OK, here goes. On the Tuesday show, the final SmackDown Live beforeWWE takes over Orlando, we had plenty of things going on. The biggest surprise of the show? Naomi made her return, taking out all the heel women in the ring and staking her claim to the SmackDown women’s title ahead of the big show.
Now, on one hand, I think this was just about the biggest “guess” most anyone was making-that the match was worded so intentionally vague, you knew someone, more than likely Naomi, was going to show up. And who knows, they may have another surprise or two in store for Sunday. But did WWE waste the surprise by having Naomi return Tuesday, instead of Sunday?
Honestly, probably yes.
Here’s the thing. If it’s a major draw-a Cena, Hunter, Undertaker, Austin-someone of that ilk, you want them to be announced or heavily implied ahead of the show. Why? Because they sell tickets. They move subscriptions. No offense to Naomi, but she does not have the same impact. Honestly, not sure any of the women would move ticket sales substantially. You could make the argument that “it’s WrestleMania, tickets will move regardless”, and you’d probably be right. There was little to gain from bringing Naomi back Tuesday. Yes, she got an awesome response…but imagine how big the pop could have been had the entire group of participants been announced…and then her music hits in Orlando? I think things would have been even bigger for Naomi.
So, yes, I think WWE fumbled this one. But, we did see one thing for certain. I think it’s safe to say that right now, fans seem to be more into Naomi than any other babyface in the SmackDown women’s locker room.
Are you ready to feel the glow on Sunday? Are you disappointed it won’t end up being a surprise?