In the midst of the buildup to the upcoming Payback pay-per-view on September 2, WWE Raw continues to deliver compelling storylines and thrilling matches. The latest episode showcased a highly anticipated clash between Intercontinental Champion Gunther and the resilient Chad Gable. Alongside this marquee bout, other matches and segments kept fans engaged and excited for what’s to come.
Opening Segment: Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens Reunite
The show kicked off with a fiery reception for Sami Zayn, who was welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd in Canada. Taking his time to soak in the chants, Zayn finally addressed the audience, only to be interrupted by the menacing presence of The Judgment Day. As the group surrounded the ring, the unexpected return of Kevin Owens injected new energy into the scene. Owens helped Zayn fend off the attackers and issued a challenge for a tag team match later in the evening, which The Judgment Day accepted. This segment showcased the crowd’s undeniable connection with Zayn and the immense reception Owens received upon his return.
The New Day vs. McIntyre and Riddle: A Preview of Things to Come
The action picked up with The New Day, Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston, taking on Drew McIntyre and Matt Riddle for a shot at the tag team titles. While the match had its moments, it fell short of its potential due to the strategic avoidance of McIntyre’s physicality until later in the match. Despite this, the match served as a setup for a potential feud between Riddle, McIntyre, and The Viking Raiders, keeping the tag team division buzzing with anticipation.
Gunther vs. Gable: David vs. Goliath Excellence
One of the most highly anticipated moments of the night was the Intercontinental Championship match between Gunther and Chad Gable. The two competitors delivered an exceptional performance that showcased their chemistry and storytelling prowess. Gable’s resilience and technical prowess were on full display as he took the fight to the dominant champion. The match concluded with Gable winning by count-out, although he didn’t capture the title. This finish preserved Gunther’s reign while elevating Gable’s credibility as a legitimate challenger.
Ripley’s Path to Payback
In the women’s division, Rhea Ripley faced off against Candice LeRae, continuing her momentum on the road to Payback. Ripley’s power was showcased as she controlled the match, leading to her victory. Raquel Rodriguez, who had been out of action due to injury, made her return and attacked Ripley. Rodriguez announced that she would be challenging Ripley for the title at Payback, setting the stage for an intense showdown.
Tozawa’s Surprising Victory
Akira Tozawa took on The Miz in an unexpectedly competitive match, with Tozawa securing a surprising victory. The involvement of LA Knight added an intriguing layer to the feud, ensuring that the storyline remains engaging and unpredictable.
Green and Niven’s Dominant Display
Chelsea Green and Piper Niven teamed up to face Katana Chance and Kayden Carter, presenting a dominant performance. While the match leaned towards being a squash, it effectively showcased Green and Niven as a formidable duo and kept their momentum going.
Main Event: Chaos Reigns
The main event saw Cody Rhodes, Sami Zayn, and Kevin Owens team up to face The Judgment Day, Ripley, and Damian Priest. The chaotic match brought a wave of excitement as all six Superstars brought their A-game. The crowd’s energy was palpable as the Canadian Superstars took center stage. While the match ended in disqualification, the subsequent six-man tag team contest provided ample action and thrills.
Conclusion: Setting the Stage for Payback
WWE Raw delivered another episode packed with intense action, intriguing storylines, and surprising twists. The highlight of the night was undoubtedly the Intercontinental Championship clash between Gunther and Chad Gable. With the Payback pay-per-view drawing near, WWE continues to build anticipation and excitement, leaving fans eager to see how these rivalries and storylines unfold on the road to September 2. As the card for Payback continues to take shape, WWE Raw ensures that the stakes remain high and the excitement never wanes.