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The June 29 edition of Monday Night Raw promised a huge double contract signing for WWE Extreme Rules: The Horror Show officiated by Samoa Joe.
Drew McIntyre agreed to a match with new Raw trade acquisition Dolph Ziggler. Asuka accepted Sasha Banks’ challenge despite The Legit Boss remaining a Friday Night SmackDown star. With two champions and two challengers in the ring at the same time, it was likely to get wild.
More chaos was expected thanks to Seth Rollins. The June 22 edition of Raw ended with Rey Mysterio, Dominik, Aleister Black and Humberto Carrillo standing tall. He told the world that he now needed to apologize.
Akira Tozawa was required to defend his 24/7 Championship against R-Truth after sneaking away with the title thanks to Bobby Lashley. For this week, The All Mighty was set to be in Montel Vontavious Porter’s corner for a non-title match against United States champion Apollo Crews.
After Andrade and Angel Garza laid out The Street Profits, The Viking Profits challenged Zelina Vega’s crew to a match on behalf of their friends.
This show was overflowing with big moments and matches, and no one knew what to expect.
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The show started in the middle of a brawl as Bayley and Sasha Banks beat down Asuka. Dolph Ziggler arrived to introduce Drew McIntyre, calling him ungrateful. The two men traded verbal shots before signing their contracts for WWE Extreme Rules.
McIntyre allowed Ziggler to choose the stipulation for their match. The Empress of Tomorrow interrupted The Showoff to sign her contract. The brawling continued once The Boss signed her name on the dotted line.
Action opening the show is the best approach, even if it doesn’t mean an actual match. It was easy to get excited for the show when everyone was immediately brawling. It especially sold the heat between Asuka and Banks without words.
Setting up a stipulation for McIntyre vs. Ziggler, which The Showoff gets to choose, allows Ziggler a glimmer of hope in a one-sided rivalry. If he can choose a match that suits him over the WWE champion, it gives fans some expectation that he might win.
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The cameras caught Angel Garza, alongside Zelina Vega and Andrade, failing to seduce the referee for their match with The Viking Raiders, Jessika Carr. Charly Caruso questioned the group’s strategy before Big Show interrupted and demanded he take their spot next to call out Randy Orton.
Andrade and Garza got involved in Show’s segment, starting to surround him. Ric Flair encouraged them to do some damage to The World’s Largest Athlete while telling Show that The Viper was staying in the back for now. The Viking Raiders ran down to make the save.
Vega’s team continued to argue repeatedly. El Idolo almost walked out on The Most Beautiful Man, but their manager convinced them to keep fighting together. Their teamwork improved as Ivar was taken out of the match. Andrade hit a back elbow on Erik to set up the Wing Clipper by Garza for the win.
Andrade and Garza def. Raiders by pinfall.
Show and Flair without Orton was much less effective than last week. It’s hard to get excited about two veterans past their prime yelling at each other. Show did not need to get involved in any of this, especially the awkward overlap with the tag team rivalry.
The tag team match that followed delivered. Andrade and Garza have chemistry to spare in spite of their odd pairing to start. The Raiders always deliver. It was great all around and showed why Vega’s team should be allied for a while before the eventual break-up.
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Akira Tozawa stood with a trio of ninjas as he prepared for the arrival of R-Truth. The match did not last long before the challenger managed to convince the champion to stop for a moment. It gave Truth enough of an opportunity to roll up Tozawa for a three count.
Afterward, he ducked the ninjas and ran off with his title back in hand.
Truth def. Tozawa by pinfall to become the new 24/7 champion.
While it was hyped ahead of time, this felt like a filler segment thrown together at the last minute. It was an unexciting addition to a rivalry that has been built over time on creativity. The last time Tozawa went after the 24/7 Championship, he had to stop Santa. Now, he’s just a ninja.
The biggest problem with the 24/7 Championship is that no one is ever able to defend it in a real match. Tozawa lost faster as the champion than he did in recent squash matches against top talent like Andrade and Murphy.
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Seth Rollins requested forgiveness from Rey Mysterio for the horrible things he would do to The Master of the 619. Mysterio interrupted from a live feed at his home. He asked for Dominik’s forgiveness for what he would do to The Monday Night Messiah. Dominik accepted the apology and promised Rollins would pay.
Aleister Black and Humberto Carrillo came out to run off Rollins and Murphy. The Messiah questioned why The Dutch Destroyer and Mexican Superstar fought for Mysterio. Rollins called The Master of the 619 a coward, which set off both faces. Black called Rollins evil.
The Messiah promised to end this, setting up an impromptu tag team match. Rollins thought he was walking into an easy fight, but he was not ready for the strikes of Black or the resilience of Carrillo.
However, the cohesion of Murphy and Rollins was too much. Carrillo survived a powerbomb/diving high knee strike combination, but he could not kick out of the Stomp. Afterward, Black saved Carrillo from losing an eye, but The Messiah hit the Mexican Superstar with the Stomp on the steel steps.
Rollins and Murphy def. Black and Carrillo by pinfall.
Rollins has run with this gimmick for a while, leading to many great segments. When it works, it really works. This was on point because Rollins actually backed up his words with actions. He may not have blinded Carrillo, but he won and stood tall.
He needs to build momentum again. That begins with Rollins and Murphy picking up victories together. It would be best if Black did not suffer for it, but it is better to commit to one angle than try to establish everyone at once.