This week’s episode of Monday Night Raw from London, England kicked off with another sparkling edition of Miz TV.

Miz reminded us all of what winning the Money in the Bank can do for one’s career. But before long, his guest for the evening, Roman Reigns, made his way to the ring. Reigns was on Raw once again as apart of the “Wildcard Rule.”

Miz started to take the conversation toward each of their movie careers and said he and Roman should team up to be in a movie. However, Roman was not a fan of this and told Miz he didn’t want to hang out with this version of him. Roman went on to say he’d rather talk to the version of the Miz that stands up to the authority.

This led to a damn good promo (shocker there) from the Miz, who said despite not being the biggest & strongest man, he brings the fight & he will do that this Sunday when he steps inside a steel cage against McMahon.

McMahon came out to put a stop to the Miz TV segment, but it was all a setup for Bobby Lashley and Elias to attack the pair from behind. Shane then put the four men in a tag match after the commercial break.

The Miz promo and interaction with Reigns was excellent, but for an opening segment, it didn’t have the ideal juice you’d want to see. We have another rendition of the good guys (Reigns, Miz) battling the bad guys (Lashley, Elias) who are doing the dirty work for the authority.

Below I rate the rest of Monday Night Raw’s segments & give my rating at the bottom of the page.

Cesaro and Mysterio have quite the match:

These two men are two of the better in-ring performers that WWE has at their disposal. These two hit each other with some of their best moves. At one point Mysterio went for his patented ‘619’ before Cesaro countered it into a swing.

Though this did not get a ton of TV time, it was the best match of the night in my eyes. There was a flurry of moves from both competitors, and they had great chemistry.

Here’s to hoping these two meet again in the ring and get even more time to display their vast arsenal of offensive skills.

Firefly Funhouse takes a turn to the dark side: 

Bray Wyatt had a secret he wanted to show us, it is what he had been working on for quite some time.

Wyatt’s mood took an eerie turn, and the screen began to cut in and out. A creepy figure that appeared to be a more sinister version of Wyatt, with a clown mask and all, started singing and laughing.

This is what we all have been waiting for from Wyatt. This character had hints of a darker, more sinister side to it when the Funhouse debuted some weeks ago, but now we are beginning to see the payoff to this genius act put on by Wyatt himself.

Becky 2 Belts gets double the beatdown: 

Lacey Evans & Charlotte Flair were both on hand to sign the contracts for their respective title matches this Sunday at Money in the Bank.

These three women had quite a few good lines back at one another, but Becky stole the show on the microphone. I personally enjoyed her acting confused as to which women was Lacey, you know since they are both blondes.

Becky’s line such as “I made the history you thought you were owed.” when talking to Charlotte & telling the both of them “One of you cannot afford to lose your first title match, and one of you cannot afford to lose your millionth title match” were two killer lines from ‘The Man’ herself.

Charlotte spewed the same nonsense toward Becky that she has been for the past 9 months, granted she is a legit heel and can back it up in the ring. Lacey, on the other hand, may be able to hold her own on the mic, she has yet to prove it in the ring.

Becky’s cocky attitude may have gotten the better of her on this night, as the blondes both went after Lynch. Though she was able to fend them off at first, Lynch was overcome by both women and was put through the table (how original for a contract signing).

With how this segment went last night, it will be interesting to see how things fare for ‘Becky 2 Belts’ come Sunday night.”

Braun’s MITB chances wind up in the dumpster:

These two Superstars made their way up and down through the crowd and went at it in the concourse, and with the help of Baron Corbin hitting Strowman with trash cans, before putting him through a table.

This match came back down through the crowd, and then Zayn & Corbin made their way backstage.  Here is where Strowman would unleash or Zayn, until another member of the Raw roster, Drew McIntyre, interfered on Sami’s behalf. However, this still was not enough to keep the monster down.

Eventually, these two made it back into the arena. Strowman began to stack ladders on top of Zayn, before both Corbin and McIntyre beat Braun down, then helped Sami into the cover & we have a new participant in the Men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

When the stipulation of a ‘falls count anywhere’ match was added to this match, it seemed apparent that Zayn would be taking the place of Strowman. The stipulation of the match was made of interferences, as WWE had to keep Strowman strong, while still giving Zayn the win.

Baron Corbin just keeps winning:

It is always entertaining to watch Ricochet take part in any match just because of his aerial arsenal and vast offensive skillset in the ring. Heck Ricochet did such a good job he made Corbin look halfway decent.

Corbin countered a Ricochet aerial move with a nifty-looking ‘End of Days’ move to pick up the win. That Corbin push that many feared was coming seems to be gaining even more momentum. Slice Wrestling also reported that Corbin is being set up for a possible Universal Title title feud.

I’m all for a Baron Corbin mid-card run for the US title, but he is still nowhere near a legit Universal Title contender. This would give us a Jinder Mahal like title reign, and we don’t want that.

Reigns/Miz vs Elias/Lashley: 

As we see quite often, the opening segment led to a tag match with McMahon ringside. Overall this was an alright tag match. Miz and Reigns got worked out for much of the contest, but Elias did hit a spectacular meteora from the top rope on Miz.

Right before Reigns was going to tag in the match, Shane ripped Roman off of the apron and beat him down, resulting in a DQ. The trio of Shane, Elias & Lashley then beat down Miz, before Roman took them down with a soaring dive over the top rope.

In the end, Miz (with the help of a steel chair) & Roman stood tall. This was all to hype the pay-per-view this Sunday. WWE has been showing Shane getting into scuffles, only to run away and escape the beat down, which is significant because he will not be able to do that inside the cage.

Nikki Cross is on Raw?

Over the past couple years I had gotten used to seeing the “Twisted Sister” version of Nikki Cross. So when someone was there to talk with Alexa Bliss following her “phone call” it took me a minute to realize it was in fact Cross.

Bliss’ luggage was “lost,” and Cross offered to take the spot of Bliss in the fatal four-way match that was scheduled for later in the night. Unlike Mojo Rawley, I am actually interested to see where this direction of Nikki Cross & her seemingly new character goes.

Nikki Cross impressive in Raw debut: 

This match was to hype up the Women’s Money in the Bank ladder match, but it was also the first TV match for Cross since February. This may be a smart strategy by ‘The Goddess’ to preserve herself for the match on Sunday, which would be fitting given the Alexa Bliss character.

These women actually had a rather entertaining fatal four-way match, including an incredible dive from the top of a ladder. In the end, Cross hit a swinging neck breaker on Natalya to pick up the win, which got a pretty decent pop from the London crowd.

The actions from Cross & Bliss post-match may be indicating that Cross will be the new sidekick to Bliss, and get her out of tight situations and fight her battles. I am all for it, as it is something new. Plus it gets Nikki Cross on the show, who does have quite a bit of talent.

The (new?) Mojo Rawley debuts:

Before the Mojo match, a falls count anywhere match between Braun and Sami Zayn was set up by Shane. The winner of this match would take one spot in the Men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.

As for the Mojo match, he took on Apollo (who was one of the four wildcard superstars from Smackdown) and this match was a complete dud. I get WWE is trying to rebrand Mojo, but it is going to go nowhere.

This week’s Raw was a slight upgrade over what we saw last week but was by no means a home run, considering the fact it was the go-home show for Money in the Bank. WWE did an excellent job to hype the two Women’s title matches as well as the Men’s ladder match. But there were only backstage segments for the Universal title and the Women’s Money in the Bank ladder match took a back seat to Nikki Cross.

My rating: 3.5 out of 5.

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