WWE Raw: 3 things that went right on the Oct. 18 episode

WWE Superstar Xavier Woods (Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images)
WWE Superstar Xavier Woods (Photo by Jerod Harris/Getty Images) /

Monday’s episode of WWE Raw took place at the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, CA, home of the NBA’s Sacramento Kings and the greatest Rock Concert ever. Knowing the former, it was fitting that this edition of WWE’s flagship show hosted the semifinals of the 2021 King of the Ring and Queen’s Crown Tournaments.

This show also served as the go-home show for the company’s latest blood money Saudi Arabia propaganda show: Crown Jewel. As such, WWE also took some time to promote the red brand’s two big matches: Big E vs. Drew McIntyre for the WWE Championship and Bobby Lashley vs. Goldberg in a No Holds Barred match.

On the whole, the show had its bright spots, but it still packed in plenty of nonsense to frustrate anyone who chose/had to watch the entire three hours. We’ll get to the negatives later. For now, though, let’s focus on the positives.

These are three of the things that went right on the Oct. 18 episode of Raw.

Xavier Woods advances to the King of the Ring Finals

For WWE, it must’ve been awfully tempting to go for the meta heat and have Jinder Mahal beat Xavier Woods in their King of the Ring semifinals match. Fortunately, someone realized that Woods vs. Finn Bálor is a far better and more interesting match than Mahal vs. Bálor, and thus we got the rare case of WWE giving the fans what they wanted to see.

Quality-wise, Mahal vs. Woods was fine; “The Modern Day Maharaja” still wrestles with that vanilla prelim match style that made such a tedious WWE Champion, but Woods was more than good enough here to elevate this to something solid.

They did sneak in a false finish with Jinder hitting Woods with the Khallas — Woods got his foot on the ropes to nullify the pin, which wisely protected Mahal’s finisher — but WWE ultimately did the right thing here, and that’s what matters in the end. Now, fans just have to hope that the promotion does it again in the finals against Bálor.

Mansoor’s promo

It’s a shame that WWE only does stuff with Mansoor when one of these Saudi shows is around the corner (that was a big reason why he had that undefeated streak for so long) because the young man has so much potential as a babyface.

He showed some of that potential in the promo he cut on Mustafa Ali on Monday. Ali came out after Mansoor beat Cedric Alexander and ran down Mansoor for being perpetually positive before saying that he would get the win in Mansoor’s “hometown” (interesting choice of words there).

Mansoor quickly responded with a fiery promo, saying that he would be grinning from “ear to ear” when he beat Ali “senseless”, with his delivery even taking Ali aback a bit. This was simple stuff, but that’s when wrestling is often at its most effective.


This one is a soft inclusion, but it’s here for a couple of reasons. First, it was nice to see WWE give R-Truth something to do outside of chasing Reggie and the 24/7 Championship around. Second, Truth deserves credit for making those jokes at Austin Theory’s expense work.

In a lesser performer’s hands, making Theory puns and a riff on Theory’s youth (given how old most of the wrestlers on the main roster are, maybe painting someone’s under-30 age as a negative isn’t the best way to go) would fall flat, but Truth’s delivery extracted more laughs than the material deserved.

Next. WWE: Cancelling TLC should be a step to revamping the entire PPV model. dark

Sure, it just led to another Theory vs. Jeff Hardy match, but it was nice to see WWE slightly depart from the weekly formula with Truth.