12/07 WWE Raw Results: Powell’s live review of Drew McIntyre and Sheamus vs. AJ Styles, The Miz, and John Morrison in a handicap match, U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley vs. Jeff Hardy in a non-title match, Randy Orton visits the Firefly Funhouse, WWE TLC build continues

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

WWE Raw (Episode 1,437)
Live from Orlando, Florida at Amway Center
Aired December 7, 2020 on USA Network

[Hour One] The Pat Patterson memorial graphic was shown on the big screen. Vince McMahon and Paul “Triple H” Levesque stood on the stage along with the Raw wrestlers. The broadcast team of Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Samoa Joe stood behind their desk. Phillips acknowledged the death of Patterson and set up the ten bell salute in his honor…

The Raw opening aired… The broadcast team hyped the handicap tag match…

Randy Orton made his entrance. Footage aired of last week’s A Moment of Bliss segment. Orton stood in the ring and said he smashed his moral compass years ago. He said he doesn’t need to hide behind a mask like The Fiend. Orton said he would knock on the Firefly Funhouse door while wondering just exactly who would “let me in.”

The Firefly Funhouse opening played on the big screen. Bray Wyatt stood on the Funhouse set and waved to Orton. Wyatt said that Alexa Bliss would have joined him, but she wasn’t there because Orton was so mean to her the week before. Orton told Wyatt not to play games with him.

“Did you just say games?” Wyatt asked. There was a cut to Wyatt dressed like a gameshow host with a wig and a jacket, and he had a long microphone. Three of the puppets in front of buzzers. The dead frog from a recent episode was given a price. Wyatt asked how Orton should be punished. The puppets chimed in with various ideas. Wyatt didn’t like Ramblin’ Rabbit’s answer and scolded him.

Wyatt said none of his contestants were correct. Wyatt removed the wig while sinister music played. Wyatt said “He” always has the right answer. A Fiend video flashed. Orton said that if Wyatt wanted to play games, then he would play games. Orton called for a match against Wyatt while noting that he would face The Fiend at TLC. “Yowie wowie, I accept,” Wyatt said. Orton smiled while looking at the screen as the Funhouse music played…

The broadcast team hyped the Orton vs. Wyatt match, then set up a sponsored recap of Asuka and Lana’s recent wins over Shayna Baszler and Nia Jax. Phillips hyped Baszler and Jax vs. Asuka and Lana for the WWE Women’s Tag Titles at TLC. Asuka and Lana made their entrance. Phillips hyped Asuka vs. Baszler for after the break… [C]

Powell’s POV: I’m shocked that they haven’t made the women’s tag title match a tables match given how many times Lana has been put through the broadcast table. Perhaps that stipulation will still be added. The heel vs. heel dynamic of Wyatt vs. Orton continues to be strange, yet their feud is also compelling.

A montage of Pat Patterson photos were shown along with tweets from WWE personalities…

Nia Jax gave Shayna Baszler a pep talk at the Gorilla Position about demolishing Asuka. Jax said that once they finish with Lana, she will have an ugly, hideous face and they will twist her body in different directions. “She’s gonna have boobs on her back,” Jax said…

Powell’s POV: Will Lana still have boobs in the front in addition to having them on her back? I’m guessing Miro might approve if Jax is talking about Lana having boobs on both sides. After all, four boobs are better than two boobs. Hey, Jax brought it up.

1. Raw Women’s Champion Asuka (w/Lana) vs. Shayna Baszler (w/Nia Jax) in a non-title match. Early in the match, Baszler suplexed Asuka, who rolled to ringside selling head and neck pain. Baszler followed her to ringside. Lana checked on Asuka, and was shoved down by Jax, then Baszler ran Asuka into the broadcast table. [C]

Asuka came back with a release German suplex. Asuka followed up with a Codebreaker, which was oddly called a facebuster. Asuka went for a cross arm breaker, but Baszler countered into a play for her own finisher, which Asuka avoided. Asuka went for the Asuka Lock, but she gave it up when Jax attacked Lana at ringside.

Lana ended up shoving Jax into the ring steps, then dove off the steps at her. Jax caught Lana in powerbomb position, but Lana countered into a huracanrana that sent Jax crashing into the broadcast table. In the ring, Asuka rolled up Baszler and pinned her…

Raw Women’s Champion Asuka defeated Shayna Baszler in a non-title match.

Powell’s POV: It’s really said that an Asuka vs. Baszler match felt as unimportant as this one did. There’s no reason other than creative ineptitude that Asuka and Baszler can’t have a terrific feud over the Raw Women’s Championship. Instead, this was all about building up to a throwaway tag title match at TLC, and the creative forces still aren’t doing anything to build up singles challengers for the Raw Women’s Championship.

The broadcast team hyped Bobby Lashley vs. Jeff Hardy, and Kofi Kingston vs. Shelton Benjamin for later in the show…

“The Hurt Business” Bobby Lashley, MVP, Shelton Benjamin, and Cedric Alexander were shown walking backstage. They tormented a crew member and then laughed once he walked away…

Phillips hyped Drew McIntyre’s “road to TLC” as coming up after the break… [C] A graphic touted that Miz has won 19 championships in WWE and also listed several of his television ventures…

The broadcast team set up a video package on Drew McIntyre’s recent television segments involving Sheamus, The Miz, John Morrison, AJ Styles, and Omos…

Highlights aired of last week’s Retribution related matches…

Ricochet and Dana Brooke were talking backstage when Riddle showed up with a box of “Bronuts” and asked if they’d seen MVP or Bobby Lashley. Ricochet said they were talking strategy for a mixed tag match. Riddle asked them to let him know if they see MVP or Lashley, then made his exit. Sarah Schreiber showed up and asked Ricochet about teaming with Brooke after rejecting Retribution.

Ricochet said he’s not opposed to being on a team, but he is opposed to being a team consisting of complete jackasses. Brooke said she won’t be disrespected after she’s worked so hard and so long to prove that she belongs. Brooke pointed out a bruise below her eye and said she owes one to Reckoning…

Mustafa Ali, Slapjack, and Reckoning made their entrance… [C]

Powell’s POV: Brooke always talks about how hard she’s worked to show she belongs. It’s as if Lana’s character is somehow based on Brooke’s character.

An ad for NXT hyped the fallout from the WarGames event and Finn Balor returning… A pre-tape with Ali, Slapjack, and Reckoning played. It closed with Ali saying Ricochet and Brooke would meet their end at the hands of Retribution… Brooke and Ricochet made their entrances…

2. Ricochet and Dana Brooke vs. Slapjack and Reckoning (wMustafa Ali) in a mixed tag match. Brooke slapped Reckoning to start, then Reckoning returned the favor. Brooke took down Reckoning and threw punches at her. The men tagged in. Ricochet cleared Slapjack to ringside, then performed a dive over the top ropes onto him. Ali told Ricochet that he belongs with Retribution.

Back inside the ring, Slapjack performed a falcon arrow for a near fall. The women tagged in. Brooke performed a sit-out slam on Reckoning and then pinned her to win the match. Ali was shown seething at ringside.

Ricochet and Dana Brooke beat Slapjack and Reckoning in 1:45.

After the match, Ali barked at Reckoning and Slapjack for losing the match. “This is how you repay me?” Ali asked them before leaving…

Powell’s POV: Remember when Retribution actually claimed their plan was to take down WWE? And now they can’t even beat Dana Brooke.

Sheamus was shown taping up his hands backstage when Keith Lee approached him. Lee said the entire locker room knows that it’s only a matter of time until Sheamus stabs McIntyre in the back. Sheamus stood up and went face to face with Lee. “Excuse me while I turn on the champion and beat the hell out of him,” Sheamus said…

A Smackdown ad focused on Roman Reigns, Kevin Owens, and Jey Uso… [C] The broadcast team congratulated Becky Lynch and Seth Rollins on the birth of their daughter…

The Miz and John Morrison hosted The Dirt Sheet inside the ring. The duo introduced AJ Styles as their guest.

[Hour Two] Styles and Omos headed to the ring. Omos remained at ringside while Miz apologized for not having a chair big enough for him. Styles noted that he would be facing Drew McIntyre for the first time ever in a TLC match. Miz spoke about taking out McIntyre in the handicap match. Miz and Morrison impersonated the accents of McIntyre and Sheamus.

Sheamus made his entrance and spoke from ringside about what he would do to Miz and Morrison if he heard them talking that way at a bar. The heels said Sheamus has no friends and mocked him for being outnumbered. Sheamus said they’re not exactly right.

Drew McIntyre made his entrance and then he and Sheamus entered the ring. McIntyre complimented Miz and Morrison for coming back for more no matter how many times he roughs them up. McIntyre said the word in the locker room is that Miz has no balls. McIntyre said it’s not true, Miz has balls, they’re just not his original pair because those are in Maryse’s purse. McIntyre said Miz replaced his balls with Morrison’s balls when he made him “your own personal sidekick bitch.”

Styles stood at ringside next to Omos and pointed out that it was four-on-two. McIntyre and Sheamus quickly roughed up Miz and Morrison and cleared them from the ring. McIntyre grabbed the Money in the Bank briefcase and tossed it from the ring to the stage…

Powell’s POV: It’s bad enough that it feels like McIntyre beats Miz and Morrison in every Raw main event, but now he’s beating them up before they even get to the part where he beats them up in the main event. So it’s a handicap match and they’ve already had McIntyre beat up the pests, so perhaps the heels are going over. I wish I cared.

Phillips set up a recap of the Wyatt and Orton segment and hyped their match for later in the show…

Raw Tag Champions Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their entrance… [C] Additional Patterson photos and tweets were displayed…

3. Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) vs. Shelton Benjamin (w/MVP, Cedric Alexander). Benjamin was the early aggressor and picked up a couple of two counts. Kingston came back with a clunky standing double stomp. Benjamin stuffed an SOS attempt and performed a big powerbomb for a near fall. Benjamin applied an ankle lock, but Kingston reached the ropes.

Benjamin dumped Kingston to ringside. When Benjamin followed to the floor, Kingston ran him into the ringside barricade. Kingston returned to the ring. Benjamin barely beat the referee’s count, but he ran into a Trouble In Paradise kick and was pinned by Kingston…

Kofi Kingston defeated Shelton Benjamin in 3:25.

After the match, Alexander took the mic and told Kingston to get in the ring so that he could wipe the mat with him. Kingston was heading back to the ring going into a break… [C]

4. Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods) vs. Cedric Alexander (w/MVP, Shelton Benjamin). The match was joined in progress. The broadcast team replayed a spot from Kingston’s match with Benjamin where he was flipped over and sold a knee injury due to landing on his feet. Kingston continued to sell the knee during his match with Alexander.

Kingston performed a clunky version of SOS for a near fall. Kingston limped as he stood up. Alexander ended up dropkicking the knee, then performed a brainbuster for a near fall. A short time later, Kingston went for a move from the top rope, but Alexander moved and Kingston landed on his feet and sold the injury. Alexander performed the Lumbar Check and scored the pin…

Cedric Alexander defeated Kofi Kingston.

Powell’s POV: Kingston won his first match and it was portrayed as if he lost the second match due to a knee injury. Creative is so worried about protecting the babyfaces that the heels don’t even look good when they actually win matches.

Highlights aired of Jeff Hardy beating Elias in the Symphony of Destruction match… Phillips hyped a tribute to Patterson… [C] The “My Way” video package on Patterson aired…

Powell’s POV: I believe that’s the third time I’ve watched the “My Way” video package on WWE programming. No complaints. It’s wonderful.

The broadcast team spoke at ringside about Patterson briefly, then Phillips transitioned to recapping the Miz TV segment… Drew McIntyre made his entrance for the handicap tag match… [C] A Tribute to the Troops video package aired… The remainder of the handicap match entrances took place…

5. Drew McIntyre and Sheamus vs. AJ Styles (w/Omos), The Miz, and John Morrison in a handicap match. Morrison hit McIntyre with a forearm, then McIntyre fired back and knocked Morrison to the mat. McIntyre tossed Morrison to the corner and called for Styles to tag in, but he didn’t get his wish.

A short time later, Sheamus took a swing at Miz at ringside. Miz ducked and Sheamus stopped short of hitting McIntyre, who told him to get his head in the game. Morrison dived at the babyface duo. They caught Morrison and then launched him over the broadcast table and into one of the chairs. McIntyre and Sheamus smiled and high-fived. [C]

[Hour Three] McIntyre and Sheamus took turns working over Miz. McIntyre taunted Styles, who hadn’t tagged in to face him. Miz ended up getting a shot in on McIntyre and then backed him into the heel corner. Styles tagged in briefly to get a shot in. McIntyre knocked Styles and Morrison off the apron and then roughed up Miz before tagging out.

Sheamus hit his clubbing forearms to the chest of Miz while glaring at Styles, Omos, and Morrison. Miz raked the eyes of Sheamus and then clipped his knee. Sheamus was isolated by the heels. Styles rolled Sheamus into a Calf Crusher, which McIntyre broke by running in and kicking Styles.

Styles set up for a Styles Clash on Sheamus, who countered into White Noise. Sheamus made the hot tag. McIntyre worked over Miz and Morrison. McIntyre backdropped Morrison who did an extra half rotation. McIntyre set up for his finisher, but Miz pulled Morrison from the ring.

Styles threw a kick at McIntyre from the apron. Sheamus tagged in and worked over the heels. Sheamus went for a Brogue Kick on Morrision, who ducked, and Sheamus accidentally took out McIntyre. Styles hit Sheamus with a Phenomenal Forearm and then pinned him.

AJ Styles, The Miz, and John Morrison defeated Drew McIntyre and Sheamus in 15:40 in a handicap match.

After the match, McIntyre leaned against the barricade and held his jaw while looking at Sheamus, who sat in the ring and looked at McIntyre…

The broadcast team hyped Wyatt vs. Orton for later in the show… [C]

Powell’s POV: The handicap match was more about the McIntyre and Sheamus relationship than it was about setting up Styles as a serious threat for the championship or even an attempt to justify the needless TLC gimmick being used for the title match. Once again, the babyfaces are protected due to the handicap match stipulation. There are plenty of times when it’s logical to protect the babyfaces. The problem is that they are going overboard with it on Raw, and that’s part of the reason that none of the heels have any meaningful level of heat.

Phillips hyped Drew McIntyre, Nia Jax, Shayna Baszler, Cedric Alexander, and Shelton Benjamin as the guests on Raw Talk…

The broadcast team announced that Nia Jax will face Lana next week on Raw…

Backstage, a fearful Lana told Asuka that she was going to be slaughtered in her match against Jax. Lana said they could win the tag titles together, but she can’t face Jax alone. Asuka made Lana say that she believes in herself, can beat Jax, and they can become the tag team champions. Lana kept repeating the lines about believing in herself and beating Jax after Asuka left the picture. Lana turned around and found Jax glaring at her…

Sheamus was pacing backstage when Charly Caruso approached him and asked about Brogue Kicking his best friend. Shamus said he knew McIntyre was going to come back and try to kick his ass. He said it was not intentional. McIntyre showed up and then Caruso made her exit. “You know it wasn’t intentional, right?” Sheamus asked. McIntyre was hard to make out, but he seemed to ask Sheamus if he knew what had to happen… [C]

McIntyre and Sheamus were trading punches coming out of the break while a group of wrestlers cheered them on. Pat Buck got between them, then McIntyre and Sheamus roughed up Buck and slammed him through a table. McIntyre and Sheamus both smiled and walked off together…

Powell’s POV: Pat Buck brought that shit on himself by wearing that hideous plaid suit.

Bobby Lashley and MVP made their entrance, then the broadcast team narrated footage of Lashley attacking Riddle last week. Jeff Hardy was shown warming up at the Gorilla Position when Riddle showed up with his “Bronuts.” Hardy told Riddle that he had a match. Riddle tried to talk him into teaming up as the Hardy Bros and said their finisher could “Broetry in Motion.” Hardy made his entrance, then Riddle at his donuts while saying, “More for me”…

6. U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley (w/MVP) vs. Jeff Hardy in a non-title match. Lashley was dominant to start the match. Hardy came back briefly and went to the ropes, but he was distracted by MVP climbing onto the apron. Riddle ran out and pulled down MVP. Hardy dumped Lashley to ringside and hit him with a clothesline from the apron. [C]

Lashley regained offensive control during the break. Lashley dumped Hardy to ringside and then walked down the ring steps while jawing at Riddle. Lashley threw Hardy back inside the ring. Lashley ended up applying a sleeper hold. Hardy elbowed his way free and got in some offense, including a Whisper in the Wind, which led to a two count.

Hardy put Lashley down with a Twist of Fate. Hardy went up top for his finisher, but Lashley got back to his feet. Hardy jumped back into the ring, landed on his feet, and then ate a spear. Lashley applied the Hurt Lock and got the submission win. Lashley held on after the match, but then released it by throwing Hardy at Riddle, who was entering the ring to help…

U.S. Champion Bobby Lashley defeated Jeff Hardy in 14:05 in a non-title match.

Powell’s POV: A competitive match. I’m not sure why they didn’t just make it a title match if they were going to put over Lashley anyway. But at least they didn’t bend over backwards to protect the babyface and instead let Lashley go over clean. Riddle’s main roster character is still more annoying than endearing.

Randy Orton was shown in his locker room. Someone knocked on his door, but when he opened it there was no one there. Orton closed the door. Then Ramblin’ Rabbitt puppet into the doorway and spoke about how much fun his match with Wyatt would be… [C]

Another batch of Patterson photos and tweets were shown… Ring entrances for the main event took place…

7. Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt. The match spilled to ringside where Wyatt blocked Orton from suplexing him onto the broadcast table, then reversed it and slammed Orton onto the table. Wyatt moved toward Phillips and Saxton. Philips hopped the barricade, but Wyatt reached over and took the headset. “Yowie wowie, we’ll be right back,” Wyatt said into the headset. [C]

Wyatt took offensive control, but Orton blocked Sister Abigail. A short time later, Orton took Wyatt to ringside and dumped him onto the broadcast table. Both men returned to the ring where Wyatt set up for his finisher, but Orton avoided it again and thumbed Wyatt in the eye. Orton executed a draping DDT and then struck the Viper’s Pose.

The Fiend lighting changed. Orton hit the RKO on Wyatt and went for the cover, but the lights went out completely. When the lights turned on, Orton was lying over The Fiend, who sat up and put him in the Mandible Claw to close the show…

Randy Orton fought Bray Wyatt to a non-finish in 12:00.

Powell’s POV: WWE made creative use of the show being held in the empty venue. Speaking of which, it’s the end of the Amway Center era, as WWE will be moving to Tropicana Field in Tampa, Florida starting with Friday’s Smackdown. Anyway, the approach they used in the main event was understandable given that they’ve already announced Orton vs. The Fiend for TLC.

Overall, this was another episode that really struggled to fill the three hours. They have to start putting heat on the heels and do a better job of utilizing some of the wasted wrestlers. Why doesn’t Keith Lee have anything better to do than confront Sheamus for a few seconds? Why is Riddle booked as an unlikable nuisance to babyfaces and heels? Why does Retribution still exist when those wrestlers could be repackaged and actually help the cause rather than serve as huge turnoffs? Can we at least get through one week without McIntyre beating the hell out of sorry ass Miz and Morrison? Let me know what you thought of the show by assigning it a letter grade in our post show poll available the via the main page. I will be back shortly with my same night audio review for Dot Net Members.


Readers Comments (3)

  1. Twenty years from now, everyone will remember where they were the night Drew McIntyre cut his legendary “Miz’s balls” promo. Jesus. WWE’s writers are truly shit-tier.

  2. Does anyone even watch this any more. I feel like this is like the last days of like How I Met your Mother or Jay Leno. It’s just limping along until someone finally pulls the plug

  3. “Can we at least get through one week without McIntyre beating the hell out of sorry ass Miz and Morrison? …. A good question.

    and will happen most likely when They stop putting Lana through tables weekly.

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