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The December 21, 2015 Edition of RAW is a Professional wrestling television show of the WWE's RAW brand, which took place on December 21, 2015 at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. This event featured the 2015 Slammy Awards.
Last week, Stephanie McMahon opened Raw by going nose-to-nose with Roman Reigns and slapping him in the face for punching out Triple H. This week, Stephanie McMahon opened Raw by going nose-to-nose with Roman Reigns again. The difference? Reigns is the genuine WWE World Heavyweight Champion and as such, he was having a ball in passive-aggressively riling Stephanie into a frenzy. But The Billion Dollar Princess did have some discipline for the champion nonetheless, or more accurately, for his family: The Usos would battle The New Day in a Handicap Match and Dean Ambrose had Sheamus in a Steel Cage.
Congratulations to Neville, whose rookie campaign won him Breakout Star of the Year in Raw’s first Slammy Award presentation — much to Kevin Owens’ chagrin. Fittingly enough, moments later, a fight broke out when Dolph Ziggler jumped a trash-talking KO on the stage.
Then, another fight broke out when The Wyatt Family swarmed Kane’s return against Bray Wyatt, breaking up the match but bringing out three of the four ECW Originals as reinforcements for The Devil’s Favorite Demon. That led to the former ECW Champion teaming with the hardcore vets against the Wyatts, who prevailed thanks to a discus clothesline from Luke Harper to D-Von Dudley, though the interference of Braun Strowman certainly helped to set Harper up.
You know what was funny? R-Truth thinking he was in the Money in the Bank Match over the summer, though Slammy presenter Santino Marella attempting to abscond with Truth’s statue for LOL! Moment of the Year was a solid, if a little-too-late contender for runner-up.
More on the serious — or, rather, shocking — side was the award for “OMG!” Shocking Moment of the Year, which went to Kalisto for his ladder-shattering Salida del Sol at WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs. Lucha!
So Kevin Owens doesn’t like losing. Losing the Intercontinental Title led him to jump Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose last week, and dropping the Breakout Star of the Year Slammy to Neville led him to provoke The Showoff into a fight. The disappointment ended during the actual match that the two ended up having, though it was hardly a walk in the park for Kevin Owens to pull out the win. Ziggler hung so tough with the former Intercontinental Champion — a Famouser to a rope-strung Owens all but finished him off — that a punchy KO only won by a stroke of luck, catching Ziggler with a Pop-up Powerbomb when The Showoff rushed too recklessly toward his foe.
He was WWE World Heavyweight Champion. He was Mr. Money in the Bank. He was United States Champion. And now, Seth Freaking Rollins can add Superstar of the Year to his trophy case for 2015. The Architect even made an appearance — his first since being sidelined by a knee injury that stripped him of the title — to accept the award. So Rollins’ jubilation turned quickly to intensity as he vowed to “redesign,” “rebuild,” and “reclaim” the title that nobody ever beat him for.
Splitting from Zeb Colter and allying with The League of Nations continues to pay dividends for United States Champion Alberto Del Rio, who capped off his series against Jack Swagger with a fairly one-sided beatdown of The Real American that was only briefly placed in jeopardy by Swagger’s late-game rally. Del Rio snuffed that out quickly, toppling a turnbuckle-perched Swagger straight into the Tree of Woe stomp. It was a solid display by The Essence of Excellence, who later fed Swagger to an attack by the rest of The League of Nations. Del Rio had better keep it up, because he’s got a tougher-than-tough opponent to contend to next week in the final Raw of 2015, and his name is … well, you know.
Who embodies the hero in all of us? Mark Henry was on hand to reveal the answer to just that, presenting the “Hero in All of Us” Award in between the night’s Slammy distribution. Chief among WWE’s plethora of humanitarians turned out to be John Cena, though his absence led to Henry accepting on the Cenation leader’s behalf. Perhaps Cena himself will give his speech upon his return next week.
Santa Claus is back! And with Alberto Del Rio’s cars nowhere in sight, that meant Kris Kringle was free to spread holiday goodwill and cheer to — oh, wait, it’s just Bo Dallas in a red hat. Well, the former NXT Champion certainly doesn’t lack for jolliness, which made his presentation of Surprise Return of the Year to Sting all the more merry. Alas, Bo had to accept on behalf of the absent Vigilante, which really is a surprise nobody saw coming.
It’s good to be Roman Reigns, but it’s also good to be Roman Reigns’ friends. In the first of McMahon-sanctioned punishments for The Big Dog’s compatriots, The Usos prevailed in a 2-on-3 match against the full-force New Day, who were mildly smarting over losing the Tag Team of the Year Slammy to Jimmy & Jey.
They made the brothers pay, though mercifully by not spoiling “Star Wars.” Instead, they just used the numbers to their advantage, picking The Usos apart in a revolving door of pain. The Usos hung tough, however, with Jey providing the exclamation point by way of an enzuigiri to an interfering Big E and a reversal of Xavier Woods’ roll-up for the win. Usos rock?
The winner for Diva of the Year is Paige! Wait a minute. No it’s not. Despite a Steve Harvey-ish mix-up by presenter R-Truth, the winner was ultimately announced as Nikki Bella, who still graciously let Paige stay onstage — appropriate, since Nikki dedicated her trophy to all the women in the WWE locker room, office and the WWE Universe.
That led seamlessly to a match between Neville and Rusev, and even though the Breakout Star of the Year has had some luck against big men in recent weeks, he couldn’t get the better of The Super Athlete. Rusev locked in the Accolade and marshaled a beatdown of the former NXT Champion by The League of Nations that Neville’s would-be mentor, The Miz, had no interest in stopping at ringside. Now that’s a diva.
As self-proclaimed ambassador of awesomeness and Hollywood, perhaps it’s only appropriate that The Miz presented the “This is Awesome!” Moment of the Year Slammy to crossover Superstars The Rock and Ronda Rousey for their confrontation with The Authority at WrestleMania. Appropriate too, as that moment — and Miz’s Rocky-style plug of “Santa’s Little Helper” — was, indeed, awesome.
Equally awesome was the outcome of Becky Lynch’s battle with Brie Bella. Even though The Lass Kicker has been helped — sometimes knowingly, sometimes reluctantly — by the interference of Ric Flair at ringside, the absence of “The Nature Boy” proved no issue for Lynch, who flew solo and got the “W” by reversing Brie’s La Magistral into the Dis-arm-her.
Ric Flair knows a good match when he sees one. Or has one. So that made the two-time WWE Hall of Famer ideal to present the coveted Match of the Year Slammy Award, which went to The Undertaker and Brock Lesnar’s Hell in a Cell Match. Despite the booming overture of The Conqueror’s music, only Paul Heyman re-emerged to accept the gold on behalf of The Beast Incarnate. The WWE Universe vocally advocated for homegrown hero Lesnar’s presence. Heyman blew them off in favor of praising The Undertaker’s bravery and The Beast’s continued dominance. Sounds about right.
The League of Nations standing sentinel around a Steel Cage; The Usos taken out; a Brogue Kick before the bell even rang. Sounds like a solid day at the office for Dean Ambrose, who battled from a near-insurmountable deficit to overcome The Celtic Warrior in Raw’s main event.
The momentum first started to shift when Sheamus pounded the Intercontinental Champion with White Noise off the top turnbuckle and Ambrose rallied from the grave to reply with an elbow drop off the top of the cage. The League of Nations reacted accordingly and Reigns made his appearance then, taking out Sheamus’ minions and tossing The Lunatic Fringe a steel chair to use against the Irishman himself. That Ambrose chose to climb out of the cage rather than walk out the door is a testament to his insanity. But it worked, in a veritable photo finish when the Celt followed him over the side. So, to paraphrase Sheamus: Who looks crazy now?
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Kane defeated Bray Wyatt (w/ Braun Stowman, Luke Harper & Erick Rowan) by DQ (0:58)
- The Wyatt Family (Bray Wyatt, Braun Stowman, Luke Harper & Erick Rowan) defeated Kane, Tommy Dreamer & The Dudley Boyz (Bubba Ray & D-Von Dudley) (2:46)
- Kevin Owens defeated Dolph Ziggler (12:12)
- Alberto Del Rio (w/ Sheamus, Rusev & King Barrett) defeated Jack Swagger (7:05)
- The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) defeated The New Day (Big E, Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) (7:55)
- Rusev (w/ Sheamus, Alberto Del Rio & King Barrett) defeated Neville by submission (8:05)
- Becky Lynch (w/ Charlotte) defeated Brie Bella by submission (5:10)
- Dean Ambrose defeated Sheamus (w/ Rusev, Alberto Del Rio & King Barrett) in a Steel Cage match (11:00)
Other on-screen talent