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WWE Raw Review 12/02/24



Good evening so I’m looking forward to diving in on the Road to Wrestlemania, with the Elimination Chamber PLE just around the corner.



We’ve got a bunch of Chamber qualifiers on tap for tonight, with Bronson Reed vs Bobby Lashley and LA Knight vs Ivar taking up the men’s side of things, and Liv Morgan vs Zoey Stark filling out the women’s side. Plus, Imperium take on the New Day & Jey Uso in trios action, which should be a ton of fun if given time. Let’s roll!




Cold open to the Rupp Arena, and earlier today Cody Rhodes arrived and he is WALKING. In 54 nights, Cody challenges Roman Reigns for the Undisputed WWE Universal championship.



It’s a New Day, yes it is! 6-man tag team action is kicking us off tonight as Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods head down to ringside. Announced for later on, we’re also getting Sami Zayn vs Shinsuke Nakamura! Hellooooo!



Match 1 IMPERIUM VS THE NEW DAY & ‘MAIN EVENT’ JEY USO



Kofi and Kaiser start this off as Kaiser backs Kofi into the corner. They trade strikes until a shot to the midsection levels Kingston, followed by a knee to the face. Kofi up with a dropkick, tag to Xavier, sliding clothesline to Kaiser and a diving elbow. Woods grounds Kaiser in the corner and stomps away on him.


Kofi tags in to do the same, and now here comes Jey Uso for more stomps. Woods back in as the proverbial mudhole is being stomped into Kaiser. Hip attack from Uso and now Jey locks eyes with Gunther. Tag to Gunther!


But nope, Gunther tags out to Vinci, who takes out Jey from behind. Gunther comes back in, ripping off Uso’s shirt and giving him a big time chop. Kaiser in again but Jey with a thrust jab, goes for Gunther but misses and Kaiser clotheslines him to the floor. Gunther capitalises with a boot to the face as we head to commercial.



When we come back, Kaiser is in control of Jey Uso, but a back suplex allows him to get some space. Kaiser tags in Vinci as Woods tags in too. Kofi springboards in on a blind tag as he hits Vinci with a fame-asser and a frog splash to the back. 1, 2, no.


Boom Drop connects and he looks for Trouble in Paradise, but Kaiser grabs the leg. Vinci dumps Kofi to the floor and Kaiser sends him into the steel steps. Running boot to the side of the head of Kingston to add insult to injury. Cover, 1, 2 no.


Gunther tags in, uppercut to Kingston. Elbow to the back of the neck, followed by more uppercuts as Gunther catches Kofi on a dive to make a tag, and chops him down. Chop to Jey Uso for good measure! Gunther turns Kingston over into a Boston Crab in the center of the ring but in comes Jey Uso, who slaps Gunther right across the face! Things are heating up as we go to another commercial break.


Back live, Kofi and Kaiser tussle, as Kofi desperately tries to make a tag. Back body drop by Kingston, this is his chance! Tag to Jey Uso! Yeet clotheslines to Vinci, Samoan Drop to both Vinci and then Kaiser, and now Uso is ready for Gunther. Gunther watches as Jey takes out Kaiser and Vinci with hip attacks. Superkick to Kaiser.


Kick to Vinci. Ludwig tags in Gunther now and he goes to chop Jey but Jey ducks it…only to get chopped down on a second attempt. Uso goes for a superkick, caught, but an enziguri follows to knock Gunther for six. Uso to the top rope, crossbody. 1, 2, no.


Uso goes for the spear but Gunther puts his weight forward on top of him to stop it. Rainmaker-like clothesline, 1, 2, Jey kicks out! Gunther heads up top now, but misses the splash as Jey got the knees up. SPEAR by Jey Uso! 1, 2, no Kaiser breaks it up! Woods and Kofi take out Kaiser as Vinci is tagged in.


Vinci goes for a powerbomb, but a superkick by Uso! TRIPLE TEAM 1D by the New Day and Jey Uso! Kofi takes out Kaiser on the floor, and Jey Uso nails the big splash on Vinci to pick up the 1, 2, 3!


Winners: The New Day & Jey Uso


Rating: *** – Commercials ate into this one a fair bit, but this gave us some nice build to a Jey Uso/Gunther title match, which I’m all in on.


Match Time: 19:49


Next, we recap the Wrestlemania Kickoff event and the chaotic Rock/Reigns/Cody/Rollins segment. Cody Rhodes will be here live later on to address what went down.


Andrade video package time! Andrade loves this business. He had his first match when he was 13 years old. He’s been a champion all over the world. He became NXT champion, then US champion…but those titles were not enough. He had to leave to remember who he was. He’s back, and now he knows and the direction is clear.



Match 2 [MEN’S ELIMINATION CHAMBER QUALIFIER] BOBBY LASHLEY VS ‘BIG’ BRONSON REED


Lockup and they back each other into the corner, with Reed attacking with a splash. He gets Bobby on his shoulders but Lashley escapes, looking for the Hurt Lock. Reed avoids it, sending Lashley into the corner, but Lashley comes right back with a big clothesline.


Lashley goes for a spear but Reed sidesteps him and sends him shoulder first into the ringpost. Reed with a shoulder block off the apron, sending Lashley careening into the barricade as we head to break.


We’re back as Reed lays in repeated short-arm clotheslines. Bronson looks for a suplex but Lashley escapes. Flatliner by Lashley! He follows up with a snap suplex, damn! 1, 2, no. Clothesline by Lashley in the corner, neckbreaker attempt but Reed kicks him away.


Death Valley Driver by Reed out of nowhere! Reed misses a splash in the corner, and Lashley elevates him with a uranage. Lashley goes for a spear but Reed catches him with a knee. Uranage of his own and a senton by Reed. Bronson heads up top for the Tsunami but Lashley catches him and throws him off the top! SPEAR! 1, 2, 3.



Winner: Bobby Lashley


Rating: *** – Fun big man action here, throwing a few bombs at each other until Lashley could capitalise. Lashley now qualifies for the Chamber, and is sure to leave a path of destruction inside it.


Match Time: 8:37


Earlier tonight, Sami Zayn talks with Jackie Redmond in the stands. Jackie asks about Zayn’s thoughts after losing his Chamber qualifying match last week. Zayn feels a little embarrassed, but that feeling is overtaken by an unwavering belief in himself. That belief last year carried him to Wrestlemania. So yeah, Zayn promises he will be a champion. It will not be an easy path, but he will walk it nonetheless.


On the Titantron, Shinsuke Nakamura appears. Zayn has had the glory, the moments, has he forgotten? He acts like he’s in misery. He wants the people’s sympathy. Just like Cody. Nakamura wants to see the true Zayn in the ring tonight. If he doesn’t let his real emtions out, Nakamura won’t tolerate it. He will pick up his soul and carry on with his warpath forward.


Backstage, Cody is still WALKING and he will be appearing next!




We come back from break, and the ‘American Nightmare’ Cody Rhodes makes his way out, suited and booted as the crowd sing along to Downstait.


So Lexington, Kentucky, what do you wanna talk about? Cody believes they could talk about the main event of Wrestlemania 40, and how he will be challenging for the Universal championship against Roman Reigns. The only reason he’s able to say that is because of those guys, the fans. They made their voices heard.



Big WE WANT CODY chants.


Cody thanks them for that. He doesn’t know how he could repay them…maybe there’s only one way. He’s a passionate guy, he wears his heart on his sleeve, but he doesn’t want to become emotional because otherwise he’d become a ‘crybaby’.


ROCKY SUCKS chants now.


While they were saying We Want Cody, there was one man who did not want to hear it. The most famous man alive, the people’s champion, the man who coined the term ‘Cody Crybabies’. Cody sends us to the footage from Pat McAfee’s show where The Rock laid into the Cody Crybaby fans.


Cody knows that promos are different to when Rock was last here, but he does have to ask…what are we supposed to do with the nuggets? He asks Pat, Pat spells it out that he’d have to shove them up his ass. Cody re-asserts that he is a fan of The Rock. But one thing The Rock does not do well is he does not listen. Cody didn’t defile his ancestors, and yet Rock chose to slap him in public. Cody recognises the look in Rock’s eye, the look of malevolence. Rock and Reigns together is the perfect storm. But Rock put his hands on Cody, and that means Cody is going to hit him back.


BURN IT DOWN! Out comes our World Heavyweight Champion Seth Rollins.


Cody tells Rollins to take a bow. He wants to thank Rollins for coming to his aid at the press conference. Seth says ‘what can I say except You’re Welcome’ haha. As much as Rollins was looking forward to defending against Cody at Wrestlemania, he understands the decision. He understands why, he needs to finish that story. There are millions of people that want him to finish the story. Now that the decision is made, Seth wants to make it clear…he NEEDS to finish that story. For himself, for Dusty, for Seth, for every single person here tonight. If Cody doesn’t beat Reigns, the landscape on the other side of Mania is very, very dark. Reigns gets more power, more leverage, he shows up less, he defends the title less, the brass rings get higher. This is the last real chance that anyone has to take that title and give it to the people.



Cody might be the man for the job…but what’s the plan, Cody? Last year, Cody got screwed out of the title. He fought his way back, won the Rumble again, but the deck is stacked against him just the same, and the bar has been raised. He’s dealing with Jimmy, Solo, Heyman, and the most influential man in the entire entertainment industry, he has to deal with The Rock.


Seth says he came out here to tell Cody that he doesn’t have to fight this battle alone. Seth & Cody haven’t always seen eye to eye, but deep in his soul, Seth feels what Cody wants. Seth is tired of the arrogant, entitled pricks that can throw their weight around without consequence, he’s sick of them getting away with it. Rollins has to admit, the man Reigns is is partly Seth’s fault. They were brothers, but he could never imagine the monster he would become. Now the monster has two heads. When it comes to fighting The Bloodline, there is only one man who is suited to be Cody’s Shield… Seth Freakin’ Rollins.



Seth exits the ring, leaving Cody to ponder his thoughts. Great promo segment there.


Cathy Kelley is with The New Day and Jey Uso, congratulating them on their win. Next week, Gunther vs Jey Uso for the Intercontinental Championship is official! Jey Uso is stoked for that.


Liv Morgan reflects on being injured by Rhea Ripley. Now she’ll take everything from Ripley at Wrestlemania. Stark says she’s been busy making history since she came to Raw. She will take care of Liv Morgan, and will make history as the baddest woman in the division, and she will go on to Wrestlemania.



Match 3 [WOMEN’S ELIMINATION CHAMBER QUALIFIER] LIV MORGAN VS ZOEY STARK


Quick rollup by Morgan for 2. Liv stomps Stark down in the corner, but Stark comes back with a clothesline. Mounted punches by Stark, Liv avoids a body slam and sends Stark to the apron. Springboard kick by Morgan takes Stark to the floor. Morgan goes for a suicide dive but Morgan cuts her off with a right hand. Morgan to the top rope now, but Zoey cuts her off again. DVD on the apron by Stark! Stark screams ‘this is about me!’ as we head to commercial.


Back splash by Morgan as we come back. Liv goes to the middle rope, codebreaker connects! 1, 2, no. Liv goes for a step up knee in the corner but Stark catches her and slams her down for 2. Stark gets Morgan to her feet, Liv avoids an attack in the corner and gets a modified crucifix pin for 2.


Another codebreaker attempt but Stark catches her and slingshots her into the buckles. Zoey catches Morgan with a kick to the face for 1, 2, no. Stomp to the midsection by Stark. Zoey heads up top but misses the corkscrew, and Morgan capitalises with the ObLIVion! 1, 2, 3!


Winner: Liv Morgan


Rating: ** – Honestly this was surprisingly heatless, but hopefully the Chamber will help heat Morgan back up again.


Match Time: 9:09.


Backstage, the Judgment Day walk. R-Truth arrives and Damian Priest addresses him. They’ve had laughs, but the joke is over. Truth has never been part of the Judgment Day. Priest is serious. He will be really clear – tonight, it’s an execution. Truth looks concerned.



R-Truth is sending a voicemail to The Miz, saying he needs his help. Adam Pearce pleads with him to head to the ring as his match is scheduled right now!



Match 4 JD MCDONAGH (W/ THE JUDGMENT DAY) VS R-TRUTH


JD attacks as the bell rings while Truth was giving his phone to the referee. R-Truth sends JD into the corner face-first, whips him into the ropes and connects with an arm drag. Splash in the corner, back body drop, and the Attitude Adjustment. McDonagh heads to the floor to regroup as we go to commercial.


When we come back, R-Truth fights out of a sleeper and lays in some right hands. Shoulder block and the 5 Moves of Doom! But JD kicks him in the face as R-Truth goes for the You Can’t See Me. Truth gets him down again and nails it this time. Truth looks for another AA, but JD rolls him up for 2. Spinning flying forearm, axe kick misses! The Devil Inside! JD gets the 3 count.


Winner: JD McDonagh


Rating: ** – Mostly commercial break! Perfunctory stuff here. With Truth handing the phone to the ref, I thought they were telegraphing something, but no, that went nowhere.


Match Time: 6:50


Post-match, Judgment Day go to attack but R-Truth holds his own! Truth and Priest are left now, but McDonagh distracts him, and Priest nails R-Truth with a right hand. 4 on 1 assault now as the Judgment Day beat him down. But here come DIY! Gargano and Ciampa have steel chairs in hand, and Judgment Day hastily exit the ring.


Sami Zayn tapes his wrists backstage as Cody approaches. He thanks Zayn for having his back. And he reassures Zayn that Cody believes in him, and more importantly, the fans believe in him. Zayn appreciates that.



The Man Becky Lynch is walking backstage and will appear NEXT.


Back from break, here comes Becky Lynch!


Lynch takes a mic as the crowd start a loud Becky chant. Becky says the Road to Wrestlemania has already been crazy and unpredictable, and that’s what she loves. She loves this business. She was 15 years old the first time she stepped foot inside a ring, and she’s been obsessed ever since. It’s the reason she’s got to travel the world, it’s the reason why a girl who failed gym class was able to go on to win in the first women’s main event of Wrestlemania. That obsession also means she missed birthdays, weddings, her father’s funeral. She’s had to have difficult conversations with her daughter about why her face is smashed up, why she can’t pick her up, why Daddy wants to fight Maui. She will see Becky’s face smashed against the steel in the Chamber, but she will she the brutality that Lynch is capable of.


Becky has to win the Elimination Chamber and then go face to face with one of the most dominant champions we’ve ever seen. The people dig Mami, and don’t think anyone can beat her. But Becky isn’t ‘anyone’. And Rhea hasn’t faced anyone like her. Becky wants to make a toast, and she asks for a drink. She makes a toast to the wild ride we’re on towards Wrestlemania. Raise that drink in the air…this is to Rhea Ripley…enjoy your last few weeks as champion.


And that brings out Nia Jax. Nia knows they’ve had their differences, but she has something to say to Becky in the ring. Jax enters the ring to big ‘You Suck’ chants. Jax has big respect for Becky. If Nia’s mom was half the mother she is, Jax would be so blessed. Jax wants to become a mother and will use Lynch as an example. Jax knows Becky will win the match at Elimination Chamber. With that passion, that drive, nothing will stop her from winning and going to Wrestlemania. Just like nothing will stop her from beating Rhea Ripley and becoming the Women’s World Champion.


And Rhea Ripley has heard enough! Out comes the Women’s World Champion, and she goes straight for Nia Jax! Jax sends Rhea into Becky, and Nia squashes them both in the corner. Right hand by Jax, but Lynch comes right back with an attack of her own. Becky and Rhea stand tall, and Rhea boots Nia off the apron. Rhea and Lynch lock eyes as Nia Jax seethes on the ramp. That Nia promo was…not fun.


Jackie Redmond is with Drew Mcintyre, who will face Cody Rhodes next week here on Raw. Drew tried to give the fans what they wanted. Drew wants to know who the real bad guy is here? Drew sees himself as the underdog – he had to beat AJ Styles, one of the best in the world, just to qualify for one of the most dangerous matches in WWE history. Drew warns Cody that he doesn’t need this – otherwise Cody might not make it to Wrestlemania.


Elsewhere, R-Truth thanks DIY backstage for helping out earlier. R-Truth can’t believe he got helped by DX! He asks how Road Dogg is doing. R-Truth has got two words for ya…thank you!



Match 5 [MEN’S ELIMINATION CHAMBER QUALIFIER] LA KNIGHT VS IVAR (W/ VALHALLA)


Valhalla sweeps the legs to distract Knight as this one begins, allowing Ivar to get a double underhook, but Knight lands on his feet. DDT by LA Knight! Ivar to the floor, running basement dropkick by Knight, and Knight bounces Ivar’s head off the announce table.


Ivar is sent stomach first into the barricade, but Ivar comes right back with a flapjack into the barricade on Knight. Running crossbody against the barricade squashes Knight as we head to commercial.


We’re back, and Knight is heading up to meet Ivar on the top rope. Ivar boots him away but Knight jumps right back up there and nails a superplex. 1, 2, no. Right hands by Knight, Ivar misses a spin kick. Back elbow by Knight , but a tilt-a-whirl power slam connects for Ivar on Knight. Knight to the apron, Ivar drags him in through the middle rope for a niiiice Tiger Driver, which gets a 2 count.


Running knee by Knight, powerslam and the patented elbow drop gets another 2. Knight misses the BFT, spinning leg lariat connects for Ivar. Ivar to the top, misses the Doomsault! BFT connects! 1, 2, 3.


Winner: LA Knight


Rating: **3/4 – Didn’t have much of a chance to get into second gear, but Ivar had flashes of some neat offense. Knight joins Orton, Lashley & McIntyre in the Chamber in Perth.


Match Time: 8:25


Backstage, Sami Zayn is walking…and he comes face to face with Drew McIntyre. Drew will make it real simple – keep his name out of Sami’s mouth, and Sami’s nose out of his business. Drew steps aside to let Sami walk past.


Adam Pearce is with Chelsea Green, Indi Hartwell & Candace LeRae. Chelsea wants to be in the Last Chance battle royal for the Chamber. WM can’t be the biggest WM without her. Indi Hartwell wants to earn her opportunity too. Shayna Baszler and Zoey Stark stop by and want to set an example next week by beating up Chelsea.




Match 6 SAMI ZAYN VS SHINSUKE NAKAMURA


Zayn controls the arm early on, but Nakamura backs him into the ropes. Side headlock by Sami, Nakamura again backs him into the ropes and kicks the chest, goading Zayn to attack him. Side headlock by Nakamura now, off the ropes, Nakamura sent to the floor and Sami takes to the skies but a fake out angers Nakamura on the floor as Zayn does Nakamura’s usual taunt and we head to commercial.


Back live, Sami is in control, hits an elbow off the middle rope, but Nakamura fireoff some knees to the mid section. He hangs Sami up on the top rope and gets the running knee to the midsection, which gets a 2 count, and again. Kick to the chest by Nakamura, and another. He goes for one too many and Sami catches the leg, but Nakamura kicks him away. Sleeper applied by Shinsuke but Zayn gets to his feet and snapmares him over. Kick to the back of the head by Nakamura, and the sliding German suplex from the middle rope connects. Cover, 1, 2, no.



Zayn looking for the Blue Thunder bomb, Nakamura avoids it but walks into a Michinoku Driver for 2. Zayn takes Nakamura to the floor with a big clothesline, takes a run up and hits the tope con hilo! Both men are down on the floor as we go to break.


We’re back, and Nakamura is kicking the chest of Zayn in the corner. Zayn fights back and they trade forearms. Zayn calls for more! Nakamura connects with a kick to the temple, misses the Kinshasa but Sami turns it into the Blue Thunder Bomb! 1, 2, no. Nakamura struggles up in the corner, Zayn goes for the Helluva kick but Nakamura rolls to the floor to avoid it. Sami goes old school and goes to dive through the bottom and middle ropes for the DDT but Nakamura kicks him in the face!



Back in the ring, Nakamura lays in repeated knees to the head and neck. Boot to the face now. Zayn on his knees, Nakamura to the second rope and hits a knee to the back of the head. 1, 2, no Zayn gets the arm up! Crowd is rallying behind Sami as Nakamura looks for a knee but Sami with a lariat out of nowhere. Zayn grabs Nakamura, peppers him with jabs as the referee pulls him off. Exploder into the buckles by Zayn! Helluva Kick coming? But Drew McIntyre runs down to distract. Nakamura takes out the leg from behind and hits the Kinshasha to the back of the head to pick up the win.


Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura



Rating: ***1/2 – Once again, this felt gutted by commercials, but what we saw developed into a good main event, with Zayn getting to show some of that fire that makes him such an endearing babyface. Nakamura had his work boots on too, so this was good stuff, although I could have done without Drew’s interference.


Match Time: 17:08



Post-match, Drew enters the ring and lays the boots in to Sami. Nakamura watches as Drew stomps away on Sami…but HERE COMES CODY! Cody takes out Nakamura and goes right for Drew McIntyre. Cody Cutter on Drew! Cross Rhodes on Nakamura! Drew hightails it up the ramp as Cody poses in the ring. Cody is ready for him next week on Raw – Cody Rhodes vs Drew McIntyre, one on one. Drew seethes as tonight’s broadcast ends.


Overall thoughts


Let's start with the BIG positive from tonight's show - that promo segment between Cody Rhodes and Seth Rollins was a tremendous piece of business, pulled off without a hitch. Rollins was on point, fired up, and as eloquent as ever, and this was just a big win all round. We also had a decent main event

in Zayn vs Nakamura, who could probably knock it out of the park in their sleep at this point.



Aside from that, there was a slight element of being on the treadmill towards the Chamber - the qualifiers didn't provide any big surprises or noteworthy matches, and theLynch/Jax promo brought the pace of the show down painfully, as no one bought Jax's 'heartfelt' address. Still, Trips does a good job teeing up each show - next week's should be a banger with Jey Uso vs Gunther!



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