– Tonight’s WWE RAW opens up with a look back at Michael Cole’s interview with Roman Reigns from last week, which was crashed by Braun Strowman. They also show video of Braun destroying Reigns and tipping over the ambulance.
– We’re live from Columbus, Ohio with Michael Cole, Corey Graves and Booker T, who is filling in for David Otunga for the next six weeks as Otunga is filming a movie.
– We go right to the ring and out comes Braun Strowman to a mixed reaction. JoJo does the introduction.
Braun is proud to say he broke Roman Reigns in half last week, that Reigns left in an ambulance last week, that Reigns has a separated shoulder and cracked ribs. Braun announces Reigns won’t be here tonight and gets a pop. Braun laughs as a “yes!” chant starts up. Now that Roman is out of his way, Braun is ready to tear through the locker room and prove why he is the Monster Among Men. The music interrupts and out comes RAW General Manager Kurt Angle as the “you suck!” chants start.
Angle asks Braun what point he’s trying to prove. Angle says Braun did enough damage last week. Braun says there’s still more to come. Angle says that’s exactly what Reigns said before they went on the air tonight. Angle says he’s giving Reigns what he wanted – a match with Braun at Payback. Braun says it will be Reigns’ funeral but he wants to know about tonight. Angle says Braun’s ass should be suspended. Some fans boo. Angle says Braun has done enough damage and has the night off. Braun says Mick Foley tried to play these games and that didn’t get him too far. Braun wants more competition tonight, or else. Angle asks or what. Braun steps in his face but walks out of the ring after dropping the mic. Braun’s music hits as Angle looks on.
– Still to come, Mickie James vs. Nia Jax vs. Sasha Banks vs. Alexa Bliss to crown a new #1 contender. Also, The Miz has invited Dean Ambrose to be a guest on MizTV. Chris Jericho vs. Samoa Joe will also take place.
Chris Jericho vs. Samoa Joe
We go to the ring and out comes Seth Rollins for commentary. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and out comes Samoa Joe to the ring. We see footage of Joe helping Kevin Owens destroy Chris Jericho last week. The music hits and out next comes Jericho to a pop.
The bell rings and Joe strikes first. He takes Jericho to the corner and beats him down. Jericho ends up dumping Joe over the top rope and hitting a springboard kick to send him back down. We go to commercial with Jericho standing tall in the ring.
Back from the break and Joe has turned it around. Joe with kicks and an elbow drop for a 2 count. Joe keeps Jericho grounded now. Jericho comes back with chops but Joe knees him. Jericho counters again but Joe sends him to the apron. Jericho runs to the top and comes down with an axe handle. Jericho runs the ropes but Joe catches him in a powerslam for a close 2 count.
Jericho rolls out of the way and hits a Lionsault for a 2 count. Jericho charges in the corner but Joe catches him and slams him. Joe goes to the second rope for a big splash but Jericho moves. Jericho goes for the Walls of Jericho and finally gets it locked in. Joe breaks the hold but Jericho tries for it again. Joe breaks it up and applies the Coquina Clutch in the middle of the ring. Jericho goes down to one knee. Fans rally for Jericho and he tries to break it but can’t. They tangle on the mat but Jericho finally taps out after a minute or so.
Winner: Samoa Joe
– After the match, Joe stares at Jericho as his music hits and we go to replays. Joe takes the mic and yells out Seth Rollins’ name. Rolins stands up at the announce table. Joe asks Seth if he remembers what it sounded like when Joe arrived. Joe remembers it well – the sound of Rollins’ ligaments and joints popping when he hit the ground, the sound of his cries for mercy. Joe says that was nothing but business as Rollins was the designated target by Joe’s benefactor, Triple H. Joe says he cares about his clientele and because of what Rollins did to Triple H and his wife Stephanie McMahon, it will not be business at Payback – it will be very, very personal. Rollins stands on top of the table and says of course it’s going to be personal because Joe almost cost him his career. Rollins says he gets Joe one-on-one in two weeks and like they say, payback is a bitch. Rollins drops the mic and his music hits as they stare each other down.
– We see Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson backstage walking. They walk past Elias Samson playing his guitar. They stop and glance at The Drifter but keep walking. We see Goldust and R-Truth walking together next. Bran Strowman appears out of nowhere and lays them both out. Braun launches Goldust into a storage area and then grabs Truth when he comes at him. Braun clubs Truth to the floor. Truth gets up on his knees but Braun kicks him into a cart. Agents and producers come over to tell Braun to calm down, that he has the night off. Braun walks away as Fit Finley checks on Truth and calls for help. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see what Braun just did. A referee approaches Braun sitting down in the locker room. The referee says Kurt Angle made it clear Braun has the night off. Braun stands up and says he’s leaving when he wants, unless the ref has a problem with that. The official leaves and Braun sits back down looking grumpy.
– We go to the ring with Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson. They mention Braun taking out Golden Truth but they aren’t happy about being on standby. They left Japan to make green and be mean. Gallows tells Angle to send them some nerds out. The music hits and out comes Enzo Amore and Big Cass.
Enzo Amore and Big Cass vs. Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows
Enzo and Cass cut promos before the match begins. Cass starts off with Anderson and takes control as Cole talks about Dash Wilder’s jaw injury and how The Revival will be out for about 6 weeks. Enzo tags in and keeps control. Cass comes right back in and beats Anderson around the ring. Cass floors Anderson and clotheslines him over the top rope. Enzo tags back in as Gallows checks on Anderson. Enzo runs around the ring and takes out Gallows. Cass launches Enzo into Anderson. Enzo and Cass stand tall in the ring as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Anderson is in control of Enzo. Gallows comes in and keeps control. Enzo tries to fight back but Gallows clubs him and keeps him grounded on the mat. Gallows takes Enzo to their corner and beats him down. Anderson tags in and drops a big knee. Anderson works on the arm and keeps Enzo down now.
Enzo fights up and out but Anderson catches him in a big spinebuster for a 2 count. Gallows is back in with more offense. Enzo counters in the corner and hits a big DDT. Gallows tags Anderson in. He leaps and is able to stop Enzo from tagging. Anderson ends up missing in the corner. Cass finally gets the hot tag. Cass unloads and knocks Gallows off the apron. Cass with a big sideslam as he gets hyped up and the crowd pops. Cass drops the Empire Elbow and nails a big boot. Enzo goes to the top and Cass launches him into Gallows. Cass boots Gallows over the top. Cass also tumbles to the floor. Enzo comes off the top but Anderson catches him and launches him onto the top turnbuckle for the pin.
Winner: Karl Anderson
– After the bell, Anderson runs out of the ring and joins Gallows. We get replays and come back to The Club standing tall on the ramp.
– Cole hypes up Mickie James with a quick video package to promote tonight’s Fatal 4 Way. Also, Dean Ambrose on MizTV.
– Back from the break and we get a quick Nia Jax video to hype tonight’s Fatal 4 Way.
– We go to the ring and The Miz is out with Maryse for another edition of MizTV. The music interrupts before Miz can introduce his guest but out comes WWE Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose.
They mention last week’s altercation and Ambrose calls for a truce because they’re in Ohio tonight and both are from the state. Ambrose does a chant for the local crowd and gets a pop. He tells Maryse not to worry about, she wouldn’t know what that is about because she’s Canadian. Miz asks Ambrose if he he thinks this is a joke. Ambrose knocks the suit and shoes he’s wearing. Miz says he dresses and talks like this because he respects what a WWE Superstar is. He walks the part, dresses the part, talks the part because he is the part. Miz says Ambrose doesn’t care, with his messy clothes and greasy hair. Miz goes on and says everything he’s done is to make them into WWE Superstars but Ambrose just makes them look like ‘rasslers. He suggests Ambrose put on a fanny pack and some Zubaz to set them back 30 years. Miz goes on about fans supporting Ambrose and him getting opportunities. Ambrose says it’s not about what he wears, it’s about what he has in him. Ambrose says a lot of guys in WWE worry about their image, their tweets and branding. Ambrose doesn’t even know what that word means. He’s not a brand, he’s Dean Ambrose.
He doesn’t care about movies or talk sows or endorsement deals, this is what he does. He does this because he loves it. Ambrose goes on and says he loves black eyes, loves spitting up his own teeth. Ambrose goes on and declares himself the Intercontinental Champion, mentioning how he took the title from Miz. Maryse calls Ambrose a dirty little street rat. She knocks him for not being a true champion. Ambrose asks Miz to hold his mic. Miz starts ranting again as Ambrose places his title on the chair. Ambrose takes his jacket off next. Miz is still running his mouth. Ambrose ends up tackling Miz and unloading on him. Maryse hits him in the back with her high heel. Ambrose turns around and Miz tries to take advantage but Ambrose gets the upperhand. Maryse retreats and Miz joins her on the ramp. They taunt each other as Ambrose’s music hits.
– We see Braun Strowman dragging Kalisto around backstage. People are yelling at him to stop. Braun says Roman Reigns is garbage and so is Kalisto… Braun dumps him in a big trash cart. Braun walks away when Big Show comes out of nowhere and sends him into a large door. Show yells at Braun to pick on someone his own size. Braun sits up and looks frustrated as Show walks off. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see what just happened to Kalisto and then Braun. Braun vs. Big Show will take place later tonight.
TJ Perkins vs. Jack Gallagher
We go to the ring and out comes TJ Perkins. Jack Gallagher is out next.
They go to start the match but JoJo announces that WWE Cruiserweight Champion Neville is here to make a special appearance. The music hits and out comes Neville to the ring. He gets in Gallagher’s face and then looks at Perkins. Neville leaves the ring and will be watching from ringside. They go to start the match again but the music hits and out comes Austin Aries. Aries says he didn’t know we were having a special viewing party so he’s inviting himself, making an even “specialer” appearance. Aries does his own introduction and takes a seat beside Neville.
Back and forth to start the match. Gallagher with an early 2 count as Aries and Neville look on. Perkins keeps Gallagher down and gabs. Graves doesn’t approve. Gallagher ends up getting the best of Perkins before mocking the dab. Gallagher with a headstand in the corner and a kick to Perkins. Perkins turns it around and sends Gallagher out into the barrier. We go to commercial.
More back and forth after the break. Gallagher headbutts Perkins to the floor. Gallagher picks up the umbrella Perkins tossed to the floor earlier. Gallagher opens the umbrella and goes to the top rope. He comes crashing down onto Perkins on the floor. Gallagher brings it back in but Perkins rolls to the floor. Gallagher follows but Perkins shoves him into Aries, knocking him out of the chair. Perkins goes back into the ring. Aries comes to the apron and takes off his jacket but Neville comes from behind and takes his leg out, knocking him off the apron.
Perkins with a cheap shot to Gallagher as the referee is distracted by Neville. Perkins nails the Detonation Kick for the pin.
Winner: TJ Perkins
– After the match, Neville heads to the ramp and looks back as Aries tells him to bring it to the ring. Perkins joins Neville and stands behind him with his arms raised. We go to replays.
– We get a quick video package on Alexa Bliss as Cole hypes the Fatal 4 Way. Still to come, Cesaro vs. RAW Tag Team Champion Jeff Hardy. Back to commercial.
– Apollo Crews is backstage with buddy Akira Tozawa when Titus O’Neil walks in. Titus congratulates Crews on expecting his first child soon. Titus wants to know what Crews is planning on doing to make an impact on RAW. This leads to Titus making a lame pitch for Crews to join The Titus Brand.
– Mike Rome is backstage with RAW Tag Team Champions The Hardys. Matt Hardy comments on being back and says the current crop of WWE Superstars are the most athletic they’ve ever faced. Jeff Hardy talks about the reaction they received at WrestleMania 33 and says he can’t put it into words. Cesaro and Sheamus walk up. Cesaro welcomes them back on behalf of the entire locker room. Sheamus recalls seeing The Hardys earn his respect as a kid at WrestleMania. Cesaro mentions tonight’s match with Jeff. Sheamus says it will be an honor to take the titles back from The Hardys at Payback. Matt is confident they will retain. Cesaro apologizes for Sheamus’ comments and they walk off. Matt says it’s great to be back.
– We get a quick video on Sasha Banks to promote tonight’s Fatal 4 Way.
Fatal 4 Way to Crown a New #1 Contender: Sasha Banks vs. Mickie James vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Nia Jax
We go to the ring and out first comes Sasha Banks. The winner of this match will earn a shot at RAW Women’s Champion Bayley. Sasha enters the ring and we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Sasha is finishing up her entrance. Alexa Bliss is out next to a big hometown pop. Mickie James is out next. Nia Jax comes out last. The bell rings and they meet in the middle of the ring. Nia talks trash and wants them to bring it. Alexa goes to leave but Mickie and Sasha push her into Nia. She goes down. Mickie ends up going at it with Nia and jumps on her back. Nia kicks Sasha down. Nia tosses Mickie from her back. Nia goes to work on Mickie for a 2 count as Bliss runs in and breaks it up. Bliss tries to run away but Nia grabs her. Bliss slaps her for a pop. Bliss begs Nia before retreating. Nia goes after her. Mickie dropkicks Nia to the floor where Bliss is. Sasha and Mickie lock up as we see Bayley backstage watching.
They trade pin attempts and size each other up again. They lock up and Sasha grabs the arm. Mickie drops her with a shoulder. Mickie with a dropkick. Sasha with a head-scissors takedown. Sasha shows off some and Mickie ends up hitting the hurricanrana out of the corner. Mickie goes on and hits a neckbreaker for a 2 count as Nia pulls her out of the ring. Sasha launches herself out of the ring and takes out Nia and Mickie. We go to commercial with Sasha standing tall.
Back from the break and Bliss gets a 2 count on Mickie. Nia comes in and plants her. Sasha comes off the top and Nia catches her. Nia slams Sasha on top of Bliss. Mickie comes next but Nia takes her out as well. Nia with a 2 count on Mickie. We see Bayley watching backstage again. Nia manhandles Mickie now. Nia continues her dominance and applies a bear hug to Sasha in the middle of the ring.
Sasha turns the hug into a guillotine but Nia overpowers and suplexes her to the mat for a 2 count as Mickie breaks it up. Mickie unloads on Nia. Nia cuts her off and picks her up by her neck. Mickie starts fading but she manages to turn it into an armbar. Mickie takes Nia to the mat with the hold. Bliss is slow to get up to the apron. Mickie rolls over and keeps the hold locked. Nia powers up and tosses Mickie onto Sasha in the corner. Bliss goes to the top but has second thoughts when Nia sees her. Nia ends up hitting the ring post as Sasha and Mickie move. Mickie goes at it with Bliss now.
Mickie with a kick and more offense. Sasha comes in and stops the DDT. Sasha goes at it with Bliss and nails a stiff kick. Sasha ends up fighting Mickie off and hitting the double knees int he corner to Bliss. She goes for a 2 count but Nia pulls her out of the ring. Mickie takes Nia down from the apron. Mickie goes back in but Bliss knocks her off the apron, on top of Nia. Sasha comes back into the ring and faces off with Bliss. Sasha runs into an elbow. Bliss yells that this is her division now. Sasha gets the Banks Statement applied but Mickie breaks it up. Mickie tells Sasha to get up and they go at it in the middle of the ring. Mickie drops Sasha on her face. Mickie kips up and gets hype. Mickie goes to the top but Sasha cuts her off. Sasha climbs up and talks some trash. Nia comes over and clubs Sasha. She scoops Sasha on her shoulders and uses her to knock Mickie to the floor. She nails a Samoan Drop on Sasha but Bliss runs in, takes Nia out with a dropkick and steals the pin for the win and the title shot at Payback.
Winner and New #1 Contender: Alexa Bliss
– After the match, Bliss hits the ramp and gets a big hometown pop as we go to replays. Nia stands tall on the apron and stares at Bliss.
– Big Show is backstage with Charly Caruso. She asks why Show did what he did to Braun earlier. Show says Braun needs to feel intimidated. He’s in the best shape of his life and tonight Braun gets a Giant-style dose of his own medicine.
– Cole leads us to a WWE Network promo.
– Back from a break and Curt Hawkins is in the ring. He mentions Big Show stepping into the ring with him last week and being in the main event this week. He says if you want to be a main event WWE Superstar, you step into the ring with Curt Hawkins. Hawkins wonders who it’s going to be this week. He waits until the music hits and out comes Finn Balor.
Finn Balor vs. Curt Hawkins
The bell rings and Balor ducks Hawkins and goes to work. Balor with a dropkick and a Slingblade.
Balor with another dropkick. Balor goes to the top and nails the Coup de Grace for the easy win.
Winner: Finn Balor
– After the match, Balor stands tall as we go to replays.
– Still to come, Bray Wyatt delivers his Sermon to The Snake.
– Cole introduces actor and former RAW guest star Dule Hill at ringside. We get a clip from WWE Studios film “Sleight,” which stars Hill. Back to commercial.
– Mike Rome is backstage with Chris Jericho. Jericho calls him Tom and admits he lost to Samoa Joe earlier. He gives Joe props but says he was a little bit sidelined because he can’t stop thinking about his Payback match against the stupid idiot, WWE United States Champion Kevin Owens. Jericho disses Owens’ face and says America deserves better. Jericho says if he wins, he goes to SmackDown but it doesn’t matter where he goes because The Friends of Jericho always go with him. Jericho gets a Y2J chant going in the arena. Jericho goes back and forth with Mike over his name and adds is about to add him to The List when Elias Samson walks behind them playing his guitar. Samson keeps walking out of sight. Jericho says Mike is off the hook but Samson gets added to The List.
– We go to Bray Wyatt somewhere. He cuts a promo on fear and says he’s not like us, he doesn’t bow down to fear. He harnesses it. Fear lives within his house. Wyatt knows WWE Champion Randy Orton is scared, he can smell it. Wyatt says in his “House of Horrors” all of Orton’s fears will come to light. Wyatt goes on about the match and tells Orton to run.
– Still to come, Hardy vs. Cesaro. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Alicia Fox is showing Dana Brooke how she was humiliated on WWE 205 Live last week. Emma walks in and says Dana has been making fun of Alicia all week. Dana says Emma is lying. Alicia says Dana is making a joke of her but she doesn’t think it’s funny. Alicia says she doesn’t want to be Dana’s friend anymore. Fox storms off. Dana and Emma have words before Emma walks off.
Jeff Hardy vs. Cesaro
We go to the ring and out come RAW Tag Team Champions The Hardys. Cesaro is out next with Sheamus.
The bell rings and they lock up. They trade holds to start. Cesaro runs into a kick. Jeff kicks Cesaro out of the ring and back to the floor. Jeff runs off the apron and nails a flying clothesline. Jeff brings it back into the ring and covers for a 2 count. Cesaro ends up catching Hardy in mid-air. Cesaro with a slam for a 2 count. Jeff rolls to the floor and sells an injury. Cesaro goes to the floor and nails a running uppercut into the barrier.
Cesaro brings Jeff back into the ring and covers for a 2 count. Jeff counters Cesaro and hits a jawbreaker. Jeff goes to the top but Cesaro sees him and rolls to the floor. Jeff stands tall in the ring as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Cesaro ends up sending Jeff to the floor. The referee counts. Cesaro goes out and brings Jeff back in. Cesaro covers for a 2 count. And another. Cesaro keeps Jeff grounded now.
More back and forth now. Jeff with a 2 count. Cesaro with uppercuts. Jeff makes a comeback and clotheslines Cesaro. Jeff with an inverted atomic drop and the leg drop. Jeff with more offense for a close 2 count. Jeff blocks the Cesaro Swing. Cesaro nails a springboard corkscrew uppercut for another pin attempt. Cesaro goes for the Swing again but Hardy kicks him away. Jeff goes to the top but Cesaro nails a big uppercut. Cesaro climbs up for the big superplex but Jeff counters. Jeff crotches Cesaro over the top rope and then dropkicks him to the floor.
Jeff comes back in but misses in the corner and hits the turnbuckles. Jeff ends up taking Cesaro down from the top. Jeff with a 2 count. Jeff dropkicks Cesaro n the face but misses boots to the gut. Cesaro with a 2 count. Jeff counters the Neutralizer but hits the Twist of Fate. Jeff climbs to the top and hits the Swanton Bomb for the win.
Winner: Jeff Hardy
– After the match, Matt and Sheamus join their partners in the ring. Sheamus helps Cesaro up. Sheamus extends his hand and Matt shakes. Jeff and Cesaro also embrace. We go to replays. Cesaro and Sheamus leave as The Hardys celebrate with the titles.
– The announcers discuss Braun Strowman and Big Show. We see what has happened during tonight’s show. Mike Rome is in the trainer’s room for an update on Golden Truth and Kalisto. They are being treated… Rome is interrupted by Heath Slater and Rhyno. Slater talks about not even being drafted last year but thanks to the “Superstar Shakeup” he is back on RAW. Braun comes through the hall hyped up for tonight’s main event, which shuts up Slater and causes Rhyno to drop his plate of food. We go to commercial.
Big Show vs. Braun Strowman
Back from the break and out comes Braun Strowman for tonight’s main event. Big Show is out next.
Braun meets Show at the bottom of the ramp and they go at it. Braun sends Show into the barrier. Show fights back with lefts and rights. Show sends Braun head first into the steel steps. Show sends Braun into the steel steps and then into the ring.
The bell rings and here we go. Show sends Braun to the floor. Show with a running dropkick through the ropes. Show follows to the floor and sends Braun into the steel steps. Show comes back into the ring. Braun decks Show in the face and makes his way in. Braun ducks a right hand and nails a big dropkick after running the ropes. Braun with a 2 count.
Back and forth in the ring now. Strowman counters a hold, kips up and arm drags Show. Braun with another arm drag to the big man. Show fights Braun off but Braun fights back. They both counter bodyslam attempts. Show scoops Braun but can’t get him over. Show finally scoops Braun and slams him. Show hulks up as the crowd pops. Braun blocks a chokeslam and hits a suplex. Strowman keeps control and stands tall. He yells about being the champion and raises his arms to some boos.
Braun headbutts Show back down. Braun kicks Show while he’s down and plays to the crowd again. Braun continues to beat on Show while he’s down. Show gets up but Braun scoops him. Show counters and sends Braun into the corner. Show splashes him. Show ends up with Braun on the top. Show chops him and climbs up. Braun knocks him back to the ring. Braun comes off the top but Show grabs him and nails a chokeslam for a close 2 count. We get a replay.
Braun ducks a knockout punch. Braun with another big slam for a close 2 count. Braun goes back to the top but Show cuts him off. Show climbs up for a superplex but Braun crotches him. Braun leaps from the top but Show nails a knockout punch in the middle of the ring. Braun still kicks out at 2. Both are down as we get a replay. Show goes to the top but Braun climbs up and nails him. Braun nails a superplex and the ring implodes.
Fans chant “holy shit” as both men are down. Officials and medics hit the ring to check on them as a “yes!” chant breaks out. Braun gets to his feet and yells as his music hits and we go to replays. Braun stands on the stage and yells as officials check on Show in the middle of the ring. RAW goes off the air.