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Buddy Murphy finally has a match on TV and some think it was a match of the year candidate! Roman Reigns’ attacker will be revealed next week! And Kevin Owens is fined MONEY. And can we all breathe a sigh of relief that The Fiend is safe in WWE? I am Luke Owen, click the timestamps down below to jump to any of those stories, press the thumbs up and subscribe buttons, and leave a comment down below to answer our question of the day:
Who do you think attacked Roman Reigns if it wasn’t Rowan? And make sure you vote in the poll above my head to let me know what you thought of the show. Where you can choose from: SmackNificent, SmackTastic, Smack Bang in the Middle, SmackDowner, and a Smack in the Face. This is the 13th of August, 2019 edition of Smackdown Live.
The show was opened by Kevin Owens who came out to a thunderous superstar reaction. He said that he was putting Shane in his rear mirror so he could focus on the King of the Ring tournament which has been won by such WWE legends as Steve Austin, Bret Hart, Brock Lesnar and… um, Billy Gunn. This of course brought out Shane O Mac who said that Owens cheated at Summerslam and their feud must continue – and for attacking Elias who was a WWE official in their Summerslam match, Shane fined Owens $100,000. Which got zero reaction from this Toronto crowd. And they didn’t react any more when Owens attacked Shane’s TV with a chair backstage. Monetary fines don’t hold the weight WWE writers or Vince McMahon think they do, and it opens up Kayfabe questions like why didn’t Shane just suspend him or take him out of the King of the Ring tournament?
But never mind that, we’ve got some really good women’s action coming up as Ember Moon took on Charlotte Flair. To the surprise of no one – seen as though all she’s done for the last few weeks is get beat up and lose – the crowd didn’t buy into Ember Moon at all at the start of the match, but she’s so good and Flair gave her so much, that the two turned the crowd round by the finish. Moon sold her leg throughout the match – what a dork, right Seth? – and Flair was superb in getting Moon over; winning with a Big Boot and Figure Eight. I just hope this doesn’t set up Flair to be the next contender to Bayley but really, who else could it possibly be?
After a recap of the Roman Reigns attacker storyline, Daniel Bryan and Rowan came out to call Buddy Murphy a liar and say they will expose the truth later tonight. Rowan was wearing a Hatebreed t-shirt, which is cool, but I’ve always been more of a fan of Hatebeak.
Aleister Black is back in his cupboard cutting promos, and then came what some are calling the best WWE match of 2019 in Roman Reigns vs. Buddy Murphy. Now I do want to clarify that with all the great wrestling we’ve had in 2019 – particularly with the stunning G1 coming to a close on Monday – this is the best WWE match of 2019. And while I don’t personally agree, I do think this was an excellent match. The crowd were so hot for Murphy and wanted to see him do well, and Roman gave him every opportunity to do so. And being the incredible wrestler he is, Murphy took all his shots – getting several 2-counts on Roman following wicked knee shots and an amazing nearfall off a Brainbuster that the crowd totally bought into. Roman eventually hit the Superman Punch and Spear for the win, but the night belonged to Murphy. It may have taken WWE four months to find him something to do, but one has to hope this is the beginning of a big push for Buddy Murphy,
Kayla Braxton interviewed The Revival who called the 24/7 title and New Day a joke, and New Day themselves who said they would beat them in their match tonight. Kofi Kingston was seemingly given AJ Style’s post-Summerslam script from last year, as he said that Randy went too far when he got his family involved. Do WWE writers only have a few templates to work with?
Family Man Kevin Owens took on Samoa Joe next, with Elias as the guest ring enforcer even though Shane had said earlier in the night he wasn’t there and the 24/7 rule was suspended. This was more angle than match, with Elias pulling the ref out the ring following a Pop Up Powerbomb, and fast-counting Owens after Joe rolled him up.
And the main event was set to be New Day vs. Revival, but Randy Orton came out to call Kofi Kingston a coward and say that he ran away from their fight – challenging New Day to a six-man tag instead. The match was mostly the heels working over Xavier Woods, but it built to a fun and chaotic final few minutes with Kofi kitting a huge dive onto Orton, and Revival picking up the win with a Shatter Machine – which one would assume puts them in line for a Smackdown Tag Title shot down at Clash of Champions? Orton then laid New Day out after the match with various and thunderous RKOs. This angle was so much better than all the build for Summerslam, and has added some serious and much needed heat to their eventual rematch at the next PPV.
Earlier in the night, Rowan and Bryan beat up Murphy backstage and told him to admit that he was lying, which he did, and then told Roman Reigns after the main event they’ve been doing their own investigating and next week, they’ll reveal the culprit.
This was a really fun edition of Smackdown Live. It didn’t have the big news story like Sasha Banks on Raw but it didn’t need to, it instead added more intrigue to the Roman Reigns and Owens/Shane storylines, and had great in-ring TV action to boot. That’s a really good episode of Raw and a terrific episode of Smackdown. Canada really is bizarro land! This week’s Smackdown Live is a high SmackTastic.
And now, over to Pete with the news.
Top notch review Luke! And a top notch SmackDown to boot!
With all these wrestlers coming out of the woodwork and being featured now, with Buddy Murphy finally wrestling, Aleister Black on the rise, The Fiend shocking everyone at SummerSlam, it’s about time for a return for my boy Rusev isn’t it?
Rusev hasn’t been seen on WWE TV since Super Showdown, where he participated in the 51-man battle royal, yes it was 51, not 50, because WWE can’t count.
Prior to that, he was on the Superstar Shakeup in April, and he’s essentially been on hiatus ever since. This was reportedly due to creative frustrations over his position in the company, and Rusev himself has done nothing to quell these rumours.
He’s now posted a sort-of update. Responding to a tweet claiming that he and wife Lana weren’t sure what their next step was to be, he said:
“Oh I know what my next step is”
Rusev to AEW confirmed!
Someone else that hasn’t been seen on WWE TV in quite some time, unless she’s being called a pioneer, a trailblazer, and/or a legend of the women’s division, is Alicia Fox. Unfortunately for Fox, it seems she’s gotten herself into a bit of trouble once again.
It’s being reported by Casey Michael of Squared Circle Sirens that Fox was sent home from SummerSlam by WWE, because she showed up drunk, and got into a verbal altercation with a fan attending the event.
Fox’s issues with alcohol are well documented, and they reportedly led to Arn Anderson being fired after he let her wrestle after turning up drunk to a show.
I hope that Alicia gets the help she needs to overcome this problem.
But in much more positive news, WWE’s been pretty good lately hasn’t it? This has been reflected with a huge bump in ratings following a very well-received SummerSlam.
Raw drew an average of 2.729 million viewers, up massively from the previous week’s 2.321 million. Interestingly, there was actually an increase in ratings moving from hour one to hour two, showing that it wasn’t necessarily a fluke for the first hour.
Hopefully this means WWE pay attention to what they’ve been doing and do more of it! Like giving Paul Heyman more control.
Speaking of not abandoning what’s working, and yesterday I spoke about concerns that WWE may be trying to soften Bray Wyatt’s Fiend character and/or get rid of his severed head lantern, after his entrance at SummerSlam was heavily edited on their YouTube channel.
However, Bryan Alvarez on Wrestling Observer Live noted that he reached out to several sources within WWE, and none of them had heard anything about the severed head lantern being dropped or anything of the sort.
In fact it’s quite the opposite, as the lantern will supposedly be part of the marketing of his Mattel action figure, I’m sure that’ll go well with parents after all the controversy surrounding Al Snow’s Head, plus more lanterns are being created for merchandise for them to sell. AND on top this, they’ve now uploaded his theme song to YouTube too, so if they were trying to keep him tucked away, they’re doing a poor job of it.
So he’s not being neutered! Everybody celebrate because we still get the creative genius of Bray Wyatt himself. Alright, relax, breathe, breathe. I was worried for a while there.
What didn’t quite materialise in the way we expected though, was Samoa Joe turning babyface. After showing concern for Roman Reigns last Tuesday from his car accident, fans saw the seeds being planted of a babyface turn for Joe.
Then he saw heel Sami Zayn talking trash about him backstage, and had a match with him that he won in 30 seconds. Great babyface stuff! Then he…ragged on the crowd and told them he would never forgive them…sigh.
The reason for this frankly bizarre tease of a babyface turn, only to switch back to being heel again has now been revealed and it…well it’s most certainly something.
Dave Meltzer on Wrestling Observer Radio noted that the reason Samoa Joe was booked like a babyface was because Vince McMahon was worried Sami Zayn would get a large pop in Toronto, because he’s Canadian. So to counter this, they made Joe a babyface to neuter Zayn’s reaction, because fans would pop for a Joe babyface turn and wouldn’t boo him on his first night as a babyface, but then turned him back because they don’t *actually* want him as a babyface. Makes perfect sense.
So all of this trouble and hassle was done, just to make sure Sami Zayn didn’t get a pop. I’m sure it was worth it.
Disney are unhappy with X-Men: New Mutants! What does this mean for the X-Men’s future in the MCU? Find out all the details in today’s ScreenStalker with Oli and Housemate Simon by clicking the video on screen! Press the thumbs up, subscribe and enable notifications before you go though, and leave us a comment letting us know what you thought of SmackDown! A special thank you to our pledgehammers on Patreon, some of whom you can see scrolling below me right now! I’ve been Chopper Pete Quinnell, and that, was wrestling.