WWE Raw Recap: December 24, 2018
S episode 52 Aired on December 24, 2018

Baron Corbin has a lot to answer for following his tyrannical reign as Raw’s “General Manager-Elect,” and Seth Rollins made Team Red’s resident Krampus pay for all of his transgressions in a Christmas Eve main event that was far from merry for The Lone Wolf. Plus, Ronda Rousey defended her Raw Women’s Title against Natalya, The Revival challenged Bobby Roode & Chad Gable for the Raw Tag Team Titles and Elias decked the halls with Bobby Lashley in a Miracle on 34th Street Fight.

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all throughout Raw, Elias began the show with a song. A Street Fight was coming, and he was feeling flighty, about his fresh chance, to beat “The All Mighty.” When Bobby Lashley came down, Elias looked good, till Lio Rush interfered and ruined the mood.

The big move that made Elias come back, was when he threw Lashley onto Legos he used like thumbtacks. Bobby was laid out, but Rush was still able, so Elias put him through a big Christmas table. While Lio was doused in cookies and Jello, The Living Truth broke out a big Christmas cello. Seeing that Bobby was all out of whack, he smashed up that cello all over his back. Now Lashley was down, and the 1-2-3 won, but Elias wanted a little more fun. He went over to the young Piece of Gold, then dumped on his head a big eggnog bowl. With the match won, he drifted off to the next town, with his enemies beat, embarrassed and down. Now that’s how it’s done, and how the fight ends, we’ve walked with Elias, so let’s get an amen.

Ronda Rousey did not look thrilled about having to defend her Raw Women’s Title against Natalya; The Baddest Woman on the Planet was uncharacteristically muted-looking and off-kilter in the early goings of the match, and it wasn’t difficult to see Rousey was having a difficult time wrapping her head around fighting the woman who helped train her for WWE. But that doesn’t mean she was going to let her win.

Natalya, who scored three straight victories in a Gauntlet Match to earn the opportunity last week, certainly didn’t hesitate to take advantage of Rousey’s hesitation, grinding The Queen of Harts down in the hopes of locking in the Sharpshooter. Even as Rousey stirred to life, she seemed reluctant to pull the proverbial trigger … until Natalya finally applied her signature hold with a look of gleeful disbelief on her face. With Natalya unwilling to relinquish the submission, Rousey was forced to spring into action, reversing the hold into an immediate Armbar that won the match and brought tears to her eyes. The post-match embrace was well-earned from a competition standpoint and served as a touching affirmation that the grueling fight that preceded it was nothing personal, strictly business.

Has Baron Corbin not suffered enough? No, he has not. At least, that appeared to be the thinking of Seth Rollins, who was among the first to stand up to the former “GM-Elect” and who effectively used Corbin as something between a punching bag and reboot switch during the main event of the Christmas Eve Raw.

The match quickly took on the tone of a battle for pride for both Superstars. Corbin desperately needed to regain some mojo after a professionally demoralizing week, and The Kingslayer was looking to re-center himself after Dean Ambrose played him like a fiddle and took the Intercontinental Championship. Corbin certainly went a long way toward re-establishing himself as a Superstar to be reckoned with, catching a full-steam ahead Rollins unaware on multiple occasions. But The Kingslayer got the last word with a Stomp that dropped Corbin like a stone and sent him packing. That’s the thing about Christmas. Sometimes, you get exactly what you wanted — and if you’re lucky, exactly what you needed, too.

In other action … Raw Tag Team Champions Bobby Roode & Chad Gable def. The Revival … Finn Bálor def. Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre (Triple Threat Match) … Mr. McMahon delivered Christmas gifts to the WWE Universe … Bayley, Sasha Banks & Ember Moon def. Mickie James, Alicia Fox & Dana Brooke … Braun Strowman confronted Paul Heyman … and Rhyno returned to help Heath Slater fend off Jinder Mahal and The Singh Brothers.