Shore's WWE Smackdown Hitlist: London gets the best Smackdown in weeks, The Shield kill Undertaker, Sheamus vs. Big Show bleeds into Randy Orton vs. Mark Henry, William Regal and Wade Barrett get the hometown treatment, and more
By Chris Shore
WWE Smackdown Hits
Undertaker vs. The Shield: Everything about this segment was a Hit. The match was well put together. They told the story they wanted to tell, made Taker look like a total badass who got beat down because it was three-on-one, and yet the Shield got a big lift out of leaving Taker laid out on the announce table. It also manages to write Undertaker out (should that be the plan) and gives him something to come back for (but before WrestleMania). Like I said, everything about this is a Hit.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Jack Swagger: Yet another good match from two guys who left us flat during their title feud only to kick it into high gear once Dolph Ziggler took the title. I realize they are still technically in the title feud, but they have done more to improve their specific feud with their two most recent matches than they have building for the title match. And yet their improvement makes the title match better in the end.
Sheamus vs. Big Show: Sheamus and Big Show have great chemistry in the ring, and this match continued to show that chemistry. I also include the Randy Orton vs. Mark Henry match in this because it was the natural conclusion of the finish to Sheamus vs. Show, and because I'm more confident than ever that this ends up a fatal fourway at Extreme Rules, which could make for a hell of a match. Ultimately I see these feuds leading to a big Orton vs. Sheamus match at SummerSlam, and if booked the right way, could be a major player in that show.
Overall Show: Only one real complaint on the show (see below) and it's a minor one. Smackdown has suffered as of late from formulaic writing, but there was really good stuff on the show this week. Most everything seemed to have a purpose, something we rarely see, and I felt like they had better cohesion throughout the show. I have been openly critical of that, so I definitely want to point out when WWE does something right. See this show if you haven't already.
WWE Smackdown Misses
William Regal vs. Wade Barrett: This was a throwaway segment, and I try to leave them as throwaway segments when they happen, but this one was frustrating on so many levels. First, it came across to me like a "Oh yah, I guess we need to get the British guys on the show," match, an insult to the live crowd. Second, as a fan of both these guys, I wanted more than 50 seconds of action. Regal can work, and I have no problem with them saving him for UK tours, but let the man work when you put him out there! I realize their wasn't a lot of time on this show due to the longer matches, but this should have been given more time and they should have cut a video package, or four, to make it happen.
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