Monday Night Raw
Date: February 3, 2020
Location: Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City, Utah
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, Jerry Lawler
We’re about two months away from Wrestlemania and tonight is going to be very interesting. Not so much because we need to do anything special, but because there is a horrible snow storm in Salt Lake City. The show is going on as planned, but we could be in for a very sparse crowd. Like, even more so than usual. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of what happened to Edge last week at the hands of Randy Orton, including being taken away in an ambulance after the show.
Here’s Orton to explain himself. Orton takes his time before posing on the roles and the fans are not thrilled to see him. He thinks he owes an explanation but the fans are booing him out of the building in a hurry. That turns into an Edge chant and Orton still can’t bring himself to say anything. He finally says he can’t do this, puts the mic down, and walks away.
Video on the Royal Rumble, focusing on Drew McIntyre and Brock Lesnar.
Lana vs. Liv Morgan
Lana fakes a wrist injury to start and gets two off a kick to the head instead. We hit the chinlock before Lana sends her head first into the mat. Posing ensues and Liv is back up with the springboard Downward Spiral for the pin at 1:24.
Post match Ruby Riott makes her surprise return….and knocks Liv down with a chokeshove. Riott beats her down even more and leaves, allowing Lana to lay out Liv again.
We take a quick look at the horrible blizzard.
We look back at Drew McIntyre challenging Brock Lesnar last week and getting beaten down as a result.
Drew McIntyre vs. Mojo Rawley
Non-title but first, Drew promises to Claymore Mojo’s head off three seconds after he puts the mic down. After thanking the fans for braving the weather, Drew talks about that clip of Drew getting attacked, pointing out that Brock had to take him down from behind. That’s all well and good, because Drew, has a secret weapon with the Claymore and he’s kicking Brock’s head off to become champion. Drew: “Geez Mojo I forgot you were there for a second. Claymore in six seconds and Drew didn’t even take his coat off. The “Mojo’s Only Fan” sign in the crowd is a nice touch.
Buddy Murphy and the AOP are ready for Kevin Owens and the Viking Raiders. Seth Rollins comes in to tell them to go get ready because he’s got this. Rollins is ready for a triple threat match tonight where he can become #1 contender at Super ShowDown. He’s beaten Brock Lesnar for the title twice (thanks for finally mentioning that) and Drew needs to get ready for a new Wrestlemania opponent.
Viking Raiders/Kevin Owens vs. AOP/Buddy Murphy
Elimination rules and Rollins is here with his cronies. The Vikings start fast with Ivar slamming Erik onto Murphy and we take a fast break. Back with Murphy hitting a jawbreaker on Erik so Rezar can come in for the slugout with Ivar. Akam comes in though and knees Erik down, setting up some hard right hands to keep him in trouble. Murphy strikes away as well but Erik knees him in the face, allowing the hot tag off to Ivar for a basement crossbody.
A seated senton out of the corner crushes Akam and a clothesline turns Murphy inside out. The springboard clothesline/German suplex combination gets one on Murphy with the AOP making a save. Everything breaks down and the Raiders hit some dives to take AOP down. Ivar misses a charge into the LED board though (knocking it offline in the process), allowing Rollins to Stomp Erik on the floor. That’s enough for Murphy to get the elimination at 8:06 as Ivar’s shoulder is out. Ivar goes to the back at about 9:00 so Owens is all alone against the three of them.
We take another break and come back with Owens hitting a suplex but Murphy pulls him down into a chinlock. Murphy takes it to the floor but gets caught with a fall away slam into the corner. Back in and Murphy kicks him in the face for two as frustration is starting to set in. Owens enziguris Rezar but walks into the side slam/middle rope stomp combination for two.
The chinlock goes on and Murphy cuts off another comeback attempt. A DDT plants Murphy but Akam is right back in to forearm Owens down. That doesn’t last long either though as Owens goes to the apron for a Cannonball to Rezar, followed by a whip to send Akam into the steps. The Swanton hits Murphy’s raised kneed but a Pop Up Powerbomb gets rid of Murphy at 19:21.
The Stunner eliminates Akam at 20:04 and Rollins is panicking. Rezar charges into the post and gets superkicked into the corner, setting up the Cannonball. Now the Swanton can connect for two so Owens gets a fireman’s carry, only to have Rollins offer a distraction. Rezar hits a heck of a clothesline and a spinebuster plants Owens again. A second spinebuster finishes Owens at 23:15.
Rating: C+. It was longer than it needed to be but that’s how you stretch out a match when there might not be a full load of talent due to the weather. I was surprised by the ending here as I never would have bet on Rezar winning once they got down to one on one. Fair enough given that Owens was spent though and enough to make everyone look good.
Post match Owens get the big standing ovation.
Ricochet is ready to earn a title shot because he wants to prove people wrong.
Aleister Black vs. Eric Young
Black starts with the striking and sweeps the legs out, setting up a knee to the face. Black Mass finishes Young at 1:18.
Post match Black talks about being told that he could be anything you want to be. Now he knows that isn’t true and that drives him. He will be knocking down the Raw locker room door because he was told he could be anything he wanted.
We look back at Andrade hammerlock DDTing Humberto Carrillo into the concrete last December, plus Humberto coming back to do the same thing to Andrade last week. Andrade is out indefinitely, though there is no word on the title being stripped or vacated.
Humberto Carrillo vs. Angel Garza
That would be Humberto’s cousin, who is accompanied by Zelina Vega. She puts Garza over as a former champion and a hot prospect, while also mentioning the family connection. Garza says that he is the leader of their family so Humberto answers to him. Humberto is a disgrace to the family, so he takes the mic away and rants in Spanish at both of them. Zelina slaps him in the face and Garza jumps him, including the Wing Clipper to knock Humberto silly. They go outside with Garza peeling back the mats but Rey Mysterio runs in for the save. Sounds like we have a replacement match. Garza looked like a star here. Again.
Rey Mysterio vs. Angel Garza
Garza stalls on the floor to start before Rey makes him bail into the ropes for another breather. Rey grabs a headlock before headscissoring him into the corner. That’s enough to send Garza to a knee with an offer of a handshake but Rey shakes a finger no. Garza TAKES OFF HIS PANTS and throws them at Rey but misses a charge into the corner. A kick to the face staggers Rey again though and Garza puts him on the corner so the mask can be teased.
With that not working, Rey gets tied in the Tree of Woe for a running knee to the ribs. Rey is right back but misses the 619, allowing Garza to pull the ring skirt out to send him to the floor. Back from a break with Mysterio still in trouble as Lawler mentions that he and Honky Tonk Man are cousins (that’s something you don’t hear too often in WWE). Garza misses a moonsault though and they’re both down.
Rey gets two off a tornado DDT but Garza knees him in the head for the same. The Wing Clipper is broken up and Rey hits a running Canadian Destroyer. Vega breaks up the 619 so Rey springboards to the floor to drop Garza again. Rey yells at Vega so Garza gets in a superkick and whips him into the barricade. The hammerlock DDT onto the exposed concrete draws the DQ at 13:10.
Rating: B-. If you want to make someone look like a star, put them in there against Mysterio. Garza took a bit to grow on me but sweet goodness he has all the star power you could want. The ending tied into everything that the story was built upon and the match was good as a bonus. Nice stuff here and I’m hoping Garza gets even more of a push in the future.
Here’s Charlotte to announce her Wrestlemania decision. She has held the Raw and Women’s Titles more than once and….there’s a Rhea chant. Charlotte says she’s done that too and yes NXT has love for it’s queen but….here’s Rhea herself. Rhea says Charlotte has beaten Bayley and Becky, but Rhea has beaten her. She holds up the NXT Women’s Title and Charlotte smiles at her, only to walk around and leave. Charlotte throws in one more WOO for good measure. I’m not sure where they’re going with this and I like that.
Bobby Lashley isn’t distracted by Lana losing because that was her match. He’ll become #1 contender tonight because he deserves to face Brock Lesnar. Then he’ll go to Wrestlemania and beat up Drew McIntyre to retain the title. Posing ensues.
Asuka vs. Natalya
Asuka’s early headscissors doesn’t get her very far so she does it again and switches into a bodyscissors. A grab of the leg has Natalya in trouble so she kicks Asuka in the back for the break. Natalya knocks her into the corner and hits a sitout powerbomb for two, with Asuka bailing to the floor. Back from a break with Asuka kicking away at Natalya’s chest but missing the big one and getting rolled up for two.
A kick to the face sets up the Octopus Hold, followed by a Shining Wizard to give Asuka two more. The armbar keeps Natalya in trouble and Asuka switches to a guillotine to make it even worse. Natalya powers her up into a suplex for the break though and they’re both down. It’s Natalya up first with the discus lariat into the Sharpshooter but a rope is grabbed before too long. A quick Kairi Sane distraction lets Asuka grab the Asuka Lock for the tap at 12:01.
Rating: C+. It’s always nice to see Asuka in old school form of breaking people in half and that’s what we got here. Natalya is fine when you don’t let her talk and just go out for her stable and efficient match. The ending was a little flat as Sane just cheated to give Asuka the win but they had a good match coming up on the finish.
Post match Asuka rants about wanting a rematch with Becky Lynch for the Raw Women’s Title. Cue Becky (with checkered flag sunglasses) to say Asuka ducked her for a year and now wants to face her again. Of course she wants to drink from that fountain again but why put the title on the line again so close to Wrestlemania? Well, that’s because beating Asuka again would be better than doing it once so the match is on. Sane tries to jump Becky but gets thrown to the floor. Becky is even ready for the mist because she has superpowers, like eyes in the back of her head. No date on the match.
Charlotte will be on NXT this week to answer Rhea Ripley’s challenge.
Here’s Seth Rollins for the main event but first he needs to talk about it being his time. He’ll go to Super ShowDown and win the WWE Title, though the fans aren’t as happy with the announcement this week. Last year he won the title from Lesnar twice and then defended it around the world but the fans crucified him. He doesn’t hate the people for it though and actually he’s here to say thank you. Rollins is fighting right now and it’s for something that is going to be remembered in ten years. McIntyre is going to Wrestlemania but he’ll be facing the Monday Night Messiah.
Seth Rollins vs. Ricochet vs. Bobby Lashley
Lashley is sent outside early and Rollins is right there with a Sling Blade to Ricochet. Another shot knocks Lashley off the apron so Rollins can get a quick two. Lashley is back in though and hits a DDT to Rollins and a neckbreaker on Ricochet at the same time. A clothesline puts Rollins on the floor but Ricochet gets in a kick to Lashley’s head. The rolling dropkick puts Lashley outside again and there’s the big flip dive.
Another one hits Rollins and it’s time for the 630…but Buddy Murphy and the AOP run out to wreck Lashley and Ricochet. This brings out Kevin Owens for the save with the Viking Raiders following to clean house as we take a break. Back with Lashley coming back in to run Ricochet over and plant Seth with a spinebuster. Ricochet hits a high crossbody on Lashley though and scores with the springboard clothesline to Rollins.
The running shooting star press gets two with Lashley having to make a save. Another spinebuster hits Ricochet and a lifting Downward Spiral gets two on Rollins. A Blockbuster gives Rollins his own two on Lashley with Ricochet making a save this time around. The Buckle Bomb hits Ricochet but he’s back up with an enziguri to catch Rollins on top. There’s the Tower of Doom, though Lashley lets go of the two of them so it was more like Ricochet superplexing Rollins as Lashley just fell. The 630 hits Lashley for the sudden pin at 13:33.
Rating: B. Ricochet makes sense as the big winner as we’ve seen Rollins and Lashley vs. Lesnar isn’t exactly thrilling to anyone but Lashley. Ricochet may not have a chance to win but there’s a great Jeff Hardy factor him where there might be a. .01% chance that he could win, but it’s very fun to think about. The match was good and it had the right winner so I can’t really complain.
Post match Lesnar runs in for a quick F5 to end the show. Lesnar might have been on screen for fifteen seconds and got a full payday for it. That’s why he’s smarter than we are.
Overall Rating: B. You can tell they’re in Wrestlemania Mode as the show flew by with nothing bad and some stories being advanced. It’s acceptable to focus on Super ShowDown as there is so much time left before Wrestlemania, but I really hope that it doesn’t turn into the usual mess where all of the focus is on the less important show and the big one suffers in the process. This show gives me hope though, because it was the best one in a long time.
Liv Morgan b. Lana – Springboard Downward Spiral
Drew McIntyre b. Mojo Rawley – Claymore
Buddy Murphy/AOP b. Kevin Owens/Viking Raiders – Spinebuster to Rezar
Aleister Black b. Eric Young – Black Mass
Rey Mysterio b. Angel Garza via DQ when Garza DDTed Mysterio on the exposed concrete
Asuka b. Natalya – Asuka Lock
Ricochet b. Seth Rollins and Bobby Lashley – 630 to Lashley
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