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WWE SmackDown recap & reactions (Feb. 11, 2022): The real hero

You know, on the one hand, it was deeply entertaining seeing Sonya Deville try to exercise her power as an authority figure just to see the big boss himself strike her down with great hypocrisy and furious comedy on Friday Night SmackDown this week. She hasn’t gotten hers nearly enough over the past few months while doing everything in her power to hold Naomi down.

On the other hand, and not to be a party pooper here, doesn’t it kind of suck that this didn’t come about until Ronda Rousey came around and there was an issue between Rousey and Deville? And the reality here is that Rousey actually did break the rules and was protected for it while Naomi never did anything wrong, was treated like shit for months anyway, and no one did a single thing about it? In fact, Deville has run wild all the way up until she tried to suspend a big star.

What kind of message does this kind of thing send about Naomi?

To offset that a bit, they had Naomi hit the scene to take a victory lap over Sonya in the form of a five finger face greeting. Ultimately, though, she lost her match against Charlotte Flair for the SmackDown women’s championship and will likely fade right back down the card.

Meanwhile, Rousey has a title shot in the main event of WrestleMania coming up and was positioned to save the day here.

None of this is all that surprising, considering the entire history of the promotion, and to that end it’s probably not that big a deal relatively speaking, and I may even be reading a bit too much into it, but there’s something about it that just doesn’t sit right with me.

Feel free to disagree but tell me why if you do.

Also, let me make sure I don’t skip over talking about just how good that Flair vs. Naomi main event match actually was. I’d go so far as to say it was better than probably anything Rousey and Flair could put together. There were so many great near falls while Naomi showcased all the emotion you would hope for from someone giving their all and coming up just short.

For me, she’s the real hero here.

Showing the footage and reminding us that Goldberg beat Brock Lesnar in just over one minute is great promotion for Roman Reigns vs. Goldberg at Elimination Chamber. It’s not such great promotion for Roman Reigns vs. Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania 38. I suppose the idea is to more firmly establish Reigns with a victory over such a strong opponent but is he not firmly established already by now?

This almost makes me think even more that we’ll be getting a title vs. title match, because you really can’t have Lesnar win the Royal Rumble, then have him lose a title match while using prior title losses as promotion for other matches along the way before he ever gets the match he earned for winning said Rumble.


Having said all this, Reigns said he’s going to “Goldberg Goldberg” and I’m very much looking forward to seeing whatever the hell that means.

Later, Goldberg said he doesn’t care what anyone says about him, this comeback is actually going to stick. He also said Reigns won’t “Goldberg” him because there’s only one Goldberg.

The sit down interviews weren’t bad, but if you weren’t already excited for the match they probably didn’t help get you there, unless you’re like me and just want to see what Reigns means by Goldberg’ing Goldberg. There’s a face-to-face promised for next week to give them another chance to get folks invested.

All the rest
  • “There’s a certain level of comfort Big E shows when he’s in a tag team,” they say after Corey Graves talks about witnessing Big E’s run with the WWE championship. That felt like an unnecessary shot instead of an endorsement of The New Day. Then they went and lost to Los Lotharios, who debuted a new “Kiss Cam” that was really just them finding an attractive woman in the crowd to kiss them on the cheek. They’re a fun team, so I’m fully on board a push for these two and a win over New Day is a great way to get them going. Just, you know, maybe not with those comments.
  • “I am a three-time Guinness World Record holder, and you are a piece of crap.” - Natalya, who scored a submission win over Aliyah because the latter didn’t understand the rules of the match. When she tried to use the ropes to break the Sharpshooter and was told she couldn’t, she quickly tapped. It was a funny way to end the match. Xia Li hit the scene to brawl with Nattie right after as a protector of Aliyah, and it appears we’re headed for a program between these two.
  • Shout out to Rocky Johnson.
  • Sami Zayn ZAPPED poor Rick BOOGS! It was a set up to gain an edge going into his title match against Shinsuke Nakamura next week! This was a short segment that all involved made far more entertaining than it had any business being.
  • Is it just me or was that Cesaro vs. Happy Corbin match pretty damn great for a short TV match? Meanwhile, Corbin is undefeated since he became “Happy” and WWE is calling attention to it. Could that be in preparation for Drew McIntyre beating him to take it away? Time will tell.
  • I’d like to note here that Corey Graves doing this show because Pat McAfee was in LA for the Super Bowl gave me a renewed appreciation for what McAfee brings to the table. I was missing his enthusiasm and unique delivery, not to mention the random hilarious quips he throws in throughout each broadcast. Graves isn’t even bad, and he was just fine here, but he’s no Pat Mac.

This was a decent enough show, but it was just sort of there.

Grade: C+

Your turn.

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