By: Frank Hyden
RAW last night was about the fallout from Survivor Series. It had some good parts and only a little of the not so good parts. Let’s get to the rundown.
GOOD/BAD- Opening segment, Braun Strowman attacks Adam Pearce
Adam Pearce was in the ring with all 5 members of Team RAW. He said one of them could get a title shot and asked them to state their case. They argued some, which I sort of liked, then Strowman grabbed Pearce and headbutted him. The whole segment was okay but nothing great.
GOOD- The New Day beat The Hurt Business
I like New Day but I was kind of hoping to see THB win the tag belts. One of the problems in WWE is the predictability, you generally know who’s going to win the matches. That’s not necessarily bad but when that happens with just about every match, it hurts the product. Another problem is the lack of title changes. When Drew McIntyre beat Randy Orton last week for the WWE Title, it felt huge and special. Some of the reason it felt that way was because of the lack of title changes but you don’t want to set a precedent that big things will only happen every so often because then you condition the viewers to pay less attention to everything else. Anyway, the match was restarted after a double countout then later Xavier Woods pinned Shelton Benjamin to retain the belts. The match was pretty good but it felt more like the middle match of a feud so you know there will be more matches between these teams down the road. That’s a good thing to me, at least.
GOOD- Matt Riddle beat Sheamus
This was one of the three matches tonight where the winners will face each other next week and the winner of that match will get a title shot at the TLC pay-per-view. This was a long match and had its moments but it also dragged a bit because of the length. They could have shaved off a few minutes or more and made the match better. I don’t want to complain, because I’d rather a match be a little too long than a little too short. This was a good and physical match, which seems like that’s just about every match these two are in. Riddle’s win advances him to that triple threat match next week.
GOOD/BAD- Asuka vs. Lana becomes a tag match
Asuka and Lana didn’t wrestle very long before the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax inserted themselves and provoked Asuka. The match then became a tag match where they worked over Lana. Later, Jax charged at Lana and flew over the announce table. Baszler grabbed Lana with the Kirifuda Clutch but that allowed the legal wrestler Asuka to roll up Baszler and get the win. I’m just glad they didn’t do that damn table spot again.
GOOD- Keith Lee beat Bobby Lashley by DQ
With this win, Lee advances to that triple threat match next week. The match was pretty good, it was different because Lashley was wrestling someone bigger than him, which is rare. They did some cool power moves. MVP got in the ring and attacked Lee when it looked like Lee was getting the advantage. I’m not bothered by that, they want to protect Lashley so I’m fine with it.
GOOD- Alexa Bliss beat Nikki Cross
I tweeted right before this match that it should have been the main event unless it was to further the angle. I say that because I’m afraid they’re going to give Cross the Tucker treatment. Tucker betrayed his tag partner and friend Otis and…nothing has come of it. No red-hot feud, no big match between the two, nothing. I hope that doesn’t happen here, but knowing WWE, there’s always a chance.
That said, this match did seem like it would further the angle. Bliss broke down and started crying and apologizing to Cross, who played it well with her tentativeness before finally embracing Bliss in a hug. However, it was a ploy as Bliss nailed her with a move and pinned her. So it looks like the angle will continue, thankfully.
GOOD- A.J. Styles beat Randy Orton
Styles won after Orton was distracted by The Fiend showing up behind him, hitting Orton with The Phenomenal Forearm to advance to the triple threat match next week to determine the #1 contender. Styles is always great and Orton was okay. I still would much rather have seen Bliss vs. Cross in the main event slot, though. Even given the fact that it was more of an angle than a match, it’s more interesting. I guess I can understand some not feeling the same way, though, maybe it’s just me.
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