The most recent Monday Night Raw didn't knock anyone's socks off by any stretch of the imagination, but it did lay the groundwork for the coming pay-per-view, Tables, Ladders and Chairs in December.
With that being the case, the program was an overall success or just a slight thumbs' up.
Before I go further into my analysis, here are the full match results from Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn.:
- Bray Wyatt & Luke Harper def. The Dudley Boyz
- Sasha Banks def. Becky Lynch
- Neville def. Mark Henry
- The Primetime Players & Goldust def. Cosmic Wasteland
- WWE Divas championship – Charlotte vs. Paige ends in a double count out
- Dolph Ziggler & Dean Ambrose def. Kevin Owens & Tyler Breeze
- Roman Reigns def. Rusev via disqualification
With that out of the way, here is my full analysis of the show:
The Authority looks to be rebuilding
It looks as if it's a little bit of out with the old and in with the new for Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, as it seems WWE's power couple, collectively known as The Authority, is rebuilding its once formidable group.
We all saw Sheamus align with them at Survivor Series when he cashed in his Money in the Bank contract to become the new WWE World Heavyweight champion, but it looks as if a returning Rusev and King Barrett might be joining him as well.
If that were to be the case, I would consider it a considerable upgrade over the former group (Seth Rollins aside), which consisted of corporate Kane, Big Show and J&J Security.
In Sheamus, Rusev and Barrett, you have three guys who aren't relics from the "Attitude Era" like Kane and Big Show who make people rush to their remotes to change the channel. You also have a trio that is very much capable of putting on entertaining matches and promos.
It also helps the talent, as it would breathe new some new energy into Rusev, who was toiling in an awful mid-card love angle before suffering a biceps injury. As for Barrett, it would simply give him something to do besides holding a stupid crown.
Don't worry, I'm still way over heel authority figures in wrestling and I still think The Authority has gone well past its expiration date, but if it's going to be around for at least a little while longer, then it might as well entertain me. I think Sheamus, Rusev and Barrett could do that.
The New Day stole the show yet again
I don't mention The New Day that much in my recaps because they are consistently great. I feel as though that if I mentioned how great they are every single week, my recaps would get a tad repetitive.
But for some reason, I feel the need to mention how great they were Monday night in Nashville.
Apparently, it has already been a year since The New Day formed on television. To commemorate this occasion, The New Day decided to hold a "country music jamboree and WWE Tag Team championship open challenge."
Not just an open challenge but also a "country music jamboree and WWE Tag Team championship open challenge."
The title alone meant that this segment was going to be glorious, and The New Day delivered.
First, they went to the ring riding unicorns on a stick. Kofi Kingston has his dreadlocks pulled up to look like a unicorn, and Big E came out dressed like Woody from Toy Story.
They then grabbed microphones and began to rip on how terrible country music is, which would draw the ire of fans in Nashville, also known as "Music City."
But this wasn't just standard heat seeking by heels. The New Day took it to a new level, especially Big E and Kingston. Big E seemed genuinely upset with country music, as he screamed angrily about his disdain for it.
Then there was Kingston, who said, "Let's be honest because country music sucks. It really sucks. It sucks, OK. This is me saying this, not my character. Country music sucks!"
If that's not one of the funniest things said on a WWE microphone all year, I don't know what is. I know that breaking the proverbial fourth wall on live television is generally frowned upon, but if you're going to do it, do it in the most entertaining way possible. Kingston did that, and I darn near fell off my chair laughing because of it.
After The New basked in all of their glory, The Lucha Dragons and The Usos interrupted the champions and disposed of them, seemingly setting up some type of tag triple-threat title match at TLC. I would guess it would be some form of a ladder match.
As for the open challenge, well, The Day canceled it because they can do that.
Charlotte, Paige battle yet again
After a sub-par showing at Survivor Series, Charlotte and Paige were sent out to essentially redo the match the next night for the WWE Divas title.
The match still wasn't as good as I think it could be given the level of talent in the ring, but at least they actually brawled a little, which was quite the upgrade from Survivor Series.
The double count-out finish all but guarantees more chapters to this puzzling rivalry, in which the promos are stiffer than the matches.
There was a Sasha Banks sighting
Not only was there a sighting but Banks actually got to have a match. She won it, too, a good sign that WWE hasn't completely forgotten about her.
Her match with Becky Lynch wasn't as great as their prior encounters, but what divas match is when you're dealing with the time constraints WWE has with live television.
Now, all that needs to be done is to give her a story, in which she has some time on the microphone and some direction.
Neville upends Mark Henry
In what was supposed to come off as a shocking upset, the diminutive Neville upended the world's strongest man, Mark Henry, on live television.
While it is a big deal, it could be an even bigger deal if everyone on the roster hadn't already beaten Henry one-on-one in the past year.
With that being the case, Neville's win doesn't mean much at all. A victory over Henry isn't all that valuable in 2015. That shouldn't be the case, but that's simply the way it is.
Jack Swagger-Alberto Del Rio rivalry underway
In a feud no one is looking forward to. Swagger confronted Del Rio and Zeb Colter on Monday.
I don't remember what was said in this segment because no one involved is worth paying attention to.
Del Rio's pairing with Colter still doesn't make a lick of sense and fans are supposed to suddenly care about Swagger despite the fact that he hasn't had a presence on television in months?
Tyler Breeze pinned again
With each passing week, Breeze is simply blending in with the roster of WWE's main roster, which is exactly what you don't want to do if you're new to WWE's main roster. With a recent call-up to the main roster, you should want to stand out as much as possible.
But trading wins and losses doesn't help anyone stand out. It just makes everyone look the same.