We start with Seth Rollins backstage, and he starts off by telling us we’ve got Kevin Owens and Big E in a steel cage up first then goes on to say he’s going to win at day 1.
Big E is up next backstage, and he says he’s going to punish KO inside said steel cage.
Kevin Owens is next, says the WWE championship is his and Big E is just holding it for him, says that he isn’t going to get punished inside the cage, he is going to do the punishing.
These weren’t bad in any way, just very generic, they potentially would have been better if they did it in ring and just let them spitball a bit, they have great chemistry and are all so good on the mic.
Big E vs Kevin Owens
Steel Cage match
KO is tried to get out the cage door early, but Big E took early control, KO seemed quite content with running away and tries to climb out of the cage a few times. they have some back and forth on the top rope in the corner and it culminated with Big E bouncing KO off 3 of the walls of the cage, Big E then went for his apron spear and KO moved out the way, Big E smashed against the wall, KO goes to escape again over the top of the cage, Big E goes to stop him gets kicked down to the mat and KO hits a very nice top rope lionsault.
Big E again bounces KO off a wall and goes for the pin for a 2 count, then goes for the door, KO
intercepts he beats on E then goes to climb out the cell, E climbs up to stop him, they fight on the top rope and KO bounces E off the cell twice dropping him to the mat KO looks like he’s going to do a Swanton but carries on climbing, E intercepts again and KO hits a sunset flip powerbomb on E, They are both in the centre of the ring, Big E takes a couple hits, but then hits hit belly to belly trifecta, goes for the big splash but KO scrambles away and goes for the door, they both start to fight near the door.
They get back in the centre and KO applies the Walls of Jericho/ Camel Clutch
Big E and KO are both scrambling for the cell door again and Seth is there to slam the door closed on both of them.
When we come back from break KO is on the corner attempting to escape over the top of the cage again, E intercepts and climbs up there with him and teases an avalanche Big ending, KO does a eye rake dropping Big E to the mat, then hits a frogsplash, 2 count.
KO goes to hit a cannonball in the corner, Urenage from E,
he goes for a Big ending, KO reversal
KO goes for a stunner, Big E reversal but KO does hit a pop up powerbomb.
KO once again goes to escape but E springs up and they fight on the top rope once again, this time Big E does hit the big ending off the top rope, then goes to crawl for the door. KO attempts to stop him, but E kicks him in the face as he’s crawling and reaches the door
Seth attacks E at ringside while he’s celebrating, then moves onto KO who is still in the ring, Seth goes for a Stomp on KO but Big E intercepts with a Belly to belly suplex, Seth rolls out the ring, he then hits a second Big ending on KO and celebrates in the ring.
Winner: Big E
Wow. What a match to start us off. There was some nice spots and E and KO have some really nice chemistry, as well as being generally brilliant.
A great match given sufficient time to impress to start us off.
This was a great way to start off a very good show.
My only slight gripe about this match would be that it should have ended with the Avalanche Big Ending, I don’t really get how KO recovers quite quickly from that but is done by a kick to the face from a crawling Big E.
Also, as far as I’m aware this match didn’t have any stipulations to it, didn’t have much of a point or reason to be a cage match which seems odd for a match like that one HOWEVER I feel like I’m nit-picking at a match that was fantastic to watch.
We come back from the break and all 3 of the people involved are now on ringside rolling about in pain. During the break Bobby Lashley came out hit a spear on Big E, and decimated E, KO and Seth before leaving again… Maybe not the best time for an advert break?
Possibly building up to day 1 being a fatal 4 way
This could be fantastic if it culminates, its great to have such a strong title picture where it is genuinely difficult to predict who will have the title next and when they will have it.
Queen Zelina and Carmella
Zelina Vega please stop with the accent.
Zelina comes out with a typical short heel promo “I’m going to beat Nikki ASH tonight”
“This town/city/state is disgusting”
She didn’t do it badly in any way. Just very very generic.
Zelina Vega vs Nikki A.S.H
We start off with a very quick pace, we have a couple of early roll ups and some very nice back and forth before Zelina gets a 2 count, but her feet are on the ropes for a “dirty pin” Nikki goes for a splash, Zelina moves out of the way and hits a Code red on Nikki
Winner: Queen Zelina
This was a typically short Zelina match, It had a really good pace and had some great technical moves, I actually really enjoyed this match it was just far too short, less than 2 minutes in total
I don’t mind Zelina’s Queen gimmick and taunts she pulls it off well, just drop the British accent.
Next we’re backstage with the Raw tag team champions RKbro And Riddle is wearing a beige blazer
Kevin Patrick comes over to do an interview, Matt riddle explains that they came up with the idea for
a NO1 contenders tag team tournament, Randy says it was only Riddles idea and that he said they should only be focusing on their matches and that Riddle replied with how home alone changed his life, genius, I can literally hear Riddle saying it in my mind.
Riddle announces they’re going to be guest commentators for the tournament which Riddle dubs thee RKbro-Nament, Randy doesn’t agree and says he wont be taking part.
MATT HAS A BLAZER FOR RANDY TOO
They have some brilliant, funny back and forth about Randy wearing the blazer he has his usual exasperated look, but Randy eventually gives in and puts the blazer on to a big cheer from the crowd.
We go backstage with Nikki A.S.H and Rhea Ripley, Nikki looks downhearted about her loss from earlier and Rhea is trying to cheer her up, someone asks Nikki for an autograph, but it turns out they are actually talking to Jerry “King” Lawler, Its nice to see him back for a cameo, he looks well!
Back to the RK Bro-Nament
Aj and Omos vs The Street Profits
Aj and Montez start in the ring, they have some back and forth before Montez gets the tag and the Street Profits do some nice tag teamwork, Dawkins takes control in the match until Omos moves the rope so that Dawkins falls out the ring when he goes to bounce off the ropes for a move, Aj then hits Montez on the apron with a forearm and hits a sort of reverse Phenomenal forearm to Dawkins at ringside
We come back from break and Omos is in the ring dominating Dawkins they both get a tag with Dawkins being more of a hot tag, Montez takes control with some of his usual freakish athleticism, Montez and Dawkins both slap Omos one at a time while he is on the apron then they give him a double drop kick, Aj hits an insiguri and a Pele kick on Montez in the ring, he follows up with a brain buster, he sets up for the Phenomenal Forearm but Omos tags himself in, AJ looks shocked.
Omos then dominates the Street Profits at ringside but while he is beating on them both, the ref carries on counting and gets himself counted out.
Winners: The Street Profits
AJ tells Omos “he has to listen, that’s how this tag team works”, they carry on arguing and Omos walks away, maybe the first inklings of a split? It's about time, in my opinion, AJ feels so wasted right now, he is so much bigger than what he’s involved with right now, I personally am not sold on Omos, he just seems too big to be elegant or have any type of flow.
I’m not usually a fan of this type of finish as you’ll see later… sigh
HOWEVER, on this occasion it works, although I’m not sold on Omos creative seem to be pushing him as an indestructible beast who destroys everyone he comes against, this finish carried that on, it also put the first fragmentation of the inevitable AJ and Omos tag team split, they can carry on this straight away or leave it a while depending on how instant they want the split to be. Sort of like RKbro in the sense that the heel turn is always there, its just when they want to push the big red button.
The finish of this match also allowed The Street Profits to progress in the tournament which ultimately leaves us with a more entertaining final.
The only thing I want from a Shenanigans type finish is a reasonable explanation, is that too much to ask?!
Riddle gets in the ring to give AJ an interview about the loss and argument, Riddle is very funny and probably has a future in commentary.
Aj gets angry at Riddle for trying to interview him and leaves as well
Backstage with Becky Lynch
Says tonight is a big night for Liv, probably the biggest night of her career and goes on to hit a promo on Liv brilliantly as usual, she Finishes by saying that tonight is just another Monday for big time Becks
For me Becky is the best promo in WWE right now no matter if it's in ring or backstage she just kills it every time, when she hit this promo my partner who is less than a month into watching wrestling acknowledged how good she is from her last couple of weeks of promos.
I think Big time Becks has a future as a GM or manager in WWE once her ring career is over.
Damien Priest comes out for his weekly open challenge
First, we go backstage with RKBro and Randy says he is not the broadcasting type, so it’s up to Riddle to carry on for the rest of the tournament.
Robert Roode has answered the Damien Priests challenge.
Damien Priest vs Robert Roode
United States championship match.
We start off with some pretty standard in ring wrestling with Damien slightly more in control, Ziggler
goes to get involved and Priest dodges, this seems to be a running theme every week, he goes to “talk” to Ziggler about it at ringside and gets hit from behind by Bobby and thrown into the crowd. When we come back from break Bobby hits a blockbuster from the top rope for a 2 count, Bobby continues his attack and Damien gets a reversal and hits some of his usual offence.
Hits a broken arrow for a 2 count
Damien then hits the bell clap and goes for another move, Roode gets a reversal into a backstabber for a 2 count, They trade strikes in the ring until Damien goes for a springboard move which Roode reverses into a spine buster, Roode goes for the Glorious DDT which gets reversed into The Reckoning which Roode again reverses into an attempt in a roll up, Damien reverses this into a Reckoning which hits! Priest then gets the 3 count
Dolph Ziggler gets in the ring while Damien is celebrating and hits Damien with a superkick.
Winner: Damien Priest
A nice match with a good pace to it, it had some nice reversals and some great wrestling, no spectacular spots or anything but not every match has too!
I’m glad they didn’t do the thing where Damien loses his mind again, I don’t mind that gimmick, but we don’t need it every single week!
A great Midcard match
Bianca Belair vs Piper Niven (Doudrop)
As Bianca is coming out for her entrance and whipping her braid about as she does, Piper comes steaming down the ramp and gets a cheap shot on Bianca then casually makes her way into the ring.
The match begins and they start off by having a brawl in the middle of the ring they both have some nice reversals and Bianca does some taunting followed by Piper then flattening her with a backdrop.
Piper takes control of Bianca in the corner and continues to attack her. Bianca fights herself out of what the commentators call a “gift wrap” to then have a heavy clothesline.
Bianca tries to get some momentum but gets another heavy clothesline from Piper for a 2 count.
Piper has very much controlled this match to this point.
Bianca uses her fantastic athleticism to get a reversal by flipping onto the ropes while piper is against
the ropes on the apron, Piper again takes advantage by pulling B out of the ring by her legs and doing the standing splash.
We come back from break and Bianca is starting to get some momentum by hitting a spine buster after some of her signature offence, she then hits a spear in the corner and gets 5 hits on Piper while standing on the 2nd rope above piper in the corner followed by a top rope cross body for a 2 count.
She attempts to continue her offence with a sunset flip, but Piper gets a reversal with a second rope splash for a 2 count.
Piper does some taunting to B and starts taking out Bianca’s hair clips?
She then goes for the cannonball which B moves away from, goes for the KOD but piper wriggles away then walks up the ramp and gets counted out?
Piper does Bianca’s taunts back to her at the top of the ramp...
Winner: Bianca Belair
What?! Piper almost dominated most of this match, it was a good match with some great reversals and great athleticism from both and doesn’t really matter who won but they seem to be building Piper as the “new Nia Jaxx” with regards to her being a big girl and dominating opponents. But as soon as she faced any adversity in this match, she walked away.
It was a nice match to watch that is almost ruined by a Shenanigans style finish.
Like I say with most things like this, if they explain it, it’ll be fine, but I don’t have much faith in creative doing that.
All it would take is a little interview with Piper where she says “I don’t care about the win, I just wanted to hurt her which I did for most of that match, as soon as she started getting some momentum I’ve got no interest in being in the ring with her, because she is a beast once she gets going”
That’s all it would take.
The finish is a Contender for Skid mark of the week in my eyes. IF it doesn’t get explained at some point.
In my opinion, a “clean” loss wouldn’t have made much difference to either of them in this feud. They had a chance to make both competitors look strong and not lose any momentum in this match as Piper dominated large parts of the match, So for instance a reversal and a KOD with a clean pin could have furthered the storyline better than this finish.
There could have been a promo from Bianca saying
“Guuurl UHUH, you dominated a lot of our match, but I still won! YOU DON’T EVEN GO HERE” or something along those lines
And Piper saying “you just got lucky, I will dominate and then finish the job next time” and neither competitor loses anything really.
But somehow they’ve managed to make both of them look weak as Bianca got dominated throughout then didn’t really win and Piper just looks like she’s run scared.
Also this is the second count out of the night remember.
We have a video recap of Vince McMahon slapping Austin theory last week. And Austin is back with Vince in the office, and Vince says he’s going to put him in a match tonight.
I CAME TO PLAY
Edge is going to be on as a special guest, MizTV starts with Miz saying that Maryse isn’t coming
tonight because they’re in Memphis Tennessee, typical heel stuff. Goes on next saying he watched last week back and can’t believe Edge complimented him, and he’s a shell of his former self, or is he?
YOU THINK YOU KNOW ME
Edge comes down to the ring he begins by explains by saying he meant the compliments, Miz says that edge can still get around the ring but he is mentally weak.
Edge says don’t mistake kindness for weakness, Miz says that he needed his kindness when he first started and he was a outcast, and that he doesn’t want his kindness now.
They have some more back and forth, they go on to say They’re going to have a match at Day 1 But Edge says he’s right here right now, and there’s nothing between them but air and opportunity, the Miz again replies no, the Miz says it’s not because he’s scared edge then makes out that he’s going to go for Miz and he flinches and falls to the mat.
Very good in ring stuff promo wise, I always liked Edge as a heel, but he is pretty good at being Face too, and the Miz is a career heel. Very typically good at the heel work, just a more well-known MJF if you like.
Liv Morgan is backstage and is asked whether she wants to respond to Becky Lynches earlier comments.
Says that people want to see her win and she wants the Raw Women’s championship.
Liv hasn’t quite got that natural aura on promos yet, I’m sure she’ll get there though.
Next round of the
The Mysterios vs The Alpha Academy
Dom and Chad start, some typically good technical wrestling by chad, we have a lot of reversals and back and forth to start with, each person stopping their opponent getting a tag, Dom gets out of the one leg Boston crab with a roll up reversal, then Dominik hits a insiguri and again stops chad getting a tag to Otis, gets a dragon screw in the corner and goes for a moonsault, Dominik moves out the way and rolls up Gable for the win.
Winners: the Mysterios
Decent match, both matches in this tournament have had shenanigans finishes, Would have been a decent one on one match if given more time, but Rey and Otis didn’t even get in the ring!
Riddle goes to interview the alpha academy and gets a powerbomb from Otis
Backstage Austin Theory is doing star jumps in Vince’s office, he tells him to sit down and says that it turns out he’s not going to have a match tonight, so he’s going to have to find another way to impress him.
Back in the arena.
Finn Balor is coming out for his match with T-Bar
Finn Balor vs T-Bar
We start off with a lock up, Finn gets out of it and uses his speed to go for a cross body, but just gets caught and thrown by T bar.
T bar hits a couple of big backbreakers, slowing Finn down considerably, He then gets Finn in a face lock, he throws him in the corner, Finn gets a kick to the face followed up by a signature double stomp, he then goes for a sling blade, T-Bar just catches him out of the air and throws him aside, follows up by a big boot for a 2 count.
He gets Finn up on his shoulder which Finn wiggles out of to hit a sling blade, goes up for the Coupe de gras, tbar is up to tease a top rope choke slam, Finn fights away to hit the Coupe de gras and get the 3 count!
Winner: Finn Balor
Austin theory attacks Finn while he’s celebrating hitting his spinning face breaker cutter type move, and takes a bunch of selfies with a groggy Finn Balor.. Impressive right Vince?
Dana Brooke is backstage and slinking around with the 24/7, Truth jumps out and says “I could have got you right there, but we don’t know if that’s PG, going to have to read the 24/7 rule book” what?!
Reggie flips down and says the title looks good on her, he then protects her from Tamina who has a ref with her!
Now it’s time for
First we have a backstage segments with Bobby and MVP getting asked why Bobby attacked the people earlier Mvp says he feels disrespected that they’re going to have a WWE championship match without even mentioning Bobby and that was the consequences.
Becky Lynch vs Liv Morgan
Raw Women’s Championship match
After Becky comes out but before Livs entrance we get a video package that shows Livs mother talking about Livs childhood and dreams… is this some long term feel good storytelling from WWE?!
Liv looks genuinely emotional as they’re doing the announcements for the match.
Becky starts off by putting Liv down a couple of times and does some taunts to her in the ring, Liv
makes Becky run out the ring and taunts back, they trade blows and cradles culminating in Liv getting a 2 count from a roll up, then goes for another roll up, Becky pays Homage to Trish Stratus with a backwards bridge to dodge a kick, Liv goes for about 5 pin falls in between some wrestling between the 2 of them, their chemistry has been great so far. This match has flowed amazingly.
Liv gets thrown out the ring and Becky goes for a baseball slide, Liv gets a reversal and a face breaker, Liv gets back in the ring and is back out almost instantly with a very picturesque suicide dive, gets Becky back in the ring for a 2 count. She goes to the top rope, but Becky intercepts and they brawl on the top rope before Becky hits a Superplex!
Back from the ad break and Becky is currently in control, gets a leg drop with Liv hanging over the 2nd rope for a 2 count, Liv fights out of a submission and hits 3 forearms Becky reverses and hits an inverted DDT for a 2 count.
Becky goes for a running corner move, Liv moves and drags Becky to the mat, Becky intercepts goes up top, liv moves then liv hits a step up insiguri.
Liv hits another couple of forearms and a knee then gets some ground and pound, Liv hits a knee in the corner and goes for the Oblivion, Becky moves and Liv hits her with a kick and follows up with a face breaker for a 2 count
Becky gets up and goes to hit Liv in the corner, gets sent to the apron, Becks gets stomped on by Liv, Liv then hits a missile dropkick for a 2 count, Liv locks in the moons of Saturn, Beck reverses into the disarm-her which Liv gets to the rope, Liv gets a cradle roll up, Beck reverses, Liv goes for another roll up, Beck reverses into a roll up, and grabs the bottom rope as the ref is counting to secure the 3 count.
This was a fantastic match to finish a very good episode of RAW, these two Women have great chemistry and have matches that flow amazingly. The finish to the match was appropriate and keeps both competitors looking strong as well as furthering the story!
You can almost guarantee Liv gets a rematch at Day 1 because she didn’t lose clean, it definatly feels like they are trying to build sympathy to get the crowd behind Liv.
Time for some predictions… dangerous game I know, Liv gets a rematch at Day 1 and Becky cheats to get a victory again! This builds the fanfare for Liv and makes her the public sweetheart to make her eventual win even more sweet... Anyway they carry on this feud till Rumble where Either;
1) The match gets made a submission match, so that Becky cant cheat her way into another pinfall, and they teased that sort of in this match with the Moons of Saturn – Dis-Arm-Her sequence in the match.
Then Bayley or Asuka who I think will return and win the rumble square up to her and we get the Iconic Wrestlemania sign point.
2) They have another title match at mania, with Bayley or Asuka as Special Guest Enforcer, as we haven’t seen a guest enforcer for a while.
Either way I think Liv gets the belt at Rumble. I think by this point Liv will be so over with the crowd that she.ll get a big pop for a win, then from there till Mania the possibilities are endless!
I know, Creative sign me up right?!
My Rating for this show
A good show with some nice intrigue, for the most part the wrestling was a good standard and for once the “false” finishes made sense for the most part, as usual there is probably too many of them for my liking.
I think what I liked about this show is that it left a lot of storylines open and kept me interested in what was happening; Liv and Becky, Aj and Omos, the WWE title picture, Nikki ASH and Rhea because if I had to guess, it looks like we’re going to get a Nikki ASH heel turn which could be very interesting and I am intrigued to see what they are planning for Austin Theory, possibly a chosen one MARK 2 and I’m actually interested in who the No1 contenders for the tag titles is going to be.
A few points I wasn’t a fan of, the fact that the Cage match to start the show didn’t really mean anything, The Bianca and Piper finish like I said, if they explain it or put some sort of context to it, it’ll be fine, but I really lack faith that they are going to.
The sudden reluctance to go for the 24/7 title from the usual mob, since when has it been that they won’t pin a woman for the title?! If they go the right way, they could make this title sort of like a Midcard Women's title, which I don’t think would be a bad way to go with it.
I really like the booking of Damien Priest, he is being booked so strongly and looks really good while doing it, surely he needs to move up the card soon, even if that does mean he drops the US title. Or they could elevate the US title by giving Damien a feud with people like Edge or AJ Styles or possibly both, it's great having someone of his quality essentially on the Midcard and consistently defending his title aswell.
And don’t forget to follow @rechargewrestle and @Robot-Republic on Twitter and all other social media!
Check out the Recharge Wrestling Podcast by searching Robot Republic network where you get your podcasts. Or here on our YouTube.
Enjoying our work. Give us a follow everywhere and tell a friend.
PLAY, OBEY, CONSUME.