Acting Raw General Manager Baron Corbin Granted Brock Lesnar a Universal Championship Rematch
You can't start off Raw nowadays without a talking segment featuring Corbin, Roman Reigns or Braun Strowman. It was exactly what you'd expect it to be. The only thing worth noting coming out of this was that at WWE Crown Jewel (the second Saudi Arabia show on November 2), Reigns will defend his title against both Strowman and Lesnar in a Triple Threat. That was expected after what happened at the conclusion of Hell in a Cell, but for fans to wait a month and a half for it is ridiculous. That WWE Network live special isn't even necessary and I hate how WWE is promoting multiple events at once, because as a result, none of them feel special.
Raw Tag Team Champion Drew McIntyre def. Dean Ambrose
As a first-time-ever one-on-one encounter, this was great and felt fresh. As I've said before, I'm glad Ambrose has toned down his "Lunatic Fringe" antics since returning to the ring a month ago and, of course, McIntyre is awesome as well. Thus, I thoroughly enjoyed this and it was easily the best bout on the entire show. The clean finish was refreshing and gave McIntyre a credible victory.
Chad Gable def. Viktor
Any combination of Bobby Roode, Gable and The Ascension at this point is uninteresting, but I understood what they were going for and it was decent filler. Gable is always a blast to watch and him hitting his signature spots was fun while it lasted. He and Roode teased tension for the second straight week with Konnor pushing Gable into Roode afterward. Roode didn't outright blame Gable for that, but I could see the seeds being planted for an eventual breakup.
The Undertaker Revealed Kane Would be in His Corner Against Triple H at WWE Super Show-Down
Undertaker never ceases to command the attention of an audience whenever he makes an entrance or has a microphone in his hands, but honestly, I didn't think he had anything special to say until he revealed that Kane would be in his corner when he faces Triple H at Super Show-Down. That's quite the hook considering there have been rumors of Shawn Michaels coming out of retirement soon. Could The Brothers of Destruction vs. D-Generation X be a possibility for Crown Jewel?
Bayley def. Dana Brooke
It's really frustrating that Bayley and Sasha Banks, two of the biggest stars in either of WWE's women's divisions, are spinning their wheels doing nothing of note week to week (if they're on the show at all). Hell, even Brooke has more going on in storyline than them right now with her trying to prove herself on her own away from Titus Worldewide. Granted, this match was total throwaway, but at least Brooke had a fine showing and didn't embarrass herself. This could have been way worse.
AOP def. Gregory James and Barrett Brown
AOP continue to crush fools with Drake Maverick by their side. The 205 Live general manager didn't cut a promo this week, but I'm more open to the idea of him managing them and serving as their mouthpiece than I was a few weeks ago. That said, we saw AOP compete in these same types of matches when they originally arrived on the main roster, so I'm ready for them to start squashing some main roster teams and building momentum.
Intercontinental Champion Seth Rollins def. Raw Tag Team Champion Dolph Ziggler
Rollins and Ziggler have been embroiled in a heated feud dating back to June, so as sick as I am of their matches, at least they're always entertaining. This wasn't nearly as strong as some of their past encounters, largely due to how they weren't given nearly enough time to have the match they're capable of, but it made sense from a storyline standpoint with both men being bruised up from Hell in a Cell. Plus, Rollins avenged his loss to Ziggler from the night before by pinning him here.
The Bella Twins Saved Raw Women's Champion Ronda Rousey From The Riott Squad
Rousey not knowing how an open challenge works and having to ask Natalya backstage was pretty cringe-worthy. That aside, this was a solid segment that set up the already-announced six-woman tag team match for Super Show-Down, which will pit The Riott Squad against The Bella Twins and Rousey. I like Ruby Riott getting to share a ring with Rousey, but it's obvious this won't end well for her and that their group is merely being built up to lose to Rousey and the Bellas in Australia.
Elias def. Bobby Lashley by Disqualification
This jumped out as a random match to me when it was being advertised earlier in the evening, but then I realized Lashley will be teaming with John Cena at Super Show-Down to take on Elias and Kevin Owens. Yes, that is also very random, but at least WWE is attempting to get heat on it. The matchup itself between Lashley and Elias was forgettable, but I loved what they did with Lashley and Lio Rush here with Rush shining on the mic, on commentary and in being chased away by Owens and Elias. His partnership with Lashley is off to a nice start.
Nia Jax and Ember Moon def. Mickie James and Alicia Fox
Jax had been out of action since losing to Alexa Bliss at Extreme Rules back in July, so Raw's women's division will benefit from having her back on the roster. Personally, I'm not a huge fan of hers and didn't think this was a very good outing, but the match was meaningless otherwise, so it wasn't a huge deal that it didn't blow me away. However, please don't tell me we're going to get yet another Bliss vs. Jax rivalry stemming from this.
Universal Champion Roman Reigns def. Acting Raw General Manager Baron Corbin in a No Disqualification Match
When Reigns and Corbin first faced off a few weeks ago, I was bored to tears, and unfortunately, not only was this equally abysmal, it was positioned as the main event. Before the bout was restarted into a No Disqualification match (similar to when Corbin did the same thing against Finn Balor last month), it was extremely dull and bland. The interference from Ambrose, Rollins, Ziggler and McIntyre spiced things up a bit, but on the whole, this still sucked and closed out the episode on a sour note, I thought.
Despite an above-average Hell in a Cell pay-per-view on Sunday night, this was a dreadful edition of Raw, falling in line with every other episode from the past four or five months. Virtually nothing was worth watching or sitting through, though the build for Super Show-Down was well done. That event could end up being something special, but I don't have high hopes after how pointless Greatest Royal Rumble was back in April. Plus, they're also hyping up Evolution in addition to Crown Jewel. The overabundance of shows is a big problem in WWE at the moment, as well as a lack of compelling programs on the Raw side.
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