By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Raw (Episode 1,415)
Taped Saturday in Orlando, Florida at the WWE Performance Center
Aired July 6, 2020 on USA Network
[Hour One] The Raw opening played to start the show… Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe were on commentary. Phillips hyped Extreme Rules as The Horror Show, and then they hyped the three previously advertised Raw matches…
WWE Champion Drew McIntyre made his entrance while the masked spectator wrestlers behind the plexiglass cheered. Once in the ring, McIntyre looked into the camera and welcomed viewers to Raw. He hyped his Extreme Rules pay-per-view match against Dolph Ziggler and recalled giving letting his challenger choose the stipulation for the match.
Dolph Ziggler made his entrance after being called out by McIntyre. Ziggler stood on the stage and said it was essentially The Decision, but he said he wasn’t taking his talents to South Beach (it’s a LeBron James thing, non-sports fans). Ziggler said the stipulation is a secret.
Powell’s POV: So it’s like the COVID-19 positive test count in WWE?
Ziggler accused McIntyre of stabbing people in the back and forgetting about them en route to his WWE Championship win. Ziggler said it wasn’t just him, he brought someone with him who felt the same way.
Heath Slater walked onto the stage wearing a “Free Agent” t-shirt while Phillips recalled their 3MB history. Slater recalled watching WrestleMania at home with his children. He said he jumped up and screamed, and it was probably the first time that his kids saw him cry. Slater said the joy was due to his love for McIntyre.
Slater said McIntyre is his brother and he called him when he was released. “Where were you for me?” Slater asked twice. Slater said The Bump is the one show that allowed him to speak his mind. He said he was fighting for his girls, not the 22 kids that the world thinks he has. He said his daughters believe in their daddy. “I just want you to know that I was there for you, and you weren’t there for me,” Slater said.
Slater recalled McIntyre saying on The Bump that he would petition for the two of them to have a match, but instead he’s on the unemployment line. Slater said he hopes their friendship can hold on, but he was there to take the opportunity. Slater told McIntyre to give him what he deserved and what he promised to him as a friend.
McIntyre mouthed that he didn’t want to fight Slater, who then shoved him and slapped him. “What about now?” Slater asked. McIntyre responded, “You’re on, you’ve got your fight”… [C]
Powell’s POV: A good segment. It was nice to hear from a more serious Slater, who sold me on this match. Hopefully, McIntyre will have a good counter to Slater’s complaint, as it did make him look bad for not reaching out per the storyline. For those waiting for a 3MB reunion of sorts, keep in mind that Jinder Mahal is recovering from another knee surgery.
1. WWE Champion Drew McIntyre vs. Heath Slater in a non-title match. Both men worked in their street clothes. Slater threw some punches at McIntyre in the corner and then removed his t-shirt. When Slater turned around, McIntyre blasted him with a Claymore Kick and then pinned him.
WWE Champion Drew McIntyre defeated Heath Slater in 0:24 in a non-title match.
After the match, McIntyre glared at Ziggler while Phillips on commentary accused Ziggler of manipulating Slater. Phillips also played up the idea that it hurt McIntyre to do what he did to Slater. As McIntyre was heading to the back, he stopped and watched as Ziggler berated Slater in the ring. Ziggler slapped Slater, who shoved him to the mat.
Ziggler got up and tackled Slater, then raced out of the ring once McIntyre returned. McIntyre barked at Ziggler and told him to get in the damn ring. Ziggler headed to the back. McIntyre reached out and helped Slater to his feet and they hugged while the spectator wrestlers applauded. McIntyre raised the arm of Slater and they took a bow together…
Powell’s POV: A nice moment. I actually wish the match had lasted a bit longer, but they solved the problem of McIntyre coming off poorly via Slater’s promo with that post match scene.
Backstage, Sarah Schreiber tried to interview Sasha Banks and Bayley, but they asked why they should talk to her when they could talk to the world. Asuka showed up after Banks and Bayley left. Schreiber asked Asuka who she planned to handle Banks and Bayley on her own. Asuka asked who said she was alone, then laughed… [C]
The broadcast team recapped Sasha Banks pinning Asuka to win last week’s mixed tag main event…
Sasha Banks and Bayley delivered an in-ring promo. Banks vowed to tap out Asuka when they meet for the Raw Women’s Championship at Extreme Rules. Asuka’s entrance music interrupted the Banks and Bayley rant.
Asuka walked onto the stage with a mic in hand said Banks isn’t good at math and isn’t ready for her. Bayley said Banks humiliated Asuka for the last couple weeks and would do the same at the pay-per-view. Bayley said Banks is ready for anything or anybody that Asuka had waiting for her. Kairi Sane made her entrance and joined Asuka on the stage. Phillips hyped Sane vs. Banks as coming up after a break… [C]
2. Sasha Banks (w/Bayley) vs. Kairi Sane (w/Asuka). A few minutes into the match, Banks taunted Asuka. Bayley walked over and was pushed to the ringside mat by Asuka. Sane sent Banks to ringside, then performed a dropkick under the bottom rope that took out Banks and Bayley. [C]
Sane performed a pair of running Blockbusters and then speared Banks, who ended up in the corner. Sane hit Banks with a running knee in the corner and then covered her for a two count. Banks came back with a meteora for a two count of her own. Sane rallied with and caught Banks in a submission hold, but Bayley ran in and attacked her for the DQ.
Kairi Sane defeated Sasha Banks by DQ in 13:20.
After the match, Asuka ran in to help. Asuka ended up fighting Bayley and Banks at ringside, then Sane leapt from the top rope and hit the heels with an Insane Elbow on the floor…
Powell’s POV: It was nice to see Sane back, but I’m surprised the match was booked to make Banks look like she was on the verge of losing. I’m all for doing more with Sane, but Banks is challenging for the Raw Women’s Championship at the pay-per-view. We watched Nia Jax plow through Sane multiple times so it seemed odd that Banks needed outside interference to be saved from tapping out.
Phillips hyped the KO Show with guest Seth Rollins, then set up footage from last week of Rollins and Murphy beating Humberto Carrillo and Aleister Black…
Backstage, referees were checking on Aleister Black, who was lying in a heap while Seth Rollins and Murphy walked away… [C]
Phillips hyped the Miz hosted “Cannonball” and noted that the show premieres on Thursday. Miz was shown on the cover of TV Guide, which shockingly is still a thing…
Backstage, Big Show spoke with The Viking Raiders. Ivar held a bowling ball. Erik said Ivar wanted to show him how they beat the Street Profits. Big Show said he’s all for fun and games, but they would be in the ring with Randy Orton.
The Viking Raiders spoke about Edge and Christian and said they had their own five second pose. Show chopped both men and they fired up. Erik said their viking ways might be different to show, but once they get in the ring the raid will be on…
Kevin Owens headed to the ring where he hosted The KO Show. Owens tossed the chairs out of the ring while noting that his guest was Seth Rollins. Owens introduced Rollins and labeled him a giant piece of trash. Rollins was accompanied by Murphy.
Rollins condescendingly asked how Owens’ fractured ankle was doing. Owens said he was doing better post WrestleMania than Rollins clearly was. Owens presented him with a t-shirt like the shirt he wore at WrestleMania when he beat Rollins.
[Hour Two] Rollins said he doesn’t give a damn about Owens, his shirt, or his show. He said he wanted to use the show as a platform for the now medically cleared Rey Mysterio. Rollins said he and Mysterio have unfinished business and it’s now time to make him a permanent sacrifice for the betterment of Raw.
Rollins said Owens sacrificed himself at WrestleMania to beat him and questioned at what cost. Rollins said Owens has been on the shelf with a broken ankle while he has risen to prominence since their match. Rollins said Owens needs him more than he thinks he does.
Rollins said Owens should consider that he gets more out of fighting with him rather than against him. Rollins said Owens should find a purpose in his fighting and maybe he should fight for the greater good.
Rey Mysterio’s music interrupted Rollins and he headed onto the stage with his son Dominick. Mysterio asked Rollins if he really believed that Owens would fall for his BS. Mysterio accepted Rollins’ challenge to a match at Extreme Rules and said Seth’s destiny would be in his hands.
Rollins mocked Mysterio for not having a tag partner for their scheduled tag match due to what happened to Aleister Black. Owens said he would never fight side by side with Rollins, but he would fight against him as Mysterio’s tag partner. Owens suggested that the winning team would be allowed to pick the stipulation for the Rollins vs. Mysterio match at Extreme Rules. Rollins agreed, then Murphy attacked Owens… [C]
Powell’s POV: I mistakenly wrote that Mysterio and Black were attacked in the backstage area. It was actually just Black, who had a Mysterio mask on his head briefly. I made the correction to avoid any further confusion.
3. Kevin Owens and Rey Mysterio (w/Dominick Mysterio) vs. Seth Rollins and Murphy. The match was joined in progress. With Rey down in the ring, Murphy approached Dom at ringside. Owens cut off Murphy, but Rollins took out Owens. Rollins and Murphy approached Dom. Rollins tried to goad Dom into getting his father’s team disqualified so that he could pick the stipulation at Extreme Rules. Rollins gouged the eye of Dom. [C]
Dom rubbed his eye as the match continued. Owens ducked a springboard knee, then caught Rollins with a superkick. Owens made a hot tag to Mysterio while Murphy tagged in. Mysterio worked over Murphy and put him in position for a 619. Rollins ran in, but Mysterio tripped him into the ropes.
Rey set up for his finisher, but Rollins rolled to ringside and grabbed Dom and held him hostage on the ramp. Aleister Black’s entrance music played and he walked out, causing Rollins to release Dom, who then gouged the eyes of Murphy. Once Murphy returned to the ring, Mysterio hit him with a 619 and followed up with a top rope frogsplash and scored the pin.
Kevin Owens and Rey Mysterio defeated Seth Rollins and Murphy to give Mysterio the right to pick the match stipulation for his match against Rollins at Extreme Rules.
After the match, Mysterio took a mic and said he had a perfect stipulation for their match at Extreme Rules. Mysterio called for “eye for an eye.” He said he wanted to poke Rollins’ eye out with his bare hands. Mysterio said that’s what he calls a sacrifice. Rollins and even Owens seemed shocked by Mysterio’s stipulation…
Powell’s POV: So someone will come out of Extreme Rules sporting a Carl Grimes eyepatch? I just hope that Rollins is watching Memphis footage so that he has impersonation of Terry Funk’s “My Eye!!!” perfected in time for the pay-per-view.
The broadcast team said the pay-per-view is aptly named The Horror Show given the new stipulation. They transition to recapping MVP beating Apollo Crews in a non-title match last week…
Backstage, Charly Caruso interviewed Lashley and MVP. Lashley said he broke Crews by putting him in a Full Nelson. He said it’s only a matter of time before Crews’s U.S. Championship reign comes to an end. MVP said the future of the U.S. Championship is ballin’. He said it’s the same way the future of Crews looked before he disrespected him and Lashley… [C]
Bobby Lashley and MVP headed to the ring where a table was set up with a belt that was covered. MVP spoke about how he tried to help Apollo Crews, but he disrespected him, and when you disrespect him, you disrespect Lashley. MVP said he would beat Crews at the pay-per-view and he won’t have his title belt, but he’ll always have the memories.
MVP said he was introducing the new U.S. Championship. MVP removed the cover and showed off a new U.S. Title belt. He said it was fit for a legend such as himself. MVP said he can’t wait to beat Crews at the pay-per-view so they can make it official. Lashley said things are official once he says they are official, so why not just do it on the spot by naming MVP the new champion. Lashley strapped the title belt around the waist of MVP.
Ricochet’s music played and he walked onto the stage with Cedric Alexander, who said you have to earn championships in WWE. Ricochet said Crews will be back soon, and he’ll make sure that MVP’s title fantasy will come to an end. Ricochet said MVP and Lashley hurt their friend, so they were there to make sure that The Hurt Business goes chapter eleven. Ricochet and Alexander rushed the ring. They quickly cleared MVP to ringside, then double dropkicked Lashley out of the ring… [C]
Powell’s POV: The company can come up with as many new title belts as they want. The truth is that the secondary and tag titles won’t matter until they are actually booked to matter. In other words, the champions need to be booked strong as opposed to losing non-title matches on television every other week.
4. Bobby Lashley and MVP vs. Ricochet and Cedric Alexander. MVP worked in his dress shirt and pants while the broadcast team labeled it an impromptu match. Lashley caught Ricochet going for a springboard move and knocked him to the floor. MVP ran Ricochet into the barricade. Back in the ring, Ricochet was worked over by Lashley.
Alexander took a hot tag and worked over MVP until Lashley made a blind tag and knocked him off the apron. Back in the ring, Lashley speared Alexander and pinned him to win the match for his team.
Bobby Lashley and MVP defeated Ricochet and Cedric Alexander in 6:45.
After the match, MVP held onto the new U.S. Title belt while the referee raised his and Lashley’s hands. Lashley picked up Alexander and put him in a Full Nelson. Ricochet returned with a missile dropkick that caused Lashley to release the hold…
Powell’s POV: I continue to enjoy the boost that Lashley has been given since joining forces with MVP. I’d like to see creative do something with the babyface duo, but seeing is believing.
The broadcast team recapped the drama between Andrade and Angel Garza from last week…
Andrade was shown backstage when Garza and Zelina Vega approached him. Vega said they should talk. Garza said it wouldn’t happen again. Andrade said he’s sick of this. Ric Flair showed up and told them that they were great last week. Flair said tonight would be a “must do mission.” He said if they failed, they would have to answer to Randy Orton, who appeared.
Orton noted that Andrade and Garza were third generation. For that, he said he respected them both even if only a little bit. Orton told them that Big Show will be his when the time is right during the match. He said if they do anything to screw that up, he would introduce them to the Legend Killer. Phillips hyped the six-man tag as coming up after the break… [C]
Phillips announced Ruby Riott and Titus O’Neil for Raw Talk…
Backstage, Caruso spoke with Asuka and Kairi Sane on the interview set. They both spoke in Japanese, then Asuka said she would win tonight and then they would beat Sasha and Bayley to regain the WWE Women’s Tag Titles next “month-day.” Sane played her recorder. Caruso acted amazed by her performance…
5. Randy Orton, Andrade, and Angel Garza (w/Zelina Vega) vs. Big Show and “The Viking Raiders” Erik and Ivar in a six-man tag match. Ring announcer Mike Rome handled the pre-match introductions. Ivar caught Garza with a knee to the face.
[Hour Three] Andrade was covered by Erik when Garza broke it up. Garza barked at Andrade and asked him if he wanted to lose the match. Orton was shown looking upset at ringside. Garza went to the floor and tried to plead his case, but Orton shoved Garza and then grabbed him by the throat.
Orton said he knew that Garza grew up in the business and has a special place in his heart, but he better not think for a second that he wouldn’t put his ass in the dirt. Orton told him to get his act together and then released him. [C]
The match continued while a graphic hyped Ruby Riott vs. Billie Kay for later in the show. Garza did his pants spot while working over Erik, who was isolated by the heels. A short time later, Big Show checked in and motioned for his finisher on Andrade. Orton tried to hit Show with an RKO, but Show avoided it.
Late in the match, Orton made a blind tag. The Viking Raiders went for their finisher on Garza, but Andrade broke it up and dumped Ivar to ringside. Legal man Orton hit the RKO on Erik and pinned him to win the match. After the match, Orton jawed at Show from ringside…
Randy Orton, Andrade, and Angel Garza beat vs. Big Show and The Viking Raiders in 13:40.
Backstage, Peyton Royce told Billie Kay that she wanted to watch her beat Ruby Riott. They laughed because they heard Liv Morgan wasn’t returning Riott’s phone calls. Riott showed up and said she never had a problem with the IIconics before, but now their voices make her neck twitch. Riott said she didn’t know where Morgan was or where her mind was at, but her focus was on Kay and that was bad for her.
After the women went in separate directions, the camera showed MVP talking with Cedric Alexander, who was wearing a Black Lives Matter armband. MVP said he was impressed by Alexander and questioned why he was holding himself back by being Ricochet’s sidekick. Alexander said MVP was trying to divide and conquer, and he wasn’t falling for it.
MVP questioned why Ricochet is featured in a WWE 365 documentary while Alexander isn’t if they are really equal partners. MVP said he and Lashley are in the hurt business whereas Alexander is in the catering business, because that’s where he will spend the rest of his career watching others be successful. “Bon Appetit,” MVP said… [C]
Powell’s POV: It seems like it’s only a matter of time before someone joins MVP and Lashley, and I’m genuinely curious to see who it will be.
Backstage, Ric Flair was excited about Orton’s latest win. R-Truth entered the picture and bumped into Orton. Truth told Flair that for being the dirtiest player in the game, he cleans up nice. “A little too nice, Tozawa,” Truth said while assuming that Flair was wearing a disguise. Truth heard Tozawa and the ninjas coming and ran off. Orton asked a sheepish Tozawa if they were looking for Truth, then pointed them in the wrong direction…
6. Ruby Riott vs. Billie Kay (w/Peyton Royce). Riott stomped on the hand of Royce, then Kay attacked her. Kay put Riott in a bow and arrow hold. A clump of Riott’s hair extensions fell out and she cleared them from the ring. Riott came back with a punch and went to the ropes. Royce climbed onto the apron and was chased away by Riott. Kay took advantage of the distraction and ended up scoring the pin.
Billie Kay beat Ruby Riott in 2:30.
After the match, Royce and Kay picked up Riott’s hair extensions and taunted her…
Powell’s POV: A logical outcome given that they seem to be building to Morgan returning and teaming with Riott to face The IIconics.
Caruso spoke with Banks and Bayley in front of one of the WWE Performance Center rings. Banks ended up accepting the Kabuki Warriors challenge to a tag title match for next week. Bayley wasn’t pleased at first, but Banks hyped her up. Bayley told Caruso that she had a match to prepare for… [C]
Nikki Cross was seated at the broadcast table. She said she just wanted to watch the match, but a couple of security guards wanted to eject her. The broadcast team ended up saying it was fine that she was there, so the security guards backed off. Entrances for the champion vs. champion match took place. Sasha Banks came out with Bayley and took a cheap shot at Cross. Asuka and Sane made their entrance…
7. Raw Women’s Champion Asuka (w/Kairi Sane) vs. Smackdown Women’s Champion Bayley (w/Sasha Banks) in a non-title match. Cross stood and intensely rooted for Asuka as the match started. Asuka went for an early armbar, but Bayley rolled to ringside to avoid it. Bayley caught Asuka with a shot from the floor, then knocked the headset off of Cross’s head. Cross went after Bayley, but the security guards stopped her and carried her away. Bayley leapt from the apron at Asuka, who caught her with a knee to the head. [C]
Bayley covered Asuka for a two count and then dumped her to the floor. Bayley followed and ended up dropping Asuka onto the broadcast table. Bayley grabbed the headsets and took a seat and jawed along with Banks heading into another break. [C]
Bayley remained in control until Asuka caught her with a Codebreaker. Asuka dropkicked Bayley and then followed up with a knee to the head and a hip attack in the corner. Asuka performed a German suplex, then kicked Bayley. Asuka performed another hip attack and covered Bayley for a two count.
Asuka hit Bayley with a spinning back fist. Bayley got back to her feet on the apron, then Asuka knocked her to the floor with yet another hip attack. Asuka went for a kick from the apron, but Bayley grabbed her foot and tripped her. Asuka came right back and knocked Bayley down in the ring, then went up top and executed a missile dropkick for a near fall.
Bayley ended up sending Asuka head-first into the ring post. With Asuka on the floor, Bayley delivered a knee that sent her into the barricade. Bayley rolled Asuka back inside the ring, then hit Sane with a cheap shot. Sane tried to entered the ring, but the referee stopped her. Banks took advantage of the distraction and hit Asuka with a knee to the head, which led to a near fall for Bayley.
Bayley shouted instructions to Banks, who ran over and grabbed her a water bottle from the broadcast table. Bayley took a swig and then spat water at Asuka. Bayley freaked out when she spotted Cross on the other side of the plexiglass barrier. Asuka took advantage of the distraction and put Bayley in the Asuka Lock. Banks ran in, but Sane took her out with a spear. Asuka released her submission hold only to sit down on Bayley while the referee made the three count.
Asuka beat Bayley in 23:25 in a non-title match.
Asuka celebrated her win to close the show…
Powell’s POV: The match was well worked, but the champion vs. champion, non-title match gimmick does nothing for me. Oh, and remember this match when they tell you that Survivor Series is the one time of year that Raw and Smackdown wrestlers face one another. The finish was also silly with Bayley overreacting to seeing Cross on the other side of the barrier. I guess we have to wait until next week to find out what Orton did to R-Truth, and to find out the stipulation of the McIntyre vs. Ziggler match.
Overall, this was a solid episode in terms of filling the time. The matches and segments felt like they each served a purpose beyond just passing the time. I will be back with my same night audio review for Dot Net Members. Let me know what you thought of the show by assigning it a letter grade in our weekly post Raw poll on the main page. Thanks for watching along with me. Be smart and stay safe.
The Pro Wrestling Boom Podcast with Jason Powell features Kenny Herzog discussing his journalism career, his new Outside Interference podcast, doing a feature story on CM Punk, pro wrestling in the pandemic, WWE talk on Retribution, The Hurt Business, Roman Reigns as a heel, and much more...