We have a tag title match to look forward to tonight, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre defend the championships against The Revival. Brie Bella versus Ruby Riott is advertised, as is Chad Gable versus Konnor. And there’ll be shenanigans galore as we continue the build to Super Show-Down, Evolution, and Crown Jewel.
I’m Amanda, and I’m here to give you all the important stuff from RAW.
Finn Balor def. Jinder Mahal via pinfall
The Riott Squad def. Natalya and The Bella Twins via pinfall
Konnor def. Chad Gable via pinfall
Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre def. The Revival via pinfall – Tag Team Championship match
Bobby Lashley def. Elias via disqualification
Nia Jax def. Alicia Fox via pinfall
The Shield def. Baron Corbin and AOP via pinfall
The Best Bits
– The Shield versus various combinations of Baron Corbin, Braun Strowman, Dolph Ziggler, and Drew McIntyre storyline continued this week. It was sprinkled through the show, so here’s the narrative thread.
The show opened with Baron Corbin greeting Stephanie McMahon. Triple H was with her but when she indicated she had something to say to Corbin he laughed, wished him luck, and left. She berated Corbin for giving himself a championship match. When he said The Shield’s provoked him, she said mistakes are tolerated to a point, but excuses never are. She told him to find tag partners and take them on in a match, and to take care of his business or Kurt Angle would be returning from his vacation sooner than expected.
The Shield were the opening segment. Dean Ambrose said what we were looking at was the three workhorses of WWE. They may have lost a few battles, but they’ve never lost the war and they’re still standing.
Reigns said we could read their resumé’s, but it would take all day, and all they have to do is raise those titles. Reigns said those championships are the key to the kingdom and everyone should want them. The titles will change your life. But the only men who deserve them were standing in the ring.
Rollins said that’s because this has always been about being the best. And that’s what they are. Braun Strowman wants the power so much he recruited a pack of jackasses to try to take down The Shield at Super Show-Down. But that’s not going to happen. As for tonight, Baron Corbin (he called him ‘the world’s largest substitute teacher’) seems to think The Shield’s a problem Well, they’re out there and they’d love to show him how much of a problem they can be.
Baron Corbin came to the stage. He said he and his partners were going to throw them around like ragdolls and he will impress his boss.
Braun Strowman, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre joined Corbin on the stage.
Strowman told Reigns to shine the championship belt up because he wouldn’t be wearing it long. And as for The Shield, he could already see the cracks forming and it’s only a matter of time before they implode. At Super Show-Down it will be the two of The Shield versus the four of them.
When Rollins told him to check his maths, Strowman told him to run the math past Ambrose, because he thinks Dean is starting to see the light.
Dolph Ziggler started to plant the seeds of The Shield’s destruction by telling Ambrose how The Shield needs him, but he doesn’t need them. Ziggler was there with him on SmackDown when he was WWE champion and he did it by himself. He saw the fire in Ambrose’s eyes and he knows how good he can be. Now the other two have everything and he has nothing.
Drew McIntyre said the truth is Ambrose pushed him to his limit last week and he was lucky to come away with the victory. Roman and Seth don’t appreciate him.
Ziggler suggested they probably call him disposable Dean behind his back, then pointed out all the times Ambrose has sacrificed himself for his ‘brothers’.
Rollins interrupted to tell Ziggler he was full of it. Ziggler said they won’t even let Ambrose talk. He brought up Rollins teaming with Jason Jordan when Ambrose was injured. Then asked Ambrose to think about something. Ziggler and McIntyre are tag champions, at Crown Jewel Strowman is going to take the Universal Championship. So, if Ambrose switches sides, then the Intercontinental Championship could be all his. He said he knows it’s not easy, it’s nothing short of treason to turn his back on his brothers, but everything he’d said is true.
Reigns told Ziggler to shut up and suggested they stop talking and start fighting.
Baron Corbin prevented the fight happening. He reminded Ziggler and McIntyre they had a title defence later and said he and his partners will take care of The Shield.
Backstage Ziggler spoke to Ambrose. Ambrose initially threatened him, but as he talked Ambrose appeared to be listening. Ziggler spoke again about Ambrose doing everything on his own on SmackDown Live, and told him Rollins and Reigns don’t care about him. He said he knows how hard it is to turn on his brothers, but they’ll be out there watching the match against Corbin. All Ambrose has to do is give them a signal and they’ll take care of the rest.
Seth Rollins switched the narrative on Drew McIntyre. He told McIntyre Strowman is using him and Ziggler to get what he wants, and Ziggler has been riding McIntyre’s coattails since they arrived on RAW. He asked why Ziggler was the one getting the title opportunities when McIntyre has all the talent, then left him to think about it. Ziggler appeared after Rollins left and asked what that was about. McIntyre told him not to worry about it.
Drew McIntyre spoke to Dean Ambrose in the trainer’s room and told him what Rollins had said. He theorised about why that might be and reminded Ambrose that Rollins has stabbed him in the back before.
The Shield vs Baron Corbin and AOP main evented. Before the match could start, Strowman, Ziggler and McIntyre came to the stage holding chairs and sat down to watch.
They watched a great match. It descended into the inevitable chaos with three on three in the ring after Reigns had a spell with Rezar.
The Shield stared down Strowman, McIntyre, and Ziggler and the trio made their way towards the ring. Corbin and AOP attacked The Shield off the distraction. Strowman McIntyre and Ziggler sat back down at the bottom of the ramp.
Rollins, as always, took the majority of the punishment for The Shield. He was thrown into barricades, double-teamed, triple-teamed, and generally bounced around. AOP took out Ambrose and Reigns on the outside. Even with no-one to tag, having taken all the punishment, Rollins still kicked out after the Deep Six.
Rollins managed to avoid the AOP double-team and super-kicked Akam, then, finally, managed to tag Ambrose. Ambrose had the best of Corbin and took them AOP out too, briefly.
AOP had to break up a pin. Ambrose almost took a Last Chapter, but Reigns saved him with a superman punch. Rollins came in Stomped Corbin and took out Akam with a suicide dive. Ambrose delivered a Dirty Deeds to Corbin. Reigns tagged in as Ambrose bounced off the ropes and, after Ambrose took out Rezar, Reigns hit a spear on Corbin for the win.
After the match, Ambrose didn’t immediately celebrate with his Shield brothers. He sat on the outside between them and McIntyre, Strowman and Ziggler. They prepared for his signal, and they got one. Ambrose kept his eyes on them as he got back in the ring and stuck his fist out for the Shield pose.
– Finn Balor vs Jinder Mahal – Balor was accompanied by Bayley, and Mahal by Alicia Fox and Sunil Singh – a little plug for Mixed Match Challenge. Good match, but the story came at the end. Singh grabbed Balor’s leg when Balor was firmly in control. Bayley did the same to Mahal. Fox went to sort out Bayley who floored her with one punch. Singh took a Bayley to Belly at ringside. Mahal was busily watching all that, so Balor rolled him up and pinned him. After the match Mahal beat down Singh and sat cross-legged with Fox in the ring.
– Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre vs The Revival – RAW Tag Team Championship match – This was a great match. The Revival are true tag team specialists, and things were going well for them against Dolph Ziggler, until Ziggler dodged out of the way when Wilder was charging at him and Dash Wilder hit the steps. Twice, Scott Dawson knocked McIntyre off the apron to isolate Ziggler. He didn’t do a good enough job because McIntyre broke their closest pin attempt. They tried to take McIntyre out with a tornado DDT on the outside, but they failed to keep Ziggler down. When Ziggler stumbled close enough to tag McIntyre in, it was as good as over. The Revival had one failed pin attempt on McIntyre before Dash Wilder took the Claymore Kick/Zigzag combo and got pinned.
Some Other Bits
– The Riott Squad vs Natalya and The Bella Twins was a change to the advertised match, and probably better for it. The match wasn’t all bad, but some of it was. Brie Bella accidentally kicked Liv Morgan in the head during the Yes Kicks. Morgan appeared to have been knocked out briefly. There was a showy triple-suplex from Natalya and the Bellas on The Riott Squad. Commentary said Morgan was taken to the trainer’s room after the triple-suplex, but she was at ringside being seen to by medics at the end of the match. She looked woozy after the spot and her teammates were clearly worried. The rest of the match was fine except for Brie catching Riott on the nose while taking a move from Logan. Ruby Riott won it with a Riott kick to Natalya.
– Chad Gable vs Konnor – Chad Gable is half Konnor’s size and that proved too much of an obstacle in this short match. Gable got a suplex in and did some damage with a submission attempt in the ropes, but Konnor slammed him face-first into the canvas and that was it.
– There was a Kevin Owens Show. Owens was brought out by Elias. Their guest was Lio Rush who was too sensible to get in the ring. Instead, he brought out Lashley and Elias vs Bobby Lashley happened. It was good. Bobby Lashley is good, Elias is good, I’m not feeling their in-ring chemistry. It was long as well. Kevin Owens got Elias disqualified by running into Lashley when he was chasing Lio Rush. Lashley had to save Rush from another Owens powerbomb in the aftermath.
– Nia Jax vs Alicia Fox was short and decent. Ember Moon was with Jax to counteract the threat of Alexa Bliss and Mickie James in Fox’ corner. Moon took James out after Bliss and James pulled Fox from the ring to save her. Jax no longer looks impossible to beat, just very, very difficult. Too difficult for Fox this time, she took a Samoan drop and got pinned.
In a heart-warming segment, Triple H and Stephanie McMahon took to the ring, with the roster on the stage, to talk about Connor’s Cure. WWE are joining forces with Hyundai Hope on Wheels to provide even more resources in the fight against paediatric cancers. McMahon brought out the Hope on Wheels National Youth Ambassadors and Triple H gave them with replica title belts. The representative for Hope on Wheels presented them with a cheque for two-hundred-thousand dollars for Connor’s Cure.
Charly Caruso spoke to Triple H about Super Show-Down. He said if The Undertaker is worried about a suit then he’s already lost. He wants to take Triple H’s soul, but he sold that a long time ago. When it comes to The Undertaker, the end is near.
A strong episode of RAW with enough talking points to write another article. With so much going on, Evolution seems to have been pushed into the background. Next week we have Ronda Rousey vs Ruby Riott, and a visit from Shawn Michaels, to look forward to.