Monday’s episode of Raw was a highly anticipated show. It was evident the red brand was going to give us the reunion of The Shield, and without wasting any time or leaving viewers hanging, they did just that in the opening segment of the show.
There was no Lesnar and no Cena, but there was still lots to take home from a fairly full program. The Cruiserweight Title changed hands, Emma moves on to face Asuka, the WWE Universe got to learn the true identity of Sister Abigail and The Shield reappeared to lay another beatdown, this time on the “Monster Among Men.”
Not everything was perfect, but for the most part, Raw was better this week than it’s been in a long time. Here are your five Winners and 5 Losers From Raw – October 9, 2017.
5. Loser – Bo Dallas
In a situation like Bo Dallas’, missing any time can be detrimental to his character, his place in the Miztourage and his new primetime spot on the show. Fortunately, the segment played as another Mizzies Award Show and it allowed the group to reference Bo Dallas even though he was away sick. With The Bar taking the Miztourage’s place in The Shield feud, Dallas can’t afford to not be seen in such a big storyline.
It wasn’t anyone’s fault, but Dallas better hope he gets well quickly. He needs to be part of the Miztourage week after week so their presence on screen can grow.
5. Winner – The Shield
First, the crowd popped huge for Roman Reigns when his music hit (when was the last time anyone can say that happened for Reigns) and then they popped even louder for the group as they took out a variety of WWE Superstars. It was not just a reunion of the members, but a reunion of their gang-attack mentality.
To see them back in action like they hadn’t missed a beat, it’s pretty clear they work better together as a group than each does on their own, and there isn’t a reason each can’t have a successful singles career and a successful faction mentality. Hopefully, WWE picked up on this and keep them together for a while.
4. Loser – Karl Anderson
The match between Karl Anderson and Jason Jordan was just OK for Jordan and not good at all for Anderson. When you place a tag team like the Good Brothers in singles matches only to have them both be at ringside, but unable to find a way to pull out the win, it’s not a good look for the team. Jordan really doesn’t gain much by going over Anderson here and the duo comes off poorly.
The WWE needs to find a better use for the duo of Anderson and Gallows because they haven’t been used properly since day one. It has been a very poor use of a tag team that had a viable background that could have made them contenders.
4. Winner – Emma
We’ll call Emma a winner because she defeated four other WWE Superstars for the right to face Asuka at TLC, but is she really a winner here? Yes, she cleanly pinned Sasha Banks but she’s about to move on to Raw’s next pay-per-view and get destroyed.
It would have been better for Emma’s character to simply be the victim of having to face Asuka because she simply can’t quit complaining about her place on the roster and in the division. We all know she’s going to lose. Might as well make it obvious instead of trying to hide it behind this Fatal 5-Way and hurt the image of some of the other female talents in the process.
3. Loser – The Women’s Division
Here’s a question. How weak does it make the entire women’s division to have a match where the winner moves on to face a talent that hasn’t even made her WWE debut yet? Aren’t you basically saying that none of your current female competitors are at Asuka’s level and have to fight for the right to face her in her debut? That idea feels just odd.
The match itself was too fast paced with quick eliminations to really be effective. Bayley came out of it looking bad, as did Banks. Alicia Fox got a little more time, but ultimately got pinned easily.
3. Winner – Kalisto
It feels like this win is temporary at best, and that Enzo will likely win the title back at TLC in his rematch, but for now, it’s a way to showcase Kalisto as part of the Cruiserweight Division and make him the soon-to-be-star he should have been from the introduction of 205 Live.
There is no doubt that Kalisto is among the best of the best in the Cruiserweight Division, and bringing him in, giving him main event time, and putting the title around his waist is the WWE trying to make him and the division bigger than it is right now. He will eventually drop the strap, but good for him for winning and being in the right spot of the company now.
2. Loser – Rest of the Cruiserweights
Enzo Amore doesn’t look great in the loss, but he’s the real star of the Cruiserweight Division now. Neville still looks strong and he’s the foundation of the division. Kalisto is the shiny new toy. Everyone else is just enhancement talent taking space and doing their best to get those three over in the best way possible.
Yes, they are getting some key television time, but in that time they’re made to look weak and irrelevant to the hidden truth that the division revolves around three people. Cedric Alexander should be a star but he’s being wasted. Akira Tozawa has all but disappeared and other talents just can’t seem to catch a break.
2. Winner – Braun Strowman
Having The Shield come out an attack Braun Strowman is an intriguing idea. It makes sense considering Strowman would have a beef with all three members and it makes their faction look dominant once again. If played correctly, this could be the thing that makes people forget Strowan lost so easily to Brock Lesnar.
The concern here is if the Shield continues to beatdown Strowman, it doesn’t bode well for him long term. WWE is going to have to find a way to make both sides of this equation look equal.
1. Loser – Bray Wyatt
We weren’t confident placing Wyatt here as a loser because it’s too hard to tell which direction this story will go. On the face of it, the idea of wasting an opportunity to build a big female star is heinous. And, is there really a long-term play here that works? That said, the WWE is trying something different and unexpected and you can only fault them so much for thinking outside the box.
This has the potential to be a huge disaster but if there’s one person who could pull it off, it might be Wyatt. We’re not fans of the voice. It’s neat from the behind the camera, but how does that play out in the ring as this story progresses? There was a time Kane sounded creepy. WWE just sort of sat that aside and hoped fans wouldn’t notice. Is that the plan here too, or is this just too short-term an idea for it to matter?
1. Winner – Roman Reigns
The clear winner over everyone else on Monday was Roman Reigns. After the reception he received from fans when he interrupted the Miz, you’d have to try and envision what it sounded like over the last two years as he was mercilessly booed out of every arena. We don’t think one person booed when he came out and everyone knew The Shield would be coming too.
Putting him back in the group everyone loves has immediately made him a fan favorite again. If done right, WWE can erase years of fans hating on Reigns and turn him into the face of the WWE fans can actually get behind.
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