Strowman’s revenge –  A Raw recap for 12/26/2016

Tonight’s Raw comes to us from the Allstate Arena in Chicago, Illinois.  So cue up the “C.M. Punk” chants and Colt Cabana heads.  Sure, I’ll contribute too.  Here’s Colt with some dude named Kevin Steen.

Punk and Cabana

That brings me to my first point.  They were ready for them with Steph staring the show.  “Keep that up for another 2:50 and you’ll last longer than Punk did.” she said to shutdown the first instance of the chant.

When Roman and Seth come out wanting a piece of Braun Strowman after the beatdown they received last week to control the show.  Steph and the crowd get really excited about a Shield reunion with Ambrose being “in the area.”  But it’s all another trick to control the crowd and control the show.  There’s no Shield reunion happening tonight.

Great call on having Steph start the show.  She knows how to work Chicago.

Neville and the Cruiserweights

Chicago was really into the Neville Vs. TJP match.  Neville has brought the interest level of the Cruiserweights up the the level it needs to be sustainable.  You’ve got some great talent in the devision, but so many have no connection to any of the wrestlers.  Bringing in the Man that Gravity Forgot and turning him heel is exactly what was needed.  I love The Brian Kendrick but he needed a little bit more help.

The match was great with Neville blocking the knee bar and rolling up TJP while kneeling on his head.  What was even better was the promo he cut afterwards.  He addressed all the issues the we’ve heard about his placement in the company.  His face is weird, American TV audiences don’t like his accent, etc.  Of course, some of these complaints are reportedly from VKM himself.  It was cathartic to hear though.

Later on, Rich Swann soundly defeats Davairi.  He accepts Neville’s challenge and gets attacked by Neville from behind and takes a Red Arrow to the back.

Total Nonstop Strowman

As a condition to getting his Last Man Standing match next week, Strowman is ordered to imagine Rollins as Zayn in his match this evening.  Seth gets in some good early offense, but quickly finds he’s no match for the destruction of Braun.

Zayn comes out of nowhere and attacks Braun, sending him into the ring post multiple times.  Zayn retreats to the crowd, Strowman follows and shoulder checks a fan in the process.   I’d post a gif of it but WWE legal is pretty quick pulling down any gifs that popup.  I’m assuming that guy is getting a title belt and front row seats (or maybe box seats for safety reasons) the next time they’re in Chicago.

After Braun and Zayn leave, Jericho shows up to give a beaten Rollins two Codebreakers.

Everything Else

The main event was Roman Vs. Owens for the US Championship.  This would get it’s own section if Kevin won.  It was a fine match but, like the Charlotte/Bayley segement a couple of bullet points down, doesn’t do a lot to advance the story, really.

New Day loses their rematch after taking after Xavier takes a particularly stiff looking Brogue Kick while going for the Honor Roll on Cesaro.  It was a great match to kickoff the show.

– I feel kind of bad putting the Charlotte/Bayley segment in the “Everything Else” category but there wasn’t a lot to it, just moving along the story to another week.  Chalotte points out that her shoulder was up before the 3-count in the previous week’s bout, which the ref failed to notice when declaring Bayley as a winner.  Charlotte gets a rematch with Dana Brooke as the guest referee.  Bayley dispatches Dana and gets in some offense on The Queen, but it’s short lived as Dana delivers a 3-count for Charlotte for the win.

– Nia Jax squashes a Sasha Banks fan/local talent wrestler.

– Braun interrupts a Bo Dallas and Darren Young Vs. The Shinning Stars to obliterate both teams.  Chicago were chanting Strowman like he was Goldberg.

– Speaking of Goldberg, he’ll be on next week.

– Jack Gallagher challenges Davairi to a duel by slapping him across the face with a glove?  What?  I love it but…what?