10 Thoughts: Smackdown! 8.8.14 (Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, Michael Cole, Chris Jericho)

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Now I haven’t been around to recap Smackdown for awhile because, well, I haven’t found the time to catch the Monday Night Raw preshow in awhile. I’m here for the good fight though, so if you’re reading – don’t give up on me, I’ve still got a lot of snark in me.

1. Ambrose opening the show is good. I enjoy his rebellious attitude and dedication to the DDP taped up look. It never got old for me with Page and it won’t get old for me with Ambrose. As much as I like hm opening the show though, I like his choice of a match for Summerslam a lot less than that. He gives nice reasoning for it, but I can’t tell you that I have the capability of amping myself up for a Lumberjack match. The segment of course can’t wrap up with just telling us that terrible stipulation either, it has to include Ambrose and Rollins skills at selling a product to the people. Product placement is bad enough, making your talent fit advertising into their “badass” promos for the fans is the worst. I don’t think I have the heart to say that I liked the segment as much as I do like both men involved. We’re off to a shitty start here.

2. Mark Henry and Big Show had a match against Rybaxel and surprise – the giants won. I don’t particularly care for Rybaxel, but I do enjoy the building of a tag division. Of course they tend to always kind of try to put one together and then throw their unused high paid behemoths together and have them run rough shod over anyone who tries to manage a career in said tag division. Welcome back Mark Henry!

3. Damien Sandow looks less border patrol more Duke “The Dumpster” Droese. My confusion was real for a hot second. He does seem to be playing the role of Zeb Coulter about two months ago, but since he’s a good guy now I guess that’s okay for Sandow to step on his toes. I hate Sin Cara in any form, and I can’t imagine anyone who paid money for a ticket to this show was really hoping for a Sin Cara/Damien Sandow match. Poor guy is even jobbing to the jobbers now. I guess it’s the “close to the border” reasoning especially with Alberto Del Rio on the outs. They didn’t know who else to get out of the back for this. We all suffer.

4. One thing I do like about Smackdown is that it’s much more focused on the wrestling aspect of you know, wrestling, so we get matches like Seth Rollins vs Dolph Ziggler for something like the 80th time. I do enjoy watching these guys go and even if we get the repeat on Raw it’s worth it. I do think that Mike Chioda’s ref counting skills are going. He made some pretty bad calls in the Last Man Standing match on Raw and his count while Rollins threw Dolph around outside the ring seemed pretty low. I enjoyed this match, though I think if you don’t enjoy these two in the ring you’re not letting yourself enjoy anything on these shows anymore, and while I understand I feel bad for you. Rollins wins which makes the predictability of these match endings pretty high so far.

5. I know Paige is supposed to be being evil and copy AJ and she’s always had a thing for screaming, but it seems like she’s really channeling Alicia Fox lately. Nobody picking up on that at the announce table? No? Well I see you Paige. I like you, and I don’t hate it – but I see you. Surprise surprise as well for everyone, Natalya lost a match again. I do think she’s incredibly talented and possibly the best wrestler in the women’s division but ever since I watched her on Total Divas, enjoying Natalya is nearly impossible for me. It’s a real shame.

6. Another real original match for us all now with Big E vs Rusev happening! I thought that Big E was forming a new Nation of Domination with Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston? Is that not happening anymore or do we just not have to stick with continuity on Smackdown? I assume that if you were forming a new faction you’d want at least someone out there to defend your stable mate. Maybe they’re just not at that point in their relationship yet. Or maybe they just needed a big guy for Rusev to destroy and they forgot we’ve already seen him do it to Big E more than once. At least we don’t get any uncomfortable promos from Zeb Coulter here.

7. You know, I love Chris Jericho but his promos are not cutting it for me leading up to this match with Bray Wyatt. Maybe it’s because I’ve already seen it or because I don’t see any way this match doesn’t end with a Bray Wyatt win so whatever Jericho says seems pretty useless. I’m not feeling it. I hope the match is great and I eat crow next Sunday, but I doubt it.

8. Well don’t forget about the two main events of Summerslam in 9 days everyone! WWE didn’t – they made sure to replay the same video package they played for Brock Lesnar/John Cena and then put together a brand new one for the much anticipated Brie Bella/Stephanie McMahon showdown. Nothing says we have just as much love for our other show like advertising your biggest matches with replayed footage. I will say that they’re both great which is to be expected from the WWE video team.

9. We’ve got Randy Orton and Dean Ambrose to end the show, and Michael Cole questions whether or not JBL thinks Dean Ambrose is unorthodox. He wrestles taped up, in jeans and a tank top and has no rhyme or reason to his wrestling style – of course he’s unorthodox Cole do your homework! Really, these announcers ruin more matches than I can count. They make watching everything intolerable. Something needs to be done about these people.

10. Ambrose succeeding as a face and Rollins as a heel has been blowing my mind. That’s the best kind of stuff though when watching this isn’t it? When you can still be surprised by something they throw at you. I know it’s been mentioned more than once by other people, but Dean Ambrose is the antihero WWE has been seeking for awhile. I didn’t see it coming, but now I’m disappointed in myself because it works so well. Who doesn’t love crazy guys who just keep coming? Rollins and Ambrose are so special. I mean Reigns is too but his quick dissent into John Cena 2: Electric Boogaloo really hurts him for me. I’m having much more fun watching the evolution of his former stable mates. You know WWE sees they have something too when they almost let this lunatic go over on their golden boy Orton. I have no idea who is coming out on top of this match at Summerslam and I like it that way. We’ll see more from these two for a long time anyway and I think it’s going to take a long time to get bored of it. Thank goodness.

There it is! The illustrious thoughts of Smackdown column! It wasn’t the worst show, but when you recycle things we’ve all seen before it certainly isn’t among the best either. I liked Ziggler/Rollins and Ambrose/Orton just fine. I did not like the exclusion of Bo Dallas. That sucked. Leave your thoughts below or seek me out on twitter at here. I tweet about pop culture and wrestling too much but that’s the fun stuff in life.