Monday Night Raw
Date: September 13, 2021
Location: TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts
Commentators: Jimmy Smith, Corey Graves, Byron Saxton
We’re getting close to Extreme Rules and it seems we’re getting the main event really early. This time that means we are seeing Bobby Lashley defending the WWE Championship against Randy Orton in a match that was scheduled for the pay per view, which sounds like a way to set up a rematch. Let’s get to it.
Here is Mr. Money in the Bank Big E. as a guest star as RKBro comes out for a chat. Before they can even get in the ring, Bobby Lashley and MVP cut them off. Big E. says he’s cashing in but Riddle asks him to not do it on Randy. MVP doesn’t want to hear this because Big E. isn’t cashing in on anyone. This was supposed to be MVP/Lashley vs. RKBro for the Tag Team Titles but then Orton politicked his way into a title match. Orton is asked how he did that but Orton says he did it to throw Lashley off his game. Big E.: “We got two big meaty men bumping meat tonight!”
MVP calls Big E. a clown prince and says he is surprised Big E. showed up here. Maybe he is scared of Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar, but after tonight, he will fear Lashley too. Orton says he’ll take the title with one RKO, with Big E. saying he’ll cash in after. Lashley threatens both of them and knocks the briefcase out of Big E.’s hand. The yelling is on but it’s an RKO to drop Lashley. Big E. sits in the corner as Lashley gets up and RKBro leaves. They need to do something after teasing this much, bug I’m not sure that’s going to happen.
Charlotte doesn’t think much of Shayna Baszler, mainly because of Nia Jax being involved. She will have the title and the crown because Long Live The Queen.
Charlotte vs. Shayna Baszler
Non-title, but it is a Championship Contender’s match, which is treated as more important around here at times. Earlier today, Nia Jax was annoyed at Baszler for costing her the Raw Women’s Title last week but they’ll be fine going forward. Maybe they can get some acting lessons together. Shayna goes after her to start but gets sent outside for the big slingshot dive to send us to a break.
Back with Baszler shaking the ropes to break up a moonsault but some elbows get Charlotte out of the Kirifuda Clutch. Baszler German suplexes the heck out of her for two and kicks away, which brings Charlotte back to life. A shot to the face staggers Baszler and Charlotte sends her outside for the moonsault.
Cue Nia Jax for a distraction though, allowing Shayna to send Charlotte into the steps as we take another break. Back again with Charlotte starting in on Baszler’s knee but missing a middle rope knee to the knee. Nia gets up on the apron to distractions Shayna so Charlotte can hit a big boot for the pin at 14:25.
Rating: C+. It was a fine back and forth match but egads I’m done with trying to care about Nia and Shayna fighting. This has been going on for the better part of a year now and for some reason they keep at it, despite it being WAY past time to have them go their separate ways.
Post match Charlotte stays in the ring and here is Alexa Bliss, carrying both Lillie and a present. It’s a gift for Charlotte, but she doesn’t think Bliss knows her taste. Charlotte collects titles instead of dolls and at some point you have to leave your dolls at home. They do a near cartoon exchange of “you want it/no I don’t” until Charlotte accepts the present. Charlotte: “Well it’s not ticking.” And it’s a Charlotte style Lillie doll, which Bliss names Charlie.
Bliss wanted Charlotte to have someone to play with after she takes the title at Extreme Rules. Bliss: “She’s even a narcissistic little b**** like you!” Charlotte doesn’t want the doll and she’ll send Bliss a Mattel Charlotte figure when she is in the padded room. The fight is on and Bliss kicks her out to the floor. Back in and Bliss grabs a Code Red to send Charlotte running. This was another case of insane things being said as written by bad writers and going WAY too nuts to make it work. Oh and check off the “woman called a b****” spot on your cards.
Video on Randy Orton.
Drew McIntyre/Viking Raiders vs. Jinder Mahal/Veer/Shanky
We come back from a break with Mahal and company triple teaming McIntyre until the Raiders run in for the save. The bell officially rings and it’s Veer Thesz pressing Erik to keep control. Erik knocks Veer away to hand it off to McIntyre to clean house. The overhead belly to belly sends Veer flying on the floor but the top rope right hand misses. A spinebuster plants Mahal but Shanky comes in to deck McIntyre from behind. That’s fine with McIntyre, who plants him with a Michinoku Driver. The Claymore drops Shanky for the pin at 2:38. That’s how I like my Mahal matches.
We get a New Day reunion in the back with Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston insisting that Big E. deserves the title. Singing ensues.
Reggie runs through the back to escape the usual band of idiots. R-Truth and Akira Tozawa tell Drake Maverick that his plan didn’t work. Maverick says the problem was in the execution. Truth and Tozawa argue.
US Title: Damian Priest vs. Jeff Hardy
Priest is defending and says he’s doing this despite facing Sheamus at Extreme Rules. Speaking of which, cue Sheamus to join commentary before we get started. Priest knocks Jeff down to start but Jeff avoids an armdrag. Both of them counter a signature move or two and Priest smiles at the standoff. A jumping back elbow staggers Hardy, who is back up with a shot to the knee and the legdrop between the legs.
Hardy calls for the Twisting Stunner but has to settle for kicking Priest outside. Priest gets dropped again and we take a break. Back with Hardy reversing a belly to back superplex into a crossbody, with Hardy mainly landing on Priest’s neck for two. With Priest still being able to move, they slug it out from their knees until Hardy cradles him for two. A Sling Blade gives Jeff the same and the middle rope splash gets two more as Priest is rocked.
Back up and Priest hits a hard spinwheel kick for two of his own but Hardy catches him on top. Priest knocks him down though and hits a middle rope (from the middle of the apron rather than a corner) leg lariat for another near fall. Hardy gets his own two (Sheamus INSISTS that it was three) but Priest is back with the Reckoning for the pin at 11:14.
Rating: B-. This is another example of why I don’t get how WWE has nothing for Hardy on a more frequent basis. He can work well with just about anyone so why is he stuck on Main Event at best most of the time? At least they did something here and gave him a chance for a nice match. Now just do something more frequently.
Post match, Sheamus comes in and takes out both of them with ease…or at least until Priest pump kicks Sheamus in the face.
Nikki Ash thinks she and Rhea Ripley need to have a special celebration but Ripley is ready to beat Natalya. Cue Natalya and Tamina with the former saying they dominate eras. The fight is on and here is Sonya Deville to announce another match for right now. It’s not a title match, meaning we are looking at 112 days since Natalya and Tamina defended the titles in a televised match.
Tamina vs. Nikki Ash
Natalya and Rhea Ripley are here too. Tamina throws her around with straight power to start but Nikki gets in a few shots. That means a huge clothesline to cut her right back down and Tamina grabs the chinlock. Nikki fight sup again and kicks out the leg so Tamina hits her so hard in the face Tamina’s own hand is hurt. Another comeback attempt works a bit better as Nikki knocks her into the corner and manages a running headscissors. Tamina punches her right back down but Nikki grabs a quick tornado DDT for the pin at 4:44.
Rating: D+. Not much to this one, but what were you expecting? This was the latest edition of Tamina Is Awesome and that doesn’t make for much of a match. This is another example of the lame way to build up a Tag Team Title match and I’m sure the next match will be just as effective, because this rarely works well at all.
Post match commentary treats this as a huge upset because the Raw women’s division is badly put together. Tamina and Natalya jump Nikki, take out Rhea, and send Nikki into the barricade.
Natalya vs. Rhea Ripley
Joined in progress with Rhea in trouble and no Nikki in sight. Rhea fights up and they run the ropes until Natalya calls her a b****. They fight over some near falls each and Natalya snaps off a headscissors. Ripley blocks a Russian legsweep with elbows and a big boot to put Natalya on the floor. The running dropkick sends Tamina into the steps but Natalya uses the distraction to deck Ripley.
Back in and Ripley has to fight her way out of a Sharpshooter attempt and they’re right back on the floor. A snap suplex plants Rhea and we take a break. Back with Rhea blocking the Sharpshooter again, this time reversing into a small package for two. Tamina comes up for a distraction so here is Nikki Ash to trip Natalya down. Natalya’s rollup with feet on the ropes is broken up as well so it’s a headbutt into the Prism Tap at 11:57.
Rating: C. Better match but it’s the exact same idea to set up the Tag Team Title match. At some point it stops mattering because the titles have no value, which has been the case for a very long time now. Natalya and Tamina don’t defend the things so why should I suddenly care after not having any reason to for months?
We recap the opening segment.
We look at Alexa Bliss giving Charlotte Charlie.
Charlotte throws Charlie away.
Mansoor/Mustafa Ali/New Da vs. Mace/T-Bar/AJ Styles/Omos
Mace and T-Bar promise violence. Mansoor armdrags AJ down to start and then dropkicks him into the corner. It’s off to Kofi to stomp AJ down and the Unicorn Stampede is one. Ali doesn’t like Mansoor getting into this though, allowing AJ to grab a suplex. T-Bar comes in for a cyclone boot but it’s off to Mace to throw a lot of big boots. Mace and T-Bar take out Ali again on the floor and a belly to back suplex gets two inside.
We take a break and come back with Mansoor fighting out of a chinlock. The enziguri isn’t enough for the hot tag though as AJ comes in and grabs the ankle. Another enziguri is enough to set up the diving tag to Kofi. A missile dropkick gives Kofi two and the frog splash to AJ’s standing back gets two.
Everything breaks down to set up the parade of secondary finishers until Kofi rolls AJ up for two. Ali tags himself in and hits the tornado DDT….to send him over to Omos for the dramatic tag. The whole team combined can’t get Omos down so it’s the chokeslam to finish Ali at 11:04.
Rating: C+. This got some time and that helped the match get a lot better. A match with this many people involved needs the extra time and Omos wrecking the team was an effective ending. It makes sense to go with fallout from such a big mast last week and everyone had something to do here, so well done.
Video on Bobby Lashley.
MVP and Lashley aren’t worried about Big E. If he wants to add his name to the list of people who can’t stop Lashley, they would be glad to take care of him. Big E. comes in for some booing and hissing because he is cashing in tonight.
We recap Doudrop vs. Eva Marie, with Doudrop finally standing up to the bully and crushing her a few weeks ago.
The Draft is coming in October.
Doudrop vs. Eva Marie
Eva slugs away to start but bounces off of Doudrop when trying a shoulder. The backsplash misses for Doudrop but Eva can only cover for one. Doudrop shoves her into the corner to escape what looked to be Sliced Bread and there’s a corner splash. Eva goes for the eyes but a rollup just gets a glare from Doudrop. Now the backsplash connects and the running basement crossbody finishes Eva at 1:58.
Karrion Kross says most of us don’t know who we are, but we know who we want to be. We see some highlights of Kross destroying people and he loves every second of their agony. Maybe he doesn’t have an ultimate plan and he’ll just wreck everyone to take what he wants. Everyone will fall and pray.
Raw World Title: Bobby Lashley vs. Randy Orton
Orton is challenging and MVP/Riddle as the seconds. They head outside early on where Orton has to save Riddle by sending Lashley into various things. A ram into the announcers’ table gives Orton one back inside but Lashley sends him into the corner. Lashley misses a charge into the post but he is fine enough to counter the hanging DDT. Orton gets sent outside and comes up holding his leg, only to be fine enough to drop Lashley onto the barricade. A clothesline sends Lashley over said barricade and we take a break.
Back with Orton forearming away and hitting a superplex to send them both crashing down. The delayed near fall sends Lashley outside, where he picks Orton up and sends him head first into the post. Back in and a running shoulder hits Orton’s ribs in the corner to drop him in pain. A neckbreaker gives Lashley two and we hit the chinlock. Orton fights up and hits a heck of a clothesline, setting up the scoop powerslam for two.
The RKO takes too long to set up though and Lashley hits the spear for the big near fall. The Hurt Lock doesn’t go on and it’s the RKO to drop Lashley…who rolls to the apron, with an assist from MVP. Orton gives MVP and RKO and the fans are WAY behind him…until another spear retains the title at 13:18.
Rating: C+. You had two talented guys getting some time here and it worked well as a result. I liked the match and even though it was unlikely that Orton was going to win, there was just enough of a chance and that makes things so much better. They built up how fresh of a match this was and while that wasn’t a game changer, it was a nice detail to remember.
Post match the brawl is on again with Riddle making the save. That earns him a beating as well, so Lashley puts him through the announcers’ table. Lashley comes up holding his knee though….and it’s cash in time!
Raw World Title: Bobby Lashley vs. Big E.
Lashley is defending….or he would be if not for his knee injury. Big E. slaps him in the face and that’s enough to ring the bell. Lashley takes him to the mat and the brawl is on. A spear cuts Big E. down for two but he goes back to Lashley’s bad leg. The Big Ending gives Big E. the pin and the title at 1:18!
New Day comes out to celebrate and a lot of pyro goes off to end the show.
Overall Rating: B-. This was a tricky one to grade as they threw a lot of stuff out there and there was definitely a different energy to the show. That being said, there were a lot of the same old dull booking tropes on here (tag partners facing each other, partners not getting along, feuds that won’t end when they need to) and they didn’t make things better. At the same time though, Big E. just won the WWE Championship. Lashley didn’t need to drop it though and that opens some doors for the future. I love the ending, but the rest of the show was a more energized version of a lot of the same problems they have had for years.
Charlotte b. Shayna Baszler – Big Boot
Drew McIntyre/Viking Raiders b. Jinder Mahal/Veer/Shanky – Claymore to Shanky
Damian Priest b. Jeff Hardy – Reckoning
Nikki Ash b. Tamina – Tornado DDT
Rhea Ripley b. Natalya – Prism Trap
Mace/T-Bar/AJ Styles/Omos b. Mansoor/Mustafa Ali/New Day – Chokeslam to Ali
Doudrop b. Eva Marie – Basement crossbody
Bobby Lashley b. Randy Orton – Spear
Big E. b. Bobby Lashley – Big Ending
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