Monday Night Raw
Date: May 2, 2022
Location: Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, North Carolina
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton
It’s the go home show for Wrestlemania Backlash and that means it is time for the final push towards the event. Granted after last week’s Smackdown, everything has changed again as we have a six man tag between the Bloodline and RKBro/Drew McIntyre. Yeah just a six man, with no titles currently on the line. Let’s get to it.
Here is the Bloodline to get things going. Paul Heyman handles Roman Reigns’ introduction and Reigns himself tells North Carolina to acknowledge him….but RKBro runs in to RKO the Usos. Cue Drew McIntyre with Angela the sword, leaving Reigns looking worried. The sword is dropped down so McIntyre gets in, with the Usos and RKBro joining them. Referees come down to break up the fight and we take an early break.
Earlier today, Ezekiel met with the Street Profits and had a drink. Kevin Owens (in a Becky Lynch shirt) and Alpha Academy came in to accuse Ezekiel of cheating at the lie detector test. A six man was set up for later.
Street Profits/Ezekiel vs. Kevin Owens/Alpha Academy
And now it’s later. Gable gets double flapjacked (with Montez Ford looking like he was trying something else) for an early two and the armbar goes on. Gable reverses into one of his own before it’s off to Otis. The power starts cranking up but a triple dropkick knocks him to the floor as we take a break.
Back with Ford still in trouble and Owens hitting a middle rope moonsault to the legs for two. Ford fights out of a chinlock and scores with an enziguri for the double knockdown. The hot tag brings in Ezekiel to clean house, including a heck of a Stinger Splash. Everything breaks down and Owens trips Ezekiel so Gable can grab a rollup for the pin at 9:54.
Rating: C. I’m not sure why you need to have Ezekiel take the pin here, but I’m sure we needed to protect the Profits more than someone they’re trying to present as something. Owens vs. Ezekiel is probably coming next week on Raw with some weird truth stipulation, though I’m still not sure what the endgame is with Ezekiel. That being said, it’s more interesting than anything Elias had done in months, so we’ll call this an upgrade.
AJ Styles isn’t happy with Edge and Damian Priest and he’s ready for them at Wrestlemania Backlash.
We look at Sonya Deville trying to cheat Bianca Belair out of the Raw Women’s Title last week but not being able to pull it off. After the match, she yelled at Carmella and Zelina Vega for screwing up.
Adam Pearce has been ordered to put Deville into a six woman tag, with Deville saying it should be No Holds Barred. Pearce seems to shoot her down but reminds Deville that she has no executive power.
Veer Mahaan vs. Burt Hanson
Before the match, Hanson says he is scared to death but he has always wanted to compete on Raw in his hometown and now he is making his dream come true. Mahaan throws him around to start and hits the Million Dollar Arm. The Cervical Clutch finishes at 1:32.
Post match Mahaan puts the Clutch on again in the ropes, allowing commentary to continue saying CERVICAL CLUTCH over and over again.
We look at Edge and Damian Priest taking AJ Styles out.
AJ Styles vs. Damian Priest
If Styles wins, Priest is barred from ringside on Sunday. Before the match, Edge insults the city and the sports teams it doesn’t have. Styles comes out to cut them off and they start fast with Priest throwing him around. The chinlock goes on for a bit before AJ fights up and sends him outside. The slingshot forearm connects but Priest is right back up. AJ gets lawn darted into the post and we take an early break.
Back with Styles hitting the torture rack spun into a powerbomb for two. Priest fights him off again and grabs the South Of Heaven chokeslam for two of his own. Styles loads up the Calf Crusher but an Edge distraction breaks it up. That’s fine with Styles, who rolls Priest up with a cradle for the pin at 11:00.
Rating: C. The match was pretty cookie cutter for the most part, but what mattered here was getting to the next logical point in the feud. Styles needs some kind of help to deal with the numbers game and getting rid of Priest will be a nice step. At the same time, this opens the door for someone else to join up with Edge and Priest, which opens up some possibilities.
Post match Edge jumps Styles but Finn Balor runs in for the save. That’s a good partner for Styles and Too Sweeting ensues.
Cedric Alexander comes up to Omos and MVP for some sucking up. He even has a match with Bobby Lashley tonight to prove himself, with MVP and Omos saying they’ll be watching. Alexander can leave now.
It’s time for MizTV, with Miz not being happy about what his guest did last week. Cue Mustafa Ali as his guest, but his music cuts off during his entrance. Then “Must’s” microphone doesn’t work, even as Miz talks about how the fans forgot about him during his hiatus. Miz: “Please Must, don’t go to Twitter and complain.” Ali steals the Miz’s microphone and says that he goes to the people when he is frustrated, but Miz gets his own mic to work again as Theory interrupts.
Theory has some good news for Miz: he has gone to Vince McMahon and suggested that last week’s loss to Ali be stricken from the record books. Ali wants Theory’s US Title, and that’s fine with Theory, who has gotten Ali a Champions Contenders match tonight. Theory says he doesn’t know if Ali can handle the heat, but Ali says if anyone can handle the heat from back there, it’s him. That’s cool with Theory, so let’s make the contenders match a handicap match.
Miz/Theory vs. Mustafa Ali
Joined in progress with Corey Graves daring to accidentally call him AUSTIN theory. A low bridge sends Ali out to the floor and it’s Theory getting two off a stomp to the stomach back inside. Ali fights out of a chinlock and sends Miz into the corner, setting up a neckbreaker for two of his own. Theory offers a distraction though and the Skull Crushing Finale gives Miz the pin at 2:52. Well Ali did better than I was expecting: he lasted one week.
Post match Ciampa runs in to jump Ali as well.
Earlier today, Reggie tried to talk Dana Brooke into a honeymoon but they ran into R-Truth, Akira Tozawa and Tamina. The argument over the 24/7 Title was on but Nikki Ash ran in to steal the title before running off. Dana told Reggie to get her a rematch tonight.
24/7 Title: Dana Brooke vs. Nikki Ash
Ash is defending and ties Brooke up in the ring skirt to forearm away early on. Back in and Brooke hits a flipping neckbreaker for the pin and the title at 1:34.
Post match everyone goes after the title, like they always do, but Brooke manages to escape. Then she tells Reggie that she wants a divorce.
Becky Lynch rants about how Asuka is trying to steal her comeback story. This is Becky’s story and it starts with ending Asuka.
Here is Seth Rollins for his own appreciation night. Rollins thinks it is appropriate to give him a night of praise, including a spotlight. The fans chant for Cody Rhodes, which doesn’t sit well with Rollins. He is ready for Cody at Wrestlemania Backlash, but here is Cody to interrupt. Cody talks about how he has been courteous to Rollins since he returned, but that loss is hanging around Rollins’ neck. Rollins doesn’t like being called delusional and says that Dusty Rhodes didn’t win the WWE Title because he wasn’t good enough. The beating is on with the Cody Cutter sending Rollins running.
Bobby Lashley vs. Cedric Alexander
MVP and Omos come out at the bell, with the former mocking Lashley for not being able to beat Cedric and thinking he could beat Omos. Alexander gets in some cheap shots to work on the knee but gets sent into the barricade. Back in and a spear (big one too) sets up the Hurt lock to finish Alexander at 2:36.
Liv Morgan is ready to take out Rhea Ripley.
We look back at AJ Styles beating Damian Priest.
Wrestlemania Backlash rundown.
R-Truth gives Reggie his business card as a certified divorce attorney. He is A Squire after all, which he explains as they walk past Nikki Ash. Doudrop pops up to yell at her and ask if Ash is ready to be more serious.
Becky Lynch/Sonya Deville/Rhea Ripley vs. Asuka/Liv Morgan/Bianca Belair
Becky slaps Asuka’s hand away to start but gets backed into the corner for her efforts. Deville comes in so Asuka hands it off to Belair, meaning Deville needs to hide in the ropes. It’s off to Ripley, who gets taken down to the mat so Liv can come in. Some running shoulders rock Becky and a middle rope dropkick gets two. Ripley offers a distraction so Liv dives onto her to let off some steam. A baseball slide drops Liv though and Becky’s top rope leg gets two as we take a break.
Back with Ripley working on Liv’s back as everyone but Deville claps on the apron. Liv escapes the Manhandle Slam though and grabs a DDT, allowing Belair to come back in and slam Ripley. Belair goes up but gets double superplexed back down, with Liv making the save. The big tag brings in Asuka as everything breaks down until Deville and Morgan trade rollups for two each. Deville’s running knee gets two on Morgan but she’s right back with Oblivion for the pin at 15:10.
Rating: C+. That was certainly a way to go, though I’m not sure who is next for Belair at this point. Deville has had her shot and now Morgan is winning, but Morgan isn’t going to be a major challenger. Odds are Belair doesn’t defend on Sunday, and right now that might be for the best as I don’t think there is anyone ready for the shot, at least not based on how the booking has been going.
Overall Rating: D. I have no idea what planet this show was supposed to be on and that doesn’t make me think much about Sunday. The main event story here was either the six man tag (which isn’t for a title) or the six woman tag (which also isn’t for a title). It was like they were trying to make every story equally unimportant and unfortunately they succeeded. Nothing on Sunday feels special, as it comes off like WWE is saying the show doesn’t matter. Why they would want to do that I’m not sure, but the pay per view has taken a hard turn and Raw felt like it didn’t know it was coming.
Kevin Owens/Alpha Academy b. Ezekiel/Street Profits – Rollup to Ezekiel
Veer Mahaan b. Bert Hanson – Cervical Clutch
AJ Styles b. Damian Priest – Rollup
Miz/Theory b. Mustafa Ali – Skull Crushing Finale
Dana Brooke b. Nikki Ash – Flipping neckbreaker
Bobby Lashley b. Cedric Alexander – Hurt Lock
Bianca Belair/Liv Morgan/Asuka b. Sonya Deville/Rhea Ripley/Becky Lynch – Oblivion to Deville
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