8/31 WWE Raw Results: Powell’s live review of Dominik Mysterio vs. Seth Rollins, Randy Orton vs. Kevin Owens, and Keith Lee vs. Dolph Ziggler for a spot in a Triple Threat to become No. 1 contender to the WWE Championship

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

WWE Raw (Episode 1,423)
Live from Orlando, Florida at Amway Center
Aired August 31, 2020 on USA Network

[Hour One] The Raw opening video started the show… Pyro shot off on the stage and throughout the arena, then the ThunderDome structure lit up… The broadcast team was Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe were on commentary…

Randy Orton made his entrance. The broadcast team narrated highlights of Orton’s attacks on Drew McIntyre from last week’s show. Phillips assumed that McIntyre was not present at Raw, but he has to defend his championship at the Clash of Champions pay-per-view. He said it’s the one night of the year that every championship must be defended.

Phillips hyped the three qualifying matches for the Triple Threat that will determine the No. 1 contender to the WWE Championship. Saxton announced that Rey Mysterio was injured and unable to compete and thus his son Dominik would replace him in the qualifier against Seth Rollins.

Orton recalled kicking McIntyre three times last week. Orton said McIntyre thinks he deserves the WWE Championship. Orton also ran through the list of legends that he punt kicked. Orton said McIntyre thinks he’s entitled and was handed everything. Orton said he is entitled and shouldn’t have to face anyone in the qualifier and should already be entitled to a rematch.

Orton said he would play the game, jump through the hoops, and then beat McIntyre. Orton played up the possibility that McIntyre might not even be healthy enough to defend his title at the pay-per-view. Orton said he had it on good authority that McIntyre got together with a couple of buddies and bonded over being kicked in the skull. A shot of the various wrestlers Orton has punt kicked was shown on the big screen with each wrestler lying in a hospital bed.

Keith Lee made his entrance while the broadcast team put over his win over Orton at the Payback event. Lee said Orton has done well for himself and he sees that he’s amused by what he’s done over the past few months and last week on Raw. Lee said Orton was doing his best to forget that he beat him. Lee said Orton might not be the best to ever lace up a pair of boots, but he gave him no choice but to bask in his glory.

Lee said he’s known McIntyre for a long time and he considers himself a good friend. Lee spoke about McIntyre cashing in a receipt on Orton. Dolph Ziggler attacked Lee from behind. Lee got up and grabbed Ziggler by the neck, then tossed him into a corner of the ring. Lee turned his focus to Orton, who stood in another corner. Ziggler put Lee down with a tornado DDT heading into a break… [C]

Powell’s POV: Music-free entrances are the best Ziggler entrances. Orton was good in this segment. My guess is that he’s winning the Triple Threat to set up a rematch with McIntyre. I thought they might go with a Triple Threat with McIntyre vs. Orton vs. Lee, but barring something funky it doesn’t look like that will be the case.

An ad aired for NXT’s Super Tuesday show featuring the four-way Ironman match for the vacant NXT Championship…

1. Keith Lee vs. Dolph Ziggler in a qualifier for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions. A graphic hyped the VIP Lounge with new U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley as the guest. Lee sent Ziggler flying with a shoulder block heading into a break. [C] Lee performed a powerslam and then let out a primal scream. Ziggler came back with a Zigzag for a near fall. Lee stuffed a superkick and then hit his Spirit Bomb finisher for the win…

Keith Lee defeated Dolph Ziggler in 11:00 to qualify for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions.

Powell’s POV: The expected outcome. The match didn’t need to go as long as it did, but the right guy clearly went over.

Still shots were shown of Niz Jax and Shayna Baszler winning the WWE Women’s Tag Titles at Payback…

Backstage, Sarah Schreiber asked Jax and Baszler how they put their differences aside. Jax said she told Baszler to follow her lead. Baszler made a similar claim. Jax said she’s the tag team champion and Baszler just got another title. Asuka showed up. Baszler and Jax took exception. Asuka spun Baszler around. Jax got in Asuka’s face. Asuka yelled in Japanese and then walked away… [C]

Backstage, Adam Pearce told the security guards that Retribution ruined last week’s Raw main event. He said that wouldn’t happen again or they would look for new security guards…

Powell’s POV: They need to use the security team that stands guard at pay-per-view events. After all, Retribution didn’t show up at SummerSlam or Payback.

Charly Caruso stood in the ring and introduced Raw Women’s Champion Asuka. Caruso asked Asuka who is most deserving of a title shot. Asuka yelled in Japanese and then laughed. She ran through a list of women she has beaten and then laughed again. Asuka said it doesn’t matter who is ready for her because she is ready for anything.

Mickie James’ entrance music played and she walked out with a mic in hand. James noted that she’s a six-time women’s champion and recognizes greatness when she sees it. James said Asuka is one of the greatest women’s champions of all time. James entered the ring and said that out of respect, Asuka should be the first to know that she’s coming for the Raw Women’s Championship.

Natalya’s music interrupted and then she and Lana walked to the ring. Natalya took issue with James coming back and jumping the line. Lana, who was wearing gear, said James hasn’t evolved and has had the same gear since 1998. Lana said that Natalya is the leader of the division and you have to go through her to get to Natalya. Asuka said she was ready for all of them. Natalya and Lana attacked Asuka and James, who quickly cleared them from the ring…

Powell’s POV: How crazy is it that Lana got physical the one week that she decided to wear ring gear?!? And it would be even crazier if this leads to an impromptu tag match!

Phillips hyped the Conor’s Cure charity drive and then set up a video package… Highlights aired of The Hurt Business on Raw Underground last week…

Backstage, Cedric Alexander was talking with the Viking Raiders when Demi Burnett showed up. She said she was impressed that Alexander passed on a chance to join the Hurt Business. She said she supports all of them. Demi kissed Ivar on the check. After they all left, a smiling Angel Garza walked into the picture with a rose in hand and watched Burnett as she walked away…

2. Mickie James vs. Lana (w/Natalya). Asuka sat in on commentary. James set up for a move that Lana escaped and ran to the ropes to confer with Natalya. Lana kicked James, who fired back with a kick of her own before scoring the pin…

Mickie James defeated Lana in 2:40.

Powell’s POV: No impromptu tag match, but Lana is still a soothsayer since this seemed to be framed as an impromptu singles match. I’m all for WWE doing more with James, who has been mostly wasted since she worked against Asuka at NXT Takeover: Toronto. They will need to put in the work to make the match feel meaningful because James has been damaged, though certainly not behind repair.

Highlights aired of Aleister Black attacking Kevin Owens last week…

Backstage, Charly Caruso stood outside of Black’s locker room door. Randy Orton exited Black’s locker room behind her. Phillips hyped Owens vs. Orton in a Triple Threat qualifier as coming up next.. [C]

Phillips hyped Liv Morgan and Ruby Riott vs. The IIconics in a match where the winning team earns a WWE Women’s Tag Title match and the losing team “will be no more”…

Backstage, Peyton Royce and Billie Kay were interviewed about the possibility of not being able to team together. They spoke about knowing one another since high school and how they dreamed of becoming WWE wrestlers. Still shots aired of the duo while they spoke. Royce said the Riott Squad duo are destined to self destruct…

Powell’s POV: What a strange stipulation to drop out of nowhere.

Randy Orton made his entrance…

[Hour Two] Kevin Owens made his entrance and was attacked from behind by Aleister Black, who still had the wrap around his head to cover his injured eye. Orton smiled and nodded at Black, who then blasted Owens with a Black Mass kick. Black shoved Owens into the ring. Black took a bow for Orton.

3. Randy Orton vs. Kevin Owens in a qualifier for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions. The referee checked on Owens, who confirmed that he wanted to wrestle. Owens hit Orton with two chops and a punch, then took an RKO and was pinned…

Randy Orton defeated Kevin Owens in 0:16 to qualify for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions.

Powell’s POV: It was a logical move to have Black attack Owens to continue their storyline while also saving Owens from losing clean to Orton again so quickly.

Rey Mysterio was talking with his son while his wife Angie and daughter Aliyah stood by. Caruso spoke with Rey about Dom replacing him in the qualifier. Mysterio said it would mean the world to him for his son to beat Seth Rollins to qualify for the Triple Threat. Rey said injuries happen and if there’s anyone he wants to take his place it is his son. Dom said he knows he’s the underdog, but his confidence is on another level after his win at Payback. Dom said he has a 619 with Rollins’ name written all over it…

An ad for Smackdown focused on Roman Reigns winning the WWE Universal Championship… [C] A sponsored ad recapped Bobby Lashley beating Apollo Crews to win the U.S. Championship at Payback…

MVP and Shelton Benjamin stood in the ring for the VIP Lounge segment. MVP introduced Lashley. MVP spoke about youthful exuberance and how Apollo Crews disrespected him because he had a taste of success. Lashley and Benjamin made it clear that they weren’t finished with Crews. MVP spoke about their six-man tag. He started to address Cedric Alexander, but he was interrupted.

Cedric Alexander made his entrance. The Hurt Business trio headed to ringside. MVP held back Lashley and Benjamin, then approached Alexander and asked if he’s had a chance of heart. “Hell no, I haven’t had a change of heart,” Alexander said. He added that he didn’t come alone. The Viking Raiders attacked the heels from behind. The babyfaces headed to the ring while Phillips hyped the six-man tag match as coming up next… [C]

4. “The Hurt Business” Bobby Lashley, MVP, and Shelton Benjamin vs. Cedric Alexander and “The Viking Raiders” Erik and Ivar. MVP taunted Alexander by telling him that he could have been “one of us” while working him over several minutes into the match. Alexander was close to making a tag when Lashley and Benjamin pulled the Raiders off the apron. Alexander ducked a kick by MVP and then rolled him up and pinned him.

Cedric Alexander and The Viking Raiders beat Bobby Lashley, MVP, and Shelton Benjamin in 6:20.

After the match, MVP stopped Lashley and Benjamin from attacking Alexander. MVP smiled and led his team out of the ring while Saxton wondered if MVP had developed some respect for Alexander…

Titus O’Neil was shown warming up backstage. Phillips said O’Neil was warming up for a visit to Raw Underground… [C]

The Hurt Business put the boots to Alexander in the backstage area until Apollo Crews and Ricochet showed up…

5. Ruby Riott and Liv Morgan vs. “The IIconics” Peyton Royce and Billie Kay for a shot at the WWE Women’s Tag Titles (the losing team must disband). Riott pinned Kay to win the match for her team. The IIconics sold the stipulation afterward…

Ruby Riott and Liv Morgan beat Peyton Royce and Billie Kay in 3:30 to earn a WWE Women’s Tag Title shot.

Powell’s POV: The pre-match focus was entirely on the possibility of The IIconics splitting up, which should have been your first clue. This seems like better news for Royce than it does for Kay.

Backstage, Shane McMahon approached the giant doorman. He hyped a different side of Titus O’Neil, Jessamyn Duke in action, and Apollo Crews looking for payback against Shelton Benjamin… [C]

A video package focused on the Mysterio family feud with Seth Rollins and Murphy…

Seth Rollins and Murphy made their entrance. Rollins was still pissed at Murphy. Rollins took the mic and barked at Murphy for kicking him in the head and then being pinned by Dominik Mysterio. Rollins said he couldn’t have any mistakes with a WWE Championship shot on the line. Rollins said he couldn’t have Murphy screw it up for him. “So get the hell out of my ring,” Rollins said.

Rollins barked at Murphy and told him he doesn’t want to see him until he figures out what kind of a man he is, what he stands for, and which side of history he wants to be on. Rollins slapped the back of Murphy’s head as he was leaving. Murphy got to the stage and then turned back to look at Rollins. Dominik ran out and hit Murphy from behind, then headed to the ring to start the match…

6. Seth Rollins vs. Dominik Mysterio in a qualifier for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions. Mysteiro went for a 619, but Rollins avoided it. Rollins pulled Mysterio to ringside where Mysterio slammed his head into the broadcast table. Mysterio climbed onto the desk and performed a senton onto Rollins. [C]

Rollins set up for a Buckle Bomb, but Mysterio countered into a huracanrana. Mysterio followed up with a springboard move. Rollins caught Mysterio, who countered into a tornado DDT for a near fall. Dom’s family was shown watching on a backstage monitor. Moments later, Mysterio hit a 619 and then followed up with a frogsplash attempt, but Rollins rolled out of the way. Rollins performed his Stomp finisher and scored the pin.

Seth Rollins defeated Dominik Mysterio in 9:55 to qualify for the Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at Clash of Champions.

[Hour Three] After the match, Rollins performed another Stomp on Dom. Rey was shown backstage getting upset with his wife and daughter…

Powell’s POV: In the best news of the night, the commercial break hyped new episodes of Miz & Mrs. for November. Marjo! Anyway, the match was really entertaining. Dominik is doing a great job considering his lack of experience, and it obviously helps to be in the ring with one of the best in the business. While I always miss the live crowds, I really wish we could have heard fans react to these early Dominik matches.

In the Raw Underground room, Titus O’Neil plowed through some guy in seconds. Another fighter stepped up. O’Neil made quick work of him. Riddick Moss stepped up and fought O’Neil, who tossed him off the platform. O’Neil followed and they fought on the floor and then back onto the rope-less ring. Moss caught O’Neil with a kick and a knockout punch. Shane hyped a debut…

The Street Profits delivered a backstage promo. They did a bit where Angelo Dawkins had a “Coach Dawkins Scouting Report” board on their opponents and Zelina Vega. They still want the smoke… [C]

Phillips hyped ThunderDome and said it has captured the imagination of the WWE Universe. Saxton called it amazing and enthralling and said it captures your attention…

Footage aired from earlier in the day of Akira Tozawa arriving at the parking garage. The attendant told him to slow down. Tozawa checked in and noted that his ninjas were with him. The attendant told Tozawa that he wasn’t on the list. R-Truth snuck up behind Tozawa and rolled him up while the attendant/referee counted the pin. R-Truth won the WWE 24/7 Title again. Truth fought off a ninja and ran away. Tozawa tossed the referee inside his van and drove off without one of the ninjas…

7. Raw Tag Champions “The Street Profits” Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins vs. Andrade and Angel Garza (w/Zelina Vega, Demi Burnett) in a non-title, tornado tag match. Burnett sat in an office chair at ringside. There was an early tower of doom spot with Dawkins powerbombing both opponents while Ford took the big bump from the top. [C]

Ford and Dawkins had the advantage when the lights flickered. Garza ran to ringside and escorted Burnett away. Retribution showed up and attacked the Profits, Andrade, and Vega, then ran away as the show cut to break, presumably ending the match. [C]

The Street Profits fought Andrade and Garza to an apparent no-contest in 9:30 in a tornado tag match.

Powell’s POV: It appears Retribution has at last three female members, as Vega was outnumbered by three hooded attackers. I really like the Profits as well as Andrade and Garza, but I’m actually thankful that Retribution showed up because what should be a quality tag team program has been heavily lopsided in favor of the Profits to the point that I’ve stopped caring. I still think it would be a wise move to get the tag titles on Andrade and Garza to set up an eventual program with the Mysterios.

The broadcast team recapped highlights of the previous segment…

Backstage, Pearce barked at the security guards and told them to get to their posts…

Powell’s POV: Isn’t it a little late for that?

Inside Raw Underground, Shane McMahon was joined by The IIconics. In the ring, Jessamyn Duke beat Avery Taylor. A woman took exception to Duke knocking the woman from the apron. Marina Shafir fought the woman and beat her quickly. The IIconics acted like they were going to step up to face Duke and Shafir. Billie Kay rolled onto the ring, but Peyton Royce remained at ringside. Duke blasted Kay with a kick that knocked her out. Shane put his arm around Royce and said they had more Raw Underground coming up later…

Phillips hyped Crews vs. Benjamin for Raw Underground, then recapped the six-man tag match from earlier in the night…

Cedric Alexander, Apollo Crews, and Ricochet stood next to the giant doorman. Charly Caruso showed up and asked Crews if it’s a wise decision to face Benjamin considering everything that’s happened to the three of them. Crews said the old Crews would have caved, but the new Crews won’t stop. Ricochet said MVP doesn’t know about friendship and they will show that what they have is stronger than any dollar amount. The giant doorman opened the door and they entered the Raw Underground room. Phillips said Crews vs. Benjamin was up next… [C]

The Hurt Business, Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan, and Angel Garza were announced as the guests on Raw Talk…

Crews fought Benjamin in Raw Underground. Benjamin pushed Crews off the platform and they both fell to ringside. MVP and Lashley fought Ricochet and Alexander. The Hurt Business trio stood tall. Shane said he can’t wait to see what happens next week on Raw Underground…

Backstage, Angel Garza tried to talk Burnett into leaving. She said they kind of abandoned everyone. Garza said they don’t need him. He said he would never forgive him if something happened to her. Five Retribution members burst through a nearby door and beat up a security guard. Garza ran off, leaving Burnett alone. Two of the female members approached Burnett, who ran away…

Ring entrances for the main event took place…

8. Randy Orton vs. Keith Lee vs. Seth Rollins in a Triple Threat for a WWE Championship match at WWE Clash of Champions. Mike Rome was the ring announcer. Rollins assumed that he and Orton were going to team up on Lee, but Orton rolled to ringside and told him he changed his mind. Lee got the better of Rollins, then Orton picked his spot to enter the ring and put him in a headlock. Lee shoved him off and hit him in the corner, but Rollins blindsided Lee. A short time later, Lee performed a shoulder block on both opponents. [C]

Orton and Rollins worked together for a stretch. Orton caught Rollins coming through the ropes and gave him a draping DDT for a near fall. Rollins came back with a falcon arrow for a near fall. Lee returned with his slow rise spot behind Rollins. Lee shoulder blocked Orton at ringside, then caught Rollins going for a suicide dive before tossing him onto the broadcast table.

Saxton referred to Lee as a different breed of human. Back inside the ring, Lee set up for a powerslam, but Rollins countered into a pin for a near fall. Rollins caught Lee with a kick, then superkicked him. Rollins set up for his Stomp finisher, but Lee hoisted him up and performed a Spirit Bomb. Orton returned to the ring and dropped Lee with an RKO, then covered Rollins and pinned him…

Randy Orton defeated Keith Lee and Seth Rollins in 11:05 in a Triple Threat to earn a WWE Championship match at WWE Clash of Champions.

The broadcast team hyped Drew McIntyre vs. Randy Orton for the WWE Championship for the Clash of Champions pay-per-view.

Powell’s POV: Orton going over was expected, as it sets up the McIntyre vs. Orton rematch. The main event was entertaining and I like that Orton pinned Rollins rather than Lee. Overall, this was a better episode than the chaotic mess that was last week’s Raw. The qualifiers leading to the Triple Threat gave several matches a level of importance, and even the IIconics match had a stipulation that enhanced it.

They announced that Rey Mysterio suffered a torn triceps during the show. With Rey sidelined, that could free up Rollins to feud with Lee if they want to move in that direction. The Retribution attacks and Raw Underground continue to feel directionless. I assume there will be a payoff to Retribution and perhaps it’s tied in with Raw Underground. If not, is this all there is to Raw Underground? I will be back with my same night audio review of this episode. Let me know what you thought of Raw in our weekly post show poll available on the main page. Thanks for watching along with me tonight. Stop back tomorrow night for live coverage of NXT.

Join me for my live review of the AEW All Out pay-per-view on Saturday night.



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...


Readers Comments (6)

  1. Business idea: instead of writing hours of terrible skits and promos, give Mickie and Asuka 25 minutes to tear it up.

  2. “I assume there will be a payoff to Retribution and perhaps it’s tied in with Raw Underground.”

    But it happens on Smackdown, too.

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