Since Raw did such a brilliant job, I thought the WWE would just be in cruise control for Smackdown. They actually proved me wrong, because they managed to create a strong episode heading into the PPV.
Kevin Owens vs Cesaro
So Miz TV was scheduled for this show, but we were given this match. Instead of them ignoring this blatant switch, the announce team and Miz gave the audience a reason. That almost never happens on WWE television.
Out of all the Cesaro-Owens matches, this was probably the weakest. At the same time, I don’t think it was meant to be their best. The in ring action was strong, but the two weren’t the main attraction for the home viewer .Like most of the singles matches in this four way feud, it was based on what the outside competitors had to say. In fact, I actually had more fun listening to the commentary, only because they were the focal point. The highlight of this match was how both Cesaro and Owens initiated contact with Miz and Zayn. Instead of the match ending with a roll up pin, I thought it could have ended in DQ. Roll up finishes never benefit anyone.
Paige vs Dana Brooke
As a fan, this match had me torn. I’ve enjoyed Dana on the main roster, yet I didn’t want to see Paige lose. After seeing the two in the ring together, I realized that these two would make an amazing feud together.
I need to applaud both competitors, as this match moved very smoothly. The two had instant chemistry, and that had me hooked. Since Dana is still fresh, I have a feeling her matches will always change in quality. From the start I was assuming this would end in a draw, however the clean pin sat well with me. It’s obvious that they have plans for Brooke.
Dolph Ziggler vs Sheamus
Did anybody realize that the new Ninja Turtles movie is coming out in a few weeks, yet the WWE hasn’t put any focus on Sheamus (he play’s a role in the movie). That doesn’t sound a lot like the WWE marketing department.
This match wasn’t very entertaining. We haven’t seen Sheamus in weeks, so I didn’t see him as an important figure on this show. While the match wasn’t fun to watch, Sheamus did a great job at showing the audience why he’s still one of the strongest on the roster. Considering how Ziggler has a match this Sunday and Sheamus doesn’t, I fully agreed with the clean finish.
Chris Jericho Promo
I was indifferent to this promo until Jericho brought the cage down. His math on hospitals days for Ambrose was incredible. I couldn’t stop laughing once he started rounding up numbers. He was funny, but managed to remain serious. I can’t imagine that being easy.
At first I thought Ambrose was a camera man, so he genuinely surprised me once he ambushed Jericho. Overall, I highly enjoyed this promo. It was much stronger than what they delivered on Monday. The use of the cage allowed for us to see it won’t just be a normal cage match come Sunday.
zThe idea of this match would make any fan sigh, but this eight man tag actually had some substance. There was actually a story between all eight competitors, which made this a lot more entertaining to watch.
The highlight of this match was Bubba Ray. His use of the booty-o’s slogan was golden, and it was perfectly timed. I made sure to watch that several times because it was so funny. The finishing sequence had me on the edge of my seat, and I’m glad that neither of the Vaudevillians were pinned.
Luke Gallows vs Roman Reigns
I can’t say I was excited at the idea of these two for wrestling the last 15 minutes of the show. Nothing against either competitors, but I just didn’t they could mesh well. I actually believe that’s why it moved rather slow.
There’s no hiding that this contest didn’t pick up until the last three minutes. That was probably the only time where I paid attention to what was happening. However, once the match went into mayhem, I thought it became much better. Leaving the audience with a brawl was an excellent way to go off the air. Personally, I thought it was a strong way to grab any last minute viewers for Extreme Rules.
I couldn’t think of a better way Smackdown could compliment Raw. The two shows truly told one seamless story, and it felt natural. There wasn’t a lot of story line progression of this episode, but there was enough to keep me hooked for the PPV. The low point of the show was Sheamus vs Ziggler while the high point was the show ending brawl. Overall, I give this show a 7/10.