Match Ratings For 5/17/21 WWE Raw From Sean Ross Sapp

AJ Styles (w/ Omos) defeated Elias (w/ Jaxson Ryker) via DQ
4.5/10

This match just isn't for me. The action is okay, but slows to a crawl at one point and they've given me no reason to care about Elias or Jaxson Ryker at all in recent weeks. Ryker causing a DQ before Styles does the Phenomenal Forearm isn't gonna do it. Elias beating down AJ Styles after the match isn't gonna do it. Omos chases Elias off. This was a shitty way to set up a tag team title program -- a DQ for a couple of people that have collectively won one of their last ten matches.

Io Shirai Segment, Women's Tag Team Match, Million Dollar Crowning Added To 6/15 NXT

Angel Garza defeated Drew Gulak
SQUASH

A rose up someone's asshole isn't a feud ender, so here we go. Garza tries to do a slingshot reverse suplex, but ends up doing a slingshot Stunner and it looked kind of cool. Backbreaker and Wing Clipper get the win. Guess we had to see this again. It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time. A rose goes into Gulak's match.

WWE 24/7 Championship
Akira Tozawa defeated R-Truth (c) to become champion

Oh hey, the 24/7 Title still exists. Cool! Tozawa creeps up on R-Truth and pins him. It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time. I'm just copying and pasting that.

Kofi Kingston (w/ Xavier Woods) defeated Randy Orton (w/ Riddle)
4.25/10

Randy Orton and New Day are lured backstage by Riddle, who wants Orton to apologize. He does NOT. Riddle sings Orton's theme song as they come out together.

Kofi Kingston does a slingshot Vader Bomb. That was dope. I don't think Randy Orton getting rolled up after getting distracted by a TROMBONE is dope, though. All for Kofi just having Orton's number though. That was just a shitty finish to me. I'd rather interference then a dumb distraction. Riddle pushes down Xavier Woods.

WWE Women's Tag Team Championship
Tamina & Natalya (c) defeated Shayna Baszler & Nia Jax (w/ Reginald)
4/10

Tamina and Natalya join Alexa Bliss on the playground. Lilly asks their favorite colors. Alexa says Lilly likes Tamina because she beats Reginald. Alexa Bliss is doing her best with this. It's going to have a very small audience, but she's doing good with it.

Mandy Rose & Dana, who walked out of their last two-on-two match because it "wasn't worth it" and Lana & Naomi -- who lost a tag title match two weeks ago, arguing over who deserves a title shot.

It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time. Shayna is laying it in tonight, which is cool. Nia is not exactly nimble with her bumps. Tamina seems really reinvigorated, but gets slammed by Nia. Jax got kicked off the middle rope. Tamina and Natalya get the win when Alexa Bliss causes fire to shoot from the ringpost. Another distraction. Reginald was great though.

Sheamus defeated Ricochet
6/10

"The accusations that Ricochet stole his hat and jacket?" We SAW IT! It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time.

Sheamus dumped Ricochet at the ring belt area at one point. Oh my god, Ricochet BOUNCED off of Sheamus' knees on a moonsault attempt. That was nasty. I was getting excited about this match until I realized it was "to put himself in position for a title shot." Why should that matter here when it doesn't anywhere else on the show? I mean, it SHOULD, but so should everything else. I've also learned that apparently last night also wasn't a title match. Okay then. I'll at least enjoy watching Ricochet hitting a 450 and kicking out of a nasty Brogue Knee. Brogue Kick gets the win. I'd rather them use Ricochet to make other people look great and have fun matches than not use him on Raw at all, I guess.

Sheamus tells Lashley to watch out.

Asuka defeated Charlotte Flair
6/10

It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time. Rhea Ripley is out for commentary

I will always love the Charlotte Flair headscissors stomp spot. She rolls and throws Asuka this time. I love Asuka busting out a bulldog, too. We need more bulldogs in 2021 wrestling. Charlotte does a less smooth version of Andrade's back elbow. They're going very physical and rough, and it's suiting them well. The near falls don't look planned, and it doesn't look like anyone is waiting to kick out. This is a huge point of attraction to me in this match. There are tons of great transitions and escapes, and nearfalls here. Charlotte gets hung up on Rhea Ripley and we get ANOTHER distraction leading to a finish. So Charlotte probably shouldn't be in the title picture. Cool. Do what Rhea says and get some new competition.

Lumberjack Match
Damian Priest defeated John Morrison
6.5/10

This is an honest to god Lumberjack match and Morrison is competing in honor of Miz. It doesn't do much for the "giving different guys a chance" talking point if they're just having them do the same thing and face the same people each time. Nikki Cross serving as a lumberjack is a highlight of this match, and it's a fine match. John Morrison is better than ever. I don't think he's ever put it all together in WWE quite like he is now. His offense is incredible. So is Priest's, as he does a cool Cliffhanger DDT. Damian Priest's dive and superplex onto piles was incredible too. That was one of the better lumberjack matches I've seen. Damian Priest and John Morrison killed it. Lumberjacks were great, too. Priest wins with a top rope huracanrana and Hit The Lights. Priest says Miz and Morrison are in the past now. He teases accepting Lashley's challenge.

Kofi Kingston (w/ Xavier Woods) defeated Bobby Lashley (w/ MVP)
5.5/10

MVP got Lashley five girls. MVP puts over Bobby Lashley's victory, but is interrupted by Drew McIntyre. Drew challenges Bobby Lashley for his open challenge, but MVP clarifies that it's for anyone but Drew or Braun Strowman. I really wish WWE would let programs breathe instead of doing title matches until you never want to see them again.

Shelton Benjamin teases accepting the challenge, and Cedric talks trash to him and gets punched. I like that a bunch of different stars teased accepting Lashley's challenge.

Kofi Kingston vs. Bobby Lashley for the WWE Title in the main event of Raw. Rad. Ah, nevermind. Bait and switch. Okay then. It's not a title match. But Kofi gets slammed big time. Before the commercial, Kofi does a huge Trust Fall dive, but gets taken over shortly after. WWE went to a recap video in the middle of a main event match. Xavier Woods distracting the world champ isn't a good thing, but there's at least continuity from earlier in the night. Then Lashley does a Yokosuka Cutter and Gets To The Chopper. The finish is a Drew McIntyre cane shot to Lashley. So I mean Kofi Kingston should be getting a title shot, no matter what, even over Drew.

Rating Guide
10- Perfect, 9- MOTY Territory, 8- Excellent, 7- Great, 6- Good, 5- Average to above average, 4- Slightly below average, 3 or below: Poor

Each match starts at a 5 and slides up and down based on entertainment, execution, time, environment, reaction and stakes. The ratings are in no way an indication of a "star rating," which is a completely different system. A standard, non-offensive "TV match" lands at a 5. The gap between 5.75-6 is generally the largest, with anything reaching 6 being recommended viewing.
These are opinions, and incredibly inconsistent ones that may change upon a second viewing, or sitting on the match for a period of time. Don't take them too seriously, and have (and share) your own! Our opinions mean exactly the same amount as yours.

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