This week’s WWE Raw featured two title matches including a Tag Team Title main event, Seth Rollins meets his next challenger and more.
There was some news about the WWE creative process on Monday noting that Endeavor has really backed Triple H as the guy running creative. The report from PWInsider noted that Vince’s influence has gone down a lot and Triple H is the guy running the main roster from a creative standpoint. Vince stepped down in July 2022 leading to his retirement for about five months before his return in January. The reality is Vince is 78, coming off major back surgery and he’s going to slow down. That’s just life. Plus, business is really strong for WWE in every metric and the shows are better. We know Vince edited some things here and there this year, but you never really know how much. Anyway, I’m glad it’s the Triple H show. From a television and PPV standpoint, this has been arguably the best all-around year for WWE in the last 15 years since I started doing this Raw review weekly. I enjoy the product every week. I used to give shows scores of 4 or 5 out of 10. Now it’s always around 7 out of 10 or higher.
I had a very good Canadian Thanksgiving on Monday with a lot of family present. Great food and several adult beverages. I watched this show on Tuesday morning.
A video package aired with highlights of WWE Fastlane from Saturday night. The big title change saw Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso beat Finn Balor & Damian Priest to become Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions. That video package took about four minutes.
The Raw opening video package aired. The Raw commentary team of Michael Cole and Wade Barrett welcomed us to this week’s show.
Let’s Hear from Seth “Freakin” Rollins
Seth “Freakin” Rollins made his entrance as the World Heavyweight Championship wearing one of his ridiculous outfits as usual. The fans were singing his song as usual. Those are some shiny pants along with silver boots with heels. He likes to stand out. Seth welcomed the crowd to Monday Night Rollins while admitting that Shinsuke Nakamura took him to his limit at Fastlane. Rollins talked about how he kept getting back up and he wasn’t sure he could keep Nakamura down, but he did. Rollins said he felt like was on top of the world. Rollins said after the match, he was quickly reminded that his back is still very broken. Rollins spoke about how being the World Heavyweight Champion has been one of the great honors of his career, then he paused and the fans chanted “Thank You Rollins” since they don’t like pausing. Rollins wanted us to know “I’m just getting started.” Rollins said he’ll take on anyone, any time, anywhere. Rollins wondered if he could go just one Monday night without him fighting for his life. Rollins said maybe they could sing and dance a little, throw back a few cold ones…and here comes Drew McIntyre.
Drew McIntyre walked out to the ring and joined Rollins in the ring. Rollins said you’re not here to party and asked if you wanted a World Heavyweight Title match? Rollins said he can change, so they can have the match, but Drew cut him off. Drew said he was there to look you into the eye man-to-man and say he wants that World Heavyweight Title match. Drew said he wants Seth at close to 100% so he was thinking about a match with Rollins for the World Heavyweight Title at Crown Jewel.
Rollins said he’s not used to his challengers conducting business this way. Rollins asked how does this sound? Seth recapped the challenge and the fans cheered for it. Rollins told Drew he’s got himself a match. Rollins said that Drew used to be in a band, he can dance with them and Drew said he has business to take care of in the back. Drew said if you see Drew McIntyre out in Omaha, buy him a pint and a shot. The fans cheered. Rollins got the crowd singing again.
Damian Priest attacked Rollins from behind with a clothesline to the back of the head. Priest gave Rollins the South of Heaven Chokeslam. Priest called for some help, so Dominik Mysterio ran out with the Money in the Bank briefcase. Drew headbutted Dominik to stop that. Drew threw the briefcase toward the entrance area. Rollins clothesline Priest over the top to the floor to end it.
Analysis: I love it. People have asked me for months who I want to see as the guy who beats Rollins for the World Heavyweight Title and I have consistently said I want McIntyre to beat that guy. Whether it actually happens, I don’t know, but I like seeing Drew in this spot. The issue with Priest’s attack is that he didn’t have his own Money in the Bank briefcase with him, so he had to rely on Dominik and Drew took Dom out. Anyway, it was fine for an opening segment to set up a big match for Crown Jewel, which takes place on my birthday November 4th this year.
They showed Kofi Kingston (with Xavier Woods) and Ivar getting ready for their match.
Viking Rules Match: Ivar vs. Kofi Kingston
Ivar is being used in singles more because Erik has an injury that will keep him out of action for about six months, so WWE wants to use Ivar more. These two had a terrific match a few weeks ago. There were shields surrounding the ring and Viking Rules means anything goes and Falls Count Anywhere. They didn’t have a “ship” attached to the ring this time.
Kofi sent Ivar out of the ring and hit a dive over the top onto Ivar. Ivar sent Kofi into some shields on the apron. Kofi jumped onto Ivar at ringside. Kofi brought out a table from ringside and put it again the barricade at ringside. Ivar set up Kofi on the apron leading to a running splash. Kofi slammed Ivar off the turnbuckle to the floor. Kofi hit a splash from the middle turnbuckle onto Ivar’s back on the floor and a pin attempt on the floor got a two count.
Kofi tried to use a flag for a move off the turnbuckle and he did a legsweep, but Ivar also landed on Kofi for the move. Kofi sent Ivar smashing back-first into the shield. Kofi hit the SOS trip slam for two. Ivar caught Kofi in his arms leading to a spinning slam for two. Ivar hit a double underhook sitout Powerbomb for a two count. There was a table set up in the ring. Ivar nearly ran through it, but then he stopped himself. Ivar with a spin kick to the head. Ivar went up top, but Kofi was back up with a shield to the head. Kofi grabbed Ivar while on the top rope and launching Ivara through a table that was at ringside. Valhalla showed up at ringside and jumped onto Kofi. Xavier Woods ran down to ringside, but the referee couldn’t do anything about it. Valhalla charged at Woods and she went over the barricade. Ivar hit a cross body block on Woods against the barricade. Kofi hit a spin kick on Ivar. Back in the ring, Kofi went for Trouble in Paradise, Ivar countered and Ivar tackled Kofi through the table that was set up against the turnbuckle. Ivar went up top and hit a moonsault on Kofi for the pinfall win after 11 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Ivar
Analysis: ***1/4 A pretty good match with Ivar getting a singles win after losing matches to Kofi and Woods in recent weeks. Ivar needed a win like that if they are going to keep pushing him as a singles wrestler, so I’m fine with the result. They used some weapons like tables and shields, but really not a lot considering they could legally use any weapon they wanted. I’m surprised they didn’t use kendo sticks or chairs at all. Anyway, Ivar looks impressive as a singles wrestler while his partner is out, so kudos to him for putting on some good showings of late. Kofi is always great and that’s no surprise.
Shinsuke Nakamura was interviewed by Byron Saxton, who asked how Nakamura felt about losing at Fastlane. Nakamura refused to answer and Ricochet showed up to attack Nakamura with punches. They exchanged punches leading to officials showing up to break it up.
Raquel Rodriguez entered for a singles match.
Damian Priest held JD McDonagh in the air by his shirt and had him pressed up against a wall. Finn Balor, Rhea Ripley and Dominik Mysterio showed up. Balor told his buddy JD he’s caused enough problems, so he’s had enough of him. Finn and Ripley said they were talking to Pearce. They got a rematch for the Tag Team Titles next week on Raw. Ripley told Priest not to worry about Drew. Ripley said Priest is still Senor Money in the Bank. Ripley told JD to prove himself by taking care of Drew. JD was reluctant, then Balor was nodding at him and JD said he’ll do it. Ripley left for her own business. Priest threatened JD again and told him to leave.
Nia Jax vs. Raquel Rodriguez
Last week on Raw Jax, Raquel, Rhea Ripley and Shayna Baszler get into a brawl, so they showed replays of that.
Jax ran over Raquel followed by some head slamming into the mat. Jax threw Raquel shoulder-first into the ring post. Jax sent Raquel back-first into the ring apron and Jax tossed Raquel into the barricade.
Jax was still in control with a sidewalk slam followed by an elbow drop. Raquel fought back with a boot and a clothesline. Raquel tried a lift, but Jax was too heavy and Jax ran over Raquel. Jax hit a Samoan Drop. Jax went for the Annihilator, but Raquel got back up and Raquel hit a Powerbomb. The fans popped big for that. Rhea Ripley ran out with the Women’s World Title and she tossed Raquel out of the ring so there’s the DQ. It went seven minutes.
Winner by disqualification: Raquel Rodriguez
Analysis: *1/2 They only showed about four minutes of action here. I’m not exactly clamoring for long Nia Jax matches, so that’s okay. It was a decent fight for the time given, but you can tell WWE didn’t want either woman losing here. They set up the Powerbomb spot well.
Ripley attacked Jax with strikes and a kick to the head. Raquel hit Ripley with two clotheslines and Ripley came back with a headbutt. Shayna Baszler went into the ring and Baszler went after Jax. Ripley pulled Baszler off saying she wants Jax. Baszler didn’t listen to that so when Ripley turned her back, Baszler hit a German Suplex and hit a knee to the face of Ripley. Jax looked on from the aisle while Baszler stood tall in the ring.
Analysis: This seems to be setting up a fatal four-way match with Ripley, Jax, Raquel and Baszler. I assume it will be at Crown Jewel, but maybe WWE has something else in mind for it. Anyway, they have done a nice job of building a rivalry between these women known for their toughness and trying to prove who is the baddest of them all.
Seth Rollins, the World Heavyweight Champion, walked up to Drew saying he talked to Adam Pearce and the match is official at Crown Jewel. Rollins wondered why Drew got involved earlier. Drew said that Priest trying to cash in Money in the Bank affects the whole Raw roster and he didn’t want it to be a situation like The Bloodline on Smackdown. Rollins said don’t worry about The Judgment Day because they won’t take Seth’s title and neither can Drew.
Cody Rhodes and Jey Uso were shown walking backstage as the WWE Tag Team Champions. They are up next.
Shayna Baszler was interviewed by Jackie Redmond. Baszler said she’s the baddest woman in WWE. Baszler said nobody sneaks attacks her and gets away with it. Baszler walked away, Akira Tozawa was standing there and he walked away scared so that was funny.
Let’s Hear from Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso
Jey Uso was introduced first for an-ring interview with Michael Cole. The fans popped big for Jey as usual. Jey was in a “Main Event Jey Uso” shirt as usual. Cody Rhodes was in a suit as usual with the fans popping big for the “WHOA-OH” part of the song. Cole asked how it felt to be the champions?
Jey said that he’s now a two-time Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champion and his partner is Cody Rhodes uce…yeet! Yeet! Cole asked Cody what does this Tag Team Title defense mean when it comes to finishing the story? Cole asked Cody if he was content with defending the Tag Team Tiles or perhaps Cody doesn’t want to go after the Undisputed WWE Universal Title because he failed and he might let some people down?
Cody said that Fastlane was a great moment. Cody said he got Jey back to Monday Night Raw and Cody is just excited to be an Undisputed Tag Team Champion. Cole persisted on Cody finishing the story while saying Cody was “this close” to winning the WWE Championship like his dad did, so is that going to be Cody’s story? Cody took his time to think about it, but here comes Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens. They actually played Zayn’s heel music by mistake.
Analysis: That was interesting with Michael Cole pushing those questions about Cody Rhodes finishing the story and there was no answer from Cody at all. It certainly teases something that they can go back to in the future.
Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens walked down to the ring. Zayn said he hadn’t heard that music in a minute. Zayn spoke about how Jimmy & Jey Uso held those WWE Tag Team Titles longer than anybody else in history. Zayn said that he and Owens took those titles from The Usos in the main event of WrestleMania. Zayn credited Cody & Jey for beating The Judgment Day at Fastlane. Zayn congratulated Cody on winning those titles. Zayn said that he was happy about Jey winning those Tag Team Championships. Zayn said he’s happy for them, but this gets a bit complicated due to mixed emotions. Zayn said that those guys deserve those titles, but he feels it should be them holding those titles.
Kevin Owens spoke up saying he doesn’t have mixed emotions and he isn’t happy about seeing them holding those titles. Owens said he wants those titles back. Owens challenged them to a Tag Team Title match right here tonight. The fans chanted “YES” for that. Owens said they won’t accept because Jey can’t handle the thought of losing those titles to them twice.
Cody said they are all friends here or at least he thinks they are. Cody said they do accept the challenge. Cody said that they don’t need to wait because they can do it tonight on Monday Night Raw. Zayn shook hands with Cody to end it.
Analysis: A big match for later in the show featuring two great tag teams that are also four of the biggest babyfaces on Raw. That’s fine with me. Zayn made some great points, Owens was very direct and Cody came off like a fighting babyface champion to end it.
Chad Gable was shown preparing for his number one contender’s match for the Intercontinental Title. Otis chopped Gable repeatedly because Gable wanted to be in top condition. Bronson Reed walked in saying that Gable isn’t getting near that IC Title. Reed said he’s beaten Gable and he’s beaten Otis. Reed told Gable to tell his daughter that it will be another heartbreaking loss. Reed left, so Otis chopped Gable again and Gable said “THANK YOU” to end it.
Ricochet made his entrance for the triple threat match. Shinsuke Nakamura attacked Ricochet by the entrance. Nakamura dropped him by the entrance. Nakamura hit a Go To Sleep (GTS) knee to the jaw. Cole called it a knee to the jaw, not the GTS. There were WWE Officials there to break it up.
Analysis: That GTS usage by Nakamura is certainly going to wind people up thinking about CM Punk. It’s not like he did that move randomly. I think CM Punk is coming back to WWE and I think that they continue to drop hints just like that on purpose to tease his return.
The main event was confirmed with Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso defending the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Titles against Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens.
Bronson Reed vs. Ricochet vs. Chad Gable (w/Maxxine Dupri)
The winner gets an Intercontinental Title match. No countouts and no disqualifications in a triple threat match.
Reed ran over Ricochet with a running body attack. Ricochet and Gable worked together to stomp on Reed by the turnbuckle. Reed managed to pull both guys out of the ring. Reed went for an attack on the floor, but Ricochet hit a knee to the face. Gable did a Full Nelson Suplex on Ricochet, who landed on Reed with a moonsault bump.
Gable applied an armbar on Reed by the ropes, but Reed managed to squash Gable against the turnbuckle. Reed hit a running splash on both opponents against the turnbuckle. Reed had both guys on his shoulders for a double Samoan Drop for two. Ricochet avoided some power moves leading to a jumping kick and a missile dropkick on Reed off the top. Gable went for a move on Ricochet, who countered it and Ricochet hit a cross body block. Ricochet hit a running Shooting Star Press for a two count. Ricochet with a kick to the face of Reed and Gable caught Reed with a German Suplex. Reed to the floor, so the Ricochet jumped over the top onto Reed on the floor. Ricochet went for a springboard attack, Gable rolled through and Gable applied an Ankle Lock submission. Ricochet got out of that and hit a jumping knee to the face. Ricochet went up top, Gable met him there and Gable went for a German Suplex off the top, but Ricochet landed on his feet. Ricochet was selling a knee injury. Gable hit the Chaos Theory on Ricochet (a German Suplex) and Reed break it up by dumping Ricochet onto Gable. Reed hit a senton splash on both guys. Gable rolled to the floor while Reed went up top. Reed jumped off the top with a Tsunami splash (great call by Barrett as usual) on Ricochet for the pinfall win after 11 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Bronson Reed
Analysis: ***1/2 That was a great match full of action. I’m not surprised because of how great Gable & Ricochet are in the ring while Reed is a solid worker that knows his role well as a power guy. They worked well together with some believable nearfalls for all of them until Reed found a way to win. That Tsunami splash is so great especially with Barrett calling it on commentary. I’m happy for Reed getting a big win like that.
Bronson Reed earned an Intercontinental Title match against GUNTHER, which will take place next Monday on Raw. That should be awesome.
Analysis: A heel vs. heel match isn’t that common. I like both guys and GUNTHER always has great matches, so it should be interesting.
Becky Lynch, the NXT Women’s Champion, was interviewed by Jackie Redmond. Lynch admitted she’s not 100% and she has 11 stitches in her arm. Lynch plugged her new book coming out in March. Lynch said that this is the biggest opportunity of Tegan Nox’s career. Xia Li walked in asking what about her? Li wondered when it was her turn. Lynch said she’s not hard to find and Li said she will find her.
Analysis: Xia Li hasn’t been used much on the main roster. She has talent, so it’s just a matter of utilizing her in the right way.
Drew McIntyre made his entrance for singles action.
Drew McIntyre vs. JD McDonagh (w/Dominik Mysterio)
Drew overpowered JD against the turnbuckle and JD came back with a hard slap. JD with chops, so Drew chased him around the ring. Back in the ring, Drew hit a back body drop that was really high. Drew hit an overhead bell-to-belly suplex two times in a row. After a Dominik distraction, JD went after Drew with chop block to the left knee. Drew left the ring, JD charged and Drew hit a clothesline leading to a great bump by JD. Dominik shoved Drew into the ring post while the referee wasn’t looking. JD hit a moonsault onto Drew on the floor. JD came back with a knee drop to the leg for just a one count. Drew kicked Dominik into the commentary table. Drew came back with a Future Shock DDT on JD. Drew hit the Claymore Kick for the pinfall win after four minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Drew McIntyre
Analysis: ** A dominant win for Drew McIntyre to show he’s at the top of his game going into his title match next month. It’s the right way to book Drew as a guy that is tough to slow down. JD is a talented guy who can do a lot in the ring, but he’s not being pushed right now.
Damian Priest, Senor Money in the Bank, was shown watching Drew celebrate the win. Rhea Ripley said she had an idea and she left.
They showed the end of last week’s Raw when Johnny Gargano saved Tommaso Ciampa at the end of Raw for the reunion of the #DIY tag team.
Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa were interviewed by Wade Barrett earlier in the day. Ciampa said that this was seven years in the making. Ciampa said that the fans made them undeniable and they have a lot of history. Gargano said that they have always wondered how far they could take this thing. Gargano said that this could finally be their moment. Barrett asked if this means we’ll finally see #DIY as a team on Raw. That was when Imperium’s Ludwig Kaiser & Giovanni Ciampa attacked both guys. They slammed Gargano onto the floor. Gargano & Ciampa were down selling.
Analysis: A cheap attack by Imperium to set up a tag team match between them and #DIY soon. I’m glad #DIY is back together.
A video package aired about Tegan Nox showing the adversity she has come through with two torn ACL’s in her career. Nox said she’s been through disappointment and now she’s here to win because it’s her time.
Tegan Nox was backstage before her match with Jackie Redmond asking how Nox is preparing. Nox said this isn’t just a championship match for her, but a chance to show the world who she is. Natalya walked in saying she was proud of her. Natalya said that Nox was born to do this and they hugged. Nox left for her match.
Ricochet was shown walking the hallways calling out for Shinsuke Nakamura. Adam Pearce, the WWE Official, walked up to Ricochet. Interesting to note that Rhea Ripley was talking to Drew McIntyre in the background. Pearce said that Nakamura was escorted from the building. Pearce said that Ricochet can face Nakamura next week in a Falls Count Anywhere next week on the “Season Premiere” of Raw.
Analysis: The background with Drew talking to Rhea is an interesting development that can tease some sort of alliance in the future. They like doing little things like that in the background.
NXT Women’s Championship: Becky Lynch vs. Tegan Nox
Lynch had 11 stitches in her right arm over a week ago, so Lynch had long sleeves to cover it up. Lynch and Nox spent the first couple of minutes doing some impressive mat wrestling leading to a bunch of nearfalls. Lynch got a shoulder tackle. They each did arm drag takedowns. Lynch sent Nox face-first into the turnbuckles. Lynch went for a kick off the ropes, but Nox blocked it and kicked Lynch in the right arm. Nox hit two running uppercuts along with an uppercut to the back of a seated Lynch for a two count. Lynch set up Nox on the apron, Nox with a kick to the gut and Nox did a necksnap across the top rope. Nox went up top, so Lynch kicked her to knock Nox down to the floor. Lynch hit a baseball slide dropkick. Lynch tried an attack on the floor, but Nox avoided it and kicked Lynch. Nox hit a somersault dive off the apron onto Lynch on the floor. Back in the ring, Nox got a two count.
Lynch hit a running forearm smash along with a Bexploder Suplex. Lynch with a kick to Nox, who caught the foot and knocked Lynch down. Nox went up top and hit a cross body on Lynch for a two count. That looked like a bit of a rough landing for Lynch, but it was executed well enough. Lynch hit a double underhook and Lynch went for an armbar, but Nox got out of it and Nox sent Lynch headfirst into the turnbuckle. Nox hit a cannonball splash in the corner for two. Nox kicked Lynch to knock her down. Nox went up top, Lynch went after her and Nox slipped out to trip up Lynch on the turnbuckle. Nox hit a cannonball splash on Lynch for two. Nox went for an armbar, Lynch got out of it and Lynch delivered two kicks to stagger Nox. Lynch went up top and hit a missile dropkick for two. Nox caught Lynch with a bridging fallaway slam into a bridging pin for two. Nox got a crucifix pin for two. Nox got a rollup for two. Lynch managed to get out of that and applied the Disarm-her submission on the left arm leading to Nox tapping out. It went 14 minutes.
Winner by submission: Becky Lynch
Analysis: ***1/4 That was pretty good with Nox putting up a fight before Lynch put her away. I don’t think anybody watching this thought that Nox had a chance in winning, but it was still a solid match. I think going 14 minutes is a bit long perhaps although it’s also Triple H and the WWE creative team giving Nox a chance to show what she can do. The crowd wasn’t loud in how they reacted to Nox, but I’m happy that Nox got to be in a featured match.
After the match, Lynch and Nox shook hands. The announcers put over Nox for her performance saying she learned a lot in a match like that.
Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell were shown talking to WWE Official Adam Pearce. They got an update on Ciampa & Gargano, who were attacked. Rhea Ripley walked into the room telling Candice & Indi to get out. Ripley told Pearce she wants Shayna Baszler in a singles match next week. She told Pearce to make it happen.
Tegan Nox was shown sitting on some equipment crate with Natalya showing up to tell Nox that she did great. Natalya said that Nox did amazing. Kayden Carter & Katana Chance walked in saying she did great. Chelsea Green & Piper Niven, the Women’s Tag Team Champions, walked in with Green mocking Nox about her loss. Green asked Natalya to never interfere with her again and Natalya wondered “or else?” Piper spoke up defending Green and challenged Natalya to match on Raw next week. Natalya said she’ll see her there.
Analysis: This should lead to a Women’s Tag Team Title feud with Natalya & Nox going after the rarely defended titles held by Green & Niven.
Next week on the “Season Premiere” of Raw in Oklahoma City:
* WWE Tag Team Champions Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso or Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens vs. The Judgment Day’s Finn Balor & Damian Priest
* Intercontinental Championship: GUNTHER (c) vs. Bronson Reed
* Rhea Ripley vs. Shayna Baszler. That’s a non-title match.
* Ricochet vs. Shinsuke Nakamura in a Falls Count Anywhere Match.
* Natalya vs. Piper Niven.
Analysis: They are building stories week-to-week very well.
Drew McIntyre went up to Jey Uso saying that Jey was going to show his true colors and Drew would be ready for it. Jey said he had five minutes for him right now if he wanted it. Drew dared Jey to hit him. Sami Zayn walked in asking if they were good, so Drew said yeah and they left. Jey said he appreciated Sami for always having his back, but tonight it’s go time. Zayn said you don’t have to tell him twice.
Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn entered as the challengers for the main event.
A video aired about Ludwig Kaiser saying he was living art. Kaiser said he means European Elegance. Kaiser is A+ talent, A+ aesthetics and he’s an A+ specimen.
At the end of the Kaiser video, Owens is shown in the ring with Zayn and Owens goes: “What the hell was that?” Good stuff.
Analysis: That was interesting. I don’t know if they are going to feature Kaiser more as a singles wrestler, but clearly, they are trying something with him.
Jey Uso was up first as one half of the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions followed by Cody Rhodes. Both guys were cheered loudly. All four guys were because they are four of the biggest babyfaces in WWE. Ring announcer Mike Rome did the championship introductions when all four guys were in the ring.
Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso vs. Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens
Cody and Zayn got into a bit of a shoving match after exchanging chops. The other two guys got into the ring as well. They went to break one minute into this match.
Zayn hit an elbow smash on Cody off the middle turnbuckle. Jey tagged in against his buddy Zayn, which led to Zayn dropping Zayn with a punch to the head. Jey came back with his own punch. Owens tagged in leading to a slugfest with Jey. They exchanged punches, then it went spilling out of the ring and Cody/Zayn got into a fight on the floor too. Owens went back into the ring with Zayn joining his partner while Jey took his time getting into the ring. Owens punched Jey off the apron and they were fighting onto the announce table and it continued behind the commentary table. Cody and Zayn were exchanging punches again as well. They went to break again.
Owens was in control of Jey with a senton splash. Owens went up top and Jey met him with a jumping kick to the head. Owens with a headbutt to knock Jey down and Owens hit a Swanton Bomb off the top for a two count. Owens for a Powerbomb, Jey landed on his feet and Jey hit three superkicks while Owens hit one superkick and a clothesline. Both guys were down selling after that. Jey hit another superkick. Cody tagged in against Zayn with a jumping forearm along with a powerslam. Cody jumped off the middle rope with a Cody Cutter on Zayn for two. Zayn came back with a Blue Thunder Bomb for a two count. Cody came back with an uppercut punch, but Sami came back with an Exploder Suplex into the turnbuckle. Zayn charged, but Cody caught him and hit a Cross Rhodes for two because Owens was there to break it up. Cody wanted a Pedigree, but Zayn hit a back body drop to get out of that. Jey and Owens got tags leading to hard clotheslines. Owens hit two superkicks and then Jey hit a better superkick for two. Jey went up top, he jumped off with an Uso Splash, Owens avoided it and Owens hit a Stunner on Jey for one…two…but Cody broke up the pin. Jey & Cody went to the floor, so Zayn hit a somersault dive over the top rope and onto both of them. Owens went up top and jumped off with a Swanton Bomb, but Jey got the knees up. Jey with a superkick on Owens. Jey with a superkick on Zayn and Cody hit Cross Rhodes on Zayn. Cody & Jey hit a double superkick on Owens. Jey lifted up Owens and Cody hit the Cody Cutter for the 1D/Cody Cutter on Owens and Jey pinned Owens for the pinfall win after 21 minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso
Analysis: **** That was an awesome match! The final segment of the match was by far the best part while the two segments preceding it weren’t that interesting. This was four talented veterans given a lot of time and putting a terrific tag team match. It’s a win that further establishes Cody & Jey as champions by beating former champions, who are credible as opponents. There were a lot of believable nearfalls in the match. Owens brings the intensity to every match he has while Jey can match him for sure. Cody and Zayn are so technically sound and able to do anything in the ring. These guys are so talented. The ending was a bit of a chaotic scene with about a minute of action featuring guys that weren’t legal, but at least it’s only one minute and not several minutes like in other companies.
Next week on Raw: Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso will defend the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Titles against The Judgment Day’s Damian Priest & Finn Balor.
Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso celebrated with their WWE Tag Team Titles. Zayn shook hands and hugged both opponents. Owens shook Cody’s hand. Owens was reluctant to hug Jey’s hand, but then they shook hands and hugged. KO lifted Jey’s hand while Sami lifted Cody’s hand. The fans cheered. End show.
Analysis: A happy ending with the four babyfaces getting along. Owens finally accepts Jey as an ally and perhaps a friend. I’m interested to see what’s next for Sami & Kevin because even though they are a great tag team, I’d love to see them as singles wrestlers again. Either of them going after GUNTHER’s Intercontinental Title would be fun to watch.
Three Stars of the Show
- Cody Rhodes & Jey Uso
- Sami Zayn & Kevin Owens
- Drew McIntyre
7.75 out of 10
Last week: 7.25
2023 Average: 7.34
I thought it was a very good episode of Raw. The match quality was strong with the Cody Rhodes-Jey Uso win over Kevin Owens-Sami Zayn in a lengthy main event. That was awesome to watch, especially the action after the last commercial break. I really liked the triple threat match won by Bronson Reed as well. Becky Lynch’s NXT Women’s Title match with Tegan Nox got plenty of time. Obvious result, but happy for Nox getting a meaningful match like that. Ivar’s big win over Kofi Kingston was another fun match on this show.
It was a good night for Drew McIntyre stepping up as the next challenger for Seth Rollins’ World Heavyweight Title. That should be an outstanding match at Crown Jewel. I liked the promo that Drew did with Seth to set up the match. Drew also picked up a dominant win. I wouldn’t say Drew is a heel yet, but he’s certainly leaning that way.
I mentioned in the review that they are doing a nice job of building week-to-week on Raw. The stories are making sense, they are involving a lot of different people on the roster and setting up good matches every week. Quality booking, pal. Lastly, Shinsuke Nakamura doing the GTS to Ricochet was certainly interesting to see as well. I’m sure all the punks out there enjoyed that.
The next WWE PLE is Crown Jewel from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday, November 4th (happy birthday to me). Here’s the lineup so far:
* World Heavyweight Championship: Seth “Freakin” Rollins (c) vs. Drew McIntyre
WWE Crown Jewel airs on Saturday, November 4th, at 1 p.m. ET/10 a.m. PT, streaming live from Riyadh, exclusively on Peacock in the United States and on WWE Network everywhere else.
Thanks for reading. Please check out my reviews of every WWE PPV ever listed in order. Go Los Angeles Rams, Toronto Raptors and Toronto Maple Leafs. My contact info is below.