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Mitchell’s WWE Monday Night Raw Report! (12/11/17)



All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter



  • Bayley & Mickie James w/ Sasha Banks VS Absolution w/ Sonya Deville; Absolution wins.
  • Finn Balor VS Curt Axel w/ Bo Dallas; Balor wins.
  • Seth Rollins VS Sheamus; Rollins wins.
  • “Second Chance” Fatal 4 Way: Ariya Daivari VS Tony Nese VS Cedric Alexander VS Mustafa Ali; Alexander wins and faces Drew Gulak in a WWE Cruiserweight Championship #1 Contender’s match.
  • WWE Intercontinental Championship: Roman Reigns VS Cesaro; Reigns wins and retains the IC Championship.
  • Asuka VS Alicia Fox; no contest.
  • Dean Ambrose VS Samoa Joe; Joe wins.
  • WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Match: Kane VS Braun Strowman; double count-out.


Roman Reigns is the WWE Intercontinental Champion, but Samoa Joe has staked a claim.

The Destroyer wasn’t done with going after Roman, for last week, he made sure the other members of The Shield did not reclaim the Raw Tag Team Championships to end last week’s episode. Lines have been drawn, tonight is all about settling scores!


Samoa Joe is already in the ring!

He knows the fans know of The Shield, “one of the most dominant forces in the history of the WWE.” It didn’t matter who you were, the Hounds of Justice would pounce. Joe has seen the Shield up close, but he is not impressed. He is not impressed by Seth Rollins, a man whose leg snapped on Joe’s first day on Raw. He is not impressed by Dean Ambrose, a man who does everything he can to avoid Joe. And he is “damn sure” not impressed by Roman Reigns, who he has put to sleep again and again. Joe knows he has Ambrose tonight, but here’s out here now to finish business with Reigns! Not the Big Dog and the “Lap Dogs”, just Reigns. We see The Shield watching this from backstage. Rollins tells Ambrose to tell Reigns. Joe grows impatient, he knows he’s dominant and intimidating. Roman remembers, right? Joe does. If it wasn’t for Jason Jordan, Joe would’ve ended Reigns right there. Joe takes credit for keeping The Shield from being “a grand stable of imperial champions”, and there’s nothing Roman can do about that! Samoa Joe doesn’t need The Bar, doesn’t care about Rollins or Ambrose, Samoa Joe stands on his own two feet! If it wasn’t for The Shield, Roman would be NOTHING. If Roman doesn’t agree, then come out and prove Joe wrong. Roman tells The Shield that he’s “got this.” And out comes Roman to the ring!

They brawl the moment Roman hits the ring! Roman backs Joe down, stomping a mudhole into him. Joe slips away, here comes The Bar! Roman knocks them each away and Joe fights back, it is now 3v1! The Shield reinforces Roman and goes after The Bar. Joe has Roman in the Coquina Clutch! Ambrose spills the others over and goes after Joe himself. Sheamus bails Joe out, Rollins returns and goes after both of them, but now Rollins is stuck 3v1! A-Swiss-ted White Noise takes out The Architect! Ambrose crawls back in, but now he is victim of 3v1. The Bar hold Ambrose up and feed him to Joe’s yurinagi slam. The Shield is down, do they have a chance of standing up against Joe and The Bar?


Bayley & Mickie James w/ Sasha Banks VS Absolution w/ Sonya Deville!

Raw’s Women’s Division is helping the Women’s Revolution grow stronger, but strongest of all is Absolution. The Glampire rubs in how she defeated the Legit Boss, but now she and Mandy Rose vow to “purge the division of the feeble and the unworthy.” Or in other words, the Huggable One and the returning veteran. Absolution is a symphony of carnage, and the music is about to start.

Mandy and Bayley start, Bayley tackles Mandy but Paige tags in. Bayley backs off, Paige gets the edge but then gets put into the corner, tag to Mickie for a double suplex, that Mandy saves Paige from. The Absolution women are both sent out of the ring, Paige is furious already. Bayley flies onto Mandy, then Mickie flies onto Paige! Absolution in trouble as we go to break.

We return to Bayley fighting out of Mandy’s headlock. Bayley snapmares and gives an elbow to the back, a sliding lariat and then one more elbow drop, cover, TWO! Mandy retaliates with a running knee, TWO! She puts Bayley in Absolution’s corner, tag to Paige, and Paige gives Bayley knee after knee within the ropes. Paige roars before giving Bayley another knee, TWO, so she grabs Bayley’s arm and mocks her. Bayley fights back, Paige stomps her out and even gives her a headbutt. Paige gives Mickie a cheap shot, Absolution then mugs Bayley in the distraction. Paige gives Bayley a Shining Wizard, cover, TWO. The fans rally, Paige sets Bayley up for more knees in the ropes, but Bayley counters to trip Paige up! Bayley crawls, Paige stops her, Bayley shoves her away, hot tags to Mandy and Mickie! Mickie rallies, kicks away on Mandy, and hits a jumping clothesline. She goes to put Mandy in a corner, Mandy gives a back elbow, but then she runs into Mickie’s flapjack!

Sonya gets on the apron but takes a shot for it, Mickie climbs up and flies for the seated senton! Paige breaks it up, Bayley tackles her and unleashes stomps. Mickie goes after Mandy, Paige blasts Mickie with a kick! Absolution wins! With this victory, is Raw going to be Absolution’s to rule?


Bray Wyatt is here. But so is WOKEN Hardy!

“This is nothing new. It has always been darkness versus light.” Morning and night, good and evil, it is Bray’s favorite game. WOKEN Hardy says “The Great War has perpetuated for eons!” Now, it continues on WWE’s Raw! Hardy is yin to Wyatt’s yang, and he has been waiting. The darkness shall be illuminated by the WOKEN WISDOM and BROKEN BRILLIANCE. Hardy is a liar! Hardy is a modern-day golden calf. Moo. Hardy’s words mean nothing, but Hardy is familiar with Sister Abigail. Abigail contracted an addiction to darkness, and was consumed by evil. Her horrendous soul habitats Bray Wyatt. Why follow a jester when you can walk behind a king? Choose your side wisely, for only one can survive. WOKEN WARRIORS prepare for battle against the Wyatt Swarm, and they shall… DELETE! Both men laugh like madmen, who will prove themselves the madder?


Raw is curious about Nia Jax’s interest in the Certified G.

Nia asked those infamous three words, “How You Doin’?” However, Enzo’s more in love with the Cruiserweight Championship. He asks what “Gabba Gulak” can do for Enzo. There was a major announcement. There is a Second Chance Fatal 4 Way to find a man worthy of fighting Drew Gulak for the right to be #1 contender to the Cruiserweight Championship. Gulak feels he will be that contender to face Enzo for the title, but Enzo tells him to be worried more about Mustafa Ali, Ariya Daivari, Cedric Alexander, Nia Jax- Nia Jax? Did Enzo mention Nia Jax? No… Why? She’s not on the 205 Live roster. Oh, Gulak sees what this is! It is a lesson, that Gulak needs to be prepared for anyone, even Nia Jax. Yeah… Enzo got away with that one, but when will Nia Jax next pop up?


Finn Balor VS Curt Axel w/ Bo Dallas!

The Miztourage is still going strong, as Curt Axel no longer needs that neck brace. The Miztourage also mocks Finn’s entrance, will they regret it very quickly? Axel might regret throwing his neck brace at Finn! However, Axel and Bo jump Finn right away, getting a 2v1 advantage! The match has not started but Axel unloads forearm hammers on Finn. The referee keeps Axel back and checks on Finn, Finn wants to go, so the bell rings and Axel is right on him again. Axel snapmares and neck-snaps Balor, TWO. Axel doesn’t slow down, he keeps Finn grounded with an armlock and chinbar. Finn gets up but is brought back down, knee to the spine before another chinlock. Fans rally for Finn, jawbreaker gets separation. Finn dodges Axel in a corner, then again to give chops. Axel swinsg and misses, gets a slingblade! Finn then blasts Axel with a dropkick, that bad neck keeps Axel down, COUP DE GRACE! Finn wins and sweeps the Miztourage! Can the Extraordinary Man keep this up all the way towards a title match?


Kane speaks to Braun Strowman.

“Tonight, you and I step into The Abyss.” They both know what it’s like to squeeze a man into surrender. Kane will delight to enter with a fellow monster, but he will climb out alone and smiling. Kane will crush more than Strowman’s throat, and that he will compete against The Beast, Brock Lesnar. At the Royal Rumble, the Big Red Machine vows to become Universal Champion. Can Kane make good on the first step tonight?


Seth Rollins VS Sheamus!

The Architect may not be one-half of the Raw Tag Team Champions, but he will relish this chance for 1v1 revenge against the Celtic Gladiator! The order came down that this match will ban all allies from ringside, both men will have to do it alone. The referee has to keep the piece as Sheamus puts his gear to the side, but when the bell rings, Rollins goes right for him! Sheamus shoves Rollins away, Rollins comes right back and gives chop after chop. Rollins’ whip is reversed, but he slips out of the tilt-o-whirl to then dump Sheamus out. He keeps going, and DIVES to knock Sheamus down! Rollins puts Sheamus into barriers, then pursues around the side to bump him off the apron. They go back around and then into the ring, Sheamus clobbers Rollins. Sheamus takes time to catch his breath as Rollins slowly stirs, then reels Rollins in for a lariat. Rollins gets to a corner, Sheamus comes over to give heavy right hands.

Sheamus embraces the heat fans are slinging at him, he stomps and stands on Rollins’ head. Sheamus brings Rollins up and hits a delayed backbreaker, TWO. Rollins is bumped off buckles now, Sheamus gives him forearms in the back. Sheamus stomps an Irish Mudhole into Rollins, then embraces even more heat as he goes Super Saiyan for the kick. Rollins dodges and kicks back with an enziguri! Sheamus is dazed, Rollins up and throws right hands and chops. Another whip reversed, ROllins dodges for the Slingblade! Rollins boots Sheamus away, flying blockbuster! He clotheslines Sheamus out of the ring, The Architect fires up and slingshots over. Rollins lands on his feet, Sheamus gets him with knees on reentry to send him flying back out.

The Celtic Gladiator is in control as we go to break.

We’re back and Sheamus grinds Rollins with a chinlock. Sheamus taunts Rollins as Rollins works to stand up. Rollins gives Sheamus a jawbreaker, then puts out a foot as Sheamus comes in. Sheamus blocks the kick and uses that leg to fling Rollins into the mat!

Rollins clutches that leg, Sheamus goes right after it with stomps and knee drops. Sheamus puts Rollins in a stretch muffler, hanging Rollins upside-down by his bad leg. Rollins endures, sits up, and throws hands, then huricanrana into a pin! Sheamus rolls through to the Cloverleaf! Rollins endures again, reaches for ropes, and pushes himself up but Sheamus drags him away! Rollins with the small-package counter, TWO, Irish Curse Backbreaker slipped through for a DDT! TWO! Sheamus’ toughness keeps him in this match, Rollins drags himself to a corner to recover. Both men stand up, Rollins dodges and then rolls Sheamus, TWO, MULE KICK! TWO again, Rollins’ leg hurts too much for him to be frustrated. Sheamus and Rollins stand up, Rollins grabs Sheamus but gets a back elbow, Sheamus gives Rollins a shinbreaker against a buckle! Rollins is down, Sheamus climbs up, Rollins gets up to stop him. Sheamus fights Rollins off on the top rope, Rollins topples down again, but then springs right up for the SUPERPLEX roll-through to Falcon Arrow!

The leg slows Rollins down on that cover, TWO! Both men are down, fans are rallying, Rollins is first to stand up. he brings Sheamus up, swings him out, but fireman’s carry! Rollins fights out but Sheamus trophy lifts him into the rolling senton! Sheamus fires up now, fans boo and jeer as he calls for the finish. Rollins is up, he ducks the Brogue to SUPERKICK Sheamus and give the Kingslayer Knee! Rollins wins! Will Rollins’ knee be okay so that he and Ambrose can challenge for the Raw Tag Team Championships once again?


Backstage interview with Dean Ambrose.

The Shield is up 1-0 against their opponents tonight, and with The Big Dog defending his Intercontinental Championship, what is The Lunatic’s strategy for going against Samoa Joe given the opening brawl? Strategy? Ambrose just wants to win. Ambrose will avoid getting kicked in the face, being put in the Coquina Clutch, and giving away his strategy out in the open. Joe cost them the titles, and now wants after Roman? Ambrose is overheated, thanks for the pep talk. Can Ambrose survive Samoa Joe in their first-ever match-up?


“Second Chance” Fatal 4 Way: Ariya Daivari VS Tony Nese VS Cedric Alexander VS Mustafa Ali!

The Outlandish Rich Swann lost his opportunity do to circumstances in his personal life, but that just gives four Cruiserweights who lost a chance to rise again. Drew Gulak joins commentary to watch this match-up personally.

Will it all be ‘Zo Train for the Cruiserweight Championship after the night is through?

The bell rings, all four men stare down, but it is the Carolina Kid that sparks the action as he goes after The Premier Athlete. The Pakistani Prince brawls with the Privileged Persian, the two brawls end up in opposite corners. Daivari keeps on Ali, whip but Ail flapjack dropkicks. Alexander shoves Nese, ducks, handspring headscissors and dropkick! Alexander and Ali are alone again, deja vu. They move fast with takedowns and covers, Ali rolls but Alexander kicks out, back slide cover, TWO, Ali headlocks but Alexander powers out and we have a stand-off. Ali gives elbows and chops, then a whip but Alexander gives a European Uppercut. Alexander runs, NEse dumps him out, but Ali goes up top to FLY on them both! Ali is fired up, he puts Alexander in the ring, Daivari pounces with a lariat! Daivari goes to Alexander now, TWO, which upsets Daivari. He hammers away on Alexander, then gets upset with the ref for reprimanding him. Daivari puts Alexander in a chinlock, trash talks in Farsi, fans rally and Alexander gets up. Alexander fights back but is clubbed down, Daivari puts him on the apron only for Alexander to come back in with a springboard complete shot!

Cover, Nese breaks it. Nese throws Alexander right into buckles, Ali ducks under Nese for a stiff set of chops. Ali whips, Nese reverses and gives a pumphandle lift, Ali slips out but gets run over. Nese gives Alexander a back kick, whips but is reversed, Nese eats Daivari’s discus elbow! Daivari hesitates, takes Alexander’s back elbow, Ali come sin for a tilt-o-whirl DDT! All four men are down, fans are loving it as we go to break.

We return to see Ali down in Daivari’s chinlock. Ali endures the wrench, fights out and whips but Daivari reverses for a big spinebuster and high cover, TWO. Daivari is frustrated as he puts Ali back into the chinlock. He trash talks in Farsi again, Ali gets up and fights out again. Daivari clubs him down and throws him at the buckles but Ali slips out and kicks Daivari away. Fans slowly fire up, Ali hits the rolling facebuster! TWO, Nese is back to give Ali a knee and a deadlift, but Ali fights back. Ali is put in the corner but elbows out, hops up and boots Daivari away, Nese springs up with an uppercut! Nese puts Ali back up on the top rope, climbs up but Ali elbows him away. Nese is in the drop zone, Ali takes aim, 0-5-4! Alexander breaks the pin! He and Ali have unfinished business, they throw fast and furious hands on each other. Stiff back elbow from Ali, then a slap, Ali runs but into the Spanish Fly! Lumbar Check!!

Daivari throws Alexander out, covers, but Alexander drags Daviari out. They brawl, Nese FLIES outta nowhere! Nese puts Alexander in the ring, brings down a knee pad, Premier Kneese! Ali breaks the pin! Everyone is sore and frustrated, but that’s the nature of a fatal 4 way. The ‘Zo Train regroups and targets Ali, who valiantly fights against them both. It doesn’t work, double whip but Ali kicks Daivari away. Nese is thrown out, Alexander flies in! Roll-up from Daivari, TWO, handspring Neuralizer! Alexander kicks Nese away, then hits Daivari with a Lumbar Check! Alexander wins and will face Gulak next week!

In-ring interview with Cedric Alexander.

“This was my second chance! And I plan on taking full advantage of it.” Alexander calls out Gulak, saying he will move on to face Enzo and become the NEW Cruiserweight Champion! Will Gulak be able to keep his promise to the Certified G and keep challengers away?


Drew Gulak reports to Enzo Amore.

The other challenger is Cedric Alexander, so when “Gabba Gulak” deals with him, it’ll finally come down to Gulak VS Amore and Gulak will become champion! What was that? Nothing, just “friendly” trash talk. Who said they were friends? Gulak works for Enzo on the ‘Zo Train. Gulak wins one match and he’s suddenly thinking they’re equals? Enzo will keep it real, by first saying the PowerPoint Presentations are only one word! And that word is- informative? Get out of here… And how you doin’, Nia? Just fine. Nice to see you, Enzo. And you, too, Drew. Nia likes his powerpoints. Enzo was gonna say the same thing! yes, informative, that’s what they are. Nia would like to talk with Enzo, but when Enzo’s not busy. What is the Certified G to make of this situation?


WWE Intercontinental Championship: Roman Reigns VS Cesaro!

The Big Dog promised to be a fighting champion, so another Raw means another Intercontinental title defense! Can Roman keep the title in his Yard when faced with the Swiss Cyborg?

The bell rings, and the fight is on as Cesaro goes right at Roman, only to be knocked back and stomped in a corner. Cesaro gets out of the ring, Roman pursues, they go back in the ring and Cesaro stomps Roman upon reentry. Roman takes European Uppercut after EuroUpper, but then he runs and runs Cesaro over. He starts rallying, jumping clothesline floors Cesaro. Roman gives Cesaro close-range clotheslines, Cesaro slips out to hotshot that arm. Cesaro then boots Roman, Roman boots back! Roman clotheslines Cesaro out of the ring, and catches his breath as we go to break.

Back again, and Cesaro wrenches Roman’s arm in a high keylock. Fans rally, Roman gets to his feet but Cesaro reels him in for a lariat, TWO. Cesaro keeps on the bad arm with a wristlock. Fans keep rallying, Cesaro keeps the torture up, Roman endures the twists and bends. Cesaro says no one likes Roman, so Roman should just give up. Roman still endures, slowly turning and standing up. Cesaro tries to keep Roman down but Roman headbutts and kicks back, Mahistrol cradle! TWO, EuroUpper countered, they both use power and the backslide goes, TWO. Roman dodges Cesaro then rolls him up, TWO, into an armbar and Cesaro hammers away on the shoulder before putting on the Fujiwara!

Roman endures again, Cesaro brings him to the cneter of the ring. Cesaro keeps up the torque, Roman wills his way to his feet, and then throws Cesaro to a corner. Roman keeps Cesaro in the corner, then back suplex slams him to the mat! Both men down from exhaustion, Roman blocks punches to give headbutts. Cesaro down on the ropes, Roman goes to the outside for the Drive-By dropkick! Cover, TWO! Roman and Cesaro are slow to stand up, but Roman is up nonetheless. He takes aim, locks and loads, Cesaro swats the bad arm away! Cesaro traps the good arm in a Fujiwara armbar, then shift over to a crossface on the bad arm!

Roman endures the submission, works to stand up and powers Cesaro up for a Samoan Drop! TWO, Roman is running out of ideas. Both men are slowly stirring again, Roman crawling back to the corner. Cesaro blasts Roman with a EuroUpper, then rams him into the post shoulder-first! Roman tumbles to the floor, Cesaro pursues. Cesaro runs in, Roman boots Cesaro away, flying punch! Back into the ring, cover, TWO! They are both further exhausted, yet they are still able to stand. Roman lets the battle cry out, but Cesaro kicks the Spear away, flapjack EuroUpper!

TWO, but into the Crossface hold! Cesaro pulls Roman back, Roman endures and shifts, then powers Cesaro up again. Cesaro slips down, sunset flip to the Swiss Swing! Roman powers his way up to roll over Cesaro, deadlift powerbomb! TWO!! Neither man has given up, and the fans in Cleveland are loving it. Both men stir once more, and brawl on their knees. The brawl moves onto their feet, the referee reacts to Cesaro’s mouth guard falling out, so Cesaro takes advantage with a small package! TWO, Cesaro is shocked! He argues with the referee, but just turns his frustrations on Roman. Roman in a corner, takes more EuroUppers! The referee tries to cool him off, Cesaro brings Roman out for the Neutralizer, only for Roman to power out, and SPEAR!! Roman retains! It took so much out of both men, can Roman stay champion at this rate?


Braun Strowman responds to Kane.

“You tried to crush my throat and end my career. But a couple weeks ago, I sent you crawling out of the arena, gasping for air with a taste of your own medicine.” Tonight, Strowman will give Kane another dose, because he wants another shot at The Beast. Kane stands in his way, but not for long! The collision is coming, who will survive?!


Asuka VS Alicia Fox!

Alicia is the only woman crazy enough to want another go at the undefeated Empress of Tomorrow after already having lost to her once. But when the music hits, there is no Alicia to be found. Because Absolution returns!

What happened? Backstage with a bad elbow. In that case, this gives us time to talk. The Absolution has let Asuka walk away cleanly, but not even she can stop them. That leaves us in a pickle: move aside, or they’ll make you. Asuka doesn’t move.

The fans cheer her bravery, but Paige gives one last chance. Asuka still stands in their way. Well “No One is Ready for Asuka”, but she hasn’t faced Absolution. Asuka immediately takes out Mandy and fights off Sonya, Paige pounces. Paige hammers away but gets caught in an armlock! Mandy and Sonya save her, it is 2v1 and then three with Paige’s stiff knee. Absolution feeds Asuka to Paige, but here coems Sasha Banks and the rest of the Raw Women’s Divison! They run into the ring and outnubmer Absolution now! Nia Jax has Paige but Paige slips out, Sasha stuns Paige with a knee. Mandy is left alone against all the women, Asuka gets her with the spnining back hand. Nia runs Mandy over! Absolution retreats, the rest of Raw is united! Has Absolution’s plans absolutely backfired?


Raw GM Kurt Angle wants to make sure things are ready for the main event.

The last time Kane and Braun Strowman had a match, they literally went through the ring. The ring needs to be reinforced. Understood. But in comes Jason Jordan. He apologizes for how he acted last week. JJ let his “intensity” get the best of him. But, what happened to his match with Samoa Joe? After disrespecting Angle and then ruining the Raw Tag Team Championship match, no wonder Stephanie McMahon has been on Angle’s case. Just put JJ in a match! Calm down! It isn’t a good situation, or an easy one, but Angle is JJ’s dad. Angle wanted to get at Joe personally, but he’s not just a dad but a GM. But JJ can beat Joe! JJ survived so many other legends, he can hold his own. As a GM, Angle reminds JJ didn’t win any of those matches. JJ will have his match when Angle says, not when JJ wants it. “Okay, dad.” Or is it, “Okay, Kurt”? JJ storms out, what can the Olympic Gold Medalist father do about his Gold-Blooded Son’s temper?


Dean Ambrose VS Samoa Joe!

Ohio’s favorite Lunatic goes up against the Samoan Destroyer for the first time anywhere, who will survive the violence and madness? The bell rings, Joe spots Jason Jordan with a chair? JJ is just going to watch, the same way Joe did last week.

Ambrose goes after Joe in that opening, speeding up but bouncing off Joe! Joe stomps Ambrose down, then drags him up to give him knee strikes and jabs. Joe runs, Ambrose dropkicks out a leg, Ambrose puts Joe in a corner to trap a leg and throw down hands. Ambrose runs to dropkick that leg, then gives it a dragon screw. Joe slides out of the ring, Ambrose slips out to pursue. Ambrose runs in and clubs Joe on the back, then bumps Joe off barriers. Ambrose refreshes the count before giving JOe a leg sweep against the barriers. He keeps on Joe’s leg with kicks and even a chop block before putting him in the ring. Ambrose climbs up, JJ watches as he jumps over Joe, Joe dodges and back elbow to Pele! Joe lets Ambrose tumble out as we go to break.

We return to see Joe holding Ambrose down in a half straitjacket. Ambrose gets up as fans rally, and fights out of the hold. Ambrose chops and runs but Joe runs him over, topping it off with a back senton, only to miss! Joe and Ambrose are both slow to get up as fans rally again, and they brawl. Ambrose gives jabs and chops, jabs and chops, Joe just gives jab after jab. Joe watches Ambrose stagger then gives him more jabs. Ambrose slaps Joe, Joe gives him an elbow, Lunatic Lariat into the yurinagi but Ambrose slips out. Ambrose boots Joe, Joe runs in but takes an elbow, Ambrose runs and knocks Joe down. He rallies now, runs corner to corner to forearm smash Joe, Joe powers out of the bulldog and gives another elbow, Lunatic Lariat hits! Both men down again, JJ is watching eagerly. Joe grabs Ambrose, Ambrose suddenly goes for Dirty Deeds but Joe counters with an Exploder!

Joe mocks JJ, JJ approaches the ring, Ambrose takes advantage again with a knee and roll-up, TWO! Joe kicks Ambrose, powerbomb lift but Ambrose fights out to headscissor Joe over and out with him! JJ sees them crash down but assures he’ll leave Joe alone, to instead help Ambrose into the ring. Joe gets JJ with a Coquina, Ambrose DIVES onto them both! Back into the ring now, Ambrose climbs up, JJ on the apron, flying elbow! The distraction lasts too long, the cover is counted late, TWO! Ambrose realizes that and glares at JJ.

The Lunatic slips out and goes up to JJ to get in his face. JJ grabs Ambrose, JOE DIVES! He puts Ambrose in the ring, gives JJ a back senton, then puts Ambrose in the Coquina! Ambrose flails, fades, Joe wins! Did Joe only win because of Jason Jordan? Joe doesn’t care, because he won.


Dana Brooke is backstage with Titus Worldwide.

She is so grateful to be accepted into the group! They’re excited to have her, as the official Titus Worldwide Statistician/ Head of Research & Development! Statistics? Research and development? No, no, The Club thinks that’s for… NERDS!

But here comes BRAUN!

No more talk, time for war!


WWE Universal Championship #1 Contender’s Match: Kane VS Braun Strowman!

Raw’s resident monsters have collided time and again ever since The Big Red Machine returned, but now it all comes to an end one way or another. Will it be the Devil’s Favorite Demon or the Monster Among Men that challenges The Beast at the Royal Rumble?

The bell rings, Strowman powers Kane to a corner and drives in shoulder after shoulder and even a headbutt. He doesn’t let Kane slip away, either, rocking Kane with right hands. Strowman goes corner to corner for a big clothesline in the corner, then a running dropkick! Cover, TWO, and Kane escapes to the outside. Strowman pursues, Kane gets the upper-hand now but is soon reversed and thrown into steel steps. The ref counts, they return inside the ring, Kane kicks Strowman on reentry. Strowman doesn’t slow down at all, Kane backs down but is backed down by force. Strowman goes corner to corner again but Kane dodges. Kane grabs Strowman, CHOKE SLAM!

TWO! Kane is furious, so he hammers Strowman’s head with elbows. The Big Red Machine backs off to let Strowman get up, another choke slam! TWO! Kane is further frustrated, he doesn’t understand how Strowman is enduring these attacks. He looms over Strowman, dragging him up by his throat. Strowman gives the choke back, Strowman choke slams Kane!

TWO, and Kane rolls out of the ring. He rests against barriers while Strowman recovers in the ring. Strowman comes out to pursue Kane, Kane gives that signature uppercut and now things move to the crowd! They brawl, big right hands back and forth, Strowman then tackles Kane through a barrier! The ring count climbs up and hits ten, it’s a double count-out?! The fans boo, this isn’t how they wanted the match to end. The same goes for Strowman, as he stalks a fleeing Kane. Kane kicks Strowman away, and keeps crawling away, but Strowman pursues. Strowman dumps Kane over the steel steps, then takes aim with those steel steps! Kane has the same idea, and now they go jousting with steel! Both monsters drop the steps, but Strowman fetches a cart. Kane won’t let his throat be crushed again, but Strowman wallops Kane with another right hand! They return inside the ring, fans want tables, so Strowman obliges! He puts the table in the ring, Kane gets out of the ring. Kane fetches a chair, and SMACKS Strowman’s knee with it.

Fans watch as Kane swings again, Strowman rocks Kane with one more right. Kane retaliates with more chair shots that SMACK against Strowman’s body! Kane jabs the chair edge at Strowman, but staggers from exhaustion. The table comes back into play as Kane stands it up. Fans are cheering as Kane returns to Strowman, but a double clothesline floors them both. Neither behemoth gets up, but Kane sits up. His eyes lock onto Strowman, Strowman sits up!

Kane is shocked by that! Strowman is up, and runs at Kane, but into a choke grip. Strowman uses his strength to counter, scoop Kane, and put him through the table!!

The Monster Among Men didn’t win the match, but he won the war! But the question remains: Who will face The Beast at the Royal Rumble!?


My Thoughts:

This was an interesting Raw. I’d think some of the haphazard feel comes from adjusting for certain extenuating circumstances. Even so, most of tonight was still fun, no major lull anywhere in the night. The opening segment was fine, though Joe could’ve paced his promo better, and it was a bit redundant to have a brawl when we knew about all the matches set up for tonight before tonight. Those matches themselves were great, though, as Rollins-Sheamus was solid as always, Roman-Cesaro was match of the night whether anti-Roman fans will admit it, and Ambrose-Joe was another solid match that also advanced the Jason Jordan Heel turn. Jordan’s turn is also going great, really, and he’s currently in the Tweener territory as he is making enemies with a lot of people. His playing on Angle’s paternal instincts is also key to his turn, this could go places to make a legit star out of JJ.

The Cruiserweights also have another great match, mixing the highlights from both previous fatal 4 ways into this “second chance” edition, like the standing Spanish fly counter Alexander hits Ali with. It made sense that if Swann was no longer eligible to be the chosen Face to face the top Heels, it’d fall to the other top Face to do it. Alexander has the ring talent and momentum to take down Gulak and then Enzo, but there is still an underlying bit of Face momentum that Gulak could easily tap into after that tense moment with Enzo backstage. I’m still hoping Nia just wants a manager, but it’d be hilarious if Enzo assumed she wanted something more and was rejected. On top of that, Nia and the rest of the Women’s Division is making things interesting by taking a united stand against Absolution. This better lead to the Women’s Rumble, because a single Six Woman Tag won’t be enough at this rate. The Universal Championship is the one curious piece for Raw right now. Balor wins a filler match, but he’s nowhere near facing Lesnar given how Vince is feeling. Kane and Strowman are suddenly given a #1 contender’s match but it all ends in a draw. Lesnar will show up next week, and Heyman will surely address this, but I think we all know the bottom line is that someone is only going to be fed to The Beast to hold him over until Wrestlemania.


My Score: 8/10

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