While this episode of Smackdown could’ve been more high paced, it still managed to progress most Mania programs. It didn’t need long segments or matches, and that added to the overall simplicity.
Seeing AJ come into Bryan’s office with full out Wrestlemania merchandise was hilarious. Apart from being funny, it was extremely effective for his character and current narrative.
It was only appropriate the Styles opened the show. After everything that happened last week, I’m sure it was the only Smackdown program fans wanted to hear from. His address was short, but it set the tone for his program moving forward. I for one can say I was looking forward to how this rivalry would place itself out on this show.
American Alpha vs The Usos
Wait, I seriously thought that the Usos won the titles last week. I can’t be the only one that thought so.
Thankfully, Shane McMahon didn’t take away from this match. Considering how distracting last week’s main event was, this was a good chance for these four to showcase their skill and chemsitry. The back and forth between both teams was quite strong. It was good enough to make the the action unpredictable.
I don’t understand why the commentators pushed the rope spot with Jordan as an illegal move. There was nothing wrong it, as it was a clean move. Either way, having the Usos win was a great way to push the competitiveness in the tag division.
New Total Bella Episode
This was incredible. I couldn’t believe how funny this ended up being. It goes to show how diverse the “it” couple can be. Also, it was a solid way for Miz and Maryse to garner heat before their Mania match.
No matter how reptitive the humour was, it completely work.
Baron Corbin vs Randy Orton
Believe it or not, this was the first time these two have ever competed in singles competition.
Surprisingly enough, these two worked a fluid match. Both men may work a slower pace, but that only added to the action. I liked how the two took there time, which only lead to the match becoming more intense as it went on.
This match had some strong spots, but nothing beat Orton’s salute to Ambrose after the RKO. With distraction finishes being so common these days, I thought this was a great twist on that trope, and a smooth way to end the match.
Fandango vs John Cena
Seeing Tyler Breeze dressed up as Nikki Bella made my day. That was easily the most unexpected thing on the show.
Lower card talent such as Fandango hardly get promoted, so this match was fresh in that sense. Also, part of me suspects that this match was booked for the fans that watched Southpaw Regional Wrestling over the weekend.
I found Nikki Bella’s involvement in this contest to be forced. John could’ve easily taken out the Fashion Police without her help.
Becky Lynch vs Carmella
Since Becky and Carmella have never squared off, I was looking forward to this. Unfortunately, I’ll have to wait, as this match was solely used to push a women’s brawl, which promoted the multiple woman match at Mania.
For the first time ever, I believe AJ found a way to get boos from the crowd. It was also the first time he ever came across as a despicable heel.
Based on the ass whooping Shane received last week, it was only appropriate that he got some sort of revenge. I just wish he’d drop the punches, because the look extremely terrible. Aside from that, the elbow looked great, and it was a solid way to push the feud. I can fully admit that I’m sold on the program.
With only one more episode left before Wrestlemania, I’d say this edition of Smackdown accomplished everything it needed to. It wasn’t over booked, and it allowed for each feud to progress naturally.
The low point was Nikki’s involvement in Cena’s match, while the high points consisted of the opening segment and the closing segment. Overall, this episode of Smackdown deserves a 7/10.