WWE Raw Review (August 16, 2021)

Welcome to the WWE Raw Deal review for this week. SummerSlam is this Saturday, August 21. I’m pretty excited about it as well NXT Takeover 36 on Sunday and some non-WWE wrestling things this week too (I’m sure you punks know what I mean). I think it’s going to be a big week for pro wrestling. It’s also going to be very busy for me, which I like. Busy is good! We’ll have a SummerSlam preview out on Friday morning. As for right now, here’s hoping it’s a good episode of Raw going into SummerSlam aka The Summerfest (shoutout Jeremy Piven on Raw in 2009) this weekend.

This is the Raw Deal for episode #1473 of Monday Night Raw. It’s taking place at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Please visit TJRWrestling.net daily for our regular updates on the wrestling business featuring WWE news coverage, insightful columns from our team along with reviews about wrestling’s past (including my reviews of every WWE PPV ever listed in order) and present. Let’s roll.

This week’s Raw began with a recap of last week’s show when Randy Orton seemed to dismiss the idea of teaming with Riddle again. Orton beat AJ Styles in the main event of Raw in part because Riddle took care of Omos for a moment. After the match, Orton dropped Riddle with an RKO…bro.

Let’s Hear from Randy Orton

Randy Orton made his entrance to begin the show just like last week. Orton took his time getting to the ring as usual. The Raw announce team of Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves and Byron Saxton to call the action. The building in San Antonio looked full with fans chanting “Randy” for Orton.

Orton said that people asked him all week about why he hit Riddle with an RKO. Orton said that they say that Riddle just wants to be his friend. Orton said he doesn’t need friends or anybody while claiming that he would have beat AJ Styles with or without any help. Orton reminded us that he’s a 14-time World Champion that did it all by himself while telling us that he’s Randy Orton, The Viper, The Apex Predator and Monday Night Raw is still his territory. Orton said he’ll prove it to Omos. Orton talked about how Omos is a monster, an undefeated force of nature and he has it on good authority that he is a bit of a jackass. The fans chanted “RKO” for Orton. Randy said he’ll hit the big son of a bitch with the three most destructive letters in sports entertainment, the R-K…and there’s the “Bro” for Riddle’s music. Great timing on that!

Riddle made his entrance on a scooter and got a nice ovation from the crowd. Riddle told Randy is right that he doesn’t have to explain himself to anybody because Riddle claims he knows why Randy hit him with an RKO. Riddle said he realized that Randy was just teaching him, so Randy questioned that. Riddle claimed that he wasn’t doing the RKO right, so Randy had to hit him with a proper RKO to teach Riddle a lesson. Riddle said he learned his lesson, so maybe we can give this team thing another chance. Riddle pleaded with Randy to be in his corner and he wanted to bring back RK-Bro. That led to another interruption.

AJ Styles and Omos walked out together with the Raw Tag Team Titles. Styles suggested “RK-No.” Styles said nobody really cared why Orton RKO’d Riddle and added he can do it again or maybe RKO himself if that is possible. Styles said that Orton’s win last week meant nothing because he had help and cheated. Styles said that nobody will save Orton tonight because Omos will defeat Orton. Styles said he is so sick and tired of Riddle as well as everybody else saying “bro” so that led to “bro” chants. Styles said he wants to break Riddle’s jaw and have it wired shut. Styles wanted a match now. Riddle told “Skipper” he accepts with Riddle saying he’s unstoppable with Orton in his corner. Riddle ended it by mentioning “RK-Bro” again. That led to Riddle vs. Styles after a break.

Analysis: It was solid promo work all around. I enjoyed Riddle’s promos when he’s not out there rambling with his stories while Orton plays off him well. Styles is great as a heel that gets the fans riled up and knows how to get heat. I’m not surprised that they used the segment to set up a match right after the break.

There was a commercial for SummerSlam on Saturday promoting the Universal Championship match between champion Roman Reigns and challenger John Cena.

(Commercial)

Riddle wanted a fist bump by Orton, but Randy decided to go to the back.

Riddle vs. AJ Styles (w/Omos)

Riddle was sad about Orton going to the back, but he kept on going in the match with a senton splash. Riddle with a gutwrench suplex. Styles trapped Riddle in the dreaded abdominal stretch, then Riddle broke free and Styles hit a leg whip takedown into a knee drop. Riddle hooked the legs into a pin attempt for two. Riddle used his legs to pull Styles over the top to the floor. Riddle with a PK kick off the apron to Styles on the floor. Riddle with a springboard body attack off the middle ropes onto Styles on the floor. That led to a break.

(Commercial)

The match returned with Styles going for a corner attack, Riddle moved and hit a running forearm. Riddle hit a bridging German Suplex for a two count. Styles with a series of strikes leading to a clothesline and a slam off the shoulder onto the knee. Riddle avoided a Styles Clash, then two kicks to the chest, but Styles countered a senton leading to Styles applying the Calf Crusher submission. Riddle did a nice job of selling in the submission before he got to the bottom rope. Styles held Riddle’s leg going for a move, but Riddle hit a jumping kick and then an Exploder Suplex into the turnbuckle. The fans chanted “bro” for Riddle. Riddle went up top as he favored his left leg, he was distracted by Omos on the floor, so Styles hit the legs to knock Riddle off the top. Styles turned it right into a Styles Clash for the pinfall win after 11 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: AJ Styles

Analysis: ***1/4 It was a very good match as usual from two of Raw’s best wrestlers. Riddle did a nice job of selling the leg injury while in the Calf Crusher while also continuing to sell it the right way by climbing the ropes while favoring the left leg. That’s the right way to do it. Don’t stop selling when you are on offense. Keep selling. Riddle is one of the better guys in WWE in terms of doing that. Anyway, the finish was a bit predictable with Omos causing the distraction and I liked the smooth transition into the Styles Clash for the win.

Nikki A.S.H. was interviewed backstage by Sarah Schreiber. Nikki said that she wears this outfit for herself and everyone out there is just like her. Nikki said it’s about confidence, you just need the courage to bring it out of you and when you do you can be almost a superhero. Nikki said that tonight she has the confidence to beat Rhea Ripley and the confidence to hold onto the Raw Women’s Title this Saturday at SummerSlam.

Nikki A.S.H. entered for a match against Rhea Ripley. It’s a rematch from last week.

(Commercial)

They showed Keldon Johnson of the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs sitting at ringside. Keldon was on the USA Men’s Olympic Basketball Team, so he had a Gold Medal as well. Johnson didn’t play much, but he’s a young guy with a bright future in the NBA. The fans cheered for him.

Riddle was shown backstage walking with his scooter by his side. Kevin Patrick showed up for an interview. Riddle was sad that Randy Orton left him in the ring all by himself with AJ & Omos, so Riddle is sad now.

Rhea Ripley made her entrance for her match. Ripley and Charlotte Flair will challenge Nikki A.S.H. for the Raw Women’s Title at SummerSlam on Saturday. Speaking of Charlotte Flair, she made her entrance in non-wrestling clothes.

Nikki A.S.H. vs. Rhea Ripley

Charlotte Flair joined commentary for the match. Nikki hit a bulldog off the ropes, then Ripley to the floor and Nikki hit a kick followed by a cross body block to the floor. Nikki celebrated that as the show went to break one minute into the match.

(Commercial)

Nikki was in control with a kick to the leg and a rollup got a two count. Ripley hit a dropkick while Charlotte said that the fans were chanting “WOO” for her. Ripley hit a delayed vertical suplex for a two count. Ripley with a charging attack, Nikki moved and Ripley hit the turnbuckle. Nikki with a headscissors takedown and Nikki got a forward roll into a pin attempt for two. Nikki with a boot to the face followed by a Tornado DDT off the middle rope for a two count. Ripley set up Nikki on the top rope, Nikki jumped off the rope and Ripley hit a bridging Northern Lights Suplex for two. Nikki with a jawbreaker for two. Ripley with a boot to the face and Ripley hit the Riptide slam for the pinfall win after about eight minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Rhea Ripley

Analysis: **1/2 It was just an average match with Ripley picking up the clean win so she can “build momentum” with a win over Nikki in a non-title match. It seemed like they went to the finish suddenly because Nikki did a jawbreaker and then Ripley did two moves to finish it. There was nothing wrong with it, but I’d still just call it an average match.

Post match, Charlotte taunted Nikki about losing that match. Nikki went after Charlotte with a tackle on the floor, so then Nikki tossed Charlotte in the ring. Nikki and Ripley beat up Charlotte a bit and then tossed her out of the ring. Charlotte was in high heels moving around the ring pretty well. The three women all stared at eachother to end the segment.

Analysis: The Raw Women’s Title triple threat match could go either way at SummerSlam although I doubt Ripley wins. Nikki A.S.H. will probably retain in order to keep her title reign going. If Charlotte gets the title back soon then it wouldn’t surprise me because I can see her having a longer title reign at some point before the end of the year.

They showed a highlight of last week when Drew McIntyre used his sword to scare off Jinder Mahal and friends.

Jinder Mahal was shown talking to Veer and Shanky saying he brought them to Raw to learn from him. Jinder told his guys they are in a handicap match against Drew. Mahal said any time they get close, Drew McIntyre threatens them with his sword. Mahal said that this is the last chance to take away Drew’s sword Angela before SummerSlam. That match is next.

Drew McIntyre made his entrance with his big sword named Angela, which was named after his late mother. Good pop for Drew, who decided to bring Angela with him to ringside for the match.

(Commercial)

There was a video showing highlights of the All Mighty Bobby Lashley during his impressive championship run. They showed a clip of Lashley telling Goldberg that he is “done.”

There was a backstage scene with MVP talking to a guy on a headset about a chicken order. Kevin Patrick interviewed MVP saying that Lashley and Goldberg will be face to face later in the show. MVP said that Goldberg insulted them last time with a Spear on MVP and he promises us that Lashley will repay Goldberg perhaps at SummerSlam or sooner.

Drew McIntyre vs. Veer & Shanky (w/Jinder Mahal)

If you don’t know Veer and Shanky, the really tall guy is Shanky and Veer has the big beard. McIntyre with a clothesline on Veer followed by punches and a suplex. Shanky was in next as McIntyre punched him with a jab, but then Shanky got in some punches. Shanky with more punches along with a kick. Drew was going for something, but something was off, so they kept it simple. Veer tagged in with an elbow drop. Veer grabbed a headlock, McIntyre with a headlock, then two clotheslines and a punch for Shanky. McIntyre with an elbow smash on Veer followed by a suplex across the ring with Shanky making a tag while Veer was against the turnbuckle. McIntyre with an elbow. Shanky went into the ring, sent Drew into the turnbuckle, then Drew avoided a charge and Drew hit a Michinoku Driver on Shanky. Drew with a Future Shock DDT on Veer. McIntyre hit a Claymore Kick on Shanky and McIntyre got the pinfall win after about five minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Drew McIntyre

Analysis: *1/2 A dominant win for McIntyre to give him some positive momentum going into SummerSlam. Shanky looks very green out there while Veer is definitely more polished out of the two of them.

Post match, Veer went for Angela the sword, but Drew stopped him and gave him a suplex on the floor.

McIntyre told Jinder (who was in the aisle while Drew was in the ring) he won’t have his goons at ringside at SummerSlam this Saturday. Drew claimed he thought Shanky wanted to say something and mocked him saying he wished he could be as confident and sexy as Drew McIntyre. Drew claimed that Shanky said that he hopes Drew beats Jinder at SummerSlam. Drew complained about how Jinder screwed him at Money in the Bank. Drew said he’s known Jinder over ten years, he’ll embarrass him and he’ll create a moment at his expense that will live forever. Drew said that maybe he’s overconfident, Drew’s a former World Champion and in peak physical condition. Drew asked who thinks Jinder is going to win at SummerSlam, which led to boos and Drew asked if he’ll win at SummerSlam, so the fans raised their hand and cheered. Drew told Jinder he is screwed at SummerSlam to end it.

Analysis: Good promo from Drew showing some confidence along with some comedy. I think Drew should win at SummerSlam as payback for what happened at Money in the Bank and I think if Jinder won it would be a bit of a surprise for sure.

Charlotte Flair showed up in the office of Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville. Charlotte complained about how she did nothing wrong, but they attacked her. The WWE Officials told Charlotte to find a partner for a match later. Charlotte said that she didn’t play well with others, but they said that was her only option, so Charlotte left.

John Morrison made his entrance for a talk show. They showed a clip from last week when The Miz ran away from Damian Priest to show that Miz was not injured anymore. The premiere episode of “Moist TV” hosted by John Morrison is up next.

This week on Smackdown, they promoted Roman Reigns and John Cena being there. No matches advertised here.

(Commercial)

There was a video featuring Elias in a forest somewhere with a fire burning. Elias tossed the guitar into the fire. It was the same video that aired last week letting us know Elias is moving on from the guitar playing gimmick.

Moist TV Hosted by John Morrison

It was the debut of Moist TV hosted by “America’s Moist Wanted” Johnny Drip Drip. Morrison said that last week we witnessed a miracle when The Miz ran away showing he had healthy legs. Morrison introduced The Miz, who walked out there in a suit. Miz hugged Morrison when he got into the ring.

The Miz was excited to be the first guest on Moist TV leading to a “Moist TV” chant. Morrison asked Miz his favorite movie and Miz said all of his starring movies in The Marine moves. Morrison: “Solid acting in those.” Morrison asked Miz if he pretended to be injured. Miz noted that he never lied to him, never used him and Morrison questioned if Miz would fake an injury. Miz said he’s not a liar and the fans booed. Miz asked the fans if Miz would lie to them and Damian Priest made his entrance.

Damian Priest said that we all know Miz was lying. Priest said that before he goes to SummerSlam to beat Sheamus to become the US Champion, he wanted to know what Morrison thought about how Miz used Morrison to push him around on a wheelchair for many weeks. Miz ranted about how he never gets injured in 16 years while reminding us that he got hurt against Damian Priest. Miz said he has kids, so he has a responsibility. Miz said that he’s been cleared for weeks, Morrison got mad about that and Miz claimed he wasn’t 100% healthy yet. Morrison wondered why Miz didn’t tell him. Morrison set up a match with The Miz facing Damian Priest with Miz getting angry about that. Priest shoved Miz in a kiddie pool that was in the ring.

Analysis: It’s a way to tease some tension between Miz and Morrison, which could lead into a split with Morrison likely in the face role.

(Commercial)

Sheamus was at ringside with the US Title to do commentary on the match since he’s against Priest at SummerSlam.

Damian Priest vs. The Miz (w/John Morrison)

The Miz was wrestling in dress pants along with dress shoes (Gucci loafers). Miz faked a knee injury, then did a neck snap across the top rope and hit a double axehandle off the top. Priest with kicks, then punches and a spinning kick. Priest charged into a running kick from Miz, but Morrison refused to give him the “dripstick” as a weapon. Morrison walked to the back so Priest took control with a clothesline. Priest hit a Brogue Kick of his own for the pinfall win after two minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Damian Priest

Analysis: * Easy win for Priest while Miz was made to look like a fool as usual. For a guy that has so many career accomplishments like The Miz, he sure does get booked like a loser a lot.

Sheamus did a promo on the announce table saying that Priest should enjoy the moment. Sheamus said that he has a broken face and he’s going to kick Priest’s head off his shoulders this Saturday at SummerSlam. Priest and Sheamus did some trash talking from a distance to end it.

A replay aired from last week when Doudrop faced Alexa Bliss and Lilly “winked” at Doudrop, so Bliss got a rollup for the win.

Eva Marie was shown backstage talking to Doudrop. Eva was rude to Doudrop saying she blew it last week. Eva said before she takes care of this Alexa Bliss problem this Saturday at SummerSlam, Doudrop should go to the playground to handle the other little problem. Eva told Doudrop to bring her Lilly.

Alexa Bliss was shown on her playground saying somebody is going to play with them, so Lilly should be on her best behavior.

Analysis: I’m a bit surprised that they added Eva vs. Alexa for SummerSlam. I would expect it to be a short match.

(Commercial)

John Morrison was shown walking backstage with The Miz going up to him wondering what Morrison was doing. Miz pointed out that he is Morrison’s best friend. Morrison said he wanted Miz to know what it felt like when somebody wasn’t there for him. Miz seemed to apologize and they were fine. While they spoke, the New Day duo of Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston were in the background with a sign telling people to buy their merch. Miz and Morrison ranted about plans for SummerSlam mentioning water and most and all that stuff.

Analysis: It appears as though Miz and Morrison are on the same page again, but certainly there’s a possibility that there’s a split coming soon. The New Day bit in the background was mildly funny.

Alexa Bliss was shown on her playground with Lilly the evil doll while Doudrop showed on the playground. Doudrop grabbed Lilly, then Doudrop stared at her and was scared. Some evil music played, so Doudrop handed Lilly back to Bliss. Alexa: “See ya at SummerSlam.” That’s it.

Analysis: Riveting segment. It’s shocking that this show has never been nominated for an Emmy Award with segments like that.

Mace & T-Bar entered for a singles match for Mace against Mansoor since T-Bar faced Mustafa Ali last week.

(Commercial)

There was a “Did You Know?” graphic letting us know that WWE’s TikTok channel has 12 million subscribers, which is more than other sports organizations. I’m too old to TikTok and very proud of being old in this case.

Mansoor entered with Mustafa Ali by his side. They showed a pre-tape with Ali telling Mansoor he was going to watch his back.

Mansoor (w/Mustafa Ali) vs. Mace (w/T-Bar)

The bigger man Mace tossed Mansoor across the ring. Mace caught Mansoor with a release suplex with Mansoor doing a moonsault bump across the ring. Mace with a chinlock, then he let go and hit a jumping sidekick. Mansoor avoided an elbow drop, Mace sent him into the ropes and Mansoor hit a forearm to the head. Mace charged, Mansoor avoided and Ali got in a cheap dropkick (while Mace was trying to pin Mansoor so the referee missed it) leading to Mansoor getting a sunset flip pin on Mace for the pinfall win after two minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Mansoor

Analysis: * That was quick. Mace had a couple of good moves that looked like things they practiced in the ring earlier in the day. That’s fine. I’m just saying it looked like they worked on it. Anyway, it was a clever finish with Ali helping Mansoor get the “upset” win over the bigger opponent. It should lead to another tag team match where hopefully Mansoor/Ali win the feud. Since WWE is going back to Saudi Arabia in October and Mansoor is from there, maybe they can win the Tag Team Titles there. I don’t know. Just an idea for now.

AJ Styles and Omos were shown walking backstage. Sarah Schreiber about Omos’ match. Omos said he’s going to kill the legend that is the Legend Killer, Styles said Riddle was a moron so he’s the Moron Killer. They said that it would be the death of RK-Bro.

Randy Orton made his entrance for his match. The reaction for Orton was not as strong here compared to when he entered at the start of the show. That’s the top of hour three match.

(Commercial)

There was a video about Goldberg that was sponsored by Sonic. Goldberg will be on Raw later.

Omos made his entrance with fellow Raw Tag Team Champion AJ Styles. They showed a clip of Orton not helping Riddle earlier in the show against AJ Styles, who beat Riddle thanks to a distraction from Omos.

Omos (w/AJ Styles) vs. Randy Orton

Orton went for an RKO early, but Orton shoved him towards the turnbuckle. Orton went for a punch, Omos blocked the fist and Orton charged, so Omos caught him with a body slam. Omos did some head-crushing with his hands, Orton fought back with punches and Omos hit a punch to the back. Orton tried to fight back again, but Omos hit him with a knee to the ribs. Orton avoided a charging Omos, so Omos hit the turnbuckle. Orton went for an RKO, but Omos caught him and shoved him out of the ring. AJ Styles kicked Orton in the ribs on the floor. The referee wasn’t looking, but he heard it I guess, so there’s the DQ. It went about three minutes.

Winner by disqualification: Randy Orton

Analysis: 1/2* A nothing match with Omos getting some basic giant offense (the dreaded head squeeze!) using his size advantage and then they went with the cheap finish using Styles. It doesn’t hurt Orton that much although Orton barely got offense in that match.

Post match, Styles brought Orton back into the ring. Omos tossed Orton out of the ring near the announce table. Omos whipped Orton into the barricade at ringside with Orton bumping over the barricade to the floor. Omos carried Orton into the ring.

Riddle made his entrance to a big pop, he ran by Styles and dropkicked Omos into the announce table. Riddle with a jumping knee to Styles followed by a clothesline over the top to the floor. Omos didn’t like that Styles was hurt. Omos decided to leave by carrying Styles over his shoulder.

Riddle went over to Orton and helped him back to his feet. Orton said that respect isn’t handed out for free, it is something you have to earn. Orton said that in the past he respected Riddle, but that doesn’t mean that he respects him today. Orton said that everything Riddle has done to him, Riddle had Orton’s back, so Riddle earned Orton’s respect. Orton: “Yeah, it’s happening. RK-Bro is back!” They shook hands. The fans loved it. Orton hugged Riddle and Riddle had a big smile on his face. Riddle said that he makes him so happy. Riddle said that at SummerSlam, RK-Bro is going to challenge AJ Styles and Omos for the WWE Raw Tag Team Championships. Riddle’s music played to end it.

Analysis: The story has been building for several weeks, even months now, so it was pretty obvious that they would set up the SummerSlam match. The fans like Riddle a lot, which is why it was smart to have him save Orton and get that big reaction from the fans. I thought the segment worked well along with the promos. It’s certainly possible that Riddle/Orton is the right team to win the Tag Team Titles from Omos/Styles since the fans would love it, so SummerSlam would be a good spot for that. I don’t know if that’s my official prediction. I’m just saying it’s a possibility for sure.

Jeff Hardy was interviewed backstage by Kevin Patrick. Jeff was upset about how Karrion Kross disrespected him by attacking him after the match was over last week. Jeff said that Karrion Kross should check his hourglass because his 15 minutes of fame on Raw is almost up. Karrion Kross showed up with a cheap attack that led to Kross knocking Jeff down on the floor.

Karrion Kross, the NXT Champion, made his entrance for another rematch on this show. Kross defends the NXT Championship against Samoa Joe at NXT Takeover 36 this Sunday. The Kross/Hardy match is next.

(Commercial)

Jeff Hardy got a good pop for his entrance including his “No More Words” theme song.

Karrion Kross vs. Jeff Hardy

Hardy with an atomic drop, low dropkick and a dropkick to the face. Hardy went for the Twist of Fate, but Kross caught him and applied the Kross Jacket submission. Jeff sold it like he was fading and passed out. Kross win in less than one minute.

Winner by submission: Karrion Kross

Analysis: 1/2* A dominant win for Kross with Hardy looking like a loser again. I’m guessing WWE pays Jeff Hardy a lot of money. Maybe one of the highest-paid stars on Raw but they sure don’t use him like that. Yes, I want Kross to win a match. You could also have Kross somebody beat somebody else.

Eva Marie was backstage with Doudrop going up to her. Eva was mad that Doudrop didn’t have Lilly with her. Eva said that was like a slap to the face, so then Eva slapped Doudrop twice and left.

Analysis: What a legend. I mean Eva, of course. Poor Doudrop.

Reggie defending the 24/7 Title outside is next.

(Commercial)

There was an “Earlier Today” segment featuring 24/7 Champion Reggie. That led to Reggie saying that it all began when he went to the park and practiced doing flips. Reggie claimed he didn’t have a safe childhood growing up, but he could go to the park and be with his thoughts. Truth did a backflip to avoid R-Truth (dressed as a bush) and Tozawa, who was under a trashcan. Reggie did some flips to avoid both guys. Reggie did a jump over the top of the car, so then he drove away. Truth and Tozawa had a staredown to end it.

Analysis: A lot of flips. Mildly fun.

The announcers did a SummerSlam rundown in this order.

WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. John Cena

Raw Women’s Championship: Nikki A.S.H. (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley

Seth Rollins vs. Edge

Drew McIntyre vs. Jinder Mahal – Veer & Shanky are banned from ringside.

Raw Tag Team Championships: AJ Styles & Omos (c) vs. Riddle & Randy Orton

Eva Marie vs. Alexa Bliss

Smackdown Tag Team Championships: The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) (c) vs. Rey & Dominik Mysterio

United States Championships: Sheamus (c) vs. Damian Priest

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Sasha Banks

WWE Championship: Bobby Lashley (c) vs. Bill Goldberg

Analysis: That’s ten matches. I don’t know if Belair/Banks is really happening. They didn’t do the match at two live events over the weekend. There’s no word on if there’s an injury or a virus-related issue, but there are rumors it may get taken off SummerSlam.

Rhea Ripley made her entrance for her second match of the night.

(Commercial)

There was a video showing Elias’ broken guitar. Elias claimed he had a number one record (heels lie) and fans eating out of the palm of his hands. Elias said it just wasn’t enough. Elias had a tombstone that said 2017-2021 as he said: “Elias is dead.” Elias left.

Analysis: I’m not sure what’s next for Elias, but I’m cool with him doing something different.

Nia Jax made her entrance as Charlotte Flair’s tag team partner. The other three women were already in the ring.

Charlotte Flair & Nia Jax vs. Nikki A.S.H. & Rhea Ripley

Jax used her power to shove Nikki down. Nikki with a forearm, Jax didn’t sell it much and Nikki jumped on Jax’s back. Jax drove Nikki into the turnbuckle. Jax with a running backsplash on Nikki along with a Stinkface-like move against the turnbuckle. Jax with a running clothesline. Charlotte tagged in with a boot to Nikki’s face leading to a break.

(Commercial)

The match continued with Nikki hitting a bulldog out of the corner. Ripley tagged in with two clotheslines, Ripley with a headbutt and a dropkick. Ripley with a Northern Lights Suplex. Charlotte with a back elbow, Ripley with two boots to the face and Ripley a missile dropkick, but Charlotte moved. Jax tagged in with a Samoan Drop on Ripley. Jax went to the middle rope, Charlotte tagged herself in, Jax was not happy about it, Charlotte kicked Nikki off the apron and Charlotte hit the Natural Selection on Ripley for the pinfall win after eight minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Charlotte Flair

Analysis: ** A decent tag team match that was also not that interesting for some of it. The faces barely got any offense, Ripley got the hot tag and was made to look like a fool shortly. The win by Charlotte meant that Nikki and Rhea were both pinned on this show. It’s a weird way of booking wrestlers in a title match at SummerSlam.

Post match, Charlotte left the ring for some staring at her SummerSlam opponents.

AJ Styles was interviewed backstage by Kevin Patrick. Styles talked about how they have beaten every tag team that they have been put in the ring with. Styles said that Randy Orton will despise Riddle within the five days of their match at SummerSlam. Styles guaranteed that and he left.

Bill Goldberg’s music hit as the fans chanted “Goldberg” for the big man. Goldberg got his full pyro entrance and was wearing a Goldberg shirt on his way to the ring.

(Commercial)

Face to Face: Bobby Lashley and Goldberg

There were about seven minutes left in the show. The graphic reminded us that Goldberg will challenge Bobby Lashley for the WWE Championship at SummerSlam.

Goldberg said before he starts talking about SummerSlam, there’s something important that he needs to address. Goldberg said that last week, Bobby Lashley and MVP talked about fatherhood, so they brought their son into this. Goldberg said it’s been less than two years since he moved his family to Texas. Goldberg introduced his son Gage Goldberg (I believe he’s around 15 years old now) along with some other kids that were wearing football jerseys like Gage was. Goldberg said he came back for his son. Goldberg told Gage he can watch videos of what Goldberg was, but Goldberg needs Gage here experience who Goldberg is.

The All Mighty WWE Champion Bobby Lashley and MVP entered in suits. MVP said that normally Goldberg let’s his actions do the talking, so maybe he is hiding something. MVP said that when Goldberg locked eyes with Lashley, Goldberg saw that it was going to be different this time. MVP talked about how Lashley was more explosive and dominant compared to Goldberg.

Lashley got into the ring with the WWE Title. Lashley said he gave Goldberg the chance to back out of this, but he’s too stubborn and hardheaded. Lashley said he’s going to leave Goldberg with enough so that Goldberg can tell his family and friends that he had the privilege to have his career ended at the hands of Lashley. Bobby said that this is the house of the All Mighty. Goldberg said that was “bulls**t” and it was muted here. Lashley charged with a clothesline, Goldberg ducked and Goldberg hit Lashley with a Spear. The fans cheered. Goldberg brought Gage over the barricade and they walked to the back. Lashley and Goldberg did some long-distance staring. End show.

Analysis: It was a typical face to face segment that WWE likes to do before a PPV. Goldberg hit the one move with the Spear, then he left and that was it. I doubt Goldberg wins at SummerSlam, but if he does it would only be if they wanted to do a Money in the Bank scenario with Big E. I just think Lashley will keep the title.

 

Three Stars of the Show

  1. Riddle
  2. AJ Styles
  3. Randy Orton

 

The Scoreboard

5.75 out of 10

Last week: 6.25

2021 Average: 5.91

 

Final Thoughts

It felt like a typical Raw with the usual barrage of rematches that are never that interesting and just a bunch of average segments for most of the night. I did like the Orton/Riddle “reunion” if you want to call it that. The women’s matches and segments weren’t that interesting. Goldberg hitting a Spear on Lashley sends a message before SummerSlam, but it’s not like it was some exciting segment to end the show.

I’m much more excited about the Smackdown matches at SummerSlam compared to Raw.

The next WWE pay-per-view is SummerSlam, which is this Saturday, August 21. Here’s the official lineup so far.

WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. John Cena

WWE Championship: Bobby Lashley (c) vs. Bill Goldberg

Smackdown Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Sasha Banks

Seth Rollins vs. Edge

Raw Women’s Championship: Nikki A.S.H. (c) vs. Charlotte Flair vs. Rhea Ripley

Raw Tag Team Championships: AJ Styles & Omos (c) vs. Riddle & Randy Orton

Drew McIntyre vs. Jinder Mahal

Smackdown Tag Team Championships: The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) (c) vs. Rey & Dominik Mysterio

United States Championships: Sheamus (c) vs. Damian Priest

Alexa Bliss vs. Eva Marie

You can watch SummerSlam on Saturday, August 21, streaming at 8 ET/5 PT exclusively on Peacock in the United States and WWE Network everywhere else.

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You can contact me using any of the methods below. Go Toronto Blue Jays and Los Angeles Rams. Be safe and smart out there.

Thanks for reading.

John Canton

Email: mrjohncanton@gmail.com

Twitter: @johnreport

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