Friday Night’s SmackDown looks to be the quietest edition we’ve seen in a while.
The WWE has been recycling content a lot in the past few weeks (which show hasn’t ended with Daniel Bryan facing some variation of The Shield?), though The Corporation 2.0 program has been exciting enough that the product has remained compelling.
Perhaps the WWE is just buying time until the next big swerve in the McMahon family storyline?
This week’s SmackDown was in Milwaukee. Below are the full spoilers, courtesy of ProWrestling.net.
- SmackDown opened with Triple H giving a speech on what’s best for business but was interrupted by The Miz. Triple H books Miz vs. Randy Orton for tonight.
- Alberto Del Rio beat R-Truth. After the match, Rob Van Dam attacked Del Rio and posed with the World Heavyweight Championship.
- Update: During a backstage segment, it was announced that the Rob Van Dam vs. Alberto Del Rio World Heavyweight Championship match at Battleground will be contested under hardcore rules.
- The Real Americans defeated The Prime Time Players after Darren Young tapped out to Jack Swagger’s ankle lock.
- The United States Championship match between Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler ended in disqualification after interference by The Shield.
- Triple H made a six-man tag match that saw The Shield defeat Rob Van Dam, Dolph Ziggler and Kofi Kingston.
- AJ Lee scored a pinfall victory over Cameron.
- Paul Heyman and Ryback came out, and Paul cut a promo about how he’ll stand victorious over CM Punk at Battleground.
- Santino Marella and The Great Khali defeated 3MB.
- The Miz vs. Randy Orton ended in a DQ finish after Orton continuously attacked Miz, but Triple H came out and ordered the bout be restarted. Randy got the win via RKO.
No Vindication for The Awesome One
This week’s episode of Raw was good for The Miz, but his momentum is set to be killed on SmackDown.
Miz has fallen flat as the cheerful babyface (partially due to him constantly being put in boring feuds), so it was refreshing to see him be serious again on Raw, when he claimed he’ll be getting awesome vengeance on Randy Orton.
Unfortunately for him, that was not the case. Orton beat down and then scored a decisive victory over The Awesome One.
It’s clear the company didn’t really have any long-term plans for Miz, but him being involved in this high-profile angle could’ve led to a career resurgence, like the one Cody Rhodes has been getting.
After SmackDown, it seems much more likely that Miz will toil the midcard for at least the next few months.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Dean Ambrose. Again.
For all the good they’ve done for the main event scene, the WWE just can’t seem to produce a quality feud over a midcard title.
We’ve seen Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose share a ring many times over the past few months, but it doesn’t feel like the WWE knows where it's going with this rivalry.
It seemed maybe their program would culminate on SmackDown after a match for the U.S. Championship between the two was announced on Raw, but it ended up getting a lousy DQ finish.
Why even bother having the match? One storytelling transgression the company has been continuously guilty of lately is giving us a match on TV multiple times and then expecting us to care about it when it’s put on a pay-per-view.
The trend started with Alberto Del Rio vs. Christian and has now trickled down to the midcard. Dolph and Dean deserve better.
On the bright side, the six-man tag match should be fun.
Los Matadores Cometh
One result that sticks out amongst the rest is The Real Americans getting a win over The Prime Time Players.
It seemed like Darren Young and Titus O’Neil were getting a push as a babyface team, but that may have been nixed.
More likely though, the WWE is preparing The Real Americans for a match against Los Matadores, who will debut on next Monday’s Raw.
It feels like it’s been months and months since Jack Swagger scored a victory of any kind, but it’ll be interesting to see where the WWE takes the tag team feud between the Americans and the Matadores.
Let’s hope they give the two teams a chance to give us a tag-team angle we can invest in, rather than just putting them in one match on Raw and then forgetting about them the next week.