WWE Monday Night RAW Review (8/23/2021) by Anthony S. DiSalvatore
This was a big weekend for wrestling! We saw some big returns, including Brock Lesnar and CM Punk (on the other channel)! Becky Lynch also appeared, but given the way she won the ladies’ title, I don’t expect her to be cheered for long. Just yesterday, we saw the highly anticipated rematch between Walter and Ilya at NXT Takeover 36! I won’t spoil that for you if you haven’t seen it, but I saw it this morning and both those guys are fantastic. I strongly suggest you seek this match out if you’re a fan of old school wrestling. But enough of that! I don’t know what’s on the card for tonight, but I suspect we’ll find out what’s next for Brock Lesnar, which is the only selling point needed. Summerslam fallout starts now! Tonight’s show comes from San Diego!
Bobby Lashley is out first. After successfully defending his world championship against Goldberg and winning via ref stoppage, he’s out here to crow about it. I don’t blame him! I’ve watched Goldberg for his entire career and he’s never lost that way before. This promo by MVP is a different tone than I’ve ever heard from him. He’s way too complimentary of Goldberg. I can’t tell if he’s just doing a bit or if he’s being serious. There’s still the matter of that stupid kid jumping the rail, but MVP brushes it off by saying Bobby would have done it to anybody who decided to jump in there. Bobby refuses to apologize. Damian Priest enters! Shocking!
This is quite the jump for Priest in less than 24 hours. He’s only just now won the United States title, and now he’s here to challenge Lashley to a match and stand up for the kid! Priest insults Bobby’s manhood and they come to blows. Priest holds his own against Bobby and clears the ring! Bobby gets pissed and goes to grab his ring gear. This will be the first match of the night. I’m impressed! Priest was floundering, but he totally turned it around in just two days. Wow!
Bobby Lashley vs. Damian Priest
Bobby is back for round two, and now he’s dressed to wrestle. He opens with power and corners Priest right away. Bobby starts throwing bombs, then sets up for the spear. He’s not playing games! Priest blocks it, then Sheamus comes in and gets the jump on Priest for the disqualification. What a bummer! Drew McIntyre shows up to even the odds and there’s a brawl all over the ringside area between all four guys. After a commercial break, so everyone can compose themselves, everything restarts as a tag team match.
Priest gets the better of Sheamus until Bobby makes a distraction and kicks his ass outside the ring. I guess he tagged himself in, but it must have been off-camera. Priest takes a prolonged beating on the outside and Bobby targets his knee, just as he did Goldberg at Summerslam. Aside from that, I’m pretty sure his tailbone was at least bruised, if not broken after that fall he took last night, so Priest is in pretty rough shape already. I’m not sure he can pull through this. After another break, Priest is down and Sheamus is pouring it on. Priest badly needs to tag out. For his part, Drew McIntyre won his match against Jinder Mahal last night very easily, so he shouldn’t have any physical problems. Sheamus picks up where he left off with forearm smashes to Priest’s kidneys, then Drew McIntyre tags in for a comeback!
Drew goes his usual suplexes, then sets up for the Claymore before MVP makes a distraction. Bobby connects with a chokeslam, but Drew’s able to avoid the spear and Bobby hits the ringpost instead. I hate that! Sheamus tags in and body slams Drew from the second rope for a long two count. This match may never end! Sheamus sets up for the big boot, but comes up empty. Bobby’s had enough and decides to take a walk. Sheamus is incredulous, but doesn’t have time to do anything before Drew Claymores him to Oblivion and wins the match. I normally hate the singles match turning into a tag team match thing, but I think it was the only way to protect Priest from taking the pin this time, so I’ll allow it! Every guy looked impressive in this match, but Priest, in particular, needs a rest. I know his back’s killing him!
Karrion Kross vs. Ricochet
Kross is in dire straights right now. He’s split matches against Jeff Hardy and Keith Lee, and he just lost his NXT championship last night to an aging Samoa Joe. Just when I thought things couldn’t get any worse for him, he comes to the ring for this match wearing a BDSM helmet! What have they done to him? As for the match, it’s nothing special. Kross wins in short order with a rear-naked choke.
Miz vs. Xavier Woods
This entire thing came about after Woods dressed up like Scott Hall for some reason and sprayed Miz with water yesterday. Is this what wrestling has come to? Anyway, I saw John Morrison walk out on Miz last week, so I’m surprised to see him still accompanying Miz to ringside for this. Kofi is nowhere to be found, which is refreshing. Woods targets Miz’s previously injured knee, and it looks like he can’t continue. The ref may call this thing off, but it’s a ruse. Miz gets the jump on Xavier and takes control. The match goes to the floor and Miz gets hucked into the stairs.
After another break, Miz somehow has the upper hand again. Several more minutes of inconsequential stuff happens in this match. Johnny tries to get involved and Miz tries to the steal the pin, but the ref ends up being distracted and Miz loses to a small package. I’m about done with Miz and Johnny at this point. I don’t understand why they spray water everywhere, but their segments have been death for months now. I suppose there’s only one place to start for Woods as a singles wrestler and it had to be here, but they’re dangerously close to not being included in these at all anymore. After the match, Miz beats Johnny down, so they aren’t even teaming up anymore. I saw this same thing years ago. Miz went on to blow up and win the world title, and Johnny faded into obscurity before he was fired. Could one of these dudes be on their way out? I’d care a lot more if they hadn’t looked like goofs for so long before this.
Mansoor (w. Mustafa Ali) vs. Jinder Mahal
I already talked briefly about Jinder’s return to pay per view. He came up on the losing end against Drew McIntyre, so he’s here now against Mansoor. To be honest, I’m just glad he’s a regular on television again. I’ve been a big supporter of Jinder since he became world champion! Jinder has the obvious edge in size here, and he looks very impressive from the start. Mansoor is great at getting his ass kicked! Mustafa Ali’s trying to get Mansoor to take the easy way out and cheat to win, but Mansoor insists he wants to do things the right way. It’ll be interesting to see which way he ultimately goes. Mansoor gets overpowered easily and dropped with a superkick. Jinder continues to pour it on and the ref has to call him off after a five-count. This match is thrown out, but I like Jinder’s aggression! Where will he go from here?
Matt Riddle vs. AJ Styles
We’ve seen this match a few times now, and I’m surprised it’s happening again. After getting their asses kicked for the tag team belts at Summerslam, you’d think AJ and Omos would find something better to do. This match isn’t terribly different from all the other ones we’ve seen from these two. The match finally picks up steam when Omos gets involved on the floor and hucks Randy Orton across the arena, but Riddle eventually wins with his inverted Neutralizer. This was a good match, I’m just not going move for move this time. AJ gets dropped with an RKO after the match for good measure. It appears the powers that be are putting all their eggs in this basket for the time being! No Brock Lesnar this week, but I expect him to show up on Smackdown.