This week’s edition of Friday Night SmackDown, came to us from this side of the Atlantic, in Manchester, England (This Monday’s Raw was taped in Manchester this past Friday too) In a taped edition of the blue brand’s flagsgip show, it was a pretty good episode.
The show kicked off with (despite the opinion of many) our first high. King Corbin came to the ring, teasing his opponent for the evening, The Big Dog, Roman Reigns, Corbin hyped up the upcoming Survivor Series PPV. He did howver, blame Roman Reigns for last week’s NXT invasion, saying that Reigns is not a real leader. He listed Reigns’ biggest accomplishments, including his second,real life battle with leukemia. The crowd clapped in Roman’s honour during this mention, in a nice little moment during the opening segment.
Corbin then mentioned that the fickle fans, only seem to care about what Roman Reigns has done lately, which is nothing. He says that Roman Reigns is half the man that he used to be, The Shield abandoned him, and he’s no longer The Big Dog, that his bark, sounds more like a little Chihuahua, and Corbin says that Reigns has tiny marbles for testicles. Corbin ends the promo by saying that Reigns will be here later tonight, and says he’ll defeat Reigns, leaving him there for fans to take out their doggy bags and clean up the excrement that he’ll leave in the ring. It was gross and it certainly wasn’t Corbin’s best promo, but the material is more to blame on this night. For what it was, it was funny and it got the job done.
Up next, we saw Kayla Braxton interviewing New Day members Big E and Kofi Kingston, they dedicated their upcoming SmackDown Tag Team Championship match to their partner Xavier Woods, who is out of action with an injury. They called their opponents for the night, Champs, The Revival, legit, but said they keep talking mess, and that tonight, New Day need their 7th Tag Title reign, as they need to catch up to Charlotte Flair (who is a 10x Women’s Champion in her own right) Great promo segment from The New Day as always.
The Tag Team Title match was up next, it was both a high and low, the match was a decent match, but the talent are capable of much more. The end of the match saw The Revival go to hit a Shatter Machine, Big E reversed it, allowing Kofi to come in and hit a missile dropkick, and a double team Trouble In Paradise for the pinfall victory, giving us new SmackDown Tag Team Champions, and a 7th reign for The New Day – Great match, that was a high. The low part, was that it changes up a Survivor Series match, with the PPV being Raw vs SmackDown vs NXT, The New Day will be replacing The Revival in the triple threat match involving 3 brands’ Champions. The match at Survivor Series will now be Raw Tag Team Champions The Viking Raiders, vs SD Champs The New Day, vs NXT Tag Team Champions, Undisputed Era. A solid match, but many were looking forward to seeing The Revival in the mix.
Another high next, as Kayla interviews Banks & Bayley about Shayna’s attack last week. Bayley and Sasha mention that Shayna is trying to be relevant by coming after the two women that put the NXT women’s division on the map, making it what it is today. Bayley brings up the fact that she’s the only woman to hold all of the women’s titles, and that she is ready for Survivor Series.
Bayley comes out to the ring for commentary during her pal Sasha Banks’ match vs Nikki Cross.
Sasha Banks gets new theme music! A brilliant remix of her current theme, featuring her cousin Snoop Dogg. This is Sasha’s first match since her Hell In a Cell match vs Becky Lynch back in September, and her first match on SmackDown since being drafted to the blue brand.
It was a solid match, Cross put up a decent fight, about to hit The Purge on Sasha, when Banks reversed it, hitting a Backstabber, and locking in the Bank Statement, forcing Nikki Cross to tap out.
After the match, NXT Women’s Champion Shayna Baszler attacks Bayley. This part was another low, NXT invading both Raw and SmackDown weekly seems a bit too much, the invasion angle has a tendency to be overdone fairly quick. It’s coming dangerously close to that level…
We head backstage next to see Sami Zayn and Daniel Bryan talking, Zayn says that Bryan should have celebrated Cesaro and Nakamura’s win earlier over Ali and Gable. Sami says that he knows that Bryan has already made a decision on whether to join him and Nakamura. The lights flicker off in the room, they come back on, and we see The Fiend attack Bryan as Sami runs away. The Fiend locks in a Mandible Claw on Bryan, with a maniacal laugh as we fade to black. Brilliant stuff here, it looks like we may have The Fiend Bray Wyatt’s first Universal Title program, if it indeed is Daniel Bryan, we’re in for some fantastic storytelling. This segment was certainly a high in the evening.
Next was a match that was supposed to take place last week, NXT’s Bianca Belair attacked both Dana Brooke and Carmella, forcing the match to be postponed for this week. We saw Brooke and Carmella to team up to take on Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, the winners would grab a spot in the Team SmackDown women’s match at Suvivor Series – it was a very quick match that saw Dana Brooke hit a nice swanton to pick up the win and spot for her team. It was great to see Dana Brooke get some shine, we need to see her reach her potential more, her future could be so bright if she’s properly given the green light, the fact that it was a short match is a low, but the result was a high.
It was time for the main event next, King Corbin vs Roman Reigns, it was a fairly decent match, they’re both big guys, and they always work well together. There was some inteference from Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode, who are quickly taken out by Roman Reigns. Corbin nailed an End Of Days for the pinfall victory. A final high to end this week’s SmackDown, It progresses the feud and gives Corbin more momentum, which is a good thing, he’s a brilliant worker and the ending wasn’t as predictable as most assumed.
Highs – 6
Lows – 3