Welcome to Ringside News’ coverage of WWE Monday Night Raw!
The WWE Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar, returns to Monday Night Raw for the first time since defeating Roman Reigns at WrestleMania. The Beast must face Reigns again at The Greatest Royal Rumble on Friday, with the title on the line. So, theoretically, Brock and Roman are set to go head-to-head one last time, and that means we’re sure to see them go at it tonight. It seems like the time for Roman to win but hey, WWE sure like to throw a fast one our way.
Elsewhere on tonight’s show, we get the fallout from the Superstar Shake-Up. So while Jeff Hardy took the United States Championship to SmackDown Live, along with The Miz, Samoa Joe, Asuka, The Bar, Gallows & Anderson and more, Raw in turn received The Riott Squad, Dolph Ziggler, Drew McIntyre, Baron Corbin, Bobby Roode, Jinder Mahal, and more. The Shake-Up is always exciting and it should be fun to see what slots these men and women fall into.
On last week’s Raw, Stephanie McMahon overruled Kurt Angle’s decision to not hire Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens, and WWE.Com is teasing more of this in-fighting. It seems a matter of time until Kurt is fired as Raw GM. Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy are ready to face The Bar for the tag team titles on Friday and they’re 100% going to win because that’s how the shake-up affected things. Expect them to cruise to an easy-win tonight. All that and lots more on tonight’s Raw. Remember to download the Ringside Talk app and join the conversation. Enjoy the show!
WWE Monday Night Raw opens with a graphic for the death of Bruno Sammartino. We go live to the arena and the entire roster is stood on the stage, with Vince McMahon front and centre, they ring the bell ten times with a moment of silence. The live feed fades to a video package highlighting the career of Bruno, with the likes of John Cena, Roman Reigns, Pat Patterson, and Bill Apter talking about the Hall of Famer. Rest in peace.
We return live to the arena and the fans applaud and chant “Bruno”. After a minute of atmosphere and recognition for a legend, Brock Lesnar’s music hits. The WWE Universal Champion makes his way to the ring for the first time since WrestleMania, with Paul Heyman by his side. Lesnar and Heyman will address his upcoming match with Roman Reigns, next!
We return to Heyman and Lesnar standing in the ring. The fans boo as Heyman introduces himself and his client. Lesnar has goosebumps as Heyman calls him “still” and the fans boo. Heyman says he assumes the fans are booing because he’s out here to gloat, they think they’re here to say “we told you so”, just like they did when Brock Lesnar conquered The Undertaker’s undefeated streak, just like when Brock Lesnar took John Cena to Suplex City, just like everytime some wannabe comes down the ramp and doesn’t realise this is real for Brock Lesnar. Heyman reminds us that he doesn’t deliver predictions, he delivers spoilers. He says Brock Lesnar doesn’t gloat, he conquers. However he gloats, he gloats all night long about the fact that Brock Lesnar took Roman Reigns to Suplex City, and hit him with very non-PG elbows that left him scarred, and left him in a Samoan trash heap in the main event of the biggest WrestleMania of all-time.
Heyman continues, Lesnar doesn’t care about any of that. Lesnar doesn’t dwell on the past, even when that past if WrestleMania a mere two weeks ago. He says Lesnar wants to be in a UFC fight so badly that he’s willing to fly across the world, just to be locked inside a cage. A tiny pocket of fans start chanting “Roman”, and Heyman asks if they truly think that being locked in a cage with Lesnar was Roman’s idea. He then tells us that Lesnar signed a nice, big fat new contract, with a substantial pay raise, which he earned by defeating Roman Reigns. Heyman says WWE came to Lesnar and asked him to be at The Greatest Royal Rumble and Lesnar asked to take Roman because he’s still breathing. Heyman says on Friday Lesnar is going to shred Roman piece from piece and send him back to the U.S in multiple boxes. With that, Roman has heard enough and he makes his way to the ring.
Roman gets into the ring with Lesnar – Heyman has scampered away to the apron – and WWE keeps showing that tiny pocket of Roman fans who are so excited I seriously wonder if they’re plants. Roman and Lesnar come face-to-face and Reigns says “you’re right”, he doesn’t know how he’s going to get back but he’s coming with the title. He says “believe that” and drops the mic. Roman turns and leaves the ring.
Later tonight, we will bear witness to Raw’s new talk show: The Sami and Kevin Show, with Kurt Angle as the first guest. The main event tonight will be a ten-woman tag team match. However, up next, Elias takes on Bobby Roode!
Elias is in the ring, but he’s interrupted by Bobby Roode before he can sing a note.
They lock up, and Elias hooks a side headlock. Roode whips him off, but Elias shoulder blocks him down. Roode comes back with a back elbow and chops him in the corner a few times. Elias chops back, but Roode kicks and chops him. Elias reverses a whip to the corner, but Roode boots him in the face.
Roode jumps over Elias and hits an inverted atomic drop followed by a dropkick for a two count. They’re pointing out that Roode may have tweaked his knee. Roode keeps him grounded with an arm bar. Elias fights up, but Roode wrenches the arm. Elias soon takes him down and chops the chest. Elias send him into the ropes, but Roode tries for a Glorious DDT. Elias gets out of it, and Roode clotheslines him over the top rope.
We come back from the break to see Elias make a comeback on Roode and send him shoulder-first into the ring post. Elias locks-in a trap hold while they cut the screen in half to promote The Greatest Royal Rumble. Roode fights up and punches out. Elias punches and stomps Roode down before the referee backs him up. Elias comes right back with a kick and slams the chest off the ring apron. Elias hits a running knee to the face for a near fall. Elias hooks a chin lock, but Roode eventually fights up and gets out with a back suplex. Elias is first to his feet. Roode blocks a right hand and punches away at him. Roode chops the chest. Roode has a whip reversed, but he comes back with a forearm and a clothesline.
Roode clotheslines him in the corner and hits a swinging neckbreaker. Roode goes to the top rope and hits a diving clothesline. Roode does his “GLORIOUS” taunt and Roode goes for a Glorious DDT, but Elias counters. Roode comes back with a roll-up for a two count. Roode boots him back and hits a blockbuster. Roode tries to follow up, but Elias immediately gets out of the ring. Roode goes outside and throws him back in. Elias snaps the arm off the ropes while he comes back in and rolls Roode up for the win.
Matt Hardy is backstage and he says that at the most humongous rumble of royalty, they will procure the Tag Team Championships. They will descend into the abominable wasteland. The lights go dim, and Bray Wyatt walks up. Wyatt says, “Without darkness, there can be no light. Together, we will cast a shadow that will engulf all living things.” They laugh together before saying, “RUN!”
We return and the announcers congratulate Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson on the birth of his third daughter today.
Matt and Bray make their respective entrances to face The Ascension. They are calling the tag team of Hardy and Wyatt, “The Deleters of Worlds” – seems to me like The Woken Warriors would have been a lot easier.
Hardy starts against Viktor. They lock up, but eventually separate. Hardy gives him an ovation and shouts, “WONDERFUL.” Hardy takes Viktor down and tags in Wyatt. They hit a double-team back elbow followed by a leg drop/senton splash combo. Viktor gets out of a uranage and tags in Konnor. Wyatt soon takes him down with a vicious clothesline.
Hardy tags in and boots Konnor before Wyatt hits a shoulder tackle. Hardy goes for a Twist of Fate, but Konnor powers him to the corner and tags in Viktor. They stomp Hardy down before Konnor tags back in. Konnor takes Hardy down before tagging Viktor back in. Hardy gets out of a chin lock and tags in Wyatt. Wyatt powers Viktor to the corner and knocks Konnor off the apron. Wyatt then hits Viktor with a flying body block.
Matt tags in, while Wyatt avalanches Viktor into the corner, and Hardy hits a Side Effect for a near fall. Hardy goes for a Twist of Fate, but Konnor breaks it up. Wyatt then hits Konnor with Sister Abigail. Wyatt tags in, and he holds Viktor up for Hardy to hit a Twist of Fate. Wyatt covers for the win.
The Kevin and Sami Show will have Kurt Angle as a special guest, next.
We return and out come Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens. They get into the ring which has a desk, some chairs, and pictures showing them beating on Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon.
Zayn and Owens come and sit behind the desk, after some dancing on Sami’s part. Owens says RAW was met with a great loss after The Miz moved to SmackDown, but they are here to fill the void. Sami says this is the new weekly talk show but then corrects himself and Owens says they will conduct the show whenever they choose. They say they’ll prove they are the best in WWE by winning the Rumble on Friday in Saudi Arabia. In respect to their guest, they came up with a song. They then sing, “You suck,” to the tune of Angle’s theme song.
Kurt Angle makes his way to the ring. Owens wonders where his manners went and pulls out a yard chair from under the table. Zayn asks what he thought of their song. Angle tells them not to quit their day jobs. Owens says Angle is bitter about last week, but they got off on the wrong foot. Owens should be mad if his boss had his manhood in a jar in Hartford, Connecticut. Zayn says they’ve come from a toxic work environment. Owens says they were victims of a conspiracy by Shane McMahon. Owens took matters into his own hands and cracked the skull of Vince McMahon. Zayn says Stephanie McMahon either really appreciates their talents or she must really dislike Angle. Angle wouldn’t blame her if she did. If it wasn’t for him, she’d have Ronda Rousey under her thumb while having full use of her arm. Owens says Angle desperately needs this job. Zayn asks if he has five kids, but Owens says it’s six. Zayn double checks his notes and puts on some nerdy reading glasses. Owens says he forgot Jason Jordan. Zayn says that’s no big deal because Angle forgot about him for years as well. Owens says tonight is not about the past. It’s about the future. Angle is going to tell them how he’ll maximize the investment his boss made in them.
Angle sarcastically says he appreciates the way they treated him. He’ll pay them back at the Greatest Royal Rumble match because he’ll be in that match. So will Daniel Bryan, Chris Jericho, and every other superstars they’ve endeared themselves to over the years. That’s Friday and this is Monday Night RAW. Angle would love to repay them. Tonight, they’ll have a tag team match, and their opponents will be Bobby Lashley and Braun Strowman! Angle leaves the ring conducting the “You Suck!” chant, while Owens and Sami look angry.
Seth Rollins is texting backstage when The Miztourage walks up to him. Bo Dallas says they said goodbye to The Miz and want to reclaim their future. They then reveal themselves to be wearing Rollins’ t-shirt and they scream “BURN IT DOWN!”. They want to be the new Shield with him. Rollins says their wins are in the right place… They put their fists out, but Rollins says this is a hard no. They bump their fists as he walks off.
Still to come tonight, the huge 10-woman tag team match! Up next however, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre will talk.
We see a replay of Dolph Ziggler coming to Raw last week, and then Drew McIntyre attacking Titus Worldwide.
Dolph Ziggler starts against Titus O’Neil. O’Neil sends him to the corner and stomps away at him. Apollo Crews tags in and hits a standing moonsault. Crews sends Ziggler into the ropes, but he eats an elbow.
Drew McIntyre tags in and big boots Crews – the fans are excited for the Scotsman. McIntyre chops the chest and clubs away at him. McIntyre then sends him across the ring with a belly-to-belly overhead suplex. McIntyre gets him in position for an inverted Alabama Slam. Ziggler tags in and superkicks him before McIntyre completed the move. They then hit the double-team Zig-Zag/Claymore attack for the win.
Charly Caruso gets in the ring and asks Ziggler why he brought McIntyre with him. Ziggler says since day one, no one has had his back. Now McIntyre is watching his back. This man is dangerous. McIntyre takes the microphone and says he is dangerous, especially to a locker room that’s gone soft. There is no fire or ambition. These people are just collecting checks. It makes him sick. McIntyre says he is what a superstar looks like. The times are changing. McIntyre is not what WWE wants. He is the wake-up call and reality check this place desperately needs. Ziggler says they don’t give a damn about stealing the show. They are the show. They then leave the ring.
Kurt Angle is backstage on his phone and Chad Gable walks in. Gable says he doesn’t intend to waste this opportunity. Angle says he knows that. Gable asks how Jason Jordan is. Angle says he’ll be back soon, but he’s here as a singles competitor. Jinder Mahal comes in and is furious with Angle for making him defend his title against Jeff Hardy. Mahal says at the Greatest Royal Rumble event and will win back his United States Championship. Mahal demands to be sent back to Smackdown Live. Gable tells Mahal to have some respect. Mahal thinks Gable is Nicholas, the former Tag Team Champion and current fourth grader. Mahal then says he thought Mini Me passed away this week – what a terrible joke to make. Gable shoves him. Angle tells them to settle it in the ring right now.
While Gable is making his entrance, Mahal attacks him and knocks him to the floor. Mahal throws him into the barricade. Mahal gets him in the ring and stomps Gable. The referee backs him up and checks on Gable. The former tag team Champ makes his way to the ring and agrees to start the match.
Gable agrees to start the match. Gable ducks a punch and attacks Mahal. Gable takes him down, but Mahal kicks him away before hitting a kick to the face. Mahal stands over him before going for a back suplex, but Gable counters into a pin. Gable pulls the top rope down to get him out of the ring. Gable charges at ringside, but Mahal clotheslines him down. Mahal is in charge as we head to the break.
We come back from the break to see Mahal hit Gable with a suplex for a two count. Mahal stomps Gable and cuts off a comeback. Mahal sends him to the corner, and Gable hits sternum first. Mahal hits a lame looking crossface and elbow to the head. Mahal then applies a chin lock. Mahal chokes him on the ropes and drops some knees. Gable soon boots him back and attacks the knee. Gable hits a dragon screw and stretches the leg. Mahal knees him and lifts, but Gable elbows out. Mahal quickly drops him on the ropes and hits a running knee. Mahal goes for the Khallas, but Gable climbs the ropes and pushes back to pin Mahal and win!
Mahal is furious after the bell and Gable stumbles up the ramp. Michael Cole says Gable just scored the biggest win of his career.
Renee Young is backstage with The Riott Squad. Renee asks if they were trying to send a message to Sasha Banks and Bayley. Riott says it was a message to the whole division. Liv Morgan says they’re not here to build bridges or make friends. Sarah Logan says she spent her life tracking animals and knows how to take things down. Riott says they’re like a can of tear gas. They’re equal opportunity agitators. Everyone will be on their knees begging for help. It’s messy and unpleasant. That’s the way they like it.
Immediately after Raw tonight, there will be a documentary on the WWE Network about Bruno Sammartino.
We see a replay of the opening of the show with Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman, with Roman Reigns joining the fray. The commentators then hype their upcoming cage match on Friday. We get a phone promo from Samoa Joe, who says he’s worried that he might not have an opponent come Backlash, because he expects Lesnar to bury Roman in Saudi Arabia.
We see Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas backstage. Dallas starts talking to someone, saying their friends have gone to SmackDown Live, so that creates an opportunity. The camera turns to show Finn Balor, who says he wasn’t thinking what they were thinking. They show that they’re wearing ‘OG BC’ i.e, Bullet Club, t-shirts, and ask Finn to lead them. They put out their hands for a Too Sweet but Balor says no and walks off, then comes back and puts their hands down. Dallas turns to Axel and asks if he knows what he’s thinking and Axel laughs, and says no.
We see Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn walking backstage, making their way ringside for a huge tag team match.
The bell rings, and Owens and Zayn get out of the ring. They go in and out to avoid them, but eventually they’re caught. Lashley hits Owens with a neckbreaker and a spinebuster. Lashley punches Owens back and hits a running shoulder block. Lashley clubs him down and stomps him. Owens is sent into the ropes, but Lashley lowers his head and eats a kick.
Zayn tags in and backs Bobby into the corner with blows. Lashley fights out of the corner and hits a suplex. Lashley hits some back elbows and charges, but Zayn boots him down. Owens tags in and punches away at Lashley. Zayn tags back in. They send Lashley into the ropes. Lashley fights them off, but Owens soon pulls the top rope down to get him out of the ring. Owens follows up with a senton splash on the floor.
We come back from the break to see Zayn chopping Lashley in the corner. Zayn charges, but Lashley sends him across the ring with a huge belly-to-belly suplex. Owens stops a tag to Strowman and punches away at Lashley. Owens goes for a senton splash, but Lashley gets the knees up.
Zayn tags in, and he jumps on Lashley’s back for a sleeper hold. Lashley fights up and hits a sidewalk slam. Lashley nearly gets the tag, but Owens pulls Strowman off the apron. Strowman angrily gets back on the apron. Lashley comes back with a club to KO and a forearm to Strowman.
Strowman is tagged in, and he runs around ringside to destroy Owens with a shoulder tackle. Strowman gets in the ring and viciously clotheslines Zayn. Owens gets to his feet at ringside, so Strowman runs him over again. Strowman gets in the ring and turns Zayn inside out with a clothesline. Strowman then goes outside and levels Owens with a dropkick! Strowman gets in the ring, and Zayn runs away.
Lashley chases and catches him before putting him back in the ring. Strowman grabs Zayn and clubs him down. Strowman throws Zayn across the ring after tagging Lashley in. Lashley holds Zayn up for a long delayed vertical suplex – that got the crowd on their feet. Strowman is tagged in and he hits Zayn with a Running Powerslam for the win.
A good fun match. It would be interesting to see Lsahley Vs. Strowman somewhere down the road.
Tonight’s main event will be a 10-Woman Tag Team Match. Seth Rollins and Finn Balor will also take on The Miztourage. We’ll see Baron Corbin in action, next.
We return and out comes No Way Jose, followed by his conga line. Baron Corbin is out second and he has a mic. Corbin says he sees through Jose’s plan, his conga line clearly is set-up to ambush him as he grinds him into the mat. He says he came to Raw to be a Champion but Jose is clearly not on his level. So tonight, he says no way, Jose. Corbin leaves but Jose grabs a mic and says just because Corbin didn’t want to have fun, doesn’t mean everywhere else can’t. His music starts again and they dance around ringside. God, I hate gimmicks like this, they have such a short shelf life and they’re not entertaining. Jose dances with his line all the way up the ramp and then Baron Corbin comes running out and attacks Jose. Corbin throws Jose into the LED wall and stomps on Jose before delivering a chokeslam backbreaker. Thank you Corbin for that mercy kill.
We get a public service video of Alexa Bliss talking about bullying. She tells a story about giving a homeless woman a burrito bowl but Nia snatched it and gobbled it up. She says she’s as guilty as Nia because she did nothing. She tells Nia’s partners tonight to not be silent accomplices tonight.
Finn Balor makes his way to the ring for yet another tag team match, this show has been extremely uninspired.
Bo and Finn start the match together. Dallas scores the first takedown on Balor with a shoulder tackle before tagging Axel. Finn gets knocked down again and Axel celebrates over the top, including a Too Sweet.
Balor hits a low dropkick to gain some momentum. Bo tags back in and hits a few knees to the head for a near fall. Balor hits an overhead kick to give himself some breathing room.
He tags Rollins as Dallas tags Axel. Seth hits a springboard clothesline and he’s all fired-up. He knocks both opponents out of the ring so he can hit a suicide dive. The Architect takes Axel down with a blockbuster before hitting The Blackout. He tags Balor for the Coup de Grace and the win!
After the match Rollins and Balor celebrate after their win, no hard feelings whatsoever even though the commentators kept saying they dislike each other.
We go backstage to Nia Jax, Natalya, Sasha Banks, Ember Moon and Bayley. Ember says something about them beating the heels, while Nia says she should give a PSA that making fun of her is bad for your health. Awkward stuff. They all leave except for Sasha and Bayley, who look at each other then walk away in silence. The main event is up next!
Alexa Bliss and Mickie James are out first, followed by The Riott Squad. The babyfaces follow suit and it’s main event time.
Sasha Banks and Liv Morgan begin the match but Sarah Logan is tagged in immediately. Logan takes the fight to Banks and seems to really enjoy hersefl but The Boss recovers and catches Logan in a submission.
Morgan is tagged in and takes a few hits from Sasha. Ember Moon is tagged in and she delivers a springboard cross body for a near-fall, followed by a huge suicide drive to the outside on Morgan. The babyfaces are in control as we head to the break.
We return to see Logan controlling Banks in the middle of the ring with a submission. Mickie tags herself in and Logan does not look too happy about it. Natalya gets the tag and goes to work on Mickie with a series of suplexes. She locks in the Sharpshooter but Logan takes out Natalya’s knee to break the hold. Nattie bring in Bayley right before James kicks out Nattie’s leg.
Natalya gets looked at by some officials at ringside while Bayley builds momentum in the ring against Ruby. Ruby stopsBayley dead with an STO for a near-fall. Bayley manages to create some distance and Nia Jax is finally gets tagged into the match and she shows off her power with a gorilla press slam to Riott. Everyone from the heel team attacks Nia, which causes all of Nia’s teammates to come in and help her out. They end up outside the ring and Jax takes everyone down with a leap off the apron!
James pours salt in the wound when she goes around the ring and attacks Natalya on her injured leg. Ronda Rousey’s music hits and she comes marching down to the ring. James hits Rousey with a basement dropkick as she tries to help Natalya to her feet. Ronda gets up and looks pissed. She runs in and takes James down to put her in a nasty-looking armbar, causing a DQ finish.
After the match, officials check on Mickie, who’s crying out in pain. Ronda heads over to check on Natalya and starts to help her to the back.
The announcers talk about the upcoming Greatest Royal Rumble, which takes place this Friday at noon ET. That’s it for tonight’s show, remember to check back everyday for your wrestling news and coverage. Until next time, safe travels!