WWE SMACKDOWN HITS & MISSES 7/30: The best in Banks is back, crowds are a factor, a bad night for Finn Balor, more

BY NICK BARBATI, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Finn Balor (photo credit Wade Keller © PWTorch)

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Hits

The Best is Back
Much has been made about Roman Reigns vs. John Cena, but look no further than this week’s show to see that the real main event of Summerslam is Sasha Banks vs. Bianca Belair. Banks looked incredibly motivated in her return this week with a spark that just separates her from the rest. Belair, for her part, looks worthy of being in there with the exceptional Banks, which is a compliment in itself. The women’s tag main event was very good with all playing their parts well, but make no mistake about it, it’s all about Banks being simply the best that made this show feel special.

Literally the Head of the Table
The moment of Paul Heyman putting Reigns as the literal head of the table was just so good. It’s regrettable that the shenanigans around Reigns this week were damaging and poorly coordinated because he was his usual spectacular self. That is an assumed ‘hit’ each week.

Crowd Elevated Undercard
The undercard of Smackdown was fine this week. Nothing overly spectacular, but some good action in the six-man tag and the Rey Mysterio vs. Jimmy Uso matches. Both of these matches were very much helped along by a hot crowd which has really elevated everything the past couple weeks.

Changing it Up
I actually liked the Edge and Rollins attack taking place off screen. It gives fans a reason to attend live tapings in the vein of ‘anything can happen at any time’. It was a nice move for a show that already had so much on its plate. With that said, it did give the overall vibe that maybe the WWE backstage is tiring of Edge’s role right now. He wasn’t exactly protected in his positioning here.

Overall Show
This isn’t a runaway hit for me, but now two weeks in to the new ‘season’ of WWE, and Smackdown is still carrying the torch of the best WWE show. The biggest hit, though, is that it is clear that several key Smackdown roster members are over with the crowd, which really was the biggest question of all.

Misses

Bad Habits Die Hard
Well that didn’t take long. After just a couple of weeks, John Cena has managed to find himself as annoying as ever and in a role that keeps other wrestlers (in this week’s case, Finn Balor) down. How can you justify calling him a face when he steals another man’s opportunity? How does it help anyone to insinuate how much weaker Balor is than Cena? It’s really a shame.

Balor’s Burial
This week was simply crushing for Finn Balor. Leaving last week’s episode, Balor had the intrigue and excitement surrounding the prospect of a championship shot giving him extra wind in his sails. This week he was insulted, outsmarted, and left for dead.

Make it Make Sense
How is there a disqualification in a 24/7 match when we have seen over and over again that the title changes hand regardless of situation? How does something like that even leave the writers room? This is just an excuse to show Reggie’s acrobatics on Sin Cara’s old trampoline. It is also simply wasted screen time.


CATCH-UP: 7/30 WWE SMACKDOWN TV RESULTS: McDonald’s report on Balor-Reigns fallout, John Cena’s next move, Summerslam hype

4 Comments on WWE SMACKDOWN HITS & MISSES 7/30: The best in Banks is back, crowds are a factor, a bad night for Finn Balor, more

  1. I’m high on Banks as a performer, too, but I think this praise here goes a bit overboard. Bianca Belair doesn’t belong in a main event at Kilgore High School gym just yet, let alone SummerSlam. A ridiculous statement. Also, spot on that Cena made a heelish move signing the contract. But the Cena hate is so 2005. Come on, man.

  2. As much as I “mark” for Cena, I was really hoping there would be no swerve and we would actually see Balor vs. Reigns. Reluctantly, I would have even taken Corbin vs. Reigns. As crowd favorite as he is, I just don’t need to see Cena in the title match at Summer Slam. A far more “interesting” matchup to me would be Cena vs. Balor, perhaps with the winner facing Reigns. And as much as I love Bianca Belair, her match with Sasha Banks should not be considered main event. But, that’s the way they are leaning so far. Maybe there will be another swerve in the next few weeks and we will get more exciting and less predictable matches.

  3. I was totally expecting Cena to walk over and hand the contract back to Balor. Completely surprised Cena signed it instead. Definite asshole heel move by Cena.

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