Live (on tape delay) from Manchester, England this is the Raw Deal for episode #1276. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport.
It was my birthday this past Saturday and I’m still recovering a bit from the weekend, so let’s get to this week’s Raw. Thanks to those of you that sent along birthday wishes.
The broadcast started with this message supporting the people that died in a church in Texas because of a crazy gunman. What a disgusting act. Too much violence in this world. It’s hard to focus on normal things after stuff like that happens. My condolences go out to the victims and their families.
— WWE (@WWE) November 7, 2017
There was a video recap to start the show that covered Braun Strowman's attack against The Miz from last week's show. It took a few minutes.
The Miz started the show in-ring with Miz TV. His buddies Curtis Axel (with neckbrace) and Bo Dallas were in the ring. Miz had a message for Baron Corbin saying that if he talks about his pregnant wife again, Miz will knock his teeth down his throat. Miz said Corbin responded by talking about his wife and unborn daughter anymore. Miz said Corbin claims Miz will call him "daddy" and fans chanted "who's your daddy" at him. Miz talked trash about Corbin. Miz claimed he'll beat Corbin so badly he'll make his title relevant.
Analysis: Heel vs. heel matches don't work. That promo by Miz was almost like a babyface, but he sucks as a face and should always be a heel.
Miz introduced Raw General Manager Kurt Angle as his guest. The crowd cheered Angle and greeted him with "you suck" chants out of respect.
Angle told Miz he has his full support against Baron Corbin. Miz said he wishes he could say the same thing to him. Angle told Miz if anybody knows what he's capable of then Miz would know from TLC. Miz talked about Angle abusing his power, his team falling apart and he remembered Stephanie McMahon saying this last week. A clip aired of Stephanie telling Kurt he's captain of Team Raw and if they lose then he's fired as GM.
Angle told Miz he's not going anywhere. Angle said it's the longest running episodic show in history, they have the best talent, the best show and the best fans. Angle said that Smackdown will always be known as the B show and at Survivor Series they'll prove that. A clip aired of Smackdown's roster attacking Raw talent two weeks ago. Also a clip of Kane "attacking" Daniel Bryan last week.
Analysis: Welcome to Miz TV, your home for clips from previous week's events.
Miz said he wouldn't be shocked if Smackdown came there again and put them under siege. Angle said they wouldn't dare. Angle said he had nothing to do with what Kane did and apologized to Daniel Bryan for what happened. Angle said he had nothing but respect for Daniel. Miz said that when Stephanie threatened Angle's livelihood, he saw the real Angle show up - the ultra competitive Angle. Miz said that he knows Angle tried to eliminate Bryan like he tried to get rid of the Miztourage. Miz bitched about how last week, Braun Strowman tried to attack them with a garbage truck. Miz said he and Bo escaped, but somebody did not and fans chanted "Curtis Axel."
Miz said that Daniel Bryan doesn't deserve an apology, Axel does. Angle said that's not going to happen. Miz did his "hand goes up, mouth goes shut" routine and Angle told him to put his hand down. Miz asked why did Angle reward Strowman by putting him on Team Raw at Survivor Series? Angle said that Strowman is a hell of a negotiator because Angle had to promise him one thing...a match tonight...against The Miz. Fans cheered that. Miz didn't like it. Angle's music played to end it with Miz on his knees begging him not to do it.
Analysis: Typical Raw opening segment that was done to set up a big match for later. It covered a lot with the video recaps of previous weeks and Angle standing up to Miz when Miz did what he could to rile him up. Miz was great like usual. Angle seemed fired up too, so they played off eachother well. There was no mention of Miz's IC Title, so that means it is non-title.
Elias was shown walking backstage for his match.
Commercial aired for WrestleMania 34 next year and travel packages being available.
Elias was in the ring without his guitar because it's a Guitar on a Pole match. Elias complained about how last week Jason Jordan crushed one of his cherished instruments. Elias asked what they want to hear? They said "Wonderwall" according to him and he said too bad because he's got his own song that will be better than anything Noel Gallagher (of Oasis) ever wrote. Elias sang about how he despises Manchester, he called children "future losers" and the parents are a disgrace. Here comes Jason Jordan.
Jason Jordan made his entrance to a mild reaction. The Raw announce team of Michael Cole, Corey Graves and Booker T were shown on camera. Cole noted it's a Guitar on the Pole match for first time in nearly two decades. Clips aired of their guitar smashing incidents the last two weeks.
Guitar on a Pole Match: Elias vs. Jason Jordan
There's a guitar on a pole and the first person to get it can use it as a weapon. Elias tried to get away, Jordan cut him off and they went to break one minute into it.
Back from break, Elias was in control with a hard chop to the chest. The awkward announcing started with Booker complaining about Jordan and tried comparing him to Erik Watts, which didn't get anywhere. Jordan hit two suplexes on Elias. Jordan went up top, Elias tripped him up and Elias hit a clothesline. Elias got the guitar in his hands. Jordan drove Elias back first into the turnbuckle three times in a row and he hit a belly to belly suplex. Crowd was dead for this. Jordan got the guitar and hit Elias in the back with it. That's the end of the match since Jordan's music played. It went about seven minutes.
Winner: Jason Jordan
Elias rolled to the floor selling the guitar to the back.
Analysis: *1/4 Boring match like their other matches. The end of the match was not that interesting with the guitar smashing to the back of Elias. I like both guys, but I don’t think this rivalry is helping either of them.
Still to come: Strowman vs. Miz.
Asuka is up next.
Angle was in the “office” on his phone like usual (the usual office scene) when Cesaro and Sheamus showed up to complain about things. Cesaro was talking with his mouthguard in, so it was tough to understand him. Sheamus said they want to represent Raw as the Tag Team Champions and they trashed Seth and Dean. Angle told them they had one last chance at the titles tonight.
Analysis: This company sure loves rematches. I don’t mind it that much because those teams have great matches. It just feels repetitive and shows how there’s a lack of depth in the tag team division.
Asuka made her entrance.
Asuka vs. Stacy Coates
Coates is a local talent who wrestles as Isla Dawn. Asuka opened with a series of kicks to knock Coates down. Hard slap to the face by Asuka followed by slaps and a kick to the gut. Running hip attack by Asuka knocked down Coates. Hard kick to the head by Asuka. That was followed up by the Asuka Lock submission for the win in after a little over one minute of action.
Winner by submission: Asuka
Analysis: 1/4* An easy win for Asuka as expected. No surprise that it was over so quickly.
Alicia Fox appeared on the screen wearing her captain’s hat since she is the captain of Raw’s women’s team. Fox said that Asuka has been named a member of Team Raw.
Analysis: I thought Smackdown’s women might win the elimination match, but with Asuka there now I have my doubts about that since she’s got the undefeated streak for over two years.
Titus O’Neil and Apollo Crews were set to be interviewed by Charly Caruso, but here’s a video of Samoa Joe beating them up last week. O’Neil said they love to have fun in Titus Worldwide, but last week wasn’t fun at all. O’Neil said last week he was there to help Crews, but this week he’s facing Samoa Joe and said Joe is in trouble.
Analysis: The problem with that promo is that O’Neil loses nearly every match, so he has no credibility when he tries to talk shit. The crowd doesn’t believe him.
Titus O’Neil and Apollo Crews made their entrance. Joe attacked from behind. Joe shoved Crews off the ramp, so Crews went crashing into a barricade. Joe slapped on the Coquina Clutch on O’Neil at the bottom of the ramp as they got near the ring. Refs showed up to break it up.
Analysis: No match. Thanks Joe for saving me from reviewing a Titus O’Neil match.
Joe did a promo saying that it does not matter if you are big and powerful like Titus or if you have athleticism like Crews, if you stand in his way he will put you down. Joe said if there’s anybody back there that wants to step up, he’s not done yet.
Finn Balor’s music hit as he made his entrance to a huge ovation. When he got to the ring, they went to break.
The bell rang to start the match.
Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe
The announcers mentioned their history in NXT with each man holding the NXT Championship and there was a familiarity there. Joe cheated right away by raking Balor’s eyes across the top rope. Balor tripped him up leading to a double foot stomp. When Balor went up top, Joe tripped him up and crotched him. Joe hit a running splash in the corner followed by a jumping kick to the head for two. Joe continued to work on Balor with an elbow drop. High elbow by Joe slowed down Balor when he tried to start a comeback. Balor hit a running forearm to Joe to get him some momentum. Joe went to the middle rope, Balor kicked him in the head and Joe bumped to the floor, which is impressive for a man of his size. Balor hit a running dropkick to send Balor into the barricade. Balor hit his running kick while on the apron. They were outside the ring with Balor hitting a running forearm to the face as the show went to break.
Back from break, Balor hit the Slingblade. Joe came back with a seated senton for a two count. They had a slug fest exchanging strikes and Balor nailed an overhead kick that knocked Joe down. Both guys were down for about a seven count. Balor hit another Slingblade followed by a dropkick that sent Joe into the turnbuckle. Balor went for the Coup de Gras, Joe avoided it and Joe hit a uranage slam for a two count. Joe went for the Coquina Clutch, Balor broke free and hit him with a double stomp attack. Joe bailed to the floor, so Balor hit a somersault dive over the top to take out Joe on the floor. That was too sweet. Joe recovered and hit a hip toss on Balor on the ramp. The ref counted them out for a ten count, so it was a double countout finish. It went about 15 minutes.
Match Result: Double Countout
Analysis: ***1/2 That was very good. Giving two excellent workers that much time for a TV match on Raw is something that helps a show like this. They have great chemistry after working so much in NXT, so no surprise that they could still have an entertaining match like that. Joe’s offense is as good as any heel in WWE while Balor sells everything so well. Balor’s comebacks are very easy to get behind because his offense is so believable. I don’t mind a double countout finish occasionally. That’s what WWE does when they don’t want to have a guy doing a job. I can understand it because they are evenly matched in terms of their place on the roster. Nothing wrong with building to a future match when it's the start of their main roster storyline.
Post match, they continued the fight on the ramp with Balor attacking Joe with punches. Referees were there to try to break it up. Joe fought back and Balor was relentless in trying to attack him again. Security guys went out there along with GM Angle.
Angle said that Survivor Series is the one night of the year where Raw competes with Smackdown. Angle told them that’s the kind of passion and attitude he wants on his team. Angle welcomed them to his team at Survivor Series. Joe was being held by security near the ramp leading to Balor doing a running forearm attack that knocked him down.
Analysis: Solid post match angle that leaves fans wondering if Joe and Balor can work together as a team.
That means Team Raw is Kurt Angle, Braun Strowman, Samoa Joe, Finn Balor and one more name.
The Miz was in the locker room with Curtis Axel and Bo Dallas. Dallas tried to do a pep talk telling Miz they can do this. Axel said that Strowman is really a monster among men. Axel said he thinks they should leave right now and run. Miz paced in the room without saying a word.
Still to come: Strowman vs. Miz and Rollins/Ambrose vs. Cesaro/Sheamus for Raw’s Tag Team Titles.
There was a tweet from Triple H shown congratulating Josh Reddick of the Houston Astros for winning the World Series. They sent the Astros as WWE Championship and Reddick is a huge WWE fan, so there was picture of him holding it. Congrats Astros. Great series.
Angle was in the office on the phone as he was leaving a message to Smackdown’s GM Daniel Bryan. Angle said he wanted to personally apologize for what Kane did to him and to call him back. Jason Jordan walked into the room as Angle gave his “son” a hug. Angle told Jordan he’s been making great strides as a singles competitor. Angle told him his job is on the line at Survivor Series and this may be seen as favoritism, but he needs people he can trust on his team and told Jordan he’s on the team. Jordan was excited, told him he’s not going to let him down and gave Kurt a hug.
Analysis: I was told by people at the show that when that segment aired, the fans booed Jordan on the team loudly. However, watching the show there were no boos. Typical WWE editing out crowd reactions on a show taped several hours earlier.
That means the Raw team at Survivor Series is Kurt Angle, Braun Strowman, Samoa Joe, Finn Balor and Jason Jordan. The Smackdown team is Shane McMahon, Randy Orton, Shinsuke Nakamura, Bobby Roode and one more name.
Analysis: My prediction at this moment is that Raw’s team will win with Strowman as perhaps the only survivor in the match, but it may be him and Angle.
The announcers Booker and Corey argued about it. Booker said damn right that was favoritism while noting that Jordan isn’t ready for that. Graves said Jordan was a good choice because when you’re going to battle, who better to fight with you than family.
Bayley and Sasha Banks were interviewed by Mike Rome. They face Alicia Fox and Nia Jax. Bayley said that Fox likes to act different, but she’s not different enough to not choose them for Team Raw. Bayley said the only hugs she’ll be given are the hugs of consolation after Smackdown loses. That line was so bad. Anyway, Banks chimed in too, but I was too busy laughing at how bad that Bayley line was.
Analysis: That hugs of consolation line was brutal. Please get better writers.
Nia Jax made her entrance. She’s not like most girls. I heard that a few times.
Jax was in the ring and Cole said Total Divas had a “wonderful” season premiere. I wonder if he watches while drinking wine and eating bonbons.
Sasha Banks made her entrance. Bayley entered as well. Alicia Fox entered last wearing her captain’s hat even though her partner Nia Jax was already in the ring. They messed up the order of entrance to put Fox last? Okay then.
Bayley & Sasha Banks vs. Nia Jax & Alicia Fox
This match feels like a repeat, but it’s just Jax working in tags against Bayley and Banks. At least these fans care about Bayley with the “Hey Bayley” song. The crowds in the US don’t react to her much anymore because of how badly she has been booked. Jax shoved Bayley down. Banks tagged in and the face slowly sent Jax into the turnbuckle. Bayley with a corner clothesline. Banks jumped off the top, Jax caught her and Jax missed an elbow drop. Running kick by Banks got a one count. The announcers were bickering around the Raw team with Graves saying our team and the other two pointed out Graves is on both shows. Welcome to WWE, where people suck at trash talk. Bayley sent Fox out of the ring. Jax hit Bayley with a clothesline that sent her out of the ring. The show went to break there.
Back from break, Jax hit elbow drops on Bayley as the heels took control. Fox slapped on a chinlock on Bayley. Jax put Bayley on her shoulder and sent her face first into the turnbuckle. That was a good spot. Jax should do that move more often because it looks impressive. Jax tosses Bayley across the ring. Bayley sent Fox into the turnbuckle and Bayley tagged in Banks. Double knees off the top by Banks on Fox. Headscissors take down by Banks on Fox. Double knees by Banks on Fox in the corner and Jax broke up the pin. Bayley jumped on Jax’s back. They went tumbling to the floor in a slow looking bump that looked bad. Fox rolled up Banks for two. Banks kicked out and slapped on the Bank Statement submission for the win after 10 minutes.
Winners by submission: Bayley & Sasha Banks
Analysis: *3/4 Decent match to put over the faces with Fox tapping out in predictable fashion because WWE always tries to protect Jax in tag matches. Booking Fox to be a loser was no surprise since that’s how they usually book her aside from winning the match to be captain of the team.
Post match, Fox did a promo saying that she needs and wants “Bossy Banks” aka Sasha Banks on Team Raw. Banks’ music played to end it.
That means Team Raw is going to be Alicia Fox, Nia Jax, Asuka, Sasha Banks and one more.
Analysis: I hope the fifth person is Mickie James, who wasn’t even on this show, but it will probably be Bayley.
Braun Strowman was shown walking backstage for his match.
A video package aired that basically covered Strowman turning into a face as the new “Stone Cold” Braun Strowman.
Strowman made his entrance with the fans cheering him.
The Miz made his entrance with the Intercontinental Title on his shoulder with Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel in suits. Axel has a neckbrace on too.
More recap of what happened last week with Strowman’s return.
Analysis: All of that recapping and entrances took about ten minutes. This show is too long.
Braun Strowman vs. The Miz (w/Curtis Axel & Bo Dallas)
This is not for the IC Title held by Miz.
The Miz stalled outside the ring to start the match. He tried to use Axel and Dallas as a distraction, but Strowman tossed Miz across the ring. Miz bailed to the floor. Strowman chased after Miz on the floor and sent Miz into the ring post. Strowman tossed Miz back in the ring. Strowman picked up Miz on his shoulder and slammed him his stomach. Strowman left the ring and punched Dallas with a punch that sounded like a big punch. Strowman whipped Axel into the barricade. Strowman told Miz he can’t run and Strowman tossed Miz over the top onto Dallas and Axel.
Kane’s music started up as Kane made his entrance down to the ring. Kane went into the ring, Strowman told him he can’t kill him and he’s the monster on Raw. Kane punched Strowman, so that led to the DQ finish.
Winner by disqualification: Braun Strowman
Analysis: * They went four minutes and Miz spent half of it on the floor. There’s not much to rate, but it is always fun to watch Braun tossing people around.
The fight continued with Kane getting a boot to the face of Strowman. When Kane tried a Chokeslam, Strowman fought out of it and Strowman hit him with a Running Powerslam. Kane sat up, so Strowman hit a clothesline to send him over the top to the floor. Kane landed on his feet. The announcers seemed imrpessed even though we have seen Kane do that for twenty years. Miz and Dallas attacked Strowman from behind. Strowman with a running splash on Dallas in the corner. Strowman with a corner clothesline on Miz and then a Running Powerslam on Miz. Strowman posed as the crowd cheered.
Analysis: It was a dominant performance from Strowman, which is the usual from him. The announcers tried to put over Kane sitting up from the Powerslam, but it’s not like Kane looked that strong since he was clotheslined out of the ring. All of this is done to build up a future Strowman vs. Kane match while Miz was left to look like a loser.
Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose, the Raw Tag Team Champions, were interviewed by Renee Young, who is Dean’s wife although WWE doesn't say that. Ambrose said that as the champions, you have to expect the unexpected and defending the titles is what they do. Rollins said you’re bound to make some enemies when you’re as dominant as they are. Rollins said in two weeks at Survivor Series, they’ll prove to The Usos who the best tag team really is. Rollins said that Sheamus and Cesaro are two of the most uncool people on Earth. They mocked the smell of Sheamus and Cesaro’s teeth. Ambrose said that Sheamus and Cesaro aren’t going to win. Rollins said The Shield fist has been and always will be the real bar. The guys stuck their fists out for The Shield pose and after they left, Renee put her first out too.
Analysis: Solid promo from the champs. Nice moment for Renee fangirling for her husband Dean.
A clip aired of Enzo Amore retaining the Cruiserweight Title against Kalisto two weeks ago by losing a match by disqualification.
Enzo made his entrance with the Cruiserweight Title around his waist. It’s Enzo vs. Kalisto for the Cruiserweight Title again at Survivor Series.
Enzo did a promo bragging about how great he is. He kept on insulting the crowd. He asked what is next for the Cruiserweight Champion. He talked about how a little kid asked him something. Fans chanted for Neville I think and Enzo said he ran him out of town. Enzo continued his routine with the kid saying that what’s next is Kalisto at Survivor Series. This promo kept dragging, so Graves said somebody give him the hook. Yes please. Enzo said that he’s the only defending their title at Survivor Series. Graves said he wanted to take a nap. Fans were losing interest in this.
Analysis: This went on for way too long. I figure it was done to get heat, but it was too much.
Kalisto made his entrance way too late to try to shut up Enzo. Kalisto sat down in a chair by the ring.
The entrance music played of the WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne. The crowd cheered. Angle showed up to say that tonight they will have the cruiserweight against the Bruiserweight. Angle introduced the WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne, who is making his debut on Raw.
Dunne walked down to the ring with the UK Title on his shoulder as the crowd cheered their countryman.
Pete Dunne vs. Enzo Amore
No titles on the line in this match. Cole noted that Dunne was 205 pounds.
Dunne nailed Enzo with a forearm to the face. They went outside the ring where Dunne hit a kick to the gut and a suplex on the apron. Enzo escaped an armbar and hit a dropkick to the knee. Enzo kicked him in the ribs. Dunne came back with a leaping enziguri kick to the head. Enzo tripped him up with a pin where he put his feet on the ropes and Kalisto told the ref about it, so the ref told Enzo to get his foot off. Enzo yelled at Kalisto about it. Dunne capitalized with a forearm to the back that sent Enzo into the turnbuckle. Dunne hit the Bitter End finisher for the pinfall win after about four minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Pete Dunne
Analysis: *3/4 Good job of showcasing Dunne’s skills. Enzo is booked like a loser when he’s not defending the title, so the outcome was predictable with Dunne winning clean. Dunne is a very good performer that should be a regular in NXT or even the main roster because he can do it all. It would be nice if WWE utilized him more. I hope this leads to more opportunities, but it was likely done just to pop the fans in England since he’s from Birmingham, England.
Post match, Kalisto raised Dunne’s hand to congratulate him for the win. Kalisto talked trash to Enzo to end it.
Coming up later is the Rollins/Ambrose vs. Sheamus/Cesaro.
The announcers talked about Total Divas with Cole saying it’s incredible. Put down the booze, Mikey.
A video package aired about Brock Lesnar vs. Jinder Mahal at Survivor Series…if Mahal retains the WWE Title against AJ Styles on Smackdown. Mahal calling himself the “Beast Master” is such a terrible nickname.
Next week on Raw: Brock Lesnar returns with Paul Heyman.
Alexa Bliss was interviewed by Charly Caruso backstage. Bliss called Natalya an eccentric cat lady. Bliss said she’ll run circles around Natalya just like when she was on Smackdown. Bliss noted she was a two time champion on Smackdown and a two time champion on Raw. Bliss asked Charlie “what does two and two make” so Charly said four and Bliss said it makes one as in the “one and only goddess of WWE.”
Analysis: I’m not sure why WWE thinks Bliss vs. Natalya in a heel vs. heel match at Survivor Series is a good idea. Did they plan this in advance? Sometimes I wonder. I like Natalya a lot more than Bliss, but I don’t think she can carry her to a good match where both women are booed. Bliss may get some cheers, though.
Sheamus and Cesaro made their entrance. They were wearing Liverpool soccer/football kits/jerseys (soccer uniforms), which drew boos because fans in Manchester don’t like Liverpool. Cheap heat, England style.
This week on 205 Live, they have invited the WWE UK division.
Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose made their entrance by walking down the steps in the crowd and entered to The Shield music. It was also announced that Roman Reigns will return to Raw next Monday in Atlanta.
Raw Tag Team Championships: Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus & Cesaro
Rollins hit a Slingblade on Sheamus while Ambrose held Sheamus. Cesaro tagged in and Rollins hit him with and X-Factor facebuster. Sheamus saved Cesaro by pulling him out of the ring. Rollins dropkick knocked both heels into the barricade. Rollins and Ambrose each hit dives off the top rope onto the heels on the floor. The heels recovered as Cesaro hit an uppercut on Ambrose. Running knee by Ambrose to the ribs of Sheamus and Rollins tagged in with a dropkick that sent Sheamus to the floor. Cesaro sent to the floor as well as the show went to break.
Back from break, the heels were still in control of Ambrose. Double team kick to Ambrose in the corner. Heels did a double team clothesline on Ambrose followed by Sheamus hitting a knee drop to the face. Ambrose tried to fight back, but Sheamus hit him with a forearm to the back that knocked him off the apron. Ambrose came back with a bounce back clothesline on the floor. Cesaro tagged in and kicked Rollins off the apron. Ambrose fought off a Cesaro attack on the top rope and hit a clothesline that ended up sending Cesaro to the floor. Sheamus tagged back in, Ambrose sent him shoulder first into the post and the crowd went crazy as Rollins got the hot tag against Cesaro.
Rollins hit a springboard clothesline on Cesaro, then a Blockbuster on Cesaro and a suicide dive on Sheamus. Rollins got a rollup for two. Rollins hit the Falcon Arrow slam for a two count. The flurry of offense from Rollins after a hot tag is always exciting to see. Sheamus on the apron, so Rollins hit him with a double axe. Cesaro came back by launching Rollins into the air leading to an uppercut for two. Ambrose saved Rollins, which led to a slugfest that was won by Rollins hitting a superkick on Sheamus while Ambrose hit a clothesline on Cesaro leading to a two count for Rollins on Sheamus. The heels prevented the double suicide dive attempts. Double team Powerbomb by the heels that sent Ambrose into the barricade. Same bump that hurt Finn Balor last year. Back in the ring, Cesaro held up Rollins leading to Sheamus hitting a clothesline in the Doomsday Device clothesline that the Road Warriors used to do. Sheamus set up White Noise, Ambrose back in the ring and Rollins hit superkicks on both heels. Ambrose hit Dirty Deeds on Sheamus. Rollins went to the top rope and hit a Frog Splash. Cesaro shoved Ambrose onto Rollins to break up the pin. That was an awesome spot to break up the pin.
The New Day's music hit as they made their entrance with Big E doing their usual “Feel The Power” promo as everybody freaked out because it was a Smackdown invasion. The trio of Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods appeared in the crowd where The Shield made their entrance. They did a promo while Kurt Angle, Rhyno and Heath Slater were shown walking backstage. Braun Strowman showed up, so Angle told him to go guard an exit. Angle got more wrestlers to go with him. This match was still going on even though the guys were just standing there watching them. New Day pointed out that Raw did nothing to them. Kingston said prepare yourselves for #UnderSiege part two. They wondered what Raw was going to do about it and said “nothing” together. Angle and the Raw locker room got out there. Angle told the Raw stars to go up the steps to get them. Meanwhile, back in the ring Sheamus hit Rollins with a Brogue Kick and covered him while Cesaro prevented Ambrose from making the save. It went 19 minutes.
Winners and New Tag Team Champions: Sheamus & Cesaro
The win means that Sheamus & Cesaro are three-time Raw Tag Team Champions. That means they will face The Usos at Survivor Series.
Analysis: ***1/2 That was fun tag team match. I love watching these teams in long tag matches. They have a lot of chemistry since this feud has been going on for a few months with several television matches as well as them perfecting their craft during live events. It was a weird match to watch because five minutes of it featured The New Day talking while the guys in the ring just stood there like a bunch of idiots distracted by it. The finish with Sheamus hitting the kick was clever. This was well on its way to being a four star level match, but I had to knock it down a bit because of the way it ended. As an angle, it worked well. I’m a little surprised by the title change because I thought Seth and Dean should have carried the titles into the new year at least. They really haven’t had them that long. It feels like it was just done to set up a Shield match more than any other reason.
Sheamus & Cesaro celebrated with their titles on the ramp. Ambrose and Rollins were stunned in the ring while Angle was looking confused about what happened. Graves was saying that Smackdown got the best of them again.
Analysis: What that New Day appearance likely means is that we’ll get The Shield trio of Roman Reigns, Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose vs. The New Day trio of Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods at Survivor Series. That should be an awesome match.
I was really looking forward to Seth/Dean vs. Usos because they are two incredible teams, but I can understand WWE wanting to pivot to a Shield match since they didn’t get to team up at TLC due to Roman’s illness. The win by Sheamus/Cesaro means that they face the Usos now and The Usos are still a heel team, so that’s three heel vs. heel matches at Survivor Series. Weird lineup to have three all heel matches.
If you're wondering about the "invasion" angle, Smackdown had a live event in Portugal. Obviously, WWE made the call to take New Day off that show and fly them to England. There may be some Raw talent on Smackdown this week, but Raw has live events too. Next week's shows will be when both rosters will be free to further the story.
Three Stars of the Show
1. Finn Balor
2. Samoa Joe
3. (tie) Sheamus/Cesaro
3. (tie) Rollins/Ambrose
7 out of 10
Last week: 4.5
2017 Average: 5.83
Average since brand split starting July 25/16: 5.81 (Smackdown is 6.63)
Last 5 Weeks: 5.5, 6.5, 5.5, 4.5, 5
2017 High: 8 (April 3)
2017 Low: 4 (Jan. 9, Feb. 27 & June 12)
I give it a 7 out of 10.
Raw was pretty good this week. I liked the Balor/Joe match and the Tag Team Title matches a lot. Both got time and told interesting stories. Neither match had a clean finish, but that’s fine once in a while.
Braun Strowman’s path of destruction continued. Smart way to book him strong heading into Survivor Series.
I liked the appearance from Pete Dunne. I’m not going to call it his debut because I doubt he’s going to be on Raw regularly even though he really should be. This just felt like something to do to pop the England fans.
The crowd was loud most of the night although you could tell WWE edited some crowd responses too.
— WWE (@WWE) October 31, 2017
The next WWE PPV is Survivor Series on Sunday, November 19. Here’s what we know.
Universal Champion Brock Lesnar vs. WWE Champion Jinder Mahal
Raw’s 5 men (Kurt Angle is the captain of the team with Braun Strowman, Finn Balor, Samoa Joe & Jason Jordan) vs. Smackdown’s 5 men (Shane McMahon is the captain of the team with Randy Orton, Shinsuke Nakamura, Bobby Roode and one more name)
Intercontinental Champion The Miz vs. United States Champion Baron Corbin
Raw Tag Team Champions Sheamus & Cesaro vs. Smackdown Tag Team Champions The Usos
Raw Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss vs. Smackdown Women’s Champion Natalya
Raw’s 5 women (Alicia Fox is the captain with Nia Jax, Asuka, Sasha Banks and one more name) vs. Smackdown’s 5 women (Becky Lynch is the captain with Charlotte Flair, Naomi, Tamina and Carmella)
Cruiserweight Championship: Enzo Amore vs. Kalisto
It’s a four-hour show. I think The Shield’s Reigns, Rollins and Ambrose vs. New Day’s Big E, Woods and Kingston will be added as well.
That's all for this week. See ya next time for the Smackdown review.
Go Los Angeles Rams, Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs.
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