Professional Wrestling - In Review Monday - 11/27/2023
By: Kobain Reid
News and Interesting developments
Cm Punk signs with the WWE amidst Survivor Series After the Men’s Wargames bout.
AEW: Dynamite ratings out after the holiday weekend. AEW Thanksgiving Eve Special drew 845k on Cable TV with a 0.26 in the 18-49 demo. This number is consistent with past weeks and only just missed where they were at this time of year in 2022, 880k/0.32.
Cm Punk expected to have a live mic promo on RAW. Many fans online, and some that I’ve talked to, will be watching for the first time in a couple years. Cm Punk is definitely best for business and creates talk wherever he goes. Unfortunately, most of the time that also leads to drama, which in Punks case usually ends on the extreme side of things. He was fired from AEW with cause and left WWE with cause. At the end of the day, it’s been 10 years, he sells merch, creates talk, and the fans wanted it, Punk wanted it, so WWE pulled the trigger. It was a Nick Khan call and he is the one who made the call to Punk, none of the TKO staff, Vince Mcmahon, or even the talent were aware he would be there. Only Khan, Levesque, and Punk himself.
–Monday Night RAW started off with a very heated promo between Rhea Ripley and a returning Randy Orton, setting up a match between Orton and Dominik Mysterio as the Main Event bout. Backstage pre-recorded comedic segment featuring Alpha Academy, recording artist, Jelly Roll, and R-truth leads to Jelly Roll on commentary and starts off the #1 contendership 6-way Tag Team Turmoil Match. Alpha Academy (Akira Tozawa, Otis) Vs DIY (Johnny Gargano, Tomasso Ciampa) to start. Very different in terms of pace compared to previous RAW weeks. It started and stayed pretty quick between the first two teams and Alpha Academy played the crowd hard. DIY takes out Alpha Academy after a running knee and super kick combo, page out of the Golden Lover’s playbook very happy to see that here. Indus Sher (Veer Mahaan, Sanga) is the next team out. DIY eliminates them pretty quickly after a crescent flip roll-up by Gargano. The Creed Brothers out next. They keep up the pace well and there's some nice team sequences from the Creed Brothers, but Gargano shows out by himself taking on both by himself and getting a “Johnny Wrestling” Chant. Leapfrog falcon arrow by Creed Brothers, then Julius Electric chair and Brutus ball from the top rope and finally eliminating DIY; crowd was very pleased with the showcase from both teams. The New Day (Xavier Woods, Kofi Kingston) is out next. Really surprised with the wrestling shown between Creeds and New Day here. Very simple sequences, Brutus hits a suplex from the apron to the ring for only 2. Woods hits a back breaker and Kofi comes in with a double-stomp off the top rope for 2. Brutus dodges the “Trouble In Paradise” and tags Julius. Julius catches a kick and turns it into a power slam of sorts. Then the Electric Chair and Brutus Ball combo eliminates the New Day. Imperium (Ludwig Kaiser, Giovani Vinci) is the last team out and immediately both men are the ring attacking the Creed Brothers. Imperium haphazardly counter the Brutus ball and are setting up for a top bottoms lariat power-bomb but the Creeds counter with a superplex and then another Brutus ball electric chair combo on the opposite corner and gets the win. Securing the #1 contendership for the Undisputed Tag-Team Titles.
Backstage with Judgement Day, Damien Priest is looking inattentive and believes the others are upset with him; but they say they are a family and stick together, relieving his worries. They decide to go to check on JD Mcdonagh because he's still banged up from the RKO off the top of the cage at Survivor Series: Wargames.
Cody Rhodes promo is next, he talks about Survivor Series and a small bit on Punk and declares for the 2024 Royal Rumble. Suddenly a Shinsuke Nakamura vignette appears and he essentially reveals that Cody Rhodes–is the person he was talking about in his mysterious promos the past several weeks. After the vignette, Shinsuke appears and attacks Cody from behind. This gives something for Cody to do before Roman at Wrestlemania 40.
Bronson Reed Vs Ivar w/Valhalla is next. Barrett says they are both “meat Planets” and says “this is Monday Night Meat”. Lots of holds and Splashes, slams, and strikes. a surprise Picture in Picture we don't usually get on RAW which they end up doing all night. Good big man match, very entertaining, and both men weren’t going all out, just mostly simple stuff. Reed avoids a top rope splash and tries one for himself but Valhalla stops him. She gets ejected, both men play to the exhaustion angle where they cant hit or lift as hard or as much. Ends in a Double count-out. After the bell rang, Bronson hits a Death Valley driver onto the barricade. Ivar and Bronson get up and still keep fighting, taking it into the crowd. Security and Pearce try to stop him, but Bronson throws the guard at Ivar. Out of nowhere, Ivar jumps off a barricade onto Bronson. “Holy Shit!” chants rang through the arena.
We go to a Prerecorded backstage promo from Zoey Stark and Shayna Baszler that gets interrupted by Nia Jax which sets up Nia Vs Zoey which is next. Cut to another Backstage segment after the commercial, with Judgement Day again. Mcdonagh is wearing a neck brace and they are walking through their locker room – ”Clubhouse” – they call it. They find R-Truth eating Jelly Rolls on their couch.
Very entertaining comedy promo and we cut back to the ring for Nia Jax Vs Zoey Stark. Still hate putting segments between matches. Crowd was pretty dead for this match. Nice springboard move from Zoey then a roundhouse kick for a near fall. Tries a springboard dropkick for another near fall then heads to the top rope again but Nia counters and catches her into a Samoan slam and a running senton in the corner. Then an “annihilator” for the 3 count and the win.
After we see a backstage segment with Imperium, after some talking Vinci and Kaiser walk off speaking German supposedly heading to speak to Adam Pearce. The Miz comes over to talk to Gunther. Says he knows he can beat Gunther, and Gunther says Miz is a great entertainer/wrestler and belongs in the ring; just not with him. Next was a Seth Rollins Promo, he calls Punk a hypocrite, and teases a World Heavyweight Title bout tonight. McIntyre interrupts and says he has to focus on what's most important, the World Title. Rollins says McIntyre deserves a shot but he thinks more people are deserving. Rollins talked to Pearce, said there will be a World Title match next week against Jey Uso. McIntyre is pissed he picked Uso (Mcintyres Rival) over him. Hard elbow strike to Rollins from Mcintyre and he continues to beat down rollins. Jey Uso comes to save Rollins and fights McIntyre out of the ring. Uso Picks up the World Title, looks at it, aggressively hands it back to Rollins, and leaves the ring.
Next is the Women’s Tag title Match between - Tegan Nox, her newly appointed mentor Natalya Vs Chelsea Green, Piper Niven (C) - in between team entrances, Sami Zayn and McIntyre have a promo backstage. Sami declares interest in the World Title and calls McIntyre a spoiled little brat. McIntyre says he's right and he's gonna talk to Pearce about getting a match next week–against Sami. Back to the ring, big fight feel, and spotlights come down for team in ring announcements. The announcement of Chelsea Green's name needs to stop. Normal tag sequences, Top rope dropkick from Green, leads to a near fall. A comedic team sequence from the champs and they are fully in control doing team offense in their corner on Natalya. Green is legal and has Natalys on the top rope, Natalya counters into a power bomb and tags Nox. Nox hits some decent hot, comeback offense on Green. Top Rope 450 senton from Nox on Green, then Niven saves the champion from getting pinned and helps get Green back in control. Niven sneakily tags in, Nox and Natalya still focus on Chelsea and throw Green into the barricade. Niven comes out of nowhere and hits a diving senton from the apron taking out Natalya and Nox. Diving crossbody from the top rope onto Nox for the win, retaining the Tag Championships.
Backstage promo with Jey Uso apologizing to Randy Orton and saying he's changed from how he was when he was with the Bloodline, Orton forgives him. Main Event Bout is next, Dominik Mysterio w/Rhea Ripley are out first. Guaranteeing Punk will be the Main Event promo segment this week. Back from the commercial, they mention again that the Cm Punk return got 71 million views across all social media accounts. Backstage interview with Becky Lynch. Nice pop for Orton. Cole says only 2 people have held more world titles than him, John Cena, and Ric Flair. Barrett Praises Orton's physique upon return from double-fusion back surgery. Orton looks dominant with shoulder tackles, strikes and lariats with some crowd playing. “Who’s your daddy!” chants at Dominik. Classic Orton sequence gets the crowd awake and cheering. Piped in whistling noises are a really weird addition–it's the same whistle sound every show. Jelly Roll gets involved, pushing down JD Mcdonagh to a crowd pop. Orton does 2 back suplexes to Dom onto the announce table and brings dom in the ring, dom counters with a 619 but Orton counters the frog splash and hits a RKO for the win. Good Main Event, did what it was supposed to. Normal Orton match, but it was his first match back in a RAW ring in over 1 ½ years.
Cm Punk comes out, and says that Hell must’ve frozen over, if he's really in a RAW ring with a live mic. Says Saturday was a career highlight for him and says only two words can describe this for him, even though it's cringey and not like Cm Punk. “Im Home''. Says WWE has made himself feel like himself again; but he feels like he's really home, and that no one forgot him, even though maybe he wanted to. They never stopped chanting–*fans chant “CM PUNK”*--says he's back because he loves the fans and wishes he never had to leave. Says once upon a time, a wise man told him, to get what he needs, he has to leave. He says the wise man was right, and that behind the camera after coming back, has been nothing but love from staff and talent. Questions about AJ (Lee) arose he mentioned, answered with, “She’s fabulous and sends her regards”. Hugs from everyone, well, almost everybody. Says some people have been the “best in the world” for the last 10 years; but they weren't really the best in the world, the best in the world, is Cm Punk. Says the man with living color is–*Holds Mic up*-- fans chant “CM PUNK!”. He leans into the camera and says, “I’m not here to make friends, I'm here to make money”. Show goes off air.
–WWE: Main Event was taped as well and will be broadcasted on Hulu and posted on Peacock on-demand as well. This week features Charlie Dempsey Vs Duke Hudson, and Apollo Crews Vs Riley Osborne.