This week’s WWE Smackdown episode started off really well, with the continuation of the King of the Ring tournament and the escalated rivalry between WWE Champion Kofi Kingston and Randy Orton. There’s also talk about Daniel Bryan claiming to have found more evidence that would prove Rowan’s innocence in the mystery of who attacked Roman Reigns.
Unfortunately, what could have been a good time to finally put an end to the mystery, it didn’t. Instead, Bryan showed the footage he found and he, along with the rest of the world, saw Rowan (or someone looking very much like him) at the scene of the first crime. A raging Bryan basically dumped Rowan and went to the ring where Reigns was to tell him that he had no idea why Rowan had done it. And what did Reigns do? He speared Bryan in half.
On one hand, I had a feeling that Bryan was lying and Reigns knew that too. But on the other hand, WHY IS THIS STILL GOING ON? It’s become way too draggy now, to the point where I no longer care who the attacker is. It’s already gone stale last week. This week, it just stinks. What a terrible way to end Smackdown.
Another hit and miss for me is the women’s match. In my last article about Raw, I mentioned how Bayley vs Nikki Cross needed something from Charlotte Flair to keep the feud alive. Well, this time on Smackdown, Charlotte did just that during Bayley’s match with Lacey Evans. Charlotte didn’t do much though, except to react to the match happenings. I was expecting some sort of staredown between her and the Smackdown Women’s Champ or maybe some interference, something, but nah.
The match went on like the one on Raw where Bayley has to dig a little deeper to finally triumph over the opponent, plus one unnecessary suplex by the champ onto the outside floor. I’m not sure why they had to make the match that intense. It would’ve been better if Charlotte had played a part in that to get back at Bayley, adding more dynamics to the feud. But again, WWE says nah. Oh well.
The show still had good stuff though, like Sami Zayn and Intercontinental champion Shinsuke Nakamura attacking The Miz again, Kevin Owens beating up Elias during Shane McMahon’s absence, Drake Maverick winning back the 24/7 championship and of course Big E getting some payback for his New Day brothers against Randy Orton (despite getting jumped later by The Revival).
Here are my favourite moments from this week’s Smackdown!
The Kofi Kingston and Randy Orton feud
This feud is really the best one going on in WWE right now. It just keeps getting better and better as Orton made it even more personal this week. After Orton called Kofi ‘stupid’ like a thousand times, he threatened to visit Kofi’s son. This forced the WWE champion to go after Orton backstage where a brawl ensued between them. But it ended badly for Kofi as Orton RKO’d him right off the catering table, smashing his face onto the hard floor. As the backstage staff finally pulled Orton away, he repeated again, “Stupid, stupid, stupid…”
Such an amazing segment! Kofi went out of commission for the rest of the night, unfortunately leaving Big E all alone to fend for himself later when The Revival blindsided him during his match with Orton. By now, Orton has successfully isolated Kofi from his New Day brothers. There’s no telling what will happen next, but whatever it is, I know it’s gonna be great.
Ali vs Buddy Murphy
This Round 1 match of the King of the Ring tournament is certainly Smackdown’s Match of the Night. Ali and Murphy has similar styles as they love to utilise their striking abilities and high-flying skills that leave the crowd impressed every time, Ali with his brutal kicks and Murphy with those deadly knees.
The match was very action-packed and there were moments where it could’ve been anyone’s match. Highlights include Murphy’s senton dive (at 0:53 in video below) and Ali’s crazy DDT (2:02). But in the end, Ali wins with a 450 splash and advances to the next round of the tournament. As the cherry on top of an awesome match, they respectfully shook hands afterwards and Murphy raised Ali’s hand in victory.
Watch the highlights:
Chad Gable vs Shelton Benjamin
This is another first-round match of the King of the Ring tournament where Chad Gable faces his former tag team partner Shelton Benjamin. The idea alone made for an interesting fight and it didn’t disappoint. Short jokes aside, Shelton is one mean wrestling machine in that ring and he definitely took Gable to his limits, especially with that hard swing to the barricade (at 1:10 in video below). Also check out that sick single leg takedown (0:56)!
But Gable held his own, even managing a beautiful rebounding German suplex (0:32) and rolling sunset flip counter (1:49) that finally got him the win.
Catch the highlights: