WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW! (5/8/17)
-The Miz w/ Maryse VS Finn Balor; Balor wins.
-Alexa Bliss w/ Nia Jax VS Mickie James w/ Bayley; Alexa wins.
-Kalisto VS Braun Strowman; no contest.
-WWE Raw Tag Team Championship #1 Contender’s Tag Team Turmoil: Cesaro & Sheamus win and will face The Hardys for the Raw Tag Team Championships.
-Seth Rollins VS Samoa Joe; Joe is disqualified, Rollins wins.
-TJ Perkins VS Jack Gallagher; TJP wins.
-Sasha Banks VS Alicia Fox; Sasha wins.
-Dean Ambrose VS Bray Wyatt; Wyatt wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Dean Ambrose gets a call on his phone. It’s Kurt Angle! Did he get those pics? Good stuff, right? His wife…? Nevermind then. Wait what? Absolutely! Ambrose has a great name for the next PPV by the way– Kurt? Disconnected. Ambrose announces he’s making an announcement, so hit his music!
Dean Ambrose comes to the ring!
The Lunatic Fringe and Intercontinental Champion says hello to London, then explains to the crowd that General Manager Angle–who is sadly not here–has informed the “trustworthy” Ambrose that he’ll be the acting general manager for tonight! “Deano” has the crowd on his side as he says they’re going to get the action going, until The Miz and Maryse come out.
The It Couple cannot believe Angle made Ambrose the GM, and the crowd is supporting it. Raw will now be “absolute, total chaos tonight.” Ambrose assures Miz he has a great plan for Raw already. As such, Ambrose is gonna put Miz in the very first– newsflash, Ambrose. Miz got a very important phone call from Stephanie McMahon. Stephanie already got word that Ambrose was being named, and feared Raw would get cancelled. Therefore, there is a co-manager in the form of… The Miz. Why? Because he’s– blaaaah!
Co-managers, fine, enjoy it while you can, Miz. At Extreme Rules, Ambrose is gonna put a hurting on Hollywood and keep that Intercontinental Championship. Miz brags that he managed to simultaneously beat “Seth Freakin’ Rollins” and Finn Balor. You do that all by yourself? Ambrose respects Miz for that, and wishes for a legit, respectful handshake. Miz very tentatively reaches out, but then BRAAAUN shows up!
Bad arm be damned, the Monster Among Men is in London to say that he “took out the Big Dog at Payback”. But since Roman can still walk, Strowman isn’t done with him yet. Call Angle, call Stephanie, and let them both know that once his arm is healed, he will finish Roman once and for all, to then move on to Brock Lesnar. There’s been a lot of talk about The Beast, but he’ll be the first to– Wait, Kalisto is back already?!
If Strowman isn’t done with Roman, Kalisto isn’t done with Strowman! Kalisto won that Dumpster Match, but then Strowman was a sore loser and almost ended Kalisto’s career. Big or strong, NOBODY treats Kalisto like garbage. Kalisto wants Strowman, TONIGHT! Do it, Dean! Do it, Miz! Strowman says it was a technicality, because he crushed Kalisto like a beer can. He can do it again with one arm. Ambrose likes it! The match is made. Strowman says he’s hurt. No, he said he could win with one arm. So see if you can defeat “the world’s bravest little man.” The fans support “Deano”, Strowman accepts the terms. As for Miz, he criticizes Ambrose for “ending Kalisto’s career”. What other madness is next? Something the fans want to see. The Miz is first up, against Finn Balor!
The Miz w/ Maryse VS Finn Balor!
The Hollywood A-Lister stepped in it when he interrupted his co-manager, as he must now go 1v1 with the leader of Balor Club, who only lost the triple threat once the Eater of Worlds interfered. Miz gets out of the ring rather quickly to keep Balor from grabbing him. The fans are all behind Balor, who does get a waistlock and slams Miz. Miz fights out of the facelock but is covered, a quick kick out leads to an arm wrench. Miz back elbows out kicks Balor against the ropes, then whips him but is reversed. Sunset flip is met with a dropkick, Balor gives a strike fest before another dropkick, TWO. Miz backs Balor into a corner, Balor gets out to swing kick from the apron. Balor then clotheslines Miz out the other side, and with the crowd cheering, Balor goes running to blast Miz into barriers. Back into the ring, Maryse pulls Miz out of the ring to get to safety. The Miz regains composure and his breath as we go to commercial break.
We return to Miz in control now, hooking the nose before putting in a chinlock. A peek at the commercials shows that it was a little cat and mouse then the help of Maryse that allowed Miz the opening to take over. However, Balor chops back in the present, but Miz hits the backbreaker to neckbreaker, TWO. Miz wants the Finale, Balor slips out to victory roll, TWO. Miz kicks out a knee, low DDT! TWO! Miz is getting frustrated, the fans chant for Balor, Balor fights back. Balor whips Miz but is reversed into the kitchen sink knee. Miz hooks the mouth and nose again before putting on another chinlock. Balor works to get out, gives elbows to Miz’s gut, but Miz boots, Balor Pele! Both men are down and a ten count begins. Both men get up before, Balor boots out of a corner and starts rallying. Running chops into the corners, Miz boots back but Balor kicks Miz down from top rope to floor. Balor builds speed, baseball slide dropkick knocks Miz to barriers. Then from the apron, Balor lines it up, Penalty Kick! Balor puts Miz back in the ring, Miz begs for mercy. Maryse distracts the ref, Miz pushes Balor into the ref and knocks Maryse down!
Miz scrambles to get a microphone. Miz says that, as co-manager for tonight, Miz will not let this match continue after Balor touched a referee. Miz calls for the ref to disqualify this match in Miz’s favor. The ref does, the fans boo, and the winner is… The Miz! But wait wait wait, Ambrose says that won’t end like that! No disqualifications end matches, the match continues and Maryse is banned from ringside! Miz is blindsided from behind and thrown into the ring! Balor hits Slingblade! He blasts Miz into the corner and then from the top rope… COUP DE GRACE! Balor wins for real!
Alexa Bliss encounters Nia Jax backstage. Nia wants to know why Alexa didn’t run her down like she did the others? Does Alexa really think Nia is great? O-Of course! What would Alexa get from lying to Nia? In that case, Nia is next at the title. No one deserves a chance more, and Alexa would love to give her that honor, but Angle is the match maker, not her. She’ll do her best to talk to Angle about it. Then until you do, you have a new best friend. Let’s go, “friend”.
Alexa Bliss w/ Nia Jax VS Mickie James w/ Bayley!
Alexa has a new friend, but it seems so does Mickie. The Huggable One being friendly with the returning icon is more believable, however. That aside, Mickie plans to show “The Goddess” what happens when you disrespect a former 6 time champion. The fans serenade Bayley while Alexa gets Mickie in a corner. Alexa breaks cleanly and backs off, the two tie up again and Mickie brings Alexa to the mat. Alexa gets up and throws Mickie down, Mickie jumps on Alexa and throws hands. Alexa scrambles away and uses the ref as a shield, it backfires into Mickie’s snapmare and running kick. TWO, Alexa scrambles to ropes for defense. She rushes back in, gets a neckbreaker. The fans now serenade Mickie, Alexa kicks out and shouts at the crowd to shut up. Alexa gets hit with a baseball slide dropkick, Mickie is in control of the champ as we go to commercials.
When we return, Alexa is now in control but Mickie kicks out after an arm wrench. Alexa pulls on that arm through the ropes, Alexa mocks Bayley as she does. Alexa drags Mickie out of the corner to yank on the arm and put it in an armbar. Bayley gets the fans going for Mickie, Mickie fights out, but Alexa knees Mickie down again. Mickie is whipped to a corner but elbows back, then Mick-canrana! Mickie is denied her whip, however, arm wrench brings her down, TWO. Alexa keeps on that arm, snapping it between her arms. Alexa shouts for Mickie to just give up, but then misses her knee drop. Mickie fights back and starts rallying, back kick to pump kick to forearm, TWO! Mickie lines up a kick, but Alexa denies the MickDT. Mickie denies the STO to give a flapjack, kip-up gets the fans fired up again. Mickie tries to go top rope, Nia anchors her, Bayley crossbodies Nia down! Alexa trips Mickie up, Mickie tumbles down, Alexa pins and wins!
But the Goddess isn’t done, she throws hands on Mickie, but Bayley runs her off! However, Bayley left Mickie all alone with Nia Jax… Nia gets in the ring, stalks the former 6 time champion, and squashes her in the corner! Then the elbow drop on top of it, Nia shows just how serious she is about being next in line.
Dean Ambrose is confronted by The Miz. Ambrose runs a clean show, down the middle stuff. He shows Miz his rough draft schedule, everything is taken care of so Miz should just go home. No, Miz has an episode of Miz TV tonight. He got a member of One Direction! No no, that got cancelled. Less talk more action. Less talk? What is Ambrose doing? Ambrose is willing to throw down right now. In that case, Ambrose will face… Bray Wyatt! Wow, making matches is fun. Miz then takes Ambrose’s schedule, with the intent to rewrite it.
Backstage interview with Samoa Joe. The Samoan Destroyer screwed Rollins out of last week’s triple threat. But go back further than that, to Payback. The Kingslayer didn’t slay Joe, he escaped. Rollins wanted to just move on to Lesnar, but that’s not how it goes. Things are over when Joe says they’re over, and things are NOT over. Rollins will hear every bone break before things are done. Rollins takes the fight to Joe! They brawl into the back, Rollins using a small ladder to knock Joe into a trunk. The brawl continues until referees and security pull them apart! The fighting is done for now, but things are far from done between Rollins and Joe.
Kalisto VS Braun Strowman!
Despite all the damage done to the Lucha Dragon at the hands of the Mountain Among Men, Kalisto wants his revenge match tonight. Strowman takes to the mic first to tell co-manager Ambrose can “shove it”.
Strowman isn’t accepting this match on behalf of his injury and on behalf of Roman Reigns not being man enough to be in the ring instead. The bell still rings, Strowman boots Kalisto’s face! Strowman kicks Kalisto while he’s down then stomps away in a corner. Strowman apparently still accepts this match, but as he puts a boot into Kalisto’s throat, Roman Reigns appears!
Wounded as Roman is himself, he won’t let Strowman call him a coward. Strowman and Roman stare each other down from across the ropes. Roman enters the ring and the two pace each other. The fans are riotous as Roman gives SUPERMAN PUNCHES. Strowman is staggered after two, a THIRD takes him down and out of the ring! Strowman uses the barriers as support, Roman comes around the corner and… BOOT from Strowman! Roman is stopped in his place, but manages to side step and send Strowman into a post. Roman uses his good arm to beat down Strowman’s bad arm! And the post helps, too. The referees try to back Roman down, the fans are dueling “Let’s go Roman!” “Roman Sucks!” Roman gets a chair! Roman hits that bad arm! Twice! Three times! Strowman retreats through the crowd, The Big Dog returns to the ring to declare it’s still HIS yard. When and how will this finally end for The Big Dog and the Monster Among Men?
The Golden Truth gets ready. They are set to be in Tag Team Turmoil. Goldust reminds Truth that, as Angle said, their win-loss record is bad. They admit that. They’ve both been champions, but not champions together. Other teams have passed them by. They got run over by Strowman. Goldust knows what he can do, Truth knows what he can do, time to show the world what “we can do”, that the Hardys aren’t the only ones who can “turn the clock back.” Is this the last shot for these two at tag title gold?
WWE Raw Tag Team Championship #1 Contender’s Tag Team Turmoil!
Five teams will compete in a gauntlet style match, and the last team standing will face The Hardy Boyz for those Raw Tag Team Titles at Extreme Rules! First up: The Realest Guys in the Room, Enzo & Cass! The Certified G and the Human Skyscraper assure the other teams’ “plans are getting foiled and pants are getting soiled” in the O2, as the others are S A W F T! However, they’re up against Cesaro and Sheamus! The Swiss Superman and Celtic Warrior were very close to winning back the titles at Payback, can they make it through four other teams to get another chance? Between these two teams, Cass and Sheamus are the ones to start, Cass pushing Sheamus to ropes. A clean break, until Sheamus kicks and boxes Cass in the corner. Cass denies the corner to corner whip, then he powers Sheamus to the corner to unleash hands. Cass whips Sheamus corner to corner, running splash and scoop slam before the Empire Elbow! The Hardys watch from backstage, Enzo tags in to mock Cesaro and be a projectile weapon! Enzo goes top rope, flying crossbody, TWO! Cesaro swipes at Enzo, Enzo runs into an Irish Curse backbreaker. Enzo is down on the outside as we go to commercials.
Upon returning, Cesaro is stomping away on Enzo non-stop. Cesaro then puts Enzo in a low abdominal stretch, but Enzo fires himself up to fight out. Cesaro whips Enzo to a corner, but Enzo dodges and lets Cesaro run into the post. Sheamus tries to tackle Enzo but also misses, Cesaro grabs a foot of Enzo’s, Enzo-guri! Enzo leaps for Cass, but Sheamus trips Cass off the apron and throws him into the post. Cesaro gives a European Uppercut to the back of Enzo’s head, then puts on the Sharpshooter!
Enzo’s bad back endures the hold, Enzo taps out, the Realest Guys are eliminated. Up next: Heath Slater and Rhyno! The former SmackDown tag team champions are here on Raw and now brawl with the Warrior and the Superman. The brawl continues until Rhyno is 2v1 and thrown into steel steps! Slater comes back but gets tossed into barriers. A EuroUpper from both Cesaro and Sheamus before things return to the ring and the match officially continues. The fans know “Heath’s got kids!” Cesaro stomps Slater in the gut and gives a leg drop down the middle. “No more kids.” Cesaro puts Slater in a neck wrench and armbar, but Slater fights out until he is whipped into the corner. Slater still fights, jumping heel kick to Cesaro! Rhyno is not at the corner, Cesaro tags in Sheamus, flying lariat! TWO! Low dropkick takes Rhyno off the apron, then the beat down continues for Slater. Sheamus puts on a chinlock to choke Slater, but Slater fights back. He slips out of the scoop slam and shoves Sheamus, Cesaro tags in and EuroUppers Slater in Slater’s corner! Still no tag for Slater, tag back to Sheamus, BROGUE!
Slater & Rhyno are eliminated, so now it’s The Club’s turn! Another former Raw Tag Team championship team comes out, commercial break as Gallows & Anderson head to the ring.
We return as Cesaro punches Anderson to a corner then whips him corner to corner. EuroUpper is dodged, Anderson hits a jump kick. Anderson brings Cesaro over and tags Gallows, back breaker to elbow drop. TWO, the Hardys are still watching as Gallows drives elbows into Cesaro. Gallows tries to suplex Cesaro, Cesaro powers the bigger Gallows up and over! Tag to Sheamus, double clothesline, TWO. Sheamus keeps up the work on Gallows’ arms, but Gallows gives back hard right hands. Gallows punches Sheamus down then whips him, body drop kicked away. Sheamus knocks Anderson down, goes top rope, flying– YAKUZA KICK! Both men crawl to their corners, Anderson tags in but gets a powerslam. Gallows boots Sheamus down, springboard EuroUpper! Spinebuster from Anderson! All four men are down and slowly crawl to regroup. Gallows takes White Noise from Gallows, TWO! One more commercial break as Sheamus looks frustrated.
Anderson and Gallows hit the back suplex neckbreaker as we return, TWO. Tag back to Gallows, they prepare Magic Killer but Cesaro gets in to disrupt it! He takes Anderson out, BROGUE to Gallows, The Club is eliminated! That just leaves… The Golden Truth! They are the final and freshest team, and rush the one of the first and therefore more exhausted team! It’s a brawl and The Golden Truth are backing down Cesaro and Sheamus! Cesaro is clotheslined out, double clothesline to Sheamus. Golden Truth hit a twisted-arm double leg sweep, TWO. Sheamus whips Goldy, Goldy hits his signature uppercut and bulldog. Corner punches for Goldust, that deep breath to top it off. Corner to corner whip is reversed, powerslam for Goldust, TWO! Goldy punches Cesaro out, Sheamus sends Goldy out. Tag for Cesaro, he gives a shinbreaker onto the barrier! Back into the ring, Cesaro works on that leg by grinding an elbow into the knee. Tag to Sheamus, that knee gets damaged more, Truth gets the crowd on his side. Half Crab on Goldust, the crowd rallies with applause as Goldust pushes and kicks out. Cesaro tags in, grounds Goldy and goes after that bad leg more. Cesaro whips Goldy corner to corner but Goldy just can’t run with that bad leg. Cesaro mocks the deep breath, Goldy kicks back with his good leg. Cesaro takes down Truth, Goldust tries a powerslam but his bad leg makes him fall over. TWO, but just barely, so Cesaro goes back to the Sharpshooter! Truth clubs Cesaro down to break it up for his team. Goldy fires himself up as he rolls and crawls, tag to Truth! Truth rallies on Cesaro, gives a kick to Sheamus, then the calf kick to Cesaro. TWO! Truth keeps going, Gordbuster and Scissor Kick! TWO! Cesaro staggers to a corner, Truth runs in but misses wide, roll up and… Cesaro and Sheamus win! The Swiss Cyborg and the Celtic Gladiator ran the gauntlet! Then they beat down Goldust and R-Truth just because! So the Hardys come out to confront their two-time contenders. The Hardys hit the wing, Cesaro and Sheamus hit the road. Matt declares “DELETE DELETE DELETE”, it is only a matter of time before these two teams have their rematch.
Seth Rollins VS Samoa Joe!
A quick victory at Payback and a brief brawl backstage results in a rematch tonight in London. As such it is a brawl right from the bell. Joe rolls out but drags Rollins out to join him. Rollins hits back and bumps Joe on the apron, then it’s a trade of chops. Rollins bumps Joe off the barrier, Joe hits back to bump Rollins off the apron. They return to the ring and Joe headbutts Rollins before giving jabs in a corner. Joe gives a nice loud chop, whips Rollins corner to corner, Complete Shot sends Joe into the second buckle. Joe rolls out of the ring, Rollins hits a lariat off the apron. Rollins boxes Joe against the barrier but is reversed on the whip to send The Architect into the barriers. Joe puts Rollins back in the ring, Rollins flounders to the corner, Joe keeps him down with kicks to the chest. Joe stands Rollins up to throw jabs again, then whips him corner to corner again. Rollins boots out, a Slingblade drops Joe, but a ropebreak stops the pin. Rollins keeps on Joe with chops and a whip, but is reversed into a back elbow. Joe gives Rollins sharp right hands on the mat, then a headbutt to the back of the head. Joe and Rollins brawl with right hands, Rollins is denied his suplex but Joe hits his. TWO, Joe keeps on Rollins as he whips him to a corner. Rollins gives a back elbow and a second rope blockbuster! Rollins rushes in but is put to the apron, he knocks Joe away with a right hand but Joe grabs Rollins’ bad leg. Rollins fights Joe off, but Joe sweeps the legs to send Rollins tumbling down! Joe admires his handiwork and the ref checks on Rollins as we go to commercials.
Joe keeps Rollins down as we return, saying it’s “My time, all the time.” Joe rocks Rollins with a headbutt, but Rollins fires back with jabs and chops. Joe’s knees stop that, then a snapmare, chop, kick and elbow drop, TWO. Joe asks if Rollins can hear it, referencing the noises of damage and pain Joe described earlier. Joe dares Rollins to swing, Rollins swings and misses. Joe is enjoying how he is toying with Rollins. Joe pulls Rollins up by his feet, Rollins lands on his feet, only to be put in the sleeper hold! Rollins uses a jawbreaker to get out, then he sends Joe outside, FLYING ROLLINS!
Rollins keeps going, MORE FLYING! Then into the ring, Rollins springboard clothesline, TWO! Rollins gives Joe a corner forearm, but then Joe responds with a chop. Rollins tries to follow Joe, powerslam, TWO! Joe gives Rollins the atomic drop, boot and back senton, TWO. Joe drags Rollins up as the fans cheer for both, Rollins denies the powerbomb but stubbornly goes for a suplex. Joe denies that, lifts Rollins up, but Rollins slips out and manages the Falcon Arrow! TWO!
The fans are fired up as these two brawl once more. Joe backs Rollins down, Rollins mule kicks and front kicks back but spins into the sleeper hold. Rollins slips out, Pele! Joe rushes back in, but gets a boot for it. Rollins goes second rope, Joe grabs him off, buckle pad comes off. Sunset flip, TWO, Mule kick! TWO again, Rollins drags Joe up. KINGSLAY– Rollins is pulled into that exposed buckle! The ref sees the buckle and wants to put the pad back on, Joe takes that pad and throws it away! Joe pulls Rollins up, the ref tells Joe not to, Joe does throw Rollins into the buckle!
Joe is disqualified, Rollins wins, but the “punishment” continues as Rollins is thrown into the buckle again! Kokina Klutch, Rollins is unconscious already. The ref tells Joe to stop, Joe finally lets go, reminding Rollins that “it’s over when I say it’s over!” What will it take for Joe to say it is finished?
TJ Perkins VS Jack Gallagher!
The King of the Cruiserweights joins commentary, as he gave the FilAm Flash a “promise” that, should TJP defeat the Extraordinary Gentleman tonight, a title match will be made. TJP stays perched on the top rope when he’s meant to be giving the handshake, TJP instead just mocks the peace sign. Therefore, Gallagher mocks the dab. TJP shoves Gallagher and gives his own dab, EXTRAORDINARY HEADBUTT! TWO! TJP rolls out of the ring, Gallagher pursues and Neville can’t believe TJP almost got punked out like that. TJP avoids getting close to Gallagher, Gallagher pursues and gives a EuroUpper. Drop toehold sends Gallagher right into the steps, then things go into the ring. Slingshot senton, TJP pins, TWO. TJP works on Gallagher’s legs with a standing Indian Deathlock, into the Butterfly Lock. The fans rally for Gallagher, small package, TWO. Gallagher blocks a kick, gives EuroUppers and a pair of dropkicks. T-Bone suplex, Gallagher whips TJP but is reversed. Extraordinary Headstand then kick, TJP tries the Detonation Kick but Gallagher rolls up TJP. TJP reverses the roll up and pulls on the tights! TJP steals the win! Neville respects the “smart move”. Does TJP get his title shot now? Neville says that’s none of Michael Cole’s business. TJP then goes after Gallagher, beating down the leg to put it in the Kneebar! Aries appears out of nowhere! He ear claps TJP, second rope neckbreaker. TJP runs before the Discus Five-Arm can connect, the Greatest Man Who Ever Lived won’t let a bad leg stop him from stepping up to anyone. Who is it that gets a crack at Neville’s title?
Sasha Banks VS Alicia Fox!
The Boss and the Foxy One brawled a lot in last week’s 8 Woman Tag and now they continue their beef tonight with jawing and shoving. Alicia slaps Sasha, Sasha slaps back. The two brawl again, the ref backs them down but Alicia throws Sasha down by her hair. Alicia gives Sasha a Northern Lights, TWO. Another pin, another kick out, Alicia gives Sasha a knee into a chinlock. Alicia rakes Sasha’s nose but Sasha fights out and fights back. Sasha turns the tilt-o-whirl backbreaker into her own crossbody, TWO. Tilt-o-whirl headscissors sends Alicia to a corner. Sasha gives double knees, but then Alicia gives double boots. Sasha side steps the scissor kick but Alicia denies the bakcstabber. Alicia puts Sasha on the top rope, Sasha resists and knocks Alicia down. Flying double knees! Sasha wins quick, she’s climbing the rankings back towards the top.
Dean Ambrose VS Bray Wyatt!
The Miz returned the favor to his co-manager, so now the Lunatic Fringe must face off against the Face of Fear, all with the Intercontinental Championship match between Ambrose and The Miz announced for next week! As such, The Miz joins commentary to watch his co-manager and eventual opponent in the ring. Ambrose and Bray warily tie up, both very familiar with the other. Bray throws Ambrose but Ambrose rolls through, the two go again. Bray elbows out of a waistlock, runs into buckles but spider walk leans right out of it. Ambrose dodges Bray and jab-chops away until Bray throat chops. Bray chokes Ambrose on the ropes, but backs off so he can punch Ambrose around the ring. Bray declares himself “a god” as he throws Ambrose to ropes, Ambrose dumps Bray out and the FLYING LUNATIC knocks Bray into the barrier.
Bray is put back in the ring, Ambrose goes top rope, Ambrose jumps over Bray. Bray denies the Dirty Deeds and rolls out of the ring, Ambrose grabs Bray’s hair but gets a hotshot. Bray gives Ambrose a hanging suplex to the floor!
Miz will admit Ambrose always gets up from getting knocked down. Ambrose kicks out at TWO, Bray stomps away on Ambrose as we go to one last commercial break.
Bray has Ambrose in a chinlock as we come back, but Ambrose fights out. Bray still gives Ambrose a big corner clothesline, TWO. Bray gives headbutts to Ambrose’s ribs, then an elbow to the back of the neck. Bray goes to punch, Ambrose punches back. Bray kicks Ambrose, DDT, TWO! Bray stretches Ambrose with a camel clutch, headbutts Ambrose down when the Lunatic fights back, then returns to the camel clutch. Ambrose fires up and jawbreakers out, the two start brawling. Lunatic Lariat ran over by Bray’s lariat, TWO. Bray drags Ambrose into position, Bray goes to the corner and from the second rope, back senton– misses! Ambrose fires himself up more and starts to rally on Bray. Bray reverses a whip but gets knocked down, Ambrose then gives a corner forearm. Bray pushes off the bulldog, knocks Ambrose into the corner, but Ambrose kicks back. Ambrose top rope, Bray rolls out, that doesn’t stop Dean! BIG elbow drop to Bray, both men are down on the outside. The ring count begins, Ambrose gets Bray into the ring, Bray gets running and hits his body check! Miz says he’s done with commentary, he wants a “closer look” at the match.
Miz and Maryse walk down the ramp, Ambrose side steps Bray and sees them coming. Bray pounces, but is denied, roll up TWO. Yurinagi slam from Bray, Miz likes that! TWO! Miz doesn’t like that. Bray grabs Ambrose and chops him into the corner, then sits Ambrose on the top. Bray climbs up, tells the fans to hush, but is denied his superplex. Ambrose headbutts Bray until Bray tumbles down. Ambrose steadies himself, flying– uppercut! Lunatic Lariat! Miz holds the title belt up, declaring it’s his already. Ambrose tries Dirty Deeds but is denied. Bray throws Ambrose to the ropes, Ambrose uses that momentum to FLY onto Miz!
Bray pursues Ambrose and knocks him into barriers, Ambrose returns the favor. Back into the ring they go, but Miz clobbers Ambrose behind the ref’s back, with the Intercontinental Championship belt!
Ambrose is down, Bray picks him up, and in the ring, TWO! So Bray grabs Ambrose again, SISTER ABIGAIL! Bray wins, big assist to The Miz, who even makes the announcement for Bray. Bray keeps his eyes on Miz even as The Miz gives punches to Ambrose and rakes at the eyes! The Miz stands tall over Ambrose as he declares that he will be champion once again. Then the whole world “and this godforsaken country” will all declare The Miz is “AWESOME~!” Will the Hollywood A-Lister’s bold prediction come true?
While Raw was only under the kayfabe control of Ambrose and The Miz, this Raw legitimately felt better than the usual Raw where those two aren’t in control. For one, these two polar opposite characters have good chemistry together, as reflected in their promos together. Then there were the matches both men were involved in. Miz and Balor were a really good opener, and it was fitting of Miz to try and use his authority to simply make himself the winner. Of course, Balor wins as a way to give Miz comeuppance and keep Balor Club strong. Then Ambrose got to close out the night with Bray Wyatt, in a solid match that was “ruined” by The Miz. The Miz gained a lot of Heel Heat as he made his rematch with Ambrose almost as personal as their SmackDown feud that revolved around Ambrose’s relationship with Renee Young. The motivation and build in the “sequel” hasn’t been as good as the original, but I don’t doubt the match will at least be up to the task.
The Tag Team Turmoil was a large chunk of the night but still a very good gauntlet of matches. I’m genuinely surprised Cesaro and Sheamus were the ones to win all the way, from start to finish. I thought it was going to be the reverse: Golden Truth win all the way through three teams to make it seem like they could do it all, only for Cesaro and Sheamus to crush their dreams as the fresh ones. Either way, it was the natural outcome that the Golden Truth miss out and the steamrolling Cesaro and Sheamus get one more shot at the Hardys to give us what could be a physically intense No Disqualifications style tag match at Extreme Rules. Similarly, I look forward to seeing whatever kind of matches the Women’s Division, Cruiserweight Division and the grudge match of Rollins VS Joe have, as I think they’re all worthy of No DQ stipulations, especially Rollins VS Joe.
However, there were still some drawbacks that can’t be ignored. Kalisto, Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns getting involved in the ring this soon after the three suffered their separate “injuries” is too soon, even for WWE level healing factors. Kalisto’s revenge match and Roman’s own revenge attack could’ve all been left for next week or even the week after that since Extreme Rules isn’t until June 4th. This way, the returns to television are more logically timed, and we still get a good segment to build up the Roman VS Strowman Ambulance Match to come. Likewise, there was no reason to shove in Banks VS Fox right before the main event, even if Sasha Banks is a very popular female superstar. The TJP-Gallagher match and that Cruiserweight segment as a whole could’ve benefited from having an extra couple minutes and then it wouldn’t have felt like filler. Things were going so great, so smooth, and then it was like hitting two speed bumps right in a row. Raw really needs to work on how it schedules itself or it’ll never return to what it once was.
My Score: 7/10