Rey Mysterio teases retirement! Braun Strowman and Seth Rollins win the Raw Tag Team Titles! And The Fiend returns to finger Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler…urgh, no, that’s not the right wording!
And Chris Jericho SHOOTS on Vince McMahon about AEW vs WWE!
Click the timestamps in the video description below to go straight to any of those stories.
I’m Oli Davis – give us a subscribe, press the thumbs up button, and answer our question of the day in the comments: What do you think about NXT reportedly going up against AEW? Because I’ll be replying to people FROM OUTTA NOWHERE! And click the ‘i’ above my head to give your rating of the show – where you can choose from: RawSome, Cor, AVRAWGE, Poor and RawFul – as I review the 19th August episode of Monday Night Raw!
The show opened with the voice of Jerry ‘The King’ Lawler on commentary (but this isn’t Memphis?) – Corey Graves to AEW confirmed – as Roman Reigns came all the way to Raw, wildcard, to face Dolph Ziggler, who’d been saying nasty things on Twitter.
After a decade of start-stop pushing, Ziggler has somehow made himself an engaging screen presence again – with great lines like “I thought we had to wait six months between spears” and “Maryse’s husband beat me with Ric Flair’s move”, which he followed up with a terrifically paced, back and forth, big move match against Reigns – which Roman inevitably won, oooo-ah.
Becky Lynch then referenced Sasha reportedly trying to quit WWE at WrestleMania, describing her hiatus as a ‘four month whinging vacation’, for Jerry The King Lawler to introduce a King’s Court segment with the Boss – when the lights suddenly began to turn off in a fantastic building of Fiendish suspense.
Jerry tried to escape, but ran right into Wyatt, who fingered his mouth hole (really got to find a new way to say that) to Yowie Wowie chants.
Even better was that 205 Live’s Vic Joseph then replaced The King on commentary, freshening up the announcing team. Jerry Lawler to AEW confirmed.
In an out of competition tag, Ricochet and The Miz took on Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin next, because NOT EVEN KING OF THE RING CAN ESCAPE THE PULL OF BARON CORBIN’S MIDCARD VORTEX.
This is actually the first time Baron’s been on TV since losing at Extreme Rules. And, much like Bray Wyatt, he’s completely reinvented his character and look… he now wrestles in a vest.
Corbin looked so much better, and the in-ring action here was really exciting, with Ricochet pinning Baron after Miz pulled him out the way of a Corbin charge.
And then to make King of the Ring feel even more special, Michael Cole took a Skype call from Booker T.
The pace continued straight into another bigtime match – Braun Strowman vs AJ Styles. It was a few minutes of tantalising speed vs strength, until The O.C. ran in and caused the DQ. This brought Seth Rollins out for the save, which actually got him a babyface pop. It’s working Seth, they like you, they really like you!
This set up a Raw tag team title match between Seth and Braun vs the Good Brothers.
Then we got our inaugural King of the Ring 2019 match: the heavy hitting bout of Samoa Joe vs Cesaro. It was a terrific TV match between the two, and Cesaro got a lot of the match, meaning when Joe made him tap in the Coquina Clutch, both guys came off looking great.
After …Drake Maverick tried to win the 24/7 title off Elias in a recording studio over the weekend, it was R-Truth’s turn to jump him in a concert segment in the ring. But Elias could potentially dominate this division, as he has an unmatched special skill… he can kick out of surprise schoolboy pins.
Charly Caruso asked Rey Mysterio backstage why he’s such a stupid loser with a stupid face – which Mysterio kind of agreed with. He emotionally confessed it’s time to retire and was about to take off his mask, when Eddie Guerrero’s son Dominic convinced him to stay for one last tag match. Despite the wooden acting, this actually played really well.
After the Revival pinned the New Day last week, they got a straight two-on-two here – where Randy Orton appeared from outta, guess wh-NOWHERE! Well, actually, The Revival were wearing snake skin boots, so you coulda figured it ou-NOWHERE!
It was a vintage RKO, and an even better follow up angle, where Orton made Kofi watch as The Revival did a knee break spot on Xavier Woods. This is so much more engaging than building a feud around Kofi’s mostly offscreen family. The audience are far more invested in the New Day’s friendship being targeted – which resulted in some great crowd heat here.
Sasha then explained her shocking turn last week to Michael Cole, of changing her hair colour to blue, said ‘you’re welcome’ and then awesomely walked off.
Later on, Natalya cut a promo so emotional backstage about her recently passed father and injured arm that the crowd chanted ‘what?’ for Banks to brilliantly jump her and brutally say: “Go to hell, Nattie. And tell your dad I said ‘hi’.”
But as great as Raw has been for the last month, three hours is still way too long for a weekly wrestling show, and the crowd began to fade for Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss vs Fire & Desire here.
And also Cedric Alexander and Sami Zayn’s King of the Ring match, which saw Cedric win convincingly in just a few minutes – pushing Zayn further down the card.
The main event saw Seth and Braun fighting for the Raw tag team titles against Gallows and Anderson. We’ve all seen this storyline before. Strowman wants Rollins’ Universal title, so they turn on each other here, setting up the championship feud and-yowie wowie, Seth and Braun just won the Raw tag team titles! Screw you Gallows and Anderson for re-signing long term with WWE!
It’s a really exciting and unexpected direction to take this storyline in, with the crowd popping huge for the surprise. It was a fun match too, all building to Strowman’s trademark tiny step running hot tag.
This was another excellent episode in a month of incredibly solid WWE TV. Which, again, has absolutely nothing to do with another wrestling promotion starting weekly TV in a few months. The matches are getting a lot more time, and the actual in-ring style is connecting more with the crowd. This week’s Raw is a high Cor!
Before we get into Laurie’s news about Jericho shooting on Vince McMahon. WrestleTalk proudly announced last week that our WrestleTalk Magazine will be going monthly, and it’ll be available in shops all over the UK from the 19th September! WrestleTalk goes mainstream!
To celebrate, and to catch everyone up on the WrestleTalk Magazine so far, we’ve got a huge sale on issues 1 to 10 – where you can buy all 10 copies for just £15 plus postage and packaging, or individual issues at just £2 each. This offer is only running for one month only, and ends on midnight September 18th, so get your copies using the link in the video description below now!
Thanks Oli, time for some news.
And while Seth Rollins and Braun Strowman are out here winning tag team titles like it ain’t no thing, the rest of the tag division is probably a little bit peeved. What with being tag team wrestlers and wanting the belts as the top prize and not just a thing to put over the Universal title feud. I’m not a booker what do I know.
None more so than Lucha House Party it would seem, who’s last good go of things on the main roster was when they were winning Lucha House Rules matches against the Revival in which they, the faces, blatantly cheated by having three people in the match. I’m not a booker though so what do I even know.
Man, last year really was the darkest timeline.
But there is a light at the end of the tunnel for poor underused talent, the end of a contract, which Kalisto seemingly revealed in a tweet saying ‘10 months… hashtag freeagent’.
To which Gran Metalik responded ‘me too carnal’
So give it 10 months and the pair might be having a Lucha Housewarming Party at another company.
Kalisto has since deleted his tweet, probably because contract lengths are a closely guarded secret in WWE. And intimating that you want to leave on Twitter is exactly the sort of thing that got the Revival stuck in that terrible Lucha House Rules farce back in November.
And we can’t do that here! Have Lucha House Party lose 4 on 3 to the Lucha Street Party of Rey Mysterio, Andrade back in a mask, Sin Cara and the other Sin Cara.
It’ll be interesting to see whether some of the positive turnaround happening on both Smackdown and Raw can entice more of the talent to stay.
And then there’s always NXT which people will have even more reason to return to once it moves to cable. Something which was rumoured to be announced on Monday and just straight up didn’t happen, probably because it had leaked all over the internet by that point.
But the fact that NXT might move to cable is something apparently superstars backstage didn’t know about until journalists started asking.
Sean Ross Sapp at Fightful spoke to his sources backstage and was reportedly told by superstars backstage that they now expect NXT to officially become the ‘third brand’ moving forward.
While another roster member said that they believe AEW will outdraw NXT in attendance but NXT will outdraw AEW on TV. Though that same superstar said that it would be difficult to get fans to watch NXT over the ‘new feel’ of AEW.
That new slightly Attitude era-y feel.
It’s also been said that several NXT stars weren’t even filled in on the details of the deal ahead of time, they just found out when everyone else did.
One person who also caught wind of the move was Chris Jericho who had some choice words about it all on Busted Open Radio saying:
“I think WWE is great but there’s too much WWE as it is, By adding another two hours, that really dilutes the product, it dilutes their mindset, it dilutes the focus. It’s a reactionary move that’s done by a guy who wants to start a war. We don’t care if you want to start a war, that was never our intention. There’s no war for us, we’re just doing what we’re doing.”
We never meant to start a war, we just wanted you to let us in.
Aside from basically reading out the lyrics to Miley Cyrus’ Wrecking Ball, Jericho went on to say that all this drama from the WWE side of things actually just makes AEW seem like a bigger deal.
“I don’t care about any other wrestling company in the world. I want everyone to do good, everyone be the best that you can be, whether it’s WWE, Ring Of Honor, Impact, New Japan, AAA or friggin’ George Swanson’s show at the Armory on a Friday night. Do your thing. We don’t care, and I think that’s one of the things that makes us cool. It’s a typical thing, the more other people will do, the more it makes us look revolutionary and cool, and we haven’t even started yet. Just wait until we start.”
Thank for you watching, head on over to ScreenStalker to see Luke and Chopper discuss a Spiderman Far From Home re-release with bonus footage and all the big trailers from Gamescom, plus we get Super, Super Hot.