24th Jul2018

WWE Raw – July 23rd 2018: Results & Review

by Nathan Favel

2018-raw-logo

Welcome to this week’s Monday Night RAW review, right here on Nerdly. I’m Nathan Favel and we have a major announcement to get to, as well as a big main event. Let’s get to the action Jackson! Carl Weathers won’t be involved in this, by the way. I don’t know him and he doesn’t seem like the kind of guy to appear in a review, especially one that’s just in print. Could you fit a person in a sentence? You’d probably need to keep the sharp points of the letters from piercing their temple. They’d probably get that weird tongue-dangling-out-of-the-mouth look, and that eyes-roll-into-the-back of-your-head motif going on. Is that what a moose looks like if they ram their head into another moose too many times? What the hell was I going to do? Oh, wrestling… I need to get the money to buy the delete/back-space button.

Raw Tag Team Champions The B-Team def. “Woken” Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Against all odds, The B-Team defeated “Woken” Matt Hardy & Bray Wyatt for the second time, this time in a defense of their Raw Tag Team Titles with a victory that represented the most definitive statement that their run has some legs in it yet. In fact, while The-B-Team’s magic continues to flourish, The Deleters of Worlds’ suffered an unusual glitch. (All this under the watchful eye of The Revival backstage, no less).

The challengers wisely centered their strategy around Bray Wyatt, who started the contest after being neutralized in their earlier loss. Hardy proved adept as a closer, dropping Curtis Axel with the Twist of Fate. But when interference from Bo Dallas brought Wyatt in to even the odds, Bo bounced Bray off the turnbuckle and straight into Hardy, who Axel rolled up in a crucifix pin for the 1-2-3. Though The Deleters seemed to offer a show of respect with a Woken O after the match, the gesture quickly turned hostile as Hardy took out Dallas with a Twist of Fate and Wyatt dispatched The Axe Man with Sister Abigail. Two things remain abundantly clear: The B-Team’s reign is far from OVAH, and their business with the challengers might just be far from finished.

My Take: I wish they would take the B Team seriously when they win, but at least they did retain.

Sasha Banks & Bayley def. Samantha Simon & Karen Lundy

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Last week, Sasha Banks told Bayley how she really felt with an emotional, soul-baring confession that seemed to finally bring months of conflict back to an even keel. So, does that mean their friendship is finally secure? It’s looking that way. Not only did they make relatively quick work of a pair of locals, but when Bayley went to raise Banks’ arm following the match-ending Bank Statement, The Boss stepped away, seemingly refusing the gesture… only to double back and offer Bayley a hug, which was accepted in heartwarming fashion.

My Take: This was a sneeze and a fart’s worth of action, but at least they didn’t do another dissention angle.

Mickie James def. Natalya

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Alexa Bliss and Ronda Rousey were both conspicuous by their in-ring absence this week (the former didn’t have a match, and the latter is serving the final week of her suspension), but that didn’t stop their camps from waging a proxy battle when Bliss’ enforcer Mickie James battled Rousey’s training partner Natalya.

Despite the presence of Bliss at ringside, the match was looking like a victory for Natalya after she dropped the six-time Women’s Champion with an Electric Chair. The Goddess briefly distracted Natalya, forcing The Queen of Harts to dispatch her at ringside with a clothesline, though the former SmackDown Women’s Champion ran right into a Mick Kick from the fully-recovered James. Add a win for Team Bliss, but with Rousey set to return on next week’s Raw, the tables may well be just about to turn.

My Take: This was a nice little match that gave two fabulous wrestlers a chance to show their stuff.

Mojo Rawley def. Tyler Breeze

The following is courtesy WWE.com:

Mojo Rawley continues to impress, this week earning a repeat victory over Tyler Breeze that saw the high-energy Superstar snuff out Prince Pretty’s well-scouted game plan (Breeze clearly learned from his missteps last week) by pure force, throwing Breeze into the ring post before sealing the deal with a sit-out Alabama Slam. It was the kind of performance that more than backs up Rawley’s insults over the past week both in ring and on social media, particularly those that targeted Bobby Roode. But The Glorious One himself calmly refuted Rawley during a backstage interview, claiming that he — like Breeze and recent Rawley rival No Way Jose — is comfortable in his own skin and wasn’t sweating any insults that came from behind a keyboard.

My Take: Tyler Breeze deserves so much more than this. Rawley is coming along, but between these two, there’s more money with Breeze, who can wrestle like there’s no tomorrow.

Seth Rollins & Finn Bálor def. Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntyre

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Drew McIntyre promised to wipe the smile off Finn Bálor’s face, but the first-ever Universal Champion was still flashing those pearly whites at the end of the night, having defeated The Scottish Terminator not once but twice. Granted, the first was more of a moral victory than anything, as Dolph Ziggler interfered at a crucial moment to instigate a two-on-one beatdown that left The Extraordinary Man in a heap.

When Seth Rollins arrived to even the odds, Raw General Manager Kurt Angle restarted the bout as a tag team contest, and Finn & Seth pulled out the win there as well, with The Kingslayer scoring the fall by tossing McIntyre from the ring and administering a Stomp to Ziggler. And, off the strength of that victory, Rollins received another crack at the Intercontinental Title, as Angle sanctioned Ziggler vs. Rollins for SummerSlam. Smiles all around, and who can blame them?

My Take: Rollins continued his streak of great work here, adding to the great work of Balor, Ziggler and McIntyre to make this a very nice tag team match.

Ember Moon def. Liv Morgan

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

Last week’s victory by Sarah Logan showed that Ember Moon can be toppled by The Riott Squad. This week’s loss by Liv Morgan showed that the numbers game helps. With Logan barred from ringside, Morgan received her third opportunity in four weeks against the former NXT Women’s Champion and seemed determined to make the best of it, putting Ember on the ropes with a frantic press. But Ember quickly soared off those same ropes, downing Morgan with her feared Eclipse move. For a Superstar who believes firmly in prophecy, this may well be the first step toward its fulfillment.

My Take: There wasn’t much here, but at least Moon got a win.

Roman Reigns def. Bobby Lashley to earn the right to face Universal Champion Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam

The following is courtesy of WWE.com:

For months, Roman Reigns has called himself the uncrowned Universal Champion. Now, the throne is finally within his grasp once again. The Big Dog outlasted Bobby Lashley in a WWE Extreme Rules rematch to earn a Universal Championship Match against Brock Lesnar at SummerSlam, setting up the fourth one-on-one confrontation between the two since their first tussle at WrestleMania 31.

To get there, Reigns had to overcome a Superstar who convincingly defeated him just eight days ago and was well on his way to doing so again, thwarting Reigns’ strategy at every step and wearing him down in an attempt to neutralize The Big Dog’s more powerful maneuvers before he could tee them up. Much like Extreme Rules, Reigns fought back to bring things to a war of attrition that could only be ended with a Spear, and like Extreme Rules, Lashley landed the move first.

Unlike Extreme Rules, however, Reigns kicked out and Lashley got nervous, quickly resetting to line up a second Spear to put Reigns away. The Big Dog thwarted the move with a Superman Punch, however, and while Lashley was able to swat Roman away once as a last gasp, he was too drained to stop the Spear that followed and ended the bout. Reigns gave due credit to Lashley for a big fight with a handshake, but Lashley’s goal will have to wait. Reigns is going to Brooklyn, and The Beast awaits.

My Take: Bobby Lashley was the star here, wrestling like a house of fire all the way through the fight. I sound like an idiot in that last sentence. Lashley channeled the best parts of Goldberg and Kurt Angle here, running circles around Reigns, who himself looked good here. Lashley even got the crowd on his side and to great effect. Sadly, the whole match led to Roman winning again, which will likely lead to the same scenario as he had with Brock Lesnar at this past Wrestlemania. Over-all, this was an excellent match and a prime candidate for the best WWE match of the week.

News of the Night:

  1. The McMahon family announced that the women’s division will have their own Pay Per View this October, called Evolution. Trish Stratus and Lita will both appear and the roster for the card will feature 50 women.
  2. Kevin Owens will wrestle Braun Strowman for the Money in the Bank contract at Summerslam.
  3. Dolph Ziggler will defend the Inter-Continental Championship against Seth Rollins at Summerslam.
  4. A Titus Worldwide/Authors of Pain feud is still being built.
  5. Elias attempted to sing his songs all night, but gave up.
  6. Baron Corbin and Finn Balor are still feuding. Corbin is coming along as a personality.

Final Verdict: The announcement of the women’s PPV, as well as an excellent main event, saved a dull card from being just that.

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