Welcome to the latest installment of the WWE Raw and Smackdown Live Quick Hits recapatory. Each week either Mark Blake, Brandi Wagner or I will run down the week that was and try and entertain you along the way. This week there is no joy in Mudville as we have little in the way of home runs and more in the way of strikeouts.
Let’s begin with Monday night. Raw begins with Alexa Bliss coming out to announce the Raw entrants in the upcoming men’s Money In the Bank match. She says the four men representing Raw are Braun Strowman, Ricochet, Drew McIntyre and Baron Corbin. It is only at this point that we find out that only the Raw entrants are being revealed on this program, and not Smackdown Live which had been suggested. Once they are all out in the ring, the four men agree to engage in a tag team match, which followed right away, or at least after the commercial break.
The match pits Ricochet and Braun Strowman against Baron Corbin and Drew McIntyre. The match itself is primarily about heel domination. However, Corbin’s selfishness does his team in. Just as it appears as though McIntyre is setting up for the Claymore kick, Corbin tags himself in. That leads to McIntyre punching him in the face, which in turn leads to Strowman hitting him with a powerslam and setting up Ricochet for a shooting star press for the three count and the win.
You scratch my back, I’ll shave yours: Before the match between The Usos and Gallows and Anderson, we’re told that by the Usos that we are about to see something we hadn’t seen before. And what they show is Dash Wilder shaving Scott Dawson’s back while in the shower. After that bit of hilarity, the Uso brothers defeat the Good Brothers.
Miz TV begins during the second hour with Bobby Lashley as the guest. It ultimately ends with Lashley and Miz throwing fists, and a match is made during the commercial break. After both men get shots in on each other, it isn’t long until the Miz gets the advantage. It appears as though he was about to close in for the win when Shane McMahon’s music plays and he makes his way to the ring, distracting Miz. At first, Miz thwarts Lashley’s attacks despite McMahon’s distraction, but then a picture of Mr. Mizanin is shown on the Jumbotron leading to the fatal distraction, and Miz is speared and pinned by Lashley. After the match, Shane comes into the ring and picks at the bones of a beaten Miz, leading to him choking out the A-lister.
Raw Women’s Money In the Bank Entrants: Alexa Bliss returns to announce the women competing in the Women’s Money In the Bank Ladder Match. She first announces Natalya, Dana Brooke and Naomi, and then the final competitor, herself. After she announces herself, Naomi challenges her to a match. At first, Bliss tries to decline the offer abut the match is eventually made.
We then see the next edition of the Firefly Funhouse that walks closer to the line of being about disturbing children’s cult leader than the previous one. Bray Wyatt’s mannerisms certainly are enough to raise the question of if fans can trust him. That’s right, trust him….
If the shoe fits, lose it: Bliss and Naomi compete though Bliss is not in her ring gear. She repeatedly ties her shoelaces and battles back, beating down Naomi. Eventually, her shoes are pulled off and Naomi hits her with the rearview, followed up with a split-legged moonsault and a pin.
A man, a lady, and a Chuck all walk into the ring and…The Man comes out to address how she will be competing twice in one night, in what is being dubbed ‘double trouble for The Man.’ After a commercial break, she says there is nothing impulsive about the situation she has created for herself, and that she doesn’t care about the odds. She derails what others believed and how that won’t matter come Money In the Bank. ‘I didn’t make history by dodging anybody, I achieved it by beating everybody.’ Great line, and fitting of the champ. Evans comes out after Lynch calls her out. The two go right at one another outside of the ring until officials pull them apart. It’s great to see backstage producers Sonjay Dutt, Jamie Noble and Fit Finley all involved in splitting these two up.
“Shave Your Back”: A Tag Team matches up involving the Raw tag team champions Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins against The Revival Wilder kicks off the third hour. Ryder and Hawkins got the advantage early on in the match. But The Revival eventually gains control and take it to Ryder. But the Broski is able to reverse a pinning attempt, securing a three count of his own and a win for him and Hawkins.
‘The critic of the critics: Zayn comes out to the ring and shares what he learned about life while traveling away from the WWE bubble. He has become Raw’s version of Daniel Bryan, though his antagonism and contempt for the audience isn’t rooted in environmentalism but rather his personal beliefs. The crowd isn’t responsive but the promo is solid.
Booya-come back: Samoa Joe versus Rey Mysterio was the final match of the evening. Joe delivers a promo about how he thinks Dominick is embarrassed by his father. Mysterio comes out and even though Joe took the fight to him as he has in the past, the former champion comes right back at him. After a commercial break, Joe has the advantage in what is a pretty even affair. Joe blocks a 619 and attempts a coquina clutch, but Mysterio counters with a roll up for the win. Dominick comes out to celebrate with his father and hoists him up on his shoulders.
The main event is a contract signing for AJ Styles and Seth Rollins. Styles delivers a promo about how Rollins is said to be the ‘next AJ Styles.’ He declares he will never be that, but Rollins counters that he never wanted to be the next anyone, but rather the first Seth Rollins. Eventually, of course, the two come to blow, and eventually, Styles delivers a phenomenal forearm that puts Rollins through a table. The champ is left laying with Styles standing over him.
Michael Cole interviews Kofi Kingston who comes out to discuss his rise to the WWE championship and the support he’s received along the way. He follows up by discussing threats to his championship, most notably how Kevin Owens and attacked him after his match last week. Kingston then challenges Owens to a match for the WWE Championship at Money In the Bank. Owens comes out and accepts, and when Xavier Woods attacks, Owens beats him down.
The Hardys are apparently going to make an announcement about the Smackdown Live tag team championships. Jeff is on crutches so don’t know what this is all about.
Bayley faces Becky Lynch and is mentioned as the first woman from Smackdown Live that will represent the brand in the women’s Money In The Bank match. Becky and Bayley spar with one another, with Bayley gaining an advantage as it goes to commercial. After the break, they continue to exchange moves. A double clothesline wipes both of them out at first. Eventually, Bayley attempts a top rope elbow only for it to be countered and she gets locked into a disarmer. She taps out, giving Lynch the win. After the match, Charlotte attacks both women leaving them laying outside the ring.
It seems as though they are reintroducing Aleister Black with promo, as this is the second week in a row he speaks cryptically, directly to the camera.
The Hardys come out to discuss the Smackdown Live tag team championships. After the commercial, they announce that Jeff Hardy is injured and cannot compete. Thus, Matt states that the Hardys have to forfeit the tag team championships. This is attributed to Lars Sullivan’s attack a few weeks back. Sullivan comes out again and he and Matt exchange blows until R-Truth attempts to slay ‘The Freak,’ but gets put down once again.
After the break they announce the men representing Smackdown Live in the Money In the Bank Ladder match; they are Ali, Finn Balor, Andrade, and Randy Orton. Some interesting choices and there are certainly some new possibilities for who will emerge as the winner. They then announce that the four men will engage in a tag team match.
Asuka and Kairi Sane are led to the ring by their manager Paige. Their opponent’s names are never mentioned unless you count Peyton Royce calling one Ariel from the Little Mermaid. That comment is made while The IIconics sit at ringside delivering commentary. In the end, Sane and Asuka are victorious.
Fans are then shown Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville backstage talking and how one of them will be a part of the Money In the Bank Ladder match. After some back and forth between the two, Deville wishes Rose all the best as she will be the member of Fire and Desire that joins Bayley in the match.
Commercials appear to be the order of the day, as after yet another break we get Roman Reigns coming out. He declares that Smackdown Live is now his yard and that he wanted to come and make a difference. Since his arrival, he has punched Mr. McMahon and was attacked by Shane McMahon and Elias. Shane McMahon interrupts and says Roman will be facing the B-Team in a 2 on 1 handicap match, with Elias at ringside as the special guest enforcer.
Reigns takes on the B-Team after another commercial break. Both men use their speed against Reigns but to no avail. Elias gets involved as he is part of the story being told in this match. Both Dallas and Axel try to work on Reigns in order to get the finish and the win. But the Big Dog recovers and attacks everyone. However, once the referee is knocked out Elias takes some liberties, laying in kicks, punches and bringing a guitar in the ring. Reigns overcomes’ all of this and hit Axel with a spear for the win.
Once again the Firefly Funhouse appears and it is remarkably similar to the previous week’s edition.
Ali and Finn Balor arrive in the ring followed by Orton and Andrade. Ali and Balor initially take the fight to their opponents and eventually get the win. After the match, Orton hit Balor with an RKO.
Ember Moon and Carmela are announced as the final two participants in the battle royal.
After the break, it’s the KO Show, and the guest is supposed to be Xavier Woods, but due to injury he cannot appear. Owens uses action figures to represent the members of the New Day, mocking all of them, until Kofi Kingston charges the ring and a fight between the two ensues. Owens retreats while Kingston stands tall…until next week.
Is Sonya Deville really happy for her partner Mandy Rose? What is the health of Daniel Bryan like? Will any information is shed about his status moving into Money In the Bank? What will happen now with the Smackdown Live tag team championships? These questions and more appear may be addressed next week.
For Mark Blake and Brandi Wagner, this is Marc Madison saying if I had any money I’d put it in the bank.
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