The post-Survivor Series Raw saw a series of changes sweep across the Monday Night landscape as Roman Reigns became a Grand Slam Champion claiming his first Intercontinental Championship defeating the Miz in a fantastic Main Event. The Women’s Division was shaken up as Paige made her return and brought with her two NXT stars in Mandy Rose & Sonya Deville.
Stephanie McMahon, Triple H & Kurt Angle Promo. Grade: B- Kurt Angle, Stephanie McMahon and Triple H, my god what year is it. While fairly standard, this did well to establish the fact that both Kurt Angle & Braun Strowman are coming after Triple H, and who doesn’t want to see those matches. The fact that Angle told HHH & Steph that they can shove their job is interesting.
Samoa Joe defeated Finn Balor. Grade: B+ This was just a really good match, no interference or distractions needed to extend the feud here, just a good win for the heel looking dangerous choking Balor out while Balor looks tough by refusing to tap out. This feud is building nicely and should be a highlight of Raw moving forward.
Asuka defeated Dana Brooke. Grade: B+ Dana cut a cocky arrogant pre-taped promo before the match and Asuka made her pay for it; Asuka crushed Dana as she continues to tear through the division.
Miz TV with The Shield. Grade: B. Miz brushed off his loss to Baron Corbin at Survivor Series like it was nothing which while it helps the Miz, does nothing in putting over Corbin’s victory. Rollins announced that he and Ambrose were going back after the Tag Titles, and so Roman set his sights on the Intercontinental Championship. A fairly standard Miz TV that achieved its goal in setting up the title match for later in the night.
Dean Ambrose defeated Sheamus. Grade: B. This feud seems to be going on forever and while Ambrose & Sheamus once again delivered a good television match this feud really needs something to kick it into another gear.
Alexa Bliss & Women’s Division Promo. Grade: C+ Bliss cut a promo on her loss at Survivor Series saying she was at a disadvantage not being able to prepare for Charlotte and saying that she just got caught out. Sasha, Bayley, Fox & James came out and all claimed that they should be the next contenders. While this ticked all the boxes, it just felt so flat and standard.
Paige Returns and Sonya Deville & Mandy Rose Debuts. Sasha Banks vs Bayley vs Mickie James vs Alicia Fox got thrown out. Grade: A. Paige returned to a thunderous ovation and her and her new group of NXT’s Sonya Deville & Mandy Rose laid out all four women causing the match to be thrown out. Backstage the three attacked the champion Alexa Bliss. The Women’s Division has just received a major boost and this trio is going to create much interest and another layer of depth to the division. It will be interesting to see how Deville & Mandy go on the main roster but they are sure to be protected by Paige. The trio attacking Bliss and the match being thrown out would indicate Paige will be the next contender for Bliss’ title; it will be interesting to see how WWE handles the babyface heel dynamic here.
Kane attacks Braun Strowman during the Braun Strowman vs Jason Jordan Match. Grade: C+ Jordan selling his leg injury really did nothing for the crowd. The Kane & Strowman feud is set to continue with Kane getting his revenue for last weeks powerslam through the ring by taking a chair to Strowman’s throat, who sold the injury perfectly. We need to just hurry up and get through this feud.
Cruiserweight Promo. Grade: C. This was the same promo that we have already heard from Enzo Amore running through how his Zo Show buddies have improved since siding with him. A group of babyfaces came out and cut the most generic promo you could ever imagine. This is why it is hard to care about the cruiserweights.
Mustafa Ali, Cedric Alexander, Rich Swann & Akira Tozawa defeated Drew Gulak, Noam Dar, Ariya Daivari and Tony Nese. Grade: D- This match achieved nothing and no one looks any better coming out of it. It was clear WWE had absolutely nothing for the cruiserweights tonight, and so just threw this together at the last minute. Would have been better off just leaving them off the show all together.
Matt Hardy attacked Elias. Grade: D+ Elias sung his song to Houston making fun of them before Matt attacked him getting revenue for the assault on his arm the night before. This feud is going nowhere in a hurry; WWE seems just to be going through the motions with Matt until they can get to his Broken Gimmick.
Roman Reigns defeated The Miz to win the Intercontinental Championship. Grade: A- This may be the most a crowd has been behind Roman in a singles match, for a title nonetheless, in a very long time. Perhaps its because Miz is just such a great heel, perhaps Roman really is as good as they say he is; either way the crowd was totally behind him in this match. its going to be very interesting to see how long Roman holds this title for; whether it was just a way to give Roman the Grand Slam before Wrestlemania, or whether he holds the belt through till Mania and we see a Double-Title match. Either way this was an incredible match!