This week’s episode of RAW aired from the WWE Performance Center. Andrade defended his United States Championship against Apollo Crews tonight. Charlotte, Nia Jax, and Natalya will face off in a Triple Threat match. The winner will get a shot at the RAW Women’s Championship at Backlash.
RAW Results (5/25)
- Apollo Crews def. Andrade to win the United States Championship
- Angel Garza def. Kevin Owens
- Murphy & Austin Theory def. Aleister Black & Humberto Carrillo
- Nia Jax def. Charlotte & Natalya to earn a shot at the RAW Women’s Championship at Backlash
- Street Profits def. MVP & Lashley via DQ
Here are 6 takeaways from this week’s RAW:
Nia Jax Earned A Title Shot At Backlash
NXT Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair quickly interrupted and made her way to the ring. Charlotte claimed that the RAW Women’s Championship should have been handed to her and pointed out that Asuka has never defeated her. Natalya joined the party and Kevin Owens hilariously got all of his set props out of the ring before she got there. Owens told Natalya that there is nothing to throw this week and Natalya apologized for her tantrum last week.
Charlotte told Natalya that she was irrelevant before Nia Jax marched down to the ring. The NXT wrestlers in the crowd booed Nia as Jax vowed to win the Triple Threat match tonight. Owens scampered out of the ring as Jax said she was going to bulldoze over Asuka at Backlash. A brawl then broke out and Nia quickly retreated to the outside.
Match Recap: Asuka joined commentary for the Triple Threat match during the third hour of RAW. Natalya and Charlotte teamed up and launched Nia Jax into the ring post. The action spilled out of the ring and Jax cleared off the announce table. Jax and Charlotte then traded shots on the ring apron. Charlotte unloaded with a flurry of chops and went for a big boot but Nia blocked it. Natalya and Charlotte then teamed up once again and Powerbombed Nia through the announce table as RAW went to a break.
When RAW returned, both Charlotte and Natalya hit a Clothesline on each other and fell to the canvas. Asuka rolled Nia Jax back into the ring and Natalya locked in an Arm Bar. Jax broke the hold with a massive Powerbomb and Charlotte tried to steal the cover but Natalya kicked out at two. Charlotte connected with a Moonsault off the top rope for a near fall.
Natalya hit Flair with a Crossbody off the top rope for a two count. Jax hit Natalya with a Clothesline and then delivered one to Charlotte. Flair targeted Nia’s knee and locked in a Figure Four in the middle of the ring. Charlotte bridged into the Figure Eight but Natalya broke it up with a Dropkick. Natalya then locked in the Sharpshooter on Charlotte in the middle of the ring but Nia broke it up. Charlotte sent Natalya out of the ring and made her way up to the middle rope. Nia attacked her and went for a Superplex as Natalya connected with a Powerbomb on Jax at the same time.
Natalya tried to pin Charlotte and Nia but they both kicked out at two. Charlotte locked in the Figure Four on Natalya but Nia broke it up with a Leg Drop. Jax then planted Natalya with a Samoan Drop for the pinfall victory. Nia Jax will face Asuka for the RAW Women’s Championship at WWE Backlash.
Opinion: Nia Jax was the only superstar in this match that made sense to face Asuka as they have already been developing a storyline over the past couple weeks. Charlotte, Nia Jax, and Natalya delivered a very solid Triple Threat match tonight.
Apollo Crews Captured The United States Championship
Andrade defended his United States Championship against Apollo Crews tonight on RAW.
Match Recap: Crews dominated the action and connected with a Suplex for a near fall. Andrade battled back with an elbow to the face for a two count. Crews shoved Andrade and he accidentally knocked Zelina off the apron and to the floor as RAW went to a commercial break.
When RAW returned, Apollo hit Andrade with a Clothesline and then slammed him into the turnbuckle. Andrade tied up Crews in the ropes and hit a Double Stomp the the chest for a two count. Andrade hit Double Knees again in the corner of the ring for another near fall.
Crews hit an Enziguri and slammed Andrade to the canvas. Apollo hit back to back standing Moonsaults for the pinfall victory. Apollo Crews is the new United States Champion.
After the match, Apollo Crews was interviewed and stated he can finally say that he won his first title in WWE. Crews added that he has never given up and has put in 11 years of hard work to get here.
Seth Rollins Threatened Humberto Carrillo & Aleister Black
Seth Rollins cut a backstage promo with Rey Mysterio‘s mask in his hand. Rollins said he cannot imagine how painful it must of been for Rey and his family to not be there to support him in his finest hour.
Rollins added that if getting his eye shoved into the steel steps was Rey’s final act, than it was a courageous one because it all them to move into the future. Murphy and Austin Theory showed up behind Seth as Rollins stated that they understand what it is like to be underutilized but their ceiling is limitless under his guidance.
Murphy thanked Seth for his guidance and said he needed a leader. Theory thanked Rollins for finding him when he was abandoned by his friends. Rollins vowed to make examples of Humberto Carrillo and Aleister Black later tonight to show what happens when you get in the way of the Monday Night Messiah. Later on RAW, Theory & Murphy battled Black & Carrillo as Rollins was ringside.
Match Recap: Humberto hit a massive Crossbody onto Murphy and Austin before tagging Aleister Black in. Black leveled Theory with a Clothesline and followed it up with a Dropkick. Murphy and Humberto then tagged in and Carrillo connected with an Enziguri. Theory and Black quickly tagged back in and Aleister connected with a couple of shoulder tackles. Austin accidentally booted Murphy in the face and Black capitalized with a springboard Moonsault. Black leveled Austin with a knee to the face and tagged in Humberto. Murphy knocked Black off the top rope and Austin planted Humberto with the ATL.
After the match, Theory and Murphy sent Aleister Black into the timekeeper’s area. Rollins told Murphy and Theory to hold Humberto against the steel steps. Rollins told Aleister to put the chair down or Humberto loses an eye. Aleister obliged and Rollins threw Humberto to the floor.
It was announced after tonight’s RAW went off the airthat there will be a “Retirement Ceremony” next week for Rey Mysterio.
The IIConics Attacked Bliss & Cross
The IIConics came down to the ring and complained about not being given enough opportunities. Women’s Tag Team Champions Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross interrupted and came down to the ring.
Billie Kay told Nikki to shut up and just stand there and be grateful. Nikki Cross said she had to work for everything while people constantly looked passed her. Cross claimed that Alexa Bliss keeps her focused and she likes to think that she has taught Bliss a little something about friendship. Nikki closed the promo by saying she cannot think of anything more iconic than that.
The IIconics then attacked Bliss and Nikki out of nowhere. They sent Bliss flying into the ring post before slamming Nikki Cross to the canvas. Billie Kay and Peyton Rose then posed with the Women’s Tag Team Championships in the middle of the ring.
McIntyre Sent A Message To Lashley
MVP had WWE Champion Drew McIntyre as a guest on an episode of the VIP Lounge. MVP introduced McIntyre as the soon to be former WWE Champion. McIntyre will defend his WWE Championship against Bobby Lashley at Backlash.
McIntyre quickly knocked over the chairs and demanded that Lashley come out here. MVP told Drew that the Full Nelson won’t happen tonight because Lashley is going to save that for Backlash.
MVP brought up McIntyre’s previous appearance on the VIP Lounge and how Drew declined to accept his guidance. MVP added that he is responsible for Lashley getting a WWE Championship opportunity after 13 years. Drew pointed out that it took him 19 years to get his title shot and he capitalized by beating Brock Lesnar in five minutes.
Drew said he doesn’t need anyone thinking and talking for him. McIntyre added that the only way Lashley will take this title from him is prying it from his cold dead hands. Lashley interrupted and came down the entrance ramp. McIntyre leveled MVP with the Claymore and dared Bobby to get into the ring. Lashley retreated as McIntyre posed with the title.
Lashley & McIntyre Brawled To Close The Show
Match Recap: Lashley leveled Montez with a shoulder tackled and then beat him down in the corner of the ring. Lashley went for a Suplex but Montez escaped and tagged in Dawkins. Bobby sent Ford flying into the barricade and slammed him into the ring post as RAW went to a commercial break.
When RAW returned, Lashley hit a Powerslam on Ford for a near fall. MVP tagged in and brought Montez out of the ring and launched him into the steel steps. Back in the ring, MVP went for the cover but Ford kicked out at two. MVP went for a big boot but Ford got out of the way and MVP ran into the turnbuckle.
Angelo Dawkins tagged in and hit MVP with a few Clotheslines. Dawkins hit a Splash in the corner and followed it up with a Bulldog. Angelo blasted Lashley off the apron and Montez followed that up with a shoulder tackle. Ford tagged in and hit MVP with a massive Frog Splash. Lashley shoved Ford into the ring post and locked in the Full Nelson on Montez. Lashley wasn’t the legal man and wouldn’t let go so the match ended in a DQ.
McIntyre marched down to the ring and hit Lashley with the Glasgow Kiss. Lashley battled back and the two traded punches outside the ring. The action returned to the ring as referee John Cone asked the Performance Center trainees to break up the fight. Lashley hit McIntyre with a Spear and the brawl continued as several more trainees got in the ring to separate the two superstars as RAW went off the air.
Opinion: This week’s RAW dragged on and there were too many segments that felt lifeless. Lana was shown getting frustrated that MVP is now managing Lashley and it seems obvious that she is going to factor into the WWE title match at Backlash. I’m finding it impossible to get invested in this feud at the moment. It was cool to see Apollo Crews finally win a title but he and Andrade could have had a much better match than what we saw tonight.