By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Raw (Episode 1,432)
Live from Orlando, Florida at Amway Center
Aired November 2, 2020 on USA Network
[Hour One] Raw opened with a recap of last week’s show… The Raw opening video aired… The broadcast team was Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe…
WWE Champion Randy Orton made his entrance. Phillips said the Apex Predator had become the hunted. The announcers spoke until Orton’s music finally stopped playing and he started his promo six minutes after the top of the hour.
Orton spoke about becoming champion eight days earlier. He said he proved that he is the best. Orton said he’s better than Edge, Undertaker, Shawn Michaels, Ric Flair, and Drew McIntyre. He said he proved he’s better than everyone backstage.
Orton said the wrestlers in the back claim he’s been handed everything, but the reason he’s in this position is because he is the best. He said he is no longer the legend killer, he is simply a legend.
Orton said the title comes with great responsibility and a bullseye on his back. Orton dared anyone in the back to try to take the title from him. He said he didn’t care if it was McIntyre, Roman Reigns, or The Fiend. “Come and get it,” Orton said.
Alexa Bliss made her entrance. Bliss entered the ring and stood in the middle of it with a smile on her face while Orton walked a circle around her. “Where is he?” Orton asked. Bliss showed off gloves that read “play” on one and “pain” on the other. She kept the “pain” glove up and said, “He could be here.”
The lighting changed to Fiend’s red, but he didn’t come out. Orton walked around the ring waiting for The Fiend. Bliss disappeared and Orton turned and walked into a Claymore Kick from Drew McIntyre, who dared Orton to give him a rematch. McIntyre said he would make Orton’s life a living hell.
After McIntyre left the ring, The Miz and John Morrison rushed from the opposite side and called for a referee. A ref entered the ring and the ring announcer started to announce that Miz was cashing in his Money in the Bank contract, but McIntyre returned to the ring and roughed up Miz and Morrison. McIntyre looked down at the duo and said only he would take the title from Orton, who started to recover while McIntyre headed to the back… [C]
Powell’s POV: A decent opening segment. The MITB tease was solid even if there was no reason to think Miz would cash in successfully. It’s encouraging that McIntyre has been prominently featured in the opening segment on both Raw episodes that have been held since he dropped the title to Orton.
Charly Caruso interviewed The Miz and John Morrison backstage. Miz vented about how close he was to cashing in his MITB contract and complained about McIntyre stopping him. Morrison announced that they challenged McIntyre to a handicap match…
Powell’s POV: I was hoping that creative was going to book Miz and Morrison more seriously once Miz took the MITB contract, but the handicap match combined with Morrison clowning around during this segment suggests they are playing the same mid-card roles.
Elias sat in the ring and played his guitar. He said there’s a time in every man’s life when he has to admit the truth to himself. Elias said Jeff Hardy did that when he realized that Elias’s career surpassed his, which led to Hardy hitting him with a guitar. Elias boasted about his album going to number one on the (soundtrack) charts. Elias spoke about the guitar on a pole match and said smashing the guitar over Hardy’s back might be his greatest hit ever. Elias started to play his song “Amen” but he was interrupted by Hardy’s entrance theme…
1. Jeff Hardy vs. Elias in a Guitar on a Pole Match. Hardy made a quick play for the guitar, but Elias stopped him. Rinse and repeat only only with Elias going for the guitar. They fought to ringside and Hardy got the better of the exchange. Hardy made another play for the guitar, but Elias threw the stool from his in-ring performance at him.
Hardy hit a late Twist of Fate and then went for the guitar. Elias tried to stop him, but Hardy kicked him away and grabbed the guitar. Hardy leapt fro the top rope and slammed the guitar over Elias’s back and then pinned him…
Jeff Hardy defeated Elias in 8:20 in a Guitar on a Pole Match.
Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke were shown warming up for their match, which Phillips said was coming up after the break… [C]
Powell’s POV: The Hardy vs. Elias feud feels flat, so hopefully this was the blowoff.
2. Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax vs. Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke for the WWE Women’s Tag Titles. Just as the match was about to start, Lana made her entrance while Phillips noted that she was on Team Raw at Survivor Series with the four women in the match. Lana stood at ringside as the match started.
Baszler tagged in and then jawed at Lana while questioning why she was out there. Brooke went on the offensive and bulldogged Baszler for a near fall. Baszler was shot toward the ropes. She slipped under the bottom rope and grabbed Lana, but Brooke caught her with a kick.
Back inside the ring, Baszler put Brooke in her finisher, but Lana provided a distraction. A short time later, Baszler applied the Kirifuda Clutch and got the win…
Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax defeated Mandy Rose and Dana Brooke in 3:35 to retain the WWE Women’s Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: Phillips said it was a title match even though it was advertised as being a non-title match. Lana wasn’t put through a table, but the night is young.
Randy Orton was interviewed by Charly Caruso backstage. Orton said he finds it amusing for people to forget how easy it can be for the hunters to become the hunted. Orton said McIntyre would get a reminder of that in the form of an RKO… [C]
WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth made his entrance with a water bottle in hand. Sarah Schreiber was waiting in the ring for him and questioned why he would accept a match with U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley. Truth said he came out to meet his favorite water boy Bobby Boucher. She informed him that Lashley was actually his opponent. Lashley made his entrance…
Powell’s POV: You can do it!
3. U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley vs. WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth in a non-title match. Truth said nobody needed to get hurt, so he laid down for Lashley, who refused to pin him. Lashley tried to pick up Truth, who kicked him and got in a little offense. Lashley came back with a spear and won with the Hurt Lock, which Phillips called the Full Nelson this week.
U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley defeated WWE 24/7 Champion R-Truth in 0:55 in a non-title match.
After the match, Drew Gulak ran out and covered Truth, but Lashley pulled him off and put him in the Hurt Lock, which Phillips called the Hurt Lock this time. Lashley released the hold and put Gulak on top of Truth. The referee counted the pin, meaning Drew Gulak won the WWE 24/7 Championship…
Powell’s POV: You’ll never forget where you were when Drew Gulak won the WWE 24/7 Championship. Or something. Yawn.
Backstage, Lince Dorado informed Gran Metalik that Gulak won the 24/7 Title. They were going to go after Gulak, but they ran into AJ Styles’ giant associate and stopped in their tracks. Styles showed up and asked if they had a problem. The Lucha House Party duo backed down… [C]
Sarah Schreiber tried to talk with Nia Jax about Lana, but Jax barked not to say Lana’s name in her presence. Jax complained about Lana being on Team Raw. Jax said she would end Lana’s career…
Powell’s POV: End her career? My lord, they are going to book her as a pro wrestler who is more concerned with being a gamer.
[Hour Two] AJ Styles and the big man headed to the ring for a promo. The big man stood on the apron while Styles delivered a promo about the Team Raw vs. Team Smackdown match at Survivor Series.
Styles cut a promo about being the captain of Team Raw. Styles introduced his teammates Sheamus and Keith Lee while Saxton said Styles had not been officially named the captain of the team. Lee said he and Sheamus never agreed to call him captain. He added that if Styles thinks his sizable friend is enough then he should reconsider. Sheamus agreed with Lee and said he would never take order from Styles regardless of the big man.
Braun Strowman made his entrance with a mic in hand. Strowman said Team Raw needed “these hands” and said Raw had him on the team. Lee said he, Styles, and Sheamus had to qualify for the team, so Strowman had to do the same. Strowman boasted about his Survivor Series accomplishments and claimed he beat Lee clean in a match on Raw. Strowman claimed he should be the team captain.
Adam Pearce walked out and said he would love to have Strowman on Team Raw, but he was having a tough time finding someone to face him. Lee interrupted and took issue with Strowman claiming that he beat him clean. Sheamus said he’s a senior member of the roster and Lee should stand behind him. Sheamus was willing to face Strowman.
Styles pitched the idea of a Triple Threat match with Strowman vs. Lee vs. Sheamus. Styles said Strowman would be on Team Raw if he won the match. Pearce asked if there were any objections. “They don’t pay me to talk,” Strowman said. Pearce said the match was official. Phillips said the match was coming up next… [C]
Powell’s POV: The only thing more tiresome than the meaningless battle for brand supremacy is the annual bickering over who are the captain of the Survivor Series teams.
4. Braun Strowman vs. Keith Lee vs. Sheamus in a Triple Threat. AJ Styles sat in on commentary while the big man stood behind him. Lee performed a scary flip dive. He grazed the ropes and then the apron, but his fall was broken by both opponents. Strowman took out Lee and Sheamus with a running shoulder block.
Strowman cleared the broadcast table and wanted to chokeslam both men through it, but they fought him off and ran him into the ring steps. Sheamus and Lee took a piece of the ring steps and rammed them into Strowman. Sheamus shoved Lee into the ring post.
Sheamus put Lee in a sleeper at ringside. Strowman recovered and then charged both men, causing all three to crash through the ringside barricade. [C] Lee and Sheamus fought in the ring coming out of the break. Strowman returned with another shoulder block and a clothesline on his opponents.
Sheamus avoided a charging Strowman in the corner, then performed White Noise on him for a two count. Sheamus went up top, but Lee grabbed him by the throat. Sheamus fought off Lee, but Strowman recovered and ended up superplexing Sheamus with Lee underneath for a Tower of Doom spot.
Later, Lee performed a running cross body block on Strowman for a two count. Sheamus returned and was suplexed by Lee. Sheamus came right back with a big knee to Lee’s head, which led to a two count.
Sheamus set up for his finisher, but Strowman returned to the apron and pulled Sheamus to ringside. Strowman returned to the ring and was clotheslined by Lee, who then got a two count. Lee set up for a powerbomb, but Sheamus returned and gave him a Brogue Kick. Strowman performed a running powerslam on Sheamus and pinned him.
Braun Strowman defeated Keith Lee and Sheamus in a Triple Threat match to qualify for Team Raw at Survivor Series.
After the match, Styles entered the ring and applauded all of his teammates. Styles asked them to shake it out since they were going to be on the same team. Strowman told Lee that they don’t like each other, but they needed to put their differences aside.
Lee and Strowman shook hands. Strowman and Sheamus bickered. Strowman offered his hand, but Sheamus slapped it aside, then hugged Strowman. Sheamus followed that up with a Brogue Kick once Strowman’s guard was down. Lee knocked Sheamus to ringside, then Styles knocked Lee to ringside and celebrated…
Powell’s POV: This was the highlight of the night so far. Granted, that’s not saying much, but this was a fun Triple Threat match even if the outcome felt rather predictable. Everyone involved worked hard and put together an entertaining match. I liked the post match angle when it looked like everyone might be on the same page. I was actually up for the idea of seeing a united team of badasses face another united team of badasses, but instead we’re going to get more bickering.
Angel Garza spoke into the camera to that “special someone out there in the WWE Universe.” He said they might be far apart, but what they feel is real. “This one goes to you,” Garza said before holding up a rose in front of the camera…
Huskus and Ramblin’ Rabbit were shown in front of a swear jar while Phillips hyped the Firefly Funhouse. The rabbit put a $5 bill inside the jar… [C]
The broadcast team narrated highlights of Undertaker’s Halloween Eve appearance on The Tonight Show. They followed up by recapping the opening segment…
Drew McIntyre was interviewed by Charly Caruso on the backstage ring set. He spoke about doing whatever it takes to get his rematch with Orton and said he would do it with a smile on his face. McIntyre also noted that he accepted the handicap match challenge…
Bray Wyatt and Alexa Bliss hosted the Firefly Funhouse. Wyatt said they would talk about the three most important letters in sports entertainment. Huskus wondered if it was PIG. The letters were actually RKO. Abby chimed in and said Orton could go F himself. Bliss said there was no foul language in the Funhouse. Abby said Bliss could go F herself too.
Wyatt recalled Orton burning down his shed (highlights were shown). Wyatt said “he” never forgets. Bliss she wanted to show of a trick. Wyatt put his “heal” glove over her head. The next shot showed Bliss sticking her tongue out and it grew. “Oh, shit,” Wyatt said (he was censored)… [C]
Phillips hyped the WWE content available on the Peacock streaming service…
Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler made their entrance for Jax’s match against Lana. A pre-tape with Lacey Evans and Peyton Royce laughing about how the broadcast table wouldn’t survive the match. Baszler was shown clearing the table. Lana made her entrance. A pre-taped Lana promo aired. She said she would turn the tables on Jax…
5. Nia Jax (w/Shayna Baszler) vs. Lana. The broadcast team noted that Jax had put Lana through the broadcast table six times on previous shows. Jax dominated the match until Lana caught her with a few kicks to the head. Jax knocked Lana down and could have pinned her, but she picked her up to deliver more punishment.
Phillips could be seen looking at something behind him briefly while the match continued. Jax bodyslammed Lana and told her to quit. Lana pulled herself up. Jax gave her a Samoan Drop and then pinned her.
Nia Jax beat Lana in 3:10.
After the match, Jax and Baszler teased leaving, then went back to the ring. Baszler tossed Lana to ringside. Lana tried to fight Jax, who tossed her into the barricade and then gave her another Samoan Drop through the broadcast table…
Powell’s POV: And that’s lucky number seven. We’ll never know for sure, but suspect that live crowds would be cheering the weekly Lana table spot rather than feeling sympathy for her. Fans love table spots and it’s not like Lana has been cast as a sympathetic character before now.
R-Truth was walking backstage wearing a neck brace. He stumbled upon The Hurt Business, then opted to go the other way. MVP said they signed his water bottle for him, then they all had a laugh. Phillips hyped a VIP Lounge for after the break… [C]
[Hour Three] “The Hurt Business” MVP, Bobby Lashley, Shelton Benjamin, and Cedric Alexander headed to the ring for the VIP Lounge. The production crew could be seen putting the broadcast table back together.
MVP said Survivor Series is about getting an opportunity to beat the best. The group took turns talking about Lashley facing Sami Zayn at Survivor Series. Lashley said he would put Zayn to sleep. MVP said the Hurt Business took care of the Retribution problem for WWE and now it’s time to collect their payment. MVP said the payment would be the Raw Tag Titles.
Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their entrance and delivered a promo from the stage. Woods spoke about getting in trouble for staying up late to watch Lashley’s matches while he was in seventh grade. Kingston put over the others and then couldn’t come up with anything for Cedric Alexander.
Kingston and Woods made it to ringside. Kingston boasted that he won more titles during his career than the entire Hurt Business has won. Kingston boasted that he won the WWE Championship, which is something that Lashley hasn’t even done.
MVP said it was a historic win, then pointed out that he lost the title in an eight-second match. MVP said Lashley could probably beat him in less time. Kingston said eight seconds is relevant because Lana said that’s about as long as Lashley can last.
MVP said they are all about business while New Day are all about jokes. Woods said New Day is a worldwide conglomerate while Hurt Business is another failed 2020 internet startup… [C]
Powell’s POV: This verbal exchange had its moments, but it just didn’t need to go on as long as it did. So the Hurt Business’s payment for taking care of Retribution for WWE is an eventual tag title shot? These guys work cheap.
6. Raw Tag Champs Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods vs. Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin in a non-title match. MVP sat in on commentary. Woods was on the offensive and went up top, but Alexander stumbled into the ropes to cut him off, then Benjamin knocked Woods to the floor with a kick. Woods was isolated going into the break. [C]
Kingston checked in and performed a running stomp on Alexander for a near fall. Alexander stuffed an SOS attempt and countered into a Michinoku Driver for a near fall. Benjamin tagged in. Woods tagged in after a clunky sequence and DDT’d Benjamin for a two count. Benjamin came right back with a spinebuster for a two count.
Woods performed a DDT from the middle rope and had the pin, but Alexander broke it up. Kingston sent Alexander to ringside and set up for a move, but Benjamin cut him off and tossed him into the air and released him. Kingston rolled to the floor. Alexander made a blind tag and hit a Neuralyzer, then Benjamin followed up with Paydirt. Alexander covered Woods for the win…
Cedric Alexander and Shelton Benjamin defeated Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods in 12:50 in a non-title match.
Powell’s POV: I like the idea of Alexander and Benjamin feuding with New Day. There aren’t many tag teams on Raw these days and it gives Alexander and Benjamin an actual purpose beyond coming off like sidekicks in Hurt Business.
Backstage, Nikki Cross approached Alexa Bliss, who stood with her back to the camera. Cross made her pitch to Bliss to salvage their friendship. She ended up spinning Bliss around and then took a step back in fear. Bliss had colored contacts in her eyes and smiled at Cross… [C]
7. Ricochet vs. Tucker. Tucker’s entrance was not televised and he wore long pants with “Knight” written on the back. Before the match, Mustafa Ali made his entrance and walked around the the ring and then stood on the broadcast table. Ricochet hit the Recoil and won quickly.
Ricochet beat Tucker in 0:38.
After the match, Slapjack, Mace, T-Bar, and Reckoning hit the ring. Ricochet was thrown to ringside, then the Retribution members put the boots to Tucker. T-Bar and Mace performed double big boots on tucker. Slapjack went to ringside and tossed Ricochet inside the ring. Ricochet tried to fight the group, but he was outnumbered.
The Retribution members held Ricochet, who asked Ali why he was doing this. Ali gave instructions, then T-Bar and Mace performed a double chokeslam on Ricochet. Ali stood over Ricochet and put his hand up and made a fist…
Backstage, Drew McIntyre and Sheamus crossed paths and were friendly with one another. Sheamus invited McIntyre to be the fifth man on Team Raw and said they could form the Celtic Connection. McIntyre said nothing would make him happier than fighting side by side, but he can’t because his mind is on Orton and the WWE Championship. Sheamus said he understood, but he told McIntyre to let him know if he changed his mind. Sheamus wished McIntyre well in his handicap match…
Phillips noted that McIntyre and Sheamus had been friends for 15 years. Joe said they have been living a lie for 15 years because there’s no room for championships and friendship. The Miz and John Morrison made their entrance for the handicap match… [C]
Powell’s POV: I like the idea of acknowledging the friendship between McIntyre and Sheamus. Sure, it’s a bit odd that the top babyface is friends with a longtime heel, but it can be explained away by McIntyre in a promo once Sheamus turns on him. More than anything, I am hopeful that a feud that plays on this friendship will somehow add another layer to the Sheamus character. Meanwhile, I guess Retribution showing up again means that Hurt Business didn’t solve the problem after all.
Phillips hyped Braun Strowman, Lacey Evans, Peyton Royce, and Mustafa Ali for Raw Talk… Drew McIntyre made his entrance…
8. Drew McIntyre vs. The Miz and John Morrison in a handicap match. A bunch of pyro shot off around the arena once McIntyre was in the ring. McIntyre dominated the match heading into a break. [C] Miz and Morrison eventually got some offense in, but McIntyre suplexed Morrison from the ropes. Miz tagged in and was worked over by McIntyre, who tossed him around the ring with a couple of suplexes and then performed a neckbreaker. McIntyre kipped up.
McIntyre went for a Future Shock DDT. Miz countered into a Skull Crushing Finale attempt, but McIntyre escaped it and performed a spinebuster. McIntyre went for the pin, but Morrison performed a standing shooting star press to break it up.
Morrison had a brief flurry of offense on McIntyre that resulted in a near fall. Miz made a blind tag. McIntyre shoved Morrison off the ropes, then Miz dropped him with a Skull Crushing Finale that led to a near fall. Miz threw his Daniel Bryan style kicks at McIntyre, who ducked the last one. McIntyre shoved Miz into Morrison, which knocked Morrison off the apron.
McIntyre dropped Miz with a DDT. With both heels at ringside, McIntyre dove onto them. McIntyre brought Miz back inside the ring and put him down with a Claymore Kick and then pinned him…
Drew McIntyre beat The Miz and John Morrison in 15:35 in a handicap match.
After the match, Randy Orton popped up and hit an RKO out of nowhere on McIntyre. The Fiend laugh track played and Orton looked nervous. The Fiend imagery flashed on the screen and an audio track played with Bray Wyatt saying “Let Me In” to close the show…
Powell’s POV: A nice win for McIntyre, who continues to be booked as the top babyface of the company despite dropping the WWE Championship. Unfortunately, it came at the expense of Miz and Morrison. I didn’t expect the heels to win by any means, but I really was hoping they would be elevated to some extent once Miz took the MITB contract. Instead, they look like hapless mid-carders who don’t belong in the title picture.
Overall, Raw continues to struggle. The main event feud is interesting and the new tag title feud has some potential, but they are really struggling to fill the three hours. I will be back shortly with my same night audio review of Raw for Dot Net Members. Let me know what you thought of the show by assigning it a letter grade in our weekly post Raw poll available via the main page. Get out there and vote tomorrow.