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The Smackdown Breakdown: Or The Nikki Bella Show “Groan”

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AJ Styles and Dean Ambrose

Hello WNW People! Mitch “Big M” Adams here, welcoming you to the Smackdown Breakdown. Before we get started, I would like to announce a new segment here on WNW called 205 Live Vibes. It is a review of the WWE Network show 205 Live, and it will be posted every week around the same time as the Breakdown. The segment will begin this time next week.

In-Ring Segment: Styles, Ellsworth & Ambrose > B+
I like how AJ addressed the “elephant in the room” (his pants tearing at TLC) in the manner that he did! It shows he has a sense of humour about this kind of stuff. His promo work was as usual short but strong and to the point!

James Ellsworth dancing around waving his fists at AJ like he was Ali had me in a fit of hysterics! I keep saying that after this storyline ends, WWE creative should write his character in the same manner as Santino Marella. He could be a great mid-card comedy act…if he works on his promo game a little bit that is.

AJ’s “Chin and Tonic" line wasn’t as funny as it probably should have been, but the rest of his promo towards Ellsworth was pretty good. I liked how AJ’s promo on Ellsworth was written to put over Ambrose while still keeping AJ heel. It’s little things like that I would really like to see more of in WWE’s storylines. Dean coming out and hitting Dirty Deeds on Ellsworth without saying a word was simply a perfect way to continue the storyline and to end the segment.

The Wyatt Family (c) [w /Luke Harper] vs Rhino & Heath Slater > B

There have been a few issues with Smackdown’s production since the brand split. Ranging from audio problems from backstage segments to the Wyatt Family’s entrance being triggered too early. I don’t know if there is an issue in WWE’s normally super efficient production truck working live two nights a week instead of one, but I would like it if they got their s**t together for Smackdown.

I know that eventually Orton is supposed to turn on the Wyatt’s revealing that he was never truly one of them. But I honestly thought it would have happened by now! I don’t know if creative is just trying to convince us that Orton has joined the Wyatt’s for real, so it’s actually a shock when he does turn on them or what. All I know is whatever they are trying to do; it isn’t working.

As for the match itself, it was ok and had a few good spots.
Rhino, even after all those years of Hardcore matches can still go. But this match was just to get Slater and Rhino’s rematch out of the way. I hope they remain in the focus of Smackdown’s Tag Team Division because the Slater storyline has been a true highlight of the year.

Edit: After Watching Talking Smack. Wow, I did not see that coming! Still, I suppose Slater going solo now that he’s over can only be a good thing. If WWE remains committed to his push that is!

WINNERS via PINFALL (Orton over Slater): The Wyatt Family

Backstage Interview: Kalisto > D
As good as he is in the ring (as evidenced at TLC) Kalisto still has next to no mic skills! Although, he did deliver the “Speed kills” line pretty well.

Carmella vs Natalya
Once again 90% of the focus in Smackdown’s Women’s Division is directed towards Nikki Bloody Bella. A quick promo from Carmella, a beatdown from Natalya, a chase to the back and an awkward standoff between Natalya and Nikki! Both Natalya and especially Carmella deserve so much better than this. It’s sad and pathetic!!!
No Contest

Backstage Interview: Baron Corbin > B+
Corbin is another worker that has benefited so much from the brand split. He was completely directionless on before hand on the main roster. Creative had completely ignored what made his character work before he was called up. But thankfully with the brand split, they went back to what got him over in NXT.

He seemed to be getting a lot stronger on the mic too, more confident. I like it!

The Hype Bros vs The Ascension > F
Groan, these two teams again! The Ascension, once over as rover in NXT has completely flopped on the main roster. As for the Hype Bros, I could list everything about them that’s awful. But I don’t think I could post a Breakdown ten thousand words long! Crap match with two crap Tag Teams that wasn’t short enough.
WINNERS via PINFALL (Ryder over Viktor): The Hype Bros

MizTV: Dean Ambrose > B
This segment was a lot better than I thought it was going to be. It wasn’t a Miz brag fest about still being IC Champ after TLC. I liked Ambrose saying that no one has actually seen him angry before. I also liked how Miz insinuated that Dean deserved to have Ellsworth screwing him over at TLC for using him to get to AJ. It continues the storyline.

The intensity from Dean towards Miz after being presented with the participation award actually left me cold for some reason. Maybe because even though the IC Title has been made to feel important again on Smackdown, it’s still a secondary Title. And therefore Dean doing something with the IC Champ feels like a step-down.

And it only felt worse when Daniel Bryan came out to make the match later for the main event. In fact, it’s the only reason why this segment doesn’t get an A.

Kalisto vs. Baron Corbin > B+
As I said before, Kalisto is awesome in the ring. And he seems to have great chemistry with Baron Corbin. The Moonsault to Corbin on the outside was incredible. But, I wish the action had lasted a little longer.

I don’t object to Corbin going over here because he deserves a push. But I do object to JBL repeatedly stating “Big men will beat little men every time.” I know Vince would rather we all think that way so he can only book workers who are more aesthetically pleasing to his eye. But we all know great workers come in all sizes, and smaller workers can be booked to beat big guys quite convincingly.
WINNER via PINFALL: Baron Corbin

Backstage Segment: Nikki Bella & Some F lister “Celebrity”> F ALL DAY!!!
This was pointless and brutally awful! The less said about it, the better.

Chad Gable [w /Jason Jordan] vs. Tyler Breeze [w /Fandango] > B
Nice short little match with plenty of good spots. But the thing I found most memorable was honestly Fandango tripping on a camera cord on the outside. I smell a Botchamania submission! Chad Gable’s solo finish of a schoolboy roll up into a German suplex is super cool in my opinion. I wouldn’t mind seeing both members of American Alpha have a few more solo matches.
WINNER via PINFALL: Chad Gable

In-Ring Segment: Alexa Bliss & Becky Lynch > A
I know I keep harping on this, but if you will indulge me just once more, thank you. I hate the fact that even with all the amazing matches and moments Women Wrestlers like Sasha Banks and Charlotte have given us this year on RAW! WWE’s higher-ups still insist on making Divas like Nikki and Eva the forefront of Smackdown’s Women’s Division.
It truly does my head in! Especially when workers like Alexa and Becky have been tearing it up in the ring and on the mic for weeks.

But thankfully, they didn’t have to take a back seat this week! As expected, the mic work of both these women was off the charts. I could watch these two cut promos and wrestle for months on end.

I would also like to reiterate what an idiot Kevin Dunn is. Becky Lynch can cut a great promo, and deliver great lines. I am so pumped for the rematch between these two whenever it is.

The Miz (c) [w /Maryse] vs. Dean Ambrose > C
This match wasn’t as good as I expected sadly. Maybe it has something to do with how dead the crowd was. The crowds for TLC, Raw, Smackdown and 205 Live have all sucked honestly. I’m usually the first person to defend live crowds, but the Texan fans this week have really gotten on my nerves. It took so much for workers to get them to pop this week. They seem very ungrateful and completely unaware of some the greatness they were witnessing. If I were Vince, I wouldn’t go back to the lone star state for a long while yet.

I still feel that the James Ellsworth storyline is the most creative in WWE right now, but his interference in this match fell flat for me. Ellsworth trying to make it up to Dean by letting the referee know Maryse was trying to interfere, only to distract Dean long enough for Miz to beat him was obvious and uncreative. I hope this isn’t the beginning of the creative ruining the best storyline in the company. That has happened WAY too often in recent years.

Overall Grade > C
I hate to say it, but Raw honestly put on the better show this week. And Raw wasn’t even all that flash either. Hopefully the Blue Brand shapes up next week.

And that ladies and gents was the Smackdown Breakdown.
I hope you have enjoyed it. Please feel free to follow me on Twitter @TheBigM91

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