Here are my five likes and five dislikes from WWE Friday Night SmackDown this week. It's not a recap of the show.; it's about what worked and what didn't. Let's get to it.
LIKE: Sheamus defeats Dolph Ziggler in the main event
This was a non-title rematch of their match from Sunday's No Way Out PPV. It was an entertaining TV match where you knew Sheamus was going to win again, but at least they didn't bury Ziggler during the match. Sheamus is the long-term World Champion, and it will stay that way for the foreseeable future.
It wasn't the kind of match that would blow you away or make you mad if you missed it. It was a very good, three star TV match that was a nice end to a television show. Some weeks there's nothing wrong with that.
Who is going to be Sheamus' opponent for the World Title at Money in the Bank? We don't know yet.
I would assume they will go with Del Rio, who has yet to have his one-on-one match despite it being advertised originally at Over The Limit (then changed into a four-way) and No Way Out (due to a concussion). Chris Jericho could return too. That would be fresh.
DISLIKE: Ryback beats up two skinny jobbers
Again? At the PPV Ryback was saying he wants to face three guys, yet they put him against two once more. It's funny to see him toss around 150 pound dudes like they were nothing, but it's getting tiresome. At least the Baltimore crowd seemed to be appreciative of his efforts although on SmackDown you never know if the sounds we hear are legit.
I think fans are ready to see him face some different opponents, so it will be interesting to see when he gets an actual feud, and who will be the one to get destroyed by him.
As an aside, since I've complained about it a lot it's worth noting that Ryback's finisher is called "Shell Shocked." It's okay—not great. I think the move is sponsored by the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
LIKE: Big Show destroys Brodus Clay again
I'm not sure what I liked most about this. It was either the fact that they did an entertaining segment that effectively put over the power of Big Show or simply because I'm so tired of the stale Brodus Clay character that deserved a beating like this. I think it's the latter.
This will likely lead to a longer feud between Show & Clay down the road that will hopefully make Clay a more serious character, because if he keeps going down the path he's on, he will lose fan support rather quickly.
By the way, the addition of David Otunga dancing like Carlton Banks after the beatdown was pretty funny too.
DISLIKE: Big Show competing in a Money in the Bank Ladder Match
This is a minor dislike. Prior to Show's destruction of Brodus Clay, he announced he would be in a MITB ladder match. Does anybody want to see him try to climb a ladder? No.
I guess it could be similar to Kane being in the match many times over the years and he actually won a couple years ago, but I'm not that interested in the Big Show character. I have a worry that the match is going to be all about him. I don't expect him to win though.
Assuming that there are two MITB ladder matches (that's what I keep reading although it's not confirmed by WWE yet), this is the opportunity to elevate new people. Show will likely lose due to Brodus Clay, getting his revenge on him there. That's just a feeling on my part.
LIKE: Alberto Del Rio defeats Christian in an entertaining match
This is why I like SmackDown a lot. It's the show where talents like Alberto Del Rio & Christian get a chance to have a quality 10 minute match where the IC Champ Christian does a wonderful job of putting over Del Rio, who needs it. Christian's in the spot that Jericho's been in for many years.
He can lose matches and the fans won't care too much because he's been such a consistently good performer for so long that he has earned the respect from the viewers. They're going to react to him no matter what.
He's also one of my favorite wrestlers, so I'm glad he's out there putting up good matches on a regular basis. Del Rio needed the win.
DISLIKE: Mick Foley booked like just another guy
Mick Foley is the Hardcore Legend and he's my pick to be the headliner at the 2013 Hall of Fame in New York/New Jersey. You couldn't tell that on SmackDown, though.
He barely got any screen time despite being "in charge" of the show. He was the GM this week, yet the first person we saw was Teddy Long. Why? I'm tired of Teddy. The only use of Foley was seeing him awkwardly dance with Great Khali backstage and then a comedy in-ring segment where he was cut off by Heath Slater.
That's it? Foley needs to be made out to be a bigger deal than he was here.
LIKE: AJ continues to include herself in anything Kane is involved with
On Monday we saw AJ skipping around the ring while dressed like Kane. On SmackDown she was in the role of guest timekeeper (why do we need a timekeeper anyway?) and she helped Kane win his eight minute match against Daniel Bryan. How?
Bryan had Kane in the Yes Lock while the big man was trying to fight out of it. All of a sudden AJ rang the bell, so Bryan thought he had won when in fact he did not. That allowed Kane to recover and hit the Chokeslam on Bryan for the win. Creative booking. I like that. It's not something we see all the time, so it worked for me.
The loss doesn't hurt Bryan very much because it was only due to the behavior of AJ as the timekeeper. It was smart booking. I liked it a lot.
DISLIKE: Santino's comedy segment
This was brutal. I can't believe they did a time filling segment like this on one of their main weekly shows. There are so many talents on the roster (especially the divas) that could use the 3-4 minutes of TV time given to Santino, who got kissed by a random "fan" in a comedic way.
The Santino character gets plenty of TV time. Why not give it to those that need it? Weak.
LIKE: Tag teams are actually feuding
It was another nice win by the Prime Time Players as they defeated the Usos clean in tag team action. After the match, they were confronted by Primo & Epico backstage. Can you believe it? An actual storyline involving tag teams in WWE! It's about damn time!
By the way, on WWE.com they are spelling it as Prime Time Players rather than Primetime as one word, so perhaps the PTP will work as well.
DISLIKE: Zack Ryder is used on SmackDown but not on Raw
It was nice to see Zack Ryder get an actual win even though it was a quick squash of Heath Slater, who is quickly become the joke heel jobber on all WWE shows.
My question is: Why not use Ryder on Raw in his hometown of Long Island when the fans were chanting for him during segments involving others? I'll never understand the logic of burying people in their hometown.
- I thought it was smart to announce that Vickie Guerrero would be running Raw & SmackDown next week. It's important to build things from week to week, so now at least we can expect to deal with her annoying voice for the next two shows.
- Aside from Big Show announcing his entry into a Money in the Bank match, nothing was announced regarding July's PPV. I'd assume next week's editions of Raw & SmackDown will give us some more info involving the annual July event that is typically one of the better PPVs of the year.
This was an enjoyable edition of SmackDown featuring quality wrestling matches that led to meaningful wins for deserving talent while also doing a good job of continuing stories.
I rate it a 7 out of 10.
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