After a quite disappointing Battleground PPV (read the results and our review here), this episode of SmackDown had to offer serious atonement to the fans and good announcements in the view of Summerslam. We already knew Jinder Mahal is in quest of a new challenger, AJ Styles of a US title rematch and The New Day of a celebration. Let’s see if their quests were successful…
Welcome to the most must-see Vulture Hound weekly review in history; welcome to… The SmackDown Review, brought to you this week by Miss “Doctor Frenchy” Steph (who said again?).
The show opened with the now 3-time United States Champion, The Face of America, Kevin Owens. At Battleground he proved that good things happen if you’re a good person and your heart is pure. So he took his title back from that thief, AJ Styles. The Kevin Owens United States Title Open Challenge will be back next week. But here came AJ Styles.
Owens cut his music to let AJ congratulate him. But Styles was there for a rematch, not to claim he was the better man. Suddenly, the pair were interrupted by very familiar music. Could it be ? A devastated Owens welcomed the return of the Ayatollah of Rock’n’Rolla, The King of Bling-Bling, Y2J, Chris Jericho. List in hand, he quickly shut up Owens who was asking why he was there to explain he’s back for a US title rematch. And he wanted it tonight.
Styles tried to explain to Jericho that he will have to wait as he’s not the first in line and he will have to come after him. Jericho raised his pen, Aj Styles just made the List! Owens decided to leave but here came SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon. He stopped Owens and claimed both Styles and Jericho have legit shots at the title. So they will get their opportunity to do it at the same time tonight. Owens was not happy at all…
HERE ARE THE OTHER THINGS THAT HAPPENED:
– In a rematch of Battleground, Shinsuke Nakamura defeated Baron Corbin. Mr. Money in The Bank was quite frustrated to see the King of Strong Style FINALLY showing his skills. Nakamura blocked the End of Days, Corbin tried to go for another low blow but Nakamura nailed a destructive Kinshasa straight on the back of Corbin’s neck for the win. The Artist known as Nakamura is over, welcome back to the King of Strong Style !
– SmackDown Women’s Champion Naomi told Dasha Fuentes she didn’t like the way Natalya refused her hand at Battleground. Natalya appeared and claimed she will restore honor to a title Naomi made a glowing toy of. Carmella then appeared, briefcase in hand, to remind Naomi everything can happen until SummerSlam.
– Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch defeated Lana and Lamina. I still don’t understand what Lana is doing on the main roster but, for sure, it’s not where she belongs. Charlotte and Becky had good team work in front of a quite lonely Tamina (don’t expect Lana to transform into Bull Nakano in a few days…). Charlotte hit a big boot on Lana’s face and covered her for the pin. Tamina was not very happy with Lana…
– Jinder Mahal came alone to the ring as The Singh Brothers weren’t here because of the beatings they took from Randy Orton at Battleground. Mahal claimed he crushed the legacy of Orton, that he will stay Champion forever (this man is boring or it’s just me?). He asked for his Summerslam opponent, to make sure he can crush that persons dreams. But it was the 16-time World Champion John Cena who appeared on the ramp (No! No! No!)… The Champ congratulated Mahal and showed him his respect for being in the best shape of his life, how the WWE Title means a lot to him, and how Jinder is willing to do anything to keep it (Cena was drunk or under influence…). But even if Mahal has a lot of friends and motivation, he will have to face Super Cena at SummerSlam… And Cena wants to be a 17-time Champion… But SmackDown General Manager Daniel Bryan had a trick up his sleeve for the two men. If Cena wants to make history, he will have first to defeat someone he never fought before, someone who proved he was a part of The Land of Opportunity. Cena will have to defeat Shinsuke Nakamura on next week’s SmackDown if he wants to face Mahal at SummerSlam. (Dream match alert !)
– Owens complained about his match of the night to Shane McMahon, Shane said he wants to do a good show for the fans, Owens answered he doesn’t give a damn about the fans.
– Tye Dillinger and Sami Zayn defeated Aiden English and Mike Kanellis in a double rematch of Battleground. English sang, the Kanellis’ kissed (can someone throw them a bucket of cold water, please ?) but Dillinger and Zayn made great team work, allowing Zayn to hit the Helluva kick on Kanellis for the win. Perfect Ten for this match…
– The New Day’s celebration of their first SmackDown Tag Team Championship turned into a huge mess when The Usos came and knocked everybody down. Throwing Kingston into the LED walls, smashing Woods’ head onto the ramp lights and hitting a double superkick on Big E.
– Backstage, Shinsuke Nakamura told Renee Young if Cena can’t see him next week, he will see Mahal at SummerSlam.
– In the main event, Chris Jericho, AJ Styles and US Champion Kevin Owens competed in a Triple Threat match for the WWE United States Title. This was what I call a PPV level main-event match. Way, way much better than the Battleground one. Styles and Jericho attacked Owens straight in the match. Jericho, at the top of his game (20 years I’ve been watching him on TV and the pleasure is still the same…), had many opportunities to win the match over Styles, but was blocked each time by Owens who was not ready to let the belt go that quickly. Styles displayed much better wrestling than two days ago, doing a hell of a job on Jericho.
An offensive Owens did his best in front of these 2 huge competitors, but Styles and Jericho had control. All three men unloaded their full repertoire of moves, offering an insane level of action. Owens was on the way to win the match, after hitting a superkick, a pop-up powerbomb and a frogsplash on Jericho. But when Owens tried to pin Jericho, Styles grabbed Owens and tossed him out of the ring. Styles covered Jericho for the win, the opportunistic way, to become a now 2-time United States Champion.
After the match, AJ celebrated, Owens grabbed the mic to yell how unfair all this match was and that Styles stole his title. He asked for a one-on-one rematch next week. And whether we like it or not, he will take the title back next week.
Jericho is back at SmackDown Hotel, baby ! This episode was about wrestling, and just wrestling, thank you very much! In one hour and half, SmackDown offered more good action than Battleground did in three hours. The triple Threat main event just tore the Blue house down but this constant title holder change has a little taste of boredom. Next week, Cena vs. Nakamura is set to be a high level match. But a little birdie is telling me Baron Corbin should be involved and spoil the wish of a dream match. This may lead to a Triple Threat match at SummerSlam… Wait and see, until next week…
All pics courtesy of WWE.com