Last week was the first full Smackdown show since the brand split, and we saw lots of interesting things and started lots of interesting feuds. That all continues tonight, with lots of twists and turns along the way, and I will dissect the two hours of footage this week and tell you whats good and whats not. Let’s head backstage to start off the show.
The show started off today backstage with Shane and Daniel watching a replay of Randy on Monday Night RAW. They started scolding his actions because Smackdown is his proper brand. “But with that being said, it was pretty awesome” were the words of Shane as he said he will have security everywhere to make sure Brock isn’t here to retaliate after the attack on Monday. After that, Daniel and Shane both had a quick conversation with The Miz, and they informed him of a match of Apollo Crews, Baron Corbin and Kalisto, with the winner facing The Miz for the title at a later date. After the new intro video plays, Dean Ambrose makes his way to the ring to call Dolph Ziggler out to the ring. We get a quick conversation between the two, and they both cut some really good promos. Just as we thought we were going to a break, Bray Wyatt appears and attacks Ziggler. After the attack, he challenges Ziggler to a match, with the winner facing Dean at Summerslam.
The start of this show was good, but it seemed like it was a lot of information for 15 minutes. We essentially saw 4 segments all in a small amount of time, but I would still prefer this over the stretched out (but still good) segment that started off RAW this week. I really like the angle they are doing with Orton and Lesnar, and I think it’s good to utilize the roster rules and make the rules a part of the storyline. It was only a matter of time until we saw a “He’s at the wrong show” gimmick. Dolph and Dean both cut good promos, and I think it’s good to throw Bray in the mix at least for a week because we have not seen much of him in the past few weeks and he needs a bit of a boost now that he’s without the Wyatt Family.
Match 1: Kalisto vs Baron Corbin vs Apollo Crews (IC Title #1 Contenders Match)
After the break, Ziggler goes to Bryan and Shane to say that he wants the match that Wyatt challenged him to. So later on we will see Ziggler versus Wyatt, but up next it’s a triple threat match of Kalisto, Baron Corbin and Apollo Crews to find out who will face The Miz for his Intercontinental Championship. Apollo Crews ended up being the man on top in this match, and he won by rollup. This match was amazing, and it defined the term “short but sweet” for matches. All 3 wrestlers got to get some sweet spots in, and Kalisto WAS able to do some lucha things. After the match, everyone gets in a brawl including The Miz who was ringside, and Corbin ended up winning the brawl. I don’t know what they will do since Corbin won that brawl, but I hope it was because he will feud with Kalisto. He attacked Kalisto first, and I could see that being a very good rivalry. But in general, I am very happy that they gave Crews the shot, but he does need more mic time. We barely hear him talk, and that is certainly where he lacks the most.
Match 2: Becky Lynch vs Eva Marie
It’s time for the women’s division to be on showcase, with a new face to the show. Becky Lynch, a name that has been on the roster for around a year faces Eva Marie, who is doing her debut match tonight. Eva Marie’s entrance, is as hilarious as last week, with a long dialogue by an announcer as she enters the ring. Now it’s time to see if Eva Marie has improved. Or is it time? Apparently no. As Eva comes into the ring, she “””injures””” herself even though there was no apparent injury. I can see this becoming a gimmick of Eva Marie, especially because she lacks in-ring talent, she can get easy heat by avoiding matches whenever she has a match. We will see how this rivalry pans out next week.
Match 3: The Vaudevillians vs American Alpha
After a poor attempt at a debut, we get a debut which is hopefully a little more graceful. Jason Jordan and Chad Gable, the team of American Alpha make their Smackdown debut against The Vaudevillians. This match was very short, and was all Alpha as you would expect. They got all of their big moves in which seems like a good thing because when they came out at the start of the match, they got a very quiet reaction from the crowd. They probably got some more fans with this match, and they hopefully got their name out there to the casual crowd that doesn’t watch NXT. I hope that they could get a tag division going soon, but I do worry that the tag division is too small on Smackdown to get anything going.
AJ Styles call out John Cena
Up next we have AJ Styles calling out John Cena, fresh from the Teen Choice Awards. AJ wasn’t even able to fit in a couple sentences before Cena came running out to the ring. They both exchange words, and Cena does a great monologue about how he is loyal to the WWE, and AJ Styles says that he wants to face him at Summerslam. This segment went on for quite the amount of time and got pretty dull in the middle, but Cena versus Styles at Summerslam is quite a dream match and you can’t ignore that. And even though the speech that Cena did has probably been said numerous times, it was still a great speech.
Match 4: Fandango vs Randy Orton
We come back after the commercial break to find security circling the ring, because Randy Orton is in action next. Daniel and Shane are worried about Lesnar running in to seek revenge on Orton, hence the security. The match reaches near it’s end, and Lesnar appears from the crowd. Orton RKO’s Fandango, but gets F5’d by Brock to end the match. Shane McMahon sprints out to the ring and they make sure that Brock leaves, and that ends the segment.
Match 5: Carmella vs Natalya
After another break, Heath Slater is backstage speaking to Bryan about his interest of joining Smackdown. As he is talking, he gets Speared (gore’d) by Rhyno. Our next match on the show is also from the Women’s Division, with the debut of Carmella. Carmella makes her entrance but is immediately attacked by Natalya. Natalya puts her in the Sharpshooter, then walks away. The match gets thrown away, which seems kind of crappy since that was Carmella’s debut, but I can see a whole angle of revenge coming up, and I can see this as a good way to get Carmella’s foot in the door with the main WWE crowd.
Match 6: Bray Wyatt vs Dolph Ziggler (Winner face Dean Ambrose at Summerslam)
It is time for our main event, announced earlier after Bray Wyatt jumped Dolph Ziggler and challenged him to this specific match. Ziggler puts his match against Ambrose at Summerslam on the line, with the winner facing Ambrose at Summerslam for sure. This match was certainly the match of the night. There was lots of great spots, and it ended with Ziggler winning. I was not a big fan on the idea that Bray Wyatt has been buried for the millionth time in a row, but I assume that this rivalry will become something after Ambrose is done with him. The match ends with Bray falling into an exposed turnbuckle, then getting superkicked. After the match, Erick Rowan and Bray Wyatt beatdown Ziggler and Ambrose to end the show. I honestly hope that this beatdown causes a further rivalry because Bray Wyatt can only be buried so many times until he just becomes useless.
That ends off the show this week! We saw lots of short or incomplete matches this week which was not too amusing, but we did get a very good main event, and we did get a show that was worth watching all the way through. Smackdown has kept it’s buzz since the brand split, and just kept that buzz for another week.