Here we are at the Raw after Money in the Bank and I must say I rather enjoyed the pay-per-view for the most part. Obviously, like many of you I let out a huge groan when Brock Lesnar came in and snatched the MITB briefcase with the most minimal effort ever for a winner of the briefcase. I have no idea what they have planned for him and the briefcase, but I will say with his part-time status, it does make it interesting as to when he will cash-in. With all of that out of the way let us jump right in and see what Raw had for us this week.
Paul Heyman & Brock Lesnar In-Ring
I was totally ready to crap on this opening segment, but Brock was having so much fun with that briefcase that it was hard not to enjoy it. There have been many memes made of Brock rocking out with the briefcase like it was a boombox and it was very refreshing to see him show some personality. Heyman did what he normally does, and he hyped up Lesnar like only he can. I honestly hope that one day Heyman can make his way into the WWE Hall of Fame because he will give one of the most legendary speeches ever. Heyman continued talking up Brock and it was only a matter of time before Seth Rollins made his way out. Rollins got in Lesnar’s face and tried to goad him into cashing in the contract while he is completely healthy and not beaten down. Heyman then mention Kofi Kingston as being a possible cash-in and that brought out Kofi. He talked about how beating Brock would make him even more legit and Heyman told both men that Brock would not cash-in because Kofi and Seth would be busy tonight. This was a really fun opening segment and as much as I hate to say it, Brock did well here.
Sami Zayn vs Braun Strowman
This wasn’t really much of a match and this was more about how much Sami fears Braun. Sami tried to talk Bobby Lashley to help him take about Braun prior to the match but Lashley declined. Sami then made his way out to the ring looking as dejected as one can be and it was great. Strowman then came out and Sami high-tailed it out of there and Braun gave chase. They went all around the backstage area and Lashley just watched and Braun beat up Sami. Once the action returned to the ring, it was pretty much a squash as Strowman easily picked up the win.
Lars Sullivan In-Ring
Lars came out to the ring to talk about all the destruction he has caused, and a video package then played highlighting all of it. Before Lars could speak, the Lucha House Party came out to exact some vengeance for the attack Lars did at Money in the Bank. Things were looking good for LHP at the start but eventually Lars took over and destroyed all three men. I wonder if this will lead to a 3-on-1 match next week and be a way to show how strong Lars is. The one question I do have is who will be the one to stand up to Lars and be a somewhat credible threat to him. With the Wild Card Rule, anybody from either brand could try and challenge him so it will be interesting to see who it will be.
Ricochet vs Cesaro
A video was played after Ricochet made his entrance as to why this match was happening and I enjoyed Cesaro kind of goading Ricochet into this match even though he is hurt from the MITB ladder match. Cesaro came out to new theme music and I liked it, but I feel like there could be a better one out there. Cesaro has had so many themes in his career and it feels like he has yet to get one that is really his. You know you can expect a good match with these two and that is what we got. Ricochet makes things look so easy and that is just unfair. Cesaro is able to work with anybody and every style and he proved it again here. Ricochet sold for Cesaro very well and Cesaro really asserted his size and strength advantage just as well. This was a very good match that saw Cesaro pick up the win here and I wouldn’t mind seeing another match between these two and for it to be just a bit longer.
AJ Styles Backstage
AJ Styles was interviewed backstage about his loss to Seth Rollins at MITB and he did a good job selling that Seth was the better man and that is was time to go back to the drawing board. Baron Corbin then came in and was the perfect amount of slime in rubbing AJ’s face in the fact that he lost. Corbin relishes in being a heel and he owns every minute of it. AJ retorting Baron about how he has squandered his chances was great and Baron just shrugging it off was just as good. AJ then slapped Baron and it looks like we may be getting a program between these two.
Roman Reigns In-Ring
Roman Reigns came down to the ring and before he could get a word out, Shane McMahon came out and bragged about his win over the Miz. Shane says that he is done with the Miz and now he is putting his focus on Roman because he punched Mr. McMahon. Roman says that it is perfect for Shane to be done with the Miz because he is done with Elias and that frees him up to take on Shane. Shane teases taking on Roman tonight and we all knew it wasn’t going to happen because heels don’t give in to the fans. Shane then introduces Drew McIntyre as his newest backup and he tells Roman that he will take him on at Super Showdown. This wasn’t my favorite heel Shane segment, but it did its job.
Shane & McIntyre Backstage
The seriousness in the Miz’s face in asking Shane if he was done with him was perfect. Before Shane could reply, Drew McIntyre stepped in and told Miz that he is done with him and if he had a problem with that, that he could take it up with him. The Miz obliged him and laid the challenge down for a match later tonight.
The Usos vs The Revival
This was a darn good match and one I have been waiting to see since these two teams started their program with each other. The fun and games are over and now it is time for them to settle this in the ring and they did a fine job in doing that. These are two of the best teams in all of WWE and this was a moment to show exactly why. I did wonder a bit if this match would be as good as I hoped because it didn’t start off hot right out the gate. After some time passed though, business picked up and this became the match of the night. I hope this is the first of a series of matches between these two teams because I feel like we have only gotten a taste of what they can do with each other. This was a great match and one to go back and watch because this is why people love tag team wrestling. I will also ask a question I asked last week, where are Hawkins and Ryder? Also, what happened to the Viking Raiders?
Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross Backstage
I just love this new Jekyll and Hyde character that Nikki is playing right now because she is fully committed to it. Though if you follow her YouTube channel, this is more of a Nicola/Nikki thing. It is obvious to us that Alexa is just using Nikki and I cannot wait to see how this blows up in her face because it surely will. The Revival coming in all sweaty and saying they should be on A Moment of Bliss was done well and Alexa’s response to it was just as good.
Firefly Fun House
We got a full intro song this week for the Firefly Fun House and I was pulled in from the start and wondered where they were going with it. We saw some kids at play and it quickly got dark with the children having “Let Me In” written on their shirts and foreheads. This is getting creepier and darker and I am loving every minute of it.
A Moment of Bliss
This was probably my favorite Moment of Bliss segment to date and her asking for coffee was done well and handing Nikki an empty mug was just as perfect. Becky Lynch came out to talk about beating Lacey and losing to Charlotte but before she could say a word, the IIconics came out. I loved Peyton and Billie in NXT and started to dislike them when they were first on the main roster, but I have come back around and am absolutely loving them again. Some people think they are annoying and hate that but that is the point of their gimmick and they are totally committed to it. I think they have found their groove on main and more people are going to come around to them. They traded barbs and then Lacey Evans came out and said she was the reason Becky lost. Becky then challenged them to a 3-on-3 match and the heels wondered who her partners would be. Nikki volunteered and then Becky volunteered Alexa to be the third member of their team. Alexa didn’t want to at first, but Becky told her she would just stand there and let her do all the work, so she came down. The best part of this was Alexa taking her coffee with her and that had me dying.
Becky Lynch, Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross vs IIconics & Lacey Evans
Pretty solid match between these women and it was a refreshing one at that. It was nice to see the IIconics work the ring for a change and I think they did well here. Are they the best workers? No but they do their job well and work well together as a team. Lacey has shown some improvement in the ring and she obviously can get better and I think she will. She is totally committed to her character and that is something you can’t teach because you either got it or you don’t. Nikki spent a lot of time in the ring and that is great for her because she is someone the WWE fans will love the more they see of her. The faces and Alexa ended up picking up the win and this was a fun match.
Mick Foley Unveils New Championship
I was ready to give this a much lower grade because I hated the design of the belt and the title but when I saw what happened after, I decided I shouldn’t be so hard. Mick Foley came down and hyped up what this new title was going to be, and it ended up being called the “24/7 Championship” and I absolutely hate that name. They could have come up with something better and judging by the reaction of the crowd, they wanted something better too. I don’t blame them, but Mick did his best to win them back over. I was wondering where they would go from here and then out came, for lack of a better term, the jobber locker room and we had ourselves a scramble to decide who would be the first champion. So much comedy took place and Titus O’Neil ended up being the first winner. Well that was until Robert Roode came from out of nowhere to snatch the title from him and we were off to the races with the 24/7 Championship.
The Miz vs Drew McIntyre
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from this match and we ended up getting a pretty good match. Drew is an absolute star in the waiting and being paired with Shane could help elevate him because he was Vince’s “Chosen One” all those years ago. I have enjoyed the Miz as a face and I think this match helped further his face run because of the odds he had to overcome and the beast that is Drew McIntyre. It looked like McIntyre’s size and strength would be too much for the Miz, but he was able to chop down one leg and slow McIntyre down a bit. I was truly surprised with how well these two worked with one another because the Miz’s style doesn’t blend with everybody, but it did in this case. Shane provided enough of a distraction that would allow Drew McIntyre to hit the Miz with a Claymore and he picked up the win. After the match, Drew set up the Miz for a coast to coast, but Roman Reigns came down to the ring to make the save before that happened.
Kofi Kingston & Seth Rollins Backstage
Kofi and Seth were interviewed backstage about their upcoming main event match against Lashley and Corbin and I thought both men did well here. They both talked about being aware that Lesnar was still in the building so there could be a chance they could get cashed in on and they both had confidence they would retain if that were to happen. I love that Kofi did his hip gyration and that Seth did not engage in it. I was hoping Kofi would yell at Seth that the reason he didn’t join in was because he beat him at Madden on UpUpDownDown but he didn’t. That was such a missed opportunity but still a fun segment nonetheless.
Samoa Joe Promo
Samoa Joe is just simply brilliant on the mic and he can darn near do no wrong when he delivers a promo. He spoke about not being pinned since his shoulders were up and that Rey should give him back his title. This was such a stellar promo from Joe and another one we can add to the growing library of fantastic Samoa Joe promos.
Robert Roode & The 24/7 Championship
I decided to lump all the 24/7 stuff in this because I feel as though it works best like this. Roode was running for his life after winning and he was being chased for the rest of Raw because of the 24/7 Championship. He evaded the group chasing him at one point, but they eventually found him and continued the chase. Lashley and Corbin were talking at one point and Roode came running by them and the huge crowd was chasing him down. The best part was Drake Maverick clutching at his back and sides because of the workout he was getting chasing Roode. This all led to the outside area where Roode bumped into R-Truth and Truth hid Roode in the trunk of his car and it looked like Roode would escape Raw with the 24/7 Championship. That was until a referee appeared from Truth’s car and Truth rolled up Roode to become the new 24/7 Champion. Truth took off in his car with the title and I really cannot wait to see the zaniness that Truth will bring for the 24/7 Championship.
Kofi Kingston & Seth Rollins vs Baron Corbin & Bobby Lashley
Ealrier in the night, Triple H informed Seth and Kofi that they would face Lashley and Corbin in the main event in a tag match. The match then ended up being a No DQ match and while Seth was making his entrance, Corbin and Lashley attacked him from behind and Kofi tried to help but was thrown to the side rather easy. Corbin and Lashley used that early advantage to their benefit as Kofi and Seth were hurt from the sneak attack. Lashley seems to be relegated to just tag matches since Lio Rush was removed as his hype man and I wonder if this is the future for Lashley. Kofi and Seth did a good job fighting back to gain some advantage but Corbin and Lashley would regain the advantage each time. It looked like the heels would continue dominating and win but the faces would mount one last comeback and that would lead to the win. Seth used one of the chairs he was buried with to even the odds and eventually Kofi hit Trouble in Paradise for the win. Both men were battered after the match and Lesnar decided to make his way down to the ring for a possible cash-in. This ended up just being a tease as Lesnar then continued walking and left the champions wondering when he will cash-in his MITB briefcase.
I had to rewatch Raw because I wasn’t so sure how I felt about it when it finished on Monday and I have to say that this was a pretty solid episode of Raw. From start to finish, I was pretty entertained throughout and there weren’t any real low points either. The highlights were the Usos vs the Revival, Cesaro vs Ricochet, the main event and the antics that resulted from the 24/7 Championship. The only real low point was the reveal of the 24/7 Championship because it was not done particularly well. So overall, a pretty good episode of Raw this week and make sure to join me next week for another Sovereign Statement.