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Credit: WWE.com

London hosted a lackluster edition of WWE Raw that was largely skippable. 

Monday’s show was newsworthy in that it decided three new entrants—Bobby Roode, Alexa Bliss and Kevin Owens for the Money in the Bank ladder matches, but even with a buzzing crowd, Raw couldn’t find its stride. Underwhelming tag team clashes dominated the card and too little stood out.

As usual, Seth Rollins was in the match of the night. 

Much of the rest of Raw was blase, though. It turns out building a show around Jinder Mahal and Roman Reigns’ sparkless rivalry isn’t a winning formula. 

Read on for a full breakdown of Monday’s Raw.

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Reigns called out Mahal who cost him a win in the Money in the Bank qualifier last week.

Raw general manager Kurt Angle emerged instead. Angle explained that Mahal will face Elias and Bobby Lashley with another spot in the Money in the Bank ladder match. He noted that Reigns would get no additional chances to enter the ladder bout.

The Big Dog then went backstage to scrap with Mahal. The two men brawled, knocking around equipment in the process.

Officials had to step in to break up the fight.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • Fans sing “Na Na Hey Hey” to Reigns.
  • Mahal tries to use Sunil Singh as a human shield.
  • Reigns hits Mahal with a Superman Punch on the stage.

Grade

C-

Analysis

The “Reigns snapped” moment didn’t resonate the way WWE had to be hoping. The fact that this feud has only just begun was a part of that as was the usual pushback against Reigns.

Overall, the segment felt flat.

Reigns growing frustrated over how things have gone could be a good angle. Another tale where the system tries to hold him back, on the other hand, has little appeal.

2 of 10

Owens made the match a slugfest early on, a strategy that paid off. He had Rollins reeling for a spell.

The challenger worked on Rollins’ midsection, leaving him hurting. 

The Kingslayer battled back. He and KO traded blows and Rollins’ speed advantage allowed him to take control.

Each man threw haymakers at each other. Owens looked to have the match won a few times. A wincing Rollins, though, held on to the title by stomping on KO’s head as he tried to re-enter the ring.

Result

Rollins wins via pinfall to retain the Intercontinental Championship.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • Owens catches Rollins in midair and hurls him into the ring post.
  • Rollins hits a Falcon Arrow on the ring apron.
  • Rollins flattens Owens with two straight suicide dives.
  • Fans chant “This is awesome!”
  • Owens hits a Fisherman Buster from the top rope.

Grade

A-

Analysis

Add another strong match to Rollins’ impressive 2018 resume. He and Owens delivered a back-and-forth clash that had the fans roaring.

That’s become the norm for the IC champ, Raw’s current cornerstone.

WWE is wisely playing up Rollins’ winning ways, billing him as a fighting champion. The more we see of this, the bigger his eventual defeat will be.

3 of 10

Baron Corbin knocked No Way Jose around before grounding Roode. Jose tried to strike his way back into the match.

Each wrestler scored near-falls, but someone was able to make the save each time.

Corbin regained control of the match, alternating attacks on Jose and Roode. The Glorious One, however, sneaked in to land a DDT on Jose to seize the win.

Result

Roode wins via pinfall to earn a spot in the men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • Fans sing Jose’s entrance song.
  • Corbin leaps off the ring apron to clothesline Roode.

Grade

C-

Analysis

High stakes and a ton of near-falls couldn’t make up for a lackluster bout. The opponents didn’t have great chemistry. There was also a lot of lying around from No Way Jose.

Roode isn’t the most exciting addition to the Money in the Bank field.

His style is a bad fit for ladder matches. And he has barely any momentum to speak of. 

4 of 10

Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel asked Angle for a tag team title match. The GM laughed off the idea. He instead offered them a chance to impress in the ring.

Tyler Breeze flustered the duo now calling themselves “The B-Team” in the match’s opening moments. The heels, however, were able to power their way to the advantage, keeping Prince Pretty in their corner.

Fandango fared better momentarily. A missed leg drop left him vulnerable. A double-team suplex attack followed, giving The B-Team the win.

Axel and Dallas celebrated afterward. 

Result

Dallas and Axel win via pinfall. 

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • “You can’t use that.”—Angle when Dallas and Axel propose calling themselves ‘The A-Team.’
  • Axel and Dallas wear white T-shirts with a B written in marker on it.
  • Fandango kicks Dallas while hitting a tornado DDT on Axel.

Grade

C

Analysis

The match itself was average, middle-of-the-show stuff, but it’s fun to see some development with the men who once made up The Miztourage.

Axel and Dallas have a bit of direction all of a sudden. A Cinderella run to the No. 1 contender’s spot would be an intriguing midcard story.

5 of 10

Moments into the match, Sasha Banks found herself in trouble, having to battle out of The Riott Squad’s corner. 

The Boss, Ember Moon and Natalya looked good for a while afterward. Ruby Riott and her crew slowed the action down and zeroed in on Banks to take control.

Natalya tagged in and went on the attack. 

The match turned chaotic as everyone got involved and fights broke out at ringside. Natalya capitalized by clamping the Sharpshooter on Liv Morgan who couldn’t help but tap out.

Result

Banks, Moon and Natalya win via submission. 

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • Morgan knocks Moon off the ring apron with a forearm.
  • Banks leaps off the ring apron to nail Sarah Logan with flying knees. 

Grade

C+

Analysis

WWE booking six-women tag team matches has become a running joke at this point. It’s the go-to option just about every week.

The wrestlers did well to create some electricity, but the match didn’t feel important. 

The Riott Squad has been beaten a ton already. The bout didn’t do much to advance any narratives. This felt like filler despite the solid effort by the competitors. 

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The B-Team looked on from backstage as the action unfolded.

Bray Wyatt and Matt Hardy toyed with their foes to kick things off. The Revival, however, blasted Hardy’s leg and went to work punishing him in their corner.

A flurry from Wyatt had Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder on the defensive. He and Hardy hit the Kiss of Deletion to wrap things up.

Result

Hardy and Wyatt win via pinfall.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • “I’m awake.”—Booker T when asked if he was “woken” like Hardy.
  • Hardy leads a standing ovation to mock The Revival.

Grade

C-

Analysis

It’s good to get the Raw tag team champs a win and WWE keep them in the spotlight.

Things could get so much weirder and fun with Wyatt and Hardy with some creativity. We have yet to see WWE Creative tap into what makes this team unique.

The Revival hasn’t been showcased nearly as much as it should. This short loss did little to show off Wilder and Dawson’s work. They have had no momentum to speak of since returning from injury. 

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Sami Zayn mocked Bobby Lashley and griped about him stealing his thunder.

He claimed that Lashley gave him vertigo. He read a doctor’s note that was supposed to prove that.

After showing some clips on the big screen, Zayn said he would expose the real Bobby Lashley by talking to the former Impact Wrestling champ’s sisters.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • “Has it occurred to anyone else that Prince Harry looks a lot like me?”—Zayn.
  • “Bobby Lashley victimized me. He did it all to impress you.”—Lashley.

Grade

D

Analysis

Lashley vs. Zayn is not something one would have seen coming. Zayn will make a quality foe for the powerhouse in the ring even if that story to this point is ridiculous. 

Zayn had a poor script to work with. He did his best, but this was a bad segment that left the crowd dead.

8 of 10

Alexa Bliss and Mickie James teamed up to take out Bayley. 

The Huggable One was able to battle her way into the match despite being outnumbered. Things got heated between Bliss and James, a situation Bayley took advantage of. 

A forearm to the jaw and a DDT did Bayley in, however, allowing Bliss to earn a three-count.

Result

Bliss wins via pinfall to earn a spot in the women’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • James sneaks up on Bliss and rolls her up for a two-count.  
  • Fans sing “Hey Baby” to Bayley.

Grade

B-

Analysis

The three wrestlers packed a good amount of action into a relatively short match.

James and Bliss’ splintering relationship offered an intriguing subplot. Their alliance is something WWE hasn’t ever fully explored. There’s plenty of narrative raw material to work with, though.

Bayley and Banks both not making it to Money in the Bank is quite the surprise. How WWE plans to advance that feud at this point is unclear.

9 of 10

Credit: WWE.com

Braun Strowman and Drew McIntyre glared at each other across the ring before the bell rang. McIntyre teased fighting The Monster Among Men but backed out with a smile on his face.

Strowman and Finn Balor overwhelmed Dolph Ziggler until the heels double-teamed their way to the advantage.

A crash into the ring post left Strowman stunned. Ziggler yanked Balor off the top rope and pinned the babyface. 

Result

McIntyre and Ziggler win via pinfall. 

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • “We have a banquet of pigs stuffing their fat faces.”—McIntyre.
  • “We’re here to flip the damn table over.”—McIntyre.
  • Strowman throws Balor at Ziggler.
  • Strowman barrels through McIntyre on the outside.

Grade

C+

Analysis

The announcers did well to catch fans up on McIntyre’s backstory and the transformation he experienced in the last few years.

A win here helps establish Ziggler and McIntyre as the threats they claim to be. They looked solid in beating down Balor.  

The tag team division isn’t the ideal home for Strowman especially considering the lead-up to WrestleMania for him was all about how he didn’t need a partner. WWE seems to be unsure of what to do with him so it’s using the tag scene as a holdover spot for him.

10 of 10

Credit: WWE.com

The trainer taped up Mahal’s ribs backstage. He limped around backstage until Reigns floored him, leaving him unable to compete.

Angle announced the match would go on, but was forced to add Owens per Stephanie McMahon’s orders.

Elias and Owens pounded on Lashley as soon as the opening bell rang. The Dominator left the heels on their backs, however. 

The impromptu Elias-Owens alliance ended in violent fashion as they stopped targeting Lashley and went after each other. 

When it looked as if Lashley had the victory in the bag, Zayn attacked Lashley. That left KO free to dive onto Elias for the win.

Result

Owens wins via pinfall to earn a spot in the men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

Memorable Moments and Quotes

  • Reigns spears Mahal through a wall backstage.
  • Lashley flings both Owens and Elias into the security barricade. 
  • Elias tries to sing a mid-match song.
  • Lashley suplexes both foes at the same time.
  • Fans chant “Lashley’s sisters!”

Grade

C+

Analysis

A few fun moments carried what didn’t feel a true main event.

Lashley hasn’t been special since his return. The presence he showed at Impact Wrestling hasn’t transferred to Raw thus far.

Owens worming his way into the Money in the Bank ladder match was an unexpected move. It sure beats Mahal entering that fray.

In what proved to be a microcosm for the night, the crowd seemed eager to get into this match, but never had good reason to get revved up. 

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