Date: May 9, 2022
Location: XL Center in Hartford, CT
Show Recap --
RK-Bro entered to start the show and the announcers said they wouldn’t be getting much of a break after last night’s main event because they’re defending the titles up next.
Randy Orton admitted they lost a hard-fought battle but when this was all said and done, they would win the war. Orton mentioned that the Usos made the initial challenge for a unification match but there wasn’t anything on the line last night because Roman Reigns ripped up the contract. Reigns knew that the Usos didn’t hold a candle to them.
Orton said he and Riddle still wanted to unify the titles. Riddle said they’d be on Smackdown and would demand that Reigns give them the unification match because the Usos can’t make decisions for themselves. If he said no, Reigns would show that he has no confidence in his cousins. Riddle rambled until the Street Profits interrupted.
Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins reminded RK-Bro that they were next in line and they wanted to be the ones to unify the titles. After Ford said they want the smoke, Riddle told them that RK-Bro 4:20 says we just smoked your ass. Orton seemed to enjoy that.
Randy Orton & Riddle defeated The Street Profits to retain the Raw Tag Team Championships (10:10)
They went to break after Ford hit a flip dive and Orton made a hot tag following the break. There was a spot where Riddle went for a dive off the ropes but he wiped out Orton by mistake.
Ford gave Riddle a frog splash for a close nearfall as Orton broke up the cover. Ford went for another splash but Riddle brought him down with an RKO. The crowd popped big for that.
This was an awesome finish. It was more unpredictable than usual because it was Riddle and not Orton. Orton was supremely impressed.
Kevin Patrick interviewed Theory on the stage about his US title defense tonight against Cody Rhodes. Theory is going with “I can do this all day” as one of his catchphrases. Theory said he was practically in diapers the last time Rhodes was in WWE. Rhodes was in the past and Theory wasn’t worried because he’s the future.
The Judgment Day segment
Edge entered flanked by Rhea Ripley and Damian Priest. He said they formed “The Judgment Day” because they were tired of being sheep like all of us. Listening to the people over his career got him nowhere. Sure, it got him into the Hall of Fame, but he was bigger than the Hall of Fame.
Edge said the fans were ugly keyboard warriors and the people of Hartford were morons who couldn’t understand that no one can touch them. The crowd chanted “you suck.”
Priest said that they were already dangerous individually but they were something more together and now they’ve added an “instrument of brutality.” Priest told the crowd to rise for Rhea Ripley.
Ripley said joining Judgment Day was the easiest decision of her life. She saw Edge and Priest changing for the better and wanted the same. She was tired of signing autographs at the airport just to see them end up on eBay the next day. Ripley was focused on destroying Liv Morgan tonight. Edge said Ripley was being wasted in a tag team with Morgan.
Edge rambled until Morgan entered to her music for her match.
Rhea Ripley (w/Edge & Damian Priest) defeated Liv Morgan (5:39)
Morgan hit Codebreaker for two but Ripley dodged a missile dropkick and applied a standing Texas Cloverleaf for the submission win.
— After the match, Edge (who has a new haircut) nodded at Ripley and she reapplied the Cloverleaf. Morgan wildly tapped out and Edge mocked her as she did.
The three heels posed until Finn Bálor’s music hit. Bálor entered and AJ Styles came out to his music as well. They weren’t really coming out to help Morgan, Bálor just so happens to have a match up next against Priest.
(An hour into the show, this is the third time they’ve had someone interrupt a promo with their music to lead to a scheduled match.)
Finn Bálor (w/AJ Styles) defeated Damian Priest (w/Edge & Rhea Ripley) via disqualification (4:22)
Bálor set up for a dive but Ripley stood in front of Priest so he stopped. Edge suddenly speared Bálor for the DQ.
Styles tackled Edge and fought off Priest. Ripley grabbed Styles and he turned like he would punch her but stopped when he realized who it was. Styles issued a warning before Edge speared him. Judgment Day stood tall.
Chad Gable used scientific terms to explain to Kevin Owens how they can expose Ezekiel/Elias. Owens didn’t understand what he was trying to say. Gable said he took the red solo cup that Ezekiel drank out of and he has friends who can test the DNA to prove that he’s Elias. Owens was excited about this. Owens also said he had a guest tonight. His older brother Ken Owens would be here to take on Elias.
MVP’s VIP Lounge
MVP cut his usual promo and Cedric Alexander entered to make another offer to him. Bobby Lashley entered and laid out the security guards before putting Alexander down with the Hurt Lock.
(The crowd was dead quiet for this until Lashley entered. In fact, they’ve been pretty quiet since the opening tag match.)
Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville had an argument backstage. Pearce tried explaining something to Deville but she just wanted to know who her opponent was tonight. Before he could tell her, she suddenly decided that she didn’t want to know.
Deville entered for her match. After a break, Pearce entered and announced the news he tried telling her backstage. The investigation has concluded and Deville has been terminated as an authority figure. The crowd cheered. Deville was distraught.
Not only that, her opponent tonight was Alexa Bliss.
Alexa Bliss defeated Sonya Deville (0:40)
Bliss won quickly with a DDT and Twisted Bliss.
Bliss did have the doll with her but she acted like her usual self. The crowd was happy to see her.
“Ken Owens” and Ezekiel segment
Kevin Owens entered wearing a wig (and had more grey in his beard than usual). They announced him as Ken Owens from Nova Scotia. Ezekiel welcomed “Ken” to the ring.
Owens told him not to play along. He said nobody actually thought that Ezekiel was Elias’ younger brother and everyone in the back who said they believed him was just playing along. Owens rambled at Ezekiel who continued to call him “Ken.” Owens ripped off his wig and some people in the crowd actually played along and acted shocked.
Owens had enough and attacked Ezekiel. Ezekiel fought back but Alpha Academy ran down to help Owens. Owens laid out Ezekiel with a stunner.
Pearce spoke with Asuka in the back until Becky Lynch interrupted. Lynch said Asuka didn’t deserve to be handed a title match and noted that she didn’t even get a title rematch yet. Pearce explained that Asuka wasn’t being handed anything. She had to beat Bianca Belair to earn a title match.
Lynch said beating the champ just to get a chance to beat the champ didn’t make any sense. Pearce left and Lynch continued to complain until Asuka screamed at her and mocked her for acting like a baby.
Veer Mahaan defeated Frank Lowman (1:22)
Mahaan won with the million-dollar clothesline and Cervical Clutch.
Patrick interviewed Cody Rhodes. Rhodes put over Seth Rollins as a top-five wrestler in the world but said his chapter with Rollins was now closed. He said Theory had potential but he better dig deep because nothing sounded better to him than becoming the new United States Champion.
United States Championship match: Cody Rhodes defeated Theory via disqualification — Theory retains the title (13:08)
Theory had control for a few minutes until Rhodes came back with a reverse suplex and dropkick. Theory countered a kick and cleared the announce table but Rhodes fought back. He went for a move on the table but Theory scampered back into the ring.
Theory regained control during the break with a clothesline before the two men collided with running crossbody attempts. Rhodes came back with a running forearm and powerslam for two. Rhodes followed with a moonsault for a nearfall. Theory responded with a crosslegged neckbreaker for two. Rhodes hit a Disaster kick and came right back with a Cody Cutter.
A close-up camera angle on Rhodes made it obvious what was going to happen next. Seth Rollins ran down and attacked Rhodes from behind for our second DQ of the evening.
Rollins laid out Rhodes with a curb stomp on the announce table.
The announcers, Corey Graves included, said that Rollins had crossed the line.
(Theory got a lot in this match and they tried to portray him as a guy on Rhodes’ level, or at least on his way there. I don’t think he did anything underhanded to gain the advantage on offense, either.)
Non-title match: Women’s Tag Team Champions Sasha Banks & Naomi defeated Doudrop & Nikki ASH (4:23)
Doudrop was able to gain control of the match but Nikki lost it when she took too long to pose. This allowed Naomi and Banks to knock Doudrop from the ring and hit Nikki with their double-team finisher for the win. After the match, Doudrop lectured Nikki who furrowed her brow in a vain attempt to understand the situation.
Miz’s music interrupted because he’s the special referee for the next match.
Miz explained that Ali thought he deserved better which is why he was named special referee for this match. Ali wasn’t buying it.
Ciampa defeated Mustafa Ali [Special referee: The Miz] (5:33)
Ciampa and Ali didn’t get entrances.
Miz slow-counted Ali’s early pinfall attempts. Ciampa was in control until Ali fought back. They had a back and forth exchange that led to Ali hitting a superkick and springboard DDT.
Ali seemed to have it won but Miz took way too long to count so Ciampa kicked out. Ali argued with Miz until Ciampa hit a reverse DDT. Miz did a fast count and Ciampa won. Miz quickly escaped to the stage as Ali looked on in disbelief.
They aired a Lacy Evans video. (I think this was the first time they’ve aired one of these on Raw.)
Bobby Lashley challenged Omos to a cage match next week.
With 14 minutes left in the show and the main event match still to come, there was a backstage segment with the 24/7 crew. R-Truth handed divorce papers to Reggie and Tozawa. Tozawa refused to accept the papers so Tamina told Truth to go after him.
They showed pictures of Bianca Belair and Montez Ford at the Kentucky Derby over the weekend.
10:48pm: Lynch enters to join commentary. Commercial break.
10:53pm: Asuka enters.
10:54pm: Belair enters.
10:55pm: Main event begins.
Non-title match: Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair defeated Asuka via disqualification (3:01)
Asuka countered a KOD into an armbar before Belair hoisted her up into a powerbomb. Lynch then attacked Belair for our third DQ of the evening. Lynch also attacked Asuka.
Belair checked on Asuka as Lynch backed away up the ramp and the show ended.
It’s almost impressive how lacklustre this was.