Hola Raw fans and welcome to this week’s Raw Redux. Sorry for the delay this week! Josue here and I’ll be covering Raw for Alex this week. The Women’s Money in the Bank Ladder match is beginning to take shape with another qualifying match this week. Elsewhere, the Raw Women’s Champion Nia Jax makes her return to exchange some words with the woman she challenged at Money in the Bank Ronda Rousey!
Raw General Manager Kurt Angle kicks things off with his big announcement: tonight the Raw Women’s Champion Nia Jax and Ronda Rousey will make their Money in the Bank title match official with a contract signing!
He says he’ll be preceding over the contract signing and mentions a qualifying Women’s MITB match when suddenly Stephanie McMahon’s music hit! The Commissioner of Monday Night Raw is back, looks like that arm has healed up!
McMahon asks for a round of applause for Angle and says that there are no hard feelings after their mixed tag team match from this year’s WrestleMania. She is a businesswoman who will always do what is best for business.
The WWE Universe riles up and begins to chant “You tap out” to which McMahon owns up to. She continues to compliment Angle for his efforts as GM but insists on being the one to overlook the Raw Women’s Title contract signing. She then addresses the “Roman Reign situation” and questions why Angle continues to give him much latitude but it needs to end.
This brought out Reigns who suggested that if McMahon had something to say about him, she should say it to him. They go back and forth until Kevin Owens interrupts that ends with McMahon booking an immediate match between Reigns and Owens.
In a pre-match interview, Renee Young reminds Bliss that Moon actually defeated her during a tag team match but Bliss brushes it off and says Moon only won because she had the element of surprise. Bliss claims this time things will be deferent as she will win.
Mickie James accompanies her friend Bliss and things start off with Moon working on Bliss’ arm. The former Raw Women’s Champion fights Moon off with a hairpull to the mat. Bliss takes a moment to taunt but from behind, Moon kips up and runs the ropes to take Bliss down with a crossbody.
Bliss rolls to the outside, finding some comfort in James but Moon stays in pursuit. She takes Bliss down with a headscissors take down but keeps a close eye on James. The small distraction is enough for Bliss to take control when she sends Moon shoulder first to the barricade. The Superstar make their way back to the ring, where Bliss continues to work on Moon’s shoulder.
When we return from a break, Bliss continues to wear down Moon’s arm with knee shots and submission. Moon rolls out to escape and takes control after a side slam. She adds a dropkick that sends Bliss to the ring apron. Bliss latches onto the ring skirt and uses it distract the referee to sneak in a kick. James enters the ring, taking off her shoes to use as a weapon but the referee catches this and sends her to the back!
James throws a tantrum but Moon swings a forearm to silence her. Bliss rolls Moon from behind for a two count but gets a knee strike in the midsection for her troubles. Moon climbs the turnbuckle, connects the Eclipse and picks up the big win.
In a post-match interview, Moon celebrates her win by saying that her win this proves she is a threat for next’s month Ladder match
We jump to our official contact signing with between Jax and Rousey. The commissioner of Raw hypes up the challenge heard round the world and introduces both the Champion and Challenger. Rousey greets McMahon and asks how her arm is doing. Oh Ronda!
Throughout the contract signing, McMahon tries to stir things up by pointing out the strengths and weaknesses in both Rousey and Jax. The Raw Women’s Champion has had enough of McMahon’s instigation to spit her own truth. Jax says that she will make a new for herself when she defeats Rousey at Money in the Bank. With that, the women sign the contract but before closing things out, Rousey extends her hand for handshake and vows to take Jax’s Raw Women’s Championship… and her arm! Cue in the intense stare down!
As already mentioned last night, Natalya won a Fatal 4-Way that included Dana Brooke, Liv Morgan, and Sarah Logan when she forced Logan to tap out to the Sharpshooter to earn her place at the MITB Ladder match.
ALSO NEXT WEEK: It's a LAST CHANCE #MITB Qualifying #GauntletMatch on #RAW as either @SashaBanksWWE @sarahloganwwe @RubyRiottWWE @YaOnlyLivvOnce @MickieJames @itsBayleyWWE or @DanaBrookeWWE will enter the Women's #LadderMatch! pic.twitter.com/krInEwFW4y
— WWE (@WWE) May 22, 2018
Thoughts: Ember Moon versus Alexa Bliss was a fun little match-up. I’m glad to see that they squared off in singles competition this time to allow more spotlight on the women. With Moon still being considered one of the “newer” names to the Raw Women’s division, I really think she needed this win going into the MITB Ladder match – more-so when you consider there have been weeks when she didn’t even make an appearance on Raw! Since she won her qualifying MITB Ladder match, Moon has been my pick to win this year’s event.
The contract signing pretty much had McMahon doing the heavy lifting in terms of tossing the jabs for both Rousey and Jax, which given their mic skills, was probably for the best. There are still a good few weeks before the PPV so I do wonder how they’ll continue to build this match and if Rousey will continue to be present.
My concern with this match comes from the fact that Rousey has yet to have a singles match in WWE, which was pointed out during the contract signing. We know she was originally set to face Mickie James during last week’s European tour but that changed. Reports suggest that WWE officials felt Rousey was “deemed not ready” but if she wasn’t ready against a seasoned veteran Mickie James, how/will she better in a match against someone who isn’t as experienced in a few weeks. Either way, I see Jax retaining due to some crazy involvement with Stephanie McMahon. Coincidence that she returned to Raw this week?
And finally, the qualifying MITB Ladder match this week. While it was refreshing to see Dana Brooke compete in a match again, it felt like it was more so to allow the Riott Squad play off the two on two numbers game. I would love to see Brooke return as an active member of the Raw Women’s division again.
I was a bit surprised to see Natalya get the win, as I’d figure she’d be at ringside for Rousey for her match. They’re really selling the friendship between these two aren’t they? I was for sure that Sarah Logan would win but maybe she will during next week’s gauntlet match.
What did you think of this week’s episode of Raw? Did you enjoy the contract signing? Who do you will win next week’s Last Chance match? Let us know in the comments below!