Monday Night Raw
Date: May 9, 2022
Location: XL Center, Hartford, Connecticut
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton
We’re done with Wrestlemania Backlash and now it is time to start getting ready for Hell In A Cell. This means that we are likely in for MORE rematches, as WWE continues to get more time out of their one set of ideas. Not much happened last night on the Raw side, but Cody Rhodes’ rise continues. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of last night’s main event, with Roman Reigns pinning Riddle so the Bloodline could beat RKBro/Drew McIntyre.
Here is RKBro for a chat. Randy Orton talks about how they came up short last night, but that was just a battle and they will win the war. The original plan was for a Tag Team Title unification match, but Roman Reigns cut that off because he knows the Usos can’t beat RKBro. That’s why they’re going to Smackdown this week and DEMANDING that Reigns allow the match. If Reigns doesn’t say yes, it shows how little he believes in his cousins.
Cue the Street Profits, who are scheduled to challenge RKBro later tonight. They are going to be winning the titles tonight and then unifying them against the Usos because they want the titles and the smoke. Riddle: “RKBro 4:20 says we just smoked your a****”. I think that’s a yes. To a match that was already set.
Tag Team Titles: Street Profits vs. RKBro
RKBro is defending and Ford takes Riddle down early to start, setting up Ford’s version of Randy Orton’s pose. Back up and Riddle tries an armbar, allowing Riddle to mock Orton’s pose for a bonus. It’s off to Dawkins, who gets taken into the corner so Orton can come in. The assisted Floating Bro gets two as Riddle comes back in and sends Dawkins outside. The penalty kick is blocked though and Ford hits the big flipping dive to the floor as we take a break.
Back with Riddle fighting out of a chinlock but getting taken back into the corner to keep him in trouble. Riddle flips out of a suplex though and the hot tag brings in Orton to clean house. The hanging DDT plants Dawkins and it’s right back to Riddle, who accidentally dives onto Orton on the floor. Back in and the frog splash gives Ford two on Riddle with Orton making a VERY last second save. Ford goes up again but this time the frog splash is countered into an RKO to give Riddle the pin at 10:15.
Rating: C+. Those RKOs out of nowhere are still great and that was the case for the pin here, as Riddle makes up for mistakenly taken out Orton earlier. This should be enough to set up the Tag Team Title match, likely inside the Cell, in the match that shouldn’t have been initially advertised for last night. Still though, nice enough match here and Orton’s reactions are getting louder and louder.
We get a….my goodness we get an old school platform style interview (platform, edge of the stage, same thing) with Theory. He isn’t worried about defending the US Title against Cody Rhodes later tonight and is the youngest United States Champion for a reason. Is it because every previous champion has been older than him? He is the future and the future is Theory.
Here are Edge (who has hacked his hair off) and company, now including Rhea Ripley, for a chat. Edge talks about how he listened to the fans for years and all it got him is a Hall of Fame ring. He is bigger than the Hall of Fame. You can point at any part of him and he has had surgery on it. Everyone here tries to stand by their principles and then go home like a bunch of keyboard warriors. Edge holds a mirror up to all of them and they see someone ugly and wrong.
Damian Priest says the truth hurts and while he and Edge could destroy everyone’s favorites, but now they have Rhea Ripley by their side. Ripley says this was the easiest decision of her life because she wanted to be like them. She is done signing autographs at the airport and then seeing them sold on eBay.
That brings her to Liv Morgan and tonight it is time for Liv’s destruction. Edge talks about everyone believing that Ripley was holding Liv down and takes credit for slitting Liv and Rhea up. He saw potential in Ripley and wants her to run everything over. This movement isn’t done and they are looking for more….and here is Liv Morgan to interrupt.
Liv Morgan vs. Rhea Ripley
Ripley throws her into the corner to start and hits some shoulders to the ribs but Morgan is back with a springboard hurricanrana. That earns her a kick to the chest and some right hands on the mat, setting up the bodyscissors. Liv fights out of the Riptide and kicks away, setting up the springboard Codebreaker for her own two. Ripley knocks her back down and grabs the Prism Trap for the tap at 5:40.
Rating: C-. Hey remember when These two were partners for like a month and then lost their two title shots and then they split up and it was nowhere near as big a deal as WWE presented it as being? Well this was Ripley winning the singles match between the two of them. I don’t think this goes anywhere else, save for having Liv as the designated woman in mixed tags as a group of guys go after Edge N Pals, assuming that has any value.
Post match Edge tells Ripley to put the hold on again so Liv taps again. Cue Finn Balor, with AJ Styles, because it’s his turn now.
Finn Balor vs. Damian Priest
Priest throws him into the corner to start and seems to be rather pleased with himself to start. Some more striking and pounding has Balor in trouble but he comes back with a dropkick to the knee. Some shoulders to the ribs in the corner have Priest in trouble and Balor counters a chokeslam into a rollup for two. There’s the Sling Blade to send Priest outside but Ripley gets in the way of a dive. That allows Edge to come in with the spear on Balor for the DQ at 4:19.
Rating: C. This didn’t have the time to go anywhere but it makes sense to have Edge want to hurt Balor rather than worry about the win or loss. That’s kind of the point of the team and they will likely get to stand tall after a beatdown. I’m expecting a big tag match next month, but that needs to be it for the feud so Edge and company can move on. To what….I’m not sure.
Post match Styles and Styles get beaten down.
Alpha Academy promises Kevin Owens DNA evidence next week that will prove that Ezekiel is Elias. Owens is happy because his brother Ken Owens is here to compete against Ezek…er, Elias.
It’s time for the VIP Lounge with MVP hyping up Omos’ win over Bobby Lashley last night. MVP starts to explain what happened to Lashley but here is Cedric Alexander to interrupt. Alexander keeps saying THEY DID IT and seems to think that he’s back in the team. That doesn’t seem likely, but here is Lashley to clean house, though MVP escapes. Cedric springboards into the Hurt Lock to really leave him laying.
Sonya Deville isn’t happy with Adam Pearce’s formal investigation but he promises her quality competition later tonight.
Sonya Deville vs. ???
Before the opponent is announced, here is Pearce to say that as a result of the formal investigation, Sonya is FIRED as an official, but she is still an active star, meaning she is having a match with this person.
Sonya Deville vs. Alexa Bliss
DDT and Twisted Bliss finish Deville at 34 seconds.
We look back at Cody Rhodes beating Seth Rollins last night.
Ezekiel vs. Ken Owens
It’s Kevin in a gray wig, because Ken is his older brother. Ken goes on a big rant about how he can’t stand liars like Elias and how stupid the people are here for buying this. The wig eventually comes off (with Ezekiel giving a funny shocked face) and the fight is on, but Alpha Academy runs in to beat Ezekiel down. No match.
We recap the return of Asuka to interrupt Becky Lynch.
Becky interrupts Asuka in the back and doesn’t get why Asuka is getting a title shot. Not so fast as Asuka has to beat Bianca Belair to get a title shot, which has Becky confused about the idea of beating a champion to get the chance to beat the champion (preach it). Becky talks about handing Asuka her last title but Asuka screams that she didn’t need Becky’s help. Asuka shouts about Becky acting like a baby instead of a mom, causing becky to say that Asuka is the one with the weird green tears on her face as she walks away.
Veer Mahaan vs. Frank Lowman
Lowman has a bit of size to him and says he doesn’t want to get taken out on a stretcher. He has a wife though and three triplets to go with her, so he is doing this for his family. Lowman gets in a shot to start but is taken down by a Thesz press (minus the press). A side slam sets up the Million Dollar Arm. The Cervical Clutch makes Lowman tap. Lowman was one of the better looking jobbers in a long time.
Cody Rhodes is proud of his win over one of the best in the world. Now he is seeing someone with limitless potential like Theory, but you have to dig deep to find that potential. Theory better be ready to dig deep.
US Title: Cody Rhodes vs. Theory
Cody is challenging and they lock up to start. Theory takes him down and strikes a quick pose so Cody hits a forearm to the face. That’s fine with Theory, who snaps the arm across the top rope and scores with a rolling dropkick. A dropkick to the knee cuts Cody off again but he’s right back with a springboard kick to the face. Something off the apron is broken up though and they go to the announcers’ table, which sends Theory running back inside.
We take a break and come back with Cody fighting out of a chinlock and they both hit crossbodies for a double knockdown. A powerslam gives Cody two and a moonsault is good for the same, meaning frustration sets in. Back up and Theory elbows him in the face, setting up the fisherman’s buster onto the knee. Cody isn’t having that and hits the Disaster Kick into the Cody Cutter but Seth Rollins comes in for the DQ at 13:08.
Rating: B-. They were starting to cook a bit near the end, but Rollins’ interference might as well have had a big countdown clock running for the entire match. You knew they were going to go to a third match between those two, probably in the Cell, and now they have a reason. At the same time, I like the idea of using a title match to set up one more fight. Cody gets screwed out of something he wants and Rollins keeps him from getting something he wants. Not a bad way to go.
Post match Seth Stomps Cody onto the announcers’ table and screams about Cody never taking anything else from him again.
Doudrop/Nikki Ash vs. Naomi/Sasha Banks
Non-title. Doudrop headbutts Naomi away to start and sits down on her to break up a sunset flip attempt. The cobra clutch goes on for a bit before a running corner splash crushes Naomi. A step up enziguri gets Naomi out of trouble though and it’s Banks coming in with a high crossbody, which is pulled out of the air for a slam. Nikki tags herself in (Doudrop doesn’t approve) and covers for two but Banks fights up and gets over to Naomi. The Codebreaker/Bubba Bomb combination finishes Nikki at 4:10.
Rating: C-. Anytime WWE wants to drop the Doudrop name and the Ash gimmick, I’m certainly cool with it. These are two talented women who could be doing something and are instead left as little more than losers, especially Nikki with that dead end idea. I could see both of them being released soon too and while that is sad, odds are they aren’t going to get to do anything of note anytime soon.
Post match Doudrop yells at Nikki but Miz, guest referee for the next match, comes out to cut them off.
Mustafa Ali vs. Ciampa
Miz is guest referee and neither of the two of them get an entrance. Ali grabs a rollup for no cover to start so Ciampa runs him over and stomps away. A running knee knocks Ali off the apron and a clothesline on the floor makes it worse. That lets Ciampa sit on the announcers’ table for his pat on the back but Ali rolls him up for….a very delayed one back inside. The chinlock goes on but Ali comes back with a hard clothesline. Ali hits a superkick and a tornado DDT for a VERY delayed two. Ciampa uses the distraction to hit a reverse DDT for the very fast pin at 5:33.
Rating: D+. It’s an idea that you have seen time after time and this happened to be the latest instance. I’m glad Ali is back and a feud with Miz isn’t the worst thing, but Ciampa being little more than a pawn who isn’t given as much as a decent introduction is a sad thing to see. You know, because this show is so flush with interesting talent that they can throw Ciampa out there with nothing behind him.
We get what sounds like a mashup of the Lacey Evans Story. Has she just been traded and we’re supposed to forget last week’s Smackdown?
We look at Bobby Lashley attacking Omos/MVP/Cedric Alexander earlier.
Lashley wants Omos in a cage next week.
Dana Brooke and Tamina have talked to R-Truth about getting divorces, but here are Reggie and Akira Tozawa with flowers and candy. Then R-Truth serves them with divorce papers. Well not so much Tozawa, as he runs away without taking them.
Asuka vs. Bianca Belair
Non-title CHAMPIONS CONTENDER match and Becky Lynch is on commentary. Feeling out process to start with Belair flipping over her and telling Asuka to bring it. Belair goes with a leapfrog and runs Asuka over. With Asuka down, Belair loads up the handspring moonsault but Becky pulls her to the floor for a whip into the steps and the DQ at 2:59.
Post match Becky beats Asuka down to end the show.
Overall Rating: C. This show started well and then fell hard, as most of the last hour, plus some more before that, was rather rough. Three disqualifications in nine matches is a lot, but the biggest problem continues to be the lack of a World Title. You have Edge and company as the monsters but with no one to chase, they are only so interesting. Nothing on here feels especially important and it comes off like they’re trying to find a way to get to the next pay per view without having a main story. That can work every now and then, but when it is the feature, there is a big problem.
RKBro b. Street Profits – RKO to Ford
Rhea Ripley b. Liv Morgan – Prism Trap
Finn Balor b. Damian Priest via DQ when Edge interfered
Alexa Bliss b. Sonya Deville – Twisted Bliss
Veer Mahaan b. Frank Lowman – Cervical Clutch
Cody Rhodes b. Theory via DQ when Seth Rollins interfered
Naomi/Sasha Banks b. Doudrop/Nikki Ash – Codebreaker/Bubba Bomb combination to Ash
Ciampa b. Mustafa Ali – Reverse DDT with a fast count
Bianca Belair b. Asuka via DQ when Becky Lynch interfered
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