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    Wednesday, July 7, 2021

    RAW Food for Thought (7/5/21): High on Riddle

    A ho-hum RAW was salvaged by the absolute joy that is Riddle. The Original Bro was the highlight of the penultimate RAW of the ThunderDome Era, with his stoner antics stealing the show on Miz TV. Later on, he and AJ Styles put on an entertaining match with a tribute to 80's classic The Karate Kid. Riddle is sports entertainment personified. He's clearly being groomed for a major push, even sans Randy Orton. I would not be surprised if he ends up world champion and headlining WrestleMania within two years. 

    There wasn't much development for the men's Money in the Bank Ladder Match compared to last week. John Morrison and Ricochet had another match without a conclusive ending, setting up an exciting Falls Count Anywhere Match for next week. Meanwhile, an irate Jinder Mahal stole Drew McIntyre's sword, setting up a potentially great SummerSlam feud. As someone who doesn't want Drew to win the briefcase, I hope Jinder and his goons interfere in the MITB match to really cement their feud. 

    The more interesting storyline developments happened in the women's division. The writers gave Shayna Baszler some of her cunning back in the middle of a tag match when she figured out how to stop Alexa's hypnosis powers. The match was great for setting up a potential tag feud between Shayna and Nia Jax against Eva Marie and Doudrop as well. After all, we can't rely on "Sexy Muscle Friends" vs. Natalya and Tamina forever.

    Apart from Riddle and the few things I mentioned above, this episode was forgettable. Maybe the next one will be better. The upcoming match-ups they announced definitely excited me for the final trip into the WWE ThunderDome. 

    Final Grade: C

    Stray Observations:

    • Match of the Night definitely goes to Riddle vs. AJ Styles! I thought AJ was going to win, and I really wanted him to. After all, he tends to be booked well while Riddle had to sell a serious injury. Oh well.
    • The Worst Match of the Night easily goes to Jaxson Ryker and R-Truth vs. Elias and Cedric Alexander. This was a huge waste of time for the 24/7 Championship Division, and it certainly did nothing for all four men. Lucha House Party vs. MACE and T-BAR was a much better way of advancing a story for its participants.
    • The segment between Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley also felt like a waste of time. Hopefully, they capitalize on the crutch fighting by using it as their Money In The Bank title match stipulation. An Ambulance Natch or a Stretcher Match would be cool too.
    • John Morrison needs to relax with the water puns! He's turning into this.
    • I know I said it was great that Drew McIntyre's promos were incorporating Scottish history and mythology, but he's starting to go overboard.
    Header image from WWE


    Kim Antonio is a contributor to Smark Henry and a lifelong fan of professional wrestling. He was first exposed to wrestling as a small child when his older cousin would practice finishers on him, which led him to hate wrestling. Later, he saw it on TV and was hooked ever since. He dreams of being a wrestling booker after watching Ready to Rumble and playing GM Mode on SmackDown vs. Raw. He hopes fellow fans will learn someday that there's nothing wrong with loving both shows of competing promotions. 
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    Item Reviewed: RAW Food for Thought (7/5/21): High on Riddle Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Kim Antonio
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