Welcome one and all to this weeks edition of the Smackdown Breakdown. I 'm literally aching today after being out at a concert last night and am trying to play catch up on all my WWE programming as well as other stuff as a result so I've had to make watching Smackdown the priority but because I have so much to do the Breakdown won't have a huge intro or outro this week. We only have another week until Payback, which seems such a shame as the chance to build up the matches is very marginal, meaning it becomes harder as a fan to fully invest in what the company want us to watch. I hope Payback will be a good show but given the rush to build it and probably book it I'm not expecting anything ground breaking.
Lets head on down into this weeks edition of the Smackdown Breakdown and see what I thought of this weeks show.
A Meeting Of Two Kings And Ziggler Segment - 4 Stars
I've got to say I'm really proud of King Barrett, this really feels like a last chance at a push for him and I think if he can stay injury free he could be pushing for a spot on the top of the card in the near future. Barrett did a good job of getting himself over and really made the whole King gimmick seem like it was going to stick. I loved Lawler's defiance in saying "all hail King Barrett", before Ziggler came out and challenged Barrett to a match. Lawler did a good job selling no fear of Barrett, and I hope some of the boys in the back took notes because it's little things like King's stern face and reaction that can make a big difference.
King Barrett vs. Dolph Ziggler - 4 Stars
Following on from the last segment these two bright stars met in singles competition. I loved the early exchanges between these two, with things going back and forth at an early stage. I thought both men worked well together with the mix of Ziggler's speed and Barrett's power making this an interesting watch. The match soon ended in disqualification as Sheamus came to the Kings aid and just as it looked like Ziggler was going to have his backside handed to him Neville came out to make the save. A good singles match that then led to....
King Barrett and Sheamus vs. Dolph Ziggler and Neville - 4 Stars
This match was made during the commercial break so we joined the action part way through. This match contained four very exciting and promising superstars, all who are trying to show why they can be the next breakout superstar of the company. Since moving up to the main roster I have really enjoyed Neville's work and think he has only grown since being a part of NXT, but I do hope that over the coming months he gets a chance to hold one of the singles titles as he has so much potential and he really showed it during this one. Ziggler and Neville picked up a hard fought and well deserved win in this one and I would love to see more work between all four of these men going forward.
Luke Harper vs. Fandango - 3.5 Stars
I love the fact the new and improved Fandango has now gone and the original Fandango is back in the picture. WWE could have maybe capitalized more on the whole Fandangoing deal back when it first caught on but instead chose to let it go. Harper and Fandango worked well in this one with Harper picking up a well deserved win. With Erick Rowan coming out post match I was expecting him to have some sort of confrontation with Harper, but instead he attacked a defenceless Fandango. Is this possibly a hint at a return of the Wyatt Family? Or at least a reuniting of Harper and Rowan? Time will tell but that is an exciting prospect.
Rusev Segment - 3.5 Stars
The reaction for Lana continues to grow week by week and I think it's only a matter of time before she finally splits from Rusev on screen. It could even come at Payback, but that remains to be seen. Rusev soon spoiled the Lana loving party before it got started and sent her to the back before he proceeded to try and make us believe he will defeat John Cena at Payback, despite having lost two matches in a row to the US champion.
The New Day vs. Cesaro, Tyson Kidd, and Ryback - 4 Stars
This was a real entertaining match between six talented stars. I loved the part where Kidd, Cesaro, and Ryback did the triple suplexes although I would have loved to see them all do them together. The high flying and fast paced action in this one would normally have made Ryback and Big E stand out like sore thumbs but their strength and power didn't really hinder them one bit. I'm enjoying seeing New Day more and more as a team and they really are making a difference. Cesaro and Kidd worked well together as usual and had some good exchanges with Kofi and Woods. I liked the tease of Bray Wyatt toward the end of the match to distract Ryback and can only see things growing in the two feuds concerned.
Emma vs. Naomi - 3.5 Stars
What I really like right now about Naomi, other than her in ring work is her pairing with Tamina. I think this is a great stroke of creativity and I think the two can learn and grow together. Unfortunately for Emma she continues to suffer in getting the raw end of the deal with her use. Emma is a great talent but just can't seem to catch a break. She ended up being beaten down post match and made an example of by Naomi and Tamina, who look like they are going to be a formidable force to compete with in the Divas division.
Los Matadores vs. Lucha Dragons - 3.5 Stars
On paper this match should have been amazing with these two both been capable of amazing high flying action. The Lucha Dragons continue to go from strength to strength and it's possible that in years to come Kalisto could develop into the next Mexican wrestling sensation. I would have loved to see more of a lucha libre style in this one but it was still an enjoyable and exciting watch. The Sin Cara spot leaping outside the ring was a poor botch but he more than made up for it in winning the match for his team. Next time I hope WWE just let these guys turn it loose and we get more of a lucha style. There appears to be tension developing in the Los Matadores camp and it will be interesting to see how this one falls out over the coming weeks.
The Payback Main Event Contract Signing - 4 Stars
Kane was overseeing this signing which automatically to me meant there was going to be trouble by the end of this segment. I'm thrilled Dean Ambrose is getting an opportunity in the main event and hope he uses this opportunity to show the higher ups in the company just why he deserves to stay there. Adding Reigns and Ambrose into the mix with Orton and Rollins at least gives the match something fresh headed into Payback. I can't say I honestly see Rollins losing the title at Payback, but stranger things have happened. Rollins not stepping into the ring at first was quite a good touch, and it allowed the verbal jabs to be traded between all four men. Just when it seemed Rollins might get out of signing the contract Kane threw a further spanner into the works as the two men's relationship continues to sour. Rollins used some great remarks to create tension between the three challengers in the ring to create some dissension but it was always apparent he would fail and an all out brawl would erupt. I enjoyed to way the show ended this week and am really looking forward to how the fatal four way at Payback goes.
Overall Show Rating - 3.75 Stars
This weeks episode of Smackdown was pretty strong in my opinion. All the segments were well worked and entertaining in their different ways and made this show something to really savour. I'm going to give the six man tag team match between New Day and Ryabck, Tyson Kidd, and Cesaro my segment of the week award because I think all six men involved in this one worked hard and showed that they are all stars to watch going forward.
As always please fell free to leave your thoughts on the show in the comments section below. I will be back again next week with another edition of the Smackdown Breakdown. Until then thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed the show.