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WWE Raw preview (Sept. 3, 2018): Additives

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Team Red returns for a quick trip around the globe for Labor Day in Columbus, Ohio.

The Headliner(s)

Among the top programs being hyped by WWE.com’s official preview for the Sept. 3 Raw is a match between The B-Team and The Revivial for the brand’s Tag Team Titles.

Almost all of our readers can probably name all four wrestlers on those teams and tell you which pair currently holds the straps. A slightly smaller number could break down how they won them and what’s been going on lately in their feud with the challengers. Some can probably offer highlights of Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel, Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder’s WWE careers, with special emphasis on their various NXT accolades.

But get out into the folks who catch Raw a couple times a month and don’t make it a habit to check wrestling websites on the regular, no matter how talented the wrestlers or how fun the gimmick, the Monday night tag scene is not something which is going to make an impression.

I’m a Top Guys mark from way back. Their 2016 run was some of the best tag wrestling I’ve ever seen. Axel is a gifted wrestler who’s finally found his place by embracing his inner goofball. Bo is very funny performer who’s figured out he works best as part of an ensemble. They’re all useful pieces, but regardless of who wins the belts tonight, I’m not sure any of them can change the perception of Raw’s tag division as being pre-show fodder along with the cruiserweights.

It’s a little baffling, too, as two established teams made up of names many casual fans would recognize have been feuding for a while. But for whatever reason, the issues between Dolph Ziggler & Drew McIntyre and Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins haven’t entered into the same story as the red & silver straps.

The point of contention for those two units has been the Intercontinental Championship Rollins holds. Seth just won it from Dolph, who beat him for it in the first place. McIntyre’s help made Ziggler too much for The Architect to handle, so he brought back his old partner Ambrose from injury.

Reports say the two teams will have a tag match at Hell in a Cell on Sept. 16. Will the Tag Titles be represented at all in San Antonio? Wouldn’t involving The Shield and The Show in the hunt for titles they can wear make more sense than, say, casting them as extras in the battle for another belt?

The title scene

Especially when the story they’re playing a supporting role in will now have its big next act take place in a structure which prohibits outside interference. But thinking Seth and Dean won’t be able to get in the Cell to help Universal Champ Roman Reigns is only one of the questionable decisions Braun Strowman’s made lately, along with cashing in his Money in the Bank contract weeks in advance and turning heel to partner with McIntyre & Ziggler.

The Big Dog will be watching for attacks from three potential assailants. Women’s Champ Ronda Rousey will need to keep her head on a swivel for even more threats. Alexa Bliss is gathering allies like Alicia Fox and Mickie James to try and ensure her rematch with Ronda is less one-sided than their SummerSlam fight. Plus, Rousey knows she’ll be teaming with the Bellas against The Riott Squad next month in Australia. Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan and Sarah Logan will be dealing with Nikki and Brie’s return to the ring in Columbus, but they also may be looking for an early advantage on the champ for Melbourne.

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- On the subject of Super Show-Down, Raw is spending more and more time hyping that Oct. 6 Network special/house show’s main event. Shawn Michaels will be on Raw tonight to get us excited by recounting his history with Undertaker and Triple H. Will old HBShizzle reveal he has a role to play in “One Last Time”?

- He quit, and we kind of hope it’s a story that lingers longer than similar stories from the recent past. Will Kevin Owens Steen still be chilling in Disney World tonight, or is he back on the grind already?

- Baron Corbin got first taste of real power as acting General Manager last week, and he used it to... make sure he beat Finn Bálor (the Man, not the Demon).

- Since Elias is getting beat up by the Legends returning for Evolution right now, Bobby Lashley has moved on to beating up tag teams like The Ascenions (see, I told you the tag scene could use a makeover).

- Maybe making fun of Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch’s troubles is good for their team chemistry. It helped Sasha Banks pick up a win over Dana Brooke. But Brooke’s Titus Worldwide troupe isn’t exactly on the same page themselves these days...

Two weeks until Hell in a Cell!

What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?