WWE SMACKDOWN HITS & MISSES 11/25: Final hype for War Games misses, Lynch returns, more

BY BRIAN ZILEM, PWTORCH CONTRIBUTOR

Becky Lynch talks working War Games
PHOTO CREDIT: WWE

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

The 5th member was announced for team Belair – MISS

Terrific to see Becky Lynch back in the ring. The brawl from the ten women was fine, but the overall presentation of the reveal was lackluster at best. The tease was something easy that could have been a show-long hook, but WWE decided to get it out of the way within the first two minutes of the show.

Butch vs. Santos Escobar – MISS

This match had so much potential, but this one fell very flat. The distractions from the brawl backstage and Legado Del Fantasma led to Butch’s undoing as Santos pinned Butch with a Phantom driver. Santos Escobar now moves on to the Smackdown Cup Final.

Bray Wyatt promo – MISS

The most significant talking point I got from this segment was that Bray’s entrance might be longer than Roman’s. Bray said he didn’t jump L.A Knight. Uncle Howdy then jumped on the screen to say he would have sought vengeance against L.A Knight. I assume Bray Wyatt will pop up on the PLE for War games for some ring-in promo.

Hit Row vs. the Viking Raiders – MISS

Where to begin with this one?

This match only went two minutes and wasn’t good.

Michael Cole was bad during the match, stating the Viking Raiders seem more vicious when they used to be called the vicious Viking Raiders. Hit Row as a group is completely cooked, and it’s clear that Triple H had no plans when Hit Row returned to WWE.

Ricochet vs. Braun Strowman – (HIT)

The match doesn’t deserve a hit. However, I’m giving this a hit based on the intent behind the result. This message was sent directly to Braun Strowman to stop being an idiot on social media. Braun was buried throughout the match on commentary, then pinned by a distraction finish. Ricochet moves on to the Smackdown world cup finals to face Santos Escobar, where the long-term program seems to be Braun vs. Gunther.

Rhonda Rousey and Shayna Baszler vs Shotzi and Raquel Rodriguez – Double MISS

Beyond of shadow of a doubt, Rhonda Rousey is the worst promo in WWE. I’m curious to know who’s encouraging Rhonda to do promos like this, but someone needs to pull her aside asap. I actively cringe when Rhonda speaks on a microphone. And to make matters worse, this stink carried over onto Shayna before their match. Fixing this situation is very easy; give Rhonda a mouthpiece. It’s not that difficult. The match started as a handicap match, with Raquel getting jumped before the match began. Racquel took the fall as Rhonda and Shayna worked over Raquel’s injured shoulder for the submission win. I am curious to know how this benefits Shotzi at the PLE. It would be in the overall card’s best interest to be over in less than 4 minutes.

Sheamus and Drew McIntyre vs. the Bloodline – MISS

Babyfaces getting the advantage for War Games is so stupid, and I don’t understand why Triple continues to do this. The match was terrible officiating and gang wars at its finest. People getting pulled out directly in front of an official is an awful wrestling troupe. This should always be a D.Q any time it happens. Several shenanigans outside the ring led to Kevin Ownes giving Jey Uso a stunner, followed by a Brouge kick from Sheamus.

FINAL THOUGHTS: This was one of the weakest go-home shows to date in the Triple H era. Yet, people are still going to tune in to the War Games PLE despite WWE dragging its feet into the final week of a big show on Saturday. WWE isn’t worried about PPV numbers because of streaming, but it’s still their overall responsibility to get people on the hook for a big 4 PLE, which in my opinion, WWE did a half-ass job throughout the entire week.


CATCH-UP: 11/25 WWE SMACKDOWN RESULTS: Keller’s recap and analysis of final Survivor Series hype, Drew & Sheamus vs. Usos, Butch vs. Santos, Braun vs. Ricochet

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