Another NXT darling enjoys a Raw debut tonight, the Edmonton crowd enjoys a cavalcade of Canadian stars, and Dexter Lumis will make it hard for some people to ever visit the Hockey Hall of Fame again. To the report!
Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair heads to the ring to open the show alongside Asuka and Alexa Bliss, calling out Bayley on not being willing to fight her own battles and needing her Damage Control partners IYO SKY and Dakota Kai to help her all the time.
This, naturally, brings out Damage Control to talk some trash right back, highlighted by Bayley claiming that everything Belair has accomplished has been because Bayley wasn’t here to stop her. Bliss, by the way, looks disinterested during this whole sequence.
Enough is enough for Belair, and she challenges SKY to a match right now. Well, after a commercial break. And also after we witness the arrival of Sami Zayn and Solo Sikoa in the arena parking lot.
Bianca Belair (w/ Asuka & Alexa Bliss) VS. IYO SKY (w/ Dakota Kai & Bayley)
After all of that, we join the match in progress with Belair landing punches on SKY in a corner before pulling her out to spin her around and slam her face-first to the mat. A couple of tough looking throws send SKY tumbling hard to the mat, and a backbreaker nets Belair a two-count.
Sky fights back with a palm strike, but a shoulder tackle by Belair sends SKY flying, and not in the manner she prefers, as we go soon afterwards to break. Coming back, both women are down in the middle of the ring, rising to trade punches before Belair goes on another run with a pair of suplexes, the second-one with a little marching flair as she holds SKY up.
A springboard moonsault by Belair leads to another two-count, and then a top-rope crossbody by SKY is caught and turned into a fallaway slam by Belair. SKY brings Belair down from the second rope with an arm drag, but Belair sends her off the top to the floor before catapulting herself over the ropes and onto Bayley and Kai. Going back into the ring, Belair finishes things up with a KOD.
Winner via pinfall: Bianca Belair
Not a smooth match, and since neither Bayley nor Kai made any moves to interfere at all, Asuka and Bliss were left with nothing to do but cheer, and that also negated Belair’s promo which led to this match in the first place.
Backstage, Kevin Patrick speaks with Rey Mysterio, hearing that he will never fight his son Dominik. First things first, though, he plans on taking some of his pent-up emotions out on Seth Rollins tonight.
Next up, The Miz struts out in front of an Edmonton Oilers display case with a group of security guards, offering them fame and riches if they can find and stop Dexter Lumis. He even names them “Miz Force”, which is hopefully his next movie.
Seth Rollins VS. Rey Mysterio
As Rollins enters, wearing some pretty classic “Architect” gear, his info graphic calls his WrestleMania 31 cash-in “The height of the century”. Can’t always trust spell-check.
Before Mysterio joins him, Rollins takes some time on a mic, grumbling that he should be United States Champion right now if it weren’t for that meddling Matt Riddle. As Rollins vows to rid himself of Riddle, the crowd keeps on singing his theme song and is clearly behind him in this segment.
Mysterio finally gets into the ring, hits Rollins with a dropkick before the bell, and off to commercials we go. With the match in progress upon our return, Rollins has Mysterio in the corner, delivering kicks, but Seth is cut on his forehead, which we learn is from Mysterio running Rollins’ head into the steel steps. Hey, careful with that Rey — someone’s going to lose an eye like that.
A tilt-a-whirl hurricanrana puts Mysterio temporarily on top, but a backbreaker gives the advantage back to Rollins. He kicks and chops Rey around the ring as the announcers argue over who is the more Einstein-like between Riddle and Rollins. Let’s leave the intelligence competitions to Chad Gable, though.
Rollins catches a springboard moonsault and hits a gutbuster on Mysterio, and when the fight goes to the floor Dominik appears with a chair in hand. He actually pats Rollins on the back and sticks around at ringside as we go to break.
Back to the match where Rollins is running Rey into the turnbuckles and landing a kick to the head before offering — and receiving — a fist bump from Dominik. In the ring, Rey fights out of the last of Three Amigos, bringing Rollins down with a DDT instead, and then reverses a buckle bomb with a hurricanrana. Next, he hits a seated senton off the top rope, and soon has Rollins in position for a 619. Rollins catches Rey in mid-run and does deliver a buckle bomb after all, but moments later Rey uses a top rope splash for a two-count.
The crowd chants “Dominik’s useless” as Rollins ducks away from a second 619 attempt, but not long afterwards he hits one square on only to see Seth roll out to the floor. As Rey chases him, Dominik gets in his way and again challenges his father to hit him with the chair.
As Rollins keeps the ref busy, Rhea Ripley appears to drive him into the ringpost. Dominik rolls him back into the ring where Rollins stomps him and then applies a Peruvian Necktie for the victory.
Winner via submission: Seth Rollins
Backstage, Bobby Lashley meets up with Matt Riddle and offers his encouragement for his match with Rollins at Extreme Rules … and also tells him never to interfere in one of his matches again.
Elsewhere, Kevin Owens and Johnny Gargano are readying for their tag match when they catch sight of the Miz Force knocked out cold. They shrug and laugh it off.
As they make their official entrance, Gargano alerts Owens to a sign that reads “Hey KO, fight my sign”, and Owens obliges by grabbing and punching the sign to the ground.
Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis) VS. Johnny Gargano & Kevin Owens
Owens and Gargano are not officially billed as The Panda Express, but Byron Saxton and Corey Graves talk enough about it to make it a real thing on Raw. As Gargano and Gable open the contest with reversals, the crowd chants for KO and soon get what they want with a pair of tags. Owens and Otis try a couple of shoulder blocks with no winner, so in comes Gable to receive an elbow, moonsault, and senton. Gargano enters again and hops on Owens’ back for a double senton, but soon it’s Otis against Gargano and Johnny doesn’t do well as the big guy slams him hard to the mat.
After a break, Owens gets a hot tag and slaps Gable with a series of clotheslines and a cannonball. A top rope Swanton Bomb, though, ends up on Gable’s knees. Saxton suggests: “When in Canada, how about a Sharpshooter,” as Owens applies the submission move (though Graves suggests that it’s actually a Scorpion Deathlock), and Otis is forced to break up the hold.
Owens does land a Swanton Bomb after all, but only for a two-count. Gable leaps away from a pop-up powerbomb, hitting a German Suplex instead before Gargano tags himself in. He misses a kick from the apron, and when he jumps in to try for a slingshot DDT, Gable goes from a Northern Lights Suplex to a tag for Otis. With Gargano up on Otis’ shoulders, Gable tags in again and delivers a bulldog from the top rope for another two.
While Gable and Gargano are doing who knows what, we follow Owens and Otis to the floor where KO puts Otis up on the announcer’s table and lands an elbow off the barricade. As Gargano seems poised to deliver a final blow to Gable, Austin Theory distracts him and tries to hit him with the briefcase, though he counters with a superkick and hits his slingshot DDT on Gable for the victory.
Winners via pinfall: Johnny Gargano & Kevin Owens
Kevin Patrick is backstage again, this time with AJ Styles and asking him about turning down The Judgment Day’s offer. Finn Balor interrupts and makes a second pitch for AJ to join him. Styles turns him down once again.
Elsewhere, Theory calls out Gable and Otis on their lack of success. Gable blames their run-ins with “the two-ton doofus” Braun Strowman. Theory wants to get even with Gargano, but takes a phone call … for Gable. Chad answers and it’s Strowman, challenging him to a match on next week’s Raw.
Omos VS. Joey Gibson & Greg Lester
With MVP on commentary and singing a few bars of the Geddy Lee/Mackenzie Brothers classic “Take Off”, Omos has his way with power moves, slamming both wrestlers from on high and claming an easy victory.
Winner via pinfall: Omos
Omos continues his assault after the bell.
The Miz discovers his Miz Force all unconscious and vents his frustrations in front of a suspicious looking hockey player statue. Except it’s not a statue, of course, but Dexter Lumis, who drops the gloves and assaults Miz before putting him to sleep. Naturally, this elicits a “Let’s go Oilers” chant from the crowd.
Nikki A.S.H. VS. Candice LeRae
This is a surprise to the crowd, the announcers, and Nikki herself. A low dropkick by LeRae sends Nikki to the floor, but she traps Candice in the apron when she tries to follow up. Back in the ring, LeRae lands a backstabber before bringing Nikki down from the second rope with a swinging neckbreaker for the easy victory.
Winner via pinfall: Candice LeRae
As LeRae exits the ring, Nikki is breaking down in a corner, removing her mask.
Backstage once again, Kevin Patrick catches up with The Judgment Day as Balor is trying to convince them that Styles will come around. Patrick asks if Priest will be holding anything back against his former friend Riddle in their match. Priest laughs off the idea, promising to Riddle that it’s nothing personal tonight.
Sami Zayn (w/ Solo Sikoa) vs. AJ Styles
Firstly, and most importantly: yes, Zayn is wrestling in his new shirt. The crowd starts the obligatory “Ole” chant before Styles quiets them down with a backbreaker and a kneedrop. A high back drop by Zayn impresses himself, as does a standing elbow drop from the second rope. Styles fights his way back on top with a clothesline, a low sliding forearm, rack bomb, and a forearm from within the ring to Sami on the floor.
Back from commercials, Zayn dodges a Phenomenal Forearm but takes a suplex into the turnbuckles. He fights back with a Blue Thunder Bomb, and another bomb of the Orange Crush variety, but can’t get a pinfall. A Pele Kick by Styles knocks both men down and takes us into another break.
Coming back, Zayn wriggles away from a Styles Clash and sets up a Helluva Kick, only to see Styles roll to the floor. When he comes back in he cinches in the Calf Crusher, forcing Zayn to the ropes to break the hold. After Styles tries another Styles Clash and Zayn sends him onto the apron, Zayn distracts the ref and Sikoa drives AJ onto the apron. Styles stumbles back to his feet in the ring with a Helluva kick awaiting him.
Winner via pinfall: Sami Zayn
The Judgment Day heads to the ring with Styles still there, and Balor offers once again admission into the faction. Styles refuses again and suffers a quick beat down, but as Balor is about to stomp on a chair wrapped around AJ’s neck, he stops and tells him he is still his friend.
Backstage, LeRae meets up with Belair and Bliss singing Happy Birthday to Asuka. Damage Control walks by, and the result is that Kai and LeRae will face off next week.
Damian Priest (w/ Finn Balor, Rhea Ripley, and Dominik Mysterio) VS. Matt Riddle
A starting lock-up solves nothing, so Riddle tries a Kimura, then a rear chinlock, before a sequence of both wrestlers trying kicks and strikes with nothing to show for it but reversals. Riddle lands a Bro-ton, but Priest responds with a spinning heel kick. Priest yells at Riddle, asking if he’s trying to embarrass him on his birthday before the fight spills to the floor where Priest walks a suplex over to the barricade, dropping Riddle on a painful angle.
Back from ads, Priest is stretching Riddle’s arms and back, but Matt escapes and uses a ripcord knee and springboard corkscrew moonsault onto Priest on the floor. As Riddle sets up a Floating Bro, Priest pushes him all the way to the floor before more commercials.
We come back in time to see a fisherman’s superplex by Riddle for a two-count. The two stand in the middle of the ring and trade punches, with Priest pulling out a bell clap before a Bro Derek gets another two-count. Riddle goes up for another Floating Bro attempt, but Ripley distracts him long enough for Priest to grab him off the top rope and deliver a strong clothesline. Riddle hits a knee on Priest and is thinking of an RKO, but Priest grabs him only for Riddle to wrap him up in a sloppy small package for the 3-count.
Winner via pinfall: Matt Riddle
Instantly, The Judgment Day enter the ring and lay a beating on Riddle before that other Alter Bridge song announces Edge’s arrival. He clears the ring with a couple of spears and challenges Finn Balor to an “I Quit” match at Extreme Rules.
Monday Night Raw, Sep 26, 2022
A solid if not spectacular Raw, with all eyes on Extreme Rules for now. The crowd picked their predictable favourites and had their fun with a big night for the Canadian contingent.