WWE Monday Night RAW Review (8/30/2021) by Anthony S. DiSalvatore
Tonight’s show comes from Oklahoma City! We’re fresh off Summerslam, so it’s time to find some new opponents for the incumbent champions on this program. The show opens with the brand new US champion Damian Priest, who says he’ll treat the belt with honor. He then throws Bobby Lashley under the bus for making a strategic retreat last week, then throws out his own open challenge to defend the belt. He’s got the US flag on his pants now, which is a nice touch. Sheamus shows up again and wants a rematch. This makes perfect sense, but he’s followed shortly after by Drew McIntyre, who throws his hat into the ring. Drew wants to challenge on the grounds that he’s never been US Champ before. Bobby Lashley shows up and the fans chant Goldberg’s name at him. MVP shuts this down fast and says Bobby wants to fight Priest so he can win all the belts. I’ve seen him do this once before, and I know he can do it again. BUT WAIT! Randy Orton and Matt Riddle show up. Orton’s dead serious and Matt Riddle’s a clown. Bobby wants to fight for both tag team belts by himself, but Riddle challenges him and MVP to a tag team match later instead. Are there no officials to make these matches?
Enter Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce, who are here just for the purpose of making these matches official. Priest will defend his US title in a triple threat with Sheamus and Drew McIntyre, and the team of MVP and Bobby Lashley will be up against Randy Orton and Matt Riddle. Rhea Ripley shows up, but she has no dog in this fight. She’s up against Shayna Baszler next! I’ll actually watch this one, on the off chance that Alexa Bliss won’t be anywhere near it. After a commercial that plugged the premiere of Chucky on the USA network on October 12, it’s revealed that Nikki Cross will be in Rhea’s corner for this. Nope! Not doing it. What’s next?
Viking Raiders vs. Jinder Mahal & One of His Men
This is the first time Jinder has been on since Drew McIntyre rag tagged him at Summerslam, so the odds are not good that he’ll have any success this week. Both of Jinder’s associates are rotten in the ring. Jinder tags in and things get drastically better for a hot second. Let’s skip to the end. Jinder ends up taking the pin from the Vikings after the slingshot powerslam. This match looked like it happened underwater, but I don’t blame Jinder for this. His style is more slow and methodical, so he didn’t mesh well with these guys.
Damian Priest vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus: United States Championship
As a rule, I don’t like triple threats. I’d much rather see Priest against Sheamus in a singles match with more time than they got at Summerslam, but putting Drew McIntyre in the way doesn’t make sense. Isn’t the US title beneath him? Or are they trying to elevate the belt, and by extension the guy who’s holding it? Logic says Priest will win this since he only just won the belt and got some fancy new gear. Speaking of gear, Sheamus’s protective face mask now says Warrior on it. Nice touch! Do we really need boxing intros for this? It’s not even the last match, and this is free television. All three guys have a standoff, then Priest and McIntyre double team Sheamus. Priest does the same flip dive that hurt him at Summerslam. Why? McIntyre and Sheamus fight amongst themselves while Priest watches.
After a commercial, Sheamus and Priest are squaring off in the ring. Priest throws some kicks, then puts on a triangle choke before Sheamus drops him with a backbreaker. Make a cover stupid! This is for the belt! Sheamus clubs Priest on the chest, then milks it until Drew hits him from behind and makes his comeback with his usual suplexes. Priest comes in and makes a comeback on Sheamus and Drew before he and Sheamus get dumped out of the ring. Sheamus does his own flip dive to the floor, just like Priest did. I hate this! Priest already got hurt last week and the last thing they need is to lose Drew for any extended period of time. Sheamus stays on the floor while Drew and Priest fight in the ring. This is all a triple threat match is now, so they really shouldn’t do them for a while. Just put on a singles match so one doesn’t have to be the third wheel!
All three guys are in the corner and setting up for one of those things where everyone slams everyone. What do they call those things? They do them in every triple threat or four-way match. Priest takes a turn on the floor while Sheamus puts Drew in a cloverleaf, but he soon enters again to chokeslam Sheamus for a two count. Drew looks to be hurt! Could it have been that ridiculous flip dive? Probably. Sheamus takes a break while Priest sets Drew up for the Cross Rhodes, but Sheamus comes in with a big boot. Priest gets dumped to the floor while Drew sets up for the Claymore, but Sheamus rejects him with a big boot instead for a two count. Sheamus gives Drew a body slam off the second rope, and Priest comes back in again to break up the pin. It’s two guys doing big moves to each other, while the third guy waits outside the ring to catch his breath, while also waiting to break up the pin at the right time. Priest wins over Drew with the Cross Rhodes. Surprising! I expected him to beat Sheamus. Drew’s not gonna take this sitting down. Triple threats are such a drag. Priest and Drew shake hands after the match. Bummer! I was hoping for some conflict between them! Is Drew not pissed that he took the pin and lost the match?
Karrion Kross vs. Humberto Carrillo
The Karrion Kross experiment continues. He’s now wearing suspenders in addition to his BDSM mask, and his girl is nowhere to be found. But he’s winning! He choked out Jeff Hardy in record time and also choked out Ricochet and Keith Lee in other matches. This match should be more of the same, mostly because nobody cares about Humberto at this point. Kross does a clothesline and a back elbow. Humberto gets no offense, apart from a chop or two. Humberto comes off the top rope, but eats a forearm smash and gets choked out. This one was only a few minutes, but it still went too long.
There’s a match after this that featured Nia Jax and Charlotte, but I skipped it because I’ve had my fill of Charlotte for now. This may persist for the next few weeks until I’m not tired of her anymore.
Omos vs. John Morrison
Last week, Miz turned on John Morrison once again. I say once again because he already did this around 2010 or so. After this, Miz became world champion while Johnny faded into obscurity for a few years before making a comeback. Why should this time be any different? But I think I know what the problem is! For all the talents Morrison has, I think he’s lacking in the promo department. Nobody really wants to hear him talk, but when he’s running with Miz, he doesn’t have to worry about that. Why not just keep them together and let them have some serious matches? This water gun thing is ridiculous! Johnny starts by trying to spray Omos with water, but Omos isn’t here to play. Johnny proceeds to work around Omos with some cool flips and kicks. He’s very good at this because he has a lot of experience working around large obstacles, but nothing he does has any effect on Omos. Johnny gets wrecked with a chokeslam and the match ends.
AJ Styles vs. Xavier Woods
Not sure why this match is happening, but I think it might have something to do with video games. Kofi isn’t here and Woods is better for it. AJ sets up for the forearm smash early, but Xavier bails to the floor and the match isn’t over yet. AJ targets the leg, but Xavier fires up and fights back for a few minutes. AJ goes back to the leg and wins by submission with his weird leg hold. This match was all right, but nothing special. If AJ were less annoying every time he talked, and Xavier wasn’t running with Kofi, I’d care about this a lot more.
Randy Orton & Matt Riddle vs. Bobby Lashley & MVP: Tag Team Championship
With ten minutes of show time left, I guess this is the last match. Bobby’s immediately fighting with a handicap since MVP’s currently walking with a stick, but that’s not slowing him down. Riddle starts this match and immediately takes a delayed vertical suplex. Randy Orton tags in and stomps MVP while Lashley watches. Bobby seems disappointed. If he loses, will he dump MVP after this? MVP has to bail to the floor, but Riddle follows with a flip dive while Randy cheers him on. He’s not doing that shit! Randy tags in for a comeback and the crowd blows up! MVP takes all the heat during Randy’s comeback. Bobby tries to get in, but he takes the DDT instead. The crowd is loving this! Bobby enters and beats Randy down, but the crowd is still behind Randy. Bobby sets up for his full nelson, but Randy tries to counter with an RKO. It doesn’t work, so Riddle tags in and does his greatest hits. He goes to the top for the flippity flop and nails it, but MVP breaks up the pin and gives him a big boot. Riddle comes back with a kick and both guys are down.
Meanwhile, on the floor, Bobby tries to slam Orton into the ringpost, but he gets blocked and eats it instead. Omos and AJ Styles show up for some reason and double team Orton, leaving Riddle in the ring alone with MVP. He does the flippity flop and gets the pin on MVP, which isn’t a surprise. Bobby gets the jump on Riddle after the match with a spear, but Orton gives him an RKO to make up for it! Nice to see Orton go to bat for his friend! The best match on this show was the triple threat, but I still maintain that it would have been better as a singles match.