WWE Raw Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from July 19

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Bleacher Report 19 July, 2021 - 06:30pm 8 views

When did Roman Reigns win the Universal Championship?

Roman Reigns is the current champion in his second reign. He won the title by defeating previous champion "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt and Braun Strowman, who Reigns pinned, in a No Holds Barred Triple Threat match at Payback on August 30, 2020 in Orlando, Florida. No. Days recog. wikipedia.orgWWE Universal Championship

Sunday's Money in the Bank pay-per-view was a huge night for WWE as live crowds returned in full force. The WWE Universe was electric during what is often considered one of the year's most exciting events.

Nikki A.S.H. won the women's Money in the Bank briefcase after overcoming seven other Superstars. She shocked the crowd and beat the odds when she climbed over six other women on three ladders to grab the case and claim victory.

On the men's side, Big E won the MITB briefcase in one of the most emotional moments of the show. He looked as excited as we have ever seen him, and both wrestlers and fans took to social media to congratulate the powerhouse of The New Day.

AJ Styles and Omos retained the Raw Tag Team Championships, and Bobby Lashley kept the WWE title with a decisive victory over Kofi Kingston. Charlotte Flair also became the new Raw women's champion by beating Rhea Ripley.

After Roman Reigns defeated Edge to retain the Universal Championship, John Cena made his return to one of the biggest pops of the night. He seemed to challenge Reigns by stepping up to him but also promised to be on this week's Raw during a post-show speech to the live crowd.

As Raw began with a silent crowd, John Cena's music hit and made everybody stand up to cheer for the Peacemaker as he returned to the red brand for the first time in over a year.

He hyped up the crowd and joked about his role in the upcoming Suicide Squad. He then spoke about Sunday and ruining Reigns' celebration. He said returning to WWE only happened because the crowd is back and he wanted to share his love with the WWE Universe.

He said Reigns was also responsible for his return because he is after the Universal Championship, and he wants his shot at SummerSlam. He talked some trash about The Tribal Chief before Riddle made his way to the ring. They said "Bro" to each other several times and then Cena just left.

Grade: B+

Few Superstars can hype up a crowd like Cena. Real passion comes through when he speaks. It was a smart move to bring him back right as crowds returned.

Unfortunately, this segment didn't accomplish much. We already knew he was going after Reigns. All this did was set a date for SummerSlam, which was something we all saw coming.

Riddle's presence got a pop from the crowd but ultimately did nothing to make the segment better. Cena was the star. Riddle was just an extra.

Riddle and AJ Styles started this six-man tag match for their teams with a quick exchange that ended with Styles on the receiving end of a big backdrop.

John Morrison tagged in, but Riddle took him down into a submission right away. JoMo countered and hit a few strikes before The Bro unloaded on him with some hits of his own.

Erik and Ivar took over and double-teamed Morrison to keep him isolated. We got to the obligatory spot when everyone got involved, and it ended with Omos launching Styles onto everyone else.

We returned from a break to see Riddle taking a beating from Omos. Johnny Drip Drip came in and failed to make Riddle tap out to a submission. Erik got the hot tag and blocked every strike Styles threw at him.

After a few more tags and close calls, Riddle tricked Omos into thinking The Miz sprayed him with a drip stick. This allowed Erik and Ivar to hit the Viking Experience for the win.

Grade: B-

Considering Morrison and Ricochet were feuding the past few weeks, it was surprising to see Riddle on the babyface team instead of the high-flyer.

The match was good if a little predictable. It followed a well-tested formula for six-man matches. The Viking Raiders get to stay in the hunt for the tag titles with this win, and Riddle may begin a feud with Morrison and The Miz.

The crowd was into the action, and the match had a few fun moments. It wasn't a bad way to get the action going.

We returned to see Elias sitting in the ring to play his first song in front of a live Raw crowd in over a year. The "Walk with Elias" chant still worked like a charm.

Jaxson Ryker gave a quick promo before he came out for this Symphony of Destruction match. Elias got the first hit, but Ryker was the first to use an instrument as a weapon.

Elias hit a flying knee to prevent Ryker from hitting him with a guitar. He followed up with a keyboard to the back before Ryker sent him into a gong. It didn't make the sound WWE hoped it would.

We came back from a commercial to see them trading offense. They used every instrument around the ring, including a grand piano near the ramp. Ryker slammed Elias on top of it for a two-count.

Elias beat Ryker with a huge cello for another near-fall. The musician ended up bleeding from the head. Ryker hit a superplex through two tables to get the win.

Grade: B-

This feud is stale and needs to end, but this was a decent final chapter. They gave the crowd some fun moments and found interesting ways to use a few of the instruments.

The crowd still seemed to prefer Elias over Ryker, so WWE may want to consider turning him into a tweener or babyface again. As for Ryker, we'll see if this win gets him anywhere.

We returned from a break to see this match already in progress. Shayna Baszler scored a two-count on Natalya after Nia Jax sent Tamina into the barricade with a Samoan drop.

The former champions double-teamed Nattie but still couldn't keep her down for the pin. The Queen of Spades stomped on her arm to soften her up. The Queen of Harts took Jax down with a series of clotheslines for another near-fall.

Tamina hopped onto the apron and tagged in. She kicked Jax off the apron and hit Baszler with a body slam before climbing to the top rope. Reginald distracted her so Baszler could recover.

Tamina superkicked Baszler's face off for the pin and the win. Jax took out Reginald with a headbutt to end their relationship for good.

Akira Tozawa ran to the ring to escape some people chasing the 24/7 title. Reginald took him out with a couple of acrobatic moves to win the 24/7 Championship.

Grade: C

                             

This was quick and somewhat pointless. We have seen this match several times in recent months. The good news is it looks like this bout has led to Baszler and Jax ditching Reginald once and for all.

The match was short but had good energy and some nice exchanges. The mayhem after the match might be the only good thing WWE has ever done with Reginald because he was allowed to use his athleticism for his own benefit for once.

Sheamus was forced to battle Humberto Carrillo again this week after what he pulled last week, but instead of this being a rematch for the U.S. title, Carrillo had to win this bout to earn another shot.

The high-flyer used his speed to avoid Sheamus and send him out of the ring. He hit a slingshot crossbody to the floor to take down The Celtic Warrior. He hit a crossbody from the top rope for a quick two-count.

Damian Priest was shown watching from backstage as Carrillo kept the upper hand with some kicks to the body. He tried to pull Sheamus' mask off but ended up having to let go.

Sheamus grabbed him for a powerbomb onto the apron as we went to a break. We returned to see the Irishman in control with a headlock. Carrillo fought out but ended up on the receiving end up a backbreaker.

Carrillo made a comeback and hit a hurricanrana from the top rope followed by a suicide dive. He nailed Sheamus with a missile dropkick, but he still couldn't get the three-count. Sheamus drilled him with a Brogue Kick to get the win.

Grade: B

These two have had several matches, but this may have been the best of their feud. Carrillo looked great, even in defeat. Sheamus getting the win was surprising, but it seems as if WWE already has Priest pegged as his next opponent.

On a night when the WWE Universe returned to Raw for the first time in over 70 weeks, it was disappointing to see so many rematches. This was arguably the best of the bunch.

Lashley came out with MVP to issue an open challenge to anyone brave enough to face him. He gave a promo and said destroying Kingston was all the talking he needed to do. He handed the mic to MVP so he could put him over.

They told anyone to come out who wanted to battle the champ. Keith Lee made his long-awaited return to answer the call and received a huge ovation.

The bell rang, but they were slow to make contact. They locked up and fought for control until they came to a stalemate. They went for it again, and The All Mighty backed Lee to the corner. He took a cheap shot instead of making a clean break, but Lee picked him up and planted him in two different corners.

Lee hit a leapfrog before taking Lashley down with a crossbody. Lashley came back with a vengeance and beat him down as MVP talked loads of trash.

Lashley picked up Lee but ended up being shoved into the ring post when he couldn't keep him up. MVP distracted Lee so his client could take control again. The WWE champion got a running start to hit a huge spear at ringside.

Lee's shoulders were too wide for the Hurt Lock, but Lashley was able to hit a slam instead. He drilled Lee with another spear for the pin and the win. As he celebrated, Goldberg's music hit and he marched down to the ring. He laughed in Lashley's face and declared he is next.

Grade: B+

This is the kind of thing we expected for the first Raw with a live crowd again. Big returns and fresh matches. As expected, Lee and Lashley delivered a fun, hard-hitting performance.

The outcome was genuinely surprising, as most would have expected Lee to win or lose dirty in his first match back. While MVP played a small role, this was mostly a clean pin for the champ.

Let's hope this is not their last encounter because they had great chemistry together. The Goldberg rumors had been flying for days. We'll see if WWE can make this more interesting than his last run.

Karrion Kross made his main roster debut this week in a match against Jeff Hardy. Instead of letting this be a surprise, WWE hyped it throughout the night.

Jeff Hardy brought back his old "No More Words" entrance music to the delight of the live crowd. The WWE Universe was in Hardy's corner, but that wasn't enough to stop Kross from taking him down with a few suplexes.

The Charismatic Enigma avoided him in the corner and hit the Twist of Fate. He climbed up but missed the Swanton. Kross got up and went for his signature elbow, but Hardy countered and ended up pinning him with a little help from the middle rope.

Grade: C+

WWE opted not to have Scarlett accompany Kross for this match. Hopefully, this is a mistake that is rectified during his next appearance.

Hearing Hardy's old music was great, but seeing him get what many might call a surprise win was the best part. This match was short and nothing special, but the moment itself went over huge with the live crowd.

Kross gave an interview after the match and said Hardy just made the biggest mistake of his life. We'll see if this becomes a real feud or if this was a one-time thing.

Grade: C

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John Cena calls Roman Reigns an 'a******' following WWE return

GiveMeSport 20 July, 2021 - 07:50am

John Cena did not pull any punches on his return to Monday Night Raw last night, calling Universal Champion Roman Reigns an "a******" before challenging the SmackDown star to a match at SummerSlam next month.

John Cena shockingly returned to WWE at the end of the Money in the Bank pay-per-view on Sunday night, confronting Roman Reigns after the 'The Tribal Chief' defeated Edge.

This was the first time that John Cena has appeared on WWE TV since WrestleMania 36 last year, where he lost in the first-ever Firefly Fun House match to 'The Fiend' Bray Wyatt.

Appearing on Raw the following night, Cena called Reigns an "a******" before saying that the Universal Champion is arrogant and isn't as over as he thinks he is:

"Roman Reigns is an arrogant, self-absorbed, overhyped, overprotected, overexposed gimmick who is not as over as he says he is, and that is coming from me. There is a saying, 'if you're good, you'll tell everybody. If you're good, you'll demand everyone acknowledge you.' If you're good," Cena said before the audience the asking to make some noise. "The rest of that saying is, 'If you're great, they'll tell you."

John Cena and Roman Reigns' feud in 2017 featured a lot of 'shoot' promos, and their 2021 feud seems like it will be following a similar pattern, at least if Cena's promo on Raw last night is anything to go by.

While not officially confirmed by WWE, John Cena challenged Roman Reigns to a Universal Championship match at SummerSlam next month, with the match reportedly being planned as the pay-per-view's main event by WWE.

Also during his promo last night, John Cena confirmed that he is going to be on Friday Night SmackDown this week, so expect Reigns and Cena to go face-to-face later on this week.

Michael Cole: WWE SummerSlam 2021 Is The Perfect Moment For John Cena Vs. Roman Reigns

Cultaholic 20 July, 2021 - 06:30am

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Cena and Reigns, while not officially confirmed for SummerSlam, is almost certainly set to be the main event for WWE's next pay-per-view in August after Cena challenged Reigns in a promo on Monday Night Raw after confronting the Universal Champion at Money In The Bank.

The feud will almost exclusively play out on the SmackDown brand, where Cole works with broadcast partner Pat McAfee, and Cole feels Cena's return has come at the right time, just as the fans are getting back to the WWE product. 

With Reigns on the run of his life as well, Cole is beyond excited to see the story the two can tell in the run up to and at SummerSlam.

Speaking to McAfee on The Pat McAfee Show, Cole said: "One of the reasons I'm really excited about what's going happen these next five weeks leading up to SummerSlam; you've got the greatest of this time, Roman Reigns, and the greatest of all-time, John Cena and they are now meeting in what seems like the perfect moment, The universe is aligning. WWE fans are back. The excitement is back.

"Roman Reigns is the uber heel, the most dominant man and he knows it. John Cena is coming back as the old babyface that he was. It's going to be this unbelievable meeting of these two great individuals in the main event and we get to be part of that. 

"What's cool is that you [McAfee] and I get to sit there and we are so adamant about who we support in this match. We're supposed to be unbiased, but I'm a John Cena guy, you're a Roman Reigns guy. It's going to lead to a really interesting debate over these next couple of weeks. Can Cena win his 17th (World Title), beat Ric Flair's (number of 16 World Titles) and cement his legacy as the greatest of all time? Will Roman Reigns slay another legend? 

"There are so many rich storylines and layers to this show. Where does Paul Heyman fit in all of this? You can't write a better scenario."

H/T Fightful

The 50 greatest WWE Superstars of all time ranked after John Cena makes dramatic return

GiveMeSport 20 July, 2021 - 06:13am

Ask any sports fan what they do when there’s not much happening and chances are they’d tell you how they’re working on the greatest “all-time list” of all time.

WWE fans, in particular, are spoilt for choice in terms of the options they have for such lists, especially ones that focus on the greatest 50 or greatest 100 Superstars of our lifetime.

Now that John Cena, a candidate for the “GOAT” title, has returned to WWE television after appearing at Sunday's Money in the Bank pay-per-view, this seems like a good time to look at Ranker’s “Greatest WWE Superstars of All Time” rankings.

As always, there are some interesting picks and agendas are very well reflected in the way that the fans have voted for their favourite wrestlers, but that's what is important to remember, these are the fans voting, not us!

Not much to debate here, however, considering Bliss, Paige and Lynch’s standings among the female WWE wrestlers, shouldn’t they have been further up on the charts? Lynch, in particular, is one of the most popular names in WWE, so much so that she was sixth in Twitter’s list of the Top Female Athletes in the world in 2019. Therefore, to place her at 48 seems very unfair. However, she is very early on in her WWE career, so no doubt she'll fly up this list as time passes

There could be a lot that’s deemed wrong here, in particularly involving Andre the Giant, Kane and Mick Foley. Surely, there’s an argument for at least two of them to be in the top 10, and almost certainly Andre can’t be named 21st in the list of all-time greats. Should he be in the top 10? Perhaps. Should he be in the top 12? Surely.

As indeed can be said of The Undertaker, The Rock and The Heartbreak Kid Shawn Michaels. What an era that was, though.

10 Best WWE Games, Ranked

GameRant 18 July, 2021 - 07:30pm

While some fans are eager to return to the crowd after COVID 19, many are still connecting to their favorite form of sports entertainment through video games. Fans looking for the best experiences in WWE gaming will find that some games stand out above the rest.

Smackdown Vs. Raw made full use of the marketing that was the WWE brand war, and the rivalry the two shows had. While this game had its flaws, it still made up for it with advanced mechanics and showed what customizable options could look like for future installments down the road.

This Playstation 2 classic is highly regarded for its advanced story mode, where players select rosters and choose their own designated path through the WWE ladder. Many fans are still begging for this concept to be replicated since it is arguably the most intricate and highly interactive story mode in any WWE game to this day.

The greatest thing about 2K16 isn't the improvements or added match types though. The overflowing roster containing over 120 characters is what makes this game stand out. Adding some much-needed diversity to a stale cast of playable talent with the introduction of numerous NXT superstars makes this entry stand out especially.

Keeping much of what made the 2006 edition of the game so successful, but not offering anything new likely due to developer Yuke's having to create four different versions of the game due to the newly released console's arrival. One aspect worth mentioning is the game's ever-growing roster though as newcomers and legends are both present and accounted for.

Character creation was enhanced exponentially in this title, allowing players to customize every attribute of their wrestler, along with creating their own entrance, highlight reels, and finishing moves. Another welcomed addition was the improvements to the vastly underrated Road to Wrestlemania game mode, which allowed players to create personalized stories for every single wrestler in the game where one's imagination could run rampant.

The sequel to Wrestlemania 2000 runs off the same engine but proves that it can still prosper. The first game in the WWE game mythos to include storylines into gameplay, along with epic and brutal combat and finisher animations make WWF No Mercy a game long-time fans still reminisce about.

Older entries in the series are highly regarded for their ridiculous and oftentimes over-the-top atmosphere, and it seems like 2K19 developer Yukes took those games to heart, and created something that both hardcore and casual fans could get behind. Serving as by far the best title in the WWE 2K series, WWE 2K19 has nearly everything from wacky match types, a steller roster, and incredibly fun gameplay. It's a shame the series couldn't keep the momentum going following it.

GM mode is a fairly simple, and straightforward game mode. Players take control of either Smackdown or Raw and produce their rosters, matches, rivalry, champions, and more. Players could run their own show and decide the fate of their show's wrestlers. While this game mode hasn't been around for over 10 years now, WWE 2K titles have introduced players to Universe mode which is similar to GM mode. Sadly Universe mode is nowhere near as good.

The addition of some wild match types such as backstage brawl and outrageous weapons make this entry a highly sought after, and much-beloved wrestling title to this day.

At the time of release, Here Comes The Pain was the best-looking wrestling game ever and had gameplay reminiscent of WWF No Mercy in regards to the ridiculous, brutal, and overall enjoyable combat mechanics. Finishing moves especially felt huge in this game, as the camera angle would change and create the epic environment a fan would see viewing WWE's actual product from home. While completely unnecessary, Here Comes The Pain seemingly knows this and gives fans an experience that many still rave about to this day.

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