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WWE Raw live results 11-23: Survivor Series Fallout

The Big Takeaway: 

Sheamus faces Roman Reigns in a TLC match at the TLC PPV. Since Seth Rollins is on the shelf, the overriding buildup of HHH vs. Rollins has now turned into HHH vs. Reigns, as that was the tease during the 20 minute opening segment. A long show and a cold one, though Reigns got a good response. 

Show Recap: 

Superstars matches:

R-Truth beat Adam Rose
The Miz beat Zack Ryder

Raw will be returning to the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville on 2/29.

Tickets are on sale now at ticketmaster with the code word TICKETS.HHH and Stephanie McMahon are first out, which is one hell of a way to get the new champion over. HHH said he gave Roman Reigns an opporutnity of a lifetime several times, but Reignss told him to shove it. HHH introduced Sheamus as a man who knew how to seize an opportunity. 

So out came the James Hetfield look-a-like who dropped 9 of his previous 10 matches before he beat Reigns last night. He got some good heat. Sheamus said Reigns' "Roman Empire" lasted only a few minutes. Sheamus mentioned how Reigns cried at the end of the match. If they want to get Reigns over as a babyface that fans won't boo, I think they need to obscure that part of history ASAP.

This brought out Reigns, who got "Roman" chants. Reigns said he wanted his rematch tonight, which got "Yes" chants. Stephanie stepped in front of HHH and said any chance Roman had to dictate terms to them was lost when Reigns speared HHH. Roman asked HHH if Stephanie was standing in front of him because he was scared.

What followed was exactly why WWE finds themselves in the predicament they're in. HHH and Reigns had a long staredown while the new champion was just a background piece. It was supposed to get monster dual chants going, but it got a mild reaction. So with Rollins out of the picture, it's going to be HHH vs. Reigns at some point down the line until Vince changes his mind again. HHH said Reigns wasn't getting his rematch tonight. At that point, Rusev ran out of the crowd and hit Regins with a thrust kick. Sheamus followed up with a Brogue Kick.

As the heels retreated up the ramp, HHH announced that Reigns would face Shemaus in a TLC match at the TLC PPV. Stephanie ordered Reigns to face Rusev tonight.  

Luke Harper and Bray Wyatt defeated the Dudley Boyz (7:49)

Luke Harper pinned Bubba Ray Dudley after a clothesline. Bubba looked like a geek at the finish, because he got distracted by Bray who...was standing on the apron. Then he got pinned with a transitional move. Braun Strowman came in afterwards and gave Bubba the Head-and-Arm Choke, which Michael Cole is now calling a bearhug. Wyatt left Devon Dudley laying with Sister Abigail. Wyatt in a tag team ruins his aura, but not any more than his two programs with the Undertaker. 

They continue to run the 25 years of Undertaker vignette, which ran twice last night. 

Sasha Banks defeated Becky Lynch (4:06) 

Becky Lynch didn't even get a ring entrance. Lynch got the Disarm-her, but Tamina took the referee while Naomi pulled Sasha Banks to the ropes. Lynch went after Naomi, allowing Banks to get the pin with a schoolgirl cradle. 2 distraction finishes in 2 matches. Banks is a star on NXT. On the modern day Raw roster, she gets McMahoned/Dunned. (That's a good name for a heel tag team, BTW) Same applies to Lynch. 

Cole built up Banks as a future contender when Paige appeared on the big screen to shout him down. Paige claimed that Charlotte cheated to win last night at Survivor Series because when Charlotte applied the Figure Eight, her hand was under the ropes. Paige claimed Charlotte was just like her father, the dirtiest player in the game. 

They showed the trailer for "Santa's Little Helper," starring the Miz. I'd like to remind everyone Mystery Science Theater 3000 is launching a campaign to return to TV. 

The New Day came out to celebrate its 1st birthday. They came out with stick rocking horses and toy cowboy hats. Big E. got the DieHard "Yipee Ki Ay." Kofi Kingston talked about how country music sucks, which actually got a pop. Kofi and Big E. sang with the thickest twang they could about losing dogs, girlfriends, and tractors while Xavier Woods played the trombone, then sang "Mamas Don't Like Your Babies Grow up to be Bootee." Woods has a great voice. He issued an open challenge for the WWE World Tag Team championship. Lucha Dragons came out. 

Kalisto spoke about being serious about facing the tag champs. Sin Cara, for the first time I can recall, talked and wished them a happy birthday. 

New Day started to leave when the Usos came out to stop them. Sin Cara told the Usos they were out there first and suggested a triple threat match. Big E. got mad at them for ruining their jamboree. Woods said the open challenge had been canceled. So Jey Uso decked Woods. The Usos gave Kingston a double superkick while Big E. was sent over the top rope. Rare New Day segment that died after the first few minutes. 

Renee Young did an interview with Charlotte and she built up her match with Paige later tonight, which really made me glad I missed their match last night since it's now rendered meaningless. Of course, the company rendered their own world title tournament they had built for 3 weeks meaningless last night in about 2 minutes, so we've got a theme going. 

Neville defeated Mark Henry (2:25) 

This one did one no one any favors. Mark Henry gave Neville a Beal from the corner, then acted like he didn't want to hurt Neville as he rolled out of the ring. So Henry distracted himself and didn't see Neville get in the ring. Neville hit a kick to the head, Henry sold it like he was dead and Neville got the pin with the Red Arrow. Cole called it a huge upset. Hasn't Henry done nothing but jobs for months? Henry met Neville and shook his hand afterwards. So Neville was the only babyface eliminated in the Survivor Series match last night, and won tonight. 3 segments in a row that made last night meaningless. 

Stardust was backstage in his liar going crazy about Cesaro being out when Titus O'Neal showed up. O'Neal mentioned taking a wrong turn, then noticed a titanium figure in Stardust's room. Titus claimed it was in the shape of the Florida Gators. When Stardust looked, Titus did his dog bark to scare Stardust. Something about seeing Titus taking a wrong turn was amusing. 

The Prime Time Players and Golddust defeated The Ascension and Stardust (6:11) 

O'Neal pinned Viktor after a Spinebuster. Darren Young got the heat. It was OK. 

Zeb Coulter and Alberto Del Rio came out. Coulter ripped the crowd saying the borders of MexAmerica were now closed because people weren't listening to their message. People tend to do that with dead gimmicks. Jack Swagger returned saying Coulter had turned his back on the people and his country. He said Coulter used to stand for something. Yeah, xenophobia. He didn't mention that part. 

Del Rio shouted him down. Swagger promised to defend his country against all doubters, foreign and domestic. He dared Del Rio to do something about it. They had a staredown. Del Rio held up the U.S. title and walked out to boos. Swagger led the people in a "We the People" chant. 

Charlotte (C) and Paige went to a double countout (14:56). Charlotte retains the Divas Championship. 

They exchanged holds for most of what aired. Paige tripped Charlotte off the second rope with her head hitting the back of the turnbuckles. Paige used various leglocks and a Bow and Arrow. Unfortunately, Charlotte didn't sell her leg as much as she should have. Charlotte speared Paige through the ropes, leading to a double countout, a finish the crowd booed. That didn't help matters since the fans were dead for most of the night. Afterwards, Paige continued her gimmick of doing submission holds on the announcer's table by giving Charlotte the PTO. If Cole could explain what difference it makes when Paige does the PTO on the announcer's table, I'd really appreciate it. Charlotte has great facials selling submissions, showing the apple didn't fall far from the tree. 

Heath Slater came out. Swagger. Slater. It's like the Witness Relocation Program all-stars came out in full force tonight. He ran down Dirks Bentley, Johnny Cash and teased singing. Ryback came out to total silence. Slater busted his guitar over Ryback's back, but Ryback didn't sell out. Crowd did start a "Feed Me More" chant as Ryback gave Slater a spinebuster, Meat Hook Clothesline and the Shellshock. Same segment you've seen 100 times with Slater, which I guess is better than getting released. 

Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler defeated Tyler Breeze and Kevin Owens (5:27) 

Dean Ambrose pinned Tyler Breeze with Dirty Deeds. Already, Breeze is in the 50/50 club. None of these men got a ring entrance. So much of Breeze's routine is the entrance. How can you not fit that in on a 3:15 show? Fortunately, they made up for it with Breeze and Kevin Owens doing the tag partners who don't get along gimmick, which got old in TNA around 2006. Dean Ambrose hit a tope where Breeze tookd a nasty fall. Looks like they're setting up Owens vs. Ambrose for the Intercontinental championship. 

Cute product placement for Tex/Mex Chicken Sandwiches at Carl Jr's./Hardees with JBL, El Torito and Henry. It showed Torito coming out in JBL's gear getting a huge pop from a crowd that was edited to look live. This was a trip. An acid trip. 

As Sheamus came out for the main event, they showed a tweet from Notre Dame football coach Brian Kelly congratulating him. That's apropos, because one person has backdoored into a championship opportunity they had no business getting. And the other person was Sheamus. 

Roman Reigns defeated Rusev by DQ (18:46) 

Sheamus interfered freely, which led to him being sent to the back. Rusev pulled off a cool spin kick that caught Reigns across the forehead. Reigns escaped an Accolade attempt and hit a Superman's punch, but Rusev kicked out. Reigns gave the sign for the spear, but Rusv rolled out of the ring. Reigns teased the Drive By, but Rusev hit the thrust kick. Rusev repeatedly rammed Reigns' head into the table, but again, Reigns barely sold it. Reigns hit a Superman's Punch while Rusev was on the apron, and Rusev took the Nestle Tea bump on the floor. Reigns caught the Drive By. King Barrett ran out, for some reason, to attack Reigns for the DQ. Both men really worked hard and it was the best match of the night with a bad finish. 

Barrett pulled out a chair. Rusev teased hitting him with it, but Reigns got it and hit Rusev with it repeatedly. Sheamus ran down, only to take a chair shot to the back. They teased Rusev, Barrett and Sheamus as a new heel trio. 

SUMMARY: 

There's little hope for this company to build a new star if they keep going back to 1999 in order to find big matches. With HHH as the de facto top heel, that makes Sheamus look like his understudy. In other words, they learned nothing from how poorly Rollins was booked. This show had too many bad finishes and the crowd was lifeless most of the way.