Welcome to The Raw Reaction, where I offer my take on this week’s show from Boston. You can check out John’s in-depth review here.
We open with the opening video and pyro before Becky Lynch comes out to talk about Survivor Series. Dio Maddin is noticeably absent from the announce table. He doesn’t need two weeks to sell the F5. Anyway, Becky says she’s ready to fight and we have an IIconics sighting. Billie Kay is complaining that they got left off of the Survivor Series card. The IIconics started to do their iiconic bit when Becky interrupted them ready to fight both of them. Out comes Charlotte Flair, because this is a tag match after all. Quick plug for Survivor Series leads us to a random Samoa Joe appearance and a commercial break. Back from break, Joe is on commentary tonight and The IIconics lose quickly. After the match, the NXT MMA Horsewomen are out with a quick hit and run attack on Becky and Charlotte before retreating through the crowd. Becky and Charlotte give chase only to be stopped by security. Becky slugs one of the security guys for good measure. This might be a theme for the show tonight.
Random jobber abuse is next from AOP beating down Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins who were discussing their upcoming tag title match. Guess AOP thought Ryder and Hawkins were not worthy of the title shot.
Karl Anderson and Humberto Carrillo are up next. Carrillo starts off hot and The Street Profits come down to help even the odds after The OC gets involved in the match. A pretty good match develops and Carrillo picks up the win after outsmarting The OC.
Seth Rollins is up for a promo about his match with Andrade later and Survivor Series.
Back on Temptation Island, Lana and Bobby Lashley are out for Lashley’s match against No Way Jose. Lana is announced as the Ravishing Russian, but still continues to flip back and forth between American and Russian. She seriously needs to make her mind up on this one. In the meantime, I’ll blame (Un)Creative for it. Anyway, Lana announces that she is filing for divorce from Rusev, showing some legit looking US District Court papers bearing their real names on it. The whole promo lasts longer than the match, with Lashley channeling his inner Chris Masters and putting Jose down with the Full Nelson, like it is the Masterlock Challenge. Fun fact, Lashley was the one to break the hold in 2006.
Rollins takes on Andrade next with the Captain of Team Raw on the line. Match started off a little slow and Vega interfered. Becky did not come out to whop on Vega, so the ref just tosses her instead. A very good match then breaks out and Smackdown’s Lucha House Party, of all people, interfere in the match so Andrade does not have to take a clean loss. Rollins and Andrade team up to dispose of LHP and Rollins said “we’ll do this again” to Andrade. Hopefully next time, Andrade is willing to take a clean loss.
Former cruiserweights Buddy Murphy and Akira Tozawa are up next. Before the match, Murphy knocked on Aleister Black’s door, but was gone before Black could see him. Murphy picks up the win in a very competitive match. It was a shame that the Boston crowd just didn’t care. They worked really hard and WWE really needs to work on making us care about them. After the match, Murphy and Black bump into each other at the door and that should be a good match soon.
Erick Rowan channels his inner Jake “The Snake” Roberts for whatever is in the carrier before slaughtering some poor jobber. A 24/7 Title match tries to break out, but Rowan steamrolls all of them.
Survivor Series teammates Kevin Owens and Drew McIntyre square off next. Neither guy holds back and we have a fantastic match. WWE even remembered how to protect a guy’s finisher with the foot on the rope for each competitor. With the fans chanting “This is awesome”, NXT’s Triple H appears and the match just stops. Lame. Back from break Triple H is talking about how Owens was making NXT before he was taken (good movie, btw) which lead to the Raw v. NXT brawl before NXT left.
Heyman cuts a promo about Survivor Series now being No Holds Barred. Rey accepts and I’m hoping for a title change.
Asuka and Natalya are up next in a match that was just too short to be anything to write home about. Asuka picks up the win after a kick to Nattie’s head.
The tag title match is next with the Viking Raiders defending against the team of Randy Orton and Ricochet. Halfway through the match, you see the Smackdown guys beating up Raw guys backstage. At least they were color coded. The match goes a few more minutes and Smackdown charges to the ring and the fight is on. Raw clears the ring and here comes NXT. Everyone is fighting everywhere as Raw goes off the air.
Let’s look at the highs and lows from tonight.
There were several good matches tonight, however, most didn’t get a decisive ending. Owens/McIntyre and Rollins/Andrade had no finish while Murphy/Tozawa had a finish but the crowd just didn’t care.
Samoa Joe was very good on commentary tonight. We need a better explanation where Maddin is though.
The two best matches of the night had no finishes. I get the need to hype Survivor Series but come on.
The show closing brawl was nothing really special. We see it every year and I can only imagine what Smackdown has planned for Chicago.
Overall, I thought several of the matches were very good, just needed some finishes. With Survivor Series on Sunday, I don’t feel like there is any real reason why NXT was included this year, especially with the two Wargames matches the night before.
That’s all I’ve got for now. Until next time.