1. COO Triple H Makes an Offer to Roman Reigns: Triple H started the show talking about Rollins’ injury and inviting Reigns to the ring. With Championship belt on a pedestal in front of him the title looked very tempting to Reigns who, despite how easy it could have been, turned down Triple H’s offer to be “his guy” and take the easy road to the championship. The crowd cheering proved this was a good move for Reigns.
2. Roman Reigns v. Big Show: After turning down the easy road Reigns had to start “at the back of the line” in the tournament for the WWE Championship. The match wasn’t that great but the fans were still behind Reigns who chose earning the title rather than being given it. One cool moment was when Reigns went for the Superman Punch and Big Show, like he used to, was quick enough to catch Reigns and choke slam him. Reigns picked up the win, advancing in the tournament with some extra fan support.
3. Kevin Owens v. Titus O’Neil: Another tournament match with, I’m sad to say, a clearly thought out victor in Owens. O’Neil, while talented, is floundering in the mid-card, his tag team, the Prime Time Players (with Darren Young) is essentially a footnote in the locker room lately. Still, Owens played the perfect heel and Titus did a good job in the match until the victor came out on top, as we all expected.
4. Paige v. Becky Lynch: At one time this match would’ve been difficult for fans of Team PCB but now it was welcome. Paige tried to pick up the win with cheating but Becky turned the tables and grabbed Paige’s tights for the win. Despite the slightly underhanded win it went over with the crowd as a “turn about is fair play” kind of thing. When Paige attacked Becky and put her in the PTO on top of the announce table it was a great heel move. Charlotte came to make the save, upping the tension between Paige and the Diva’s Champ as they head towards Survivor Series.
5. The Miz v. Dolph Ziggler: An early injury to Dolph’s leg could’ve been the end but in true Ziggler style he pulled through with a good win over The Miz. This match could’ve been better but the expected time restriction on this match probably made it difficult for these two competitors who, if given enough time, put on great matches. Ziggler advanced in the tournament, the crowd agreeing with the choice.
6. Colter & Del Rio Mock England: In a clear ploy to not be forgotten Zeb Colter and Alberto Del Rio came out with their Mex America flag and talked some trash. If the WWE is angling towards Swagger being involved in this scenario he should’ve come out at this point and gotten in Del Rio’s face. A missed opportunity in my opinion.
7. Naomi v. Natalya: With the tournament beginning I was surprised to see two Divas matches tonight. Still, the time was limited and the match itself wasn’t that great. While Natalya picked up the win, which was good, it was better to see the heels of Team B.A.D. attack her, adding fire to this potential feud and angle.
8. Sheamus v. Cesaro: Involving celebrities is not new but having Wayne Rooney of Manchester United slap Barrett was a nice touch as Sheamus and Cesaro battled it out. One of the better matches of the night Cesaro and Sheamus put on a good show, the outside ring action not taking away from it but adding to it without outshining it. All in all a good segment and a good win for Cesaro. Sheamus being in the tournament baffled me a little because, let’s face it, he carries around his title shot.
Tyler Breeze v. Dean Ambrose: Breeze has been on a bit of a roll since coming to the main roster in his interactions with Ziggler and I worried Ambrose would fall victim to this. However Prince Pretty lose his first match, leading me to believe that Breeze will effect Ziggler’s matches throughout the rest of the tournament rather than come face to face with him. With Ambrose advancing I can’t help but wonder if the tournament will come down to Ambrose and Reigns. I hope it does.
9. The New Day v. The Usos & Neville: The New Day was great on the mic and the match was pretty good overall. Neville hitting a modified Red Arrow from the turnbuckle to the outside on everyone in the match, even his own teammates earned a “this is awesome” chant, which it was. The New Day picked up a win via cheating (interference and use of the ropes) but we’ll see how long The New Day can stay lucky with the Usos and the Dudley’s coming for them. Speaking of which, where are the Dudley’s this week?
10. Bray Wyatt’s “Memorial” for the Undertaker & Kane: Bray Wyatt came out, spouting his lines about how he now owned the souls of the Brothers of Destruction. If he did own their souls they weren’t well controlled as The Undertaker and Kane came out to the ring, shocking Wyatt and the fans. Kane and the Undertaker fended off the entire Wyatt clan, without backup and brought back classic moves such as sitting up in unison, raising their arms at the top of the ramp and the double choke slam to Wyatt. It was the best end to Raw in a while.
Tags: 10 thoughts on raw