WWE Raw Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from December 9

Kevin Berge@TheBerge_Featured ColumnistDecember 10, 2019

WWE Raw Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from December 9

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The December 9 edition of Monday Night Raw had plenty of stories to tell. The final event on the WWE calendar, WWE TLC 2019, approached on December 15, but the red brand had not set its line-up for the show.

    However, Raw was just as focused on delivering on this night. In the main event, Rey Mysterio was set to defend his United States Championship against AJ Styles. Randy Orton waited in the wings, watching The Phenomenal One closely.

    Lana demanded the official proceedings of her divorce to Rusev finally end. The two promised to sign the papers live on Raw.

    Charlotte Flair continued to struggle with The Kabuki Warriors on her own. Luckily, she potentially had an ally in Becky Lynch as long as The Man could find a way to trust The Queen.

    Kevin Owens began a hunt for The Authors of Pain all on his own. He knew Akam and Rezar would be a tough fight especially with Seth Rollins in their corner but was ready to take on the challenge.

    With a night approaching filled with wood and steel, the red brand roster had revenge on the mind.

Rusev and Lana Finally Get Divorced

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Jerry Lawler announced that he would presided over this divorce then explained that Rusev's restraining order had been temporarily lifted for the night. The Bulgarian Brute came out in a Donald Duck T-shirt with a smile on his face, ready to let this all go. Lana angrily stomped to the ring.

    After arguing about custody of their dog, The Ravishing Russian signed the contract then Rusev demanded one thing. He wanted a match with Bobby Lashley. The All Mighty arrived to announce he would soon marry Lana. The two brawled, and Rusev put Lashley through the signing table.

              

    Grade

    D

               

    Analysis

    This feud has produced far worse segments. Rusev's nonchalant attitude almost distracted from the atrocious acting of Lana. It was still terrible television that should not have opened the show this close to TLC.

    Once The Bulgarian Brute and The All Mighty get their match, this whole feud needs to be done. There's nothing left to accomplish beyond sinking further into the depths of terrible soap opera.

Drew McIntyre vs. Matt Hardy

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Drew McIntyre taunted Matt Hardy by calling him a terrible father. The veteran made The Scottish Psychopath pay for his comments, coming right at him with forearms. While Hardy dominated the match, McIntyre planted him with a Future Shock DDT then the Claymore.

                

    Result

    McIntyre def. Hardy by pinfall

              

    Grade

    C+

               

    Analysis

    A squash match is always better with a story behind it. McIntyre motivating Hardy gave the hint that maybe the veteran could pull off the upset. Obviously there are no plans for The Woken One in WWE while The Scottish Psychopath is on a straight path to the top. It's just about suspending disbelief.

    McIntyre still needs a rival though, and it can't just be Randy Orton given The Viper is already feuding with AJ Styles. It's time for him to get the chance to beat some real competition.

Raw Tag Team Champions The Viking Raiders vs. The Street Profits

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The Viking Raiders offered an open challenge to anyone that wanted a shot at the Raw Tag Team Championships. The Street Profits answered.

    Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins came out fired up nearly pinning Erik after a spinebuster into a frog splash. The Raiders recovered through sheer resilience. Ivar set up the Viking Experience to give the champions the win. The two shook hands afterward.

                

    Result

    Raiders def. Profits by pinfall

              

    Grade

    B-

               

    Analysis

    Rushing through a quality match with plenty of story is never a good look on a three-hour show. That said, the tag teams did the most with their time. This contest was fun and delivered on what makes both teams so vital to the red brand's tag team division.

    Dawkins and Ford will get their time atop the division. It may not be yet, but, just like in NXT, The Street Profits are too good to be wasted. Right now, it's The Raiders' time.

Kevin Owens Refuses All Help in His Crusade Against The Authors of Pain

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Kevin Owens searched for The Authors of Pain backstage. Rey Mysterio gave him a steel pipe to even the odds. He slapped Mojo Rawley backstage for making fun of him.

    Seth Rollins interrupted The Street Profits and The Viking Raiders shaking hands. He called out AOP, but KO answered. Owens demanded Akam and Rezar appear, and their car arrived in the parking lot.

    The Beastslayer walked out on KO as The Prizefighter continued to not accept Rollins' help. AOP cut a promo in their native languages but did not come out.

    Instead, Sami Zayn, now officially a manager who can work both brands, walked out with Rawley. The Critic of the Critics demanded an apology for his new client, but KO stunned Rawley and bashed him with the steel pipe.

              

    Grade

    B+

               

    Analysis

    KO vs. Rollins has a chance to be Raw's top feud, but it took a while to get off the ground. Better storytelling would have sold The Beastslayer's reveal as a bigger deal. He played the babyface for too long up to this segment when no one bought it.

    Zayn working as a manager on both brands is good for Raw's talent. He's a great mic worker and adds interest even to a solid mic worker such as Rawley. However, this manager role for The Critic of the Critics is a waste of his talent.

Aleister Black vs. Akira Tozawa

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Akira Tozawa tried to find an opening in Aleister Black's striking game, but he was overwhelmed. The Harbinger of Fury countered The Stamina Monster's suicide dive with a running knee. He dragged Tozawa in the ring for the Black Mass to take the three count.

                

    Result

    Black def. Tozawa by pinfall

              

    Grade

    C

               

    Analysis

    Black vs. Tozawa is a fantastic match-up that will never be allowed to be great. The two got no time at all as The Striking Man from Amsterdam squashed one of the most talented stars on the roster.

    The point is to build to Black vs. Buddy Murphy. Both have now defeated Tozawa now, but only one can win when they clash. This will be the biggest challenge Black has faced to date.

Andrade vs. Humberto Carrillo

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Humberto Carrillo played the gentleman with Zelina Vega, and Andrade took exception. The two got into an argument. El Idolo demanded a match.

    Andrade went after Carrillo early. He made the rookie pay for every small mistake. However, it only took one mistake by Andrade for Carrillo to pull off the upset. El Idolo ran into his business associate, sending her off the apron and distracting him long enough to get rolled up for three.

                

    Result

    Carrillo def. Andrade by pinfall

              

    Grade

    B+

               

    Analysis

    On a night that was moving at snail's pace to this point, this match was a breath of fresh air. These two have chemistry to spare, and it felt like this was just the tip of the iceberg. These two have great matches in them.

    The upset was overhyped by commentary given Andrade so rarely sustains momentum in WWE, but it still is a big win for Carrillo. It elevates him to a similar status as his new rival.

Buddy Murphy vs. Zack Ryder

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    Credit: WWE.com

    In an interview following his win over Akira Tozawa, Aleister Black told Buddy Murphy he made his worst mistake by knocking on The Harbinger of Fury's door.

    Zack Ryder made Murphy pay for coming into this match overconfident. He sent The Best Kept Secret to the floor with a Broski Boot. Murphy distracted Ryder by punching Curt Hawkins on the outside, setting up a high knee and Murphy's Law.

                

    Result

    Murphy def. Ryder by pinfall

              

    Grade

    C

               

    Analysis

    WWE's struggle to deliver a compelling squash match is fascinating. Ryder was so dominant in this match, and it ended in a moment with a Murphy win.

    Black and Murphy are playing a game of one-upmanship that is not nearly as interesting as it should be. Both men have proved they can deliver in sprints. Let them work.

Seth Rollins Allies Himself with The Authors of Pain After Brutal Stomp on KO

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Kevin Owens kept hunting backstage until he found AOP's car. He bashed it with the lead pipe until Akam and Rezar grabbed him. They laid him out then Seth Rollins came out of the car and hit The Stomp onto the cement floor.

    Afterward, as KO was loaded into an ambulance, The Beastslayer walked out on the stage. He blamed the fans for turning on him and not believing him. He said he had not been behind anything that attack, but now he had realized only The Authors of Pain understood him.

              

    Grade

    A

               

    Analysis

    This beatdown and promo elevated the entire feud in a major way. The Architect has returned in force, and he sounded far more interested in what he was doing.

    Even last week's beatdown from AOP did not stick, so this needed to be memorable. Owens was sent to the hospital. The alliances are clear. The only question is how KO will retaliate.

Becky Lynch vs. The Kabuki Warriors

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Charlotte Flair asked for Becky Lynch's help fighting The Kabuki Warriors, but the two could not see past their own rivalry. The Man promised she would defeat the WWE women's tag team champions in a handicap match.

    Lynch struggled repeatedly with the numbers, but she had counters for every tactic from Asuka and Kairi Sane. She managed to reverse the Asuka Lock into her own version. She used her knees to stop the Insane Elbow.

    After The Empress of Tomorrow had dragged The Pirate Princess out of the Dis-arm-her, Asuka hit the Raw women's champion with a steel chair to cause a disqualification. The Kabuki Warriors attacked The Man, setting up for Sane to hit an Insane Elbow on Lynch through a table at ringside.

    Lynch refused the trainer's help. The Queen arrived and offered The Man another chance to help her. Reluctantly, Lynch accepted. As Charlotte walked away, The Kabuki Warriors attacked her from behind.

    Asuka and Sane challenged Lynch and Charlotte to a tag team championships match. The babyfaces agreed but only in a Tables, Ladder and Chairs match.

                

    Result

    Lynch def. Kabuki Warriors by disqualification

              

    Grade

    B+

               

    Analysis

    Beyond the weak finish, this was as great a match as last week's handicap clash. The Kabuki Warriors can do no wrong at the moment especially fighting the best women in the business. The Man looked great after a few weeks off.

    Handicap matches are always dangerous, and the DQ finish makes it seem like Lynch might be good enough to defeat the division's best team on her own. However, it works in the sense that it hypes the TLC tag team title match that should main event TLC.

Erick Rowan vs. Local Competitor

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    Credit: WWE.com

    The local competitor grabbed Erick Rowan's cage and ran up the ramp. He left it on the stage and tried to get a count out win. The Big Red Wood ran back to the ring in time and hit a series of Iron Claws until the referee stopped the match. Rowan hit another Iron Claw after the bell.

                

    Result

    Rowan def. local competitor by referee stoppage

              

    Grade

    D+

               

    Analysis

    This story is growing tedious now. Each week, it is the same match with Rowan. Until someone actually does something to his friend or at least stands up to him, these squash matches will be skippable television.

    Whatever is in that cage is likely to disappoint.

United States Champion Rey Mysterio vs. AJ Styles

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    Credit: WWE.com

    Rey Mysterio and AJ Styles cut promos backstage promising victories. The Phenomenal One came out at first on his own, but Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson arrived late in the match to distract The Master of the 619.

    Mysterio fought off The OC, but The Phenomenal One took advantage to hit a devastating Styles Clash. Randy Orton appeared to tease an RKO but backed off. The distraction was enough to set up an inside cradle by Mysterio that allowed the United States champion to retain.

                

    Result

    Mysterio def. Styles by pinfall to retain the WWE United States Championship

              

    Grade

    B+

               

    Analysis

    While Styles and Mysterio have had better matches, they never slack. The two were all over the ring in this contest. From bell to bell, you would have assumed these two were half their age. The ending was sloppy, but it is certainly forgivable.

    The rivalry switch from Orton vs. Ricochet to Orton vs. Styles has not changed the actual story much. This is still about The Viper playing mind games. He is getting in The Phenomenal One's head and costing him gold. The end result hopefully will be a great match.

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