WWE Raw Review – 12.30.19
Kevin Owens kicked off the final Raw of the decade and said he was going to kick things off with some firework. He then pointed to the tron,, and a video package played of what went down last week with the AOP and Seth Rollins.
Owens said he will continue to go after those three men, but what really bothers him is seeing them take out a legend like Rey Mysterio. Their beat down of him last week is why Owens thinks he lost the U.S. Title to Andrade at a house show.
But right on cue, Rollins and the AOP emerged, and Seth said KO is still not understanding the bigger picture. Seth says he is trying to be a leader and take this industry into the next decade. Seth also is trying to impose his will, and if he resists, the AOP will be there to enforce his will.
KO does not even let Seth finish talking before going after the AOP, but gets beaten down. Samoa Joe then comes out for the save and briefly takes over, locking in the coquina clutch on Rollins. But eventually, things break down into total chaos and security tries (and fails) to restore order, and Owens hits a cannonball to the outside right before a commercial.
After the break, Joe cut a promo saying Seth Rollins got him involved in this, and he made a choice to make sure that Kevin Owens will never stand alone again. So it looks like Joe and KO may be a team to try and take down the new and powerful trio of Rollins and the AOP.
This makes the main event scene even better, Joe adds another element into the mix that will make people want to tune in. He and Owens are not only great in the ring, but they are also excellent on the microphone. Both men have the crowd support and will make outstanding faces taking on the villains.
After an action-packed opening segment, was the rest of Raw as entertaining? Check below to find out.
Buddy Murphy vs. Aleister Black:
After it was said only 20 times that this match stole the show at TLC, these two men were ready to try and steal the show once more. Early on in the match, Murphy would send Black to the outside with a head scissors move and then would taunt him by mimicking his sit down move in the ring. Murphy then gets sent to the outside, and Black answers back with a sit down move of his own.
This led Black to go on the offensive attack, hitting a snap suplex for a two-count. Black then followed it up with a massive kick to the head and then landed shots in the corner. Aleister then hit another kick to the face, but it only was a near fall. Murphy looked to get an edge by sending Black into the turnbuckles face first, but Black hits another massive pump kick that leaves Murphy limp.
Murphy recovered and tried for a sunset flip, but Black blocked the move. Murphy is able to send Black to the outside right before the break. After the commercial, a kick from Black sends Murphy into the ring post, and then he follows that up with a moonsault. Aleister then followed that up with several more kicks and even a springboard moonsault for a two-count.
Aleister briefly got sent to the outside, but recovered with more strikes. Off the top rope Black missed, and then Buddy hits a dropkick before using the ropes for leverage, but the referee catches him before the three count. Murphy stayed on the attack, hitting a dive to the outside and then followed it up with a meteora for a two-count.
Murphy would then get Black in position for a powerbomb but was only good for a two-count. Buddy then landed a superkick, and the two men traded rapid-fire strikes. Black picked up another near fall off a brainbuster. As the two men were down on the canvas, the Raw crowd was on their feet.
Black was finally able to land Black Mass, but then paused for a minute and then landed Black Mass again before picking up the win. WOW, what a match! These two men have incredible chemistry in the ring, and to quick-strike offense is fun to watch!
Charlotte Flair issues open challenge:
Flair starts off by saying she will officially enter the Women’s Royal Rumble next month. Charlotte said she wants to prove why she is the queen and issues an open challenge. Instead of an NXT talent, it was Natalya answering the call.
Early on, these two women traded headlocks and wrist locks. Charlotte gained a bit of an edge then and did the Flair strut. But Natalya would answer with a suplex followed up by a lariat for a two-count. Charlotte escaped a submission attempt from Nattie and then lands a big boot for a two-count.
Nattie would gain an edge when she sidestepped a move from Flair and slammed her head into the turnbuckles. Nattie would then land a suplex on the outside. Back in the ring, Nattie got locked up in a Boston Crab by Flair, who was on the middle turnbuckle.
Then all of a sudden, the 24/7 title came into the picture, and Flair landed a big boot onto Eric Young. Back from break, Nattie landed a crossbody for a two-count and shortly followed that up with a suplex. Flair then answered with a suplex of her own but missed with a boot. Nattie then landed a powerbomb for a near fall.
Flair then nailed Nattie with a big boot and a spear, but she was able to kick out at two. Flair then countered a sharpshooter into Natural Selection, but again Nattie kicked out at two! Flair went for a moonsault but missed, and Nattie then rolled her up for a two-count. Flair was finally able to put Nattie away with the figure-eight leg lock.
Overall this was a very solid TV match, it gives Charlotte a crucial win over an established star like Nattie. Wrestlemania season is right around the corner, and it is time to start building Flair back up.
RKO outta nowhere!
Randy Orton came out quite hobbled after suffering what looked to be a knee injury at a house show over the weekend. Orton was very rambly here, but finally said he heard something pop and suffered a significant injury. He then said there is a very good chance he may never be able to get back in the ring again.
Just as Randy was about to wrap up, AJ Styles interrupted him. Styles was out here, taunting and laughing at Orton’s expense. Styles said he is a patient man and would wait until Wrestlemania to tap out and retire the Viper. Styles even kicked a crutch out from underneath Orton’s arm.
Orton pulled AJ back in, saying that the difference between him and Styles is that AJ is patient, he is not and hit an RKO from out of nowhere! Another main event feud that is building up momentum, it is nice to see Raw develop more than one top-tier storyline, it makes the show feel more important.
Becky has an announcement:
Lynch lets us know that she will face Asuka at the Royal Rumble. Becky said she used her upcoming contract negotiation as a bargaining chip to get her match with Asuka. Lynch said history needed to know if a woman could be the face of wrestling, and she did that. Now she needs to find out if it was all worth it.
This storyline is fantastic. Becky is a made woman in the WWE and can have any contract she wants, but cannot get over her loss to Asuka. It is a brilliant piece of storytelling.
Bobby Lashley and Lana’s wedding:
This segment had mainly been built up throughout the night. After months of wild segments (some good, mostly bad), it was all set to climate with the wedding. The crowd was restless as the “pastor” read out the script Lana gave him.
Lana then went to read her vows and began to berate the crowd, saying this day was all about her. Boy Lana has quite a big head for someone who has not done anything in the WWE, she even tells Bobby that the greatest gift Bobby could give himself is her. Again the crowd chanted “Rusev Day!” and this flustered Lana.
To make this segment even better, Bobby then pulled out vows that Lana wrote for him. This segment finally got a little better when Lana’s “first husband” came out to berate Lana and warn Bobby. Then Lashley’s “first wife” came out, and Lana quickly dispatched of her.
And then…Liv Morgan came out?!? She said the love of her life was out there, and it turned out to be Lana! What in the world?? To put the icing on top of this cake, Lana and Liv got into a full-blown catfight. Speaking of icing…Rusev would then appear out of the cake to beat down Bobby, and Liv jumped back in to end this chaotic segment.
The O.C. vs. the Street Profits:
The O.C. began to cut a promo about how they were the best tag team in the world but were cut off by the Street Profits. After an exchange of words, a match became official.
Montez Ford started the match off hot, and the Street Profits ran wild for a bit before Styles ran interference and was kicked out for his shenanigans. Back from the break, Anderson was on offense and hit a neck breaker on Ford for a two-count. Then Gallows entered the match brought the heavy strikes to Ford.
After several minutes of Gallows working over Ford, Montez finally was able to hit a dropkick to break free, but Dawkins was not there. But Dawkins was able to get back on the apron and then made the hot tag. Dawkins would run wild for a bit, but Anderson landed a spine buster for a near fall. Gallows then picked up a near fall of his own off a neckbreaker.
The Profits would then gain the edge, and Ford went to the sky for a splash and the big victory. The tag division on Raw can use a boost, and the Street Profits would be a nice boost going into 2020.
The new United States champion was here to take on a jobber, he dominated early before Vega told him to hit the hammerlock DDT outside on the exposed concrete. Luckily for this man, Ricochet came down for the save and challenges Andrade to a match.
After the break, Andrade would land a massive dropkick as Ricochet took flight to gain the advantage. Andrade then went for the DDT, but Ricochet countered with a hurricanrana and then a corkscrew dive over the top rope. But Andrade would hit a back body drop onto Ricochet, sending him into the concrete.
Back from break, Ricochet made his comeback, hitting a step-up enzuigiri and then a dropkick. He added a standing shooting star press for a two-count. Andrade would counter Ricochet’s offense with a wicked back elbow for a two-count. But once again, Ricochet was back on offense, hitting a spinning brainbuster and went to the top rope.
But once there, Vega ran interference, and Andrade hit the Hammerlock DDT for the win. I am enjoying this push for Andrade, but I hope we are not back Vega constantly helping Andrade to win matches.
Drew McIntyre handicap match:
Drew McIntyre was set to take on Curt Hawkins but was attacked by Hawkins and Zack Ryder before the match. This backfired, and then McIntyre hit a suplex on Hawkins before landing a Claymore kick and a Future Shock DDT for the two-on-one win.
This is a man that is deserving of a massive push in 2020, here’s to hoping he gets that push!
Another Erick Rowan Squash:
Before the break, Rowan confronted Lana, asking where his invitation was. But frankly, he did not care that he did not receive one. Rowan then entered the arena for a match against another local talent. He tried to go for the cage, Rowan beats him down and wins with the claw slam. Yawn. Wake me up when this actually goes somewhere.
Wow…what an episode to close out the year and the decade. There was some great wrestling with Buddy/Aleister and Charlotte/Natalya. The Randy/AJ segment was very well done, and I am intrigued at the Samoa Joe/Kevin Owens pairing.
The wedding segment was…WOW. I am not even sure what to say. The Liv Morgan video packages were put together for this? And how does Liv fit into this storyline? Why is Rusev getting involved if he does not care about Lana anymore? So many questions, but I somehow found this slightly entertaining.
I give this episode of Raw a 3 out of 5.