Smackdown – October 8, 2015: The A-List Superstars

Smackdown
Date: October 8, 2015
Location: Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Commentators: Rich Brennan, Booker T., Jerry Lawler

Things look a bit different coming out of Raw as New Day got all aggressive and violent to end the show. They even left John Cena and a few others laying in their first real display of dominance. It should be interesting to see where they go from here as they’ve been so goofy but now they have a new edge. Let’s get to it.

Here’s New Day to brag about what they did on Monday. No one has ever dominated like they did. Not the Shield, the Wyatts, the NWO, the Dungeon of Doom or Los Boricuas. Philadelphia doesn’t know what it’s like to win and Eagles head coach Chip Kelly (Big E: “Chip?” Woods: “Yes. Grown man and his name is Chip.”) even called them for some tips after they lost to the Washington Redskins this past week. However, now they have to deal with the Dudleys, who have politicked their way into ANOTHER title shot at Hell in a Cell.

It’s time for the chants but here’s Ziggler (in trunks again) to interrupt. Normally Dolph would be out there one upping every single one of New Day’s jokes but tonight is about revenge. The Authority has allowed him a match against any member of New Day he wants so he picks Big E., who cost him a US Title shot on Monday. Dolph even has a way to guarantee it’s a fair fight: John and Juan Cena! Actually it’s just the Dudleyz. You think a star like Juan would work this show?

Big E. vs. Dolph Ziggler

Ziggler dropkicks him down and hits the running DDT as we take a quick break. Back with Big E. running him over with a clothesline (Woods: “TRICEP MEAT! WE TOLD YOU THE STOCK WAS RISING! HE IS THE CEO OF TRICEP MEAT INC.!”) before choking on the ropes. Woods of course gets an interview with Ziggler before throwing it back to Kofi in the studio. Ziggler fights back but his cross body is countered into a backbreaker for two. We hit that trombone with Woods playing Ziggler’s music and Big E. slaps on a chinlock.

It’s off to a bearhug instead before E. drops him face first onto the buckle. E.’s charge hits the post though and a Fameasser gets two. A belly to belly from E. sets up the Warrior splash for two but Dolph’s superkick gets the same. New Day and the Dudleyz get in a fight on the floor and Kofi snaps Ziggler’s neck across the top. That’s not enough though as he holds Ziggler’s foot down so Big E. can pin him at 9:51.

Rating: D+. Not a great match here but it was more about the New Day’s antics than anything else. I like the idea of the team having some singles success but I’m more interested in seeing how they write Cena off TV in just a few weeks. Unless they just go with “I’m going home for a few months”, something big is going to have to change.

Stills of Lesnar vs. Big Show on Saturday.

We recap Heyman’s promo and Lesnar beating up Show on Monday.

We look at Summer proposing to Rusev on Monday.

Summer is wedding planning but Rusev comes up and asks why she’s telling everyone about their engagement. You mean the one that was announced in front of millions on Monday? His Russian accent is almost completely gone at this point. Summer has gotten him a match with Ryback tonight and if he wins, he’ll probably be #1 contender to the Intercontinental Title.

Team Bella vs. Charlotte/Becky Lynch/Natalya

Becky armbars Fox down to start and it’s quickly off to Charlotte for a double elbow into a double nipup. It’s off to Natalya vs. Nikki, meaning Brie has to get in the first batch of “COME ON’s!”. Becky comes in but eats a middle rope dropkick from Brie as we take a break. Back with Fox chinlocking Banks as Booker talks about how beautiful they all look. Brie throws Becky away from her corner but the BRIE MODE (minus shouting BRIE MODE thank goodness) knee misses.

Nikki breaks up the tag but gets sent into the corner, allowing the tag off to Charlotte. The champ cleans house for a bit until Nikki comes back with a Disaster Kick for two. The Rack Attack is broken up though and a spear sets up the Figure Eight. Brie makes a save and helps Nikki roll it over but Becky switches it right back and Nikki taps at 11:07.

Rating: C-. Not bad if you ignore the fact that this is the Wyatts vs. the Shield Boys with Natalya currently playing the third man to help in the war. I’m hoping they add Sasha to this feud as it’s finally starting to get interesting. There’s really no wrong way to go with the title unless it’s back to the Bellas, but NXT can only have these awesome matches for so long before everyone realizes the Bellas are in way over their heads.

Paige thinks Natalya is trying to steal her spot.

Rusev vs. Ryback

Owens is on commentary and he’s officially defending against Ryback at the pay per view. Ryback takes him into the corner to start as Owens calls Lawler stupid. Owens: “With all due respect of course. Now that I said that you can’t be mad at me.” Rusev throws him through the ropes and Ryback gets his hand caught in the ropes to give Rusev a target.

The hand is rammed into the steps and post but amazingly enough that’s not enough for a pin. Rusev switches up to just going after the arm as Brennan asks Owens about Renee Young saying he isn’t a real Canadian. Owens: “Has anyone ever told you that you look like Millhouse from the Simpsons?” Brennan: “Only you Kevin.” Owens: “Well there you go.” Ryback’s comeback is quickly stopped and it’s off to an armbar. A belly to belly gets Ryback out of trouble and he stops a charging Rusev with a boot.

Rusev counters what looked to be a powerbomb and gets two off an Alabama Slam. Off to a sleeper of all things but Ryback escapes with an over the shoulder Stunner. Shell Shock is broken up and Rusev’s jumping superkick gets two (with Summer shoving the boot off the ropes). Back up and the Meat Hook and Shell Shock end Rusev at 8:25.

Rating: C-. You can see Rusev’s star falling from here as he’s now regular losing matches on Smackdown. There’s a chance that they’re going with Summer costing Rusev matches (not that she did but Rusev is the kind of guy who would blame her for his troubles) and they split as a result. Ryback doesn’t really gain anything here but a win is always helpful.

Recap of Kane attacking Rollins again on Raw.

Bray asks if he’ll be locked inside the Cell with Roman or will Roman be trapped inside with him. Not that it matters as the result is the same. Tonight, Reigns and Orton face the wrath of the black sheep. Strowman used to catch rabbits and then squeeze them until they crossed over. Run little rabbits.

Video on King Barrett.

King Barrett vs. Neville

Neville flips out of the corner to start but gets slammed into the mat via a hair pull. We take an early break and come back with Barrett tossing him into a boot to the chest for two. Barrett hooks a bow and arrow as the announcers give us a quick history of King of the Ring. An enziguri puts Barrett on the floor and a moonsault to the floor takes him down again. This is almost every match we’ve ever seen between these two. Neville gets two off the German suplex but Barrett gets away before he can launch the Red Arrow. The Bull Hammer gives Barrett the in at 8:32.

Rating: D+. Neville loses again and while I could usually get behind the idea of him putting someone else over, it’s Barrett. He’ll probably be losing to a mascot or an actor or the returning Hornswoggle soon enough. The match was watchable enough but Neville is really in need of some momentum.

Post match Stardust, wearing a card dealer’s hat, says it won’t be a king, a champion, or Stardust’s lady fair. He picks up another card and likes what he sees but doesn’t tell us what it is. Lawler’s easiest line in a month: “He’s not playing with a full deck.”

Breast cancer is bad moment of the week.

Roman Reigns/Randy Orton vs. Bray Wyatt/Braun Strowman

No Harper or Ambrose at ringside. Orton and Wyatt get things going with Bray being sent to the apron but escaping the hanging DDT. Back in and Bray hands it off to Strowman who runs Orton over like he’s not even there. It’s off to Reigns for the big showdown and a shoulder puts Roman down like he’s one of the Ding Dongs. Orton makes a blind tag but Strowman shoulders both opponents down with ease. It’s back to Bray to stomp away in the corner until Orton scores with his backbreaker. Braun misses a charge into the corner and there’s the tag to Reigns.

Roman slugs away and lifts Braun for a Samoan drop but can’t get it over. Instead Roman gets him in the ropes and kicks Strowman in the face, eventually Superman punching him to the floor. The camera zoomed in on Roman to make sure we couldn’t see Braun down on the floor though. That’s a very nice touch as they’ve done a great job of keeping Strowman looking like an unstoppable monster and he still hasn’t been down. Why waste that on Smackdown? Roman goes after Bray on the floor but Wyatt hits him in the ribs with a chair for the DQ at 7:50.

Rating: C-. Another average match here that felt like it was cut really short. I still love how they’re booking Strowman as he’s going to get beaten one day but they need to build him up as long as they can before finally having someone take him down. The match was just another step towards the Cell match and I’m assuming Ambrose and Harper will be in part of a tag match at the pay per view.

Post match Orton saves Roman from Wyatt but gets choked out, only to have Reigns score with a Superman punch. Bray can’t hit Sister Abigail and it’s an RKO to Wyatt, followed by the spear to end the show.

Overall Rating: D+. It was another worthless edition of Smackdown this week and those are getting more and more annoying to sit through. None of the matches felt important and the whole show felt like a way to kill two hours. I’ve been saying that WAY too often lately and it’s even worse when it’s something that could be remedied. If no one is watching, give us some nice long matches every week instead of the endless recaps and 8-10 minute matches that change nothing. It’s even less effort for the writers as all they have to do is let the wrestlers do their thing. Is that too much to ask for?

Results

Big E. b. Dolph Ziggler – Pin after Kofi Kingston guillotined Ziggler across the top rope

Charlotte/Becky Lynch/Natalya b. Team Bella – Figure Eight to Nikki

Ryback b. Rusev – Shell Shock

King Barrett b. Neville – Bull Hammer

Roman Reigns/Randy Orton b. Braun Strowman/Bray Wyatt via DQ when Wyatt used a chair

Remember to follow me on Twitter @kbreviews and pick up my new book of Complete 1997 Monday Night Raw Reviews at Amazon for just $3.99 at:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/product/B015IN12I2

And check out my Amazon author page with cheap wrestling books at:


http://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Hall/e/B00E6282W6

1 comment

  1. MikeCheyne says:

    I feel like at one point, maybe late 2012-Smackdown was basically doing what you said; it was still infinitely disposable in the post brand split era, but it would usually feature at least one longish, good match a night (and I guess you still had the World Heavyweight Championship). That was the last time I really liked Smackdown; you had Josh Mathews and JBL and JBL’s line of “We fight on Friday nights” felt good–Smackdown was the show where they wrestle, instead of doing all the promos and backstage stuff.