Date: November 14, 2022
Location: KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, KY
Show Recap --
Seth Rollins entered as a video package aired recapping his night last week. Rollins said he barely escaped with the United States title and ran down all the guys who wanted a shot at his belt.
Rollins mentioned Austin Theory’s failed cash-in attempt and the crowd chanted, “that was stupid.” He encouraged them to chant that later when Theory was there.
Rollins said the US title was the most sought-after belt and the top prize on Raw because he was the champion. He plugged his main event title defence tonight against Finn Bálor.
Bobby Lashley interrupted. He warned Rollins that the beatings would continue until he got the title back. Rollins reminded Lashley that he lost to Brock Lesnar at Crown Jewel. (Lashley still has a large gash on his chest from last week.)
Mustafa Ali interrupted and a referee followed him out, encouraging him to return to the back. (This never happens but I guess the officials think Ali is too weak to confront anyone alone.)
Lashley also warned him to leave. Ali went into the ring but Lashley easily chucked him out of it. Ali jumped Lashley when he turned his attention to Rollins but Lashley dumped him out of the ring again. Lashley wondered if Ali was stupid but offered to fight.
Bobby Lashley defeated Mustafa Ali (4:20)
Ali took a Dominator and the referee offered to stop the match — two minutes into it. Ali said no. Lashley hit consecutive chokeslams but Ali wouldn’t stay down. Ali came back with a tornado DDT but Lashley turned him inside out with a spear. Lashley applied the Hurt Lock and Ali passed out.
Cathy Kelley interviewed AJ Styles, Mia Yim and the OC. Styles said he’s had enough of Judgment Day and challenged Finn Bálor to a match at Survivor Series so he can put an end to this.
Luke Gallows thought he should get credit for bringing in Yim because he was so good with the ladies. Karl Anderson called Yim the toughest woman in the room and called her “michin.” Kelley didn’t know what that meant so Yim told her it was “crazy” in Korean. She told OC to have beers ready on ice after her match. They all did the “too sweet” thing.
Mia Yim defeated Tamina (1:57)
Tamina decked Yim as the match started because she was distracted by Rhea Ripley and Dominik Mysterio sauntering down the aisle. Yim dodged a splash, hit a few strikes and hit Eat Defeat for the pinfall win.
Yim invited Ripley into the ring and Ripley teased getting in before backing off. (The crowd was quiet for the match but woke up when they thought Ripley might face off with Yim.)
Kelley asked Riddle about Elias’ whereabouts. Riddle claimed Elias was out trying to get a gig booked for them. Alpha Academy interrupted. Chad Gable thought the idea of Riddle and Elias as a team was even more ridiculous than them as a band. Otis called them a clown show. (Riddle was unbothered by Gable but was hurt that Otis insulted him.) Gable said he’d see Riddle in the ring. Riddle played his bongos.
Damage CTRL approached Yim in the back. They were impressed by her win and offered her a spot on their team at Survivor Series. Yim turned them down. IYO SKY seemed to threaten her before OC showed up. Damage CTRL backed off.
Chad Gable (w/Otis) defeated Riddle (9:47)
Riddle went to the top but Otis distracted him so Gable brought him down with a release German suplex which led to break. Riddle fought back after the break hitting an exploder, senton, powerbomb and knee strike for two.
Gable reversed a Bro Derek attempt and applied an ankle lock but Riddle got out of that and applied a triangle choke. Gable hit a Cliffhanger DDT for two and Riddle came back with a draping DDT.
Riddle set up for an RKO but was distracted by Otis. After a couple of counters, Gable applied a backslide with his feet on the ropes (with Otis holding Gable’s feet down) and picked up the pinfall win. Riddle was stunned.
JBL and Baron Corbin played poker in the back. Corbin was smoking a cigar (indoors). Some guy offered Kentucky whisky to JBL but he didn’t want anything from Kentucky and proceeded to mock the state. JBL had his own expensive whisky from Uganda.
Akira Tozawa suddenly showed up at the table and wanted to play. He said he’s never played poker and didn’t know the rules. Corbin wanted him to leave but JBL laughed and told him to stay.
Miz had Byron Saxton host the segment. Saxton had questions but Miz read from a prepared statement. Miz regretted paying Dexter Lumis. He asked for empathy because he never asked for time off in his 18 years there. He never got cheered or got a pat on the back. He offered to get Lumis back on his feet and asked for very little in return.
Saxton asked Miz why he told the private investigator a different story. Miz was just telling her what she wanted to hear so Hollywood would pick up his movie rights.
Johnny Gargano interrupted. Gargano claimed that Miz stopped paying Lumis because he got caught up in the lie. Miz wanted to know why Gargano was involved at all and claimed he just wanted to hear people chant “Johnny Wrestling.” The crowd chanted it and Gargano was happy to hear it.
Gargano called Miz a compulsive liar. They bickered about Miz’s sweater for a bit before Miz eventually said “I’m sorry” so they could finally move on. Gargano wanted Miz to pay Lumis.
Gargano spoke to WWE officials and announced that Miz would face Lumis in two weeks (presumably at Survivor Series). If Lumis wins, Miz has to pay him everything he’s owed and he’ll earn a WWE contract. Miz wanted Gargano to tell Lumis that it would be lights out for him.
Gargano said Miz could tell Lumis himself. Lumis was in disguise as a cameraman. Lumis was about to go after Miz but Miz bailed. They played Lumis’ music as the segment ended (despite Lumis not being under contract).
Earlier today, Kelley tried interviewing Shelton Benjamin but they were quickly interrupted by Dominik and Damian Priest. Dom said Benjamin has been a disappointment since his deadbeat dad and Eddie Guerrero were a team. Benjamin warned him to leave or he’d give him a beating. Priest stepped in for Dom. Priest challenged him to a match but Benjamin said he’d see Dominik in the ring. Dom was worried.
Dominik Mysterio (w/Rhea Ripley & Damian Priest) defeated Shelton Benjamin (4:57)
Dom went for a 619 but Benjamin caught him and hit a powerslam followed by a knee strike and exploder. Priest got in Benjamin’s face and Dom used the distraction to apply a schoolboy but only got a two count.
Benjamin applied an ankle lock but Ripley distracted the referee and Priest pulled Dom into a rope break. Benjamin, who has been wrestling for 22 years, turned his back on Dom to argue with Priest. Dom shoved him into the ring post before hitting a DDT and frog splash for the pinfall win.
Kelley interviewed Austin Theory about his failed cash-in. Theory said nobody understood him or the pressure he was under. He was touted to be the next big thing and he exceeded those expectations to become the face of the franchise. They hated him because they can’t relate and they wanted him to fail — but he didn’t fail last week. He felt more alive than ever.
Theory said Roman Reigns has been unstoppable and knew the Bloodline would be there if he tried to cash in. Even in his two previous cash-in attempts, he was foiled. He decided instead to go against one of the greatest champions of the past decade but Lashley stopped him.
Theory kept going until Dolph Ziggler interrupted to say, “Worst. Cash-in. Ever.” Ziggler claimed he had the best cash-in ever and said Theory was full of excuses. Theory challenged him to a match and would prove there were no excuses.
There was a War Games video and they explained the rules of the match.
Dana Brooke did an interview earlier today voicing her displeasure over Nikki Cross tossing the 24/7 title belt in the trash.
Tag Team Champion IYO SKY (w/Dakota Kai, Bayley & Nikki Cross) defeated Dana Brooke (3:18)
Brooke hit a DDT for two and tried a handspring elbow but SKY caught her and hit a German suplex. SKY followed with a running double knee strike and moonsault for the pinfall win.
— After the match, Yim entered. He informed Damage CTRL that she was joining Bianca Belair’s team at Survivor Series. Belair, Asuka and Alexa Bliss entered to pose with Yim.
Back at the poker game, Tozawa had most of the chips after winning 12 hands in a row. Corbin went all-in and claimed he had three aces but he was lying. Tozawa challenged him to a match before running off with the chips.
Theory entered without his cell phone and the announcers made a note of it. They’re trying to tell the story that the MITB briefcase was an anchor and Theory could be more dangerous now without it.
Dolph Ziggler defeated Austin Theory via disqualification (14:38)
The crowd was quiet for the first portion but got into it after a break. Ziggler applied a sleeper but Theory powered out of it before Ziggler caught him with a knee strike and fameasser for a nearfall. Theory twice drove Ziggler shoulder-first into the ring post but Ziggler returned the favour after Theory tried it again. Ziggler followed with a Zig-Zag for a close nearfall.
Ziggler set up for a superkick but Theory clocked him with a right hand and hit A-Town Down. Theory had the match won but he hit his finisher again before hammering away at Ziggler.
The ref implored Theory to stop as he launched Ziggler into the steel steps. Theory rammed Ziggler’s head into the announce table and the ref called for the bell. Theory chucked chairs at a helpless Ziggler until officials ran down to stop him. Theory walked off and acted pissed.
Damage CTRL seemed concerned in the back when they were approached by Ripley. Ripley added herself to their Survivor Series team now that Yim was on the other side and wasn’t going to take any objections. Ripley left. Damage CTRL was thrilled. (Cross was off in her own world in the background.)
Baron Corbin (w/JBL) defeated Akira Tozawa (3:34)
Tozawa was all over Corbin and hit a suicide dive but he tried another one and Corbin launched him into the barricade. Tozawa fired back and hit a shining wizard but Corbin caught him off the top rope and hit End of Days for the pinfall win.
Kelley interviewed Belair and her team. Belair said they were dangerous now but just wait until we see who their last partner was. Kelley asked who would represent their team in the singles match to determine who would have the War Games advantage. Belair wouldn’t reveal that just yet.
Gable and Otis approached Kelley as Belair and friends left. Gable bragged until Rollins appeared. Rollins was just there to sing his theme song.
Elsewhere, Saxton asked Bálor if he would accept Styles’ challenge. Bálor said “of course” he accepted. Everyone should know who he is by now and if they didn’t, just ask Edge and Rey Mysterio. He planned on becoming the US champion right now.
Seth Rollins defeated Finn Bálor to retain the United States Championship (21:12)
They went to break two minutes in after Rollins hit a dive but Bálor took control after the break when he shoved Rollins into the corner of the announce table.
Rollins fought out of an abdominal stretch and hit a suicide dive followed by a flying knee strike and clothesline for two. Bálor avoided a stomp and hit a slingblade but ran right into a Rollins superkick. Rollins went for a frog splash but Bálor countered into a cradle for a two count.
After a second commercial break, Rollins tried a powerbomb into the barricade (the move that injured Bálor in their Universal title match years back) but Bálor slipped out and dropkicked him into the barricade.
Rollins hit a sit-out powerbomb in the ring for two. Bálor hit a dropkick but Rollins cut him off and hit a superplex. Before Rollins could transition into something else, Bálor hit 1916 for two. They traded counters until Rollins hit a falcon arrow for two.
Judgment Day ran out for a distraction and Bálor used a schoolboy for two. Rollins was distracted again allowing Bálor to hit a double foot stomp.
The OC and Yim ran out to brawl with Judgment Day. Anderson and Dom ended up in the ring. Anderson wiped out Dom so Bálor clotheslined Anderson out of the ring.
As the brawl continued, Bálor hit a dropkick and went to the top. The ref was distracted by Dom so Styles tripped Bálor off the top rope.
The two teams brawled through the crowd and Rollins hit Bálor with the curb stomp for the pinfall win. Rollins retains.
— Theory attacked Rollins immediately after the match. Theory gave him A-Town Down, tossed him around ringside, hit A-Town Down again and hit him with the title belt. Theory held up the US title belt as the show ended.
(This match was really going along well until all of the interference. Styles vs. Bálor is happening at Survivor Series and it’s hard not to think about how much interference there will be, assuming it remains a singles match.)