Welcome to The RAW Reaction, where I offer my take on this week’s offering from Nashville. You can check out John’s full in-depth review here.
We open the show with AOP arriving and Charly Caruso asks them why they attacked Kevin Owens. They pulled out the old heel cutting a promo in a foreign language bit and Charly asked them to speak English. They said she looked lovely, and she did, before walking away.
The opening video plays and the stage blows with pyro to get everyone ready. Samoa Joe is back on commentary this week and it looks like Dio Maddin is possibly gone from the desk, as there was no mention of him this week.
Seth Rollins starts us off tonight and he apologizes to everyone for what he said last week and asks Kevin Owens to come out. Owens asks about AOP and Seth said he didn’t have anything to do with them. Owens calls Rollins a liar and out comes AOP. AOP with the foreign language promo and Rollins bails. AOP let Rollins go to the back and Owens challenges AOP. AOP laughs and then leave. Owens said he’s ready to fight and asks anyone in the back to come out and fight. Lashley and Lana are shown walking backstage as we cut to break.
Back from break on Temptation Island, Lana comes out to ramble on about Rusev and Owens begs her to stop because nobody cares. He’s not really lying there. Lana eventually shuts up and out comes Lashley and a couple of suits called detectives. The match starts off with Lashley in control. Owens regains control and they have a decent match until the expected AOP DQ run-in. AOP beats Owens down and literally drags him out of the arena to break.
Back from break and Charly is trying to interview Lana and Lashley in the ring. Lana babbles on some more and Rusev pops out of the crowd to slide into the ring. Charly was nice enough to pull Lana out of the way so Rusev could superkick Lashley. Rusev bails back through the crowd and we get some poorly acted banter about why the cops just stood around instead of pouncing on Rusev. Lashley bumps one of the cops, so they do a shocking (not really) face turn and arrest him. Lana continues with the poor acting and eventually slaps a cop so she could get arrested. The whole thing finally ends with Lana and Lashley getting hauled off to jail.
Our next match has Akira Tozawa get tossed around the arena by Drew McIntyre. Tozawa bumps like a pinball and McIntyre picks up the easy win. McIntyre cuts a great promo on Randy Orton, who eventually comes to the ring. McIntyre cuts another great promo that Orton is old and he is new. Orton said he has no issue with McIntyre, but if McIntyre has an issue with him, they should settle it right now. This leads to The OC coming out and McIntyre told Orton he had other problems to deal with and left. OC jumps Orton three on one until Ricochet, Humberto Carrillo, and Rey Mysterio make the save. That took a while to get to where it needed to get to and I smell a six-man tag later. Holla holla, Playa!
Tony Nese is out next to get smashed by Aleister Black. Nese got in a couple of moves, but Black dominated him for the win. Buddy Murphy is interviewed by Charly backstage and he said that Black needed to calm down. Murphy said he would help Black calm down and I can’t wait for that match.
Andrade is out next for his match with Eric Young. The match is pretty paint by numbers and Andrade actually picks up another clean win. After the match, R-Truth runs down to ringside with the 24/7 title being chased by guys looking for TV time. NASCAR Champion Kyle Busch and Fox NASCAR analyst Michael Waltrip are conveniently at ringside and offer Truth a hiding spot while sending the pursuing Job Squad off in another direction. Truth thanks them for their help and surprise surprise, Waltrip has a referee shirt on under his Fox jacket and Busch with the roll-up to capture the 24/7 title. After Raw went off the air, Truth recaptured the 24/7 title followed by some bad acting by Busch.
Charly catches up with Rollins as he is leaving the arena to ask him about AOP and Rollins speaks briefly before leaving.
Up next on Prime Time Wrestling has No Way Jose taking on Erick Rowan. Jose lives up to his name and quickly gets demolished by Rowan, who continues to talk to whatever is in the cage.
The Kabuki Warriors cut a quick promo on Charlotte Flair before their handicap match. Flair tried to stay one step ahead of The Kabuki Warriors, but the numbers game always caught up to her. The match itself was pretty good, but the outcome was obvious from the get-go. Sane blind tags herself in as Asuka gets locked in the Figure Eight. Sane hits an Insane Elbow on Flair to pick up the win.
The Viking Raiders maul a couple of dudes in a quick match.
The main event was the six-man Teddy Long special (holla holla) between The OC and Ricochet/Mysterio/Carrillo. The tag match was a great ending to the night with AJ Styles picking the win up for his team after a second rope Styles Clash on Ricochet. After the match, Styles eats an RKO from Orton to send the fans home happy (although Becky Lynch won the dark match after Raw went off the air).
Let’s take a look at tonight’s highs and lows.
Drew McIntyre had a couple of great promos with Randy Orton, planting seeds for a future feud between the two. I think 2020 might be Drew’s year.
The six-man tag was a really great match to end the night with. Ricochet does need to stop eating the pins though.
Most of the show felt like an episode of Prime Time Wrestling with lots of jobber abuse matches. There could have been a little more effort put into the matchmaking.
That’s all I’ve got for now. See you next time.