Posted January 12th, 2016 by jshannon

It was a night of returns as both Chris Jericho and Brock Lesnar made appearance on Raw.

We began with a look back at the Roman Reigns vs The McMahons from last week. Vince was the special guest ref when Roman faced Sheamus. Vinny Mac tried his best to screw over Roman but Reigns…reigned supreme. After the match, Vince notified Roman that he would defend his World title…at the Royal Rumble…in the Rumble match!

The entire male roster was on the stage. They were joined by Vince and Stephanie McMahon. Father and daughter strolled, arm in arm, down to the ring. Tonight was the 23rd anniversary of the very first Raw. I remember sitting in my little house, on Elwood Street—in Irving, watching Undertaker, Shawn Michaels and so many others. Smile.

Vince and Stephanie discussed that one of the people on the stage could very likely become the new champion, at the Royal Rumble. Stephanie was thrilled with the idea that someone would pitch Roman up and over the top rope. Vince and Stephanie picked out various stars to push as potential winners of the match. They were cut off by the Wyatt Family making their entrance, behind the McMahons. Bray reminded that it will by “anyone but you “(Roman). Vince suggested that Brock Lesnar might be the one who will win.

Roman Reigns came out onto the breezeway and then walked through the crowd. This is the only time that the title will be defended in the Rumble match. Ric Flair wont he title during the 1992 Rumble, but the title was vacant, at the time. Roman entered the ring and stared down Vince nad Stephanie. Stephanie mocked the crowd for not being able to chant correctly. Stephanie wondered if Roman was there to beat up Vince, again. Vince was nervous about that idea. Roman only had one question: What happens IF I win? Stephanie cackled like my Aunt Maggie Hamilton as the ridiculousness of the concept hit her. The McMahons decided to set up the 1 vs All match. Sheamus jumped Dean Ambrose to let the Lunatic Fringe know they were about to fight. First, we had to watch a few commercials (and I had time to run grab some fresh popcorn).

Dean Ambrose vs Sheamus
Non-Title Match

Sheamus hit a European Uppercut as the show returned. Back Drop Suplex by the Celtic Warrior. Sheamus boxed the ribs and chest of the Intercontinental champ. Dean reversed things with the Punch/Chop combos. Knee Strike by Sheamus before he threw Dean out to the floor. 10 Beats, mixed with shots to the kidneys. Short Arm Clothesline on the apron by Sheamus. Sheamus stood on Dean’s throat. Snap Mare into a Rear Chin Lock by Sheamus.

Dean powered up to his feet and hit a Side Suplex. Sheamus pounded Dean and went back to the 10 Beats. He didn’t get to connect as Dean blocked him. Dean hit his own version of the10 Beats, or part of it. Sheamus reversed things and took Dean out to the floor. Sheamus threw Dean into the barricade, while screaming “Don’t embarrass me”. Scoop Slam put Dean on the announce table. Sheamus tossed Dean back in the ring and then posed. Modified Camel Clutch by Sheamus. Dean punched at the ribs but Sheamus went for a Suplex. Dean got free and rocked the Irishman with Forearms. Corner Slash by Dean. Sheamus missed the Brogue Kick and tumbled out to the floor. Air Lunatic sent Sheamus into the barricade. Raw cut to commercial.

Sheamus connected with the Irish Curse Backbreaker and then went into the (Texas) Cloverleaf. Dean made it to the ropes. The ref asked Dean if he could still continue. Dean would not give up. Rebound Clothesline missed but he Rolling Neckbreaker was right on target. Dean went for the Standing Savage Elbow but Sheamus caught him up top. Dean escaped White Noise and almost rolled up Sheamus. Sheamus struck the ring post and then Dean hit the Tornado DDT. 1-2-not yet.

Dean went up top and then launched into the Standing Savage Elbow. 2 count, again. Back Elbow by Sheamus. Sheamus avoided Dirty Deeds but couldn’t use White Noise. Rebound Clothesline by Dean and Sheamus fell through the ropes. Dean went to fly, again, but got clocked in the jaw. Sheamus threw Dean into the several sections of the barricade. Sheamus drove Dean into the ring steps. The ref was counting but Sheamus didn’t seem to care. Dean didn’t either and Dean threw Sheamus into the ring post and ring steps.

Your Winner: Double Count-out
Raw Ranking: 3.5 out of a possible 5

Dean tore apart the announce table and got ready to do something seriously evil. He didn’t get the chance…because he was jumped by Kevin Owens. Kevin just annihilated the IC champ. Several refs rushed out to stop Kevin. They didn’t have a whole lot of luck, at least at first. Kevin eventually headed to the back as the refs checked on the downed Dean Ambrose.
Raw took a look at Bourbon Street. I remember walking down that wonderful part of the world with some of my best friends, a couple years back.

Renee Young checked on Dean Ambrose. Dean yelled about still having a pulse and that was bad news for Kevin Owens.

Elsewhere, Stephanie and Vince ran into Paul Heyman. Paul loved the idea. Paul pushed his client, Brock Lesnar. Stephanie asked Paul to join them in the office.

Star Dust vs Titus O’Neil

Star tore into Titus with hard shots to the ribs. Scoop Slam by Titus. O’Neil smacked Star in the chest. Hard Whip by Titus but Star got the boot up. Titus caught Star and hit a pair of Side Breakers and then he threw Star aside. Star kicked away at Titus as JBL got in several David Bowie references.

Star dropped his weight on Titus’ back. Rear Chin Lock by the former Cody Rhodes. Star got on Titus’ back but O’Neil just stood up and then flipped his foe over. Shoulder Tackles by Titus. Star kicked Titus in the face but Titus laid out Star with the Big Boot. Corner Splash by Titus. Star escaped and hit the Side Effect. 2 count. Star same off the top rope and fell to the Clash of the Titus.

Your Winner: Titus O’Neil
Raw Ranking: 3.0

Star attacked Titus, after the match.

Highlight Reel:

Chris Jericho mocked New Day for being “Rooty Tooty Booties”. Chris said he was back to save the WWE. New Day came out and mocked Chris for his style. New Day was cut off by The Usos. Jericho said he would be in The Usos’ corner, later tonight.

New Day vs The Usos (w/Chris Jericho)
Non-Title Match

Kofi took one of the Usos to the corner. Kofi and Big E were fighting for their trio. Tag to Jimmy. Double Elbow Drop by the twins. Big E got the tag and Jimmy was run over by a Shoulder Tackle. Jey took the tag and dropped Big E. Knife Edge Chop to Big E. Float Over by Jey and he did a little dancing, just like his daddy used to do. Jimmy flew off the top and caught Big E’s arm.

Kofi tagged in and choked Uso with the boot. Kofi was dropped with a Flying Elbow. Kofi ended up in the corner for the Rikishi Run. 2 count. Kofi pushed Jimmy off the top rope. Xavier played the trombone until he ran into Jericho. Chris scared the willies out of Woods, who jogged to the back. Raw break time.

Kofi worked over his opponent as Raw returned. 2 count by Kofi. Woods had returned to the ringside area. Big E crashed into Jimmy, on the apron, as Woods played he trombone. 2 count. Big E put Jimmy in the Abdominal Stretch. Jey rocked Big E. Kofi got the tag and Jimmy flipped out of a Suplex. Tag almost made as Jey was pulled off the apron by Big E. Boom Drop by Kofi.

Tornado Enziguri by Jimmy. Tag to Jey. Flying Clotheslines to Big E. Jey hit an Uppercut and then a Running Dropkick. Low Bridge sent Kofi out to the floor. Jey flew over the top to take out both enemies. Jey went to the top and hit the Crossbody. 2 count. Big E hit a Belly to Belly on the charging Jey Uso. 1-2-no. Jey fought out of the Big Ending. Jey dropped Kofi. Woods got up on the apron to distract. Jericho laid out Woods with a toot from the trombone. Jericho threatened to strike Woods with the trombone. Instead, he broke it. Woods had a serious nervous breakdown. In all the confusion, Kofi was rolled up.

Your Winners: Jimmy and Jey Uso
Raw Ranking: 2.75

Michael Cole talked about John Cena’s Rotator Cuff surgery. John will be out of action for several months.

Stephanie and Paul negotiated about Brock Lesnar. Paul said Brock would make the perfect opponent for the World Champion…at Wrestlemania Paul wanted Brock to just kick back and wait for the winner of the Rumble to be decided and then face Lesnar on the biggest stage of them all. Stephanie made it crystal clear that Brock will be IN the Rumble, not sitting back and waiting to pick the bones.

John Bradshaw Layfield was there to announce the first inductee into the WWE Hall of Fame. The lead spot goes to…STING! They ran a great promotional piece for The Icon.

The Wyatt Family vs The Social Outcasts
8-Man Tag Team Match

Bo Dallas, Curtis Axel, Adam Rose and Heath Slater all made it clear that they wanted a fight. Braun started against Rose Adam kicked away but it had no effect. Bo tagged in and Braun took him across the ring with a Biel. Axel got in the match ad hit a Flying Forearm. He did rock the big man, a little. Shoulder Tackle by Braun. Ryback rushed down to get involved. It broke down into total chaos. The Wyatts were all tossed out of the ring.

Your Winner: Match Thrown Out
Raw Ranking: 1.25

Kalisto was interviewed, backstage. Kalisto beat Alberto Del Rio, last week, in a non-title match. Kalisto said he wanted to compete with pride, like his idol, Eddie Guerrero.

Alberto Del Rio came out and bragged out taking out John Cena. Del Rio was ready now to destroy that little mosquito, Kalisto.

Alberto Del Rio vs Kalisto
United States Title Match

Del Rio ripped into the Luchadore. Del Rio kicked the ribs and then hit a Snap Suplex. Del Rio threw Kalisto into the corners. DDT by the champion. Kalisto went outside but Del Rio threw him right back in. Del Rio climbed up the ropes and waited. Ax Bomber by Del Rio. 1-2-no way, Jose. Del Rio placed Kalisto up top and pounded away. Kalisto tried to fight out of the Superplex. Kalisto hit numerous Headbutts to force Del Rio off the top. Seated Senton and Corkscrew Springboard Elbow. Hurancanrana was blocked by Del Rio. Del Rio Powerbombed kalisto but it only brought him a two. Del Rio tossed Kalisto out to the floor. Del Rio then kicked at the ribs of his challenger.

They went back in the ring and Del Rio got a two count. Rear Chin Lock by Del Rio. Del Rio Clotheslined the daylights out of Kalisto but he couldn’t’ keep the littler man down.

Kalisto kicked away and hit the Hurancanrana. Del Rio rolled out to the floor. Kalisto flew out of the ring but Del Rio used Kalisto’s momentum to send the Dragonito into the barricade. Break time.

During the break, Del Rio tossed Kalisto into the barricade. Back in the ring, Kalisto kept fighting. Snap Suplex by Del Rio. Del Rio went up top, again. Kalisto tripped Del Rio and Alberto Crotched himself on the top rope. Top Rope Hurancanrana but Kalisto couldn’t’ follow up. Kalisto planted Alberto with a wicked DDT. 2 plus on that one. Del Rio rocked Kalisto with a Tilt-a-Whirl Backbreaker. Del Rio set up for eh Superkick but Kalisto blocked it and kicked Del Rio in the face. 1-2-aw, man, kick out by Del Rio. Kalisto went up top but he got tripped. Del Rio with a wild Inverted Superplex. Kalisto ended up rolling out under the ropes.

Kalisto kicked away and tried for his finisher. Del Rio dropped Kalisto on the top rope. Del Rio kicked away. Del Rio went to the peak of the turnbuckles and went to jump. Kalisto avoided it and got free. Kalisto hit the Running Hurancanrana DDT for a two. Delr Rio avoided the Solinas Del Sol. Kalisto rolled up Alberto to become THE NEW UNITED STATES CHAMPION!

Your Winner (and NEW U.S. Champion): Kalisto
Raw Ranking: 4.0

That was just freaking awesome!

The announcers examined the feud between Becky Lynch and Charlotte (Flair). Charlotte and Ric Flair were interviewed by JoJo. Charlotte was asked why she attacked Becky. Charlotte said she beat Becky “Flair and Square”. Charlotte knew there was no place for sentimentality in the business. Charlotte tried to make herself out to be the victim in this feud. Seriously?

Brie Bella vs Charlotte (w/Ric Flair)
Non-Title Match

Becky jumped Charlotte, before the match. Becky drove her knees into Charlotte’s face, over and over. Charles Robinson tried to hold Becky back. That wasn’t happening. Becky and Charlotte took turns slugging it out. More refs rushed out to take Becky out of the arena. Ric got on the microphone and screamed at Charles Robinson. Ric said Charlotte was no longer in any shape to compete. Charlotte stepped out of the ring and limped down the steps. The fans were ticked off. Ric screamed t several fans.

Your Winner: No Match
Raw Ranking: N/A

Paul Heyman and Brock Lesnar chatted, in the back.

JoJo stopped Becky, backstage. Becky was livid that her best friend had turned her back on her. Becky knew Charlotte was using Ric Flair for protection. Becky knew she was now on her own and that made her very emotional. Becky reminded everyone that she made Charlotte tap out…and she would do it again.

1 Vs. All Match

Roman Reigns vs Everybody (I guess)

Vince McMahon’s music hit and the Chairman came out with the Billion Dollar Princess, Stephanie. The stage began to fill up with wrestlers. New Day, Wyatt Family, Ascension, Star Dust, Kevin Owens, Sheamus, Del Rio and others joined the McMahons on the walk down to the ring. Kevin got in first. The other wrestlers surrounded the ring. Stephanie said Roman would have to keep fighting until roman could no longer move. Vince said Kevin would be the first to fight and everyone else had to stay outside the ring, at least for awhile.

Roman Reigns vs Kevin Owens

Collar and Elbow but both men held their ground. Side Headlock into a Go Behind by Roman. Kevin worked over Roman’s arm. Roman reversed things until he was sent to the ropes. Shoulder Tackle sent Kevin out to the floor. Kevin kicked away at the World Champion. Corner Clothesline and punches by Kevin. Running Back Elbow by Kevin to draw a two. Rear Chin Lock by Kevin.

The ref checked to see if Roman was asleep. He wasn’t. Roman sent Kevin into the ropes. Kevin fought out of the Samoan Drop. Roman settled for the Rolling Neckbreaker. Roman went out to the apron and Kevin clocked the champion. Backsplash Senton, on the floor, by Kevin sent us to break.

Kevin reversed a Whip but ate a boot. They ended up on the floor and Roman was launched with a Fallaway Slam into the barricade. 2 count, back in the ring. Kevin locked in a seated version of the Shinu-Numaki. Roman came back to drop Kevin. Superkick by Owens. 1-2-nope.

Interesting side not about Kevin. On the new Owen Hart DVD, he mentions that when it came time for him to change his name (from Kevin Steen), he took Owens as a tribute to his son, who was named after Owen Hart.

Rear Chin Lock by Kevin. Roman took Kevin to the corner and hit a hard Headbutt. Roman charged and hit the ring post. Cannonball! 2 count for Owens. Kevin missed the Backsplash Senton. Roman got the boot up on Kevin. Uppercut by the champ. The two traded big Haymakers. Roman took control of the situation. Running Clotheslines by Roman. Flying Clothesline dropped Kevin, big time. Kevin rocked Roman with a hard Headbutt. Roman rushed Kevin into the corner and hit repeated Corner Clotheslines. Big Boot by Roman. Reigns stared daggers at the McMahons. Superman Punches to the Ascension. Roman then took out Tyler Breeze with a Spear. Roman screamed at Vince “Is that all you got?” Everyone on the floor rushed the ring. The fans screamed for Brock. New Day and Sheamus took turns brutalizing the champ. Brogue Kick!

The Beast was unleashed! The men in the ring were happy to see Brock Lesnar. That changed when Brock destroyed the New Day. Brock launched Kevin Owens and dropped Alberto Del Rio. Sheamus went after Brock but The Beast laid him out. Suplex City, B*tch! Lesnar basically annihilated everyone in his path. Brock then looked at the fallen Roman Reigns. Brock pulled Roman to mid-ring and stood over him. Brock lifted Roman for an F5.

Your Winner: Brock Lesnar
Raw Ranking: 3.00


–Jay Shannon

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