The John Report: The WWE Raw Deal 10/19/15

Live from Dallas, Texas this is the Raw Deal for episode #1169. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. That pic for the banner is pretty great. I realize that “All” shouldn’t be in there, but I’m too lazy to ask my banner man Melo Man to fix it.

Raw begins with the glass breaking and the music of WWE Hall of Famer “Stone Cold” Steve Austin hits as Austin enters the arena to a huge pop. Michael Cole noted it’s been four years since Austin was on Raw. That’s way too long.

Austin said it was great to be there in Dallas since he got his start in wrestling at the Sportatorium in 1989. When they first built this building they shipped in Austin and The Rock to break this sumbitch in. He got a few “hell yeah” chants for the crowd regarding Raw and WrestleMania. He said he stomped so many mudholes and walked it dry in Dallas that he has to reminisce about it with beers once in a while. He plugged his talk with Brock Lesnar after Raw on WWE Network. He introduced The Undertaker while doing a speech encouraging the “what” chants from the crowd. He said he was honored to introduce him.

Analysis: That was a hot start to Raw with Austin doing a promo although it didn’t really mean that much. It was just a plug for WWE Network and introducing The Undertaker. I’m a huge Austin fan, so I love seeing him in the ring again, but I would have liked to see him part of some angle or have some interaction with somebody on the show. It was still cool. I just wanted to see more of him.

The Undertaker made his usual entrance. Austin left before Undertaker walked out. He worked three matches in Mexico over the weekend and is keeping himself in great shape. Undertaker said that he and Lesnar have on last battle to fight. Undertaker: “The depths of hell will look like the gates of heaven compared to where I’m going to take you this Sunday at Hell in a Cell.” Brock Lesnar’s music hit.

Lesnar was on the stage with his advocate Paul Heyman. “Ladies and deadman,” said Heyman. He said Lesnar will be unleashed this Sunday inside Hell in a Cell. Heyman said it’s fitting that both guys go into the match with revenge on their mind. Heyman used this opportunity to remind us that Lesnar conquered The Undertaker’s undefeated streak at WrestleMania. Heyman made a point to say that Sunday’s match is the last Lesnar/Undertaker match there ever will be. Heyman said that after Sunday, Undertaker will have to accept that he conquered everybody except Lesnar.

Undertaker slowly took off his hat and jacket. He said when you take everything from a man, then that man ends up fighting with nothing to lose. The crowd was cheering Undertaker as he did a “just bring it” Rock-style hand gesture.

Lesnar walked down to the ring. Heyman told him to stop. Lesnar jumped on the apron with Heyman yelling at Lesnar about Undertaker is in his head. Lesnar just smirked and dropped back to the floor. Lesnar slowly backed up the ramp. The crowd booed Lesnar while Undertaker made the throat slash gesture to end the segment.

Analysis: I’m a little surprised by that booking because Lesnar has been portrayed as a babyface since WrestleMania and in this scenario Lesnar looked like the heel. I get why WWE did that because they wanted to set up this match without putting the two men in a physical altercation, but it made Lesnar look like a bit of a punk.

Up next is John Cena and the Dudley Boyz against The New Day.

(Commercial)

John Cena made his entrance. It was announced that he’ll be interviewed on ESPN on Tuesday night and his Hell in a Cell match will be the US Title Open Challenge. The Dudleys entered.

The New Day entered with the Tag Team Titles while Xavier Woods had a broken trombone. Woods said they may as well be called unicorns because they have brought magic back to WWE. Big E said that everything is “booty” in Texas while mocking Dallas Cowboys injured players Dez Bryant and Tony Romo. When Kofi Kingston said “ass” in a promo, Big E and Woods said “wow” since it’s a PG show.

Analysis: Fun promo like usual from The New Day, who continue to be one of the most entertaining parts of Raw.

John Cena & The Dudley Boyz vs. The New Day

The Dudleys worked over Kingston for a minute, then Kofi went to the floor and it’s time for a commercial.

(Commercial)

Back from break, Cena was isolated in The New Day’s corner. They kept on working over Cena with Woods hitting a reverse neckbreaker for a two count. Big E hit a sidewalk slam for two. Cena hit a dropkick, but Big E came back with an overhead belly to belly suplex. Devon got the hot tag against Woods with Devon dominating with a one armed spinebuster. Big E broke up a pin, so Bubba went after him and Big E tossed Bubba into the ring post. Cena hit a cross body block off the top to take out Big E. With all that going, Woods did a ROLLUP OF DEATH~! with tights for the win after nine minutes.

Winners by pinfall: The New Day

Analysis: **1/2 It was a solid tag match although I didn’t love the finish because it was a bit flat. I don’t like when a guy is destroying everybody offensively, but then ends up getting pinned on a rollup. The tights were grabbed as a way to make it not look clean. I still don’t love it. It was also weird seeing Cena booked as just a regular guy in this match instead of the one making the hot tag and cleaning house for the win. Definitely not used to seeing that.

Post match, the faces attacked them. Cena hit the Attitude Adjustment on Woods while Big E and Kingston went up the ramp. The Dudleys got a table, so Cena helped them out and Bubba drove Woods through the table with a Powerbomb.

Analysis: A good way for the babyfaces to get revenge after the loss.

The announce team of Michael Cole, John Bradshaw Layfield and Byron Saxton were shown on camera. Cole said that Randy Orton didn’t make the live events in Mexico and JBL said that his sources said that Orton was taken out by the Wyatt Family.

Analysis: It was reported by the Wrestling Observer that Orton has a legitimate shoulder dislocation that may require surgery. If he has surgery that could put him out for several months. Hopefully he can recover without the surgery.

Backstage, Dean Ambrose was shown talking to Fit Finlay, Dean Malenko and a referee backstage. We will hear from Ambrose after the break.

(Commercial)

Ambrose was interviewed by Renee Young. He said that the Wyatts got to Randy before and they got him again. Ambrose said he’s not letting anybody or anything getting in his way because he wants to fight the Wyatt Family tonight.

Nikki Bella & Alicia Fox (w/Brie Bella) vs. Tamina & Sasha Banks (w/Tamina)

Banks hit a dropkick on Fox and Naomi hit a running splash. The show went to break there.

(Commercial)

Back from break, Fox and Nikki hit a double suplex on Naomi to isolate her because it looks like WWE is booking Banks for the babyface comeback in this match. Fans were chanting “we want Sasha” as Fox worked over Naomi. That led to Naomi hitting a kick to the head. Nikki was legal, Naomi used a jawbreaker and here comes Banks. She was on fire with a dropkick, a running knee attack and she tossed Fox out of the ring. Nikki nailed a forearm, Naomi tagged in and they exchanged some nearfalls. Brie distracted, so Nikki hit a spinebuster on Naomi and a cheapshot forearm on Banks sent her to the floor. Nikki sent Naomi into the turnbuckle and then hit the Rack Attack for the pinfall win after nine minutes.

Winners by pinfall: Nikki Bella & Alicia Fox

Analysis: ** A good match designed to put the heels over while keeping Banks strong by not involving her in the decisive fall. The finish makes sense since Nikki is getting a Divas Title shot at Hell in a Cell on Sunday, so it’s a nice way to put her over. Banks wasn’t really in the match for that long. Her hot tag sequence went about one minute, then she tagged out and they brought Naomi in to get pinned. I like that just because it protects Banks, who WWE obviously sees as a huge star and a potential top babyface diva in the near future.

There was a replay of last week’s Raw with Demon Kane beating Seth Rollins in a Lumberjack Match. It was also mentioned that Corporate Kane has been suspended for Raw this week.

Triple H and Shawn Michaels were shown talking backstage. Michaels is live in the ring up next.

(Commercial)

A video package showed WWE’s support for breast cancer survivors.

The legendary WWE Hall of Famer and my favorite wrestler ever, Shawn Michaels, entered to a great ovation at the top of hour two. He even took a few bites of a fan’s pizza or whatever that was. Michaels jokingly looked tired after he did his full intro.

Shawn Michaels Addresses The WWE Universe

Michaels apologized to the kid for taking his pizza, but thanked him because he was starving. Michaels talked about how many years ago he was in the first Hell in a Cell match. He joked about how he was hit in the head a lot, so he couldn’t remember who he was in the ring with and then admitted it was The Undertaker. That’s one of my favorite matches ever. He said it’s amazing that Undertaker will step inside Hell in a Cell 18 years later against Brock Lesnar. Michaels spoke about Roman Reigns having an opportunity against Bray Wyatt. He said he believes those two matches are going to tear the house down.

The WWE Champion Seth Rollins interrupted the promo. Seth got right in Shawn’s face. Fans were chanting “one more match” as they stood face to face.

Rollins wondered what Michaels was doing out there and said that Michaels was supposed to introduce Rollins. Michaels spoke about how for 20 plus years he’s been given instructions back there, but then he gets in the ring and it’s gone. Rollins pointed out that the orders came from HBK’s best friend Triple H. Rollins said if Michaels wants to talk about Hell in a Cell that’s fine, but he needs to be talking about the man that will stop the show this Sunday – the champion and the guy that everybody seems to be calling “Shawn Michaels version two.” I like Rollins, but I don’t remember the comparisons much although I do agree he’s damn good.

Michaels said if he had a nickel for every guy that was supposed to be the next HBK then he’d be a billionaire. Michaels pointed out how Rollins was happy being called “version two” while HBK said that it never occurred to him to be the second coming of anybody. Michaels said it was because he was too busy becoming the greatest wrestler that’s ever lived. He’s never lacked confidence, that’s for sure.

Rollins told Michaels that he was jealous because at WrestleMania, Rollins had a moment that eclipsed anything Michaels did in his career. Rollins said he’s not worried about Kane because he’s going to be on his back looking up at the lights. Rollins said he’s had enough of this and wanted them to hit his music. Michaels told him that when you’re a version two you don’t get to hit your music. Michaels told Rollins that he has a match up next against Ryback and then HBK asked for his music, so that played as he left. Michaels had some of the kid’s drink on the way out while Rollins looked angry in the ring.

Analysis: It was fun to see them interact just because Rollins is arguably the best overall performer in WWE right now while Michaels had that label for much of his career. It’s a shame that HBK is retired and that they can’t have a match because it would be great to watch it. I thought Michaels was clever with some of the things he said. He’s not usually the kind of guy to say that he’s the best wrestler ever, but as a scripted line against a cocky heel it works. I think he’s the best ever, for the record. Rollins more than held his own in the promo. Fans may think of him as the next HBK although that would happen more often if he was in a face role. Michaels was a great heel before he was a face in the early 1990s, but he broke through as a face to win his first World Title in 1996.

(Commercial)

Seth Rollins vs. Ryback

This is not for Rollins’ WWE Title. Ryback dominated early on with a delayed vertical suplex. Rollins was able to turn the tide as he sent Ryback into the steps outside the ring. Then Rollins nailed a suicide dive to take out Ryback. Back in the ring, Rollins applied a leg lock. Ryback nailed a back body drop as well as a spinning powerslam that looked a bit sloppy, but not injury. Rollins fought out of the Shellshock with a kick and then Ryback nailed a spinebuster. Rollins avoided an attack while on the apron, got in a kick to the ribs and hit a Pedigree for the win after four minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Seth Rollins

Analysis: *3/4 This was good because it was a chance to put over the WWE Champion clean on television, which is pretty rare. A win for Rollins on television is so rare these days. I’m glad he wasn’t booked like a loser for once. Why can’t they book him to have more wins? I don’t understand their booking of Rollins. I expect him to retain the WWE Title on Sunday against Demon Kane because a loss would be stupid.

Dean Ambrose vs. Luke Harper and Braun Strowman is announced for later.

(Commercial)

They showed members of the Dallas Cowboys seated at ringside behind the announcers.

Replay of Undertaker/Lesnar segment from earlier.

A recap of the Rusev/Summer Rae breakup story after Rusev got engaged to Lana. Then on Smackdown, she was the ref in a Rusev/Ziggler match, she did a slow count against Rusev and Ziggler won. Post match, she wanted to get together with Ziggler again. He said no.

Dolph Ziggler, Cesaro and Neville entered for a six man tag match. Fun moment as Ziggler held up a Cesaro Section sign.

(Commercial)

The European heel trio of King Barrett, Rusev and Sheamus made their entrance.

Dolph Ziggler, Cesaro & Neville vs. King Barrett, Rusev & Sheamus

Neville got in some offense as Rusev with JBL saying that Rusev has always been known as the Bulgarian Playboy. I think Cole just says everybody in this match has “issues” with eachother as if he’s a robot programmed to say it. Anyway, the heels predictably isolated Neville from his partners. The fans chanted “USA” even though Neville is from England, but Ziggler is the only American in the match, so at least it’s in support of the team. Neville got in a kick on Rusev, then he was distracted by Sheamus and Rusev sent Neville into the announce table. Time for the vintage floor to commercial break.

(Commercial)

Back from break, Rusev was still working over Neville in the ring. Barrett tagged in charged at Neville, who ducked and Barrett was knocked to the floor. Sheamus was legal, then Neville tagged in Cesaro. Cesaro nailed Sheamus with four uppercuts in a row followed by a running dropkick. A cross body block by Cesaro got him a two count. Sheamus came back with a powerslam. Cesaro tagged in Ziggler while Barrett also tagged in. Ziggler hit forearm shots, then a neckbreaker and an elbow drop. Ziggler sent Rusev outside the ring. Fameasser by Ziggler for two although it didn’t connect like he usually does. Ziggler got another nearfall and then a Superkick for two as Sheamus made the save. Cesaro kicked Sheamus out of the ring, Rusev kicked Cesaro out of the ring and Neville kicked Cesaro out of the ring. Neville went up top, hit a somersault dive to take them out including his partner Cesaro, but not Sheamus. Ziggler got a rollup for two, then Ziggler was draped across the middle rope and Sheamus nailed a Brogue Kick while he was on the floor and Ziggler was in the ring. Barrett covered for the win after 13 minutes.

Winners by pinfall: King Barrett, Rusev & Sheamus

Analysis: ***1/4 That was a fun and exciting tag match, especially that finishing sequence. The three European heels work very well together. The announcers really put over the team after the match as well, which makes me think maybe WWE will pull the trigger on a stable for them as well as other Europeans. Maybe it’s just going to lead to some Survivor Series match with them as a team. I’m not sure what the direction is. I liked the finish a lot with Sheamus hitting the Brogue Kick on an unsuspecting Ziggler because it puts over that move in a big way, which is necessary when he’s Mr. Money in the Bank. Ziggler getting pinned normally would bother me, but I think it’s just being done because he’s likely going heel very soon and when guys turn they usually lose a bunch of matches in order to set it up. If he doesn’t turn heel in the near future I’ll be disappointed.

Backstage, Ric Flair and Shawn Michaels were showing off their watches with Flair set to appear after the break.

(Commercial)

This week on Smackdown it’s Miz TV with Dolph Ziggler and Summer Rae.

Ric Flair was already in the ring. He spoke about how he has a lot of history in Dallas, Texas. He mentioned the Von Erichs and Freebirds. He said the most exciting thing is about to happen is WrestleMania in the Big D over at AT&T Stadium. He mentioned that Dean Ambrose is tagging up with his main man Roman Reigns. Here comes Reigns. Reigns entered the arena by walking down the steps by the audience and Flair welcomed him inside the ring. They hugged. Good way to keep the crowd from booing Reigns.

The Wyatt Family showed up with Bray Wyatt being flanked by Braun Strowman and a returning Erick Rowan. I guess Flair left. No sign of Luke Harper even though he was mentioned earlier in the show. Reigns said he would get two chairs – one for him and one for Wyatt. He brought the chairs into the ring.

Reigns said if they don’t start nothing then it won’t be nothing. Reigns called out Wyatt in the middle of Dallas, Texas as he sat in a chair and there was another chair in the ring for Wyatt to sit on. Wyatt sat down.

Reigns talked about Wyatt’s a bully that likes to pick on people and that Wyatt gets power because of fear. Reigns told Wyatt that he surrounds himself with mountains because he’s scared to be alone. Reigns mentioned Hell in a Cell on Sunday saying that Wyatt is scared to be trapped in the cell with Reigns. Things got physical with Reigns hitting Rowan with a chair followed by a chair for Strowman and Wyatt took a chair shot too. The three Wyatt Family guys retreated as Dean Ambrose entered the ring for the save.

Analysis: It was decent promo from Reigns. Good to see Rowan back since he was out for about five months with a torn biceps. You can see the black arm brace he has on to protect it. No word on why Harper wasn’t there. Maybe he has heat for that picture that you can see as my banner for this column because it’s breaking kayfabe. I don’t think it’s a big deal, but you never know what management thinks.

Seth Rollins was talking to Triple H and Stephanie McMahon in their office. Shawn Michaels showed up. They discussed the Wyatt Family vs. Ambrose/Reigns and Michaels suggested putting Rollins in the match. Rollins said that they didn’t need to protect him, so he’s going out there to stop the show. He said he’s going to team up with Ambrose and Reigns. The crowd cheered wildly at the thought of The Shield teaming up later. Rollins left.

Analysis: The thought of The Shield teaming up together on Raw is pretty interesting. I like that as a way to keep people interested in the show later on.

(Commercial)

Charlotte entered for a match against Brie Bella while the announcers talked about the main event.

Charlotte (w/Becky Lynch) vs. Brie Bella (w/Nikki Bella & Alicia Fox)

This is not for Charlotte’s Divas Title. Paige was shown watching the match on a backstage monitor. Charlotte was on offense, then Nikki grabbed the Divas Title and Brie used the distraction to stun Charlotte on the top rope. Running knee attack by Brie and then a bulldog for two. Another bulldog by Brie for two. Charlotte came back with clotheslines, chops and forearm smash. Neckbreaker by Charlotte followed by a Spear. Charlotte applied the Figure Eight submission and Brie tapped out after six minutes.

Winner by submission: Charlotte

Analysis: *1/4 An average match that was a bit boring. It feels like we’ve seen Charlotte vs. Brie a lot as a way to set up the Charlotte vs. Nikki matches. That win gives Charlotte momentum going into Hell in a Cell much like Nikki’s win earlier. I think Charlotte will retain on Sunday.

Post match, Renee Young was interviewed by Paige. Renee asked if Paige took out Natalya on Smackdown. She called Paige the “prime suspect” for attacking Natalya. Paige said she was trying to put the ugliness behind her. She said anybody could have a grudge against the divas division. She spoke about how it could be past divas like Kaitlyn, Eve Torres, Trish Stratus, Lita or Alundra Blayze. Renee said it’s likely not any of them. Paige called Renee “Sally Jesse Raphael” (a TV host from the 80s/90s) and then said she’s barely Erin Andrews while noting she’s not as pretty. Paige left.

Analysis: Heel Paige is a lot of fun. I found face Paige to be boring, so I’m glad she’s in a heel role where she can thrive. The problem with a story like this with a mystery attacker is they do it too often and it would make sense to simply ask Natalya about it, but they did the angle that she’s not there. Oh well. At least they have Natalya in a storyline while Paige is probably move up as the top challenger for the Divas Title after Hell in a Cell.

Six man tag later.

(Commercial)

PLUG TIME: We launched the brand new, weekly TJRWrestling Podcast last week. My good friend Rey is co-hosting with me. All the info is right here. Go check out and bookmark our Soundcloud page where we will upload new episode every Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. You can also use listen to it on iTunes or search for “TJRWrestling” and it should come up. This week’s episode will have former WWE/TNA wrestler Mickie James on the show. She’s a good friend and it’s a great chat covering a lot, so check it out.

Kevin Owens vs. Mark Henry

This is not for Owens’ IC Title. Henry did the Texas Longhorn hand gesture and Owens got in his face about it. Henry nailed Owens with some headbutts as well as a body slam, but his splash attempt didn’t work. Owens with a running senton for two. More headbutts for Henry as well as a hard whip into the corner. Henry with a running splash in the corner. Owens came back with a superkick. Henry bounced off the ropes, so Owens lifted him up and nailed the Popup Powerbomb for the win after three minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Kevin Owens

There was a replay of the Popup Powerbomb by Owens. Really good spot right there.

Analysis: *1/2 A short match to put over Owens prior to his IC Title defense against Ryback at Hell in a Cell on Sunday. Henry got in a decent amount of offense. That Popup Powerbomb by Owens was very impressive. Give credit to both of them for that spot because it worked very well.

Post match, Ryback marched down to the ring to confront Owens. As he slid into the ring, Owens escaped out the other side. Henry rolled Owens into the ring. Ryback nailed a Powerbomb on Owens. Ryback led the crowd in “feed me more” chants.

Analysis: That gives the advantage to Ryback going into their match at Hell in a Cell. I think Owens will win the match and keep the title. No reason to put it back on Ryback.

The announcers went over the two HIAC matches: Lesnar vs. Undertaker and Wyatt vs. Reigns. Then they shilled WWE Network. Cole: “The WWE Network – Just like Netflix, only better.”

Rollins was interviewed by Renee Young backstage. Rollins said that this isn’t a Shield reunion. It’s just his way of proving that he is the man.

(Commercial)

A video package aired to hype up Lesnar vs. Undertaker for the last time ever. Great video like usual.

They plugged the Austin podcast with Lesnar after Raw.

Six man tag up next.

(Commercial)

They hyped up Cena’s US Title Open Challenge on Sunday. I’m not sure who he’ll be against, but there are rumors it will be a debuting Tyler Breeze. I hope it’s Ziggler winning the title thanks to a heel turn. Not sure if that’s the plan. Daniel Bryan coming back to win the title would be great too. Cena is taking time off for two months after Hell in a Cell, so a title change is likely.

Announced for Hell in a Cell’s Kickoff show is Dolph Ziggler, Cesaro and Neville against Rusev, Bad News Barrett and Sheamus. That’s a rematch of their match earlier on Raw.

Roman Reigns entered first and then Dean Ambrose. The WWE Champion Seth Rollins walked out last for this Shield reunion that isn’t really a reunion according to Rollins.

When The Wyatt Family entered, the announcers noted that Luke Harper isn’t there and that Erick Rowan is back. Cole wondered if Harper’s absence is related to Orton. Earlier in the show they didn’t mention Harper at all, but now they made a point to do it.

The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Erick Rowan & Braun Strowman) vs. Roman Reigns, Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins

Fans chanted “this is awesome” before the match began. They are easy to please. Rollins told his teammates he was going to start the match, but then he tagged out instead of going against Rowan. Rollins got in there against Wyatt, nailed a forearm smash and then Wyatt nailed a slam where he drove Rollins’ ribs into Wyatt’s knee. The show went to break with Rollins on the floor.

(Commercial)

Back from break, Reigns nailed a back suplex on Rowan. Ambrose tagged in against Strowman, Ambrose nailed a missile dropkick and his running attack was countered with a clothesline by Strowman. The heels made some quick tags as they isolated Ambrose in their corner. Wyatt had Ambrose grounded with a long chinlock as the crowd chanted support for Ambrose. When Ambrose almost broke free, Strowman attacked Reigns on the apron and sent him to the ground. Ambrose nailed a missile dropkick on Wyatt. Ambrose crawled over to Rollins, but Rollins jumped to the floor while pretending like his knee was hurt. Since Reigns was down, Rowan nailed a splash on Ambrose and then Ambrose nailed a clothesline. Reigns was back up as he received the hot tag and nailed Rowan with a clothesline followed by the ten clotheslines in the corner. Reigns ducked under a Strowman punch and nailed the Drive By dropkick on Rowan. Samoan Drop by Reigns on Rowan. Reigns hit the Superman Punch on Rowan, but Strowman broke it up. Strowman cleaned house with the head/arm choke on Reigns. Ambrose nailed Strowman in the back with the kendo stick. The ref called for the disqualification. The match went 15 minutes.

Winners by disqualification: The Wyatt Family

Analysis: **3/4 It was a pretty standard tag match. While it was nice to see The Shield trio together again, it really wasn’t a reunion and they did nothing to really remind us of them as a team. Rollins got out of there instead of playing a part in the finish, so it was mostly about putting Rollin over as a selfish jerk. Harper was missed just because he’s the best in-ring performer among the Wyatt Family members. When he’s not there to hit his awesome moves or take great bumps it is noticeable. As usual, Strowman was made to look dominant without bumping much, so the strong booking continues for him.

Post match, Ambrose attacked Strowman with the kendo stick some more. Ambrose went for a dive outside the ring, but Strowman grabbed him and gave him a spinebuster on the floor. Reigns took out the three Wyatt Family guys with a dive over the top rope. That was very impressive. Fans chanted “this is awesome” for it. In the ring, Reigns hit a Spear on Wyatt and then a Spear on Rowan as well. The heels retreated.

Reigns and Ambrose stood together in the ring. A shot of Steve Austin and Brock Lesnar was shown on set for the Stone Cold podcast after Raw. Reigns and Ambrose looked on as the show came to a close.

Analysis: I liked the post match attack. I’m not sure who will win the Wyatt/Reigns match at Hell in a Cell, but I’m leaning towards picking Wyatt. I know they say that HIAC matches aren’t supposed to have interference, but we’ve seen many instances where there is interference and that’s what I expect for that match. It just doesn’t make sense to me to have one of them lose clean. I’ll have more thoughts on that when we post our Hell in a Cell preview on the weekend.

 

Three Stars of the Show

1. Steve Austin – His first time on Raw in four years. He’s first star even though I wish he was on more.

2. Seth Rollins

3. Kevin Owens – That powerbomb was impressive. Give Henry credit for it too.

 

The Scoreboard

6.5 out of 10

Last week: 4.5

Last 5 Weeks: 4.5, 4, 3.5, 5, 5.5

2015 Average: 5.74

2015 High: 9 (May 4)

2015 Low: 3.5 (September 28)

 

Final Thoughts

I’m giving it a 6.5 out of 10. That’s my highest score since the 7.5 I gave on August 24, so it’s a nice sign after two months of mostly below average shows.

– It was a typical go home PPV show where a lot of people that are featured in PPV matches were booked to win matches over others not on the PPV. Pretty standard stuff.

– I liked seeing Undertaker and Lesnar even though it was brief. A physical confrontation would have been nice, but I definitely understand why they would hold off on it. Want to see them fight? Go watch Hell in a Cell.

– It was a show full of tag matches or at least that’s what it felt like. I liked them for the most part although nothing was that outstanding.

– The presence of Austin at the top of hour one, Michaels at the top of hour two and Flair at the top of hour three certainly helped the show a bit. Seeing legends once in a while is a good thing because it freshens things up a bit.

– I didn’t really miss Kane. It was a smart move to keep him off the show because he’s been over exposed in the last month.

That’s all for this week.

The Hell in a Cell PPV preview will be posted likely on Friday and I may write a Hell in a Cell recap live for TJRWrestling.net on Sunday night. If not, it’ll be posted by Monday morning.

We launched the brand new, weekly TJRWrestling Podcast last week. My good friend Rey is co-hosting with me. All the info is right here. Go check out and bookmark our Soundcloud page where we will upload new episode every Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. You can also use listen to it on iTunes or search for “TJRWrestling” and it should come up. This week’s episode will have former WWE/TNA wrestler Mickie James on the show. She’s a good friend and it’s a great chat covering a lot, so check it out.

Thanks for reading. Go Toronto Blue Jays. Go St. Louis Rams.

John Canton – [email protected]

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