Monday Night Raw
Date: August 8, 2022
Location: Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse, Cleveland, Ohio
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton
This could be a very interesting show, as we are coming off last week’s pretty awesome episode, but now the question is how they follow it up. They certainly don’t need to have some big moment or debut/return, but keep up the energy and put on a good show and they should be fine. Let’s get to it.
We open with a recap of Bayley/Iyo Shirai/Dakota Kai coming together at Summerslam and running some roughshod last week.
We get the brackets for the Women’s Tag Team Title tournament:
Iyo Sky/Dakota Kai
Nikkita Lyons/Zoey Stark
That’s a heck of a lot better than I would have bet on.
Here are Bayley, Iyo Sky and Dakota Kai for a chat. Bayley: “DING DONG!” Bayley can’t believe that she’s getting this kind of a reception when the fans need her. They are here to save this women’s division and the role model needed to do something. Bayley says they are here to bring back the hunger and get rid of Becky Lynch and Bianca Belair. She mentions Iyo Sky and Dakota Sky (Bayley: “YEAH I KNOW I SAID IT WRONG!”) and talks about how bad things have gotten, but here are Alexa Bliss and Asuka to interrupt.
Bianca Belair joins them, with Asuka dancing to Belair’s music (and ducking a pony tail whip). Bliss threatens Sky and Kai because she and Asuka will be waiting on them in the next round. On top of that, Belair isn’t worried about Bayley, and they can have that six woman tag right now. Bayley laughs that off and the match is on for Clash At The Castle instead. That’s good for Belair and the fight is on right now. Everyone brawls into the crowd and Bliss gets in a dive off the barricade to take everyone down. Energetic opening segment if nothing else.
Angelo Dawkins vs. Seth Rollins
Montez Ford is here too. Rollins knows him into the corner to start but Dawkins jumps over him and hits a nice dropkick. Back up and Dawkins scores with the jumping back elbow, which sends Rollins outside (where Ford….I’m not sure what he does, but he shakes a lot and yells at Rollins). There’s a Pounce to send Rollins over the announcers’ table and we take a break.
Back with Rollins drawing Ford into the ring with a chair, which is enough to earn Ford an ejection. Dawkins uses the distraction to jump Rollins and send him outside for the big running flip dive. Back inside and the Silencer drops Rollins for two but he’s right back up with a forearm to the back of the neck. The Stomp misses though and Dawkins hits a Sky High for a close two. Another Sky High is loaded up but Dawkins reversed into a Pedigree for the pin at 8:34.
Rating: B-. This was the kind of match that suits people like Dawkins and Rollins well. They’re both athletic and can work a fast paced match, making this one of the better ways they could have gone. The Profits losing to Rollins is hardly some horrible fate but it seems that there might be bigger things afoot for at least one of them in the future.
Post match Rollins goes after Dawkins again but Ford runs in for the save. I could see this setting up a Ford vs. Rollins rematch on the bigger stage.
Recap of Edge returning last week and promising to take out Judgment Day, followed by the team going after the Mysterios. Rhea Ripley accidentally caused Dominik Mysterio to get speared by Edge to add in some conflict.
Edge comes up to the Mysterios and says he has their backs against Judgment Day tonight. Rey can go with that, but Dominik doesn’t buy it. Rey says he’s known Edge for 20 years and he’s family, but Dominik says he’s known Rey for 25 and walks off.
Ciampa is asked about his United States Title match but Miz cuts him off and doesn’t like the word phenomenal being used. Miz rants about AJ Styles for a bit before Ciampa says believe in him, just like Harley Race, his trainer, did. Race passed away about three years ago almost to this day and he is dedicating his win to Race, whose Starrcade 1983 robe is behind him. Tonight Bobby Lashley will feel his sacrifice and he has already lost.
Ezekiel vs. Kevin Owens
Owens rushes him to the floor to start and hits the apron powerbomb. The referee calls for medics and we’ll call this a no contest at about 1:00 (the ending bell never rang).
Ezekiel is taken out on a stretcher.
Finn Balor vs. Rey Mysterio
Only Damian Priest is at ringside. Before the match, Finn Balor declares himself to be danger and promises to show that to Rey tonight. Priest isn’t worried about Edge and says he’ll take care of him in two weeks in Edge’s hometown of Toronto. We cut to the back, where Rey tells Edge that Dominik will come around.
After a break, we actually start the match and Rey takes over early on by taking Balor down with straight speed. The top rope seated senton sets up the hurricanrana into the corner. A crossbody misses for Mysterio though and Balor kicks him in the ribs for two. Balor mocks Eddie Guerrero’s Three Amigos as I try to remember the last Mysterio match without an Eddie reference. Rey reverses the third suplex into one of his own, followed by the sitout bulldog for two. The 619 hits Priest by mistake though and Balor posts Rey as we take a break.
Back with Rey going after Priest and getting dropped as a result. Cue Edge to take out Priest, leaving Rey to grab a Code Red for two. The 619 is blocked with a clothesline and it’s the shotgun dropkick but the Coup de Grace misses. Rey loads up the 619 again but here is Rhea Ripley carrying a destroyed Dominik Mysterio. The distraction lets Balor hit 1916 into the Coup de Grace for the pin at 13:52.
Rating: C+. It’s nice to see Balor win a match but I’m still trying to figure out why I’m supposed to care about Dominik. He has never done anything significant without his dad being involved and he isn’t exactly likable in the first place. Seeing Ripley beat him up is a funny moment and I don’t see myself feeling sympathetic for him anytime soon. That being said, it was nice to see Balor actually get a win for a change, as it feels like it has been awhile.
Dana Brooke/Tamina are ready for the first round of the Women’s Tag Team Title tournament. Bayley and company come up to laugh at them, while promising not to take the 24/7 Title. Tamina gets in Bayley’s face and…no.
Women’s Tag Team Title Tournament First Round: Dakota Kai/Iyo Sky vs. Dana Brooke/Tamina
Bayley is here too. Kai and Brooke start things off but Tamina comes in rather quickly to clean house. Sky and Shirai are sent outside for a big dive from Brooke as we take an early break. Back with Kai cranking on Brooke’s arms before Sky and Kai hit back to back kicks for two.
Brooke fights out of a chinlock and dives over for the tag off to Tamina to start the house cleaning. Sky and Tamina slug it out until Tamina hits a superkick into the Samoan drop for two. Bayley has to pull Sky out of Kai’s way of Brooke’s dive against the barricade, leaving Tamina to load up the Superfly Splash. Sky gets her knees up but Tamina puts the brakes on, only to get kicked in the face by Kai. The moonsault gives Sky the pin at 10:01.
Rating: C+. The match was good enough and Sky’s moonsault is always impressive, but it’s a little much to buy Kai and Sky needing ten minutes to beat Tamina and Brooke. No they haven’t been above NXT, but the top of NXT is a heck of a lot better than….whatever level Brooke and Tamina are on. It never got too ridiculous, but this should have been more of a dominant win.
Kevin Owens is leaving and doesn’t like being asked for a comment. Unlike Ezekiel, he knows who he is, and since there are a lot of eyes on this show, he is here to remind people who he is. This is still the Kevin Owens Show. During the segment, there were a bunch of people (including Doudrop and Nikki Ash) looking at a car that had crashed in the background. Neither the people nor the car were ever referenced.
Video on the United States Title, I believe the same one from last week.
United States Title: Ciampa vs. Bobby Lashley
Ciampa, with Miz, and wearing the Harley Race robe, is challenging. After the Big Match Intros, Lashley runs him over to start and hits the delayed vertical suplex. A spinning back elbow to the face looks to set up the spear but Ciampa bails outside. Miz’s distraction fails as Lashley knocks Ciampa off the apron and then rams him into Miz as we take a break.
Back with Ciampa holding a chinlock until Lashley fights up and hits the spinning Big Ending for two. The spear connects but Miz puts Ciampa’s foot on the ropes. Cue AJ Styles to chase Miz out of the arena and Ciampa gets two off a small package. Lashley loads up the Hurt Lock but Styles and Miz run back in for a distraction.
Ciampa uses said distraction to send Lashley into an exposed buckle and the post for a VERY close two (I bought that one). The Hurt Lock is loaded up but reversed into the Gargano Escape (Graves: “Sometimes you gotta do it yourself!”). That’s reversed into what looked to be a powerslam, only to have Ciampa send him outside. Back in and Willow’s Bell connects for two more but another running knee is countered into the spinebuster. The Hurt Lock retains the title at 12:52.
Rating: B. Dang I was buying those near falls and they pulled me way into this. Lashley retaining the title is a fine way to go and it was nice to see something like the old Ciampa here instead of the same loser we have seen for so long. Great match here and one of the better WWE TV matches in a good while.
Miz and Styles brawled backstage during the break and had to be separated. They’ll face off later tonight, No DQ.
Omos vs. Andrea Guercio/Spencer Slade
General destruction sets up the chokebomb to finish Guercio at 1:39. The best part here was Graves talking about how the jobbers were going to be destroyed from the opening bell and throughout the match.
Seth Rollins isn’t worried about Riddle being back for an interview next week. He mocks Riddle’s catchphrases and dubs himself the gatekeeper of this industry. If you want to know what is so bad about him, just ask Dana White. He’s still Seth Freaking Rollins.
Chad Gable vs. Dolph Ziggler
Otis is here with Gable. They go technical to start with neither being able to get very far. Ziggler can’t quite get a backslide and gets caught with the American Automatic. A dragon screw legwhip takes Ziggler down and Gable start going after the leg. The moonsault misses though and Ziggler is back with the DDT for a delayed two. Gable grabs the ankle lock and Ziggler can’t roll out of it, instead having to kick Gable in the face. The superkick doesn’t work as the leg gives out though and Gable powerbombs him back into the ankle lock. Ziggler breaks it up this time and manages to hit the superkick for the pin at 6:34.
Rating: C+. It might not have been the most well received match but this was logical and fairly well done. Ziggler tried to wrestle with him but was in over his head against a former Olympian. That left Ziggler to have to escape and wait for an opening, which he used to pull off the come from behind victory. I liked this, and it worked out well.
Nikki Ash and Doudrop are ready for Asuka and Alexa Bliss next week.
Asuka and Alexa Bliss are ready for Nikki Ash and Doudrop next week. Bayley and company come up to mock them as the wrecked car from earlier is loaded up on a truck. Then some cops come running from the car and by the women.
Miz vs. AJ Styles
No DQ. Styles starts fast and knocks him outside to take over. A kendo stick and a chair don’t work for him though, so it’s time to grab a table. Miz hits a dropkick through the ropes (with the camera oddly cutting away before contact) and puts the table back under the ring. The kendo stick works for Miz and he hammers on AJ, who manages to fight back and take it outside. Styles loads up something on the announcers’ table but gets backdropped onto the floor for a crash as we take a break.
Back with Styles pulling out the table but taking too long and getting kendo sticked down. Styles manages to take it away and unloads on Miz, including a low blow. Miz gets in another shot and loads up the Skull Crushing Finale but Styles slips out and hits the Phenomenal Forearm….for two as Ciampa comes in for the save.
That doesn’t go well for Ciampa, who gets knocked off the apron and through the table at ringside. That’s enough of a distraction for Miz to get two but Styles hits him in the face. Another Phenomenal Forearm is loaded up but Miz throws the chair at Styles’ head. The Skull Crushing Finale gets two so Styles hits him with the chair, setting up the Styles Clash for the pin at 12:34.
Rating: B-. They were starting to cook near the end here and I was liking a lot of what was going on. What mattered here was having Styles overcome the odds and get a win instead of losing over and over. Styles is someone who could be a big enough deal around here and a lot of that comes from winning a few matches every so often.
As Styles is celebrating, cops are seen arresting someone in the front row. Styles looks over at them….and that appeared to be Dexter Lumis they were arresting. Commentary says Lumis’ name as Styles celebrates to end the show. When is the last time when Raw ended without things being all wrapped up?
Overall Rating: B. It might not have been as good as last week’s show, but the main thing here was the energy. There was nothing really close to bad and that Lumis deal at the end has me interested. That Lumis/car story has me intrigued and that is a nice feeling. It’s the kind of a story that has me wondering where things are going and I haven’t felt that on Raw in a long, long time. Pretty awesome show here and that’s two in a row, which hasn’t happened since I don’t know when. Good stuff.
Seth Rollins b. Angelo Dawkins – Pedigree
Kevin Owens vs. Ezekiel went to a no contest when Ezekiel couldn’t continue
Finn Balor b. Rey Mysterio – Coup de Grace
Dakota Kai/Iyo Sky b. Tamina/Dana Brooke – Moonsault to Tamina
Bobby Lashley b. Ciampa – Hurt Lock
Omos b. Andrea Guercio/Spencer Slade – Chokebomb to Guercio
Dolph Ziggler b. Chad Gable – Superkick
AJ Styles b. The Miz – Styles Clash
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