Welcome to the Wrestlepurists’ live coverage for Monday Night Raw for the November 27th, 2023 episode.
RANDY ORTON IN-RING PROMO
Coming off the most newsworthy Survivor Series since 1997, we are live with the Raw returns of Randy Orton AND CM Punk. Wild, wild times. We kick things off with Randy Orton and its damn good to see after reports that he was close to never wrestling again. Orton says he is back for as long as he can stay here. He says out of his long list of accolades, one of the things he has never done was compete in War Games. So when Cody Rhodes gave him the call, it was a no brainier. Orton says he also came back because he has unfinished business with the Bloodline. Uh oh. Orton reiterates that he has a receipt for every single member of the Bloodline that took him out. And to welcome Orton to what Raw is like in 2023, here comes Rhea Ripley to interrupt. Rhea immediately brings up Orton having his big return upstaged. She says that the Bloodline has fallen and the Judgment Day has risen as the most dominant force in WWE. Finally she blames Orton for preventing Damian Priest from cashing in his contract at War Games. Orton says he kept up with the product while away and it was always Mami this and Mami that “well guess what Rhea? Daddy’s back!” Orton says a lot of things have changed but the one thing that hasn’t is that no one tells Randy Orton what to do. Rhea says Orton made “us” your enemy and Dominik Mysterio and JD McDonagh pounce on Orton. The two on one advantage doesn’t work and JD eats an RKO. Orton tells Dominik not to go too far, because he is going to make sure it’ll be Orton v.s. Dominik tonight! Awesome, if you’re gonna do Judgment Day v.s. Orton to start the show it couldn’t have gone much better.
BACKSTAGE WITH TAG TEAM TURMOIL PARTICIPANTS
Chad Gable says tonight is the night he unleashes the team of Otiz and Akira Tozawa. Maxxine Dupri and Ivy Nile come in and say country music singer Jelly Roll is here. My god him and Otis do a belly bump. R-TRUTH is here! He is looking for a snack, classic R-Truth mix-up.
THE CREED BROTHERS WIN THE TAG TEAM TURMOIL
Tozawa and Otis start things off with Johnny Gargano and Tommaso Ciampa. Awful draw for both teams, but WWE tends to like having a team that starts run the table to at least the final two. Otis and Tozawa hit stereo Caterpillar’s as the new Alpha Academy have good chemistry so far. As soon as I say that DIY ditches Otis out of the ring and then hit Meet in the Middle on Tozawa to move on. Indus Sher is out next. How many times are we going to try with these guys? DIY doesn’t wait for them to get in the ring and they pay for it. Wade Barrett says Jinder Mahal has been in negotiations with Adam Pearce for months to get Indus Sher an opportunity. Logically, its insanely easy to get an opportunity on Raw. Jinder is a terrible manager if that’s true. Gargano rolls up Veer and that’s it for them tonight. Ooh here we go, the Creed Brothers are next. Is it their time? Despite the Creed’s being the fresh team, DIY have Brutus set up for their finish. Julius hits a shoulder tackle on Ciampa to break it up though. Julius hoists Ciampa up and Brutus hits the Brutus Ball to move on. Out next is the New Day. The New Day do a great job of cutting off Julius from Brutus with quick tags. Julius powers through a rollup from Kofi Kingston and hits a powerslam! Brutus hits a standing moonsault and Julius follows up with a standing shooting star press for a casual two on Xavier Woods. It’s insane how talented they are. Kofi hits the crossbody on Julius but he rolls through and hits a fallaway slam on Kofi. Brutus takes out Woods on the outside and then hits the Brutus Ball on Kofi to eliminate the New Day! The final team to enter is the highly dysfunctional Imperium. These four go right at it but Giovanni Vinci and Ludwig Kaiser have no problem getting the upper hand since they are fresh. Vinci hits a perfect springboard crossbody. It gets lost sometimes just how damn good that young man is. Two on one beatdown on Julius but he isn’t giving up. Imperium hit their combo finish but Brutus breaks it up just in time. Julius suplexes Imperium every way he knows how and has Kaiser up for the Brutus Ball but Kaiser rakes Julius’s eyes while Vinci crotches Brutus. Imperium wants their tag team finish but Julius is able to break things up. They tried to do something where Julius launched off Brutus but he slipped. Still an impressive recover. Julius has Vinci up for the Brutus Ball and he hits it! The Creed Brothers are the new number one contenders for the Undisputed Tag Team Championships!
BACKSTAGE WITH THE JUDGMENT DAY
Rhea Ripley is talking to Dominik while Damian Priest looks off into the distance. Finn Balor comes in and says he just finished watching the Creed Brothers and they need to take them seriously. Priest says he knows he was the captain of the team at War Games so he is waiting for them to pile on him. They tell him it’s just one loss and to take it easy. Finn and Dominik seem sincere but Rhea does point out that Priest made himself the leader of the team. Priest and Balor go to check on JD.
CODY RHODES IN-RING PROMO
The American Nightmare Cody Rhodes is here. I know it’s probably a pipe dream but in a potential Punk/Rhodes feud I would eat up some “run from the grind” talk from both men. Cody says there are so many stories stemming from this weekend. One of gratitude is that his team at War Games was on the winning side at Survivor Series. He thanks each of his teammates and man this crowd is hot. Cody mentions how much Orton giving Cody the win in “his Dad’s match” meant to him. Cody is the first person with a live mic to bring up the return of CM Punk. He says no one knows what will happen because of it. Cody says “welcome back.” He mentions the saying that the fisherman always spots the other fisherman from afar. So with that being said Cody is the very first person to declare themselves for the 2024 Royal Rumble. The lights dim however and SHINSUKE NAKAMURA HAS FOUND HIS OPPONENT. A video plays with Nakamura saying that Cody is a true hero but he needs Cody to set Shinsuke free. Cody looks so confused. Nakamura says he is done waiting and will bring chaos to him. The lights come back on and Nakamura is behind Cody. He hits him with the Red Mist! Ooh we cooking now. Listen I know Nakamura isn’t the guy he used to be, but he is a great TV feud for Cody for the next couple of months until the Rumble.
IVAR V.S. BRONSON REED ENDS IN A DOUBLE COUNTOUT
“Big” Bronson Reed is out for his meat match with Ivar. Valhalla gets involved early and allows Ivar to hit his spinning kick on the outside. With Reed sitting up against the apron, Ivar hits his crossbody as we head to break. These are two good works but they are also two heels which is never a great recipe for any crowd. Ivar goes up for a moonsault but gets nothing but the mat. Reed goes up for the Tsunami but Valhalla gets up on the apron to distract Reed. The referee throws Valhalla out to go have a discussion with the Viking gods and some shampoo. Reed tries to pick Ivar up on the outside but dropped him. We are heading for a countout. Ivar looks directly at the referee at the count of eight and decides to try and dive off the barricade. Reed cuts him off and hits a Death Valley Driver through the barricade. The referee calls for the double countout but these two men are still fighting. Ivar hits Reed with a chair but that barely does anything. Security tries to break things up but these two are just using the security as weapons. Whatever stipulation rematch they have will be more fun, but this was a clunker.
BACKSTAGE WITH ZOEY STARK & SHAYNA BASZLER
Earlier today Zoey Stark was backstage with Shayna Baszler. Zoey says she almost had Rhea at Survivor Series. Shayna tells her that’s true but to calm down. She says Zoey has only been here for six months and she will get another chance. I mean that’s true but way too easy to get over that loss. Nia Jax comes in and mocks Zoey for losing. Shayna threatens to take Jax out again but Zoey steps up. She challenges Jax to a match which is happening right now!
CM PUNK SOCIAL MEDIA VIDEO PACKAGE
We see a really cool video package of fan reactions to CM Punk’s shocking return at Survivor Series. They definitely need to do more of these with their big moments.
BACKSTAGE WITH THE JUDGMENT DAY & R-TRUTH
JD, Priest, and Balor find R-Truth in the Judgment Day hang out absolutely covered in sugar from a huge plate of Jelly Roll’s. R-Truth heard they were looking for fifth member for War Games. Priest tells them that War Games was two days ago. “It was? Did you win? How did I do?” Awesome. JD tells Finn that he will take care of R-Truth. Be careful what you wish for man.
NIA JAX DEFEATS ZOEY STARK
Zoey Stark had a great showing at Survivor Series, hopefully they stick with her push. Jax charges right at Zoey but Zoey’s quickness allows her to avoid any big shots at first. Zoey hit a big dive to get the upperhand before the break, but as we come back Jax has Zoey in a torture rack. Oof Jax swings Zoey head first into the middle turnbuckle. Zoey ducks a running attack from Jax which sends Jax into the post. Zoey hits the corkscrew senton back into the ring but only gets a two count. Jax cuts off Zoey from the top and hits a Samoan Drop. She probably has her but hits a running senton. Jax still doesn’t go for the cover and instead pulls Zoey over into the corner and hits the Annihilator for the win. They cut to the worst camera shot they could have for that Vader bomb. I’m glad commentary made a point to say Zoey had to be hurting from her match with Rhea.
BACKSTAGE WITH IMPERIUM
Kaiser and Vinci are arguing and surprise surprise are caught by GUNTHER. He tells them both to go to Adam Pearce to sort out the DIY issue. Vinci starts to say he promises to get it sorted but Kaiser interrupts and says he will handle it. They leave and the Miz is waiting. Miz says he heard GUNTHER say at the press conference that GUNTHER’s next opponent needed to come and challenge him to his face. So here he is. Miz says GUNTHER knows Miz can beat him. GUNTHER says he knows the Miz is no threat to him. He tells the Miz that he did prove that the Miz belongs in that ring, just not with him.
SETH ROLLINS IN-RING PROMO
And here we go folks. Seth Freakin Rollins is out for a promo. Seth’s reaction after Punk’s debut was 100% a work but it’s going to be a blast. There is real animosity there in interviews over the years. This is a feud we legit can sink our teeth in and the parallel’s between what Seth is doing with his title reign versus what Punk tried to do a decade ago are excellent. Seth does his normal shtick and the crowd is split between singing his song and chanting “CM Punk.” Seth says he doesn’t want to spend one more second on that hypocrite. OHH is that where we are going? Me like. Seth says instead of that lets talk about the championship that he has built into the most important championship in this entire industry. Seth says two days removed from War Games he isn’t feeling too good but he is starting to get the itch of being a fighting champion again. Just as he is about to talk about his next opponent here comes Drew McIntyre. Drew says it’s been a crazy 48 hours. Even though people are talking about things outside the ring, he wants to shake Seth’s hand for his victory in War Games. Drew mentions that he didn’t know the Judgment Day’s master plan to give him Jey Uso on a silver platter happened to include losing the match. Drew claims he wants to refocus and put Jey on the back-burner. Drew mentions again what Seth said before their title match at Crown Jewel. Drew says he has no one to blame but himself for losing there. Drew says he had a chance to end Seth on the steel steps but he hesitated. “To swim with sharks, I have to become the biggest shark.”Seth says Drew does indeed deserve a rematch. But Seth also believes there are a few people that deserve it a little bit more. Seth says next week he will be defending the title live next week on Monday Night Raw. Drew asks who the match is with and ooh no Drew. The crowd knows. Seth says next week it will be Seth Rollins v.s. Jey Uso. It’s an incredible reaction from Drew, he just goes white as a ghost and then headbutts Seth. Drew is busted open from the headbutt and is screaming at Seth as he beats him down. Jey comes down and we have ourselves a fight! Jey and Seth both hit superkicks to send Drew out of the ring. Oh man what an awesome segment. Gave us just a hint of the Punk stuff but then solidified that Drew, no matter how much he might not want to be, is obsessed with Jey.
BACKSTAGE WITH DREW MCINTYRE & SAMI ZAYN
Sami Zayn catches Drew walking in the hallway. He confronts Drew for headbutting Seth. Drew tells Sami he doesn’t understand. Sami gets fired up and tells Drew “every single disappointment you’ve had so have I times ten!” Sami says every time it happens he keeps moving forward because he knows it will end in him becoming World Heavyweight Champion. Sami calls Drew a spoiled little brat. Drew tells Sami that he is right, that he is going to work his way back up to the top. He is going to go find Adam Pearce and get a match next week with…Sami! Great promo from Sami there, pointing out Drew has already been World Champion. Good that it really didn’t make Drew flinch, he’s that far gone.
CHELSEA GREEN & PIPER NIVEN DEFEAT TEGAN NOX & NATALYA (WWE WOMEN’S TAG TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP)
Natayla and Green lock up before the bell even rings lol Natlaya tries for the Sharpshooter right off the bat but Green gets out of it and tags in Piper. Tegan Nox hits a penalty kick and then tags in Natalya for a clothesline to send us to break. Nox gets the hot tag from Natalya and she is fired up. Green slaps her but it only pisses Nox off. Nox knocks Piper off the apron and then hits the Molly-Go-Round on Green! It would have been three but for Piper breaking it up. Codebreaker by Green, she holds on, and then Piper hits a senton to crush Nox into Green’s knees. That was awesome. On the outside Nox and Natalya suplex Green into the barricade but Piper is the legal woman. She hits a dive onto both women and then throws Nox into the ring. One running Crossbody from Piper and the champs retain. Fun match from these four, would love to see them run it back with some more time.
BACKSTAGE WITH RANDY ORTON & JEY USO
Orton is getting ready for his match and Jey comes up. He thanks Orton for having his back at War Games. He apologize for what happened with Orton almost two years ago. Orton says he appreciates that and says he has been watching. He has seen how Jey has had Cody and others back. If they trust him and he is truly out of the Bloodline, then its water under the bridge. They shake hands. Hmm this could be a logical storyline thread tied up or it could be something more with an eventual Orton heel turn.
BECKY LYNCH INTERVIEW
Jackie Redmond is backstage with Becky Lynch. She asks Becky how she is feeling after War Games. Becky says she feels like she went through an epic battle but tonight the Man has come around to Nashville. She says there are a few fights on the horizon for her “one more pressing than the other.”
RANDY ORTON DEFEATS DOMINIK MYSTERIO
Orton starts the match in total control, sending Dominik flying with a huge back body drop to send us into break. LOL Man Orton has been beating the breaks off of Dominik all commercial break. Orton goes for the Singh bomb onto the announce table but Dominik flips through and throws him into the stairs. Orton gets the advantage back and signals for the RKO. JD pulls Dominik out of the ring. He sees…Jelly Roll sitting in the front roll and Jelly Roll first pushes JD to the ground and then Dominik. Orton gives him a high five and then says “what’s that smell” oh man I’m guessing Jelly Roll is high as a kite. Good for him. Orton hits the Singh Bomb on Dominik and its fantastic. The crowd calls for another one and Orton delivers. JD gets the vintage Orton DDT but that allows Dominik to set up and hit the 619. Dominik goes for the Frogsplash but misses. Orton sizes him up and nails a massive RKO for the win. Awesome, by the numbers but seeing Dominik get RKO’d was great.
CM PUNK IN-RING PROMO
And here he is! Ten years is such a long time and there are so many ways this can go. I’m just happy one of the best ever gets to continue his career. Punk says “looks like hell froze over.” Punk says Saturday was a career highlight for him and he is starting to feel a little more like himself. Punk says “I’m home.” Man. Good for him but man. He said that was something that is the truth and scares him how much its the truth. Punk says this is where he belongs. “I’ve been gone for ten years and in that time you people have never forgotten me.” Punk says he is back because he loves the fans and he has missed all of this. He said a wiseman told him for him to get everything he needs out of this place he would have to leave and come back. He says the fans are home. Punk says everybody back there is happy to see him. He tells us that AJ is fabulous and she sends her regards. “Everyone has welcomed me back with open arms…well almost everybody.” Punk says everything he has always wanted has been here. He says they are all afraid that Punk just set the bar and they can’t reach it. Punk says people are afraid they are going to wake up tomorrow morning and realize their best isn’t enough to match up to the Best in the World. He calls back to his famous “nobody can touch me” promo and says the Best in the World is back and his name is CM Punk. His music hits and he tells the camera that he is back, not to make friends but to make money. Man, not controversial at all but the needed promo from him to be back in WWE. Honestly he probably does feel back at home. I’m excited to see what’s next for Punk, but definitely not the pipe bomb promo people thought they would get. I can promise you the first Seth/Punk face off will be noteworthy.