11/08 Barnett’s WWE Smackdown Live TV Review: Becky Lynch vs. Alexa Bliss for the Smackdown Women’s Championship



By Jake Barnett

WWE Smackdown on USA Network
Taped earlier today in Glasgow, Scotland at SSE Hydro Arena

Mauro plugged a huge main event between Becky Lynch vs Alexa Bliss for later tonight to start off the show. AJ Styles music hit and he was the first man to make his way to the ring. Footage was shown of Dean Ambrose gaining back his #1 Contendership from last week’s show. Styles grabbed a mic and glared at the crowd before he launched into his promo. He told the crowd to give them a break, and that he was in no mood for their cheers, or their boos either. He doesn’t want to see their tweets. In fact they should put down their phones, sit in their seats and be quiet. He called what happened last week on Smackdown a travesty, and accused Dean Ambrose of cheating.

Styles said Ambrose doesn’t belong in the same ring as him, and if it meant so much to him he wouldn’t have lost it. Styles then called James Ellsworth a mutant turtle, and said he looked like a foot, and if he wouldn’t have gotten involved last week it wouldn’t have happened the way it did. Styles said no one is flying Ellsworth to Scotland, so they don’t need to worry about seeing him tonight. He then said he can’t get his hands on Ellsworth according to the GM because of a thing called Survivor Series, and he’ll have to make his team work, because he’s the de facto captain and he wants to kick the crap out of Raw. He then said he would bring the team out, and get them all on the same page.

Corbin interrupted and said he would deliver at Survivor Series, just not for Style’s team. The Wyatt sounder hit and the Wyatt Family (incl Orton) were standing at ringside when the lights came up. Dean Ambrose then made his way down to the ring, except he turned around and walked back up the ramp when he got down to the ring. Ellsworth’s music hit and he made his way out to a somewhat tepid reaction. Ellsworth did a good job of looking terrified of everyone in the ring. Ambrose began to speak as a brief Ellsworth chant broke out.

Ambrose said Ellsworth was his guest and that he had never been to Scotland before. Styles told him that he doesn’t care what he does, as long as he keeps him away form Survivor Series. Ambrose got in Styles face, and he responded by telling Ambrose he was outnumbered. Corbin bailed and walked to the back at this point, and the Wyatt’s didn’t play their hand. Shane McMahon ran down passing Corbin, and told Team Blue that if they want to be the best, they have to put their differences aside and defeat Raw.

Ellsworth bent Shane’s ear, and he reported that it was a great idea. Ellsworth then said he was the official mascot of Team Smackdown. Shane then made a match to “get the hostilities out of the way” between Team Wyatt Family vs. Ambrose, Corbin and Ellsworth. Becky Lynch was shown backstage getting ready for her match, and Breezango vs. The Vaudevillians is next…[c]

<span style=”text-decoration: underline;”><strong>My Take:</strong></span> Yawn. I’m pretty much over Ellsworth at this point, and his involvement in the match gives away Team Smackdown losing because he causes Ambrose and Styles to implode. Survivor Series is off to a mediocre build thus far. Raw was downright awful and this segment was nothing to write home about.

Backstage, Shane McMahon stopped Baron Corbin and asked him if he heard he was in the main event. Corbin said he heard and he wasn’t interested. Shane then took him out of the six man, and put him in a match with a star returning from injury, Kalisto. The Vaudevillains were already in the ring, and Breezango made their entrance.

1. Breezango vs. The Vaudevillains: Gotch went on the attack early and hit a fireman’s carry. He tagged English, who hit a Swanton Bomb and covered, but Fandango broke it up. The ref cleared Fandango from the ring, and Breeze made a tag to Fandango. English pulled Breeze to the floor while Gotch kicked Fandango off the apron. English tagged in after Gotch hit a few strikes, and Fandango surprised him with a Falcon Arrow and got the victory.

Breezango defeated The Vaudevillains

Becky Lynch vs. Alexa Bliss was hyped for later…[c]

My Take: It’s really hard to make any of these teams seem relevant with the survivor series format. Breezango gets a win here to get on the team, but it didn’t really feel like they accomplished anything with the way they quickly ran away from the segment.

Natalya was in the ring while Naomi made her entrance. Nikki Bella joined on commentary.

2. Naomi vs. Natalya: Naomi rolled up Nattie quick for a two count. Nattie grabbed a headlock, which Naomi escaped with a sit out chinbreaker. Carmella walked down to ringside and things broke down straight away. Natalya jumped to the floor to break up Carmella and Nikki, and blew a rather ineffective whistle. Nikki the dropped Carmella with a forearm. Nattie finally got back into the ring, but got rolled up by Naomi for a win.

Naomi defeated Natalya

Naomi and Nikki celebrated and headed up the ramp…[c]

My Take: Will Team Blue recover next week and get on the same page? Stay tuned at the same bat time, same bat channel. Probably the next week too. We gotta stretch this out.

James Ellsworth made a bad pun about he and Amborse having four hands and a fighting chance, when Daniel Bryan approached them backstage. Bryan said he had found them a partner, and it was safe to say his career was on fire. Ellsworth turned around into Kane, and asked him the strategy for tonight. Kane bent down and told him not to tag in. Ambrose just kind of shrugged. Baron Corbin made his entrance while footage was shown of him assaulting Kalisto several months ago.

Kalisto made his entrance, and did the lucha dance. He vaulted over the ropes into the ring, and got met with a clothesline. Corbin then tossed Kalisto around and trash talked him. He then threw him under the ropes and out to the floor. The ref admonished Corbin, who slipped on the ring apron and sold an injury. Kalisto then ran around the rind and dropkicked Corbin’s knee into the steps. Corbin rolled back into the ring to be checked on by referees.

Kalisto appeared to leave, but then walked back down and hit a frog splash into Corbin’s bad leg from the top. He finally left, leaving Corbin writhing in the ring. Becky Lynch vs. Alexa Bliss is up next…[c]

My Take: The slip spot looked pretty good, but Corbin patient waiting for Kalisto next to the ring steps with his bad knee exposed awaiting the dropkick did not. I liked Kalisto showing some fire and taking the extra shot at the end with the Frog Splash, though. He should be angry at Corbin for putting him out.

We got a video package that featured the lead in to Becky Lynch and Alexa Bliss. Alexa Bliss then made her entrance…[c]

Backstage, Daniel Bryan informed Shane McMahon that the trainers told him Baron Corbin will not be able to compete. Shane said he racked his brain and couldn’t make a decision on who would replace him, and handed the decision off to Daniel Bryan. He told Bryan to make a decision while he went to watch the Main Event. Becky Lynch then made her entrance in the arena to a nice reaction.

3. Alexa Bliss vs. Becky Lynch: Becky went hunting for Alexa’s arm out of the gate and nearly got it. They went back and forth with some pinning attempts and reversals, and came to a stand off. Becky hit a series of arm drags and a drop kick. Alexa retreated into the corner, and the ref blocked Becky from attacking her, which set up the tables to turn on the match. Bliss hit some knees and sent Becky out to the floor, where she threw her into the steps arm first. In the ring, Bliss took a page from Becky’s book and worked the arm.

Bliss threw Becky into the bottom turnbuckle and wrenched her arm on the apron, followed by some arm twists. Becky got in some hope punches, but Bliss quickly returned to the arm. Lynch showed some impressive strength by escaping an arm hold with a sitout powerbomb…[c]

Becky shook off Alexa and started her comeback. She hit a clothesline in the corner and hit an exploder suplex, but couldn’t really capitalize because of her arm. She climbed to the top and went for a leg drop, and Bliss fired up with a soccer kick and hit Insult to Injury for a near fall. Bliss sold frustration and they traded elbows. Becky went for a splash in the corner, but Alexa avoided it and hit a sunset flip for another near fall.

Alexa went up top, perhaps for Twisted Bliss, but Becky knocked her down. Becky climbed up to meet her, but ended up getting hit with a DDT. Bliss sold frustration again, and climbed back up top, but ate knees on the way down. They traded roll ups, but Becky was able to switch positions into a Disarmer. Initially Alexa couldn’t quite reach the ropes, but the ref was out of position after Becky shifted and Alexa’s foot was on the ropes as she tapped out. The ref didn’t see it and Becky was awarded the win.

Becky Lynch defeated Alexa Bliss, kinda.

Backstage, Shane McMahon spoke to Daniel Bryan about replacing Baron Corbin, and Bryan said he would have an answer by the end of the night. Maryse walked up and said The Miz was so angry with Daniel Bryan that he won’t speak to him. She demanded to know why Dolph Ziggler was allowed to defend the Intercontinental Championship against a Raw wrestler. Bryan explained the theme of survivor series, and said that on top of the Ziggler match, The Brian Kendrick would defend the Cruiserweight Championship against Kalisto. If Kalisto wins, the Championship and the Cruiserweight Division all move to Smackdown. Maryse complained about The Miz not getting his rematch clause, and offered a title match next week on the 900th episode of Smackdown. Maryse accepted, and Miz looked dismayed. Bryan and Shane were thrilled….[c]

My Take: This was an enjoyable women’s match, but they sacrificed having a satisfying finish to extend the feud to TLC. I really can’t see Bliss winning there either, considering how uneven she has been in the rind and on the microphone, but we’ll see which way things go. There really isn’t a more polished women’s performer on Smackdown than Becky Lynch right now.

Apollo Crews made his entrance, and Curt Hawkins was already in the ring. A video played that detailed their brief history from a few weeks ago.

4. Apollo Crews vs. Curt Hawkins: Hawkins got the early jump, but Crews fired back with a sweet dropkick and a clothesline. Crews climbed up top and missed a flying crossbody, but got nothing but air. Hawkins then rolled him up in a crucifix and got the win.

Curt Hawkins defeated Apollo Crews

My Take: Uh, ok. I was really hoping the limited roster would give lower card guys on Smackdown something interesting to do, but they still can’t find much for them to do.

Backstage, Renee Young stopped Dolph Ziggler backstage and asked about defending his Intercontinental Championship next week against The Miz. He said he can’t wait, because he’s a fighting champion. He would shut the MIz up next week, and a few days later send the paper boy packing empty handed back to Raw. In the arena, The Wyatt Family made their entrances. AJ Styles joined on commentary, then we saw James Ellsworth, Dean Ambrose, and Kane make their entrances…[c]

5. Kane, James Ellsworth and Dean Ambrose vs. The Wyatt Family: Kane and Harper were in the match to start, and Kane got an early advantage with a back body drop. Orton and Ambrose tagged in briefly and Ambrose remained in control, hitting some strikes and a clothesline before tagging back to Kane. Orton took advantage of a distracted Kane, who had to admonish James Ellsworth for asking for a tag. The Wyatt family took over on Kane and made quick tags cutting him off in their corner with strikes and stomps…[c]

Ellsworth chants broke out as Kane continued to struggle to make a tag. Harper and Orton took turns holding onto rest holds and hitting strikes. Kane hit a DDT on Harper to get back into the match, and crawled towards his corner. Ambrose cleaned house, hitting a running bulldog clothesline combo on Harker and Wyatt. He then flew over the top rope onto Randy Orton. He then lined up and hit a suicide dive on Orton and Wyatt at ringside. Wyatt went for Sister Abigail as the action returned to the ring, but Ambrose broke free. Kane and Harper brawled at ringside, and Wyatt and Ambrose took each other out with a double clothesline.

Ellsworth made a move over to Ambrose and tagged himself into the match. He got fired up and set up for no chin music, but Bray Wyatt hit Sister Abigail and covered for a the win.

The Wyatt Family defeated James Ellsworth, Dean Ambrose and Kane

After the match, Ambrose tried to revive Ambrose to no effect. Team Smackdown ended up back in the ring bickering, and Shane McMahon ran down to sort it out. Daniel Bryan followed with his clipboard, getting a huge reaction from the Glasgow crowd. Bryan said he has the power to name anyone on the list to the Survivor Series team, aside from himself, because he’s unable to compete. He said in the top left corner of the list was the name of the Commisioner Shane McMahon, and he then asked him if he would be the 5th member of Team Smackdown Live. Shane then accepted to close the show. The Team apparently was ok with this for some reason to close the show.

Undertaker, Edge, and the Intercontinental Championship Match was plugged for Smackdown 900 next week.

My Take: I swear if we see Super Shane be the first guy to knock Braun Strowman off his feet, I will laugh myself into a coma. The main event wasn’t terribly newsworthy, aside from Ellsworth playing the patsy again, but it was fine for what it is. Overall, this was a better show than Raw, but not really by virtue of telling great stories, but rather because it was shorter and didn’t have as much wasted time.


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