WWE has wisely built up several things for Raw – and it’s sad that such a thing is newsworthy or an exception to the norm. Tonight, we’ll start things off with MVP vs. Crews for the US Title and Shane McMahon is set to return alongside the debut of a new faction. We get some fake technical problems in the truck before Apollo comes down and the lights go out and they blame weather issues. MVP’s greatness in WWE is directly proportional to him getting his full “tick tock…” version of his theme. MVP, Shelton, and Lashley are down and we get a big match intro for it. Joe says that MVP is the rightful champion because he had the belt made and wants to make it better. MVP tells Crews that he’ll send him back to catering with Cedric and Ricochet.
MVP gets a long tie-up and monkey flip and moves faster in that then he has in a while. Crews eats a big uppercut and forearm, but comes back and dives on everyone. After a break, Lashley trips him up on the apron and MVP cranks his neck. MVP gets an exploder and floats over for 2. Crews lands the towerhacker bomb and gets the win. Crews gets both belts with the win. He puts over Lashley’s strength and how disappointed his kids were when they saw MVP saying he was champion – BUT NOW HE CAN TELL HIS KIDS THAT DADDY IS CHAMPION and he’ll hang the old belt on their wall and he’ll proudly wear MVP’s new title. MVP says that Crews STOLE HIS TITLE and he doesn’t care about his wife or kids – HE WANTS HIS REMATCH AT SUMMERSLAM.
The Golden Role Models are here and we get a shadowy dude standing outside a door with the show logo on it and they say it’s Shane’s idea. Bayley buries WWE’s interview tropes before Sasha says that those things don’t do justice to them and we get an IN A WORLD… video for them. Shayna attacks Sasha and Kevin roams backstage and grabs energy drinks before the IIconics “woohoo!” him to get on the show but he already has a guest. “I plan these things, ya know!? Here, have a water!” – KO is great. He brings out Ruby Riott who calls the IIconics sad broads who tear others down to build themselves up. She put an end to their iconic bullshit and only wished Liv was with her. He brings out Liv as a surprise and Owens says that he loves them both as friends and wants to tell them as someone who’s done bad things to his friends, it’s worth hearing her out and not breaking up their friendship.
Ruby talks about their shared tattoo and how she misses her friend and then cries. She wants another chance to be her friend and then the IIconics come out. They bury the Squad and their mic goes out. Liv says they aren’t iconic, but no one starts a riot better than they do. KO asks for more tech problems for only the IIconics’ mics before they slap KO and then the Riott Squad attacks to set up a tag match. A guy arrives at the door backstage with drinks. Regal cutter gets 2 and Peyton works over Ruby on the mat. Liv gets a missile dropkick for 2 before Billie saves…after the kickout and Morgan gets a cradle win. Inverted magic killer is avoided and the Riott Squad hits a double STO. I guess the Riott Squad had a finish after all!
They shill the free Network tier and we get a report of a LARGE BOX SECTION falling over. MVP bitches about this being a story but he’s happy about getting his title shot and Shelton says someone stole his belt. Drew vs. Orton is hyped up for Summerslam and Drew says that Orton has spent 20 years doing this his own way. Orton’s RKO shifted his plans last week, but his plans have always been to be WWE Champion. He is tired of Orton hyping up his early accolades because his dad was Cowboy Bob, and while he never rode in a limo with Evolution, he didn’t want to. He didn’t have anyone cleaning up after his mistakes. He gets a reference to Orton crapping in bags and says Orton should’ve been fired and THAT’S ENOUGH for Randy.
Orton says he wants to be here and he loves RKOing guys and punting heads. Orton says he should’ve been fired a lot, but he wasn’t – Drew was, because he means more than Drew ever has or ever will. “I am the chosen one. Then, now and forever!”. Tremendous. Now that’s a hell of a burial of Drew and Drew agrees to shoot with Orton a bit. He enjoyed The Last Ride, but found Taker pulling Orton up to his level to be the most fascinating part of it. Can Orton say he’s ever pulled someone to his level? Never! He doesn’t see a leader – he sees a selfish prick.
Nia Jax talks to Pat Buck, the official she struck before. KO meets with Flair and Flair talks about chatting with him about the Vachons and Andre, and he feels he’s too much of a guidance counselor. KO says he wants to be what Randy should be, but isn’t. Ric says THIS IS RIC FLAIR TALKING and you need to take care of Kevin Owens, and maybe you’ll get a title match at Summerslam. Owens challenges Orton for next week. Nia Jax is out to “own up” to what she’s done and WE GET A CLIP. Nia is suspended without pay for “unsanctioned actions” and then beats him up again. Truth is out with the 24/7 Title and gets chased by the ninjas.
Tozawa rolls out so Truth and Shelton can go at it and he can rest with his ninjas. Shelton hits Paydirt on Truth before beating up a ninja and Tozawa uses Lashley and MVP beating up ninjas to senton Truth and win the title. Shane is just backstage at a fight pit and announced Raw Underground at 10 PM. All righty then. Domonik is shown kicking Seth and Murphy’s ass last week before he talks with Sarah Shreiber about Rey’s GLOBE LUXATION and he knows. It’s crazy. To fight. Seth Rollins. He witnessed. His father. Get blinded. He challenges Seth to a match at Summerslam.
Shayna is out to face Sasha, who starts out with strikes and that goes poorly for her. Bayley distracts her and Sasha hits a back stabber and posts her shoulder. I think the story is here is that Shayna came for a fight, but is being out sports entertained by Sasha. They exchange knee strikes to the jaw before Asuka attacks Bayley and somehow this is a DQ despite no one INVOLVED IN THE MATCH BEING HIT. Bray’s attack on Alexa is shown to hype up Braun coming back to her defense. Charly stands mid-ring with Asuka before we get a recap of Kairi’s beating, which was already shown earlier but whatever.
Asuka says Kairi will be okay, but she’s not here and Sasha and Bayley are here and she’s here. What she wants is a rematch with Sasha for the title. Shayna tells her she isn’t here to fight her now – she’s rooting for her and wants to see her win it so then she can beat her for the title. Sasha agrees to the rematch if she can beat Bayley on Raw next week. So logically, why is THE SD WOMEN’S CHAMPION the heater for Sasha and I’m sure vice versa? It just devalues both titles. Angel hits on a cute blonde named Demi from The Bachelor and Zelina tells her she doesn’t belong her and she gives Angel crap for bringing her here. Shane has a fight end via Rampage bomb in the Underground fight club.
Andrade and Angel face the Street Profits in one on one matches later. Shane is mid-fight pit. So it’s literally Shane-O-Mac’s Bloodsport – but with TNA’s cage dancers from 2002 and brings out Dabba Kato aka Babatunde. He takes out a dude with POLISH HAMMERS and then beats another dude with a Sambo suplex. Dawkins is out first to face Garza, but first, Montez puts over Raw being the longest-running episodic show in history. Montez buries Angel for wearing a velvet tracksuit in August because VELVET DOESN’T BREATHE. He talks about Demi some more. I can only assume her birth certificate says Demi From The Bachelor. Then he gets serious and says they attacked his brother. Garza gets posted for an ad break.
Flapjack to Angel gets 2. Dawkins avoids the Wing Clipper and slugs him before a distraction from Montez just falling down leads to a superkick and a hesitation dropkick to Dawkins to end it. Instead of MONTEZ GETTING MEDICAL AID, he’s prepped for his match. They come back and Montez is just fine and gets out of a go-behind. Andrade gets a snap suplex and Montez lands a big flying lariat and a dropkick before landing a big dive to the floor, but he passes out after shaking dem ropes. NOW THEY WANT A DOCTOR!?
Backstage, Murphy watches the Aleister eye gouge on a phone from four years ago before Seth tells him he’s proud of him. In my head canon, Seth gets the latest and greatest phones while Murphy, based on his phone, gets his used iPhone 6. “HE’S NOT EVEN A WWE SUPERSTAR!” is a thing all bad guys should say. Just think of how much better Inspector Gadget would’ve been with Dr. Claw saying he’s after THE TRADEMARKED HERO INSPECTOR GADGET!
Erik takes on a kid and beats him down with terrible pulled punches and a ground German ala Firepro before KOing him with the judo toss knee strike. Hey, might as well try to get that over. Then after this, they bring up the Montez deal. Angel tells Charly to not fear her full heart. Zelina ponders that the titles may have to be vacated and Dawkins says the doctor says he might’ve been poisoned. Bianca blames them for it and SHE’S THE EST of the baddEST acting in WWE. Then the women shreik for a bit. We get “security camera” footage of goons blowing up a generator or something with a molotov cocktail. They’ve got tremendous audio on this security camera.
The Hurt Business shows up dressed like Miami Vice thugs and wants a fight in Raw Underground. We get a long Seth vs. Rey recap to set up a Seth vs. Dominik recap to tie into their Summerslam match. THIS is some unreal filler. Seth comes out and asks Tom if he takes pride in his work and gets on him for cherring Dominik when he beat him up with a kendo stick. “YOU ARE THE VOICE OF MONDAY NIGHT RAW” buries Raw so much more than they realize. Seth says he’s making people biased and he’s now a liability. Seth sics Murphy on him before Joe stands up for Tom. Joe cuts a great, subdued promo about laughing harder than anyone else did at Seth. Hyped for Joe vs. Seth at Summerslam…oh, we’re getting Seth vs. Dominik. And to think that WWE is failing to capture their audience.
Dominik jumps Seth and Murphy as they stand mid-ring with chairs and beats them up with his kendo stick before diving on them. Okay, so if Rey doesn’t re-sign, then they’ve set up Joe as his new advisor. Seth accepts Dominick’s challenge. Dolph uses amateur wrestling in this fight and gets the mount before landing a choke. The Hurt Business shows up and IN ONE NIGHT, Raw Underground has new management. Lashley Doctor bombs a dude and slugs him. Generic Rap Theme 6 from Here Comes the Pain as background music for this is no buys. MVP judo throws and punches a dude down. Shelton takes down a dude in sweet window pane pants and slams him down. They beat up dudes on the pit fighting crew AND THROW THEM INTO BOXES. Dammit, haven’t enough boxes been damaged tonight!?
Shelton lays more dudes out and Shane lets them know they can hang out as long as they like. Now we get replays for Raw Underground, which I guess is underground…but part of the show, but they’re not matches, but they’re fights – but they’re clearly not fights. MVP says they’re the Hurt Business and business is booming. Okay. Week one, this was a thing to try, but it’s been run into the ground after one night and feels too overproduced to feel authentic.