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WWE Raw results, live blog (Dec. 24, 2018): Ronda Rousey vs. Natalya

WWE Monday Night Raw comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Dec. 24, 2018) from the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento, California, featuring all the latest build to the upcoming Royal Rumble pay-per-view scheduled for next month in Phoenix.

Advertised for tonight: Natalya challenges Ronda Rousey for the Raw women’s championship, Seth Rollins vs. Baron Corbin, and more!

Come right back here at 8 p.m. ET when the Raw live blog kicks off once the show starts on USA. It will be below this line here. (REMINDER: NO GIFS OR PICS ARE ALLOWED IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. OFFENDERS WILL BE BANNED.)

Note: You can read spoilers for this show here.


No, I won’t go, I want to stay here with you. Now do what you know, don’t hesitate, make that call. If you need help, scream “hey you!” One more time, “hey you!” Dreams they don’t help, but they do stop the hurt. For now I guess we will have to figure this one out, and I’ll have to liveblog this here pro wrestling show for you, folks.

The show opens with a Raw-themed rewrite of A Visit From St. Nicholas.

Commentary then runs down our announced matches and we go in the ring with a Santa hat-festooned Elias who is ready to sing us a song ahead of his match.

He plays a few bars instrumentally before launching into his usual spiel about walking and such. He says it’s fitting that he’s opening up the Christmas Eve Raw, because at this time of year there are three truths that follow everyone-- peace on earth, goodwill to his fellow man, and WWE stands for walk with Elias. He then says he’s going to give us the gift of beating and humiliating Bobby Lashley tonight, but first he’s got the greatest gift, an original Elias Christmas song, for all of us.

The Drifter launches into his Christmas song, which is about how children can be annoying, but not as annoying as Lio Rush, and his Christmas wish is that Lashley go missing. The chorus doubles down on running Bob down, straight up being “Bobby Lashley sucks” as it is and all.

Bobby Lashley vs. Elias (Miracle on 34th Street Fight)

Circling, Lashley in with a takedown into grounded punches before smashing Elias face-first into the turnbuckles and putting boots to him. Clubbing blows into a swinging neckbreaker, Bob goes for more face-smashing into shoulder thrusts to follow that, overhead elbow, forearms and kicks into a choke, Whip across, Drifter up and over to the apron but he gets clobbered down with a forearm.

Lashley follows out after and grabs a platter with a Christmas tree on it only for Elias to deck him WITH a Christmas tree! Slamming the tree into him over and over, the Drifter stalks his prey after, pasting Bob with chops and a running clothesline before opening a present... IT’S A CANDY SINGAPORE CANE! Lio Rush takes it away from him but Elias counters Lashley’s charge and puts him into the steel steps to send us to break.

Back from commercial, trading strikes as Elias backs Lashley into the corner. Off the ropes, duck the lariat, reverse STO connects and Bob has some breathing room. Mounted punches, Rush up top... FINAL HOUR! Suplex reversed, schoolboy, charging in and Lashley plants him with a chokeslam before showing his butt off! Passing stomp, right hand and he dumps the Drifter to the floor.

Literally stepping on Elias’ neck at ringside, ramming him into the barricade, Bob arranges some presents on the floor and slams him into them! Walking Armageddon throws him back inside, big elbows in the corner, charging in, the boot is up but when the Drifter comes charging back he gets hit by the overhead belly-to-belly suplex! Lio passes Bob a gift, he dumps it out in the ring... AND THE LEGO DEATHMATCH HAS COME TO WWE, MY FRIENDS!

Taking Elias into the corner, setting him up top, jockeying for position, looking for a superplex but the Drifter blocks... AND LASHLEY TAKES A FOREARM THAT KNOCKS HIM INTO THE LEGO! Staggering to his feet, going after Elias at ringside and he gets a face full of CO2 out of a fire extinguisher! Off the ropes... AND LIO RUSH GETS KNOCKED OFF THE APRON AND THROUGH A TABLE! Knee to the face, fire extinguisher shot, stomping away and Elias gets a bowling ball out of one of the presents.

He squares it up and throws... STRIKE RIGHT IN THE GENTLEMAN’S AREA! The Drifter gets into another present and gets a cello out! Cello to the back...

Elias wins by pinfall with a cello shot to the back.

Post-match the Drifter heads over to Lio and feeds him some cookies before dumping a bowl of eggnog out over him!

A recap of last week’s opening segment follows, because Raw is three hours long. (Three hours long.)

This feeds into the promise of appearances from Mr. McMahon-ta Claus and Paul Heyman, as well as a tag title match which will be up next, after the break.

Back from commercial, Heath Slater gets a promo saying that his Christmas wish is to have his best friend, Rhyno, back on Raw.

Bobby Roode & Chad Gable (c) vs. the Revival (WWE Raw Tag Team Championship)

Wilder and Roode to start, circling, Dawson with the distraction for a schoolboy and Bobby scuttles away! Waistlock, Dash reverses to a wristlock and tags Scott in. Roo with a kick, a chop, tag to Gable, more chops, double whip into a Stinger splash and a Poetry in Motion monkey flip... NOPE! Chad on him with an armbar, kneeling into it, Dawson counters with a handful of hair and gets him in the corner for punches and chops!

Whip across, up and over, shoulder block, off the ropes, drop down, slide under, duck the lariat, big arm drag from Gable! Flapjack countered into a flying headscissors, tag champs running hot but the Revival hit a double-team Hot Shot... NOPE! And so we go to break.

Back from commercial, Wilder’s in control on Gable and puts him into the ropes. Tag to Dawson, he dumps Chad onto the apron and pummels him with kicks and punches, Dash running interference while referee Dan Engler is busy with Roode. Quick tag back to Wilder, nearfall, probing kicks, an uppercut, setting the Olympian up top... AND GABLE GRABS THE ARMBAR IN THE ROPES!

Dash falls to the floor when he lets go, tags Dawson in, Scott cuts off the tag, Chad ducks a short-arm lariat and hits a back suplex and the way is clear! Tags made, Roode in hot with lariats, whip, back body drop, right hand clears the apron, overhead exploder, uranage for Dawson before dumping Wilder on him! Charging shoulder, lariat sends Scott to the floor, spinning spinebuster into a cover... NOPE!

Gable wants the tag, he gets it, Bobby sets it up but Dash shove shim into the corner. Chad with the moonsault, he lands on his feet... CHAOS THEORY CONNECTS BUT DAWSON BREAKS THE PIN UP! Scott tags in, whip to the corner, up and over into a sunset flip for two! Rana pin from Dawson outta nowhere, only two, jackknfe from Gable reversed into a backslide attempt, reversed, Wilder tags in, uppercut German suplex into a bridging pin... ROODE WITH THE SAVE!

Going for an assisted suplex, Bobby with the save, Chad thinks fast...

Bobby Roode & Chad Gable win by pinfall by way of Gable reversing a suplex into a small package on Scott Dawson to retain the WWE Raw Tag Team Championship.

Commentary points out that Scott Dawson was not the legal man while recapping the match, so that’s some drama to look forward to.

They hype up the rest of tonight’s action and we go backstage where the B-Team are caroling, offering Apollo Crews a B-Team t-shirt for his kids. Crews begs off and they recommit to their song to send us to break.

Back from commercial, Lucha House Party get a backstage segment where they talk about what they’re asking Lucha Claus to bring them for Christmas. Curt Hawkins gets one, too, where it takes him a minute and some outside prodding before he asks Santa for a win. No Way Jose wants to give Santa a gift and enumerates all the stuff he’s going to need to take the WWE Universe to the north pole to make it happen.

This segues into the video package on the six NXT superstars that are getting called up soon.

Dolph Ziggler gets a handcam promo where he enumerates things he deserves, like Shane McMahon handing him the Best in the World trophy, a Netflix special, and proof that he’s just that damn good.

Drew McIntyre makes his entrance, and we go to break before his match can begin.

Back from commercial, we get a vignette advertising Kevin Owens as returning soon.

Drew McIntyre is interviewed in the ring.

He asks if a mountain lion worries when it spots two deer in the wild and says of course not, that’s extra food. But of course Dolph and Finn are going to gang up on him, but it’s not gonna make a difference because those boys are limited and the Scottish Psychopath is limitless. (Er, that’s Keith Lee, sir) And once he disposes of Finn and Dolph, he’s going to win the Royal Rumble and fulfill his prophecy by main eventing WrestleMania.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Finn Balor

Circling, Balor and Ziggler both rush in and McIntyre takes them out. Firing chops off, drawing Dolph up in the corner, Finn gets his boots up and Ziggler gets an elbow. Balor with a flying forearm, off the ropes, another, Drew still standing but staggered, temporary alliance and McIntyre gets clotheslined to the floor! Dolph in control, right hands, scraping Finn’s face across the top rope.

Balor blocks a punch and eats a dropkick for a one count, off the ropes, sunset flip into a dropkick and Finn lariats Ziggler to the floor. Lined up, off the ropes and Drew yanks him to the floor and throws him into the barricade! Dolph comes charging around and gets caught with a body slam into the apron to send us to break.

Back from commercial and McIntyre is in control with a kneeling armbar on Balor, raking the bones of his forearm across Finn’s face! Knee to the midsection and he throws Balor through Ziggler on the apron! Delayed vertical suplex on Dolph for two feeds into mounted punches, stomps to the hand and into a half nelson chinlock on the mat. Ziggler clawing at his face for an escape, body blows but McIntyre dumps him to the floor.

Balor in with a sunset flip, only two, elbow from Drew gets the same and he follows it with stomps to the head and leg. Finn probing with leg kicks, Ziggler back in with right hands on McIntyre, going for a superkick and he gets cut off with a headbutt that sends him to the floor! Front kick takes Balor down, powerbomb clutch, slide out, dropkick, shotgun dropkick, Finn up top... nobody home on the Coup de Grace and Dolph picks the bones with a Zig Zag for two!

Balor catches a kick but takes the Fameasser, McIntyre is able to catch a kick and hoss Dolph around... Inverted Alabama Slam puts Ziggler into Finn but can’t put Balor away! Squaring Finn up, lying in wait... SLING BLADE! Finn with some fancy evasion, gamengiri connects, up top and Ziggler cuts him off! Looking for the big DDT, Drew throws him off but Dolph lands a headbutt and a superkick... COUP DE GRACE BREAKS IT UP!

Fired up, lariat sends McIntyre to the floor, shotgun dropkick for Ziggler, up top...

Finn Balor wins by pinfall with the Coup de Grace on Dolph Ziggler.

Post-match, Drew returns to the ring and grabs Dolph by the jaw to yell at him about how he’s trying to save the place and there’s not enough room for the both of them, all while referee Darrick Moore is yelling at him to back off... ZIG ZAG!

A recap of Tribute to the Troops follows.

Commentary hypes up our matches for tonight again and we go backstage where the B-Team are still shopping their version of The Twelve Days of Christmas around and Bo Dallas knocks a Christmas tree over in frustration. Curtis Axel scolds him and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Mr. McMahon-ta Claus greets us from a north pole that looks stunningly, by his own admission, like a set on a stage somewhere.

He announces that John Cena is back on both Raw and SmackDown, as well as WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions, and next week on Raw a steel cage match between Dolph Ziggler and Drew McIntyre. He takes the beard and wig off and asks the crew if they’ve seen Bad Santa before the camera cuts.

Alicia Fox, Dana Brooke, & Mickie James vs. Boss and Hug Connection (Bayley & Sasha Banks) & Ember Moon

Moon and James to start, Ember with a quick schoolboy for a nearfall, collar and elbow, Mickie with a wristlock. Moon reverses, catches a punch into a kick combo but James dodges the last one and comes off the ropes for a kick for a nearfall of her own. Ember shoves her off, kip-up headscissors takeover and a tag to Fox. Moon cuts her off with a kick, off the ropes... suicide dive on Mickie!

Throwing James back inside for some reason, Alicia runs Ember over and we go to break.

Back from commercial and Brooke is in charge of Moon with a mat slam before tossing her into her corner and tagging James in. Kick to the midsection, slamming her face into the mat for two, cover made for two, tag to Dana, handspring splash... NOPE! Ember with an arm drag, Dana clears Banks off the apron and puts Moon into the corner but she sidesteps the handspring elbow and tags Bayley in!

Hugger in hot, knee to the head into a Saito suplex before clearing the apron and charging in for a shoulder thrust. Back roll, tube man... cut off with a lariat! Tag to Mickie, charging in, Hot Shot and a tag to Sasha! Knees in the corner, headed up top and Meteora connects a bit loose but Fox breaks it up! Ember hits Eclipse on Alicia, the Boss goes for the lungblower but James kicks her off.

Tag to Bayley, lungblower sets it up...

Boss and Hug Connection & Ember Moon win by pinfall with the Bayley-to-Belly from Bayley on Mickie James.

The Riott Squad hit the ring after the match and beat our winners down, dumping them out of the ring for an early reminder of how the Royal Rumble works.

A recap of the Baron Corbin / Seth Rollins feud follows, which oughta help those of you with children who are celebrating Christmas get them to sleep nice and early for Santa.

And so we go to break.

Back from commercial, Paul Heyman is in the ring singing a version of Silent Night rewritten to be about Braun Strowman’s upcoming match against Brock Lesnar.

He launches into a variation of his usual schtick and says he’s got access to Braun’s personnel file and tells a story about how he prayed that Santa Claus would bring him a replica title and now here he is a full-grown monster and he doesn’t want a replica, he wants the real deal at the expense of his client, Brock Lesnar. Paul E. says he’s gonna shoot from the hip and there’s no way he’s getting the title this year.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer couldn’t find him a path to the Universal Championship, and all Strowman is going to get from Santa Claus is one big lump of coal, and at the Royal Rumble--


Enter Braun Strowman.

He gets in Heyman’s face while Paul begs off, wishing him various happy holidays. Braun pulls out a red nose and antlers and puts them on him, calling him Paul Heyman, the Red-Nosed Advocate and saying he’s got a message for him to take back to Brock. At the Royal Rumble he’ll be healed up and Lesnar is going to get These Hands!

A recap of the events that lead to tonight’s WWE Raw Women’s Championship match ensues.

Natalya is interviewed backstage about that match. She says she expects nothing but the best from Ronda Rousey and Ronda expects the same from her, but nobody knows Rousey better than she does. 2018 was one of the most challenging years of Nattie’s life, but she’s focused and ready now, and bringing the title home would be an amazing gift for her and her family.

The match will be up next, after the break.

Back from commercial, Alexa Bliss asks Santa for a personality for Bayley, some humility for Sasha, and some good makeup for Ronda Rousey. Tyler Breeze asks Santa for a speedy recovery for Fandango and some Ariana Grande tickets, with a preference for the latter if he can only have one.

Natalya vs. Ronda Rousey (c) (WWE Raw Women’s Championship)

Circling, side headlock takeover from Natalya, headscissors counter, reversed, stalemate. Back to circling, jockeying for position, Rousey with the takeover this time and Neidhart reverses to a crucifix pin for one. Ronda back at it with a wristlock, Nattie reverses, side headlock takeover, shot off, shoulder block gets two. Collar and elbow, Neidhart with a leg pick into a front chancery and Rousey reverses to a hammerlock.

Elaborate float-over looking for the armbar, Natalya keeps her hands clasped as Ronda switches things up looking for some kind of triangle choke. Nattie gets a waistlock, Rousey with a judo throw into a pin for two! Squaring back up, Neidhart with a leg pick into a spinning toehold and then the Prison Lock! Reversed to a side headlock and a pin, Nattie shoots in with a double leg but Ronda reverses to a bodyscissors!

Adding a guillotine choke, Natalya hosses her up for a delayed back northern lights suplex! Sharpshooter denied, Neidhart through the ropes and we go to break!

Back from commercial, Natalya’s in control and gets a nearfall off a schoolboy pin, following it up with a bodyscissors. Shifting to a front chancery, snap suplex, and into a sleeper hold after but Rousey is able to wriggle out. Neidhart with a lariat, only two, starting to get frustrated, grabbing at the hair before setting up a Cobra Twist, and picking a leg after moments in the hold to really wrench it in.

Ronda slings her off, Nattie rushes in with a dropkick and gets a nearfall off it. Following it up, a suplex that verges on a sheerdrop brainbuster... STILL NO! Posing for the crowd, the delay lets Rousey recover and start throwing punches in the corner. Judo throw, high knee... SO CLOSE! Nattie blocks a judo throw, gets a quick cover, discus lariat... NOT HAPPENING!

Pick the legs, cross ‘em over but Rousey struggles out of it... PIPER’S PIT! Grabbing the arm, a sad look on her face, hesitation and Neidhart reverses into the Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring! Clawing, scraping, crawling, reaching, Natalya drags her back to the center of the ring! Losing her grip as Ronda crawls and reaches and manages to roll to her back, pick the leg to counter, grab the arm...

Ronda Rousey wins by submission with the cross armbar to retain the WWE Raw Women’s Championship.

Rousey draws her friend up and they embrace before referee Chad Patton presents her the title. Ronda holds both the title and Nattie’s hand aloft.

Dean Ambrose gets a promo in a dark room where he wishes Seth Rollins luck in his match against Baron Corbin tonight. Or well, not really, he wishes him what he deserves, the gullible fool that probably still believes in Santa that he is. This year Dean got the gift he deserves, the Intercontinental Championship, and imagine the lousy Christmas Seth’ll have if he loses tonight.

A trailer for Fighting With My Family follows to send us to break.

Back from commercial, we get a vignette for Sami Zayn, who is billed as returning soon.

Heath Slater vs. Jinder Mahal

Collar and elbow, Mahal with a wristlock, wrenching it in but Slater reverses. Jinder with a back elbow, chop, whip across, big back elbow from the Modern-Day Maharaja into a straight suplex for two. Three-quarter nelson, slip into a reverse chinlock when Heath gets to his feet all the way and... HERE COMES SANTA CLAUS THROUGH THE CROWD!

Mahal stands up to yell at the fat mat, Slater takes advantage with a superkick... and the Singh Brothers hit the ring for the beatdown.

Heath Slater wins by disqualification.

Santa gets in the ring and asks Jinder and his boys to stop because it’s Christmas, and they actually oblige him... SANTA TAKES MAHAL OUT WITH A LARIAT AND DUMPS THE SINGH BROTHERS TO THE FLOOR! SANTA WANTS A GORE... GORE! IT WAS RHYNO THE ENTIRE TIME!

Beauty and the Man-Beast hug and share a moment of holiday brotherhood.

Backstage, the B-Team are still singing and are somehow on the 42nd day of Christmas. Flagging, Bo collapses and Curtis joins him as they pass out full of Christmas cheer to send us to break.

Back from commercial we get a recap of Mr. McMahon-ta Claus’ announcements from earlier, followed by the NXT call-up vignettes, because this is a pre-taped holiday show and Raw is three hours long. (Three hours long.)

Seth Rollins is interviewed backstage and says life is about moving forward and he’s focused on putting Baron Corbin away once and for all. As for Dean Ambrose, he can try to take everything he wants from him, but he can’t take his reputation nor his heart.

Seth makes his entrance and we go to break before the match can begin.

Back from commercial, Apollo Crews asks Santa for a tank, because he needs to flip it over, and then moonsault over it afterwards. The Ascension wish to punish their opponents and Viktor is sad because he wants to do Secret Santa but Konnor thinks that’s dumb since there’s only two of them. Kurt Angle says making sure Baron Corbin didn’t become general manager is the only gift he needed.

Baron Corbin vs. Seth Rollins

Rollins out hot, punches and chops, backing Corbin into the corner and forcing referee John Cone to pull him off. Baron with a knee, off the ropes, Seth returns the favor, clotheslines him to the floor and hits a suicide dive! Drawing him up, right hand, pacing after the Lone Wolf, chop, smashing his face into the apron but around the corner Corbin manages to ram him into the apron and throws him back in.

Kick to the midsection, Corbin rolls away from Blackout and Rollins dives on him! Throwing Baron into the barricade and back in the ring, the Architect on him with punches, again forcing Cone to back him off. Back body drop to the apron and up top and Corbin cuts him off with a right hand that sends him to the floor and us to break.

Back from commercial and Corbin in control but Rollins fights back with body blows. Corbin with a knee, a charge, sidestepped, pass outside and back in and he devastates Seth with a lariat but can only get two! Drawing him up, right hands to the forehead, letting out a primal scream before returning to the punching. Overhead elbow to mix it up, leaving Rollins gasping as he goes back to a half nelson chinlock.

Really wrenching it in, Rollins fights to his feet, hammering Baron’s midsection with punches, whip reversed, sidestep, out and back in, duck the lariat, boot up in the corner and Seth hits the diving blockbuster for some separation! Blocking punches and firing his own back, chops in the mix, whip reversed, duck the lariat, Sling Blade connects! Kick to the midsection, looking for a suplex, reversal reversed with a knee.

Boot up on the charge, up and over, pop-up countered... FALCON ARROW BUT HE CANNOT DO THE DEAL! Tuning up the band as Corbin rises, superkick to the midsection, Blackout ducked... DEEP SIX CAN’T KEEP ROLLINS DOWN! Putting Seth in the corner, setting him up top, right hands, jockeying for position and strikes send Rollins crumpling to the apron.

Enzuigiri connects, springboard... CAUGHT INTO THE CHOKEBREAKER BUT IT’S NOT ENOUGH! End of Days blocked, small package... ALMOST! Sidestep the charge, shoulder to post, roll-through, Avada Kedavra, out of the corner...

Seth Rollins wins by pinfall with Blackout.

Rollins celebrates while commentary wishes us a Merry Christmas.

That’s the show, folks.

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