red brand goes boom
source: custom, YouTubeTV Screenshot

Sure, the holiday was Sunday, but it’s RAW in a Nutshell, 4th of July edition. This time around, the red brand goes boom for the Fourth.

Or, at least, that is the plan. After SmackDown had the pre-holiday fun on Friday, RAW gets to clean up after the holiday.

That is the plan, in a Nutshell.

Of course, the real focus? That is on Money In The Bank, and all the associated hype.

The PPV is right around the corner, after all. Heck, real live fans are right around the corner too.

With the next PPV coming up fast, there are matches left to be booked. Sure, the ladder is nearly loaded…but the rest of the card is a work in progress.

So how much gets locked in tonight? Or, will any of it?

That is what this RAW in a Nutshell will be all about. Among other things.

Hopefully everyone had a safe and enjoyable holiday and is focused on the task at hand.

And that task? It’s…

RAW In A Nutshell: Red Brand Goes Boom For The Fourth

Let’s crack open this Nutshell and get into it!

Best Match of the night:

Flip a coin between Riddle/Styles and the main event. I enjoyed both.


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Also, solid nod to Morrison and Ricochet.

Worst match of the night:

Jaxson Ryker and R-Truth versus Cedric Alexander and Elias.

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This wound up being a one on one, Ryker versus Alexander, and becoming a squash.

Sure, the beginning bits were mildly funny…but it was short and largely forgettable.

A couple points I will make…

One, interesting tag partner choice for Jaxson, all things considered.

Two…starting to feel like there’s some big (or, relatively, for him) push incoming. Clearly, someone in Stamford likes him.

red brand goes boom

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Crowd Chants of the Night:

Not yet…but it won’t be long now…

Star of the Night

Gotta go with Riddle…


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Spot of the Night:

This one might be one of the easiest ever.

WWE. 2021.

 red brand goes boom

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No, ladies and gentlemen, that is not a mis-print.

We saw Riddle channel his inner Karate Kid, and it was awesome.

Jobber of the Night:

Cedric Alexander.

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Mansoor might be an honorable mention.

Upset of the Night:

Not really, but having Riddle beat AJ Styles, overcoming the injury angle? And considering AJ’s pedigree?

It was sold as a bit of an upset, and I have to think that it was done intentionally. As in, WWE looking to build up Riddle’s stock.

Perhaps building him up for a briefcase win? I won’t get my hopes up…but considering the comedy schtick he’s mostly done the last year….

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

I could have put this in low lights, but this one, the more I thought about it, stunned me a bit.

Charlotte was, in my opinion, terrible on the mic tonight.

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Why? Here’s my critique in a Nutshell.

Go listen to it…she said “I mean”…a lot.

I think I lost track after several sentences in a row started with “I mean”. And when she didn’t start one with that…it wasn’t gone long.

She’s supposedly the best in the women’s division, so I grant that she had a down night. Or, it was planned for that…but it just bugged me.

Also…as bad as Charlotte was, and I think many fans are against her…WWE is screwing up the Ripley booking badly.

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Is she a heel? A face?

Seems to be an unknown. Becky and Sasha and anyone else can’t get back fast enough at this point.

Botch of the night:

The new guy? He called Nia Jax “Nikki Jax”.

I suppose it is mild in the grand scheme, since Nia had just pinned Nikki…but still.

LOL Moment of the night:

It was going to be the Karate Kid homage…

Or Riddle dedicating his win to Randy, as if Randy was at home, in bed, gravely ill.

I still can’t shake that Orton is somehow going to get Riddle’s spot though.

Instead…we go with this…

Noteworthy Moment:

It’s our next to last ThunderDome RAW, and thus, next to last ThunderDome RAW In A Nutshell. In case you were tracking that.

Also, seeing the hype now for the latest WWE live show locale-a return to WWE’s “home” arena, Madison Square Garden, in September.

Wonder if that isn’t a retaliatory strike, considering a certain competitor is also heading to NYC toward the tail end of 2021…

Overall lowlights:

Eva Marie.

That’s it. That’s the lowlight.

Fine, there were probably other things. I’m not overjoyed with the use of Mansoor and Ali, as though we will eventually see the two stuck as  a team.

Seeing Mace and T-Bar struggle through their crappy gimmicks, rather than WWE taking them off TV for a week or two and giving them a new look and better hopes.

Also, jobbing them out…to Lucha House Party no less. Seems like just yesterday that Dominik Dijackovic and Keith Lee were having 5 star matches in NXT.

Now, one can’t even get on TV, and the other probably wishes he’d never been called up.

Overall highlights:

My favorite was the Riddle match. Lots of promise there, it told a good story and I think it sets things up for the remainder of the summer.

The main event was good too. Getting MVP back in the ring is notable, though I don’t know too many people that were dying for it.

Like, he’s not the major return people are waiting for. But it’s still good to get Superstars back after injury.

After the final bell:

Well, that was an interesting RAW In A Nutshell.

Some bits worked, other bits…not so much. So did the red brand go boom?

Some of the red brand went boom in a good way. Others did not go boom at all…or fans might wish they went boom…or just went away.

But, with Money In The Bank a couple weeks away, things are certainly heating up on the red brand…or trying to.

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