It’s Memorial Day! WWE starts it with a nice tribute, and the crowd promptly begins a weird out of sync USA chant. I’ve got high hopes for this evening.
We kick things off with Miz TV w/ special guests Cesaro & Sheamus. Sheamus talks about how the fans turned their back on his best friend Cesaro when The Hardyz showed up and he’s angry! Miz then takes over the interview to talk about his own quest for the Intercontinental Title and a wild Dean Ambrose appears. He talks about how he’s always doing crazy things, you know like coming out here while there’s three guys that don’t like him very much, but he’s not stupid. The Hardy Boyz join him and before we go to break it seems pretty clear we’re getting a six man tag.
The Hardy Boys & Dean Ambrose vs SheaSaro & The Miz (w/Maryse)
I do not know if I am bias or what but Jeff Hardy always looks exhausted to me. I admittedly do not enjoy the guy but I’m worried for his health at all times. This is a pretty good match! Matt seems kind of stiff, and I tune Jeff out for the most part but I thought Dean was good and has been on fire as of late. I also just really love all three of the heels in this match and their working over of their opponents is top notch. There’s some chaos as we near the finish, and it ends with an awkward twist of fate from Matt to Miz and Jeff Hardy throwing himself off the top of the rope for a swanton.
Winners: Dean Ambrose & The Hardy Boys
Corey Graves abruptly leaves the announce table after receiving some sort of text or email!! After the break Kurt is reading said message and apparently it’s trashing his job as the GM of Raw. Kurt wants to know where Corey got this information but he just says people like to tell him things. INTRIGUING.
The Drifter vs Zack Evans
This starts with The Drifter serenading the audience and how lucky are they?! This is a quick match just to get The Drifter over and the biggest problem with it is that for some reason Corey is still gone so he can’t express his hate for Elias. UNLESS of course he set it up and sent himself the message in order to have an excuse to leave the announce desk so he wouldn’t have to see him at all. It’s all a RUSE because he hates The Drifter so much.
Winner: The Drifter
Samoa Joe is in the back gazing dreamily at a video of Finn Balor’s entrance for some reason before Chuck Caruso interrupts and asks about his match tonight. He says he knows Finn Balor and he’s broken him before, and he’s interrupted by ol’ creep Bray Wyatt. He’s the devil Joe doesn’t know. He waxes poetic about himself and you know, I just drift away…
Finn Balor vs Samoa Joe vs Bray Wyatt
This is a really entertaining match that serves to put Finn Balor over pretty well. That may sound crazy, but he’s the smaller guy in there hanging with two larger opponents who give him quite the beating. All three do look pretty good, but I’m no great reteller of moves and the like (lots of great maneuvers out there!). It’s worth a watch, everyone looks good unfortunately the person who gets pinned and that comes down to Bray Wyatt. Not surprising, and honestly someone needed to lose. The only issue is Bray *always* loses. It’s a hard situation and I even annoy myself thinking that’s a problem. Finn looks like he’s taking the win home with a coup de grace, but Joe throws him from the ring and takes the victory for himself.
Winner: Samoa Joe
Backstage Mike Rome is here with Seth Rollins to ask about Samoa Joe just winning his match and facing Roman Reigns later tonight. Seth says he knows Roman well and he’s learned a lot about Samoa Joe. It’s a pretty good spot. I particularly enjoy when Seth references his new finisher and says “what was my greatest weakness is now my greatest strength”. Good line.
Noam Dar (w/ Alicia Fox) vs Rich Swann (w/ Sasha Banks)
Well I mean I guess at least they’re not constantly teasing Sasha going heel and killing Bayley every week (I mean I still think that’s coming). It’s not a very long match, and it ends when Alicia tries to get involved and Sasha knocks her off the apron so Swann is free to hit a Phoenix Splash. Swann stands supreme! Afterwards he and Sasha dance because of course.
Winner: Rich Swann
Backstage TOP GUYS are back, Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder. I enjoy them so much, and it’s possible they killed Enzo Amore so that’s fun!! THEY CALL HIM THE TILAPIA OF WWE. This interview is a lot of fun, watching these guys makes me love tag teams again. They’re accused of being the ones to attack Enzo last week WHICH IS CHARACTER ASSASSINATION. Except they totally did it. When they return to the announce desk Corey insinuates that perhaps Cass took out Enzo last week and as they show a video package of Akira Tozawa vs THE Brian Kendrick from 205 Live, Cass confronts Corey to explain his anger at that accusation. Oohhhh snap Corey!
Titus O’Neil (w/Apollo Crews) vs Kalisto
Titus is here to show Apollo how it’s done! He shows him how it’s done by holding Kalisto’s tights and rolling him up for the win. Apollo calls him out on it, but by the end they’re taking selfies in the ring of course. For some reason Booker is condoning the cheating because he forgot he shouldn’t like the bad guys.
Winner: Titus O’Neil
Alexa Bliss is here to show do a “Bayley: This Is Your Life Skit” Yikes. I feel like these never ever work outside the ONE time it did work. I even LOVE Alexa Bliss and this is painful. We meet her teacher who says Bayley’s dad had to sit with her in class or Bayley would cry to be separated. Then her ex best friend says nobody liked Bayley because she was such a goody two shoes. Then we meet Bayley’s ex boyfriend who says Bayley brought her father along on dates. Then the ex-best friend and ex-boyfriend realize they’ve been hiding feelings for each other all this time. Wow. This is an UGLY segment. I mean Im not surprised it is, and the crowd is hating it, but I really wish it could have been better. Bayley eventually enters and Alexa still regains control, revealing a hidden kendo stick under a table. She beats Bayley down and stands supreme. Wow.
Backstage Enzo has been attacked again! Cass is there and Kurt assures him he saw The Revival leave the building so it couldn’t be them! Cass says they could have come back! Kurt says he wants all the facts. Cass angry, grrrr! Maybe it was him..
Austin Aries & Jack Gallagher vs TJP & KING Neville
I skipped Raw last week so it must have been the week before we saw this exact match. Why couldn’t one of these guys been teamed with Swann and Dar and had this match without two of it’s usual participants? I don’t know. I thoroughly enjoy all of these guys, but I can’t imagine you get these guys over showing the crowd the same matches again and again. And I like them! The match gets some time too and is pretty good. Jack Gallagher takes most of the punishment throughout though. I think the crowd at least TRIES to be into it. In fact Aries does a pretty good job winning them over before the end of it. Aries sold his knee injury pretty well, and it made me think Neville was definitely taking the win for his team, but Aries pulled it off with a Last Chancery and made the champ tap out. Good action better than the last encounter they had as teams if I had to say. Neville is ANGRY he lost. Aries is awesome. Neville is too, but Aries really got the crowd into this thing.
Winners: Austin Aries & Jack Gallagher
Backstage Roman says he doesn’t care about Seth Rollins or if they were friends, all he cares about is showing everyone he’s the Big Dog and this is his yard! BOW WOW WOW!
We get a Goldust promo now, old school Shattered Dreams Production! I like it a lot, I just wish he’d wear his wig. For some reason that would just be the cherry on top for me. It’s a pretty good promo, and I even like when R Truth has his own movie-like promo interrupt and send his own message to Goldust. It’s a fun little segment and as much as I don’t particularly like R Truth, I can be here for this.
Seth Rollins vs Roman Reigns
I love watching Seth Rollins wrestle. I do not love having to pretend that Roman Reigns is not a heel. At one point he’s acting so cocky while staring at Seth struggle that Booker T has to REMIND us that he’s a good guy who isn’t using any dirty tactics to take on Rollins. Whatever. It’s an entertaining match with both guys looking pretty good. Seth hits about 17 different moves that could be finishers and Roman Reigns hits 3 superman punches and a spear and takes the win cleanly. I mean, I like when there are winners I do. So I won’t complain. I just don’t see how this helps you make Roman look like a sympathetic character. He even yawns at one point!!
Winner: Roman Reigns
FINAL THOUGHTS: I think it was a strong start to this Raw, and it fell apart during that “Bayley This Is Your Life” segment. I do however think that was the low light, and despite getting matches we’ve seen before all of them were pretty entertaining. I didn’t hate the show, and while I don’t think there was anything spectacular to make anybody tune in, I don’t think you could say it was a particularly bad show. I just want EXCITEMENT. SOMETHING interesting and fun to happen. I hate to say it but just being a decent show with matches we’ve seen before is not going to bring us back. I do like the segments with Corey leaving to talk to Angle, and Cass confronting him at the announce desk, but we gotta see where it goes! Maybe I’m thinking too positively.
WATCH THIS MATCH: Seth Rollins vs Roman Reigns was my favorite match of the night, but the opening match and the Cruiserweight match were pretty good.
SKIP THIS MATCH: Titus O’Neil vs Kalisto. It’s a nothing match, nothing happens. Or, watch that and just skip that Alexa/Bayley segment.
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