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Wrestling’s 4Rs: The Right, Wrong and Ridiculous of WWE Smackdown

November 28, 2017 | Posted by Dylan Diot
WWE Smackdown Ruby Riot Liv Morgan Sarah Logan Royal Rumble
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Wrestling’s 4Rs: The Right, Wrong and Ridiculous of WWE Smackdown  

How the 4Rs of wRestling Work! (WWE Smackdown Edition)
Here is a quick explanation of the 4R’s. I will group my feelings on the show in various categories: The Right, the wRong and the Ridiculous. The Right is stuff that worked very well: a great promo, a great match and so on. PuRgatoRy is a section between the right and wrong. It shows equal traits from both sides that cannot be ignored and needs discussed. It is not a bad place per say, as things can get remedied or go the wrong way the very next week. The wRong is what it sounds like: bad matches, bad or boring promos and so on. The Ridiculous is stuff that had no right on TV: Stupid angles and so on. And there is always a possibility of a 5th R, which is as bad as they come. This column is supposed to be analytical, and at the right time very critical of the shows, it was the whole reason it was created. This is not a “mark” column, nor a “smark” column, our goal is to analyze the show from many different fronts, reward the good and call out the bad. We will not apologize for our opinions, they are as they are, whether positive or negative.

SMACKDOWN 11.21.17
– Shelton Benjamin d. Jey Uso [**1/4]
– The Bludgeoning Brothers d. The Hype Bros [SQUASH]
– WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship- Natalya d. Charlotte Flair © by DQ [**1/2]
– Lumberjack Match- Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn d. The New Day [**1/2]

THE Right:
The Hype Bros vs. The Bludgeoning Brothers: Harper drilled Ryder with a big boot on the floor and sent him into the steps. Rowan charged at Mojo in the corner and he eats a big boot of his own from Harper. T-Bomb on Mojo gave them the quick win. From an in-ring standpoint this was a great re-debut for Harper and Rowan. They obliterated the Hype Bros and looked like the monsters they were presented to be. Their overall presentation is solid and over time hopefully they’ll be able to flesh out their characters but who now the goal needs to be to build them up as unstoppable machines for a future clash with the Usos and this was a strong first step in that direction.

AJ Styles Discusses Survivor Series: AJ Styles talked about the love he received after the match with Brock Lesnar but he isn’t thrilled that he lost. Styles talked about how we wasn’t the one who had to limp backstage after the match and said that Rocky won the rematch, so he told Lesnar that he’ll be waiting if they want to meet again. Styles turned his attention to Jinder Mahal and told Jinder to come down and try to take the WWE Championship from him. Mahal appeared on screen and claimed he was focused on Brock Lesnar, which caused him to be caught off guard by AJ Styles in the UK. He said he will invoke his rematch at Clash of Champions and The Singh Brothers attacked Styles from behind. Styles fought them off and he laid out one of them with the Styles Clash as Jinder watched from the screen. This was a very solid promo segment. Styles portraying his defeat as a disappointment rather than a failure put over the idea that he was and still could be a match for Brock Lesnar and kept the door open for another clash down the line. The Styles/Jinder back and forth was decent and did a good job kick starting their program again heading toward Clash of Champions, so a very productive segment overall.

WWE Smackdown Women’s Championship – Charlotte Flair © vs. Natalya/The NXT Women Arrive: Charlotte threw some chops to start but Natalya quickly cut her off with a discus clothesline. Charlotte hit some punches in the corner but Natalya took her out with the Liger Bomb for a near fall. Natalya grabbed the Sharpshooter but Charlotte fought out. Charlotte hit the Lethal Combination driving Natalya into the corner and she went up top. Moonsault by Charlotte ate the knees of Natalya and she drilled Natalya with a Spear. Natalya bailed but then Ruby Riot, Sarah Logan and Liv Morgan came through the crowd and attacked Natalya. Then they turn their attention to Charlotte and they lay her out with their respective finishers. Earlier in the evening, they attacked Naomi backstage and also destroyed Becky Lynch when she tried to make the save, so they took our four members of the Women’s Division in one night. The Flair/Natalya match was on its way to being at the level of their effort from last week, with solid back and forth action the whole way through. I have no problem with the finish and the transition to the assault by the new arrivals from NXT, as they really did a tremendous job of bring them in hot with them just annilationg several of the top women on the brand. I said a few weeks ago that the division needed some fresh blood, so bringing these three in was perfect timing. They were immediately treated as serious threats and the division already feels fresh. This was a win on every level and I’m very excited to see what Riot, Logan and Morgan bring to the table now that they are on the main roster.

Wow, Look at That, Shane McMahon Opens The Show: Shane McMahon opened Smackdown and said that at Survivor Series they proved even in defeat that they are the premier show in the WWE. Shane said that everyone in the locker room bleeds blue except for two men and he brings out Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. Owens and Zayn make of Shane for his constant failures and they said he should beg for forgiveness, because they would have beaten the Shield or would have beaten Team Raw. Shane called them out for their lack of respect, which Zayn openly agrees with and he threatened to fire them but Owens and Zayn claimed to be too valuable to the brand. Shane is about to fire them but Daniel Bryan stopped him and said since the Smackdown locker room hates their guts, Bryan booked Owens & Zayn vs. The New Day in a Lumberjack Match. The usual paint by the numbers Shane opening segment. Owens & Zayn’s promo was pretty flat and the Shane firing them tease really didn’t get over like they probably intended. The last few weeks of booking for Owens and Zayn did them no favors and you could tell it affected this segment, as this should have been more heated than it was.

Shelton Benjamin vs. Jey Uso: Jey cut off Benjamin with a back elbow early and he went up top but Benjamin knocked him to the floor with a knee strike. Jey came back with some hard strikes and he hit a Samoan Drop on Benjamin. Jey went to dive to the floor but Gable blocked his way, trigging a fight on the floor between Gable and Jimmy. Benjamin rolled up Jey with the tights for a near fall and Jey answered back with a super kick for one of his own. Jey missed the Superfly Splash and Benjamin hit Pay Dirt for the victory. This was an OK little match, they mistimed a few things but there was enough action sprinkled throughout that made this a fun little watch. They continued to build on the run of dirty tactics by Gable and Benjamin and right they now they feel like worthy enough challenges for the Tag Titles, so I’m more than OK with the simple approach in the build to their likely PPV encounter.

Lumberjack Match- The New Day vs. Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn: Kofi and Big E represented the New Day. Owens dumped Kofi to the floor but the Lumberjacks refused to go after him. Zayn did the same thing and again, the Lumberjacks wouldn’t go after him. Zayn went after him on the floor but the Lumberjacks attacked him and dragged him back to the ring. The New Day delivered the Unicorn stampede in the corner but Owens super kicked Kofi to finally gain control for his team. They overpower Kofi but when Owens attempted the back senton he ate the knees of Kingston. Big E got the tag and he cleaned house. Kofi hit a cross body off the top for a near fall as Owens saved and Owens and Big E lay each other out. Kofi backdropped Zayn onto the lumber jacks and Baron Corbin went to take a shot but he hit Bobby Roode instead, trigging a brawl among the lumberjacks. During the chaos, Zayn rolled up Kofi Kingston for the win. After the match, Kevin Owens bailed in the crowd when Rusev and Aiden English went after the New Day. Zayn tried to escape as well but The New Day captured him and laid him out in the ring. Backstage, Kevin Owens begged not to be fired by Daniel Bryan but Bryan said he didn’t plan on firing him and booked him against Randy Orton next week. First off, thank god they gave Owens & Zayn the victory and let Zayn get the pin fall, so at least they booked the finish the right way this week. The match was basically built on the roster getting revenge on Zayn & Owens for going against the brand at Survivor Series so I’m fine with how the segment played out and how Zayn & Owens got some comeuppance without being buried. I also liked how the brawl was initiated and how they found a clever way to kick-start a Corbin/Roode feud within this match. However, because of how this match was constructed and built totally around the lumberjack involvement, the match itself wasn’t anything special and again, a New Day/Owens and Zayn match that should be fantastic on paper disappointed in execution.

THE wRong:

THE Ridiculous:

The 1174th edition is over…

The final score: review Average
The 411
This was pretty much a transition episode of Smackdown, as they had to quickly move on from the brand warfare stuff and get back to in-brand storylines and feuds. This episode did a solid job restarting feuds like Styles/Mahal and Usos/Benjamin and Gable but unfortunately couldn’t have the same success shifting the attention back to the Owens & Zayn stuff after putting them on the back burner for several weeks. There were elements of the show that felt fresh with the Bludgeoning Brothers return and the arrival of the NXT Women being total successes and gives two of the brand’s divisions significant upgrades. While nothing in the ring on this show stood out, it’s still worth checking out to see the start some of the new acts and programs the show is going to be dishing out over the next few week.

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Smackdown, Wrestling's 4Rs, WWE, Dylan Diot