WWE SmackDown Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from March 14

The Doctor Chris MuellerFeatured ColumnistMarch 15, 2014

WWE SmackDown Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from March 14

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    Every week on Bleacher Report, I take an in-depth look at SmackDown, recapping the action, offering analysis and grading the matches, segments and anything else that takes place on the show. I also provide some predictions on the direction of storylines.

    This week's show featured some decent wrestling, but the match between Alberto Del Rio and Dolph Ziggler was easily the highlight.

    The Shield played a big part in the show, being involved in the opening match, a backstage segment and the closing match.

    No huge surprises happened, but this was an above-average show overall. Let's get right into it with Triple H's opening promo.

Triple H Promo

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    SmackDown kicked off with Triple H coming out sans Stephanie McMahon, which was a shame because she has become such a great heel authority figure.

    Trips talked awhile about how Daniel Bryan would not beat him at WrestleMania and go on to challenge for the title later in the show.

    He brought out Damien Sandow to punish him for not getting in the ring on Monday during the Occupy Raw segment. He told Sandow to keep his mouth shut and then proceeded to make him apologize.

    Trips accepted the apology and then told Sandow that he would be wrestling first. The Shield's music hit, and that's when Sandow realized he was screwed.

    This was a decent way to start the show and transition into the first match of the night. Trips is always good on the mic, but this promo was his usual stuff for when he is in "wrestler-mode."

    Grade: B

    Some notes from the segment:

    • Stephanie's performance on Monday was really convincing. I thought she would bust a blood vessel while yelling at Bryan.
    • I love how Triple H trolls the audience these days. A lot of people are probably jealous of the fact that he can say anything he wants to the crowd and still get a response.
    • I wonder how many fans who weren't in on the Occupy Raw segment tried to jump the barricade and join in? I assume at least a few people tried.
    • Come to think of it, that was a huge risk. What if the fans thought a real riot was breaking out and went nuts in the ring? Crowds are unpredictable, and if you have ever seen a riot at a sports event, you know it isn't pretty.

Damien Sandow vs. Seth Rollins

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    Seth Rollins picked up the win in a match that barely went three minutes. He pulled off a couple of cool moves that showed his amazing agility, so the match wasn't a total bust.

    Dean Ambrose decided to attack Sandow after the match, and we got to see the Triple Powerbomb for the first time in a while.

    There was no tension among the Hounds of Justice, and despite the length of the match, the segment as a whole was entertaining.

    Grade: B

    Some notes from the match:

    • WWE has been very smart with its treatment of this team. The company is milking the breakup for all it's worth, which is making for some great television.
    • Have you ever noticed how Rollins almost always lands on his feet after a suicide dive?
    • The two decisions that WWE has made about The Shield that I really like are that the team has never tried to add a new member, and the three Superstars keep getting better in the ring every time we see them.
    • Damien Sandow deserves better than this.
    • The Shield as a whole is beginning to get babyface reactions, whereas it used to be just Reigns.
    • For some reason, this was not on WWE's YouTube channel, so check out this week's JBL & Cole Show instead.

Big E vs. Fandango

3 of 9

    The Liberace of WWE and Big E had a quick match that ended with Big E getting an easy pin. This was a pointless match that only served to give him an easy win.

    Nothing really happened other than a few exchanges and a Big Ending. I really like Langston, but matches like this do him no good.

    Give the guy two Superstars to fight like the WWE did for Ryback. The crowd might eat that up when it's a guy like Langston, who can actually wrestle.

    Grade: C-

The Real Americans vs. Cody Rhodes and Goldust

4 of 9

    This was a good match from start to finish. Everyone performed at a quick pace and offered up the usual exciting moves.

    Rhodes' nearly botched moonsault to the outside was a close call, but everything else in the match went very smoothly, save for the ending.

    He and Goldust picked up the win, but the more interesting development is what went on between Cesaro and Jack Swagger during the match.

    Both men tagged themselves in when the other was trying to win the match, causing quite a bit of friction. The Real Americans attacked the Rhodes brothers after the match, but the Usos came out and made the save.

    Either WWE is planning to break up The Real Americans soon, or they are going to be the next challengers for the tag titles. Or both.

    The WWE may choose to have them challenge for the titles, lose and then break up because of it. Whatever ends up happening, at least one good match will come out of it.

    Grade: B+

    Some notes from the match:

    • The way Cesaro tried to catch Rhodes when he came off the ropes with a moonsault to the floor area and almost missed catching him looked so dangerous. Rhodes could have been hurt if that had gone just a little worse than it did.
    • Still, it was an impressive showing of strength from Cesaro to lift him back up onto his shoulder.
    • Steve Austin should be proud of the mudhole Cesaro stomped in Rhodes. I counted more than a dozen stomps.
    • WWE did a terrible job of editing what was clearly a messy backslide into a clean one at the end of the match.

Bray Wyatt vs. Kofi Kingston

5 of 9

    Bray Wyatt gave another great promo before the match that was directed toward John Cena. It was his usual mix of creepiness and honesty.

    Kingston put up a decent fight, but we all knew Wyatt would win this match from the moment it started.

    This was a decent match that made the most of one segment's worth of time. Kingston is still being used in a very strange way, but at least he is on TV on a regular basis.

    Grade: B

    Some notes from the match:

    • Do you want to know what the most unrealistic part of Bray Wyatt's character is? We're supposed to believe that he lives in the woods somewhere, but he can keep those white pants so clean.
    • All 300 pounds of Bray Wyatt landed on Kingston during a running senton.
    • It's good to see Wyatt in more singles matches on television.
    • I am not a big fan of horror movies because I don't find them scary for the most part, but if WWE made a horror movie starring The Wyatts without any connection to wrestling, I would see it.

Tamina vs. Nikki Bella

6 of 9

    This above-average Divas match saw Nikki pick up the win over Tamina with the Torture Rack Drop she has been using lately.

    Other than a close call from a back drop, both women looked good in terms of technique. The Divas division has promise; the WWE just needs to put the right people against each other to show what they can do.

    This was not on the level of the match we saw from AJ and Natalya on Main Event, but it was better than usual.

    Grade: B-

    Some notes from the match:

    • Tamina may have caught Nikki Bella with the kick to the mouth a little more than intended.
    • The spot where Brie dove off the apron onto AJ had absolutely no camera coverage for the impact. It was probably the best spot in the match and didn't even involve the two competitors who were wrestling.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Alberto Del Rio

7 of 9

    Mark your calendars, folks. Not only did we get a clean win from Dolph Ziggler over Alberto Del Rio, but he did it using his finisher and not some rollup out of nowhere.

    These two always have exciting matches, but they usually end with Del Rio winning. To see Ziggler finally get a good solid victory was the icing on the cake.

    This may not lead to a huge push for him, but it is a big step in the right direction.

    Grade: A

    Some notes from the match:

    • I am baffled as to why Del Rio felt the need to slap the mat after every single elbow drop from Ziggler.
    • Ziggler may have been trying a little harder than normal, since he knew he was going to win.
    • Renee Young interviewed Ziggler after the match, and he declared his intentions to enter that Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. I hope he wins.
    • I like Renee Young more than any WWE Diva right now. Not just because she is a pretty wrestling fan, but because I'm sure she's a lot smarter than I am, and that's an attractive quality.

Big Show vs. Kane

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    We've seen these two face off before, so this was nothing new, but the physicality of these two men is always pretty impressive.

    Big Show ended up taking a chokeslam from the top rope and kicked out, so Kane tried to sick The Shield on him. They hesitated on the apron, and Kane yelled at them. That's when The Shield stopped taking orders from Kane.

    Big Show hit a chokeslam when Kane turned around, picking up the win. Kane tried to grab Rollins for a chokeslam after the match, but Reigns saved him with a Spear to end the show.

    Grade: B-

    Some notes from the match:

    • Kane's choice to wear his suit pants when he wrestles makes him so much less intimidating.
    • So does his hair.
    • The Shield have officially gone from heels to antiheroes.
    • This was another match that was not on the YouTube channel, so here is Bad News Barrett instead.

Final Thoughts and Predictions

9 of 9

    This could be classified as an enjoyable SmackDown. The matches were all decently entertaining, and there were even a few interesting storyline developments.

    Ziggler and Del Rio easily had the match of the night, but everyone else made sure the show was good as a whole. Even the Divas put on a solid match.

    WrestleMania is right around the corner, and we could end up seeing some very interesting results.


    • We will see at least three legends in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal.
    • The tag title match at WrestleMania will feature a minimum of three teams.
    • The next encounter between Brock Lesnar and The Undertaker will see the Dead Man take an F-5.
    • Kane will try to punish The Shield on Raw, but they will come out on top.
    • Renee Young will appear at a commentary table on Raw, SmackDown or Main Event at least once by the end of 2014.
    • Wade Barrett will eventually wrestle again. (I hope.)

    What did you think of this week's SmackDown?


    Thanks for reading, and follow me on Twitter: @BR_Doctor.