WWE RAW HITS & MISSES 11/15: Lynch showcases promo ability, Balor vs. Owens deliver in the ring, Mysterio vs. Lashley misses, more

BY JON MEZZERA, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR


SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

Opening Segment – HIT: WWE is trying to do too much, with a half hearted approach to building to the meaningless Raw vs. Smackdown themed Survivor Series while also telling the stories that are ongoing on each show. It isn’t working, but this opening segment was pretty good while juggling those two things. Big E had a chance to talk about what The Bloodline did to The New Day on Smackdown last week to try to paint his upcoming Champion vs. Champion match against Roman Reigns into a personal issue. It worked pretty well. He did a nice job. He was interrupted by Kevin Owens for the non-PPV related portion of the segment. Owens was great in explaining his side of what happened last week. I like the idea of him becoming the bad person that everyone says he is. This made me look forward to an eventual Owens vs. Big E WWE Title match. Seth Rollins is still in the Title picture too. The beating from the Usos leading to the save by Matt Riddle and Sonya DeVille making the Teddy Long special all worked well too.

Six Man Tag – MISS: These back-to-back matches took up a good amount of time and filled that time with some good wrestling action. I am giving it a Miss mostly because it largely felt inconsequential. The first tag match was short and predictably ended with a disqualification when Rollins attacked Big E. This led to Randy Orton making the save and the predictable continuation of the match as a 6 man tag. While the second match went on, I just couldn’t help but think that I don’t care about RKBro vs. The Usos. I know that they will go their separate ways on their separate shows after Sunday. Overall, I felt like I was watching something that didn’t matter at all.

Becky Lynch – HIT: I’m not giving the overall segment a Hit as Liv Morgan just wasn’t good enough for this spotlight. I won’t give it a Miss either, because the start of the segment when it was just Becky Lynch talking about Charlotte Flair was very good. The idea that WWE wants Lynch to be a heel is crazy. They do seem to want her to be the babyface against Flair, but then go right back to being a heel against Morgan after the PPV. This is why this brand vs. brand theme is so stupid. At least we got to see why we love Becky so much as she tore into Flair. She was great here and I want to see more of this. I do think she and Morgan will have a good match down the line, but Morgan needs to step up her game big time.

The Street Profits vs. Alpha Academy – HIT: This was a good tag match which isn’t surprising considering these are two good tag teams. WWE has been giving Alpha Academy good screen time, potentially trying to set up Ottis for a singles push, but they always lose. Chad Gable had good showings in losing efforts in singles matches back to back weeks. Here, they lost this tag match. I assumed they would win. RKBro needs a challenger other than Styles & Omos. I thought a win here would mean more for Alpha Academy. So, while I didn’t like the outcome of the match, I did enjoy the match itself.

Women’s Tag Champions Matches – MISS: WWE seems to be telling a story about Rhea Ripley carrying her team with Nikki Cross. If this leads to a break up of the team and a change of character for Nikki, and a renewed singles push for Ripley, then it will be worth it. In the meantime however, it didn’t make for good tv. These short matches with Nikki vs. Queen Zelina and Ripley vs. Carmella fit in with WWE’s idiotic 50-50 booking scheme. The heel wins, then the babyface wins. Rinse and repeat. Zelina’s horrible English accent remains horrible. Carmella’s horrible face mask remains horrible. A match between these teams will likely be decent to good, but I’m not really looking forward to it.

Balor vs. Owens – HIT: This was a very good match between Kevin Owens and Finn Balor. Owens needed a win over a strong opponent. WWE could do so much more with Balor, so I would prefer to keep him stronger than taking this loss. But, right now Owens needed the win far more. It was good to see him actually getting a clean win for a change too. It would have been very easy for WWE to have him cheat to win to play into his new heel persona, but having the strong clean win does more for him. It actually plays into the character better where he can brag about it and use it as an example of being a good person.

Styles & Omos vs. The Dirty Dawgs – MISS: Part of my problem with this match was the poor back stage interviews which proceeded it. Overall, AJ Styles and Omos were ok, but the Avengers reference felt dated. Yes, that is one of the biggest movies of all time, but it was also several years ago and even more MCU movies ago. The Dirty Dawgs promo was terrible. The match was ok, but the heel vs. heel dynamic didn’t work for me. It seems like they wanted me to cheer for Styles & Omos, but that won’t be the case when they face RKBro soon. WWE might be setting up Styles and Omos breaking up. We will see what happens there.

Mysterio vs. Lashley – MISS: WWE really had to stretch out the main event to fill up the end of the show. 3 hours is too long! We got the interview with Bobby Lashley which was good, followed by the ring entrance for Rey Mysterio, then a commercial. After the break, they had the Smackdown recap video followed by a replay video of what Lashley did to Dominick last week and Lashley’s entrance and another commercial. Why did Rey have to stay in the ring for so long waiting for his match? After the commercial they plugged Raw Talk before getting to the actual match. The match itself was fine, although there were more sloppy spots than you’d expect in a Mysterio match. It was just ok. These two could have a much better match against each other. The post-match announcement from Adam Pearce was bad too. I hate seeing him continue as a heel authority figure. I don’t understand the decision to take Mysterio out of the match for Austin Theory. From a behind-the-scenes standpoint, more fans want to see Mysterio in the match than Theory. And from a kayfabe standpoint, last week Pearce said he wanted only former World Champions on the Raw team, but here he replaced a former Champion with a guy who just got called up and hasn’t even been presented as a serious threat in the ring.

Jon Mezzera is PWTorch.com’s WWE Hits & Misses Specialist, providing his point of view for Raw and Smackdown each week. Email him at jmezz_torch@yahoo.com.


CATCH-UP: 11/15 WWE MONDAY NIGHT RAW REPORT: Hazelwood’s alt-perspective on Survivor Series go-home, latest in feuds for E/Owens and Lynch/Morgan, Lashley, more

1 Comment on WWE RAW HITS & MISSES 11/15: Lynch showcases promo ability, Balor vs. Owens deliver in the ring, Mysterio vs. Lashley misses, more

  1. I say you steer into the skid with Liv and lean into her nerves as part of the story. I’d be nervous too stepping up to Becky Lynch for my first time in the spotlight!

    After all, one of the most compelling stories on WWE television the past few years was Dakota Kai’s “PTSD” character during her Shayna feud, imo. Do that again!

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