While the rest of the WWE Universe is still reeling from Money In The Bank the Raw brand has a Great Balls Of Fire PPV to book.
Roman Reigns is set to make an announcement tonight that is said to be pretty important. The landscape of WWE has been a kind of wait and see until SummerSlam. But things were getting close to Great Balls Of Fire at least and they only had one sure match on the card.
Roman Reigns’ music hit to a “thunderous reaction”… sounded more like boos to us Michael Cole.
Roman grabbed the microphone and prepared to speak. He paused for a bit to let people get the boos out of their system as the camera cut to one dude appearing to bow to The Big Dog.
Roman said some people might love this and some people might not like it. Then Roman said he can’t be beaten one-on-one. He said it’s the truth and started to name off all the people he beat when they should really be asking Vince McMahon.
When Roman got to talking about retiring The Undertaker the people booed both the fact that he main evented three WrestleManias in a row but he also retired Undertaker. Then Roman said he doesn’t care who wins at the Great Balls Of Fire PPV, he wants a shot at the Universal Championship.
He said he gets to make that call because this is his yard. Then Samoa Joe interrupted him and boy were people glad to see him.
Joe went straight at Roman by saying he seems to forgotten his name referring to the fact Roman called him “some guy named Joe.” The Samoan Submission Machine said Roman has never beaten him and the place erupted in adult voices cheering.
He said his name is Samoa Joe and he is the true #1 contender and next Universal Champion. Then Roman said he’ll never be “Samoa” Joe to him, he’ll always be just Joe referring to the fact that Joe isn’t in his family wrestling family.
Joe didn’t waste time and punched Roman out. He went spilling to the floor and then Joe started beating him off barricades and the ring apron. Samoa Joe rolled Roman back in the ring and yelled in his ear. He tried to get Roman in the Coquina Clutch but Reigns escaped and hit a Superman Punch.
If they’re trying to make Roman look like a heel here it’s working. Reigns told a guy his heritage doesn’t matter because he’s not in the Anoaʻi family. Then he got beat up and rightfully so. What WWE had Roman say there was downright culturally insensitive to his own heritage no less.
So strange. But yeah, cheer for Roman, buy his t-shirts and put his face on lunchboxes but in the end you won’t matter unless you’re in his family.
Hardy Boyz vs The Club
The Hardys came down and didn’t have the pyro we’ve grown so fond of during their entrance. The Club look great and every time they come out it’s great to see them. It’s the Good Brothers vs the Broken Brothers, neat!
Matt and Karl started out the match until Hardy tagged into Jeff and they hit Anderson with a double team move. Matt got the tag back in and Gallows came in to start putting in some offense.
Matt rolled out of the way of an elbow and tagged in Jeff. They pulled off their Poetry In Motion move on Luke Gallows for a two count.
Gallows pushed Jeff against his turnbuckle and tagged in Karl Anderson. “Hardy” chants broke out as Jeff went to the top rope but Anderson pulled him down hard to the mat.
Gallows and Anderson kept control of the match for a while with Anderson landing a nice looking jumping knee drop for a two count among other maneuvers. Jeff tried to get to his brother, but kept getting held back. Jeff finally said “screw it” and went after Gallows on the apron and then tried to run past Anderson for the tag, but it didn’t work.
Just as Jeff was about to get the tag, Gallows jumped up and took Matt out. Finally Jeff a dangerous Whisper In The Wind on both members of The Club. Jeff landed way too close to the ropes on that one and it was scary. But it was enough for him to get the tag to Matt.
Matt came in and hit Anderson with a clothesline in the corner but the bulldog was blocked. Matt did hit the elbow to the back of the next and a Side Effect for a two count.
Anderson rolled Matt up but he kicked out at two. Anderson backed Matt up against the ropes and Gallows grabbed Matt’s leg. He hit Hardy with a cheap right hand and ran back to get the tag. The Club hit the Boot Of Doom but Matt kicked out at two.
Jeff took Anderson out on the side of the ring as Matt took a sidekick. He backed into the turnbuckle and Jeff tagged himself in. Matt suddenly hit a Twist Of Fate on Luke Gallows followed by a Swanton Bomb from Jeff. 1-2-3 and The Hardy Boyz beat The Club clean.
Goldy did another promo in his old Hollywood theme where he spoke about R-Truth and just when these look like they’re just going to keep on until probably the Great Balls Of Fire kickoff show when they’ll finally have a match, Goldust invited R-Truth to have a match. Next week. Yay, the Golden Age is back!
Elias Samson Segment
Elias Samson is slowly becoming one of my favorite parts of Raw and I’m ready to Walk With Elias! He’s already been given the chance to be way stronger on WWE’s main roster than he ever had on NXT. Samson said when he was fifteen his daddy gave him a guitar and told him to tell all the stories he wanted to. Then he insulted the hometown crowd.
His character is a heat drawing magnet as evidence by the fact that he plays an acoustic guitar and everybody hates acoustic guitars. This week he threw in a nice little deal where he had to stop and tune his guitar. Then he ordered complete silence while he tuned his guitar. It was great.
Suddenly Finn Balor’s music started to play and I was all like, “there’s no way Samson is playing that song!”
Booker T called Finn “James Dean” but I like to think of him more like a Fonzie because I imagine Balor having the ability to fix a jukebox with his fist.
Elias slung his guitar over his shoulder while Balor looked him in the eyes. The Drifter looked at his guitar like a weapon briefly and then decided to leave without throwing a punch.
Finn Balor vs Bo Dallas
Hey, it’s Bo Dallas! Amazing and he’s got a sick beard growing too! Maybe he’s trying to snag a ring announcer like his brother.
Bo jumped Finn before the bell and Balor looked dazed. The ref tried to get n to his feet as Bo Dallas stalked him and looked ready for more. As soon as the bell rang Bo kept hitting him and then he backed up to scream a little bit. Bo had a black singlet with some kind of “arrows through a heart” design.
Bo threw Finn out of the ring and threw him into the barricade. He followed it with a running knee to Finn’s head on the barricade. Dallas rolled Finn back in the ring and got a two count. The announce team was really talking up Bo Dallas. Nobody said they “Bolieved” at all either.
Finn started his comeback and started stomping on Bo’s chest over and over and over and over and over and over again. He clotheslines Bo over the rope and hit him with a running knee from the apron. Then Balor decided to throw Bo against the barricade to see how he likes it. He did that a few times.
Balor tossed Bo back in the ring and hit a Sling Blade. Finn sized Dallas up and hit his stiff dropkick to the chest, climbed up to the top rope, hit the Coup De Gras, and got the three count.
Nice try for Bo Dallas, he was able to show some explosive offense and looked pretty strong for a little bit. Maybe his push isn’t out of the question just yet.
When they shot back to the announce team Michael Cole talked on while Corey Graves acted like he was hearing something in his headset. He had to excuse himself to leave once again. What does Corey Graves know that he’s not telling us?!
Kurt Angle was on the phone backstage talking about something controversial. Kurt said he’s here to help when Corey Graves walked up to him. He said he saw the same text as Graves did but we didn’t see the text, we’d sure like to know what all of this is about.
Enzo and Big Cass were suddenly next to them both and Angle asked him what he was thinking sending that tweet to Connor McGregor.
Enzo blamed The Revival for jumping them backstage. Big Cass said he though it was Enzo at first but now he knows it’s the Revival.
Kurt Angle said by the end of the night we’ll know who attacked them both. After Enzo and Big Cass left Corey Graves stuck around to keep chatting with Angle about whatever.
Seth Rollins Promo
They really should have called Seth Rollins “The Carpenter” instead because he is Crossfit Jesus after all.
Rollins started out by hyping video games and he said he was going to be on the cover of WWE 2K18. He said it almost didn’t happen because he used to be a heel. He won championships and made a lot of money. “You deserve it” chants broke out during a very strange point in his promo.
Rollins said he had burnt every bridge he had to build and seemed to get a little choked up when he said the fans gave him a second chance. Then he said the WWE 2K18 cover isn’t just his cover, it’s “our cover.” I’m going to buy ten of each and I don’t even have a video game system!
Then Seth started to make a promise to everyone but was interrupted by a Bray Wyatt promo on the big screen. He said Seth contradicted himself and then laughed and laughed. He said all Seth can talk about are his material possessions and he called Rollins vain. Wyatt can feel the struggle in his soul, man. Rollins is still conforming into whatever the people want him to be.
“You can wear the clothes of a good honest man but you and I know that deep down you are not that man,” Bray said.
Then Seth said he’s not that man, he’s the man. Seth said Bray thinks he knows everything but life doesn’t work that way. Rollins said he’s had a crazy couple of years and listed what he’s done. Then Rollins said gods only exist in our minds. In Bray’s world he is a god but in Seth’s world he is nothing but a coward.
Bray said that he warned him and anyone who takes his name in vain is to be punished. Now it was time to make a sacrifice. Seth looked on from the ring as Bray brought up his lantern and said “now I’m here” and he blew out his lantern.
Bray’s music hit and the fireflies came out in droves. Bray Wyatt showed up on the entrance holding a lantern that was lit again. He must use a ton of kerosene.
Bray got as far as the ring before Seth jumped on him from the top rope and knocked The Eater Of Worlds to the ground. Seth’s music hit and he walked off looking intensely at Wyatt while he sat propped up on the ring.
Corey Graves would like to take the time to put Kurt Angle over and say he is the best GM Raw has ever had and he supports him in all of his personal problems. Okay, that helps us.
Finn Balor said he wanted the Universal Title and put Samoa Joe and Roman Reigns over. Suddenly Elias Samson jumped him from behind and left Finn in a world of pain. “Don’t you ever upstage me again” Samson said as he pulled Finn up to his face.
Akira Tozawa vs TJP
It’s purple rope time once again and everybody rejoice! But the match didn’t start before Titus O’Neil came to the ring hyping The Titus Brand. How long does this gimmick need to go before it goes the same way “Make Darren Young Great Again” did? It’s great for house shows. Titus did the ring introductions and really put Tozawa over as the Next Cruiserweight Champion.
Tozawa got TJP in a headlock early on and got his “ha ha ha” chant going. He shot TJP off the ropes and Perkins came back with a flip. Akira rolled TJP up for a pin but he kicked out. Tozawa then slapped on an arm bar, but TJP countered into a leg scissors and then dabbed just to rub it in.
TJP tried to best Tozawa but got his chest kicked in for his troubles. But out of nowhere Neville’s music hit and he came out dragging his purple belt behind him. Neville strolled over to the announce table and said he wasn’t there to talk to them because he was there to get eyes on Akira Tozawa. Apparently Titus can just claim someone is the next contender for his title and it makes it a fact. Cool, good for Titus.
Neville lounged at the announce booth as TJP continued to try and take out Tozawa. He applied a rear chinlock and Neville didn’t look impressed. Akira squirmed and tried to break the hold but TJP had it on tight.
TJP really had that submission hold on there well, but Akira still fought out of the hold to the best of his ability. TJP went to suplex him but Akira landed on his feet. He hit TJP with a running boot to the face and climbed the top rope.
Akira amped himself up on the top rope, but TJP rolled out of the ring as Tozawa just jumped down. Akira hit him with a suicide dive and started to yell “ha ha ha!” like a crazy happy person.
TJP stated to beg off in the corner and suckered in Akira. He pulled Akira down to the smash his face on the second turnbuckle and then hit a gutbuster for a two count. TJP tried to hit a Detonation Kick, but Akira reversed it and sent him to the ground.
Tozawa climbed back up to the top rope and hit a Senton Bomb for the win. Titus jumped in the ring and celebrated with his prospect while Neville just looked on looking like he was learning something.
Titus grabbed the microphone because obviously the timekeeper didn’t get the memo not to give him the microphone. Titus said himself and Apollo Crews are going to be facing Sheamus and Cesaro tonight and said he’s going to give everyone stuff like Oprah.
Neville stood on the announce table and said Tozawa will be annihilated if he faces the King Of The Cruiserweights. Titus said he didn’t see a proud king, he saw a scared little boy.
Titus said the Neville Level will be annihilated by the Power of Tozawa.
R-Truth accepted Goldust’s invitation for a match. Oh, goody!
Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas were backstage and Axel was trying to console his friend as Miz walked up to them. Miz said they had what it takes to be in the Marine 5 but Bo and Curtis aren’t doing anything special.
Then Miz offered to make Bo and Curtis his entourage and he promised to make them stars their families could be proud of.
Roman Reigns vs Samoa Joe
Joe wanted a piece of Roman and both of these guys wanted to command respect from the other. They battled back and forth taking some of each other’s best offense.
Roman hit a Samoan Drop and Joe crawled to the apron. He saw Roman’s Drive By coming and got out of the way. Roman came around to get Joe but he was scooped up and sent against the ring post and Joe followed it up with a running senton on the outside.
Joe continued his domination with some stiff kicks and covered for a two count. Michael Cold said he bet Brock Lesnar was watching this match very closely. He probably wasn’t.
Joe mounted Roman and just pounded him with some closed fists to the face. As Joe slapped on a rear chinlock the crowd started to chant for both competitors. Roman fought out the best he could and created some separation before Joe knocked him back down with a headbutt.
Joe went for another running senton but Reigns rolled out of the way. Roman got back to his feet and so did Joe.
Joe missed a splash in the corner and Roman knocked him down. He shot Joe off the ropes and took him down with a straight kick to the check. Roman backed Joe in the corner and started to rain down with clotheslines to the face. Joe looked dazed as he took another clothesline and a flat back bump.
Roman started to “feel it” and he cocked his fist to prepare for a Superman Punch. Joe got to his feet and felt the punch coming so he rolled out of the ring. Roman hit a drive by on Joe and Corey graves said “he might be out cold.”
They got back to the ring but Joe reversed a Superman Punch into an inverted atomic drop and a kick to the face for a two count. Roman countered Joe again and hit a Superman Punch for a two count.
“How did he kick out?” Booker T questioned.
Roman went for a spear but ran into a knee. Joe hit the uranage for another two count. Once he got to his feet, Just Joe started stalking Roman and tried to latch on the Coquina Clutch but Roman shot himself off the ropes and hit a spear. 1-2-Joe got his foot on the bottom rope to break up the pin.
Joe rolled outside the ring as Roman rose to his feet in the ring. The ref started to count as Joe remained outside and “this is awesome” chants rang out in the arena. Joe made it in just before the ref counted to 10.
Roman was already preparing for a spear when we heard the sounds of an ambulance being backed up. Suddenly an ambulance was shown on the big screen and Braun Strowman opened the back door or the ambulance.
“ROOOOOARR!” Braun yelled as Roman looked on in disbelief. Apparently Braun was delivered via ambulance, that’s neat.
Just Joe jumped Roman from behind with a Coquina Clutch and that was all she wrote there. Samoa Joe won and Braun Strowman was back. Those are both bad things for The Big Dog.
As Roman Reigns laid on the mat and held his throat Braun Strowman’s music hit and the Monster Among Men came down to the ring. He stood over Roman with a mic in hand. While the crowd chanted “yes” and “holy sh-t” Braun said Roman’s seemed to forgotten he’s not finished with him.
Then Braun picked Roman up and just slammed him face first into the mat. Good lord Braun Strowman is amazing. “One more time” the crowd chanted as Braun said if Roman’s man enough then he’ll see him at the Great Balls Of Fire PPV in an ambulance match.
Yup, we’re getting another ambulance match. Yay for gimmicks!
Miz Is Awesome
As Miz came out Michael Cole said he was in the doghouse with his wife Maryse thanks to Dean Ambrose. The Miz TV set included a big gift in the middle of the ring and two guys in bear costumes holding signs that said “I’m sorry” and “please forgive me.”
Miz said his guest was his beautiful sexy wife and Maryse came down to her own entrance music. I forgot what her entrance sounded like.
Miz said not to worry about the bears because he checked them out. He got a Miz Bear and a Maryse Bear. They’re the It Couple of the “bear community”… that was clever.
Miz said he’ll admit when he’s wrong and he was sorry for destroying the grandfather clock a few weeks ago. He said he was sorry for everything and then said he knew sorry wasn’t good enough and told Maryse he had a gift for her.
He said the box was safe and got the crowd to chant “open it” so she did. The box had a grandfather clock in it that Miz claimed was the same clock from a couple weeks ago. He said all those nights when she thought he was on the couch he was actually studying YouTube videos of how to fix grandfather clocks. He did a lot of work.
Then he said Maryse is everything to him and he loves her so much. He said he will never put her in harm’s way. Then Miz said the clock is timeless just like them. He asked Maryse to forgive him one more time and then she kissed him as Dean Ambrose’s music hit.
Dean-O came out with his t-shirt on that looks like a whiskey label looking very cocky and sure of himself. Ambrose got in the ring and Miz tried to protect Miz which accidentally spilled her Champaign all over her. Then Ambrose sent Miz tripping into the grandfather clock.
Maryse got pissed and left as Miz yelled for his wife to come back saying he didn’t mean to do that. Ambrose was alone in the ring with Miz and tried for a Dirty Deeds. Miz got thrown over the ropes and suddenly the bears attacked Dean.
The bears pulled off their heads to reveal Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel in the costumes. Miz returned to the ring and hit a Skull Crushing Finale on Dean. Then Miz surrounded by Axel and Dallas in bear costumes stood tall over Ambrose. That was neat.
Sheamus and Cesaro vs The Titus Brand
Titus O’Neil and Apollo Crew have a lot on their plate when The Celtic Warrior and The Swiss Superman are on the other side of the ring. Apollo and Cesaro started out the match and Cesaro hit him with a quick shoulder tackle to establish his power. Crews leaped over him as he shot off the ropes and hit a dropkick. Then Cesaro tossed him to his corner and hit an uppercut as he tagged in Sheamus.
Sheamus kept up the pressure on Apollo and latched on a submission hold. Apollo was thrown back to his foes’ corner and both of them stated kicking a mudhole in Crews.
This was a strange match between two heel teams. The Raw Tag Team Champions were more over so I guess they were the babyfaces here?
Sheamus beat Crews down and quickly tagged Cesaro back in the match. Crews hit a kick to the side of the head and tagged out to Titus.
O’Neil started taking Cesaro down and used some major power. He kicked Cesaro’s head off, but Sheamus pulled Titus’ arm over the top rope and slowed him down.
Apollo got the tag and eventually landed a standing moonsault on Sheamus but the pin was broken up. Apollo rolled Sheamus up but got a two count. Cesaro hit Apollo with a “cheap shot” from the outside and got tagged in.
Sheamus and Cesaro hit their double team finisher on Apollo Crews and got the win. That was a very quick match but at least they were able to do something with it.
Brock Lesnar is going to be in LA for Monday Night Raw next week so that should be fun.
Sasha Banks vs Nia Jax
Emma really did come back for nothing last week. She came back from an injury that was caused by Sasha Banks but in no way did that factor into the story of the match. Instead Alexa Bliss just dodged a tag and walked off on her. But this isn’t about Emma, I just needed to get that off my chest.
Nia Jax should be the #1 contender because there’s seriously nobody who can beat her in the Women’s Division. Unless they’re already in a relationship with someone else Nia and Braun Strowman really need to just make babies so Triple H and William Regal can sign them out of the womb.
Alexa Bliss’ music hit and she walked to the announce table for commentary. It’s nice to see the Raw Women’s Champion on Raw. She almost missed it this week by waiting until ten till eleven to come out. But at least Bliss gets to talk which is her biggest selling point. She’s pretty good in the ring too so that should only go to further put over her promo abilities. But there was no saving that “This Is Your Life” segment with Bayley, no amount of ability could have turned that into chicken salad.
Nia Jax took it to Sasha from the start and didn’t let up on her. She tossed The Boss around the ring and Banks took some hard bumps. Sasha jumped off the top rope for a double knee but couldn’t capitalize on it.
Suddenly Emma showed up on commentary and confronted Alexa Bliss for walking out on her last week. It looks like things might be making sense. Yay for booking and story telling!
Emma chased Bliss to the ring and the got in during the match. Bliss dodged out of the way and Emma accidentally kicked Nia causing a DQ. They took Jax out and then Bliss and Emma beat up Sasha Banks. Mickie James and Dana Brooke ran to the ring to join the fray and Nia Jax took pretty much everyone out.
Then… it’s Bayley! The Hugger ran to the ring and threw Alexa through Emma. She hit a Bayley to Belly on Alexa and hit Emma with a few moves including a running knee that looked nice. Nia took Mickie and Dana out and went for Bayley. The Hugger drove Nia out of the ring and the babyfaces stood tall in the end.
It was almost like Raw was going “hey SmackDown, we’ve got women too” but in the end it was just another chaotic fracas followed by the heels running off. It does mean several women are mad at each other for different reasons though. So that’s cool because rivalries are always a good thing, that helps you build a division.
Enzo and Big Cass “Whodunnit” Revealed Segment
Kurt Angle’s music hit and everyone loved him so much they all wanted to make sure they let him know how much he sucks. “You suck” chants are a strange way to show love that would only be acceptable in pro wrestling. Imagine trying the same thing at your grandma’s next birthday party.
Kurt Angle said he wanted to get to the bottom of this and called Enzo and Big Cass out to the ring. Their music hit and the crowd popped loud when they came out. These guys are still so over it’s ridiculous. If they’re breaking up soon it might be too soon at this point. It might have been a good idea a couple of months ago, maybe even before Mania. But right now they seem to have gotten more popular again. But this whole storyline had the markings of a break up all over it and it looked like something was going down tonight.
Enzo came out and did his whole bit and Cass said when they find out who’s been jumping them they will find them and there’s only one word to describe them SAWFT-SAAAAAWFT!
Kurt Angle said he’s been talking to suspects all night long and then brought out The Revival. Dash and Dawson came out and they really should have gotten a bigger pop than they did. These are Top Guys and should be treated as such. It should be a Monday Night Revival every week if you ask some people who treasure the wrestling they perform so well.
Big Show was called out next and the giant came down with a constipated look on his face. How about Kurt Angle call Vince McMahon to the ring next… nope. Angle was done at two people. Only two suspects. That’s detective work Angle.
Kurt brought up the fact that Big Cass said it felt like a brick when he got hit in the back of the head and he asked Show if he did it. Big Show said if he came at them he would do it to their face and not behind their back. He looked at Big Cass and talked some trash. We would like to see those two go at it for a program. That would be nice.
But Big Show looked at Angle and asked him how he could accuse him after all they’ve been through. Big Show said maybe he didn’t need to be on his show anymore and left as Big Cass talked some trash to him.
The Revival explained themselves by saying they’re not there to win a popularity contest but they’re innocent. Then Kurt Angle said they’re right and they didn’t do it. He said The Revival have very solid alibis.
Then Corey Graves got up and said he could be of assistance. Then he said Big Cass lied about his medical treatment because he spoke to medical and they had no record of treating him. Then he brought up the fact that Big Cass wrestled last week when he wasn’t medically cleared because he was never injured. This wasn’t looking good for those who wanted Enzo and Cass to stay together.
Corey Graves proved himself to be a superior journalist as he showed security footage of Big Cass backstage looking around to see if anyone was around. The footage showed Big Cass lifting up a piece of metal staging and a wood pallet to set up his faked attack scene.
Big Cass looked nervous in the ring as the footage showed Big Cass lay on the ground to fake an attack. Corey Graves said Big Cass attacked Enzo.
“YOU’RE DAMN RIGHT I DID IT!” Big Cass screamed. Then he went off about how annoying Enzo is to work with. He brought up Enzo running his mouth to Connor McGregor and said he’s wanted to knock him out himself on many occasions. He said because everybody in the back doesn’t like him he felt bad for him.
It looks like it was happening. The Realest Guys In The Room are no more. Cass said it felt damn good when he attacked Enzo from behind and he would have snapped his neck like a twig if he wanted to but he didn’t because he wanted to watch him suffer. He said he’s been annoyed by Enzo since NXT and blamed Enzo for causing him heat backstage.
Big Cass realized Enzo was dumb and nothing more than dead weight and holding him back when he should be rising to the top. He’s the reason Cass has never been a champion in WWE. He’s the star, the future, where the money is. Cass said Enzo’s mouth writes checks his ass can’t cash because he’s always been behind him.
Big Cass said they’re through and hit Enzo with a Big Boot. Kurt Angle looked concerned and let Cass leave while he kneeled down to attend to Enzo.
It seemed pretty anticlimactic but their break up had to happen soon or later. So that’s that kids and you can’t teach that!