WWE Smack Down Live Review
Shane McMahon, Daniel Bryan,and James Ellsworth appear on screen, with Ellsworth sneezing and coughing repeatedly. Both Shane and Daniel are pleading with Ellsworth to not compete tonight. Ellsworth is barely able to get word in between his coughing and sneezing, and even wipes his nose on his shirt several times, which generates a your nasty response from Shane McMahaon each time. Daniel begins to reiterate Shane’s words when Ellsworth sneezes directly on GM Daniel Bryan. Ellsworth quickly exits the screen, as Shane pulls out hand sanitizer offering some to Daniel as the show intro begins.
We open with a shot of Miz in the ring for his latest Miz TV segment, featuring AJ Styles. The two go on to speak about the postponed Championship match AJ has against James Ellsworth. Styles continues his corny but funny dad puns, about James Ellsworth chin, saying Ellsworth came down with a case of Chin-fluenza (drum solo cymbal crash). Miz goes on to shower AJ Styles with praise, saying his hair looks better than a soccer moms. AJ says thanks and mentions how he’s looking to get a shampoo endorsement deal, and tosses his hair in comedic fashion. AJ goes on a rant, declaring that no one is on his level in that ring. As AJ goes on you see the look on The Miz’s face ever so slightly change. The Miz chimes in and begins to run down his own list of accomplishments, and ends with AJ I’m not on your level, I’m above it, before saying maybe he should make the WWE title legendary again. This is a very logical progression since AJ gets cheered way to much to continue to be a heel champion. By setting this up it could potentially lead to a future feud, with Smack Down’s best resident jerk. As the two men square up eye to eye, Dean Ambrose music blasts and he quickly makes his way to the ring. AJ and The Miz scuttle from the ring, as Dean kicks around the chairs and props from Miz’s set. Almost immediately Dolph Ziggler interrupts and calls both AJ and Miz cheaters and cowards. Miz quickly rolls into the ring and hits Dolph with the skull crushing finale. Dean Ambrose then hits Miz with the dirty deeds. AJ Styles still outside of the ring smartly walks away, telling Dean and crew we do things on my terms. Dean then hits Dolph with the dirty deeds leaving both Miz and Ziggler laying prone in the ring. The Wyatt scream plays, and the lights drop, only to come back on where Luke Harper is creepily in the middle of the ring. Harper clotheslines Ambrose, and stares down AJ Styles as he heads up the ramp.
Coming back from break, Shane and Daniel are shown backstage talking. AJ walk in and demands protection from all the people coming after him for his title. Shane and Daniel then decide to make a Fatal Four way match between, The Miz, Dean Ambrose, Luke Harper, and Dolph Ziggler. Winner gets a shot at the WWE World title on the final Smack Down of the year, much to AJ’s chagrin.
Nikki Bella is sitting at the already crowded commentators table, for the upcoming match between Natalya and Carmella. Before the match can begin Natalya begins to plead with Nikki over the mic, that she had nothing to do with her attack at Survivor Series. As Natalya continues her pleas, Carmella’s music hits, as she moon walks on to the entrance ramp. The match starts off slow and a little messy. Both women put on an unconvincing brawl, consisting of mostly of weak tackles, and rolling around the ring. Finally a stiff slap from Carmella to Natalya while outside of the ring gets the action going for real. Carmella is becoming a better performer every time she hits the ring, and she constantly talks, screams, and yells while in the ring. As the match builds, there’s more back and forth than you would have expected from Carmella and Natalya, Carmella is able to pull out a win with a roll up pin on Natalya, who seems more interested in pleading her case with Nikki Bella than actually winning.
Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias is shown walking backstage, and is the first guest celebrity I hear get a crowd pop in a very long time. Fluffy runs into the long time missing Apollo Crews backstage. The two men barely get a chance to talk before The Miz and Maryse show up rudely cutting in. Miz makes a few snide remarks about Fluffy and his shirts, and Fluffy gets in his own jabs about The Miz’s loud suit. Ultimately the skit is kind of pointless, and goes nowhere, ending with The Miz and Maryse traipsing away.
Tag Team Battle Royal
Since Heath Slater and Rhyno lost their rematch last week, the number one contenders for the Tag Team titles will be decided in a battle royal. Each member of the team has to be thrown over the top rope, and both feet must hit the ground to be eliminated. When both men have been eliminated, then the team is eliminated as a whole. American Alpha, Hype Bros, Breezango, The Ascension, Heath Slater & Rhyno, and The Vaudevillians hit the ring, and the battle begins. I’ve usually found battle royals confusing affairs to watch, but this one starts off quickly with excitement. Mojo Rawley clotheslines Simon Gouche right out of the ring soon as the bell hits. From there the fight breaks out, with men pairing off against each other, and some doubling up on others. The fight goes on for awhile before there are any other eliminations. Finally Victor of the Ascension is thrown out by American Alpha’s Chad Gable, which then sets off a chain reaction of eliminations. Gable is eliminated by Konner, Slater accidentally eliminates Rhyno, Mojo Rawley is eliminated by Fandango, and Jason Jordan eliminates Aiden English in grand fashion by hurling him into the air from the ring side, where he crashes on to the floor. Slater eliminates Fandango, but is soon hit during Jason Jordan’s spear party. Tyler Breeze and Konnor of The Ascension eliminate Jason Jordan teaming together on him. Slater briefly rallies hitting the men with every move in his arsenal, before Konnor hurls Slater out of the ring. Tyler Breeze tries to get Konner to continue their team up but is eliminated by Konnor after he tries to sneak attack him. Zack Ryder ends up eliminating Konnor, and Hype Bros win the chance to face The Wyatts for the Smack Down Live Tag Team championships. While I can’t say I’m to “Hyped” about seeing this match up, at least the Hype Bros are no longer wearing the tangerine dream outfits anymore, and that’s a plus.
Baron Corbin has a new video promo this week. Shot in black and white, it’s real gritty, and makes him look as big and imposing as he really is. I like the nice slow burn the WWE is doing with him currently. Having him win the Andre the Giant battle royal earlier this year, didn’t do much for him. Classic case of to much to soon. Since being on Smack Down though, they’ve been able to take more time in building him up into the future beats of the division.
Alexa Bliss sashay’s down to the ring with the Smack Down Womens championship around her waist. Her opponent is already in the ring, and this time we don’t even get a proper introduction. Alexa interrupts the ring announcer before her opponent can be named. Ms. Bliss then goes on a tirade about not giving out charity and dubs the unnamed wrestler Jane Ellsworth. Before she finishes her speech, Alexa unexpectedly beats down opponent quickly, and throws her out of the ring. Becky Lynch comes down the ramp and challenges Alexa Bliss for the title, asking for her rematch. Alexa pretends to accept the challenge, but then roles out of the ring, denying Becky the chance at her rematch. As Alexa is leaving, Shane comes out, then says we don’t do things like that on Smack Down, and makes the rematch a go for tonight. When the actual match starts, thee are several missteps by both women. The build up, proves to be better than the match in this case. Becky is able to get in several submission holds, but each time Alexa makes it to the ropes. The fight spills outside of the ring , where Alexa tweaks her knee, and Becky ends up winning the match via count out, which means the title does not change hands. The ladies fight a little longer, and Alexa throttles Becky briefly in the corner, showing that Alexa is not truly hurt. Smartly after the quick dust up, Alexa pretends the knee is hurting once again as she makes her way up the entrance ramp.
#1 Contenders Match
Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, The Miz, and Luke Harper, each make their way to the ring for the number one contenders match for the WWE World Championship. AJ Styles comes out, and sits at the announcers table for commentary during the match. Luke Harper starts soon as the bell rings, and beats down both Dolph and Dean in quick fashion, before setting his sites on The Miz, who applauds him, and tries to make a brief partnership. Luke answers with a right uppercut, and a pin attempt. Harper puts on a clinic, beating down each superstar respectively. Harper wisely exits the ring to attack the other men before coming back into the ring to try and submit Ziggler. After several good segments between all the men, The Miz is eliminated first by a roll up pin performed by Dean Ambrose. Ambrose and Ziggler take on the brunt of the second half of the match, putting on a good show. They trade a set of near pin falls, before Harper comes to, and begins to decimate the two men again. A super kick from Ziggler, and a dirty deeds from Dean put away Luke Harper though, as the men briefly team up to take down the monster. Dean and Dolph, begin to battle anew until Ziggler is catapulted into the ring post. Miz sneaks back to the ring and tries to distract Dolph but ends up getting a super kick to the face. Ambrose takes advantage and rams Dolph into the ring post again, before rolling him back into the ring. Miz keep Ambrose from entering the ring for the pin though by holding on to his foot, from outside of the ring. Dean quickly kicks Miz off of him but gets a super kick as he enters the ring, allowing Ziggler to get the pin, making him the new number one contender.