WWE SmackDown Live returned last night (Oct. 9) from the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. Step right up and find all the results in the Greatest Live Blog on Earth here.
Predictable (but good)
The Women’s title rematch opened the show and ended in a count out finish.
There’s a good chance you saw that coming.
The fact that the match opened the show pretty much choreographed the fact that there wouldn’t be a legit finish. They’d main event if that were the case. And in general, WWE’s booking throughout a feud can be quite predictable.
This was a match where the title would change hands if Becky was DQ’d since that’s how their match ended Saturday. The typical next step in WWE feud advancement is to find another non-finish to add another stipulation. It’s solid, but when it gets this predictable, it may be time to change up the formula here and there.
That’s my criticism of WWE’s general predictable storytelling but not a specific criticism of this segment.
Despite knowing a non-finish was likely on our way, Becky and Charlotte put on hell of a match. It was a bit evident that they were jet lagged from flying around the world, but the announcers made sure to work it into their storytelling. As long as they do that, it works. We’re supposed to think these fights are legit, despite knowing they’re not. Of course they’d be jet lagged and have to fight through it. They worked it into the match, really selling how worn out they were towards the end.
Things continued to heat up in the post match angle after the double count out. Charlotte wanted to fight more but Lynch looked to bail. The Queen chased the champ up the ramp and speared Becky through the LED boards!
It was a great post match spot, reminding us how much these two hate each other. And the fact that it was the beginning of the show, the damage to the stage was ever present throughout the night to continue to remind us of one of WWE’s best stories.
Miz hosted both Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles on MizTV, weeks ahead of their WWE championship match at Crown Jewel.
The segment was a well done mix of comedy and a couple very good promos (one obviously from the Miz).
Bryan and Styles made sure to make fun of the Miz a couple times and the A Lister was very good reacting to it. Bryan cut a strong promo explaining to the champ that he returned to WWE in order to win the WWE title - not to reunite Team Hell No or feud with the Miz. He wants the title and Styles is in his way.
Not to be outdone, Miz cut another one of his superb, scathing promos, running down both men. He went after Bryan for beating him with the most bland move and claimed his shoulder was up anyway. And then he targeted the champ, verbally assaulting him for making the WWE title completely irrelevant, even stating the title doesn’t main event pay-per-views because of him.
I’m already betting that Styles and Bryan’s match at Crown Jewel will end with a Miz interference non-finish. After all this time, he should be in the title scene. It looks like that’s where we’re headed.
This week gave us two qualifying matches for the WWE World Cup. Which has me asking one major question:
Is there any reason to give a damn about the World Cup?
Given this is going to take place at their second Saudi Arabia show, I’m thinking the answer is “not really.”
The Greatest Royal Rumble had a lot of well known wrestlers but little stakes. They don’t talk about Braun Strowman winning it. (Did you already forget?) It’s not an accolade that’s used to build him up. He got a title we never saw again, a trophy that was broken within a week, and that’s it. There’s no reason to think the World Cup will be any different.
We don’t know the format yet so there’s definitely a possibility that they give us reason to care. If it’s an 8-man bracket, we can get some really good matches throughout the night, especially with Kurt Angle and John Cena both qualified. And next week Rey Mysterio is facing Shinsuke Nakamura in a qualification match. That itself could make this worth it.
This week’s qualifiers:
Jeff Hardy def. Samoa Joe via referee stoppage
During his battle with AJ Styles last week, Joe’s leg sustained a ton of damage. It was so bad this week that he couldn’t stand on it and the referee called the match. Tough week for Joseph Samoa.
Randy Orton def. Big Show with an RKO
Big Show’s return match was a loss, which at this point in the big man’s career is par for the course. This was the first RKO Randy has hit since turning heel.
The Night in Milwaukee story ended up having a pretty stupid ending, but I don’t know how it wasn’t going to. There’s no way this was going to have some clever ending. When the lead in was the idea that maybe Aiden English and Lana boned in Wisconsin, it was never going to be a masterclass in storytelling.
Aiden played more of the scandalous video, where Lana told him she wanted him to know how much she and Rusev appreciate him. Then English put his arm on Lana before he cut the footage again. He called Rusev out and told him he’d destroy the tape if they reunite Rusev Day.
But apparently, Lana hacked him (or used his “IheartRusev” password) and got the video herself. She called English’s bluff and played the video herself. Turns out Aiden looked like he was going to make a move, Lana stopped him, and then that’s it.
Aiden English with a terrible plan here. He took a video of him hitting on his best friend’s wife, used it to imply he actually slept with her, and then tried to get Rusev to team back up with him? I mean, wow. He can sing, but he can’t scheme.
It all ended up being pretty lame, but that was a given.
Solid episode this week. No major plot turns, but overall enjoyable.
Whatever happened to SAnitY?
Sound off below.