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Mitchell’s WWE Monday Night Raw Live Report! (2/26/18)

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All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter.

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Six Woman Tag: Alexa Bliss, Nia Jax & Mickie James VS Asuka, Bayley & Sasha Banks; Asuka, Bayley & Sasha win.
  • Bray Wyatt VS Heath Slater w/ Rhyno; no contest.
  • Seth Rollins VS The Miz w/ The Miztourage; Rollins wins.
  • Finn Balor VS The Miz w/ The Miztourage; restarted as…
  • No Disqualifications: Finn Balor VS The Miz; Balor wins.
  • WWE Raw Tag Team Championship Best 2 out of 3 Falls Match: The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke; The Bar wins and retains the WWE Raw Tag Team Championships.
  • Braun Strowman VS Elias; Strowman wins by disqualification.

PLAY BY PLAY

The Elimination Chamber made history.

Seven men, all of main event caliber, waged war inside the sinister steel structure. But it was The Monster Among Men who dominated and eliminated five men. It came down to familiar foes as Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns gave everything left they had. But in the end, three Superman Punches and two Spears were enough for The Big Dog to win his ticket to Wrestlemania. Of course, Strowman wasn’t finished with Roman as he still got the last Monster Slam and a pod-destroying toss. Roman may have won, but will it be Strowman that conquers the WWE?

 

Raw looks back to “Rowdy” Ronda Rousey’s contract signing.

The Baddest Woman on the Planet was almost brought to tears at the ovation from the fans in Las Vegas last night. Kurt Angle was excited, too, because he knew The Authority’s plan to “own the bitch” was coming to fruition. Angle also remembered Stephanie talking trash about Rousey. This angered the Rowdy Ronda, but COO HHH did his best to keep things calm. That is, until he got put through a table! Then Stephanie, in her anger, slapped Ronda. That only upset Ronda more, but Stephanie got away before Ronda could do anything. Ronda still signed her contract to Raw, but now she’ll have to “explain herself” to the WWE Universe. What will she have to say in response to last night’s rowdiness?

 

Alexa Bliss and Mickie James head to the ring.

The Goddess is still Raw Women’s Champion after the inaugural Six Women Elimination Chamber match, but that doesn’t take away from the former Six-Time Women’s Champion’s stellar performance. Alexa reflects on the historic moment, as well as marvels at herself. The fans have no idea how amazing it feels to retain in such a historic match. She defied the odds and set a new standard, and the WWE Universe will talk about this for the next 50 years. February 25th, 2018 is the day Alexa changed the game #ThenNowAndForever.

But she’s not selfish, so she gives credit to “this amazing woman”, Mickie James. Mickie showed everyone why she is a Six-Time Woman’s Champion and future Hall of Fame candidate. They’ve had their “rough friendship” moments, but Alexa has learned so much from her, and everyone in the locker room can. Speaking of the locker room: Absolution has a bright future, but not while Alexa’s here; Sasha Banks & Bayley, Alexa has harsh words, but she doesn’t want to be “that person”. Never mind, she’ll say it. Bayley is a “sad situation” and Sasha, the other finalist, was taken down by her massive ego. This isn’t the Boss’ year. Ever since Alexa came to Raw, it has been her year, which is why she’s head to Wrestlemania.

Alexa points to the sign, she’s always wanted to do that. It feels good. But then she’ll feel even better when Alexa breaks Asuka’s Streak. Oh, speaking of break, will Asuka be in good shape? Nia Jax wrecked Asuka last night, and Alexa will “finish the job.” But speaking of Asuka, here she comes!

Asuka storms into the ring, but Alexa has her slow down. “Are you kidding me?” But the fans sing, “Asuka’s gonna kill~ you!” Alexa thinks it’s funny that Asuka is acting like she’s 100%. She’s not fooling anyone, Nia Jax humiliated and crushed her. And Alexa thought, “I wish I was Nia. Nia will definitely be added to the Wrestlemania match, where she deserves to be.” But unfortunately, one little move and it doesn’t go that way. Alexa believes Nia deserves to be in that match. Alexa says it slower so Asuka and her bad English can understand. Asuka, wipe that smile off your face before Alexa has Mickie do it for you.

But Mickie won’t have to, here comes Nia!

The Irresistible Force hits the ring, Asuka hits Alexa and Mickie! But then Nia runs Asuka over! With flashbacks to last night, Nia uses her power to lift Asuka, but Asuka brings her down in a triangle! Mickie and Alexa return to fight off Asuka! But then Bayley and Sasha Banks hit the ring! They even the numbers and fight off Alexa and Mickie. However, Nia runs them over, too! Asuka gets up and kicks Nia back down, but Alexa gets the sucker punch! The Goddess and her allies take their leave of Asuka, Bayley and Banks. With things this tense, will the champion and challenger even make it to Wrestlemania?

 

Six Woman Tag: Alexa Bliss, Nia Jax & Mickie James VS Asuka, Bayley & Sasha Banks!

Seems that scuffle won’t be the end of this. We now have a big opening match of the Goddess and her allies against The Empress and apparent best friends in The Hugger and the Boss. Bayley and Mickie start with the bell, Mickie gets the wristlock. Bayley rolls and reverses, but Mickie reverses back. Mickie puts on a headlock, but Bayley powers out. Mickie runs Bayley over, then things speed up. Bayley gets Mickie into a corner, then bumps her off buckles. Mickie kicks back, then runs but Bayley evades to scoop and slam. Bayley drops an elbow, covers, TWO. Bayley whips Mickie but Mickie elbows back, and then hits the Mick-canrana. Mickie runs Bayley over, covers, TWO.

Tag to Nia, and the Brutal Beauty headbutts Bayley in the ribs. Nia taunts little Bayley but Bayley hits back. Bayley ends up in a corner, Nia squashes her. Nia tags in Alexa, and ALexa clubs Bayley down. Alexa bumps Bayley off buckles then stomps a mudhole into her. The ref counts and Alexa lets up, but then Bayley flapjacks Alexa off buckles. Bayley gives Alexa buckle bumps over and over, getting up to 10. Snapmare to cover, TWO. Bayley runs to clobber Alexa with an elbow, TWO. She brings Alexa up and Sasha tags in suddenly. Sasha rolls Alexa, TWO, but Sasha runs to drop double knees. TWO, but Sasha keeps on Alxa.

Alexa fights back but can’t get away. She fires more forearms but Sasha brings her down in a drop toehold to crucifix pin, TWO. Alexa whips Sasha to a corner but Sasha reverses. Sasha runs in, ends up on the apron, but hits Alexa with a stiff knee. Alexa sits down, Sasha hits a wrecking ball knee drop. Cover, TWO, and Alexa gets out of the ring. Mickie checks on Alexa but Sasha gets them both with a wrecking ball dropkick. She puts Alexa in the ring, but then Nia runs Sasha over!

Bayley comes over to check on her friend whiel Nia grins down at her. Alexa drags Sasha up and in, covers, TWO! Alexa slams Sasha’s face off the mat before pulling her hair. She wraps Sasha in a chinlock, but the fans rally for Sasha. Sasha gets up and fights out, but Alexa knees low and throws her into ropes. Alexa stomps Sasha and Sasha slips out of the ring while we go to break.

Raw returns and now Nia has Sasha in a chinlock. The fans rally, and Sasha jawbreakers out. She reaches for her partners but is short by just inches as Nia catches her!

Nia powers Sasha to an open corner! She rocks Sasha with a headbutt, then chokes her against ropes. The ref counts and Nia lets up at 4. Nia tags in Mickie, and Mickie snapmares Sasha into a running kick. Cover, TWO, but Mickie keeps her cool as she wraps Sasha in a chinlock. The fans cheer for Sasha again, but Mickie keeps on The Boss with more wrenching. Sasha gets to her feet but Mickie brings her back and tags Alexa. Alexa stomps another mudhole, then drags Sasha out for the skateboard stomps. She lets up at 4, covers, TWO.

Alexa taunts Bayley and Asuka with a possible tag, but wraps Sasha back in a chinlock. The fans keep rallying, Sasha gets out again, but Alexa runs her over. Alexa sucker punches Asuka!

She grins as she goes back to Sasha. Sasha suplex counters, and both women are down. The two crawl for their corners, Sasha wants the tag on Bayley, but Bayley hops down?! She got Sasha back for the betrayal, and Mickie pounces! Sasha slips out of the waistlock, and rolls Mickie, TWO! Tag to Asuka!

Asuka rallies on MIckie with furious strikes. She builds speed, hip attack! Nia comes in but gets a swift roundhouse. Asuka runs but Mickie kicks back, only to run into the pop-up knee! Asuka’s not done there, she kicks away on Mickie. She takes Nia out with a hip attack, then buzzsaw on Mickie! Alexa breaks the pin just in time! Saido suplex on Alexa from Bayley! Mickie goes for the neckbreaker, Asuka gets the armbar! Mickie taps, Asuka and team wins! They weren’t all that cohesive, but a win is a win. Will Asuka maintain her streak past Wrestlemania? Will Bayley and Sasha ever go back to being friends?

 

Raw Talk had John Cena share his thoughts after the Elimination Chamber match.

No one has put more pressure on the Face that Runs the Place than Cena himself. “The cards aren’t falling my way and here we are.” Cena has no ticket to the Grandest Stage of Them All, yet. He has a plan, but all he can say is, “I’ll figure it out.” Cena will appear live up next, what more has he to say on his Wrestlemania plan?

 

John Cena heads to the ring!

He looks up to the Wrestlemania sign as he hears the fans dueling, “Let’s Go Cena!” “Cena sucks!” Cena then looks at the camera and says, “Last night, I failed.”

In the atmosphere of it all, he was then rushed to a room to speak, and he felt “demoralized.” Failure is tough to deal with, and from the fans in attendance, they’re having him go through his failure alone. Cena knows where he is. Character isn’t judged when you’re riding high, it’s when “your back is against the wall.” For Cena, he has come up against that wall. He spent five minutes feeling sorry for himself, then moved forward. Cena knows he said he’ll figure out his Road to Wrestlemania. He thought he’d get there through the Royal Rumble, but no. He thought it would be the Elimination Chamber, but no. Cena thought it was over, and fans know no other superstar would ever admit it like he does.

Cena lets the fans cheer, jeer and boo as they see fit, “because when you say you fail, the disappointment is on you.” Failure gives you two choices: stay down or get up. He got up, and he has figured it out! He challenges, THE UNDERTAKER!!

The fans go wild, chanting “YES! YES!” A total of 39 Wrestlemanias and yet Cena and Taker have never faced each other. “You want Wrestlemania? That IS Wrestlemania!”

But that match won’t happen. Because Cena doesn’t make the matches, and that match isn’t happening because that match is “impossible”. Now everyone understands disappointment. Cena could stay down or get up, and he prefers getting up. His Road to Wrestlemania shall now go through SmackDown!

The Free Agent will show up on SmackDown not to beg, but to “do whatever it takes” to earn a Wrestlemania moment. With that, Cena drops his mic, takes his leave, and heads for the Blue Brand tomorrow night. Who will step up to take on the leader of the Cenation on the Road to Wrestlemania!?

 

Bray Wyatt VS Heath Slater w/ Rhyno!

The Great War crossed through the Elimination Chamber Pay-Per-View, and with some mind games, WOKEN Matt Hardy defeated the Eater of Worlds to make their series 1-1. As such, he takes his frustrations out on the unsuspecting ManBeast as he knocks him out of the ring!

Wyatt defends against Slater, then runs him over with the body check! Rhyno returns, only to get the yurinagi! Wyatt laughs but the fans chant, “DELETE! DELETE!” Even so, Wyatt does his spider walk and targets Slater, hitting a big corner clotheslines. He rains rights on Slater, then grins as he brings him back up. Wyatt dances with the limp Slater, before reeling him into the Sister Abigail! Then one to Rhyno! This was no match, but Wyatt has won something. Or is it that he’s lost something?

Bray Wyatt calls out to Matt Hardy.

“Look what you made me do.” Hardy made him hurt innocent men. This is Hardy’s fault! “You led them to slaughter.” The Great War is far from over. They will face each other once more. But this time, Wyatt will make sure those “WOKEN Eyes stay shut forever!” Wyatt laughs and says he’s coming for Hardy. “Run.”

 

The Miz and his Miztourage head to the ring!

The Intercontinental Champion didn’t win the Elimination Chamber. In fact, he was the first one eliminated. But he still has that Intercontinental Championship, and is still on his own Road to Wrestlemania. “And it stops in Anaheim?” They’re just 45 minutes from Los Angeles, “a city with star power”! Miz could see Jennifer Lawrence while pitching ideas to Michael Bay, but no, he’s in “a bonafide suburb.” Maybe, if you’re lucky, you could get a picture with someone dressed as Donald Duck. But Kurt Angle takes his stars for granted. In 62 days, he will be the all-time longest (combined) reigning Intercontinental Champion!

Not Shawn Michaels, not Bret Hart, not Pedro Morales, not Edge, not Chris Jericho, not even Roman Reigns! It’s all going to be MIZ!

He’s even bigger outside the ring. Miz IS the Marine movie franchise, and he and his wife are the stars of the newest sensation, Miz & Mrs. You better cheer that. They don’t. All his accolades, yet Miz is treated no better than any other superstar. In fact, worse! Miz’s face isn’t anywhere! He should be the main event of Wrestlemania! Miz should take Lesnar 1v1 to become the first-ever dual Universal and Intercontinental Champion!

But no, he was forced to start the Chamber match with two men who shouldn’t have even been in the match. Angle handed Finn Balor and Seth Rollins opportunities while Miz is punished. Miz is sick of the disrespect! He doesn’t care what happens to anyone else, he will keep his dream alive because he has the IC title. Everyone take a really good look at it, for it is the “most prestigious and honorable title in all of the WWE!” And since he has it, The Miz demands from Angle, “I want to know what the Intercontinental Champion is doing at Wrestlemania.” And what is he doing? Angle told Miz, “You’re opponent tonight might determine who you face at Wrestlemania.”

Might?! Miz carried this show for almost a year, made his title more relevant than the Universal Championship, and yet he only gets might! He’s been here for 12 years, yet “might” is all he gets? Then whoever it is that comes out, you’re getting a beating, no matter what. But who is it that comes out? Seth Rollins!

Seth Rollins VS The Miz w/ The Miztourage!

The Architect has yet to be Intercontinental Champion, is this going to be the key to his Grand Slam completion?

The bell rings, and after Miz confers with The Miztourage, he circles with Rollins. They tie up, Miz gets the headlock, but Rollins powers out. Miz runs him over, then speeds up. Rollins hip tosses Miz down, then snapmares him into a running kick, but Miz gets clean and free. Miz and Rollins circle again, Miz pulls hair to put Rollins in a corner. The ref counts, Miz backs off, and Rollins dodges his sucker punch. Miz dodges Rollins’ own punch, but Rollins runs him over with a shoulder. Rollins speeds things up again, but blocks the hip toss into a knee and snapmare. Now Rollins gets the Penalty Kick! He then clotheslines Miz right out of the ring.

The Miztourage help Miz up, but Rollins builds speed. Miz and his boys get clear, but Rollins pursues. Miz tries to attack but Rollins sees it coming and counter punches. Rollins keeps the Miztourage back, then puts Miz back in the ring. Rollins takes aim but Bo distracts, Miz knocks Rollins down and into barriers! Miz comes out to fetch Rollins while The Miztourage applauds. Miz drops Rollins onto the barrier, then puts him in the ring. Cover, TWO, but Miz keeps on Rollins with elbows into his shoulders. Miz wraps on a chinlock, but fans rally for Rollins. The Architect gets up to his feet and jawbreakers out of the hold. He then whips Miz, but Miz reverses, kitchen sink knee sits Rollins down. Miz catches his breath, and decides to start up the It Kicks!

He kicks and kicks, but fans say “No!” each time. Miz prepares the buzzsaw, but Rollins ducks and rolls Miz up! TWO, but Rollins chops Miz back. He keeps chopping, then whips Miz. Miz holds ropes, then dumps Rollins all the way out! The champion has control while we go to break.

Raw returns and both men are slowly standing back up. Miz throws a haymaker, but Rollins gives on back. Miz goes again, but so does Rollins. Now Miz kicks low, but Rollins chops and punches him to a corner. Rollins runs in but is put on the apron. He knocks Miz away, then springboards for the flying clothesline! Rollins keeps going, Slingblade! He boots Miz away, then hops up, for the flying blockbuster! Cover, TWO! Rollins won’t let that deter him, he gets to the top rope. He takes aim but Miz rolls away to the far side. Rollins hops down and walks over, but Miz yanks him into the ropes. Miz hits the low DDT! Cover, TWO!

Rollins rolls to ropes while Miz catches his breath. The fans duel while Miz hits a running dropkick in the corner. He goes corner to corner and hits a second dropkick! Miz runs in and hits his A-Lister clothesline, then dumps Rollins out. Now Miz climbs up to the top, but Rollins trips him up. Rollins climbs up to join Miz, but Miz resists. Miz fights back with body shots, then headbutts Rollins down. Rollins returns to SUPERPLEX and roll through to Falcon Arrow! Cover, TWO! Both men are down but stirring. The fans know “This is Awesome!” Rollins takse aim at Miz, and mule kicks him. He runs but Axel hooks a foot. Miz goes for the Finale but Rollins rolls him up, TWO! Miz swings but Rollins dodges to DIVE on the Miztourage!

Rollins hurries back into the ring an clotheslines Miz out. The fans are all fired up, Rollins builds speed to DIVE again! He takes everyone out, then puts Miz in, for Revolution Knee! Rollins won’t stop there, he climbs up from the far side! BIG Frog Splash!! Rollins wins! He pins the Intercontinental Champion! Will The Architect challenge for the title at Wrestlemania?

But wait! Finn Balor appears!

The Extraordinary Man, inaugural Universal Champion, and familiar foe to Rollins, is here, but why? Just to ruin Rollins’ moment? Rollins leaves and we go to break.

 

Finn Balor VS The Miz w/ The Miztourage!

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, The Miz must wrestle a second match, against the 100% Finn Balor! Can he even hope to win after what he just went through with Rollins?

The bell still rings, but Miz is reluctant to have any part of this. He circles with Finn, and The Miztourage come in to attack! The match is thrown out, but Bo and Axel keep stomping on Finn. Bo feeds Finn to Axel’s DDT!

Then Miz has them bring Finn up, but The Club come to the rescue! Anderson & Gallows fight off The Miztourage for Finn, and the fans chant “Too Sweet! Woop Woop!” Gallows throws Bo out, then Anderson throws Axel. Finn and Miz are alone in the ring while the brawl continues outside. Miz stalks Finn, but Angle says to stop right there. Angle said that Miz was going to have a match with Balor, and now the others are ejected from ringside to start this match over. There must be a winner, or Miz won’t be at Wrestlemania at all. The Good Brothers and The Miztourage leave, and the match restarts.

No Disqualifications: Finn Balor VS The Miz!

Finn says he’s ready, the bell rings, Miz hits his A-List clothesline! Miz hurries with a low DDT, covers, TWO! Miz keeps on Finn with a rain of lefts, then the low boot. Cover, TWO! The frustration grows but Miz keeps on Finn by throwing him out. He slips out the side and goes over to Finn, but Finn fights back. Finn chops and punches Miz, then throws him into steel steps. Finn puts Miz back in the ring, but Miz kicks him away. Miz keeps kicking, then boots Finn to a corner. Miz brings Finn out and suplexes him, cover, TWO. He tries another low DDT, cover, TWO! Miz is frustrated with Finn, but both men stand up.

Finn throws hands, Miz knees low. Miz runs, and hits a shotgun knee on Finn! TWO, and Finn gets to ropes while we go to break.

Raw returns to Miz grinding Finn with a chinlock. The fans rally for Finn, and Rollins watches from backstage. Finn gets up and jawbreakers free. Miz checks his teeth then throws a haymaker, but Finn Pele kicks Miz down! The referee begins a ten count, and Finn moves first. He gets to a corner, Miz runs in but Finn boots him away. Finn rallies on Miz with forearms, then the takedown to double stomps!

The fans fire up while Finn flexes. He gives Miz a running chop, then whips him corner to corner for another chop. Finn whips Miz again, but Miz boots him away. Miz hops up, Finn swings a kick and that brings Miz down, for the elbow drop DDT! Cover, TWO! Though surprised, Finn doesn’t slow down. He gets up and gets to a corner to aim at Miz. He runs out but Miz reverses. Finn slips out of the Finale to a roll up, TWO! Miz goes again, A-List combo! Cover, TWO!

Miz’s frustration grows, but he stands up and aims at Finn. He swings a kick but Finn dodges and kicks back. Finn gives Miz those “It Kicks”! He runs and dropkicks Miz down, TWO! Miz rolls out of the ring, but Finn slips out the other side. Finn runs around the corner, to blast Miz with a dropkick! More flexing before Finn puts Miz in the ring. Finn Slingblades Miz down, then blasts him with another dropkick! Now Finn climbs up high, and the fans fire up as he hits Coup de Grace! Finn wins! Has Finn earned himself an Intercontinental Championship match now?!

Backstage interview with Seth Rollins.

He has no idea what to make of Finn beating a guy he just beat. That’s not how you prove yourself. You prove yourself by lasting 65 minutes in a gauntlet. But they both came up short in the Chamber, so where does that leave Rollins for Wrestlemania? Rollins has learned that “There is more than one road to Wrestlemania.” He knows how to pave his own way, because he wants that Intercontinental Champion! The Architect goes for the Grand Slam, but will he have to worry about the Extraordinary Man on the way?

 

Roman Reigns heads to the ring.

The Big Dog won the Elimination Chamber and is now the #1 Contender to the Universal Championship. And since The Advocate to The Beast promised his client would be here tonight, Roman has come out to hold up his end of the promised face-to-face encounter. After hearing out the cheers and the jeers, Roman speaks.

“I’m a man of my word.” Roman said he would win, and he did. So when he says he’ll go to Wrestlemania and beat Brock Lesnar, he’s telling the truth. But speaking of the truth, “I don’t know why I’m covering for this guy.” The truth is that Lesnar isn’t actually here. Up until 30 minutes ago, we all thought he was going to be here, but nope. No one else will say it but Roman will, Lesnar is “an entitled piece of crap who hides behind his contract.”

Just think about it! Six weeks away and the Universal Champion isn’t here? They were in Vegas, he was there, but not the Chamber. He was hanging out with Dana White and the UFC! Why? Because Lesnar doesn’t respect Roman, the fans or the locker room. Roman is sick of it, everyone is, and “we all know it!” Every week, the other superstars “bust our ass” but Lesnar shows up when the money or the venue is right. But it doesn’t matter, Roman will be there, because he says he will.

Brock and Paul will show up later and say they’re business men, but Roman was born to this business. His family bloodline IS the business! Roman learned early on that there’s a fine line between business and respect. And he’ll say this right now: “I don’t respect Brock Lesnar. And I damn sure don’t fear that bitch.” That’s all he has to say, and now he’ll go back and get chewed out for the sake of his respect for this business. Mic drop and some actually applause, has Roman just fired the first shot?

 

Braun Strowman speaks.

“I may not have won the Elimination Chamber match, but I saved us all from any more of Elias’ noise pollution.” Tonight, Strowman will perform a symphony of destruction that is a literal smash hit! Can The Drifter survive another run in with the Monster Among Men?

 

WWE Raw Tag Team Championship Best 2 out of 3 Falls Match: The Bar VS Titus Worldwide w/ Dana Brooke!

There will be no more flukes and no more lucky shots between the Swiss Cyborg, Celtic Gladiator or the Real Deal’s rising brand. One team will decisively win and be the champions, who will the odds favor this close to Wrestlemania?

Sheamus and Titus start, but then Cesaro speeds by. BROGUE, The Bar gets the first fall fast! They used brains and brawn, and celebrate like they’ve already won the whole thing.

Apollo helps Titus regroup, and Cesaro comes in to start the second fall with Apollo.

They tie up, Cesaro knees low and whips, but Apollo fights back. Apollo flies, covers, TWO. Roll up, ONE, small package, ONE. Apollo tries the victory roll, TWO, and Cesaro rocks him with a right. Tag to Sheamus, and Sheamus goes after Apollo. Corner to corner whip but Apollo goes up and over to then dropkick Sheamus down. Cover, ONE, but Apollo keeps on Sheamus. Sheamus gets loose but Titus tags in. Sheamus wants nothing to do with an angry Gator, but too late! Titus puts him in a corner. Sheamus knees low, tags Cesaro in, but Titus runs him over.

Titus glares at Sheamus, but blocks Cesaro’s roll with power. He chops Cesaro, then chops him again. Tag to Apollo, and Titus throws him in for the shoulder tackle. Cesaro is fed to a scoop slam, then Apollo adds a leaping elbow drop. TWO, but Apollo keeps Cesaro grounded. He tags Titus back in, they double whip and shoulder Cesaro back down. Titus drags Cesaro up then whips him hard into buckles. Sheamus wants a tag, but stays back when Titus looks his way. Apollo tags back in, he lifts Cesaro and then drops him. “Worldwide~!” standing moonsault!

TWO! Sheamus swings at Apollo but Apollo knocks him down, then asai moonsaults on The Bar! The champions aren’t as in control as they thought while we go to break.

Raw returns and Cesaro keeps Apollo back from his corner. Cesaro reaches for his own tag but APollo reels him back into forearms. Apollo keeps throwing forearms but Cesaro whips, only for Apollo to send Cesoar flying out! The fans rally while Apollo crawls but Cesaro tags Sheamus first. Sheamus intercepts and throws Apollo to ropes. Apollo slips out of the scoop to tag Titus! Titus rallies and chops away on Sheamus.

He then throws Sheamus across the ring! Titus storms over but Sheamus boots him away, only to walk into the powerslam! The fans bark with Titus, and he runs in corner to corner for the corner splash. Titus also takes out Cesaro, then lifts Sheamus, Dominator slam! TWO!

But that won’t slow Titus Worldwide! Apollo tags in, goes top rope, big splash! Csaro barrels in for the break, so Titus throws him back out. Sheamus throws Titus out, but Apollo rolls Sheamus! TWO, enziguri! Standing moonsault again, TWO! Apollo and Sheamus are both down, but Apollo is stirring. Cesaro trips up Titus but Titus clobbers Cesaro. Sheamus clobbers Titus then throws him into barriers, but then Apollo FLIES! Apollo puts Sheamus in, climbs up but has to fight off Cesaro. Sheamus kicks Apollo’s feet out then tags Cesaro. The Bar hits A-Swiss-ted White Noise! The Bar wins and retain in the 2-0 sweep!

Is this the end of second chances at the Raw Tag Team Championships for Titus Worldwide?

In-ring interview with The Bar.

Titus Worldwide looked to have their number, but The Bar now has Titus’ number, and it’s ZERO. Two men walk into The Bar, and then nothing. Nothing walks into this Bar and ever gets up. Just ask The New Day, the Hardys, Rollins & Ambrose- Well, Ambrose got up, but his arm didn’t. Sheamus remembers now, they took out Jason Jordan. Who? Exactly. But Wrestlemania is coming, and everyone wants their moment. The Bar might be punished because of how dominant they are! To be honest, who is there left to face after there’s no one left to beat? But that’s just how it is when you are The Bar!

 

WWE and Raw proudly present the Warrior Award’s 2018 recipient.

Jarrius “JJ” Robertson, diagnosed with a chronic liver disease, was on the brink of death. But once the ventilation machine went off, his was able to breath on his own. His liver would continue to be a problem, and he’d have sleepless nights. After a second liver transplant, JJ realized his calling: “It takes lives to save lives!” JJ would unite and inspire people with his unstoppable optimism. And after waiting for so long, he would receive his second liver. Now he’s on the up trend, and his positive energy continues to spread.

 

“Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias.”

He tunes up as always, and then asks Anaheim, “Who Wants to Walk with Elias?!” The fans give him a mixed reaction. Hold on to that feeling, because that is what it’s like to be in the presence of greatness. Elias knows Anaheim doesn’t know what that’s like. Things didn’t go as planned in the Chamber, but Elias’ Road to Wrestlemania will not be derailed. Everyone will learn that WWE truly stands for Walk With Elias!

He wasn’t going to treat himself to a performance, he was going to focus on his match. But then he heard Strowman called Elias’ “beautiful music” nothing but “noise pollution.” Strowman criticizes because he is jealous. Who isn’t jealous of Elias? But the real pollution was Strowman singing! Every word from Corey Graves is pollution. And every noise from these people’s mouths is pollution. But Elias’ music is a gift. So please silence phones, hold applause and shut mouths!

“The Monster will be slain, Elias says it’s time. I’ll make him even more ugly than the people of Anaheim.” The fans boo and jeer but he continues. “Braun wants to be me, I know this much is true~. But he can’t hold a candle to Elias, he’s just like all of you!” BRAUN interrupts.

Braun Strowman VS Elias!

The Monster Among Men had one “smash hit” a few weeks ago when he broke a bass cello across The Drifter’s back. He had another when he eliminated Elias, even though Elias was the last man into the Chamber. Will Strowman top the charts again for the third week in a row?

The bell rings and Elias circles with Strowman. He keeps his distance, of course, and the fans chant, “Strow~man!” Elias tries but is just powered back then thrown around by Strowman, so he bails out of the ring. Strowman lets him take his time returning, so Elias waist until the ring count is at 5 before entering. Elias keeps in a corner but fights back with kicks. He tries to whip but Strowman reverses, so Elias bails out again. Strowman chases him! Elias turns it around on Strowman, throwing forearms, but then he runs into Strowman’s shoulder!

Strowman runs at Elias but Elias boots him away. Elias runs at Strowman but Strowman swats him down. Strowman picks Elias up to then throw him across the way again. The fans want “One More time!” but Strowman gives Elias a big corner splash instead. Strowman rolls Elias out of the corner, then stalks the dazed Drifter. He kicks Elias while he’s down, and Elias rests on ropes from the battered ribs.

Elias staggers up but Strowman reels him into a lariat. Strowman scowls as he linse up a shot, and gives Elias another kick to the ribs. He headbutts Elias, and Eilas drops to the mat. Strowman stands Elias up to club him down with that hammering fist. Elias gets under the bottom rope but Strowman brings him up. Elias hotshots Strowman away then goes top rope. Flying ax handles hit but Strowman only staggers. Elias runs, but back into another shoulder!

He gets out of the ring once again, but Strowman goes out and throws him right into barriers. Strowman throws Elias to the other barriers, then into the ring. Elias bails out again, but that won’t stop Strowman. Strowman stalks Elias around the corner, because “You can run but you can’t hide.” Elias hurries under the ring, but Strowman grabs his foot. He drags Elias out, but Elias has the fire extinguisher! Elias blasts Strowman, disqualifying the match, but he doesn’t care!

Elias blasts Strowman more, then bumps him off a post. He puts Strowman back in the ring, then grabs the empty extinguisher can. He rams the can into Strowman’s stomach! Strowman falls to his knees and Elias throws hands. Strowman grabs Elias by the throat, but Elias breaks free, only to get rocked with a right uppercut! Elias runs away while the blinded Strowman tries to clear his eyes. Even with that, Strowman still gives chase! He runs Elias down on the ramp.

Strowman brings Elias up and over to the announce desk. He clears it off, and even with bad vision, picks Elias up! Elias rakes the already damaged eyes, then runs for the hills. The fans boo the Drifter’s cowardice, but Strowman won’t let him get away that easily. They both go backstage, and Elias panics. He runs but Strowman pursues at a stagger.

They end up near the tour buses. Elias is long gone, but Strowman roars “I’m not finished with you!” With no prey to hunt, Strowman leaves while a limousine pulls up. Who is inside?

 

Triple H and Stephanie are here!

The Authority is back again after the situation from last night. It was meant to be the highlight of their executive careers, but because of Kurt Angle, “things went horribly wrong.” Angle hallucinated and said things he believed were true. He has “double pneumonia” and his words stirred up Ronda Rousey to behave in a way not appropriate in this business. Ronda “acted out of savage instinct”, and that is her training. Stephanie got physical to “remind her of the hierarchy”. Stephanie is the Raw Commissioner, which means both Angle and the new Raw superstar, Ronda Rousey, belong to her. She wants to clear the air and establish the roles, starting with apologies. Stephanie wants Angle to come out, but it’s Rousey instead!

Luckily for Stephanie, and even HHH, Angle does appear to calm her down. Angle wants Rousey to hear him out on one thing: “You coming to the WWE is the best decision you’ve ever made.” Rousey says she meant everything she said last night, that she wants this more than anything. But she’s never been slapped before in her life, and she refuses to be disrespected. And above all, she is no one’s property.

Angle understands that, but the WWE is a different world. She must work within their system. Angle also needs this job, he really does. He must do what he must do, so given everything she did last night, Angle must admit he lied. He doesn’t know why, he has been sick and must have misheard them. Whatever he said, not that he remembers them, were all false. Angle is sorry.

Stephanie thanks him for that. The Authority isn’t horrible, despite what you read or hear. They understand why Rousey did what she did, and now knows it was all made up. Now, let’s make her the superstar she deserves to be. Stephanie and HHH leave, but Rousey says there’s one thing left: the slap. If Stephanie wants to put this behind her, Stephanie should apologize to Rousey. And if Stephanie doesn’t, Rousey will rip her arm out. The fans want her to “Rip it out!”

Stephanie steps up to Rousey, and is “terribly sorry”. She is, she reacted to what happened to her husband, it was all the wrong thing to do. Please forgive her, and welcome to the WWE. Good? But then HHH sucker punches Angle! The Authority leaves, but there are still many questions between the various authority figures. What does Stephanie have planned for Rousey now that things are “fine” between them?

 

My Thoughts:

Not a bad Raw to follow up that solid Elimination Chamber PPV. Though, we do need to question why Mickie has suddenly turned Tweener to stay on the same side as Alexa. And we need to question why Bayley ran out with Sasha to help Asuka with the beat down. But that aside, I still enjoyed the Six Woman Tag that occurred, and I really enjoyed Bayley’s tag swerve to get Sasha back for both the Rumble and the Chamber. And we need to wonder why Raw just assumes Asuka will want the Raw Women’s Championship when she hasn’t vocalized her decision. Hopefully that becomes a big moment when Asuka finally chooses, but chances are it might just keep the course of Asuka wants Raw because of everything Alexa is doing and saying.

Cena is always great on the mic but he really got us here tonight. He called out Taker, but then tells us he can’t have Taker, so he’ll settle for anything on SmackDown. It almost gives me the vibe that he’s gone at least Tweener out of his desperation. But since he and Taker were staples of SmackDown for a time, it might be more fitting if The Phenom were to respond there and not on Raw.

Speaking of “might”, Miz is becoming the kind of promo guy that could read the phone book and make it entertaining, provided he gave his commentary. He burned up the mic, then did really good even in two losses to Rollins and Finn. Clearly that is all setting up to at least a triple threat for the Intercontinental Championship, which could give rise to Rollins joining Roman and Ambrose as Grand Slam Champions. And speaking of Roman, he actually did great with that passionate venting of frustration over Lesnar. It speaks to a contingent of the fans that don’t like it either, and gives us the straight-shooting Roman fans have probably wanted for a long time. The real face-to-face can still happen with the remaining weeks, but if we’re being fair to “The Guy”, this was a pretty good start.

WOKEN VS Wyatt 3 at ‘Mania better have a truly BROKEN Build and match because the fans are barely holding on as it is. The Raw Tag Team Championship was a nice surprise, but I’m a bit disappointed Titus Worldwide didn’t even get one of the three covers. The Raw Tag Team Division is cluttered, but I appreciate The Bar being meta about it. I said it with the Chamber and I’ll say it here, this seems to be building towards another ladder match. And unless Strowman and Elias are going to detour into the IC title, it seems a shame it’ll just be the two of them against each other (or in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal). Then, if it wasn’t more clear WWE plans for Angle-Rousey VS HHH-Steph, then you weren’t watching. HHH’s sucker punch made it clear they won’t put this behind them without a match.

My Score: 8.5/10


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE Monday Night Raw Results & Report! (4/22/19)

Raw settles in after the 2019 Superstar Shake-Up!

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WWE Raw Cover image

Raw is now Phenomenal AND Awesome! Both AJ Styles and The Miz moved from SmackDown, but what will they and the other new stars do next?

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender Qualifier Triple Threat: AJ Styles VS Rey Mysterio VS Samoa Joe; Styles wins and advances to the main event.
  • Naomi VS Billie Kay w/ Peyton Royce; Naomi wins.
  • WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender Qualifier Triple Threat: The Miz VS Drew McIntyre VS Baron Corbin; Corbin wins and advances to the main event.
  • Cedric Alexander VS Cesaro; Cesaro wins.
  • The Viking Raiders VS Lucha House Party; No Contest.
  • Becky Lynch VS Alica Fox; Lynch wins.
  • Ricochet VS Robert Roode; Roode wins.
  • WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Match: AJ Styles VS Baron Corbin; Styles wins and will challenge Seth Rollins for the title at Money in the Bank.

PLAY BY PLAY

Triple H returns to Raw!

The Game was victorious against The Animal in their No Holds Barred Wrestlemania match, and now he’s back as the COO! HHH gets Des Moines fired up as he picks up the mic. Because here comes Seth Rollins! Iowa’s own is here to #BurnItDown! Rollins stands with HHH in the ring and says, “This whole thing is too surreal for me, man.” To be standing in the ring, in his home state, after everything he and the fans have been through together, it’s unreal. HHH shakes hands with Rollins, and Rollins reviews how he was in the fight of his life at Wrestlemania. Rollins Slayed the Beast to bring the title home! Fans chant “Welcome Home!” to make it complete.

HHH agrees, Rollins walked in the Kingslayer and came out the certified BEASTSLAYER! Rollins did what he said when he stepped in the ring, stomped “bucket head” Brock Lesnar three times, then walked out THE WWE Universal Champion! And now Rollins stands in his home state (pause to hear the fans cheer again) but now with a new landscape. The Superstar Shake-Up changes everything. Rollins as Universal Champion and measuring stick has the whole world gunning for him. And Rollins knows that. Money in the Bank is coming, but if anyone knows a thing or two about that contract, it’s Rollins. He cashed it in and changed his career, but also had it cashed in on him. Rollins promises he won’t let Mr. MITB get the drop on him again.

HHH warns Rollins not to put the cart before the horse. Don’t worry about who wins that contract, be worried about who he defends against that same night. Did Heyman blow up HHH’s phone to get a rematch for Lesnar? No, surprisingly. Heyman hasn’t said a thing since Mania, and Lesnar must be licking his wounds. Then what’s next? That’s what tonight will determine! Because “the best of the best” are on Raw and will compete into two Triple Threats to then move on to a main event match. The winner of that goes on to Money in the Bank to face Rollins for the Universal Championship. Rollins likes the sound of that. But here comes one of those contenders, it’s Samoa Joe!

The current WWE United States Champion says “It seems I missed my invitation.” Joe reminds us that he does what he wants when he wants. And tonight, the champion has arrived! Joe admits, Becky Lynch came up with a real interesting concept of double champion. Joe has room for one more belt, “and that would be yours”, Rollins. But here comes another of the contenders, Rey Mysterio! The King of Lucha tells Joe that he’s not the only one wanting to make an impact. As for Rollins, Rey isn’t here just to drop knowledge. He’s here for a dream match. After tonight, at Money in the Bank, Rey VS Rollins. But yet another contender appears! It’s Drew McIntyre!

The Scottish Terminator makes himself clear. It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks they deserve, McIntyre cleaned up Raw yet has had no title opportunities! This is DREW’S time! What was it HHH said? Rollins is the measuring stick here? The only reason Rollins is champion is because he got to Lesnar before McIntyre. Everyone knows what McIntyre is capable of. McIntyre promises to win his Triple Threat, go to MITB, beat Rollins and finally be Universal Champion! But now we get The Miz! The Hollywood A-Lister says that first and foremost, he’s back! And the more things change the more they stay the same, because Miz and Rollins are on the same brand and Rollins has something Miz wants. Miz has had a reboot thanks to the “Best in the World”.

This is not the same Miz as before, because he has seen the light. Miz can be a man worthy of the title. And what more must-see match for MITB than Rollins VS Miz?! But now we get Baron Corbin, who wants everything to stop right here. Corbin puts this in perspective for everyone: he is the most deserving of all to challenge Rollins. At Wrestlemania, Rollins slayed the beast, but Corbin retired a legend. McIntyre didn’t beat a gold medalist in his farewell match. Miz didn’t beat a gold medalist in his farewell match. Mysterio didn’t, either. But finally, here comes the Phenomenal One! He leaves the House that AJ Styles Built but looks just fine being on Raw.

And after hearing the fans cheer for him, Styles asks if Corbin ever shuts up. Because c’mon. Corbin’s face is almost as annoying as his voice. And speaking of annoying, it seems like everyone forgets Styles is Raw! Including Rollins. Styles promises to win his triple threat, then bet the other winner, and Raw will realize why SmackDown was the House that AJ Styles Built. But to that point, this is Raw, so Styles promises to give the fans what they’ve always wanted: Rollins VS Styles for the Universal Championship! HHH looks to Rollins, and Rollins sees what HHH meant. Everyone guns for the champ. Rollins is ready. It doesn’t matter who it is at MITB, because this is Seth Freakin’ Rollins, who will BURN IT DOWN! Mic drop from the champ, but who will make it through the special double header to be his contender?

 

WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender Qualifier Triple Threat: AJ Styles VS Rey Mysterio VS Samoa Joe!

A match worthy of any title, the Phenomenal, the King of Lucha and the Destroyer fight for just the first step towards Rollins and Money in the Bank. Who backs up their words with actions?

Raw returns with the bell and all three men circle. Joe quickly headbutts Mysterio then brawls with Styles. Joe knees low then kicks Styles while he’s down. Mysterio returns and enziguris Joe, but Styles hits Mysterio, too. Styles whips Mysterio corner to corner hard then goes back after Joe with a forearm. Mysterio boots Styles then uses Styles to alley-oop to huricanrana Joe out! Now Styles and Mysterio are alone as they circle. Fans duel for these fan favorites as they approach. Mysterio kicks away on Styles’ leg but Styles reverses the whip. Mysterio slides under but Styles gets him with a backbreaker! Styles catches his breath and aims at Joe from the apron. Sliding knee rocks Joe down!

Styles goes back to Mysterio and snap suplexes hard! He drags Mysterio up but Mysterio throws hands. Mysterio runs but into a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Styles keeps his cool as he drags Mysterio up again. He wants the Clash but Mysterio scrambles out. Styles pursues but has to hit Joe first. He gets Mysterio back in the ring and back up for the Clash, but Mysterio manages to get ropes. Styles powers him up but the bomb is countered to a spike-rana! Cover, but Joe breaks it! Joe kicks Styles to a corner then bumps Mysterio off buckles. Joe drags Styles up to whip and run Styles over with the elbow! He drags Mysterio up to throw those swift jabs, then whips and slides Mysterio out to the floor!

Joe goes back to Styles but Styles fights back. Styles whips but runs into the urenage! Cover, TWO! The WWE United States Champion has control while we go to break.

Raw returns and Mysterio fights back against Joe. Mysterio runs but Joe gets him for the powerslam! Cover but Styles breaks it! Styles hobbles over to Joe in the corner and brings him up. Styles fires off the Phenomenal Blitz but Joe tanks it to fire palm strikes. Joe spins, misses, and gets Styles’ PELE! Cover, but Mysterio breaks it! All three men are down but Mysterio and Styles go after each other. Mysterio CHOPS then kicks Styles, then whips. Styles reverses but Mysterio kicks him back. Mysterio runs and wheelbarrows for a bulldog! Mysterio sees Joe coming and trips him into the ropes! Fans fire up as Mysterio dials it up, but Joe bails out. So Mysterio springboards and corkscrews to take Joe down! Mysterio hurries up to a corner, climbs, but Styles stop shim.

Styles climbs up from the outside but Mysterio fights him off. Mysterio wants a superplex but Styles denies him. Joe hurries up and in, and gets both men for a SUPER DOUBLE BACK DROP! All three men are down but Des Moines are fired up! “This is Awesome!” but far from over. Joe crawls to cover Mysteiro, TWO. Joe crawls to cover Styles, TWO! He tries Styles again, TWO! Joe grows frustrated while we go to break.

Raw returns and Mysterio fights against Styles. Mysterio runs but Styles clobbers him! Joe clobbers Styles! Cover on Styles, TWO!! Joe drags Mysterio up and puts him on the top rope. Mysterio fights Joe off and hits the seated senton! Mysterio tilt-o-whirls for a Crucifix Driver! But Styles breaks the cover immediately! Styles drags Mysterio up and whips him, but Mysterio goes up and over to headscissor Styles out! Joe attacks Mysterio and scoops, but Mysterio spins around for a tornado DDT! All three men are down but Mysterio is up first. He clubs Joe on the ropes then dials it up! 619 misses, into the Coquina Clutch! PHENOMENAL- COQUINA! Joe has Styles now but Styles uses buckles to make a cover, TWO! Joe swings but gets another PELE!

Styles brings Mysterio up but Mysterio pops through to headscissor Styles on ropes! DIAL IT UP on JOE! Then springboard but Styles BOMBS Mysterio, onto Joe! Then Styles Clash on Mysterio onto Joe! Cover on Joe, Styles wins!!

Winner: AJ Styles, by pinfall; advances to the main event

The main event is already Phenomenal as Styles advances! Who will meet him from the other Triple Threat later tonight?

 

Naomi VS Billie Kay w/ Peyton Royce!

Iowa loves to #BurnItDown with Rollins, but will they #FeelTheGlow as Naomi goes against one half of the IIconics?

Raw returns as the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions make their entrance. They say that what Naomi did last week can be summed up in a few words: “Thank you, next.” That song from that singer obsessed with them. Who is it? Trenta? Venti? Grande! Ariana, that is. This is why they’re the champions. Billie has Peyton’s back and Peyton has Billie’s. But who has Naomi’s? Bayley’s on SmackDown! Bayley said no to the glow! The IIconics laugh at their own joke, but they tell Naomi she’s living in the past if she thinks she can beat the future! And the future is… IICONIC! Strike the pose. The IIconics may say that now, but will Naomi show them what she can do solo?

The bell rings and Billie boots Naomi right down! She also throws Naomi around then covers, ONE! Billie keeps on Naomi with a grounded abdominal stretch. Billie claws Naomi’s face but the referee reprimands her. Naomi endures and fights her way up, only to get a knee. Naomi roundhouses back then lariats Billie down! She adds an elbow and a running jawbreaker, then a SLAP! Billie is furious but runs into Naomi’s headlock. Peyton gets up on the apron, Naomi gets both IIconics with the bulldog! Slingshot sunset flip, Naomi wins!

Winner: Naomi, by pinfall

The champions are furious! Naomi gets a win on one, but they point out this won’t change who the champs are. Will Naomi find yet another partner to help her challenge Billie & Peyton in the future?

 

WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender Qualifier Triple Threat: The Miz VS Drew McIntyre VS Baron Corbin!

The reformed A-Lister takes on a tall task in facing the Scottish Terminator and the Lone Wolf. Will we see Awesome VS Phenomenal? Or will see one man rebound from losing to The Shield on Easter Sunday?

Raw returns as McIntyre makes his entrance. Corbin already made his entrance over the commercial break, but we can assume he’s not Des Moines’ Favorite Son. The bell rings and Miz sees he’s between two towering opponents. Miz throws hands on McIntyre but Corbin whips. Miz boots back then rolls Corbin up, but McIntyre pries him off. McIntyre scoops but Miz roll shim up, TWO! Miz bails out, and wags his fingers “Not so fast.” McIntyre and Corbin work together and flank Miz. He gets back in the ring and then wrecks McIntyre with a dropkick! But Corbin wrecks Miz with an uppercut! Corbin and McIntyre stomp away, then mock the fans who boo. McIntyre drags Miz up and in, then stalks him. He brings Miz up for a CHOP and Corbin likes the sound of that. Corbin drags Miz up but Miz fires hands!

McIntyre clubs Miz and Corbin adds on. They work together to mug Miz with a running body shot. Corbin drags Miz up for McIntyre, but then he sucker punches McIntyre! Corbin goes back to Miz, the alliance over, and throws him out. He pursues after Miz and rams him into barriers! Corbin whips Miz but Miz reverses to send him into barriers! But then McIntyre clobbers Miz from behind! McIntyre puts Miz in and deadlift suplexes Miz up and over! Cover, TWO! Corbin returns but stops when McIntyre glares at him. Corbin tries to explain that whole sucker punch, but gets a boot! McIntyre drags Miz up and CHOPS Miz back down. Then he clubs him down, then tosses him to a corner. Miz hits back but Corbin returns. Miz sends him out but Corbin slides back in, to clothesline McIntyre! Roll up, TWO!

Corbin runs into a corner at Miz but gets post instead! Miz has the fans behind him as he looks at both opponents. Miz blocks and counter punches Corbin again and again! He fires off It Kicks in the corner! Then he gives McIntyre double knees! And then Corbin! A-List Lariat on McIntyre! Miz springboards for ax handles on both men! Fans fire up as Miz sees both men on their knees. MIz gives them both It Kicks! Miz swings the buzzsaw at McIntyre, but McIntyre ducks to let it hit Corbin! And then McIntyre gives Miz the Glasgow Kiss! But it rocks McIntyre, too, so he staggers back. McIntyre drags Miz up for a fireman’s carry and then puts him on the top rope. He CHOPS Miz then climbs up to join him.

Miz hits back but McIntyre clubs away. The brawl is fast and furious and McIntyre backs off! Miz adjusts, but Corbin is sent right into him! McIntyre climbs over Corbin to get to Miz again. McIntyre CHOPS Miz again, then fireman’s carry, but Corbin adds on! SUPER CELTIC CROSS POWERBOMB!! But no one can cover, and we go to break!

Raw returns and Corbin throws hands with McIntyre on the outside. Miz is in the ring but he’s climbing up top! The brawl is back and forth, fast and furious, but Miz LEAPS onto them both! Miz wipes them out but has to get one in the ring. He drags Corbin up to throw him into the timekeeper! Then he puts McIntyre int he ring only to run into an elbow. McIntyre gets through the boot to give Miz another elbow, then the Inverted Alabama Slam! Cover, TWO! Styles watches backstage as Miz survives. McIntyre fires himself up while he dares Miz to stand. Miz does stand, but he gets clear of the Claymore to get a Figure Four! McIntyre endures the hold, and then shoves the ref to poke Miz’s eyes! Miz lets go and McIntyre hobbles only to be sent out.

Miz works on getting vision back while Corbin stalks McIntyre. Corbin ditches McIntyre to go after Miz, DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO!! Corbin is furious with the referee but a two is two! He goes back out to hit Miz but runs into steel steps! Miz slides under McIntyre and rolls him up, TWO! BIG Spinebuster from McIntyre! Jackknife cover, TWO!! Miz still lives and McIntyre is even more furious. Fans chant for The Miz even as McIntyre looms over him. McIntyre drags Miz up for underhooks, but Miz slips out to kick low and DDT! Cover, TWO! Corbin returns and reels Miz in, END Of- No! Another low DDT! Cover, TWO!! Miz knows how close he was but he’s still so far!

All three men crawl, and McIntyre gets to a corner. Miz stalks Corbin but Corbin denies the Finale. Corbin runs but is clothesline’d out! Miz and McIntyre run, CLAYMORE!! but Corbin shoves McIntyre out, covers, and wins!!

Winner: Baron Corbin, by pinfall; advances to the main event

The Lone Wolf grins as he takes advantage of McIntyre’s work! It will be Styles VS Corbin in the #1 Contender’s Match, but who moves on to face The Architect?

 

Backstage interview with AJ Styles.

He was watching that match, so how does he feel about facing Corbin in the main event? Corbin’s big, but it’s about the size of the fight in the dog. Styles is a Georgia bulldog with a lot more fight in him than the Lone Wolf, the “former” United States Champion. Yes, Corbin won that, won Money in the Bank and beat Kurt Angle. But Styles is a former United States Champion, a former WWE World Champion, and the longest champion on SmackDown in history! Styles beat up John Cena! But this isn’t about accolades, this is about picking a fight with a big bully, and winning. Hopefully Rollins watches later tonight, because he’ll hear, “and the winner of this match, The Phenomenal AJ Styles!”

 

Sami Zayn is here!

The zany Underdog from the Underground makes his way to the ring to speak, after the break.

Raw returns and Sami says he’s doing something no other superstar has had the courage to do: tell the WWE Universe the truth about themselves. No one wants to hear stuff like that, so the fans just used denial and deflection, and create a false narrative about Sami. Somehow Sami is “bitter”? Sami squashes that by saying he’s the exact opposite. Sami is jubilant and happy! In fact, those ten months away from the fans was the happiest time of his life! If fans don’t believe him, Sami will show us how beautiful life is. Sami hiked in Switzerland, reconnected with nature, and wept at the beauty all around him. Then Sami relaxed on a beach in Mexico! He’s snuggled up in a hammock!

Sami then went to Scotland to see the castles. “Look at that face!” Sami’s all smiles! Has anyone ever seen such unbridled joy? Sami lived the good life. But his return approached, he suddenly felt depressed and anxious. A dark cloud was over his head, but why? What was it about the WWE that made him sick? The corporate structure? Or perhaps the other superstars who are “total egomaniacs” and delusional? No, that wasn’t it. Sami dug deep, deep down, and he found the root of the problem: THE FANS! The fans perpetuate and impose a toxic environment on the superstars! Fans boo and Sami criticizes them for that. Y’know why that feels good? Because it’s easier to pass blame than to hold yourselves accountable! But fine, it doesn’t matter, Sami makes the fans responsible. Sami holds the fans accountable!

Fans think they get away with this because of the mob mentality, but it won’t keep them safe from Sami! Sami would much rather be back in Norway, Iceland or Sweden or Switzerland or Mexico. Anywhere but depressing Des Moines! Fans definitely boo that. But if fans have a problem with that, take a page out of his book. Take a trip. “Doesn’t that sound nice?!” They can all go… TO HELL! Sami laughs and spins around his way out of the ring. Will Sami’s mission against the fans get him anywhere?

But Cedric Alexander makes his entrance! The Superstar Shake-Up moved him to Raw full-time, now it’s time to see if the Age of Alexander can be reborn!

Cedric Alexander VS Cesaro!

Raw gives a highlight reel of the Soul of 205 Live and his incredible run through the Cruiserweight Division. But now 205 Live’s Soul goes against the Swiss Cyborg, a last-minute Shake-Up from SmackDown! Will Cesaro end the Age of Alexander’s newest chapter before it even begins?

Raw returns as Cesaro makes his entrance. The bell rings and Cesaro circles with Alexander. They tie up and Cesaro powers Alexander to the corner hard! Cesaro dares Alexander to get up, and Alexander ties up with him. Cesaro gets the arm and wrenches, but Alexander rolls and handsprings to reverse. Alexander headlocks and goes for a takeover but Cesaro powers out! Alexander lands on his feet but gets rocked with a right! Cesaro throws a BIG European Uppercut, then a chop. Cesaro CHOPS again, then stomps Alexander. He whips corner to corner but Alexander goes up and over to handspring headscissor and dropkick Cesaro out! Alexander builds speed as fans fire up, but Cearo gets in. Aelxander slides under and tries to scoop, but Cesaro gets out to scoop slam Alexander! Cesaro drops an elbow, covers, TWO!

Cesaro keeps on Alexander with a chinlock, then shifts to a cobra clutch. Fans rally up as Alexander endures. Alexander fights up and fights out but Cesaro shoves him. Cesaro runs into a boot, but catches Alexander for a backbreaker! Cover, TWO! Alexander clutches his back but he survives. Cesaro sits Aleander up for a running forearm! Cesaro keeps on Alexander with another chinlock. Alexander fights as fans rally again. Alexander gets up and fights with body shots. He throws forearms then runs, but Cesaro BOOTS him down! Cover, TWO! Cesaro keeps his cool as he stomps Alexander’s arm. Cesaro gut wrenches Alexander for a suplex! Cover, TWO! Alexander gasps for air while clutching his back, but Cesaro looms over him.

Cesaro stomps Alexander’s hand then reels him into another chinlock. Cesaro puts his weight on Alexander but Alexander keeps getting up. Alexander fights but Cesaro whips, only for Alexander to sunset flip. Cesaro stays up, then drags Alexander up for a lift. Alexander sunset flips again, TWO! Alexander CHOPS and punches Cesaro, then throws forearms. Cesaro shoves but Alexander blocks the boot to elbow! Alexander dropkicks the legs out then dropkicks Cesaro in the head! Fans fire up with Alexander as he knips up! Alexander runs in but is put on the apron. He boots Cesaro away then springboards in, but Cesaro overpowers the complete shot! Cesaro suplexes but Alexander slips out, and scoops to a Michinoku Driver! Cover, TWO!

Alexander brings Cesaro up but Cesaro EuroUppers, only for Alexander to backslide. Cesaro powers out, but Alexander dodges to handspring, NEURALIZER! Cesaro tumbles out and Alexander builds speed again, to FLY! Direct hit wipes Cesaro out! Alexander puts him back in the ring then aims from the corner. Springboard, EUROUPPER! Cover, Cesaro wins!

Winner: Cesaro, by pinfall

The Swiss Cyborg was just too much for Alexander’s first Raw opponent! Will Cesaro head for a title match of his own in the near future? What will it take for the Soul of 205 Live to revive himself now that he’s in the big leagues?

 

Backstage interview with The Usos!

Jimmy & Jey are ready to be on Raw. SmackDown was #LockDown, now Raw gonna be Uso Lit! Who is here? Lucha House Party! Party over! The Viking Raiders! Who? Those bearded brothers from Braveheart. FREEDOM~! The Major Brothers, Hawkins & Ryder. Those guys like toys, but here come the #TopGuys. The Revival see the Usos. Good hands in the tag team division, perhaps SmackDown’s greatest. But this is Raw, this is their territory. So the Usos aren’t locking down- Hey, wake up! Oh, sorry, they had a crazy dream about two guys talking about beating the Usos? Usos bring the Penitentiary with them, will Dash & Dawson be the first two put away?

 

The Viking Raiders VS Lucha House Party!

Erik & Ivar gave the WWE Universe quite the experience, but now Rowe & Hanson- Er, Erik & Ivar prepare for war! Will the fiesta survive the raid?

Raw returns as the LHP make their entrance. But the Vikings attack! They wreck Kalisto then dump down Gran Metalik. They attack Lince Dorado with big knees! Metalik returns bot Erik catches him. Ivar brings Kalisto over for Erik to have on his shoulders, for a powerbomb-powerslam combo! This isn’t even a match but the Vikings keep going. They grab Lince, and feed him to Thor’s Hammer! The Vikings leave the luchadors down and out, who else will suffer a brutal Viking Experience?

No Contest

 

Backstage interview with Curt Hawkins & Zack Ryder.

The Raw Tag Team Champions just saw what happened to Lucha House Party, are they concerned? Hawkins isn’t sure what to say. We all saw the same thing! Those guys went berserk! They’re big, strong, agile but Ryder says they’re still new. The Major Brothers have been here for over a decade and are still here. They earned these titles, so they’re not letting these “smelly, horny, woolly mammoths” just take them away. But will they really have a say in it when the Viking Raiders come for gold?

 

Becky Lynch VS Alicia Fox!

The Man is the Champ-Champ, and she’s going strong towards her match with The Sassy Southern Belle at Money in the Bank. Will she stay strong against Ms. Crazy Like a Fox?

Raw returns and Becky Two Belts hears the fans chant for her. She then speaks, “There’s something in the air tonight in Iowa.” Becky sensed it backstage and in the locker room. It’s the Superstar Shake-Up. That time of the year where new challengers emerge. Becky didn’t have to wait long, she saw Lacey Evans win that shot. “The woman who likes to sucker punch The Man.” Becky doesn’t mind a good sucker punch, because she’s thrown her own here and there. It’s not the punching, it’s the woman behind them. Becky has made a career of slapping bleached blondes currying favors. Lacey is just the new take on an old approach. While Lacey is “furthering her career”, Becky will cement hers with a fight! But before Alicia can appear, Lacey does!

Lacey struts down the ramp and says Becky always wanting to fight, she can’t understand it. How can Becky let her emotions get the better of her? Is it because she’s Irish? Or like a man, she wants to be the center of attention? Lacey will educate Becky. Lesson 1: a lady is in complete control of her emotions. Lesson 2: a lady is not a show-off. And lesson 3, the most important of all: a man respects a lady. Lacey will teacher Becky that with her Woman’s Right, and then she’ll take both belts to put around her waist. Becky wants Lacey to back up. After everything Becky’s been through, she was just trying to enjoy herself. But “you absolute plank” is on her last nerve. Lacey talks about Irish emotions, those emotions wanna slap Lacey’s head off her shoulders!

Lacey may be new around here, but do not confuse happiness for content. Becky will go to MITB and dismantle Lacey because she can. And then The Man will collect on her debts. But now, Alicia does make her entrance, and we can begin this match!

The bell rings and Des Moines cheers Becky on again. Becky and Alicia circle and tie up, and Becky gets a headlock. She throws Alicia with a takedown but Alicia gets up. Alicia fights out and puts a headlock of her own. Becky powers out but Alicia runs her over with a shoulder. Cover, but Becky slips out and has a little fun. Things speed up and Becky deflects the dropkick to back kick Alicia to the corner. Alicia gets out but Becky wants at her. Becky dares Alicia to get in and fans rally up. Alicia draws near and Becky wrecks her with a baseball slide! Becky bumps Alicia on the apron then throws forearms. Becky brings Alicia around to bump off more apron, but then Alicia rams Becky into barriers!

The ring count hits 8! Alicia drags Becky up and in at 9, then slithers to a cover. TWO, but Becky is in trouble while we go to break.

Raw returns and Becky has Alicia in a corner. She brings Alicia out to whip but Alicia kicks back. Alicia boots Becky down then covers, TWO! Alicia tries again, ONE! She keeps Becky down in a chinlock, but fans rally up. Becky feeds off the energy and gets up to fight out. She throws EuroUppers but Alicia shoves to tilt-o-whirl. Becky headscissors through but Alicia denies the Disarm-Her. Alicia throws Becky to the apron then catches her breath. Becky crawls around the way but Alicia finds her. Alicia brings Becky up but Becky throws Alicia into barriers! Becky puts Alicia in but Alicia hits her back. Becky elbows from the corner then hops up for flying forearms. Fans fire up as Becky throws Alicia with a Becksploder! And then another!

But Becky’s far from done with Alicia as she runs in. Alicia rolls her up, TWO! Becky gets the Disarm-her! Alicia taps, but Lacey appears to throw her Woman’s Right!!

Winner: Becky Lynch, by submission

The Sassy Southern sucker punch gets the better of Becky again! Lacey brushes herself off and puts her hat back on, to hit Becky with another Woman’s Right! Will Lacey be adding a belt to her ensemble after Money in the Bank?

 

Backstage interview with Baron Corbin.

The Lone Wolf warms up for Styles. He’s already defied expectations, but if he does it again, he’ll not only earn a title shot, but he’ll have a chance to settle things with the man who was a thorn in his side during his GM days. Where is Charly getting these interview techniques? The same school that Kim Kardashian got her law degree? And who’s expectations did he defy? Those “grease balls” sitting at home in their basements on the computer? Those people didn’t think he’d beat Kurt Angle, either. The only thing better than proving “those idiots” wrong is getting revenge on Rollins. So he’s looking past Styles? No, he’s looking straight through him! But will Corbin even get through Styles to go to Money in the Bank?

 

Ricochet VS Robert Roode!

The One and Only is now on his own after more of the Superstar Shake-Up moves happened. Will he be able to overcome the slightly renamed GLORIOUS One after the break?

Raw returns as Roode makes his GLORIOUS entrance. And Bobby is now Robert, complete with a mostly shaven look. Roode explained in a WWE.com exclusive interview that with this Shake-Up, he’s been able to drop 150 pounds of dead weight named Chad Gable. But Ricochet is just as young, talented and also lacking that something special. That same something special is what Roode has to be GLORIOUS, but will his new name and new look really help give him a fresh start?

The bell rings and Roode circles with Ricochet. Roode and Ricochet tie up and Roode powers Ricochet to the corner. Ricochet turns it around but backs off at the ref’s count. Roode kicks low then throws hands on Ricochet in a corner. Ricochet punches back and backs Roode down. Roode headlocks but Ricochet powers out. Things speed up and Roode gets the headlock back. Ricochet endures then fights his way out. Roode knees low then stalks Ricochet. He CHOPS Ricochet to ropes then whips. Ricochet rolls off Roode’s back then rolls under to handspring headscissor and dropkick Roode down! Roode wants a timeout at the ropes but Ricochet dares him to come back. Ricochet walks over but is sent to the apron. He shoulders back in then dumps Roode out!

Fans fire up as Ricochet builds speed to fake Roode out! Roode swipes but misses, and gets the moonsault! The King of Flight is fired up while we go to break!

Raw returns and Roode has Ricochet in a chinlock. Ricochet fights his way up but Roode wrangles him back down. Roode grinds Ricochet down but fans rally up. Ricochet endures as Roode squeezes tighter. Ricochet feeds off the energy and fights out of the hold. He runs but into Roode’s knee! Roode drags Ricochet up to whip and knee again. He kicks away then suplexes Ricochet up and over! Cover, TWO! Roode grows frustrated but he keeps on Ricochet. He drags Ricochet into a half camel clutch but he also fish hooks Ricochet’s face. He lets go at 4 but then goes back to the camel clutch. Roode sits deep on it but fans rally. Ricochet powers his way up but Roode knocks him back down. Roode drags Ricochet up to whip him to a corner. Ricochet boots Roode away, then somersault shotgun dropkicks!

Both men are down but Ricochet slowly stands. Roode slowly follows and they start throwing hands. Ricochet dodges and runs to rally with forearms! Ricochet headscissors Roode to a corner, then goes corner to corner for a shoulder tackle. He slips out to the apron and bumps Roode on buckles, then kicks the buckle to snap Roode back. Ricochet aims and springboards for a leaping lariat! Standing Shooting Star! Cover, TWO!! Roode survives but Ricochet keeps his cool. Ricochet drags Roode up and to a fireman’s carry but Roode fights out. Roode waistlocks but Ricochet fights out. Ricochet grabs at Roode but Roode elbows back. Roode runs but Ricochet rolls him, TWO! Ricochet leaps into a SPINEBUSTER! Cover, TWO!!

Roode grows frustrated but he has one more move to try. He winds it up… GLORIOUS! Ricochet stands but denies the DDT to reel Roode in, TKO knee! Cover, TWO!! Ricochet drags Roode to a drop zone and climbs up top! He goes for the 450 but has to land on his feet as Roode dodges. Roode rams Ricochet into buckles! GLORIOUS DDT!! Cover, Roode wins!!

Winner: Robert Roode, by pinfall

The GLORIOUS Reinvention is successful! Roode revitalizes himself with the name change, but will this lead him to putting that new name on a title belt? Can Ricochet rebound and get on track as a singles competitor in his own right?

 

Welcome to Firefly Fun House~!

Who is that in the red sweater? Iiiiiit’s BRAY~! Brat Wyatt has missed us. But he knew we’d all be back together some day. He saw it in his dreams. Bray Wyatt promises we’ll all have fun. All the fireflies will feel safe here. And he can’t wait to show us what he’s learned. Tada~! Here are his very special friends! Mercy the Buzzard! Pammy the Witch! “You are going to love them.” Now, Bray admits he used to be a very bad man. Boo~! Yes, he deserves that. But Bray has been punished for that, so that part of him is dead.

However, he has a reminder so that he won’t ever go back to being that “pathetic slob loser.” Bray shows a cardboard cut-out of himself, and CUTS IT UP! YAY~! The fun is just getting started. So remember, fireflies: Bray will light the way, all you ahve to do is let him in. See you next week!

Wat?

 

WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Match: AJ Styles VS Baron Corbin!

The Phenomenal One and the Lone Wolf made it through four other incredible superstars to make it to this match. But now, who will show they’ve still got more in the tank to punch their ticket to Money in the Bank?

Raw returns as Corbin makes his entrance. And this time, we do have to hear Mike Rome list Corbin’s accolades. But again, the former Raw General Manager, Golden Gloves boxing champion, United States Champion and Mr. Money in the Bank is NOT Des Moines’ Favorite Son. Corbin accepts that, and the bell rings so we can begin this major main event!

Corbin circles with Styles but obviously the fans are on Styles’ side. Styles and Corbin approach and Corbin talks trash. Styles gets Corbin with a right hand! Corbin comes back but gets CHOPS. Styles shows Corbin he’s just fine and then kicks away on Corbin’s leg. Corbin rocks Styles back with a right, then drags Styles up. Styles slips out and dropkicks Corbin away. Styles throws more hands against the ropes but backs off at the ref’s count. Corbin gets back up to knee Styles low. Corbin throws Styles out but Styles is on the apron. Styles shoulders in then slingshots but into a big right! Styles goes down and Corbin stomps away. Corbin whips Styles corner to corner hard and Styles goes down again. Corbin looms over Styles but fans still rally up. He stands Styles up to punch him back down.

Corbin sits Styles up to punch him back down again and again. He drags Styles up but Styles throws hands back! Styles runs and clotheslines Corbin out! Styles slingshots but lands on the apron when Corbin gets clear. Corbin trips Styles and Styles falls on the apron hard! Corbin whips Styles into the timekeeper area, but Styles roundhouses back! Fans fire up as Styles uses the barriers. But Corbin catches him to drop him on the barriers! The Lone Wolf has the advantage while we go to one more break!

Raw returns again and Corbin has Styles down in a half nelson. Corbin leans on Styles but Styles fights his way up. Styles fights out as fans rally, but Corbin throws another right. Corbin lifts and tosses Styles with a spin! Cover, TWO! Corbin grows frustrated but he still stalks Styles to a corner. He drags Styles up and puts him on the top rope. Corbin climbs but Styles fights back. Corbin rocks Styles again, then wants a superplex, but Styles slips out to trip Corbin up! Styles gets up and throws kicks into Corbin’s leg. Fans rally as Styles kicks Corbin off his feet. Styles wants the leg but Corbin shoves him away. Styles comes back with a sliding forearm! He clotheslines Corbin in the corner then goes for a fireman’s carry. But Corbin slips out, only for Styles to give him the Phenomenal Blitz!

Corbin grabs Styles and glares at him, for the choke slam. Styles wheelbarrows to a victory roll, TWO! Corbin swings but Styles dodges to climb around for a sunset flip. But into the Clash! But Corbin is too tall and he kicks Styles away. Both men are down but crawling. Corbin stands in a corner but Styles dodges. Corbin slides out then in but gets the PELE! Styles keeps moving, but gets a DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO!! Styles still lives and Corbin can’t believe it. Corbin crawls to ropes while Styles goes the other way. Corbin runs at Styles in the corner for a big clothesline! And then another! Corbin reels Styles in but Styles rolls him for the CALF CRUSHER! Styles pulls back hard but Corbin slams Styles’ head on the mat! Corbin is free but the damage is done.

Corbin crawls to a corner and drags himself back up. Styles runs in but Corbin boots him. Corbin puts Styles on the ropes then hops up, and leaps! Styles dodges and Corbin hotshots himself! Styles takes aim and springboards, Phenomenal Forearm! Cover, Styles wins!

Winner: AJ Styles, by pinfall; NEW #1 contender to the WWE Universal Championship

The Phenomenal One is victorious after a night of incredible action! Now he heads to Money in the Bank to take on The Architect! And speaking of, Seth Rollins comes out to meet his challenger! Rollins offers a handshake, and Styles accepts it! These two respect each other, but will that change with a month left to go?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A rather crazy Raw tonight, what with more changes after the backlash of Superstar Shake-Up. The most obvious is that the infamous Viking Experience name change was changed again. Viking Raiders is a better compromise to keep “War” out of the team name, but I wish they’d also just let Erik & Ivar be Rowe & Hanson. But then this compromise was ruined by Vince sneaking his choice in anyway, and now every match where they use Thor’s Hammer, the pop-up powerslam, will have commentary shouting “Viking Experience!” If only Vince felt the wrath of Thor’s Hammer… The next most obvious was Robert Roode’s new name and the change to his facial hair. I was surprised to see him win, but I suppose if he’s in a rivalry with Ricochet now, they’d need to go back-and-forth at least this much.

Cesaro VS Cedric was great, and I suppose it works that Cesaro wins. Alexander’s promotion to Raw works better if he has some trouble with the transition, and it’ll make his first win on Raw that much more exciting. Bray Wyatt turning all those creepy promos into this children’s show is a hilarious next step in this new story. His new self is great with this underlying just-barely-holding-on-to-sanity characteristic. I wouldn’t mind seeing some more interactions with Mercy and Pammy for a few weeks, maybe a couple months, to really explore how this is going. Maybe it becomes part talk show with an occasional guest.

I felt like The IIconics pointing out Naomi was all alone was going to prompt her new friend to appear to keep the IIconics from screwing her out of the match. But surprisingly, Naomi won clean. I still feel like Naomi will end up teaming with someone, perhaps Tamina. With Nia Jax out with injury and given the history and real-life bond between them, Tamina going to Naomi or vice-versa makes sense to me. Lacey Evans more than likely misspoke about having both belts after one match with Becky, she’s only the Raw Women’s Championship #1 contender. But either way, she had a pretty good showing without a match, as she gives a good promo and then a great sucker punch attack just as Becky’s match ended. Lacey’s push may be fast but I’m sure she’ll deliver in the match.

But the big thing was that Raw rightfully upped the ante for that Universal Championship now that it’s finally on TV. Both triple threats were incredible, worthy of a title in their own right. They both ended about how they should, and it made sense for Corbin to be opportunistic in that moment at the end. Samoa Joe and Mysterio can either have a proper US Championship match or be in the MITB ladder match, and MITB can also include Miz and/or McIntyre if they see fit. Styles VS Corbin was pretty good for under 15 minutes, and honestly I was surprised Corbin didn’t find a sneaky way to win. But Styles winning is great, we’ll get a dream match already with MITB PPV. I would think Rollins retains, but at least with Styles, it’d be believable if he’d take it so soon.

My Score: 8.1/10


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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(NOAH) WEEKLY NEWSLETTER VOL.31~ 21ST APRIL 2019

With the Global Tag League in full effect, Hisame brings us those weekly NOAH updates! Read up on one of the best Japanese promotions that tends to fly under the radar!

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With the Global Tag League in full effect, Hisame brings us those weekly NOAH updates! Read up on one of the best Japanese promotions that tends to fly under the radar!

CURRENT TOUR RECAP
NOAH’s first show back on the mainland was held on a midweek night, and while the attendance was not good (819), the show was intense and the fans that did not go were lamenting that they were prevented from going due to it being a midweek night, and therefore, a work night.

Due to Quiet Storm sustaining a concussion after receiving a kick to the head from Kenoh in Sapporo, NOAH have changed their cards (no date has been given for a return of either himself or Kimya Okada yet), and 50 Funky Powers have so far been deducted four points, as per the rules of Global Tag League which counts a team being unable to compete as an automatic loss and a win for the other team (hence the reason why The Tough have two points), and Rocky Kawamura was drafted in to compete at Korakuen Hall. His gimmick is Rocky (the character from the films), and Mohammed

Yone took his name from Mohammed Ali, so you had two boxing fans together.

Yone laughed afterwards and said that he himself might try coming to the ring in boxing gloves.

True to his word, NOSAWA Rongai bought a “friend” to Korakuen Hall.

The “friend” turned out to be Hideki Suzuki who had a match in 2018 in NOAH against Naomichi Marufuji and Atsushi Kotoge (he teamed with Jay Bradley), but wasn’t seen at all again until 2019.

Suzuki got in the ring and asked for a tag match against Marufuji (Suzuki will team with NOSAWA), as he was at ringside (and all of the heavyweights are tied up in Global Tag League), Marufuji, after telling Suzuki that he should build his own gang, said “lets just have a match” and nominated Junta Miyawaki to be his partner. Miyawaki told NOSAWA that he was going to get the victory over him.

Match has been set for the last night of Global Tag League on May 4th.

When asked why he was here, Hideki said he was “job hunting” and hadn’t been employed since the beginning of the year. He later admitted that he was here for himself.

As if the Korakuen Hall crowd weren’t wound up enough, there was a HUGE upset for AXIZ when Masao Inoue (whom the crowd had been cheering on), got the sneak win over Katsuhiko Nakajima.

After the match, Inoue and Saito went to imitate AXIZ’S pose, but at the last moment Saito walked away leaving Inoue to crash to the floor.

The crowd laughed.

Saito laughed louder.

Nakajima, however, didn’t find anything amusing and said that Masao Inoue has borrowed something big, and he will be coming to take it back.

Whatever it is that is going on between Stinger and Daisuke Harada took another turn at Korakuen Hall.

Yoshinari Ogawa offered his hand to Daisuke Harada again, and Harada went to take it, but Tadasuke objected. Harada shoved him aside, and Tadasuke fell against the ropes with a look of surprise. Ogawa tried again, but this time YO-HEY came between them. After that, Harada looked at his hand and just left the ring.

AXIZ were not the only team to have a bad night at Korakuen Hall, their rivals in KAIOH did too.

Takashi Sugiura (complete with stitches after the headbutts from Atsushi Kotoge in Sapporo) stood still and staring at his two former protegees as they entered the ring.

They probably knew that it was a very very bad sign. This match was not about “The Sugiura Army” beating KAIOH, this was about Takashi Sugiura beating down two upstarts, and although they put him through hell, he prevailed with the headlock choke on Kaito Kiyomiya. After the match he got on the microphone and told Kiyomiya that he wouldn’t push the issue now as it was Global Tag League, but he wanted Kiyomiya to remember, that he would be coming for the title.

NOAH held their next event on Sunday 21st April at a new venue (which had been a former fish market) in springtime Niigata. Attendance was a full house of 865.

Naturally, being an event by the Shinano River, a fight went outside and to the riverside, and Marufuji almost threw YO-HEY in. Tadasuke thought it would have been funny, but YO-HEY said that the next time NOAH come to the venue, he is going to bring goggles and a flotation device for Marufuji.

Marufuji’s response was basically, “bring them for yourself”.

Fact is, that if NOAH go back there in the summer or autumn, someone will most likely go in (probably Kotoge in his cape).

Daisuke Harada made the first defense ever of the IPW Junior Heavyweight title against Hitoshi Kumano. While I don’t have too much details on the match itself, one fan did liken it to a fight that one of the Four Pillars would have put on. It was that intense.

Harada said that he wants his next challenger to be British, and said it would be interesting to see if anyone came over to NOAH. He also said that with Global Junior Tag League starting, he was equally interested to see if a team would enter.

When asked about the handshake with Ogawa, Harada walked away.

Yoshinari Ogawa had said that you could see how the situation was developing, as Kotaro Suzuki added, “If the leader’s heart is swayed, then the team is over”

Kaioh were almost beaten in Global Tag League by The Inferno. That was until Kiyomiya changed the tide of the match, and got the pin via the Tiger Suplex on Maybach Taniguchi.

So far Kenoh has not managed to get a single win at Global Tag League. Once the league is over, and especially if Kaioh do not win the titles, then his resentment is going to erupt.

As of the time of writing, The Sugiura Army lead the scoreboard with eight points.


EVENT RECAPS
April 17th – Korakuen Hall, Tokyo
April 21st – Mandaijima Multipurpose, Niigata

Post match promos – April 13th, Mars Gym, Sapporo
Post match promos – April 14th, Mars Gym, Sapporo
Post match promos – April 17th, Korakuen Hall, Tokyo

NEWS
Fortune Dream6 & “TAKAYAMANIA EMPIRE 2”
On the 17th April at Korakuen Hall, Kenta Kobashi announced that Fortune Dream6 would return on June 10th. NOAH participation was announced as Go Shiozaki and Yoshiki Inamura vs Yuji Okabayashi & Kazusada Higuchi. Addtionally, Masa Kitamiya will team with Yuya Aoki against  Shoki Kitamura & Towa Iwasaki.

Yoshihiro Takayama has announced via his official blog, that “TAKAYAMANIA EMPIRE 2” will be held on Monday, August 26 2019 at Korakuen Hall.
Card to be announced.

Although Takayama cannot be at the show (although he wants to find a way to be there), there is good news on the horizon as he says that his condition is improving gradually and he can now feel the soles of his feet.

CURRENT CHAMPIONS


TOUR TIDBITS
~ Although he cannot wrestle due to concussion, Kinya Okada has been seen at ringside doing his usual duties. Poor boy looks sad, like he did when he was unable to debut due to injury.
~ Minoru Tanaka was hungover at the Niigata event. Said he hoped it would help his hangover. It didn’t.
~ Each time Atsushi Kotoge went to do the “Revolutionary Hero” pose, Marufuji smacked his arm down (Yoshiki Inamura in Niigata was a little more game)
~ Takashi Sugiura said there are to be no further entries into the “Sugiura Army”, he also doesn’t like NOSAWA being put at the center of the group in the official photographs for the new “Sugiura Army” t-shirts.
~ I don’t want to know exactly what a “YO-HEY Teriyaki McBurger” is
~ Takashi Sugiura’s most infamous dog video this week was him on his lap, and chewing the cord of his tracksuit pants.


BROADCASTS
The 4th May Global Tag League finals will be broadcast at 10pm JST on Samurai TV
The 28th May show will be broadcast live at 6.30pm JST on G+ (its the first night of Global Tag League)


LINKS
King Shame, Takashi Sugiura on becoming the core of the new born Noah

PICTURE CREDITS: NOAH GHC, PKDX, Daisuke Harada


Let us know what you think on social media @theCHAIRSHOTcom and always remember to use the hashtag #UseYourHead!
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