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Welcome to week 33 of “RAW is WAR: 2009 vs. 2019.” This is a 52-week project to determine which year of Monday Night Raw was better: 2009 or 2019. Each week, we’ll have the three biggest takeaways from the shows, extra analysis and thoughts on the rest of the show, and then a final score for each show. Whichever score is higher wins, and whichever year wins the most week wins bragging rights for life … kind of.

It’s the last show before SummerSlam in 2009. Meanwhile, the 2019 show continues to build toward Clash of Champions. Which Raw will have a better episode? Time to find out!

August 17, 2009 Raw in St. Louis, MO

THE CHAMPIONS:

  • WWE Champion: Randy Orton; No. 1 contender: John Cena
  • United States Champion: Kofi Kingston; No. 1 contender: TBD
  • Divas Champion: Mickie James; No. 1 contender: Gail Kim
  • Unified Tag Team Champions: Chris Jericho and Big Show; No. 1 contenders: Cryme Tyme

Detailed “play by play” of the show here.

THREE BIGGEST TAKEAWAYS:

  • Kingston, James retain their titles — Guest host Freddie Prinze Jr. said that “SummerSlam starts early” and announced Kingston and James would defend their titles. Kingston defeated Carlito in a fun match, while James defeated Gail Kim in a match that wasn’t so good. I feel bad for James and Kim, as they’re two of the better female wrestlers on Raw. The ending of the match was incredibly botched, though, and James didn’t look happy at all following the match. A disappointing title match after a fun fatal four-way match last week.
  • Legacy ruins the DX reunion — This was probably the best segment of the night. After DX, Shawn Michaels and Triple H, did all the pomp and circumstance of their entrance, Cody Rhodes and Ted DiBiase came out of nowhere to attack DX. It was a vicious assault that culminated with Rhodes hitting both HHH and Michaels with Michaels’ boot. I’m really excited for this tag team match at SummerSlam. The build to this has been really good.
  • Cena stands strong heading to SummerSlam — Cena and Orton tagged together against Big Show and Jericho, and it went exactly the way you’d expect it to. Cena ultimately pinned Jericho for the win, but afterwards, chaos broke out. It ended with Cena standing tall, though, heading into Sunday. This was a fine main event, but nothing special.

ANALYSIS FROM REST OF SHOW:

  • Freddie Prinze was a good host. You can tell he’s a lifelong wrestling fan and knew what he was talking about. His skit with Santino Marella was amazing and the backbreaker he took from Orton was solid. I enjoyed having him on the show.
  • Macaulay Culkin made an appearance! He helped Hornswoggle defeat Chavo Guerrero in a falls count anywhere match! That was so random, but I loved it.

SCORE: 7/10. Another fun Raw. The 2009 shows have consistently been entertaining. The quality of show really depends on the guest host, and this week was solid. The crowd was hot and being in Orton’s hometown added another layer to the crowd dynamics.

August 19, 2019 Raw in St. Paul, MN

THE CHAMPIONS:

  • Universal Champion: Seth Rollins; No. 1 contender: TBD
  • United States Champion: AJ Styles; No. 1 contender: Braun Strowman
  • Raw Tag Team Champions: Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson; No. 1 contenders: TBD
  • 24/7 Champion: Elias (NEW); No. 1 contender: everyone
  • Raw Women’s Champion: Becky Lynch; No. 1 contender: TBD
  • Women’s Tag Team Champions: Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross; No. 1 contenders: TBD

Detailed “play-by-play” of the show here.

THREE BIGGEST TAKEAWAYS:

  • Braun Strowman and Seth Rollins are tag team champions — Yes, you read that correctly. The night ended with Strowman and Rollins defeating Gallows and Anderson for the tag titles. This all after Strowman lost his US title match to AJ Styles via disqualification when Gallows and Anderson interfered, prompting Rollins to run in for the save. The tag title match was fantastic, with the crowd white hot for Strowman. After the match, Strowman and Rollins celebrated on the stage — and then Strowman looked at Rollins’ Universal Championship. YES!! GIVE. ME. ALL. OF. THIS. An absolutely fantastic ending to the show.
  • Sasha Banks breaks her silence … kind of — Banks did an interview and was asked about last week’s attack on Becky Lynch. She proceeded to talk about dying her hair blue. When specifically asked about Lynch, all Banks said was “you’re welcome.” Later in the night, she attacked Natalya again. Everything with Banks has been perfect and I can’t wait till her match against Lynch becomes official.
  • The Fiend attacks Jerry Lawler — Another legend goes down at the hands of The Fiend, Bray Wyatt. Just like Banks, everything with Wyatt has been perfect. His SummerSlam entrance/match was unreal and every attack he’s done has been equally as awesome. He’s the perfect character right now.

ANALYSIS FROM REST OF SHOW:

  • Elias thwarted R-Truth from becoming a 13-time 24/7 champion. First time we’ve had no 24/7 title changes on Raw in a long time. Sad!
  • Samoa Joe and Cedric Alexander advanced in the King of the Ring tournament. Joe defeated Cesaro in a physical match, while Alexander knocked off Sami Zayn in a quick match. It’s exciting to have this tournament back and I look forward to the matchups we’ll get out of it.
  • Damn you Rey Mysterio! He teased his retirement, only for his son to come out and stop him from it. Dominic said that Rey promised to him that they would tag team together in Dominic’s first professional match. So maybe we’re about to get a father/son tag team? I don’t know, but the emotions of this segment were real and I loved it.

SCORE: 7.5/10. Good matches, emotional segments and new tag team champs. All in all, another really strong showing of Raw and another win for 2019. It’s not that 2009 is bad right now; 2019 has just been that good.

OVERALL SCORE: 2019 — 20; 2009 — 13

Austin Hough

Author Austin Hough

A young journalist who loves sports, journalism, and professional wrestling. Chicago raised, Mizzou Made, Indiana paid (currently).

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