Canadian shows are always better and tonight was no exception. Monday Night RAW absolutely knocked it out of the park in Winnipeg after a weaker show the week prior. Let’s see why tonight was must see WWE TV.
Here is a recap and reactions to the 24 February episode of RAW.
Angel Garza def. Humberto Carrillo
Ricochet def. Luke Gallows
Aleister Black def. Erick Rowan
Bobby Lashley def. R-Truth
Angelo Dawkins def. Murphy (DQ)
Seth Rollins def. Montez Ford
Randy Orton def. Kevin Owens
Randy Orton Promo
Watch. Another Monday Night RAW kicking off with that Edge/Matt Hardy beating son of bitch Randy Orton. He tries to apologize to the fans for his “unbalanced” actions. He tells the fans that last time RAW was in Winnipeg – 15-years go — it was actually Edge who beat down him.
The segment turns into, “which legend will come out to confront Randy Orton this week?” Turns out it is Canada’s own, Kevin Owens. He gives an impassioned promo about the impact Edge’s career and return had on him and demands an explanation for Randy’s actions. The five words Randy responds with were perfect, “You think you know me?”
The two set up a match for later on in the night after a decent opening for RAW.
Angel Garza vs Humberto Carrillo
Watch. Goddammit Garza is a stud. While I don’t like how WWE keeps playing up the non-relationship between himself and Zelina Vega, he oozes charisma without saying all that much — he’s a modern day mix of Rick Rude and Eddie Guerrero.
The match begins with the weirdest lock I’ve ever seen. The two link legs, get into a head stand, and just start slapping each other. These two have the amazing chemistry you’d expect from people who grew up together — this was one of the better RAW matches of the last few weeks. Carrillo controls the first bit of the contest, but things obviously get serious when Garza rips off the tights. He hits Carrillo with a top rope assisted suplex which leads to the pair kicking the crap out of each other on the ring apron. After each man hits a Spanish Fly on the other, they transition into a series of pinning predicaments. Roll-up after roll-up leads to a tights grabbing win by Garza (that’s just how it happened, not sexual innuendo FYI).
Ricochet vs Luke Gallows
Watch. This was the mediocre salad bar before you get to the prime rib at the end. Ricochet continues his pre-AJ Styles feud with The OC in a match with Luke Gallows. The man formerly known has Festus has never really impressed in the WWE ring, but his pairing with Ricochet was at least moderately enjoyable. Gallows catches Ricochet with a few big boots, while Ricochet lands his trademark offense. What really makes the match is the incredible Shooting Star Press that ends it, giving Ricochet the win.
In a backstage segment after the match, The OC end up berating and beating down Aleister Black while he was just minding his own business. So… tag team match The OC vs Ricochet and Black next week?
Brock Lesnar/Paul Heyman
Pass. SUPER SHOWDOWN IS THIS THURSDAY. GO WATCH SUPER SHOWDOWN THIS THURSDAY. IT’S ON THURSDAY AND IT’S A SUPER SHOWDOWN. ALSO, WRESTLEMANIA IS COMING UP. Or something like that.
Aleister Black vs Erick Rowan
Watch. Black comes out beat up and pissed off to take on Rowan. Between himself and the commentary booth, his injury is sold throughout the match.
Honestly? Kudos to WWE for making Rowan engaging inside the ring the last two weeks. The match tells an overtold, but effective story of a babyface overcoming the odds, but they do it in a way that made Black look like a complete badass.
In the mayhem of the match, Rowan inadvertently knocks over his mysterious cage on the outside. He goes to fix it, but on his return to the ring he is hit with a pair of Black Masses to end the bout.
Drew MacIntyre Backstage Segment
Watch. I’m not usually a big fan of backstage sit-down segments, but this was candid and told the story of Drew. From the future world champion, to 3MB, to NXT, to now and it was honest and enlightening.
R-Truth vs Bobby Lashley
Watch. Turns out R-Truth would rather ask Bobby Lashley if he’s seen the Sonic the Hedgehog movie rather than fight, but that damn Lana demands the bell be rung. Lashley dominates from the bell, but Truth almost hits his childhood idol’s Five Moves of Doom to win the match. He can’t get Lashley up for the spear and is quickly turned inside out with a spear. This was nothing special, but it was enjoyable enough for a squash match.
Women’s Elimination Chamber Contract Signing
Watch. To quote Jerry Lawler, nothing bad has ever happened at a contract signing. Shayna Baszler isn’t at the table at the start of the segment and Asuka is quick to call it out. After the five women sign the contract, the missing Baszler’s music hits and she comes out through the crowd to add her signature. Tensions erupt into chaos as Asuka tells Baszler to “bite me” and all the women start brawling in their various feuds while Shayna cheers them on. Of course, Lynch comes out to attack Baszler but the two are broken up fairly quickly by the ring-side staff. It was your typical contract signing shmoz but it was definitely watchable.
Angelo Dawkins vs Murphy
Watch. The match started out fast and furious and was generally entertaining, however, about a minute in Seth Rollins interferes for the DQ. I was going to say skip this since I wanted to see more from these two, but the post match segment is great. Montez Ford gets on the mic and says he doesn’t blame Seth for interfering since Dawkins hit Murphy so hard last week he lost his first name. Ford says he’ll do the same to Rollins which makes the “Monday Night Messiah” charge the ring to start…
Montez Ford vs Seth Rollins
Watch. Early on in this one, Murphy is booted from ringside by the referee, leaving a discipleless Rollins to fight for himself. The story of this match was Rollins hitting Ford with several buckle bombs, until Ford finally reverses one into a hurricanrana. A spike DDT on Rollins almost gets Ford the victory, but it just wasn’t enough. A missed frog splash allows Seth to hit the Curb Stomp for the win. The match was a great showcase for Ford, who should absolutely be a future star in the WWE.
Randy Orton vs Kevin Owens
Watch. The go-home segment was 10% ridiculousness, but I was here for it. A furious start by Owens is slowed once Rollins and his goons come out to watch the match lumberjack style around the ring. RAW continues to devolve into warring factions when The Viking Raiders and The Street Profits come out to clear the interlopers from ringside.
That is, until Rollins reappears allowing Orton to hit the draping DDT which is given a fast count by the referee. The referee goes to the outside to check on Rollins several times afterwards, while Seth throws a pair of chairs inside the ring so Orton can do what he did to Hardy and Edge to Owens. KO gets up before this can happen, only to have the steel chair snatched from his hands by the fast counting referee. Owens grabs the man and tears off his referee shirt to reveal a “Monday Night Messiah” shirt. Owens puts the man through a table to the delight of the Winnipeg crowd to end the show.