The Big Takeaway: Bray Wyatt (immediately teasing a program with Finn Balor), Dean Ambrose (and the Intercontinental Championship), The Miz, Alexa Bliss, Mickie James, Maryse, Curt Hawkins, Apollo Crews, Rhyno, Heath Slater, and Kalisto were all officially sent from SmackDown to Raw. The wrestlers just showed up on Raw with no word on who is going to SmackDown Live in return. The Raw departures will be announced on SmackDown Live tomorrow night.
Somehow, all of that roster movement may have been overshadowed by an angle where Braun Strowman jumped Roman Reigns, who was doing a backstage interview with Michael Cole. Strowman set new standards for destruction, first ramming a moving case into Reigns, who was laying against a wall.
After Reigns was loaded onto a stretcher by an emergency crew, Strowman took the stretcher and rolled it off a ramp backstage. As a frantic EMS crew loaded Reigns onto an ambulance, Strowman came back for more, chasing the crew away and overturning the ambulance on its side. It was an amazing angle that lit up social media. T.J. Perkins also turned heel on Austin Aries.
The Miz and Maryse started the show dressed as John Cena and Nikki Bella. Miz, who is now part of the Raw roster with Maryse, said Rule #1 of John Cena's House Rules clearly states no one can ever chant "Cena sucks." Of course, the crowd started chanting exactly that. Miz, as Cena, said the last time people saw us, they made people very happy because they were going to Hollywood. Maryse, as Bella, said Hollywood said we suck. Miz, as Cena, said Hollywood claimed they were robotic actors and the best thing they could do was come back to Monday Night Raw.
Dean Ambrose came out, so the Intercontinental Championship is back on Raw. Ambrose said it was good to see some familiar faces on Raw and acted like it was really Cena and Bella in the ring. Miz started to break the truth to him, but Ambrose got a line in saying once Cena starts talking, he doesn't stop for 20 minutes. Ambrose complimented Cena and Bella for beating Miz and Maryse because everyone knows they suck.
Miz said they were the "It" couple. The Superstar Shakeup brought them to Raw. Miz said he was Miz and she was Maryse, who took off her dark wig. Ambrose said, in that case...he kicked Miz and gave him Dirty Deeds.
Angle was on the phone in the back when Sami Zayn walked in. Zayn wanted to know if he was staying on Raw or going to SmackDown. Zayn wouldn't shut up as Angle looked like he was out of patience. Angle said Zayn has been important to Raw, but there's been a lot of interest from SmackDown. Maryse and Miz walked in upset about Ambrose's attack. Zayn interrupted and it led to Miz exchanging words. Angle ordered a match with Miz and Zayn tonight. Angle looked emotionally taxed as Raw GM just two weeks in.
Big E and Xavier Woods danced out. Big E. carried a Kofi Kingston doll in Kingston's absence because of his ankle injury. Woods said Kingston's spirit lives within this blow-up doll. Woods said New Day was hosting a job fair and told the Revival to come down and get this work.
The Revival defeated The New Day (8:49)
Dash Wilder and Scott Dawson came out wearing a RIP shirt for the New Day's ice cream cart, which they toppled over last week. Michael Cole said Wilder garnered comparisons to Dean Malenko. Big E. hit three belly-to-belly suplexes on Wilder, followed by a splash. Near fall after Dawson gave Big E. a neck snap and Wilder used a schoolboy cradle while holding the trunks. Woods got a tag. Big E. gave Dawson another belly-to-belly. Woods tried a coast-to-coast top rope elbow drop, but came up a little short. He landed on his knees, but dropped the elbow on Dawson's sternum for a two count. Finish was very well laid out. Wilder made a blind tag. Big E lifted Dawson for the Midnight Hour as Woods went to the top rope. Dawson slipped out behind Big E and threw him towards Woods, who jumped right into the Shatter Machine. Wilder pinned Woods for the Revival's second straight win over the New Day.
Charly Caruso interviewed Neville backstage. He talked about facing Austin Aries again after Aries won on 205 Live last week. He said he's already proven that Aries isn't on the Neville level. T.J. Perkins came out and said somebody was going to make Neville eat his words someday. Neville said Perkins wouldn't get another chance at the championship. Neville said Perkins was the first cruiserweight champion, but now his career is a joke. Since 205 Live started, opportunities that were once reserved for Perkins now go to people like Aries. It seemed the only person that respected Perkins was him. Perkins looked like he was taking those words seriously. Aries walked in and said Neville was lying. Neville left. Aries asked Perkins if he believed Neville. Perkins just left.
It was later announced that Neville will face Aries for the Cruiserweight Championship at Pay Back.
The next SmackDown Live star to bolt for Raw: Curt Hawkins. He was in the ring saying this was the greatest get since the Louisiana Purchase. He wanted to start celebrating. The Big Show came out instead. Hawkins looked unhappy, then wanted to hug Hawkins. Show just knocked him out and left.
T.J. Perkins defeated Austin Aries (4:37)
Neville was on commentary. Perkins got booed, but the fans weren't that hot for Aries, who gave Perkins a plancha. Neville came down on the ramp and started arguing with Aries, nearly getting counted out. Aries got in the ring, but Perkins rolled Aries up in a small package for a pin. Neville continued to jaw with Aries, who challenged Neville to get in the ring. Perkins then turned heel, jumping Aries from behind and giving him a Detonation Kick. Crowd chanted "You still suck" at Perkins.
Seth Rollins walked around backstage and talked with Enzo Amore and Big Cass.
Rollins came out to inform the fans about his status during the "Superstar Shakeup." Rollins didn't know if he was ever going to be able to have a conversation with the fans again because he put so much of himself into WrestleMania. He woke up after a war with HHH the next morning in more pain than he's ever been in before. But emotionally and mentally, he was at peace. He left it all in the ring and, most importantly, he did it. Then he corrected himself and said, "we did it. We slayed the king." He thanked the fans for giving him a second chance. He promised the fans that WrestleMania wasn't the finish line because he was just getting started on Raw. He wanted to settle a score with Samoa Joe and getting his hands on the Universal Championship. But based on Stephanie McMahon going through a table at WrestleMania, he may not get that opportunity. They replayed Stephanie taking the bump. Fans chanted "Thank you, Seth."
Seth said he probably won't be named Employee of the Month. Eventually, Stephanie will return to work and see Rollins, which will remind her of her failure and her husband's defeat at WrestleMania. Seth said it would probably be easier to deal with Shane McMahon on SmackDown Live instead of Stephanie. Crowd chanted "no." Seth said he took the easy way out once before and he won't do it again. That's not the man he wants to be. So he cut a promo on Stephanie saying he's not leaving Monday Night Raw without a fight.
Angle came out to the biggest pop of the show so far. Angle said it's true that Stephanie wants Seth gone. If they had this conversation two weeks ago before WrestleMania, he would be gone. But he saw something in Rollins at WrestleMania. Angle said his agenda was to put on the best show he possibly can, and his show has "Seth Freakin' Rollins." As long as Angle is GM, Rollins will have a home on Raw.
Angle left, but Samoa Joe ran in and jumped Rollins. Angle pulled Joe off of Rollins, who immediately made a comeback. Angle tried to pull Rollins off Joe, but Rollins gave Joe an enzuigiri and a superkick to knock Joe out of the ring. Joe started to get in the ring, but backed off.
Caruso interviewed Kevin Owens. Caruso said with Miz and Ambrose on Raw, how will it affect Owens? He said the cream always rises to the top, just like it did when he defeated Chris Jericho at WrestleMania. Maybe Caruso should ask Jericho how the Superstar Shake-Up could affect him? But then he remembered that Jericho wasn't here tonight. Owens said being the United States champion made him the face of America and the top champion on Raw. Caruso asked about Ambrose, the Intercontinental Champion, now being on Raw? Owens said that Ambrose should remember his place. Owens proclaimed himself the premier champion on Raw because Raw was the Kevin Owens Show.
Nia Jax defeated Charlotte (5:57)
Nia Jax did a shoulder breaker in Charlotte where she dropped her on her head. Jax put Charlotte in a Cobra Clutch while the fans looked away from the match. For some reason, the Drifter walked around in the crowd with his guitar. But it was never pointed out by the announcers. That was strange. Charlotte used a chop block to hit Natural Selection, but Jax kicked out of one of Charlotte's finishers. Jax missed a shoulder block and hit the post, then Charlotte rammed Jax into the post. Charlotte did the moonsault off the post. Her face landed hard on the floor, but her legs caught Jax across the head. Charlotte went for the Figure Eight, but Jax sent her into the bottom turnbuckle. Jax hit a running splash and got the pin with a Samoan Drop. Charlotte was treated like a wrestler leaving the territory.
Finn Balor defeated Jinder Mahal (2:46)
Jinder Mahal clocked Finn Balor with a forearm across the head that looked like it nearly killed him. Balor came back with the Sling Blade, the drop kick and the Coup de Grace.
Suddenly, Bray Wyatt popped up on the screen saying Raw is his new home now. He brought a gift of Pay Back. He said in three weeks, the whole world will watch Wyatt defeat Randy Orton in a House of Horrors match at Pay Back He told Balor to watch himself because he was now watching Balor. Wyatt said "Monday Night Raw, I'm here" and he blew out his lantern.
When Michael Cole, Cory Graves and Byron Saxton returned from the break, they played up Wyatt joining Raw but made no mention of Orton potentially joining Raw, even though Wyatt said he was wrestling Orton at Pay Back, which is a Raw PPV. They did announce Apollo Crews, Kalisto, Rhyno and Heath Slater officially joining Raw.
Sami Zayn defeated The Miz (7:36)
Miz did his Daniel Bryan chest kicks. Zayn caught Miz's leg and landed the Blue Thunder Bomb. Zayn went for the Helluva Kick, but Maryse pulled Miz out of the ring. Zayn chased Miz around the ring, but Maryse held his leg. Miz went for the Skull Crushing Finale, but Zayn reversed it into a victory roll for the pin. Cole called Zayn's win "an upset victory."
They announced Ambrose vs. Owens in a champion vs. champion match tonight.
Roman Reigns did a sit-down backstage interview with Cole. Reigns was asked if he felt any guilt about the speculation that his win over the Undertaker could be the Undertaker's final match. He said it was a bittersweet win. But he asked how do you prepare to retire a legend? He said he had to do what he had to do. He said it was his yard now and he was the big dog.
Just then, Braun Strowman attacked Reigns and launched him through a table. "Roman sucks" chants could be heard in the background as Strowman threw Reigns into a garage door repeatedly. Several referees and backstage personnel tried to step in, but Strowman gave Reigns the Oklahoma Stampede onto another road case. With Reigns laying against a wall, Strowman took one of the cases and rammed it against Reigns, then left.
EMS put Reigns onto a stretcher, which got some cheers and even a "You deserve it" chant. Then Strowman took the stretcher and rolled it off a ramp, with Reigns supposedly on it. They did some clever editing to make it look like Reigns took the bump. The pop for Strowman grabbing the stretcher rivaled the reaction Angle got earlier. A panicked looking crew wheeled Reigns into an ambulance.
But Strowman wasn't done yet. He popped onto the screen to massive cheers, chasing the EMS crew away. He punched Reigns a few times from the back of the ambulance, then closed the door, went over to the passenger's side, grabbed the ambulance from the bottom and turned it over onto its side. The ambulance was just left laying there with Reigns allegedly inside. This got Strowman over so much, he could run for mayor of Uniondale.
Somehow, Reigns was in one piece after all that. They found a dingy backup ambulance to carry him off, but the remains of the ambulance that was tipped over was in the foreground. Crowd gave Reigns the "Hey, Hey, Goodbye" treatment as he rode off into the darkness. Cole called it the most stunning display of strength he's seen in 20 years of being on Raw.
The Hardy Boyz, Cesaro and Sheamus defeated The Shining Stars, Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson (7:48)
The Drifter came out after the Hardy Boyz entrance and walked beside the commentator's table. Jeff Hardy gave Primo the Twist of Fate. Cesaro and Sheamus clotheslined Karl Anderson over the top rope. Jeff Hardy gave Anderson, Primo and Luke Gallows the Poetry in Motion. Epico went for the back stabber on Matt Hardy, but Matt avoided it and gave Primo the Twist of Fate. Jeff Hardy pinned Primo after the Swanton.
Backstage, Dana Brooke was reading a book called "How to be Your own Protege." Emma walked up to Brooke and ordered her to go. Brooke didn't know what she was talking about. Emma reminded Brooke that Brooke was her protege before Charlotte picked her up. Now that Charlotte has dumped her, it was time for Brooke to follow her. Brooke said she's learning to stand on her own two feet and she's not standing beside her or anyone else anymore.
The announcers claimed Bayley was set to come out, but Sasha Banks showed up instead. Banks said she had some unfinished business, but introduced Bayley instead as "just Bayley." Bayley came out and thanked Banks for the introduction. Bayley said she wanted to say something she's been waiting to say since WrestleMania. She thanked the fans for sticking by her from the first day she was in NXT, and if it wasn't for them, the 12-year-old that still lives inside of her wouldn't have had her WrestleMania moment.
Banks said WrestleMania didn't go the way it wanted it to, but she congratulated Bayley. But that WrestleMania moment was over. It looked like Banks was finally ready to go heel.
Then Alexa Bliss came out to a big reaction. Bliss said she was going to throw up listening to Bayley, she was a two-time SmackDown Women's Champion and said she had arrived to Raw. Bliss said she was ready to put the SmackDown Live drama behind her.
Then Mickie James walked out. James said she has arrived on Raw. She said she might be "the greatest women's champion of all time" and the only six-time women's champion. James said Bliss' drama wasn't over and her nightmare has just started. Jax came out and gave James a running bodyblock. Bliss pushed Banks into Jax, who threw her out of the ring. Jax gave Bayley a Samoan Drop and said the Raw Women's Championship was hers. Jax gave Bliss an evil stare as she left. Bliss laughed at the fallen bodies around the ring.
Cole reported that Reigns suffered cracked ribs and a possible separated shoulder following the attack from Strowman, who was removed from the building.
Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose defeated U.S. Champion Kevin Owens in a non-title match (14:12)
Owens listed Ambrose from a Samoan Drop position and threw him into a post, leading to a countdown tease. Owens nailed the old Go Home Piledriver, but Ambrose got his knees up on an senton attempt. Ambrose used a tope for his comeback, hitting a swinging neckbreaker. Ambrose went for a bulldog, but Owens threw him off and attempted the cannonball, but Ambrose blocked it, crotched him off the top rope and jumped off the top rope with a clothesline for a near fall.
Ambrose went back to the top rope, but Owens rolled out of the ring. Ambrose jumped to the floor with a flying elbow. Ambrose jumped off the top rope, but Owens caught him with a knee, then used the Steenalizer for another near fall. Owens tried a Pop-Up Power Bomb, but Ambrose blocked it. After a series of counters, Ambrose hit Dirty Deeds for the pin.
Post-match, Jericho came out and gave Owens a codebreaker. Fans chanted "Y2J."