WWE Smackdown Live Hits and Misses of 3.20.18 w/ The Chairman
This is the Chairman and here are my hits and misses of this week’s Smackdown Live.
HIT: Daniel Bryan is Cleared to Wrestle Again
Probably the biggest hit ever in the history of this article and rightfully so. News broke earlier today that Daniel Bryan has been cleared by WWE to wrestle. This is huge news considering many thought we would never see Bryan wrestle again. Of course most die hard fans are well aware Daniel Bryan’s WWE contract expires later this year and had WWE not cleared him, chances are he ends up wrestling in ROH, NJPW, and everywhere in between. Clearing Daniel Bryan just before Wrestlemania also means more than likely Bryan will make his return at the grandest stage of them all. Wrestlemania just got better with this news alone and I’m sure I’m not the only one ready to see Bryan lace the boots and compete again.
MISS: Everything In Between the Bryan Segments
I kind of wondered why WWE would leak the news online about Bryan being cleared opposed to letting him make the announcement on Smackdown for a huge shocking moment. Then I realized, ratings. With this news, many fans were going to tune into Smackdown to see this for themselves. The only problem is hooking the fans to stick around for the whole show because it wasn’t very good. Many of the matches and segments were things we’ve seen before week after week. Nothing new, nothing fresh, basically the same old stuff. It was definitely a tough show to watch, but die hards held on until the very end knowing Daniel Bryan was going to be confronting Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn at the end.
HIT: Daniel Bryan Confronting Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens
Last week Zayn and Owens assaulted Shane McMahon as a parting gift for all their hardships over the past several months. Bryan had a fantastic promo with Owens and Zayn bringing up their past and how they would’ve killed ten years ago to face each other at Wrestlemania. Bryan then told Owens and Zayn that they took things too far with Shane and he had no choice but to fire them. He even brought up how he was fired twice and it wasn’t goodbye forever, just goodbye for now. At this point, everybody knew Bryan was going to fall victim to a Owens and Zayn assault. Bryan though got some offense in which was awesome to see. The crowd was ecstatic as was I to see Bryan performing several of his signature moves. Bryan looked fantastic by the way, didn’t look like he missed a step at all. Of course, two on one odds overcame Bryan and he took some bumps. I was wondering if somebody was going to rush out to make the save, but nobody did. Not Shane McMahon, not Dolph Ziggler, nobody. It’s clear we’re going to see Owens and Zayn wrestle Bryan at Wrestlemania. The only question is who will his partner be. I really hope it isn’t Shane McMahon, but I’m sure that’s the direction it’ll go.
MISS: Bobby Roode Screwed
So as everybody knows, Randy Orton defeated Bobby Roode for the United States Championship at Fast Lane. Roode of course is owed a rematch, which Roode declared he would be using at Wrestlemania. Orton vs Roode, I’m okay with this. Now enter Jinder Mahal… the unnecessary third wheel to this rivalry. Mahal doesn’t seem to go away and sure enough he’s out there cutting the same promo that he did every week in 2017 when he was WWE Champion (cringe). All the sudden I see a graphic and it’s a triple threat match at Wrestlemania for the United States Championship between Orton, Roode, and Mahal. Why is Mahal getting a title shot as well? Why do we have to have another triple threat match, Raw is already doing that with the Intercontinental Championship? So basically Roode gets screwed out of his one on one rematch. Orton gets screwed because as everyone knows in a triple threat match, he doesn’t have to be involved in the decision. So the only beneficiary is Jinder Mahal…
HIT: Carmella Attempts Another Cash In
There weren’t many moments outside of Daniel Bryan, but I give props to Carmella for attempting to cash in the Money in the Bank briefcase once again. Sure it was a complete flop, but it’s nice to see her trying. Carmella knows Wrestlemania is around the corner and I’m sure she wants to walk into the biggest show of the year with the title. Of course she probably may be forgetting if she holds the gold going into Wrestlemania, Asuka awaits. I’m sure WWE isn’t going to change the course of Charlotte Flair vs Asuka, but don’t be surprised to see Carmella trying to recapture a Seth Rollins Money in the Bank moment from a few Wrestlemania’s ago. The real question is can she cash in on the Raw’s Women Championship? I’m intrigued to see where her story goes in the next few months, because the contract expires in June.
MISS: Baron Corbin and Tye Dillinger
There’s a reason why Tye Dillinger is barely on WWE programming. As for Baron Corbin, I’m confused why keeps getting these mini pushes. What I seen those two do in the ring tonight made me sad for wrestling. May have been one of the worst matches I watched in 2018 and that doesn’t include the giant botch on the End of Days move. Smackdown Live is two hours long and some wrestlers we don’t get to see every week. Some stories barely get any time because WWE has to stuff so much content into their small window. These two wrestlers shouldn’t be utilized until they figure it out. If they don’t figure it out, there’s a long line of NXT prospects ready to take their spot.
BONUS HIT: This is unrelated, but 205 Live has been fantastic the past weeks. I just watched Mustafa Ali vs Drew Gulak and it was an amazing match! Definitely check it out if you haven’t.
That’s all I have this week. Thanks for reading. Follow me on Twitter @chairmanpodcast for my latest tweets on current wrestling, archives, and whatever randomness I tweet. Have a good week!