It’s everyone’s favorite day once again; Monday! With it brings Monday Night Raw of course and as always I’ll be here to give you the live play-by-play of the show as it airs. Watch this space for the WWE Raw Recap!
Drew McIntyre backstage is asked about the bounty that’s been placed on him. He asks people if they can trust Bobby Lashley’s a man of his word? And he dares everyone to come after him.
The Hurt Business make their way out to the ring as the WWE Raw Recap begins.
They make it clear again. if anyone takes out Drew McIntyre before WrestleMania, they will get the title match in his place. MVP asks who wants to step up and take this generous offer? No one comes out. So they move on to Cedric and Shelton who lost the Handicap match last week and therefore ended up being barred from ringside at WrestleMania.
Bobby berates them, says they’re becoming an embarrassment. They’re tarnishing his image, that’s why they had to step out of the family for this situation. Can’t count on them for anything right now and he refuses to be associated with this incompetence. They don’t like them doing this publicly. Shelton says he wouldn’t be champion if it weren’t for them. Fight breaks out, Lashley takes out Cedric, Shelton waistlocks him and takes him down briefly. Lashley strips off his jacket and assaults Shelton. Cedric comes to the apron, Lashley rears back and Alexander runs off.
Lashley says for Shelton and Cedric the Hurt Business is over and then reiterates his deal again for some reason.
WWE Raw Recap rolls on as Riddle is backstage.
Says he just wanted to ask Sheamus some questions and he doesn’t know what’s wrong with him, but he’s pissed him off now. He rolls over to Titus O’Neil and asks him about roasting a pig at WrestleMania. He misheard ‘co-host’ as roast. It’s very funny I can assure you. Sheamus attacks him again thankfully.
Cedric and Shelton storm over to Adam Pearce. Benjamin repeats that Bobby Lashley would never be WWE Champion without them. Cedric wants to show him he’s nothing without all of them. Shelton wants Lashley tonight and Cedric wants him next week. Pearce wants to consult with Bobby but they ask does he make the matches or not? “Where is your sac, Pearce?” asks Cedric.
WWE United States Champion Riddle (c) vs. Sheamus
Sheamus with a front facelock, takes him down. Keeps him on the mat for a while. Hits the ropes but Riddle grabs his ankle, sweeps behind him for a Piggyback Sleeper, gets him down to the mat. Sheamus breaks the hold, they exchange forearms. Riddle with a kick off a back body drop attempt, roundhouse kick takes him between the ropes. Shotgun Dropkick sends him to the floor! Running kick off the apron, Asai Floating Bro! Commercial break, WWE Raw Recap will resume as the show goes on. We come back to see Sheamus giving Riddle quite the Dublin Smile.
Exchange of forearms, Riddle wins out. Hits the ropes, Sheamus counters with a Tilt-A-Whirl Backbreaker! Nearfall. Sheamus takes him onto his shoulders and goes up top with him. Riddle with a sunset flip to counter, Sheamus batters him and kicks him away.
Riddle wants a superplex, gets shoved off but then leaps back up for the Bandido Style Spanish Fly!
Combination of strikes leads to the Pele Kick, charging forearms in the corner! Pulls him out, Exploder Suplex! Roundhouse kicks to the chest against the ropes until the ref pulls him away. Sheamus blocks a kick and wants White Noise, Riddle escapes, rolls him to the mat, PK, Broton! Nearfall! Riddle pulls him into the Triangle Choke! Sheamus manages the Backlund Bomb but he still holds on! Sheamus desperately gets to the ropes! Fight spills to the apron… WHITE NOISE TO THE APRON! Rolls him back in for a nearfall!
Sheamus pulls him to the center of the ring and nails an Alabama Slam! Close nearfall! Sheamus beating his chest, Riddle with a charging kick in the corner! Sheamus blocks a high kick, Pump Knee lands for the win!
Very, very strong match. It feels funny to say this but Sheamus is one of the best workers on the main roster, his body of work in the past six months or so compares well with pretty much anybody on Raw and SmackDown.
Shane McMahon, Elias and Jaxson Ryker are making their way to the ring for their next terrible segment making fun of Braun Strowman.
AJ Styles and Omos meet Drew McIntyre backstage. Drew is concerned they’re going to attack him. They say they have their own plans for WrestleMania, more realistic ones than his. They plan on embarrassing New Day at WrestleMania and taking the tag titles, besides AJ has to focus on Xavier Woods tonight.
Shane, Elias and Ryker are sadly in the ring now as the WWE Raw Recap rolls on.
Shane claims that those doubting his knee injury last week have no idea about anatomy, physiology or adrenaline. It was adrenaline that let him run like he did to avoid further injury.
He now shows us Braun Strowman’s old report card, apparently. D- in math and social studies, D in English, D+ in Gym. They talk about the teacher’s notes saying he’s a bully without problem-solving skills and is in dire need of summer school. We see a dumb PhotoShop of Strowman in a dunce hat with “2+2 = 5 I’M NOT STUPID I’M NOT STUPID I’M NOT STUPID” on the chalk board behind him.
Shane says they will outwit him. But maybe he just needs a hug and they’ll give it to him. Strowman comes out. Next up on the WWE Raw Recap…
Braun Strowman vs. Jaxson Ryker
Braun with a big boot takes Ryker down immediately. Big biel throw sends him flying! And another! Braun barrels him into the corner, blasts him with elbows to the face. Pulls him to the center, big headbutt drops him. Elias on the apron, Strowman spooks him off. Does the same to Shane, Ryker attacks from behind. Strowman takes him to the corner but Ryker gets the boots up off a charge. Chop block drops him, Bulldog takes him down! Comes off the top with the world’s shittiest double axe handle and misses by a full foot. Strowman takes him to the outside, freight train spot ensues. Drags him into the ring, makes sure Shane is watching as he hoists him up and plants him with the Powerslam for the win.
Winner: Braun Strowman
Braun chases Shane around the ring for a bit, heels get him back into the ring and swarm on him momentarily but Braun makes his own comeback, takes down Elias and chases Shane away. Strowman says Shane accepted his challenge for Mania and told him he could pick any match he wanted. He’s been thinking and he made up his mind. One that his goons can’t get involved in and put an end to these weeks of him running for his life. Says there’s nowhere to run and nowhere to hide, at WrestleMania he’ll get these hands in a Steel Cage match.
MizTV segment now.
They’re still doing the Hey Hey, Hop Hop thing. They talk about VMAs. Bad Bunny was nominated for one, did not win. They of course say Bunny will lose to Miz at WrestleMania. He thought he already showed him he doesn’t belong when he hit him with a guitar. But he had the cojones to hit him with a guitar as well! Says he just wanted to teach him a lesson, but he tried to injure him!
Miz says he will pay him back for every splinter of wood in his back. They transition back to talking up their music video and they’re gonna show the whole thing this time. Miz has tears of joy as we come back. Goes ahead and prepares his speech for their awards.
Bad Bunny and Damian Priest interrupt.
Priest says they actually enjoyed their music video. It was entertaining. Glad they found the time to relax and goof off because they won’t be laughing when Bunny handles Miz at Mania. Bunny cuts a quick promo on Miz in Spanish. Miz demands to know what he just said. Priest hesitates to say it. Naturally though the answer is, “He’s gonna make you his bitch”. Miz and Morrison storm out to go after Bunny. Priest stands in front of them momentarily but then steps aside and lets Miz go over and Bunny just nails him with a right hand.
Bunny and Priest enter the ring and demand Miz and Morrison come in but they refuse. Bunny tosses their poster at them. Heels back off.
WWE Raw Recap continues. Randy Orton with a backstage promo.
Randy says he wanted to take out the Fiend and so he chose to light that match. No mortal man could survive what he did but the Fiend is not a man. He is something much more, he is an abomination from Hell. He thought Alexa’s promise to bring him back was part of her game. But no, she knew the whole time that she had the Fiend’s heartbeat in the palm of her hand.
Randy says atleast now, thank God he knows what he’s up against. For the final time he will face the Fiend at WrestleMania and he knows how far into Hell he has to dip to get the Fiend out of his life forever.
Next up on the WWE Raw Recap…
WWE Champion Bobby Lashley vs. Shelton Benjamin
They come together immediately, Shelton with a waistlock takedown. Bobby fights up momentarily but Benjamin takes him back down, knee drives to the ribs. Pulls him up again. Shot to the back, hits the ropes, Lashley ducks a line and nails a Flatliner! Mounted forearms. Takes Shelton to the outside, powers him onto his shoulders and runs him right into the post! Charging tackle in the corner, Cedric swipes at Bobby and he chases him off, Cedric going allll the way to the stage. Lashley back into the ring, Shelton surprises him with the Paydirt! Nearfall!
Exchange of shots, Shelton takes him to the corner. Batters him, pump knee to the face! Charges, another one lands! But Bobby fights back with a Spinebuster! Pulls Shelton up to his feet, whips him for another Spinebuster! Hurt Lock cinched in. And that’s the match.
Winner: Bobby Lashley
Shame to see this happen to the Hurt Business. It was a good group while it lasted. Could’ve been a great one.
New Day meet up with AJ and Omos backstage preparing for Game Night? Xavier has a big flipnote sign advertising stuff.
And now New Day in the ring, decorated for their Game Night. This was advertised literally a segment in advance, that’s how little we know about. Xavier puts over Omos’ mom shirt and indeed, it’s quite mom. Kofi talks about how important it is for a team to be on the same page. We have a barrage of games to prove who is the better team.
Styles says they’re the better team in this ring anyway but they’ll play their silly games just to prove them wrong.
First up; Charades!
Xavier explains the rules of Charades as if anyone doesn’t know it. Kofi pantomimes playing a piano and Xavier miraculously gets “A Thousand Miles by Vanessa Carlton” correctly from this.
AJ gets “The Lion King” and he does a bunch of cat-like stuff but Omos doesn’t even try to guess it.
Now they go to Pictionary.
Xavier draws a rocket ship and Kofi gets it, that’s pretty easy.
It’s Omos’ turn but AJ takes it for him because he’s just not about this life. AJ’s prompt is “The Sun” and he says this is so easy, draws a circle with lines coming from it but again Omos does not guess.
New Day mock them for their losses. Omos says enough with this, all they have to do is win their match at WrestleMania to become tag champs and he’ll show them what he’s made of there. AJ promises to show the same to Xavier up next and the heels slowly destroy the Game Night setup as New Day continue playing us off.
So, up next on the WWE Raw Recap…
AJ Styles vs. Xavier Woods
AJ takes over quick, leap frog, dropkick! Pulls him up, whips him, Xavier ducks a couple of lines. Slides between his legs, nails a lariato! Uppercuts send AJ to the corner, big knife edge chop. Whip reversals exchanged, Styles sends Woods to the corner. Charges but Xavier sidesteps, blade chop for a 2 count! Styles with a knee lift to the gut, sends him to the outside. Wants a tope but Omos is in the way of it so he stops short.
Styles sneaks up behind Woods to take advantage of the distraction but Xavier was ready for it, clobbers him and sends him to the outside, lands a Flip Tope! Commercial break as the WWE Raw Recap rolls on. As we fight on, Woods is still in control, Leg Lariat takes him down. Woods with a wiiild Back Body Drop for a 2 count. Xavier takes AJ up top, forearms to the face. Woods wants a superplex, AJ slips free and trips him up! Ushigoroshi for a nearfall! Woods with a Tornado DDT for a close nearfall! Woods goes up top and wants his long-distance elbow drop, Omos pulls AJ to safety. Xavier confronts Omos and he just nails him for the DQ.
Winner: Xavier Woods (by DQ)
Omos grabs Kofi by the throat and this week it’s Kofi taking the stunt bump over the barricade. Making use of that while they still can, I guess.
Now the heels double team Xavier in the ring. AJ throws Woods to him for a huge throw-down Spinebuster! He plants a foot on Xavier’s chest and AJ counts the three.
Alexa Bliss’ Playground segment up next on the WWE Raw Recap.
When we come back from a lengthy break, we see her holding her Jack-In-The-Box. Says this is much more than just that. Centuries ago they called this the Devil-In-A-Box. Demonic presences sealed within them, but only after they’ve been weakened. That happened at TLC. Randy burned him alive, thought he got rid of him forever. But no, he just weakened him, trapped him in her Fiend-In-A-Box. But you can’t be trapped forever.
Randy’s biggest mistake used to be playing with fire that he didn’t understand. Now his biggest mistake is thinking he knows what happens next. But here’s a hint; at WrestleMania, the Legend Killer dies. She winds up her box and the Fiend doll pops out. Camera pans and the Fiend is sitting on the swing next to her.
McIntyre backstage is sick of waiting for someone to come and jump him, rushes into the locker room looking for somebody to step up.
He says he’s disappointed nobody is doing it. Says he would’ve been jumping at this opportunity years ago. Comes up to Braun Strowman, says he should’ve been a five time world champion by now. Demands he step to him. Strowman tells him after he destroys Shane, IF Drew is WWE Champion he will step to him.
Drew grabs somebody by the shirt and tosses them aside, not sure who. Angel Garza jumps him from behind and gets taken down easy. Drew with a Glasgow Kiss takes out Drew Gulak. Steps up to Ricochet. Says he’s known him for a long time and knows he’s dying for an opportunity. Ricochet says Bobby Lashley’s word means nothing. But if he wants a fight he’ll give him one out there. McIntyre respects that.
Up next on the WWE Raw Recap…
Shayna Baszler vs. Naomi
Shayna bullies Naomi into the corner but she kicks her away until Shayna takes her down. Singles out the arm and stomps it. Naomi fights back, Full Nelson Slam, rolls her into a unique cover for 2. Pinning combinations exchanged, Naomi stops that with a Splits Legdrop! Wants the Split-Legged Moonsault, Reginald on the apron. Lana swings at him, he flips away. Nia wants to put her through the table again, Lana escapes and accidentally shoves her into Mandy Rose on commentary. Dana goes after Lana, Lana escapes, Shayna is distracted and Naomi rolls her up for the win.
Riddle backstage meets Asuka. He starts to ask about how much people would like scooters in Japan but just kinda loses his train of thought and rides away.
Now Adam Pearce in the ring for the contract signing for the Raw Women’s Title match at WrestleMania. Introduces Rhea Ripley and Asuka. Ripley wants it to be clear that Asuka is the CURRENT Raw Women’s Champion, not the permanent one. Asuka cackles and tells her she’s over-confident. Rhea agrees. Her first night on Raw she was confident enough to challenge her to a match at WrestleMania. And now she’s confident enough to tell her to her face she will beat her at WrestleMania and take her championship!
She signs the contract quick. Asuka makes a big show of signing herself. Rants at her in Japanese. Says her confidence is borrowed, not earned, not yet. Tells her she has the talent but she has to learn that she’s not ready for- Ripley flips the table into Asuka’s face!
Nia and Shayna make their way to the ramp, for some reason.
They complain about Ripley immediately getting her title match. Shayna says they’ve dominated the division for a year and asks where their title match is, as if ignoring the fact that she literally just lost. Nia suggests the two of them step into the ring with them next week and they’ll show them what brutality really is.
MVP comes up to Ricochet and commends him for taking Lashley up on the offer. Ricochet says it’s not about the offer, he thinks they’re full of it. He’s going after McIntyre because he knows he can beat him.
Up next on the WWE Raw Recap…
Ricochet vs. Drew McIntyre
Ric charges Drew immediately with strikes. McIntyre throws him to the corner, Ricochet with a boot up. Charges, McIntyre with a back body drop sends him flying! Drew TOSSES him with an Overhead Belly To Belly! Forearm to the face drops Ricochet. Wants another Belly To Belly, Ricochet amazingly lands on his feet off of this and they were stupidly showing Bobby Lashley watching backstage while it happened so nobody noticed but I sure did. Ricochet with a high kick, leaps off the top rope with a Flying Enziguri for a 1 count!
Ricochet low bridges McIntyre to the outside, Drew drags him out of the ring and wants to throw him into the steps, Ricochet leaps over the steps and hops to the top of the barricade. Tightrope walk, flying dropkick! Throws McIntyre into the ring, goes up top! 630 attempted, McIntyre rolls out of the way, Ricochet rolls through, Claymore gets the win.
Winner: Drew McIntyre
They really made this out like it was going to be a bigger deal than it was.
Mustafa Ali attacks McIntyre after the match however! McIntyre deposits him and challenges him to meet him now. Impromptu gauntlet, looks like, so next up on the WWE Raw Recap…
Drew McIntyre vs. Mustafa Ali
Ali has the lead as we come back from commercial, drops him with a chop block! Stomps on McIntyre’s leg, kicks it and sends him to the apron. Pulls him up, Drew nails him but on the way back in, a low dropkick sends McIntyre to the mat! Drew fights him away momentarily but yet another chop block drops him. Grabs the ankle, Drew kicks him to the apron but he hangs on, goes up top! Frog Splash to the leg! Hooks the leg for the 2 count. Mustafa tells MVP to tell Bobby he’s coming for the opportunity.
Mustafa pounding on him, hits the ropes – Drew with an Overhead Belly To Belly and Ali bumps like absolute madness for it. Another one sends him all the way across the ring! Drew is clearly in pain, limping over but he bashes him in the corner. And a third Overhead Belly To Belly! They overuse it, but for a good reason, they look amazing. Ali with a boot up in the corner, wants the Satellite DDT but a Glasgow Kiss out of the air stops that! Countdown – Claymore for the win.
Winner: Drew McIntyre
Some neat stuff so far, let’s see who’s next. Seems like this is just the rest of the show now.
McIntyre says there’s no one else and asks for a mic. Says he knows Lashley’s watching, everybody tried and got their ass kicked by Drew McIntyre. Tells him it’s time to get up there and finish him his damned self.
Bobby’s music plays and he’s on his way out here.
After a commercial break, they’re both finally in the ring together. Drew says it makes sense he came out here, he was so focused on the matches he didn’t realize MVP was behind him on commentary. Lashley says he needs nobodies’ help to beat him. He mauled him at Elimination Chamber and could’ve ended his career, in hindsight he should have. At WrestleMania he’ll finish the job.
McIntyre says he knows how bad he is. If he wasn’t here, Lashley would be the man. But McIntyre is here and sending everyone after him told him just how afraid of him Lashley really is! FIght breaks out and McIntyre sends him out of the ring. King Corbin appears and attacks Drew from behind. McIntyre fights back momentarily but Corbin counters the Claymore with a Deep Six! Lashley cinches the Hurt Lock onto McIntyre and he can’t break it, Bobby flings him to the mat. Cinches it in again when Drew stands. Eventually McIntyre passes out. Heels stand tall as the show goes off the air.