The Manchester crowd were gifted a huge episode of Raw that saw the Raw Debut of WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne and new Raw Tag Team Champions crowned. The Raw Survivor Series teams continued to be filled, Braun Strowman finally got his hands on The Miz, Finn Balor took on Samoa Joe, and the seeds were planted for a huge 6-man tag team match between The Shield & The New Day.
Miz TV with Kurt Angle. Grade: A- The Miz blasted his Survivor Series opponent Baron Corbin on the mic providing the (television) build that their feud has been lacking in recent weeks. Miz then turned his attention to General Manager Kurt Angle accusing him of setting up Kane’s attack on Daniel Bryan the week before, to which Angle responded by booking Miz in a match with Braun Strowman later in the night. A great opening segment showing exactly why Miz is one of the very best on the microphone at the moment.
Jason Jordan defeated Elias in a Guitar on a Pole Match. Grade: C- I’m all for fun stipulations but there is hardly anything more ridiculous than a Guitar on a Pole match. Elias has genuine, legitimate heat and instead of using that he is being booked to lose to the talent but incredibly flat Jason Jordan. There was little to care about here and the Manchester crowd made that known.
After the match Jason Jordan is added to Kurt Angles Raw Survivor Series team. While Jordan is by far the lessor name on the team, hopefully this provides some progress to the whole Kurt Angles son story.
Asuka defeated Stacy Coates. Grade: A- Another complete squash match for Asuka and these are exactly what is needed for her right now. Her addition to the Raw Women’s Survivor Series team is interesting, given that she surely can’t lose it almost guarantees a Raw victory. It would be disappointing to see her undefeated streak end in a 5v5 Survivor Series match.
Samoa Joe destroys Titus O’Neil before the match can start. Grade: A+ Samoa Joe straight killed Titus before the match could start; making Joe back into the absolute monster he should be and was quickly becoming in his feud with Brock Lesnar is a necessity and these recent beatings of two lower-card guys in Titus & Apollo Crews achieves this well. After the match Joe was fire on the microphone and issued a challenge to anyone in the locker room.
Finn Balor vs Samoa Joe ends in a Double Count-Out. Grade: A- These two stars out on a great competitive match, but still kept plenty in the tank for future bouts. This feud could carry the show for the next few months leading as far as the Royal Rumble in January. They have a great history from back in NXT that the commentators established. Kurt Angle added both men to his Raw Survivor Series team which should make for some interesting viewing to see how these two get along as teammates.
Sasha Banks & Bayley defeated Alicia Fox & Nia Jax. Grade: C- The match was oaky but is nothing we haven’t really seen before and nothing out of the ordinary. Alicia Fox as captain should look better than she did coming out of this match, Nia Jax is just stumbling around clearly destined for far bigger things than it seems WWE have planned for her. The crowd was red hot for Bayley and despite this WWE still choose to give the fall to Sasha Banks over Alicia Fox in the same way they have done so many times before. Adding Sasha to the Survivor Series team but not Bayley adds into her underdog story well, but it will be hard to find a crowd hotter for Bayley than Manchester was.
Raw Women’s Champion cut a good backstage interview on Survivor Series & her opponent Natalya.
Braun Strowman defeated The Miz by Disqualification due to interference from Kane. Grade: B. Miz tried to avoid Strowman to start but once The Monster Among Men got his hands on the Intercontinental Champion he proceeded to batter him all around the ring. Strowman destroyed both Bo Dallas & Curtis Axel at ringside before Kane interfered and caused the DQ. Strowman hit Kane with a Running Powerslam but Kane sat up in a cool spot. Strowman cleared the ring and stood tall to end the segment. An effective way to have Strowman crush the Miz while extending the Kane & Strowman feud.
Pete Dunne defeated Enzo Amore. Grade: C+ Enzo cut a longwinded promo saying much the same he has said before; the highlight here was Corey Graves on commentary threatening to take a nap. Kalisto interrupted before WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne made his Raw Debut to a thunderous Manchester ovation. The match was ridiculous, with Dunne starting hot but Enzo controlling the middle of the match for reasons I cannot explain. Dunne got the win but only with the help of Kalisto. Pete Dunne debuting was incredible, but putting Dunne on the same level as Enzo & Kalisto is beyond ridiculous.
Cesaro & Sheamus defeated Seth Rollins & Dean Ambrose to win the Raw Tag Team Championship. Grade: A+ Every single time these two teams wrestle each other they put on an unbelievable match, this was no different. These four men totally stole the show with an incredible match, before the New Day’s music hit. The New Day came through the crowd, just like the Shield does, looking like they were about to put Raw under siege again Kurt Angel brought his entire Raw locker room out ready to fight back against Smackdown; New Day “Pump Faked” and left but the distraction allowed Sheamus to get the win for his team. While we lose the Usos vs Rollins & Ambrose match at Survivor Series, Cesaro & Sheamus vs the Usos should be just as good, and with Roman Reigns announced to return to Raw next week; while it may be too rushed to do it at Survivor Series, is there anything you want to see more than The Shield vs The New Day.