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WWEekly: The Top Talking Points of RAW, SmackDown & NXT (10.21 – 10.25.19)

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Normally I have an intro for these pieces. Some hype building little opener that brings you up to date with what is going on but to be honest when it came to this week, I didn’t really know or care. I knew NXT was going to be great since it had a triple threat for the North American Title but other than that, I just didn’t know what to expect. It’s all mostly just build to Crown Jewel. There were no women on RAW at all either, which is just weird. Let’s get into it shall we?

RAW

– Drew McIntyre is back! He is now going to be the Captain of team Flair. Team heel needed a big bad to lead it into the war with Team Hogan at the Saudi Show on Halloween and guess what, he got it. People may have wanted Drew to come back to a massive singles push but hey, at least he’s back right? This is a prominent story and he’s now a top figurehead of it. Then in his comeback match, he killed Ricochet, which was an amazing display of carnage. The segment ended with Ricochet eating the Reverse Alabama Slam into the ring steps. Nasty.

– Cain Velasquez appears to be the guardian angel of Rey Mysterio as he once again made the save for Mysterio as Shelton Benjamin gets in his face. As Benjamin pushed him, he claimed it would get him title opportunities. Instead it got him a beatdown from Velasquez.

– Aleister Black demolishes a local jobber with the Black Mass. One day he’ll do something prolific on the main roster.

– Did you guys know Sin Cara can wrestle? I’d forgotten he existed to be honest as he’s been gone for so long. Here he was managing to mix it up with Andrade like a new man. It’s always nice to see a strong Andrade match and Sin Cara was actually a good opponent for him. Though, now we may be leaning into the Zelina interference a bit too much now as she always seems to get him the win now.

– Rusev goes on a murderous rampage trying to find Bobby Lashley and Lana. A video plays of them at a restaurant whilst he’s talking on the King’s Court. He travels there but they’ve fled and he gets arrested. I still hate this storyline.

– Viking Raiders crush Curt Hawkins and Zack Ryder in a relatively fun match to watch. The Viking Raiders are finally getting treated like the stars they should be on the main roster.

– Humberto Carrillo gets the showcase of a lifetime as he fights current Universal champion and top villain Seth Rollins. He actually has Rollins’ number for a lot of the match and his fast, lucha libre offense has Rollins reeling. Unfortunately, he goes to the well too many times on a Moonsault, opening him up for a Stomp. Good match that the crowd didn’t seem to appreciate too much.

– The Street Profits win their RAW debut against The O.C with a little help from Kevin Owens. He comes out to deal with the pesky AJ Styles interference that keeps ruining the Profits momentum. He hits Styles with the Stunner and the Profits use the distraction to set up for a Frog Splash to win.

SmackDown

– Miz TV sees Team Hogan and Team Flair stand across from each other. As expected, things get heated. They start comparing achievements and team members whilst Hogan talks about never being beaten by Flair. They end up setting a six man Tag match between the team members that are there… and Sami Zayn, who doesn’t want to wrestle so he drafts in Cesaro. The main event came around and to no one’s surprise the match was really damn fun. Roman Reigns gave Ali the chance to pick up the win and the face team stood tall. Oh, and Sami tried to recruit Daniel Bryan. It didn’t work.

– The New Day defeat Roode and Ziggler to gain momentum for their title match next week. Their win brings out The Revival, whose presence brings out Heavy Machinery and everyone brawls. Nice match though I still struggle to take Roode and Ziggler seriously.

– Lacey Evans drops a nice bit of character work by refusing to fight a jobber. She starts the match, walks out, let’s the count get to 9 then runs in and levels Camron Connors with the Women’s Right. Easy win in a match she totally didn’t need to fight. I’m actually starting to appreciate Lacey Evans a bit more as a character. Not that I actually ever had anything against her to begin with.

– Seth Rollins did not kill the Firefly Funhouse. It returned on SmackDown to hold a funeral for Rambling Rabbit. He had perished in Seth’s attack last week. At least that was the narrative played. Luckily Bray was able to resurrect him. He didn’t get to live long though as Mercy the Buzzard ate him about 10 seconds later.

– Kalisto gets a win after Braun Strowman comes and attacks Drew Gulak once again. Despite the helpful PowerPoint Presentations, it seems Drew Gulak just cannot get on the good side of Braun Strowman. Instead he is used as a message to Tyson Fury.

– Nikki Cross picks up another scalp, this time against Mandy Rose. Once again the Neckbreaker seals the deal of an opponent and could seal Bayley’s fate when they meet. Sasha and Bayley watch from commentary, clearly un-impressed by this performance.

– Brock Lesnar and Cain Velasquez are meant to meet face to face. Brock wusses out and delivers it via video backstage whilst Paul Heyman runs the whole thing down. They try to lure Cain away and drop cryptic hints that someone is there with them. When no one plays along Brock reveals he is once again attack Rey’s son Dominic. When they come to check on Dominic, Brock attacks Cain and Rey. That small attack is probably one of the best I’ve seen in ages as Brock throws a trash can at Cain, throws Rey into a wall and F5’s Cain onto Dom. Totally fun carnage.

NXT

– NXT starts with Rhea Ripley continuing her American tour of NXT carnage by eliminating one of the top women in the company, Bianca Belair. This was a battle of two brash, loud, powerhouses. However the action wouldn’t be contained to this pair though as Io Shirai and Candice LeRae made appearances in the match too with Shirai taking umbrage with what Ripley had said to her weeks ago. Ripley won with the Riptide, moving one step closer to getting another title shot

– Next up would Cameron Grimes finally suffer another loss as he was up against the Original Bro, Matt Riddle. Grimes certainly ended up taking a beating as Riddle smashed him with strikes. This wasn’t a pretty match at all. Grimes was tied in knots and beaten down. He did end up coming back though with some incredible strength and athleticism. Riddle wins with the Bro-Derick. Grimes’ night gets worse as Tyler Bate hits him with Bop and Bang from the crowd.

– Breezango won the entrance game as they teamed with Isaiah Swerve Scott to fight The Forgotten Sons. This was exceptional. Scott stole the show with some amazing moves of high risk flippery. He even got the win for Breezango and bust a move with the duo to finish the segment.

– Lio Rush joins commentary as we get Angel Garza against Gentleman Jack Gallagher. The pair put on a fast and furious clash of styles bout and Garza gets the win with a Cabrada. He impresses Lio Rush and makes his title intentions known.

– Team Kick win themselves a shot at the Women’s tag titles by beating the Horsewomen of MMA in a contender’s match. Kai takes a beating, gets the hot tag to Tegan Nox who then wrecks the duo of underlings to Shayna Baszler. They win with Nox’s shiniest wizard.

– Rodrick Strong got to play the human on the ground during a kaiju fight as he was forced to defend his North American Title against both Dominik Dijakovic and Keith Lee. This was incredible. Roddy held his own against the two titans but it was Lee and Dijakovic that stole the show yet again with their completely mental style. I implore you all to watch this, it’s a total spectacle for the imagination. Roddy played it smart and used his opponents to win the match stealing the victory in the process.

– After that amazing match, the Undisputed Era attacked Keith Lee. Upon seeing his Goldie in the open, Ciampa had to make an appearance. Then Gargano and Balor also came out. At first it looked like we had a team of heroes to take on the Undisputed Era then Balor threw a spanner in the works by attacking Gargano. The UE descended on Ciampa like jackals as Balor watched on, not getting involved. He merely wanted to destroy Johnny Gargano. It ended with the 1916 on the ramp. Ouch

John is a UK based wrestling obsessive who still wants to believe the Bullet Club is fine. He is always tearing the business apart and first realised wrestling was for him when he saw Mankind fall from the top of the cell at King of the Ring 1998.

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