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Dirt Sheet – MISS: This was The Miz & Morrison and AJ Styles at their very worst. I wouldn’t mind Miz & Morrison’s act so much if they weren’t tied to the Money in the Bank briefcase and weren’t connected to the feud between Styles and Drew McIntyre for the WWE Championship. This was so stupid on so many levels. I hated this start to the show in every way.
Styles vs. Sheamus – HIT: At least the match that followed that terrible opening segment was good. Styles needed a strong win which he got over Sheamus here. Unfortunately, Sheamus should also be kept strong considering he is also involved in the program with McIntyre and he might be a future WWE Championship challenger. So the match likely shouldn’t have happened, but at least WWE picked a winner when they often do some sort of crapy non-finish in these situations.
New Day & Hardy vs. Hurt Business – HIT: This was another good match. There was lots of good wrestling action throughout in a nice long match. The Hurt Business continues to be a bright spot on an otherwise bad show. They are presented as a strong faction. They talk big, but back up the talk. I am tired of the matchups involving them against The New Day. WWE needs to get the Tag Titles off of New Day and onto Alexander & Benjamin ASAP to move on to something new for both teams.
Women’s Division – MISS: The Raw Women’s Division is terrible right now. There is still some talent there even without Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. They have Asuka and Shayna Baszler who should be built up as the top babyface and heel on the brand to face over the Women’s Championship. Instead, nobody seems to want to face Asuka for the Title. They have the three generic hot blonds working with Asuka in various ways against Baszler & Nia Jax over the Tag Titles. They are wasting Alexa Bliss as The Fiend’s girlfriend. Nikki Cross could contribute more. Naomi is on Raw since the draft, but hasn’t been on. Lacey Evans isn’t great, but her character work is good and her in ring work is ok. She could be used in some way. I’m glad Lana is out of the Tag Title match at TLC, but I’m not excited about any possible partner for Asuka. I am hoping it won’t be Mandy Rose or Dana Brooke. Rhea Ripley perhaps?
Elias & Ryker – MISS: I don’t care about Elias at all, and adding Jackson Ryker to his act isn’t going to help. Having him in any way involved with the 24/7 championship isn’t going to help either.
Lee vs. Miz & Morrison – MISS: I don’t like having this match at all and the execution wasn’t great. There were some good spots here and there, but overall it wasn’t good enough. There were some timing issues, especially before the commercial break. John Morrison bumped over the top rope before Kieth Lee actually hit him with the pounce. That type of amateur execution should not be happening on Raw. It was good to see The Miz actually win a match for a change, but I don’t like seeing Lee take a loss. The fact that it was a handicap match protected Lee some, but then the boost to Mr. Money in the Bank isn’t as big.
Firefly Funhouse Field Trip – MISS: It is bad enough when you have Bray Wyatt interacting with puppets on an obviously pre-taped segment on his Firefly Funhouse set. But when he is doing it in the ring and other wrestlers are interacting with them in the backstage area, it really takes me out of the show. Hide and seek? This kiddy stuff is ridiculous. Wyatt looked like an idiot for sitting in the rocking chair when it was clearly a trap set by Orton. Then there was something else that happened that was totally unbelievable. I can’t quite put my finger on it. Oh yeah. Orton tried to murder Wyatt. He tried to kill him by burning him alive. The announcers were quiet instead of yelling for help. Where was security? Where were the EMTs? Someone was in a box on fire! And of course, he magically turned into the Fiend and is impervious to pain and got his revenge by knocking him out, so why do we need to see a match between them? Where do they go from fire?
Riddle vs. MVP – MISS: The only good thing about Matt Riddle’s character this week is that at least the babyfaces weren’t trying to avoid him like they have been recently. New Day and Jeff Hardy actually seemed to like him this week which is a step up. Of course, I can’t figure out why they would like him since he is the most annoying person in the history of the universe. I remain a huge fan of his in ring work, but was disappointed that we only got to see a 1 minute match with him and MVP. I appreciate the fact that he got a strong win as he should. And while MVP has been more of a mouthpiece than a wrestler, he does still wrestle enough and is part of a strong faction. Therefore, having him lose 1 minute matches isn’t good.
Title Ascension Ceremony – HIT: This was at least something different instead of a contract signing. It also put some heat on Styles and let him stand tall on the go home show before the PPV on Sunday. It was a nice tease of the violence of the TLC match. I would rather see them in a regular match than a TLC match, but it should still be pretty good.
Jon Mezzera is PWTorch.com’s WWE Hits & Misses Specialist, providing his point of view for Raw and Smackdown each week. Email him at email@example.com. Follow Jon on Twitter @JonMezzera.