Monday 4 July 2022

WWE Raw Highlights Wrestling Reality 4 July 2022


WWE Raw 7/4/22 July 4th 2022

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WWE Raw Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from July 4

Wrestling Reality Team!

    Welcome to Wrestling Reality's coverage and recap of WWE Raw on July 4.

    Saturday's Money in the Bank pay-per-view had a few different results that changed the landscape of WWE quite a bit.

    Not only did Theory and Liv Morgan win their respective MITB matches, but Morgan actually cashed in that same night to defeat Ronda Rousey and win the SmackDown women's title.

    Before Theory claimed his briefcase, Bobby Lashley defeated him for the U.S. title. Mondays Raw dealt with all of the fallout from the PPV while beginning the buildup for SummerSlam.

    Let's look at what went down during Monday's show.

Opening Segment

1 OF 8

    Raw opened with Lashley coming out wearing his brand new United States Championship. The crowd began to chant his name as he tried to speak, and it looked like he got a little emotional before talking about Independence Day.

    It didn't take long for Theory to come out and brag about becoming Mr. Money in the Bank and how he beat the odds to win. He even had the nerve to compare himself to Tom Brady and Michael Jordan.

    Theory said he wants to win back his U.S. title before he wins the Undisputed World Championship at SummerSlam, so he is basically announcing his cash-in ahead of time, or at least teasing it. Theory attacked Lashley with the briefcase, but Lashley recovered and sent him out of the ring to end the segment.

    This was decent and helped both men build the kind of heel and babyface heat they need right now.

    Grade: C

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • Lashley saying there is nobody in any division or any promotion was a fun little reference to The Forbidden Door, but it will ultimately mean nothing because WWE will never open that door. 
    • If Theory would have tried to compare himself to MJ in Chicago, he wouldn't make it out of Illinois. 
    • Kevin Patrick appears to have joined the commentary table, at least for this week. Jimmy Smith was not at the table, but Corey Graves and Byron Saxton were. 

The Mysterios vs. Judgment Day

2 OF 8

    Before Rey and Dominik Mysterio vs. Finn Balor and Damian Priest could begin, Judgment Day attacked the Mysterios to get an early advantage.

    Even though Rey and Dom were able to make a comeback toward the end of the match, the action was dominated by Priest and Balor.

    This seems like a random tag match, and it was, but the back-and-forth action we a little more entertaining than a lot of bouts, especially because it ended with the famous Eddie Guerrero chair trick.

    As Balor was preparing to hit Rey with a chair while Priest had the referee distracted, Rey dropped to the mat and acted like he was already hit. The ref turned to see this and called for a disqualification.

    Usually DQ endings get boos from the crowd, but Rey taking a page out of Latino Heat's playbook got a big pop from the crowd.

    Winners: The Mysterios

    Grade: B

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • Balor's new gear definitely fits the aesthetic of the group, but there are going to be some fans who do not like the leather pants. 
    • The chair spot was not the only reference to Guerrero in this bout. It's nice to see Rey so willing to pay homage to Dom's real father. 
    • Do we need to specify that the last sentence was a joke?

The Miz vs. AJ Styles

3 OF 8

    The feud between The Miz and AJ Styles continued this week with a singles match. There is no title or potential title shot on the line in this storyline. They just don't like each other and want to fight. It's a simple but effective way to build a feud.

    The A-Lister took control after their initial exchange, but it didn't take The Phenomenal One to fire back with a Pele kick out of nowhere.

    Even though Styles probably controlled the pace a bit more, this was a highly competitive match. Both men came close to winning a few different times and used just about every signature move in their repertoires.

    Styles was able to secure a clean win with the Phenomenal Forearm, but this is unlikely to be the end of their storyline. As he was celebrating his win, Styles was attacked from behind by Ciampa. The Miz took the final shot when he hit The Phenomenal One with the Skull Crushing Finale.

    Winner: AJ Styles

    Grade: B

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • Remember when Styles knocked one of Miz's teeth out in one of his first WWE matches after debuting in the 2016 Royal Rumble. 
    • Before the match, we saw The Street Profits throwing a Fourth of July party. Chad Gable and Otis showed up and mocked them for losing at Money in the Bank. 
    • We also saw a backstage attack by Judgment Day on the Mysterios. Priest looked like he wanted to take Rey's mask but was driven off by officials. 
    • The Ciampa we knew in NXT would never team up with The Miz, even as a heel. 

Carmella and Natalya vs. Liv Morgan and Bianca Belair

4 OF 8

    Liv Morgan came to the ring to celebrate not only winning the women's MITB match and the SmackDown women's title, but she wasn't alone for long. Natalya came out and appeared to want the first shot. Carmella made an appearance and said they should go to SmackDown and leave Monday to the Raw locker room.

    After a fight broke out, Bianca Belair came out to make the save. This led to Adam Pearce pulling a Teddy Long and booking a tag team match that started during the break.

    After a decently long match with a lot of action, Morgan was able to get the pin for her team. This match won't be talked about much, but it was fun and gave the women a lot of time to work.

    Winners: Liv Morgan and Bianca Belair

    Grade: C+

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • You have to wonder if Mella and Nattie purposely coordinated their gear because they knew they would be in this match together. 
    • Natalya seems to hesitate when she hits the discus clothesline as she spins, so it doesn't always look smooth. She really needs to throw her weight into it to make it look like her father's move. 
    • Morgan keeps getting better. You can see a marked improvement in the way she moves around the ring just over the last six months. She clearly spends a lot of time training, and working to get better and it has paid off. 

Ezekiel vs. Seth Rollins

5 OF 8

    During the Fourth of July party, Ezekiel accidentally sprayed ketchup all over the doilies Rollins was wearing as a shirt, so it led to them having a match.

    The reason for this match was kind of dumb, but the match itself was actually quite good. Rollins is one of the best in the game, so it won't surprise anyone to hear he did a great job.

    What might shock some is how Zeke kept up with Rollins and may have ended up producing one the best matches of his career in the process. This wasn't a Match of the Year Candidate, but it might just be remembered for being the strongest performance on this episode.

    After Ezekiel came close several times, Rollins nailed him with The Stomp to score the pin.

    Winner: Seth Rollins

    Grade: A-

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • The shirt Rollins had on at the party looked like it would breathe really well, but it might also be kind of uncomfortable. 
    • Zeke picking Rollins up over his head to hit a press slam was an impressive display of power. It looked like it was so easy for him. 
    • The spinning powerbomb Ezekiel hit looked clean.
    • Riddle's RKO just doesn't look right. He always hits it when he should, but there are so many other people out there who can do a cutter much better than him. Homicide is one guy who might be as good as Randy Orton when he hits it. 

Bobby Lashley and Street Profits vs. Theory and Alpha Academy

6 OF 8

    Theory teamed up with Alpha Academy to take on Lashley and The Street Profits in a six-man tag match. While we have seen all of these people compete before, this particular combination of Superstars is not one we have seen quite as much, so it was a nice change of pace.

    This match had the usual setup for six-man contests. The heels controlled most of the action while the babyfaces would make occasional comebacks before the heels took over again.

    It feels like we haven't seen Otis in the ring much recently, so it was great to be reminded of what an athlete he is. For a man of his size, he has a lot of versatility.

    Lashley was not in the match much until he got the hot tag from Ford and started cleaning house. Lashley was able to take out Gable with a Spear to get the pin for his team.

    This was a solid performance from six guys who are already known to be reliable. The team of Lashley and the Profits seemed to work together especially well.

    Winners: Bobby Lashley and The Street Profits

    Grade: B

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • Dawkins doing a flip over the top rope and landing on his feet has looked impressive in his last two matches, so he is probably going to make that a regular spot he hits. 
    • There was kind of a funny moment when Ford threw Gable out of the ring and then realized he was too close to his corner and moved back to the middle of the ring. This led to him eventually making the hot tag to The All Mighty.
    • The way Dawkins blasted Theory to send him over the announce table looked incredible. 
    • Lashley doing a roll after his Spear is a nice touch. It doesn't always make it look like he is hitting them harder, but it's a nice way for him to get right back to his feet and make the move unique to him. 

Gunther vs. R-Truth

7 OF 8

    R-Truth came to the ring dressed like Uncle Sam and talked for a bit before he was confronted by Gunther and Ludwig.

    Truth wrestled the Intercontinental champion while still wearing his costume. The match was over in about two minutes and ended with Gunther hitting a powerbomb for the win. There wasn't much to this, so there isn't much to say about it.

    Winner: Gunther

    Grade: D

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • R-Truth had better be making a lot of money because he does literally anything WWE asks him to do. He is the definition of a dedicated employee. 
    • Ludwig needs to wrestle more. He is very good, and just being Gunther's sidekick is not good enough for him. 

Asuka vs. Becky Lynch

8 OF 8

    The main event of this week's show saw Asuka and Becky Lynch looking to end their feud with a No Holds Barred match. As soon as Lynch got to the ring, she grabbed a table and set it up as the show went to a break.

    This feud has been going on for weeks, but every time they meet, they produce a great match. It's hard to complain about repetitiveness in this instance because every encounter has felt different.

    They used tables, chairs, garbage cans and anything else they could find to inflict punishment on one another. After a long fight, Lynch put Asuka through the table with a super Manhandle Slam.

    This was a great way to close out the show. The crowd was into it and the Superstars did their best to make sure they sent the fans home happy. This week's Raw was an easier watch than usual, and the main event was a big part of why.

    Winner: Becky Lynch

    Grade: B+

    Notable Moments and Observations

    • Big Time Becks grabbing a table and a bunch of chairs before Asuka even made her entrance immediately set the tone for the rest of the match.
    • Asuka just has an extra bit of pop when she hits people. Some wrestlers look like they are pulling punches. Asuka doesn't have that problem most of the time. 
    • Asuka hitting a missile dropkick to Lynch when she had a garbage can on her head was a great spot. They made it look so good

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