The One Where Triple H Doesn’t Show – A Raw Recap for 1/16/17

Tonight’s raw comes to us from Little Rock, Arkansas.

“Raw sucks!” Michele exclaimed deep into the main event.

We’d got almost to the completion of the program and it was hard to even remember what happened.  It’s not that this episode was particularly bad and it wasn’t particularly good either. It was a bright, shining example of mediocrity and that itself seems like the bigger crime.

And was it really any worse than other weeks?  After watching a stellar four hours of wrestling the past two days, did Raw even have a chance this week?

Probably not.

But hey, Triple H was needed for…some reason. After he tweets making a big deal to fly from Blackpool in the U.K. in order to make Raw tonight, rampant speculation was afoot.  But nothing.

Sure, we got Brock Lesnar confronting a Roman Reigns, who in turn sounded a little cocky and heel-ly than normal.  And yes, they teased a Braun Strowman Vs Lesnar match (count me in!). And we got a Helluva kick-outta-nowhere to setup a 6 man tag main event.  Despite all that, it just seemed like a really good house show.

For everything else, I’ve got three categories: Loved it, hated it, and Meh.

Loved it:

  • Roman sounded cocky and arrogant, assuming that he’s winning the Universal Championship and winning the Royal Rumble. I don’t think he’s actually turning heel but he’s doing a good job of riding the line.
  • Also with the opening segment, they teased not only a Brock Vs Strowman match, but also a Brock Vs Zayn.  In doing so, they’ve really made it not obvious who is going to win the Rumble.
  • The Snuka memorial package was pretty great.  I feel like there’s a high chance he did kill his girlfriend in 1983. But if you strictly look at his in-ring career, it was pretty influential.

  • Speaking of video packages, they announced Kurt Angle headlining the hall of fame with a great one.  I do hope he makes a short appearance in the Rumble.

  • I liked Nia Jax attacking Sasha Banks earlier in the day while she was being evaluated in ring by medical staff.  It was a nice touch and felt real.
  • The Sheamus and Cesaro Vs The Club for the tag titles was actually a good match all the way through.  The Club wins by DQ. No titles change hands.  The Club is pissed.
  • I loved the strategizing session between Zayn, Rollins, and Reigns before their big tag match the main event that evening.  It seems they’re playing into Zayn’s shoot persona a bit.  He just can’t really shut up about something once he gets started.
  • Although I thought the main event was “Meh”, I did like the post-match action on the ramp to close the show.  The Powerbomb Owens did to Reigns was particularly brutal.
  • Neville attacking Rich Swann.  I also like that Neville attacked Tony Nease for trying to get in on the action.
  • Finally, I’m glad they didn’t manage to do something insensitive on MLK Day, like that Curb Stomp to Big E a few years ago.


  • We’re really going to do all three Titus matches against the New Day?  I guess we are.
  • I don’t think it’s Charlotte’s fault that the promo was so bad.  I feel like no one wrote anything for her and gave her 10 minutes to fill.  She was spinning her wheels for most of it.


  • Could Brock really have not worked a match tonight?  The main event would have been somewhat more interesting.
  • Everything Else

Maybe I liked more than I thought

Ok.  So maybe my “Loved” column was a lot bigger than I thought.  It still didn’t feel like anything of substance happened on this Raw, and that’s worrisome with the Rumble less than two weeks away.  I will give them props though. This is one of the most unpredictable Rumbles of recent times.