WWE SmackDown returns to SyFy this coming Friday night (July 5, 2013) from Topeka, Kansas, but the show was taped, as usual, on Tuesday night. That means full spoilers are readily available if you're the impatient type who doesn't want to wait a couple days for the payoff.
Unwrap that present early (via PWTorch.com):
- The show opened with CM Punk, so he's not just advertised for a dark segment to boost ticket sales. He cut a promo and was interrupted by Alberto Del Rio, whom he took to task for being a phony working that gimmick he was using during his babyface run opposite Jack Swagger. Credit to Punk for making mention of the hypocrisy and sheer lunacy of that angle. Teddy Long naturally appeared and booked the two for a match in the main event.
- Pre-tape backstage with Paul Heyman unsuccessfully attempting to make up with Punk.
- The Usos def. Rhodes Scholars in a match that, no different than Main Event, saw Sandow get heat for the encounter with a strong pre-match promo. This sounds like it was done to put the Usos over strong, which is the natural move here. The Shield did a post-match promo on the titantron.
- Alicia Fox def. Kaitlyn after AJ Lee distracted the latter by skipping around the ring. That gimmick still works? Are these the dumbest women on Earth? Don't answer that. There's a pre-tape right after that sees AJ run away in the back, the Bellas stop Kaitlyn, and Big E. Langston laugh at her. Me thinks he actually does have a crush on her and that's still how they'll break him away from AJ.
- Randy Orton def. Christian in a long match, a typical babyface vs. babyface encounter. Clean victory for Randy off the RKO.
- Pre-tape with Teddy Long telling Paul Heyman he had to be on commentary for the Punk vs. Del Rio main event.
- Dolph Ziggler def. Drew McIntyre after cutting a promo pre-match saying he'll win the world heavyweight title again. It's weird to see Ziggler in the role of "babyface who needs wins to build to big PPV match against heel champion so feed him jobbers". They did the same angle they did on Raw after the match where 3MB tried to overwhelm him but he made them look like geeks.
- Fandango def. Justin Gabriel in a nothing match designed to get the former some credibility. I guess.
- Zeb Colter promo on Independence Day. Not a surprise this was hammered on both Main Event and SmackDown.
- Alberto Del Rio vs. CM Punk went to a double count out after a long match. It all sounds really, really pointless and like it's a big waste of time, so hopefully the match itself is good, even with the screwy finish. Plus, Heyman will be commentating throughout, so that could help too.
- It should be noted that this doesn't include various video replays. That said, Daniel Bryan and Kane both fail to appear on the show, even in a dark segment.
That's the show, Cagesiders. How does it sound to you?