Third Times a Charm, Maybe – A Raw Recap for 11/28/2016

Tonight’s Raw comes to us from Flair Country, otherwise known as Charlotte, NC.

Man, last week was a great week of wrestling with Takeover, Survivor Series, Raw, and SmackDown Live.  But I was a little burned out.  Add to that some jetlag and some anxiety about how I was making money for December and it was a recipe for a little time off.  It’s always going to be a little hard after Big 4 weeks.

I’m refreshed and writing this recap before work for an above average episode of Raw, so I’d say that things are going pretty well.

Roman Reigns Flirts with the Universal Title Picture

We kick off with the Highlight Reel to break down the Universal Title Match between Rollins and Owens.  Jericho reveals that it wasn’t him in a Sin Cara mask but in fact Sin Cara in a Chris Jericho mask.  Like, what?  Owens joins him and so does Reigns.  Supposedly Rollins is not at Raw this week.  Somehow, Reigns seeds the beginning of the end of the best friendship while getting a opportunity to become #1 contender if he beats Kevin later that night.

On a side note, I’ll never understand getting a #1 contendership by actually beating the champion.  How about beating Jericho instead?  That would be a logical beginning of the end of the friendship when Jericho falls to the Superman Punch.

But you may ask yourself, Rollins really isn’t absent is he?  You’d be right.  As Jericho attempts to leave in his limo, Rollins attacks him and delivers a Pedigree on the top of the car of Jericho, keeping him from interfering in Roman’s match later.

The Owens Vs. Reigns match was very good.  I can’t really put my finger on why.  I know we’ve seen them fight before, but there was a good energy to it.  They kept the crowd engaged the whole time, even during the 2 and a half minute headlock sequence (I counted).  Reigns seals the deal and will get a title show in three weeks at Road Block.

Sasha Vs. Charlotte XXXIV

I’m kidding about the number but it kind of feels like it.  In fact, we had two matches with the Queen and the Boss.  Earlier in the show, they met for their title shot but it ended in Double Count Out.  Foley wasn’t satisfied in his slightly creepy uncle way, and scheduled a No DQ, no count-outs, falls count anywhere match for the pair in the main event of the show.

Is it just me or do they always try to beat SmackDown to stipulations?  Carmella and Nicki are meeting in a No DQ match this weekend just has to be out done by this match.  It’s moments like these that make me believe that maybe Raw and Smackdown are run by two different people.

As for the match itself, I’ll let Lance Storm take it away:

The beginning of the match looked a little sloppy, but all of their matches do at some point.  My theory is that Sasha always wants to take it to a point where it looks like a real fight and work a little too tight.  In the end, it looks sloppy and unintentional, but I think it is intentional.  It just doesn’t play like that on TV.

As promised, the Falls Count Anywhere Match does go everywhere:

Did I mention that this match is taking place in Charlotte, the Queen’s hometown?  Did I also mention this is WWE where rarely anyone wins in front of their home crowd?  Again, I go to Lance Storm:

The Queen taps to a Banks Statement on the guardrails after a well fought match.  Sasha basically falls into a dude’s lap and celebrates her win.  The guy can’t believe that it’s happening.  He bought the craziest seats ever.

For some reason, because it’s Charlotte, Naitch is there and raises Sasha’s hand while Charlotte looks on, crying:

Ric Flair raises Sasha's hand

These matches are great…but Raw really does need to learn to tell more than one women’s story at a time.  SmackDown proves that it’s possible with less TV time.  You can make it count if you use the time right.

I do love this feud, but they also need to mix it up.  Have Sasha fight Emmalina or somebody.  What’s happening with Bayley now after her and Charlotte were the sole survivors?  Shouldn’t it have been Bayley with that title shot tonight?  Is Charlotte going to maintain her PPV win streak and just win the title back at Roadblock?  Is it devaluing the title to switch it back so many times?

Everything Else

  • Braun Strowman crushes R-Truth.  Goldie tries to defend him and Sami comes out to help.  Mick and a bunch of officials stop all the action and gets mad at Sami again.  He gets so angry that his dental flipper falls out.  A weird segment overall.
  • Sheamus and Cesaro, free of being forced into a tag team, defend each other in a bar fight with a bunch of local talent who are all terrible actors.  Another bizarre segment but I approve a willing tag team of the two lads.
  • Rusev kicks Enzo in the balls for exposing himself last week and making lewd Thanksgiving-related remarks about Lana.
  • The New Day retained against the Club after grabbing a handful of tights.  At this point, they better go full-blown heel to lose these titles.
  • Probably other stuff happened too, but it’s not important.  So here’s a gif of Ric Flair from an episode of Baywatch.