This week’s WWE Smackdown Live was held in the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colorado.
The Hell In A Cell go home show for Smackdown Live opened with a video recap of what transpired between last week between Shinsuke Nakamura and Jinder Mahal. I have to hand it to the WWE, one thing they do exceedingly well is video packages.
Renee Young welcomed Shinsuke Nakamura to the ring for an interview. Shinsuke was only able to answer a few questions before being interrupted by the Singh brothers. They did their usual intro to Jinder Mahal, but this time instead of coming through the curtains, Jinder jumped Nakamura in the ring. Nakamura made a valiant effort to fight off the Singhs and Mahal, but this week he would fall short. The segment ended with Mahal hitting the Khallas on Nakamura, and the champion standing victorious over Nakamura.
Charlotte/Becky Lynch vs Natalya/Carmella – Winners: Natalya/Carmella
One thing that rang true during this match was when Corey Graves mentioned the fact that Charlotte and Becky being friends is not good for Becky. Although this is true, it is even more true for Charlotte. I mean watching Charlotte tap out to Natalya in a non title match that didn’t mean anything didn’t sit well with me. Smackdown needs someone on their show that can look unbeatable, preparing to combat the arrival of Asuka on RAW. Charlotte is that person hands down.
I’m not opposed to heels tagging against faces, but it also didn’t make sense for Carmella to be in this match tagging with the champ. I say this because not once did Carmella try to screw over Natalya. I know that the WWE wants a cash in at a PPV for the most part, but at least make the theater believable.
Shane McMahon/Kevin Owens Preview
I just wanted to add this in the article to once again spotlight what amazing video packages the WWE is producing. This segment actually made me want to see the match, which until tonight I was iffy on.
The video highlighted the relationship between Shane and Kevin from the beginning, all the way back to Kevin Owens going back and forth between both shows. Even though I think Shane will slow Owens down a bit during the match, I think the brutality that will be brought at Hell In A Cell will make up for that. This may very well be Shane’s last match, so I’m sure he will want to go out with a crazy performance.
Bobby Roode vs Mike Kanellis – Winner: Bobby Roode
This wasn’t so much a match to showcase talent as it was a vehicle to get to the face to face between Bobby and Dolph Ziggler. I know there has to be some people that need to take losses, but Mike Bennet, (yes Bennet, forget this Kanellis nonsense) deserves better than that.
Like I said this was about Dolph and Bobby. I’m really sad that it seems like Ziggler’s contract will run out without him resigning. This is the best mic work he has ever done. The WWE really messed up with him. Hopefully he shows up in a place like New Japan where they will be able to use him. He is perfect for the Bullet Club.
I digress. Dolph ripped into Roode, telling him that all his flash won’t mean a thing, because at some point the bell will have to ring. Ziggler has never been more real than this, and like I said last week, this has the potential to be match of the night.
Usos Read The New Day Their Rights
This was essentially just a warning to the New Day from the Usos, but man was it good. These guys have completely hit the mark with their persona change and it fires on all cylinders. No one can match them in either tag division…..except maybe the New Day.
Speaking of the New Day they came down to chime in on their match on Sunday. I like what the Usos bring out in The New Day. The bring out an intensity and darkness that no other team can. This feud has surpassed all my expectations and I’m sad that this might be the end all be all for them on Sunday.
Tye Dillinger vs Baron Corbin – Winner: Tye Dillinger
I don’t know what Baron did to tumble so far down the ladder on Smackdown but it must have been something significant. I know that some officials weren’t happy with his Cena spots, and possible reasons might also have included backstage drama and social media posts, but man.
If Baron is unable to beat AJ at Hell In A Cell than I will be convinced something is going on. He has been performing really well as of late, with both in ring work and heel work. If he doesn’t get the nod Sunday I don’t know what to tell you guys. Corbin was one of my picks to be a break out star this year, it sucks to see him stalled out like this.
Randy Orton vs Aiden English – Winner: Randy Orton
The crowd must have gotten to Randy because he was more energetic and animated in this match. The best part of the match came after Orton won. Rusev attempted to sneak into the ring to jump Orton, but Orton was ready and spun around. He was eye to eye with him and had more intense expression in his eyes that I have seen in a while.
This interaction gave me a bit of hope for their match this Sunday. Maybe something clicked in Orton that made him realize that the smug thing doesn’t work. I’m looking at you Roman Reigns. Or maybe it’s just because he like Rusev because he takes the RKO better than most people.
Shane / Owens Face To Face
This turned into exactly what I thought it would. An absolute decimation of Shane at the hands of Kevin Owens. Sami Zayn added to the deranged demeanor of Owens by warning Shane before he went out to the ring. Sami told Shane that this Kevin Owens is completely different than the snarky/disobedient Owens that we are used to. He was right.
Owens is so much more methodical when it comes to Shane and I love it. His work on the mic gets much more real and it’s perfect for this upcoming match. Owens went so far as to say that he would powerbomb Shane so many times he would forget his kids names. Absolutely awesome.
I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I’m now 100% on board with this match. It’s completely due to Owens work over the last few weeks. Owens going all Stone Cold on Vince didn’t hurt either.
This PPV could be either amazing or a snooze fest, nothing in between.