Mike Tedesco’s Smackdown Thoughts
January 2, 2015
By: Mike Tedesco of Wrestleview.com
The first official WWE show of the year is always Monday Night RAW, so whatever comes before that first RAW of the year is written like they’re just trying to get through the show. They usually bring much better stuff the next week. This show opened up like they were just trying to get through this one. They had their big angle on RAW with the return of The Authority, and they’ll make their big speech on RAW this coming week, so that leaves this show in limbo for what to do.
They marched Edge and Christian out for the first segment to basically kill time. It seems like they had an idea of what they wanted to do for the segment, but it never came to fruition. There were times they were just killing time and going, “Do you want us to kick off the show?” It was pretty damn lame to watch. There was no energy whatsoever. You could see on their faces that they knew the segment was crap, and they couldn’t do anything about it because everything must follow the script to the letter. No one is allowed to be creative or think on their feet, so as a consequence you get garbage segments like that. Joey Mercury and Jamie Noble read a statement from The Authority and said that Edge and Christian are still contractually in charge of the show for the evening, so that’s how they got around the absence of The Authority. This was twelve minutes I’ll never get back.
Bray Wyatt defeated Erick Rowan in what turned out to be an interesting match. It’s sad that after a nearly two year run with The Wyatt Family (which ended with no explanation) that this match was given away on a throwaway Smackdown with no fanfare whatsoever. Still, the commentators did a good job building up the significance of it (it’s not everyday I can say the commentators did a good job), and the interactions between Wyatt and Rowan were really neat. I like how the relationship wound up playing into the finish of the match where Rowan showed some remorse only to be blindsided by Wyatt. Wyatt’s promo was good enough to build to the final chapter of Wyatt/Ambrose on Monday (well the final chapter until they pretend this never happened and do it again a year or two down the line).
The six-man tag with The Usos and R-Truth beating Adam Rose, Gold and Stardust was time wasting fun. It’s already established that nothing of note is going to happen on this show, so the least they can do is make the time wasting stuff a little fun. This certainly hit those points and was a good six-man tag that means absolutely nothing in the long run.
When Edge announced that Ryback would face Big Show on the show, the lukewarm response the crowd gave it was the same I felt sitting at home. It actually turned out to be fairly passable, in my opinion at least. There was nothing really wrong with it. It’s two big lumbering guys clubbing away at each other. It’s not meant to be pretty. The finish was pretty decent. I liked Rusev’s interference, and the crowd definitely responded to the tease of a showdown between the two. I’m actually looking forward to that match. I’m assuming we’ll see more of Ryback in the main event (I’m writing these thoughts as I watch).
I really like the tag team of Cesaro and Tyson Kidd. They were really impressive against Los Matadores. I love their tag team finisher. That was killer. As much as I want them to, they’re not going to do anything with Cesaro. The way he stumbled through that promo on RAW, I don’t expect them to change that, as they must feel vindicated. This tag team is a good way for both men to get some face time in and show what they can do. It wasn’t that long ago that Cesaro and Tyson Kidd were involved in that awesome triple threat on Smackdown against Dolph Ziggler for the Intercontinental Title. I think that was the Smackdown from England in November. Both guys deserve better, so I’m hoping they make the best of this situation and grow from it.
The Dean Ambrose stuff was quick and painless. I love Ambrose, but when they give him material like that, it just isn’t good. So let me get this straight: Ambrose is going to commit vehicular manslaughter this coming Monday after he removes all of Wyatt’s fingers. I’m not a fan of over-exaggerated threats, which now seems to be the writing team’s flavor of the week. First Seth Rollins said he was going to “kill” Edge, and now we get Ambrose’s promo. It’s just not my cup of tea. I remember watching some TNA PPV from 2011 and hearing Christopher Daniels say he was going to murder AJ Styles on live TV. I got the same kind of feelings of “this is stupid” running through my head from that.
I’m not terribly impressed with The Ascension’s debut this week. Their match was so short that there was nothing impressive about it on RAW, and tonight they cut an ill-fated promo where they pointed out that they’re basically ripping off The Road Warriors and Demolition. What was wrong with their NXT gimmick that it needed to be tweaked like this?
The Edge and Christian backstage segments, simply put, weren’t that great. It was just a bunch of corny jokes and “gags.”
The main event with Roman Reigns and Rusev was pretty good, but you it wasn’t going to have a clean finish. They’re not going to beat Reigns anytime soon nor will they do the same to Rusev. I automatically dislike watching matches where I know there’s not going to be a conclusion. It just begs the question of why make it happen in the first place. Reigns got even with the Big Show, so there’s that. I figured we’d see Ryback, but he didn’t make an appearance.
Overall, I’d say this show was just a massive time waster. It had the feel of “let’s just finish this up and get to RAW next week.” There was some good stuff on here, but none of it means a damn thing, so in the end, you missed absolutely nothing.
Bump of the Night: Cesaro giving Fernando a Very European Uppercut on a suicide dive!
Match of the Night: Bray Wyatt vs. Erick Rowan ** 1/4
Final Rating: **
Please check out my live recap of RAW every Monday at 8 PM EST.
Thanks for reading!
Mike Tedesco is the official recapper of WWE RAW and Smackdown for Wrestleview.com.