Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Raw Review 10/24/16

October 24th, 2016 | Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota

It’s the go home show before Hell in a Cell! Brock Lesnar is on the show and Seth Rollins, Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho do battle in a triple threat match.

Speaking of Chris Jericho, he opened the show. According to commentary, it was supposed to be Enzo Amore vs. Karl Anderson kicking things off. This is the better option for sure. Jericho is upset because someone has stolen the list of Jericho. Oh no! He refused to leave the ring until he got it. Kevin Owens showed up and was greeted with “where’s the list?” chants. Owens didn’t have the list and didn’t care, but promised to help Jericho after they took care of Seth Rollins. Out came Stephanie McMahon, because she has to in the show’s main storyline. She told Jericho to stop being ridiculous, so Jericho freaked out about the list again. Seth Rollins interrupted to a big pop and he had the list behind his back. Jericho freaked out again about Seth having it and Seth had some fun with him. Seth revealed that both Stephanie and Owens were on the list, which Jericho denied. Seth ran down a list of his own of the body parts that he’s going to hurt on Owens at the PPV, with the last one being Owens’ ego. Seth left the list and told Jericho to come get the list.

In the back, Stephanie McMahon walked up to Seth Rollins and said that Jericho wanted the list still. Seth claimed that Stephanie only wants the list so the match can happen and Jericho and Owens can soften him up for the Cell. He believed that Stephanie just wanted to make sure that her and her husband’s chosen one won on Sunday. He also claimed he didn’t have the list anymore.

Enzo Amore w/ Big Cass def. Karl Anderson w/ Luke Gallows in 7:17
A tag match between the duos has been announced for Hell in a Cell. Gallows and Anderson interrupted the usual pre-match opening Enzo promo. They paid off someone to shut off Enzo’s mic so, in a really cool moment, Enzo and Cass do their entire opening without a microphone since the crowd knows every single word and did it for them. They worked through a break and Anderson was in control. Enzo started in with his comeback but Anderson outsmarted him and sent him into the corner. Some distractions by Cass and Gallows allowed Cass to big boot Anderson and Enzo stole it. Not much here. Anderson can go as a singles guy but hasn’t shown it here, while Enzo is clearly a better tag guy. 

The Roman Reigns vs. Rusev Hell in a Cell match got previewed. Rusev spoke and basically said that he was going to do despicable things to Reigns on Sunday. He made a good point about Reigns disrespecting his family.

Time for the W (gyrate) W (gyrate) E (gyrate) World (gyrate) Tag (gyrate) Team (gyrate) Champions (gyrate)! They praised Cesaro but not Sheamus. His name is “shame us” after all.

Non-Title Match: Cesaro and Sheamus def. The New Day w/ Xavier Woods in 11:41
I never understood giving away a match on free TV before the PPV. The New Day had control because, as Xavier put it, they live and train together. After a commercial break, Sheamus and Cesaro isolated Kingston but they still weren’t working together. It was more of them one upping each other. Big E got the tag and came in hot, delivering belly to belly suplexes. Cesaro and Kofi went at it, which was cool. They had a phenomenal match on Main Event a few years ago. Sheamus blind tagged in and missed the Brogue Kick. Big E launched Kofi outside right into an uppercut. Sheamus got back in and hit the Brogue Kick this time for the win. Really fun match that got awesome in the finishing run. I just don’t see why you do this now and again in six nights. ***¼

Time to recap Goldberg’s return last week.

Jericho continued to look for the list in the back. The Shining Stars offered him a timeshare but Jericho said that he hated the Dominican. He complemented Titus’ scarf game and called Jinder Mahal a stupid idiot.

Next up is supposed to be Dana Brooke vs. Bayley in a rematch from last week. Brooke got on the microphone before the match to say that her win last week wasn’t an upset and bragged about having a better look than Bayley. She said that the rematch is an arm wrestling contest and not a wrestling match. Bayley was wearing the Cesaro shoulder tape. The fans gave this a “this is stupid” chant. Dana won handily but saw the bad right shoulder on Bayley so she wanted to go with the left arms. “Boring” chants. Bayley near won and Dana hit her with a cheap shot. So it was every arm wrestling match in wrestling history. Bayley turned it around and sent Dana packing. This fell flat on its face and the only positive was that it was short. They have no idea what to do with Bayley. Hopefully she does something of note once the Charlotte/Sasha feud ends.

Chris Jericho came up to Stephanie McMahon, still upset that he can’t find the list. Stephanie told him to get focused and compete whether or not he finds the list. If he doesn’t compete, he’s suspended.

Curtis Axel was in the ring when they came back from commercial. He believed in Bo, but after Bo took him out last week, he had to re-evaluate his life. He mentioned his roots and being from Minnesota. Curtis name dropped his grandfather and father. The crowd got way behind him.

Bo Dallas def. Curtis Axel in 2:57
Axel also ditched the stupid shorts that he would wear and was back in his old trunks. He started hot to the crowd’s liking. Axel hit the Perfect Plex for two, which pissed me off. YOU DON’T KICK OUT OF THAT DAMMIT! Axel stayed hot but Bo rolled him up in a school boy that got the three. This was surprisingly fun thanks to the Minnesota crowd being way into it. **

A Rich Swann video package aired. He faces Brian Kendrick later tonight.

Chris Jericho was walking backstage, seemingly ready to walk out. A worker came up to him and said they saw someone with the list. An excited Jericho kissed him on the head and turned the corner to see Braun Strowman reading the list. Braun gave it back to him after making Jericho say please. Braun wasn’t happy that Sami Zayn wasn’t on it but gave it up and left. Jericho said Sami was on page four and put Braun on the list for touching it. There were big pops for Jericho getting it back and putting Braun on it.

Roman Reigns now spoke about the upcoming Hell in a Cell match with Rusev. It wasn’t interesting, like most Reigns promos, but he kept it serious and short, so that was fine.

The Golden Truth w/ Mark Henry def. The Shining Stars w/ Titus O’Neil in 3:59
Titus and Mark were around due to a segment last week. I missed it since I didn’t catch Raw last week, so I apologize. The crowd didn’t care about anything going on in this one. Titus and Henry argued outside. Henry shoved Titus, who sold it horribly and jumped back onto the apron, where he accidentally knocked Primo off the top, allowing the Golden Truth to win. Really boring and nobody gave a damn. *

Mick Foley was in the ring for the contract signing for Sasha Banks vs. Charlotte on Sunday. Foley again made it feel like they this match is just in the Cell for the sake of “making history” rather than because the story calls for it. Charlotte was introduced first, then Sasha. Sasha looked like a good 10/10. Charlotte and Sasha both had trouble not smiling. Charlotte wanted the contract, but Foley was hesitant to give it to her, so she yelled at him. He held back because it was time for Mick to give the “Hell in a Cell is dangerous” speech. Sasha called herself a student of the game and said that she studied everything to know what she’s getting into. Mick still spoke about how they can’t be sure of what they’re getting into. Charlotte yelled a lot and said that she’s why the title matters. Sasha admitted that Charlotte was the first champion but will go down as the greatest. She doesn’t care if she has to crawl up the ramp broken, as long as she’s champion. Charlotte broke up Sasha’s injuries and called her weak. Foley interrupted again to talk about how he left the Cell as a different man. Mick got all emotional when bringing up Ric Flair and Eddie Guerrero. Charlotte signed and so did Sasha. This was good at times, weird at others. They all yelled a ton and some of it felt passionate, while some just felt annoying. Foley saved it with his emotional stuff near the end.

They ran another Emmalina hype video with shots of her in bikinis. The name is stupid, but she’s incredible looking.

Rich Swann def. The Brian Kendrick in 8:30
TJ Perkins joined commentary for this one. Swann played the fun babyface and Kendrick was the wily, angry veteran heel that he’s done so well with this year. Swann came close to winning on a sweet top rope rana. Swann hit a great tiger driver with a jackknife pin. Kendrick went for the Captain’s Hook but Swann slipped free and rolled Kendrick up to win. This was a fine match. My issue is the result. I get that they wanted it to seem like TJ is somehow in Kendrick’s head, but the top contender shouldn’t be losing. I’d have had Kendrick get disqualified for going nuts on Swann and TJ could have made the save. **¾

Kevin Owens was interviewed. He said that like Charlotte and Sasha, he hasn’t been in the cell before, but has wanted to for his whole life. No kids will talk about how cool the cell is after Sunday because he’s going to dismantle Seth in it. On Sunday, they’re going to hell together, but Kevin believes he’ll be the only one coming back.

We were supposed to get Braun Strowman vs. Sami Zayn here. Strowman demanded a microphone. He called out Mick Foley and said that he wanted competition. He didn’t see any real competition in Sami. Sami leveled him from behind and then slapped him. He ran and played some cat and mouse with Braun. He dropkicked him twice, but made the mistake of attempting to dive on him and got sent into the guardrail. Strowman then just walked away. Sami got back in the ring and wanted to keep fighting.

In the back, Brian Kendrick walked up to TJ Perkins and asked for help. TJ wasn’t ready to forgive him for the past few weeks. Kendrick said that he needs this. TJ is young and could win the title back one day, but Brian said that he needed to win at Hell in a Cell to provide for his family. He asked TJ to let him win on Sunday. TJ just walked off, while Brian cried.

BORK TIME! Heyman put over Brock for a few and then spoke about the fans jumping on the Goldberg bandwagon. They stood around while the fans split chants for the two men. Heyman was upset about the split crowd and they unceremoniously left.

Next week is Raw Halloween and Goldberg will be in attendance.

Non-Title Match: Seth Rollins def. Chris Jericho and Kevin Owens in 9:47
Seth had to play divide and conquer here. He isolated Jericho for a bit but Owens caught him and sent him into the guardrail. Unfortunately, I missed part of this match due to issues with my cable provider. For some reason, the screen went black and got fuzzy for a bit. When it came back, Seth was back at it with Jericho and kicked out of a Codebreaker. Owens came back in with the cannonball and took over with Jericho. Seth got free from the top and won with a double powerbomb, pinning both opponents. I can’t give this a fair rating since I missed a good chunk of it, but from what I saw, it was only okay. I also don’t like that Seth pinned the champion going into Sunday.

Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho put the boots to Seth Rollins after the match. Security came out to break it up but Seth got free and attacked Owens after Jericho left. Owens shouted that he was the man before powerbombing Rollins on the apron. Commentary sold this as if Seth wouldn’t be able to compete on Sunday.

Overall: 3/10. I couldn’t get into this episode at all. The only thing entertaining on the show was the New Day/Cesaro and Sheamus match (which was dumb to do right before the PPV) and Jericho’s antics. The main event felt lackluster, as did most of the matches on the show. Part of the Sasha/Charlotte promo came off well but for the most part, this failed to get me more interested in the upcoming PPV, which is the job of a go home show.