Welcome to the Smackdown Reaction, where I offer my take on this week’s show. As always, you can check out John’s full in-depth review here.
Promo Time with Roman Reigns kicks us off. Roman had a change of heart on the tag title match and told the Usos that they needed to win for the family. This was a good way to carry over last week’s events to set the stage for the show.
The tag title match between The Usos and Mysterios starts off our in-ring action and it was an excellent match. The Usos looked like they haven’t missed a beat. Rey was the face in peril most of the match before bringing Dominik in on the hot tag spot. The Usos made Dominick look great. The match ended with a protected finish when Dominik stacked up Jimmy for the three count. The ref was out of position and did not see Jimmy get his opposite side shoulder up. The replay showed that the ref just missed the call because they were out of position, which was what the commentary sold. You could also see in the replay that Jey made no attempt to break up the fall other than trying to get the ref’s attention. After the match, Roman told the Usos to fix it.
We have a quick backstage skit to plant seeds for a Street Profits/Alpha Academy feud before the Usos demand Adam Pearce and Sonya Deville make things right with their title match.
How do we follow up an excellent opening match? With a Carmella match, of course. Carmella’s opponent is the recently singled Liv Morgan. Unfortunately, Carmella picked up the win in a short match. I’m assuming Carmella only won because she would be the next person Bianca Belair will successfully defend her title against. If that’s not the case, please use Liv better.
As the Mysterios were showing getting ready to leave the arena, Adam Pearce stopped them and said the Usos would get a rematch tonight in the main event.
Promo Time with Bianca Belair is next talking about how she’s always had to keep proving to the doubters that she was the real deal and challenged Bayley to a match at Hell in a Cell. Bayley appeared on the screen “via satellite” and accepted the challenge before laughing on all of the video screens. At least Bayley didn’t debut a doll with her.
The Street Profits get attacked by Otis and there’s a feud.
Shinsuke Nakamura had to give King Corbin his win back before fighting over the crown again. Nakamura and Boogs left with the crown on Nakamura’s head. The crown does fit well with Nakamura and Pat McAfee is having a blast overselling the entrance.
The Intercontinental Championship is up for grabs next with Kevin Owens challenging Apollo Crews. Commander Azeez was banned from ringside so he wiped out KO before the match started backstage. Owens sold the rib injury well and Crews was smart to stay focused on it throughout the match. The match was another really good showing from Crews. Why couldn’t WWE have gotten behind him like this a couple of years ago? The match ending was rather unique, Crews hit Owens with a Death Valley Driver on the apron to retain the title. After the match, Sami Zayn showed up to attack Owens because their feud must continue for some reason.
Main event time with The Mysterios defending the Smackdown Tag Team Championships again against the Usos. This match was not as good as the opener even with the roles reversed, having Dominik as the face in peril instead of Rey. Rey got the hot tag and set his team up for the win again, so Roman appeared for the DQ finish. The finish made sense with Jey out after going headfirst into the ringpost and Jimmy set up for Dominik’s Frog Splash finisher. Roman then destroys the Msyterios since his cousins couldn’t do it. With no main event faces on Smackdown right now, nobody came down to help the Mysterios. Jimmy would walk out on Roman because it was too excessive and Jey started to go before being stopped by Roman. Reigns hit a Powerbomb on Dominik and Smackdown ended there.
Let’s look at tonight’s highs and lows.
The opening Smackdown Tag Team Championship was excellent. The Usos looked great here, although last week’s opener with the Street Profits was better. The Usos made Dominik look like a legit star in his short career in WWE. The match is definitely worth a watch.
Apollo Crews continues to look impressive as weeks roll by. I only wonder the level he would be at now if the WWE had backed him like this years ago. His performances now have him looking like World Champion material.
With the Roman/Usos storyline dominating the night, there wasn’t much time to push many of the other feuds currently going on. Pretty close to half or just over half of the show (I did not specifically time it) was dedicated to The Bloodline. Crews/Owens got some time but Azeez needed to do the attack to make it reasonable for Crews to win a short match with Owens. Nakamura/Corbin was about as long as the video package was. I think Boogs is there just to keep people invested. The whole Roman Reigns destroys people, while not seen in a while, is just played out. He has the Asuka problem. Creative literally has nobody legitimate to face. We don’t need to see Owens again and Cesaro is stuck with Rollins again. As it looks on paper, Roman does not have a legit contender until John Cena returns to put him over at SummerSlam. Then what?
Just a personal note before I wrap up. There will likely be no Raw or Smackdown columns from me next week.
That’s all I’ve got, until next time.