We have a RAW Women’s Championship match to look forward to tonight because Becky Lynch granted Asuka a rematch. There’s an eight-man tag, very similar to last week’s six-man tag, only Samoa Joe is back so Seth Rollins will join his minions, and it’s not an elimination match this week. Ricochet will respond to Brock Lesnar’s sneak attack at the end of last week’s main event, where Ricochet became Lesnar’s Super ShowDown opponent. And MVP will host a VIP Lounge with Drew McIntyre as his special guest.
I’m Amanda and this is the RAW review.
Becky Lynch def. Asuka
Street Profits def. Mojo Rawley & Riddick Moss
Riddick Moss def. Mojo Rawley (24/7 TITLE CHANGE)
Angel Garza def. Cedric Alexander
Rhea Ripley def. Sarah Logan
Ricochet def. Bobby Lashley
Aleister Black def. Akira Tozawa
Seth Rollins, Murphy & AOP def. Kevin Owens, Samoa Joe & The Viking Raiders
♦ Seth Rollins opened the show with Murphy and AOP (Murphy lost the ‘Buddy’ part of his name last week). He said a lot of words but this ‘Monday Night Messiah’ persona is repetitive and, so it was mostly the same stuff he’s been saying for weeks. He talked a bit about the six-man elimination tag last week when Kevin Owens got left on his own and eventually got beaten. And he got annoyed about Kevin Owens and Erik spoiling his chances in the triple threat. He’s running out of patience with Kevin Owens and his friends. They’re trying to promote a message unity and they’re not leaving until it’s heard.
Kevin Owens came to the stage, but Rollins issued him a warning about getting in over his head before Owens could say anything, citing Samoa Joe and Ivar’s injuries as proof of what could happen. Owens said Rollins sounds stupid every week when he comes out and now he looks stupid as well (it was a bad jacket). Rollins keeps talking and Owens keeps fighting. And he’s not alone. The Viking Raiders came out to join him and Rollins said Owens’ problem had ever been finding partners it’s been keeping them upright.
Kevin Owens checked Ivar and Erik for solidity by shoving them, and said they seem solid and as sick of Rollins as he is, so they made their way to the ring. AOP and Murphy met them at ringside, leaving Rollins alone for Samoa Joe to sneak in and lock on the Coquina Clutch. The minions broke it up and Rollins escaped, but Murphy took a stunner from Owens before he was allowed to leave. Owens and co left the ring when Becky Lynch arrived, with Kevin Owens giving her a shrug on his way past.
♦ Becky Lynch vs Asuka – RAW Women’s Championship match – was the opening match of the show. Kairi Sane was with her as ever. Are The Kabuki Warriors ever going to defend the tag titles again? Kairi Sane caused a distraction heading into the break, allowing Asuka to hip attack Lynch off the apron. She was also responsible for Lynch getting kicked in the back, after Sane shoved Asuka out of the way when Lynch dove off the apron and Lynch got distracted.
Not long after the second break, Asuka locked in a submission and Lynch had to pick her up and drop her to make her let go. Lynch went up for a leg drop but took too long and found herself struggling out of an Asuka Lock. They exchanged a multitude of quick pin attempts then Becky Lynch slammed Asuka into the mat and got the victory.
Shayna Baszler attacked Becky Lynch from behind while she was celebrating put her down, then apparently bit a chunk out of the back Becky Lynch’s neck. What a very odd reintroduction for Baszler, but I guess she’s a RAW superstar now.
♦ Mojo Rawley & Riddick Moss vs Street Profits was great but short. Riddick Moss got pinned after a Street Profits spinebuster frogsplash combo. I think Ford and Dawkins’ pre-match banter was longer than the match.
After the match, Riddick Moss pinned Mojo Rawley for the 24/7 Championship and legged it through the crowd.
♦ Medics tried to convince Becky Lynch she needed to go to the hospital. When they succeeded, she threw the driver out of the ambulance and drove off in it.
♦ MVP hosted the VIP Lounge with Drew McIntyre. They talked about their history and joked about McIntyre having to point at the sign every time someone says WrestleMania. MVP said McIntyre should focus on all the good thing and not worry about what the haters are saying behind his back. McIntyre managed to get out of him that ‘people’ were saying he’s not ready. It turned out that MVP was pitching to be McIntyre’s manager or media guy or something similar to help him cope with the pressures of the position he’s in. McIntyre said the difference between him and Lesnar is that, unlike Lesnar, he doesn’t need someone to think for him or talk for him or kiss his ass. MVP said he’s an ass-kicker, not an ass kisser. McIntyre tried to walk away. MVP grabbed his arm and told him not to walk away because McIntyre needed him. Drew McIntyre headbutted him then threw the table out of the ring and took his shirt off before delivering a Claymore… you’d have to ask him why he has to take his shirt off for a kick.
♦ Cedric Alexander vs Angel Garza, with Zelina Vega, started with Vega showing footage of Garza’s exploits last week as proof he’s a man’s man, and Garza doing some boasting about also being a ladies’ man. At that point, Humberto Carrillo ran down to the ring and pounced on Garza. Officials separated them and Carrillo was dragged away. After that, the match got underway with Vega immediately making herself useful as a distraction. Garza didn’t need her help from then. He even ripped off his stripper pants before delivering the Wing Clipper to end the match.
♦ Rhea Ripley appeared again this week. In a backstage interview, Charly Caruso asked if she was still waiting for Charlotte Flair. She said no, because she doesn’t wait for things she gets up, gets out, and does what needs to be done until she gets what she wants. Caruso asked if she was getting ahead of herself considering she is defending her title on Sunday against Bianca Belair. Ripley didn’t get to answer because Sarah Logan appeared and asked her who she thought she was coming to RAW thinking she could do whatever she wants. Ripley said ‘I’m Rhea Ripley, who are you?’ and walked away.
After a separating segment, Sarah Logan came to the ring and demanded a match with Ripley, so Sarah Logan vs Rhea Ripley happened. Charlotte Flair appeared and watched from the stage. It didn’t go the way Logan was hoping. She got destroyed by Ripley in less than a minute and finished with the Riptide with Rhea Ripley barely taking her eyes of Flair.
After the match, Ripley asked for an answer from Flair. Charlotte Flair asked a question in return instead, after NXT TakeOver: Portland, how do we eve know Ripley will still be champion? That was the end of the segment, so I guess we have to wait until next week and see if Ripley retains before Flair makes a decision.
♦ Lana and Bobby Lashley had an interview about his match with Ricochet later and about Lashley losing to Ricochet last week in the triple-threat. Lana waffled, Lashley made some threats, then it was over.
Immediately before the match Ricochet was asked to respond to Lashley’s threats. He said he’s never backed down on a fight before and being WWE Champion is a dream he’s had for seventeen years and he’s been intimidated by people by Lashley before but nothing is going to stop him getting to Super ShowDown.
Bobby Lashley, with Lana, vs Ricochet was ok. Lashley’s big, Ricochet is fast and athletic, you get the picture. A huge spinebuster from Lashley got him a close two count, but it was Ricochet who finished the match with a couple of dropkicks keeping Lashley down long enough for him to hit the 630.
♦ Randy Orton had another go at explaining why he attacked Edge a couple of weeks ago. He said he knows he owes everyone an explanation. What he did to Edge hurt him more than it hurt Edge.
Matt Hardy came out then and said he also wants to know why he did it. Everyone wants to know. Orton must be wondering why Hardy gives a damn about Edge. There was one point in time where no one hated Edge more than him, but before that they were best friends along with Jeff Hardy and Christian… there was a history lesson but the bottom line is Edge’s retirement cured the bitterness and he cares again because they have a shared passion. His return was incredible and Orton took it away. What the hell is wrong with him?
Orton went for an RKO instead of answering, Hardy was ready and fought back, but Orton got him on the second attempt. Randy Orton grabbed two chairs from ringside, put one of them under Matt Hardy’s head, then hit it with the other one. Then he left. He got to the stage and stopped to turn back and survey his handiwork.
♦ Ruby Riott had a backstage interview. She said Liv Morgan was her best friend and best friends know everything about each other. She knows the real Liv Morgan, she’s a puppy dog who needs to be led around on a leash. She can try to sell the world on this metamorphosis into a woman who strikes when she wants but Riott isn’t buying it. Liv Morgan will always be a follower, so she came back to put Morgan in her place and remind her she strikes when Ruby Riott says so.
♦ Aleister Black vs Akira Tozawa was too short. Tozawa would be an entertaining opponent for Black in a match that was allowed to develop, but this one wasn’t. Aleister Black’s Black Mass finished it inside a minute.
After the match, Black expressed his appreciation for the WWE Universe then started talking about rebelling against paradise and feeling like an animal trapped in a cage. He’s angry and wants to fight people, that’s the gist. That’s always the gist.
♦ Becky Lynch drove herself back from the hospital around 25 minutes into the third hour. It took her an ad break to get from backstage into the arena and out to the ring. She said they numbed her up and gave her something nice for the pain and now she’s back and ready to smash Baszler’s face in. She called Baszler out and said Baszler wants to put her hands on her and sink her teeth into her to get her attention. Mission accomplished. She doesn’t care how tough Baszler is or who she hangs around with because she has run through them all and made all of them pay. But she doesn’t give a damn about settling anything with Baszler, she’s going to break her down little by little and week by week and Baszler better hope she finds Lynch before Lynch finds her.
♦ AJ Styles is advertised for a Tuwaiq Trophy Gauntlet match alongside Andrade, Bobby Lashley, R-Truth, Rusev, and Erick Rowan. That is both good news, and a really odd line up for a match. Guess a lot of people opted out of the show. Also, Andrade is still suspended so how does that work?
♦ Seth Rollins tried to say a few words before the main event got underway but, mercifully, Kevin Owens punched him in the face and a brawl kicked off to keep the crowd amused during the ads. Seth Rollins, Murphy, & AOP vs Kevin Owens, Samoa Joe, & The Viking Raiders was underway when we came back. A very good match, but I feel they’ve overdone it with this group for now. There is something to be said for giving feuds a week off now and again. Rollins was directing operations and got in an opportunistic cheap shot on Owens, who took a considerable amount of punishment during the match. Owens managed to return the favour on his fightback to tag Samoa Joe. Triple suicide dives from Samoa Joe and The Viking Raiders took out AOP and Rollins, but Rollins avoided being pinned. Kevin Owens dive off the top turnbuckle to the outside took out AOP and The Viking Raiders with them. Samoa Joe had Murphy tapping in the Coquina Clutch, but the ref was busy stopping AOP breaking it up so he didn’t see Seth Rollins run in and Stomp Joe. He turned around just in time to count Murphy’s pin though.
A fairly decent episode of RAW again. Ruby Riott being back will be good for the RAW women’s division, but Shayna Baszler being added to the roster is a much-needed boost. With Super ShowDown in a couple of weeks and WrestleMania looming, there’s a lot going on, but it might be a few weeks to find out how the longer storylines will play out.