With only 48 hours remaining until Survivor Series, Friday Night SmackDown provided another enjoyable edition with excellent hype for the pending pay-per-view. Here, I will analyze each significant segment presented on the show, as well provide a combination of aftermath and wishful thinking about what we will hope to see in coming weeks.
World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry ambushes Daniel Bryan
Refreshing opening to the show with World Heavyweight Champion Mark Henry ambushing Daniel Bryan backstage. It was a nice change of pace to kick off the broadcast in this manner, as well as successfully maintaining Henry's hot heat going into Survivor Series.
Keeping Bryan in the title picture is a very smart move if they plan to have him cash-in against the World's Strongest Man next year at WrestleMania 28.
United States Champion Dolph Ziggler def. Sin Cara (non-title)
Good match for the time it was given with United States Champion Dolph Ziggler going over Sin Cara. These two work well together, so it surly should have exceeded five minutes.
Nonetheless, the post-match beat-down was logical and set up the following contest nicely.
Mason Ryan def. Jack Swagger
Despite their similarities in size, Mason Ryan and Jack Swagger did not put on an entertaining match. Not that it was a bad contest, but Ryan isn't great at keeping the viewer's attention during his matches.
Regardless, Ryan is certainly improving in the ring, and putting him in the ring with Swagger will only help him more.
Christian addressed the WWE Universe
Intriguing promo from a sidelined Christian, who additionally announced his presence at Survivor Series despite his injury he suffered last weekend. Unlike past promos, Christian seemed to have took on a more serious, ruthless side to his character.
Here's hoping they slowly evolve Christian into a legitimate heel upon his return rather than being booked terribly as a lesser-version of the "Creepy Little Bastard."
Ted DiBiase def. Derrick Bateman
Another enhancement talent match with Ted DiBiase defeating NXT Rookie Derrick Bateman. I'm not sure if it was piped in or not, but DiBiase really looks to be connecting with the crowd a lot with these recent victories.
Impressive showing from Bateman, who should continue to be featured on television if Creative has any plans for him following his recent stint on this season's NXT.
Big Show addressed Mark Henry
Quality promo from Big Show that gave significant hype for his upcoming match against Mark Henry this Sunday. Sure, Show isn't the most serious Superstar on the mic, but he was able to put that aside for a few minutes to explain his hatred for the World's Strongest Man.
The ending punches were a bit ridiculous, but I've come to accept his stupidity as a character, realizing that it's never going to change.
WWE Tag Team Champion Kofi Kingston def. Hunico
Great match between WWE Tag Team Champion Kofi Kingston and Hunico. If given some more time, these two adrenaline junkies could have tore the house down given their unique styles, but what we got was good action.
Although Hunico's wrestling attire bothers me a bit, there's no doubt the guy can wrestle, which is always the key factor.
Divas Champion Beth Phoenix and Natalya def. AJ and Kaitlyn
Brief Divas tag team match with Divas Champion Beth Phoenix and Natalya dominating AJ and Kaitlyn in a contest that served its purpose. This win was essential in re-establishing the Glamazon as a legitimate threat going into Survivor Series, and it certainly succeeded in that aspect.
Randy Orton and Sheamus def. Wade Barrett and Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes by disqualification
Solid tag team match main event with Randy Orton and Sheamus gaining momentum over the team of Wade Barrett and Intercontinental Champion Cody Rhodes with a disqualification victory. Besides the fact that the finish was weak, I enjoyed Christian's involvement in this match with him stating earlier on that he will be present at ring-side in MSG.
Logical booking following the contest with Orton and Sheamus getting the better of the heels, though it was a stale sight with this erasing any momentum Barrett gained up to this point. With that being said, this gives me hope Barrett and Rhodes will be the sole survivors come Sunday.
Overall, another good show that did an excellent job in both exceedingly hyping Survivor Series and providing some great action as whole. The additional promos were well-done and served their purposes respectively. Although the Raw replay was unnecessary, it at least was relevant in building towards Sunday at MSG.
Visit my website at Next Era Wrestling as well as my WrestleRant and Spoilers podcasts for more of GSM's thoughts and writings, along with WWE/TNA news, recaps and more. Follow me on Twitter @SAVE_US_GSM.
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!