Shore’s WWE Smackdown Hit List: Final hype for Battleground features Luke Harper vs. Chris Jericho, Kane vs. Dean Ambrose, Alicia Fox v. Eva Marie with Nikki Bella as referee, and more
By Chris Shore
WWE Smackdown Hits
Luke Harper vs. Chris Jericho: Probably the best match on the card, this gets a Hit for the match and the pre-match promo from Bray Wyatt. They lost a little bit of juice in this feud Monday night, to the point of Wyatt getting ridiculous “Boring” chants from the live crowd. They recovered tonight and gave Jericho a good win going into the PPV on Sunday. Harper continues to be a stud in the ring with everyone he’s in there with—no surprise to those of us who saw him on the indy scene.
Kane vs. Dean Ambrose: While not a breathtaking match, this still deserves a Hit for the logical composition of the match and the hot, if somewhat predictable, finish. What I really liked is that they managed to end this when neither guy was in an apparent finishing sequence. Far too often wrestling waits till a guy is about to win to have the run-in. While that makes perfect sense sometimes, this story needs to keep everyone on fairly equal footing, so I appreciate Rollins running out seemingly at random than right before Ambrose put Kane away.
Paige and AJ Lee vs. Summer Rae and Layla: A surprising little Hit from the Divas. I’ve always thought Layla could work, and Summer Rae is no slouch. The pedigree of the women on the other side is also well known. I’m still wildly confused by the Paige and AJ storyline, but I am hopeful that the two women have a great match at the PPV. It could be a defining moment for the Divas division.
Sheamus and Dolph Ziggler vs. Fandango and The Miz: This gets a Hit because it’s one of those matches that you roll your eyes at in the beginning because you have no reason to care about it, and then by the end the action is good enough to suck you in. I half like Miz’s “Don’t hit the money maker” gimmick, but it also comes across as campy sometimes. He’s got to find the right balance to make this character work.
WWE Smackdown Misses
Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins opening: A bit of a snore fest between these two to open the show. It wasn’t bad per se, just uninspiring and stale. It’s the only one in this feud so far so it isn’t a killer, but it just wasn’t very good. They had a couple of good lines, but I found myself struggling to stay invested.
Alicia Fox vs. Eva Marie with Nikki Bella as referee: How many problems can you fit into one match? The crowd doesn’t care about Nikki all that much, so her getting attacked constantly is barely moving the needle. Then they use the heat vacuum Eva Marie to try and get this over. Why not put Rosa Mendes out there? She could at least use the TV time and is probably a better worker. This was a miss from start to finish.
Stardust and Goldust: What the hell was this? I’m sory, but WWE needs to pull the plug on this. It isn’t working. I give Cody Rhodes an A+ for effort, I really do. He’s done everything he can to make this character work, but it just isn’t. People look at his brother and say, “That’s Goldust.” People look at Cody and say, “That’s Cody Rhodes trying to act like his brother.” That’s not a character that is ever going to work.
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