WWE started things off strong with its Hell in a Cell 2019 pay-per-view event, delivering an excellent Hell in a Cell match between Sasha Banks and Becky Lynch. However, things quickly went downhill, ending with one of the most controversial PPV endings in WWE history.
The Hell in a Cell match between Seth Rollins and "The Fiend" Bray Wyatt ended in a no contest, much to the outrage of fans in attendance and those watching online. There were loud chants for refunds, as well as loud chants in favor of WWE's main competition, All Elite Wrestling. It will be interesting to see if the fan's anger carries over to Raw.
Here are WWE Raw 10/7/19 match results:
1. Randy Orton vs. Rusev never happened
Perhaps as a way to make sure the crowd wasn't acting out of place, WWE kicked off Raw in the middle of a brawl, with Randy Orton and King Corbin beating down Rusev. Rusev got the upperhand, but was then distracted by Bobby Lashley appearing on the TitanTron to reveal that he is at Rusev's house, in Rusev's bed, naked with Rusev's wife Lana. Rusev then went berserk and took out his rage on Corbin and Orton, but the match never actually took place.
2. Last Woman Standing Match: Lacey Evans vs. Natalya
Winner: Natalya defeated Lacey Evans. Honestly, kept waiting for WWE to stop this match despite the fact that it is supposed to only end when someone can't answer the 10 count. In any case, the match itself was fun enough with some decent spots and a powerbomb off the stage and through a table to give Natalya the victory.
3. Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode vs. The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar)
Winners: The Viking Raiders defeated Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode. This match was much better than the six-man tag that The Viking Raiders were a part of at Hell in a Cell. The crowd was into it throughout, and there were some fun tag team maneuvers, like the spinebuster/Zig Zag combo. Ultimately, The Viking Raiders picked up the win over the Raw Tag Team Champions, which should mean they're next in line for a tag team title opportunity.
4. Handicap Match: Aleister Black vs. The Singh Brothers (Sunil and Samar Singh)
Winner: Aleister Black defeated The Singh Brothers. This was a throwaway match, but Black's strikes were great and Black won the the Dragon Sleeper.
5. Six-Man Tag Team Match: Lucha House Party (Gran Metalik, Kalisto, and Lince Dorado) vs. The OC (AJ Styles, Karl Anderson, and Luke Gallows)
Winners: The OC defeated Lucha House Party. The Kalisto/AJ Styles sequence at the end of the match was particularly well-done, and there was plenty of fun spots throughout. The OC were part of the meh six-man tag at Hell in a Cell, but they had a much better showing here with a much stronger crowd reaction. The post-match beatdown on Lucha House Party added a lot, with AJ dealing a devastating avalanche Styles Clash.
6. Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair vs. The Kabuki Warriors (Asuka and Kairi Sane)
Winners: The Kabuki Warriors defeated Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair. Prior to the match, there was a Miz TV segment with Charlotte and Becky. It was fine for what it was, with Becky's burns getting good reactions from the crowd. The match itself was pretty exciting, with Asuka bringing out the Green Mist to cheat her way to the victory. What was nice about this was that the tag team was actually given the win over the two singles stars, as WWE usually lets the singles wrestlers go over tag teams. When the match was over, Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross stormed the ring to avenge their Hell in a Cell loss. Bliss still feels weird in the babyface role, but we'll see how it plays out in the coming weeks.
7. Apollo Crews vs. Ricochet
Winner: Ricochet defeated Apollo Crews. The pre-match promos for this one were a little awkward. The match was uneventful, but entertaining thanks to the flippy-dos. Having seen some of Crews' work on the indies before he went to the WWE, especially his short stint in PWG, it's a little disappointing to see how WWE has failed to really capitalize on his talent. His promo delivery isn't great, but that can be worked around if he was paired with a fitting manager.
8. Tyson Fury Promo
Tyson Fury, the undefeated boxing champion, is the headlining act for Raw this week. For those confused, Fury first appeared in WWE on the big SmackDown Fox show last week, where he and Braun Strowman came into conflict. The main thread through this episode of Raw has focused on the confrontation between Fury and Strowman, with both giving backstage interviews setting it up.
Fury is better on the mic than many of the active wrestlers on the roster, though the confrontation still felt a little too scripted. The post-promo brawl was fun, but went on a little too long and became repetitive. Things picked up again when Bray went backstage and gave a heated promo only to run back out and continue the brawling. It will be exciting to see these two wrestle, though it remains unclear when the fight will actually take place. WWE may stretch things out to WrestleMania, but since that's most likely what the company plans on doing with the Lesnar/Velasquez feud, hopefully we get to see Strowman/Fury well before then.
The lack of followup to the disastrous Hell in a Cell main event was surprising, but probably the best move by the WWE. It barely even mentioned the main event outside of a short recap video that was heavily edited to make it seem like the crowd didn't hate everything that went down between Seth Rollins and The Fiend. However, audible booing from the live crowd could still be heard after the recap video ended.
Overall, this episode of Raw felt a bit like filler and WWE spinning its wheels. While the in-ring action was mostly pretty good, a lot of it felt randomly put together just so WWE could fill the three hours. And even then, it seemed to struggle filling the entire time and had to stretch out the Strowman/Fury brawl for eternity. We're already seeing Raw being relegated to B-show status, as more focus is on this coming Friday's episode of SmackDown, which will be the first part of the WWE Draft.