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WWE SmackDown Live preview (Apr. 9, 2019): WrestleMania fallout

SmackDown Live returns tonight (Apr. 9) from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY with their fallout from WrestleMania.

The Headliner

How great with Kofi’s win? Seriously, his win was one of the best WrestleMania moments of the last five years. It will be remembered for a long time.

But now that Kofi is WWE champion, now what?

Watching what happens next should be quite interesting. Obviously, as of two months ago, Kofi wasn’t in the plans for the title. Now he’s champion. Which begs the question: Was his moment at Mania just that and we’ll be getting back to Bryan sooner than later? Or did it change the long term course of the belt?

Rematch clauses don’t exist any more, but I fully expect Bryan to get his rematch at one point. Does he win it back and they go forward with other ideas they had for the New Daniel Bryan? Or is Kofi going to have an extended run?

We’ll learn all of that soon enough and it will be very interesting to follow. But tonight, we will get to celebrate that moment and enjoy it while we can in case it is a short lived title reign.

The Title Scene

Becky Lynch is now both Raw and SmackDown Women’s champion. But we don’t know what that means going forward. Is she going to be unified champion? Or she going to be running feuds for each title on both shows. Last night, Lacey Evans popped Becky in the jaw, possibly putting her in the title picture on Raw. Will that be a Raw exclusive story as Becky also feuds with the women on SmackDown as well? Twice the titles means twice the responsibility. The Man is surely up to the challenge.

The Usos retained their SmackDown tag team championships in a fatal 4-way two nights ago. Now they need a new challenger. Perhaps it’ll be a team in that group. The Bar was pinned, but that means Rusev/Shinsuke Nakamura or Ricochet/Aleister Black would make for reasonable next challengers. I’d love to see Black & Ric mix it up with them, but I’d also like to see Black and Nakamura one on one. All the kicks. (It looks like tonight, they’ll have to defend against the Hardy Boyz, which WWE announced in their preview this morning.)

The IIconics claimed Women’s tag team gold in a fatal 4-way of their own at WrestleMania. Will they need to go to Raw to find another women’s team to feud with? Not necessarily. Fire & Desire are an option on Tuesdays, but they are another heel team. So that means they may have to invite Bayley and Sasha back in their house. Or perhaps the NXT team of the Sky Pirates (Io Shirai and Kairi Sane) will take a trip to Tuesdays.

Samoa Joe squashed Rey Mysterio to retain his United States championship at WrestleMania. The squash was more likely because Mysterio is hurt and not to save time on a marathon show. Either way, we were denied a pretty good match. Hopefully when Rey is healthy, they go back to it. Until they, Joe needs to find another challenger. Perhaps Ali, who had issues with Joe awhile back?

Other Stuff to Keep an Eye on:

- Shane McMahon lucked into a victory over the Miz at WrestleMania. But the A-Lister still doled out some serious punishment to The Money. Despite that beating, Shane will be able brag about the victory so likely Miz will want to get a victory to remedy that. Maybe we’ll get a Shane & Vince vs. Miz and George Mizanin match? Sounds crazy but don’t count it out.

- Will AJ Styles and Randy Orton’s WrestleMania match be a one time thing or will the feud continue, this time without blinding light?

- Post-Mania time usually involves call-ups and returns. But the main roster is pretty saturated with NXT talent they’re already not using. So while we may see a return (though Sami came back last night), I’m not expecting a slew of NXT talent to debut. Perhaps we’ll see the ones that aren’t doing much (read: EC3) finally get some direction, but I’m not expecting a slew of new talent coming up.

WWE looks to make it here for one more night before departing New York. What will you be looking for on SmackDown tonight?

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