The Street Profits score in Raw debut, Cain Velasquez comes to the aid of Rey Mysterio, new 24/7 Champion crowned and more.
One of the more surprising moves in the WWE Draft on Night 1 was Raw’s selection of Drew McIntyre with the fifth overall pick. It appears, however, that Ric Flair was of the same mindset as the suits at USA who brought the Scot to Team Red. “The Nature Boy” opened Raw by naming McIntyre as the final member of Team Flair at WWE Crown Jewel, a “favor” the former NXT Champion was all too happy to accept. And while McIntyre hinted at having more to say in the future, for the time being, his business was clear: A bout against Team Hogan ace Ricochet that he happily offered Flair a ringside seat for, albeit with the grim caveat that things were about to get "uncomfortable."
Humberto Carrillo certainly did not waste his opportunity to make an impression on Raw, giving Universal Champion Seth Rollins all he could handle after some passive-aggressive shade compelled The Beastslayer to challenge the 205 Live veteran to a match. But with “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt looming ahead in a Universal Championship Falls Count Anywhere Match that can’t be stopped for any reason, Rollins was simply not going to let himself be defeated — let alone by an upstart, no matter how talented.
And make no mistake; Carrillo is talented. The purple-brand workhorse whipped Rollins to and fro with a seemingly bottomless array of springboard armdrags, darted the champion with suicide dives and generally gave Rollins such a fit that he couldn’t help but be impressed. Carrillo seemed inches from victory after a sky-high moonsault hit its mark, but his attempt at a second moonsault (the first only got two) was blocked by boots to the face from Rollins, who followed up with a superkick and Stomp for the victory.
Nonetheless, Carrillo seemed to have gotten, in some form, what he had come for. The champion was so impressed with his opponent’s efforts that he returned to the ring after the bell and shook Carrillo’s hand. He might not be ready to contend for the title, but the idea of Humberto Carrillo as Universal Champion is clearly not as farfetched as it was just a few hours earlier.
For a full week, the speculation surrounding The Street Profits was who they would recruit to even the odds against The O.C., who hold a distinct numbers advantage as long as United States Champion AJ Styles is lurking in the corner. As it turned out, that line of thinking may have been discounting the former NXT Tag Team Champions a little too much. Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins emphatically recorded a grinding, come-from-behind victory in their Raw debut, and the third man only made his presence known after Styles got himself ejected and threatened to derail the bout anyway.
The mystery equalizer was none other than Kevin Owens, a former Styles rival. The only hint the Profits gave before the bout was that their guy didn’t like Styles, and KO dropped The Phenomenal One with a Stunner on the ramp, teeing up The Street Profits to finish the match with a Dawkins spinebuster and a magnificent Frog Splash from Ford, both to Karl Anderson. So it’s a win for The Street Profits, who get the pin in their Raw debut. It’s a win for Owens, who got one over on a Superstar he still doesn’t like. And by the looks of things, it’s the first of many on both counts.
In other action … Drew McIntyre def. Ricochet … Drew McIntyre def. Ricochet … Rusev attacked Bobby Lashley at a restaurant following King's Court insults … Andrade def. Sin Cara … Raw Tag Team Champions The Viking Raiders def. Zack Ryder & Curt Hawkins … Cain Velasquez brawled with Shelton Benjamin following a confrontation with Rey Mysterio.