Barnett's WWE Smackdown Hitlist: The Shield continues to shine, Del Rio and Big Show impress, as does Dolph Ziggler, but several others do not.
By Jake Barnett
The Shield: Yes, I know, another show and another Shield attack. Sheamus looked good taking a beating here, actually besting The Shield for a moment before the numbers caught up to him. The attacks continue to be well done, and it’s actually refreshing to me that WWE is allowing The Shield to continue to build up momentum without feeding them to fan favorite wrestlers to be mauled. At the same point in the life of the Nexus, they were already losing matches on television and storyline momentum. I’m interested to see if Jason Powell’s idea that we may see Cena, Ryback and Sheamus vs The Shield in an Elimination Chamber match in a couple of weeks. The last time we saw The Shield on PPV it was absolute mayhem, and the Elimination chamber would definitely play to their strengths.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Big Show: Alberto Del Rio and the Big Show both continue to play their respective roles exceptionally well. Del Rio is showing real babyface fire, and is much better in this role than he was as a marginalized heel wrestler. He was spending way too much time losing matches to babyfaces warming up for their main event appearances. The parking lot attack was a nice change of pace form the usual WWE dramatic efforts, specifically the trip on the top of the car that looked like it hurt no matter how you attempt to rig a stunt. Big Show has also really impressed me since taking a much darker turn after his feud with Sheamus. I didn’t like where they left his character when that feud was over, specifically because he had looked intimidated by Sheamus on several occasions, which is no kind of behavior for a giant.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Dolph Ziggler: This was a great main event, and one that I would recommend you go back and watch on Youtube or on DVR if you missed the show. Both guys work very well together, and Ziggler looked very strong in defeat. The post-match attack on Ricardo by Big Show was a very good close to the show as well, and it should set up some interesting event for next week.
Team Rhodes Scholars breaking up: This was good news. Both guys are better as singles talents, and the Intercontinental and US Title Divisions needs more players.
The Great Khali in the Elimination Chamber: I’m not sure how much I need to expound on this, but this was depressing. Khali can barely walk and wrestle, and putting him in a Chamber spot seems risky. I suppose the counter point is that he could be restricted to a very short time in the match, but even if that’s the case, why put him out there at all?
Jack Swagger’s return: I’m surprised he came back with the same look he left with, and even more surprised they didn’t have him change up his character whatsoever. He was basically the same guy, and the lack of reaction shouldn’t have been unexpected, given that he was treated as an afterthought prior to his absence.
Randy Orton vs. Wade Barrett: So, what was the point of having Barrett get a clean win over Orton a few weeks ago? I think they’ve flushed that down the memory hole for whatever reason. The latest stuff with Bo Dallas has been a fun underdog story, but I hope it isn’t the WrestleMania plan for Barrett.
The Great Khali (w/Natalya and Hornswoggle) and 3MB: How many times do we have to watch this? Both of these acts are embarrassing.
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