Monday Night Raw
Date: September 9, 2019
Location: Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York
Commentators: Michael Cole, Corey Graves, Renee Young
We’re in the World’s Most Famous Arena this week for the first of two shows. They’re also the last two shows before Clash of Champions, which is looking like quite the lame duck show given the Bray Wyatt match being all but confirmed for October. Oh and Steve Austin is here too. Let’s get to it.
We’re not wasting time this week as here’s Austin to open the show for some beer consuming. Before Austin gets to the point, we take a trip down memory lane and hear about some of his great moments in MSG, including Survivor Series vs. Bret Hart, the first Stunner to Vince and Summerslam vs. Undertaker, complete with Austin being knocked silly. With that out of the way, it’s time to get down to the contract signing between Braun Strowman and Seth Rollins.
Strowman comes out first and stares Austin down, drawing a heck of an AUSTIN chant. Strowman offers a handshake but Austin introduces Rollins instead, with some extra bass in his voice. Rollins wants to sign but first has to talk about how awesome it is to be in the Garden with Austin. See, Strowman thinks there is something going on here and Austin might have it in for him. Rollins isn’t sure if that’s the case or not but gets in on the WHATs for a bonus.
Austin says we need to sign the contract so Rollins says he’ll win on Sunday and then signs. Strowman says he respects Austin but a rattlesnake is still a rattlesnake. He won’t turn his back on Rollins because he loves being Tag Team Champions. He’ll love being Universal Champion more though and promises to give Rollins these hands. Strowman signs….and here’s the OC to interrupt.
Styles mocks a bunch of Austin catchphrases and threatens Steve a bit, with Styles not exactly buying it. AJ rips on New York a bit so Austin tells him to put some bass in his voice. The OC gets in the ring with AJ asking how Strowman got a title match so easily and calls Austin old. Austin moves the table and it’s Strowman and Rollins fighting the OC as Austin looks on. AJ dodges the Stomp and sends Rollins outside, only to turn into the Stunner to blow the roof off the place.
AJ Styles vs. Cedric Alexander
Non-title and Cedric starts fast as AJ is banged up. AJ gets sent into the barricade early on and Alexander’s anklescissors has him in more trouble. A pair of dropkicks gets two and the Neuralizer puts AJ on the floor for the big flip dive. Back in and AJ pulls on the bad arm to take over as we go to a break. We come back with Cedric fighting out of a chinlock and snapping off the Michinoku Driver for two. An enziguri from the apron looks to set up a springboard but Karl Anderson grabs Alexander for the DQ at 8:26.
Rating: C+. The match was entertaining while it lasted but what makes me happier here is how the booking. In theory this sets up Cedric for the US Title shot on Sunday but they did it without having him pin Styles. It’s another case where you can do this kind of thing and protect your champion, which WWE has been doing better lately (for the most part). I could go for more of Cedric vs. Styles, especially in Cedric’s hometown on Sunday.
Post match the beatdown is on but here are the Viking Raiders to go after the OC and lay out AJ.
Sasha Banks and Bayley are glad they’re back together because nothing is stronger than the two of them.
Conor’s Cure video.
Here’s Roman Reigns to talk about battling cancer last year and how he wanted to use his platform to bring awareness to the issues cancer patients face. That’s why he’s been going to a bunch of children’s hospitals and tonight, they’re getting to come out here in front of all of you. Five children come out in homemade wrestling gear, each with their own wrestling name. This is always cool and you can hear the sincerity in Reigns’ voice as he talks about it.
Video on Bayley’s heel turn and a good chunk of the women’s division being dragged into it.
Bayley/Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte/Becky Lynch
Charlotte and Becky are ticked about having to team with each other so they charge to the floor to start the fight in a hurry. Charlotte gets sent into the barricade and it’s Becky getting double teamed before the bell. Charlotte clears the ring with a chair and we take a break before the match starts. Back with the bell ringing (thank you) with Banks bailing instead of having to face Becky. That’s fine with Becky, who sends Bayley into the barricade and hands it off to Charlotte to keep up the beating.
Charlotte fights out of the corner in a hurry and hands it back to Becky for a jumping kick to the face. Banks comes back in and grabs a suplex for two on Becky. They don’t waste time on the hot tag though as Charlotte comes in and kicks Bayley off the apron. The neckbreaker gets two on Banks and the Figure Eight goes on. Becky tries the Disarm-Her on Bayley, who sends Becky into Charlotte for the save. The Meteora off the apron hits Charlotte and we take a break.
Back with Charlotte getting knocked into the corner but getting up a knee to stop a charging Bayley. The hot tag (the sequel) brings in Becky to clean house with the Bexploder to Sasha. Bayley can’t get the Bayley to Belly so Sasha hits the Backstabber instead. Charlotte big boots Sasha and Becky adds a double missile dropkick. The moonsault actually hits Bayley (though Charlotte almost landed in a pushup) but Banks breaks up the cover at two.
Becky gets the Disarm-Her on Banks on the floor with Bayley making the save. That means a baseball slide from Charlotte….but there is no one there so it was just an over enthusiastic dive to the floor. Bayley suplexes Becky into the barricade and German suplexes Charlotte on the floor before taking it back inside. The top rope elbow hits raised knees and Natural Selection pins Bayley at 17:27.
Rating: B. This was an energetic match and the crowd was hot for it throughout. You could tell they were fired up to have the Horsewomen in the same match and we had a good one here. It’s a tag match so the champ getting pinned isn’t the worst thing, though I’m hoping it means Bayley retains on Sunday as there is no need to put the title on Charlotte again just yet.
The OC isn’t happy with what happened but they run into Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler. Roode and Ziggler laugh it off but bring up having mutual enemies. They offer to join forces but want to know where the OC stands. Fists are bumped and we have an alliance for….whatever is planned for later.
Rey Mysterio vs. Gran Metalik
They exchange some quite wrist control to start so Metalik tries a headlock. The battle over a monkey flip ensues and Metalik starts flipping around and counters a hurricanrana. An anklescissors looks to set up the 619 but Metalik ducks and grabs a rollup for two. Metalik sends Rey hard to the floor and nails the step up flip dive.
Back in and a slingshot hilo gets two, followed by the required chinlock. Rey fights up in a hurry and headscissors Metalik into the middle buckle, setting up the top rope seated senton. Metalik hits his rope walk dropkick and a hurricanrana gets two. Code Red gives Rey two more and it’s the springboard frog splash to put Metalik away at 6:25.
Rating: C+. They were energized here and the match worked well as a result. The idea here was to show that Mysterio can still go, which is exactly what he did throughout the match. Metalik got to showcase himself as well and it made for a rather nice, albeit short, match, which is what they were looking for.
The Street Profits hype up the rest of the show, including a ten man tag later tonight. Oh and Angelo Dawkins seems to approve of Sasha with the blue hair.
Video on Erick Rowan destroying Roman Reigns and Daniel Bryan on Smackdown.
King of the Ring Semifinals: Ricochet vs. Samoa Joe vs. Baron Corbin
The fans are VERY into Joe. Corbin gets sent outside to start and it’s a headscissors into a dropkick to put Joe outside as well. Back in and Corbin shoulders Ricochet down to some rather warm heat. That’s fine with Ricochet, who kicks Corbin in the face and hits the running shooting star press for two. A hurricanrana off the apron takes Corbin down as well and we take a break.
Back with everyone down and the fans going back and forth on Corbin. Ricochet goes outside to go after Ricochet and sends him face first into the post with a reverse powerbomb. Joe’s suicide elbow drops Corbin and a big boot gives him two with Ricochet making the save. A snap powerslam gives Joe two on Ricochet but the Tower of Doom is broken up.
Corbin turns Ricochet inside out with a clothesline but Joe kicks Corbin in the face for the three way knockdown. Back up and Corbin big boots Ricochet, followed by Deep Six for two with Joe making the save. The Koquina Clutch has Corbin in trouble on the floor, with Joe taking him down. Ricochet hits the shooting star off the apron onto both of them and everyone is down again. Back in and Ricochet has to flip out of the Clutch, setting up the Recoil to Joe. The 630 connects (with Ricochet leaving it a bit short and landing back first onto Joe’s stomach) but Corbin pulls Ricochet to the floor and steals the pin at 14:07.
Rating: B-. So our hopes are now down to Elias and a guy called Shorty G. I’m sure we’ll be getting King Corbin and then have to hear about him for the next several months, because why not try something again and again when it hasn’t worked well in the first place? The match was fast paced, but seeing Corbin win just sucked the life out of the whole thing, as it almost always does when Corbin is involved.
Lacey Evans vs. Natalya
Rematch from last week where Evans knocked Natalya cold. Evans powers her into the corner to start so Natalya hits a slap to the face and some right hands of her own. It’s already time to go after Evans’ leg with a weird leglock making it worse. That’s broken up so it’s an attempted Sharpshooter to send Lacey outside. This time Lacey gets in some shots to the face and wraps the ring skirt across her face.
Back in and a slingshot elbow gets two but the double jump moonsault only hits mat. The discus lariat is countered with a kick to the ribs though and Lacey sends her face first into the mat a few times. That means a napkin to wipe down the face so Natalya kicks her in the ribs. The Sharpshooter makes Lacey tap at 5:05.
Rating: C. Natalya? Winning clean on Raw? Over someone who main evented a pay per view earlier this year? Does WWE really see value in a Natalya vs. Lacey Evans feud? I know Evans has fallen a lot in recent weeks but come on. Anyway it was another energetic match as the Garden is bringing out the work in a lot of people tonight.
Before Raw went on the air, former New York Knick Enes Kanter won the 24/7 Title from R-Truth. He then revealed his Boston Celtic jersey, only to get rolled up to give Truth the title for the fifteenth time.
Clash of Champions rundown.
It’s time for the Firefly Fun House. Bray is speaking with a Spanish accent so here’s Ramblin Rabbit to say he’s experienced STRANGER DANGER. Wyatt thinks that might be Steve Austin, with the rest of the friends confirming the identity. That’s not something Bray is going to deal with because the Fiend took care of everyone else. Everyone keeps saying stranger danger so Bray shouts for QUIET.
You’re supposed to take turns talking in the Fun House, so Bray fixes Abby’s clock (stuck on 3:16) with a hammer. See, Austin is a rattlesnake and you can’t blame a rattlesnake for doing rattlesnake things. Strangers are just friends you haven’t made yet. Think of Strowman and Rollins tonight. They met the Viking Raiders and now they’re all friends. The problem is that friends won’t help you because the Fiend never forgets. See you in h***!
Cedric Alexander/Braun Strowman/Seth Rollins/Viking Raiders vs. OC/Dolph Ziggler/Robert Roode
Rollins and Ziggler start things off because we can never see these two fight enough. A hiptoss into an armbar has Ziggler in trouble and Erik slams Ivar onto him. Everything breaks down for a wild fight and Strowman chokeslams the heck out of Ziggler. We take an early break and come back with Cedric in trouble in the corner. Cedric gets in a faceplant but AJ takes him down by the bad arm and brings Gallows in. The New York fans, getting AJ, the OC and more in the main event, respond with the Wave.
Roode comes back in to work on an armbar and slams the arm into the mat for two. Cedric fights up and knocks Roode down, allowing the hot tag off to Rollins. House is cleaned, including the springboard knee to Anderson for two. The parade of strikes to the face begins with Rollins superkicking Styles to the floor to clear the ring. It’s off to Strowman for the running shoulders around the ring. The running powerslam gets two on Anderson with Roode and Ziggler shoving Seth into the cover for the save.
Strowman isn’t happy with Rollins and we take a break. Back with Anderson spinebustering Rollins for two but Rollins grabs a Blockbuster for a breather. The buckle bomb to Ziggler allows the tag to Strowman and house is cleaned again. Strowman goes shoulder first into the post (it’s a tradition) and Erik comes in to beat people up and shout a lot. Ivar goes up top and hits the big flip dive onto the pile. That leaves Cedric to Lumbar Check Styles for the pin at 19:35.
Rating: C+. The ending makes sense and is a lot more acceptable than having the champ get pinned in a singles match. It was the big spectacle match to end the show with everyone in there at once so it’s hard to complain about what they went with for a main event. Sometimes it’s better to go with the big match instead of some singles match that we’ve seen before and that’s what they did here.
Post match here’s Austin again and a lot of beer is consumed to end the show.
Overall Rating: B+. This was one of the better shows they’ve done in a very long time with everyone working hard and the feel of the Garden making things seem that much better. The idea here was to make the show feel like it was a big deal and that was what we got. Now the problem is I doubt a lot of people actually watched the show because Monday Night Football premiered, but at least those who watched it had a good time. There was nothing bad and the show flew by with everyone working harder than usual. Very good show and the kind that you almost never get from Raw these days.
Cedric Alexander b. AJ Styles via DQ when Karl Anderson interfered
Becky Lynch/Charlotte b. Bayley/Sasha Banks – Natural Selection to Bayley
Rey Mysterio b. Gran Metalik – Springboard frog splash
Baron Corbin b. Ricochet and Samoa Joe – 630 to Samoa Joe
Natalya b. Lacey Evans – Sharpshooter
Cedric Alexander/Braun Strowman/Seth Rollins/Viking Raiders b. OC/Dolph Ziggler/Robert Roode – Lumbar Check to Styles
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