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Dead Men Walking and Dominant Tag Champs highlight his week’s RAW

A raucous RAW begins at the Schottenstein Center on 9/3/18 with Braun Strowman, Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre in the ring.

The newly formed heel trio talks about their need to come together to combat The Shield and Strowman states that he was more then content challenging Roman Reigns for the Universal Title one on one at Hell in The Cell.

Strowman states that Roman felt that he couldn’t get the job done without his friends so Strowman lined up some “friends” of his own.

This leads to the quintessential staple of live television, the all out brawl. Much of the preliminary talent is handled until the mid-level and main event talent is able to separate the two teams. Acting General Manager, Baron Corbin, is unsure of how to handle things and we find out later that he had the Shield taken from the building with the aide of local law enforcement. This will surely continue later in the night.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qx1zoqtXyQ0&w=560&h=315]

The Bella Twins defeat The Riott Squad with pin fall after a Rack Attack 2.0 from Nikki Bella on Liv Morgan.

This is the first time the Bellas have competed on RAW in three years time and there was a little ring rust. Nikki Bella looked very sound, even working against Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan, who are still honing the craft themselves. Brie Bella took a while to get going, and she nearly killed herself with a suicide dive towards the end of the match.

All in all, they had the crowd behind them and they came away with the victory after Nikki hit the Rack Attack 2.0 cutter for the victory. We found out that at Super Showdown from Australia, the Bellas will team with Raw Women’s champion, Ronda Rousey, to take on the Riott Squad as a whole.

Finn Balor confronts Baron Corbin backstage and says he wants a rematch after what transpired last week. Corbin had just gotten off the phone with Stephanie McMahon and he says he has his hands full and then he mocks Finn’s height again. Balor says Corbin wanted Balor “the man” and he doesn’t seem to have the stones to get it done himself, and seems to be overcompenstating as a result. We have our main event booked for later as a result of such.

A newly formed team is being showcased as the under-utilized Chad Gable and “Glorious” Bobby Roode will team up to bolster the Raw tag division’s depleted ranks. They’re in action next.

Bobby Roode and Chad Gable defeat The Ascension via pin fall after Gable hits a german suplex on Viktor.

Gable looked fantastic and this was well done as Roode was in awe of Gable’s talents instead of the other way around. Gable was enamored with Roode’s entrance and even with some pre-match taunting from Konnor and Viktor, this was an easy victory for the faces. We’ll watch this develop in the coming weeks.

We “walk with Elias” after the break. He trashes the Ohio State Buckeyes and their mascot, which he says is not exactly “intimidating”. He then plugs the Michigan Wolverines, despite a horrid loss to Notre Dame on Saturday.

Of all the people to interrupt Elias, this week it’s “The goddess”, Alexa Bliss. Elias is less than pleased as this turn of events. He did reference begin slapped by hall of famer Trish Stratus last week. Bliss is getting a monstrous pop and it’s because she’s from the town of Columb, home of this week’s Raw. Bliss says she graduated from high school in the very building they are in. She gets the cheap pop with a hometown cheer and then she calls them mindless imbeciles and sheep.

She says everything Elias said about her town is true. She says she couldn’t get out of this “dump” quick enough. She continues her trash talk as Natalya, flanked by Ronda Rousey, heads out for singles action.

Alexa Bliss defeats Natalya via submission with an armbar.

After interference from Mickie James and Alicia Fox, Bliss hits her implant DDT on Natalya. Instead of going for the three count, she locks in her version of the armbar, Rousey’s signature move, and Natalya taps. Apparently, Bliss has been studying judo for the past few weeks according to the commentary team, which features the incredible Renee Young once again this week.

After the match, Bliss attacks Rousey, but the women’s champion fights her off and she tends to her injured friend.

Acting Raw GM, Baron Corbin, is lambasting someone backstage when he is approached by Braun Strowman, Drew McIntyre and Dolph Ziggler. They demand competition tonight, as earlier, were were shown the Shield being arrested and escorted from the building. Ziggler and McIntyre demand a tag team title match, but Corbin says the Revival are slated for that spot.

Ziggler says if something were to happen to the Revival, then they’d have their shot. Corbin says he’d be forced to look at alternative options if that occurred. Strowman is quiet, but it’s implied that he wants to see competition tonight as well.

The Revival are backstage starting an interview, when as expected, the brakes are beaten off of Dash and Dawson by the would be champs.

The B-Team are in the ring, waiting for the Revival, but there’s the music. We have a tag title match.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TmPHK-bO9s&w=560&h=315]

Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre defeat The B-Team via pin fall with the Claymore/Zig-Zag combo to become the new RAW tag team champions.

The B-Team’s title reign is quickly thwarted by the two heels. It is creepy how much Ziggler and McIntyre remind me of “Two dudes with attitude”, which was Shawn Michaels and Diesel’s team name during the mid-nineties.

The B-Team had a valiant run, but after the attack on the Revival, and how they manhandled the faces in this match, it seems like Ziggler and McIntyre are looking to take the titles to dizzying heights.

This was not only unxpected as the night began, but refreshing. These two should have a lengthy run with the straps, and if how they handled the faces in this match was any indication of how things will go heading into the future, we’re going to have the makings of some very good tag team wrestling. The Revival will almost surely have to see a face turn after this, the B-Team will be due a rematch and we could have the return of a sensational tag team division.

Will they make it so? We’ll see. Either way, a refreshing surprise for the Columbus fans and a dominating team now atop the division.

We see the Authors of Pain headed towards the ring after the break, and they are accompanied by 205 Live General Manager, Drake Maverick?!

The Authors of Pain w/Drake Maverick defeat Enhancement Talent via pin fall with the Super Collider.

The 205 Live GM is not only the head of the division, but he introduces himself as the new manager of the Authors of Pain. He states that he will take them to the Raw tag team titles.

AoP makes very short work of the jobbers, executing a multitude of power moves before hitting that awesome super collider for the easy victory. New tag champs and the AoP making their intentions known? I’m okay with it.

Ronda Rousey and Natalya are backstage and Nattie says she needs a minute. The Bellas enter the segment and talk about Rousey wearing the women’s title and taking it to dizzying heights. Nikki Bella says she inspired their comeback and she offers to help Rousey further her training. It’s cringe-worthy and they quickly leave.

The legendary “Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels is out next to a thunderous ovation. He begins by plugging the Super Show-down match between his buddy Triple H and The Undertaker and he echoes the sentiments of the great Steve Austin, that Triple H is going to be the victor at the show.

He is shockingly interrupted by an unscheduled appearance by the Phenom himself, the Undertaker. The veteran looks great and he talks about returning to best Triple H against the odds, because Triple H has never been able to beat him, just like HBK.

HBk says that when he retired, he stayed retired. He says he did it out of respect to the boys, to the fans and most of all, out of respect for the Undertaker. Taker asks if he did it out of respect, or out of fear. I can’t do this promo justice. It’s terrific and you need to watch and enjoy it for yourself. This is one of HBK’s best promos in years, and as he said, he’s retired. Taker leaves to a massive pop as HBK contemplates the words in the ring.

Sasha Banks and Bayley defeat Dana Brooke and Ember Moon via submission after a Banks Statement on Brooks.

Poor Ember Moon. In the world of accepting booking, I wonder if someone can ever just say no as it relates to a tag team match. Brooke takes the L again this week and after losing to the Boss and Hug connection, she proceeds to “quit” Titus worldwide. Whatever. Get something better for Moon and let Dana continue to work on getting better in the ring. This was an easy victory for Banks and Bayley.

Finn Balor is informed by acting GM Corbin that he won’t be facing him later tonight in the main event, he’ll be facing Braun Strowman. Well, there’s another good idea, continue to feed the monster some of the most over guys in the company. This one is sliding downhill fast.

Here’s where we hit the edge of the cliff until a white knight saves the segment. Bobby Lashley is informed that he’ll have to be in the ring with Jinder Mahal for a mandatory anger management session of sorts. He’ll be practicing yoga with Jinder Mahal.

Who did Lashley tick off backstage to continuously end up these horrendous segments? There is seemingly no justification for how bad these have been for him over the past few months. Mahal and Sunil Singh are trying to keep the calm Lashley level-headed with “shanti” chants and this segment dies a quick and miserable death in front of a crowd that was enjoying the broadcast.

Thankfully, the segment is saved by a returning Kevin Owens, who had “quit” last week and returned just a week later to start a program with Lashley. I’m glad Owens is back already, but how about having him return with the briefcase at Hell In The Cell to cash in on Roman reigns because Braun Strowman “handed” it to Baron Corbin?

At least a program with Owens will hopefully elevate Bobby Lashley into a meaningful story, we’ll see.

Braun Strowman defeats Finn Balor via pin fall with a powerslam.

This isn’t any sort of a shocker. Balor actually was able to see a fair amount of offense despite the fact that McIntyre and Ziggler were present at ringside. Strowman ultimately puts it away with the running powerslam for a decisive three count.

After the match a police paddy-wagon is backed into the arena and the Shield returns, ready to pounce. The revolution is quickly trounced however as a multitude of Raw brand heels, including the likes of Kevin Owens and Elias, proceed to decimate the Shield along with the “Pack” trio of heels. Strowman, the Authors and Pain and Drew Gulak of all people, destroy Roman Reigns on the floor with the steel ring steps.

Drew McIntyre, Sunil Singh, Jinder Mahal, Mike Bennett and others take out Dean Ambrose using the announce table.

Dolph Ziggler, Kevin Owens, Elias and the Ascension dismantle Seth Rollins and they actually hit an awesome spot where Rollins is sent off the stage into the police paddy-wagon and the window shatters. Ouch. The Raw heels all stand tall, probably at the orders of Baron Corbin and this will probably lead to Kurt Angle’s return with the faces. That’s Raw this week folks.

 

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