WWE Raw Recap: December 3, 2018
S26 episode 49 Aired on December 3, 2018

After Nia Jax & Tamina prevented Raw Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey from helping Natalya fight off The Riott Squad, The Baddest Woman on the Planet got some backup in the form of The War Goddess, Ember Moon. Find out how Hot Ronda put The Irresistible Force on the defensive en route to their title collision at WWE TLC: Tables, Ladders & Chairs.

About the only positive thing that can be said of The Riott Squad’s continued vendetta against Natalya is that they’ve at least stopped evoking the loss of her father. Apart from that, however, Ruby Riott & Co.’s tormenting of The Queen of Harts continued apace — this week, the trio ambushed Natalya during the start of Raw’s planned opening match, a tag team bout pitting Natalya & Ronda Rousey against Nia Jax & Tamina.

Nia and Tamina made quick work of The Baddest Woman on the Planet, and The Queen of Harts was left to The Riott Squad’s mercy, or lack thereof. The 3-on-1 attack was demoralizing enough, but they saved the finishing stroke for last, positioning the former SmackDown Women’s Champion on the apron and driving her through a table they had brought to ringside. Alexa Bliss quickly sent The Riott Squad home, but that wasn't enough for Rousey, who demanded a match with Nia & Tamina. And, unwilling to leave the selection of her partner to The Goddess, the Raw Women's Champion declared she'd find one herself.

Having received his inoculations last week, Dean Ambrose deemed Houston sanitary enough to receive him, though he entered the ring wearing a gas mask and surrounded by a SWAT team. Once Ambrose felt comfortable enough to remove his mask, however, he spoke at length about the difference between himself and Seth Rollins.

According to Ambrose, Rollins’ need to control everything contributed to the deterioration of the brotherhood and led to The Lunatic Fringe’s betrayal. But now that Ambrose — the self-proclaimed “Moral Compass of WWE” — had unmanned The Architect with weeks of attacks, he was confident enough to predict that Rollins would lose control of everything at WWE TLC, including the Intercontinental Championship.

He might be onto something, as Rollins certainly looked like a wild man when he attacked from behind and took out the entire SWAT squad before pursuing Ambrose into the audience. The Lunatic Fringe gained the upper hand by hitting Rollins in the face with a gas mask, at which point he teed off on The Kingslayer and administered a pair of Dirty Deeds. Whether Ambrose’s moral compass points north is certainly up for debate. But should these trends continue, it's looking like Seth Rollins has nowhere to go but down.

Nia Jax & Tamina certainly had the right idea in trying to hand Ronda Rousey a loss en route to her title defense at WWE TLC. Unfortunately for them, The Baddest Woman on the Planet picked an ace as a tag team partner in Ember Moon, and Nia’s plan fell apart at the last second when it turned out she might not be as ready to face Rousey as she claimed.

Despite a successful ambush of Rousey before the match began, Nia bailed on the match the second she was tagged in, leaving Tamina to fend for herself against the Raw Women’s Champion. When The Irresistible Force tried to interfere, she was expelled from the ring by The War Goddess, who pounced on Tamina with an Eclipse off the top turnbuckle. All Rousey had to do was apply the Armbar — which she did — and smile for the cameras as she extended her winning streak. As for Jax? She’ll have to do a little more than that.

In other action … Sasha Banks & Bayley def. Mickie James & Alicia Fox … The Lucha House Party def. Scott Dawson (Lucha House Rules) … Dolph Ziggler def. Drew McIntyre … Elias smashed a guitar over Lio Rush's back … Raw Tag Team Champions AOP & Drake Maverick def. Bobby Roode & Chad Gable (3-on-2 Handicap Match) … and Heath Slater def. Rhyno; Rhyno was fired from Raw and Slater was reassigned as a referee.

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