The Big Takeaway:
A face-to-face interview segment turned got out of hands quickly which featured the WWE Universal Champion Brock Lesnar and Samoa Joe. Roman Reigns speared Braun Strowman off a stage and WWE announced more match for the Great Balls of Fire pay-per-view on the go-home show.
WWE Monday Night Raw Recap
In-Ring: Enzo Amore
Enzo Amore came out to open the show explaining why he’s a Certified G. Enzo said he’s going to climb to new heights and he’s climbed out of holes that are taller than Big Cass. Enzo then said that Cass is nothing more than a seven-foot catchphrase that he wrote.
- As usual Enzo was great on the mic and cut another passionate promo
Backstage: Charly Caruso interviewed Big Cass
Cass basically cut a heel promo on Enzo and said he’s where the money is at. Enzo appeared from behind and jumped Big Cass. Both Big Cass and Enzo were pulled apart. WWE announced that Big Cass will face Enzo at Great Balls of Fire.
Sasha Banks & Bayley def. Alexa Bliss & Nia Jax
Jax took control of Bayley early on in the match. The action moved to the floor as Jax rammed Bayley into the barricade and was helped to the back by WWE officials. The action continued in the ring as the heels to control of Banks. Banks recovered as she kicked Jax to the floor, then countered Bliss DDT attempt and applied the Bank Statement as Bliss tapped out.
Backstage: Kurt Angle & Braun Strowman
Strowman approached Angle backstage and wanted to know what he would do if Reigns couldn’t make it to Great Balls of Fire? Angle said his sources tell him that Reigns will be at PPV. Strowman said his sources are wrong. Strowman said he’s going to the ring later and wants some competition.
Cedric Alexander came out and cut a pre-match promo saying that Dar cost him his match against Shawn Daivari last week on 205 Live. So tonight’s he’s going to beat Dar.
Cedric Alexander def. Naom Dar
Dar got the advantage early off the distraction from Fox. Alexander recovered and delivered the Lumbar Check and got the win. Fox tried another distraction but it didn’t work this time.
MizTV with Maryse, Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel, Dean Ambrose, Heath Slater & Rhyno
Miz came out with Maryse and his Miztourage. Miz said Lonzo Ball will be the biggest bust in NBA history. Miz then said LaVar Ball was a loser and walked around like a raving lunatic and couldn’t believe he wanted Ambrose in the Big Baller Brand. Ambrose came out and wanted to know how there is still a MizTV segment after last week’s debacle? Ambrose challenged Miz to an Intercontinental Title match but Rhyno and Slater came out. Slater said he’s the one that defeated Miz and wants a title match.
Kurt Angle came out to a big reaction and said that Miz doesn’t make matches but he does. Miz to Angle to go over his personal problems with Corey Graves. Angle told Miz to watch his mouth. Angle said Ambrose will face Miz for the IC Title at Great Balls of Fire but will defend the title against Slater right now.
- An entertaining segment as the Miz was terrific as usual.
WWE Intercontinental Title Match: The Miz def. Heath Slater
Ambrose was on commentary enjoying his view of the match. This was a good back-and-forth match as the big highlight was Slater running up the turnbuckles to give Miz a powerslam which got a nice reaction. Slater went for a cover but Axel jumped on the apron to distract the referee. Rhyno pulled Axel off the apron and was about to run into Maryse but was attacked Axel and Dallas. With Slater distracted by the action on the floor, Miz delivered the Skull Crushing Finalle and got the win.
- After the match Ambrose ran down but was attacked by Axel and Dallas who delivered their version of the Grand Amplitude. Miz then delivered the Skull Crushing Finalle to Ambrose and posed with the IC title.
Backstage: Titus O’Neil and Apollo Crews
O’Neil tried to talk Crews into wrestling Strowman tonight but was hesitant. O’Neil talked Crews into taking the match by saying “Crews can’t lose”
The Shattered Truth with Goldust
Goldust came out to deliver the world premiere of “The Shattered Truth” Goldust cut another heel promo on R-Truth then showed close up footage of his cameraman filming last week’s segment. R-Truth was behind Goldust eating popcorn and then attacked him.
Backstage: Kurt Angle, Sheamus & Cesaro
Angle told Sheamus and Cesaro that they will defend the Raw Tag Team Titles in a 30-minute Iron Man Match against the Hardys at Great Balls of Fire. Cesaro said he wanted singles competition tonight. Angle suggested a match against Strowman but Cesaro said he wanted to face Finn Balor which Angle made. The champs left as Angle then took another phone call.
Seth Rollins def. Curt Hawkins
Hawkins came out asked the WWE Universe “Who thinks Curt Hawkins is going to lose this match?” Rollins then took the mic and cut a short promo. Rollins then decked Hawkins with a right hand and then pinned him with his version of the Rainmaker Knee strike.
- After the match Rollins cut a promo on Wyatt and after Great Balls of Fire we will find out if Wyatt is a man or a coward?
Head-to-Head: Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman) & Samoa Joe
Joe interrupted Cole and said all he’s done was make statements since becoming number one contender and wanted to ask Lesnar and Heyman questions. Joe asked Heyman how it felt to be locked in the Cocquina Clutch? Lesnar interrupted and said Joe isn’t facing Heyman but is facing Lesnar. They went back-and-forth brining up which WWE they defeated. Joe took off his mic piece and went to look for Lesnar who was just laughing. Joe eventually found Lesnar and was pulled away by WWE officials.
- This was done well and the build for the match has been great
WWE Cruiserweight Champion Neville def. Mustafa Ali — Non-title Match
Ali delivered a hurricanrana and a twisting spike DDT but Neville kicked out. Ali then attempted the inverted 45o splash but Neville tossed him into in the barricade. Neville took control delivered a clothesline and applied the Rings of Saturn and got the submission win.
- A good short match. Neville is great playing up the role of a heel.
Bray Wyatt Promo from the Phoenix Desert
This week instead of cutting a spooky promo in a lair, Wyatt cut a spooky promo on Rollins from the Phoenix desert to hype up the PPV match.
Backstage: Charly Caruso interviewed Alexa Bliss
Caruso asked Bliss about losing to Banks. Bliss mocked Caruso question. Bliss ended the segment by saying no one cares what Caruso thinks. that’s why Caruso was holding a mic and Bliss is the Raw Women’s Championship.
Finn Balor def. Cesaro
The Hardy were commentary enjoying the match. Good back-and-forth action but then Elias Samson walked down the ramp strumming his guitar which distracted Balor. Cesaro then hoisted Balor in the air and delivered an uppercut but Balor kicked out for a great near fall. Cesaro then delivered two running uppercuts and then climbed up the turnbuckle but was knocked to the floor as Balor kicked him off.
Balor attempted a tope but was tripped up by Samson. The Hardys came down and attacked Samson. Balor then delivered a beautiful looking tope to everyone on the floor.
Matt gave Samson the Twist of Fate. Sheamus delivered the Brogue Kick to Matt. Jeff ran off the apron and delivered a plancha to Sheamus. Cesaro delivered an uppercut to Jeff. Balor delivered a missile dropkick to Cesaro into the barricade. Balor then tossed Cesaro in the ring, delivered the Coup de Grace and got the win.
- Really good match that was filled with entertaining high spots.
An ambulance pulled into the arena as Braun Strowman came out for the main event segment. Strowman cut a promo on Reigns and then called out his opponent. O’Neil came out and did his best to put Crews over.
Braun Strowman def. Apollo Crews (w/Titus O’Neil)
Crews got in a few moments to shine by delivering two standing enzuigiri’s and a low running dropkick which brought Strowman to his knees. Crews went for the standing Shooting Star Press but was kicked away. Strowman then delivered three running powerslams and got the win.
After the match O’Neil entered the ring and went on the attack. Strowman then delivered a running powerslam to O’Neil. Strowman then took Crews and placed him inside the ambulance but it didn’t leave.
Strowman went to the driver side but was attacked by Reigns. Strowman attacked Reigns and tossed him into the guardrails. Reigns battled back and tackled Strowman into the video board. Reigns then delivered a Spear to Strowman off the stage through a table. Both men were selling the effects of the Spear but Strowman still got up as the show ended.
- I enjoyed the final angle of the show as it made Reigns look strong heading into the Ambulance Match at Great Balls of Fire. I’m looking forward to seeing the match which should be good.
A fine go-home show. The builds for the main and co-main events have been great. The overall PPV card of Great Balls of Fire looks pretty strong and show should be good. Will be interested to see how the show is booked especially the main event.
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Follow Me on Twitter: @AminAjani
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