CHARLOTTE VS BECKY LAST WOMAN STANDING…
Recap: The show led 0ff with a rematch of Charlotte Flair vs Becky Lynch for the SmackDown Women’s Title. Due to the finish of the prior match in Australia, this match carried the stipulation that Becky could lose her title by disqualification.
Late in the match, Becky grabbed her belt and attempted to leave. [The match stipulation dealt with disqualifications, not count outs.] Charlotte chased her down and threw her back into the ring. Charlotte bumped into the ref, and Becky tried to take advantage by attacking Charlotte with the belt. Before she could, however, the referee realized what was happening and scolded her. He looked to be about ready to call for a DQ, but while Becky argued, Charlotte took advantage by rolling up Becky. Becky countered into her own roll for a two count. Becky rolled to the floor, so Charlotte attempted a moonsault from the ringpost to the outside. She missed. Becky then it an Exploder into the barrier and scurried into the ring, hoping for a countout. Becky had to exit the ring again, however, as it appeared Charlotte would beat the count. The brawl made it back into the ring, but Becky rolled out again, causing Charlotte to exit the ring after her. Both competitors ended up being counted out.
After the match, Charlotte attacked Becky as she attempted to leave the ring. Becky gained the upper hand and continued up the ramp. Before she could leave, however, Charlotte recovered and speared Becky through the LED boards. The camera caught both competitors in bad shape, with Charlotte bleeding.
Later in the show, the announcers mentioned that Charlotte was fine and would be able to compete in Mixed Match Challenge later.
In a backstage segment, Paige announced that Becky would face Charlotte at Evolution in the first ever Last Woman Standing Match.
Evaluation: The match and post-match were good and emphasized the brutality of the feud, which was the right setup for the Last Woman Standing Match. The fact that the announcers said Charlotte was fine after what was intended to be a brutal spear through the LEDs really detracted from the angle, however. I understand that Facebook is paying a lot of money for Mixed Match Challenge and likely wants stars, but there had to be a way to reschedule the matches such that Charlotte’s team didn’t need to wrestle tonight. Considering the abysmal viewership of MMC, sacrificing a pay per view storyline doesn’t make much sense.
Forecast: I expect Becky to retain at Evolution. She’s too hot right now to have her drop the belt.
MIZ REMAINS IN THE PICTURE…
Recap: The second hour opened with MizTV. Miz first introduced AJ Styles, who came to the ring. Miz said he sympathized as a family man with what AJ went through with Samoa Joe. Miz said AJ’s next challenger was a different type of competitor, someone more likely to tend your garden than break into your home. He then introduced Daniel Bryan.
Miz was disgusted as AJ and Bryan shook hands. Bryan mocked the length of his match with Miz in Australia, calling him the “two minute man.” Miz attempted to sow discord, claiming AJ believed himself to be better than Bryan. Neither man bit.
Bryan said he didn’t come back to fight the Miz or reunite Team Hell No. He said he came back to win the title, and AJ was the man standing in his way. AJ said he wuldn’t be moving. The two went face to face. Miz commented that the encounter had finally become entertaining.
Instead of attacking each other, however, AJ and Bryan began to mock the Miz. Miz became angry, claiming that Bryan’s win in Australia was a fluke. He said he had reviewed the tape and his shoulder was up. He said he had demanded a rematch but Paige refused. Miz said that whoever won between AJ and Bryan, he had the next shot at the title.
Miz then informed AJ that he had a match with Shelton Benjamin. During the match, Bryan and Miz were on commentary, constantly insulting each other. AJ won the match with a Phenomenal Forearm.
Evaluation: It was odd that Miz stated that Bryan isn’t the type f guy to break into a man’s house, since he did previously break into Miz’s house to attack him during filming of Miz & Mrs.
The fans seemed to sympathize with Miz’s gripes, as they popped during his speech.
Forecast: The MizTV segment and presence of Miz on commentary seem to indicate that Miz isn’t out of the picture yet (despite Byron Saxton saying exactly that). I expect the Riyadh match to become a Triple Threat, with the AJ-Bryan one-on-one coming later.
ANOTHER NIGHT IN MILWAUKEE…
Recap: Aiden English came to the ring to reveal the remaining portion of the “One Night in Milwaukee” video. He showed the same clip from last week, but paused slightly later. We learned that Lana actually said she wanted to thank Aiden for all he had done for her and Rusev. Aiden then leaned in toward her, at which point he paused the video.
Aiden then called Rusev to the ring and offered him a deal. If Rusev would ditch Lana and reunite Rusev Day, Aiden would destroy the video. Lana then came to the ramp. Rusev stood between Aiden and Rusev for a while, but then called Aiden’s bluff and told him to play the rest of the video. Aiden delayed, and Lana revealed that she had guessed Aiden’s password, so she could play it if he wouldn’t.
The remainder of the video showed Aiden attempting to kiss Lana while she rebuffed him. Aiden then told Lana that his offer still stood, and that if she ever tired of Rusev Days, she could always have an Aiden Night. Rusev chased Aiden but he escaped.
Evaluation: This made no sense at all. The spot where Aiden stopped the video made him look in the wrong, not Lana. Even absent the hacking angle, no reasonable person wouldn’t have told him to just play the rest of the video, especially since Lana had a week to tell Rusev what was on the remaining footage.
Forecast: I expect this feud to wrap up at Crown Jewel.
NOW CHECK OUT LAST WEEK’S COLUMN: TOP 3 DEVELOPMENTS – SMACKDOWN 10/2: A Somber Opener, One Night in Milwaukee, Becky Cheered