We have the Greatest Royal Rumble on Friday and Brock Lesnar is in the building for the Raw before everyone takes off to Saudi Arabia. He will defend his WWE Universal Championship against Roman Reigns and the only question is who will be claiming the Universal Title as a carry-on for the flight home.
There are plenty of other factors at play to make up various stories as the WWE Superstar Shake-Up settles. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn have yet to really settle in and that’s going to be a fun thing to watch because they’re always entertaining.
Stephanie McMahon still hasn’t weighed in on the decision about what happened last week and if she makes the show that means the McMahon Family caught WWE’s private jet after attending Bruno Sammartino’s funeral to make the show. This wouldn’t surprise me a bit if that was the case though.
The Raw Tag Team Championships are also still vacant since Braun Strowman and a 10-year-old picked up the Red Brand’s tag team gold at WrestleMania 34 and they were vacated the night afterward because Nicholas had school.
So let’s get into it and see what WWE brings to the table this week.
They opened the show with a video package for Bruno Sammartino that was amazing featuring a slideshow and interviews with everyone like Triple H, Heyman, Cena, Pat Patterson, and Reigns. What is so unfortunate is that so many people might not be able to fully appreciate how big of a deal Bruno Sammartino was during his day and how much everyone today needs to thank his memory for paving the way for everything that came afterward for Vince McMahon and Company. But the package was great and did its best to highlight Bruno and everything he meant to the world of sports entertainment.
Brock Lesnar Kicks Off Raw
Welcome to episode number 1,300 of Monday Night Raw and Brock Lesnar came down with a big smirk on his face as Michael Cole said The Coach was on assignment this week. “What do you mean, he’s golfing,” Corey Graves said referring to the fact that Jonathan Coachman was announcing a long drive competition for Golf TV this week so Booker T had to take his spot back for a week.
Brock Lesnar got the usual introductions from Paul Heyman where they gloated extra hard about the fact that he’s still Universal Champion. Then Paul Heyman said he’s not going to gloat and say “I told you so.” Then he started dropping truth bombs.
He said Lesnar threw Reigns out like Samoan trash to be left out for the next morning in a vicious rant and it was marvelous to see. Then Heyman said Lesnar doesn’t dwell on the past, he looks forward to the future. Now the future is the Greatest Royal Rumble.
Heyman said Lesnar is flying on a private jet and fly to the Kingdom Of Saudi Arabia just to be locked in a cage with Roman Reigns. The camera found the only cluster of people chanting “Roman” as Heyman talked about how Lesnar earned a raise and new contract when he won at Mania.
Then Paul Heyman hyped the cage match at the Greatest Royal Rumble talking about how Reigns will come back in multiple boxes as a former Superstar and then Reigns’ music went off and the place actually popped.
“He’s here, the Big Dog,” Michael Cole said
“He’s always here,” Corey Graves replied on cue to accent the story that Roman doesn’t miss any shows because he’s the guy.
Reigns said he doesn’t know how he’s going to come back, but he’s coming back with that title and you can believe that. Then he dropped the microphone and left. This rematch has the build of a match with the possibility of much less but in reality, it could stand to become a very important match in WWE History.
Elias vs Bobby Roode
The Drifter got no time to sing a song or even work with the crowd. He started to go but Bobby Roode’s music cut him off and everyone reacted poorly because they felt gipped that they didn’t get to see Elias play off the crowd, do his thing, and sing a song about how crappy their city is.
Michael Cole said “what’s interesting about this is that both of these men will be a part of the Greatest Royal Rumble” which is stupid to say because of course, they are because there will be 50 guys in it.
Cole also later said that people can watch the Greatest Royal Rumble during their lunch break. Who is getting a 5-hour lunch break? Anyway, back to the wrestling.
Roode took it to Elias for a bit but The Drifter kicked out. Roode kept working the arm until Elias fought out of it but Bobby reversed out of it. Elias reversed a Glorious DDT but Roode clotheslined him over the ropes to the floor which used to be a disqualification.
Elias took control and they fought outside of the ring. But once they returned to the ring Bobby Roode eventually took control and hit top rope clothesline that looks like he took it from Kane.
He went for a Glorious DDT but Elias reversed it again but Roode popped up and hit a blockbuster so Elias rolled out of the ring. As they got back in the ring, Elias yanked on Roode’s arm and sent Bobby’s head in to the ropes and then Elias rolled him up and stole a pinfall.
Winner: Elias via pinfall
After the match was over, Elias walked off looking happy with himself as Bobby Roode looked on in the ring.
Matt Hardy and Bray Wyatt cut a video promo about the Most Humongous Rumble Of Royalty they will procure the Raw Tag Team Championships. It was quite nice and those two are starting to really gel well with each other. The mood to the room and lighting changed as Bray came in to add his little special something. Then they both looked in the camera and said, “run!” Nice.
The Ascension vs Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy
Matt Hardy took a moment to applaud Viktor for doing a cartwheel during the opening moments which got a standing ovation. “That was wonderful!” Hardy announced.
Bray soon got the tag and Konner came in as well until Wyatt clotheslined his lights out and then tagged in Matt who took him down with a shoulder tackle. Konner drove Hardy into his corner and tagged in Viktor to put the boots on Hardy.
Hardy took control and announced they have reached the climax and hit a Twist Of Fate but Viktor kicked out. Then Bray hit a Sister Abigail on Konner and he rolled out. But Hardy tagged Bray back in and they hit a double team move for the win.
Winners: Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy
Corey Graves hyped the Kevin And Sami Show coming up next and you could hear Michael Cole say, “Sami and Kevin” which makes me wonder if they meant to have that make the air for some reason.
The Sami And Kevin Show
The ring was set up like a little podcasting studio with some signs up of Sami and Kevin and Sami said it’s the hottest new talk show in WWE. Kevin said they’ll do it whenever they feel like it.
They said since The Miz had to take Miz TV to SD Live then they get to take advantage. The crowd chanted, “you both suck” as Sami and Kevin bantered about why they’re going to win the Greatest Royal Rumble Match.
Sami said they were the handpicked jewels of Stephanie McMahon and that drew a large boo because everyone hates Stephanie. Then Kevin and Sami sang Angle’s “you suck” theme song before welcoming him out.
They told Angle they would get him a chair so they got out a beach chair and sat it down for him to sit about a foot lower than them. Sami said SD Live was toxic and they were victims of a conspiracy theory against them.
Kevin bragged about splitting Vince McMahon’s head open with a headbutt and Sami talked about how Shane hates them too. So they said since Steph put them on Raw then she must really hate Angle.
Angle said Steph hates her because he ruined the deal with Rousey. They said Angle needs a job and then they bantered about how many kids Angle has. Sami said 5 and Kevin said 6 because he forgot Jason Jordan but that’s okay because Kurt Angle also forgot about him for years.
Then Angle said he’s going to be in the Greatest Royal Rumble along with Daniel, Jericho, and every other Superstar they pissed off over the years. Then he sat up a match between Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn vs Bobby Lashley and Braun Strowman.
Seth Rollins was backstage taping his hands when he looked over and Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas were standing there. They were wearing Seth Rollins shirts and proposed they could be the new Shield. Rollins aid their head is in the right place but it’s going to be a hard no. It looks like without The Miz, they need someone else to follow around.
Drew McIntyre and Dolph Ziggler vs Titus Worldwide
Dolph and Drew’s mashed up music is rather interesting. Michael Cole put over Drew for being more polished and ready this time. Dolph started the match and took some damage from Titus as Dana Brooke continued to shout out direction from ringside.
Apollo got the tag and hit a standing moonsault for a two count but Drew got a blind tag off the ropes and took Apollo down with a big boot. He laid in some chops in the corner onto Crews and soon tagged in Dolph where he hit a Superkick/Alabama Slam combo. Drew knocked Titus off the apron and they hit the Claymore/Zig Zag move for the win.
Winners: Dolph n Drew via pinfall
After the match was over, Charlie got in the ring and asked Ziggler why he brought McIntyre with him. Dolph said it’s because nobody has ever had his back and he’s a dangerous man.
Drew took the mic and said the locker room has gone soft. They have no fire or ambition and they’re just collecting checks. He said he’s a Superstar and he’s got all the credentials to back it up. He said he’s not what WWE wants, it’s the wake-up call and reality check WWE desperately needs.
Then Ziggler said they don’t need to steal the show because they are the show. Then they left to Ziggler’s music.
Angle watched backstage on a monitor when he turned around and saw Chad Gable who thanked him for bringing him up on Raw. Gable asked how Jason Jordan was and Angle said Jason’s doing well but he brought Gable over to be a singles competitor.
Suddenly, Jinder Mahal was there and he demanded to be sent back to SmackDown Live if he wins at the Greatest Royal Rumble. Gable stepped up to him and told him he should have some respect.
Jinder asked if Gable was the little kid who won the tag team championship with Braun Strowman and then said “oh Mini-Me I thought you passed away this week” which was pretty tasteless considering how much he meant to some of the guys. Gable jumped Mahal and Kurt Angle told them to settle it in the ring.
Jinder Mahal vs Chad Gable
Mahal attacked Gable during his entrance and didn’t let him breathe much with some stomps before tossing him in the ring. The referee backed Mahal off before ringing the bell to start the match.
Then Gable started wrestling circles around Mahal. but Jinder sent him down with a big boot. Gable hit a crossbody but Mahal fought out of it and the action soon spilled out of the ring where Jinder took control due to his size advantage.
Once they returned to the ring, Jinder Mahal maintained control and kept the pressure on Chad Gable for a bit. Gable reversed a knee strike and came back with a rolling kick and then he went to work on Mahal’s leg with a couple strikes and a dragon screw.
But Jinder returned fire until Gable fought out of a fireman’s carry but Mahal hung him up in the ropes and then hit a running knee strike while Cole put him over on commentary.
Jinder Mahal went for the Khallas, but Chad Gable walked up the turnbuckle while still in the move and flipped around pinning Mahal’s shoulders to the mat for a three count.
Winner: Chad Gable via pinfall
Renee Young introduced the Riott Squad backstage. Ruby said she sent a message to the entire Raw Women’s Division. Logan said everyone is jumping at shadows and Liv said if Alexa or Mickie get out of line they’ll get the Bayley and Sasha treatment. Ruby said they are equal opportunity agitators which needs to be on a t-shirt.
Samoa Joe cut a promo about how Roman wouldn’t make it to Backlash because Lesnar is going to destroy him.
Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel were wearing Finn Balor merchandise but Balor didn’t need them to be his cronies.
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn vs Bobby Lashley and Braun Strowman
KO and SZ rolled outside as soon as the bell sounded because they obviously didn’t want any part of Lashley or Strowman. When Bobby and Braun went outside to chase them, Sami and Kevin rolled inside. They tried a switch-up one more time but Braun caught them and started the abuse.
Lashley and Kevin ended up in the ring to start it out while Michael Cole put Lashley over by re-introducing him to the WWE Universe.
Sami got the tag but could do little to Bobby Lashley until he was thrown into a corner and raised his boot for Bobby to run into.
Braun continued to stand on the apron as Bobby took it to Zayn but Kevin Owens lowered the top rope as Lashley ran off the ropes and he went toppling to the floor as KO followed with a running senton.
Once they returned to the ring, Lashley hit a massive belly-to-belly on Sami and Kevin Owens jumped in to make the save. Sami tried to keep Bobby from making the tag to Braun by hanging off his back. Kevin pulled Braun off the apron but it didn’t keep him from being in his corner for long.
Lashley knocked KO off the apron and tagged in Braun who raced around the ring and hit a shoulder tackle on Kevin, he ran in the ring to knock Sami down, and then he ran around the ring to hit Owens again. Then Braun an in the ring once again to nail Sami and ran back out to nail Kevin Owens with a dropkick.
This is when Sami Zayn started to run but Bobby Lashley tracked him down and threw him back in the ring to get those hands from Braun as the crowd started to chant, “get this hands.”
Bobby got the tag and hit a very long vertical suplex and tagged in Strowman to hit the running powerslam for the win.
Winners: Bobby Lashley and Braun Strowman via pinfall
Baron Corbin vs No Way Jose
No Way Jose came out with a conga line that looked like a bunch of reject Rosebuds and it reminded me way too much of the Exotic Express. To think No Way Jose will suffer the same fate as Adam Rose makes me sad.
Baron came out and said he’s not going to fall for No Way Jose’s trick because he saw the conga line as a chance for people to jump him. He said unlike Jose, Baron is there to fight and No Way is not on his level.
Baron said as long as he’s running around with that group of freaks then-No Way, Jose.
Jose grabbed the mic and said just because Baron doesn’t want to have fun doesn’t mean the party has to stop. So they hit his music again and No Way Jose danced some more. Yep.
No Way Jose and his group danced up the ramp and as Jose turned to pose to the crowd, Corbin jumped him from behind. He beat Jose down and launched him into the video screen. Then Baron hit the chokeslam backbreaker to leave No Way Jose laying on the top of the ramp while Baron Corbin posed above him.
Alexa Bliss cut a video promo called “A Moment Of Bliss” about anti-bullying. She told a story about how she was once out with Nia Jax and they say a homeless lady. Bliss said she gave the homeless lady her burrito bowl but Nia took it away and gobbled it down. She said she will never forget the sound of Nia laughing and chewing and she will have to live with that for the rest of her life. Then she waned the babyfaces not to fall for Nia’s tricks.
Seth Rollins and Finn Balor vs The Miztourage
Dallas and Axel came out to The Miz’s music which is kind of sad and they will probably new their own music soon enough.
This match was pretty standard. Balor took some abuse in the ring until Rollins got the tag and rallied. He hit a suicide dive and then Dallas countered Seth but he reversed and hit a curb stomp on Axel. Then he tagged in Balor who hit a Coup De Gras for the win.
Winners: Seth Rollins and Finn Balor via pinfall
Alexa Bliss and Mickie James and The Riott Squad vs Nia Jax, Natalya, Bayley, Sasha Banks, and Ember Moon
Alexa Bliss is wrestling in this match which should put to rest any idea of her having breast enhancement surgery because she wouldn’t be competing if that was the case.
Banks and Morgan started things out until a brawl broke out when Logan got the tag. She drove a knee into Banks’ abdomen and The Boss tried to gain an advantage by jumping on the apron and firing off a kick. Liv Morgan got the tag once again and Banks made her way to the corner after countering Morgan to tag in Ember Moon.
Booker T, who trained Moon talked about first meeting her as she hit Morgan with a flipping clothesline into the corner followed by a suicide dive on Morgan on the outside.
Later on, Sasha Banks ended up in a disadvantage as Mickie James scored the tag and took her down with a headlock to slow her down as they went to a split screen to hype the Greatest Royal Rumble. Banks hit a jaw jacker to break up the hold as Mickie snatched her back into a headlock because the promo wasn’t over yet.
Banks almost made it to a tag and although James tried to stop her Nattie soon got the tag. She hit a few moves including some perfect suplexes and concluded it with a basement dropkick and sharpshooter. Then Sarah Logan jumped in the ring to hit a chopblock on Nattie to take her down.
She sold her knee as the referee checked on her and asked her if she could continue. Bayley got the tag but Mickie James kicked Nattie out of the ring for good measure. The referee called for some help and ringside medics came down to check on Nattie as the action continued in the ring.
Ruby Riott and Bayley fought on in the ring until Nia Jax got the tag. She tossed Ruby into the turnbuckle and hit a gorilla press slam followed by a leg drop but the pin was broken up. Then chaos broke out in the ring and spilled outside. Nia Jax got on the apron and hit a running jumping tackle that took everyone out. Alexa Bliss took a bump there so that should answer your question about if she is okay to compete.
James ran to the other side of the ring and started stomping Nattie down after knocking her off the apron and then Ronda Rousey came down to help her friend up. James scurried in the ring and then she hit Ronda Rousey with a dropkick through the ropes which knocked her down.
Ronda hit the mat and sprung up just to chase Mickie in the ring and quickly make her tap out to the armbar.
Raw went off the air with Ronda Rousey helping Nattie up the ramp and she didn’t look happy about what just went down.
Winners: The Heels via DQ