The following is a guest post from WrestleTalk. Subscribe to their YouTube channel for new videos every day.
The 05/23/16 edition of WWE Monday Night Raw reviewed in about 4 minutes – including AJ Styles’ continued losing streak, the triumphant return of Seth Rollins, the Flairs break up, 1,200th episode birthday celebrations and much more…
SETH ROLLINS RETURNS
The show opened with Seth ‘Crossfit Jesus’ Rollins, delivering his first babyface promo after his shock return at Extreme Rules…until he quickly went back to being a heel. The gear change came with the awesome line: “My knee, it buckled…it buckled under the weight of carrying this company on my back for so freaking long!”
Oh, did you miss any of the last 10 minutes of Rollins recapping the story so far? Don’t worry, because Shane McMahon’s here to recap everything again, which ends with him making Rollins vs Roman Reigns at Money in the Bank for the title Seth never lost.
They’ve really missed an opportunity not having Rollins as a face. If they weren’t so stubborn about keeping Reigns a good guy, we could have had a heel Roman vs face Seth feud – you know, one where people would actually cheer the good guy and boo the baddie.
MONEY IN THE BANK QUALIFIERS
The rest of the show was mainly made up of Money in the Bank qualifier matches. They’re a lot like normal Raw matches, just that they actually mean something and they require the competitors to look up at a briefcase hanging from the ceiling at least twice a minute. It’s like the new Wrestlemania sign.
SAMI ZAYN BEAT SHEAMUS
The first contest was ‘Battle of the Gingers’ – last year’s Money in the Bank winner Sheamus, and the increasingly over Sami Zayn. Zayn won with a Helluva Kick – quoth the Michael Cole – “FROM OUTTA NOWHERE!” Randy’s gonna be jealous. Infuriated by the loss, Sheamus beat up Apollo Crews backstage.
CHRIS JERICHO BEAT APOLLO CREWS
Despite the beatdown, Crews was still smiling and looked absolutely fine for his qualifying match against Chris Jericho. It was Y2J that looked beat up, covered in bandages from his Asylum match the previous night. This didn’t do Crews any favours – losing to a visibly hurting man while not selling any of his own injuries made him look weak in defeat.
CESARO BEAT MIZ
Which is why Crews should watch Cesaro’s selling of his shoulder injury against The Miz. Cesaro put in a terrific performance as always.
DEAN AMBROSE BEAT DOLPH ZIGGLER
And Dean Ambrose beat Dolph Ziggler clean in a completely un-extraordinary match. I would’ve had Baron Corbin cost Ziggler the win ahead of their fight next week, but that would spoil the ‘babyfaces losing clean’ theme for this show.
Here’s the other stuff that happened!
NEW DAY BEAT SOCIAL OUTCASTS
The New Day brought out a happy birthday cake celebrating Raw’s 1200th episode ahead of their six-man tag against The Social Outcasts. New Day picked up the win in a quick match, and then hit Heath Slater with the cake.
The great thing about this angle is that it really had layers – strawberry, chocolate, and vanilla.
It was a good fight, and the post-match stuff was just the icing on top.
Someone give me a ‘too sweet’ hand signal!
Um…something about sponge. I feel like there’s a joke about sponge in there somewhere.
BIG CASS BEAT BUBBA RAY DUDLEY
Seth wasn’t the only return on the show. Enzo Amore received a hero’s welcome in Baltimore, after being out with a concussion since Payback. He got so excited he dropped his mic off the side of the stage. Big Cass went onto beat Bubba Ray for the 98th time this month so far.
CHARLOTTE’S DADDY ISSUES
I never knew I wanted a Flair/Dana Brooke faction so much until it happened at Extreme Rules. Charlotte’s delivery was great here, she’s getting really good at interacting with the crowd, but the structure was off.
She began teasing breaking up with her father, then backtracked, then finally fully disowned him. It would have been a lot more impactful if she just did the last par-PIECE OF CAKE! The New Day really made winning look like a piece of cake. Finally got that last pun in.
Watch the video below to find out Oli’s thoughts on whether AJ Styles is being buried as Roman Reigns fodder in the main event…
Support WrestleTalk – buy a t-shirt!
And, before you go to read all the other great articles on Flickering Myth, you might as well watch the latest episode of British Wrestling Weekly: