Raw airs tonight (Aug. 28) with a live show from FedEx Forum in Memphis, Tennessee. This is the final episode of Raw during the four week build towards Payback, which takes place this Saturday (Sept. 2).
Here we go again with Matt Riddle
Matt Riddle’s push in WWE has faded over the last year with Randy Orton off TV due to injury. Their RK-Bro odd couple tag team was very successful and made Matt an upper card fixture in WWE, but he hasn’t been able to maintain that spot as a solo wrestler.
However, Riddle appears to have a chance to recapture some of that past glory because he’s now part of an odd couple tag team with another WWE top star, Drew McIntyre.
Like Matt’s early days tagging with Orton, a lot of fans don’t expect longevity from this pairing. Drew McIntyre could probably use a heel turn now that he is back in WWE, and Matt’s head is right there waiting to be kicked off by him. It’s just a matter of time until Drew turns on this goofball, right?
That sounds fine on paper, but all it takes is for this new McRiddle team to get over with the fans and WWE may very well decide to stick with the duo going forward, just like what happened RK-Bro.
McRiddle lost last week’s match against New Day, and Drew tried to peacefully break things off with Matt right there. But New Day later encouraged them to stick together and even offered them a rematch.
Before that rematch happens though, Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston will have to face the Viking Raiders tonight. Could we be headed to a three way tag team match at Payback?
The rest of the title scene
Last week, Intercontinental Champion GUNTHER experienced his first loss in a one-on-one match on the WWE main roster when Chad Gable beat him by count out. Gable looks to secure a rematch for the belt when he gets Ludwig Kaiser in the ring for a match tonight.
World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins will defend the gold at Payback against Shinsuke Nakamura. Seth admitted there is some truth to what Shinsuke said about his back being messed up. Rollins plans to confront Shinsuke about it tonight, assuming Nakamura is man enough to do it.
WWE Tag Team Champions Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens are back in full force and are firmly involved in the business of The Judgment Day. Damian Priest and Finn Balor no longer trust each other, but there is a scenario where they might be challenging Zayn and Owens for the gold at Payback, depending on how Adam Pearce handles things tonight.
WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Piper Niven and Chelsea Green easily defeated Katana Chance and Kayden Carter last week. Actually, it’s more accurate to say that Piper Niven is the one who dominated them last week. With Katana and Kayden already taken care of, there aren’t any obvious teams left on Raw to challenge the champs, because the women’s tag division basically has no depth.
Raquel Rodriguez is finally cleared and will challenge Women’s World Champion Rhea Ripley for the gold at Payback. Will Raquel have a tune-up match tonight to shake off any potential ring rust? She last wrestled on July 17.
Other stuff to keep an eye on
- Even though Becky Lynch is facing Trish Stratus inside a steel cage at Payback, The Man knows that Zoey Stark might still find a way to interfere in their match. Therefore, she plans to take Zoey out of the equation altogether by destroying her in a Falls Count Anywhere match tonight.
- Tommaso Ciampa vows to climb back up the ladder to the very top of WWE. He starts that journey tonight with a match against Bronson Reed.
- The Miz was embarrassed last week when he lost a match against jobber Akira Tozawa. Will LA Knight show up on Raw to rub it in his face before they fight at Payback?
- Cody Rhodes is still figuring out what’s next for him in WWE now that he’s finished with Brock Lesnar but can’t challenge Roman Reigns for the WWE Universal championship. Cody will have a chat with Grayson Waller at Payback, but as far as tonight is concerned, maybe he’ll once again have Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens’ back in their war against The Judgment Day.
- Ricochet has practically been a non-factor on Raw since losing to Logan Paul at SummerSlam. He’s been stuck wrestling on Main Event the last two weeks.
- Will WWE put Indus Sher back on TV now that Superstar Spectacle in India is coming up on Sept. 8?
- Will any more tributes for Bray Wyatt or Terry Funk make it to air tonight?
What will you be looking for on Raw?