WWE Raw Recap: August 12, 2019
S27 episode 33 Aired on August 12, 2019

AJ Styles, Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson are running roughshod over the red brand, but they’ve made a massive enemy in the form of Braun Strowman, who joined Ricochet in helping Seth Rollins repel a 3-on-1 attack from the United States Champion and the Raw Tag Team Champions. Find out what The Monster Among Men’s assist could mean for next week’s Raw, and learn which Superstar returned to WWE for the first time since WrestleMania.

Late last year, Andrade began to make his mark at the expense of Rey Mysterio on SmackDown LIVE, and he seems to be doing so again on Raw, earning his third consecutive victory against the former World Heavyweight Champion — or, technically, his third and fourth: Andrade ran the table in a 2-out-of-3 Falls Match against The Master of the 619; about the best thing that can be said for Mysterio was that his mask escaped untouched, but the loss was still demoralizing enough that The Ultimate Underdog was seemingly questioning his future in a backstage interview.

Andrade’s future, however, looks bright. The former NXT Champion pinned Mysterio almost immediately for the first fall, with Zelina Vega handing an assist from the outside by holding Mysterio’s foot to the ropes. Rey rallied back to connect with the 619, but Andrade countered a Frog Splash with his knees, rolled his legendary opponent to his feet, and struck with the Hammerlock DDT. The loss hit Mysterio hard; during the backstage interview, he tearfully admitted that he was unsure where his career was headed at this point, and he walked off with more questions than answers — for us, and for him.

Sasha Banks is back with electric blue hair and a vengeance to go with it, making her first appearance since WrestleMania with a brutal statement against two of Raw’s toughest Superstars. The first to feel The Boss’ wrath was Natalya, sporting an apparent dislocated elbow after her SummerSlam loss and square in the middle of paying tribute to her late father, Jim "The Anvil" Neidhart, on the one-year anniversary of his passing. The Boss initially embraced Natalya in friendship before dropping her and going to work on her arm, an attack that was only stopped by the appearance of Becky Lynch.

The arrival of the Raw Women's Champion was certainly to the benefit of Natalya, who put some much-needed distance between herself and Banks. But Becky fared no better than her former opponent: Despite being driven by a desire to come after everyone who had done her wrong, The Man found herself subjected to several vicious steel chair strikes and slapped her across the face before a crew of officials intervened. The final image of Sasha's return to Raw was The Boss exiting the arena with a satisfied strut up the ramp, a smile across her face and two enemies to her name. Just the way she likes it.

So who’s the better champion on Raw? Seth Rollins is definitely the more honorable, having fought AJ Styles down the middle despite the lingering threat of The O.C. at ringside; Styles, on the other hand, is probably the more opportunistic, willingly taking a disqualification loss that cost him the match but gave him the chance to knock The Beastslayer down a few pegs. But while The Phenomenal One was, perhaps, the cleverer champion, he definitely turned out to be the unluckiest of the two.

It wasn’t that Ricochet came to The Beastslayer’s aid in an attempt to even the odds against the good brothers — despite his best efforts, the high-flyer was dispatched quickly by a Boot of Doom from Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson. Braun Strowman’s arrival proved to be the final nail in AJ Styles’ night; The Monster Among Men singlehandedly took out Gallows & Anderson before planting Styles with a Running Powerslam. Rollins, understandably, was wary of the big man’s presence, especially when Braun hungrily eyed the Universal Title at ringside. But Strowman’s decision to hand the title to Rollins and shake his hand — and Styles' post-show issuing of a U.S. Title challenge to The Monster Among Men — proved to be a much-needed sigh of relief. In a world where he’s got a target on his back, it must be comforting for Seth Rollins to know that regardless of whether Strowman accepts The Phenomenal One's challenge, The Monster Among Men doesn't appear to be looking his way. For now.

In other action … United States Champion AJ Styles confronted Universal Champion Seth Rollins … Samoa Joe def. Sami Zayn … The Miz def. Dolph Ziggler … Ricochet def. Elias … Drew McIntyre def. Cedric Alexander … Robert Roode def. No Way Jose … The Revival def. R-Truth to become the new 24/7 Champions; R-Truth def. The Revival to win the 24/7 Championship; Elias def. R-Truth to win the 24/7 Championship … The Viking Raiders def. Carter Mason & Sebastian Suave … and WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross def. The Kabuki Warriors.

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