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Opening the show for the live crowd, Sasha Banks came to the ring to address what happened last week. Prior to her entrance, a video package had shown her brutal attack on Bayley.
While Sasha Banks protested that she didn’t owe anyone an explanation, she did go to great lengths to justify herself. Starting off, she showed what she felt was the important footage from last week, where Bayley told Sasha that she didn’t trust her. Banks would say that she did everything she could to move on, but Bayley disrespected her. Now Sasha says that she is supposed to come out here and apologise for what she did, and for the nature of the attack. Banks will tell whoever made that call that they can to go to hell, because she isn’t going to say sorry for being who she is. Continuing, Banks put over the fact that she has been forced to spend the last two years being somebody else, saying that she is tired of pretending to be somebody she isn’t. Insistent that she will not be painted as the bad guy, Sasha Banks made it clear that Bayley ended their friendship, all she did was ensure it ended on her terms. Pointing out that Bayley isn’t here tonight, Sasha Banks said that she knows Bayley is going to play the victim in this situation. She will therefore ask the WWE Universe to keep one thing in mind, listing the fact that she was the one who reached out to Bayley, she is the one who said sorry last week, and she is the one who hugged Bayley in the middle of this ring. What that means to Sasha Banks is simple, as she says that everybody here has to agree, Bayley can only blame Bayley for what happened last week.
That wasn’t all for Sasha Banks, as when the show returned from the commercial break, viewers were informed that Natalya had taken issue with last week’s attack, requesting a match against her. Kurt Angle made the match, where a focussed and brutal Sasha Banks was able to make Natalya submit with a Banks Statement. After the match, Banks refused to release the hold, until she was forced to by officials.
Following on from last week, Elias and Chad Gable’s issues continued throughout the night, stemming from Chad once again interrupting a performance. When Elias claimed that he wouldn’t compete until he was allowed to complete his performance, Kurt Angle vowed to cut Elias’ microphone every time he goes to speak if he didn’t take part in the match.
However, later in the night, as the match was postponed, Chad Gable was attacked in the back. Unable to compete, with Elias considered the most likely culprit, Chad Gable was replaced by a returning Superstar. Throughout the night, Raw talent such as Kurt Angle, Corey Graves and Mojo Rawley were informed (via text) of a “huge star returning to Raw”, with particular emphasis on the fact that the show was in San Diego. Popping up at Kurt’s hour of need, the star was not who many expected.
Revealing that he had been sending the messages, it turned out that Kurt Angle’s son Jason Jordan was the returning Raw Superstar. Looking out for his friend, and offering to get his father out of a jam, Jason Jordan stepped forward to face Elias. Smiling at his father, Jordan would tell Kurt “just like you taught me… always bring your gear!” With little other choice, Jason Jordan was placed in the match, which took place towards the end of the show.
The final match of the evening, Jason Jordan enjoyed a triumphant return to Monday Night Raw. Having been told he couldn’t perform before the match, Elias was in an awful mood, compounded by the smile that is permanently etched on Jordan’s face. Overly happy to be back, Jason looked to recapture the reactions which had followed him since he was revealed as Kurt Angle’s son. Scoring a lucky roll up, Jason Jordan celebrated as if he had just won the Main Event of WrestleMania.
Jason Jordan bt. Elias
Long before that match, Sami Zayn was also in action, having earlier stated his intention to become the next WWE Universal Champion. Tonight however, he turned his attention to the Intercontinental Championship, accepting Seth Rollins’ open challenge.
Intercontinental Championship Match
Competing in an extremely long, competitive match, Sami Zayn was unable to defeat Seth Rollins. During the match, Kevin Owens had joined the commentary.
Throughout, Kevin Owens was respectful about Sami Zayn, but made it clear that he feels he is making a mistake. Owens hoped that their friendship would survive their current issues, saying that he doesn’t want this turning out like Bayley and Sasha Banks. Behaving out of character, Kevin Owens’ usual abrasiveness was not on show, and he sounded clearly disappointed as Sami was hit with the decisive Curb Stomp.
Seth Rollins (c) bt. Sami Zayn
Returning to Raw, the commentators sent back to an incident that took place “During The Break”. Furious about his loss, and feeling like Kevin Owens’ presence was unnecessary, a banged up Sami Zayn approached the commentary table. Shouting at Owens for seemingly no reason, Sami Zayn told Owens “I am going to do this… I am going to become the WWE Universal Champion!”
The second hour of the show saw Ember Moon and Nia Jax team up, taking on the team of Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan. With Ember & Nia in control, Ruby Riott decided action needed to be taken. Not interested in victory, Ruby Riott pulled Nia Jax off the apron, while Liv Morgan joined Sarah Logan in the ring. This resulted in a DQ.
As the attack continued, with Ember now up against all three members of The Riott Squad, Nia Jax returned to the ring, clearing it of Morgan, Logan and then Ruby.
Tired of The Riott Squad’s continued attacks, Nia Jax told Ruby that “you’ve got it!”, accepting her challenge to a match for the Women’s Championship.
Mojo Rawley was defeated by No Way Jose, as Titus Worldwide presented a united front. Later on, Drew McIntyre defeated Rhyno, after Dolph & Drew questioned what had happened to the once ruthless, destructive Rhyno. After the match, Dolph Ziggler joined Drew McIntyre in the ring, with Dana Brooke watching on from ringside, smiling at Dolph Ziggler.
The Raw Tag Team Champions were also in action, with The Revival taking them on in a non-title match. Looking to build on a successful few weeks, The Revival were disappointingly defeated by Hardy & Wyatt. Following the match, The Authors of Pain picked their spot, finally getting their hands on The Deleters of Worlds. Leaving the Raw Tag Team Champions down in the ring, Akam & Rezar appeared to be back on the right track in their quest to take the titles.
Over all the events which had preceded, the key thread throughout the entire episode of Raw revolved around an appearance from Paul Heyman.
In demand from Braun Strowman and Roman Reigns, both of whom have an interest in the Universal Champion, Brock Lesnar, Kurt Angle had to remind the pair that Paul Heyman was there for a meeting with the Raw General Manager, and nothing else.
Once he arrived at the building, Paul Heyman went straight into Angle’s Office. It was just several minutes into this “crunch meeting” that Paul Heyman left the office, with a smile on his face. Promoting an announcement regarding the Universal Championship at the end of the show, the commentators wondered what conclusions the pair could have possibly come to, having been in the much anticipated discussions for such a short time.
Unwilling to wait until the end of the show, Roman Reigns made his way to the ring, calling out Paul Heyman. Roman didn’t want to speak about the announcement, instead telling Paul to cut the crap and give him what he’s owed. This brought out Finn Balor, who once again took issue to Roman Reigns’ sense of entitlement.
Finn Balor - who was repeated shot down by Roman Reigns last week - this time was able to get his points out. Balor told Reigns that he is “owed” nothing in the WWE, but said that he was unsurprised that Roman didn’t know that. He went on to claim that his journey to the WWE is what made him the man he is today, arguing that Roman Reigns having his roads paved with gold is the reason why he lacks the humility and depth to accept that the whole Universe doesn’t revolve around him. Finn said that if there is to be an announcement of a Universal Championship match next week, then he isn’t about to let Roman Reigns past him. Roman Reigns replied by telling Finn that he won’t have to step past him, because he can just as easily go through him. Reigns then added “you might have abs of steel… but that’s nothing if there’s no guts behind them”. At this point, as the pair squared up to fight, Paul Heyman appeared on the large screen.
Paul Heyman told the two men that what they say now will have no effect on his announcement at the end of the evening, but they’re welcome to bicker with each other. He did hope that they wouldn’t beat each other too badly, because he was sure that they’d both want to hear what he has to say at the end of the night. Agreeing with this, Roman Reigns left the ring, leaving Finn Balor behind him.
When it came to the Main Event segment of the night, Paul Heyman’s entrance was followed by Roman Reigns, who stopped at the top of the ramp. Not wanting to be outdone, Finn Balor joined him, and the two stared each other down. Paul Heyman was frustrated by the interferences, and as he went to begin his announcement, a third Raw Superstar made their way out from the back. This time, he didn’t stop at the top of the ramp, as Braun Strowman instead barged past the bickering Balor and Reigns, heading straight to the ring to confront Paul Heyman.
Delaying the announcement once more, Braun Strowman said that the one person Brock Lesnar’s camp should be focussed on was him. Strowman said that whatever the announcement is, he first wanted to send a message through Paul to Brock. Braun Strowman reiterated his points from last week, saying that there has never been a bigger threat to a Champion than him holding the Money In The Bank. He added that he knows that the Universal Champion isn’t used to running scared, but he’d better get used to it.
Moving on, Paul Heyman finally began his announcement, but first made note of it being his first opportunity to congratulate Brock Lesnar on becoming the longest reigning Heavyweight Champion of the “Modern Era”. Announcing that Brock wants to celebrate that in style, Heyman said that he would do just that, in three weeks, at Extreme Rules. Paul Heyman would then go through the various merits of the three men who have staked their interest, as well as mentioning the likes of Sami Zayn and Bobby Lashley. However, Paul Heyman felt that after a short discussion, and with a number of easily manageable provisions, the right choice for Brock Lesnar’s next challenger would be the man who never lost the title. Stepping forward, Finn Balor would make his way down the ramp. Looking back towards Reigns, before brushing past Braun Strowman in the ring, Finn Balor extended his hand to Paul Heyman. With the two men shaking hands, it was official - at Extreme Rules - Brock Lesnar will defend the WWE Universal Championship against Finn Balor!
Sasha Banks bt. Natalya
Seth Rollins (c) bt. Sami Zayn [Intercontinental Championship]
Ember Moon & Nia Jax bt. Liv Morgan & Sarah Logan (DQ)
No Way Jose bt. Mojo Rawley
The Deleters of Worlds bt. The Revival
Drew McIntyre bt. Rhyno
Jason Jordan bt. Elias