A Labor of Love – Raw Recap 9/5/16


Your Labor Day edition of Monday Night Raw comes to you live from Kansas City.  Raw has a big task this evening, as it’s not only trying to get viewers on a holiday, but it’s also up against a big time College Football matchup on ESPN.  But I guess Raw best get used to that, with Monday Night Football coming back in a week.  In any event, let’s get straight to this.

Kevin Owens Wants a Party


After an incredibly well produced video package recapping the shocking end to last week’s episode, we got a really weird moment with Foley and Steph backstage from earlier today.  It made me a little uncomfortable.  Do they think that showing that she has emotions is going to help get her some face cred with the audience so that her book sells?

After that strange backstage segment, we kick off with the commissioner and GM in the ring as balloons fall from the sky and Kevin Owens rolls out looking quite dapper.  Fancy suit, looks like he got a fresh haircut, and that red belt over his shoulder.

Owens snubs Foley when he reaches for a handshake, so I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that he’s going to book him in a ridiculous match.  Owens takes a giant dump on the audience, true to form.  You didn’t think the belt was going to change his persona did you?

Seth Rollins launches down the ramp with his sights set on Steph, not even worried about Kevin Owens.  That wasn’t a terrible opening segment, as Steph tries to suspend Seth Rollins Mick Foley interjects and gives Seth Rollins a rematch against Kevin Owens at Clash of Champions.  In another backstage segment Kevin Owens is pissed, but at least this segment includes the gift of Jericho.  Drink it in, man.

Hey, we want some Bayley.  Hey, we want some Bayley.


Bayley gets a match against the Women’s Champion, Charlotte, but the title is not up for grabs.  The crowd loves Bayley.  Every crowd loves Bayley.  I feel like Charlotte has been bulking.  She’s freaking huge lately.

Michael Cole just reminded the crowd that Sasha Banks tweeted that she would be at Raw tonight and she has bad news for the crowd.

Bayley went for a diving dropkick across the corner and got hung up a bit.  She seemed like she may have tweaked her leg somehow.  That would not be good.  Then again it might force them to actually use Nia Jax in the women’s division.  And much like the Sasha Banks match at Summerslam, Charlotte is focusing on that possibly injured knee.

Dana Brooke pushed Charlotte out of the way on a splash in the corner, but Bayley pushes Charlotte out of the roll up and she headbutts Dana.  Bayley hits the Bayley to Belly for the win.  If she’s not injured, she will get a title shot at Clash of Champions.

Damn you, Raw.

There’s a new video package for Connor’s Cure and the V Foundation, so of course I’m crying like a baby now.  There’s new Connor’s Cure stuff on WWE Shop.  At least when you buy more wrestling gear it goes to a good cause.


And yeah, now you’re crying too.

“I was just embarrassed in front of the entire world by the Sesame Street kid” – Charlotte.  

I think Bo Dallas just stole Braun Strowman’s opponent for the evening.  Why is Bo Dallas getting squash matches against random nobodies?

‘Cause we’re the two best friends that anyone could have


More backstage moments with Jericho and KO, who are now making sure everyone knows they are best friends.  Chris Jericho has promised his best pal that he’s going to beat down Seth Rollins, that stupid idiot, because he’s Kevin Owens’ best friend.

But Chris Jericho does indeed have a match with and incredibly pissed off CrossFit Jesus.

I’m sorry, I didn’t type a whole lot during that match because it was fantastic.  If you’ve even thought to yourself that Jericho is old and he needs to hang it up, just watch this match and it’ll help solidify his place is right where it’s always been, in that ring with the best of them.  Jericho is a fantastic performer, but tonight Seth Rollins got the better of him with an “emphatic Pedigree” according to Byron.

Match 3 in the Best of 7 – Cesaro 0, Sheamus 2



I originally agreed with Jeremy that Cesaro would go down 3-0 and take the final 4 matches.  Match 4 of this tournament will be Wednesday night in London at the O2 arena, a match that will not be televised or shown on the network, so it would be a strange time for them to start Cesaro’s rally.

Sheamus is beating the hell out of Cesaro’s back.  I mean, we watch a program about two fighters beating each other up, but it still makes me uncomfortable when these guys scream in pain.  The ref is checking on Cesaro and Sheamus practically takes the ref’s head off coming at Cesaro with a Brogue Kick.  Sheamus is up 3-0, so enjoy London, you get to see Cesaro’s first win of the seven.

I’m incredibly excited about WWE Story Time.

I had to rewind a segment with the World’s Worst Travel Agents

I haven’t been quiet in my dislike of Primo and Epico, the Shining Stars of the Caribbean, so when they’re on screen, I fast forward like I used to do with The Usos.  Maybe they can turn it around at some point, because I’ve actually enjoyed the Usos lately.

I had to watch this segment because they put them on screen at the same time as the Certified G and his 7 foot tall pal.

Enzo just pretended to give birth because he seems to be mistaken in the definition of the word Labor as it applies to Labor Day.

There just not entertaining in the ring and they’re even less entertaining with microphones.

This match goes about like you’d expect, Enzo takes a pretty bad beating throughout the bulk of it, hits a reversal and the hot tag to Cass who cleans house.  Primo grabs Big Cass when he’s setting up for the tag team leap from Enzo and with the distraction, Epico rolls up Enzo to steal the victory.

Nia Jax is headed out to squash another nobody

Meet Ann Esposito.  She’s Nia Jax’s newest victim.  She’d have probably faired better in that match against Bo Dallas.

She’s so unknown I couldn’t even find a photo of her on Google.  She did last longer than most have in this position.

Anderson and Gallows are no longer doctors…they’re “retirement specialists”


This was actually sort of funny.  They paraded an aged version of the New Day out and taunted them, equipped with tiny trombone for a shrinkage joke and a slowed down version of the New Day theme song.

New Day came out to defend themselves, and Kofi even explained the fact that the same matter couldn’t occupy the same space at the same time.  The segment went a little longer than it should have, but it was a moderately enjoyable one of those space filler segments they have to have to round out a 3 hour broadcast.

The Road to Darren Young’s Greatness goes through Jinder Mahal

Titus O’Neil is on commentary, because that’s what people love, listening to Titus speak.

I feel like this Darren Young thing should be on Superstars like anything having to do with Jack Swagger.

Titus walked down for the trademark distraction to roll up for the other guy to get the win.  But then Titus and Darren brawled.  This, much like KO-Sami or Cesaro-Sheamus, will never end and they’ll never feel the need to put any more creative effort into either of these guys.

Yeah, this is a third squash of the evening

Sin Cara will take on Braun Strowman, and this will go about as well as all the other matches Braun has had since the draft.  Please just give this guy Paul Heyman so he can serve some kind of purpose other than just filling two minutes of Raw every week.

In a sense, this is basically Kalisto – Ryback again.  They let the little Lucha hit a few of his flying maneuvers, but it wasn’t going to go anywhere.

You can feel free to fast forward this one.

Sasha Banks has some bad news for you


Sasha goes on a lengthy tirade about the revolution, and as she begins to talk about her updated medical condition Dana Brooke interrupts her.  Her bad news was for Charlotte, because she’s been cleared medically.

Now the “injury” to Bayley makes more sense.  I would anticipate an announcement sometime in the next day or two that Bayley will be out for a bit while her knee recovers.  Really, they sold a knee injury in order to get Bayley out of the way so Sasha doesn’t have to compete with her for attention.

But that begs the question, what will they do with Bayley now?  Do they just not utilize her and work the keyfabe injury?  Does she go back for round 3 with Asuka?

Sami Zayn – Kevin Owens Round 38

What do you write about this match?  There is no way to explain again how great the two of these guys are in the ring together in a way I haven’t already.  So let’s hit the real highlight here:


This is Kevin Owens’ new merch.

I really am confused as to why they don’t seem to have any direction for Sami Zayn.  One night he’s in the main event on Raw.  The next week he is in the opening match on Superstars and not even on the main broadcast.  It makes absolutely no sense.  Sami against Rollins was amazing.  Sami vs KO is always money.  Sami Zayn puts on a show when they give him the opportunity.  Can we get him in the mix for that United States title?

Sami is still working the ankle injury, and it costs him the match by hobbling him on his attempt at the Helluvakick and Owens turns it into a superkick and powerbomb to pick up the win.

And look, Roman is here.  Believe that.

And Kevin Owens’ Best Friend is here too.  YAY!  I am a Jericho mark.

Mick Foley makes an appearance as well, to inform Roman that next week he will have a match against Owens, and if he is successful in that match, the Clash of Champions match will become a Triple Threat.

Oh, and Jericho tries to sneak attack Roman and takes a vicious looking spear.  Poor Jericho, he’s just trying to help his friend and KO just leaves him laying in the ring like a wounded animal.  Jerk.  That’s not being a good friend.

Final Thoughts:

All in all this was a solid show, even if a good bit of it felt like filler.  I think it would have elevated the show a great deal after last week if we’d have gotten anything at all from Triple H.  It’s a hell of a missed opportunity, unless they’re going to have him screw Roman again next week and have a match with Roman at CoC (tee hee, yes I’m 12).