Rating and reviewing the matches and segments from this weeks Raw. CONTAINS SPOILERS.
It was the final Raw before this weekends Survivor Series PPV so the focus was sure to be on the developments of Team Authority and Team Cena. The Authority were never going to allow the newly formed Team Cena a chance to push forward and were bound to do everything in their power to destroy the team.
Raw started with The Authority coming to the ring to talk about Survivor Series, they did a good job of building up the tension, mocking Team Cena and then turning their attention to Ryback, who had previously turned the offer to join The Authority down. Ryback appeared and yet again told them that he was on Team Ryback and was only interested in his own destiny. Will Ryback pick a side before Survivor Series?
Segment Rating 6/10
Dolph Ziggler Vs Luke Harper (Intercontinental Championship Match)
Just before the match started HHH announced that this would be a Title match, showing The Authorities intentions with newest member and "Team Player" Luke Harper. Once Ziggler was in the ring Joey Mercury and Jamie Noble attack him along with Harper, they then hold him up as Seth Rollins gets in the ring and hits Ziggler with the Money In The Bank briefcase. The bell finally rings, after Ziggler staggered to his feet and demanded the match start. Luke Harper hits the Big Boot instantly followed by a huge Powerbomb, nearly getting the pinfall. Ziggler was dominated by Harper and barely got into the match, he did hit the Famouser near the end and almost got the 3 count. Harper then hits Ziggler with a massive Clothesline and pins Ziggler for the win. After this Rollins gets back in the ring and Curb Stomps Xiggler face into the mat. Luke Harper is the new Intercontinental Champion. One thing to take away from this match was the chance to see Luke Harper after his split from The Wyatt Family. Harper certainly has the skills and power to become a formidible Champion, whether he will be given the chance to thrive by WWE, we will have to wait and see.
Match Rating 7/10
The Miz & Damien Mizdow are next seen backstage talking to this weeks celebrity guest, Grumpy Cat. Yes you did read that right. In what should have been a terrible section, Miz tries to convince Grumpy Cat to be his new co-star in an upcoming movie, complete with Mizdow mimicking his every move. The camera focuses on Grumpy Cat who surprisingly looks grumpy, Miz gets angry and walks out. This was actually hilarious, Miz always does comedy very well and this segment worked really well.
Segment Rating 9/10
Adam Rose Vs Tyson Kidd w/ Natalya
Before the match starts Adam Rose tells the Bunny not to get involved like he did last week. This match was pretty good, Kidd was on form, flying around the ring and matching the athleticism of Rose very well. Attentions soon tuned outside the ring as The Bunny started to get "Frisky" while looking at Natalya, inviting her toward him. Yet again Rose is distracted, telling The Bunny to back off. Kidd took advantage and locked in the Sharpshooter causing Rose to Tap Out. After Kidd & Natalya leave The Bunny got back in the ring to apologise, Adam Rose was having none of it so the Bunny "Humped" his leg and then bounced away, stopping occaisonally to make more "Humping" actions before leaving. The time may well have come for the Bunny's identity to finally be revealed, the commentary team have finally started to refer to him as a guy in a bunny costume as opposed to just The Bunny. but who is behind the mask?
Match Rating 7/10
Bray Wyatt was next to the ring delivering yet another speech about saving Dean Ambrose. Once again Wyatt delivered a masterclass in promos, stalking around the ring like a deranged preacher, never missing a beat. Wyatt could genuinely be the best talker in the WWE since The Rock and that's some praise. After a while Dean Ambrose appeared on the screen to tell Wyatt that he doesn't need saving and that he had learned some magic tricks of his own. The magic trick in question was called Video Recording, telling Wyatt that he recorded the segment earlier and was actually in the arena. Wyatt looks around and then Ambrose appeared behind him to launch an attack, the two brawl briefly before Wyatt leaves quickly. Their match at Survivor Series promises to be a highlight as the two madmen go head to head.
Segment Rating 10/10
Ryback Vs Cesaro
This was a great match, the two powerfull wrestlers matching each others skill perfectly. There were lots of big Slams and Suplexes as well as displays of extreme strength. Near the end of the match there was a fantastic sequence of counters and finishers showing off the potential of both wrestlers. The match eventually ended after Ryback hit his Shellshock finisher allowing him to pin the impressive Cesaro. With neither of these wrestlers aligned to a team for Survivor Series we could easily se either of them join Team Cena by the end of the night.
Match Rating 8/10
Rusev Vs Heath Slater
This was a total farce of a match, the likes of which we were all hoping we had seen the back of after Rusev had begun to move away from the overly patriotic storyline. Heath Slater appeared in full stars & stripes suit claiming to be a true American, blah blah blah, we've heard it all before. Rusev hits the Superkick followed by the Accolade and Slater taps out. Yet again Rusev deserves some real match time, not these ridiculous one move showpieces. Let's hope this was a one off.
Match Rating 5/10
Next we saw The Miz & Damien Mizdow, once again backstage with Grumpy Cat, he apologises for getting angry before and offers Grumpy Cat the lead in his movie. Grumpy Cat looks sleepy as Miz is interupted by Eric Rowan who takes off his sheep mask and says that "He wants that cat".
Segment Rating 5/10
The Big Show was next to the ring quickly followed by Stephanie McMahon who, yet again, tries to convince him to leave Team Cena. This time she tells him that he will be the first Inductee to the 2015 Hall of Fame as well as the first ever Inductee to still be active. This is a huge offer that takes Show by surprise but he still refuses. Sheamus then comes out and Stephanie tells him that if he doesn't leave Team Cena then there may be an "issue" with his passport before Survivor Series. She then tells Sheamus and Big Show that they will be fighting eachother next in a match for a WWE World Heavyweight Championship match.
Segment Rating 7/10
The Big Show Vs Sheamus
This was yet anopther brilliant match, both wrestlers played their part expertly, showing respect for their fellow team mates while battling for the chance of a number one contender position. Big Show is laregely dominant in the match, throwing Sheamus around the ring. Sheamus managed to pick up Big Show for a slam which was impressive but the match ended soon after as Rusev and Mark Henry made their way to the ring and attacked. Sheamus was picked up by Mark Henry and put through the Announce table while Rusev applied The Accolade on Big Show, causing him to pass out. The Authorities destruction of Team Cena continued, would anyone be left by the Contract Signing?
Match Rating 7/10
Brie Bella Vs Nikki Bella
The match started with AJ Lee's music but Brie Bella came down the ramp dressed as AJ, which we certainly couldn't complain about. Nikki then announced that it would be an "Exhibition Match". AJ Lee was on commentary for this match, cheering on Nikki who she said looked better than her in her outfit, they both look great let's face it. This was another mediocre match, essentially Brie just let Nikki beat her up. Eventually AJ Lee got up on the sid eof the ring distracting Nikki, Brie saw her chance and pinned her sister with a rollup, obviously not in her sisters script. Nikki got angry and attacked Brie but AJ got in the ring and knocked her out. It looked as though Brie and Nikki would celebrate together but AJ took her out too.
Match Rating 4/10
The next segment saw Ryback backstage with John Cena. Cena was trying to convince Ryback to join Team Cena yet again, Ryback refuses.
Segment Rating 5/10
The Usos & Los Matadores Vs Gold & Stardust & Miz & Damien Mizdow
This is what the Tag Team Championship needs, fast paced wrestling with character and flair. Los Matadores were brilliant in this match, dominant and technically impressive. It has been easy to forget how good they are recently as they have been largely used as a joke. It was great to see all four tag teams allowed to just be themselves and show of their talents in a fat paced free for all which was genuinely exciting. If their Fatal Four Way Tag Match at Survivor Series is half as good then we are in for a treat. The match eventually came to and end with Stardust hitting Dark Matter for the win.
Match Rating 9/10
Finally it was time for the big Contract Signing for Survivor Series. The Authority were in the ring and HH did a lot of talking about how they can't lose and what WWE means to him and Stephanie. Eventually it was time for Team Cena to come to the ring but only John Cena arrived. Cena then talked, for a long time, about how it didn't metter if he had a team of five or a team of one he would still win and they would be out of a job. Eventually Cena squared up to Stephanie who slapped him, he told her to leave the ring as he was going to fight them all. Right then Dolph Ziggler appeared to stand by his side, quickly followed by Big Show, then a real suprise as Eric Rowan appeared and joined Team Cena. Suddenly it was four against 5 for Survivor Series which HHH was happy to point out. At that moment Cesaro came out and stood by Team Cena but shortly after laughed at Cena and joined HHH to mock Cena's team. Finally the crowd got what they wanted as Ryback made up his mind and came down the ramp to join Team Cena. The ring descended into chaos as the two teams plus HHH, Joey Mercury and Jamie Noble, brawled. Team Cena slowly but surely took apart The Authority until eventually HHH got Cena in position for The Pedigree but Ryback interupted, squaring up to HHH. As HHH was distracted Cena picked him up and delivered the AA right through the signing table.
Segment Rating 10/10
And so the scene is fully set for Survivor Series and we finally know the teams.
John Cena, Dolph Ziggler, Ryback, Big Show & Eric Rowan
Seth Rollins, Kane, Rusev, Mark Henry & Luke Harper
What will the outcome be? Will The Authority be out of work? Will Team Cena regret their decision?
The only way to find out is to watch Survivor Series this Sunday (23rd Nov 2014)
SEE ALSO: MX vs. ATV: Supercross Review
SEE ALSO: WWE 2K15 Season Pass & DLC Announced