By Ryan Satin
FOX Sports WWE Analyst
Former NXT wrestler Dexter Lumis returned to WWE this week on Raw, but in a way you wouldn’t have expected.
First, here’s a recap of the match results:
— Seth Rollins defeated Angelo Dawkins via pinfall after hitting a Pedigree
— Kevin Owens defeated Ezekiel via ref stoppage in less than a minute
— Finn Balor defeated Rey Mysterio after landing the Coup De Grace
— Dakota Kai and IYO SKY defeated Dana Brooke and Tamina to advance in the Women’s Tag Team title tournament
Dakota Kai and IYO SKY advance in the Women’s Tag Titles Tournament!
Dakota Kai and IYO SKY faced off against Tamina and Dana Brooke in Round 1 of the Women’s Tag Titles Tournament on Monday Night Raw.
— Bobby Lashley retained the United States title over Ciampa after putting his opponent in the Hurt Lock for a submission victory
— Omos defeated two local competitors in roughly two minutes
— Dolph Ziggler defeated Chad Gable via pinfall
— AJ Styles defeated The Miz via pinfall in a No-DQ match
Moment of the night: Dexter Lumis debut plays out in the background
This started in the background of a promo when Doudrop and Nikki A.S.H. were seen beside a crashed car.
The shot appeared unintentional at first, but the next time the car was seen, it was being loaded onto a tow truck (once again in the background of an interview). Security surrounding the car then got a tip about something and all rushed away in pursuit.
This led to the conclusion of the main event where security tackled someone in the crowd who turned out to be Lumis.
Rewarding the viewer for paying attention to background happenings isn’t a typical WWE move. Triple H, however, has proven in the past to enjoy messing with various production tropes to enhance his shows.
For example, there were a few times during NXT TakeOver where he’d put up the end of show logo to indicate it was over — then something big would happen afterward to make the surprise even better.
Seeing him introduce Lumis in the background throughout multiple segments had similar vibes.
It also made viewers want to tune in next week for more of the story. That’s what Raw needs more of.
Kevin Owens brutalizes Ezekiel and ends the match early on Monday Night Raw
Kevin Owens absolutely brutalized Ezekiel without wasting any time on Monday Night Raw, snapping after weeks of tension finally boiled over.
Kevin Owens destroyed Ezekiel in the ring, then cut a killer promo afterward on once again proving Raw is the KO show.
Under Triple H’s leadership in NXT, Owens was a beast.
The possibility of seeing a version of that character again on Raw has fans salivating at the potential.
This was a great start to getting there.
Here are the full brackets for the Women’s Tag Team title tournament.
One notable entry is Nikkita Lyons and Zoey Stark from NXT. It’ll be interesting to see how they fare in their main roster debuts.
Bobby Lashley defends the United States Title against Ciampa on Raw | WWE on FOX
Ciampa had a chance to earn gold on Monday Night Raw when he went up against The All Mighty Bobby Lashley for the United States Title.
Lashley may have defeated Ciampa to retain the United States Championship, but they both gained from the match.
Ciampa standing toe-to-toe with a former world champ, and even getting a few nearfalls on him, made him appear to be a tough competitor.
This will help him in the long run more than what he was doing before.
As for Lashley, he was shown busting out new offense and asserting his dominance as the top champion on the show.
If the plan is to elevate the importance of the United States Championship on Raw, this did a good job of accomplishing that.
For a segment-by-segment breakdown of the show, listen to the SmackDown Roundup podcast in the “Out of Character” feed on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.
Ryan Satin is a WWE analyst for FOX Sports. Satin previously appeared on FS1’s “WWE Backstage” and founded Pro Wrestling Sheet, where he broke countless news stories as editor-in-chief.
Get more from World Wrestling Entertainment Follow your favorites to get information about games, news and more.