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WWE SmackDown Live preview (Oct. 3, 2017): Close the book

Team Blue follows Team Red, as WWE pulls a double-header in Denver.

The Headliners

For the third straight week, tension between the main eventers for this Sunday’s pay-per-view (PPV) leads off the promotion for the newest episode of SmackDown.

As a matter of fact, as of the early morning hours on the day of the show, the non-title rivalry between Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens is the only thing WWE is hyping for tonight. At least, unlike the last two shows, this time they’ll be FACE-TO-FACE!

The last time they were in the ring together, Owens kept bringing up Shane’s sons until McMahon attacked him. That led to threats of lawsuits, and an appearance by Vince, who ended up needing medical attention, etc, etc.

You know. The usual.

After exchanging threats long distance, Shane O’Mac and KO did end up in the same building last Tuesday. That mostly just went badly for Sami Zayn, though. After Owens made an example of his long-time nemesis, McMahon’s desire to get his hands on The Prizefighter resulted in bowling Zayn over while he already had a steel chair around his neck.

Which is good for us as viewers, cause Shane still has all kinds of pent-up aggression ready to spill out when he gets in the ring with Kev tonight. I’m betting we finally see that ‘go home’ show elbow through the announce desk The Money is known for.

The Title Scene

When Tye Dillinger was written into the United States championship program, he probably wanted to be something more than a projectile Baron Corbin hurled at the champ before claiming a countout win and challenging AJ Styles to a match for his belt at Hell in a Cell. But we can’t always get what we want, Tye.’s (late posting) official preview reveals The Perfect Ten will get yet another shot at The Lone Wolf tonight.

It’s not clear whether or not The Usos want their next battle with tag champs The New Day to take place in the demonic structure known as Hell in a Cell, but that’s what Xavier Woods, Big E and Kofi Kingston have called for - and frankly, if there’s a feud in WWE that calls for it right now, it’s this one. Before they head into The Uso Penitentiary this weekend, Jimmy and Jey will “read them their rights” on SmackDown.

Now that everyone has taken their turn beating Ms. Money in the Bank Carmella (and her little dog, James), Women’s champion Natalya and Charlotte Flair can focus on continuing their long rivalry at the PPV this weekend.

Shinsuke Nakamura finally showed up to put a stop to WWE titleholder Jinder Mahal’s unfunny jokes about his face and ethnicity last week, but does anyone still care? Especially since the rumor mill says Jinder’s destined to stay champ until the India tour in two months? You can think about those questions when an interview with Nak leads off tonight’s show.

Other stuff to keep an eye on:

- Fashion Files is back! I don’t even remember where the story left off (I think Aiden English is a top suspect), but I don’t care! BOOK ‘EM, DANGO!

- After ruining Rusev Day, and possibly damaging the priceless vocal cords of The Artiste, Randy Orton has a lot of explaining to do heading into his rubber match with The Handsome One this Sunday.

- Weeks of impersonating other Superstar’s elaborate entrances led to Dolph Ziggler getting a match against Bobby Roode for Hell in a Cell. A good angle which hits on themes of theatrics vs. athletic performance, or just another case of The Show-Off serving as the main roster entry opponent for a former NXT champ?

It’s the Hell in a Cell ‘go home’ show!

What will you be looking for on SmackDown Live tonight?

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