WWE Raw emanated from Cleveland, Ohio, hometown of former WWE NXT star Johnny Gargano. With the Triple H era underway, and multiple Triple H-backed stars already returning, rumors surfaced of Johnny Gargano being the latest to return. Ahead of the biggest WWE match of his career, Gargano’s former DIY tag team partner Ciampa teased a Gargano appearance on Twitter.
WWE Raw advertised Ciampa vs. Bobby Lashley for the United States Championship after Ciampa won two matches on WWE Raw last week. While Ciampa walks in as a massive underdog on paper, the new regime—particularly Triple H, who is a huge supporter of Ciampa—gives Ciampa more than a glimmer of hope in his first championship match on the main roster. Gargano was a trending topic on Twitter before and during the broadcast. While WWE Raw did not see the return of Johnny Gargano, it did see the return of Dexter Lumis. Lumis was (kayfabe) arrested presumably stemming from a car crash earlier in the broadcast.
WWE Raw also featured Rey Mysterio vs. Finn Balor; Seth Rollins vs. Angelo Dawkins and the debut of the WWE women’s tag team tournament. The first-round matchups included Iyo Sky and Dakota Kai vs. Tamina and Dana Brooke; Alexa Bliss and Asuka vs. Nikki A.S.H. and Doudrop; Raquel Rodriguez and Aliyah vs. Xia Li and Shotzi; and Nikkita Lyons and Zoey Stark vs. Natalya and Sonya Deville.
WWE Raw Ratings
- August 1, 2022 | 2.230 million
- July 25, 2022 | 1.901 million
- July 18, 2022 | 1.814 million
- July 11, 2022 | 1.735 million
- July 4, 2022 | 1.563 million
MORE FOR YOU
- WWE Raw Venue: Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse (Cleveland, Oh.)
- WWE Raw Tickets Distributed: 6,534
- WWE Raw Tickets Available: 187
WWE Raw Results| August 8, 2022
WWE Women’s Tag Team Tournament | First Round
- Iyo Sky and Dakota Kai vs. Tamina and Dana Brooke
- Alexa Bliss and Asuka vs. Nikki A.S.H. and Doudrop
- Raquel Rodriguez and Aliyah vs. Xia Li and Shotzi
- Nikkita Lyons and Zoey Stark vs. Natalya and Sonya Deville
WWE immediately put a focus on the women’s division with the show’s opening video package centered on Bayley’s new stable.
WWE Raw kicked off with Bayley, Iyo Sky and Dakota Kai. The trio got heat at points, but also had to combat “what” chants.
Bayley wasted no time putting over “Dakota Sky” and Iyo Sky. She quickly recovered from her “Dakota Sky” flub and managed to get even more heat.
Seth Rollins def. Angelo Dawkins
If WWE is really serious about eventually turning Montez Ford heel, it would be really cool to see him win this match, sparking jealously within Ford, who is already pegged as the breakout star of this tag team.
Of note, Montez Ford was kicked out of this match for throwing a temper tantrum.
There was a point in this match where Dawkins hit D’Lo’s patented Low Down, and many fans fell for it.
After several failed Curb stomp attempts, Seth Rollins finally beat Dawkins with the Pedigree. As long as Triple H is in charge, nobody is ever kicking out of the Pedigree again.
Kevin Owens Injures Ezekiel
Ezekiel didn’t receive an entrance, and poor Kevin Owens tripped on his way to the ring. Poor Zeke was pounced by Owens and injured before the match even started. Ezekiel’s prospects in the Triple H era continue to be grim.
A more serious Kevin Owens cut an incensed promo later on in the show. In the background, Nikki A.S.H. and Doudrop could be seen at the sene of a car crash. This wasn’t even mentioned by the WWE commentary team. Looks like the Triple H era is bringing about some much-needed subtlety.
Finn Balor def. Rey Mysterio
Backstage, Dominik Mysterio shoved Edge for inadvertently Spearing him.
Edge vs. Damian Priest in Toronto will be the most crowd heat Damian Priest has heard in his young WWE career.
Damian Priest is now referring to himself as “the Punishment” of The Judgment Day, a nod to his ROH days as Punishment Martinez.
Rey Mysterio walked out with no Dominik, and Core Graves remarked “Rey should’t have shorted on a babysitter.”
The crowd was hot for Balor vs. Mysterio, and Balor and Mysterio rewarded them for it.
Dominik mysterio returned just in time for the finish. Unfortunately, he had been apparently beaten down by Rhea Ripley. Somehow, there’s still a lingering chance that Dominik Mysterio will join The Judgment Day and was in on this possibly fake (kayfabe) beatdown.
Dakota Kai and Iyo Sky def. Dana Brooke and Tamina
While there was not much heat for this match, fans did chant “Bayley sucks!”
Dakota Kay and Iyo Sky are already starting to flash as a potentially great tag team and Sky won this match with an impressive moonsault.
Bobby Lashley def. Ciampa
After cutting a great promo in homage to Harley Race, Ciampa wore Race’s famed ring robe to the ring. This alone gave him a chance to upset Bobby Lashley, not even speaking of Triple H being a Ciampa supporter.
This felt like the main event of a two-hour Raw, and really, both things should be true.
Corey Graves dropped several references to Ciampa’s NXT days, including the phrase “Do it Yourself.”
That was about as good as Ciampa could have looked losing to Bobby Lashley. I’ve seen people beat Bobby Lashley and come out looking much weaker.
Omos def. Spencer Slade and Andrea Guercio
WWE is going back to basics with Omos in a squash match that mostly hid his weaknesses. Omos is undefeated in the new era and I expect things to stay that way.
If Omos can continue to improve, he could stand out even more with Triple H now pushing smaller talent.
Dolph Ziggler def. Chad Gable
Dolph Ziggler was celebrated as the hometown hero with chants of “let’s go Dolph!”
Predictably, parts of this match mirrored a collegiate wrestling contest between two standout amateur wrestlers.
After countless attempts at an ankle lock, Dolph Ziggler won this match out of nowhere with a super kick.
Backstage, during an Alexa Bliss and Asuka promo, there was more background footage of the mystery car crash. WWE security raced past the women, suggesting this was an emergency.
AJ Styles def. The Miz
There was an abrupt start to this match, in fact The Miz didn’t remove his t-shirt until the third hour.
Despite being in Cleveland, Ohio, fans still chanted “tiny balls!”
AJ Styles was on his way to winning this match, but Ciampa pulled the referee out of the ring. With Ciampa in the main event segment, it would almost be cruel to not debut Johnny Gargano.
There was a brutal spot where Miz threw a chair into Styles’ face during a Phenomenal Forearm.
Following Styles’ win, Dexter Lumis was seen getting arrested, possibly stemming from the car crash. This was a great episode of Raw.