November 21, 2016 - RAW begins with the dramatic sounds of Goldberg's theme music. Dressed in jeans and a black jacket, he makes his way to the ring as the Toronto crowd showers him with Goldberg chants. Insider the ring, he thanks his wife, thanks the fans and thanks his son for making him want to be that superhero again. As a dad, this whole storyline is giving me all the feels.
After being showered by GOLDBERG! and You Still Got It! chants, the former WCW legend said he was approached by Stephanie McMahon who asked if he had one more title run left in him. Goldberg responded with an emphatic, "You bet your ass I got one more title run left in me."
We reported yesterday that Goldberg had agreed to appear at the Royal Rumble and tonight he confirmed that not only would he be making an appearance, but that he would indeed be entering the 30 man battle royal, declaring that the road to the title and to Wrestlemania goes through the Royal Rumble.
Goldberg finished by saying that everyone in the 2017 Royal Rumble match would BE NEXT!
I love to see a returning star set his sights on winning a championship. Championships are what the entire structure of the business are built on, so they should always be the motivation for the wrestlers at the top of the card.
THE NEW DAY VS SHEAMUS AND CESARO
New Day acknowledge that they are only 23 days away from demolishing Demolition's tag team championship record. Interestingly, the New Day seemed to be playing the heels for the entire match. *Scattering of boos* If their face run has gotten stale, a heel turn as champion would give them more legs. It worked for CM Punk's record breaking championship run. The New Day pick up the win after Francesca 2 Turbo distracts Cesaro long enough for a Kofi Kingston roll up. Welp, there goes all that Sheamus and Csearo momentum from Survivor Series.
Enzo is freaking naked in the hallway. The shining stars offer him a trip to a special resort. Lana seems slightly impressed and gets a special How You Doin? Before Rusev threatens to crush him in the ring. Oh, the genital innuendo takes me back to a simpler time. A time when Triple H and HBK couldn't make it through a promo without dropping 10 crotch jokes.
Foley and Steph celebrate winning 3 out of 5 matches at the Survivor Series. They tell Sami Zayn that he will be in a one on one match vs Braun Strowman as punishment for not bringing the Intercontinental championship back to RAW. Wasn't Sami begging to be in a match with Strowman a few weeks ago? Does Mick watch his own show?
Anyone else noticing the Shooter commercial where Randy Orton has a cameo and keeps saying Let's get Swagger? Did Jack Swagger kill the president?
CEDRIC ALEXANDER VS DAVARI
Davari cuts a Iron Shiek-esque promo on Canada being even worse than the USA. Does the middle eastern man in a headdress cutting a threatening promo make anyone else uncomfortable? Is this really a good time we should be portraying middle eastern characters as evil villains? Considering the current political climate it might be a good idea to try to put a positive spin on this old wrestling architype. Anyhow, Cedric wins.
THE HIGHLIGHT REEL
Y2J slowly makes his way out to the ring for the Highlight Reel to hold an autopsy for Team RAW and call out the man responsible for forcing the destruction of The List. Kevin Owens comes out, wanting to show who really caused RAW to lose. This feels like a Y2J face turn. KO goes over the tape of how he saved Jericho. Jericho talks about his deepest, darkest thoughts being strewn all over the ring. KO says WHO CARES ABOUT THE LIST? Kevin says Chris wasted their friendship by losing at Survivor Series. Right when it appears the guys are going to come to blows, they simultaneously say "I'll tell you whose fault it is … ROMAN REIGNS!" The crowd pops. God, they hate Roman Reigns.
Owens calls Roman and Seth The Conditioner Brothers. "As he was standing there with conditioner pouring out of his hair everywhere!" Seth breaks up the party to reveal that he gets his Universal title match tonight. A beat down onn Seth brings out Roman. Foley announces a no DQ main event for the Universal title. JeriKO legitimately had me fooled; a testament to their acting masterclass.
RUSEV VS ENZO
Lana forgets where she is and calls Toronto America. To be fair, she's an American actress from Florida pretending to be Russian, so lets cut her some slack.
Enzo gets in a sick burn saying if you really want to see me naked, hack my phone like everyone else in your country. Big Cass sends out a SAWFT chant goes to Rusev's penis, but Rusev squashes Enzo with an accolade.
GOLDEN TRUTH VS THE CLUB
Gallows and Anderson take on Golden Truth with an opportunity at facing New Day next week for the championship. This one seems pretty obvious. Graves mentions that it seemed like the Club would take over when they arrived, but have had a harder time than they probably expected. Yeah, you think? The Bullet Club were the hottest faction in wrestling and I'm now legitimately wondering if they can beat R Truth and Golddust. Thankfully, the match ends with a Magic Killer and The Club will face The New Day for the Tag Championship next week in Charlotte. The Club stopping the New Day from reaching their goal of holding the record is a more important storyline than New Day reaching the record. Make it happen, WWE!
Strowman attacks Zay before the bell, destroys him outside the ring. Brings him in for several running splashes in the corner. Zayn gets in a little offense before Braun takes his head off with several devastating looking clotheslines. Mick Foley comes out to stop the match since Sami Zayn can't defend himself. My god, Strowman is an amazing beast. No one on the roster is more valuable right now than Strowman. With Show, Taker, and Kane all on the tail end of their careers, Braun will soon be the only giant monster left on the roster.
CHARLOTTE IS IN THE RING to explain her actions. Let me guess, she hates inflatables and or hugs? This feud is going to be so much fun. Charlotte is the perfect heel and Bayley couldn't be a bigger natural face. Sasha interrupts, and while I'm always happy to see the Boss, I was kind of ready for these two to keep their distance for a little while. Sasha demands her rematch tonight and Charlotte responds in classic heel fashion, saying Sasha will get her rematch, but not tonight. Nia Jax interrupts to call out Sasha for losing early. I always expect Nia to talk like Vader, but she just sounds like a sassy secretary bitching about an office lunch order gone wrong. A beatdown ensues until Bayley runs in and gets knocked down by Nia. That was a horribly ineffective run-in, but it leads to an impromptu tag match. Sasha makes Charlotte tap out, but we know she's losing next week, so whatever.
RICH SWAN vs NOAM DAR vs TJ PERKINS
Winner gets the Cruiserweight champion THE Brian Kendrick next week on 205 Live. Brian Kendrick is on commentary. It sounds like the entire division will only exist on Tuesdays. I'm confused. Plenty of good action. Dar gets cut open the hard way after a sick kick from TJ Perkins, but it's Rich Swan that gets the 205 Live shot at Kendrick after he holds TJ down for the three.
It should be noted that a grown man with a ROMAN SUCKS shirt is in the front row dancing to Rich Swan's music. Oh, Canada.
SETH ROLLINS VS KEVIN OWENS - UNIVERSAL CHAMPIONSHIP NO DQ
Roman Reigns and Chris Jericho are both banned from ringside, yet it's a no disqualification match. So, if they chose to run down to the ring there are literally no repercussions. Not even two minutes into the match and a table has been brought into the ring. Kevin kicked the table out of the ring and we go to the 700th Chrisley Knows Best Commercial with only 10 minutes left in the show. The spots are coming fast and furious in this one. We get chair shots, Owens sends Rollins through a table during a second commercial break. Owens looks to powerbomb Rollins into two chairs but Rollins reverses it into a back drop. After KO crashes through the chairs, Rollins brings a table into the ring and props it up in the corner. Rollins turns his buckle bomb into a table bomb! Owens kicks out at 2! Jeez, they got me on that one. Action spills into the crowd and we're 7 minutes past the hour. I smell a no-finish. Seth throws Owens into a trashcan as Kevin runs for the back. Owens goes for a pop-up powerbomb, but Rollins resourcefully grabs the rails and climbs up to come crashing down on Owens from 7 rows up. As they make it back to the ring, Rollins is attacked by a masked man in a Strong Style hoodie! Is that Jushin Thunder Liger? Ultimo Dragon? Oh my sweet lord, it's Chris Jericho in a Sin Cara mask. Sin Cara, who Jericho got in a legit backstage fight with only two weeks ago. Rollins pulls him over the rail and hits a pedigree! The distraction is enough to allow Owens to hit an apron powerbomb on Rollins, and pick up the three count. Roman Reigns keeps his promise and never makes it to the ring, so RAW goes off the air with JeriKO standing tall.
The show started with a bang, trailed off for a few hours and then finished incredibly strong. That was a pay-per-view quality match between Rollins and Owens. What else can you possibly say about Owens and Jericho? They're on a different level. They're having the best 2 man run since Brennan and Dale crushed the Catalina Wine Mixer.
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