It’s the last RAW before Clash of Champions and we just named our #1 Contender last week, despite there being an obvious double pin! So, what’s in store for our Superstars this week before every title goes on the line on RAW’s first solo PPV since the 2016 brand extension.
So, whether last week’s double pinfall between Sasha Banks and Bayley was intentional or not, we see Dana Brooke and RAW Women’s Champion Charlotte rewatch the ending of last week’s match with RAW General Manager Mick Foley. Dana clarifies that all four shoulders are pinned, causing Charlotte to say that this means there is no #1 Contender! Dana suggests that Sasha and Bayley should face each other tonight, but this only flicks a light switch in Foley’s head to suggest that Charlotte won’t have one opponent… but two! Charlotte will take on Sasha Banks and Bayley in a triple threat match for the RAW Women’s Championship at Clash of Champions!
A clearly frustrated Charlotte looks at her shocked protege, who she then shoves down to the ground!
The cameras backstage then catch up with Bayley and Sasha Banks, with a chirpy Bayley describing how excited she is to be included in the Championship match – ‘just like old times’. Although, a serious Sasha reminds her that no one comes between her and that title, but for tonight they’ll have to team up together!
In a Battleground 2016 rematch, the dynamic is slightly different this time around due to Sasha’s injury. The heels dominate Bayley for most of the match, with frequent tags between the Mentor and the Protege. Still with a wrapped up lower back, Sasha Banks eventually gets tag, but the heels regain control of the match by working on her back for the rest of the match. The end of the match sees Bayley get the hot tag, gearing up Charlotte for a Bayley-to-belly which is blocked by Dana Brooke. A distracted Bayley then gets laid out with a Big Boot by Charlotte who reminds everyone why she has dominated the division for pretty much this entire year!
Elsewhere, Michael Cole and the announce team reveal that Alicia Fox will take on Nia Jax at the Clash of Champions Kick-off pre-show! Everyone get their spatulas ready for Sunday night, I think someone’s gonna need it!
Finally backstage we catch up with Jinder Mahal, who is trying to teach inner peace to none other than Alicia Fox. Unfortunately, she misreads his words and turns into an obsessive teenage school girl with a crush!
Thoughts: Safe booking is the key word here. Yes, I know I’ve not covered Stephanie and Lana’s tidbits this week, but again everything they did too was just safe… predictable, safe, logical, but boring.
I guess the most interesting thing was Nia VS Alicia being announced for CoC… but the fact that they used her in a lame Fallout clip, but couldn’t even do a 30 second backstage interview with her saying how she felt about being squashed like a pancake last week? Makes it pretty obvious that this is a throwaway feud here, which is honestly a waste of Alicia’s return and Nia’s proper in-ring debut. They could have booked this so much better, but realistically how are they going to make Alicia look any more credible going into the match?
The tag match was cool, but Dana Brooke should have got that win. Unless Charlotte is losing this weekend (which I doubt), they could have used that to reflect the up and down relationship between the duo. Dana can’t just be losing all the time, especially if she’s supposed to step up and feud with Charlotte sometime soon. It would have lead to a fun and cocky dynamic between the two at Clash of Champions, until Dana starts messing up again. Bayley really didn’t need to take the fall too, she’s such a big face and she is an underdog, but Sasha’s return has overshadowed her completely. It’s a good thing she’s added to this match, but she’s unfairly been treated as the afterthought.
I’m very pleased to have the Triple Threat announced, as it is new and refreshing, but I wouldn’t pay to watch it right now. It was just so obvious to see it was going to happen, but the booking has been rushed – especially when you think about the build up to triple threat matches in the past – I need a clear tweener, I need Sasha to take on Bayley, I need Charlotte to be a cocky heel and not a coward. Hopefully these ladies can pull it out the bag, but RAW was a bore this week!
Do you agree with my thoughts this week? Would you prefer a triple threat or Sasha taking on Charlotte alone? Do you really think Alicia is going to look credible against Nia this Sunday? Let me know in the comments below!