Original Air Date: December 10, 2018
Event Date: December 10, 2018 (aired live)
Commentary: Michael Cole, Corey Graves, Renee Young
Ring Announcer: Jojo
Already in the ring, Seth Rollins plans to “burn it down” in his title match against Ambrose on Sunday. He also plans to burn things down tonight. Tonight isn’t about Dean Ambrose though. Instead, Rollins calls Baron Corbin to the ring.
After a few seconds, Corbin heads to the ring. He tells Rollins that they can talk in private if Rollins has something to say. Rollins tells Corbin to shut up. Rollins also says that RAW sucks under Corbin’s leadership. It sucks because Corbin makes the show all about himself, and that is not okay. Corbin tells Rollins to watch how he speaks to him, but Rollins wonders what Corbin will do. Corbin doesn’t know what to do. For example, he has The Revival, who should be competing for the tag titles, in Lucha House Rules matches. He also has a lot of urination on the show.
Rollins says that every decision he’s made has been to mask his own insecurities. That’s why Corbin handed the Universal Title to Brock Lesnar. But where is Brock Lesnar? Lesnar hasn’t competed on RAW since 2002. Corbin is a failure. Support, and ratings, are at an all-time low, and that’s all because of Corbin.
Corbin appreciates the feedback, but also, he doesn’t care what Rollins or anyone else thinks. RAW is Corbin’s, and if Rollins doesn’t like it, then he better get used to it. It’s only going to get worse from here. Once Corbin becomes the permanent GM, he’s going to put Rollins through hell. Rollins suggests that Corbin start putting Rollins through hell in a match tonight. Corbin deflects the challenge. Rollins challenges Corbin again, this time to a TLC match. Corbin says that if Rollins wants to try to be a hero, it’s going to cost him everything. But tonight, Corbin has other things to do. Rollins repeatedly calls Corbin a coward until Corbin agrees to a match, but it will be for the Intercontinental Title.
Dasha Fuentes asks Seth Rollins if he regrets calling out Corbin. Rollins says it might not have been the smartest move, but he can’t sit back and let Corbin do whatever he wants to do. If he didn’t take a stand, then he wouldn’t deserve to carry the IC Title.
Three-on-Two Handicap RAW Tag Team Title Match
AoP & Drake Maverick vs Chad Gable & Bobby Roode
(referee: Chad Patton)
Result: Bobby Roode pins Drake Maverick with a crucifix pin, Roode and Gable become the new tag champs
Time: 4:53 (1 break)
This was all about making Drake Maverick look like a smug fool. I don’t really understand what the whole point of bringing up Drake Maverick was if this is all they’re going to do with him. Hopefully the tag matches on RAW will get better from here though.
Also, why did Roode and Gable get a title shot if Roode lost to Maverick last week? It doesn’t make any sense. They should have a story going tonight where Corbin’s decisions are getting overturned or modified all night, and it turns out someone like Kurt Angle or even Stephanie McMahon have been trying to get RAW back on track behind the scenes. Giving Roode and Gable a title shot would actually make sense if that were the case.
Gable and Roode celebrate their victory when Charly Caruso asks them how they got the job done tonight. Roode knew that if they put in the work, they would eventually become champs. Gable feels glorious.
In the ring, Natalya says Ruby Riott doesn’t respect anyone or anything in this business. Riott tried to destroy her father’s legacy. Natalya says that she has had to overcome a lot, including the Montreal screw job. On Sunday, Natalya plans to teach Ruby about respect. She also plans to dedicate her match to her father, Jim “The Anvil” Neidhart.
The Riott Squad comes out to the stage, and they have a table. Ruby isn’t surprised that Natalya is crying again. All Natalya ever does is feel sorry for herself. Ruby says Natalya doesn’t need respect, she needs a good counselor. She says Natalya disgraces her own family. Ruby says she has a gift for Natalya, and she reveals that the table she brought out has Jim Neidhart’s picture on it. Ruby plans to have Natalya and her father get closer than ever on Sunday.
Dolph Ziggler plucked Drew McIntyre from obscurity, and tonight he might send him back. Ziggler says he’s not the good guy here, but he’s not the bad guy either. He’s just Dolph Ziggler.
Drew McIntyre heads to the ring. In the ring, Charly Caruso asks McIntyre why he would challenge Dolph Ziggler tonight. McIntyre says he lost last week, but no one stay undefeated forever. But maybe losing will make McIntyre even more dangerous. Maybe Charly should ask Finn Balor about that, but she can’t because Balor is at home due to injury.
Drew McIntyre vs Dolph Ziggler
(referee: Darrick Moore)
Result: Drew McIntyre wins via pinfall after the Claymore Kick
Time: 5:27 (1 break)
Pretty good match. I liked it, but it was fairly short. I think this was really just about McIntyre getting a win back before heading to TLC. I feel like there was a better way of doing this without just having a rematch with Ziggler.
After the match, Drew McIntyre looks like he wants to powerbomb Ziggler onto the ring steps. Referees come out and get McIntyre to back off, but McIntyre hits Ziggler with a Claymore into the side of the ring before he decides to leave.
Bayley w/ Sasha Banks vs Alicia Fox w/ Jinder Mahal, The Singh Brothers
(referee: John Cone)
Result: Bayley wins via pinfall after the Bayley to Belly
This was fun. It was full of shenanigans all around ringside (which Apollo Crews came down to join in on), but yeah, it was fun. I think it fit with the tone of the Mixed Match Challenge which it was a preview for.
Dean Ambrose wears his Bane jacket as he watches TV sideways.
Charly Caruso welcomes Dean Ambrose. Ambrose says Rollins is rattled. He’s off his game. Why? Because of his ego. Rollins always has to be the center of attention. Charly asks how Ambrose thinks Roman Reigns would react if he knew what was happening between Ambrose and Rollins. Ambrose doesn’t care what Reigns would think.
Charly shows Ambrose a video of the night Reigns gave up the Universal Title and Ambrose turned on Rollins. The video also shows the growing rivalry between Ambrose and Rollins.
Charly wants a reaction from Dean, but he doesn’t give her one.
Elias warms up on his guitar.
In the ring, Elias plays his guitar and talks about his match with Bobby Lashley on Sunday. He also says that since he is a good guy, hitting children with a guitar isn’t high on his list. Last week was an exception though. He then sings a song about how much Bobby Lashley sucks. Lashley interrupts as he accompanies Lio Rush to the ring.
After a commercial break, Elias and Rush are ready for their match, but there is no referee. After a few seconds, Heath Slater heads down to the ring wearing a striped shirt.
Elias vs Lio Rush w/ Bobby Lashley
(referee: Heath Slater)
Result: Lio Rush wins via pinfall after Bobby Lashley smashes Elias with his own guitar
Rush showed some of his speed and agility, but his moment to shine was brief. Slater wouldn’t call for a DQ when Lashley started to attack Elias, so Rush and Lashley took full advantage of that. This was a beating of Elias.
Alexa Bliss talks to a crew member.
Baron Corbin tells Heath Slater that he did a good job tonight. He also tells Slater that he has another match to referee tonight.
Alexa Bliss heads to the ring. Before she can say anything, Nia Jax and Tamina head to the ring. Jax makes a statement. She says she will become RAW Women’s Champ on Sunday. She also says if Ronda Rousey were smart, she’d give Nia the title tonight. Jax says she is Rousey’s worst nightmare, and she is the anti-Rousey. She also mentions Becky Lynch so the crowd will actually react to her. Jax says she will punch Rousey in the face until she gives up.
Ronda Rousey comes out and quicky heads to the ring. Rousey isn’t here to talk, she’s here to fight. As Rousey enters the ring, Jax, Tamina, and Bliss exit. Jax and Tamina attempt to flank Rousey when Ember Moon heads to the ring. Jax and Tamina back off when Moon enters the ring.
Tamina w/ Nia Jax vs Ember Moon w/ Ronda Rousey (RAW Women’s Champ)
(referee: Rod Zapata)
Result: Ember Moon wins via pinfall after the Eclipse
Time: 5:15 (joined in progress)
Good match. There were some shenanigans around the ring with Jax and Rousey, but the action in the ring was fine.
Seth Rollins gets ready for a fight.
Charly Caruso asks Baron Corbin if his title match tonight is an abuse of power. He doesn’t. He’s also not concerned that Braun Strowman might show up on Sunday.
Lars Sullivan is (still) headed to the main roster.
Tables Ladders and Chairs Intercontinental Title Match
Baron Corbin vs Seth Rollins (IC Champ)
(referee: Heath Slater)
Result: Seth Rollins wins after a superkick to Heath Slater and a curb stomp to Baron Corbin
Time: 16:56 (2 breaks)
Good match. Make no mistake though, this match was good in spite of Baron Corbin, not because of him. This match was good because of Seth Rollins. He could have been facing anyone and have had just as good of a match. The match was of course set up to use Slater as an assistant for Corbin, so Rollins had to overcome two men to retain his title. That part of the match built some decent tension. Also, there was enough violence and action to warrant having a TLC Match on RAW. I enjoyed it.
After the match, Dean Ambrose comes out to the stage. Ambrose and Rollins stare at each other as the show ends.
I think it’s funny that they realize that RAW has been declining in ratings and quality, so they decided to attempt to spin that into a story line. The problem with that is, in reality, it’s not Corbin’s fault that RAW can be hard to sit all the way through, it’s the writing staff’s fault. Pinning RAW’s problems on Corbin doesn’t even really help Corbin all that much, because he was terrible to begin with. They apparently realize Corbin is boring enough to need someone like Seth Rollins to make him interesting, yet they still make the show all about Baron Corbin. It’s a baffling writing choice.
Even so, there were parts of the show I liked. The TLC match was fun. Seeing Lio Rush compete on RAW was fun (although I wanted more). Bayley versus Alicia Fox was fun. A lot of the rest felt like more of the same.
And who in the back still thinks it’s a good idea to give Nia Jax a microphone. No one cares. The only time people react is when she mentions Becky Lynch. And now she’s screaming in her promos. Stop it.
Match of the Night
TLC IC Match
Seth Rollins is making a strong big for being the savior of RAW and the man who has carried through some of the roughest times in recent memory. There are certainly other people who are also capable of doing what Rollins has been doing nearly every single week, but he is the only one who has consistently been given the time and space to make every segment he’s in something that people want to watch. Finn Balor could do it, but every time he gets a rare opportunity to truly shine on RAW, he’s made to look weak or ineffectual (like last week when he got payback in multiple segments only to get beat up badly enough to miss this week’s RAW).
Official Results: https://www.wwe.com/shows/raw/2018-12-10