The Smackdown Breakdown – From American Hero To American Zero

Welcome again to another edition of the Smackdown Breakdown. We are one week off the back of Summerslam and I don’t know about you but I felt that as a show Summerslam lived up to and beyond any expectation. We saw some special matches throughout the night and I think everyone bought their A game to really show that WWE can still deliver a great show. We saw the potential beginning of a three man play by play announce team on Smackdown as Tom Phillips was added to the announce team. He did a pretty good job for his first venture onto a bigger stage and showed why he is one to watch for the future. Phillips does a good job on NXT and I hope that he continues to get a chance to shine on Smackdown.

It was also announced that Brock Lesnar versus John Cena will occur at Night of Champions after what can only be described as a pure massacre at Summerslam by Brock who defeated John Cena and while it may have been uncomfortable to watch the match at times Lesnar had to be booked like a monster to really solidify not only his victory over Cena, but over the Undertaker from Wrestlemania 30. This week also saw the launch of the Monday Night Wars the Network which is a series I will be looking to watch tonight as it is another one of the reasons I bought the Network in the first place. The Network continues to grow and is becoming the life blood and future of the WWE and it’s success. I for one can’t wait for the Network to only become bigger and better as the idea expands over time.

With that being said lets head on down into this weeks Smackdown Breakdown and see what I made of the show as for the first time in a long time I actually typed up the Breakdown while I was watching the show which meant I could get down all my thoughts at the time instead of making paper notes and going back to it later to only forget what I was thinking. Lets see what thoughts I had for this week right now.

Randy Orton Segment – 3 Stars

Orton cut promo before the start of the match to say one match doesn’t define him or Roman Reigns and that just one victory proves nothing. Orton’s destruction of Reigns on Raw was brutal to watch and is more of the side of Orton I want to see as right now his character feels so stale. He warned his opponent for later tonight Rob Van Dam he could be in for a rough evening. Part of me is telling me in my mind the only ones in for a rough ride watching that one is us as fans. A few years ago I would have been excited by this match but as it goes right now neither man is exactly giving it his all in the ring. Orton’s promo felt quite bland and boring to me and it was almost like he was going through the motions.

Seth Rollins vs. Jack Swagger – 4 Stars

Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose not only tore the house down on Sunday at Summerslam with that amazing Lumberjack match but they did it again the next night in a Falls Count Anywhere match on Raw. Both men in those matches are going to be such big main event players in the future it’s scary that they haven’t even reached their peaks yet. Swagger came into this one fresh off a loss at Summerslam to Rusev in a flag match that wasn’t really a flag match but it keeps their programme going a little longer and I’m sure Swagger will eventually hand Rusev his first defeat.

This was a match of two different styles as on one hand you have Swagger who is a pure wrestler while Rollins can work as a high flyer but also showed he can work a mat based match in this one. I felt not only did Swagger have a pretty good match but Seth really helped make Swagger look good in the ring. The match saw a good mix of power moves, mat wrestling, and some fast paced action. Rollins picked up a count out victory after he nailed Swagger with a Curb Stomp as he was getting back into the ring which doesn’t harm Rollins victory and doesn’t harm Swagger in taking a pin. A pretty solid opening match to kick off this weeks show. Bo Dallas came out after the match to seemingly console Swagger and give him some inspiration and motivation but I Bolieve that Bo made a big mistake by saying Swagger has gone from American Hero to Zero. Swagger will no doubt get some revenge in the near future over Dallas, hopefully seeing Swagger destroy Bo.

Rusev vs. Sin Cara – 3.5 Stars

Well the outcome of this match was kind of obvious before it even started. Rusev looks like he has two challengers right now in not only Jack Swagger but in Mark Henry, who confronted the Bulgarian (Yes he’s Bulgarian WWE) Brute and for the first time I can remember Henry made Rusev look human. I’m interested to see where they go with that one. Back onto the Smackdown match and while Sin Cara tried to use some speed to outwit Rusev, it didn’t really change the inevitable outcome of Rusev destroying Sin Cara and making him tap out. For a fairly quick match I found it enjoyable as Rusev showed he is still a dominant force in the WWE and it is going to take something special to defeat him.

Mark Henry came on the Titan Tron after the match and made everyone aware he was coming out to destroy Rusev again. Just as Henry got in the ring and it looked like these two behemoths were going to go at it again Rusev turned and ran and very slowly backed up the ramp with Lana as the two men exchanged words. When these two face off in a match it’s going to be an interesting contest to watch.

Randy Orton vs. Rob Van Dam – 3.5 Stars

Prior to this one we saw Orton blindside RVD as he was giving an interview to Renee Young. This fired up Van Dam and he showed his frustration by charging down the ramp at Orton, who would quickly escape from the ring. Orton controlled the initial early stages of the match before Van Dam gained some momentum and hit some of his high flying moves before the break. However Orton was quickly back in the driving seat as he moved as Van Dam went to hit his signature spinning leg drop from the ring apron. Orton then destroyed Van Dam using the announce tables and whipping Van Dam into the steel steps outside the ring. Randy’s obvious intention was to cause Van Dam pain and it meant this one ended in a double count out. However it was Orton who walked away from this one looking the better of the two men. This was essentially an all out assault from Orton and it certainly achieved it’s purpose as the segment ended with Van Dam taking an RKO onto a steel chair. Orton would then warn Roman Reign’s he would be out there later for his match with The Miz.

Natalya vs. Paige – 4 Stars

I have to admit I was shocked to see Paige defeat AJ at Summerslam but I’m so glad she did as she now gets a second chance as a heel to show just what a great talent she is. She lost to Natalya Monday night on Raw and this match was clearly WWE’s way of allowing Paige to get some revenge. I have to say I like the new look of Natalya wearing the trunks instead of the long legged tights. This was a pretty solid Divas match between both women that saw Paige really show her aggressive and dominant side. As Paige controlled the match AJ Lee came out to ringside and try to distract the Divas champion as she skipped away with the Divas title. While it looked like Paige might get counted out she got back into the ring before the ten count but was forced to tap out to Natalya’s Sharpshooter. I would be intrigue to see Natalya added to the mix and see these three talented Divas tear the house down with a triple threat match. This was an enjoyable effort from the Divas and a much better step in the right direction as a whole for all involved.

Stardust and Goldust vs. Luke Harper and Erick Rowan – 3.5 Stars

Goldust and Stardust picked up a huge win on Raw over The Usos in a Tag Team match and it seems this could be the beginning of a build to a match between the two teams. It was a shame to not see The Usos and Wyatts face off in another tag match at Summerslam as they tore the house down with that opening match at Battleground in July. I was expecting big things from this tag match as both teams can bring so much to the table and I felt that they produced a good standard match. The Wyatt’s controlled for the majority of the match and showed that they are not a team to be messed with but I would have liked to see a little more offence from the Rhodes boys during this one rather than them picking up the cheap roll up victory but it just gave more of a reason for the Wyatts to beat down the Rhodes brothers some more. The post match beat down was quite a sight to watch and Goldust deserves to be commended for the way he took a good beating from those two animals. This one isn’t over by a long shot and it will be interesting to see where this one goes next.

Roman Reigns vs. The Miz – 3.5 Stars

I’m getting worried about The Miz as I’m pretty sure he’s started to wear Maryse’s clothes as that coat just looks weird on him. While Miz dropped the Intercontinental Championship to Dolph Ziggler at Summerslam, we saw Reigns pickup another huge victory over Randy Orton. I really think this will help Reigns build in the long run and gives more momentum to him going into the 2015 Royal Rumble winner and emerging as the winner. The match tonight came following Reigns punching Miz in the money maker on Raw during Miz TV. Then again I think many people would like to punch someone like The Miz who was interrupting Reigns at every opportunity.

No sooner had the bell rung in this match we saw Randy Orton walk down the ramp to ringside. This didn’t really affect Reigns much as he took control of Miz early on in the match. Reigns couldn’t keep his eyes off Orton, and with good reason as there was that feeling throughout that Orton would be involved sooner or later in this match. Miz would eventually take control of Reigns for a brief period but no sooner had that happened than Roman Reigns nailed a Spear on Miz and picked up the victory. After the match you could feel the tension between Orton and Reigns build and it was inevitable the two men were going to brawl. Both men teed off on one another and it felt like these two were going to go all over the arena. However Orton played the typical heel and used a weapon to gain the advantage as he nailed Reigns with a chair shot. Orton set up to RKO Reigns onto the chair but instead Orton would taste steel across his back before Reigns would nail the Viper with a Superman punch. You can tell this one is not over and their next match is going to be something special. I hope Reigns can really bring out another side to Orton and the two can have a real strong match when they next meet.

Overall Show Rating – 3.5 Stars

This was a pretty decent week for Smackdown and a much better improvement on last weeks show. While there were segments that could have gone better I thought it was good to see another mostly wrestling heavy show and I don’t think anyone had a particularly bad match. My favourite match for the week I think has to go to Seth Rollins and Jack Swagger as they wrestled a match with different styles and made for an entertaining pair to watch. Natalya and Paige deserve a special mention too as they really made a good effort with their Divas match but if I’m honest I probably would have liked to see Paige pick up the win to gain some revenge on Natalya and get into AJ’s head a little. I’m sure that moment will come down the line and it at least brings another deserving Diva into the mix.

That wraps it up for another week here on the Smackdown Breakdown. As always if you have any comments about the show or my thoughts on it then please leave them in the comments section below. I do read every one and always look to respond to each comment. Until next week thanks for reading this weeks instalment of the Smackdown Breakdown and I hope you will be back again next week for another instalment.

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