Time for another episode of Smackdown Live. Jeff Hardy is back to confront Randy Orton about him being a bastard. Joe is now number one contender for Summerslam as is Becky. Miz and Daniel Bryan looks set to be going down for Summerslam too. What else can happen in this wacky world of professional wrestling? Let’s find out.
Smackdown opened and closed with the women this week. We opened the show with Renee interviewing Becky Lynch in the ring. Becky brought some facts with her letting us know that she hasn’t been champ since Dec 2016 and hasn’t even had a title match since Mania 33 last year. She says that she wasn’t born to be a champion, she fought to be a champion, and it will be her honor to walk into Evolution as the Smackdown Live women’s champion. First Evolution mention on the show. There may have been one earlier too. I can’t remember. Plenty more to come though.
Carmella comes out and plays the innocent Alex Bliss card. This has been done too much lately. It’s not effective anymore. She said that she’s not going to make excuses, Becky beat her fair and square last week. More stuff about Evolution. Did you hear about that? Apparently there is going to be an all women’s PPV. Who knew? Carmella says she feels like she failed as a representative of the division. She should be building each other up, not tearing them down. Becky has always been a step ahead of her. She was told she would only ever be a manager or a hype girl. Carmella starts crying at this point. Everyone loves Becky and people don’t want Carmella to be champion. But she can’t wait to prove everybody wrong as Summerslam when she tears down the house with Becky.
And we finally get to the bastard hell part. Carmella offers the handshake but James Ellsworth’s music hits, Becky gets distracted and Carmella attacks from behind. Carmella takes out a chair and is about to hit a DDT on Becky when Becky’s best mate Charlotte’s music hits and she runs down to the ring and takes out Carmella.
We came back from break to Paige chatting backstage with Carmella. Paige told her that she should be ashamed of herself. Carmella retorts with “I am one thing you’ll never be again, the champ”. So Paige makes a match for the main event. Charlotte vs Carmella. If Charlotte wins, she’s added to the title match at Summerslam. It’s great being a Flair. So much perks.
All 3 women involved in the opening segment were interviewed by Renee throughout the night. Charlotte said that the Queen is back and ready to reclaim her throne. Becky was happy that Charlotte is back, but not so happy at thought of a triple threat. Carmella said that she knows she can beat Becky one on one. And that Becky is rooting against Charlotte in this match. Dissension, ooooooooh.
In the match, they played up Charlotte’s ring rust after being off for a month and a half. Why was she off? Boobies. That is all. Carmella tried to get Charlotte counted out a couple of times. She then kicked out of Natural Selection and Charlotte kicked out of a Superkick. Carmella tried to lock in a figure 4, but Charlotte countered it and locked in a figure 8 of her own which caused Carmella to tap out. So we now have a Triple Threat match at Summerslam, Carmella vs Becky Lunch vs Charlotte Flair. They must have thought Becky wasn’t a big enough draw to have a one on one match with Carmella herself. It’s a shame. She’s been getting the best reactions of any of the women (with the exception of Ronda) lately.
The Tag Team Tournament continued this week with the Usos taking on The Bar. The Usos had a nice backstage promo walking through a dark mood lit hallway which they end in almost telling The Bar to stick their thumbs straight up their candy…. before realizing that they are PG.
For the match itself, The New Day came out and did commentary from their own unique pancake and Booty-O decorated announce table. The commentary switched between the regular commentary and the New Day’s commentary as the match progressed. i would have preferred if they just left the New Day’s one on. Or maybe have a vote. They still have that app, right? Now how do you install that Michael Cole?
During the match, Sheamus saved Cesaro from a dive by shoving him out of the way and taking it himself. The Bar then went for a Double Suplex but it was countered, and Sheamus was dragged off the top rope out of the ring. The New Day were giving the match 5 pancakes. Usos got a splash on Sheamus but the pin was broken up by Cesaro. They then went for a Double Splash but this was countered into uppercut and knees respectfully. Sheamus then rolled up an Uso to get the win. The New Day got in the ring and they had a faceoff with The Bar. They will face off next week to determine who will face Bludgeon Brothers at Summerslam.
Samoa Joe cut one hell of a promo on this week’s Smackdown. He started off saying that he respects AJ Styles and the house he built. He made the WWE Title the most prestigious in the WWE. But he put the title in front of his family. Joe mentions that last week, AJ spoke about telling his daughter she could do anything she wanted. But AJ is barely home long enough to even hug his child let alone to look lovingly in her eye.
He said that AJ is more comfortable on the road living out of a suitcase than being a husband to his wife. He is a champion above all else even if that means being a failure as a father. But it’s ok. Joe will take it all from him at Summerslam. The world will be cheering AJ on but AJ’s family will be cheering for Joe. They’ll have their Daddy back but Joe will be WWE Champion.
This was awesome. Joe is just a killer promo. give him and mic and let him go. Always pure gold.
Jeff Hardy came out to do a promo. A lot of promos in this show. He said that the US Championship is more than a title to him. It’s his 5th eye or some bullshit. It deepens his connection with the WWE Universe. When he lost it, a piece of him was severed away. Winning it back is the most important thing to him right now but nearly as important is beating the hell out of Randy Orton. He calls Randy out to the ring.
And Randy responds by coming out to the ring. As Randy is making his entrance, Nakamura attacks Jeff from behind. He goes to Kinshasa Jeff but Randy stops him for a moment before telling him to go ahead with it. Immediately afterwards, we get a staredown between Naks and Orton. Shinsuke leaves and Orton sets up for an RKO on Jeff. Instead of hitting the RKO, he just takes Jeff down instead and kicks his limbs.
Orton hits the Elevated DDT on Jeff in the ring and then on the outside too. He puts Jeff on the announce table (not the special New Day one) and takes off all Jeff’s signature stuff, the arm sleeves, Hardy’s tshirt, Hardy’s chain. He then pours water on him and wipes off his facepaint. Orton takes the chain with him and leaves.
After their brawl last week, we got Lana vs Zelina Vega this week in Zelina’s first match on the main roster (she only had 1 on NXT TV, well 2 if you count the smash match she did against Asuka as Thea Trinidad). Lana came out without Rusev as she is giving him space after last week. Vega came out with Almas. Zelina also embodied Almas a bit throughout the match hitting the double knees in the corner and trying for a Hammerlock DDT which got countered.
The finish saw Almas try to distract Lana which brought out Aiden English to try to stop him. All this commotion caused Lana to get distracted and Vega rolled her up for the win. Afterwards backstage, English was apologising to Lana for causing the loss. He ran when he heard Rusev coming as he was shouting looking for Aiden. Lana told Rusev that she knows he is looking out for the best for Rusev Day. But tonight Lana needed you.
Daniel Bryan came out to cut a promo (another one, I know). He spoke about the first ever all women’s PPV, Evolution (in case you were unaware) and how Brie was in the match that caused the #GiveDivasAChance trend. He said that this was a big step forward. But with 2 steps forward, we get 1 step back (referring to Miz). This horrible segway was brought to you by Sonic. For 2 years, Miz taunted him because he felt that he had a protective wall. He would be safe because Daniel couldn’t do anything. But then he was cleared. Last week, Miz used his wife and “baby” to build a wall between them. But Miz knows that if they got in a fair fight, Daniel would destroy Miz. He tells Miz to get out and face him now.
Miz appears on screen with security on either side of him. Apparently he is on set recording Miz and Mrs…. a reality show…. in which they are supposed to follow him around in his everyday life. Miz says that this isn’t the indies. Here you can’t just challenge someone like that. (It’s worked for years before this) He says Daniel will need to call his agent if he wants anything. He then goes into a mini ad for Miz and Mrs.
Daniel tells Miz to come out for a fight. He is hiding at the moment because as Daniel has always says, Miz is a coward. Miz said that the last time Daniel called him that, he ended up walking away. He said he’s carried Daniel on his back since he was pro on NXT. 10 years of indies did nothing. 5 minutes of talking to Miz on Talking Smack made Daniel famous. Bryan retorted that for himself, it’s about passion. But for Miz, it’s about fame. His dream has already been done and by better men than Miz. The reality is, he’ll never going to be The Rock. He’s not even going to be John Cena.
Daniel issues the challenge for Summerslam. But Miz said he is done with Daniel riding his coattails. He said that Daniel’s WWE career is over and he needs to let his contract expire and go entertain dozens of people in high school gyms. “All these people look at you and all they see is one thing”. He then shows a compilation of babies crying which he handily had lined up.
It was another good Smackdown this week. Not very Wrestling heavy with only 3 matches on the show, with 2 of them being women’s matches. #EVOLUTION. But a tonne of storyline progression and some damn good promos. Joe’s one was awesome. And the whole Jeff/Randy/Shinsuke thing is fantastic too. I’m a bit disappointed that they put Charlotte into the title match though as this should have been Becky’s moment to shine and now she will be the afterthought cause the WWE love them some Charlotte.
Overall though, Smackdown blew Raw out of the water again this week even though Raw had all guns blazing with Brock and Ronda on the show. It just shows how good storytelling outweighs big name draws every single time. Long may it continue.
The Bar def. The Usos by pinfall
Zelina Vega def. Lana by pinfall
Charlotte def. Carmella by submission
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