It’s time for a big RAW in a Nutshell, and after SummerSlam it is clear that there’s a new Game in control of things.
We knew that Triple H was promoted. That’s no secret.
The shows immediately following his promotion showed us but a tease, a glimpse, of promising things to come.
After Saturday, however…it’s clear. There is a new Game in control.
Hunter and the new creative direction is, thus far, making things much more interesting.
And then, the other nod to control? Well, Bayley is back, and there are whispers that her new trio is possibly going to be called Control.
My first thought there? Adam Scherr and his friends may wish to have a word.
As we move deeper and deeper into Hunter’s reign, you just know he is going to be able to do more and change more.
A couple hours wasn’t enough time. Right before the biggest show of the summer wasn’t much better, but he pulled off a lot.
Moving forward, there’s a new Game in control, and this might be the most must-see RAW in quite some time.
So without any more chatter, it is time for…
RAW In A Nutshell: There’s A New Game In Control
Let’s crack open this Nutshell and see how this show goes!
Best Match of the night:
Option one: Iyo Sky and Bianca Belair.
Talk about a welcome to the main roster moment.
It’s a wise move for a DQ finish, it fit the progression of things, and protected both the debuting-on-RAW Sky, and the champion.
I was hoping that, with Becky written off, that was a chance for Sasha and Naomi to ride in and make a save.
Perhaps that is held off for Friday, or a later date (assuming those rumors are true).
Choice two: Mysterios versus Usos for the titles.
Kind of felt like there’d be some twist for this one…no offense to Rey or Dom, but after SummerSlam, this didn’t feel like a big main event.
Surprised we got a clean bout, and then Judgement Day intervened to conclude the show.
The Edge spear of Dom should be easy to sort out, but who knows where that all goes.
Do we see Beth come in to take on Rhea? Stay tuned…
Worst match of the night:
Crowd Chants of the Night:
There were a few, I heard chants but didn’t make out most.
The bigger thing for me was…social media (see lowlights) was not kind to the Houston crowd.
There were definite times where things felt a lot quieter than they should have been.
Star of the Night
Oh, where to start.
Iyo Sky in her RAW debut was stellar. Bianca was right with her, and the six women involved were superb.
That match, even with the DQ finish, could have been the main event and no one would have complained.
Ciampa and Styles were superb. Even factoring in the Miz and his big assist.
But…I am still going with…since the change in leadership, I feel like the roster has been given a boost.
Spot of the Night:
Some really slick sequences in both of our triple threat matches, but especially how Ali landed his 540, then went into a Styles Clash, onto The Miz.
— WWE (@WWE) August 2, 2022
Jobber of the Night:
No jobbers really.
I mean, Becky did the job to sell the assault.
AJ Styles did the job to put over Ciampa, as he faces Bobby Lashley next week for the United States Championship.
Upset of the Night:
Ciampa over Dolph and Chad Gable.
Arguably slightly predicable, with a new Game in control and the history from NXT.
But, still a huge step up for Ciampa. Especially with his (somewhat assisted) win.
Now…RAW is in Cleveland next week. A certain former NXT Superstar is from Cleveland (other than The Miz).
Could we dare see the dream? Might Johnny Wrestling come back, this time to a Triple H-run main roster, and re-ignite one of the best feuds in the last decade?
I mean, I doubt Lashley needs the help…but until Gargano lands SOMEWHERE…he remains a popular and (to me) wanted free agent.
Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:
We heard the talk, that RAW was going to be back to a PG-14 rating.
It’s only been a couple shows, but Edge coming out to talk confirmed it.
He dropped a curse that just a couple weeks ago would have been censored.
Unless it was a botch, there’s your confirmation.
Botch of the night:
First, some wondered if Graves botched Saturday, calling her Io Sky when her entrance was still her old name.
Now, knowing she is Iyo Sky…Graves called her by her NXT name.
LOL Moment of the night:
How Montez Ford described Cody Rhodes in his Hell In A Cell victory over Seth Rollins…
— WWE (@WWE) August 2, 2022
There were rumors that she might have been injured during SummerSlam, which Becky Lynch quickly confirmed at the opening.
She is going to miss a couple months, give or take, based on the shoulder injury, plus was written further off when Bayley and her minions attacked.
After suffering a separated shoulder at #SummerSlam, @BeckyLynchWWE’s injury was further exacerbated after an attack from @itsBayleyWWE, @ImKingKota, and IYO SKY earlier tonight on #WWERaw. As a result, @BeckyLynchWWE is expected to be out for several months. pic.twitter.com/eaWeubYqso
— WWE (@WWE) August 2, 2022
While we know Drew has a date with Roman Reigns in Cardiff, Seth Rollins declared his own intentions on RAW.
He hinted last week. Now, there’s no beating around the bush: Rollins wants a shot at Reigns.
There were some spots that things seemed deader than you’d expect, given the action.
Social media wasn’t thrilled with the Houston crowd, right or wrong…you decide.
Even if Sasha and Naomi were to return, I’m glad it’s not tonight cause this crowd doesn’t deserve it. #WWERAW
— Real Talk Wrestling (@RealTalkWrestle) August 2, 2022
One thing Hunter cannot (that I know of?) control…the excessive in-match commercial breaks.
Yes, they did a lot of side by side stuff…but I think there were at least two such breaks during the main event.
Nick Khan, Hunter, Stephanie…someone needs to work this out with USA (and, likely FOX too). These are scripted shows.
We know roughly the run times of matches and segments…so how hard is it to say, OK, opening match, 12 minutes.
Then a commercial break…and so on.
Maybe I am over-simplifying things…BUT…if major professional sports can (and do) not cut away for most live action, then it’s entirely do-able for WWE too.
She might be getting some time off to heal, but The Man is back. Lynch might have been a good heel, but she had a better pop than Bianca Belair did, if my hearing was right.
Nice hype package for the United States Championship and it’s history. Though, I feel in a way like it’s being done to elevate Lashley since Roman won’t be on RAW much.
Another RAW under new management, another top notch RAW.
After the final bell:
Riddle me this, folks. While we saw a lot of great talent released for some really iffy reasons while Vince and Nick were running things…we are seeing a course correction now.
Someone had to leak things to the Wall Street Journal, that ultimately got Vince out. Who was it, and why did they wait so long?
The last two weeks, RAW (and WWE in general) has been a much more watchable thing.
My only change for tonight that I would have made? Flip the Usos/Mysterios match with the Bianca/Iyo one.
Both matches were superb, and both had interference. But, I think the returning Bayley and debuting on RAW Dakota Kai and Iyo Sky were worthy of the main event slot.
All in all…great show.