins gets the foot on the ropes after an AA, he locks in the STF but The Club comes out to cause a distraction. It is just enough for Rollins to hit the pedigree and pick up the win. No issues from me with the interference as we knew it would happen, and it helps progress things.
Enzo & Cass vs. Jobbers
The promo before the match lasted longer than the actual match, we had the usual talk from Enzo (Yes Luke, I was excited and I quoted it boom!) and they got the crowd to do the wave and that was pretty fun. The match was a big boot and rocket launcher and calling them S-A-W-F-T. The Social Outcasts are back and they came out, and for some reason there was talk about them being hard … WTF? I laughed anyway, but they shied away from a fight and this may be a future feud and that is fine with me.
Summer Rae vs. Becky Lynch
Natalya is on commentary and she is trying to justify her actions and despite everything I can’t hate her, she has a fair point and Becky is the target. The match between Becky and Summer does not happen, as Becky just goes straight to attacking Nattie. And that was it, once they were separated no match took place. What lazy booking …
Rating: 0/5 for the non match
Highlight Reel with Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens
This may have been my favourite thing to happen on Raw, Chris Jericho introduces his guests and from the get go he tries to stir the pot. Sami Zayn is having none of his BS, and he confronts Owens about what has been happening. He says this thing between them in not just a rivalry it is an obsession and they are costing each other their careers. Zayn makes some comments about the resentment Owens has and the jealousy. It was all really well said and delivered perfectly with Owens staying silent, Zayn then says that he is challenging him to a match at Battleground to end this on going feud once and for all. Owens basically agrees and speaks back about their past. Jericho decides to state how much better he is, and the pair both super kick Jericho down. Everything about this segment was fantastic, even though we didn’t get these two in matches, this sold the feud and the feud ending. No doubt they will end up on different shows.
Intercontinental Championship Match: The Miz w/Maryse (c) vs. The Demon Kane
Should have seen this coming really, duh! Not a bad choice at all, I didn’t expect it to be an NXT call up or a returning performer or anything. This wasn’t much of a match, even though The Miz was trying pretty hard to overcome the odds. During the match Maryse gets on the apron and falls and hurts her ankle. This is enough of a distraction for The Miz to grab his wife and walk out, Kane wins by count out and The Miz keeps the title. After the match Maryse says she was acting, good job.
Cesaro & Apollo Crews vs. Sheamus & Alberto Del Rio
This was a mess of a match, the pairings to me made no sense (I missed Smackdown so I don’t know if something happened there) and honestly these guys deserve better. Well maybe not Crews as he has to improve a lot, and this didn’t really show me that he has. Sheamus wanted none of Crews so Del Rio was in and once Cesaro was in he got the upper cut train treatment. After a little back and forth it seems like yes Sheamus and Del Rio are not getting along and of course not, they were in The League Of Nations and that fizzled out. Anyway Del Rio abandons the match and Crews picks up the win on Sheamus.
The New Day Address The Wyatt Family
This was both weird and funny, The New Day were mocking The Wyatt Family and came dressed up like them. They state they picked a fight with The Wyatts is because they are so negative and they need the power of positivity. They make fun of them and Woods tries to get them to stop and pack it up. The Wyatts lead by Bray come out, he speaks to The New Day and mentions that the world is cruel and positivity cannot fix everything. Woods looks terrified and Bray addresses him. Bray says that Woods can trust and confide in him, Woods sells this so well by looking scared as hell. Bray says again New Day Falls and the promo ends. This is getting interesting and I kind of like how Big E and Kofi are not taking it seriously but this is affecting Woods differently. I am curious as to where this will ultimately lead.
Dean Ambrose vs. AJ Styles (If Styles win he gets added in at Battleground)
More Rollins as he is at commentary and I loved every second of it, he was so conflicted, not wanting AJ to win but not wanting to go for Dean either. This was a pretty fun match from the get go, Styles and Ambrose have solid chemistry and it was good to see them have a match to main event Raw as well. The action was high for a lot of the match, back and forth between the two with no one really having an upper hand, at least not for long. I loved that Styles put on the Calf Crusher but Ambrose got to the ropes, and then threw him out. I loved the Pele kick as well, Styles hits that move with perfection and Ambrose sold it well. As expected The Club comes out, and tries to cause a distraction, but it doesn’t work and John Cena comes out. He takes out The Club and distracts AJ long enough for Ambrose to hit Dirty Deeds and get the win. The fight between them gets taken to the outside, whilst Rollins comes in for a surprise attack and hits the pedigree. The Club beat up Cena and give him the Magic Killer on the top of the ramp, and Rollins hits Ambrose with another pedigree.
Overall Raw was just okay, some solid matches and a great segment, but things are not moving as well as I want them too. It feels like everything is a place holder until the draft and nothing really feels important. I suspect things will be like this for the next few weeks until the draft, with players like Cesaro getting saved to make a bigger impact on one of the shows.