HEYDORN’S SMACKDOWN RECEIPT 3/5: Daniel Bryan shines as championship match between him and Roman Reigns looms

BY ZACK HEYDORN, PWTORCH ASSISTANT EDITOR

Daniel Bryan (art credit Travis Beaven © PWTorch)

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

This week’s episode of WWE Smackdown has wrapped. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane and relive some of the madness.

-So, the WWE just welcomed their largest Performance Center class ever last month. They should all watch the Daniel Bryan promo that opened the show this week. Textbook babyface material and effective on every level. Bryan was authentic and credible in how he spoke, but also sympathetic while putting over the power that Roman Reigns exudes as champion. We don’t know what kind of trouble WWE may be up against at WrestleMania when it comes to Edge vs. Reigns because of the lack crowd reaction on a weekly basis. If Bryan keeps spitting fire like this, they could have a thing on their hands come April 10 or 11.

-Sami Zayn needs something with more depth to sink his teeth into. He’s effective in this role without question, but the real question is, how much is WWE leaving on the table with him if they keep him at the level he’s at now? Zayn is skilled enough to take this act and tweak it, so its main event ready. Tick tock, WWE.

-So, Reginald was fired by Carmella and slapped by Sasha Banks. That’s the end of him, right? Nothing against the guy, but why are championship level talents playing around a silly story like Reginald. Would Edge or Roman Reigns be involved in nonsense like that ahead of their WrestleMania match? Of course not. Sasha Banks and Bianca Belair need the same recognition from management.

-The general booking of Rey Mysterio is a mystery to me. If Otis is supposed to get his heel act over by beating Mysterio, then Gable losing this week was puzzling. If the story is Rey getting his comeuppance on Otis at some point down the road, Gable losing tonight is still, well, puzzling. Regardless of which direction the story goes, this angle was meaningless.

-Root. Sasha. Banks. Vs. Bianca. Belair. In. Something. Other. Than. Reginald. Thanks.

-It’s good to see Murphy back given his ability to have a good match with anyone, but aligning him with Seth Rollins again? Ya know, if we get a 20-minute classic between him and Cesaro out of this instead of a four-minute tease, I suppose it’s worth it. If not, why are we going back in time and reliving the lukewarm nature of the Rollins/Murphy partnership?

-A really great follow-up promo from Crews after last week. Having a foundation is important and he’s found his.

-What is the plan for Bayley at WrestleMania? The Ding-Dong segments are fun and they line up perfectly with her character, but without much time left, it’s hard to imagine her in a big-time WrestleMania feud at this point. A bit of a shame given the run she’s had during WWE’s pandemic year.

-Daniel Bryan vs. Roman Reigns for the WWE Universal Championship is locked for WWE Fastlane after Bryan defeated Jey Uso inside a steel cage this week. Put Bryan in a main event match ahead of WrestleMania rather than at WrestleMania. Huh. Where did we see that play out before? So, Bryan is in an entirely different place now than he was back at WrestleMania 30. I get it. That said, he’s such a lovable act and you have to wonder how a crowd would be responding to the main event scene on Smackdown with him hovering around the top of the card, while not quite being at the top next to Roman Reigns.


NOW CHECK OUT HEYDORN’S DYNAMITE RECEIPT: HEYDORN’S DYNAMITE RECEIPT 3/3: Shaq delivers the best performance he could in a surprising match

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