Date: November 1, 2021
Location: Dunkin' Donuts Center in Providence, RI
The Big Takeaway --
It still dragged at times but Raw was much better than usual thanks to some strong wrestling.
Becky Lynch cheated to retain her title over Bianca Belair, while Big E beat Kevin Owens in a non-title main event.
AJ Styles was absent once again despite an appearance by Omos.
Show Recap --
There was a big video package hyping Becky Lynch vs. Bianca Belair.
In the back, Belair admitted to Sarah Schreiber that she wasn’t ready for Lynch at SummerSlam after preparing for Sasha Banks. She was excited to face Lynch until she was suddenly without her title 26 seconds later. The experience made her stronger, while Lynch has lost sight of what it takes to be champion. Lynch couldn’t stand that Belair rose to the top while she was out. Belair put over the magnitude of this match.
After Belair entered the ring, Lynch told Schreiber that Belair only rose to the top because she wasn’t around to stop her. She was doing push-ups the day after she gave birth and nobody understood how hard it was to be her. People didn’t appreciate her and that motivated her to beat Belair again.
Becky Lynch defeated Bianca Belair to retain the Raw Women’s Championship (18:38)
Belair was in full control for the first two minutes before they went to break. Lynch tried using Belair’s braid against her but Belair yanked Lynch into the post before giving her a vertical suplex outside the ring. Lynch posted Belair during the break (they finally showed something that happened during the break) and used a reverse DDT for two.
Belair dodged a leg drop and came back with dropkicks, vertical suplex and delayed vertical suplex for two, followed later by a gutbuster for two. There were dueling chants as they traded counters. Belair countered a Disarmer by hoisting Lynch up and knocking them both over the top to the outside which led to break. (Second commercial break in the match’s first 11 minutes.)
Lynch countered a vertical suplex and tried an armbar but as Belair tried to reverse it, Lynch sat down into a cover for two (the referee initially didn’t count because Belair’s shoulder was up, even though you couldn't really tell, and Lynch basically told the referee to count). Belair slammed Lynch for a two count of her own.
Belair used a press slam and tried a moonsault but Lynch got her knees up. Lynch followed with the Man-handle Slam but Belair got a rope break at two. Lynch went after Belair on the outside but Belair dropped her on the announce table which drew a two count in the ring. Belair followed with a Glam Slam for another two count.
Belair got Lynch on her shoulders for the KOD but Lynch yanked off the top turnbuckle cover before slipping out. Lynch pushed Belair into the exposed buckle and rolled her up for the pinfall win.
Very good match. The crowd liked both women and were into it throughout.
Kevin Patrick interviewed Rey and Dominik Mysterio. Rey thought Austin Theory was talented but he was also disrespectful. Rey was proud of how Dominik stepped up to him last week.
Theory showed up and threatened to take a selfie with Rey after he beat him, just like he beat his son. Dominik told him to show some respect. Rey said Theory wasn’t the first person to try making a name for himself at his expense, but he would show why those other names have faded away while the Mysterio name remains.
Austin Theory defeated Rey Mysterio (w/Dominik Mysterio) via DQ (10:29)
There was a spot before a break where Theory had Rey on his shoulders but Dominik spun Rey around right into a tornado DDT. The ref yelled at Dominik but didn’t kick him out or disqualify Rey.
Theory was randomly in control following the break until Rey dropped him on a turnbuckle before hitting a crossbody for two. Theory gave Rey a backdrop before dropkicking Dominik, which is only fair.
Rey dropped Theory on the middle rope and Dominik punched Theory in the face before Rey hit a 619. The ref apparently noticed what happened and called for a DQ. (The replay made it seem like he missed it.)
They were having a pretty good match until the finish. The crowd got into this as well. The obvious story was that Dominik inadvertently cost Rey the match. Rey was disappointed but embraced him after the match.
Seth Rollins / Big E / Kevin Owens segment
Rollins entered proudly holding his contract for a title match. He bragged about winning the ladder match and said it just feels right given that Raw was his show. The only thing he was missing was the title belt and the contract pretty much guaranteed he would be the next champion.
Big E interrupted. He said he came out last week to congratulate Rollins, but instead of getting a handshake, Rollins laughed in his face and slinked off like the Pink Panther. Big E’s aunt told him not to let that strange man bother him.
Rollins put over his wins over Bobby Lashley and Drew McIntyre but said Big E was still not on his level. Rollins suggested Big E give him the title so he can go back to his loser friends and be a joke like King Woods and KofiMania. Big E told him to respect the king and respect one of the greatest moments in WWE history — Kofi Kingston winning the title at WrestleMania.
Big E suggested they wrestle for the title tonight and the crowd popped big. Rollins asked the crowd if they really wanted to see that and they did the ‘Yes’ chants. Rollins said he wasn’t 100% after competing recently in both a ladder match and Hell in a Cell match.
Kevin Owens interrupted. Owens said that everyone wants to call themselves the face of Raw including Rollins and Big E. He called Big E a great champion while Rollins was a delusional dumbass. Belair and Lynch also made that claim, but everyone was forgetting about his handsome face.
Owens said Rollins might have won last week but all anyone was talking about was Owens’ performance. Owens said he would always keep fighting and would also always give the fans something to remember.
Owens suggested he face Big E for the first time ever tonight. Rollins tried to give his opinion but Owens told him to shut up because nobody ever wants to hear from him. Big E accepted Owens’ challenge.
Earlier today, Queen Zelina and Carmella were getting along swimmingly in the back. They bumped into Rhea Ripley and Nikki ASH. Zelina gave Nikki a backhanded compliment about her mask. Ripley and Nikki didn’t appreciate that and this led to a match being set up. (Zelina spoke in an English accent again.)
Queen Zelina & Carmella defeated Women’s Tag Team Champions Rhea Ripley & Nikki ASH in a non-title match (8:13)
Nikki wiped out the heels before a break but Carmella was randomly in control of Ripley when they returned. Nikki made a hot tag but Carmella posted Ripley and distracted Nikki allowing Zelina to hit a Code Red for the pinfall win. This was not good.
Chad Gable and Otis approached Big E in the back. Gable agreed with Rollins that Big E wasn’t championship material but he could be if he joined them. Big E didn’t want to wind up being a walking thumb like Otis. Gable said Big E was going to let Raw become Monday Night Rollins again. Gable suggested Big E watch him turn Finn Bálor from a prince to a peasant.
Veer Mahaan is coming (back) to Raw.
Finn Bálor defeated Chad Gable (w/Otis) (5:42)
They had a really strong match for the time they had. Bálor was limping thanks to Gable’s ankle lock and he took too long getting to the top rope. Gable climbed to the top and hit a superplex but Bálor transitioned into a cradle for the pinfall win.
There was a video showing Titus O’Neil getting a Tampa, Florida school named after him. It’s now known as Thaddeus M. Bullard Academy at Sligh Middle Magnet School.
(The Street Profits were shown applauding this video in the ring.)
There was a backstage segment with Riddle and Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. There wasn’t much to this.
Riddle and Randy Orton joined commentary for the next match. They have new team music.
Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode defeated The Street Profits (11:00)
There wasn’t much to this either outside of one big spot by Montez Ford. The crowd chanted for Orton and Riddle and didn’t seem to care about the match itself.
For the third time tonight, the babyfaces had the advantage before a break but the heels were in control with no explanation when they returned. The big spot of the match was Ford wiping out Roode and Ziggler with a dive from the ring, over the turnbuckle, to the outside. The crowd did pop for that.
Omos entered to his music and the distraction cost Ford the match. I didn’t see what happened but Ziggler pinned him. It was probably a superkick.
Omos laid out Ford, Dawkins and Riddle after the match. The crowd chanted for Orton who was pissed off. Orton ripped off his sweater and it seemed like he was about to go after Omos but they suddenly cut away to a replay from last week.
(They crossed into the third hour during this match.)
Patrick interviewed Damian Priest and asked about showing a different side last week. Priest said he tries to keep that side of him at bay but T-Bar forced him to go to a dark place. He warned T-Bar that he would see the Damian inside of him tonight.
No DQ non-title match: US Champion Damian Priest defeated T-Bar (12:59)
They went to break after T-Bar hit a Samoan drop off the top. T-Bar trapped Priest in the ropes and hammered away at him with a kendo stick. Priest freed himself and nailed a clothesline before smashing T-Bar repeatedly with a chair. Priest chokeslammed T-Bar out of the ring through a table which popped the crowd. Priest hit Reckoning for the pinfall win.
Apollo Crews entered with Commander Azeez following the match. Crews said he would soon beat Priest for the US title.
Reginald approached John Morrison as he meditated in the back. Truth and Tozawa tried and failed to attack Reginald. They blamed Drake Maverick’s plan.
Schreiber asked Lynch about using nefarious tactics to win. Lynch dismissed the accusation and pointed out that half the crowd was booing her (which wasn’t the case) because they were fickle. Lynch said she was in a league of her own and Belair should step aside for someone new to step up. Liv Morgan appeared at that exact moment but Lynch just walked away from her.
Elsewhere, Rollins offered to help Owens win tonight and offered him the first title shot when he beat Big E for the title. Owens acted flattered before threatening Rollins. Rollins told Owens to keep fighting while Rollins kept winning.
WWE Champion Big E defeated Kevin Owens in a non-title match (12:46)
This was a pretty fun and hard-hitting match.
Owens knocked down Big E with a senton off the apron and hit another senton. Rollins decided to enter to his music which led to break. (They showed a replay of the second senton and Owens absolutely crushed Big E, who should be thankful for his large frame.)
Owens hit a superplex after the break but Big E no-sold as Owens attempted clotheslines. They traded strikes and collided with clothesline attempts. Big E blocked a stunner and hit a belly-to-belly but Owens avoided a splash, hit a superkick, cannonball and flying senton — crushing Big E again.
Big E fought back and hit an STO for two. Owens tried a splash but Big E got his knees up and hit a running dive through the ropes. They bonked heads and Owens appeared to get the worst of it so the ref checked on him. Rollins attacked Big E as the ref was busy.
Owens may or may not have seen what happened and went for the cover. Big E kicked out and countered into a crucifix pin for the win.
After the match, Big E noticed on the replay that Owens saw what Rollins did. Owens grabbed a mic and swore he didn’t see what happened. Owens blamed Rollins and called him a stupid son-of-a-bitch. Owens challenged Rollins to a match next week.
Owens pleaded with Big E and apologized. Big E wasn’t buying it. Owens put his hand on Big E’s shoulder and apologized again. Big E grabbed him and gave him a Big Ending.
(This wasn’t presented as a heel turn but Big E did come across like a dick considering how apologetic Owens was being. Byron Saxton said Big E was in DTA mode.)