Wrestling Night in America Reunion: PWTorch columnist Greg Parks is joined by former PWTorch columnist Pat McNeill for a full match-by-match preview of WrestleMania 36
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WWE VALENTINE’S DAY SMACKDOWN PRIMER
FEBRUARY 14, 2020
VANCOUVER, BC AT THE ROGERS ARENA
AIRS ON FOX NETWORK, 8:00 p.m. EST
BY FRANK PETEANI (@FrankPeteani), PWTORCH SPECIALIST
Announcers: Michael Cole, Corey Graves
Arena, Top 10 Moments of Last Week’s Show, and Items Advertised by WWE
Take out your passports as WWE goes international and checks into the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, BC in Canada for tonight’s Valentine’s Day edition of Smackdown (would they make it the red brand for one night only?). The arena opened in 1995 as the General Motors Place and hosted two In Your House events including International Incident in 1996 and Rock Bottom in 1998. According to pro wrestling.fandom.com, WWE’s last appearance in the building was for Raw in 2000. Here are the top 10 moments from last week’s Smackdown
We’re less than two weeks away from Super Showdown in Saudi Arabia and a little under a month away from Elimination Chamber. From the Smackdown side of things, last week we learned that at Showdown “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt will defend the Universal Championship against Goldberg. In addition, Roman Reigns hooks up with King Corbin one more time in a steel cage. We already knew Miz & John Morrison will challenge New Day (Big E and Kofi Kingston) for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship. Here’s what on tap for tonight:
- Carmella set for Smackdown Women’s Title clash against Bayley
- What’s next for Roman Reigns and King Corbin?
- Otis looks to capture Mandy Rose’s heart on Valentine’s Day Smackdown
- Hulk Hogan makes an announcement
Smackdown Women’s Championship: Bayley (champ) vs. Carmella
Last week on Smackdown, Carmella won a fatal four-way to earn a championship match against Bayley for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. The match involved Alexa Bliss, Naomi, and Dana Brooke. Carmella won the match after Naomi thwarted Twisted Bliss from Alexa, and she nailed two kicks to score the pins. Bayley attacked Carmella after the match to close out the show, cutting her celebration short.
Carmella last held the Smackdown title in 2018 after cashing in her Money in the Bank contract on Charlotte Flair, who had been attacked by the Smackdown-debuting IIconics (Peyton Royce & Billie Kay). This took place on the Smackdown episode following that year’s WrestleMania. Carmella held the title until that year’s SummerSlam where she dropped the title back to Charlotte Flair in a triple threat involving Becky Lynch. I digress, but that was the beginning of Becky being “The Man” as a result of her attacking Charlotte after the match.
Bayley has held the title since the second episode of Smackdown on Fox, when she defeated Charlotte to start her second reign of 2019. That was the night she slashed the Bayley buddies and morphed into the character she is today. She is quite different as is Carmella, who still struts around with confidence but isn’t quite the trash-talking underhanded person she was a few years ago. WWE acknowledges that these two women are former friends, and Carmella talks about it here in a WWE.com exclusive. There’s also an Instagram post with them hanging out:
We learned on Raw a few nights ago that Bayley will put up here title against Carmella tonight.
Frank’s Analysis: This is a TV feud at best. I don’t see a title change and it’s really hard to see where things are going with the women’s division on Smackdown. No offense to the women involved, but everyone on the show is a mid-to-lower card talent at best. I wonder if Bianca Belair comes to Smackdown to challenge Bayley at WrestleMania. I don’t see her defeating Rhea Ripley at Takeover, and Belair vs. Bayley would be a fresh match I’d be interested in seeing. That’s all speculation on my part though, so take it for what it’s worth.
Hulk Hogan has a special announcement
WWE posted today that Hulk Hogan has a special announcement.
— WWE (@WWE) February 14, 2020
Miz and Morrison vs. Roman Reigns and Mystery Partner
Just when we think we’re out, they pull us back in!
I’m fairly certain everyone gets that Godfather III reference. Anyway, we know what’s next for King Corbin and Roman Reigns as last week we learned that these two will go at it one more time in a steel cage match at Super Showdown in Saudi Arabia. King Corbin went into the production truck and went crazy after they showed the video of dog food getting fed to him (poured on, flung on). Later on, he went into the arena and poured a drink onto a fan. Later on, Reigns came out and challenged him to the cage match. More build towards this is expected tonight.
Before that, we take a little detour as the Miz started some trash talk on Twitter with Reigns. John Morrison then got involved. Here are those tweets, which WWE acknowledges on their website:
Yo! I thought you quit the business years ago! Ha, welcome back!
P.S. ass-whooping waiting for you too! https://t.co/bTRca0Tmq4
— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) February 13, 2020
It’s been a few years since the Miz and Reigns worked together. They swapped the Intercontinental Championship in early 2018 enroute to Reigns facing Brock Lesnar at that year’s WrestleMania for the Universal Championship (remember that debacle?). Morrison and Reigns have never crossed paths. Tonight, Miz and Morrison team up to face Reigns and a partner of his choosing.
Frank’s Analysis: I think ultimately this leads to the Usos feuding with Miz and Morrison probably over the Smackdown Tag Team Championship, assuming they beat New Day at Super Showdown. As far as the mystery partner for Reigns tonight I don’t have any strong feelings. These things tend to be a disappointment anyway, especially when it’s somebody on the current roster. If it’s a returning or debuting wrestler it’s more exciting, but I don’t see that. If anything, maybe Mustafa Ali makes his return (not like he was gone for an extended period)? Perhaps Daniel Bryan gets the nod as he has history with the Miz? I know … Rikishi comes out of retirement for one night! Come on now, that would actually be cool. No wait, they make a deal with New Japan Pro Wrestling for Tama Tonga or Tonga Loa for one night. (Ok now that’s getting a little crazy).
Steaks and Dates! Otis Has A Date with Mandy Rose on Valentine’s Day
Two weeks ago, Heavy Machinery (Otis & Tucker) came up short in their attempt to earn a Smackdown Tag Team Championship match with New Day at Super Showdown. No matter for Otis though, as he asked out Mandy Rose who was showing her appreciation for his help at the Royal Rumble. She wasn’t free last week (like the rest of the Smackdown roster) but was free tonight. Are all the single wrestlers off for Valentine’s Day?
Otis has been putting tweets up trying to impress Mandy. I won’t put up all here, but here’s a sampling:
— OTIS (Dozer) (@otiswwe) February 10, 2020
Otis and Mandy have their big night tonight!
Frank’s Analysis: Now, I’m not offering dating advice. I was like the world’s worst single person before I met my wife. If there was something you shouldn’t do on a date, or when “pursuing” someone, I did it. I met my wife though, and now I just do all those dumb things throughout our marriage. Ok now what were we talking about? Oh yeah Otis and Mandy. You got this big man!
Other Match Results and Segments from Last Week
- The Miz and John Morrison brought back the Dirt Sheet to hype their match against New Day for the Smackdown Tag Team Championship at Super Showdown.
- The Usos defeated Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler.
- Elias defeated Cesaro.
- Hall of Famer Goldberg challenged “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt for the Universal Championship. That match happens at Super Showdown.
- Heath Slated talked trash to Daniel Bryan. Bryan went on to defeat his former Nexus partner.
- Shinsuke Nakamura, Sami Zayn, and the Revival (Scott Dawson & Dash Wilder) attacked Braun Strowman as he was being interviewed following his defeating of Nakamura the week before for the Intercontinental Championship.
- Otis was shown getting ready for his date with Mandy Rose.
- Sheamus squashed Apollo Crews.
I don’t know that I have a ton of thoughts for Smackdown in general as we head towards Super Showdown. It’s virtually a glorified house show. Goldberg vs. The Fiend is interesting in the sense of how it’s going to be pulled off. Reigns vs. Corbin needs to end, and I think that will happen here. Once we get through this and Elimination Chamber, we can focus on getting ready for WrestleMania.
Follow Frank on Twitter @FrankPeteani. Questions and discussion are welcome. Thank you for reading!