10 Thoughts On… WWE Monday Night Raw 09.14.2015 (Sting vs. Big Show, Charlotte vs. Nikki, Paige vs. Sasha Banks)

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1. Authority Promo: Well, announcing that this Raw was the “season premiere” of Raw was odd as, unless I just don’t have a good memory, was the first time a “season” was announced for WWE programming. The Authority talked about Sting’s first Raw match and then weirdly danced with The New Day. I felt a little awkward watching Stephanie & Triple H shake it with Big E.

2. WWE Tag Team Championship Match: The New Day v. The Prime Time Players: Nothing really new here, it was a good match but the predictability of Xavier Woods being an annoying distraction just made me want this over with. At least now we know at Sunday for Night of Champions it’s The New Day v. The Dudley Boys.

3. Paige v. Sasha Banks: When you have limited time for a match as well as interference from the outside it was clear this match was here just so the Divas has some time without taking up “too much” time. Given a better time slot a better match could have happened. Continuing the Paige v. Sasha Banks angle was smart though.

4. Miz TV with The Wyatt Family: An okay segment except for two things, the mysterious Wyatt family on a “talk show” seemed odd. Even odder was the fact that Reigns & Ambrose entered the ring without diving headlong into a brawl. While it was nice seeing a better mic spot (better, not fantastic) from Roman, discussing his family (Usos) and promising a partner to help defeat the Wyatts I wonder exactly how it will play out. However, am I the only one who caught the word “monster” thrown around a lot? (At Braun but I wonder if it hints at the mystery partner for Amrbose and Reigns).

5. John Cena v. Sheamus: These two work well together and their matches are always good to watch. Giving Cena the win ahead of Night of Champions was predictable but also a good move, making it clear that the Authority wants to soften up Rollins’ opponents for Night of Champions.

6. Ryback & Kevin Owens Promo: A pretty great promo overall it’s setting up a nice rivalry for these big guys to brawl it out on Sunday. I’m actually excited for this match.

7. Neville & The Lucha Dragons v. Cosmic Wasteland (Stardust & The Ascension): When did the Ascension become lackeys for Stardust? It seems weird to pair them together but not unbelievable (the theatricality of all three men seems to work well together.) The match never started though and we were left with just a quick announcement that there will be a match on Sunday as Neville & the Lucha Dragons stood tall in the ring.

8. Divas Championship Match: Charlotte v. Nikki Bella: I’ll say it, I’m pissed off. Not at the match but at how it all worked out in the end. It was a great story for the women involved, the match was pretty great, especially for the women to be given time and space to have a good Raw match. Let’s face it though, the continued use of “Twin Magic” as well as seeing Charlotte & Ric Flair cry with joy, only to have Stephanie say “oops, it’s a technicality, blah blah” really bothered me. We all know they need the match for Night of Champions butt he fact that the WWE quickly buried AJ Lee’s record is, in my opinion, tactless.

9. Cesaro v. Rusev: The match was okay but Ziggler coming out and offering Summer a gift gave Cesaro the advantage as he took down Rusev. Rusev, for his troubles, was superkicked by Ziggler and carted off by Summer who held the gift behind her back as she lead Rusev to the backstage area. Am I the only one who found Cesaro’s “Hey man, do what you gotta do,” shrug before high-fiving Ziggler funny?

10. Sting v. Big Show: Of course Rollins got involved. Of course Cena came to “rescue” Sting and of course it became a tag team match. Having Rollins tap out to the Scorpion Death Lock put Rollins in his place and made it obvious that Sting is an actual threat to the title reign come Sunday.

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