By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Raw (Episode 1,410)
Taped May 25, 2020 in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Aired June 1, 2020 on USA Network
[Hour One] The Raw opening aired and then the spectator wrestlers were shown applauding behind the plexiglass… Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe were on commentary and they hyped Drew McIntyre vs. MVP in a non-title match in addition to other previously advertised segments…
Seth Rollins, Murphy, and Austin Theory headed to the ring for the Rey Mysterio retirement ceremony. Rollins entered the ring while Murphy and Theory took seats at ringside. Rollins said it was a huge night and he would have a match with Aleister Black, and Rey Mysterio would appear later to speak to everyone.
Rollins said it would be tough for Mysterio, but his gut tells him that Mysterio won’t be able to bring himself to announce his own retirement. Rollins said he took it upon himself to handle that formality for Mysterio. Rollins said Mysterio is too humble and too modest to come out and call himself a legend.
Rollins said it’s his duty as a leader to appreciate Mysterio, then added that he was chosen as a sacrifice for the greater good of Raw. Rollins said it’s a moment that will live in time forever, and set up a video package on Mysterio. The video concluded with footage of Rollins driving Mysterio’s eye into the edge of the ring steps.
Rollins, Murphy, and Theory applauded. Rollins said it would be his honor to induct Mysterio into the WWE Hall of Fame when the time comes. Aleister Black ran out and threw punches at Rollins, who fled to ringside going into a break… [C]
1. Seth Rollins (w/Murphy, Austin Theory) vs. Aleister Black. Phillips said Black was fighting for his friend and mentor Mysterio. Black ended up at ringside. Murphy and Theory walked toward him, but Humberto Carrillo ran out with a chair and stood guard over him. [C]
Rollins and Black traded near falls. Rollins went up top and went for a frogsplash, but Black put his knees up. Black came up selling knee pain. Rollins rolled to the apron and begged off for a moment, then traded strikes with Black, who ended up sending Rollins into the post and then performed a moonsault onto him at ringside. [C]
Black went for an armbar. Rollins powerbombed his way out of the hold, but sold his arm afterward. Rollins performed a springboard into a high knee from Black. Murphy and Theory climbed onto the apron as Black setting up for his finisher, but Carrillo pulled them down. Rollins rolled up a distracted Black for a two count. Black immediately rolled Rollins into a pin for the win.
Aleister Black defeated Seth Rollins in 21:00.
After the match, Rollins, Murphy, and Theory put the boots to Black and Carrillo. Murphy and Theory held Carrillo and made him watch while Rollins gave Carrillo a Stomp. Rollins jawed at a seething Black and asked him if he wanted to be a hero. Rollins said this is what happens when you want to be a hero, then put Black down with a Stomp…
Powell’s POV: That was a hell of a match. While there was no way of knowing at the time, WWE picked perhaps the worst possible night for this to air given what’s happening in the world right now. It was a real treat for those who are watching, and I recommend that those who did not watch it live go out of their way to see it. I also like the way they immediately put heat on Rollins and his crew with the post match attack. This was all really well done.
Phillips sat at his desk and hyped the return of Raw Talk on the new free tier of WWE Network. He encouraged viewers to download the app and said Raw Talk and 15,000 other WWE shows are now available on the free tier…
Powell’s POV: I miss the days of WWE broadcasters awkwardly attempting to show viewers how to download apps. Good times.
A sponsored ad recapped Apollo Crews beating Andrade to win the U.S. Championship…
Charly Caruso interviewed Angel Garza and Zelina Vega on the backstage interview set. Highlights aired of Garza pinning Kevin Owens on last week’s show. Vega started barking at Caruso, but Garza pulled her back and said, “I’ve got this.” Garza seductively told Caruso that all is fair in love and war. Vega called Garza’s win over Owens triumphant and said he saw what he wanted and took it. Garza continued to flirt with Caruso, and handed her a rose. Vega stuck around, took the rose, and ripped the petals off before handing it back to Caruso…
Philips hyped Shawn Michaels appearing to address the Edge vs. Randy Orton match… [C]
An ad hyped Sunday’s NXT Takeover: In Your House. Joe said he was excited and wondered if they were giving away another house…
Shawn Michaels checked in and stated the obvious when he mentioned the pressure of the Greatest Match Ever billing and said he wouldn’t want to be Edge or Orton. Michaels said he thinks they can deliver on the hype and he predicted and Edge win…
The broadcast team set up a recap of the segments involving MVP, Drew McIntyre, and Bobby Lashley from last week…
Backstage, Lana yelled at MVP about the hold he has over her husband Lashley. MVP said he had actual work to do and didn’t want to be sucked into her drama. Lana said he is nothing but a leech and asked if MVP was trying to revive his washed up career. MVP said that wasn’t even remotely true, but if it was, wouldn’t that make two of them. Lana slapped MVP and stormed away. MVP smiled… [C]
Powell’s POV: It’s interesting that they continue to have Lana playing a part in the Lashley and MVP saga. I’m not sure where it’s leading, but I am intrigued.
[Hour Two] A video package recapped the Rollins promo and and his match with black while including some footage of Mysterio to set up his appearance for later in the show…
Kayla Braxton introduced new U.S. Champion Apollo Crews, who joined her in the ring. Crews spoke about winning the title and selected Kevin Owens as his first challenger while stating that he is truly deserving.
Owens made his entrance and congratulated Crews on winning the title. Owens said he appreciated the title opportunity and he’s normally not one to pass on title matches, but he felt that Crews was giving it to him out of pity after what happened with him and Garza last week. Crews said it’s all about respect. Owens said he felt bad because now Crews’s first title reign would be a short one…
2. Apollo Crews vs. Kevin Owens for the U.S. Championship. Mike Rome delivered in-ring introductions for the title match. Phillips questioned how the left knee of Owens would hold up after it was injured last week by Garza. Crews threw an early dropkick. Owens came back with one of his own and then clotheslined Crews to ringside.
Owens joined Crews at ringside. Owens avoided Crews performing a moonsault off the apron, then hit him with a senton from the apron. Owens slid Crews inside the ring and performed a top rope senton for a near fall. Owens kicked Crews, who sold it like he was kicked in the balls. The referee checked with Crews, who said he wanted to continue the match. Crews and Owens fought to ringside again and traded punches while on the ground. [C]
Owens performed a second rope moonsault for a two count. Crews came back and got a couple of near falls of his own, including one from a standing moonsault. Owens superkicked Crews and went for another top rope senton, but Crews put his knees up. Andrade, and Angel Garza ran in and attacked both men for the no-contest finish while Zelina Vega watched from ringside…
Apollo Crews fought Kevin Owens to an apparent no-contest in 10:20.
Powell’s POV: Another strong match, albeit one with the expected heel interference finish. Crews looks good for selecting a strong challenger and battling back and forth with him. Will we get the usual impromptu tag team match coming out of the break?
3. Apollo Crews and Kevin Owens vs. Angel Garza and Andrade (w/Zelina Vega). The match was joined in progress. The heels targeted the bad left knee of Owens. Crews was getting the better of Andrade when Garza took out the bad knee of Owens, who was standing on the apron. Crews dropkicked Garza through the ropes. Andrade rolled up Crews for a near fall, but Crews came back and hit Andrade with a kick and sit-out powerbomb for the win…
Apollo Crews and Kevin Owens beat Angel Garza and Andrade.
Powell’s POV: Mixed feeling on the outcome. The Owens injury gave the babyfaces an out for losing the match. Still, it’s cool to see Crews go over strong again, even if it was at the expense of Andrade, who just keeps losing.
Raw Women’s Champion Asuka was interviewed on the backstage set. Asuka yelled in Japanese initially, then spoke in English while saying The Empress never bows down to anyone… Phillips hyped the bowling match for after the break… [C]
The Street Profits vs. Viking Raiders in a bowling match video aired. Angelo Dawkins and Ivar both bowled underhanded while using both hands. Both teams did a Skol toast. Dawkins spit out his drink, which Ivar informed him was goat’s milk. Montez Ford accidentally dropped his bowling ball on Dawkins’ foot. Ivar pulled a turkey leg out of the ball return machine. Ivar had a bowling ball painted on his belly.
Ivar spotted a food sign and ran to the kitchen. Erik ran after and tried to stop him. A woman told them to get out. She did the usual bit where she said Ivar was cute, but not so much for Erik. The Profits yelled they wanted the smoke, then a guy flipped on the moonlight bowling lights. It all came down to the final frame. Erik rolled Ivar and the ball down the lane for a strike, which gave the Viking Raiders the win…
Powell’s POV: Please tell me this isn’t a best of seven.
The broadcast team spoke briefly about the bowling. Saxton said he and Joe could go bowling. Joe said they could not. Phillips set up footage from last week of The IIconcis leaving Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross lying…
Phillips said Billie Kay would face Cross in a singles match. The teams were shown bickering backstage while Adam Pearce tried to calm them down… [C]
4. Nikki Cross (w/Alexa Bliss) vs. Billie Kay (w/Peyton Royce). Kay caught Cross with a big kick and covered her for a two count about a minute into the match. Later, Kay threw the softest knee to the gut in modern day history. She ended up dropping an elbow on Cross for a two count, then bickered with the referee.
Cross fought back and clotheslined Kay. Cross fired up and hit another clothesline in the corner and followed up with a bulldog. Cross caught Kay with a kick through the ropes and went up top for a cross body block, but Kay moved out of the way. Kay hit what Phillips described as “a sit-out uranage of sorts” and scored the pin…
Billie Kay pinned Nikki Cross in 5:10.
Powell’s POV: The broadcast team told the story of Cross being dubbed the weak link of her team, so it was logical for her to lose this match for further that story. Kay had a couple of clunky moments, but she’s certainly had worse outings.
Drew McIntyre was interviewed somewhere backstage by Caruso. McIntyre said it’s week nine as champion and he’s beaten seven wrestlers on Raw since then. McIntyre said that if anyone in the locker room or around the ring or even on the street wants to face him, he will line them up and Claymore them all…
Phillips hyped Rey Mysterio’s appearance… [C] Phillips hyped Seth Rollins, The Street Profits, and The Viking Raiders for Raw Talk. He hyped the new free tier of WWE Network and said no credit card is required…
The broadcast team spoke with Rey Mysterio, who was apparently at his home. Mysterio said his eye is still recovering and he doesn’t know when or if he will be able to return. He said it all depends on how fast he can recover. He said that if an infection set in, it could mean the end of his career.
[Hour Three] Joe asked Mysterio if he was there to retire. Mysterio said he didn’t know if it’s even up to him. He said he could be cleared to compete in a few weeks or never be cleared to compete in WWE again. Mysterio said it’s been a question that he’s been thinking about for some time now. Joe asked Mysterio if he wanted to address anything about the retirement ceremony that Rollins held for him earlier. Mysterio said he wasn’t chosen by a higher power as Rollins indicated.
Dominick Mysterio sat down next to his father and said Rollins isn’t a messiah, he’s barely a human being. Dom said someone from his family needed to do something. Rey calmed his son down and then said he knew they were looking for an official statement on the retirement ceremony. Mysterio damned Rollins for what he put him and his family through. Mysterio mentioned his wife and daughter by name.
Rey said he’s truly a man of forgiveness, but he will never forgive Rollins for what he did to him and what he put his family through. Rey damned Rollins again, then asked Dom to leave with him. Instead, Dom looked into the camera and said that Rollins is a man of scripture. “An eye for an eye,” Dom said before walking out of camera shot…
Powell’s POV: Dom needs some work on his promos, but he’s young and should improve over time. I like that he’s getting involved in this storyline. I assume that Dom will be fed to Rollins at some point. I didn’t catch any hints of Dom joining Rollins, so it looks like he will eventually team with his father in this feud.
Nia Jax made her entrance while the broadcast team recapped Asuka roughing her up backstage last week. Jax said she didn’t start this. She said she’s been repeatedly attacked by Asuka and Kairi Sane. She said it’s a two on one advantage and they are not who they say they are. She said it’s all smoke and mirrors, just like Asuka’s championship.
Jax said Asuka was gifted the Raw Women’s Championship because “Becky got all pregnant” and felt guilty because she couldn’t wrestle and gifted the belt to Asuka. Jax said she’s the victim and will expose Asuka for the backstabbing, undermining charlatan that she really is at WWE Backlash… [C]
Highlights aired of Rob Gronkowski’s promo from last week. Highlights aired from earlier in the day of Gronk in Foxborough, Massachusetts. He was wearing the WWE 24/7 Title and was getting ready to film a Tik Tok dance. R-Truth was posing as his landscaper. The guy working the cameraphone for Gronk told him not to worry about Truth. The cameraphone guy removed his hoodie to reveal a referee’s t-shirt. R-Truth rolled up Gronk and pinned him to win the worthless hunk of shit title that just won’t go away…
5. Nia Jax vs. Kairi Sane. Asuka was shown watching the match backstage. Sane caught Jax in a sleeper. She released the hold once Jax was down on all fours and then worked her over with kicks. Sane went up top, but Jax cut her off. Jax set up for a slam, but Sane countered into a DDT and got a two count.
Sane fired up and performed a sliding clothesline. Sane went up top, but Jax rolled to ringside. Sane went for a baseball slide. Jax caught her, spun her around, and slammed her face into the apron. Jax ran Sane face first into the ring steps. Jax rolled Sane back inside the ring and performed a leg drop before pinning her.
Nia Jax beat Kairi Sane in 3:20.
After the match, Asuka ran out and had a staredown with Jax, who backed away and left the ring…
Powell’s POV: Sane crashed face first into the ring steps. I don’t know if Jax was to blame, but it’s time to stop booking these two against one another.
The broadcast team hyped Backlash and “what could be the greatest match ever.” Phillips set up a recap of Edge’s promo on Orton from last week… Orton was shown standing backstage. Phillips said Orton would speak next… [C]
Randy Orton delivered a backstage promo. He spoke about Ric Flair and recalled that he predicted an Orton win at Backlash. Orton also recalled Edge saying that he was complacent and just did it for the paycheck. Orton laughed and said Edge is right. Orton said that Edge can’t stand that he’s phoned it in and half-assed it for 20 years and yet he’s accomplished more than Edge or anyone else in the locker room.
Orton said Edge had to pretend to be the heroes of his childhood to get to where he is, whereas all he had to do was be Randy Orton. He said he will prove that he is better than Edge at Backlash. “I set the bait, you bit,” Orton said. “And now your storybook ending is going to be rewritten by the three most destructive letters in sports entertainment – RKO”…
Powell’s POV: Another good promo. Orton admitting to half-assing it and being complacent works on a couple of levels, as it should fire up a lot of his online detractors.
Charlotte Flair made her entrance for the champion vs. champion match… [C]
Flair delivered an in-ring promo. She told the spectator wrestlers that she wants one of them to be the next Rhea Ripley or Io Shirai. She said she wants them to stand up to the throne so that she can make them bow down.
Flair said Asuka has a history of bowing down. She recalled Asuka being a Royal Rumble winner, having the longest unbeaten streak, and listed the titles that she’s won. Flair said The Empress wants to be like The Queen. Asuka’s music interrupted Flair and she made her entrance…
6. Raw Women’s Champion Asuka vs. NXT Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair in a non-title match. They took an early picture-in-picture break for the ice cream commercial that makes AJ Styles look like a babyface. Flair controlled the bulk of the offense. Asuka eventually went for a triangle. Flair threw punches at her an then countered into a Boston Crab.
Asuka rolled Flair into a pin for a two count. Asuka applied a leg lock, which Flair powered out of by countering into a German suplex. Flair came up with a bloody lip. Asuka threw some kicks at Flair and then applied an armbar. Flair powered her up again and slammed her to the mat, which led to a two count.
Flair ended up giving Asuka a big boot off the apron. Asuka’s music played. Nia Jax came out wearing an Asuka match and dancing like Asuka. Phillips noted that it was Jax. “You think?” Joe asked. Jax removed the mask and was wearing Asuka’s face paint. Jax ran down the ramp and knocked Asuka down with a clothesline for the apparent finish…
Asuka fought Charlotte Flair to an apparent no-contest in 10:00.
Powell’s POV: Really nice work from both wrestlers. There’s been a few strong matches on the show this week, which is a pleasant surprise. But the company has to know that viewers are savvy enough to understand that if a match looks too good for television, they will usually get a cheap finish.
Lana was interviewed by Caruso on the backstage set. Caruso set up a replay of the Lana and MVP exchange from earlier. Caruso asked Lana if she thought it was Lashley or MVP’s idea to not have her at ringside during Lashley’s matches. Lana said she was unsure, then said she was sure that it wasn’t “my Bobby.” Lana said Lashley requested that she not be at ringside for his matches, but he never said anything about not going to ringside during MVP’s matches. Lana laughed and walked off… [C]
Ring entrances for the main event took place. Just as the referee was about to start the match, Lana made her entrance and joined Bobby Lashley in MVP’s corner…
7. WWE Champion Drew McIntyre vs. MVP (w/Bobby Lashley, Lana) in a non-title match. McIntyre was dominant from the start, but he became distracted by Lashley at ringside. MVP ran McIntyre into the post and then into the plexiglass barrier. Back inside the ring, MVP delivered a big boot in the corner.
McIntyre came back set up for a Claymore Kick, but Lashley pulled MVP to ringside. McIntyre performed a flip dive onto MVP and Lashley. Back inside the ring, McIntyre did his countdown and then blasted MVP with a Claymore Kick and scored the clean pin.
Drew McIntyre defeated MVP in 2:55 in a non-title match.
Immediately after the pin, Lashley put McIntyre in the Full Nelson. The show went off the air with McIntyre still locked in the submission hold…
Powell’s POV: It’s odd that they went off the air before McIntyre could really sell the Full Nelson. After all, this was a taped show, so it’s not as if it was live and they were running long. Lana’s involvement at ringside turned out to be forgettable, but I assume there’s a longer story that is still playing out. I can’t say that watching McIntyre beat up MVP again does anything for me at this point. And that’s a shame because it should mean something when McIntyre gets his hands on MVP, but they’ve already run it into the ground.
Overall, this show was loaded with three strong matches. The silly 24/7 and bowling contests didn’t do anything for me, but it turned out to be a quality edition. I assume this show will take a beating in the ratings tomorrow because of world events, but only time will tell. Thanks for watching along with me and please be safe out there. I will be back with my audio review for Dot Net Members later tonight. Let me know what you thought of the show by assigning it a letter grade via our weekly post show poll available on the main page.
Join John Moore for his live review of NXT Takeover: In Your House on Sunday night.
“I don’t know if Jax was to blame, but it’s time to stop booking these two against one another.”
Yes, please. For Kairi’s sake.
I second this and add, stop booking Nia Jax full stop!
Also, the 24/7 title, it gives Ron Killings something to do, sure, he deserves better, but the WWE don’t recognise that.
Kairi has just released a picture of the gash on her head as a result of this bump. It’s about an inch long and nasty looking.
Gee I hope there is no permanent scarring.
Cheers to the new 24/7 Champion YES! YES! YES!
Hey Jason, i think the 24/7 should be given to Ziggler so we can see his belt and listen to his shitty music. 2 for 2!
“Kay had a couple of clunky moments, but she’s certainly had worse outings.”
I think by Billie Kay’s standards, that sounds like her best ever in-ring performance.
“Murphy and Theory held Carrillo and made him watch while Rollins gave Carrillo a Stomp.
“I don’t know if Jax was to blame, but it’s time to stop booking these two against one another.”
Jax is a nightmare. There’s nothing there. She can’t work a big man style, she can’t cut a promo, she’s completely nonathletic, and her only accomplishment is being able to injure people out of sheer incompetence.