• Jayden Becker

WWE Raw Review 6/29/20



A double contract signing to make both the WWE Championship Match and Raw Women’s Championship Match official. Angel Garza and Andrade try to coincide in a tag team with the guidance of Zelina Vega.


The action doesn't stop there as Seth Rollins asks for forgiveness. Akira Tozowa puts the 24/7 Championship on the line.


Another week of Monday Night Raw, let's jump into it.


Double Contract Signing


As the show starts Asuka is already brawling with Sasha Banks and Bayley. Samoa Joe tries to make sense of the situation in the ring to no avail. As the tension settles down, Dolph Ziggler enters along with Drew McIntyre. Ziggler holds no words back, describing how he created McIntyre and how he will destroy him at Extreme Rules. McIntyre signs the contract with no issue. McIntyre confidently tells Ziggler that he can pick the stipulation for the match.


Asuka gets tired of the conversation and interrupts Ziggler, signing her contract. Sasha Banks, confident in her own right, sees herself fit to take over the whole company. Tensions boil over as all competitors brawl with their counterparts.


A match is set for the main event pinning the champions vs the challengers.


Takeaways:


Although I don’t write about AEW, I still watch it for personal enjoyment. Last episode they had a press conference between Cody and Jake Hager. I don’t know if it was a professional feel or if it was just different but I much rather see that than a regular contract signing. Contract signings are so obvious. A press conference can end with a brawl but could also end with the two just standing there taking a picture for their match. Both outcomes end with a push for the match. Contract signs are just not for me anymore.


I did enjoy the unexpected start to brawl as if the WWE was laughing at itself for the fighting in contract signings.

The Big Show Calls Out Randy Orton


The Big Show is angry about the event of last week and calls out Randy Orton. Instead of the legend killer, the Big Show gets Andrade, Angel Garza, and Zelina Vega. Before the Big Show made his way to the ring, he interrupted the trio during their interview. Andrade and Garza question his legend-hood and possible hall of fame status. Before they can attack Ric Flair enters holding back the duo for a moment. Flair, speaks for Randy Orton and how the viper will strike when ready.


Before Andrade and Garza can strike again, the Viking Raiders make their way down the ramp for their upcoming match.


Takeaways:


The fact Ric Flair is on television lately is slightly disturbing. In normal circumstances, I would be okay with him there but now with COVID-19 spiking in Florida where Raw is taped, I can only just ask for him to stay home. In the day and age of technology, he could just do a skype call or recorded promo that could be done in the safety of his home. It is his choice to come into the performance center and safety precautions have been (slightly) improved. The risk might not be worth the reward for Flair.


Wear a mask everyone.


Viking Raiders vs Andrade & Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega


After the two teams brawl on the entrance ramp, the fighting is made official as the bell rings. The Viking Raiders are in control early on cutting the ring in half. Angel Garza works himself back into the match when his pants were ripped off. Andrade and Garza have a tough time working together throughout the match, barking at each other.


Andrade doesn’t get tagged in by Garza and decides to walk away from the match. Zelina Vega wrangles him back in to compete. As the cooler heads prevail the Viking Raiders take advantage of the mishap. The Viking Raiders miss with The Viking Experience and Andrade connects with a sharp elbow. Garza lands the wing clipper and pins. Andrade saves the match by stopping Ivar from breaking up the pin in a great teamwork effort between the two.


Andrade and Angel Garza win their first match as an official tag-team.


Takeaways:


The dynamic between these two is really fun. The fact that they did their best tag team wrestling and teamwork at the end of the match to win means a lot to their ever-evolving story. This fight here isn’t a breakup but them working out the kinks if that makes sense.


It's also nice to see the Viking Raiders in the ring against someone that isn’t the Street Profits. Fixing the Raw Tag Team division slowly but surely.


Akira Tozowa (c) w/ Ninjas vs R-Truth - 24/7 Championship Match


Last week on Raw, Akira Tozowa beat R-Truth for the 24/7 Championship after R-Truth was beaten down by Bobby Lashley in a merciless attack. A rematch this week will settle the score.


R-Truth early on found himself in control reversing moves followed with taunting dance moves. The challenger lands awkwardly and favors his knee. This was a lie and fakes out Tozowa causing him to be rolled up, 1… 2… 3.


R-Truth wins the 24/7 Championship.


After the match, R-Truth is almost pinned twice by the Ninjas. The 24/7 Championship after all is defended at all times. R-Truth is chased through the back as he continues in defense.


Takeaways:


Although Tozowa has a lot more potential than a ninja leader, this might be the only way for him to get on TV so he jumped at the idea. Either way, at least we are talking about him instead of thinking where he could be.


I’ve also never been so excited to R-Truth win the 24/7 Championship. A huge pop from me on my couch at home.


Seth Rollins Asks for Forgiveness


Seth Rollins announces that he needs to ask for forgiveness from Rey Mysterio. On his way to the ring, it is noticeable that Austin Theory is not with him. Rollins describes Mysterio as not seeing things cleary lately. Rollins asks Rey for forgiveness, not for what he has done but for what he will do to Rey Mysterio.


Rey and Dominic Mysterio appear on the screen behind Rollins. Rey asks forgiveness from his son for what he is about to do to Rollins. Rollins threatens to end the career of Dominic before it starts. Aleister Black and Humberto Carrillo enter to defend Rey and Dominic.


Takeaways:


I’m sick of this storyline. I might be in the minority but I feel like I’ve watched the same thing week in and week out with slight variations. Ever since Rey got his eye poked out Rollins has been cutting the same promo with Rey giving the same rebuttal. I hope this is over sooner rather than later.


Seth Rollins & Murphy vs Aleister Black & Humberto Carrillo


In classic Aleister Black and Murphy fashion, the two get off to a hot start with Black in control. It’s not until Seth Rollins interferes that Murphy stabilizes. Carillo enters on a hot tag and dominates over Murphy once again. Carrillo attempts a 619 but Murphy is pulled aside by Rollins. With the two standing next to each other outside the ring, Carrillo connects on a big splash.


Black enters s again on a hot tag and makes good use of his kicks and flips. Carrillo connects with the 619 onto Murphy but Rollins breaks up the weak pin. Carrillo tries to roll up Rollins but is reversed into a curb stomp.


Seth Rollins pins and wins for his team.


Black doesn’t allow Rollins to celebrate, however, as he attacks from behind. Action falls outside the ring as Carrillo starts to fight back but is stopped after being hit with the steel steps. Rollins puts Rey Mysterio’s mask on Carrillo and tries to poke his eye out. Rollins settles with a curb stomp onto the steel steps.


Takeaways:


Once again even though the outcome was different, this is just a small variation of the same story being told week in and week out. I’m sick of the steel steps, I’m sick of the chairs and I’m sick of the same spots. These 4 superstars are some of the best in the company when it comes to in-ring ability. The storytelling for me here is stale.


Peyton Royce w/ Billie Kay vs Ruby Riott


After an altercation backstage, this match was formed. Peyton Royce is in control early on stretching out Ruby Riott. Riott connects with stiff shots hurting Royce. Kay distracts Riott allowing Royce to roll-up Riott. Kick out at 2.


A spinning brainbuster from Royce plants Riott, 1… 2… 3.


Peyton Royce beats Ruby Riott with the help of best friend Billie Kay.


Takeaways:


I’m in love with the new finisher from Royce. Although the move doesn’t have a name, a spinning brainbuster just looks so devastating. Finishers just don’t look like that anymore with the receiver twisting an landing on their upper body. Just adds that little bit of aggressiveness into a match.


Also, If you have been watching WWE’s youtube, the IIconics have continued to be the best promo in the business of television and on secondary programming. If you have a chance to watch them go around the locker room and ask what June 23rd means to WWE Talent.


Big Show vs Andrade & Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega


Due to issues occurring between these two, a match is made. This would be Andrade’s and Angel Garza’s second of the night. Although they showed a good sense of teamwork in their previous match, the Andrade and Garza have a difficult time deciding who will start the match. Andrade tricks Garza into going in first, causing Garza to get his chest caved in with giant slaps from The Big Show.


The duo finally gains control but continues to argue with the Big Show down. Garza decides to leave the match entirely, allowing for the Big Show to recover. Andrade turns around into a chokeslam.


The Big Show wins as Andrade is left on his own.


After the match, a KO punch from the Big Show adds insult to injury as Andrade lays wasted on the mat.


Takeaways:


Usually, I’d be mad that a tag team lost to a non-tag team, especially in a Handicap match. This works, however, as this match turned into a singles match when Angel Garza left. This helps builds up the Big Show in his feud against Randy Orton but also grew the idea that Andrade and Angel Garza are very volatile.


MVP w/ Bobby Lashley vs Apollo Crews


Before the match starts, the two bark at each other about the offer MVP gave Apollo Crews in the past few weeks. Crews is in control early on as the action falls outside. A dive over the top rope misses the mark as Crews lands on Lashley. MVP takes advantage of this and throws Crews into the steel steps.


With Crews back in control in the ring, Lashley distracts the US Champion while on the top rope. MVP connects with a fisherman suplex and pins Apollo Crews, 1… 2… 3.


MVP steals a victory over United States Champion Apollo Crews.


Crews attacks MVP after the match. A full-nelson from Bobby Lashley has to be broken up by a returning Ricochet and Cedric Alexander who have been off television for the past month.


Takeaways:


Welcome back Ricochet and Cedric Alexander. These two guys were Paul Heyman's projects gone wrong after their push was pulled by Vince McMahon. Hopefully now with the Raw Tag Team division starting to bolster up, they can get involved as well.


Also, why are almost all of the black people on Raw’s roster booked together in the same storyline? Is this on purpose? Was this pitched by one of them? Not that it’s a bad thing given that professional wrestling has been overtly white for the past 60 years, just odd how the talent has been grouped.


Ricochet w/ Cedric Alexander vs Bobby Lashley w/ MVP


Since Ricochet interfered with the after match melee, their altercation has been made into an official match. Bobby Lashley is in control early with MVP helping out his associate by dropping Ricochet on the announce table. Lashley continues to dominate by tossing Ricochet around the outside of the ring.


Lashley tries to lock in the full nelson but Ricochet drops to a knee and fights to escape. As Ricochet starts to get in a rhythm, MVP tries to distract Ricochet. Cedric Alexander stops him but it’s too little too late as Lashley locks in the full nelson. Ricochet taps out in the center of the ring.


Bobby Lashley beats Ricochet with help from MVP.


After the match, Bobby Lashley locks in the full nelson on Alexander.


Takeaways:


Looks like the pull is still intact. Much like Akira Tozowa, we should be glad that we see hi on our television because he is a real talent. He just isn’t being pushed anywhere near where he was previously.


Drew McIntyre & Asuka vs Dolph Ziggler & Sasha Banks w/ Bayley - Champions vs Challengers


After the confrontation at the double contract signing, the champions team up to take on their respective challengers in a mixed tag team match. Drew McIntyre dominates Dolph Ziggler early on but is taken out of the match quickly as Ziggler finds his way to Banks, forcing Asuka to enter. Chaos ensues early on with Ziggler and Banks being tossed out of the ring.


Asuka is forced to enter the match again and dominates quickly. McIntyre finds his way in on a hot tag as well, connecting with a flying forearm. Banks tries to distract McIntyre by yelling at him, allowing Asuka to take advantage. Asuka locks in the Asuka Lock but Banks breaks free. Banks rolls up Asuka, 1… 2… 3.


Challengers Sasha Banks and Dolph Ziggler beat the champions Drew McIntyre and Asuka.


Takeaways:


I was a little surprised to see Banks and Ziggler go over here but I get it. What helps this the most is that it saves the face of McIntyre in the process. He did technically lose this match, however, ending his lengthy winning streak.


I thought of a great stipulation for the match between Ziggler and McIntyre, a submission match. McIntyre is going to be champion for a while and he needs to be gaining something out of these matches. A Submission Match would be great for McIntyre. You might be confused given that McIntyre doesn’t have a submission finisher, but that's the point. This will allow him to build one for himself and grow as the great champion he is.


Wrap-Up:


The Prichard-McMahon Era of Raw for the past few weeks have been successful in my eyes. We could see the dismantling of some things as storylines grow. This might be a smart move, however, given how well things have been going.


Pros:

  • Double Contract Signing

  • Viking Raiders vs Andrade & Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega

  • Akira Tozowa (c) w/ Ninjas vs R-Truth - 24/7 Championship Match

  • Peyton Royce w/ Billie Kay vs Ruby Riott

  • MVP w/ Bobby Lashley vs Apollo Crews

  • Ricochet w/ Cedric Alexander vs Bobby Lashley w/ MVP

  • Drew McIntyre & Asuka vs Dolph Ziggler & Sasha Banks w/ Bayley - Champions vs Challengers

Cons:

  • The Big Show Calls Out Randy Orton

  • Seth Rollins Asks for Forgiveness

  • Seth Rollins & Murphy vs Aleister Black & Humberto Carrillo

  • Big Show vs Andrade & Angel Garza w/ Zelina Vega


Final Grade: C+

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