Welcome to the WWE Raw Deal review right here on Rajah. The next WWE PPV is Money in the Bank on May 10 with WWE continuing to build to those matches. I hope you are safe, happy and healthy wherever you are. This health crisis is not going away quickly, but at least some parts of the world are starting to open up more every week. As for me, I’m doing fine here in southern Ontario as the spring-like weather arrives. I'm trying to write as much as usual. I’m missing sports in my life although watching that “Last Dance” documentary about the 1990s Chicago Bulls has been great. Anyway, let’s see what WWE has in store for us this week.
From the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, this is the Raw Deal for episode #1405 of Monday Night Raw. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Please visit TJRWrestling.net daily for our regular updates on the wrestling business featuring WWE news coverage, insightful columns from our team along with reviews about wrestling’s past and present. Let’s roll.
The Raw introduction video aired to begin the show.
There were ladders all around the WWE Performance Center to promote the Money in the Bank pay-per-view. The announce team plugged what’s coming up this week including the contract signing and Asuka vs. Nia Jax vs. Shayna Baszler. The Raw announce team this week is Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton and Samoa Joe.
Analysis: No Jerry Lawler, but he was there as we found out later. This is Joe's TV return after a few months off due to suspension and he's been dealing with a concussion. It's unknown right now when Joe will be able to wrestle again.
The VIP Lounge Hosted by MVP
Montel Vontavious Porter was in the ring hosting his VIP Lounge talk show. He talked about the Money in the Bank contract ladder match and how it’s a big match. MVP introduced the three Raw men that are part of the MITB contract ladder match: Rey Mysterio, Aleister Black and Apollo Crews. When MVP introduced Crews, he said he was picking him to win it all. Crews beat MVP on Raw last week. There were two couches in the ring that the wrestlers were seated on.
Mysterio was asked a question, then MVP cut him off before Rey could say anything and he said for Rey, it would add to his legacy. MVP said for Black, winning Money in the Bank would help his rise to the stratosphere. MVP asked Crews what it would mean to him and wondered if he has what it takes. Crews was about to speak, but they were interrupted.
The Zelina Vega-led trio of Andrade, Angel Garza and Austin Theory were on the stage. Vega was wearing shoes with big heels on them so she didn’t look as short as usual. Vega trashed the guys in the ring saying that the WWE Universe can’t get enough of her group. Vega said that they are the future of Raw. Vega said at one point in their careers, the three in the ring were the future, but none of them could measure up to her three guys. Vega’s men knocked over part of the “set” of the talk show on their way into the ring.
Vega said that those three guys need to do what’s right and they need to show what’s best for Raw. Vega said that those three guys should allow her three guys to take their place in the Money in the Bank contract ladder match.
Rey Mysterio said that you’re coming out there expecting them to give up their Money in the Bank spots? Mysterio said that you didn’t just come out there for that, you came here to pick a fight and then the six wrestlers got into a fight. The faces tossed the three heels out of the ring. That should set up the obvious six-man tag team match.
Analysis: It set up an obvious tag team match. Very good promo from Vega as usual. I would have liked to hear something from Crews and Black to get them a chance to cut promos, but somebody in WWE must have felt like only MVP should get promo time there other than Vega and Rey’s brief speech. I would like to see WWE have more faith in their talent to deliver a promo in a spot like that. MVP is a great talker too, but you have to let the wrestlers speak.
The holla holla holla tag team match started after the break.
Aleister Black, Rey Mysterio and Apollo Crews vs. Andrade, Angel Garza and Austin Theory (w/Zelina Vega)
Black worked over Garza’s knee, then Garza went after the arm and Garza kicked Black’s leg. Black with an arm drag followed by an armbar. Vega is married to Black, as I have mentioned before. Black with a sweep kick followed by another arm drag into an armbar. Crews tagged in with a shoulder tackle on Theory and a stalling suplex. Crews with a dropkick leading to an armbar. Mysterio with a headscissors that sent Theory into the turnbuckle, Garza tagged in and Mysterio with a headscissors to send two heels into the ropes. Andrade tagged in, Mysterio managed to get away from him and sent Andrade into the ropes. Mysterio wanted the 619, but Andrade went to the floor. Black and Crews hit somersault dives over the top to knock down Garza and Theory on the floor. The faces slid back into the ring as the show went to break.
The heels were in control as Theory grounded Black with a headlock leading to a suplex by Theory. A kick to the back by Theory followed by a chinlock. Theory sent Black into the turnbuckle and then he hit a basic belly to back suplex. The heels made quick tags with Garza and Andrade getting in some shots leading to Theory getting in the ring again. Black got some offense with a kick to the head and a shot to the chest led to Mysterio getting the tag against Andrade. Mysterio with a headscissors, Andrade sent Mysterio to the apron, but Rey came back with a seated senton and a kick to the head for two. Mysterio ran off the ropes, but Andrade caught him leading to a front slam. Mysterio with a hurricanrana and a cross body block on Garza, who was legal. Garza with a knee to the face and he took off his pants to reveal the tights. Garza sent Mysterio out sliding under the bottom rope leading to Rey’s famous bump that he takes on his chest on the floor. They went to break there about 14 minutes into the match.
It was Mysterio’s turn to be the face in peril as Theory gave him a press slam followed by a standing moonsault on Rey for a two count. Andrade stomped on Mysterio against the turnbuckle, but then Rey came back with an enziguri kick to the head. Mysterio tried a leaping attack, Andrade caught him and Mysterio hit an impressive spinning DDT. Crews got the tag against Theory with two clotheslines, then he sent Theory into the turnbuckle and hit him with shoulder tackles. Crews with a spinebuster on Garza and a powerslam on Theory for two with Andrade breaking up the pin. Theory with a suplex into a backbreaker on the knee for a two count with Vega shocked that Crews could kick out of that. Crews wanted a suplex, but Crews got out of it and Andrade tagged in. Andrade lowered the top rope, so Crews went over the top to the floor. They did a series of moves where four guys were knocked out of the ring, so legal men Crews and Andrade were in the ring. Andrade hit a spinning back elbow on Crews for a two count. Crews got out of a Hammerlock DDT attempt and hit a lifting sitout Powerbomb pin for the victory after 23 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Aleister Black, Rey Mysterio and Apollo Crews
Analysis: ***1/4 It was a pretty good tag team match with Crews getting the big win to get him some momentum while also picking up a victory over Andrade the US Champion to set up a title shot. They got a lot of time and it was probably a few minutes too long, but I understand going longer to fill some time when the whole roster likely isn’t there. Mysterio sold everything well while Black did fine too. Normally a match like that will see Black featured more and likely win the match, but Crews needs the victory to continue his positive momentum of late.
Triple H Moment: There was a video honoring Triple H’s 25 Year Anniversary. They showed his #10 biggest moment that was the start of Triple H-led Degeneration X in March 1998.
Triple H Moment: The #9 highlight was a clip of WrestleMania 31 when Triple H beat Sting. I’ll always say that Sting should have won that match. My theory on why Triple H went over Sting at WM31 was because they wanted to do Hunter vs. Rock at WM32 (didn't happen) or Hunter/Steph vs. Rock/Rousey at WM32 and so they thought Hunter should get the win. But Sting should have won based on the story. It's also Vince McMahon wanting his WWE guy beating the WCW guy even though this was 14 years after WCW died.
Backstage, Andrade and Zelina Vega were arguing. Charly Caruso showed up looking tremendous and asked what happened. Andrade said that his partners let him down and that Crews can’t beat him for the title. Crews showed up he can beat Andrade again in a singles match. Andrade got back in Apollo’s face, so Crews slapped Andrade in the face. Vega told Crews he’ll get that US Title shot tonight.
Analysis: There is likely a limited roster there due to the health crisis and WWE not wanting to bring everybody to the show, so these two guys will work twice. That’s fine with me. Good slap by Crews that looked legit, so kudos to Andrade for taking it!
A video aired about the Drew McIntyre rivalry with Seth Rollins to set up their WWE Title match at Money in the Bank.
Triple H Moment: The #8 highlight was the first Smackdown main event in 1999 when Triple H retained the WWE Title against The Rock when referee Shawn Michaels hit a superkick on The Rock. Triple H hit a Pedigree to retain the title.
Triple H Moment: The #7 highlight was from July 2000 when Triple H was teaching Trish Stratus wrestling moves and he had her in a sexual position when “wife” Stephanie McMahon walked in to see it, so she threw a fit when she saw it. That was a creative booking moment. This was about three years before Hunter and Stephanie got married.
Asuka made her entrance for her triple threat match. Asuka did a promo ranting in Japanese saying it’s been two years since she fought Nia Jax. Asuka said she tapped out Nia Jax followed by more ranting and laughing.
Analysis: Asuka promos are great...even the parts I don't understand. I just like the delivery. She's awesome.
Nia Jax was up next followed by Shayna Baszler. All three women are in the Money in the Bank contract ladder match on May 10.
Baszler pulled Asuka out of the ring and punched her in the back before the bell rang to start the match. Baszler tossed Asuka into a ladder. Jax whipped Baszler into a barricade. Asuka with a kick on Jax and then Baszler hit a clothesline on Asuka. Baszler grabbed a ladder, but Asuka whipped Baszler into the ladder at ringside. Asuka sent Baszler into the ring and Jax ran over Asuka with a running body attack. Jax tossed a ladder over the top rope and into the ring, which led to all three women in the ring. Jax ran over Jax and Baszler with the ladder. Jax tossed the ladder back into the ring and Jax stood tall.
Analysis: No match, which is probably a good thing with three heel wrestlers. Jax standing tall is the kind of booking WWE loves to do with her as a dominant wrestler. It wasn’t exciting at all, but at least it was only a few minutes. Keeping it short was the right call. I'll never complain if a Nia Jax doesn't happen as advertised. Just saying.
Bobby Lashley is in action up next.
A commercial aired for Total Bellas on Thursday. Poor Daniel Bryan.
Bobby Lashley was backstage with “wife” Lana with Bobby saying he didn’t want her to go out there with him. Bobby said that Lana is a distraction and then he sucked up to her saying she was so beautiful. Lana was dumb enough to understand why he didn’t want her there. Lashley went for his match.
Bobby Lashley vs. Denzel Dejournette
Lashley with an overhead belly to belly followed, by a trip and a slap to the face. Lashley ran the ropes, Dejournette with a slap and Lashley with a leapfrog followed by a kick. Lashley with a suplex into a slam. Lashley with a one armed spinebuster. Lashley hit a running Spear for the pinfall win in a match that went over one minute.
Winner by pinfall: Bobby Lashley
Analysis: 1/2* A squash win to put over Lashley. Bobby needs a storyline because he hasn’t had anything meaningful to do in months.
Liv Morgan faces Ruby Riott after a break.
There was a clip of the new WWE Battleground video game coming this fall. It is an arcade-style game. It was announced by WWE earlier today and I have a post about it here if you want to check it out.
Liv Morgan and Ruby Riott made their entrance. Morgan beat Riott last week.
Ruby Riott vs. Liv Morgan
Riott with a STO trip to send Morgan to the mat. Riott tried a corner attack, but Morgan hit a drop toe hold into the turnbuckle. Morgan blocked a move leading to face first slam into the mat. A running corner attack by Morgan, but then Riott came back with a jumping Riott Kick to the face. That is usually good for the win, but Morgan kicked out at two with Riott shocked about that. Riott trash talked Morgan saying “you made me do it” as they went into the ropes and Morgan hit her move off the ropes that’s like a reverse flatliner called Oblivion. That was good enough for the pinfall win after about three minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Liv Morgan
Analysis: *1/4 A decisive win for Morgan. A longer match would have been nice, but it’s okay to have Morgan win in the manner that she did. This is the second straight week where Morgan beat her “mentor” Riott, who was the leader of the Riott Squad. I like that Morgan is getting a push. The next step is a meaningful feud.
Morgan was interviewed in the ring by Saxton. Morgan said that she feels like she has had so many chapters, but right now she feels like a lot of people her age and she’s trying to figure out who she is. Morgan said she’ll figure it out and then added that she’s confident she’ll figure it out.
McIntyre and Rollins still to come.
Triple H Moment: The #6 Triple H highlight was winning the 1997 King of the Ring tournament over Mankind in the finals. Mankind aka Mick Foley put over Triple H a lot in his career. I loved their rivalry in 2000, but the 1997 feud was big for both guys too.
The announcers went over the Money in the Bank matches on May 10:
* WWE Championship: Drew McIntyre (c) vs. Seth Rollins
* Universal Championship: Braun Strowman (c) vs. Bray Wyatt
* Smackdown Women's Championship: Bayley (c) vs. Tamina
* Men’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Daniel Bryan vs. Aleister Black vs. Apollo Crews vs. Rey Mysterio vs. King Corbin and one more wrestler.
* Women’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Asuka vs. Shayna Baszler vs. Nia Jax vs. Dana Brooke vs. Lacey Evans and one more wrestler.
Nia Jax was shown standing backstage with Charly Caruso going up to her for an interview. Jax asked Caruso what she can do about Nia’s actions and said nothing. Jax noted that Asuka and Shayna can do nothing about their actions.
The Viking Raiders did a quick promo calling out the Street Profits while adding that their shared history tells the truth. Ivar noted that Street Profits won the Tag Team Titles in NXT and Raw after Viking Raiders. Erik said that every single time they have faced Street Profits, the Viking Raiders have beaten them. Ivar said that they know the truth and Erik added that as long as the Viking Raiders are around, the Street Profits will only be second best. Ivar dared the Street Profits to prove them wrong and the Viking Raiders said, “we want the smoke.”
Analysis: It makes sense to build up a rivalry between those teams because Raw’s tag team division is very thin. Smackdown has a lot more teams right now.
Jinder Mahal is back in action and he’s on Raw up next.
This Wednesday on NXT it’s Keith Lee defending the US Title against Damian Priest and Charlotte Flair defends the NXT Women’s Title against Mia Yim. Two title matches on the show is a big deal.
Triple H Moment: The #5 highlight showed when NXT invaded Smackdown on November 1 when a lot of WWE superstars were unable to get there after the Saudi Arabia trip. I believe that’s my highest graded Smackdown rating since it has been on Fox. It was a great show with Triple H leading the way for the NXT brand.
Akira Tozawa was in the ring for a match. Jinder Mahal made his entrance for his return match after missing nearly a year after having knee surgery last June. Mahal is in great shape as usual for him.
Jinder Mahal vs. Akira Tozawa
Mahal with a belly to back suplex and he tossed Tozawa out of the ring. Mahal whipped Tozawa into the LED board and the barricade. Mahal with a Samoan Drop. Mahal hit The Khallas slam for the pinfall win in under two minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Jinder Mahal
Analysis: 1/2* A squash win for Mahal to make him look dominant in his return to action. Tozawa didn’t get any offense there. It wouldn’t surprise me if Mahal got a pretty good push now that he’s back from injury. I didn’t love his 2017 WWE Title run, but maybe Jinder has improved since then.
Andrade and Zelina Vega were backstage with Charly Caruso showing up. Vega said if you want to ask him something, you have to go through her. Angel Garza showed up with a rose and asked Caruso if maybe sometime they could get better acquainted. Garza left while Charly smiled.
Analysis: Garza just got major heat with me for that because Charly is wonderful. I’m kidding about the heat…maybe. Garza got engaged in the NXT ring late last year and his fiancée was actually on Raw a few weeks ago. This is just a way to further his Latin lover style gimmick.
Triple H Moment: The #4 Triple H highlight was form June 2006 when he imitated father in law Vince McMahon and Shawn Michaels imitated Shane McMahon. It was funny with a lot of memorable moments with Hunter and Shawn in the DX days.
Andrade entered with the US Title with manager Zelina Vega, who managed to walk without falling over in her high heel shoes that have about six inches of lifts on them. Apollo Crews entered as the challenger. Both wrestlers stood in the ring for the championship intros from ring announcer Mike Rome.
United States Championship: Andrade (w/Zelina Vega) vs. Apollo Crews
Crews slapped on the armbar, then a headlock and Andrade drove Crews to the apron where Andrade got a shot to the left eye. Andrade ran the ropes, Crews with a leapfrog and then a dropkick. Andrade bailed to the floor, so Crews brought him back in, which led to Andrade hitting a forearm to the back. Andrade worked over Crews by driving his knee against the turnbuckle. Andrade with a dropkick that sent Crews to the turnbuckle again. Andrade went for a running knee, Crews moved and Andrade bumped over the top to the floor. Crews went for a moonsault off the apron, Andrade moved and Crews was grabbing his left knee. Andrade knocked Crews down leading to a break.
The match returned with Andrade hitting a sliding dropkick to the knee of Crews which knocked Apollo out of the ring. Andrade with a forearm, then back in and Crews slid back in at the count of seven. Andrade wrenched back on the left knee with a kneebar followed by a stomp on the knee into the mat. Andrade with a running kick on Crews followed by forearms to the face. Crews was against the turnbuckle, so Andrade charged with the double knees and Crews moved out of the way. Crews hit the Olympic Slam like Kurt Angle but was too hurt to go for the cover. Crews with punches, then a clothesline and shoulder tackles against the turnbuckle. Crews with a corner splash followed by an overhead belly to belly suplex across the ring. Crews charged right into a boot by Andrade, but Crews came back with a kick to the head. Crews with a press slam followed by a standing moonsault for two with Crews grabbing at his left knee. Andrade with a drop toe hold into the turnbuckle and this time Andrade connected with the double knee attack in the corner for a two count. Andrade with a kick to the knee, Crews with a punch and Crews went for a press slam, but Andrade countered into a DDT for a two count. Crews blocked the finisher and then Andrade got a sunset flip into a pin for two. Crews with an enziguri followed by a lifting powerslam for a two count. Crews was limping around, then he slowly went up top and Andrade met him with a forearm. Andrade went to the turnbuckle, Crews with a headbutt and Crews jumped off the top with Andrade moving out of the way. The referee checked on Crews, who was selling the left knee injury. The referee Drake Wuertz called the match off due to injury. It went about 16 minutes.
Analysis: ***1/4 It was a very good match technically with Crews doing an excellent job of selling the knee, so much so that I had people on Twitter thinking it was a legit injury. It’s good selling, people. Anyway, it’s a way to keep the feud going because Crews can say he didn’t lose by pinfall or submission, so he can say that he deserves another shot at the title. These two worked well together. Andrade is at his best when he’s working over a body part as an aggressive heel. I’m not sure if it’s a long-term feud or just something to do for now. Andrade could use a meaningful feud.
After the match, referees and medical personnel were checking on Crews, who did a great job of selling the leg injury.
Still to come are Drew McIntyre and Seth Rollins.
Triple H Moment: The #3 highlight was Triple He’s introductory promo for the Evolution group in February 2003. That foursome of Triple H, Ric Flair, Batista and Randy Orton had a very good run together.
The Street Profits were backstage with their Raw Tag Team Titles. They mocked the Viking Raiders doing their carpool karaoke last week. Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford each said they are free next week because if it’s the smoke that the Viking Raiders want then that’s what they’ll get.
A video aired showing clips of a new WWE 24 special focusing on Becky Lynch about her rise as the Raw Women’s Champion for the last year. This clip focused on Lynch winning the Raw and Smackdown Women’s Titles in the main event of WrestleMania 35 last year. There were comments from Sami Zayn, Charlotte Flair, Becky’s fiancé Seth Rollins, Natalya and Becky’s dad as well. Becky thanked the fans for supporting her and said she loved the fans.
Analysis: Those WWE 24 specials are always very good, so I’ll check that out whenever it airs.
There was another reminder that McIntyre and Rollins are coming up in the main event.
The team of Ricochet and Cedric Alexander entered for a tag team match.
Ricochet and Cedric Alexander vs. Matt Martel and Chase Parker
Ricochet with a neckbreaker into the knee of Alexander for a two count. Ricochet went after Parker, but Martel hit Ricochet with a clothesline to the back. Parker and Martel did a double team with Parker hitting an elbow drop. Parker slapped on a chinlock. Martel tagged back in with a backbreaker on Ricochet. Ricochet broke free and Alexander unleashed on Parker with kicks. Alexander with a neckbreaker on Parker and a dropkick on Martel. Ricochet tagged in, Alexander with a Tornado DDT and Ricochet with a standing SSP on Parker for two with Martel breaking it up. Martel went after Alexander, Ricochet with a springboard dropkick on Martel and Parker got a rollup on Ricochet for two. Ricochet with a dropkick on Parker. Alexander held Parker and Ricochet hit a double foot stomp into a flatliner by Alexander and Alexander pinned Parker for the victory after four minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Ricochet and Cedric Alexander
Analysis: ** A decisive win for the exciting team of Ricochet and Alexander. That was a great double team finishing that is safe to do, but it looks deadly. The Martel and Parker team works well together, so if they develop more could be a regular team in WWE since they are in NXT now.
After the match, MVP was shown on the screen saying he’s got a keen eye for talent. MVP said that he wanted to re-introduce Shane Thorne and Brendan Vink to Raw. MVP said that he sees a rematch that could be box office gold or box office platinum and it would be “straight up ballin’” so Ricochet and Alexander agreed to it.
Analysis: The team of Thorne and Vink have only been used to put over others on Raw, so it’s not like fans view them as stars. By putting MVP with them, it might help Thorne and Vink. Raw needs more teams anyway, which means it’s fine to utilize them more.
Still to come are McIntyre and Rollins. I think they have mentioned it ten times by now.
Triple H Moment: The #2 highlight showed Triple H leading Degeneration X when they tried to “invade” WCW while they were on a jeep. It was memorable in April 1998 on Raw.
There was a shot of Apollo Crews using crutches with ice on his left leg. Charly Caruso said she was so sorry for him. Crews couldn’t speak and he left with crutches looking like he was ready to cry.
There was another Drew McIntyre video for his rivalry with Seth Rollins. The contract signing is the main event up next.
Triple H Moment: The highlight #1 showed Triple H tearing his quad in May 2001 and then making the big comeback in January 2002 to a huge ovation in Madison Square Garden.
Analysis: That’s a good choice, but the real #1 moment was Triple H marrying Stephanie McMahon in real life in 2003 and when it happened in a storyline in 1999. I’m sure I’m not the only one to make that joke.
Next week on Raw: The Street Profits vs. The Viking Raiders.
Contract Signing for the WWE Championship Match at Money in the Bank
Jerry Lawler was in the ring to moderate this contract signing segment. There was a table in the ring along with two leather chairs. Lawler introduced Seth Rollins, who was in a suit along with a black glove on his right hand as usual. The WWE Champion Drew McIntyre was up next and Drew was in a leather jacket along with black clothes. Drew told Jerry that he knows how these things go, so maybe Jerry should skedaddle, which means leave so Jerry left.
Analysis: They flew 70-year-old Lawler to Raw to moderate this segment where he didn’t do much at all. Let Jerry stay home. I know Jerry is fine with going, but it’s smarter to keep Lawler at home for stuff like this. They also taped next week’s Raw, so maybe he has a role there.
McIntyre signed the contract before saying a word. Rollins took his time to look over the contract before he signed it.
Rollins told McIntyre that he’s a fighter and an honorable man, but Drew is not a leader like Seth is. Rollins said that people have followed him his entire career, so the WWE Universe needs a leader and Seth can be the light in that darkness. Rollins said he suffered for that WWE Title and he said that Drew didn’t have to suffer. Rollins claimed he didn’t want Drew to suffer for the title the way Seth did because that title is Seth’s burden to carry, not Drew’s burden. Rollins said he didn’t want to be the one to crush Drew’s dream, but it’s a sacrifice he’s willing to make for the greater good and in time, this will make sense. Rollins told Drew he will not turn him away, he will lead Drew too.
McIntyre sarcastically thanked Seth saying that it was a passionate and enlightening speech. McIntyre said that things are clear to him now along with everybody watching around the world right now. McIntyre said that “you’re completely full of shit.” It was not bleeped. McIntyre wondered where Seth’s followers were, then said that the fans turned on Seth and Seth claims that it is never his fault. McIntyre said that he will not let Seth win this championship under any circumstances.
McIntyre offered up some advice: 1) Shut your mouth, stop talking and nobody wants to hear Seth talk be it right now, backstage, online or to his family and friends. McIntyre said that Seth gets his head stuck up his ass with the things he says. 2) He told Seth to try to finish the job because Seth didn’t finish Drew two weeks ago when he jumped Drew from behind. Rollins told Drew that at Money in the Bank, the big picture will become very clear and Drew will be better off for it. Rollins signed the contract.
Rollins told Drew to have faith, but then Drew slammed his face into the announce table. Drew tossed the announce table out of the ring and Drew hit a headbutt. McIntyre set up for a Claymore Kick, but Murphy showed up with a kick to the head of McIntyre. Murphy helped up Rollins and then Seth hugged him in the ring. McIntyre came back with a Claymore Kick, but Rollins moved and McIntyre hit Murphy to knock him down. Rollins walked away. McIntyre celebrated in the ring and stood tall with the WWE Title to end the show.
Analysis: It was solid for a contract signing. McIntyre continues to be booked very well as the babyface WWE Champion that is willing to take on all comers. The swear word by Drew was a nice surprise since you don’t hear that on WWE shows, but it felt like it was fitting for a rivalry like this because it showed how serious Drew is about beating Rollins. I liked the way that Drew called out Seth’s bullshit in his promo with Seth going on about being a leader while McIntyre is a guy full of confidence. Rollins hasn’t had any help since they have gone to the WWE PC for shows, so having Murphy show up was a good moment to show that Seth may have some help when they do the WWE Title match at the MITB PPV. I would be stunned if McIntyre lost the WWE Title one month after winning it. I think Drew will win at MITB.
Update: WWE also posted this about Apollo Crews' knee injury storyline.
Apollo Crews suffered a knee injury that left him unable to continue in his United States Championship Match with Andrade on Raw. Due to that injury, Crews will no longer be able to compete in the Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match on Sunday, May 10.
Stick with WWE’s Digital and Social platforms for further updates as they become available.
It's just a storyline. I don't know who will replace Crews in the match for this storyline injury. There have been reports that the MITB match was already taped, but I don't know for sure.
Three Stars of the Show
- Apollo Crews
- Seth Rollins/Drew McIntyre
5.75 out of 10
Last week 5.5
2020 Average: 6.37
It was another average edition of Raw, which I feel like is something I write every week since they have been at the WWE PC. Since I try to point out the positives, I liked seeing Apollo Crews getting a chance to show what he can do while WWE remembered that Andrade can defend the US Title. The two matches that those two guys were involved in were the best of the night. Other matches were either too short because they were squashes or just didn’t interest me that match. It was also refreshing to have Samoa Joe on commentary again. He is great at explaining why certain things matter in a match without insulting the intelligence of the viewer. Joe has a very bright future as an announcer whenever he decides to retire for good.
I liked the McIntyre/Rollins segment in terms of the dialogue with McIntyre saying “shit” to show how serious he is about remaining WWE Champion. It’s a little thing, but it makes people remember it more than if it was the standard main event promo segment.
This was another Raw that wasn’t must-see in any way. Some of it bored me to the point that I was nearly falling asleep, but there was enough good stuff that I would call it an average show. I just wish it was better than average.
The next WWE pay-per-view is Money in the Bank on May 10. Here’s what we know so far:
WWE Championship: Drew McIntyre (c) vs. Seth Rollins
Universal Championship: Braun Strowman (c) vs. Bray Wyatt
Men’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Daniel Bryan vs. Aleister Black vs. Rey Mysterio vs. King Corbin and two more wrestlers. (Apollo Crews is out.)
Women’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Asuka vs. Shayna Baszler vs. Nia Jax vs. Dana Brooke vs. Lacey Evans and one more wrestler.
Smackdown Women's Championship: Bayley (c) vs. Tamina
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