So Raw was terrible, really really bad, cringeworthy bad. Can Smackdown justify these new prices that networks are reportedly paying for the shows? Let’s hope it can pull something out of the bag. Please?
We opened Smackdown this week with Miz TV. Miz let us know that Miz and Mrs will be debuting on July 24th directly after after Smackdown, so going head to head with 205 Live. They love to let 20 Live get screwed over. Out come The New Day and the announcers emphasize that the winners of the MITB briefcase will be able to cash in on their brand’s champion, not the other brand. We wonder who will be the New Day’s pick for MITB. Who Who Who? We then wonder which of the New Day will be picked. Which Which Which? The New Day praise Miz’s accomplishments but say that with him, Miz always comes first. Phrasing.
Miz says that the New Day are holding each other back. He then gets the name of the game Fortnite wrong, calls it Fortline instead. Miz says he wanted an answer. He can beat any one of them any day of the week. The New Day have a discussion and decide that it’s going to be Big E….. to face The Miz tonight. Miz says that since they didn’t pick a person, they don’t get a match. The New Day shame him with pancakes.
Miz meets Paige in Gorilla on his way backstage. She tells him the match is happening and we get The Miz vs Big E right there and then. Woods is on commentary and says that they aren’t going to give away their strategy by saying who will be in the match. After some beating of the Miz, Big E calls it the end of the first round and Woods and Kofi give E Maple Syrup and vaseline his face up. After break, Kofi is now on commentary. He won’t give up the gossip either on who will be representing them at MITB. Sheamus and Cesaro attack Kofi and Woods at ringside. The distraction lets Miz hit Skull Crushing Finale and get the win.
In the everlasting story of the battle of the dicks, Nakamura told us what stipulation he would be choosing for the WWE Title Match at Money In The Bank…. eventually. Renee Young had both AJ and Nakamura in the ring. Both she and AJ asked what the stipulation will be. Nakamura asked what stipulation? They shows replay of last week where Naks beat AJ. AJ says it will never happen again. Naks says he won’t just beat him, he will dishonor him, and his house is now Nakamura’s house. Nakamura finally decides that they are going to have a Pillow Fight match because he is the King of Soft Style.
After all the jokes, bants, and talks about knees connecting to faces, AJ says that Nakamura can’t beat AJ when it matters anyway and he will see him at MITB. Nakamura attacks, AJ blocks, throws Naks out, Naks gets a chair, they brawl into crowd. AJ goes for a Forearm from the barricade but is met with a chair. Nakamura starts counting him down. So it looks like it’s gonna be Last Man Standing. Nakamura hits a Kinshasa on the outside. Counts to 10 with all the awesome facials. He grabs a mic and says Last Man Standing Match just to clarify in case people weren’t sure. You never know.
I love heel Nakamura. He’s just fantastic.
We have 2 MITB Qualifier matches on this show, both for the women’s match. In the first one Lana took on Billie Kay. Aiden English introduces Lana with a rap and a “Lana is the best, Lana number 1” singalong. Lana pop and locks her way down to the ring. Rusev is apparently in Bulgaria, not here tonight. So in place of Rusev Day, we get Lana Day. English even has a Lana Day sign. The IIconics decide to do a duet to match Aiden’s intro. They “sing” Lana is a loserrrrrrrrrrrr. Peyton slaps Aiden. Lana takes out Peyton. Lana then pins Billie in a quick match with an X Factor. We get a load of Lana Day chants.
We got a number 1 contenders match for the tag Team Titles this week. The Usos took on the Good Brothers for the chance to face the Bludgeon Brothers at Money In The Money. It’s a family affair guys. They both got jobber entrances but they did both get to cut a little promo before the match. GB say that the Usos blew their chance when they had title spots (opportunities). The Usos tell them that “This ain’t Japan, this ain’t Raw. This is Smackdown Live where the Usos reside. Welcome to the Uso Penitentiary”. Jey then proceeded to break one of the mics. Good Brothers tell them that they not wardens, but just a couple of NERDS!!!! The Good Brothers win with a Magic Killer on Jimmy after Jey was knocked off (correct use of the phrase) the top rope and will face the Bludgeon Brothers at MITB.
So Big Cass was “injured” during the European tour. It may be a real injury. It may be storyline. I don’t even know at this stage. Is there a difference anymore? Because of this, we now had Daniel Bryan vs Jeff Hardy in the main event of this week’s Smackdown. The winner faces Samoa Joe next week for the last spot in the men’s MITB ladder match. Before the match, both Daniel and Jeff had interviews with Renee backstage. Daniel mentioned some stuff about Cass while Jeff talked about brain stuff, synapsis, neurons, scorching your cerebrum. He’s facing a guy who wasn’t allowed wrestle for the last 2 years because of perceived brain trauma. It was an odd choice in promo.
As for the match, Samoa Joe was on commentary for it. It was a good fun match, the highlight being Jeff going for a Swanton bomb but Daniel getting his knees up. I’ve never seen the knees to the back look better. It just looked so fucking sore. After this Daniel locked in the Heel Hook and Jeff tapped out. The Heel Hook seems to be his new submission. It works on everybody and it looks’s pretty good so I’m not complaining. After the match as Daniel is yesing with the crowd, Joe grabbed a mic. He says that he fails to see what he is celebrating for as Daniel now has to go up against Joe next week. I can’t wait for that one.
This was actually a pretty good Smackdown. They pulled it out of the bag after a shockingly bad Raw. Stories advancing, a couple of pretty good matches. Are we seeing the momentum swing back in the favour of Smackdown again? Can Smackdown actually manage to get a main event slot on a co-branded PPV or are they delusional enough to Reigns vs Jinder as the main event in front of a Chicago crowd. Only time will tell. But I’m really looking forward to Joe/Bryan next week and AJ/Nakamura in a last man standing match at MITB. And MITB matches themselves are always great. Bring it on.
The Miz def. Big E by pinfall
MITB Qualifier: Lana def. Billie Kay by pinfall
Andrade `Cien` Almas def. Jobber by pinfall
Good Brothers def. The Usos by pinfall
MITB Qualifier: Naomi def. Sonya Deville by pinfall
Daniel Bryan def. Jeff Hardy by pinfall
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