It’s the second night of the Superstar Shakeup, and after RAW added quite a few big names from the blue brand roster, it’s time for SmackDown’s turn to poach from the RAW roster. We already have a brand new member of the SmackDown announce team, as RAW traded Byron Saxton to SmackDown, receiving David Otunga in return-in other words, Graves got his wish. So, let’s get things rolling and see what changes are in the air tonight!
Best Match of the night:
The best one tonight was, far and away, the main event. The two hour show was light on matches compared to other nights, but this one was still a very good match. I had hoped that Corbin might finally get the push to the next level, but while he looked good, it wasn’t in the cards just yet.
Worst match of the night:
Maybe it’s not that it was bad…but we’ve seen it enough that it wasn’t all that thrilling. And that is The Usos versus American Alpha.
The best part of the match was probably The Shining Stars attacking Alpha after the match. That, or the fact that between them and New Day, the SmackDown tag ranks don’t look nearly as anemic anymore.
Crowd Chants of the Night:
We want Gronk
Shane o Mac
We want Sasha
Star of the Night
I suppose by default, AJ Styles gets this one, as he won the triple threat main event to become the #1 contender to the US title, which will either be held by Owens or Jericho based on how Payback goes.
Spot of the Night:
Was really fond of Sami doing the slingshot splash off the top rope to the outside, taking out both of his opponents.
But, beyond that, there wasn’t much in the way of spots tonight. Which, is understandable considering how much of the show was talking and introducing the newest members of the roster.
Jobber of the Night:
It’s a whole new show (kind of), so why not have someone who I don’t think has won this before-Aiden English!
What is it about certain NXT tag teams, that they do so well on that show, but when called up, they suck pond water? Seriously, between The Vaudevillains and Ascension, you’d think those two should have been infinitely better than they have been. I only hope Enzo doesn’t become a jobber when Vince falls in love with a Cass monster push, and that Dash and Dawson don’t suffer a similar jobber fate.
Upset of the Night:
Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:
This is the downside of happening a night after RAW-some of the surprises were easy to guess, so nothing really came up as a holy [email protected] moment.
Closest would probably be Shane teasing the crowd and introducing Tamina, then introducing Charlotte, whom we all thought he meant the first time. And I think for this, it’s a bit of a reach.
Botch of the night:
I looked, but i did not see any.
Commentary of the night:
Who does know what to make of Nakamura?!
Tonight seemed lacking in the one liners…I will chalk that up to the changed dynamic of the announce team.
LOL Moment of the night:
Shane swerved the whole crowd in hyping the first new woman to SmackDown. The hype sounded like it was for Charlotte, but he introduced….Tamina. Nice to see her back after like, a year absence. If she can still go.
And, after Tamina came down, he then announced Charlotte.
The show opens with Kevin Owens announcing that The Kevin Owens Show has a new night. After Ambrose jumped to RAW, this one was sort of expected in some fashion or other.
Sami Zayn joins him as well, in a move that had been teased long before the Superstar Shakeup was ever a thing.
The Shining Stars are also now on SmackDown. Hopefully they’ve left their absolutely stupid time share schtick on RAW. As they jumped American Alpha, they certainly looked like a duo that was going to be taken seriously this time.
Jinder Mahal is now on SmackDown too, though he lost in his debut to Mojo Rawley, with Gronk in the front row again. I honestly didn’t expect his coach to be OK with this kind of extracurricular activity.
The SmackDown women’s locker room looks much different-as does RAW-and it might be balanced out now. Tamina comes over, which could make things interesting. But Charlotte is the crown jewel here, and suddenly things got a whole lot better.
As part of the shakeup, apparently the Vaudevillains are broken up, with Aiden English seemingly striking out on his own. But it didn’t go too well.
Sin Cara and Rusev are also joining the show. Lana is too, but interesting enough, she got her own little vignette. Wonder if she’s going to be more active, or splitting from Rusev.
They also announced The New Day as coming soon. Guessing they get some time off, refresh themselves and get Kofi back
Only complaint I could make is the show was dominated by non-wrestling things. But it went fine, so I really don’t want to complain about that.
I was disappointed that we didn’t get Sasha Banks on SmackDown, which had been rumored.
The tag ranks look revitalized.
The women’s divisions look quite even now. That’s a great thing, on paper. Let’s see how things play out long term, but the addition of Charlotte alone helps boost the roster. Charlotte for Alexa is a very lopsided trade in favor of SmackDown. However, Bliss and James for Charlotte and Tamina probably evens out.
After the final bell:
The Nakamura/Ziggler program could be a good one. I think Dolph would be a good first feud for Shinsuke, and Nakamura could really get Dolph going again. It’s certainly something to be excited for, I think.
All in all, not a horrible Shakeup. I would not be completely stunned to see some after-the-fact trades, not all that different from the Saxton-for-Otunga announcer trade, just to balance things out. I think the blue brand needs and deserves another solid woman, whether it’s Asuka from NXT, or if it’s someone else. But, for now, things will work out as much improved, as Charlotte has a whole slew of new programs to dive into.
And, in the grand scheme of things, AJ Styles is positioned to be the lead face, truly the face that runs the place, and I think both he and the fans are thrilled about it.
All in all, extremely excited to see how both shows progress now that they’ve refreshed the rosters.