The Smackdown Breakdown - Heading Into Battleground

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Whats up everybody and welcome to another action packed edition of the Smackdown Breakdown, right here on Wrestling News World (Cheap pop Mick Foley style). We are headed into Battleground this weekend which promises to be a super interesting show. For more on what the WNW staff think will happen this Sunday (Including my theory regarding Seth Rollins 'plan B') make sure you check out the WNW Writers predicts for the show that go live this weekend (Mine are literally going to be written following this).

This week has been a pretty big week for me in terms of finally breaking my pod-casting/interviewing duck and putting out my first ever 2 part audio interview with none other than KG Kevin Gill, the voice of Juggalo Championship Wrestling, co-host of Insane Clown Posse theater, video game industry veteran, improv comedian, and host of the Kevin Gill Show podcast. We cover all kinds of cool topics in the interview including Kevin's background, his memories of wrestling, ECW, WWE, and we talk about the upcoming Bloodymania 9 show which goes down a week from Saturday at the Gathering of the Juggalos 2015. To hear these interview you can click here for part one and here for part two. And once you've done that please don't forget to share them on your social media to help promote this exclusive and awesome interview.

Wanted to quickly say how much I enjoyed the Divas match on Raw this week. Seeing the trio of Becky Lynch, Charlotte, and Sasha Banks on the main roster was an absolute delight and I can say without a doubt the future of the WWE Divas division just got a whole lot better. I want to send out get well wishes to Kurt Angle, who had to have emergency surgery following surgery he already had to remove a tumor from his neck, and to Ryback who was admitted to hospital this week with a staph infection.

Now without any further delay let's head on into this weeks Smackdown Breakdown and see what I thought of this weeks episode.

Roman Reigns and Bray Wyatt Opening Segment - 4 Stars

Say what you will about this feud but for me I see it's helped to re-establish Bray Wyatt as the creepy character who you can't predict or read, and it's helped give Roman Reigns somewhat of a more human side again. I don't want to say too much about this match because it's one of the matches I'm writing about for the WNW predicts. Roman was incredibly fired up for the match when he was cutting this promo, and it seems like Sunday can't come soon enough for the big man. Bray Wyatt did his usual great job of cutting a solid response to Roman, and the two had some great back and forth interaction. I have positive feelings for this match headed into Sunday and I'm intrigued to see just how far Bray Wyatt is willing to go to get under the skin of Roman Reigns. Reigns was intense and is very seemingly playing into the hands of Wyatt, but that's what this segment needed. I thought this was a solid opening to the show and can't wait to see these two tangle on Sunday.

The Lucha Dragons vs. The New Day - 4 Stars

Two of the most talented teams in the future of the tag team division locked up in this incredibly fast paced match. We had the Prime Time Players out providing commentary on this one while the New Day consisted of Big E and Kofi Kingston teaming up. Will we see the same two face off against the PTP on Sunday? We will have to wait and see but I don't see the PTP dropping those titles just yet. The Lucha Dragons both displayed some super athleticism in this one when they hit some high impact moves but the New Day's power advantage of Big E was a little bit too much for the Dragons by the end of this one meaning they took some momentum into their tag team championship match on Sunday. I was especially impressed by the more aggressive side of Kofi Kingston on display and hope that is something we see more of. A fun tag team match to watch. I loved the post match positive promo of New Day afterwards, it really made for an exciting and tense end to the segment.

King Barrett vs. Jack Swagger - 3.5 Stars

I really had high hopes that winning King of the Ring would relaunch Wade Barrett's career. Instead it seems to have done little to nothing for him and has seen him stuck in a ridiculous feud with R-Truth over who the real King of the Ring is. Good to see Jack Swagger back in the ring and he wrestled a very mat based style in this early on which I enjoyed. Swagger gave his best in this one but it wasn't ever quite going to be enough as King Barrett picked up a win to give him momentum into Sunday. It wasn't perhaps Barrett's finest match as he had very little in terms of offence but he managed to hit that Bull Hammer Elbow to end the match. R-Truth came out on the mic looking like half a King, and I was so glad King Barrett cut him off. The two will now face off Sunday to decide who the real King is, and I hope to god that Barrett wins it otherwise the King of the Ring becomes a bigger mockery than it ever has been.

Rusev vs. Cesaro - 4.5 Stars

I liked the little tease of Owen and Cesaro before this match even kicked off. That match has money written all over it! Rusev and Cesaro also has money written and was a meeting of two men who display absolute brute strength whenever they enter the squared circle. This one starts out as a pretty pure wrestling match but quickly became a match between two powerhouses who literally beat one another back and forth. Those German Suplexes by Cesaro on Rusev were brutal looking and it was cool to see him lift Rusev up like that with relative ease. These two showed why they are both amazing talents with bright futures in WWE, and I could have watched these guys go on all show. Cesaro did something I didn't expect hi to and that's pin Rusev cleanly in the middle of the ring. Yes you read that correctly! Rusev was pinned in the middle of the ring for the 1-2-3. This match marked something significant in that it was the first time ever that Rusev has been pinned to the mat for a 1-2-3 count on free WWE television (Thanks to Jesse Sherwood for this excellent stat). Think about how big that actually is for Cesaro and his standing in WWE. John Cena is the only other man to pin Rusev for a 1-2-3 count so that puts Cesaro in very unique company. It tells me there are bigger things in Cesaro's future in WWE, and I hope that when he feuds with Kevin Owen's these guys show the WWE Universe why they are two of the best pound for pound stars in the company today.

Stardust vs. Neville - 4 Stars

To those fans who felt disappointed Cody came back as Stardust on Raw and his fathers death wasn't used as a way to advance Cody, you should be ashamed of yourselves. Yes WWE has used real life situations to advance characters and stories in the past but this isn't one of those times it feels right. People kicked off at when WWE used Paul Bearer in the CM Punk and Undertaker feud, but now they think WWE should have cashed in on a man's death. Stardust is a tribute to Dusty from Cody, and I think Stardust is some of Cody's best work of his career. This is a pretty unique pairing but I have full faith they can work a solid match and have a fun feud. Stardust showed some super aggression in this and looks refreshed since his return to action. Neville gave as good as he got in this one and hit some good high flying moves. Neville picked up the win following the referee distracting Stardust after his attempts to use the ropes for leverage to pin Neville, and these two look set to continue their feud over the next few weeks and that was confirmed with the post-match attack by Stardust on Neville while he was being interviewed backstage.

Roman Reigns and Dean Ambrose vs. Sheamus and Big Show - 4 Stars

The team of Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns joined forces to take down Mr. Money in the Bank, Sheamus and the Big Show. This one was kind of a way to at least transition all these men into Battleground and hopefully blow off their feuds from the past. Ambrose was always going to be the odd one out here but his unpredictability in the ring always makes him the wild card, while Sheamus, Big Show and Reigns are simply the power men of the match. The chemistry of Reigns and Ambrose proved to be an advantage early on in this one as they took control of their opponents, and even back from the break that seemed to be a feature of this one. Sheamus and Big Show had their moments where they controlled proceedings, but that soon turned back into the favor of Reigns and Ambrose. The DDT on Big Show by Ambrose through the announce table looked pretty sick and it was probably the action toward the end of this one that made it feel a much better watch than I felt it had been. Just when it looked like Reigns and Ambrose might pick up the win out came Bray Wyatt to attack Roman Reigns, causing the disqualification victory for Reigns and Ambrose. Wyatt tasted a Superman Punch for his troubles and the show ended with Roman Reigns standing tall in the ring. This was a main event that lacked excitement for the majority of the match until toward the end.

Over Show Rating - 4 Stars

I've got to say I felt that was a really strong episode of Smackdown headed into Battleground this Sunday. I really enjoyed watching the majority of the show, and even the bits I personally felt were a little lame were probably not as bad as I thought. I'd say my favorite segment this week goes to the match between Cesaro and Rusev. Not only was it a well worked match by both men but we saw Cesaro achieve a feat only John Cena has managed by pinning Rusev cleanly in the middle of the ring. Make no mistake about it that was a huge moment for Cesaro in his WWE career and his teaser with Kevin Owens just makes the next few months in WWE look real tasty to watch.

That's all I've got for this weeks edition of the Smackdown Breakdown. As always please feel free to leave your comments on the show in the comments section below. I will return again next week with another edition of the Smackdown Breakdown. Until then, thanks for reading and have yourselves a fantastic weekend.

If you have enjoyed this blog, and any of my other work, then please give me a follow on Twitter if that's your scene by following @jamie_welton, or please give my brand new Facebook page a like for all my latest blogs and thoughts on the world of WWE and Wrestling.

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