Almost Live, Definitely Half Assed Review of WWE Raw – 22 Aug. ’16

Sculpture in Prospect Park with Litchfield Villa in the background. Brooklyn NY. Picture by Jeff Reuben from picssr.com

Sculpture in Prospect Park with Litchfield Villa in the background. Brooklyn NY. Picture by Jeff Reuben from picssr.com

I’m not sure we can ever confirm the information, but I wonder how many people have gone to the Barclay’s Center for three consecutive nights of 2:30, 6 and 3 hours of wrestling.

It completely blows that Finn Balor got injured last night. The WWE is not getting help with some of these injuries to institute changes. That bump didn’t look good last night though so I’m not surprised it happened there. Balor gets to address the injury and thank everyone. Balor reluctantly relinquishes the Universal Title. No angle? I’m surprised but happy. Ahhh, there we go. Seth Rollins appears and laughs at Balor on the way out. He of course suggests that he should be champion. Right when Mick Foley is ready to answer, Sami Zayn interrupts. Before anything is said on mic, Chris Jericho comes out. He starts begging Stephanie McMahon for the Title. Kevin Owens comes out. We need some baby faces to balance out a tournament. Enzo and Big Cass come out before Stephanie can get some order. Roman Reigns is the last one. A new Universal Champion will be crowned next week after a “series” of matches.

Seth Rollins attacks Sami Zayn from behind after a distraction by Kevin Owens but no official is there. Rollins really should have kept attacking him instead of taunting him. Zayn gets the upper hand early. Zayn connects with a moonsault from the barrier. Rollins side kicks Zayn as they rolled back into the ring. Zayn “injures” his ankle leap frogging Rollins, who goes after it. Zayn injures himself doing a flip to the outside. Rollins gains the advantage again. Zayn fires back with a clothes line. Sunset Flip Power Bomb from the top rope gets a two count. That’s a move that should really be a finisher any time it is hit. Zayn takes control again. Zayn hobbles for a Helluva Kick. Rollins knees him in the face. Rollins locks in an ankle lock. Zayn fights his way to the ropes. The ankle fails Zayn going for a move. Rollins reverses into a Pedigree for the win.

Kevin Owens is taking on Neville. During the early part of the match, I have to explain who Neville is and why Chris Jericho has a “terrible mustache thing” as she puts it. Neville seems to be getting the better of Owens at most times. Jericho distracts Neville a second time in the match. Swinging Neck Breaker for the Owens win. A bit of a surprise just because Owens doesn’t use that finisher much. We find out from Michael Cole that the Universal Championship match will be a Fatal Four Way. With Rollins & Owens filling the first two spots, the next two go to the baby face. Premature congrats to Big Cass and Roman Reigns.

New Day has been our WWE World Tag Team Champions for 365 days. Funny of them to admit to “bad times” aka the start of the gimmick. They go to break a pinata to celebrate their reign when Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows interrupt. They want their re-match since they won last night. Gallows gets ridiculous by saying that Big E will be decapitated. Big E will show them why “New Day rocks!”

Big E is taking on Karl Anderson. Gallows takes out Woods and then Kofi. As he looks to help Anderson, Kofi & Woods take out Gallows. Big Ending for the win. Is it just me or do Andeson & Gallows need a real victory at some point?

Titus O’Neil is in the ring. He stumbles badly out of the gate. He’s not doing any better getting my attention either. He changes topics easier than we do on our podcast. Bob Backlund comes out after insults. O’Neil ends up slamming him hard. Darren Young then makes the save. What a slacker.

I’m guessing the repercussions for Brock Lesnar will be the same as him sitting out this time any way.

Lana introduces Rusev. I forgot that he has an out for his match against with Big Cass because of the injuries from Roman Reigns. Fair enough. Enzo gets to do his usual schtick. Hilarious that Cass got booed for mentioning Reigns but then immediately cheered as he went “Sawft.” Rusev kicks Enzo when he rolled to the outside. Big Cass flips out. Rusev rolls away from an Empire Elbow. Rusev gets reversed into the steal steps. Rusev rolls back out after a Big Boot. Rusev leaves ring side for the count out loss.

Tom Phillips gets to interview Chris Jericho & Kevin Owens. They’re still doing their buddy schtick. Because it’s quite funny. Phillips can’t even hide the smile when he’s called a “stupid idiot.”

I still don’t get Charlotte winning back the Women’s Championship. She points out that she won without any help which doesn’t help her gimmick. Dana Brooke is at ring side. I guess Sasha Banks has a back injury? Is that why there was a title change? Banks will get a rematch when she’s back from injury according to Mick Foley. Bayley was signed by Raw. “It’s Bayley” is the only explanation from the announcers? Please fill us in. I know who she is but about 2 million of your viewers don’t. I still haven’t gotten to her match at Takeover. I get the feeling that “You deserve it” will be as annoying as “This is awesome.” Foley makes a match.

Dana Brooke gets to lose to Bayley because the Women’s Division has no hierarchy other than Charlotte’s lackey. I wonder if Brooke will look better against Bayley since I believe they worked a match or two in NXT. The announcers are doing a better job of filling in Bayley’s character during the match. Bayley To Belly for the win. Brooke did look better than she had in any of her matches vs Banks.

Roman Reigns is ready to shut Jericho’s mouth.

Sheamus runs down Cesaro because he doesn’t show up in the big moments.

I had noticed Byron Saxton was not at the announce table so I assumed Braun Strowman was coming out. I did like his interview on Steve Austin’s Podcast. I hope he gets to have some personality eventually. Reverse Chokeslam and Elimnator for two wins.

The Dudley Boyz come out to say goodbye. They end a nice little speech with Devon giving us one last “Testify!” The Shining Stars come out and mock the Dudleys for being washed up. They got the Dudleys tickets to Puerto Rico for their going away present. 3D, Wassup and of course “Devon, get the tables!” Before they can put Primo through the table, Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows attack. Magic Killer for Devon through the table. Nice of the Dudleys to help Anderson & Gallows but people weren’t invested the way the WWE wanted.

Roman Reigns is taking on Chris Jericho in the main event. An eye rake is coming in big to even the odds for Jericho. I always seem to tune back into typing for a match when the baby face starts their come back. First gear is always a little boring even if it’s necessary. Enziguri by Jericho only gets a two count. Reigns fires back. He connects with a Drive By. Superman Punch only gets a two count. Jericho kicks Reigns going for a Spear. Jericho gets caught going for a Code Breaker. Reigns power bombs him for two. Kevin Owens jumps on the apron.  Another Superman Punch. Jericho reverses another Spear attempt into the Walls of Jericho. Reigns gets out. The ref admonishes Jericho. Owens gets in a cheap shot. Code Breaker only gets a two count. Jericho starts slapping Reigns. He flips out. Owens gets up on the apron and is greeted with a Superman Punch. Jericho tries to roll up Reigns. He continues to roll and Spears Jericho for the win. – Kevin DiFrango

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