Monday Night Raw
Date: August 2, 2021
Location: Allstate Arena, Chicago, Illinois
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton
So remember last week when Nikki Ash got beat up by Charlotte but didn’t lose the Women’s Title? Then she talked about how she got close and wanted to do it again? Well tonight is her chance to prove that she is ALMOST good, because that’s the best we’re getting these days. Oh and Goldberg, because of course. Let’s get to it.
Might want to edit that WOO out of the opening these days people.
Here are MVP and Bobby Lashley for a chat. MVP is glad to have the fans back and knows they are all excited to see Goldberg. A few weeks ago, Goldberg challenged Lashley for the WWE Title but Lashley has yet to acknowledge the challenge. Goldberg is a legend who can destroy any man on any night, but Lashley is not just any man. MVP asks how Goldberg wants to….and here’s Goldberg to cut him off. Goldberg asks Lashley what kind of a gladiator he is. The first time Lashley saw Goldberg, Lashley thought he was a victim. Fans: “WE WANT WYATT!”
Goldberg lives by the spear and at Summerslam, Lashley dies by the spear. Goldberg leaves so MVP goes out to get in the face of Goldberg’s son. That brings Goldberg back out and the spear drops MVP. Goldberg: “You mess with my son, I’ll kill you!” The fans did not care about Goldberg here and it’s kind of hard to disagree. This whole thing feels forced and there isn’t much of a way around it.
Drew McIntyre vs. Veer/Shanky
Jinder Mahal is at ringside too. McIntyre gets sent shoulder first into the post to start and Shanky clotheslines him down. Veer comes in and gets clotheslined as well as McIntyre cleans house. Everything breaks down and the Claymore is loaded up, only to have Shanky grab the leg. Mahal comes in with the chair for the DQ at 2:57.
Post match The villains all grab chairs so McIntyre grabs the sword and cleans house. Shanky is left alone so McIntyre threatens to slice him to pieces before Shanky runs off.
Mahal and company run off, with Mahal saying karma is coming for McIntyre.
Post break, McIntyre says Mahal can pick the hospital the graveyard or the sword (which is named Angela).
Nia Jax vs. Rhea Ripley
Shayna Baszler is here with Jax. Ripley kicks her way out of the corner but staggers herself on a headbutt attempt. Jax gives her the real thing into the corner and posts Ripley for a bonus. Ripley gets crushed against the post and sent into the post again for a bonus. Jax’s running hip attack misses though and Ripley dive off the apron….and onto Baszler by mistake. The Samoan drop drives Ripley into the barricade though and we take a break. Back with Ripley fighting out of a torture rack and forearming away.
A springboard hurricanrana drops Jax again and she seems to be bleeding from the eye. There’s a kick to the face to make it worse and Ripley hits a missile dropkick for two. Jax misses the sitdown splash but manages to run Ripley over. The legdrop gets a lazy two as the right third of Jax’s face is covered in blood. Baszler gets on the apron for a distraction but drops down, only to have Jax charge once she is already on the floor. Ripley grabs the rollup pin at 8:35.
Rating: C. Jax wasn’t too bad here, though that was a heck of a nasty cut on the eye. Thankfully she was able to finish and seemed fine enough so it might not have been too bad. Ripley got the win, despite the pretty terrible timing at the end. At least they didn’t have Jax beat her somehow and it all could have been worse.
Post match Ripley goes to the floor as Jax yells at Baszler, who takes her jacket off. Baszler leaves and Ripley gets back in to kick Jax again. The Riptide leaves Jax laying.
Mace/T-Bar vs. Mustafa Ali/Mansoor
Rematch from last week where Ali and Mansoor won their debut as a team. Ali gets the very warm hometown reception but gets knocked outside hard to start. T-Bar blasts him with a clothesline on the floor and drops the top rope elbow for two on Mansoor. Back up and the hot tag brings in Ali so everything can break down. Mansoor and Ali hit stereo dives, leaving Ali to hit a tornado hanging DDT. The 450 is loaded up but T-Bar kicks Mansoor into the ropes to crotch Ali. The cyclone boot finishes Mansoor at 2:40. Ali only kind of loses in his hometown, and that’s the best result he could ask for here.
Post match Ali gets taken out by High Justice, just in case the fans were still ok.
We look back at Charlotte destroying Nikki Ash last week.
Here is Charlotte for a chat. She talks about Simone Biles backing out of most of the Olympic Games. After cutting off a Becky Lynch chant with promises that this is going somewhere, Charlotte talks about how Nikki Ash won the Women’s Title thanks to the Money in the Bank briefcase.
That had Charlotte ready to have her own mental breakdown as she walks to the floor and says cashing in Money in the Bank is theft. She has been cased in on THREE TIMES since the briefcase became a thing, and throws in a kendo stick, a broom and a chair. Last week, Charlotte beat Nikki in this ring, but Nikki wanted a rematch anyway. Charlotte punched her in the face like a loser and tonight, Nikki is sacrificing herself in a No Holds Barred match. Cue Nikki from behind to blasts Charlotte with a chair to send her running.
We look at Tamina beating Eva Marie/Doudrop in what amounted to a handicap match.
Eva Marie thinks Doudrop can be scary. She even asks where Doudrop is from but cuts off the answer to promise that Tamina will pay, just like Natalya did last week.
Doudrop vs. Tamina
Eva Marie is here with Doudrop and offers an early distraction. Tamina superkicks Doudrop anyway and hits the running hip attack in the corner. Eva’s distraction lets Doudrop get in a shot of her own and a bottom rope elbow gets two. Doudrop adds a backsplash to set up the chinlock, which is broken in a hurry. Tamina sends her into the corner and ducks the Eva suggested crossbody. The Samoan drop finishes Doudrop at 3:49.
Rating: D+. Yeah what else were you expecting here? The match was nothing but Tamina ran over Doudrop, even with Eva Marie helping, without much trouble. The Natalya injury is going to slow plans down a bit, but you are only going to get so far against Marie and Doudrop in the first place.
Post match Eva Marie and Tamina are annoyed so Alexa Bliss, with Lilly, pops up on screen to declare Eva the loser of the match. Laughter ensues.
We look back at Damian Priest beating Sheamus last week.
Riddle comes up to Priest to offer some congratulations. They exchange some pleasantries, with Priest wishing him luck tonight against Omos. Riddle warns him to watch out on MizTV, but Priest promises to be ready.
It’s time for MizTV with Miz being rather annoyed at what Damian Priest did last week. This brings out Priest with Miz bringing up that it was Priest who put him in a wheelchair. Miz and John Morrison didn’t last Priest going after Sheamus’ mask but Priest says they’re nuts. Sheamus wrestled hurt and that’s a bada** in his book. What is up with Miz’s knee though? Priest wants to know if the problem is between Miz’s legs, which has Miz threatening to slap him in the face.
Priest gets up and tells him to try it but Miz just looks terrified. Morrison gets up to say kids want to grow up and be like them, which Priest finds suspicious. The challenge is on, with Priest wanting to just fight right now. Morrison seems to accept but first Priest has to block the Drip Stick. After dropping Morrison, Priest sprays Miz for a bonus.
Damian Priest vs. John Morrison
Miz is at ringside as Priest kicks his way out of the corner to start. Priest heads to the apron for a kick to the head, followed by a top rope kick to the chest for two. Morrison’s kicks give him two of his own and it’s off to a crank on the arm. That’s broken up and Priest runs him over again, only to get Drip Sticked. Morrison gets in a cheap shot for two but Priest takes him down again. The South of Heaven chokeslam gives Priest the pin at 4:02.
Rating: C-. This is the formula you can follow with ease, as Priest gets another win on his way towards the likely Summerslam title match. Priest is a big guy with some good physical gifts and they let him show those off here. Another short match which did what it was supposed to do, with the Drip Stick appearance as a bonus.
Post match here is Sheamus to jump Priest but Ricochet runs in for the save.
Sheamus/John Morrison vs. Ricochet/Damian Priest
Joined in progress with Ricochet fighting back, including a springboard crossbody to Sheamus. There’s a Lionsault to give Ricochet two more but Sheamus knocks him off the top for a crash to the floor. Back in and Sheamus hammers on Ricochet’s back before handing it to Morrison. A German suplex gets Ricochet out of trouble and it’s back Priest, for a backbreaker to drop Morrison. South of Heaven connects for two with Sheamus having to make a save. A clothesline puts Sheamus on the floor so Ricochet moonsaults onto him. That leaves Morrison to get pulled into the Reckoning for the pin at 3:49.
Rating: C. More of the same from the previous match as Ricochet and Sheamus add enough to the match to keep things interesting. Sheamus vs. Priest is going to be a showdown and Ricochet….well at least he got on Raw. Morrison and Miz can be slotted in with anyone, but I’m not exactly seeing a future between them and Ricochet.
Bobby Lashley accepts Goldberg’s challenge for Summerslam and hopes Goldberg’s son is there to watch the beating.
Riddle vs. Omos
There is no AJ Styles here as Omos shoves Riddle into the corner before the bell. We officially start with Riddle being sent outside and then over the barricade. Riddle gets back in at nine but gets sent back to the apron and then knocked to the floor again. Back in again and Riddle hits a few jumping knees, including a springboard version which doesn’t drop Omos. A clothesline drops Riddle though and the chokebomb finishes at 2:33.
Alexa Bliss claims Lilly influenced Jack the Ripper and the Zodiac Killer but Doudrop blasts Bliss with a chair. Eva Marie says Lilly is gross and the two leave. Lilly sits up on her own.
Karrion Kross promises more violence.
Karrion Kross vs. Keith Lee
Non-title rematch from last week. Lee powers him into the corner to start but Grizzly Magnum doesn’t get to launch. Instead, Kross chops and knees away, only to get shouldered down a few times. Lee gets sent to the apron but comes back in with a slingshot crossbody, because of course he can. Kross kicks him in the face though and it’s an exploder suplex into the corner. They head outside with another suplex sending Lee into the steps as we take a break.
Back with Kross hitting a clothesline but Lee elbows him in the face. Now the Grizzly Magnum can connect and Lee gets to run him over. The Spirit Bomb is blocked but so is the Doomsday Saito. Instead Kross hits him in the head and grabs the Krossjacket but Lee powers out. The Spirit Bomb gives Lee the clean pin at 9:24.
Rating: C. So Kross loses, then wins, the loses, while Lee loses, then loses, then wins. This is a good example of what fans mean when they talk about 50/50 booking, but at least Lee isn’t being treated as a total loser anymore. It’s still a weird way to go, but I can go with Lee winning. Kross….I have no idea what they’re doing here, as the losing streak without Scarlett made sense, at least until he won last week.
Rhea Ripley thinks tonight’s main event will be brutal but she’s coming for the Women’s Title at Summerslam.
24/7 Title: Reggie vs. Akira Tozawa
Reggie is defending and we get an inset promo from him, explaining that he went with the French thing to get his foot in the door. Now he is the champion so he can be himself. I can actually go with that. We start with a mini dance off until Tozawa misses a kick to the face. Reggie gets low bridged to the apron, where he moonsaults to freedom. Tozawa misses a charge into the barricade as Reggie keeps running away with the greatest of ease. Back in and Tozawa calls upon NINJA POWER but gets knocked down again. The running flipping seated senton retains the title at 2:02.
Nikki Ash isn’t sure what to expect in a No Holds Barred match but she’ll give it everything she has. If she wins, she can prove that anyone can be almost a superhero.
Nikki Ash vs. Charlotte
Non-title and No Holds Barred. Ash (who has changed gear from earlier) starts fast and hits a quick crossbody for two but Charlotte is back up to send her into the corner. The backbreaker into the Downward Spiral into the corner has Ash in more trouble and it’s time to throw her outside. Charlotte rants about how there will be no more cashing in on her and clears off the announcers’ table.
The fans want tables and Charlotte pulls one out to the reaction of the night. Ash manages a quick posting but Charlotte shoves her down again as Rhea Ripley is watching backstage. The BECKY chants start up again so Charlotte tells the fans to suck it (sans gestures). Charlotte spears Nikki through the barricade as this is mostly one sided so far. Back with Charlotte hitting a boot to the face for two, only because she pulls Ash up. Charlotte grabs a chair but gets baseball slided in the face.
That lets Ash get in a good ten whole second of offense until Charlotte takes her down again. The fans want CM Punk but settle for Charlotte countering another crossbody off the apron into a powerbomb through the announcers’ table. Back in and Charlotte slowly puts her foot on the chest for two and can’t believe Ash is doing this. A missed spear sends Charlotte through the table in the corner and Ash gets two. Ash grabs a hanging swinging neckbreaker for the pin at 14:34.
Rating: C-. Well…..it was better for Nikki than I was expecting. She did get the pin on her own and that’s quite the surprise. This actually gets Nikki somewhere and makes her feel like something of a threat for once. As for the match itself, it was a hard hitting beating, as it should have been. Charlotte partially beat herself, but Nikki hit a big move and won after Charlotte cost herself the win, so this could have been much, much worse.
Ash celebrates in the crowd to end the show.
Overall Rating: D+. This was an improvement over recent weeks, but that’s not exactly saying much. There was nothing on here as horribly bad, but overall it was pretty boring. The first half hour focused on Goldberg and Jinder Mahal and was followed by a bunch of uninspiring stuff. The biggest problem with this show was that it was boring, which is often worse than being bad. There were some good parts, but this isn’t a show that would make me want to come back next week. One good idea was to keep things moving out there, as a long and boring match can be crippling to a show. Not good, but a step up over recent efforts.
Drew McIntyre b. Veer/Shanky via DQ when Jinder Mahal interfered
Rhea Ripley b. Nia Jax – Rollup
Mace/T-Bar b. Mansoor/Mustafa Ali – Cyclone boot to Mansoor
Tamina b. Doudrop – Samoan drop
Damian Priest b. John Morrison – South of Heaven
Damian Priest/Ricochet b. John Morrison/Sheamus – Reckoning to Morrison
Omos b. Riddle – Chokebomb
Keith Lee b. Karrion Kross – Spirit Bomb
Reggie b. Akira Tozawa – Running flipping seated senton
Nikki Ash b. Charlotte – Hanging swinging neckbreaker
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