RAW (8/1/16)

After one of the more memorable and eventful nights in RAW history, Stephanie and Mick look to pick up where they left off. Is that possible after such a huge week?

Opening Statement

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We start the show with our brand new  WWE Woman’s Champion, Sasha Banks. She’s finally realized her dreams and become the champ? What’s next for The Legit Boss? She’ll be defending her title against Charlotte in a rematch at SummerSlam. For now, she has a few statements for her naysayers and some rights to brag about.

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The excitement doesn’t last for long as Charlotte comes out to crash the party. The WWE Universe has three words for the former champion and they’re not nice: “You tapped out!” Charlotte blames a fly for her aggressive slapping of her chin and the mat, and calls Sasha a one night stand. Banks fires back by referencing Charlotte’s father.

“You’re the daughter of Ric Flair. If it wasn’t for a one night stand you probably wouldn’t be standing here.” – Sasha Banks

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Before things get physical, a voice of reasoning emerges. Chris Jericho comes to the ring and the entire walk down all he has to say is, “Shut up.” He steps inside the squared circle and immediately comes to the defense of the former champ, Charlotte. Sasha is taken aback but it wouldn’t be long before someone would come to her aide as well.

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Enzo Amore is here! He’s not with the big guy and his focus seems a bit off. He’s more concerned with the champ and, “how she’s doin’,”than anything else. He kisses her hand and spits some game in her direction. She seems to be buying what Enzo is selling. Things seem to be getting hot and heavy and since this is PG television programming, SOMEONE had to interrupt. Both Charlotte and Jericho had a few jokes to crack.

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“I’m a G, you’re a Boss, you’re more like a b-a-u-c-e BAUCE. And let me be frank, I got that hot sauce.” – Enzo Amore to Sasha Banks

“Rumor has it, when it comes to Enzo and his love life, there’s only one word to describe it…” – Charlotte

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Enzo and Jericho get into a verbal spat and Jericho has some odd words for him.

“Listen here you hip hop hobbit, I’m gonna tell you this one time. You better watch it.” – Chris Jericho

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General Manager Mick Foley comes out to get things in order. He clearly has some favoritism towards Sasha and Enzo but he’s a fair boss. One might even say he’s a legit boss! The odds look to be about even so Foley calls for a mixed tag team match. That match will be next.

Chris Jericho & Charlotte Vs. Enzo Amore & Sasha Banks – Mixed Tag Team Match

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If you don’t know, despite what you may find on the WWE Network, the WWE does not allow its men and women to compete against each other physically. So how does a mixed tag team match work? A tag for one side is treated as a tag for the other. Only competitors of the same gender are allowed to be in the ring at the same time. It’s almost like having two separate singles matches swapping in and out. Now that we’re caught up on how this works, let’s get into the first match of the night.

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Kevin Owens is here! I don’t know why but with the way RAW is setup now, we know he won’t be interfering with the match. He IS here to put a headset on and speak his opinion on the match and the Superstars involved. Owens doesn’t seem to think much of Enzo or Sasha as they fight for their lives against a more than 20 year vet in Jericho and the daughter of a two time Hall of Famer in Charlotte.

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Enzo finds himself in quite the predicament when Jericho grabs his legs and turns him over into The Walls of Jericho. Enzo is able to reach the ropes and get Jericho to break the hold. Banks is fired up and ready to get back in the ring. Enzo manages to dodge Jericho and tag in his partner.

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Charlotte comes in and gets schooled. Sasha Banks would hit a Back Stabber but before she could transition into the Bank Statement, Dana Brooke makes her first appearance of the night. It looks like she’s trying to enter the ring and interfere with the match but Banks nails her with a forearm before she could think twice.

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Charlotte tries to steal the W by rolling up Banks from behind. Sasha rolls through and slaps Jericho right across the face. Charlotte kicks Sasha in the back of the leg and delivers Natural Selection. Charlotte gets the three count.

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The fun wouldn’t end there. Enzo comes in to check on his partner. He turns around right into a Code Breaker. Cass runs down to make sure that’s all that happens. Score one for the bad guys.

Braun Strowman Vs. Evan Anderholm

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Another week, another jobber. At least the guy allegedly gets $1,000 out of it. Oh well.

Somebody’s Gonna Get They’re A– Kicked

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Mark Henry must feel like it’s 1999 again. He’s feeling energetic and underutilized. He finds Stephanie and Foley and asks for a legit chance to make some noise. Stephanie informs him that he was drafted to provide leadership in the locker room more so than to have big time matches. Henry disagrees and maybe Foley does too. For some crazy reason, Foley grants Henry a US Title match set for later tonight. Stephanie rolls with it and Henry leaves rejuvenated with something to fight for.

R-Truth Has a Problem

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Since Truth was introduced to Pokémon GO last week, he’s been obsessed with it! Goldust has been trying to ween him off of it but to no avail. Goldust promises R-Truth that he’ll help him catch all the Pokémon in the arena if they win their match tonight. I’m not so sure Truth is listening.

Golden Truth Vs. Shining Stars

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The Shining Stars are waiting in the ring as Golden Truth arrive. Truth has yet to put his phone down or even put on his gear! Goldust is fighting this one alone. Meanwhile, Truth is still trying to catch Pokémon while standing on the apron. He sees his partner in need and tries to put his phone in his back pocket. He misses and his phone falls to the floor. After Goldust miraculously escapes both Shining Stars, he somehow manages to get to his corner. Well instead of tagging himself in, R-Truth decides to pick up his phone and keep catching Pokémon. In shock, Goldust gets pinned easy and the Shining Stars mock Goldy and his partner as they walk off. Truth doesn’t appear to be apologetic and is still stuck on the idea of catching them all. Goldust looks hopeless.

Finn Bálor Interview w/ Michael Cole

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Michael Cole is in the ring and Finn Bálor arrives. After several minutes of theatrics, Finn finally has a mic in his hand. Cole is all geared up to ask his first question when Finn’s SumerSlam opponent’s music hits. Rollins comes down with a huge grin and tells Cole to take a hike. Seth Rollins will be conducting this interview.

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There are so many questions that could’ve been asked and instead, Rollins uses this time to somehow talk about himself. To be fair, he made some good points and accurate comparisons. Both men are former NXT Champions (Seth was the first ever), both men were drafted high in the draft (Rollins was first overall), and both men have recent victories over Roman Reigns (Bálor’s win put him IN a championship match, while Seth’s win won one). Rollins is clearly trying to intimidate the upstart with big brother tactics and the shine of big lights. Finn may be new to the WWE Universe but he’s by no means a rookie. He’s got his work cut out for him at SummerSlam but he’s more than capable of coming out on top.

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Rollins doesn’t appreciate the way he’s being talked to and resorts to heel shenanigans. He tries to sneak attack Bálor but catches a flurry and a Pele kick. Rollins retreats and the seeds have been planted for SummerSlam.

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“The only thing you’re gonna have handed to you is your a–!” – Finn Bálor

Mark Henry Vs. Rusev (w/ Lana) – WWE US Championship Match

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Mark Henry is not the spring chicken he once was and Rusev eats three whole chickens for breakfast. Henry showed that in spurts he can still put on a show but he’s no match for Super Rusev. Henry taps out to the Accolade.

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After the match, Rusev grabs a microphone for his weekly USA slander. He speaks on the Olympics and his competition but he says one thing that causes a reaction. Rusev says that no one will ever beat him for his title. That caused the Runner Up for the big SummerSlam Universal title match to make an appearance.

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Roman Reigns is probably looking for something to do on August 21 seeing as he won’t be competing for the WWE Universal Championship. Maybe he’s found himself a new challenge? We’ll have to wait and see.

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Titus O’Neil Vs. Darren Young (w/Bob Backlund)

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Before the match, we see a clip from earlier tonight. Apparently on the RAW Pre-show, Titus stirred the pot by asking Darren Young when he was ever great. He didn’t say it maliciously but that is a pretty tough comment from a former tag team partner.

The match starts and Titus is destroying Darren Young. No amount of coaching in the world can prepare you for a whooping like this. O’Neil tries to end it with a Clash of the Titus but Young somehow escapes. It wouldn’t matter because Titus would eventually roll up Young and pull his tights to secure the victory. Young was disappointed at not only his loss, but having a friend and former tag team partner stoop so low to win a match. Bob Backlund is turning red trying to explain to the ref what just happened.

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Sheamus, Cesaro and a Tablet

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Stephanie McMahon gifts Mick foley with a tablet. It has a nice big RAW sticker on the back. Mick has done a phenomenal job as GM so far and this is just an incentive to keep it going. Sheamus barges in upset about Mark Henry getting a title match when he’s been a non-factor for quite some time now. Cesaro isn’t too far behind him. The Swiss Superman doesn’t seem unhappy or anything but Stephanie lets him know that she heard what he had to say last week about wanting to be on SmackDown and she’s not happy about it. Foley of course has a solid idea. First, he has to let these two Superstars understand why they’re in the position they’re in. Sheamus hasn’t been a threat since he won Money in the Bank and Cesaro can’t seem to stay healthy. Foley puts them in a match tonight and declares that the winner will have a title opportunity in the future.

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The Cruiserweights Are Coming

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Just reminder that the Cruiserweight Division is coming to RAW and will be exclusive to Monday nights. So, why isn’t Kalisto on RAW again?

Millions of Feelings

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Bob Backlund finds Titus O’Neil in the back and gives him a piece of his mind. He’s frustrated with O’Neil’s tactics and he’s trying to verbally teach him a lesson. Titus isn’t having it and it goes from 0 to 100 real quick. Titus threatens to put hands on the Hall of Famer and the two have a stare down. Out of nowhere, Darren young flies in and takes out the big guy. Backlund has to restrain his pupil. Young has clearly developed an anger issue, as he’s become pretty sensitive when it comes to his life coach.

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Nia Jax Vs. Ariel Monroe

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Nia Jax aka Brianna Strowoman aka Not Like Most Girls is still facing nobodies. I find it almost disrespectful. What other women were drafted to RAW? Summer Rae? Dana Brooke? She should be demolishing someone with a name. She has legit skill and she showed it with whatever her finishing move was tonight. It started off looking like a Samoan Drop, and then an AA, and then the World’s Strongest Slam. Either way, it put the “local competitor” out for good. I mean, Nia DID unnecessarily smash her opponent after the match during an interview but it’s all love! Sasha and Charlotte had better beware.

The Underdog From the Underground

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Sami Zayn has a bone to pick with Seth Rollins. He heard what Rollins said earlier, that he would make an example out of Zayn to prove a point to Bálor. After finally putting his rivalry with Kevin Owens to bed, Zayn is free to move on to bigger and better things. Instead of BEING the statement Sami Zayn is looking to MAKE a statement. A win tonight against Rollins would be huge and Zayn is ready to go.

The Club Vs. The New Day

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The Club have their sights set on Tag Team gold. They’ve crossed paths with New Day before but due to other arrangements they were forced to postpone their exploits. With AJ Styles on SmackDown, The Club are outnumbered against the New Day. Knowing this, they went to management and asked that one member of New Day be banned from ringside in their match tonight. Management obliged and New Day used fruit to decide who would sit out. Kofi and E both pulled oranges but Woods pulled a banana. It looks like Woods will be sitting out.

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Woods makes his way to the back and the match starts. The Club are in control. Gallows knocks Kofi off the apron and Anderson knocks E silly with an  enziguri. Anderson takes a moment to look down at Big E then looks over at Gallows who’s standing outside. They link up with a little too sweet action and Big E rolls up Anderson for a quick pin! The match is over already? True, but the fight isn’t.

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The Club is livid after losing the way they did. Gallows takes out Kofi, and both men beat down Big E. E actually catches two Boot of Dooms. Woods tried to come to the aide of his partners but with no luck. He was disposed of easily. The emphasis went back to Big E. The Club lined him up with a steel post and tried to split him in half by puling his legs from the outside. Too Sweet.

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Cesaro Vs. Sheamus

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This looks like an old episode of SmackDown doesn’t it? After seeing everything we have tonight and last week, this match seemed old, stale and unnecessary. That’s not to say these guys don’t have a place on RAW, they just shouldn’t be going through the motions with each other. This might have been a good match a year ago but today, for the umpteenth time, I decided to just use the restroom.

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I managed to make it back in time to see Cesaro do some strong guy stuff and even catch Sheamus deliver some beats of his drum thing. Sheamus looked to be going for a back breaker of sorts when Cesaro flipped and twisted out of it to land a Dutch Neutralizer. Win for the Swiss Superman! Commercial break.

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2MB?

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We return from the commercial break and Sheamus and Cesaro are still going at it. A new and familiar voice is heard over the speakers. It’s Heath Slater! He encourages the two men to keep the fight going. WWE officials are able to break everything up and get the two men to the back. Heath has a friend with him, it’s Jinder Mahal! How long has it been since we’ve seen Jinder? It’s good to see him still around.

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Heath Slater calls this reunion 2MB. The third member of the band is off at TNA playing a big role over there. Heath wasn’t drafted and is still looking to be signed. Foley comes out to handle the situation. Slater wants to talk but Mick wants action. Foley sends out a referee and declares that Mahal and Slater will have a match. The winner will be signed to RAW. Slater doesn’t want to fight his friend but the feeling isn’t mutual.

Mahal plants Slater with a wicked kick and Mahal gets the pin and the contract. He walks up the ramp and shakes his new GM’s hand and is welcomed to RAW.

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KO the Walls

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Chris Jericho has a lot to say and Tom Phillips has a microphone. Jericho still has a bone to pick with Enzo and Cass. He’s upset that Cass interrupted his situation with Enzo earlier. Jericho claims that Enzo wouldn’t be so lucky if Cass wasn’t around to watch his back. He then claims to have backup as well. Tom asks him who his backup is and Jericho replies with the blatantly fabricated name, Jimmin Marvin Luder. He’s allegedly a Canadian super athlete. Sure.

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Kevin Owens crashes the party. With a look of disappointment, he rats out his fellow Canadian. Owens isn’t here to start a war. In fact, he may be here to help. He encourages Chris to quit making things up, and he offers his services. Maybe this Canadian connection will become something?

Seth Rollins Vs. Sami Zayn

This isn’t the first time these two have faced off, and hopefully it won’t be the last.

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With so much to prove and really nothing on the line, these two duke it out like it’s a title match. Counters, high risk maneuvers, and a constant desire to land their finisher. These guys are holding nothing back.

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When you’re constantly swinging for the fences, you’ll either hit a home run or strike out swinging. Zayn set up and attempted a Helluva kick for maybe the fifth time and he missed. Rollins was able to capitalize and land the Pedigree on maybe HIS fifth try. Three count for the potential first ever WWE Universal Champion. Will this be the fate of Finn Bálor?

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Bad Boy RAW

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So Diddy will be on RAW next week! I have no idea how they plan to make that work. It doesn’t seem like a New Era kind of move.

The Viper Slayer

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If you know Paul Heyman, you know he loves to talk. If you know Brock Lesnar, you know he’s not big on words. This spot goes exactly as it has for a while now. Heyman speaks on the exploits of his client and Brock Lesnar bounces around looking menacing.

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Since Randy Orton is exclusive to SmackDown, there’s no hope for a face to face. Maybe that’s why Paul Heyman is making such brash declarations and animated facial expressions? He swears that Randy will NEVER get Brock in a position to deliver an RKO. Orton is a shifty dude. I mean, he has his own hashtag for crying out loud! If anybody can sneak up and land a move out of thin air we’re talking about him.

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And just like that, Orton has crossed the RAW/SmackDown boundary and hit the Beast with an #RKOOuttaNowhere! Orton mocks Heyman and points at the back of his shirt before fleeing the scene. Mick and Stephanie run out with a ton of officials and Stephanie is yelling for security.

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