Almost Live, Definitely Half Assed Review of WWE Raw – 19 Aug. ’19

St Paul City Hall. Designed by Thomas Ellerbe & Holabird & Root with influence from Eliel Saarinen. Saved from historic-structures.com.

We get the news that not only is Jerry “The King” Lawler there for a big announcement, but he’s color commentary for the show. We then get a video package about Roman Reigns‘s mystery attacker. Dolph Ziggler is his opponent. He does much of the same carping that he has done since his comeback, if one wants to call it that. Ziggler has gotten in more offense in this match than the rest of his matches since said comeback combined. I believed they were going to turn the Superman Punch into an RKO like finisher. Reigns goes for a Spear. Ziggler turns it into a Fame Asser. I’m scratching my head as to why this guy is getting this much offense in. Ziggler charges at Reigns. Spear out of the corner for the win.

Becky Lynch gets to say her piece before Sasha Banks gets to provide answers to us. I’m assuming we won’t get any answers. Lynch keeps on pushing buttons though. Becky says that Sasha is the greatest wrestler to never be great. Hahaha. Becky tells us that she put in more effort to get into the WWE than Sasha did herself.

Sasha gets to follow that up. Actually, Lawler gets to explain to us how the King of The Ring tournament works. It’s been that long, huh? The Fiend shows up instead of Sasha. Lawler exits the ring but is attacked on the ramp by The Fiend.

Vic Joseph is now filling in for The King. So happy for that dude. I can’t believe multiple people from Pro Wrestling Ohio made it to WWE TV. Ricochet & The Miz are teaming against Drew McIntyre & Baron Corbin. The faces get off to a hot start. The Miz is getting a beat down after the break. A DDT creates an opening for The Miz to tag in Ricochet. He even gets to dodge the Corbin patented Ring Around The Rosie move. McIntyre comes into the ring to break up a pin but lays in more of an attack on Ricochet. Corbin comes back in and Deep Sixes Ricochet for a two count. The Miz pulls Ricochet out of the way of a charging Corbin. He hits the post. Recoil aka Code Breaker by Ricochet for the win.

Michael Cole interviews Booker T via Skype. They talk more about KOTR. It doesn’t do much for me. The talk about KOTR is helping it simply by being at least.

Braun Strowman is taking on AJ Styles, who has Karl Anderson & Luke Gallows by his side. Strowman back drops Styles, who bounces off of Strowman’s back before hitting the mat. He takes out Anderson & Gallows. Strowman goes to put away Styles. Gallows interferes to cause the DQ. The OC continues the assault after the match. Seth Rollins comes out to make the save.

Seth Rollins knows that Strowman wants his Universal Championship. Rollins says they need to get rid of the OC first. He proposes they go after the Raw Tag Team Titles. Strowman snorts his approval? They left it open ended in my eyes.

Samoa Joe is taking on Cesaro in the first round of the KOTR. Cesaro blasts Joe right out of the gate. Joe turns it around quickly. Joe is still on offense after the commercial. Joe misses a Senton to give Cesaro an opening. A urinogi ends Cesaro’s offense. It is then followed by the senton, interestingly enough. Cesaro Swing is then turned into a Sharp Shooter. Joe rolls out of it. Cesaro goes for a spring board uppercut. Joe moves around Cesaro to lock in the Kokina Clutch for the win.

I got a kick out of Elias fighting off a lone Drake Maverick to retain the 24/7 Title. He says that this will be his last live performance because there are too many hazards with Championship. R Truth ends up being his stage hand when the sound goes bad. Truth ends up getting a couple of near falls but Elias gets out of dodge with the championship in his possession.

Charley Caruso gets Rey Mysterio to interview. Rey wonders if his injuries have caught up to him. He wonders whether he’s still good enough to go. Rey said he’s going to hang up the mask. Dominic stops him from taking off the mask. He wants to wrestle with Rey in a tag team once before he retires. Rey says that he’ll wait for Dominic.

New Day comes out so quickly that the announcers have to make a terrible transition. I love how Michael Cole & Renee Young even point it out.

They are wrestling The Revival. The New Day are in control for another commercial. Thank goodness, they’ve gone back to the normal format. Scott Dawson is taking it to Xavier Woods once we’re back. Big E gets to come in and clean house of Dawson & Dash Wilder. Big E goes for Midnight Hour. Dawson pushes Woods off the ropes. Wilder is on the apron. Big E goes for the Spear through the ropes. RKO out of nowhere. Kofi Kingston comes out to make the save. He takes out The Revival. Kofi eats an RKO too. Woods recovers. The Revival goes for a double flap jack when Orton joins for an RKO. Orton restrains Kofi so he can watch Woods get injured at the hands of the Revival.

Michael Cole gets to interview Sasha Banks who is set up back stage. She talks about her blue hair. Cole asks her directly about Natalya & Lynch. Banks looks in the camera and says “You’re welcome.”

Nikki Cross & Alexa Bliss are an odd couple but they’re so opposite, it works even with little to no explaining. Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville come out to challenge them. Vic Joseph offers to fill in for Graves with slobbering over Rose. Joseph does not in fact do that. Thanks. Cross kicks Rose who is up against the ropes. Cross drops off the apron. Rose follows. She eats a drop kick from Bliss because of it. Cross beat down Rose. Bliss tags in. Rose connects with a jumping knee. Deville gets tagged in. She takes out Bliss. Cross gets tagged in. She over powers Deville. Swinging Neckbreaker for the win. It would be really useful if they could find some local ladies to lose to Bliss & Cross.

Cedric Alexander is taking on Sami Zayn in the second KOTR match of the night. Zayn gets an inset promo about how he will use KOTR to turn around his losing streak. Zayn takes it to Alexander early. A Back Elbow creates an opening. Head scissors take over followed by a drop kick. Zayn gets hit with the Neuralizer (that rolling kick he does.) Lumbar Check for an Alexander win. Good for him.

The Street Profits are doing some KOTR Bracketology. Montez Ford got both right. Angelo Dawkins is mad because he had Cesaro going the whole way. Dawkins wants a Kings of The Ring tourney. Ford says they’re already kings of the ring. They then preview The OC vs Brau-llins, which is next. Cue popcorn eating.

Natalya is talking about how she got fooled by another supposed friend in Sasha Banks. As she is complaining, Banks attacks again. Natalya really needs revenge when she comes back.

Strowman & Rollins were out first. The OC comes out as a trio. Like most tag matches, the faces start out hot. The heels take over. Anyone surprised Rollins is doing the selling? No. Good. We should all be on the same page on that one. Strowman gets distracted by Styles. Gallows attacks him from behind and push him against a post. Rollins gets hot back in the ring. Rollins goes to the top. The OC distracts the ref. Styles pushes Rollins off the ropes. Gallows & Anderson take too long going for the Magic Killer. Styles looks like he’s going to attacks a restrained Rollins when he gets flattened by Strowman. Rollins is free to tag in. Strowman comes in and levels them. Power Slam on Anderson. Curb Stomp on Styles. We’ve got new tag team champions in Rollins & Strowman.

Kevin DiFrango

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