Monday Night Raw – September 21, 2020

Monday Night Raw
Date: September 21, 2020
Location: Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Tom Phillips, Jerry Lawler, Byron Saxton

It’s the go home show for Clash Of Champions and we still have some more to do for the show. First up is a triple threat match to crown new #1 contenders, but we also have a rematch from last week when Retribution interrupted Keith Lee vs. Drew McIntyre. Other than that, expect some more Retribution interference. Let’s get to it.

Retribution hacks the opening feed and here they are to get things going. They have officially signed contracts (because that’s a good company move) and unmask (mostly), revealing Mia Yim, Mercedes Martinez (I believe), Dominik Dijakovic, Dio Madden and a fifth member (Shane Thorne maybe?).

They talk about wanting to drain the lifeblood of this company because this place has betrayed them for the love of money. Cue the Hurt Business to chase them off and issue a challenge for tonight. Cue more masked members of the team to surround the ring and the beatdown is on. The goons are kicked out but the original members get in and the Hurt Business is overwhelmed.

Rey Mysterio is proud of his son for following in his footsteps.

Seth Rollins/Murphy vs. Angel Garza/Andrade vs. Dominik Mysterio/Humberto Carrillo

The winners get the Street Profits, on commentary, for the Tag Team Titles at Clash Of Champions. There is no Zelina Vega here to shake things up a bit, meaning she isn’t here to see Garza TAKE OFF HIS PANTS at the bell. Murphy gets sent to the floor to start so Andrade and Garza take over on Carrillo. Andrade is sent outside as well and an enziguri drops Murphy to the floor again.

Mysterio and Carrillo hit big dives to the floor to take out Andrade and Garza before we settle down to Mysterio hitting a Code Red for two on Andrade. Mysterio gets in a pretty sloppy 619 to Garza before it’s off to Murphy for a jumping knee to Andrade’s face. Murphy goes over for the tag to Rollins, who walks away, saying he has a lot on his mind. That leaves Andrade to hit a heck of a spinning elbow to Murphy and the Wing Clipper to Murphy to send Andrade/Garza to Clash at 5:24.

Rating: C+. It was a high energy match while it lasted but it seemed to be a lot more about Rollins and Murphy splitting up than the title match being set. That’s all well and good for a change, as that’s a bigger story than almost anything involving the Tag Team Titles. It doesn’t help that it’s a title match we’ve seen for months now but at least it should be decent.

We recap Braun Strowman invading Raw Underground and getting in a staredown with Dabba-Kato.

Shane McMahon is ready to hype up the fight on the Kevin Owens Show and has the large guard keep Raw Underground on lockdown.

Retribution is ready to beat up the Hurt Business tonight.

It’s time for the Kevin Owens Show with Kevin talking about how he had to deal with Captain Hot Topic last time but we’ll move on from that. He can’t believe it, but his guest is Shane McMahon. After a recap of their history, Owens hands it off to Shane’s natural promotional skills to hype up Raw Underground.

Shane talks about how Owens got to meet Kato a few weeks ago so let’s bring him out right now. Owens looks a bit impressed and says he and Kato will do this at some point, but here’s a preview. That means a slap to Kato, who Shane has to hold back. Owens has a second guest tonight so here’s Braun Strowman. Shane has to try to keep them apart until Raw Underground but here’s Aleister Black to crotch Owens against the post a few times. Shane and the giants don’t seem to notice.

We look at Drew McIntyre vs. Keith Lee being interrupted by Retribution.

Drew McIntyre says yeah, he’s worried about wrestling again with a fractured jaw. As for his fight with Lee last week, it was just business. If you’re in WWE and don’t want to be the champ, why are you here? They’ll laugh over drinks later, but for now, they’re beating each other up.

Retribution has jumped Titus O’Neil and Humberto Carrillo with Dijakovic shouting that WWE stars are the sickness. They are the judge, jury and executioners.

Keith Lee vs. Drew McIntyre

Non-title and Lee has new gear again, with the low cut singlet top that Big Show wore for years over his shorts. McIntyre misses a Claymore attempt at the bell and they trade aggressive headlocks. A running crossbody sends McIntyre over the top in a heap and it’s time to forearm it out in front of the announcers’ table. Back from a break with McIntyre not being able to get him up in a fireman’s carry and being forearmed down instead. The Spirit Bomb is broken up though and McIntyre comes back with a spinebuster for two.

A neckbreaker gives McIntyre two more but the Future Shock is powered into the corner. Lee Hulks Up and hits something like a spinebuster of his own for his own near fall. Some shots to McIntyre’s face (after commentary brought up the bad jaw) and a clothesline give Lee two more. The Spirit Bomb is escaped again and McIntyre hits the Claymore but here’s Randy Orton with a chair to McIntyre for the DQ at 12:22.

Rating: C+. It was nice while it lasted but this was a matter of time until Orton came in. They don’t want to pin Lee and McIntyre shouldn’t be taking any kind of a pin right now so this was the only way to go. That doesn’t make it better, but it makes it logical. Lee is still impressive in the ring, but

Post match Orton drives the chair into McIntyre’s face and hits a Punt on Lee.

Post break Orton says shame on all of the fans for doubting him for even a second. Of course he is going to make it to Clash Of Champions. He’s been here for twenty years and he has been the only constant. Orton has never walked away from a World Title match and he won’t be doing it anytime soon.

The match on Sunday isn’t your usual World Title match though, is it? Orton walks over to an ambulance parked in the arena and opens the doors, saying he took a ride in this ambulance just a few weeks ago. That came after three Claymores and as he heard the sirens, he was fading in and out of consciousness.

Then he knew what it felt like to be taken out by the Legend Killer. He knew what Edge, Christian, Shawn Michaels, Big Show and Ric Flair all felt like. As he came to in the back of the ambulance, he started to smile. It wasn’t because of the pain, but it was because he remembered what he was capable of doing. He knows what it takes to become WWE Champion and that is where he will go again.

For some people this ambulance represents hope, pain or death. For Orton though, it means his 14th World Title, so listen up Drew. At Clash Of Champions, Orton is giving Drew one more ride in the ambulance to make his title reign flat line. Orton slams the door to wrap up a good promo.

Asuka isn’t worried about facing Zelina Vega or Mickie James at Clash but here’s Billie Kay to interrupt. She laughs at the idea of Asuka being willing to face anyone, but here’s Peyton Royce to say she should get a title shot. Billie: “….Yeah. Either of us!” Asuka says no one is ready for her on Sunday, but tonight, she is ready for Billie.

Zelina Vega vs. Mickie James

The winner gets Asuka for the title on Sunday. Mickie promises to never give up on the Raw Women’s Title so Zelina better be ready. Zelina sends her into the corner to start but Mickie is back with a kick to the face for two. Back up and Zelina grabs a Black Widow before sending her into the corner.

A slow motion hurricanrana out of the corner gives Vega two and Mickie’s reversal into a sunset flip gets the same. Mickie is back with a spinning kick to the ribs and a running forearm. There’s the flapjack into a nipup, followed by the top rope Thesz Press for two on Vega. The MickieDT is countered though and Vega’s Backstabber is good for the clean pin at 4:13.

Rating: D+. The match was pretty rough, but what matters here is giving Vega a clean pin to set up the title match. I can’t imagine Vega actually wins the title on Sunday but they gave her a little momentum going into it and made her seem like someone who could be a bit more of a threat. Why it takes so long to do that is beyond me, but at least they did it here. Well done.

Retribution jumps the Hurt Business but they fight back and take out some of the Retribution goons.

Video on Bianca Belair out training various men at the Performance Center.

Earlier today, Akira Tozawa and a Ninja referee waited for R-Truth….in the ocean. R-Truth showed up with Little Jimmy and the 24/7 Title but Little Jimmy saw a shark’s fin in the water. Truth: “SHARKNADO!!!” Truth ran off and left the title in the water, before returning 20 minutes later with flippers and a snorkel. Little Jimmy is almost dragged off by the current but Truth makes the save.

Cedric Alexander vs. Apollo Crews

Lashley vs. Crews for the US Title is announced for Sunday. Before the match, MVP threatens violence against Retribution, with Cedric saying Crews is getting the same. He doesn’t care about Crews or Crews’ kids, so here are Crews and Ricochet to say this is about revenge. Crews starts fast and sends Alexander outside for a suicide dive as we take a break.

Back with Crews fighting out of a chinlock but getting kneed in the ribs. That means the chinlock can go back on with Alexander driving in elbows to the ribs this time. The Michinoku Driver gives Cedric two and he’s a little surprised at the kickout. Crews is back up with a crossbody and a toss Samoan drop gets two. Cedric is sent outside but avoids the moonsault, setting up Alexander’s suicide dive. Back in and Crews is fine enough to grab a rollup for the pin at 8:05.

Rating: C. Not bad here and I’m getting into this feud fairly well. There’s a personal issue between the guys and it’s becoming more and more interesting to watch. I’m not sure where it leads, but the Hurt Business has become a much better team over the last few months. It’s a nice story and the team has gotten more interesting, showing that WWE knows how to do this when they try.

Post match the Hurt Business comes out for a distraction and it’s a beatdown on Crews and Ricochet. Lashley gets the Hurt Lock on Crews to leave him laying.

It’s Raw Underground time with Dolph Ziggler vs. Arturo Ruas. Ziggler gets taken down but manages to block an armbar. A leglock is blocked again and it’s the sleeper to make Ruas tap.

Shane McMahon tries to talk to Braun Strowman but new Raw Underground interviewer Briana Brandy gets to do the interview. Braun doesn’t walk to talk and says Shane better have some better competition.

Here’s Seth Rollins for a chat. He thought it was over with Rey Mysterio, but then WWE.com put up a series of photos of the Mysterio Family. We see one of the photos, and Dominik towers over the rest of them. Rollins thinks something is amiss and has an envelope with results. He asks the Mysterios to come out here and find out the truth in person. The family comes out and Rey says they are tired of the mind games.

Seth says he has grown to respect them because they have overcome adversity together. That’s why they deserve the truth, which includes the result of a DNA test. Seth knows this has been done before and technology has advanced a lot since then. We need an answer to the question: is Rey really Dominik’s father? The results are clear: Rey is not the father. Rey goes on a rant about how we’re sick of this, but Seth realizes he made a mistake. This isn’t a test for Dominik, but rather Aliyah, who isn’t really Rey’s daughter. If that isn’t enough, Rollins has more proof.

We see a clip from last week where Aliyah checked on Murphy after Rollins jumped him. Rollins doesn’t think that was very Mysterio like, but Rey says keep his daughter’s name out of his mouth. Rey calls Aliyah naive for knowing nothing about their world, which sends Aliyah walking away. Angie goes with her as Rollins looks stunned.

Dominik and Rey go after the two of them, leaving Rollins to say he wasn’t trying to drive a wedge between the family. Rollins knows that other families have dealt with this before and apologizes. As he leaves. Rollins flashes an evil smile. Are they just trolling us with this story already? It wasn’t interesting in the first place and is coming up on five months. That’s Rusev/Lana/Lashley territory.

Shayna Baszler/Nia Jax vs. Lana/Natalya

Non-title and the Riott Squad is on commentary. Nia takes Lana down with ease to start and it’s off to Shayna for a gutwrench faceplant. The Kirifuda Clutch makes Lana tap at 1:00.

Post match Jax and Baszler go after the Squad, who smile at the champs. Lana gets planted through the announcers’ table in a loud crash.

Drew McIntyre is ready for Orton but has something to do tonight.

Rey tells Aliyah that he doesn’t want her to get hurt but Aliyah says she is just here for Dominik. But she’s just a naive 19 year old right? Aliyah leaves and Angie won’t let Rey go after her.

Back at Raw Underground, Erik and Riddick Moss fight with Moss knocking him out.

Dabba-Kato wants to see what Strowman is all about.

Asuka vs. Peyton Royce

Non-title and Billie Kay is at ringside. Asuka rolls her up to start and hits a sliding kick. They miss kicks to the face and Peyton is back with something close to the Widow’s Peak minute grabbing Asuka’s face. The Asuka Lock is countered so Peyton settles for a spinning kick to the face for two instead. Peyton goes up but gets pulled down into the Asuka Lock, only to have Zelina Vega run in and jump Asuka for the DQ at 2:16.

Post match Asuka fights back, with the threat of the spinning backfist sending Vega running.

Murphy comes up to Aliyah to say he’s sorry for what she has to go through. Aliyah looks more confused.

It’s back to Raw Underground for Strowman vs. Kato. They lock up to start and trade some body shots until Strowman takes him down for a choke. They fight to the floor for a bit before heading back to the stage, where Strowman hits a right hand and pounds away for the knockout win.

Clash Of Champions rundown.

Retribution vs. Hurt Business

Retribution is introduced as Slapjack, T-Bar and Mace (all in their half masks). MVP is the odd man out here and we start after a break. Lashley pulls Mace (Dio Madden) in and hammers away in the corner but it’s off to T-Bar (Dominik Dijakovic) to clothesline him to the floor. Cedric comes in to hammer away but gets taken into the corner for the tag off to Slapjack (possibly Shane Thorne).

Some shots to the back allow the tag to T-Bar, who sends Cedric flying. The Neuralizer staggers T-Bar so it’s off to Shelton to clean house. Mace gets in a distraction though and T-Bar scores with a kick to the face. It’s back to Mace for a double suplex but Shelton belly to back suplexes Mace for a breather. Slapjack gets backdropped as well and the hot tag brings in Lashley to clean house. The high angle spinebuster sets up the Hurt Lock but T-Bar hits Lashley in the eye from the apron for the DQ at 6:15.

Rating: D+. I’ll get to the issues with Retribution later but this was a pretty lame six man tag. The ending was horrible too as you have this chaotic and violent group and the best way to have them get disqualified is a poke to the eye from the apron? They couldn’t, I don’t know, triple team Lashley for a bit or do SOMETHING a little more violent? Granted that’s about the third biggest problem with the team so we’ll leave it for now.

Post match all of Retribution hits the ring for the beatdown. Cue Drew McIntyre with the rest of the locker room for the big brawl. Most of the ring is cleared and it’s Randy Orton with an RKO to McIntyre to end the show.

Overall Rating: C-. I actually liked most of the show as they kept things moving and, aside from the endless Mysterio vs. Rollins deal, they didn’t linger on anything too long. They added three title matches to Sunday’s card and even built on some of the matches they already had. Throw in some nice Raw Underground stuff and the show was pretty good, assuming you ignore one boneheaded move with Retribution after another.

Where do you even start? We’ll start back in 1996 with the NWO, who terrorized WCW for a LONG time. They ran in, they attacked people, they messed with the production truck and they generally caused chaos. It took until Uncensored 1997, about nine months after they debuted, for them to win authority to do a bunch of stuff.

Here, about a month and a half after Retribution debuted, WWE just hands them contracts for no apparent reason. Ignoring the fact that they were all trained at the Performance Center and therefore would seem to be under contract already, why would WWE do that? I know we won’t get an answer, but I’d think one might be a bit helpful.

The whole point of Retribution is they’re a bunch of outsiders who are mad at WWE. If they hate the place so much, why would they accept contracts to work for them? Why would WWE offer them those contracts? Why would you take away the main core of their whole persona in one night? It doesn’t make sense from a kayfabe perspective or a writing perspective. Did WWE think that Retribution would just play nice now that they worked here after they didn’t play nice when they already worked there? That’s the logic we’re working with here?

Then they actually got in the ring, where their names sound like rejected Final Fight villains from 1994. I don’t know what they are going to call Mia Yim and Mercedes Martinez, but are we really supposed to not recognize some of these people? Thorne I can accept as he is average sized and wears a full face mask and MAYBE Madden as he never wrestled on TV, but Yim, Martinez and Dijakovic are kind of hard to hide, especially with half of their faces showing. Losing via DQ is fine enough, but they couldn’t wait ten seconds and have the rest of the team run in to end it?

If this is the best WWE can do with Retribution, the team is in more trouble than they seemed to be. This felt like someone completely new took over the story (which very well may be the case) and ignored everything that made it interesting or that made sense about it in the first place. I liked some of what I saw, but unless you turn the volume off and ignore some details, you might get a big headache in a hurry.

Results

Andrade/Angel Garza b. Humberto Carrillo/Dominik Mysterio b. Seth Rollins/Murphy – Wing Clipper to Murphy

Drew McIntyre b. Keith Lee via DQ when Randy Orton interfered

Zelina Vega b. Mickie James – Backstabber

Apollo Crews b. Cedric Alexander – Rollup

Shayna Baszler/Nia Jax b. Lana/Natalya – Kirifuda Clutch to Natalya

Hurt Business b. Retribution via DQ when T-Bar poked Lashley in the eye

 

 

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