Raw airs tonight (Aug. 23) with a live show from the Pechanga Arena in San Diego, California. This is the first Raw episode during the five week build towards Extreme Rules 2021 on September 26.
Get ready for more Goldberg!
Tonight’s Raw is the fallout show following SummerSlam 2021, where Goldberg once again failed to win the WWE championship. Bobby Lashley defeated the former WCW legend via referee stoppage, and then put Goldberg’s son in The Hurt Lock after the match was over. When Goldberg realized what happened to his son, he vowed to murder the Almighty WWE champion.
It’s clear that the angle between Goldberg and Lashley is not finished, which means we’re getting more Goldberg on WWE programming in 2021. WWE happens to have a show coming up in Saudi Arabia in October, and it’s a pretty decent bet that’s where the rematch will take place. That’s where Goldberg had his terrible matches against The Undertaker and The Fiend, after all.
Even if Goldberg isn’t in the building tonight for Raw, Lashley and MVP will have to address the controversial finish to the WWE championship match at SummerSlam.
Before we get to Saudi Arabia, though, Extreme Rules is coming up in September. Lashley will likely need a placeholder opponent for that card. Hopefully tonight’s episode will give us a clue as to who that challenger will be.
The rest of the title scene
Charlotte Flair defeated Nikki A.S.H. and Rhea Ripley in a triple threat match at SummerSlam to once again become the Raw women’s champion. A.S.H. was never presented as anything more than a fluky champion, and now the title scene is reset to exactly where it was prior to Nikki’s cash-in of the Money in the Bank contract. WWE has inflated Flair’s total number of championship reigns with wins in both July and August. If this recent rate of new monthly title reigns holds steady for Flair, she could very well tie her father’s record by the end of 2021.
RK-Bro won the Raw tag team titles at SummerSlam after Randy Orton pinned AJ Styles with an RKO. Given the dearth of tag teams on Raw, we’re probably getting a championship rematch at Extreme Rules. Maybe we’ll even get a
non-title “championship contender” match on Raw that Styles and Omos will have to win against the champs to earn that rematch. But I’m already thinking too far ahead here, because RK-Bro is going to have a big celebration tonight. Matt Riddle is sure to have some goofy surprises for his new best friend.
Damian Priest pinned Sheamus to become the new United States champion at SummerSlam. This feels like a feud that will get its title rematch on an episode of Raw rather than stretching it out until the next pay-per-view.
Natalya and Tamina have their hands full with Shotzi & Nox on SmackDown, but there’s nobody coming after them on Raw. As a result, the Women’s tag team titles probably won’t be featured on tonight’s episode.
Reggie is still very good at doing back flips to escape from jobbers who are chasing after his 24/7 championship. He can probably keep this up for a while, so R-Truth better devise a new plan for getting his baby back.
Other stuff to keep an eye on
- Babyface Drew McIntyre didn’t actually murder Jinder Mahal with his giant flame-generating sword at SummerSlam, but he did take a swing at Mahal’s henchmen. Drew made quick work of Jinder at SummerSlam, so there’s really no point in this feud continuing from here. Maybe Drew will finish the job in an impromptu 3-on-1 handicap match on Raw before finding a new opponent for Extreme Rules.
- Logan Paul will appear on John Morrison’s Moist TV tonight. Will Paul be able to eliminate the newfound friction between Miz and Morrison? The A-Lister and Johnny Drip Drip better get on the same page soon, because they won’t be able to beat the New Day in their current state.
- Nikki A.S.H. and Rhea Ripley will try to bounce back from their SummerSlam loss when they team up tonight to battle Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler.
- Eva Marie wrestled at SummerSlam and it was very very bad. Doudrop embarrassed Eva after she was defeated by Alexa Bliss, putting the Eva-lution on the brink of collapse.
- Karrion Kross is no longer the NXT champion, so now he can fully focus on his probable future 50/50 booking on Raw.
- Mustafa Ali and Mansoor are still dealing with MACE and T-BAR until further notice.
- Keith Lee hasn’t wrestled a televised match on Raw since he defeated Karrion Kross on Aug. 2. Lee has instead been given a steady dose of dark matches before Raw and SmackDown over the last few weeks.
- The repackaging of Elias has been teased for two consecutive weeks. This has left babyface Jaxson Ryker with nothing to do on Raw.
What will you be looking for on Raw tonight?