This week’s edition of Friday Night SmackDown follows a pretty huge episode of Monday Night Raw.
A lot of thing’s happened on Monday; Daniel Bryan is out of the WWE title picture, while Big Show appears to be in. The Wyatts made a huge impact, and Damien Sandow unsuccessfully cashed in his Money in the Bank contract.
Unfortunately, SmackDown this week doesn’t look to progress much of the stories established on Raw, but there is some great in-ring action to look forward to.
Below are the full spoilers via WrestlingInc.com for this week’s show, which comes from Tampa, Fla.
- John Cena kicks off SmackDown and talks about being World Heavyweight champion again. Following interruptions from The Real Americans, Damien Sandow and The Rhodes Brothers are set up for the main event.
- We see a backstage promo featuring The Shield—just like the one on Raw, it teases a breakup within the group.
- Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose are defeated by The Usos. Big E Langston was ringside for the match and stares down The Shield afterward.
- Backstage segment with Dolph Ziggler selling WWE Shop merch.
- Eric Rowan and Luke Harper beat The Prime Time Players.
- Miz hosts MizTV with Randy Orton. The segment ends with Orton hitting Miz with an RKO mid question.
- The Bella twins and Natalya defeated AJ Lee, Tamina Snuka and Alicia Fox.
- A pre-taped interview with Triple H airs; he talks about Big Show’s lawsuit and how he’s banned from WWE for life.
- John Cena, Cody Rhodes and Goldust defeat Damien Sandow, Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro to close the show.
- Dark Match: After the show, Daniel Bryan defeated Randy Orton by DQ after interference from The Shield.
Stealing the Show?
Unfortunately, what sticks out most from the spoilers above is the fact that the uber-talented Dolph Ziggler is being used in a lame backstage merchandise plug.
This time last year The Showoff’s future was looking bright. He had the Money in the Bank briefcase and all the possibilities that come with it. He went on to get big wins over Randy Orton and John Cena to close off 2012.
Now, a year later, the two-time World Heavyweight champion is as low on the card as he has been in a long time.
The rumor going around is that Ziggler is in the doghouse for his attitude and for not exactly towing the WWE company line in media appearances. If this is true, let’s hope he does his time and can move on to the bigger and better things he deserves to be doing.
Believe in The Shield
For the second time in a week The Shield has shown tension within the group, which likely foreshadows a breakup. They debuted at last year’s Survivor Series and have exhibited routine excellence since, so it was definitely a good run.
But how long before they implode? WWE will often plant seeds for WrestleMania matches around November, so is this a long-term program, or is a breakup imminent?
With the Wyatt Family attacking Daniel Bryan and CM Punk, and Wyatt saying "the devil made me do it," it appears as though The Shield are being usurped, both as The Authority’s henchmen and as the dominant faction on WWE programming.
It certainly seems more likely that the dissolution of The Hounds of Justice will be a slowly told story, in which case the next couple of months should be very interesting.
Cena Back on the Blue Brand
John Cena returns to the house that built him, SmackDown. Based off his promo on Raw, it appears he’ll become a consistent fixture on the show, which is definitely a good thing.
There were many conspicuous absences on this week’s SmackDown—Daniel Bryan and CM Punk likely didn’t appear to sell their Wyatt-induced injuries. Randy Orton, Big Show and Alberto Del Rio all also confusingly don’t appear.
Perhaps most devastatingly, we’ll have to wait until Raw to get a better read on how far down the card Bryan will be sliding following his Hell in a Cell loss.
Instead of the above names, this week’s main event is comprised of some fresher faces. The Real Americans suffered a loss to Los Matadores at Hell in a Cell, but WWE seems very aware of the fact that Jack Swagger and Antonio Cesaro are a tag team definitely worth investing in.
Some will say, with some merit, that Damien Sandow’s loss on Raw kills his momentum, but he’s in the main event of SmackDown this week and appears to be in a role of improved prominence, which will likely continue. It sure beats losing to Santino.
Cody and Goldy once again find themselves headlining SmackDown. The match was described as being one of the best multi-man tags in recent memory—so they also find themselves in yet another terrific match.
Story progression is slight on this week’s SmackDown, but it looks like the stars of the future are really getting a chance to shine.
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