4/19 WWE Raw Results: Powell’s live review of Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka, Randy Orton vs. Riddle, The Viking Raiders vs. Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin, the continued build to WrestleMania Backlash

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

WWE Raw (Episode 1,456)
Live from Tampa, Florida at Yuengling Center
Aired April 19, 2021 on USA Network

[Hour One] Adnan Virk, Corey Graves, and Byron Saxton checked in on commentary. Drew McIntyre made his entrance while the broadcast team recapped his Triple Threat win from last week to give himself a rematch with Bobby Lashley for the WWE Championship at the WrestleMania Backlash pay-per-view.

McIntyre stood in the ring and delivered a promo about last week’s Triple Threat. He recalled Mace and T-Bar attacking him afterward and spoke about how he would get “retribution” once he gets his hands on the duo.

MVP made his entrance using a cane. McIntyre said MVP was just the man that he wanted to see. MVP acted innocent, but he also told McIntyre that he should start expecting the unexpected. MVP congratulated him on his Triple Threat win and said that Bobby Lashley thinks he will be a worthy adversary for him to beat again.

McIntyre asked MVP if he was going to look him in the eye and say that he had nothing to do with the attack. MVP said Lashley decided to downsize the Hurt Business. He questioned why they would hire Mace and T-Bar to attack him when Lashley has already proven that he can beat McIntyre.

MVP stated that Mace and T-Bar have zero affiliation with The Hurt Business. McIntyre exited the ring while talking about how it may have been a coincidence. McIntyre approached MVP and was attacked by Mace and T-Bar, who dragged him into the ring and put him down with a double chokeslam. Mace and T-Bar left the ring and walked past MVP, who remained at the bottom of the ramp. MVP smirked and then laughed while looking at McIntyre.

Mace and T-Bar headed backstage where Kevin Patrick asked them about their involvement with Lashley and MVP. They mentioned extinct animals, including sabertooth tigers, and said they were gone forever, which is exactly what they were going to do when they finish off McIntyre.

In the ring, McIntyre used the ropes to pull himself to his feet heading into a commercial break… [C]

Powell’s POV: I just keep hoping that Mace and T-Bar will be able to rip off their bad Purge masks so that this has a chance of working. That said, this was a solid followup to last week’s show closing angle.

Backstage, McIntyre told Adam Pearce that he wanted to face Mace and T-Bar. Pearce said McIntyre would need a tag team partner…

1. “The Viking Raiders” Erik and Ivar vs. Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin. The Alexander and Benjamin entrance was not televised. Alexander kicked out the leg of Ivar, then Benjamin followed up with a knee to the face that led to a two count. Ivar was isolated.

Ivar eventually tagged in Erik, who was suplexed by Benjamin and covered for just a one count. Alexander tagged in and performed a tornado DDT. Alexander had the pin, but Ivar broke it up. Erik came back with a big knee strike to the head of Alexander. Ivar tagged in and the Raiders hit the Viking Experience on Alexander, then Ivar covered him for the win…

“The Viking Raiders” Erik and Ivar defeated Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin in 5:15.

Powell’s POV: A nice match. It’s just a shame that Alexander and Benjamin went from being Raw Tag Champions into scrub mode in record time. It’s a shame because this could be a really good feud, but Alexander and Benjamin seem to be on somebody’s shit list just based on how they’ve been booked.

Backstage, Randy Orton was interviewed by Kevin Patrick, who asked if The Fiend was no more. Orton said The Fiend will never be heard from again as long as he’s still around. Orton spoke of being of focussed on the WWE Championship. Riddle showed up on his scooter and said he couldn’t believe that Orton beat The Fiend. Riddle said that since neither one of them has a title, maybe they could form a tag team called RKBro. Orton walked away…

Powell’s POV: WWE advertised Orton vs. Braun Strowman in their first ever singles match over the weekend, but they removed it from the official preview earlier today. There was no mention of Strowman here, so I’m assuming the match is off. Perhaps someone figured out that it would be foolish to give away a first time ever match between two established stars on television without any build?

Orton walked into Pearce’s office and spoke about being disrespected. He acted like he didn’t know Riddle’s name and said he wants to face whoever the goofball with no shoes is. Pearce said he would see what he could do…

A video package recapped Charlotte Flair’s promo and her attack on Rhea Ripley and Asuka that ended their Raw Women’s Championship match…

Charlotte Flair made her entrance in regular attire… [C] Flair delivered an in-ring promo and said she had her WrestleMania match taken from her. She said she could beat Ripley or Asuka in the same night. She said she respects Asuka and thanks she’s one of the greatest competitors in the world, but that doesn’t mean she has to like her.

Asuka made her entrance and entered the ring. Raw Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley made her entrance and stood on the stage. Flair asked if they were going to gang up on her. She said that after she beats Asuka, Ripley should take notes. Ripley said Asuka would beat Flair.

Flair told Asuka that she beat her to end her streak at WrestleMania. Asuka tried to speak, but Flair told her to stop talking. Asuka yelled, “Charlotte, tonight I beat you, bitch.” Flair looked taken aback by Asuka’s comments…

Orton was shown walking backstage when Riddle drove by on his scooter. The broadcast team hyped Orton vs. Riddle for after the break… [C] A graphic boasted that WWE had over one billion video views across its digital and social media platforms… A video recapped T-Bar and Mace attacking McIntyre, then the broadcast team announced that McIntyre would face them in a handicap match…

2. Randy Orton vs. Riddle. Riddle drove his scooter to the ring and they did the stupid CGI birds thing when he kicked off his flip flops. Riddle caught Orton in a sleeper a minute into the match. Orton reached up and grabbed Riddle’s hair to fling him to the mat. Virk correctly pointed out that it looked like Orton was going to tap out when he was reaching for the hair.

Riddle applied the move a second time and Orton escaped by backing into a corner. Riddle applied it a third time, but Orton fell backwards to drive Riddle onto the mat to break it. Riddle reached up and applied the hold again, but Orton escaped to ringside. Riddle went for his kick from the apron, but Orton caught his foot and flipped Riddle face first onto the apron. Orton dumped Riddle onto the broadcast table. [C]

[Hour Two] Orton got the better of Riddle coming out of the break and then Riddle started to fire back once they reached the top of the hour. Riddle hit Orton with a pair of running forearms in the corner. Orton came back with a punch that knocked Riddle to the mat. Riddle swept the leg of Orton and performed a Broton for a two count.

Riddle went to the ropes, but Orton cut him off and superplexed him. Orton followed up with a draping DDT a short time later. Orton struck the Viper’s Pose and then went for the RKO, but Riddle hooked him into a crucifix pin and scored the upset victory…

Riddle beat Randy Orton in 13:30.

Powell’s POV: A well worked match with an upset finish. I just wish the Riddle character wasn’t such an insufferable buffoon, because it’s really hard to be excited about such a childish character.

New U.S. Champion Sheamus entered Adam Pearce’s office. Pearce brought up John Cena’s open challenge. He said Sheamus isn’t Cena. Sheamus said he doesn’t care about the past. He said he knew Pearce was trying to goad him into an open challenge. Sheamus said he’d do it, but it would not be for the title. Pearce thanked him and wished him luck…

WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler made their entrance for a match… [C] Naomi and Lana made their entrance coming out of the break…

3. WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler vs. Naomi and Lana in a non-title match. A graphic hyped an Alexa Bliss’s Playground segment for later in the show. Baszler did the spot where she stomped the arm of Lana.

Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke walked onto the stage and showed a video on the big screen of Rose slapping Jax the week before. They set up more footage of Rose and Brooke knocking Jax to the ground. They finally showed footage of Jax slipping while trying to enter the ring during their tag match that ended with Rose and Brooke being counted out.

Baszler wanted to tag Jax, who was fuming and dropped off the apron. Jax headed toward the stage while Rose and Brooke headed to the back. In the ring, Naomi and Lana performed a double facebuster on Baszler, then Naomi pinned her…

Naomi and Lana beat WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler in 4:25 in a non-title match.

Powell’s POV: A nothing happening segment. Rose and Brooke helped cost Jax and Baszler the match, meaning it did nothing for Naomi and Lana. Is anyone looking forward to yet another Jax and Baszler vs. Rose and Brooke match? Let me guess, this time it will be a Triple Threat including Naomi and Lana?

Still shots aired of Bad Bunny and Damian Priest beating The Miz and John Morrison at WrestleMania. Footage aired of Bunny being interviewed in Spanish while subtitles were shown. He spoke about how it was a pleasure and a moment that he’d remember forever. Priest also spoke in Spanish and recalled telling Bunny how proud he was of him. Bunny also spoke about how everyone in WWE accepted him and he was able to express himself and collaborate with Priest…

The broadcast team hyped Bad Bunny’s sold out 2022 concert tour… Graves hyped Miz TV featuring a Miz & Mrs. celebration… [C]

The Miz and Maryse made their entrance and hosted Miz TV inside the ring. There was a table with champagne and glasses on it. Miz said they deserve as special celebration. He said it was their night, then they kissed and pyro shot off around the ThunderDome. Miz plugged Miz & Mrs. and his WWE 24 documentary for Sunday.

Damian Priest made his entrance once Miz finished his rant. Priest entered the ring and said he thinks he speaks for everyone when he says that Miz is as delusional as Jake Paul thinking he’s a real fighter. Priest had footage air of how Miz got the win last week in the handicap match.

Maryse volunteered her husband for a match against Priest. Miz didn’t look pleased. Priest congratulated Miz and Maryse, then took a drink from one of the champagne glasses and gagged. Priest said the champagne was trash. Miz threw champagne in his eyes and left the ring…

Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods were talking backstage when Riddle showed up on his scooter. The New Day duo congratulated Riddle on his win. They came up with some idea for silver dollar pancakes that they all found amazing. A graphic listed Kingston vs. Elias for after the break… [C]

Elias and Jaxson Ryker were in the ring. Elias tried to play his guitar, but he was interrupted by the sound of a bass guitar. Xavier Woods was playing the bass as he and Kofi Kingston walked out…

4. Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) vs. Elias (w/Jaxson Ryker). There was a clumsy spot with Elias trying to hold up Kingston and drop him on the top rope, which he barely pulled off. Kingston and Elias stumbled a bit, but Kingston was able to hit an SOS a short time later. Late in the match, Elias held onto the ropes when Kingston went for a huracanrana. Elias followed up with a top rope elbow drop and scored the clean pin…

Elias beat Kofi Kingston in 4:40.

Powell’s POV: Well, at least we got a break from the trombone. There was a comical spot where Woods played the Stone Cole theme on the bass and then Kingston followed up with a Thesz Press. The match was clunky and it’s hard to care about this developing feud. By the way, where are Raw Tag Champions AJ Styles and Omos?

Alexa Bliss was on a swing set with her new doll Lily sitting next to her. Bliss said she and the doll have been best friends for a very long time. Photos aired of a young Bliss with the doll. Bliss recalled a girl being mean to her on the playground and refusing to give her a bite of her ice cream. Bliss said she shoved “that little bitch” right off the swing, causing the girl to break her arm. Bliss said she got to eat all of the ice cream. Bliss said that when teachers asked her why she did that to the girl, she told them the truth, Lily made her do it. Bliss warned the “girls” on the Raw roster that Lily didn’t like Him and she doesn’t like any of them either. Bliss laughed…

Powell’s POV: Supernatural Fiend shit with the men, and now supernatural Bliss shit with the women. Joy.

The broadcast team recapped the segment involving Jax, Baszler, Naomi, Lana, Rose, and Brooke…

Backstage, Sarah Schreiber asked Rose and Brooke if their behavior was appropriate. Rose said they were not the bullies, Jax and Baszler were the bullies. Jax and Baszler showed up, causing Rose and Brooke to leave. Baszler told Jax to start paying attention or else. After Baszler stormed away, Angel Garza showed up and asked Jax something (the subtitles didn’t make it out either)…

Drew McIntyre made his entrance for the handicap match… [C] The broadcast team hyped Lashley vs. McIntyre for the WWE Championship for the WrestleMania Backlash event…

[Hour Three] Mace and T-Bar made their entrance…

5. Drew McIntyre vs. Mace and T-Bar in a handicap match. McIntyre went right after T-Bar once the bell rang. MVP was shown watching the match on a backstage monitor. Late in the match, McIntyre was setting up for his finisher on T-Bar, but Mace distracted him. Mace and T-Bar attacked McIntyre in the corner and ignored the referee’s count for the disqualification finish.

Drew McIntyre beat Mace and T-Bar in a handicap match by DQ in 6:00.

After the match, Braun Strowman made his entrance, causing the heel duo to flee to ringside… [C]

6. Drew McIntyre and Braun Strowman vs. Mace and T-Bar. Strowman suffered a small cut on his forehead. The babyface duo dominated until Strowman was distracted by Mace, allowing T-Bar to chop block his leg from behind.

McIntyre eventually tagged in and removed the mask of Mace, who slapped him. McIntyre smiled and then backhanded him with the mask. McIntyre roughed up Mace and the referee called for the bell. Strowman removed the mask of T-Bar…

Mace and T-Bar beat Drew McIntyre and Braun Strowman by DQ in roughly 7:00.

Powell’s POV: Progress. The bad Halloween masks are gone. Unfortunately, the broadcast team had to play dumb and act like they were unfamiliar with Dio Maddin and Dominik Dijakovic. In fairness, Virk may not have a clue, but obviously Saxton and Graves do.

The Miz and Maryse were shown walking and kissing backstage… [C] MVP, Damian Priest, Lana, and Naomi were announced as the guests for Raw Talk… Damian Priest made his entrance…

7. Damian Priest vs. The Miz (w/Maryse). Miz took a powder once the bell rang and then kissed Maryse. Priest pulled Miz back to the apron and tossed him back inside the ring. Later, Priesst was rolled up for a near fall following a Maryse distraction. He came right back with his Hit The Lights finisher and scored the pin…

Damian Priest beat The Miz in 5:05.

Powell’s POV: A bounce back win for Priest following his handicap match loss last week. I guess John Morrison is MIA this week.

Asuka was shown warming up backstage… [C]

Sheamus was introduced as he stood in the ring. He said he’s the new U.S. Champion and would stay the champion for a long time. Sheamus said he didn’t become champion by being an nice fella or making reckless decisions, he did it by doing the opposite. He said he would be your fighting champion. He said he would issue an open challenge for his title every week “or whenever I want.”

Humberto Carrillo’s entrance music interrupted Sheamus and then he made his entrance. Carrillo entered the ring and mugged for the cameras. Sheamus attacked him from behind. Sheamus roughed up Carrillo and tossed him to ringside, then followed him to the floor and clotheslined him. Sheamus ran Carrillo into the barricade repeatedly, then ran him into the ring post.

Sheamus blasted Carrillo with repeated shots to the chest. Sheamus picked up Carrillo and ran his back into the post. Sheamus threw Carrillo inside the ring and then put him down with a Brogue Kick. The production team piped in some loud boos…

Powell’s POV: A good segment that put some heat on Sheamus. I’d really like to see Carrillo come back for revenge at some point and actually have a program with Sheamus, but seeing his believing. Carrillo has been stuck in scrub mode for a long time now, so this may have been a one and done for him.

Charlotte Flair was shown backstage… The Steve Austin hosted WrestleMania 38 ad aired… [C] The broadcast team hyped Miz & Mrs. as airing after Raw… Ring entrances for the main event took place. Flair debuted a new robe and new gear. Rhea Ripley made her entrance…

8. Charlotte Flair vs. Asuka. Ripley watched the match while seated on a chair at ringside. Flair and Asuka fought their way to the apron. Both women performed simultaneous neckbreakers and fell to the floor in front of Ripley. [C]

After some good back and forth action, Flair applied a kneebar over the ropes. She released the hold and then went for a chop block, but Asuka leapt into the air to avoid her and then applied an Asuka Lock that Flair broke by reaching the ropes.

Flair got up and chop blocked Asuka, then applied a Figure Four and then bridged into a Figure Eight. Ripley reached in and pulled Flair’s arms to break the hold without the referee spotting it. Flair grabbed Ripley from the ring. Asuka threw a kick at Flair, then rolled her into a pin for the win.

Asuka beat Charlotte Flair in 9:15.

After the match, Ripley pointed at her head and told Flair that she’s in her head. Flair seethed inside the ring, then grabbed the referee and tossed him across the ring. Flair put the boots to the referee, then threw forearms to the back of his head. Two more referees entered the ring and tried to talk her down.

Flair acted like she was going to stop, then pounced on the first referee and threw more shots to the back of his head. Saxton said it wasn’t the official’s fault that Flair lost the match. Virk called it classless behavior. Flair teased leaving, then came back and kicked the referee…

Powell’s POV: The referee really brought that on himself. Okay, so that’s not the story they were telling. I guess Flair is the heel in all of this, but it’s hard to blame her for getting upset over Ripley interfering. And I’m still not sure whether we’re supposed to view Ripley as a heel or a babyface. The sad part is that Asuka is the person who strikes me as being the most in need of a heel turn, and she might be the only babyface in this strange program.

Overall, Raw was better than last week, but so much damage has been done to so many of these characters that there’s just no simple way to climb out of their creative hole. They just need to buckle down and produce quality shows week in and week out rather than search for quick fixes. It’s easier said than done and their lack of consistency has me skeptical that it will happen, but I hope they get it right. I will be back shortly with my weekly same night audio review of Raw. Let me know what you thought of the show by grading it below.

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Readers Comments (5)

  1. Patrick Peralta April 19, 2021 @ 11:19 pm

    “Supernatural Fiend shit with the men, and now supernatural Bliss shit with the women. Joy.”

    CHEERS!!! for Supernatural Bliss and Fiend………hmm Lily made her do it.

    sounds like a Ghost story I heared about years ago about a haunted Doll named Robert. The young boy when ever he got in trouble said “Robert Did it”

  2. Patrick Peralta April 19, 2021 @ 11:25 pm

    Mace and T-Bar’s Masks removed?

    wait untill next week to be sure. if they show up with the masks on then it means nothing.

    after all Kane once had his Mask removed during a match..Before he offically got rid of it…….and he showed up the fallowing week wearing the mask.

  3. Patrick Peralta April 19, 2021 @ 11:35 pm

    I agree Asuka should go back to being a heel…she was a heel with her tag team partner Kairi Sane. she should have stayed a heel once she got the Woman’s title.

  4. This Virk guy is just atrocious. If I hear him say Riddle has “moxie” one more f’n time, I’m gonna go give my closest neighbor a diving cross body!

  5. I hit FF mode with Shayna and Nia this week. They’ve been on 2 segments on Raw and Smackdown every week, and I just can’t.

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