Well hello everybody here in the Wrestle Royalty kingdom! This is Sovereign S.A.M. filling in for Baron Botch this week for the Raw blog. This is the Raw after Super Show-Down and there is plenty to talk about. I’ll just give my thoughts on Super Show-Down before diving into Raw and it was fun for the most part. I was not into the main event at all and thought it was a nostalgia fest. I know why they did the match and I think there were other matches on the card that should have been the main event. With that out of the way, let’s dive into Raw
Triple H & HBK Promo
Well the match at Super Show-Down was what we all thought it would be and that is to set up DX vs Brothers of Destruction at Crown Jewel. I have been totally against HBK coming out of retirement because he is one of the very few to stay retired after a retirement match. They each had passion in this promo, but I could care less about it. This is something that would have been exciting 10 years ago, but now it just makes me sigh.
Bobby Lashley vs Kevin Owens
This wasn’t a bad match at all and it is hard for KO to have a bad match really. He is one of the best in the company and can make just about anybody look good. Lio Rush had a mic during this match and would add in some comments from ringside throughout. Lashley worked this match very much like a heel and that played out into what would happen after the match. Lashley picked up the victory and would attack KO after the match and focus on his knees. KO is going to have some minor surgery on his knees and will have a couple of months off because of that. He deserves time off and I am interested to see where a heel Lashley can go with Lio Rush.
Team B & B Interview
Finn and Bayley look like they have so much fun being partnered up with one another. Their interview didn’t last very long as Lashley and Lio Rush came to interrupt. This pretty much cemented that Rush and Lashley will be heels on Raw so I am intrigued to see where they go from here.
Now the grade may look harsh, but the segment wasn’t bad per se. It is hard for Elias to top the kind of heat he managed to get last week and this was fine. It seems like WWE may be going in the direction with his segments after last week to get as much heat as possible by trying to do a huge insult to whatever city they are in. I always have fun with his segments because he can have the crowd cheer for him one minute and boo him the next. That is a talent that is rare to find and he has it.
Rousey & Bellas vs Riott Squad
This match was okay to me and that is through no fault of the workers involved. We just saw this match on Saturday and it is always hard to be into a rematch that happens so soon. I will admit that I am getting bored with Rousey in the ring. I know she is very green so her move set should be limited, but all of her matches are starting to feel the same to me and causing me to lose interest. Ruby is someone that is a star in the waiting and I sincerely hope that WWE gives he a chance with the title. Rousey and the Bellas picked up the win over the Riott Squad and the Bellas attacked Rousey after the match. This of course sets up the match that has been long rumored and that is Nikki vs Ronda at Evolution. I am not looking forward to that match, but a part of me wants to see Nikki beat Rousey for the title and see how the internet explodes haha.
Bayley & Balor vs Jinder & Foxy
There really is much to say about this match between these two teams. This was done to promote the Mixed Match Challenge on Facebook Watch and the match was okay. Finn and Bayley picked up the win, so I guess that’s a plus.
Dogs of War Backstage
This was a nice segment in the locker room between Drew, Dolph and Braun. They keep teasing tension between this trio and I am interested to see who it is that snaps first. I would put my money on Drew because he seems primed for a push once this trio disbands.
Acting GM Baron Corbin & Heath Slater
This was a short backstage segment and showed how much of a slime Corbin is. He tells Slater that he isn’t good enough to be in the Battle Royal qualifier for the World Cup WWE is doing at Crown Jewel. Corbin has found something good in this role and he is flourishing.
I would like to take a moment to say that WWE missed the ball completely with the World Cup. This is something that should be a network special that features wrestlers from around the globe vying for the World Cup. I think it would be highly successful if they went that route instead of this one.
World Cup Battle Royal Qualifier
This was a fun battle royal that looked like one Corbin was setting up to have an easy way into the World Cup. You knew something fishy was about to happen when there was a Conquistador in the ring. It looked like Corbin had the match won, but the Conquistador was lying in wait. He came in and landed three German Suplexes and an Angle Slam. It was clear that was Kurt Angle and he then revealed himself after eliminating Corbin. There was a backstage segment after they came back from commercial break and Kurt explained that he wasn’t back yet, he is still on vacation. Great stuff all around.
Nia Jax vs Ember Moon
So, they had this match because of the spirit of competition and that just feels lazy to me. This match felt random to me and screams of they don’t know what to do so put them in a match with one another. The match was okay that saw Ember pick up the win via count out after Nia ran hard into the LED board on the apron. I expected Nia to attack Ember after the match, but they hugged and embraced after.
Trish Stratus In-Ring Promo
Trish came out to the ring to hype up her match with Alexa Bliss at Evolution. Trish looks to be in tremendous shape and her promo was pretty good overall. Bliss and Mickie James came down to the ring to confront her and they did. They traded barbs and I think Alexa may have actually gotten the better of Trish in this moment. It then led to a set-up to make Trish’s match with Alexa a tag match and Lita came down to the ring to be Trish’s partner and the four fought with one another. They combined the Mickie/Lita match with the Trish/Alexa match and I think that may work better for all the individuals involved. I am looking forward to that match and I think it could be one of the real highlights of Evolution.
Shield Backstage Promo
Now we cut backstage to a Shield style promo where they hold up a camera and talk into it. Now this used to be one of my favorite aspects of the Shield, but this was off. The dialog and the way it was filmed felt way too polished and lacked the grit that their backstage promos once had. They did a good job in the promo but just those aspects took me out of the experience of a backstage Shield promo.
Roode & Gable vs the Ascension
Why oh why must we keep having a variation of this match up. I get that they are trying to push this Gable and Roode pairing but give them someone else to work with. The Ascension have been nothing since being on the main roster and I am so over this. The only good thing that can come from this is a Bobby Roode heel turn and I do hope that is what is happening. The only reason this doesn’t get a half star is because AOP came out after the match and laid waste to everybody. I am excited to see what AOP does with all this destruction and my guess would be that they end up being tag champs before 2018 ends.
Paul Heyman Promo
Well look who decided to show up to Raw this week. Paul Heyman came out to my surprise and cut a nice promo building up the triple threat match for the Universal Title at Crown Jewel. The man can talk like very have in this business and he will give it his all to hype up something. I am not looking forward to Brock being at a WWE event again but seems like Vince will not let him go. The best part of this promo to me was the shock and fear Heyman had once the Shield’s theme hit and he made sure to scurry away quickly.
The Shield vs Dogs of War
Now I have to ding this match just a bit because we just saw this on Saturday, but it was a fun match overall. All the participants in this match can go and they did it once again here. There is a lot of build between these two teams as to which one will disband and it is great. Many expect Dean to turn on the Shield and they are being heavy handed in that. I think WWE is going to try and swerve for a bit and have the Dogs of War split before the Shield does. The match started off a well enough and really picked up at the end. Roman was able to do his dive over the top rope onto the Dogs of War and his Shield mates and that is impressive each time. McIntyre hit the Claymore on Dean to pick up the win for his team and he seems to be the one that does that more often than not. I think Drew will be the first to break away from his trio because he will be sick and tired of carrying the rest. Dean showed some dissatisfaction with the outcome and stormed off after the match rather than be in the ring with his Shield brothers. Good storytelling throughout this match.
Raw was pretty good overall but had its down moments for sure. I know the ratings will probably not be that great as Raw is competing with the MLB playoffs, Monday Night Football, and the fall tv season. There is also one last thing I must get off my chest. I am sick and tired of WWE doing constant replays of things that have happened. Sometimes they do it right after it happens like people did not just see that. It is clear to me that they do all those replays as a way to pad the 3-hour runtime of Raw and I am tired of it. If Raw went to two hours or even two and a half hours, I would hope they wouldn’t do as many replays. I would say one replay at the start of the third hour would work just fine to recap everything that has happened so far during the show, but not the constant replays that they do throughout.
This is Sovereign S.A.M. signing off and I hope to see you all around the Wrestle Royalty kingdom.