Tozawa is on the Neville Level – A Raw Recap for 8/14/17

Tonight’s Go Home Raw comes to us from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts.  This recap is dedicated to The Man, Ric Flair.  Get well Ric.  Kick out at 2 and 3/4.

The Demon Returns

Tonight’s theme is “Summerslam Comes Early”.  True to their word, we get to see Bray Wyatt Vs. Finn Bálor tonight.  I’ve seen quite a lot of criticism lately of Bray’s ring work.  I think it’s a little harsh as this match was kinda great.  Lot’s of good work from both Finn and Wyatt.  Wyatt pulls Bálor off the top rope for a Sister Abigail for the three count.

Here’s where it gets weird.  The lights go out.  When they come back, Bray has a rusty bucket with red syrup in it that he pours all over Finn while yelling something along the lines of “Don’t send a boy to do the devil’s work.”  My guess is that it’s supposed to evoke the scene from Carrie?

It works.  Finn comes out of Angle’s dressing room to tell Charlie that he’s got demons of his own…

Akira Tozawa

I don’t watch Raw live.  In the household that I live in, anything Bachelor, Bachelorette, and Dancing with the Stars gets first priority on Monday nights.  I start Raw at 10 PM, 2 hours after it went off the air on the east cost.  That means I saw spoilers.

At first, I was confused.  Did I miss something that happened on the last 205 Live?  How could this happen?  I’d been lulled into a false sense of security that Neville would never lose the title.  It was surprising.

I’m a fan of both Neville and Tozawa and I was super excited to see this match.  I’m disappointed to say that the actual match lacked the fire that I was hoping for.  I do love that Tozawa is your new Cruiserweight Champion.  And I’ve really come around on the Titus Brand.  I love how Titus gets excited and manhandles his client.  He’s kind of a mess and I love him for it.

Akira Tozawa is on the Neville level and he pinned the king. Clean.  Was it the most exciting match?  No.  But hopefully he can have an interesting reign.

I’m Ready to Believe in the Shield

Man, the recap they did at the beginning of Raw was magic.  The flashback that Seth had while Dean’s hand was out was just perfect editing.  The WWE editors can make a stupid storyline work and a great storyline into magic.  Thankfully they have the latter this time.

Instead of talking, sometimes guys just need to beat out their differences.  Dean calls out Seth and they try to talk it out.  Each one putting their fist out in a Shield call and slightly insulting the others.  Seth and Dean have a lot of differences.  They were the Braun Strowman Vs. Reigns of late 2014-2015.  It seems Seth’s finally turned a new leaf and wants to reunite with his brother.

Dean has been burned before and it’s not going to happen again.  But…Dean wants to get back together.  Promos like this remind me of how good Dean can be when given the microphone.  He can be electric. Talking turns to yelling.  Yelling turns to shoving.  Shoving turns to fists.  They can’t control the years worth of anger that got them to this place.

Smelling blood, Sheamus and Cesaro hit the ring to attack the weakened Ambrose and Rollins.  This is exactly what they needed.  Dean and Seth get the band back together and sends the Tag Champs to the back.  Ambrose sticks out his fist and so does Ambrose.  The Boston crowd loses their minds.  It’s almost like you beamed in an Attitude era crowd without the signs.  See WWE, long form storytelling works really, really well.

But wait!  There’s more!

Kurt Angle shows up to sanction a tag title for this Sunday at Summerslam.  This suddenly became a must see event.

Everything Else

  • Paul Heyman might have given his last promo in the WWE for a very long time.  He said all the things you’d expect him to say while Kurt Angle watched with a weird grin on his face.  One-by-one, the other three competitors hit the ring to be heard.  First Joe, then Strowman, then finally Reigns who immediately spears Joe.  Capitalizing, Strowman reverse chokeslams Reigns.  Realizing that it’s about to spiral out of control, Angle sends in his security to keep  Mr. Braun Strowman and Lesnar apart.  When that didn’t work, he cleared the locker room to keep this match from coming early.  It would be cool if we didn’t seem to see this for every single Brock match.  I’m really excited for the match at Summerslam but I really, really wish they’d figure out a new way to promote it.
  • Sasha Banks is your new Raw Women’s #1 Contender after dispatching Nia Jax with the Banks Statement.  Alexa was watching from a lifeguard’s chair to…make sure Nia didn’t accidentally commit manslaughter?
  • Jason Jordan teamed with The Hardy Boyz to take on Miz and the Miztourage.  After hitting the Angle Slam variation on Miz, Jordan and the Hardys triple-teamed Bo Dallas with a belly-to-belly, Twist of Fate, Swanton Combo for a pinfall.
  • Mickie James defeats Emma.  #GiveEmmaAChance
  • Big Cass, Luke Gallows, and Karl Anderson team up to try to break the Big Show’s hand.  I’m not sure why, really.  Despite refusing a medical evaluation, Show assured Enzo that he’d be fighting on Sunday.
  • Elias Samson attacked R-Truth during his entrance because they need to fill 3 hours somehow.  Maybe they need to setup an angle for a extra match during the preshow?
  • Summerslam is back in Brooklyn next year.  Boo.
  • One more gif for Flair!