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WWE SmackDown preview (Sept. 23, 2022): Chasing the Wyatt Rabbit

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SmackDown airs tonight (Sept. 23) with a live show from Vivint Smart Home Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah. This is the third SmackDown episode during the five week build towards Extreme Rules, which takes place on Oct. 8.

WWE is chasing the Wyatt Rabbit

Bray Wyatt might actually be returning to WWE tonight on SmackDown.

WWE has played Jefferson Airplane’s iconic “White Rabbit” for live crowds recently. Fans have been trying to figure out what it all means.

A new clue during this week’s Raw pointed to a big reveal happening on tonight’s show.

Nobody knows for sure what this is leading to, but the most common guess is this means Bray Wyatt is back in WWE.

This has all happened so suddenly that it’s possible tonight will provide just another piece to the puzzle rather than Wyatt himself showing up in the flesh.

Of course, there’s also the possibility that this has nothing to do with Bray. But now that Braun Strowman and Paige are off the free agent market, it’s hard to think of any available wrestler out there who can match Wyatt’s star power. And Triple H has shown a clear willingness to bring back several wrestlers who were fired by Vince McMahon last year.

At any rate, WWE has come up with an interesting tease here, and pro wrestling fans seem very eager to jump down this rabbit hole to see how far it goes.

The title scene

WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns is making his “grand return” to SmackDown tonight. He hasn’t appeared on the show since before Clash at the Castle. He will presumably address his upcoming match at Crown Jewel against YouTube star Logan Paul. Roman is supremely confident that he will smash this fool, and why wouldn’t he be?

The Usos will defend the undisputed WWE tag team titles tonight against the Brawling Brutes. Ridge Holland and Butch earned this title shot by winning a four way match last week against Hit Row, Imperium, and New Day. Nobody has been able to take out the champs when it counts in more than a year, so Sheamus should devise an underhanded scheme for overcoming the long odds that his lads face tonight.

SmackDown Women’s Champion Liv Morgan might have a death wish, because she actually requested an Extreme Rules gimmick for her championship rematch with Ronda Rousey at Extreme Rules. Either that, or Morgan knows that someone like Charlotte Flair or Shayna Baszler will be waiting around to help her beat Ronda for a third time.

Intercontinental Champion Gunther has successfully defended his title against Sheamus, Shinsuke Nakamura, and Ricochet over the last three months. Will Sheamus get one more shot at the title before a new opponent steps up to confront the Ring General?

As the reigning and defending Women’s tag team champions, IYO SKY and Dakota Kai are allowed to show up on either Raw or SmackDown. Then again, just about everyone else on the roster is also allowed to do that these days, it seems. Shotzi seemingly turned babyface last week when she saved Raquel Rodriguez from a Damage CTRL beatdown. Is Shotzi’s tank actually returning tonight? What about her last name?

Other stuff to keep an eye on

- Braun Strowman ran through Maximum Male Models last week, but Otis came out of nowhere and slammed the Monster Among Men. As a result, Otis and Braun will have a singles match tonight. This is Braun’s first official match since he returned to WWE. Good luck Otis, you’re gonna need it.

- Karrion Kross says Drew McIntyre will never escape from his circle of agony. If WWE wasn’t a PG product, I’d be tempted to interpret that as some kind of kinky BDSM related threat. At any rate, Drew might want to dust off his giant flame-generating sword to help fend off whatever hocus-pocus Karrion and Scarlett plan on throwing his way.

- Happy Corbin may have been abducted because he stepped inside JBL’s limo on Sept. 2 and hasn’t been seen on Raw or SmackDown since. Was it really Dexter Lumis inside that limo?

- Will Ricochet incur the wrath of The Bloodline after sticking up for Logan Paul last week and defeating Sami Zayn?

- Solo Sikoa is no longer the NXT North American champion after Shawn Michaels made a bizarre decision that essentially voided his championship win. Does this mean his successful title defense last week on SmackDown against Madcap Moss never happened?

What will you be looking for on SmackDown?

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