Hell in a Cell is over and will be remembered largely for the wrong reasons (read about those here), which is a shame because Becky Lynch and Sasha Banks had an awesome match. The big story of tonight is, apparently, the appearance of Tyson Fury, who will be given a live mic to address Braun Strowman. Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair will be guests on Miz TV, and also have a Champions’ showcase match against the Kabuki Warriors. Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler take on The Viking Raiders. Natalya and Lacey Evans have a Last Woman Standing match. Rusev and Randy Orton represent their Crown Jewel teams in the opening match. And they’re going to have to sort out the mess they left at the end of last night’s main event.
I’m Amanda and this is the RAW review
Natalya def. Lacey Evans
The Viking Raiders def. Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode
Aleister Black def. The Singh Brothers
The OC def. Lucha House Party
Kabuki Warriors def. Becky Lynch & Charlotte Flair
Ricochet def. Apollo Crews
♦ The show opened with a recap of the cringeworthy Rusev/Lana/Lashley stuff I’ve been trying to forget about for a week. By the time the opening credits finished, Baron Corbin and Randy Orton were attacking Rusev in the ring. He fought them off, then Bobby Lashley appeared on the big screen wearing a bathrobe. It was Rusev’s robe because he was in Rusev’s bedroom, then his bed. Then Lana joined him, and they snuggled up while she told Rusev she’d transferred all their assets and bank accounts into her name.
After the screen went blank, Rusev spotted Orton and Corbin laughing and turned his tears into anger. He got out of the ring and destroyed them both at ringside, smashing them both in the face with the steps and sending Orton into the ringpost while asking if he was laughing at him, and knocking Corbin into the front row.
♦ Lacey Evans vs Natalya – Last Woman Standing match – Before the match, Evans said this was the end of the road. I want that in writing. No More Matches! I am so done with this feud. Apparently, they hold two victories each. It feels like more than four matches. Their Hell in a Cell match wasn’t bad, to be fair, and this one wasn’t bad either. Lacey Evans controlled the majority of it. We got a bit of kendo stick action, and Evans tried trapping Natalya in a chair with a kendo stick then kicked the chair over. That one nearly worked. Natalya took a lot of punishment, including a trashcan full of rubbish to the head, and barely made the count several times. They went up to the stage and used the backboard and the announce desk. Only trouble is, the new backboards are curved, so Natalya just slid down them.
It was there that Natalya fought back. She suplexed Evans on the stage, then put her on her shoulders and powerbombed her off it through a table. Lacey Evans didn’t get back up.
♦ Street Profits are very excited about the draft. They delivered scouting reports on Apollo Crews, Buddy Murphy, and Drake Maverick, but mainly speculated about Maverick’s sex life. They hyped the rest of the show as well.
♦ Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode vs The Viking Raiders was a non-title match, but a win for The Viking Raiders would give them a good case for a shot. They dominated the first part of the match to the point where Ziggler was begging them to give Roode a time out going into the break. They lost the match control after the break, thanks to a sneak attack from Ziggler while Roode kept the ref occupied. They kept him away from his partner for a while, but couldn’t keep him down. Great match which was given plenty of time to develop. It’s wonderful to see The Viking Raiders having meaningful matches, and they will be getting that title match. Dolph Ziggler received The Viking Experience and got pinned.
The title match was later confirmed for next week’s RAW.
♦ The Singh Brothers came out to take part in the superstar showcase, making their case to be drafted to RAW or SmackDown. They decided the best way to do this was to pick a fight with Aleister Black, who had a promo segment earlier where he said he was looking for a fight. They were wrong and Aleister Black vs The Singh Brothers was short. He took one brother out with a Black Mass and submitted the other.
♦ Rey Mysterio addressed Lesnar’s attack on him and Dominick on last week’s RAW. He said in a way he’s never been prouder of Dominick because he took a beating like a man (which is weird) but he’s at home resting up now. He feels he let his family down, and talked about his feelings of helplessness when he was too badly beaten to stop Lesnar beating up his son. According to Mysterio, Cain Velasquez is Dominick’s godfather and he came to the hospital to see them. Velasquez is the only man Lesnar fears and he’s going to avenge the Mysterio family.
♦ Authors of Pain had another dimly lit promo. They talked about how their upbringings gave them a superior killer instinct to every other tag team in WWE. They will do whatever it takes to take what they want.
♦ The OC vs Lucha House Party was a fun filler match. Lucha House Party all climbing onto the same top turnbuckle together and leaping off in separate directions to take out the whole OC looked pretty cool. It finished with an AJ Styles Phenomenal Forearm to Kalisto. The OC beat up Gran Metalik and Lince Dorado after the match.
♦ Miz TV with Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair was as antagonistic as you’d expect. After Miz listed her recent achievements, Becky Lynch said accomplishments are great, but last night Sasha Banks beat the hell out of her and she’s probably never been more banged up than she is today. But if Banks was here, she’d remind her she got her ass kicked by The Man.
After Miz gave Charlotte Flair the same treatment, Flair just said, ‘It’s good to be the Queen’.
Miz talked about the possibility of them both ending up on the same brand and got called out by Flair for calling them the most dominant women. She doesn’t believe the gender qualifier was needed. She’s right.
Lynch said, ‘Look at you with the belt that I made famous’. Charlotte Flair immediately bit back with, ‘I made you famous’ and reminded her she’s a 10-time champion.
Lynch replied that Flair’s reigns were plentiful, but hers have been meaningful.
Before it could escalate, Kabuki Warriors arrived. Asuka cut a promo in Japanese, which made Kairi Sane laugh, then Sane carried on, also in Japanese.
Lynch said she’d been waiting for Asuka so let’s get on with it, so Kabuki Warriors ran down to the ring and they brawled on the Miz TV set. Lynch and Flair delivered tandem baseball slides to Asuka and Sane, and we went to commercials while the ring was sorted.
Becky Lynch & Charlotte Flair vs Kabuki Warriors – Champions Showcase – was great. Four very talented women with only pride and ego on the line. Becky Lynch would have tapped Kairi Sane out with a Dis-Arm-Her if the ref hadn’t been checking on Charlotte Flair’s leg. As it was, Asuka sprayed Lynch with the green mist and Sane pinned her. Flair tried to take them both on post-match but was overwhelmed. Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross ran down to make the save and get some measure of revenge for being misted out of their titles last night.
Apollo Crews vs Ricochet happened as part of the superstar showcase. In their respective pre-match interviews, both men said it was nothing personal, they’re really good friends, but this is about proving their worth for the draft. A chance to make a fresh start and seek out new opportunities (or, in the case of Crews, occasionally leave catering). It was a very compelling showcase. Ricochet won, but either will be a great addition to whichever show they end up on.
♦ Finally, with a quarter of an hour left of the show, they mentioned last night’s main event. There was a recap and nothing else. Neither Rollins nor Wyatt appeared, and no updates were given. It’s funny that they just avoided the issue, but it was probably the best approach for now. They’ll have to come up with a very creative solution to appease fans, and I don’t think any explanation would be good enough at the moment. Wrestling fans have long memories though, so they’ll have to come up with something eventually.
♦ It’s breast cancer awareness month, something WWE heavily promotes, and this is just a reminder that there are many breast cancer charities to support in addition to the one WWE partners with. Always do your research.
♦ Tyson Fury’s appearance was hyped a ridiculous number of times through the show. Both Fury and Strowman had backstage interviews before they came face to face.
Tyson Fury told Charly Caruso he was there for an apology from Braun Strowman.
In Braun Strowman’s answering interview, he said he was trying to have fun when he saw Tyson Fury at ringside, but if Fury wants to make it serious, that’s fine. If Fury asks nicely for an apology, then he might get one. If not, he might ‘Get These Hands’.
The confrontation between Tyson Fury and Braun Strowman closed the show. Jerry Lawler introduced Fury and welcomed him to RAW. Fury said Strowman had tried to make him look like a fool, which resulted in him getting chucked out, so he’s here to demand an apology. Braun Strowman came out unannounced before he could say any more.
Strowman’s approach was to threaten Tyson Fury and tell him he had no idea what he’s capable of. It quickly devolved into an, I’m better, no I’m better, kind of deal followed by some shoving and Strowman carrying Fury across the ring. The ring flooded with security, who pulled them apart. Fury knocked all his guards out, so Strowman did the same, but as some as they started fighting the locker room came to break it up. They also failed a few times, but as far as pull-apart brawls go, it was fairly tame.
Backstage with Charly Caruso, Braun Strowman said Tyson Fury is going to ‘Get These Hands’. He’s not getting an apology. Then Strowman ran back down to the ring to restart the brawl as the show went off air.
The draft was advertised constantly throughout the show. It starts on Friday Night SmackDown and finishes on next week’s RAW. The fact everything changes on Friday meant that this week’s RAW was the closing of a couple of loose ends, and a lot of filler. That wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, we got some entertaining matches, but it was a bit of an anti-climax after such a controversial PPV.