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SmackDown recap & reactions (Mar. 10, 2023): United front

Jey Uso returned to Friday Night SmackDown this week next to his brother, Jimmy, as a united front with The Bloodline. He came to explain why he turned on Sami Zayn.

Because he had to.

“I ain’t want to do it. But I didn’t have a choice. Because (Jimmy) is my blood.”

That says it all, doesn’t it?

As much as anything else, it means Kevin Owens was right all along. No matter how much Sami wanted to be a member of the group, he was never their blood and he never would be. Jey repeated those same words on this very show.

He blamed Sami for everything, saying if he wasn’t so selfish none of this would have had to go down this way. But he stayed human because he also lashed out at the fans because “y’all don’t know what I’m going through.” There was something deeply personal here that added so much to the character, and the story overall. It was great.

Eventually, they turned their attention to Cody Rhodes, who, wouldn’t ya know it, was in the building and made an appearance once he heard his name. They tried to goad him into a fight, and that’s when Zayn hit the scene to kick off a big brawl that spilled out into the crowd.

They made it back to the ring just so the babyfaces could clear out the heels and stand tall as the show was going off the air. Commentary wondered if Rhodes made a critical mistake by involving himself in this side of The Bloodline’s business.

Owens, for his part, was nowhere to be seen.

They’re doing a fine job of weaving the two stories together, and it’s looking more and more like WrestleMania 39 could be where we see the fall of The Bloodline. But I’m still struggling to see how they get Owens back involved and on Sami’s side considering where he still stands as of now. They’ve got six shows left to do it.

Wouldn’t it be something if Cody Rhodes, Sami Zayn, and Kevin Owens closed WrestleMania holding all the gold?

All the rest

  • This show opened with the Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus vs. Karrion Kross vs. LA Knight vs. Xavier Woods Fatal 5-Way to determine who would move on to challenge GUNTHER for the Intercontinental championship at WrestleMania 39. I want to start by pointing out that Knight once again got a real nice ovation and I would hope the right folks are recognizing the potential there. He didn’t win here but he’s got Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal winner written all over him. The actual winner was, well, both Drew McIntyre and Sheamus, who scored a pinfall win at the exact same time. The referees argued over what to do while the two men argued about it and they eventually said Adam Pearce would have a decision to make about it. The decision he came to was McIntyre vs. Sheamus next week to determine who earns the title shot, which is actually a good way to get there considering it means they will have heated up enough to earn it proper.
  • Rey Mysterio was announced as the first official inductee into this year’s Hall of Fame class. Naturally, his son Dominik showed up to antagonize him before he could even give thanks for the honor, saying he’s ashamed to be his son. That brought out Legado del Fantasma, with Santos Escobar sticking up for a man he’s been standing by as a legend he’s looked up to. A six-man tag ensued, a match The Judgment Day won because Dom kicked his dad, who tried to respond and inadvertently created a distraction that Damian Priest took advantage of. After, Dom once again called his dad a deadbeat and even went so far as to say he should have been Eddie Guerrero’s kid. We got a bit closer to Rey retaliating, but he once again reiterated “I’m not going to fight you!” This story continues to be great, and Rey has been wonderful as the tortured dad who doesn’t want things to be like this with his son.
  • The Viking Raiders defeated Ricochet & Braun Strowman in a match that got more time than you might have expected it to but was absolutely much better than you’d think you’d get out of a TV tag match like this. They’ve been flirting with the Raiders as top contenders since the fresh coat of paint, and this could help send them on their way to being challengers post-WrestleMania. Meanwhile, is it time to start wondering about splitting Strowman and Ricochet?
  • Charlotte Flair asked Adam Pearce for a match on this show, considering we’re so close to WrestleMania, so he put her up against Shotzi. Shortly into the match, Rhea Ripley showed up to hang out ringside to watch it all go down. What she saw was Flair tapping Shotzi with the Figure Eight. After, she hopped in the ring and called Charlotte insecure while promising to take the one thing that makes her feel important, the SmackDown women’s championship. Flair’s response? That while Ripley has improved, so has Charlotte and she will outwork anyone, male or female, because she takes this business seriously. It was good to see these two come together but am I the only one who doesn’t feel the kind of tension they need for a big title match? Hopefully that changes in the coming weeks.

This was an interesting show if only because they didn’t spread themselves too thin on everything, doing less segments but giving those segments more time.

It was a good show.

Give me your thoughts.

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