The card will comprise of matches resulting from scripted storylines and have results predetermined by WWE on the Raw brand. Storylines are produced on WWE’s weekly television shows Monday Night Raw and 205 Live, the latter of which is cruiserweight-exclusive.
At SummerSlam, Brock Lesnar defeated Braun Strowman, Roman Reigns, and Samoa Joe in a fatal four-way match to retain the Universal Championship. Lesnar’s victory celebration with his advocate Paul Heyman was interrupted by Strowman, who attacked Lesnar and left him lying in the ring. Later in the show, a Universal Championship title match between the two was scheduled for No Mercy. The following week, Lesnar and Heyman issued a warning to Strowman. On the September 4 episode, after Strowman defeated Big Show in a steel cage match, he also warned Lesnar before throwing Big Show through the cage. In a confrontation the following week, Lesnar delivered a German suplex on Strowman, who quickly responded with a chokeslam and a powerslam and held Lesnar’s title belt over his downed opponent. In a split-screen interview on the final Raw before No Mercy, Lesnar thanked Strowman for being a “great challenge”, stating that is when he is at his best.