The night after a major PPV is always an interesting one. Usually, there is a combination of feuds that continue and new feuds introduced. With the introduction of NXT a few years ago the night after a major PPV, such as Survivor Series, many times leads to the introduction of at least one new member of the roster.

Who survived?

As usual, Raw starts out with talking. Stephanie comes out and talks about how Shane always has learned to strike first, but she worries about winning the war. In an obvious swerve, she introduces the leader or team Raw as Triple H. Before Triple H can even talk, Kurt Angle heads down to the ring. Angle quotes a country song about what to do with the job if he’s backstabbed again. Jason Jordon comes down to threaten Triple H and just as Stephanie mentions that Triple H fears no one Braun Stroman joins the party. And somehow, we walk away from all of this with Braun vs. Jordan later in the show.

Who is the Demon?

Finn Balor vs. Samoa Joe

Picking right back up from their feud before Survivor Series Balor and Joe face off. Samoa Joe starts out strong on offense with several quick and strong strikes. Just as Balor started to mount a bit of a comeback, we head to commercial. Throughout the match the announce team brings up Joe using a slow, methodical offense to keep Balor from using his speed. Finally, Joe locks in the Coquina Clutch until Balor passes out.

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Winner: Samoa Joe

Joe was dominant from the beginning of the match to the end. Right now, it feels as if the WWE is not sure what they want to do with Balor, so they just continue to have him lose.

WWE Shop

Welp Gallows & Anderson have been relegated to backstage sales as they push Black Friday specials. Perhaps a reunion with Balor would do all three of these men some good

Asuka’s Buzzsaw continues

Asuka vs. Dana Brook

Dana Brooks wants revenge for Asuka keeping her out of Survivor Series. Brooks used the last week to watch the WWE network which just so happens to have a special collection of Asuka matches it’s featuring right now. Asuka dominates throughout the match with all her signature moves featured until she mercifully kicks Brook in the head to end the match.

Winner: Asuka

Dana Brook was merely another victim on Asuka’s march toward an eventual championship feud.

Miz’s Greatness.

Miz TV has invited Roman Reigns as the guest tonight. Before that, Miz blows off Baron Corbin congratulating him on his win while reminding him that he has better things to do as the A-list star on the A show. After a delay, Reigns comes to the ring via the crowd with his SHEILD brethren. Miz wants a thank you for bringing the team back together. Reigns refuses to thank Miz and points out that the Miz is the only person in the ring who lost last night. Miz points out he is the only champion in the ring. Reigns challenges Miz to a match for the Intercontinental Title for later tonight.

Who sets the Bar?

Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus

It looks like coming out of Survivor Series The Shield and The Bar are going to continue their feud over the tag titles. Leading into the commercial break both men show how evenly they match as they exchange a series of moves. The second half of the match was somewhat pedestrian as Sheamus dominated the match with several high impact moves. A distraction by Seth Rollins allows Ambrose to hit the DDT and get the win.

Winner: Dean Ambrose

A Blissful Year

Alexia Bliss graces us all with her presence to discuss her loss last night. After a list of excuses as to why she lost, Alexia reminds the crowd she doesn’t care what people think of her because it is the year of Alexia Bliss. As could be expected, a few of the other women in the back disagree with her. Mickie James, Bailey, Sasha Banks, and The Captain Alicia Fox all come out to stake their claim to be the number one contender. After Bliss dismisses all her competition as not worthy, Raw General Manager Kurt Angle sets up a four-way match to determine the number one contender.

Mickie James vs. Bailey vs. Sasha Banks vs. “Captain” Alicia Fox

The match started during the commercial break. Returning the two friends Bailey and Banks are in the ring together while Fox and James are laid out on the floor. As the four competitors work their way through some basic moves, the familiar sounds of Paige’s music interrupted the match. Paige makes her way to the ring letting the other women know she is not alone. Before Paige reaches the ring, Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose hit the ring and help lead the assault. Paige, Deville, and Rose each hit their signature moves on one of the women from the match before all posing together.

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Renee Young Investigative Reporter

After the break, Renee Young catches up with Paige to welcome her back. Paige starts to explain what happened when Alexia Bliss comes to dismiss Renee and meet the competition. A stare down ends as the three newest members of the RAW roster work over Bliss leaving her beaten on the floor.

Who’s afraid of Monsters

Jason Jordan vs. Braun Strowman

Jordan spends most of the match running to avoid Strowman until he tweaks his knee trying to pick up Strowman. As he rolls out of the ring, Kane comes in from the other side to attack. Using a chair, Kane works over Strowman until he smashes Strowman’s throat with a chair.

No Contest

Second match is a row where no winner is announced. The match existed just to move the feud with Kane forward.

All Aboard the Zo’ Train

Enzo Amore comes out to brag about his Survivor Series win over Kalisto. He has Noam Dar, Tony Neese, Ariya Daivari, and Drew Gulak with him. Enzo goes through and talks about how each person has gotten better since he joined 205 Live and became the champ, but Rich Swans music interrupts. Rich Swan, Cedrick Alexander, Mustafa Ali and Akira Tozowa all head down to the ring and Enzo runs through his normal “Haters” promo. Alexander points out the group is there to earn a shot at the Cruiserweight Championship. Rich Swan points out without help Enzo is nothing but t-shirts and catchphrases. Enzo rolled out of the ring as a melee broke out.

Noam Dar, Tony Neese, Drew Gulak, Ariya Daivari vs. Cedrick Alexander, Rich Swan, Mustafa Ali, Akira Tozowa

We end up with the normal spot fest match that is used for the announcers to try and introduce the cruiserweights and get fans to tune into 205 Live. Mustafa Ali hits the inverted 405 for the win.

Elias Sings!

Elias comes out and asks who wants to walk with Elias before running down the live crowd. He’s written a song about his win over Matt Hardy, whom Elias refers to as a lost soul. Hardy was evidently not impressed with the musical stylings of Elias as he made his way down to interrupt the musical interlude. Matt got the better of Elias until Elias was able to roll out of the ring to escape.

It’s a Grand Slam

The Miz vs. Roman Reigns-Intercontinental Title Match

Booker starts from the beginning defending The Miz and how brave he is. Cole pointed out that the Miz was only there because he must be. Reigns music blasts and Cole mentions that the Intercontinental Championship is the one major title that has eluded him. After a break for the official introductions, the announce team does a breakdown of what each man needs to do to win. It is something that they do not often do, but it adds a big match feel.

After some basic tie-ups, Miz goes for a surprise Skull Crusher that Reigns easily powers out of. A quick sit down powerbomb, and we are into our first break of the match.

In from the break, both men are down as the brutality of the match so far is mentioned. Reigns hits a clothesline and several high impact moves. He sets up the Superman punch, but Miz rolls out of the ring. Reigns pursues the Miz outside when he is greeted by a DDT to the floor. After a near count-out, Miz continues to work over Reigns including another DDT and the classic backbreaker into the neck breaker. Throughout the offense, the announce team builds up how important being the champion is to Miz. It is small things like this that have rebuilt the importance of the Intercontinental Title. Something needed when you have a World Champion who is absent more than he is present.

Several attempted comebacks were thwarted by Miz as he continued to find counters for the Superman Punch. Coming off the top ropes, Miz catches a Superman punch. As Reigns begins his comeback, Sheamus comes down in an attempt to distract him. Just as quickly Ambrose and Rollins come down to take out the Bar. Reigns hit the spear for the win.

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After the match Reigns celebrated as if becoming the champion was a Highlight of his career. As Raw went off the air, the Shield continued to celebrate Reigns win and the announce Corey Graves mentions this is step one of their Championship desires.

Gregory Brothers
greghbrothers@gmail.com
Greg is a teacher, a life long student of all things pop culture, and an avid sports fan. When not spending time with spending time with family you may find him arguing the finer points of if Magneto was right, or who the best pro athlete is. He can be found on twitter @comicsportsgeek

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