By John Moore
WWE Talking Smack
Aired May 30, 2017 on the WWE Network
-Renee Young and Shane McMahon checked in from the WWE Talking Smack set. Shane called it a “historic” night. Renee moved on to talking about Randy Orton giving his first words since losing the WWE Championship to Jinder Mahal. Renee talked about Randy invoking his rematch clause for a title match against Jinder in Randy’s hometown of St. Louis, Missouri. Shane brought up Randy’s reference to past wrestlers. Shane also brought up how Orton is going for his 14th World Title reign.
John’s Thoughts: Wowzers! Randy is also sneaking up on that Ric Flair number. The difference between Randy and Cena is that Cena had way more memorable matches as champion and memorable title runs whereas I can remember Randy had that feud with Triple H a few times. He also beat Christian that one time a day after Christian won the world championship.
-Renee asked Shane how important the hometown factor was for Orton. Shane said Orton going into his hometown with pressure was very important. Shane compared Randy to a pressure cooker and said that he usually comes out on top in pressure situations. Randy brought up Jinder possibly coming through as well.
-Renee transitioned to talking about the Women’s Money in the Bank match. All of the women who were in the match joined the set. James Ellsworth was also there. Shame politely asked Ellsworth to leave the set due to the historic nature of the Women’s Money in the Bank and how the spotlight should be on the women.
-Shane gave the women an applause. Becky Lynch said history making was the game the women were in. Natalya tried to interject but then the women all started to bicker. Renee and Shane called for decorum in stereo which surprised Shane and Renee since they had the same thought at the same time.
-Renee talked about Charlotte being in so many history-making matches. Charlotte got intense while talking about getting hit by a kendo stick or being under the Hell in a Cell. Charlotte asked if anyone in this room were in such a match. Becky brought up being in a cage match. Bickering ensued.
-Shane calmed things down and wondered if Natalya might have a fear of heights or something. Natalya said that insulted her intelligence. Natalya went back to her old tired line of quoting Bret as the “best there is, the best there was, and the best there ever will be”. The mentioned “The Welcoming Committee”. Bickering started to ensue.
-Shane said he doesn’t think any of these women had to climb that high off a ladder so his fear of heights question was valid. Carmella said anyone else would complain for being put in a tough position after pinning the Women’s Champion twice, but she was going to stay calm. Mild bickering ensued.
-Shane calmed things down again and asked how Carmella feels about making history and about being nervous about heights for this first time match for everyone in the room. Shane tried to ask the only person who hadn’t spoken, Tamina, the same question. Renee brought up past wrestlers such as Edge having their careers shortened due to matches like this. Tamina said she’s happy to be in this match. Tamina said “we” deserve to have this match. Tamina said she wasn’t afraid of heights and it’s about time. Becky said the women would steal the show but she’s going to win the Money in the Bank.
-Renee asked the women how they were thinking of utilizing the advantage the contract entails. Natalya talked about being the best. Charlotte yelled to shut up the heels. Charlotte tried to bring up possibly being the first triple crown winner of all three WWE Women’s Championships. She accidentally said “wimmer” which the heels jumped on a bit. Natalya said this was not Raw, Charlotte’s turf, this was Natalya’s turf so Charlotte should just run along. Becky slipped in being the first Smackdown Women’s Champion and how she might be the first Women’s Money in the Bank winner.
-Shane said the reason he’s booking this match is to reward the hard work that the women put in on Smackdown Live. Shane talked about being so proud of them and how he feels they are going to take advantage of this first time match. Shane said a lot of men haven’t been in this match either. Shane said you can use the ladder in many ways: to climb, to hit people. Shane said he hopes them all the best and to be safe. Renee closed out the interview.
-Renee said it always gets hostile on this show. Renee then talked about Shane bringing up good points about the history, danger, and difficulty of the Money in the Bank match. Renee asked Shane about why was now the time to have a Women’s Money in the Bank. Shane said he thought of the idea on the spot and how women should have the same opportunities that the men have. Renee then did the obligatory Rocket League plug.
-Renee talked about the return of The New Day on Smackdown Live. Shane joked about Renee doing the hip gyration from last week. Renee said she was so excited to see this match against the Usos who have been hot since arriving on Smackdown. Renee wanted a prediction and Shane dodged the question. Renee brought up how Shane always dodges these prediction questions.
-Dolph Ziggler was the next guest. Dolph said his win against Styles was a long time coming and how it felt good to proves the fans wrong. Shane said Dolph is one of the premier performers in WWE when he wants to be. Shane said he’s a fan of Ziggler and Ziggler showed that he could bring it at times like tonight in his phenomenal match. Ziggler talked about losing focus at times.
-Dolph said even though AJ says he built this house, Dolph has been here ten years. Dolph said he didn’t believe he beat AJ and how he’s not used to hearing his entrance theme at the end of matches. Shane referenced Dolph being the only person in the match to have Money in the Bank success. Dolph said he loved sticking to the fans.
-Dolph said he was being a jerk to the fans back then and was losing a lot too but you can always cash in at the right moment to become World Champion. They replayed a clip of Dolph Ziggler cashing in his contract on Alberto Del Rio. They didn’t mention Del Rio by name. Dolph talked about his shoot fighting background by saying that he hooked the legs. Renee asked Dolph how it felt cashing in the night after WrestleMania. Dolph said he almost lost it mentally that night but he told himself he was the best and he was there to deliver.
-Shane referenced the women making history at Money in the Bank and wanted his thoughts on the question he brought up to the women earlier about the dangers of being in a ladder match. Dolph said if you follow him on Twitter you would know that Dolph is legit afraid of heights. Dolph said cleaning a gutter is scary so put that on top of competing with the best in Smackdown. Dolph said what everyone says about never being same after this match is true since he vividly remembers every ladder match he’s been based off of the long term pain he felt coming out of the matches. Dolph also talked about how the heartbreak was also a strong aspect of the match when you feel you fought so hard only to have someone else take that win from you.
-Dolph was about to compare the Money in the Bank to a cold Mountain Dew for some reason. Dolph said the ladder sucks because you can get the memory knocked out of you when you are focusing on so many people. Dolph said his MO is being one of the best guys, but only when he feels like it. Dolph said those moments he knows he can be the best. He then talked about how Shinsuke Nakamura has a knee that can come out of nowhere and how he’s looking at Shinsuke the most at the moment.
-Dolph said he moved his attention to AJ when he had to. Dolph then talked about losing a lot of matches again and how this was like before when he cashed in. Dolph then got nostalgic about winning the title in front of a huge WrestleMania-like crowd. Dolph asked Renee for a prediction now that Ambrose is on Raw. Renee said Dolph with no hesitation. Renee said she’s basing that off of experience. Dolph said he loves having a target on his back and even wishes for that moment. Renee closed out the interview at this point.
-Shane said this version of Dolph was the one he likes, the one that has that spark in him. Renee said magic can happen when you have a Ziggler with the right attitude. Shane talked about the opponents and how Shinsuke has something to prove too. Renee said everyone does too. Shane said the Money in the Bank was one of his favorite matches.
-Renee Young hyped Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Kevin Owens for the first time ever (Kevin Steen vs. Shinsuke Nakamura happened in ROH, and I believe Owens even referenced this in the past just as WWE references Nakamura’s battles with Brock Lesnar, AJ, and Fergal Devitt). Shane said you can’t count out Kevin Owens. Renee wanted another prediction and Shane dodged the question again. Shane said he was going to predict that he and Renee will host Talking Smack next week. This closed out the show.
John’s Thoughts: Another decent episode of Talking Smack that would only be great if Daniel Bryan were to return. Shane does a solid job being the straight man on most issues. JBL is usually better in utilizing the freeform format but WWE might be holding him off of constant exposure due to the negative attention he’s been getting. It was good of the show to focus on the Women’s Money in the Bank as such a big deal and good for Shane for focusing on the danger of being in a ladder match. Dolph Ziggler referencing his fear of heights and the pain of the ladder match helped to emphasize how big of a match this was for the women.
Dolph Ziggler is getting better on the microphone with every attempt but it seems like we’ve been at this forever. Some people like the Usos, Baron Corbin, Mojo Rawley, or Alexa Bliss; pick it up quickly when unscripted, but it looks like for others it takes longer. Dolph is persistent, I suppose. He just needs to stop “losing focus” as he keeps referencing and stop being mopey about his constant failure.