Best Match of the night:
Almost by default, this one goes to Del Rio and Cena. Just like RAW a night ago, this whole show felt light on actual, clean matches, and long on the extracurricular activities. And, it’s not totally a complaint-they worked, they fed into Sunday’s matches, so that’s fine. But from a “best match” perspective, it just wasn’t a great week for them. That being said, this match did serve as a reminder that Cena and Del Rio can work nicely together, and I think have had themselves a bit of an underrated rivalry.
Worst match of the night:
Naomi/Eva Marie. Another show, another non-match. And yet, toward the end of the evening, Eva feels the need to interject herself in the tag match, which brings out Naomi and then becomes a 6 woman tag match on SummerSlam.
Like, it’s not a fun gimmick for her, WWE Creative team. No one would be upset if you just stopped booking her, I do believe.
Crowd Chants of the Night:
Let’s go Cena/Cena sucks
Star of the Night
I have to give this one to Ziggler, because I think he did a great job of really positioning himself as a threat to Dean’s belt come Sunday. And, a nod to Ambrose too, since he’s important to that process as well. Neither man was involved in the main event, but from where they went, they stole the show.
Spot of the Night:
Ziggler, in the midst of a really intense promo, drills Dean Ambrose with a sweet superkick.
Jobber of the Night:
If not for a few actual enhancement talents, I could have awarded this to Slater last night. But, tonight? Tonight I just have to give it to him, for taking another beating, 2 nights in a row. Last night it was Lesnar pretending Slater was Orton. Tonight, Slater played Lesnar for Orton. And man did he sell it like a champ.
Upset of the Night:
Nothing really. Unless you want to count Slater’s DQ win over Orton, which I really don’t.
Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:
So nice, I have to mention it twice, but Ziggler with the stinging superkick to Ambrose, in the middle of cutting a promo on the champ. Anyone not excited for that title match on Sunday?
Botch of the night:
Folks, I really didn’t see one tonight. I am sure there probably was one, but tonight was a night where it wasn’t glaringly obvious to me. It happens. If you saw something? Say something in the comments!
Commentary of the night:
If you put his face on a billboard, I’m telling you, children will run.
LOL Moment of the night:
Heath, post-DQ win, calling Daniel Mick, and telling Shane he looked beautiful tonight, clearly thinking he was still on RAW. And then forgetting where his contract went.
We had a vignette for Curt Hawkins, he a former tag team champion, who is returning to SmackDown. Interesting, they appear to have him going with a knock-off Chuck Norris gimmick, with the vignette saying “Curt doesn’t flush the toilet, he scares the crap out of it”
Interesting to see Orton mocking Lesnar, delivering a couple Germans to Heath Slater and then doing Lesnar’s bounce in-ring. I think each man, outside of their lone guest appearances on the other’s show, have done decent jobs setting up their match on Sunday. However, I think they needed one final showdown, on either show, before Sunday. It felt missing to me.
Bray, after Rowan loses his match against Ambrose, turns his back and walks out on his Family member. Could the SmackDown version of the Wyatt Family be over already?
And, I do like SmackDown laying the groundwork for a SmackDown women’s belt. As much as I despise the split titles, it just makes sense. It would be totally unfair to these talented wrestlers to say “here’s your division on SmackDown, but you never get to fight for a title”.
Yes, I know I have this in my LOL tonight (sorry, lack of options there), but with the concussion lawsuits hitting major sports leagues, as well as WWE in recent months and years, I don’t know if having Slater act concussed when addressing Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon in the trainer’s room was a wise move.
And, if he wasn’t acting, but actually did have his bell rung? Really bad.
To me, there are three main matches coming out of SmackDown, and all three were set up pretty well. Orton and Lesnar, while lacking one last confrontation, still has a great vibe about it leading up to the event. Cena and Styles have put on some great matches, so there’s no reason not to expect another one come Sunday. And of course, Ambrose and Ziggler. The rest of the show was OK, but those five men really carried the weight tonight, I think.
After the final bell:
I am trying to give both shows a pass, since this is the first week leading up to a PPV since the full brand split happened. So I am chalking up some of the feelings to the fact that things are split. Of the 11 matches, not all are going to be hyped by RAW, or by SmackDown, and I think it just feels different at this point.
That being said, I think the matches we are getting have been, for the most part, built up pretty well. This year’s event may lack the mega-match that was Undertaker/Lesnar last year, but Lesnar is still around, and there’s plenty of strong matches planned for the show. I am looking forward to all the action we will be getting, both on Saturday and Sunday.