Smackdown kicks off with Dolph Ziggler defeating Damien Sandow.
^Michael Cole talked during this match about Ziggler’s decline and also about Sandow’s after he cashed in and lost to John Cena. Thanks for the wonderful reminder, gentlemen. I still think both men could be main event players without needing to be World Champion if WWE would just focus properly on each performer. These guys gave us some enjoyable action to start the show, but it was nothing more than your usual routine wrestling match in the grand scheme.
^Hunter acts like a jerk and then apologizes. Lather, rinse and repeat. Anyone else find it rather non-creative? Kane continues to look more and more like his old Isaac Yankem persona as he lets his hair grow out.
Fernando of the Los Matadores takes on Fandango. Diego and Summer Rae are ringside as is El Torito. Fernando rolls up Dango for the win after a distraction by El Torito chasing Summer Rae around in her red dress.
^Fernando and Fandango getting time for an actual match on Smackdown? This was fun despite being short. I’d be okay with the Matadores making it into the battle royal if they need some talent to fill it up.
Luke Harper cuts a promo about it not being safe for John Cena here on Smackdown tonight. Tonight Harper is the reaper and will carry out his will. Bray talks as well while Rowan jut stands there in the ridiculous sheep mask. Bray was born of this world’s hatred.
^That was eerie and entertaining as usual. Harper and Cena could give us something special later tonight.
Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose take on Rybaxel, the Real Americans and the 3MB(Mahal and McIntyre) to determine the new number one contender for the tag team titles. During some chaos, Roman Reigns is ringside and gets attacked by Kane as the ref calls for the bell(why did he call for the bell when Reigns isn’t in the match?). The Outlaws come out and help Kane attack Reigns. The Real Americans and Rybaxel beat down Ambrose and Rollins. The Outlaws and Kane take out the rest of the Shield as well even though they’re already down and out. Kane chokeslams Reigns in the ring last to end the madness.
^That was chaotic and highly entertaining. It’s pretty fair to guess that Kane and the Outlaws will take on the Shield at WrestleMania, and that works for me. The Shield being dominated like this does two things. First, it makes them more human and prone to being crushed. Second, they’re even bigger favorites among the WWE Universe now. Great mess of crazy here!
The Miz hosts his segment in the ring. He announces himself as an entrant in the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. He then brings out his guest who is also in the battle royal, the Big Show. It’s a ShowMiz reunion. The crowd cheers for Show. Miz says it will be hard for Show to win at Mania because he’s lost nine times at the big event. They exchange heated words and Miz brings out other participants for the battle royal. Titus O’Neil is out first, followed by Kofi Kingston, Alberto Del Rio, Big E. Langston, Cody Rhodes, Mark Henry, Goldust, and Sheamus. Sheamus wants to fight and Miz wants everyone to take out Big Show. Everyone brawls but the Miz slips out and Sheamus cleans house along with Big Show. Miz ends up trying to toss Big Show but Sheamus falls off the apron. Show throws Miz out of the ring and is left standing tall.
^More craziness to keep the Mania hype brewing, and I love it! I’m surprised some of these individuals aren’t being booked in major singles rivalries for Mania, but I guess as long as they make it onto the show then they should be happy.
Big E. Langston takes on Alberto Del Rio. There’s no title on the line here. Del Rio wins a short match with a kick to the skull of Langston.
^Very basic match here from these guys, but it wasn’t bad. Just filler material for the battle royal hype.
Emma and Santino have another awkward encounter backstage where he bumps her head and runs off.
^I like the story with these two. It’s not exactly wrestling, but it’s fun for the casual viewer to keep up with.
The Bella Twins take on Natalya and Summer Rae. AJ is on commentary and Tamina is at her side. Summer and Natalya have issues and get distracted. Brie hits a dropkick on both of them and then nails an X-Factor on Natalya for the win. Natti kicks Summer Rae and storms off after the match.
^That was enjoyable. While there wasn’t a ton of wrestling(these women move somewhat slow at times), the match was a good story with some serious tension in the rivalries. AJ was also very entertaining as Michael Cole acted surprised when she recalled that she had been the GM of Raw.
We see Undertaker’s appearance on Main Event earlier this week when he choked Paul Heyman and threatened him.
Backstage, Kane grants Rybaxel and the Real Americans a tag team title match. The 3MB wants to know what they get and Kane puts them in the battle royal. The Outlaws join Kane and hug him. Kane says he knew he could count on them and they say he always can.
^It’s ironic that Kane is so into politics in real life as he takes on the Director of Operations role on TV. This was good; I had almost forgotten the 3MB existed as a group before tonight.
Lana introduces Alexander Rusev. And no one cares…still.
John Cena takes on Luke Harper in our main event. Cena and Harper deliver standing hurricanranas to each other during the match. Cena wins the match with an AA and gets away before Bray and Rowan can attack him. Bray is mad and then laughs maniacally as he stares at Cena to end the show.
^That was short but fun. Cena and Harper gave us just a taste of what they can do in the ring together and I hope they get to go one on one again in the future. Great finish to this show.
Smackdown wasn’t amazing, but it was highly enjoyable. It’s a seven out of ten show for me despite the short filler matches. WWE is just getting it right at the moment and I’m enjoying every minute of it.
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