WWE Raw Preview: Rey Mysterio Defends Against Seth Rollins, More for December 23

Erik Beaston@@ErikBeastonFeatured ColumnistDecember 23, 2019

Credit: WWE.com

A special holiday episode of WWE Raw hits the USA Network airwaves Monday with a star-studded main event and a huge Six-Man Tag Team match on tap.

The show, taped after last week's episode so the company's performers could be home for the holidays, is the penultimate episode of 2019 and should set the stage for what is to come in the new year.


Already Announced

  • United States Championship Match: Rey Mysterio vs. Seth Rollins
  • Randy Orton and The Viking Raiders vs. AJ Styles, Karl Anderson and Luke Gallows


Can Seth Rollins Dethrone Rey Mysterio?

A week ago, Rollins and the Authors of Pain beat down Rey Mysterio, sending a message to the United States champion after he gave Kevin Owens a pipe to defend himself against The Architect and his henchmen.

Monday, Mysterio will look to avenge the assault and halt Rollins' momentum by successfully defending his title.

Of course, AOP's presence will add another element for Mysterio to overcome if he hopes to leave the show with his title, but The Master of the 619 and future Hall of Famer has made a career of overcoming odds so it should be of no real surprise if he manages to escape Raw still champion.

The wild card is Kevin Owens, who has not been seen since he was left in a heap backstage, the victim of a beatdown at the hands of Rollins and Co. Perhaps KO returns and prevents his rival from picking up another title, a little payback for what has been a tumultuous few weeks.

Mysterio has been on a roll of late. Dethroning him to unnecessarily add a title to the Rollins-Owens program would do him a great disservice. He deserves better than that.


The OC Looks To Rule Over Raw

The rivalry between Randy Orton and AJ Styles will manifest itself this week in a huge Six-Man Tag Team match in which The Viper will team with Raw tag team champions The Viking Raiders to battle The Phenomenal One, Gallows and Anderson.

Orton picked up the win over Styles a week ago, catching him in mid-flight with an RKO from out of nowhere. This week, The Phenomenal One looks for a measure of revenge while his partners seek to put themselves firmly in tag team title contention by potentially knocking off Erik and Ivar.

The match blends two of the higher-profile programs on the Raw brand and gives creative the opportunity to tell those stories without booking the same match repetitively.

The O.C. could use the win here, if only because they seem to lose more than they win of late, which is a problem considering the trio has been set up as a main event heel act.

A win here allows them to build some momentum and potentially sets them up for a run to start the new year.


What's Next for The Man?

Becky Lynch returns to Raw Monday night, and we will likely get an idea of who she will be defending her title against at the Royal Rumble.

All signs point to Asuka, who defeated her at TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs for the second consecutive year and has been a thorn in the side of The Man for the entirety of her career.

Can Lynch exorcise the demon that is The Empress of Tomorrow or will she target another competitor?