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Smackdown Rundown

Reverse Hipster What mattered

1.Roman vs Daniel Bryan

This was an epic brawl. So many times during this match, I found myself cringing because of the brutality of this match. I loved the way Bryan had a game plan, and he kept targeting that arm of Roman Reigns. Daniel had some creative ways of doing it too. My favorite was when Daniel kicked him in his shoulder in the middle of the superman punch. Roman Reigns was all power. He was powering out of everything until. Eventually, his power was too much, and he choked Bryan out. From the opening bell when Roman gave daniel a stiff uppercut, this match had a very physical tone.

In the end, Daniel loses clean in a way better performance than his Wrestlemania stack pin loss. However, Roman decides that he does not just want Daniel off Smackdown at the end of the matchup. He wants him out of wrestling, and he sets him up for the conchairto. Then Cesaro comes out and beats the crap out of Roman, which is an excellent setup for their feud. Jey attacks Cesaro from behind, and Cesaro is tied to the ropes and forced to watch Daniel take the conchairto.

2. Mixed match 6 man

I did not like how they got to this match; I thought the setup was bad. However, the match made up for that by being very entertaining. Personally, I would have liked to see Bayley directing the Dirty dogs to hurt Bianca Bel Air for a salacious angle that would heat both feuds but what they did was good too. I liked that they made Bianca look like a star. She was wrestling the guys and is the reason that her team won that match. This performance makes her look like a dominant, strong champion. Also, the street profits are the perfect tag team. They have high flying ability and power. They made this match very entertaining.

3. Ic title picture

I think Big E and Apollo had a very entertaining fight that left us wanting more. Also, I think they clearly told the story that without captain Aziz Big E would be champion; he is better than Apollo. However, the real story is what happened after the match when all hell broke loose. Aziz and Big fought, but then KO came out, and they started beating down the commander, but he was too strong. However then Sami came out and beat up Kevin, but then Sami got a Nigerian Nail. I am glad they are not just doing a straight-up rematch for Apollo and Big E. I am excited to see this fourway at Backlash. Even Commander Aziz cannot overcome all these variables.

4. Tamina and Natalya

Tamina and Natalya attacked Shayna and Nia backstage, and I liked that because it made them look like an opposing dominant force. Then they backed it up in the ring when they beat the champs. I have really enjoyed watching Natalya and Tamina get built up, and I hope they finally win the titles at Wrestlemania backlash.

5.Aleister Black

I really liked the promo this week; I feel it made far more sense than last week. I loved that Aleister is staying true to his outsider gimmick. I think this promo helped establish Aleister as different from other people and established that he will be

returning as a heel.

Rob’s What mattered

1. Intercontinental Title Scene

Apollo Crews and Big E had a good match. I feel like having another distraction finish from Commander Azeez weakened the match overall, but it was still quality in-ring work. More excitingly, Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn interrupted at the end of the match. Maybe it’s just my love for all the superstars involved, but the intercontinental scene seems unpredictable, exciting, and headed toward a crazy fatal four way match with all these guys. There is also great potential even after this match with looming superstars like Seth Rollins and Shinsuke Nakamura.

2. Roman Reigns vs. Daniel Bryan

These two had another great match this week on SmackDown. The stakes of Daniel Bryan leaving SmackDown added a new twist, but since they didn’t really clarify what that means, I wasn’t as invested as I could be. WWE usually doesn’t follow through on “loser leaves town” stipulations” so it didn’t carry as much weight for this affair. I don’t think this match was as good as their past clashes, but maybe that’s more of a testament to how good their in-ring chemistry is. It’s also a mark against SmackDown because even though they set aside over a half hour for this match, the commercials completely ruin the flow of a match like this. Still, they had monumental high spots from the top rope that made me worried for Bryan’s health and submission spots that made Roman Reigns look like one of the best sellers in the WWE today. The finish was good to continue to put over Reigns’s guillotine submission. This was a good way to end the feud between two of the best wrestlers of this era. Now, I’m left curious what this stipulation means for Bryan. It’s looking increasingly like his wrestling career could be coming to an end, but it feels like there are still so many matches left for him to have. On the other side, Reigns seems to be moving on to his full-on feud with Cesaro, which should be excellent for the Swiss Superman.

Rob’s What didn’t matter

1. Lazy booking

With the two big matches headlining SmackDown this week, there wasn’t much else on the show. The two segments they did choose were okay, but they felt lazy creatively. The six-person tag match tried to merge the feuds of Bianca Belair/Bayley and Street Profits/Dirty Dogs, but it didn’t really do anything to progress either feud. Even though Belair and Montez Ford are dating, these teams felt kind of thrown together, like SmackDown was trying to get a 2 for 1 segment due to short time on the show. In the other segment, Natalya and Tamina beat Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler in a non-title match, which felt like we already knew that could happen. These teams have faced off in some capacity so many times this month, so it felt like SmackDown could have booked this inevitable title match in a more creative way.

Reverse Hipster What didn't matter

Everything mattered on Smackdown this week. Very good episode.

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