Heading into tonight’s show we knew that the women’s tag titles would be on the line between the champions Bayley & Sasha Banks vs. The Kabuki Warriors. What we didn’t know is in addition to this exciting match we would see the return of both Bianca Belair and Shayna Baszler.
First came Belair as she finally evened the odds for Ruby Riott when it comes to The IIconics. Over the past couple of weeks, Riott has fallen to both Peyton Royce and Billie Kaye in separate one-on-one matches. This week, The IIconics expected a handicap match as Riott has no friends according to them. Belair entered declaring she will have Riott’s back this week.
The majority of the match showed why The IIconics are united and strong as a team. They isolate Riott through most of the match preventing her from tagging in Belair. Billie Kay even hits Shades of Kay on Riott but her determination to stop her losing streak allowed her to kick out.
After a jawbreaker from Riott to Peyton Royce, she was able to create separation as she crawls her way to her corner to try and tag in her partner. Kay is able to get her own tag however and tries to drag Riott away from her corner. Riott is able to break away and get the tag to the EST. Belair takes it to Kay including driving her into the corner and doing squats with Kay on her shoulder.
After a handspring that conveniently knocks Royce off the ring apron, Belair goes for a cover on Kay, but Royce is able to break it up. Riott comes back in the ring just enough to deliver a step up enziguri to Royce. This allows Belair to dodge a Shades of Kay to delivered a KOD. She picks up the pin and the win for her team putting Riott finally in the win column.
As mentioned earlier, Baszler made her return as well tonight. As R Truth was in the ring asking Akira Tozawa why he had so many ninjas to help him, Baszler’s music hits. Tozawa sent his ninjas one by one to Baszler who made short work of each one of them. He decided to then duck out of the ring himself by going underneath the bottom rope. Truth took the same route as he backed his way out of the ring to avoid an attack from the Queen of Spades.
She called out all the “weak-minded champions” who she believes are fooling themselves. Fooling themselves under the delusion that they are in control. She says she is here to hit them with a dose of reality, and she is that reality.
The main event of the show yet again went to the women, as it should be (always). It was the advertised Women’s Tag Team Championship match between Sasha Banks & Bayley vs. The Kabuki Warriors. And what a match it was.
The tag champs don’t waste any time as the match begins with them jumping The Kabuki Warriors before the bell rings. Kairi Sane and Asuka are able to fight back as they are able to get the champs out of the ring so that they can reconvene.
Personally, a lot of the highlights of the match involve Sane. Once Sane is tagged into the match she hits Bayley with a running blockbuster only to have Banks interfere. Sane then turns around and executes an arm drag on both. This then turns into a double spear on the tag champs. Sane doesn’t stop there as she hits a Bayley in the corner with a Sliding D for a near fall.
Both Banks and Asuka make blind tags as Bayley is sent out of the ring. Banks also ends up out of the ring as well and The Kabukis hit a double hip attack in the ropes. Asuka then focuses on Banks for this portion of the matchup.
The next big highlight comes from the champs as they showed their tag team skills by launching Sane into the barricade/plexiglass. Banks is then in control of Sane with a chin lock once they get back in the ring. After some more double teaming on Sane, Banks nails her with a double knee strike for a count of two. After this, there is some back and forth between Bayley and Asuka.
The champs team up on Sane yet again as Bayley lands a top rope hurricarana followed up by Banks hitting a top rope cross-body. Moments later Asuka traps Banks in the Asuka Lock but Banks is able to get to the ropes. After a blind tag by Sane, she and Asuka take out Banks with some vicious kicks before Sane hits an Insane Elbow for a near fall.
To conclude the match with Bayley and Asuka on the outside, Sane hits Banks with an Alabama slam. She then gets caught charging Banks who locks in the Bank Statement to get a tap out. Bayley and Sasha Banks retain their Women’s Tag Team Titles with a submission victory.
Let’s get into the Winners & Losers:
WINNER: Bianca Belair
A huge return for Bianca was welcomed with open arms. It seems like the original plan was to have Liv and Ruby reunite but with current circumstances, they may be substituting Bianca to keep the storyline going. Of course, this could very well also be a one-off as well. The excuse to keep Bianca off TV because there is nothing for her is rather ridiculous. There is plenty of ways to use her and this one, albeit unexpected, was fun to see.
WINNER: Ruby Riott
Finally back in the win column, although she didn’t get the pinfall – but still. Good to see her back to being a winner after several weeks of losing combined with her not picking a win since returning from injury.
WINNER: Sasha Banks
Getting the win and submission for her team made her look very good heading into Extreme Rules. Although she didn’t cause Asuka to submit and it was Kairi, it still sent a good message. However, in the same regards, I don’t see Sasha going over on Asuka on Sunday.
The main event was a great match. All four women showed out, but Kairi was a shining star during it. I really hope she isn’t leaving because the more I see her the more I appreciate her value.
I don’t really have a loser for this week. The IIconics could maybe be considered losers but just one loss over weeks of wins I don’t see as a setback. Overall a pretty entertaining RAW for me.
What did you think of this week’s RAW? Who were your Winners & Losers? Leave your thoughts in the comment section below.