WWE SMACKDOWN PRIMER 8/21: SummerSlam Fallout, Tag Team title Match, Hardy vs. Orton, Miz-Bryan follow-up, A.J. interview, Becky’s explanation 

By Frank Peteani, PWTorch Specialist


SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

WWE SMACKDOWN PRIMER
AUGUST 21, 2018
BROOKLYN, N.Y. AT THE BARCLAYS CENTER
AIRS ON USA NETWORK 8:00PM EDT
BY FRANK PETEANI, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR 

Arena/Opening Thoughts

As they have all weekend, WWE remains in the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. tonight for Smackdown as we continue the fallout from SummerSlam.  I look especially forward to tonight’s event as I will be in attendance and will be the on-site correspondent on the Wade Keller Pro Wrestling Post-Show.  It will be fun discussing the event and various crowd reactions with PWTorch founder and editor Wade Keller and his co-host.

We have one new champion in Charlotte Flair as she secured her second Smackdown Women’s Championship and seventh women’s championship overall from Carmella at SummerSlam in a triple threat match that also involved Becky Lynch, a situation that is far from over given the post-match activity.  We have two matches already scheduled for tonight including a rematch for the Tag Team Championship.  Other rivalries are far from over and will certainly be covered this evening.

No DQ Smackdown Tag Team Championship: Bludgeon Brothers (champions) vs. New Day

At SummerSlam the New Day defeated Smackdown Tag Team Champions the Bludgeon Brothers via disqualification, thus not capturing the championship.  For those new to the wrestling party, titles may not change hands via disqualification or count-out.  The Bludgeon Brothers were disqualified when Rowan hit Xavier Woods with his mallet.  Tonight, these two teams will go at it again for the championship only there will be no disqualification.

Thoughts:  In Sunday’s case it seemed the DQ was used more to continue the feud rather than fitting in with the storyline.  There really hasn’t been any grudge or issue between these teams and thus the DQ was used more in a protective sense.  Bear in mind tonight is a no-DQ match, count-outs are still possible.  It’s not out of the realm of possibility that the count-out is used to further this to Hell in a Cell depending on where WWE sees this going.  The Bar, Sanity, The Good Brothers, The Usos, and potential NXT callups could factor in the championship picture.

 Jeff Hardy vs. Randy Orton

Jeff Hardy came up short in his attempt to capture the U.S. Championship from Shinsuke Nakamura this past Sunday at SummerSlam.  Following the match, with Hardy laid out in the ring, Randy Orton came out to the ring in very energetic fashion (#sarcasm).  It appeared he would attack Hardy but thought otherwise and turned around back to the dressing room.  Tonight, these two will go at it in a one-on-one match.

Thoughts:  Back in the 1980s this would be something they’d call a “grudge match,” something you’d have to watch on Coliseum Video for those who remember that great library.  With that said, it’s hard to understand Orton’s motive.  Why would he come out and do nothing to a prone Hardy?  It’s different than what we’ve seen before in situations like this, thus the fact we’re wondering and talking about certainly makes it interesting.  Bear in mind, it’s been reported that WWE is “looking into” allegations of inappropriate behavior on Orton’s part.  It’s hard to say where things will end up, but it’s hard to imagine anything coming to fruition given Orton’s push through the years through other various issues.

Becky Lynch’s Explanation

Becky Lynch, along with her best friend Charlotte Flair, challenged Carmella in a triple threat match for the Smackdown Women’s Championship at SummerSlam.  Becky was close to victory as she had Carmella in the Disarm-Her, when Charlotte came from behind and hit Becky with the Natural Selection and scored the pinfall.  Following the match Becky and Charlotte embraced but eventually Becky would snap and attacked Charlotte.  They ended up outside of the ring where Becky threw Charlotte into the announce table.  She would leave the ring in frustration and got a huge pop from the crowd.  Tonight, Becky explains her actions.

Thoughts:  Back in the day, this is a textbook heel turn.  Charlotte did nothing wrong, and you can tell she had mixed emotions knowing she took something from her best friend.  Becky acted like a poor sport.  The problem here is everybody, including myself, was cheering for Becky.  Nobody wanted to see Charlotte win or Carmella retain.  Thus, the post-match attack ended up being cheered.  You could here the crowd chanting “you deserve it” as Becky walked to the entrance.  It will be interesting to see how this is followed up on especially with Paige as the G.M. (Paige, Charlotte, and Becky formerly the stable PCB).  WWE would be wise to keep Becky a babyface but give her an edge and turn Charlotte heel as it is her more natural role.  From a storyline standpoint they could explain that Charlotte had this plan all along to bring this side out of Becky because she was “too soft” or “too likable.”   

WWE Champion A.J. Styles Interview

With his wife and daughter in the arena, A.J. Styles retained the WWE Championship at SummerSlam over Samoa Joe when he was disqualified.  While both of them were on the arena floor, Joe antagonized A.J. verbally.  He grabbed the microphone and said “I’ll be your new daddy” referring of course to A.J.’s daughter.  A.J. would attack Joe with a chair, thus causing the disqualification.  A.J. would continue his attack which was eventually broken up.  He then checked on his wife and daughter, whom appeared to be distraught at his actions.  Tonight, A.J. gives an exclusive interview.

Thoughts:  My kneejerk reaction was “oh great, a DQ” because it was such a good match.  Thinking it through, it fit with the storyline as this feud will definitely continue.  Joe’s goal was to get under A.J.’s skin and he did just that.  The emotions on A.J.’s family looked real, especially with his daughter.  I don’t know how old she is, but children react in the simplest and most natural ways.  She was clearly upset.  I could almost guarantee this will lead to a Hell in a Cell match between these two come September.

Miz-Daniel Bryan Follow-Up

After many years we finally got the “big match” between Daniel Bryan and the Miz, whom had his wife Maryse in the front row.  The match went nearly 30 minutes, when Maryse appeared to hand something to the Miz which he kept very well concealed.  Moments later Miz would hit Bryan in the face with whatever he had, knocking him out and scoring the pinfall.  WWE has made a point to say they will follow up on this tonight as they question Daniel Bryan saying, “will he be out for payback?”  As of this writing, nothing is out on any of their twitter accounts suggesting what could happen tonight.  Miz did have this simple tweet after Sunday:

Thoughts:  The match was a bit underwhelming for how much tension has been built up between these two over an 8-year period.  With that said, I still give the match a passing grade overall and the use of the foreign object is a nice old-school touch.  WWE seemed to go to some of those touches at SummerSlam which goes a long way in continuing feuds especially if you want them to be effective.  As far as Daniel Bryan’s contract status, which certainly plays into this situation, according to PW Insider WWE has an “option year” on his contract.  This is similar to an MLB contract where a team has the option to retain a player for another season.  The details of the contract are unknown, but if this is true it points in the direction of Bryan staying for another year.  Here’s a tweet from Sky Sports WWE:

https://twitter.com/SkySportsWWE/status/1030894628206047232

 Other Items

  • Andrade “Cien” Almas and his business manager Zelina Vega defeated Rusev and his wife Lana in the SummerSlam kickoff show.  There was no interference from Aiden English so that story is either over or remains in flux.  English did tweet this out.  It’s hard to know what it means:

  • There were no NXT callups on Raw last night.  I wouldn’t be surprised if there were one or two tonight.  Velveteen Dream did have “call me up Vince” on his tights Saturday.  It wouldn’t be crazy to see him arrive tonight, although that could have been a decoy suggesting someone else is coming up.  He did defeat EC3.  It has been customary that callups lose their last match prior to arrival on the main roster.  Adam Cole lost his match, as well as Johnny Gargano.  EC3 and/or Cole would make sense.  Gargano still has unfinished business with NXT Champion Tomasso Ciampa and Aleister Black.

Start Time and 205 Live

The arena website shows a start time of 7:45 p.m.  They’re advertising a double main event of Styles, Bryan, and Hardy vs. Nakamura, Miz and Joe.  The other match is Carmella vs. Asuka.  This has been advertised before so, I don’t count on this coming to fruition.

205Live will follow Smackdown.  Cedric Alexander retained his Cruiserweight Championship over Drew Gulak in the SummerSlam kickoff show.

Tonight, Tony Nese teams with Buddy Murphy to face the Lucha House Party in an old school tornado tag match.  All members of both teams will be legal in the ring at all times.  In addition, Noam Dar faces TJP in a rubber match.


Follow me on Twitter @FrankPeteani.  Thank you for reading!

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