Shore's WWE Smackdown Hitlist: Ryback vs. Jinder Mahal is finally over, Dolph Ziggler continues to improve, the tag division shows life, Eve is scheming, and Randy Orton taps out
By Chris Shore
WWE Smackdown Hits
Randy Orton vs. Alberto Del Rio: The match itself was nothing to get jazzed up about as we just saw it Monday night. Orton tapping in the middle of the ring without interference, however, is a gigantic Hit. I am a little surprised after making such a big deal about Triple H tapping that WWE would have Orton tap like this, but I like it. Del Rio needed a good win if he is going to stay in the main event picture, and Orton loses nothing in the process because of hitting the RKO on Ziggler at the end. Very good job by WWE Creative here.
Dolph Ziggler: Ziggler continues to improve on the microphone, with his segment backstage with Vickie hitting the right chord. He also wasn't bad in the short back and forth with Sheamus. The best part of his night though, may have been when he attacked Sheamus with the briefcase. The referee's apparent lack of language skills notwithstanding, I don't remember any previous MITB winner creating his own circumstance for when he could cash in deviously. I thought that moment alone was worth a spot in the Hits.
Eve: While I didn't like Eve at the end of the Divas match so much, her interactions with Booker T and Teddy long backstage were a definite Hit. Eve has been much more compelling as a heel, and this wormy heel persona just flat works with her as I have always thought her smile seemed faker than most. As a rule, I bore of non-wrestler stroylines, but I think this eventually gets us to a Divas title match between Eve and Kaitlyn, and perhaps we get some fun chaos along the way.
Tag division: The big tag team brawl gets a minor Hit from me this week because I am guardedly optimistic about where it is going. Yes, the tag team match was barely over two minutes, but they were also setting up the backstage segment with that. Add in Booker T's dilemma of trying to find the right team to choose as the top contender and there may yet be hope for the tag division. Even if there isn't hope for the day glow yellow tops that Justin Gabriel and Tyson Kidd wore.
Cody Rhodes vs. Sin Cara: While I personally had no enjoyment of this moment, the "Cody sucks" chants at the end dictate that I call this a hit. As Jake Barnett rightly pointed out, they were very high pitched chants, probably indicating that kids are the one most excited about this. Uncle Vince loves the kiddies, so this feud with Sin Cara could be what launches Cody Rhodes into the main event picture. And that's a Hit any day of the week.
WWE Smackdown Misses
Santino Marella: I am struggling to find words to express how stupid this storyline is. In a number of ways, I prefer invisible Little Jimmy to this because while R-Truth looks like a buffoon, at least a part of his own body hasn't turned against him. The whole thing is a miss, but I'm also trying to find the silver lining here. Vince, for whatever reason, seems to love Santino. If Antonio Cesaro can have a feud with Santino that Vince finds good, then the sky is the limit for the Very European US Champion.
Ryback vs. Jinder Mahal: I almost listed this in the Hits because this feud appears to be over. It could not have gotten here fast enough. Ryback is a bust for me right now. He is getting crowd reaction, and I'm not suggesting he's a flop as a whole. But I also think he's a side show act that people like to see, but not many people care if it went away either. Mahal debuted well, but since the terrible Great Khali story has floundered around. This marriage was a Miss from the start. It is a relief to see it go away.
Overall Show: Yes, I know I have a bunch of Hits this week, and while there were some individual moments that either impressed or gave me hope for better down the road, the show dragged on and on. By the time we got to the final quarter hour and the main event I wondered if anybody was left watching with me. The show felt more like random segments put together than something with a logical flow and obvious beginning, middle, and end.
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