Dustin Holland reviews WWE Smackdown for 7/9/15

WWE Smackdown Review
July 10, 2015
By: Dustin Holland of Wrestleview.com

With high hopes spilling over from last week, I was looking forward to another above average show and this week almost made it. It was an eventful show packed with storyline progressing segments and matches. With only two weeks until Battleground it seems they are doing a better job than of late, getting to the climax of a storyline instead of just throwing it all together in the last week before a PPV.

Heyman Factor

The opening promo with Seth Rollins looked to be just another Rollins promo where he would come out and say he was the best ever, talk about what he has done since he has been champion and what he will do to his opponent at the PPV. We almost had the trifecta until Paul Heyman came out and did what Heyman does best; make other people’s promo better. He took the mundane in Seth Rollins and actually made him look good as the promo progressed. Paul Heyman came out to promote Brock Lesnar, which he did, but he also in turn promoted Seth Rollins in a way that made this match at Battleground seem relevant. The last few weeks leading up to this match have been dragging, not only because they have been promoting it for five weeks, but because it seems like it is just another stop on the Brock Lesnar part time champion express. Rollins actually looked legitimately aggravated at Paul Heyman as he fired back with what he would do at Battleground. The fire in Rollins as he closed the promo is what he has been missing lately. Instead of whining about what has happened, he actually showed passion for what will take place next Sunday. That is what Paul Heyman has done for years, make people superstars and maybe Thursday was the start for Rollins moving forward. Another Paul Heyman Guy? What do you think?

Orton Out of Nowhere on Smackdown

A rare appearance by Randy Orton on Smackdown provided some pop for the audience as he came out to promote his match with Sheamus at Battleground. It was pretty cut and dry and to the point as Orton went to walk out of the ring. I was almost disappointed that it only lasted a minute or two as Orton is one of those guys I like promos from. Then it happened, my favorite moment of the night when my “Favorite” (insert eye roll here) tag team The Ascension came out. Seeing them RKO’d out of nowhere made them relevant for a few seconds and then my distain for them was back. It didn’t last long. It was nice to see Orton on Smackdown though.

Rusev in Boots

A moment that I would usually brush aside in Rusev returning to in ring action actually made me interested in what will happen now that he is back. I have not been the biggest vocal supporter of Rusev in the past, but after squashing Fandango in the match Thursday night, I started to see him for what he could be. Instead of being the Russian bad guy, why not just “The Bad Guy”? I understand the need for international rivalries in wrestling, but I see Rusev turning into one of those heels we could love to hate. If he stays out of the USA vs. Russia type feuds and just focuses on being a heel, I can see him sticking around for a long time. Rusev is a very good technical wrestler and can provide more than just a match providing a face to get over with the crowd. And how about those boots? It makes those kicks look ten times more powerful and the sound is awesome. The boots could be nothing more than a safety precaution but they have already paid off.

Quick Thoughts

* Dean Ambrose and Bo Dallas match was very sloppy. There were a few noticeable miscues and it looked like both of them were having an off night. (Too much Batman Arkham Knight?)

* The Bray Wyatt mind games continued with the “anyone but you” shtick. I haven’t figured out what it will mean yet, but maybe that’s the point. I am also wondering if the storyline with Roman Reigns daughter was too uncomfortable and they dropped it or if it will come back this week as we lead into the PPV.

* The New Day continues to impress as the best heel tag team in a long time. Titus and Big E did what they were supposed to do last night by fueling the fire between New Day and The Prime Time Players. I would like to see more of Darren Young in singles competition so he could be showcased a little more. I like the Prime Time Players as a team, but I would like to see both guys get a chance at singles competition.

* The Divas division still needs help. The Bella’s did what the Bella’s do best…nothing! Nikki has no wrestling ability whatsoever. Brie has shown flashes and hopefully Daniel Bryan can guide her since his career is basically over. Tamina may be ok, but it’s too early to tell. Bring on the NXT!

* The Champion vs. Champion match lasted longer than I thought it would. I was waiting for Rollins to just run away which he did try to do but it actually turned into a pretty good back and forth. The Seth Rollins runaway angle is playing out well, being that he will have nowhere to run next Sunday when Lesnar gets a hold of him.

* Ryback as Intercontinental Champion may be coming to an end next Sunday, but he is doing an excellent job right now. He provides a pop from the crowd that rates with the best of them. He is good for the product as a fighting champion. That is what they need more of in WWE. Not the part time variety that win the belt and leave for “vacation.”

Favorite Moment:
RKO’s to The Ascension by Randy Orton

Least Favorite Moment:
Ambrose vs Dallas…the whole match. That was a waste of two top talents. (You thought I’d go Diva Match here, didn’t you?)

Thanks for reading. Please feel free to comment and let me know what you thought of the show. Have a great weekend!

Follow me on Twitter: @DustinHolland84