wrestling / TV Reports

Winfree’s WWE Smackdown Review 9.23.22

September 23, 2022 | Posted by Robert Winfree
WWE Smackdown The Bloodline Image Credit: WWE
The 411 Rating
Community Grade
Your Grade
Winfree’s WWE Smackdown Review 9.23.22  

Hey there people, another Friday and another episode of Smackdown. Tonight the WWE is in my neck of the woods and they need to start building up Extreme Rules immediately if not sooner. But Roman Reigns will be present, his opponent for Sweet Saudi Blood Money, uh I mean Crown Jewel got announced and I’m sure he’ll have things to say about having to wrestle Logan Paul. The Usos will defend their tag team titles against Butch and Ridge Holland, a title change seems quite unlikely but the match has some potential as long as Ridge’s involvement is limited. Karrion Kross and Drew McIntyre continue their budding rivalry, there’s a decent chance their first bout is at Extreme Rules so that could be furthered tonight. Braun Strowman will be in action when he takes on Otis, hey remember when Otis was incredibly over and had gobs of momentum? Pepperidge Farms remembers. There’s also been a lot of hints about a big reveal tonight given some needlessly cryptic and complicated clues that’ve been playing lately, so naturally the speculation is that Bray Wyatt could show up. Last week Shotzi began her attempt to take on the record for most face/heel changes when she randomly became a face to help Raquel Rodriguez fight off Damage Control. Alright, that’s all the preamble I’m giving out this week so let’s get to the action.

Up first, our Tribal Chief, the Head of the Table, the Undisputed WWWE Universal Champion, Roman Reigns. Roman has the entire entourage in tow, including Tribal Jester Sami Zayn and the now gold-less Solo Sikoa. Roman gets a mic from Paul Heyman and gets the crowd to acknowledge him. Heyman gets the mic from Roman and proceeds to introduce himself then wonders what the name for people from Utah is, then settles on “Salt Lake Citidiots”, which is pretty clever. There are a lot of items on the agenda tonight, first Roman is still the man and while he’s heard people lamenting that Drew should have won the titles because it was his time, and his home turf. Well the entire universe, the multiverse, the meta-verse, it all belongs the Roman Reigns. Now that Drew has another bridge to “Kross” it’s time to talk about Solo. Heyman brings up how Solo was sent by the elders of the Samoan Dynasty, he was sent because Brock took out the wise man and the Usos are busy, now someone has to work to fight off the conspiracies against Roman and Solo is that man. Now with an enforcer for the Bloodline they’re even more unstoppable. Which all frees up Jimmy and Jey to continue pursuing history in the tag team division. Jimmy hypes their title match with the Brawling Brutes tonight, and predicts they’ll retain. Roman gets the mic from Jey, he interrupted their catchphrase and suddenly everyone pays even more attention. Roman calls forward Solo, and warns him that the elders might have sent him but Solo answers to Roman, then tells Solo to acknowledge him. Solo gets the mic, and says he acknowledges his Tribal Chief, then they embrace. With that the Bloodline starts to leave, but Sami Zayn cuts their music as he’s got something to say. Jey is pissed, Roman is a little off put as well. Sami says he’s not technically blood, but the way the Bloodline has taken him in as of late has made him want to express his gratitude and acknowledge his Tribal Chief. Roman gets the mic back and has a real nasty smile as he looks at Sami, then says he likes Sami. . . but why is he speaking right now. He’s been seeing what’s happening, but why does Sami have their shirt on? Roman wants to know what Sami wants out of this. Sami has no answer. Roman has things he wants though, he wants Sami to take the Bloodline shirt off. Sami can’t tell if Roman is joking or not, and he can explain what happened with Logan Paul last week. Oh, you mean last week when Sami insulted the wise man. Roman wont tell Sami to take the shirt off again. Sami doesn’t move, so Jey tears the shirt off of Sami. Roman needs Sami to listen for once, he never wants to see Sami in Bloodline merch ever again. Sami looks heartbroken. Roman then says he got Sami a new one and tosses him an Honorary Uce t-shirt. Jey isn’t terribly thrilled, but Sami’s like a kid at Christmas and hugs both Jimmy and Solo. Roman then prompts Sami to express gratitude, and Sami acknowledges his tribal chief, then hugs Roman and it takes Roman more than a few seconds to return the hug. We got a really nice hint about how nasty this is going to get when they turn on Sami, and I approve. We see the Brawling Brutes watching TV at an awkward angle in the back then head to break.

Liv Morgan almost gets a jobber entrance, which her opponent did get, as we come back.

Match #1: Liv Morgan vs. Lacey Evans

They tie up, Evans pushes Liv into the corner and pie faces her. Liv with some slaps, then they hit the ropes and Evans trips Liv down then punches the body. Again they hit the ropes and Evans lands a boot to a jumping Liv. Evans yells that Liv is weak and tosses her into the turnbuckles a few times. Liv lands a shotgun dropkick, then some awkward running before landing a knee strike. Evans sweeps the legs of Liv then grabs a rest hold. They awkwardly move to the ropes and Evans lands a knee from the apron then hits another sweep. Liv avoids a stomp, then eats a body blow and Evans rams Liv into the ring post to send us to break.

Evans is working a rest hold as we come back. Commentary is trying to get over how extreme Evans is vs. the very not extreme Liv. That’s just sad. Evans tosses Liv around and yells at her about not being extreme. Liv tries to fire up, and Evans boots her down for a 2 count. Evans with a head scissors takedown then she holds the head scissors and does some pushups. Liv kicks her way out of the hold and they separate. Evans rolls out of the ring, then goes under it to find a broom, which she discards, then finds a kendo stick. Liv avoids a kendo shot, then hits a Codebreaker then the ObLIVion to pick up the win.


Rating: DUD

That was kind of a mess, timing issues, slow pacing, too long, no chemistry between the wrestlers, the champion looking mostly like a chump the whole time, just a big fat miss.

Post match Liv gets the kendo stick and after some deliberation starts laying into Evans with it. They fight out of the ring and we get a White Russian leg sweep into the barricade. Liv goes under the ring now, and finds a table which she sets up. Now Liv puts Evans on the table, then climbs to the top rope and hits a senton through the table. Apparently this proves Liv is extreme and is ready for Ronda Rousey. The post match angle was all the match should have been.

Hit Row are in the back infringing on the Street Profits Greek chorus gimmick as they run down the card. The Profits show up to show them how to do that gimmick properly. Shinsuke Nakamura is here as well, good for him I guess, and he thinks Braun will beat Otis as we head to break.

Post break Sami complains that catering didn’t have a vegan meal for him then runs into Madcap Moss and Ricochet. Ricochet and Moss call him obnoxious and unbearable, just more than usual. Sami warns them that insulting him is insulting the Bloodline. Ricochet warns him that he’s nothing, and Solo Sikoa comes from the blindside to wipe out both Ricochet and Moss, yelling at them the whole time. Sami claims he was just about to do that after pulling Solo off of them.

Next is a hype job for the Usos and their tag team history in WWE. 432 days as Smackdown tag team champions after beating Rey and Dominik, then took out RK-Bro to become undisputed. Now the Usos are closing in on history, they’ve had a longer reign than the Road Warriors, the Hart Foundation, or the Dudley Boys. Only Demolition and New Day have longer reigns, but the Usos will surpass them soon and they will take their place in tag team immortality. That sends us to break.

We come back, and here come New Day.

Match #2 – Tag Team Match: New Day (Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods) vs. Maximum Male Models (Mace and Mansoor) w/ Max and Maxxine Dupri

Mansoor and Woods get us going, they tie up then hit the ropes but Mansoor just struts then tags in Mace who hits a leg lariat. Some elbows from Mace and lays into Woods as Maxxine takes a camera from one of the ringside photographers. Mansoor tags in and they double team Woods. Some elbows from Mansoor then he grabs a chin lock. Woods fights back with some strikes, then he back drops Mansoor to the floor. Mace is able to tag in and he cheap shots Kofi off the apron then scoops up Woods and slams him. Mace heads to the second rope for an elbow drop that gets a 2 count. Mansoor tags in, but Maxxine halts them to pose so she can take pictures. Max doesn’t like this, and Kofi is able to drop kick Mace out of the ring leading to Woods grabbing the Backwoods on Mansoor and getting the pin.


Rating: 2 stars

Pretty generic stuff here.

Post match Max loses his mind of the lapse in judgement and storms off.

Next is a recap of the return of Braun Strowman to hype up his match with Otis. The ring crew is reinforcing the ring for that match as we head to break.

In the back the catering crew is hanging out in the Hit Row lounge. Hit Row eject Los Lotharios who were hitting on B-Fab, then everyone decides to watch the next match. There better be a payoff for these segments.

Match #3: Braun Strowman vs. Otis w/ Chad Gable

Both men circle each other then tie up, neither man gets an edge so Braun lands a kick and some punches then tosses Otis out of the corner. Shotgun dropkick from Braun sends Otis out of the ring, then Braun heads out of the ring and charges at Otis, but Gable gets in his way to disrupt the momentum. Otis then attacks Braun from behind and tosses him into the barricade. Otis picks Braun up and drives him into the ring post. Back in the ring Otis hits the ropes and hits a discus lariat for a 1 count. Avalanche in the corner from Otis then he clubs Braun down. More clubbing blows from Otis but he runs into a spinebuster and both men are down. Otis rolls out of the ring to recover but Braun slips out and charges then runs over both Gable and Otis. Braun tears his shirt off then tosses Otis back into the ring. Gable tries to hold Braun outside the ring, Braun just launches him over the barricade. Back in the ring Braun scoops up Otis, but can’t hold him and Otis slips free then hits a World’s Strongest Slam for barely a 2 count. Otis climbs the ropes for a Vader Bomb, hits it but again only a 2 count. Now Otis climbs the ropes for a splash, but Braun rolls away. Braun has had enough, he sets for the powerbomb, hits it, and pins to win.

OFFICIAL RESULT: Braun Strowman won

Rating: 2.5 stars

Adequate hoss match, a few hiccups here and there but Otis didn’t look like a chump in defeat.

In the back Kayla interviews the Brawling Brutes. Butch calls tonight Fight Night, and we get a chant to that effect. Ridge says they’ll win the titles. Sheamus says the Bloodline has an uphill fight, they love a good fight and just ask Gunther if you don’t believe him. He then says he and Gunther will have a rematch in a couple of weeks on the Smackdown season premier (hell yes), but tonight is about Butch and Ridge becoming the new tag team champions. Butch runs off while Sheamus and Ridge chant to send us to break. Sheamus is still clearly the mouthpiece of the group with good reason.

Post break here comes Drew McIntyre, he’s got a belt or a leather strap in one hand so I imagine he’s going to give us a story about the importance of it before challenging Karrion Kross to a strap match. Drew gets a mic and plays with the crowd. He thinks after all these years we all know him pretty well, and certainly know he doesn’t like games and prefers to handle business face to face in the ring. Well it seems Kross didn’t get that memo as he plays games and wont face Drew like a man. Drew’s got news for Kross, he went to the top and got Kross his first big match. At Extreme Rules Kross with wrestle Drew McIntyre in a match designed to make sure there’s no running, a match for maximum pain, a Strap Match. OK, no anecdote at least. The music of Kross interrupts this, and here’s Scarlett on the ramp in monochrome. Scarlett saunters to the ring, and Kross comes from behind and we’ve got a brawl between Drew and Kross. Drew lands a headbutt then posts Kross and gets the strap. Drew attaches the strap to Koss, then to himself and we get a stare off. Boot from Drew then he whips Kross a couple of times. Kross rolls out of the ring but Drew pulls him back to the ring and whips him again. Clothesline from Drew, then Scarlett gets between Drew and Kross and Drew backs down, then we get a botched fireball spot and Kross attacks Drew only to get caught in a spinebuster. They improv a bit and Scarlett lands a low blow to Drew. Kross undoes the strap then just tosses it onto Drew and steps over him on his way out of the ring. Kross thinks better of that, and locks in the Krossjacket and yells that he’ll see Drew at Extreme Rules as Drew fades. All three of them get credit for working around the fireball mishap as we head to break.

We get a recap of the Kross and Drew segment, clearly seeing the fireball miss.

Here come Damage Control.

Match #4: Dakota Kai w/ Bayley and Iyo Sky vs. Raquel Rodriguez

Raquel immediately overpowers Kai and lands shoulder blows in the corner. Running Snake Eyes from Raquel. Kai kicks Raquel a few times, then Raquel blocks a Scorpion Kick, tries a Tejana Bomb but between Bayley and Iyo they distract Raquel and allow Kai to hit the Scorpion kick and take over. Here comes Shotzi to attack Bayley on the outside, she fights Bayley and Iyo, the distraction allows Raquel to roll up Kai and get a pin.

OFFICIAL RESULT: Raquel Rodriguez won

Rating: DUD

More angle than match, and way too short to mean anything.

Post match Bayley and Iyo take out Shotzi then attack Raquel, Shotzi comes in and hits Bayley with the Never Wake Up. Raquel and Shotzi clear the ring and stand tall.

We check in with the Hit Row lounge again. This time Los Lotharios show up and attack Ashante and Top Dollah, then powder and Hit Row does the “hold me back bro” thing as we head to break.

Here come the Brutes, looks like our main event will get some time. We get both entrances then ring announcements, which sends us to break. OK, not quite as much time as I thought.

Match #5 – Undisputed Tag Team Title Match: (c) The Usos (Jimmy and Jey) w/ Sami Zayn and Solo Sikoa vs. Ridge Holland and Butch w/ Sheamus

Butch attacks Jey as the match begins. Butch goes for the arm of Jey, and right to the fingers then the old arm stomp. Ridge tags in and lands a boot but Jimmy lands a kick to the head then Jey drops Ridge with a right hand. Jimmy tags in and starts laying into Ridge with strikes in the corner. Jey tags back in and lands a forearm in the corner but runs into a Kitchen Sink knee. Butch tags in and resumes going for the arm of Jey. Butch and Ridge tie up Jimmy in the ropes and they unload on Jimmy then send him to the floor. Ridge tags in, then tags out but Jey starts fighting back and avoids a powerslam from Ridge then shoves him out of the ring. They botch an attempted toss from Jimmy to Jey and Butch falls awkwardly to the floor. Everyone congregates on the floor, Jey still annoyed with Sami, but he grabs Butch and tosses him into the barricade. Jey tosses Butch back into the ring and tags in Jimmy. Double team slam from the Usos get a 2 count as we get a commercial break.

Butch starts his comeback on Jimmy as we come back to action, that’s cut off by an enziguri from Jimmy for a near fall. Jey tags in and punches Butch to the floor. The ref is distracted by Jey and we nearly get Sami interference but here’s Sheamus to scare him off. Jey objects to Sami getting involved and they trade words. The distraction allows Butch to land an enziguri and both men are down. Both men tag out and Ridge runs wild with his uncomfortable offense. Jimmy lands a super kick and a right hand, then Ridge catches him with a tilt a whirl slam for a 2 count. Ridge removes his elbow pad, but runs into a right hand then eats a Samoan Drop but Butch had tagged in and lands a Shining Wizard to Jimmy for a 2 count.

Jimmy gets low bridged, but Jey tagged in as Butch hits an asai moonsault to Jimmy. Butch with a snap German suplex to Jey then a buzzsaw kick for a 2 count. Some stomps to the leg from Butch, then Jimmy tags in to land a kick to Butch, Jey follows with a super kick. Double super kick to Ridge, but Butch fights back only to moonsault into a double super kick for only a near fall. Jey tags in, then set for the 1D but Butch fights free with a kick to Jey and a DDT to Jimmy. Butch looks to tag out, Jey cuts him off but Butch with some finger manipulation then tags in Ridge. Ridge tries an Alabama Slam, but Jimmy tags in and kicks Ridge, then Ridge avoids a double super kick and hoists both Usos up for a double back body drop. Butch tags in, then Buzzsaw kick into a Northern Lights Bomb connects but Jey breaks up the pin to save the titles. Sami grabs a chair from the crowd and looks to slide it into the ring, Sheamus stops him then stalks Sami, but here come Imperium and they lay out Sheamus. Butch and Ridge run into super kicks, then Butch eats a 1D and we’re done.

OFFICIAL RESULT: The Usos retained the titles

Rating: 3 stars

Good match, though I’m annoyed we’ve got Butch eating pins because Ridge is the one who should be doing so right now. That said the Brutes looked good even in defeat, Butch worked his butt off here, and the Imperium run in was easily predictable but not in a bad way.

The Bloodline celebrates in the ring as the episode ends.

The final score: review Good
The 411
Very up and down episode this week, it did a lot of seed planting though. The opening segment and main event match are the highlights. Kross and Drew advanced, and I approve though the strap stipulation feels more than a little forced. Liv vs. Lacey was a pretty poor match with a decent post match angle to try and get Liv over as extreme, because this is the 3 week period of time when we're supposed to care about that being a thing. The announcement that Gunther vs. Sheamus 2 happens in a couple of weeks on Smackdown is welcome, hopefully they just let them wrestle again. Overall a Good enough episode but there was a chunk of filler to sift through.

article topics :

WWE Smackdown, Robert Winfree