We have arrived at the Raw after Summerslam and it was a good show. Raw has become quite enjoyable to watch ever since the Heyman influence has become more prevalent. There are still low points, but they are nowhere as frequent prior to Heyman taking control. With all that in mind, let us see what Raw had for us post-Summerslam.
Seth Rollins In-Ring
I don’t know if Seth’s promos were always like this and I just never noticed but man oh man are they bland. I get what he is going for, but it just isn’t hitting all the beats that it is supposed to. The other problem I had with this promo is that it just felt like the same one he gave after Wrestlemania when he beat Brock. He spoke some more and to our pleasant surprise, the OC came out to help this opening segment out. AJ pretty much got in Seth’s face and told him that he should move on from Brock and worry about the OC. He challenged him to a match for later on tonight and Seth would accept. Not the best opening segment but it was definitely saved by the OC.
Street Profits Backstage
I know people are clamoring for the Street Profits to wrestle on Raw, but I am enjoying them as the Greek chorus for Raw. This is so much better than constantly having recap videos and they are entertaining while they do what they do. Montez Ford just has “it” and, if done right, could become a huge star and future world champion. That is not a knock on Angelo Dawkins but I feel like Montez has the higher ceiling. I loved how Dawkins was playing up being tired from the after party and Sami Zayn then decided to come in and rain on their fun. Sami spoke the truth like he has since turning heel and it was perfect. I loved that Samoa Joe showed up behind Sami and watched as Sami talked bad about him. Joe then brought the intensity and gave Sami a chance to experience the power game by challenging him to a match.
King of the Ring Announcement
I absolutely love that they are bringing back the King of the Ring because it was always a highlight for me in the 90s. It raised the stock of so many superstars, but it did also produce some failures. It hasn’t been seen since Wade Barrett won it and he did nothing with it. I hope this time around they use it to its full potential and elevate somebody. I personally want Baron Corbin to win because he the type of heel that would make this gimmick work. Also, it would set the IWC a blaze to have to endure King Corbin and I relish at the thought of that.
Samoa Joe vs Sami Zayn
I think it was a pretty safe bet that Joe was going to beat Sami here. Sami just doesn’t win many matches anymore and Joe looked dominant here. Sami didn’t really get much offense, if any, and lost to the Coquina Clutch. Joe then got on the mic and pretty much solidified that he isn’t a face and is the same Joe we all love. He so eloquently said that he accepts Roman’s apology but that he isn’t forgiving the fans.
The Miz vs Dolph Ziggler
The Miz came out prepared for his match with Dolph and Dolph did the typical heel move of faking being injured so he could attack his opponent before the bell. After that, it was pretty much the kind of match we should expect from these two. They do have good chemistry, but it is jus so hard to care about anything either man is doing right now. Dolph is Dolph and he made the Miz look good. I have cooled off on the Miz as a face because he has just los so much and doesn’t have any real momentum. The Miz surprisingly picked up the win with the figure four and it seemed like that was that. The Dolph got on the mic and taunted Miz and he came back to give Dolph a Skull Crushing Finale.
Becky Lynch Backstage
Becky Lynch has a bit of her edge back and she was solid on the mic here. She gave Natalya props for the match at Summerslam and she said that she is ready to take on everybody. The confidence she oozes is palatable and this was a good warning shot to the women’s locker room.
I forgot how much I enjoyed seeing Elias on the mic with his guitar because he has been relegated to being Shane’s stooge. I love how he pointed out the fact that someone always interrupts him and how shocked he was that nobody came out. Of course, that wouldn’t stay the case and Ricochet came out to interrupt him. Ricochet was decent on the mic here and did the usual thing of telling Elias that he sucks. This would lead to a match between the two and a referee came down to make it official.
Ricochet vs Elias
Ricochet really is that dude and is just so dang smooth in the ring. Elias looked good here as well and I really do believe that he is someone that wrestles to the level of his opponent. Ricochet got so much air on a back body drop and it left mouth wide open. There was good back and forth action that saw Ricochet pick up the win with a roll up. The only thing was that Elias’ shoulder was up so we may see another match with these two next week.
Rey Mysterio vs Andrade
In comparison to their previous matches, this one just seemed a bit off to me. That’s not to say it wasn’t good, it was, but their timing was off at times. Andrade picked up the quick first fall due to the help of Zelina Vega and I was expecting Rey to pick up the second fall. That wasn’t the case and Andrade would do a clean sweep. The second fall is where things were a bit off because some of the moves were not hit as clean as they could have been. Rey did hit a fantastic head scissors over the rope to the outside. Rey would hit Andrade with a scary destroyer inside the ring and Andrade had an ugly landing. Andrade won the match here and it sucks to say that this match was just not near the level of their previous encounters.
Stone Cold Steve Austin Interview
I hate to give something with Stone Cold this rating, but it does deserve it. The audio was bad because it was done over Skype, so they had to constantly adjust the volume levels. Stone Cold tried to provide insight on some things, but did we really need it? This was all done to promote his new show on the USA network and for that I give this a big SKIP!
Rey Mysterio Backstage
I have absolutely no idea what they are doing with Rey here and I love it. Rey looks to be a broken man after losing to Andrade and he just kept saying he is doing this for his family. I wonder if this is leading to his son coming into the picture to wrestle or if he is going to align with Andrade and start a Los Ingobernables/LWO type of thing in WWE. Time will tell what they do here, but I am intrigued.
Street Profits Backstage Part 2
Montez was full of energy here and I love that Dawkins was too tired to contribute. I love that Montez tried to use the Nikki Cross angle to wake him up, but it just wasn’t working. Dawkins then started to chug his water and I just loved Montez’s reaction to the whole thing.
Drew McIntyre in Gorilla
Like Montez Ford, Drew McIntyre simply has “it” and he showed it off here once again. Seems like they are distancing him a bit from Shane McMahon and that is only going to work in his favor. Drew doesn’t need to be aligned with anybody because he is a destroyer and he showed that on the mic here. I loved how he recapped this program with Cedric Alexander and made it seem so one-sided. Drew is on the cusp of being a star and I hope he gets there.
Drew McIntyre vs Cedric Alexander
Simply put, this was one of the best Raw matches of 2019. This match had everything you could ask for in a match and then some. I do not even want to go into too much detail because it is that good of a match that it must be seen. The only things I will say about this match is that Drew made Cedric look like he belongs on the main roster. Drew would pick up the win in the match, but the real winner was Cedric. Cedric looked amazing in defeat and this match was simply awesome.
The OC Backstage
I love the interaction between these three and you can see just how much fun they are having being reunited. The way Gallows and Anderson busted AJ’s chops over not being able to beat Lesnar was perfect. AJ’s reasoning after the fact was great as well and it is nice to see these three having fun again.
Robert Roode vs No Way Jose
Why oh why was this match on Raw? This is one of the most random matches I have had to write about, and it was a match that happened. I can sum this up with one word and that is SKIP!
Paul Heyman Backstage
From something random to something that was the complete opposite. I love how flustered Heyman was because Brock doesn’t get to have an immediate rematch with Seth. Heyman being left speechless is a rare sight and he played it perfectly. Heyman is such a master of this craft and shows it every week.
Lucha House Party vs The Revival
Here we have another random match that I was left scratching my head about. I felt like something had to happen during this match and it did. R-Truth and Carmella would come out with the locker room chasing them and we had an impromptu 24/7 Championship segment. The Revival would pin Truth and become the first co-24/7 Champions, but it wouldn’t last very long as Truth pinned Dawson to reclaim the title. Truth and Carmella would escape to the back as everybody gave chase. Truth thought he got away from everybody, but Elias would smash him with a guitar and regain the 24/7 Championship.
Natalya is such a nice woman from everything you see online but she just isn’t good on the mic. Nothing she said here was believable until she started talking about her father Jim Neidhart. She is someone that should remain a face at all times and you could see it here. I knew somebody was going to probably interrupt her, but I wasn’t expecting it to be the person that came out.
THE BOSS RETURNS!!!
This is exactly what the Raw women’s division needed and Sasha Banks is back. Not only is she back but she is back as a heel and the Boss we all knew and loved in NXT. She came back with blue hair and the vicious side we haven’t seen since NXT. So many fans online were saying she was leaving WWE and heading to AEW and all she needed was time away. She came out and attacked Natalya and laid quite the beating on her. Becky Lynch then came down and it looked like she may be able to hold her own against Sasha. Sasha didn’t have any of that and she quickly got the advantage and would beat down Becky with a steel chair. The Boss versus the Man is something I have been wanting to see and now we will finally get it.
Viking Raiders vs Local Talent
Another week and another squash match for this team. I am honestly starting to lose interest in them because they aren’t progressing at all. Until they move on and do something different, their matches will all get the same score. Say it with me, SKIP!
Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross Backstage
I have loved this pairing of Alexa and Nikki and I think they are growing as a team. They are starting to play well off of each other and Nikki is fully behind Alexa now. Alexa is still giving hints of her manipulation of Nikki and I love that it isn’t as obvious anymore. I know people have said the women’s tag titles don’t mean anything right now but having them on Alexa and Nikki is the right move. WWE have been behind Alexa for quite some time so this title reign could prove to be what the titles needed this whole time.
Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross vs The Kabuki Warriors
The Kabuki Warriors straight up have the absolute worst theme music going right now. Kairi and Asuka each have great individual themes but this mash up of their themes is just horrible. I have come up with a better one in my own head that sounds so much better than the one they have now. Paige wasn’t there because she needs surgery and to be quite honest, I wouldn’t mind seeing Asuka and Kairi split up. They sort of work as a team, but they still feel too random together. Nikki and Alexa have gelled well as a team in this short period of time and they look like a team. The match itself wasn’t half bad and that should be expected given the participants. Bliss and Cross would win the match and retain the titles.
Seth Rollins Backstage
This promo by Seth was a bit better than the one he gave to start Raw. He came off with the swagger of a top champion and that is what he needs. Seth as a face should really take elements from his heel persona and just translate them over. It is fine to be a cocky face and he had a bit of that here. Less pandering to the fans and more stuff like this.
Seth Rollins vs AJ Styles
This is Seth Rollins versus AJ Styles so you knew this would be a solid match and it was. AJ is an all-time great when it comes to his in-ring work and Seth could very well end up with a similar title when things are said and done. Solid back and forth action throughout this match and I don’t think this will be the last time we see heel AJ versus face Seth. Seth still had his ribs taped up so AJ would take shots at his ribs whenever he could. The match would end in disqualification when Gallows and Anderson attacked Seth to prevent AJ from getting pinned. Ricochet would come out to help Seth and he did a good job evening up the odds. The numbers proved too much though and the OC would regain the advantage. AJ went to deliver a Styles Clash from the middle rope when Braun Strowman came out to help Seth. Braun was on fire and cleared the ring of Gallows and Anderson. Braun would give AJ a pair of running powerslams and handed Seth the Universal Championship. Braun did give the title a look before he handed it over and he may be next in line for a title shot it seems.
Overall, this was a very solid episode of Raw and they continue to keep their momentum. This match of the night was definitely Cedric versus McIntyre because they completely tore the house down. Sasha Banks had the moment of the night with her long-awaited return and the set-up for a match with Becky. The closing match and post-match stuff was solid as well and so was the 24/7 Championship stuff. The low points had to be the Stone Cold interview, the Viking Raiders squash, Roode versus Joe, and Natalya’s promo. Once again, this was a very solid episode of Raw and they really are riding a wave of momentum. I am Sovereign S.A.M. and I will see you all next week for another Sovereign Statement.