AJ Styles showed up to WWE TLC on about five minutes of sleep and still gave “The Demon” Finn Bálor the fight of his life. So, you can imagine how the former WWE Champion competed after a full night’s rest when he teamed with The Shield against the formidable combo of The Miz & The Bar in Raw’s opening contest.
For one, Styles’ presence was a galvanizing force for his two teammates, who had been through a hellish TLC Match not 24 hours earlier, to say nothing of a Raw audience that was pumped to see the former WWE Champion again. And he proved to be a life-saver as well, tagging into the match in the waning minutes when Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins needed him most. A Phenomenal Forearm to Cesaro earned the victory after The Shield dispatched Miz and Sheamus with stereo suicide dives, but the arrival of Kane and subsequent five-on-three beatdown ended Styles’ night on a note that was far from phenomenal.
Ask, and you shall receive. After WWE Champion Jinder Mahal brazenly challenged Brock Lesnar to a Champion vs. Champion Match last week on SmackDown LIVE, the Universal Champion arrived on Raw, Paul Heyman in tow, to fire back in earnest at The Modern Day Maharaja.
Team Brock responded to the WWE Champion’s challenge with a bold takedown of the “Make-Believe Maharaja” and the “Singh-Along Brothers,” calling Mahal unworthy of both the WWE Title and the honor of being beaten, victimized and conquered by The Beast. That said, if Mahal wanted to follow in Randy Orton’s shoes and tempt fate by crossing brand lines to fight Lesnar, The Conqueror would be more than happy to give him what he asked for. Survivor Series it is.
Raw General Manager Kurt Angle intended to use Team Red’s main event to announce the brand’s competitors for this year's Men's Traditional Survivor Series Elimination Match. Unfortunately, an offhanded remark earlier in the evening to visiting SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon about the blue brand’s supposedly thin ranks came back to haunt The Olympic Hero when The Prodigal Son marched his roster through the audience to surround Angle in the ring and place Raw “under siege.”
With The New Day leading the charge, SmackDown picked the Raw Superstars apart one by one across the entire backstage area. Chad Gable made a beeline for Jason Jordan, the Women's roster handily overpowered Sasha Banks & Co., and Baron Corbin even took out a hapless backstage worker. Dean Ambrose & Seth Rollins put up the toughest fight by attacking from the shadows, but Team Blue overpowered The Hounds of Justice before leading Angle back to the top of the ramp.
Rusev and Corbin marched the Raw General Manager to the ring for a final face-to-face confrontation with Shane, who commanded Angle to bring his gold medal and what was left of his roster to Survivor Series, where SmackDown would finish what they started. And given the display that had just unfolded, Shane didn’t even have to steal Angle’s catchphrase (though he did anyway) for The Olympic Hero to realize that his promise may very well come true.
In other action … Intercontinental Champion The Miz confronted Raw General Manager Kurt Angle … Kane def. Finn Bálor … Asuka def. Emma … Mickie James confronted Raw Women's Champion Alexa Bliss … Jason Jordan def. Elias via Disqualification … Alicia Fox def. Sasha Banks and Bayley to become captain of Raw’s Women’s Survivor Series team … and Team Lucha Lucha (Kalisto, Cedric Alexander, Rich Swann, Mustafa Ali & Gran Metalik) def. The Zo Train (WWE Cruiserweight Champion Enzo Amore, Tony Nese, Drew Gulak, Noam Dar & Ariya Daivari).