This Week in WWE – Raw (12/5/2016)

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This week on Raw (12/5/2016), Chris Jericho battles Roman Reigns for the US Championship while Charlotte addresses Ric Flair for the first time since May!

Kevin Owens/Chris Jericho

The Owens/Jericho saga evolved even more this week with Kevin Owens getting Jericho three gifts. The three gifts happened to be matches. The first match was Seth Rollins vs. Big Show, the second was Jericho vs. Roman Reigns for the US title, and the third is Jericho vs. Rollins at Roadblock. It’s something of a peace offering from Owens to Jericho after telling him to shut up last week.

Owens tried to help Jericho out in his US title match against Reigns, but Jericho told him to leave (he had already told him he didn’t need help earlier in the evening) and Jericho lost the match after he got speared. Owens also fought Sami Zayn for the 100th time and got the win after a Pop-up Powerbomb.

I really don’t know what to say about these two anymore. I feel like this could all be another calculated plan. I suppose we’ll find out about that at Roadblock. It’s becoming the same old back and forth every week.

The Big Show

Wow! We had a Big Show sighting on Monday Night Raw! We haven’t seen Show in so long so it’s was great to see the big man make an appearance. Part of me thought he’d be back to his old heel persona where the authority figures would use him to punish stars. That fear proved to be needless as Show Chokeslammed Owens after he kept barking orders and then left the match. Rollins would go on to win by count-out and then Pedigree Owens for good measure. Big Show’s days as a full-time star are over, but if he can be used in this way, he can still bring a tiny boost to the show here and there.

Jack Gallagher

Jack Gallagher is very unique. You can tell that just by looking at him. Jack displays such showmanship with everything that he does, from a simple tie-up, to the curly mustache on his face. He doesn’t look like a typical WWE Superstar and he doesn’t have to. He brings something completely different to the Cruiserweight Division and I’m really glad that they brought him in for it. I’m actually surprised he wasn’t part of the initial batch. Jack had an impressive victory over Ariya Daivari on Monday night and got attacked afterwards. He will be a part of Raw and 205 Live going forward along with the rest of the Cruiserweights.

Enzo Amore/Rusev

In an interesting move, it looked as though Rusev and Lana were having problems. Enzo didn’t like the way Rusev was talking to Lana so he went to make the save. This led to Lana throwing down her wedding ring. This would lead to Lana inviting Enzo to a hotel. If this sounds familiar, it’s because it’s a direct copy of an Attitude Era story between Dean Malenko, Matt Hardy, and Lita. Lita didn’t like Malenko and then all of a sudden she invited him to a hotel room with lingerie and Matt Hardy was there to beat down Malenko. The same thing happened with the heels getting the upper-hand this time as Rusev beat up Enzo in that hotel room. 

I feel like WWE is starting to push the borders of PG with stories like this and using more profanity. I wouldn’t be surprised for them to continue to push those boundaries further in the coming months. 

Rich Swann

What a Cinderella story it’s been for Rich Swann. This man lost both parents by 16 and had to scratch and claw to get through life. He found wrestling and that gave him purpose. It’s quite a story and one that makes you really want to pull for him. Rich really is everything you want a champion to be, he’s charismatic, athletic, and entertaining. Swann became the new Cruiserweight Champion last week on the debut of 205 Live and it looks like the sky is the limit for him right now. I think he’s going to be a big part of that show going forward. I don’t think we need to call him, “The Outlandish” Rich Swann, though.

Bayley

As much as I want to see Bayley challenging for the Raw Women’s Championship right now, I like how they’re keeping her ready on Raw. She continues to pick up wins here and there and she gets a great reaction wherever she goes. Once the feud with Charlotte and Sasha finally ends, she will likely be the next in line. I fully expect her to become champion at Wrestlemania.

Tag-Team Division

Gallows and Anderson faced off against Sheamus and Cesaro for the Number One Contender slot to the Raw Tag Team Championship. I didn’t think this match made a whole lot of sense to begin with, but where they went with it worked out. The New Day ended up getting involved on the outside which created a match for next week that will see a Triple Threat Tag Team Match for the Raw Tag Team Titles on Raw next week.

It would be really nice if one of Gallows/Anderson or Cesaro/Sheamus finally dethroned the champions on next week’s Raw, but we’ll probably see that happen after they beat Demolition’s record in a little over 2 weeks time.We’ve been having so many Tag Team Championship matches that they’re starting to be less meaningful. Raw really needs to fix their Tag Team Division soon before no one takes it seriously anymore.

Charlotte

Sasha Banks had a quick backstage interview where she challenged Charlotte to a match at Roadblock. It won’t just be any match, though, it’s going to be a 30-minute Iron Man Match (Yes, Iron Man even though they’re women, I don’t really get that one). Charlotte accepted that match and we will see these two face off for (what should be) the final time.

Charlotte showed up on Raw to publicly apologize to her father, Ric Flair, for tossing him to the side in May. This promo was one of Charlotte’s best, in my opinion. She started off gaining sympathy from the crowd for growing up in Ric Flair’s shadow and how hard it was to not have her own identity. She talked about wanting her approval and how it broke her heart to see Ric raise Sasha’s arm. Charlotte then called Ric out and apologized to him. 

It seemed like Charlotte was making a turn when all of a sudden, she slapped Ric across the face and called him a son of a b****. Sasha Banks then came out for the save, but ended up getting beaten down by Charlotte. She left Sasha at Ric’s feet and called her his trophy and kept talking trash as Raw went off-air.

I think Charlotte did a fantastic job roping everyone in on Raw. I wasn’t completely sold on her going soft, but it seemed like a good time to do it. I’m glad she remained a heel and solidified that position by slapping her own father. She’s a much better heel than she would be as a face. Each week, it seems like she gets better or gains more of an edge. You can say what you want about Charlotte, but she’s the best right now. She’s doing everything right and nothing seems to slow her momentum.

A Charlotte promo closed Raw. That should tell you how meaningful that segment was.

Quick Notes

Emmalina finally debuts next week.

Mark Henry beat Titus O’Neil in about 10 seconds in “The Tussle in Texas”

Conclusion

This show kind of dragged on for me. It wasn’t much that we haven’t seen before. The Charlotte segment saved it for me otherwise I would have said that this was a pretty forgettable episode.

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