This Week in WWE – Raw (11/14/2016)

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This week on Raw (11/14/2016), the build to Survivor Series reaches its boiling point. Read inside for our thoughts on Team Raw!

Bo Dallas

I really don’t understand what is going on with Bo lately. There was a time only a month or two ago when it seemed like Bo was going to be given a push and really start to take off. Over the last few weeks, Bo has been the one on the losing end in some rather short matches. As much as I like Bo and think he hasn’t really been given the opportunity to succeed on the main roster, I think he could be released sometime within the next year. It’s my hope that they find something meaningful to do with him, but it doesn’t seem like creative has many ideas for him at this time.

The Cruiserweights

There was a good segment between the Cruiserweights in the backstage area where they were all clamoring over who deserved a title shot. Meanwhile, The Brian Kendrick was trying to get everyone to believe in him against Kalisto at Survivor Series. Obviously, no one really bought what Kendrick was saying. It’s nice to see the personality of these guys instead of just wrestling. I think the crowd is having a better connection with the 2016 Cruiserweight Division because of how much they’re learning about each individual. Wrestling is very much about the character and WWE has done a great job of establishing each individual.

Kendrick had a solid match with Kalisto’s former partner, Sin Cara, later on in the night. Kendrick would win the match by submission. I’m not so sure Kendrick will walk out of Survivor Series with the title. It makes a lot more sense for SmackDown to have the Cruiserweight Division than Raw. If Kalisto wins, that’s exactly what will happen. I honestly think they should just appear across all shows, but they seem keen on having it be exclusive to one show.

Goldberg/Lesnar

It’s been surreal to see Goldberg back in a WWE ring. I really never thought we’d see that again. Bill seemed to be content with life away from the ring. Goldberg did make a return, though. He and Lesnar had their first face to face meeting on Raw and the intensity just continues to build. The reality is, everyone remembers how iconic Goldberg is and his character, but now one really knows what to expect. The anticipation is part of the mystique of this encounter and WWE has played that up perfectly.

I give a lot of praise to Paul Heyman in during the build up to this match. Paul has simultaneously built up both men in a way that very few other people ever could. Paul acted legitimately scared of Goldberg and he acted equally confident in his beast, Lesnar. Heyman has the incredible ability to know exactly what to say and when to say it in regards to promotion. He’s a genius at what he does and this program would have suffered without him. I’m excited to see this match at Survivor Series in what will likely be the end for Goldberg. It should be a match full of physicality and intensity.

The Women’s Division

It’s hard to talk about anyone individually lately, with everything revolving around Survivor Series so I’m just grouping everyone together this week. The women on Raw seem to have the biggest problems getting along. Everyone else isn’t having that much of an issue and it’s been fun to see some teams that we haven’t seen before. Sasha and Charlotte seem to have the toughest time co-existing, especially coming off a brutal Hell in a Cell match just a short time ago. They beat the team of Alicia Fox and Nia Jax, but it wasn’t without some animosity.

The Raw women’s team for Survivor Series has some great personalities and I think it makes a lot of sense for this one to be the most dysfunctional of them all. Each woman has a legitimate shot at being the next Raw Women’s Champion and that creates a lot of tension. It will be interesting to see whether these ladies can work together or not. Sasha, Bayley, and Nia are all looking for a title shot, will that get in the way of beating Team SmackDown?

The Main Event Team

4This team looks incredibly impressive on paper and even more impressive if you saw how they took care of Team SmackDown on Raw. Let’s be honest right now, this team is a lot better than Team SmackDown and will likely win on Sunday. That is something that should be addressed right away. SmackDown didn’t even have enough top stars to add to their team so that had to add ShaneMcMahon. Why not have Sami Zayn and Cesaro defect to SmackDown and add a little bit to a thin roster? 

It was nice to see a bit of a Shield reunion with Reigns and Rollins using the double powerbomb. It’s stuff like that that makes these matches worthwhile. I like that Raw is being viewed as the heel team. This show is the juggernaut and SmackDown is the underdog and I think Survivor Series is going to play into that a great deal. I was skeptical about how well they would pull off Raw vs. SmackDown, but things are shaping up a lot better this week.

Quick Notes

The tag-teams have mimicked the animosity of the women, but I really feel like the Raw team is a lot weaker than SmackDown team. The New Day has looked pretty weak over the last few weeks and so has everyone else. I expect that SmackDown will take that match.

Emmalina is premiering soon…yes, we’ve heard this for 6-8 weeks.

Conclusion

It was a good week of Raw for a change. The Raw team started to have some unity on most fronts and the management team really drove home the point that Raw is a more dominant team. Chasing Team SmackDown from the ring was icing on the cake. Survivor Series is this Sunday.

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