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Coming out of Survivor Series, the main talking point as Raw opened was the Main Event of the previous night’s show. While Ronda Rousey went to war with her former friend Shayna Baszler, Drew McIntyre’s shocking pinfall victory over Braun Strowman dominated discussion. After a look back at stills from Survivor Series, including one of Drew McIntyre standing tall at the end of the night, the Scotsman was unsurprisingly out to open the show.
Further putting over his victory against Braun Strowman, Drew McIntyre repeated the fact that Strowman hadn’t been pinned in well over a year before last night. McIntyre was also quick to drop in the fact that pinning the Champion is historically a fast-track ticket to challenging for their title. As McIntyre began to emphasise the impact he has had since his return to the WWE, he was cut off by Roman Reigns.
As Reigns made his way to the ring, the commentators spoke about him being pulled out of the Survivor Series match early on, as he was deemed unable to continue. Entering the ring, Roman Reigns said that while he wouldn’t be cleared for action on the night, he would be coming for Drew McIntyre as soon as he possibly could. Reigns said that when he is finished with Drew, being put through a car window will seem like child’s play. Drew McIntyre stepped up to Roman Reigns when he said this, saying that he didn’t need Reigns to be medically cleared for him to take his head off - just like to he did to Braun Strowman at Survivor Series.
Roman Reigns wouldn’t back down, and this led to the General Manager getting involved. Demanding the two men backed up, Angle had an idea he felt might suit both men.
Kurt Angle then explained that since Roman Reigns couldn’t fight tonight, Drew McIntyre would get the next best thing. Introducing McIntyre’s opponent for the night, Angle was sure that Reigns would be more than happy with his replacement for the evening… Dean Ambrose!
Also fired up from last night, albeit for different reasons, Dean Ambrose came into the match with Drew McIntyre all guns blazing. This allowed him to catch McIntyre cold, and the man who won the Main Event of Survivor Series went to the outside for a breather. Coming back into the match, Drew coped much better with Ambrose, putting his size advantage to use. Despite the competitive nature of the match, the two Superstars’ in-ring ability was undermined by the appearance of Jason Jordan on the stage.
Joined by The Authors of Pain, who returned the previous evening, Jordan looked to intentionally distract Dean Ambrose, while keeping his distance. While Ambrose managed to remain focussed on the ring, Seth Rollins (who had nothing to do with the match) couldn’t resist coming out from the back to get his hands on the self-dubbed “Golden Alpha”.
This appeared to be a set up, as the outnumbered Seth Rollins soon found himself in trouble. Despite Rollins only having himself to blame, Dean Ambrose begrudgingly left the ring, helping his friend fight off Jordan & A.O.P. This resulted in a countout victory for Drew McIntyre.
Drew McIntyre bt. Dean Ambrose (via Countout)
With Dean Ambrose fighting off into the night, along with the four other men who had interrupted the match, Drew McIntyre was left in the ring. McIntyre seemed glad the match was over, and said that with that out of the way, he could finally finish what he was saying earlier. Looking down the camera, addressing the Universal Champion, Drew McIntyre told Braun Strowman that he could either name him the Number One Contender right away… or he’ll play him a visit later in the night!
Returning from the break, an interview with Ember Moon was shown. This came after the commentators hyped up the fact that just 24 hours after beating Sasha Banks, Nia Jax had agreed to defend the Raw Women’s Championship against Ember Moon.
Speaking highly of Nia Jax, Ember Moon talked about the opportunity she would get later in the evening, challenging for the Championship for the first time ever. Despite her optimism, Ember Moon was brought back down to earth by Shayna Baszler.
Looking to intimidate the woman who would face Nia Jax in the night’s Main Event, Baszler told Moon that she stood no chance of walking out as the Raw Women’s Champion. Shayna also added that since “The Queen of Spades” arrived on the scene, Ember should give up her hopes of ever holding the title.
Returning to the ring, Elias was set up for his usual performance. As ever, he was joined by his biggest fans, Bo Dallas & Curtis Axel.
Singing a song in response to Matt Hardy’s open invitation for him to come to the “Hardy Compound”, Elias made it clear that he was willing to make the trip to North Carolina. Not only did the song accept the challenge to face Bray Wyatt at the “Compound”, but when the music stopped, Elias said that he’d see Wyatt next week!
Prior to making his return to singles competition on Raw, Rey Mysterio was seen talking in the back to Finn Balor. The two have grown close since Mysterio returned to Raw, but the former WWE Champion had to go it alone on the night. Managing pretty well, and looking “arguably better than ever”, Rey Mysterio was able to pick up a victory over Dolph Ziggler. Hitting his opponent with a 6-1-9, Mysterio’s successful return continued, with a win in his first singles match back!
Rey Mysterio bt. Dolph Ziggler
WWE Raw - November 19th 2018 - Live on the USA Network!
Returning to Raw for the second hour, Kurt Angle was seen talking to Drake Maverick. As Kurt Angle made a light-hearted jibe about his team beating Drake’s at Survivor Series, the mood took a turn for the worse as Drew McIntyre entered the office.
Drew McIntyre had a simple demand, telling Kurt Angle to name him the Number One Contender to the WWE Universal Championship. Kurt Angle said that it had been less than 24 hours since Survivor Series, and he wanted to hear from Braun Strowman before making any decisions. McIntyre wasn’t happy with this, and Drake Maverick (still salty about Kurt’s joke) stoked the flames. Kurt Angle told Drew McIntyre to sit tight, but he clearly wasn’t impressed with how the General Manager had dealt with the situation.
Looking back to the opening match of the night, the commentators recapped Golden Alpha’s involvement with Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins. They also talked about The Authors of Pain’s return at Survivor Series, where they screwed over Ambrose & Rollins, ensuring Jason Jordan retained the Intercontinental Championship. Seth Rollins was then interviewed about this, where he said that Kurt Angle had told him to find two guys to team with against the trio tonight. Of course, both Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns were out of the question, as established earlier on.
A little bit later in the evening, Chad Gable and Finn Balor met up in the Locker Room, having been called there by Seth Rollins. The reason for this was fairly straight-forward, and the two were happy to join him against Golden Alpha!
Cutting a promo before her match, a focussed Shayna Baszler ran down the rest of the Raw Women’s division, guaranteeing that she would be the next Champion as soon as she got her shot at Nia Jax.
Shayna Baszler then dominated a local talent, making her pass out to a Rear Naked Choke in efficient manner. During the match, it was revealed that Ronda Rousey was not at the building, as a result of media duties following Survivor Series. Following the match, Shayna Baszler continued to toy with her beaten opponent, until Ronda Rousey appeared on the screen.
Ronda Rousey was clearly annoyed, and sounded furious about the result of the Survivor Series Main Event. Rousey said that especially after last night, she would do anything she possibly could to make it to Raw, but confirmed she wouldn’t be able to make it. Ronda wasn’t done with Shayna however, saying that as soon as she was able to return to the show… she’d be coming right for her former friend!
Before the match, a promo from “earlier today” was shown, as Randy Orton spoke about his desire to face Bobby Lashley. Having been beaten by him the previous week, before pinning him at Survivor Series, Orton made it clear he wanted another match against Bobby Lashley. His opponent for the night would instead be Sami Zayn, who was joined by Kevin Owens at ringside. Prior to the contest beginning, Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens cut a promo, talking about Orton’s desire to face Lashley. Zayn said that Orton’s lack of focus would cost him, as it had Finn Balor when he pinned him at Survivor Series.
Sami Zayn’s doubts about Randy Orton’s focus proved to be unfounded, as “The Viper” managed to score a victory over his opponent. Despite Kevin Owens’ attempts to get involved, an RKO was enough for Orton to pick up the win.
Randy Orton bt. Sami Zayn
As the match ended, Randy Orton’s celebrations were almost immediately cut short, as Bobby Lashley made his way down to the ring undetected.
Having celebrated on the second rope, Orton turned directly into a Spear from “The Destroyer”. Refusing to answer the challenge Orton laid down, Bobby Lashley was gone as soon as he’d arrived.
Regrouping on the outside, Kevin Owens suggested to Sami Zayn that they pick the bones of Randy Orton. Approaching the ring, Kevin Owens soon realised that Zayn wasn’t following him. Instead of joining in Owens’ plan, Sami Zayn headed up the ramp, pissed off at being pinned for the second time in two nights.
Returning for the final part of the second hour of Raw, the commentators looked back at Drew McIntyre’s challenge to the Universal Champion earlier in the night. Having made his intentions perfectly clear, the commentators put over the fact that Braun Strowman would address his loss last night, and the challenge of Drew McIntyre. Following the recap, the WWE Universal Champion made his way to the ring.
Taking a microphone, Braun Strowman made it clear that he had no excuses for what happened last night. Strowman said that Drew McIntyre saw his opportunity and he took it, Braun had no issue with that. Braun Strowman admitted that he wasn’t used to saying it, but last night he was beaten!
But that doesn’t mean that Drew McIntyre is better than him, and Braun Strowman was clear that he was more than willing to face him again to prove it. Strowman said that after what happened at Survivor Series, Drew McIntyre has every reason to believe that he deserved a shot at the Universal Championship, but Braun wanted to hear it from the man himself. Wasting no time, Drew McIntyre made his way to the ring.
Rubbing in the fact that he pinned Braun Strowman in the Main Event of Survivor Series, Drew McIntyre said that there could be no question that he was next in line for a shot at the Universal title! Drew McIntyre added that until Braun Strowman defended that title against him, there was no way he (or the WWE Universe) could look at him as a legitimate Champion. Braun Strowman didn’t like McIntyre’s suggestion, having prided himself on being a Champion for the WWE Universe. Looking to further get under the skin of Strowman, Drew McIntyre once again put his hand on the WWE Universal Championship that was draped across his shoulder. With the no contact clause no longer in effected, Braun Strowman had no reason to hold back.
Strowman explained that he would be willing to fight Drew McIntyre at any time, and under any circumstances, but wondered why they would wait at all. Pushing Drew McIntyre with both hands, Braun said “I’ll fight you Drew… I’ll fight you right now!”
Moments after he said this, a huge brawl broke out between the two in the middle of the ring. Throwing punches at each other, after Strowman laid the Universal Championship to one side, it was clear that the title was the furthest thing from either man’s mind. The issue had clearly become personal, and the two men continued to fight each other, leading them out of the ring. As the brawl got dangerously close to the WWE Universe in attendance, security swarmed the ringside area, eventually managing to come between them. While the two men could probably have fought through the security, it appeared both were content to stay back. As Drew McIntyre backed up the ramp, the second hour of Raw ended with Braun Strowman staring down the man who pinned him at Survivor Series.
WWE Raw - November 19th 2018 - Live on the USA Network!
Following a recap of the chaos that ended the previous hour, Nia Jax was interviewed about the Main Event. Nia Jax spoke about her decision to defend the Championship for the second time in two nights. Jax said that she felt both Sasha Banks and Ember Moon deserved shots at the title, adding that she was proud to be a fighting Champion. Throwing Sasha Banks’ claim that Nia Jax’s title reign had been a failure back in her face, Nia Jax hoped for more of a challenge from tonight’s Raw Women’s Championship match.
Put together fairly late in the game, the team that was constructed to face Golden Alpha clearly had less of an understanding than their counterparts. While the three Superstars managed to put up a good challenge to Golden Alpha, the dominant Authors of Pain were able to put a stop to most of their momentum. Seth Rollins led his team well, but after Finn Balor had suffered at the hands of Golden Alpha, he only had Chad Gable for back up.
Trying to fight back against Golden Alpha alone, Seth Rollins found himself in trouble. When Jason Jordan left the ring, running away from the former Intercontinental Champion, his path was blocked by The Authors of Pain. This resulted in Akam & Rezar dropping him. Left with no choice but to bring Chad Gable in, the plucky underdog desperately tried to fight back against all three members of Golden Alpha. But they were just too well drilled. Throwing Finn Balor into the Steel Steps, before rolling him into the ring, The Authors of Pain ensured Seth Rollins was down and out by hitting a “Last Chapter” to him on the outside.
Returning to the ring, The Authors of Pain set up for a Super Collider, hitting back to back Powerbombs to Chad Gable and Finn Balor. With Chad still the legal man, Jason Jordan tagged himself in, pinning his former partner yet again.
Golden Alpha bt. Chad Gable, Finn Balor & Seth Rollins
Proud of The Authors of Pain, and thankful they let him take the decisive fall, Jason Jordan said that Akam & Rezar’s return makes him the most dangerous Superstar in the WWE. But something was missing, and since the Tag Team Championships were now dual branded, Jordan made The Authors of Pain’s intention clear. They wanted Rusev Day… and they wanted the WWE Tag Team Championships!
Segueing from this to the other WWE Tag Team Championships, the commentators put over Alexa Bliss and Mickie James’ part in the first ever WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships match at Survivor Series. While Asuka & Charlotte took the titles to Smackdown Live, the broadcast team still put over the achievement, and the history made at Survivor Series.
Returning to the in-ring action, The Revival scored a victory over the team of Apollo Crews & Titus O’Neil. Joined by Dana Brooke and Bobby Roode after the match, The Revival made it clear that they considered the rivalry with Titus Worldwide to be over…
Following that match, Braun Strowman was interviewed in the back, asked about the brawl which took place earlier in the night. As Braun Strowman made it clear that he was just as desperate for the match with Drew McIntyre as McIntyre himself, he was cut off by Baron Corbin.
Looking to keep the attention of the WWE Universal Champion, Baron Corbin told Strowman not to look too far into the future, because Baron wasn’t done with him. The fired up and pissed off Braun Strowman wasn’t having any of it however, dropping Corbin with a single punch. The Universal Champion then looked down at “The Lone Wolf”, shaking his head at him before leaving the interview area.
Raw Women’s Championship Match
Just before the Main Event, the Champion and Challenger were put over, with commentators suggesting that as far as week in, week out competition goes, Ember Moon and Nia Jax have been two of Raw’s most consistent Superstars of 2018. Once the match was underway, the two Superstars who share a mutual respect were all about the competition. Holding the Championship since WrestleMania, the dominant Nia Jax quickly took control of the match, looking to beat Ember in her trademark dominant style. Unlike most competitors, Nia Jax wasn’t able to steamroll Ember Moon, who impressed the Champion in their first meeting.
Not only did Ember Moon show great resilience in dealing with Nia Jax, she eventually began mounting a credible challenge for the title. While an initial attempt at an Eclipse saw her caught in mid-air and flattened, Ember Moon didn’t give up. Knowing that one move was all she needed to win the title, Ember fought back again, somehow finding herself in a position to go for the Eclipse a second time. As a determined Ember Moon climbed to the top rope, waiting for Nia Jax to resurface, Shayna Baszler appeared from nowhere.
Climbing onto the apron, Shayna pushed Moon off the top rope, straight into the canvas. The outside interference forced the referee to call for the bell.
Ember Moon bt. Nia Jax (c) (via Disqualification; Nia Jax retains)
Entering the ring after the bell, Shayna Baszler dragged Ember Moon back to her feet. Furious at “The Queen of Spades”, Ember Moon tried to fight back, but the match she’d just been through had taken too much out of her. Because of this, Baszler was easily able to manhandle Moon, locking in the increasingly feared Rear Naked Choke. Quickly Ember Moon faded, and as Nia Jax returned to her feet, Shayna threw the challenger to the ground. Having ruined the Main Event of the evening, Shayna Baszler went face to face with the Raw Women’s Champion. Facing off for the first time, Nia Jax knew exactly what Shayna Baszler wanted. Leaving the ring, as Raw went off the air, Shayna Baszler signalled that she was coming for the title - looking to end the 7 month reign of Nia Jax!
Drew McIntyre bt. Dean Ambrose (Countout)
Rey Mysterio bt. Dolph Ziggler
Shayna Baszler bt. Bea Brunzell
Randy Orton bt. Sami Zayn
Golden Alpha (Jason Jordan & The Authors of Pain) bt. Chad Gable, Finn Balor & Seth Rollins
The Revival bt. Titus Worldwide’s Apollo Crews & Titus O’Neil
Ember Moon bt. Nia Jax (c) (D.Q) [Raw Women’s Championship]