Incomprehensibly, the blue brand is now falling behind RAW, after weeks of dominance. Concise in their thoughts and fluidity in the evolution of storylines has played a major role in SmackDown Live being the better brand relating to the product. However, as we inch closer to the Hell In A Cell PPV, the growth has stagnated, leading to mundane and repetitive angles.
One rivalry that is still going strong involves Shane McMahon and Kevin Owens. KO has been at his belligerent best in recent weeks, and took things a step further on last week’s show. Owens put the safety of his former best friend at risk just to lure Shane out, and proceeded to fire the first shot.
The rivalry for the WWE Championship hasn’t been as sinister, however, but the WWE Champion has courted controversy. Weeks after belittling Nakamura, The King of Strong Style finally heard enough, and the weeks of mockery finally manifested itself physically.
So with just few days to go for the Hell In A Cell PPV, what went down on SmackDown Live this week? Let us take a closer look.
Jinder Mahal lays an elaborate trap for Shinsuke Nakamura
SmackDown Live kicked off with us looking back at what happened last week between Nakamura and Mahal. The number one contender for the WWE Championship made his way out to give an in – ring interview, and said Mahal’s words haven’t deterred him. He then spoke about Jinder being afraid of losing his title, before being rudely interrupted by The Singh Brothers.
The brothers talked up their messiah and the WWE Champion, and introduced him, but Mahal blindsided Shinsuke. The Japanese sensation fought back, taking out the brothers, but the numbers game eventually caught up. The WWE Champion laid Shinsuke out with the Khalas, leaving the number one contender in a heap to end the segment.
Backstage, Natalya belittled Carmella, calling her a ‘female dog’.
Natalya and Carmella teamed up to face Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch. The heels took control of the match early, but a late resurgence by Charlotte Flair turned the tables. However, Carmella decked Lynch with the briefcase on the outside, which distracted Flair. Natalya then locked the challenger in a Sharpshooter, forcing her to tap!
Dolph Ziggler continues his tirade against the fans and Roode
Mike Kanellis cut an odd figure being alone, without Maria by his side. Maria, for those who still are unaware, is currently pregnant, and won’t be appearing on WWE TV for the next year. Bobby Roode then made his way out, and picked up the easy victory. Bobby didn’t have much time to celebrate however, as he was interrupted by Dolph Ziggler.
Ziggler once again wondered what it would take for the fans to get behind him. Dolph then came out with drums, and started bursting crackers and throwing confetti. Ziggler asked if that cheered up the audience, before telling Roode that he was nothing more than an elaborate entrance. While walking back, Ziggler was stopped by Roode, who showed him the correct way of the ‘Glorious’ pose.
The Usos and The New Day agree to leave it all at HIAC
One of the most anticipated bouts on the HIAC card is between The New Day and The Usos for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship. The two teams have put on some excellent matches in the past, and will have the chance to do it again this Sunday. But before we get to the PPV, both teams came face to face on this week’s show.
The Usos first made their way out and cut a promo, talking about how they were the ones who elevated the tag team division on the blue brand. The Usos vowed to walk out of HIAC as the new champions, which brought The New Day out.
After promoting their new underwear line, The New Day got serious about their match this Sunday. The trio talked about putting on great matches with The Usos in the past, but reminded the brothers that they were still the champions. Both teams then agreed to give it their all at HIAC, with the tag team gold being defended inside the cell!
Tye Dillinger finally gets the better of Corbin on SmackDown Live
For weeks, The Lone Wolf has attacked ‘The Perfect Ten’ at every opportunity. Corbin snatched away Dillinger’s chance at the United States Championship, and will face AJ this Sunday. However, before Corbin could get to the PPV, he first had to face Tye Dillinger. Both men sized each other up, and Corbin once again showcased his dominance, exerting brute force to subdue Dillinger.
Towards the end, Tye managed to reverse a suplex attempt into a roll up, pinning Corbin in the process! Post match, Styles appeared on the big screen, and insulted Corbin, calling him a jackass. AJ then vowed to walk out of the Hell In A Cell PPV as still the WWE United States Champion.
Rusev accompanied Aiden English to the ring, but the duo was interrupted by Orton. Randy made quick work of Aiden in their match, finishing him with the RKO. Post match, Rusev tried to sneak into the ring for a blindsided attack, but The Viper had him scouted. Orton looked right into Rusev’s eyes as Rusev backed off.
Kevin Owens dishes out punishment, serving as reminder of things to come
Earlier in the night, Sami Zayn tried talking some sense into Shane, and warned him not to call out Kevin Owens. Shane however told Sami to take care of himself, while he would take care of his own wellbeing.
The Commissioner of SmackDown Live then made his way out, and called out Owens for a fight in Denver. Owens appeared in the fans’ section, and said he would see him this Sunday. Shane tried to provoke Owens by calling him a coward, but Kevin wasn’t biting.
Shane then tried going after Kevin, but Owens blindsided Shane, as the two men brawled near the concessions stand. Owens power bombed Shane through a table, and made his way down to the ring. Owens talked about doing worse this Sunday, but ‘Boy Wonder’ wasn’t done just yet. Shane made his way to the ring through the fans, as both men brawled at ringside.
The action spilled into the ring, where Kevin Owens dropped Shane with a Pop Up Power Bomb. Their match this Sunday will now have a ‘falls count anywhere’ stipulation added, as Owens made his way to the back, while Shane recovered, as the show faded.