WWE RAW HITS & MISSES 9/19: Theory and Owens hit, Bayley struggles to find chemistry, more

BY JON MEZZERA, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Full analysis of this week's WWE Raw
Kevin Owens (artist Travis Beaven © PWTorch)

SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

Rollins vs. Lashley – HIT: It is nice to see Raw kick off with a long match like this United States Championship match between Bobby Lashley and Seth Rollins. It was a very good match. WWE still isn’t building a feud for Lashley and his US Title. He just keeps having these one-off matches that are more involved with other feuds, in this case the feud between Rollins and Matt Riddle. That’s been ok, but at some point, Lashley needs something more prominent and personal to sink his teeth into. The problem with this match is that it ended with a distraction from Riddle which became the theme for this show. This one made sense, because Lashley had Rollins beat in the Hurt Lock before Rollins cheated to escape. So, I didn’t think this one was bad in itself, because it looked like Lashley would win before Rollins cheated. But, they had too many similar finished throughout the rest of the show.

Damage CTRL – Belair, Asuka, Bliss – MISS: These two groups still don’t seem to go well together. I like them all individually. There was so much talent during this segment, but it didn’t add up to much. The mic work wasn’t strong. I’m not feeling the chemistry at all. I am hopeful that they have something in mind for Alexa Bliss, because Bayley and the announcers later in the main event made a big deal about how lost she has seemed since returning from her mental health breakdown. I hope it isn’t just a return to Miss Fiend with the rumors of a Bray Wyatt return. But, I do hope they have a character shift planned, because “woman with a doll” isn’t exactly a strong persona.

Theory vs. Owens – HIT: The theme of a good match marred by a distraction finish continued with Austin Theory vs. Kevin Owens. I am still giving it a Hit based on the very good wrestling action before the distraction with Johnny Gargano grabbing Theory’s Money in the Bank briefcase. They are continuing to build to a Gargano vs. Theory match which will be great. Owens’ and Alpha Academy’s involvement is interesting and I enjoyed the scene laster in the show with Alpha Academy setting up a match next week against Owens & Gargano. That is definitely a match to look forward to, until the inevitable interference from Theory in the end.

Brawling Brutes vs. Street Profits – HIT: The brand split continues to be blurred with the Brawling Brutes appearing on Raw for no real reason. I guess the idea is that if they win the Undisputed Tag Team Championship from The Usos on Smackdown, they will be able to appear on both shows to defend that Title. But, they haven’t won it yet. It made sense to give them a strong win over a good team like The Street Profits heading into their Title match on Friday. And this was a good long match without a distraction finish for a change. The issue is that the Profits are lost right now. I wish they had some other teams to sacrifice to the Brutes, because Angelo Dawkins & Montez Ford could be built as strong singles stars, or the Profits could be the top tag team in WWE. Right now, they are far from either.

Judgement Day vs. Mysterio & Riddle – HIT: Yet another good long match with a bad finish. I keep giving these matches Hits, because I can look at each individually as good and can justify the interference in each case. Here it made sense for Rollins to get involved to further his feud against Riddle and ultimately set up their Fight Pit match at Extreme Rules. The prematch mic work from Rey Mysterio earlier in the show, and from Judgement Day right before hand was strong. I am buying into the Dominik part of the story more than I was before. They are clearly suggesting that he joined Judgment Day mostly to have sex with Rhea Ripley. There was a ton of talent in this match with Mysterio, Riddle, Finn Balor and Damian Priest, so it wasn’t surprising to see such good wrestling action. But, throw in Rollins, Ripley and Dominik all getting involved on a night of similarly disappointing finishes, and that brings down the match quality even if it is a Hit. It was also good to see AJ Styles later in the back interacting with Balor. Styles has been underutilized and getting him back involved with Judgement Day makes a lot of sense.

MizTV – MISS: I’m not invested in the Dexter Lumis vs. The Miz feud. There hasn’t been any explanation for why Lumis has targeted Miz. They aren’t doing a good enough job of explaining why and how Lumis continues to gain access to the arenas when they have made it perfectly clear multiple times that he isn’t under contract with WWE. Miz has ample reason to press charges and get him arrested. Lumis broke into Miz’s house and did some very creepy things involving Miz’s little children. But, he’s the babyface? Ciampa continues to be wasted as Miz’s protege. Even though there have been some cool individual moments, overall this angle has been a Miss.

Bliss vs. Bayley – MISS: I get that WWE seems to be conceding the final hour will lose viewers, so they aren’t putting strong main events at the end of the show. That was the case here, as Bliss vs. Bayley didn’t strike me as a main event. WWE didn’t do a good job making it feel like a big deal. After all the lame finishes on the show, you knew that this main event would have a similar ending with all the other women at ringside. There was no way that the rest of Damage CTRL or Bel Air and Asuka wouldn’t get involved. The wrestling action was ok, but dragged at 15 minutes. As I said before, they are trying to tell some story about Bliss’ character. But, this isn’t a good way to build to a Women’s Title match. Bel Air isn’t the focus, but she should be.

Jon Mezzera is PWTorch.com’s WWE Hits & Misses Specialist, providing his point of view for Raw and Smackdown each week. Email him at jmezz_torch@yahoo.com.


CATCH-UP: 9/19 WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW RESULTS: Keller’s report on Owens vs. Theory, Lashley vs. Rollins, Dexter Lumis on Miz TV

1 Comment on WWE RAW HITS & MISSES 9/19: Theory and Owens hit, Bayley struggles to find chemistry, more

  1. Yeah, I have issues with the Miz-Lumis situation. Who is supposed to be the babyface? If anything, Miz is the babyface in this situation because you have a psychopath going after him and his family. Are we supposed to be cheering for Dexter Lumis? I sure as hell am not gonna be rooting for someone who breaks into a persons home and stalks their kids. Between this and WWE wanting us to cheer Logan Paul, I wonder if they know what makes someone likeable?

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