Sean Ross Sapp's WWE Raw Match Ratings, Analysis, Notes For 10/30/17

Opening segment

  • A wise decision to note that Raw is under tighter security.
  • Stephanie McMahon is back, and scolds Kurt Angle for allowing last week to happen. 
  • Stephanie threatens to fire Kurt Angle if Raw fails at Survivor Series, and names him captain. She leaves the arena after.
  • Why did the whole Raw roster need to be on the stage for that?
  • Miz shows up late, with a returning Bo Dallas! Kurt Angle is pissy about it and says Miz has to defend his title tonight against an unnamed opponent. I loved the stuff with the Miz. Angle was angry and reasonably took it out on the Miz.
Bianca Belair Gives Thanks, Braun Strowman Delivers Inspirational Speech | WrestleMania Fight Size

Nia Jax (w/ Alicia Fox) defeated Bayley

  • Alicia is wearing a damn captain's outfit and pretending she's the captain of a boat. Phenomenal.
  • She doesn't have time to face Bayley. Instead it's New Hair Nia. It's worth noting both Bayley and Nia got nice reactions. 
  • The Rock was like "but MAKE SURE you work Baltimore, Nia. Don't fuck them over on Baltmore."
  • Nia takes a funny tumble over the top rope and an odd looking version of Moose's flipping spear that looks better than his.
  • I'm a big fan of Bayley going back to the guillotine on Nia Jax.
  • Jax gets the win and Alicia names her to the Survivor Series team. Fair match, nice re-intro of Nia.

Samoa Joe defeated Apollo Crews (w/ Titus O'Neil)

  • SAMOA JOE IS BACK! He heels the crowd that wants to cheer him.
  • Babyfaces are so hard to make in 2017. Why not run with one when people want to cheer a guy? You have a reset on him. 
  • Apollo Crews requested this match because he wants to make the Survivor Series team.
  • Crews has a hell of a dropkick. 
  • Joe beats up Crews and throws his gum at Titus O'Neil. Crews gets choked out, then Titus gets it, too.
  • I just want to say, Booker T, for better or for worse, makes Raw commentary fun for me. I enjoy it. That hasn't happened in years. 

Intercontinental Championship
Miz (c) (w/ Miztourage) defeated Matt Hardy to retain the Intercontinental Championship

  • Matt Hardy gets a great reaction in Baltimore.
  • We see a standard babyface vs. heel match, and the crowd is into it.  They play this exceptionally well.
  • This is one of your best natural babyfaces against one of your best natural heels and it gets the crowd cooking
  • Matt Hardy hit a damn moonsault and almost won! Miz rolls to the apron after a Twist of Fate
  • Miz ends up hitting a Skull Crushing Finale and winning.
  • This was a fundamental clinic. Just some great pro wrestling.

Backstage Crappenings

  • Alexa Bliss pisses off Kurt Angle backstage in her sweet Chucky costume and gets put in a main event title match with Mickie James. There's a line where Bliss says they could dig up Mae Young and she'd be more useful than James.
  • Daniel Bryan is in Angle's office, and Angle goes off calling for reinforcements. Bryan says he has nothing to do with the Siege. Later Bryan is doing some TERRIBLE acting in a closet and isn't actually on the phone, but gets chokeslammed by Kane. I'll bet Daniel Bryan took that bump, even though they set it up for him not to.
  • Miz is running around backstage because he found garbage in his locker room. Kane, Sheamus and Cesaro all say he's on his own. Gold. Miz and The Miztourage are leaving, but Angle goes off and says 

Asuka defeated Stacie Cullen

  • I don't think this is the way Stacie Cullen should have debuted on Raw. They should have had her squash Asuka to build her for the future.
  • This is a real bad ass kicking. I love a nice spinning back fist.
  • Asuka is gonna be just fine. Weird how the crowd got behind Asuka more in the Emma TLC match than this squash, eh?

Finn Balor defeated Cesaro (w/ Sheamus)

  • WWE has a bad habit of making many babyfaces revolting by shoving shit in their viewers' face a la "ordinary man who does extraordinary things."
  • This is a really fun match. Balor has found his footing in the ring in WWE. Cesaro is a good opponent for almost anyone, though.
  • It's nice to see the outside-in suplex again, too. 
  • You're not going to find many people who can take the kicks and stomps from Balor better than Cesaro. 
  • Sheamus gets involved and Balor hits a tope con hil on The Bar, who take care of him really well.
  • Balor modifies the Coup De Grace and gets the W.
  • Kane Tombstones Balor on the stage. Well then.

Kane defeated Seth Rollins (w/ Dean Ambrose)

  • The Shield come out and interrupt Kane.
  • This is really slow paced, and built to make Kane look strong. 
  • Rollins hits a couple of clotheslines that don't budge Kane.
  • The Bar come out and beat up Ambrose. Rollins dives onto them, but gets caught with a chokeslam. Kane wins.
  • Ambrose hits Dirty Deeds on Kane, but Shield 0.66 get jumped.
  • This wasn't very good and was used to set Kane up to get killed off by Braun.
  • Personally I'd just rather have had Braun Strowman indiscriminately go through Balor and Rollins and Kane since that's the point anyway.

Trick or Street Fight
Heath Slater & Rhyno defeated Chad 2 Badd & Tex Ferguson 
11/10 (not really)

  • Tex Ferguson and Chadd 2 Badd!! YES!
  • I'm a sucker for holiday themed street fights.
  • Pumpkin innards. Styrofoam Tombstones. 
  • The Smashing Pumpkins still involved in wrestling amirite.
  • Heath Slater wears everyone out with a kendo stick, then Tex Ferguson does. 
  • There was no heat for this match. It was lame, but I laughed.

Elias and Jordan

  • Elias has a full music video. He gets great cheap heat, and the crowd hates him. 
  • Jason Jordan comes out and attacks, then destroys Elias' guitar. 
  • WWE: determined to make Jason Jordan a face, Samoa Joe a heel, Stephanie McMahon the boss, Kane strong and Reigns the top guy.
  • "This kid's got a lot to learn"- Booker T on Jason Jordan. I look forward to this EVERY WEEK.
  • I love when Graves hates certain guys, but Booker's casual disdain for Jason Jordan is like Heenan-Hogan level for me.

Kalisto defeated Drew Gulak (w/ Enzo Amore)

  • Who showed Vince an episode of 205 Live? Seems he's taken a liking to Gulak. 
  • Gulak and Enzo are awesome here as Gulak spells "soft." They're a great duo.
  • Kalisto hits some cool spinning body attack.
  • I can't pretend I'll ever understand a handsping before a kick, but I understand a spiked rana and an SDS.
  • Enzo attacks Kalisto after the match.

Raw Women's Championship
Alexa Bliss (c) defeated Mickie James to retain the Raw Women's Championship

  • Does Mickie just have poor circulation in her ankles?
  • This isn't too hot. It gets CM Punk chants. Four years later and still CM Punk chants.
  • Bliss takes what looks like a lame bump, then hits the floor HARD. 
  • A flying Thesz Press really doesn't work. 
  • Mickie James sold THE HELL out of a right hand by Alexa Bliss. She wins with it!
  • All for someone getting flat out KO'd at random in a match. Awesome.


  • The Miztourage get in their limo and try to leave....A TRASH TRUCK IS THERE.
  • Braun emerges like the Terminator!!! THIS ONLY WORKS WITH BRAUN!
  • Alexa is still celebrating when Braun comes out kicking Miztourage's ass.
  • Bo Dallas and Axel slide all the way down the ramp when Braun throws them.
  • He lays waste to everyone and appeases the crowd with another powerslam. Then Axel through a table.
  • Braun Strowman is the guy. He was the guy already. He should be WWE champion and he should have beaten Lesnar.
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