I am very excited to be joining the Wrestling Express team! I will be covering RAW, NXT, PPVs, and some Ring of Honor!
Let's get started!
As everyone knows, "The Biggest Party of the Summer" will be coming to you live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York! You can catch all the action on the award-winning WWE Network for only $9.99!
The festivities kicked off with The Authority making their way to the ring to run down the card for the four-hour show and to announce that Jon Stewart, the former host of The Daily Show will be hosting.
The first match of the night was a tag team match between Randy Orton, who teamed with Cesaro and Kevin Owens teaming up with Mr. Money in the Bank, Sheamus! For the most part, the match was a back and forth contest to see who was the better man. Cesaro had Sheamus well in hand until the end of the match when Randy Orton tagged in. Kevin Owens decided he wasn't having it and decided to get involved in the match. That clearly didn't work as Cesaro made sure Owens didn't interfere as Orton placed a well-timed RKO on Sheamus for the win. What does this mean for Sunday, when Cesaro takes on Kevin Owens and Sheamus takes on Randy Orton (again)? Tune in to find out!
With last week's match between Roman Reigns and Luke Harper ending in disqualification and chaos, the two behemoths faced off on Raw again. Dean Ambrose was on commentary this time and Bray Wyatt took poor Byron Saxton's chair again (granted, Dean shoved the chair towards Bray). Reigns and Harper fought to the finish, with Harper taking control of most of the match. That is, until Roman dug deep and landed a Superman Punch and Spear right when it counted the most. The battle was won, but as for the war? Who knows?
The first Divas match of the night came in the form of the Lass Kicker, Becky Lynch taking on Team B.A.D's Tamina! It should be noted that this is Becky's first singles match since being called up to the main roster and Tamina's first singles match since the Beast in the East special on July 4th. Tamina showed strong offense but the Irish fireball was just a little quicker, using the second-generation Diva's momentum against her to apply the Dis-Arm-Her for the submission win. It will not be the last time these Divas meet, as they will be in a 9-Diva tag team elimination match. It is also not the last time we will see Team B.A.D. in action.
Ah, Mark Henry. Once a feared competitor, and now he is losing to Rusev. The Ravishing Russian Lana was on commentary while Rusev dispatched of the World's Strongest Man. After the match, however, Lana decided she had had enough and stepped into the ring to call out Summer Rae, who has been Lana 2.0 over the past few weeks. Summer got into the ring and had a nice slap waiting for her, courtesy of Lana.
Lana then called out Rusev, who stepped into the ring and fully looked ready to hurt her again. Not so. A returning Dolph Ziggler rushed in the ring to get rid of the Bulgarian Brute. Ziggler was about to superkick Rusev when Rusev, being Rusev, pulled Summer in front of him like a human shield. Knowing Dolph wouldn't kick her, Summer laughed but her joy wouldn't last long as Lana delivered a beautiful roundhouse kick (in a skirt, no less!) and Dolph superkicked Rusev. That sent Rusev and Summer running and Dolph and Lana sealed things with a kiss.
However, all of this does not lead to a mixed tag team match with Lana making her debut at Summerslam. Instead, we are getting a one-on-one match with Dolph and Rusev. I have a feeling the leggy blondes will get involved somehow.
This match didn't last very long, but Ryback and Miz managed to put a decent match on while Big Show was on commentary. After the match, Ryback challenged the World's Largest Athlete, but Big Show declined, instead waiting for Sunday.
I was fully expecting this contract signing to go to hell in a handbasket, as is par for the course when it comes to WWE. Sadly, no tables were upended nor was anyone hit. Instead, we were treated to two very good promos from the champions, with John Cena actually displaying seriousness for once. Seth Rollins called Cena "the villain" and "a disease" and the Minnesota crowd was mostly in support. Rollins then proclaimed himself "the cure" to Cena.
Cena came out there with a new shirt and the crowd, as usual, was divided. He delivered an impassioned promo, touching on some very key points. He designed his new gear thinking he wouldn't have a shot at the title again - at least, in his words, "until Captain Morgan here opened his big, fat, stupid mouth!" He then went on to say that when he wins, he will be tying Ric Flair's record of 16 championships. Cena said to Seth and to Triple H, "When you lose, you lose."
The look on Triple H's face was not one of happiness - nor fear. Instead, he knows what's at stake as well. Ric Flair passed his legacy to him and he did the same thing to Seth Rollins. But what happens if Cena wins? What happens to the legacy these men are trying to protect?
Cena finished the promo by saying this: "Triple H, you were never Ric Flair's bitch. This Sunday, I'm gonna make you mine!" He angrily signs the contract and walks out, leaving Seth fuming in the ring and the Authority possibly planning something.
Before the Fatal Four-Way Tag Team Championship match on Sunday happens, the teams involved got into a tag team match that didn't really go well. The New Day were teaming with Los Matadores until Xavier Woods got into a fight with El Torito, leading Kofi and Big E to abandon their post and help restrain Xavier while one of the Los Matadores held back the tiny bull, which was hilarious. That led to Titus O'Neil to make the hot tag to Kalisto to wrap things up.
In what was technically the main event of Raw, it was champion vs champion as the BO$$, NXT Women's Champion, Sasha Banks took on the Fearless Divas' Champion Nikki Bella. This match was pretty even for the most part until Nikki took Sasha up to set up for the Rack Attack. Naomi jumped up on the ring to distract the referee, which helped Sasha turn Nikki over into the Bank Statement. The Divas Champion tapped out to the NXT Women's Champion. Hopefully this leads to a future title match between the two. It should be noted that near the end of the match, the crowd started chanting "We Want Lesnar!" Really, guys? You couldn't wait?
The last event of the night - which caused RAW to go into overrun - was the homecoming of Brock Lesnar. The hometown boy got a welcome fit for a Japanese wrestler or someone coming back to Ring of Honor, with confetti and streamers. The audience also bowed down to Lesnar while Paul Heyman sang to him. Thankfully, he delivers better promos than he sings. It even got the Beast to smile. Paul Heyman then launched into one of his brilliant promos, before getting cut off by the gong. It was just a fake-out, though. Or was it? Heyman continued to sell us on this match that "is too big for Wrestlemania" until....
This time was no fake-out. The Deadman appeared this time to deliver a swift kick to Brock Lesnar's groin, sending him to the ring mat. Taker then delivered a Chokeslam and a Tombstone to finish Lesnar off - for now.
Like the song goes, "No sleep 'til Brooklyn!"
And that concludes my review on the go-home show of Monday Night RAW. The floor is now yours.
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