WWE Raw results, recap, grades:The return of WWE Raw on Monday night was marred by unique circumstances, as WWE women’s tag team champions Naomi and Sasha Banks walked out due to disagreements with WWE management over creative decisions. That decision forced WWE to find a new main event because the two were set to compete in a six-woman tag bout to crown a No. 1 contender for the Raw women’s championship.
The main event was later decided to be a match between Becky Lynch and Asuka, with Asuka winning. She’ll battle Bianca Belair for the Raw women’s championship at Hell in a Cell. Still, the choice by Banks and Naomi to walk out of a show while it was airing will dominate the headlines for days to come.
Chaos results in main event change, Asuka earns No. 1 contender
During the show’s opening sequence, it was announced that the night’s main event would be a six-woman match to determine Belair’s next challenger. Becky Lynch was seen backstage with WWE official Adam Pearce less than an hour into the performance, claiming Naomi and Sasha Banks had departed the arena ahead of the match, only for Pearce to inform she would now face Asuka for the opportunity to face Belair. Banks and Naomi had taken issue with the artistic direction and left the arena during the taping, according to details later revealed. WWE Raw results, recap, grades.
Asuka pins Becky Lynch with a buzzsaw kick and a mist to the eyes. Lynch was continually distracted by Belair’s presence because she was seated at ringside. Lynch pushed Asuka into Belair late in the match before attempting to attack Asuka with an umbrella. Asuka retaliated by spitting mist in Lynch’s face before hitting a kick and winning the match, securing a Hell in a Cell battle with Belair.
The turmoil surrounding Banks and Naomi departing the play in progress is obviously the story of the night. It’s a tricky situation about which we don’t have complete knowledge. WWE had to make a quick decision and settled on a battle between two of the most skilled female wrestlers on the roster. WWE fans could be in for a lot worse in terms of on-the-fly changes. Regardless of the unusual road to the bout, Asuka vs. Belair will be spectacular. Grade: B+ WWE Raw results, recap, grades
On WWE Raw, what else happened?
- In a cage bout, Bobby Lashley defeated Omos. During Lashley’s entrance, Cedric Alexander struck him from behind. Before WWE officials intervened, Omos participated in the onslaught. Lashley stormed into the ring and demanded that the match begin immediately. Throughout the match, MVP and Alexander frequently interfered. When Omos threw Lashley into the cage, breaking the wall and allowing Lashley to get both feet on the floor, Lashley would win.
- Mustafa Ali was defeated by Veer Mahan through cervical clutch submission. Ali was slated to fight Theory before The Miz was revealed as the special guest referee and Ali was replaced by Mahan. During the bout, Miz got in the path of Ali, resulting in a finish and a continued assault on Ali until the Mysterios came in to save the day.
- Riddle wins. With a roll-up, Jimmy Uso pins him. Jey Uso was caught by the referee attempting to assist Jimmy in scoring the pin, setting up the finishing roll-up.
- Los Lotharios were defeated by AJ Styles and Finn Balor via pinfall after Balor hit Humberto Carrillo with the Coup De Grace. Styles, Balor, and Liv Morgan were singled out in a promo from The Judgement Day (who was ringside with Balor and Styles).
- Alexa Bliss pinfalls Sonya Deville with a DDT. After the game, Deville slapped the referee.
- Inside Hell in a Cell, Cody Rhodes challenged Seth Rollins to a match. Rollins said that Rhodes “took something away” from him after Rhodes defeated Rollins in two matches. Rhodes then issued a challenge for Hell in a Cell, which Rollins accepted when he appeared on the Tron.
- With Kevin Owens and Otis at ringside, Ezekiel defeated Chad Gable by pinfall. When Otis spilled barbeque sauce in the sample, the trio failed to do a DNA test to establish Ezekiel is Elias.
- Lacey Evans delivered an in-ring promo in which she discussed her military history before claiming that no one in the locker room compares to her.