Another episode of WWE Monday Night Raw has come folks. I’ll be here with you all night for the live recap, so watch this space~!
Drew McIntyre makes his way out to open the show. He goes to the ring and welcomes everyone to the Thunderdome. Asks for a thumbs up and he does get it from a lot of people. Says his match against Orton was his greatest challenge to date but he stands here still WWE Champion. Says the secret to that is simple, he’s hungrier than him, he works harder than him. When chips are down and superstars go missing he pushes forward because he is so damn proud to be WWE Champion.
And he’s this way because of his journey. He knows what it’s like to go through hard times, to feel desperate and wonder when your next paycheck is coming. Orton has never had that feeling. Always protected and coddled, so naturally gifted, no matter how many mistakes he made, his inner circle protected him and as much as he hates to say it, he’s the best. Orton won a match called the Greatest Wrestling Match ever and called himself the best wrestler ever, but Drew out-wrestled him last night so what does that makes him? Says there’s no way Orton is gonna let this go so if he wants to step in the ring with him again that’s fine, he’ll do the one thing he didn’t get to do last night and that’s kick his head off and send him to Claymore Country.
He goes up to the stage to celebrate, but Orton attacks him from behind. They swiftly brawl backstage. Orton with a rake of the eyes, throws him into the wall before officials come to pull him off. But he manages to land a punt to McIntyre anyway! He’s tended to afterwards, it’s given gravity like usual.
Keith Lee vignette makes it’s first Raw appearance. And he’s appearing tonight! That was quick.
Nia Jax is backstage, yells in an interviewer’s ear that she just had to apologize to Pat Buck. Shayna confronts her and says we know she’ll just get herself kicked out of here. Nia tells her to leave and she’ll call her. Shayna says she’ll call her Haystacks Calhoun. Timely! Nia calls her an Addams Family reject. Timely!
Bayley and Sasha Banks come out and it seems like even though Nia and Shayna weren’t teaming before and are feuding, they’re facing off with the tag champs now? Nope, Shayna’s going up against Bayley one-on-one but Nia’s watching from the ramp.
WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley (c) vs. Shayna Baszler (Non-title)
Shayna going for an armbar from the outset. Manages to trip her down, wrenching at the wrist as she steps on her face. Bayley fights her way up, gets her with a series of side headlock takedowns but Shayna stops her momentum with a clothesline, pump knee. Bayley rolls her up for 2 but Baszler transitions into a Triangle Choke until Sasha starts to slide into the ring, Shayna breaks the hold to chase her out of the ring, Bayley attacks her from behind. Bayley with a Vertical Suplex, cover for 2. Bayley knocks Shayna to the floor, when she tries to get back in, Nia pulls her from the apron and there’s the immediate DQ.
Winner: Shayna Baszler
Nia continues her assault and throws her into the ring. Tag champs cheer her on but Nia turns around and stares them down. Shayna stands with her now, hilariously. They chase them up the ramp.
Kevin Owens backstage checks on Aleister Black in his very shadowy room and makes sure he’s about to show up for the KO Show. Then he comes out for the show itself and he too seems tickled by the Thunderdome. He says his guest isn’t someone you’d expect to see on the Kevin Owens Show but they’ve had a common enemy and you haven’t seen him in a while. So he brings out his guest, Aleister. And he’s got an eyepatch. Suits him.
Owens says everyone’s been concerned for him since Murphy shoved his eye into the stairs. Asks him how he’s doing. Black asks why not just show it? Owens doesn’t think we need to. Black says he’s seen it a million times. So we show it. Owens says he knows exactly how he’s feeling. Rollins and his disciples can get under your skin and get in your head, they did it to him, even made them question why he was here at one point. It’s something Seth loves to do.
Like he told Ric Flair weeks ago, he’s done terrible things in his career and now he’s going down a different path. But Seth isn’t like that. Black suddenly falls to the mat clutching his eye. Owens wants to get help but it’s a setup as Black nails him with a spinning elbow, and then drops him with a brutal Black Mass! He leaves without a word.
Bayley and Sasha are being interviewed, Bayley says tonight is about Sasha becoming Two Belts Banks again.
After a break, we suddenly have a 24/7 title fatal four way match.
24/7 Championship: Shelton Benjamin (c) vs. R-Truth vs. Cedric Alexander vs. Akira Tozawa
Immediate roll-up, but Alexander stops that with a dropkick. Handpring headscissor to Benjamin, forearm from the apron, wants a springboard but a pump knee takes him to the floor! Truth throwing hands to Shelton. Benjamin avoids a Scissors Kick, wants a powerbomb but Tozawa leaps at him for punches but he catches him out of the air, tries to powerbomb him to the floor but a bunch of ninjas catch him and stand him on the apron. Shelton goes after him but Tozawa avoids him, sunset flip to R-Truth, the ninjas hold onto Shelton as Tozawa gets the pin.
Winner: Akira Tozawa
Tozawa bails as Benjamin beats the crap out of the ninjas. You ever think about how the 24/7 title was explicitly introduced to help ratings? In the third hour specifically, really. Really the Raw Underground of 2019.
Randy Orton makes his way out and says the one thing he always is, is a man of his word. He promised he’d kill the legends of Edge, the Big Show, Christian, Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels and that’s exactly what he did. Because he’s the Legend Killer, y’see. McIntyre came out here and the opportunity presented itself to punt him not once but twice and that’s because he stood in this ring and he offered a rematch out of pity. Who the hell do you think you are? He wants to remind Drew exactly who he is, he’s Randy Orton, the legend, the greatest wrestler- BUT KEITH LEE INTERRUPTS! And they changed his theme because it was too cool for Raw I guess.
He makes his way to the ring and says Randy seems a little perplexed, they haven’t been properly introduced. Greetings and salutations, his name is Keith Lee and he wants to offer him a spectacular opportunity to stop what he’s doing and bask in his glory. Says Orton has been called many things. The Viper, Apex Predator, Legend Killer… Lee says he’s been called many things. Gamechanger, Anamoly, but one thing he certainly is, is Limitless and since he’s on Raw and Orton seems to be looking for a fight the likes of which no one has ever felt, with respect to his friend Drew McIntyre, he steps up if he’s willing to accept the challenge. One-on-one, right now. Orton says maybe later and leaves.
Backstage, Zelina Vega and Angel Garza are bickering about something and Demi Burnett is here too. They’re asked if they’re finally ready to admit to poisoning Montez Ford. Zelina says the footage proved nothing. Angel says you can’t hound her for being caught, everybodies’ been caught before. Zelina shockingly isn’t happy with that. Angel asks Demi if she’s busy tonight. She mentions Ivar. My brain turns off a little bit at this angle, my apologies.
Street Profits make their way out, promo backstage has them question how Angel Garza is a lothario, he’s not the only one who can rip his pants off and Ford has to stop Dawkins from doing it.
Montez Ford vs. Angel Garza
Ford with a springboard dropkick early, but gets dropkicked out of the air when he comes off the top, Garza rips off the pants and takes him up top. Puts him in a tree of woe for a charging knee to the chest! Cover for 2. Ford tries to fight back, Angel ducks an enziguri. Ivar comes down the ramp with something hidden behind his back. He walks over to Demi and offers her a big leg of meat. She stands up and they leave arm-in-arm. Angel hollers at them as they leave, charges at Ford but he avoids him, high kick to the chest, goes up top but Garza stops him. Hooks him for a superplex, Ford fights back and knocks him to the mat. Twisting variant of From The Heavens and Ford gets the win!
Winner: Montez Ford
I’ll know who Demi Burnett is one day.
Backstage, Nia talks to Shayna and says she doesn’t like the idea of teaming with her, but she does think they can win the tag team titles. Shayna tells her if she helps her with that, Nia gets off her back and leaves her alone. Nia sasses her and gets slapped for it.
Riott Squad and Bianca Belair are talking smack on the IIconics as they walk to the arena.
Riott Squad & Bianca Belair vs. The IIconics & Zelina Vega
Heels take control pretty quickly, Billie with the Shades of Kay on Riott for a nearfall. Zelina tags in, kick to the back of Ruby, takes her to the corner and charges for a knee. Rolls her over for a cover for 2. Hot tag to Bianca, she runs wild, rolls through on a snapmare attempt for a shoulder block. Wheelbarrow into a Glam Slam, Handspring Moonsault, IIconics break up the pin. Step-up enziguris from the Riott Squad takes them out, Vega rolls up Bianca for 2, big forearm leads to the KOD for the win!
Winners: Bianca Belair & The Riott Squad
Turns out the Riott Squad only ever needed to be faces to win matches.
Backstage Cedric beats Ricochet in an arm wrestling contest. MVP comes up and claims Chet turned his back on him last week. Cedric tells him he already said no. MVP says he made one offer and everybody has to make their choices. He’ll see them soon.
Mark Henry makes his way to the ring with a podium. Says we are six short days away from Payback and we have two competitors for the United States Championship, we’ll find out who the strongest is and take it from the strongest man in the world, this will decide it. First competitor, the CEO of the Hurt Business, Bobby Lashley. Apollo comes out as well. Mark makes a gag about Cedric the Entertainer Alexander as he says everyone is apparently banned from ringside from this arm wrestling contest. Thank God, honestly, I wouldn’t want the sanctity of this to be challenged. They both talk smack and then prepare.
I don’t want to alarm you but the heel in this arm wrestling contest pulled his hand away and stopped to take his jacket off before proceeding. They hook up and Crews surprisingly swiftly gets the win. It seems Lashley legit wasn’t ready. Lashley charges him but gets a kick to the jaw to take him to the floor, the rest of the Hurt Business comes down but they eat a flip tope and Crews makes his leave with his title. Replay makes it clear, Crews stepped on Lashley’s foot and went before Lashley was even trying, totally cheating.
The Mysterio family is backstage. They’re interviewed about what they’ve gone through. Rey says whatever happens tonight, he’s proud of his son. Dominik admits to being terrified last night but no matter what he knew he had his family in his corner and that gave him the courage to do what he had to do. Rey says one day Seth will have a family of his own and he’ll understand what he put him and his wife through. Says Seth will have to deal with the consequences, last night his son became a man. Tonight is not about winning or losing, he’s proud of him standing here in front of him knowing how much pain he’s in. Tells Dominik he loves him so much and he knows tonight will be a great night, when he finally gets to share the ring with his son and he’ll be damned if Seth wins this one.
Lana and Nattie are in the ring. Lana puts over Natalya, who says she wants to honor Mickie James. Lana says they wanted to honor her but she’s just been riding their coat-tails trying to make herself relevant again. They start to introduce a Mickie James vignette but the screen is blank and they laugh at how her career is nothing. So Mickie James runs down the ramp and easily takes them both out. Fun.
Raw Underground time. We come in to see Bobby Lashley choking some skinny dude out. Dolph enters the ring even though he’s already got a match. He picks a leg and takes him down, ground and pound. Bobby scoops him up and gets the advantage, kicks to the small of the back. He goes to grab for the eyes but Dolph gets him with an upkick, leaps onto his back with a Piggyback Sleeper! Lashley with a judo throw to get him off, shoulder tackle sends him into the wall! That counts as a win I guess. Hurt Business throw a hapless dude into the ring and Lashley expels them quickly. That’s it for now, mkay.
Randy Orton vs. Keith Lee
Lee doesn’t get to work shirtless on the main roster, not surprising. Lock-up, Orton gets him into a side headlock. Lee shoots him off, leap frog, big shoulder block! Lee wants a Test of Strength, Orton with a kick to the gut though. Lee blocks a punch and he’s got a hold of that hand! He twists and Orton is writhing! Pulls him, Standing Overhead Belly To Belly! Orton bails and Lee pursues! He lures him back into the ring and starts the Garvin Stomp when he slides back in, cover but Lee kicks out with ease sending him flying!
Orton has him in a side headlock. Lee fights his way up, forces him onto his back and stands up with him! He rams him into the corner to break, runs to the opposite corner, charging clothesline! Ducks a line, hits the ropes, crossbody! Pounce takes Orton to the floor and he pursues! He throws him right back in the ring and goes to the apron to let Orton kick him and set up for the Draping DDT. And he plants him! Orton stalks for the RKO… but McIntyre pulls him out of the ring for the DQ!
Winner: Randy Orton
Fair enough. Beating either man would’ve been a bad idea. Of course the Punt went down several notches in danger tonight as McIntyre runs Orton off and stands tall in the ring and doesn’t really look worse for wear.
McIntyre is walking around backstage getting interviewed. Says he’s happy for his friend Keith but he doesn’t need to fight his battles. He’s a little shaken now, says the Punts didn’t feel good, Orton tried to end his damn career. If Orton’s watching – Randy attacks him from behind and there’s a third Punt. Now THAT will do the trick, obviously.
Interviewer standing in front of the doctor’s room admits to spying on the doctors and saying she overheard them talking about a potential skull fracture which means bleeding in the brain. Doctor/patient confidentiality is more a suggestion than a rule, apparently.
Lumberjack Match for the WWE Raw Women’s Championship: Asuka (c) vs. Sasha Banks
Asuka quickly takes Sasha to the apron, Hip Attack takes her to the floor, Bayley makes sure nobody attacks her on the outside. Commercial break. That’s actually the first to happen during a match this show, wild. When we come back, Sasha takes Asuka to the floor, holds her in place as Bayley pummels her with bodyshots. She’s considered a lumberjack too, that’s funny. Sasha rolls her into the ring and covers her for 2. Banks charges, Asuka with a boot up. She goes up top, Flying DDT!
Asuka rolls her into an Ankle Lock, Sasha crawls towards the rope, rolls her to break and sends her to the floor! Sasha up onto the apron, Asuka avoids her and the crossbody hits the Riott Squad instead! Asuka with a sliding knee on the apron! Then she turns and goes after Bayley. Bayley throws Nattie and Lana and the IIconics in her way and Asuka takes them all down but Sasha finally attacks from behind, sends her into the ring.
Sasha goes up top, big Frog Splash for a nearfall! Bayley wants to slide a chair into the ring, Shayna grabs her though and tosses her to the floor. Asuka gets Sasha into the Asukalock and gets the submission.
Obviously nowhere near as good as their match last night, I kinda feel like all this established is that rematch clauses are a thing again which, I could’ve done without.
We then get an update on Drew McIntyre, which is to say we see an ambulance leave. Interviewer goes to Keith Lee to ask him what’s going through his mind. Lee says there is a very large portion of him that would like to say not to interfere in his debut, but he just watched his friend get loaded into an ambulance, it’s a little different. Fortunately he knows McIntyre is one of the toughest men he’s ever met. He’s gonna be okay. But he can’t say the same for Randy Orton.
We’re back to Raw Underground and Lashley is fighting Cedric Alexander now. Okay sure, why promote that? Just a fight in an ongoing feud, whatever. Lashley takes him to the mat, cross-armbreaker and he’s repeatedly elbowing him in the head until he’s knocked out. Ivar comes in, Shelton jumps him, Erik makes the save, MVP is involved as well, it’s a Pier 6 bah God.
Main event time, Mysterios jump Rollins and Murphy on the ramp. Rey brawling with Seth, Dominik taking it to Murphy. But the heels take the advantage, Rollins tosses Rey over the desk and now they can double team Dominik, send him into the ring.
The Mysterios vs. Buddy Murphy & Seth Rollins
Dominik blocks an arm drag, big dropkick takes him to the floor, he hits the ropes for a tope, Seth wants to block him but he baseball slides him! Murphy wants to attack from behind, but a back body drop sends him out. Rey seems to jump off the table at Rollins but the camera misses it with enthusiasm. They take Rollins into the ring, try for a 619, Murphy takes Seth out of the ring to avoid it but Dominik jumps onto both of them from the top! Commercial break.
We come back to see Rollins hit a Gutbuster on Rey for a 2 count. He taunts Rey as he tells him he to make the tag only to turn around and knock Dominik off the apron. He throws Rey into the corner, Rey gets both boots up, Wheelbarrow, double boots to Murphy before nailing the Facebuster! Murphy tags in, wants to grab Rey but he eats an enziguri and Dominik tags in! Sidesteps Murphy into the corner, big clothesline. Murphy stops him with a knee to the gut and throws him to the apron but a Springboard Crossbody gets a nearfall!
He goes up top, Flying Headscissor takes him into the post! Double jump into an Around The World DDT for a nearfall! Rollins distracts Dominik, Murphy with a chop block, tags Seth in. He hoists Dominik up for a Buckle Bomb, but he slips behind him to tag in Rey! West Coast Pop, headscissor takes him to the middle rope, Murphy tags in during the 619 attempt, rolls him up for 2! Rey drop toe holds Murphy to the ropes, tags in Dominik, double 619! And now finally we have Retribution antics as Dominik goes up top amongst flickering lights, Rollins shoves Dominik to the mat… Retribution enters the ring and I can already tell this match will not have a bell.
They attack the Mysterios and throw them from the ring. The audio seems to glitch every once in a while. Seth and Buddy watch from the stage and smile. Retribution then converge on the apron and taunt the Mysterios as Raw goes off the air.