20th Aug2019

WWE Raw – 19th Aug 2019: Results & Review

by Nathan Favel

Welcome to this week’s Monday Night Raw review, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and we have the beginning of the 2019 King Of The Ring tournament, so don’t forget to put on your Russell Crowe underwear, because it’s time to wrestle…about three hours ago. I already know what happened. They all died. Welcome to Big Boy. Want a Slim Jim?


Match #1: Roman Reigns def. Dolph Ziggler

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

With all the misfortune that’s befallen him the last few weeks, Dolph Ziggler is theoretically due for a turnaround. Tonight, however, is not that night: After The Showoff inexplicably tweeted insults in the direction of Roman Reigns over the weekend and downplayed the various, still-unsolved attacks against the former Universal Champion, he received his comeuppance in the form of a Superman Punch and a Spear. He did, however, stave off defeat for an impressive amount of time before that happened. The former World Heavyweight Champion started his evening with a bang, cheapshotting Reigns with a pre-match superkick and forcing The Big Dog to start off his back foot. Ziggler later dropped his foe with a pair of Zig Zags — one on the outside and another in the ring, though Reigns kicked out at the last possible second. But Dolph insulted The Big Dog one too many times after landing a Famouser, leading to the fateful Spear that dropped him like a rock. The hard-fought win gave Reigns some much-needed pep in his step as he heads to SmackDown LIVE, where his mystery attacker will supposedly be revealed by Daniel Bryan & Rowan. Ziggler, meanwhile, might do well to reexamine his mouthy strategy: He’s always been known for his trash talk, but after the past couple of weeks, there’s something to be said for results, or lack thereof.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5 – This was pretty good and the people liked it, so that’s a big win for everybody, like Mad Max: Fury Road winning all those Oscars. Screw Pitch Perfect 2. Feminist victory my ass. Pitch Perfect 2 made women everywhere look like jack-asses. Also, Reigns was still popular here, so the continued strategy of not having him be champion seems to be working. Both fighters worked hard to make this match a good sporting event, like Jordynne Grace is spending all of her time trying to get everybody to call wrestling a performance art. Imagine watching Steve Austin do ballet.

Match #2: Ricochet & The Miz def. Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Only four of Raw’s eight King of the Ring contestants will vie to advance in the bracket this week, though that isn’t to say the other half got the night off: In a tag team preview of next week’s Round One matches, Ricochet & The Miz teamed up against Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin for a “feeling-out process” and a tantalizing taste of things to come. Miz & Ricochet seemed to have the match well in hand early, with The A-Lister taking his partner’s cue during a house-on-fire opening salvo. Corbin, however, had fresher legs — this was his first match in several weeks — and an all-business mentality, turning the fight back in his squad’s favor until Ricochet tagged in to even the odds. The former United States Champion ran circles up and around The Lone Wolf, and thanks to a pair of assists from The Miz, he landed a Recoil that dropped Corbin for a hard-fought win that will either give Ricochet and Miz all the momentum they need to advance next week … or, give their opponents just the scouting they need to strike back in their first-round matches.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5 – This turned out pretty well and had a lot of action. It’s nice to see the WWE take a page out of New Japan’s G1 tournament and have the King Of The Ring competitors fight each other before the actual KOTR tournament. It’s good to keep these guys together so you actually remember that they’re going to fight each other very soon for a good reason…or whatever I have to say to make it sound like I know what I’m talking about.

Match #3: Braun Strowman def. AJ Styles – WWE United States Championship Match (Disqualification)

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

AJ Styles’ M.O. at this point is to get you by yourself and then beat you up with the rest of The O.C. It’s simple, yet effective; the only question is whether his target can escape the beatdown, and as even Braun Strowman can now attest, that is a tall order indeed. The Monster Among Men’s United States Title Match against The Phenomenal One was quickly waylaid by the combined might of The Good Brothers, who interfered in the match and caused a disqualification, though a left-field assist from Universal Champion Seth Rollins saved Strowman’s hide.

As Rollins made clear after the interaction, his appearance was a bit of debt-settling from Strowman’s own helping hand last week — a favor Strowman was happy to accept with a handshake, albeit one that was just a touch too firm, leading to the briefest expression of panic on The Beastslayer’s face. In a post-match interaction in the backstage area, Rollins all but admitted he’d have Strowman named as his next challenger if he had his way, but in the meantime, he had an idea of how the two could settle their beef with The O.C.: By teaming up and challenging Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson for the Raw Tag Team Titles tonight.

My Opinion: 1.5 out of 5 – This was way too damn short…about a minute. Do you wanna watch a minute match? A minute steak is only a last minute meal. If I say minute one more time, I’m gonna hurl. That might be the sun poisoning talking, so cram it ma’am.

Match #4: Samoa Joe def. Cesaro – King of the Ring First Round Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The King of the Ring tournament has begun, and Samoa Joe is the first man to advance out of the Round of 16 with a victory over Cesaro. The two former United States Champions set the tone for their fellow Superstars in the opening minutes of their match, as Cesaro sent Joe clean off his feet with a rocketing European uppercut and the Samoan answered with a suicide dive that sent Cesaro tumbling into the first row. The King of Swing refused to let Joe slow down the match, drilling his opponent with as many uppercuts as his body would allow, though the fast pace had the inadvertent effect of emptying his tank faster than usual. All Joe had to do was absorb the hits and pick his moment, and that he did: The big man withstood the Cesaro Swing and Sharpshooter before escaping a Neutralizer and dodging a springboard European uppercut to lock in the Coquina Clutch and submit his foe. Glory is within sight for Samoa Joe, though attaining it will be easier said than done: This match was as grueling as they come, and it’s only going to get harder from here.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5 – This was a fine bruiser of a match that will give you a black eye just from watching it. I’d love to see this go a lot longer next time. I bet they would love to wrestle each other for longer too. Overall, this was a fun way to start of the tournament and it made the whole thing feel important.

Match #5: The New Day def. The Revival (Disqualification)

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Given their total absence of empathy for their fellow competitors, The Revival and Randy Orton make such perfect sense as allies, and it’s a wonder they didn’t start teaming up sooner. They all embrace the old school, they’re all ruthless in the ring and they all have a bone to pick with The New Day. And any idea that the beef was squashed after last Tuesday was put to rest by the trio’s heinous actions on Monday. The Revival still think New Day are too fun-loving to represent the tag team division, and Orton is still out for retribution after failing to capture the WWE Championship from Kofi Kingston at SummerSlam. Orton crashed Raw during the non-title Revival-New Day match and struck Big E with an RKO to hand The Revival a disqualification loss but set up their most savage beating yet of the beloved trio. Though Kofi darted to the ring to even the odds, Orton and The Revival made short work of The New Day, as The Viper dropped Kingston with an RKO, and all three joined in on a Shatter Machine-RKO combo to Xavier Woods. Woods got the worst of the assault, with The Revival decimating his knee while Orton forced Kofi to watch. And for a group that prides itself on finding signs of positivity even in the most dire of situations, something truly ominous is fast approaching: Half test of faith, and half reality check, and they won’t know which it is until they’re on the other side of the storm.

My Opinion: 2.5 out of 5 – This was a fun little match that didn’t do too much, but it kept itself from getting boring, so that’s got to count for something.

Match #6: Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross def. Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

The dominant streak continues for the new WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions, as Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross tried their hands against Fire & Desire and emerged with a convincing victory to cement their hold on the women’s tag team division. Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville seemed to have the champs’ number on more than one occasion — The Golden Goddess dropped Cross with a hard right on the outside, and Deville turned the tide every time she stepped in the ring — but Bliss & Cross got the last word, with Nikki catching The Jersey Devil in a swinging neckbreaker to claim the victory.

My Opinion: 2 out of 5 – This was a clumsy, dull match that wasn’t really bad so much as it was disappointing.

Match #7: Cedric Alexander def. Sami Zayn – King of the Ring First-Round Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Even in defeat, Cedric Alexander looked like a Superstar to watch last week in his match against Drew McIntyre, and now, he’s one step closer to becoming King of the Ring thanks to a first-round victory over Sami Zayn. On the one hand, the match was a continuing trend — Sami’s in a bit of a rough patch — but it was something of an upset nonetheless: Zayn is a veteran, while Alexander is a newcomer still on the come-up, but the hungrier man proved to be the victor. Alexander rallied down the stretch to nail Zayn with a Neuralyzer, following up with the Lumbar Check moments later for the win. And while Sami finds himself deeper and deeper in a rut, Alexander finds himself on his steepest upward trajectory yet; “King Alexander” may still be a long shot, but it’s nowhere near out of the question.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5 – This was fine for the short amount of time it got, but deserved more than just a few minutes to shine.

Match #8: (Main Event) Seth Rollins & Braun Strowman def. The O.C. – Raw Tag Team Championship Match

The following is courtesy of wwe.com:

Coming into Raw, it seemed Seth Rollins and Braun Strowman might eventually throw hands over the Universal Championship. Coming out of it, Rollins & Strowman were the Raw Tag Team Champions, having made the most of a last-minute opportunity against Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson of The O.C., who find themselves headed back to the drawing board after weeks of running the show. The victory was doubly impressive, not just because of any lingering tension among the challengers, but because some canny cheap-shotting by The O.C. effectively took Strowman out for the middle section of the match, leaving The Beastslayer to go it alone. AJ Styles made his presence known behind the ref’s back, too, though Strowman rallied just in time to repay The Phenomenal One and take him out of the action with a running charge outside the ring.

The re-energized Monster Among Men did his part in the ring, too, tagging in to truck Gallows and pulverize Anderson with a Running Powerslam. Rollins neutralized Styles’ final, attempted interference with a Stomp when The Phenomenal One entered the ring, Strowman made the cover and that was all she wrote. So Strowman walked into Raw with his eyes on the United States Title (and maybe the Universal Championship) and leaves with a Raw Tag Team Title. And Rollins, who walked into Raw with his mind set on a potential challenge, instead leaves with a partner that renders him unstoppable by association. Everybody wins — though, of course, Strowman’s lingering gaze at the Universal Title suggests these new partners still have a thing or two to iron out.

My Opinion: 3 out of 5 – This was a good match that got the right winners, even if it is contrived. The people were clearly happy about Seth and Braun getting the straps, both as a novelty of them being a team and the tease of the two fighting for the Universal Title later on. I enjoyed this and felt like it served as a strong conclusion to the card.

News Of The Night:

  1. Becky Lynch cut a great (albeit clumsy) promo on making Sasha Banks relevant while telling her she was going to beat her ass.
  2. Sasha Banks attacked Natalya and told her that her father Jim Neidhart was in Hell.
  3. Rey Mysterio almost retired, but his son Dominick talked him out of it by reminding him that he still has to team with him in his debut.
  4. Braun Strowman is being built as the next contender to the Universal Title.

Final Verdict: 3/5

This was a good, simple show that made the King Of The Ring feel important enough to care about and built toward a fresh Universal Title match.


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