Monday Night Raw 5/17/2021


Bobby Lashley was shown with five ladies walking through the back. MVP was in the ring and introduced Lashley, who entered with all five ladies. They cheered for Lashley after a video package aired of last night’s win.

MVP indicated that the ladies were his idea and Lashley was impressed. He put over Lashley’s win over two of the toughest men in the company. He claimed that Braun Strowman was nursing hurt ribs and Drew McIntyre couldn’t even get out of bed this morning.

MVP said Lashley was thrown through the stage but still came back and won the match. Not only that, but Lashley “injured” his fist smashing his opponents. Lashley said the All Might Era would never end. MVP said Lashley was supposed to have the nights off but Lashley actually wanted to issue an open challenge.

McIntyre entered. McIntyre said Lashley could impress his lovely ladies by defending his championship tonight. MVP said the open challenge for anyone besides Strowman and McIntyre. Lashley tried to attack but McIntyre ducked and sent Lashley from the ring. The ladies shrieked and bailed. McIntyre and Lashley exchanged words as the segment ended.

They plugged Ultimate Warrior’s A&E documentary.

Lashley’s open challenge is still on for later tonight.


Raw Tag Team Champion AJ Styles (w/Omos) defeated Elias (w/Jaxson Ryker) via DQ (11:48)

**

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There was a spot where Styles was down in the corner of the ring and Elias dropkicked him into the post. Styles responded soon after with a slingshot forearm to the outside. Ryker checked on Elias as Omos backed up Styles and that faceoff led to a break.

Elias used a back body drop and spinebuster for two. Elias flexed his muscles to show off before applying a chin lock. Styles came back with an enziguri, a sliding forearm, strikes, a Pelé kick, and a fireman’s carry neckbreaker for two. Elias blocked a Styles Clash before hitting a knee strike and Drift Away for a nearfall.

They traded strikes before Styles hit a forearm. Styles set up for the Phenomenal forearm but Ryker yanked him off the apron for an abysmal DQ. Omos chased Ryker up the ramp. Elias attacked Styles so Omos chased him away too. This was a waste of time.

The announcers plugged NXT, specifically the Johnny Gargano vs. Bronson Reed cage match. (They always play commercials for NXT during Raw, but this was the first time in a while I can recall them using the announcers to plug the show.)


New Day approached Riddle in the back. Riddle had requested their presence but they were immediately confused by whatever he was saying. Riddle had promised them a two-headed snake. Randy Orton showed up. Xavier Woods was upset because he wanted an actual snake. Orton said he was told that Riddle had arranged a meeting for them with Adam Pearce.

Riddle admitted he stretched the truth to get them together. Riddle thought Orton should apologize to New Day. Orton wasn’t sorry. Kofi Kingston wasn’t surprised. Kingston warned Riddle that he’d end up on the receiving end of an RKO one day. Orton told him to back off or he’d get an RKO right now. Kingston was happy to fight him like it was 2009 all over again. Orton accepted. Orton and Riddle shared an awkward moment before the segment ended.


Alexa’s Playground with guests Natalya and Tamina

Alexa Bliss and Natalya each sat on the swing set. Natalya answered Bliss’ question earnestly as Tamina looked around somewhat freaked out. Tamina suggested they leave. Bliss said she hasn’t even gotten to the hard questions. She asked them their favourite colours. Natalya said pink. Tamina said black and blue which is what Bliss’ face would look like if she tried anything.

Bliss asked if it was fun taking out Reginald. Tamina said yes. Bliss spoke like a child and talked about how Lilly loved watching flies getting swatted. She rambled on as Natalya and Tamina just walked away. She realized they were gone and wished them luck on their match. She said “we” will be watching. She played with the doll’s hair.


Angel Garza defeated Drew Gulak (2:11)

*

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Garza won decisively with the Wing Clipper. He shoved a rose in Gulak’s mouth after the match. (Before the match, they showed still photos of Garza shoving the rose down Gulak’s pants a couple of weeks ago.)

R-Truth was in the back trying to hide as Kevin Patrick approached him for an interview. Truth was worried because there was an open challenge for his 24/7 title. Patrick let him know that it was Lashley who had the open challenge. Truth was relieved. Akira Tozawa rolled him up to win the belt and ran away.

[Second hour]

They aired the Eva Marie video from last week.


Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) defeated Randy Orton (w/Riddle) (5:12)

**1/4

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Riddle rolled out on his scooter during Orton’s serious entrance, which was an amusing visual.

Adnan Virk wondered if it was wise for Kingston to take on a man like Orton. Fellow wrestler Randy Orton.

They messed up a spot early in the match. I think Kingston was supposed to leap over Orton as he came off the ropes, but instead, they collided (with Kingston’s hip hitting Orton in the head). Orton rolled to the outside to regroup. Orton also motioned for Kingston to come outside and get him, so they went back in the ring and redid the spot.

Kingston was in control until Orton poked him in the eye. Orton whipped Kingston into the corner but Kingston bounced off the buckles and hit a dropkick. Orton cut him off with a powerslam. Woods played his trombone which distracted Orton and that allowed Kingston to apply a schoolboy for the pinfall win.

Orton was pissed but Riddle got between him and New Day. Orton left. Riddle was about to go after Orton but Woods grabbed him by the arm. Riddle turned around and shoved Woods on his ass. Riddle left.


Naomi and Lana told Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce that they should get another tag title shot because Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke kept interfering in their matches. Rose and Brooke said they wanted the next shot. Charlotte Flair barged in and said they’ve all blown their many chances. Brooke, under her breath, said Charlotte did the same last night.

Deville said they would determine the next challengers after tonight’s match. She asked the teams to leave so they could speak to Charlotte. Charlotte wanted a singles match against Rhea Ripley. Charlotte explained to Pearce that she deserves a shot because she didn’t get pinned last night. Deville told her they’d consider her request if she beats Asuka tonight.

Ripley entered the frame. She didn’t care about Charlotte and wanted new competition. She said Charlotte was yesterday’s news. Charlotte warned her that it was a matter of time until she beats her to win the title.


Natalya & Tamina defeated Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler (w/Reginald) to retain the Women’s Tag Team Championships (3:13)

**

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The challengers took control immediately after Jax ran over Natalya. Natalya hit Jax with a discus clothesline and tagged in Tamina. Tamina knocked Jax off the apron but Baszler put her in the Kirifuda Clutch.

Bliss appeared on the stage holding Lilly. Fire suddenly shot out of the ring post near Reginald. He fell back off the ring steps and grabbed his face as if he’d been burned. This also caused Baszler to let go of her finisher.

Natalya tagged in and they gave Baszler a Hart Attack for the pinfall win. (Virk freaked out on commentary knowing this was the finish and sounded completely phoney.)

Jax checked on Reginald as Lilly’s awful chuckle played over the speakers. This was terrible.


US Champion Sheamus defeated Ricochet in a non-title match (13:25)

***1/2

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Sheamus grabbed a mic before the match. He was pissed at Ricochet for touching his clothes and demanded he return his stuff. They cut to Sarah Schreiber interviewing Ricochet in the back and they aired a replay from last night.

Ricochet wanted to shut up Sheamus once and for all. Schreiber asked about Sheamus’ accusation. Ricochet did indeed take Sheamus’ coat and hat from the locker room earlier. Ricochet put on Sheamus’ stuff before doing a bad impression of him. As Ricochet entered the stage, Sheamus went after him but Ricochet dodged the attack and went to the ring.

Ricochet wrestled in black jeans (with a belt). The match started with Ricochet on the attack but Sheamus quickly took over after a clothesline. Sheamus beat him up and sent him over the barricade which led to break. Sheamus was still in control after the break until Ricochet came back with forearm strikes. Sheamus responded with a backbreaker for two.

Ricochet hit a Spanish Fly for two. Sheamus might’ve hurt his leg on the spot. They landed awkwardly and Ricochet basically landed on Sheamus’ leg.

Ricochet used a standing shooting star for two. Sheamus got his knees up on a springboard moonsault attempt for two. Ricochet went to the top so Sheamus rolled out of the ring. Ricochet hit a dive to the outside before pushing Sheamus back in the ring. Ricochet removed his belt before hitting a springboard 450 splash for a nearfall.

Ricochet tried another springboard move but Sheamus nailed him in mid-air with a knee strike. The referee seemed to count to three but Ricochet had actually kicked out, so the match continued. It didn’t matter though because Sheamus followed immediately with a vicious-looking Brogue Kick for the pinfall win.

Sheamus put on his coat and hat and title belt. He mocked Ricochet before warning Lashley that he might accept the open challenge tonight.


T-Bar and Mace cut a promo in the back. They spoke using convoluted dialogue before flipping a coin to determine which one of them would face Lashley. They didn’t reveal who it would be. (Perhaps because neither of them actually called heads or tails.)


Asuka defeated Charlotte Flair (16:45)

***1/2

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Asuka was in complete control until Charlotte kicked her down from the apron (which didn’t look good). Ripley entered at that exact moment and they went to break.


[Third hour]


Charlotte remained in control until Asuka fired back and they went back-and-forth from there. There was a weird (bad) spot where Charlotte went for a Spanish Fly but Asuka held on to the buckle and didn’t budge, so Charlotte basically gave herself a Spanish Fly.

Charlotte applied a leg lock between the ropes before chucking Asuka into the announce table. Charlotte and Ripley went face-to-face and Asuka tried to attack but Charlotte chucked her back into the ring. Charlotte got in Ripley’s face again before going after Asuka.

Asuka kicked Charlotte into the ropes as Ripley jumped on the apron, so Charlotte kicked her down. Asuka then applied a small package for the pinfall win.

This was a physical match but also had a few clunky spots. Asuka landed badly on her shoulder at one point but seemed fine.


(A graphic popped up during the match plugging Damian Priest vs. John Morrison in a lumberjack match tonight)


Patrick interviewed John Morrison in the back. Morrison made zombie jokes and dedicated tonight’s match in Miz’s memory.


Lumberjack Match: Damian Priest defeated John Morrison (12:07)

***

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Corey Graves said Damian Priest woke up this morning as the talk of the WWE universe. The lumberjacks were Nikki Cross, the Viking Raiders, Mansoor, Tozawa (the 24/7 champion), T-Bar, Mace, Lucha House Party, Shelton Benjamin, Cedric Alexander, Titus O’Neil, and Mustafa Ali. The announcers specifically pointed out Cross who was the only woman out there.

Morrison took control briefly after Mace and T-Bar attacked Priest outside the ring. Morrison fell out of the ring at one point so Cross shoved him back in. Morrison tried avoiding the lumberjacks again but ran right into a slam by Priest which sent us to commercial break.

Mace and T-Bar attacked Priest again outside the ring. Priest fought off Morrison anyway before wiping out Mace and T-Bar with a dive.

Alexander attacked Benjamin for fun which led to a brawl. The gathering of bodies gave Priest the opportunity to superplex Morrison to the outside. They still came down pretty hard on the pile. Ali and Ivar and Cross were among those fortunate enough to avoid this.

Priest used a hurricanrana to bring Morrison down from the top before nailing Hit the Lights for the pinfall win.


After the match, Priest told Schreiber that it was time to move on from Miz and Morrison. She asked him what’s next and he said maybe he’ll answer Lashley’s open challenge.

There was a Bronson Reed promo plugging his match on NXT tomorrow.

There was a new Eva Marie video. She wanted to be a heroine like Angelina Jolie growing up and now she is one.


Patrick interviewed Shelton Benjamin. Patrick asked about Alexander but Benjamin didn’t want to talk about him. Benjamin wanted to face Lashley for the title. Alexander showed up and sarcastically applauded Benjamin. Alexander was amused that Benjamin thought he was a legend and said a fluke win over him didn’t mean he could face Lashley. Alexander said there was a reason everyone always abandoned Benjamin. Benjamin decked him.


The open challenge is up next.

MVP and Lashley waited in the ring following a break for someone to answer the challenge. The New Day’s music hit and it was Kofi Kingston answering the challenge. The announcers noted that Kingston already wrestled earlier. Lashley called him crazy.

Before the bell rang, MVP made it clear that they never said it was a championship match. Kingston was pissed and attacked Lashley. The ref separated them before ringing the bell to start the match.


Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) defeated WWE Champion Bobby Lashley (w/MVP) in a non-title match (10:52)

***1/4

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Lashley immediately gave Kingston a spinebuster for a nearfall. Kingston fought out of a delayed vertical suplex and kicked Lashley out of the ring before hitting a big dive.

After a commercial break, they decided to air a replay of MVP’s opening promo to prove that he never said it was a title match.

Lashley was in control and hit a delayed suplex for two. Kingston came back with a chop and DDT for two. Lashley no-sold a leg drop and hit a flatliner for two.

Woods played his trombone to distract Lashley (as he did to Orton earlier). It worked because Kingston was able to drive Lashley into the apron. It didn’t really matter though because Lashley followed with a Dominator before driving Kingston into the ring post.

Lashley had Kingston on his shoulders on the outside but Woods yanked him off. The ref told Woods to go to the back. As Woods argued with the ref, MVP got ready to attack Kingston with his cane. However, McIntyre showed up, took the cane away and hit Lashley in the gut with it.

Kingston caught Lashley in a schoolboy for the pinfall win. Kingston pinned Lashley.

McIntyre posed with New Day as the show ended.


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