Monday night RAW is back! I can’t say enough great things about the show last night. One of the best shows of the year, and of course it was in Chicago. Chicago is a great wrestling city, and always makes the show a little better with their crowds. The show was great from start to finish, and it started with…
The Return of DX!
I think we could all agree that the writing was on the wall with this one, after the ending of Super Show-Down. Triple H started the show by saying his respect for the Undertaker and Kane is long gone. HBK made his way to the ring and was livid about what happened at Super Show-Down. He has been retired out of respect to the Undertaker, but the respect is now gone. So…Are your ready?! DX vs The Brothers of Destruction at Crowned Jewel. I can’t wait for this one, and I personally think this will lead to a third Shawn Michaels vs Undertaker match at next years Wrestlemania.
Bobby Lashley turning heel
Thank you RAW writers for getting this one right. Bobby Lashley with his hype man Lio Rush in his corner, took on Kevin Owens last night. Owens, was heavily cheered by the Chicago crowd as expected, and in turn Lashley was booed. But Lio Rush was encouraging the boo’s. He had a microphone throughout the match and would chime in from time to time to irritate Owens and the Chicago crowd. Lashley was not going anywhere as a baby face, and I think the powers that be finally recognized it. Lashley clearly turned heel last night, and in return I think Kevin Owens may have become a babyface. Lashley and Rush incited an arena full of boo’s, when Lashley attacked Owens well after the match was over. Lashley pulled an already injured Kevin Owens to the ring post corner and repeatedly crushed his knees into the ring post.
The crowd in Chicago was going to boo Lashley regardless of his tactics, so why not give them a legit reason. Well done writers, well done! It will be interesting to see the direction they go with Kevin Owens, I think if he kept the same attitude, and even the same tactics, but didn’t say anything bad to the crowd, he would be a great baby face. He is already loved as a heel, so don’t change his character, just be nice to the crowds, get those cheap pops and watch Owens be one of the most popular wrestlers on the roster.
WWE World Cup
WWE has announced they will be holding a World Cup Tournament at Crowned Jewel in Saudi Arabia. John Cena was automatically entered into the tournament because, well… he’s John Cena. On RAW last night acting general manager Baron Corbin put on a global battle royal, with a bunch of jabroni’s supposedly from different country’s around the world. One of those contestants was the Conquistador from Spain. When the match started the Conquistidor immediately jumped out of the ring and sat on the floor until there was only Corbin left in the ring. The Conquistador got in the ring and performed several familiar moves, a triple german suplex and an angle slam. Corbin was eliminated from the battle royal and we saw that when the Conquistador unmasked, it was Kurt Angle. Thus, Kurt Angle and John Cena are the first two competitors in the World Cup, which appears to be a revamped King of the Ring. At first I thought, not another tournament. Then when I see the first two entries are John Cena and Kurt Angle, I suddenly am more intrigued by this tournament. The Big Show and Randy Orton will do battle tonight for another spot in the tournament. This is shaping up to be a star-studded tournament, I think we could see a couple more legends enter the tournament before it’s all said and done. Perhaps a Rey Mysterio and Batista who are returning for Smackdown 1000 next week. Or maybe a Goldberg, Sting or The Rock. It’s probably a long shot, but it would make the tournament much more interesting. I can’t wait to see who ends up in this tournament.
The Bella’s turn on Rhonda Rousey
In a rematch from Super Show-Down, The Bella Twins and Rhonda Rousey battled The Riott Squad last night. The match was pretty good until the end when it appeared that Sarah Logan and one of the Bella’s missed a spot at the finish, and Sarah Logan fell awkwardly not even being tripped. Regardless Rousey locked in the arm bar on Ruby Riott and Riott tapped almost immediately. During the winners celebration the Bella’s turned on Rousey, throwing her into the steel steps and the ringside barricade. And though not official, it would appear Nikki Bella will battle Rhonda Rousey for the Women’s title at Evolution. This should be an interesting match, especially with Brie in her corner. Rousey vs Nikki one on one is not that intersting, as no one really thinks Nikki could beat Rousey one on one, but add Brie, now there’s a chance. I think it would be a good time for Rousey to pick up her first loss. The Bella’s are great heels and they could have a good run with the title.
Mixed tag match
Another week of mixed match challenge promos, where we see Team BnB and Team Majalicia for the third week in a row. A very predictable match where Team BnB picked up the victory. I can’t wait for this mixed match challenge to end, and we see Finn Balor in some meaningful segments and matches. I am not a fan of the mixed match challenge, with the exception of The Fabulous Truth.
Balor is another wrestler I would like to see in the World Cup tournament. He is a wrestler that can have a great match with anyone, and who wouldn’t want to see a Finn Balor vs John Cena match.
Ember Moon picks up an upset victory
Ember Moon took on Nia Jax last night in a one on one contest. A quick, but decent match that saw Ember Moon pick up the win via count out. Nia had a nasty collision with the L.E.D. board, that is now the ring apron, and was unable to return to the ring before the ten count. The two women’s division wrestlers embraced at the end in a show in a sign of friendship and sportsmanship.
Trish and Lita now a tag team
In a bit of a surprise, Lita made her return last night to help Trish fend off Alexa Bliss and Mickie James. Alexa vs Trish, and Mickie vs Lita were supposed to be singles matches at evolution, but now Alexa and Mickie will wrestle Trish and Lita in a tag team match. Alexa and Mickie fought Trish and Lita last night with Trish and Lita getting the better of their foes. Lita went to the top to hit the moonsault, but Alexa was able to pull Mickie out of the ring before she could hit it. Great to see Trish and Lita again and I can’t wait to see them wrestle at Evolution.
Roode and Gable get a win
Bobby Roode and Chad Gable picked up a much-needed win over The Ascension last night. But, it would appear as if Roode is getting tired of Chad Gable. Thank you!! I can’t stand this pairing and I hate the character that Chad Gable is portraying right now. I hope that in the very near future Roode turns on Gable or vise versa. It was also the first time I heard CM Punk chants. That kind of tells you how much the WWE universe is interested in this pairing as well. The real story came after the match, when A.O.P. came out and punished both teams, continuing their dominance. I think A.O.P. will be tag team champions very soon, and I would love to see it. I like Ziggler and McIntyre but they are singles guys, I am a fan of traditional tag teams representing the division as champs. A.O.P. would be great representatives.
Is there anyone better on the microphone than Paul Heyman? Heyman came out before the Shield, Strowman, Ziggler and McIntyre match last night. He of course put over his client Baarockk Lessssnaarr! And at the same time verbally violated both Roman Reigns and Braun Strowman. I don’t think that Brock will win the Universal title at Crowned Jewel, but Heyman can sell you anything on the mic.
The Shield cracked?
Another great match between The Shield, Strowman, Ziggler and McIntyre. Earlier in RAW it would appear that Strowman, Ziggler and McIntyre were the team that was in disarray, but they came together last night to pick up a huge win over the Shield. The match was very even going back and forth until the end when McIntyre hit the Claiborne kick on Dean Ambrose for the win. After the match, Ambrose left in anger leaving Reigns and Rollins in the ring to wonder what he was doing. In a WWE.com exclusive, Dean Ambrose was interviewed and said he “isn’t sure he fits in anywhere anymore.” I think Ambrose is headed for a heel turn. As much as I had hoped it would be Roman Reigns, it would appear as if the writers are planting the seeds for a heel turn of Ambrose.
A great show last night. A lot of surprises, twists and turns. I understand it is hard to have a three hours show and deliver every week with no summer break, but RAW continues to surprise me. That’s why I have watched for over 25 years, and will continue to watch for as long as I can. One thing RAW lacks is a mega baby face. Watch out for Kevin Owens as a baby face, I think he could be the guy to reach Stone Cold popularity.
Check out gohomepwb.com tomorrow for my Smackdown Live review. Let’s hope it’s as good as RAW was.