Welcome to a special Memorial Day edition of my WWE Monday Night Raw Results and Review for 5/25/20. Tonight, we can expect a significant amount of build to Backlash. The headlining match of the night is a first contenders’ triple threat match featuring Nia Jax, Natalya, and Charlotte, who is already the NXT Women’s Champion, but I guess she hasn’t won enough yet. We’ll also see Drew McIntyre on MVP’s VIP Lounge. Look out, Bobby Lashley will probably be lurking somewhere nearby.
The show opens with Kevin Owens getting his own promo segment, except this time his set didn’t get wrecked by Natalya for no reason. Asuka is Kevin’s special guest this week. Both of them are still talking about Becky. This isn’t news anymore, move on with your lives. Asuka says some stuff in Japanese and Charlotte interrupts. This is unexpected! I know Josh DeBord can barely contain his excitement. Charlotte wants everybody to just hand over their titles. Josh thinks that’s a great idea! Natalya comes out and apologizes to Kevin before Charlotte stomps all over it. Nia Jax shows up and now we have a big lady brawl. We join Apollo Crews backstage for an incredibly bland textbook babyface promo. These guys aren’t even trying anymore.
Match #1: Andrade (w. Zelina Vega) vs. Apollo Crews
Apollo is back, and he’s all healed up from his unfortunate knee injury a few weeks ago. Even with all this shit going on in the world, Andrade has still managed to stay US champion for a pretty long time, despite being injured, suspended, and never defending the title, to begin with. Don’t forget, he was left off the Wrestlemania card completely! When this match starts, we see Angel Garza standing around backstage. I wonder if he’ll get involved in this thing. Andrade does his big back elbow (which should be his finishing move) and only gets two. Apollo has looked really good these last few weeks, I just can’t see him losing. Speaking of looking really good, it’s time for yet ANOTHER Zelina Vega outfit update! She’s dressed in black leather from head to toe. Looks like Sindel from Mortal Kombat. I may have had a crush on her as a kid. I’m gonna need a minute here.
We come back from commercial and Zelina has taken a bump to the floor. The ringside doctors and some extra refs want her to go backstage, but she’s staying out there to support her man. I love her dedication! Andrade is fired up now since his girl went down. He tries to throw hands with Apollo and gets popped in the chops. These two guys are in the middle of a match, and we cut backstage to a promo by Angel Garza?! He’s flirting with the interviewer chick some more. It sounds like Chef from South Park. Did they really interrupt a title match for this? Are these two gonna go out on a date or what? After that abrupt detour, we get back on course in the ring just in time to see Apollo win the US title with a standing moonsault! Would have been a lot more impressive without somebody interrupting his match with nonsense. Crews gets a promo after this match. Standard never give up babyface stuff straight from the John Cena handbook. Is he crying? I can’t tell. Act like you’ve been there before dude. Do you think Emmitt Smith cried every time he scored a touchdown? Knock it off! Next, is Seth Rollins doing a promo holding Rey Mysterio’s mask? Seen this several times before. Moving on, Charlotte gets another promo segment. I can tell Josh is loving the show this week! Just give her all the titles. NEXT!
The IIconics are out for a promo next. They had a bit of a spat last week, but they’re still here to run down their entire resume. Oh god, they’re not pregnant are they? They’re a little tough to understand, but I got the point. Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross interrupt and Nikki’s yelling about stuff. Why does every promo have to be interrupted? She sounds like Shrek to me. Even so, she has a lot of fire in her promo and it isn’t bad! It’s good to see her show some attitude for a change instead of just being Alexa Bliss’s sidekick. I’d love to see her get pissed off some more.
VIP Lounge: Starring Drew McIntyre!
MVP wastes very little time introducing Drew to the ring. Drew wrecks MVP’s set for no reason and wants to know where Lashley is. MVP says Bobby wants to be anywhere near the ring to fight Drew since nothing is on paper yet. MVP reminds us of several months ago when he offered to help Drew to the top and Drew kicks him in the face. Everybody on this show keeps saying title opportunity and it sounds so unnatural. Drew says he doesn’t need anyone’s help after Brock made him look like a million bucks at Wrestlemania. Much better promo from Drew this time, lots of fire, and he actually sounds like he believes what he’s saying. Lashley shows up and MVP takes another Claymore from Drew. At least Bobby didn’t look like crap in this segment. Natalya is backstage for a promo when Tyson Kidd calls for some reason. Samoa Joe’s spent the last two weeks telling us how unprofessional Natalya has been acting. Where is this going? Why is Joe the only one who seems upset by this?
Match #2: Kevin Owens vs. Angel Garza
We’re over an hour into the program now, so it’s time for our second match! While Kevin was making his entrance, Garza clipped him from behind. Kevin refuses to quit, and when the bell rings Garza is all over the leg. That’s smart wrestling! If you can’t stand, you can’t fight. Some call it dirty, I call it brilliant. Kevin fights through the pain to deliver the flippity flop and gets ALL of it, but he can’t capitalize. Kevin goes for his powerbomb, but his knee gives out and Garza wins with the Wing Clipper. Garza continues beating up Kevin after the match ends. I liked his strategy in this thing! He doesn’t get to wrestle much, so he needs to win whenever he can. I can’t blame him!
Match #3: Buddy Murphy & Austin Theory vs. Humberto Carrillo & Aleister Black
Oh god, not the Kiss of Death! Seth Rollins is out here with his men. Great news for Seth, now he can show up every week, still get paid, and doesn’t have to worry about his knees! Why are Aleister Black and the Kiss of Death hanging out? They have nothing in common. Carrillo gets started with a bunch of flippy shit, but he’ll run out of steam soon enough. Theory’s going to need some new ring gear if he wants to run with Seth’s crew. He also has to cook Seth’s breakfast every morning. Our friends at RSH call Humberto the white Power Ranger. It’s hilarious and accurate! The pace of this match is too fast for me to know what’s really going on. Carrillo goes for the moonsault, but he misses and Theory wins with the TKO! Good to see these guys win a match for a change. Seth’s men hold Humberto hostage while Rollins does a VERY fired up promo. I like this Seth Rollins! No more monotone nonsense, I want to see Seth act like this every week. This was shocking and I loved it.
Up next is a promo from Edge! He’s coming after Orton with both barrels this week. He admits his own self-doubt, but he thanks Randy Orton for giving him some extra motivation. He says he went home and watched the Last Ride documentary, Oh god, this entire promo is just a cheap plug! It’s a very good show from what I’ve heard, but I haven’t seen it yet. Edge runs down a list of people he’s beaten. He couldn’t beat Undertaker, but he’s still convinced he can beat my man. He’s not sure how much he has left in the tank, but he’ll try his best at Backlash. These two have been great in their promos for the last couple of months.
Match #4: Charlotte vs. Natalya vs. Nia Jax
I sure hope Nia Jax wins this thing. It seems like it’s been forever since she’s had a chance to fight for the title. Charlotte’s already NXT champion, so she doesn’t need it. Natalya’s too busy taking phone calls during promos, so she’s clearly not focusing. Nia starts this match by overpowering both opponents with ease. Even with her big broad man shoulders, Charlotte is no match for Nia’s power. All the women make their way to the announce table and Natalya tries to use part of the table as a weapon. Like it or not, she can’t be disqualified, per the rules of a triple threat. I’ll allow it! Both Charlotte and Natalya gang up to powerbomb Nia through the table! That was like watching a train wreck in slow motion. I hope she’s ok.
We come back from commercial and Nia still hasn’t moved. I still think she can win this thing! Asuka (who’s been on commentary this entire time) throws Nia back into the ring! I didn’t think she had a dog in this fight! After a few minutes of rest, Nia decides she’s had enough and splashes them both. Charlotte takes her out at the knee and sets up for the Figure 4. Don’t forget the pointless backbend, but before Charlotte can do this Natalya breaks it up and applies the Sharpshooter on Charlotte. Nia recovers and does what I like to call the Coke machine. It’s where a much larger opponent simply runs through their adversary. Not a clothesline, not a shoulder block. Just a big collision between two bodies. Next up is a big tower of doom spot out of the corner. Why does this need to be in every girls-triple threat? Charlotte goes for the Figure 4 on Natalya again, but Nia crushes Charlotte with a leg drop and beats Natalya with a Samoan drop! I’m glad to see Nia’s getting another chance. I don’t think she’s been champion since she beat Bliss years ago.
Match #5: Street Prophets vs. Lashley & MVP
I guess this is the last match of the night. This comes after a solid twenty minutes of promo packages, so excuse me for not being so chipper. This match is hard to call for me. The Street Prophets are an established team that’s been pretty successful in a short amount of time, even if listening to them is like getting waterboarded. It looks like Lashley’s on his way to a big winning streak, but he’s not going for a tag team title as far as I can see, so if I had to guess I’d say MVP is here to take the pin. MVP has a sweet ass Punisher skull on his gear tonight. Lashley looks so focused! He finally got rid of that screaming nuisance outside the ring!
Montez Ford is trying to clown on Lashley. Not smart, young man! Bobby eventually overpowers him with ease. He’s not your clown! MVP tags in next and I must admit, he’s looking jacked. Ford is taking all the heat. Lashley is sweating profusely! He takes a double dropkick from the Prophets, but he looks perfectly fine. Ford gets smashed into the barricade wall and the ring post. He’s in trouble now! Montez is taking all the heat in this match. It does my heart good to see him get beaten up. I’ve said nice things about his athletic ability before, but he’s really annoyed me these last few weeks. Ford gets thrown hard into the steps on the outside. MVP goes for the big kick but misses the mark and gets dropped. Dawkins gets tagged in to clean up. Lashley gets dropped on the outside and Ford does the mega frog splash, but Lashley breaks up the pin and applies the full nelson. The ref has to throw this thing out, he has no choice. Drew McIntyre shows up looking cool. He and Lashley tangle and it’s pretty even. This is the best build for Backlash they’ve had yet! Some underneath guys show up to break it up.
My Final Thoughts on RAW (5/25/2020)
This was a pretty good show overall. Lots of promos, but it wasn’t bothersome for me. Undertaker got a lot of love on this show in particular. Andrade finally lost the title, which should have happened months ago. I didn’t get a chance to get into this during the show, but they had an audience for this one, which played into the finish of the show. Much better promo work by Drew this week. This is exactly the type of fire I like to see. After the brawl between him and Bobby Lashley, I’m actually excited to see where this goes next. If you like what I’ve written so far, be sure to catch me LIVE this Thursday on RSH! Until then, be sure to keep kayfabe alive!