Smackdown Live: False Advertisement – A Recap for 8/30/16

Smackdown Live for this week comes to us from the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, the home of Wrestlemania 32.

False Advertisement

USA wanted to let us know that Daniel Bryan would be responding to The Miz’s fiery promo from last week.  But that didn’t really happen.  Miz and Shane watched the segment from Talking Smack for the cold open.  That was about it.

The Miz, however, expanded on it.  It became clear that this wasn’t a shoot.  It was a work all along.  Just a really convincing believable one.  The benefit with the Miz is he’s capitalizing on something that people have always thought about him.  This is in spite of the fact that he’s consistent, dependable, and a face for WWE that won’t really ever leave.  They’ll be a point where you can’t see Cena on WWE TV because he won’t be there.  He’ll show up a couple of times a year and that’ll be that.  I don’t imagine Miz having a real career anywhere else, but I think he has a long career in some fashion in the WWE.  It may not always be wrestling, but he will have a role.

What we did get is a solid promo from new IC challenger Dolph Ziggler.  I wanted to say that it feels a little rushed but I realize there’s only 3 Smackdown Lives before Backlash.  Going with Ziggler will ensure a solid match between two friends who work together really well.  I had a chance to see this pairing at a house show back in December.  It was the best match of the night.

Gary “The Milkman” Millman Open Challenge

On one of the most bizarre squashes I’ve seen starts with Gary “The Milkman” Millman.  Why is he in a suit?  Why does he sound like one of the South Park guys are providing his voice?  Is he a milkman during the day?  Where are there even milkmen anymore?  Or is it milkpeople?  It was a nice way to reintroduce Kane to the Smackdown Live audience in a simple, yet effective, way.

Best use of local talent since James Elsworth.

John Cena: U Can C Me?

John Cena was off TV for another week.  So the answer is no.

Tag Team Tournament Rolls On

The Headbangers Vs. Heath Slater and Rhyno

Whoa, Whoa, Whoa.  You thought I was just going to jump in to this match without acknowledging one of the weirdest, and also weakest, segments in Smackdown Live’s short history.  You, my friend, were mistaken.

Renee Young catches up with Heath and Rhyno at Heath’s home somewhere in a Dallas West Virginia trailer park.  There’s someone pretending to be Heath’s wife serving everyone Cheese Whiz and crackers while Renee peppers him with questions.  Of note, Rhyno clears quite a bit of that plate of crackers.

The segment fell flat to me, the first thing that Heath’s done post draft split where I’ve felt that way.  But hey, it wasn’t the worst thing.  I still think it was better than some of the stuff on Raw.  And we have this Gif of the future mayor of Dearborn, Michigan.

The Actual Match

I was impressed with both tag matches last week.  The Ascension actually got in some offense and looked like a formidable team for the first time since I’ve been watching again.

This match even had a returning nostalgia act, The Headbangers.  They received almost no recognition or pop.  They didn’t even really get in their stuff really.  They got in a Stage Dive, so there’s that.

They did their job though.  They put Heath and Rhyno over and advancing them to the next round.  Rhyno got a nasty matching eyebrow gash to match Heath too!

I like this pairing.  We’ll see how this shakes out.

Vaudevillians Vs. The Hype Bros

Don’t get me wrong, I love The Hype Bros.  I just think they missed an opportunity to make the Villains look good, even with a loss.  It really was a squash match.  They’re getting buried in a division that needs every team to feel like they can win.

I wonder if it has anything to do with Gotch having heat backstage.  Or maybe they don’t have much of a future.  It’s a shame.

Everything Else

  • Apollo Crews took on AJ Styles.  He showed a tiny bit of personality tonight. A big win for him, despite the predictable loss to Styles.  Probably one of the highlights of the night.
  • Another New Era match, Barron Corbin finds himself in the main event against WWE World Champ, Dean Ambrose.  A serviceable match from both guys.  Nothing special but fun.  It ends in a DQ when AJ, who was on commentary, inadvertently hits Corbin.
  • There was a good women’s tag match (Nattie and Bliss Vs. Naomi and Becky) with Nikki on commentary.  Predictably Carmella showed up outta nowhere to continue her assault.  I’m assuming these two are going to cost each other the gold at Backlash, leading to a non-title feud.  Count me in.  As a side note, I would have put this as it’s own heading in the main recap but I can’t take this seriously until someone has the title.
  • Finally, AJ gets crotched on the ropes and Smackdown Live ends with a goofy segment.  Wasn’t the biggest fan of that.

Final Thoughts

What I like about Smackdown is that they’re experimenting and willing to experiment.  The show feels a bit more flying-by-the-seat-of-your-pants than Raw does and I think that’s the biggest asset.  And apparently, the ratings keep getting better and better.  I wouldn’t be surprised if their Tuesday show surpasses Raw once Monday Night Football starts back up.