Roman Reigns' Next Feud, Heel Becky Lynch and More WWE SmackDown Fallout
Friday's post-SummerSlam edition of SmackDown was a strong show with some good matches and a few segments that kicked off some new feuds.
Becky Lynch made her return to the blue brand and received a huge ovation. She was quickly confronted by Bianca Belair, Carmella, Zelina Vega and Liv Morgan.
After spending months in the poorhouse, Baron Corbin struck it rich in Las Vegas and returned to SmackDown with a new suit, new car and his same old cocky attitude.
Family drama took center stage throughout the night. Rey and Dominik Mysterio seemed to have some issues, while The Bloodline had to figure out what to do with Paul Heyman now that Brock Lesnar is back.
During the final segment, Finn Balor confronted The Tribal Chief and demanded to have the opportunity to challenge him that John Cena stole from him before SummerSlam.
Let's take a look at some of the biggest moments from Friday's show.
When The Man Comes Around
Lynch came out at the top of the show to a big pop from the crowd. She spoke about how happy she was to be back and how hard she worked to return.
Bianca Belair came down to the ring and requested a rematch, but she was joined by Morgan, Carmella and Vega before The Man could give her an answer.
In the end, Lynch turned all of them down and simply walked away. It was an abrupt end to her involvement in this segment and didn't seem to upset the crowd enough to boo her, but it's clear this was meant to be a sign of her heel turn.
The four women who stayed in the ring ended up brawling before the commercial break. We returned to find out a Fatal 4-Way had been booked to determine The Man's first challenger for the SmackDown Women's Championship.
Carmella and Vega were eliminated early, allowing Belair and Morgan to have the second half of the match all to themselves. The EST secured the win after a hard-fought exchange, making her the No. 1 contender.
With Extreme Rules not set to take place until September 26, it wouldn't be surprising if WWE decided to have Lynch face Belair for the belt before the event so it can book something else for the PPV.
With Morgan putting on an impressive performance and several other women on the blue brand just waiting for their opportunity, WWE should book some kind of multi-woman bout for the PPV so more people can have a chance to shine.
Baron Corbin Got His Groove Back
After months of Corbin walking around in dirty clothing and begging people for money after losing his fortune in the stock and crypto markets, he arrived at Friday's SmackDown looking like a new man.
After a fruitful week in Las Vegas, the former King of the Ring struck it rich and arrived in style with a new suit, fresh haircut and luxury car. He told Kayla Braxton to call him Happy Corbin before heading into the arena.
He asked Big E to join him in the ring and said he wanted to make up for trying to steal the Money in the Bank briefcase by offering to buy it from him. He offered as much as $100,000, but Big E turned him down every time.
Tensions started to rise, but the segment ended without incident. While there was no clear setup for anything, it does look like WWE is going to keep the feud between these two going for a little while.
Big E needs to bide his time before he cashes in, and Corbin needs a high-profile rival if this new character is going to work, so this works out well for both men.
The only thing we know for sure coming out of this segment is that Corbin is hilarious and has found his niche over the past few months.
Dominik Mysterio Is Put to the Test
During a pre-match moment backstage, Rey told Dominik that he wanted to step back and allow his son to be his own man, so he got him a match and stayed backstage while his son fought Sami Zayn.
The veteran easily took control of the younger Mysterio early, but Dom was able to hit a few counters. When it looked like Dom was in trouble, Rey decided to head to the ringside area to offer some fatherly support.
Despite a late-match comeback from the rookie, Zayn was able to secure the win with his signature Helluva Kick. As Rey went to help his son, Dom brushed him off and walked away.
WWE could be teasing a breakup and heel turn from Dominik with this reaction. A father-son feud is something we haven't seen often in this business, so it offers a level of intrigue most storylines can't match.
There are stories of sons trying to usurp their fathers going back centuries. If that is the route WWE is heading with this, it's going to be interesting to see how evil Dom becomes.
Rey may have worked as a heel at certain points, but he is mostly known for working as a babyface. Having his son betray him would provide some Shakespearean drama for the WWE Universe.
Roman Reigns Has 2 Challengers to Worry About
The final segment of the evening was a family celebration involving Roman Reigns, The Usos and Paul Heyman. During most of the show, Heyman had been locked out of their locker room, so he was unsure of his standing until The Tribal Chief told him he was family.
Reigns allowed Heyman to do his job and give a promo about his big win over John Cena at SummerSlam, but before he could say too much, Balor came out to interrupt.
He issued a challenge to the universal champion for the following week's show because he didn't want to wait until Extreme Rules. When Reigns didn't answer, Balor went after him.
The Usos gave The Tribal Chief the advantage, but The Street Profits came down to even the odds. Reigns watched as The Prince stood tall after taking out Jimmy and Jey.
Reigns vs. Balor appears to be the direction, but with Lesnar's return at SummerSlam, it's too early to tell what management has planned for the PPV.
Regardless, Heyman dodged a bullet. Everyone expected Reigns to address his relationship with The Beast, but he didn't have time. Heyman was clearly worried about being ousted from The Bloodline, so he will likely be walking on eggshells until he is forced to confront the reality of the situation.