The opening from Friday night’s show was fantastic. MizTV is often a complete waste of time, but I’m glad the creative team leveraged an establish segment to further an ongoing storyline. The Miz, Big Show, and Dolph Ziggler being together as a unified front made a lot of sense; likewise, it gave Triple H another way to continue building his corrupt boss heel-persona. I’m also happy when the opening establishes a theme for the night.
The Miz continued to show more relevance than he has in months (years?) in a solid outing against Randy Orton. These two weren’t given a ton of time to work. However, I’m glad that Orton let Miz establish himself in the ring, and think the segment played out about as good as expected. Also, The Shield came out, but the trio didn’t distract from the match itself. Good stuff from all men involved.
I’m kind of sick of handicap matches. Dolph Ziggler has done nothing but lose lately, as he did against The Shield on Friday night, and it makes me angry.
The Wyatt Family had a decent filler segment against Tons of Funk. I guess creative had to remind us that the trio still exists, but I think WWE should have established some type of post-Kane ongoing storyline to capture our attention. Simply putting them against other random opponents and having Bray Wyatt scream “Follow the Buzzards!” is starting to wear a little thin.
Daniel Bryan continues to prove that he’s the hottest thing in professional wrestling. In fact, I can’t remember being this excited about a single wrestler since CM Punk circa Summer 2011. Bryan came out to a MONSTER ovation when he was fighting off The Shield with a steel-chair, and every single thing he does is intense, believable, and exciting. I’ve called him the SCSA of the Internet Generation, and I stand by it. He is an absolute star.
Ryback returned to the ring on Friday Night, and plodded around like the big man he is. Vickie booked him against Bryan because apparently Bryan was bulling The Shield, and bullies deserve to fight other bullies. Huh? I think there’s something there for Ryback, but his character needs a tweak to feel relevant.
Many kudos to Big Show for reminding us what a veteran of his stature can do. He was tasked with sitting at ringside all night. Fortunately, Big Show used his emotion to tell a story throughout the night. His facial expressions made the pain real. At the end of the night, when Triple H demanded Big Show not save Daniel Bryan and instead leave the arena, the moment was captivating because Big Show had been building it up all night long. He gave us the demand – we WANTED to see his revenge. When the eventual payoff comes, expect the crowd to eat it up.
Overall show was good yet again. Smackdown has been on a role recently. I don’t think the ring work was quite as good as last week, or that the show had as many “must see” segments, but the blue brand continues to make Friday nights another wrestling destination. Bravo!
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