By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Raw Hits
Gunther vs. Chad Gable for the Intercontinental Championship A hell of a match. The MVP was actually Gable’s young daughter, who started crying after she watched her father lose. I hate to see a little girl cry, but this really enhanced the moment and got over the agony of defeat. I doubt they had any idea that Gable’s daughter would cry and that the idea was to sell viewers on the idea that Gable would win because his family was in attendance.
Drew McIntyre and Matt Riddle vs. The Viking Raiders in a tornado tag match: A solid brawl with a finish that furthered the storyline friction between McIntyre and New Day. All signs point toward McIntyre turning heel. It’s time. He’s currently the third or fourth babyface on Raw, whereas a turn would make him the top heel on the brand.
Jey Uso: A good first night with the Sami Zayn reunion followed by various wrestlers showing animosity with Jey over his Bloodline past. It was cool to hear that Smackdown will be getting compensation for Jey moving to Raw. Cody Rhodes seems like the most likely candidate to swap brands, as that would explain why Cody was positioned as the person who brought Jey to the Monday night show. They easily could have put that on John Cena when he hosted WWE Payback on Saturday. The fact that Cody’s character took the credit combined with his desire to win the WWE Universal Championship makes him the most logical candidate.
JD McDonagh vs. Sami Zayn: The backstage segment with Rhea Ripley telling Dominik Mysterio to make sure this match played out the way she wanted was interesting. Dom helped McDonagh win, and then walked off when McDonagh was getting beaten up after the match, so it doesn’t really reveal where things stand between McDonagh and Judgment Day.
Raquel Rodriguez vs. Chelsea Green: I’m still not sold on Rodriguez as a babyface, but this was the clean and decisive win she needed given that she’s challenging Rhea Ripley next week.
WWE Raw Misses
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Ricochet: Nakamura just lost to Seth Rollins at WWE Payback and they are setting him up for a rematch. Nakamura needs wins. I get that they were trying to show that he’s ruthless, but a simple chair shot to the back of Ricochet wasn’t enough. If they wanted to protect Ricochet, then Nakamura could have pinned someone else.
WWE Women’s Tag Team Titles: And now Piper Niven isn’t medically cleared? Perform an exorcism or just burn those cursed belts immediately.
Shayna Baszler vs. Zoey Stark: I enjoyed the match, but the live crowd’s silence was telling. Baszler and Stark showing mutual respect after the match was interesting. For their sake, I hope they are starting a faction rather than a tag team (see above).