Rowdy Recap: Week of July 15, 2019

LaToya Ferguson
Adam Cole, Johnny Gargano (source: WWE)

With so much weekly content on WWE TV, it can be difficult to keep track of everything.

That’s where Rowdy Recaps come in, looking back at the week in WWE TV and narrowing down the highlights of the big three shows (and sometimes more). (205 Live and NXT UK will certainly get some more love and appreciation in the future, but baby steps.)

So: Let’s take a look back at the past week in WWE!

Monday Night RAW (July 15, 2019)

Quick & Dirty Results:

  • Ricochet & The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) def. Robert Roode & The Revival (Dash Wilder & Scott Dawson), in 2-out-of-3 Falls match
  • The Viking Raiders (Erik & Ivar) def. local talent
  • Cedric Alexander def. Drew McIntyre
  • Samoa Joe def. Finn Balor
  • Zack Ryder def. Mike Kanellis
  • The Club (AJ Styles, Karl Anderson, Luke Gallows) def. The Lucha House Party (Kalisto, Lince Dorado, & Gran Metalik)
  • Natalya def. Alexa Bliss, Naomi, & Carmella, in a Fatal-4-Way Elimination match for the #1 Contendership to the RAW Women’s Championship
  • R-Truth def. Drake Maverick (c), for the WWE 24/7 Championship
  • Seth Rollins def. Roman Reigns, Braun Strowman, Randy Orton, Cesaro, Big E, Rey Mysterio, Sami Zayn, & Bobby Lashley, in a 10-Man All-Star Battle Royal for the #1 Contendership to the Universal Championship

The Highlights:

Holy crap, Drake Maverick is never going to consummate his marriage, is he? Maverick’s life continues to be a comedy of errors because of the WWE 24/7 Championship, but this right here is a whole new level of pain and suffering for the guy. And to think, he was so excited to spend the night with his new wife as “Mr. and Mrs. 24/7 Champion.” Instead, he ended up getting the small package.

I know for how goofy the 24/7 Championship stuff is, it seems somewhat ridiculous that it ends up a Rowdy Recap highlight at least once every week, but you’ve got to look at it this way: Every week, the 24/7 Championship shenanigans are easily the most surprising and original (and entertaining) moments on WWE TV. On RAW, especially. One day, it’s going to spill out onto NXT, and you know what? People are going to lose their collective shit.

The only real issue with all things 24/7 is that it doesn’t seem like it will ever truly be a feud between more than just Maverick and R-Truth. That will have to change eventually, though it might only end with both men in a body bag. Or in another large blue crate.

Holy crap, “The Fiend” is here. After months of Firefly Funhouse vignettes and Bray Wyatt’s special puppet friends popping up in the background of live WWE shows, we’re finally seeing what exactly the new version of Wyatt is like, in the ring. Unfortunately, the Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe match that preceded all of this was only about a minute and a half, otherwise, it would’ve factored into this highlight. But yeah…

Remember when you were a kid and The Undertaker and Kane (and Paul Bearer) freaked you the hell out? Wait, was that just me? Well, anyway, that’s the same case for Bray Wyatt as “The Fiend.” And Bray Wyatt in the Firefly Funhouse. And Bray Wyatt now, in general. And I assume it’s not just kids who are freaked out: Because it freaked me the hell out as a full-grown adult.

Holy crap, Cedric Alexander defeated Drew McIntyre in a one-on-one match. And you know what? He deserves it, after coming in last week to “help” Roman Reigns, only to lose the tag team match for him. Let the Age of Alexander officially begin.

Drew McIntyre, Shane McMahon (source: WWE)

SmackDown! LIVE (July 16, 2019)

Quick & Dirty Results:

  • Aleister Black def. Cesaro
  • Charlotte Flair def. Liv Morgan
  • Ember Moon & Bayley def. Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville
  • Randy Orton, Samoa Joe, & Elias def. The New Day (Kofi Kingston, Big E, Xavier Woods)
  • The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka & Kairi Sane) def. The IIconics (Billie Kay & Peyton Royce) (c), via Count-out in a WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship match
  • Apollo Crews def. Andrade
  • Kevin Owens vs. Dolph Ziggler went to a No Contest

The Highlights:

More Shane McMahon is never a highlight, but his “SmackDown Town Hall” and everything that spawned from it definitely is. From Roman Reigns calling him out to the set-up for Andrade vs. Apollo Crews to the Charlotte Flair/Liv Morgan interaction (leading to a highlight of a match for them as well) to a “banned” Kevin Owens ultimately Stunnering him (before ultimately Stunnering Dolph Ziggler in the main event of SmackDown).

Liv Morgan honestly put up one hell of a fight in this match, and that, specifically, is the crux of this highlight. It would’ve been even more impressive had she pulled out the unexpected win against Charlotte, but baby steps. I believe her when she says she’ll “be real” when she comes back, whatever that means. (Hopefully it means The Riott Squad will reunite. Squad! Squad!)

Also a highlight? For the first time in a long time, there are multiple compelling women’s segments and matches on SmackDown (and main roster WWE TV, in general). And they’re longer than a minute and a half too! Sure, The IIconics’ title defense against Kairi Sane and Asuka isn’t even a real match, but at least they (and the titles) were even on TV, and The IIconics continue to be the longest reigning, defending WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions of all-time.

But we do get Ember Moon and Bayley against Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose! (It still makes no sense that Carmella didn’t join forces with Ember—considering Sonya and Mandy have been harassing both of them—but R-Truth is a handful, you know?)

Apollo Crews, Kushida (source: WWE)

NXT (July 17, 2019)

Quick & Dirty Results:

  • Matt Riddle def. Arturo Ruas
  • Bronson Reed def. Dexter Lumis, in an NXT Breakout Tournament First Round match
  • Kushida def. Apollo Crews
  • Adam Cole (c) vs. Twan Tucker, for the NXT Championship went to a No Contest

The Highlights:

Marina Shafir, Mia Yim (source: WWE)

It looks like Shayna Baszler has no choice now but to accept Mia Yim’s title challenge. You can read more about that here.

Holy crap, after weeks of home movie vignettes, Killian Dain is officially back in Full Sail. His target? friend Matt Riddle. Right after Riddle pretty much mercs poor Arturo Ruas. I’m honestly still not sure what point Dain’s been trying to make all these weeks, but after his attack on Riddle, I feel like it’s been made.

NXT Breakout Tournament continued this week with Dexter Lumis (fka Samuel Shawn vs. Bronson Reed (fka Jonah Rock). While neither man is as unknown as Boa—both with their own histories in the world of indy wrestling/sports entertainment outside of WWE—they’re arguably the two competitors in this “rookie” tournament with the most to prove.

With Lumis wanting to show off his opponent’s skin in his basement and Reed wanting to shows off his “Australian Strong Style”, this match is definitely a change of pace from the other first round matches. It’s an absolute psychopath (and that’s me putting it nicely) like Lumis vs. a hoss like Reed, and neither man is a “flippy guy” either.

Last week on NXT, General Manager William Regal announced that Apollo Crews would be appearing in this week’s NXT to take on Kushida. As expected, the match absolutely rocks. Hell, even just the ovation Crews gets once he enters Full Sail absolutely rocks.

Challengers have been coming for all brands to get a shot at Kushida, and while it’s not doing what they’d like for their win-loss records, it’s doing something to raise their stock in the eyes of the WWE Universe. Sure, Crews loses this match—but you can’t deny this is the first time in ages he’s been a highlight of weekly WWE TV, can you?

Adam Cole is done with his BAY BAY Championship Celebration tour, and now he’s ready to defend the NXT Championship for the first time on NXT TV… against Twan Tucker, one of the wrestling school students (back in Ohio) Johnny Gargano spoke to back when he first won the championship.

Unfortunately, that match doesn’t happen: Because Gargano also comes out to beat Cole’s ass up and down Full Sail. (After Tucker gets confirmation that the rest of Undisputed Era aren’t around. Whoops.) It’s definitely some righteous fury to end this week’s NXT.

You can watch last week’s RAW and SmackDown on Hulu and NXT on the WWE Network.

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