Reviews

TJR: WWE Smackdown 07/24/20 Review (Jeff Hardy vs. Sheamus in a Bar Fight)

Welcome to the WWE Smackdown review here on TJRWrestling. This Smackdown is a follow up to this past Sunday’s Horror Show at Extreme Rules pay-per-view (read my review here) where the Universal Champion Braun Strowman got attacked by Bray Wyatt in the swamp while Wyatt turned into The Fiend again. Now we are on the road to SummerSlam on August 23.

From the WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida, this is Smackdown for episode #1092. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Please visit TJRWrestling.net daily for our regular updates on the wrestling business featuring WWE news coverage along with reviews about wrestling’s past and present.

The show started with Jeff Hardy in the backstage area saying he’s an alcoholic. Jeff said that he’s going to slay his demons and beat the holy hell out of Sheamus in the Bar Fight.

Sheamus did a promo from backstage saying that Jeff will find himself in a familiar place – wallowing on the cold, hold bar in that bar and struggling. Sheamus said that the ache in his head will be courtesy of a Brogue Kick.

John Bradshaw Layfield was shown at home saying the Bar Fight is going to be a great fight.

Analysis: It was not the same as last week with many people doing promos like Saturday Night’s Main Event days, but we got three guys this week.

They were at the WWE Performance Center for Smackdown this week with developmental wrestlers in the crowd. Michael Cole and Corey Graves welcomed us to the show.

Let’s Hear from Sasha Banks and Bayley

The Women’s Tag Team Champions Sasha Banks and Bayley made their entrance in street clothes. Bayley is the Smackdown Women’s Champion while Banks had the Raw Women’s Title even though Asuka is really the champion.

Banks talked about how they represent greatness and then Bayley said that they are the new definition of greatness. That led to a graphic on the video screen. Banks said that they don’t talk the talk, they walk it. Bayley noted that they don’t suck while saying that it’s hard to walk with all those titles. Banks said that the Women’s Evolution started with them and it ends them. Bayley said this is now the Era of Sasha Banks and Bayley. Banks wanted the little girls and boys to know that if you work hard, your dreams will come true and Bayley added no matter how hard you try, you’ll never be as good as them.

Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss showed up for the interruption. This feud will never end. Cross yelled at them saying that it’s going to be the end of Bayley and Banks. Cross said that she had a shot at the Smackdown Women’s Championship, but all she had to show for it is cracked ribs. Cross said that she wants a shot at the Smackdown Women’s Championship right now. Bayley noted that she beat Cross fair and square, but being the role model that she is, she’ll lead by example. Bayley said that Nikki can have her championship rematch if she can win her match against a worthy adversary, a former Smackdown Women’s Champion, a future Hall of Famer…Alexa Bliss. Bayley said that the winner of that match can face her for her championship next week. Cross and Bliss agreed to it.  Cross shoved Bliss on her ass and that match is next.

Analysis: Solid promo from Banks and Bayley. I was hoping for somebody new to emerge since we have seen the champs against Bliss and Cross so many times. Is Bayley allowed to make matches now and set up future matches? I guess so. It’s not like they are going to try to explain how she is allowed to do that. This is just how WWE works when they don’t have an on-camera authority figure to set up this sort of thing. Anyway, it was a decent way to set up a match that does feel fresh instead of a repeat of matches we have seen many times.

(Commercial)

Bayley and Sasha Banks joined the commentary team, which meant mocking Michael Cole a lot. That’s always fun.

Alexa Bliss vs. Nikki Cross

They went for pin attempts on eachother for some two counts. Bayley and Banks were very annoying on commentary just as you would expect form heels. Cross with two arm drags, Bliss blocked a DDT, Bliss with a hard slap and Cross with a clothesline. Cross with two clotheslines, then a dropkick and two corner splashes. Cross hit a bulldog out of the corner for a two count. Bliss hit a running dropkick that sent Cross out of the ring. Cross did the apron spot, but Bliss fought her off with kicks. Bayley and Banks were annoying yelling “get her” at both women, so Bliss and Cross punched them to knock them on their ass. Good spot leading to a break.

(Commercial)

The match continued with Bliss knocking Cross off the apron and then a dropkick knocked Cross down. Bliss slapped on a weak looking armbar. Bliss did a double knee stomp to the cracked ribs, which led to Cross rolling to the floor. Bliss sent Cross into the barricade and then a clothesline. Bliss did the double knee attack to the ribs two times in a row. Bliss with a head whip into the mat followed by an armbar that looked better this time as Bliss followed up with a kick to the ribs. Cross with a jawbreaker, then forearms and then she sent Bliss into the turnbuckle repeatedly. Bliss blocked a Tornado DDT attempt and Bliss hit a Sunset Bomb for a two count. Bliss went up top, Cross went to the turnbuckle with her, that led to nothing as Cross avoided a kick and Cross hooked the arms leading to a neckbreaker for two. Cross hit a reverse DDT for a two count with the announcers overreacting to that as a nearfall. Cross went up top, she went for a cross body block and Bliss moved, so Cross hit the mat. The referee checked on Cross with the injured ribs, Bliss moved back and then Cross got an inside cradle for the pinfall win after 15 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Nikki Cross

Analysis: ***1/4 It was a good match that was competitive. There were a few believable spots in there where it looked like either woman might win and then Cross ended up getting that inside cradle after selling an injury. The finish showed it was a close matchup, so it’s not like Bliss is going to be hurt by the loss. Bliss worked a smart match by going after the ribs for the entire match. It wasn’t heelish – it was a smart strategy to go after the injured ribs.

Post match, Cross was happy about the win while Bliss looked sad in the ring. Cross stared at Bayley since they are having a title match next week.

Bray Wyatt is in the Firefly Fun House up next.

(Commercial)

Nikki Cross was shown standing backstage after her win. Alexa Bliss showed up to her to give her some water and said congratulations to her. They hugged. Bliss told her to focus on beating Bayley next week while adding that she can totally do it.

Analysis: It wouldn’t be a terrible idea if Bliss were to turn heel soon. Bliss was so great as a heel, but as a face she’s just another woman on the show. I don’t know if a heel turn is happening. I’m just saying I’d welcome it. I know Bliss has a new WWE podcast coming out soon, though, so they probably want to keep her face.

Firefly Fun House

They showed highlights of the Wyatt Swamp Fight featuring Bray Wyatt and Universal Champion Braun Strowman. It featured a lot of mind games where Bray had a snake bite Braun, which led to Braun fantasizing about things like Alexa Bliss in a black cloak. After that, Wyatt and Strowman had a fight that escalated with Strowman kicking Wyatt into the swamp water. Then Wyatt pulled Strowman into the water and it ended with The Fiend appearing.

Wyatt was in the Firefly Fun House with a Bray Wyatt head/lantern on the set. Wyatt said that swamp that Braun Strowman was 100% certified organic. That’s nice. The severed head wanted to come out to play, but Bray said that you have had your chance and now it’s HIS turn referring to The Fiend. Bray said that “HE” has been unleashed. Bray said bye to end it.

Analysis: It should lead to Braun Strowman defending the Universal Championship against The Fiend at SummerSlam. Do we have to assume Strowman is in the swamp or something like that? That part of it is a bit silly, but that’s what happens in Wyatt feuds. I haven’t been that interested in any of the Strowman/Wyatt matches in the past and I doubt it will change at SummerSlam.

They showed clips of AJ Styles beating Matt Riddle last week. After Riddle lost, King Corbin attacked him.

Matt Riddle entered for a match.

Next Monday on Raw: Drew McIntyre vs. Dolph Ziggler (WWE.com says it’s a non-title rematch) with Drew picking the stipulation and Asuka vs. Sasha Banks for the Raw Women’s Title.

(Commercial)

Tony Nese was in the ring as the opponent to lose the match.

Matt Riddle vs. Tony Nese

Riddle with two gutwrench suplexes and two broton splashes got two counts. Nese came back by wrenching the arm across the top and hit a moonsault off the middle ropes for two. Riddle got out of submission attempt, kick into the turnbuckle, two running forearms and an exploder suplex. Riddle with a running penalty kick to the chest and the Bro Derek slam finished off Nese for the pinfall win after two minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Matt Riddle

Analysis: * Easy win for Riddle to get some positive momentum after losing and getting beat up last week. Nese got a few moves in, but it was obvious what was going to happen here.

Riddle did a post match promo saying he’s kinda new here, so he doesn’t know how this works. Riddle: “King Corbin, I’m calling you out, bro.”

King Corbin made his entrance as the crowd booed him. Corbin said you can’t just ask for a microphone and call out the king. Corbin said that Riddle didn’t belong there, he didn’t belong in the kingdom and he’s just not ready. Corbin said that Riddle has the new car smell, but he’s just a frat boy that looks like he’s just crawled out of bed. Corbin said he thought Riddle should be in NXT or maybe 205 Live while saying that Riddle didn’t belong in his world. Corbin said he’ll put out a King’s ransom on Riddle. Riddle told him that he’s the next special guest star on The Bro Show. Nese went into the ring, so Riddle knocked him down with a kick to the head.

Analysis: It’s likely going to lead to Corbin vs. Riddle at SummerSlam while Riddle picks up wins over other wrestlers.

The Miz and John Morrison were backstage looking at a laptop. They spoke about the hashtag supporting Naomi, then Morrison wanted a hashtag about himself and he had some ridiculous idea, so Miz told him no. Miz TV is up next.

(Commercial)

There were comments from John Bradshaw Layfield talking about the Bar Fight between Jeff Hardy and Sheamus. JBL said he’s been in bar fights with the toughest man, Ron Simmons, back in the APA days. JBL put over Sheamus for his toughness and how he’s known Jeff Hardy since he got into WWE over 20 years ago. JBL told them to have fun.

Miz TV with Naomi as the guest

The Miz and John Morrison were in the ring to host Miz TV. They did some of their comedy bit and Morrison opened up his jacket saying he wanted #MoreMorrison to start trending. They mentioned being sick if it doesn’t happen, which led to images of Seth Rollins puking at Extreme Rules. Miz moved on to introduce their guest, Naomi.

Naomi made her entrance with Miz and Morrison doing some ridiculous dancing in the ring. The announcers mentioned Naomi getting Twitter support last week with the #NaomiDeservesBetter hashtag after Naomi lost to Lacey Evans last week.

Analysis: The reason Naomi trended is because the fans hated how she was booked in a match last week and because she wasn’t doing much for the past few months. It’s not like the majority of the audience is on Twitter. I’m on there, wrestlers are on there, but it’s not like everybody is. I’m sure many of you reading this have no intention to use it. If I didn’t have this career I doubt I would have it. If Naomi won the match, I doubt fans would tweet that either. From a story perspective, it made sense for Lacey to win since she is the heel that cheated by tying Naomi’s hair in the ropes, so it makes fans want to see Naomi get revenge. With that said, could the storyline be better? Absolutely. That’s the issue I have. The karaoke segment was brutal two weeks ago and then the match last week was so short, so fans should be frustrated. I am a fan of Naomi, so I do hope it leads to her getting a push because it’s been a few years since the last time it happened.

Miz noted that Naomi suffered a heartbreaking loss to Lacey Evans, but after the match, Naomi trended on Twitter with #NaomiDeservesBetter. Naomi said the fans support her, they have her back and it’s not always to smile, but she does it because she knows she has millions of people supporting her, so that’s why she keeps doing what she’s doing. Miz noted she returned at Royal Rumble and went viral there too. Morrison mentioned Naomi didn’t mention that much either. Miz thinks that him and John going viral for music makes sense, but Naomi goes viral for losing. They insulted her, so she said they’re making her feel sick, they asked how sick, she snapped her fingers and then five “star” images of Seth Rollins appeared to show that’s how sick she was feeling.

Naomi said it’s not about trending worldwide. She said that fans were upset because Lacey acted her over a karaoke contest. Naomi asked why Miz thinks he can pass judgment on her fans. Naomi said she’s been showing up and showing out consistently over the past decade. Naomi said she gives it her all every time she gets in the ring, so that’s why fans care about her, support her, they’re behind her and that’s why they want more for her. Miz said he didn’t expect this interview to be so confrontational. Morrison said he’s sorry because it’s about to get worse and here comes Lacey Evans.

Lacey Evans made her entrance in one of her sassy southern belle outfits. Naomi was not impressed to see her.

Evans asked Miz and Morrison if they ever got beat so badly that it became a pity hashtag that went viral? They laughed at the “pity hashtag” phrase. Evans said that she’s been there over a decade, hasn’t got much to show for it and is just about as washed up as ever. Evans was being disrespectful by touching up her makeup, so Naomi shoved her into the ropes leading to some makeup smearing on Lacey’s face. When Lacey tried a fight, Naomi punched her repeatedly and Evans left the ring because all of you have to do is leave the ring to end a fight most of the time. Naomi even did a dance with Lacey’s hat on her head.

Analysis: I liked Naomi’s speech talking about how she works hard and the fans support her for that. Evans didn’t do much other than cowering like the heel in the situation. I think WWE is going to get behind Naomi now and after she beats Evans in this feud, they might put the Smackdown Women’s Title on Naomi too.

There were highlights shown from Extreme Rules with Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura beating New Day in a Tables Match to win the Smackdown Tag Team Titles.

There was a shot of Big E standing outside the Doctor/Trainer room with Kofi Kingston walking out of that room. Kofi was limping a bit while holding his ribs. Kofi said that he’ll be out for at least six weeks, maybe more. Kofi said he’ll get to spend some time with the family, so it’s all good. Big E said he’s sorry, heal up and when the time is right, they’ll get the titles back. Kofi said that the world is speaking to them because Woods is out, Kofi is out and right now it is Big E’s time. Big E said he appreciates that. Kofi said that he talks about it with Woods all the time how Big E has been selfless for the past six years and when Kofi was the WWE Champion, it was always love all the time with no jealousy or animosity with Kofi always appreciating that. Kofi said now it’s time for Big E to show the world what he can do. Big E said that he appreciated it. Kofi said that they want this for him, don’t let them deny him and Big E has his blessing. Big E asked if he’s sure, then they hugged, they said they loved eachother and Big E appreciates it. Cool moment.

Analysis: Yes! I’m all for this. A Big E singles push is a great idea. Big E is such a nice guy, he’s popular with the fans and he’s very good in the ring. Plus, he’s developed so much as a talker as part of New Day. It’s a different guy compared to when he had that brief IC Title run earlier in his career. He can do it all. It’s time to see what he can do in singles. I don’t know what Kofi’s injury is (maybe the knee?) or if they’re just giving him six weeks off as a break, but I think it’s the right time to push Big E. Kofi has been one of the most durable wrestlers in the history of the company. I don’t want New Day to ever break up as all three guys have said, but I do think you can push Big E and I want to see that happen. If they had Big E going after AJ Styles and the IC Title, that would be pretty cool. Sheamus is another possible rival. I’d rather it not be King Corbin, who is busy with Matt Riddle now. I know Daniel Bryan has spoken up about Big E getting more chances in singles and there have been reports that Bryan may be part of Smackdown’s creative team right now, so maybe it was Bryan’s doing that had a part in it. Whoever it was, I’m happy about it.

The announcers talked about with Cole saying that Graves has talked about it for a long time and Graves said he can’t wait to see what happens with New Day’s powerhouse.

AJ Styles entered with the Intercontinental Championship to join commentary for the next match.

(Commercial)

There were four men in the ring for a match. One of them gets to challenge Styles for the Intercontinental Championship. Styles questioned why they can win one match and get a title shot. Why? Because it’s WWE. They do this all the time.

Drew Gulak vs. Shorty G vs. Lince Dorado vs. Gran Metalik

Dorado and Metalik worked together to clear the ring of the other two guys. Gulak tripped up Dorado and gave him a body slam on the floor. Metalik jumped over the top with a hurricanrana on Gulak, who was on the apron. Shorty went for a German Suplex, but Metalik landed on his feet and Shorty hit an arm drag. Metalik with a rope walk leading to a dropkick. Dorado worked over Gulak with a boot to the face and a running headscissors that sent Gulak out of the ring. Dorado ran the ropes with a suicide dive, Metalik kicked Shorty and Metalik jumped off the top with Shorty hitting a dropkick to knock him down. Shorty went up top and hit a moonsault on to the three guys on the floor. Nice spot going into the break.

(Commercial)

Shorty with a belly to back suplex on Metalik, then there were quick cover attempts by Dorado, Gulak and Shorty. Gulak sent Kalisto out of the ring. Shorty and Gulak went for quick covers again followed by Shorty hitting a suplex for a two count. Cole said that Daniel Bryan came up with the idea of having a fighting champion while Styles didn’t like that. Shorty and Gulak each took turns kicking Metalik to keep him down. Metalik with a springboard elbows that knocked down Shorty and Gulak. Dorado dropkicked Shorty to the floor, kick to the ribs of Gulak and a moonsault press onto Gulak for a two count. Dorado went up top and hit a cross body block for two. Dorado with a bounce off the ropes into a stunner for two with Metalik breaking up the pin. Shorty shoved Metalik into Dorado, Shorty with a belly to belly suplex on Metalik and then an exploder suplex on Dorado. Shorty with a running attack on two guys and an exploder suplex on Gulak. Shorty with a high angle back suplex on Metalik for a two count with Gulak breaking up the pin. Gulak tried a dragon sleeper, but Shorty got out of it, picked the leg and applied an Ankle Lock. Shorty went to the mat with the heel hook, but then Dorado broke that up with a superfly splash off the top on Shorty for a two count. Dorado with two moonsaults on Shorty, then up top for another attempt, but Gulak tripped him up on the top. Shorty had Gulak on his shoulders, then he dumped Gulak to the floor and Shorty hit a German Suplex on Dorado, who rolled out of it, but the momentum sent Dorado out of the ring. Metalik walked across the top rope and hit an elbow drop on Shorty for the pinfall win after about 12 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Gran Metalik

The win means that next week on Smackdown, AJ Styles defends the IC Title against Gran Metalik.

Analysis: ***1/4 This was a fun match between four talented wrestlers that don’t get used as much as they should, so I’m glad they got a chance to show what they can do. Styles did make a good point by questioning why the winner gets a title shot, but I don’t mind it all because this match was good and next week’s match will be very good too. It’s a guy for Styles to beat. I would have liked to see Shorty G get the win because I think he’s got the most untapped potential out of anybody in this match. Going with Metalik is a bit of a surprise, but as a wrestler, he’s very talented. Entertaining matches like this are fine with me although I can understand if people complain about the lack of a story.

Styles went into the ring and he wanted Metalik to shake his hand. Metalik was reluctant, so Styles slapped him in the face and said don’t trust anybody. Metalik came back with a slap of his own. Metalik jumped off the ropes and hit a DDT that sent Styles out of the ring. Metalik celebrated with the IC Title until it was handed back to Styles.

Analysis:  I doubt Metalik is going to win, but I like how he stood up to Styles and didn’t back down to the cocky heel champion.

A video aired about Otis and his “beautiful peach” Mandy Rose, who recently had a birthday when she turned 30 years old. Next week on Smackdown, the “love story” continues.

Analysis: They have been absent from television for over one month since WWE has done more aggressive Coronavirus testing. That doesn’t mean either of them had the virus (I honestly have no idea), but they are among the most obvious absences since Otis is Mr. Money in the Bank and Mandy had a personal feud with Sonya Deville. This pause on their careers hasn’t been great for them. I’m more upset that Sonya vs. Mandy has been paused rather than anything related to Otis.

(Commercial)

Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura were interviewed backstage by Kayla Braxton. Nakamura said they were the new champions. Nakamura wasn’t sure what was more rewarding – putting Kofi Kingston through the first table or the second table and he said Kofi went “splat.” Cesaro wishes he got to put Big E through a table as well. Cesaro said that they didn’t believe what Kofi said and he said that it is not Kofi’s time at all. Nakamura said that they will make all teams on Smackdown go splat.

Analysis: There was a lot of tag team depth on Smackdown a few months ago, but now it’s not as deep. New Day are out for now and The Usos are out for the rest of the year due to Jimmy Uso’s torn ACL in his knee. The other babyface teams are Heavy Machinery (Otis and Tucker) and Lucha House Party, so I can see either one of those teams featured more in the weeks ahead.

There was a video of the Jeff Hardy storyline with Sheamus over the last few months. Sheamus won their last match at Backlash last month. Sheamus has also repeatedly mocked Jeff for his being a recovering alcoholic while Jeff has to prove that he’s on the right path to redemption.

That Sheamus vs. Jeff Hardy bar fight is up next.

(Commercial)

They announced some things for next week on Smackdown:

* Intercontinental Championship: AJ Styles defends vs. Gran Metalik

* Naomi vs. Lacey Evans

* Smackdown Women’s Championship: Bayley defends vs. Nikki Cross

They were in a bar called Irish Shannon’s Local Pub in Orlando. There was one “bartender” that was the indy wrestler that Jeff Hardy beat up in the ring a few weeks ago. Smackdown referee Danilo Anfibio was sitting at the bar having a drink when Sheamus walked in dressed in tank top, suspenders, pants and a top hat. Sheamus was about to have a shot when Jeff Hardy showed up. There were multiple camera angles that were used. Jeff asked for a Coke as the referee wanted to know if they were ready to start. Jeff told him he had to say something first. Jeff said that his brother had to delete his WWE career and tonight he has to recover his. Jeff said he’s been doing this since he’s been 16 years old while adding that sobriety has changed him. Sheamus said that Jeff will never change, he’s weak, he’s pathetic and nobody cares about Jeff anymore. Jeff asked if he’s still The Bar and Sheamus said he still is. Jeff claimed he was connected to everything that was there like the window, the TV and the bar and Sheamus asked what? Sheamus said Jeff is just a pathetic junkie. Sheamus told the bartender to take care of the hat. Jeff threw a drink in Sheamus’ face and it began.

Sheamus vs. Jeff Hardy in a Bar Fight

This may be hard to describe, but I’ll do my best. There was no commentary from the announcers during this fight. Jeff worked over Sheamus with forearms to the back, but then Sheamus came back with a side slam onto the bar counter and he dragged Jeff across the countertop while breaking glasses. Sheamus worked over Jeff with several forearms to the chest. Sheamus asked Jeeves the bartender for a shot, but then Jeff came back with a running attack off the countertop to knock down Sheamus. Sheamus shoved Jeff into a wall. Jeff grabbed some basketballs from a Pop-A-Shot machine and threw them at Sheamus. Jeff threw Sheamus into the wall repeatedly. Jeff had a metal keg, but Sheamus knocked it out of his hands and Sheamus hit Jeff with the keg followed by Sheamus choking Jeff with it. Sheamus whipped Jeff into the walls. They went over to the bathroom where a camera was already in there. They went over to a urinal and Sheamus put Jeff’s head in it while pouring some water on him. They went up to the mirror with Jeff coughing and Sheamus kept on calling him a junkie. Jeff came back by whipping Sheamus into a stall that had a toilet. Jeff got out of the bathroom and walked towards the bar. If this was the Attitude Era then there would be some brown stuff in the toilet or a fat guy in the toilet, but we didn’t get that here. Sheamus went down a hallway looking for Jeff, but then Jeff surprised him by bringing out a ladder and Jeff threw the ladder into Sheamus. Jeff jumped off a table, Sheamus caught him and Sheamus drove Jeff back first into the brick wall. Sheamus had a guitar, Jeff moved and Sheamus hit the wall with the guitar to break it. Sheamus whipped Jeff into a drum set as the show went to break.

(Commercial)

The fight continued with Jeff still in the drum set and Sheamus went for a Brogue Kick, but Jeff blocked it with one of the drums. That was creative and kinda funny. Jeff whipped Sheamus into a chair. Jeff hit the Twist of Fate neckbreaker with Sheamus bumping on his back on the hard floor. Jeff set up a ladder and dragged Sheamus across the floor. That’s when the bartender got involved with a punch to Jeff’s back, so Jeff punched him and  Jeff hit him with a Powerbomb through a table. That led to Sheamus getting back up and hitting Jeff with a chair to the back. The table and chair were likely gimmicked to break easy. Sheamus put his hat on Jeff and said, “Sweet dreams, fella.” Sheamus went over to the bar, he poured a beer and drank the whole beer quickly. Sheamus went back over to Jeff, who had the hat on his face and when Sheamus took the hat off, Jeff’s face was painted along with the weird eye contacts. Jeff punched Sheamus, then he grabbed a bottle and hit Sheamus in the head with it. Jeff climbed the ladder, went up top and jumped off with a Swanton Bomb. With the way it was shot, they most likely put some padding under Sheamus because if you did that without some protection under Sheamus it would hurt a lot. You couldn’t see the ground when Jeff hit, so that’s why it was probably edited. Anyway, Jeff covered Sheamus for the pinfall win after about 16 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Jeff Hardy

Analysis: I don’t rate these types of matches, but I enjoyed this a lot. I thought this was really good. It was another one of those WWE cinematic that they love to do with a lot of edits, but it wasn’t as goofy as some of them. I actually thought the part where Jeff had the paint on his face was creative. It’s also what set up the comeback. This was more like the Boneyard Match in the sense that it was a fight with Sheamus controlling most of it and then the babyface Hardy coming back to finally beat his rival. I liked how they set up the finishing scene with Jeff standing tall as the clear winner. That was an expensive fight that is going to cost a good amount of money to fix that bar, but I guess WWE can use the Fox money to pay for it.

After it was over, Jeff Hardy’s music began to play and Jeff put the hat on Sheamus. Jeff also closed eyes, then opened them again and instead of the white contacts, it was just his normal eyes this time.

Analysis: That could mean they are doing something where Jeff has this special power when he’s got the white contacts in. I’m not sure if that’s what it means, but I think that’s the story they were trying to tell us.

Jeff walked over a fallen Sheamus down the hallway and that was the end of Smackdown this week. The announcers didn’t say a word in the last 20 minutes of the show.

Analysis: It’s a unique ending to Smackdown. I like that the announcers didn’t talk. Let the pictures or video tell the story. I think it’s the end of the feud, but perhaps they have another match in a ring with Jeff winning. Anyway, Jeff winning is the right way to end it because he needed to get revenge and he got it. I think Jeff is probably going to feud with Bray Wyatt at some point later this year or we could see Jeff against AJ Styles soon. There are plenty of faces for Sheamus to wrestle too. I think both guys are ready to move on.

 

Three Stars of the Show

  1. Jeff Hardy
  2. Sheamus
  3. Gran Metalik/Nikki Cross

 

The Scoreboard

6.75 out of 10

Last week: 7

2020 Average: 6.30

 

Final Thoughts

It was a pretty good edition of Smackdown with two matches in the ring that I enjoyed quite a bit and then the Jeff Hardy win over Sheamus in the Bar Fight. I liked the presentation of the Bar Fight overall with Jeff finally getting the big win to perhaps end this rivalry. It’s not for everyone, but to me, it worked as a believable fight. The Nikki Cross match with Alexa Bliss got a lot of time at around 15 minutes and it was better than I thought it would be. The four way that Gran Metalik won was entertaining although I would have preferred a Shorty G win there. I just think that could have been set up better too.

It was nice to see Naomi getting some promo time after fans complained about how she has been utilized. The other thing that I really liked was Kofi Kingston, who is out for at least six weeks, telling Big E that it’s time for him to get the spotlight as a singles wrestler. A push for Big E is something I have wanted for a long time, so I’m excited to see how that is booked in the weeks and months ahead.

Easy show to watch this week. There wasn’t one standout great moment or anything like that, but I’d say Smackdown was slightly above average overall. They also set up two title matches for next week as well. I’m ready for some new rivalries going into SummerSlam too.

Thanks for reading. My contact info is below.

John Canton

Email mrjohncanton@gmail.com

Twitter @johnreport

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