A big match was announced for WWE Smackdown this Friday: Shinsuke Nakamura (with Sami Zayn) will defend the Intercontinental Title against Roman Reigns. The match was set up thanks to the usual Twitter trash talk that the wrestlers were likely encouraged to do by management.
Nakamura-san & I were eligible to be drafted together & got picked in the 3rd round by #Smackdown.
Imagine being able to get a generation-defining performer AND the Intercontinental Champion together in one pick & still deciding to pick The Big D Roman Reigns first. Unreal. – SZ
— Sami Zayn (@SamiZayn) October 17, 2019
Don’t concern yourself with the Big D Sami 🤣 but if you and Shin want to go from 3rd round to face #1…you know where to find me.
— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) October 17, 2019
— Shinsuke Nakamura (@ShinsukeN) October 17, 2019
The Nakamura/Reigns match is expected to open the show. It will be the third straight week with a title match since Smackdown moved to Fox with Brock Lesnar beating Kofi Kingston for the WWE TItle two weeks ago, Bayley beat Charlotte Flair to win back the Smackdown Women’s Title and now Reigns gets a title shot against IC Champion Nakamura.
* In other WWE news, a WWE Now update informed us that the Authors of Pain (AOP) tag team of Akam and Rezar have signed with Raw. In other words, WWE’s creative team forgot about them in the list of free agents that were assigned to shows yesterday and now AOP are a part of Raw.
I think Raw is a good spot for them. There should be a long term plan to have AOP as a dominant heel team against the Viking Raiders as dominant babyface champions. There’s no need to rush it, but that has the potential to be an awesome tag team feud.
* There’s been a change in the WWE Crown Jewel lineup on October 31. Since Seth Rollins is facing The Fiend for the Universal Title at that show, Rollins is no longer on Team Hulk Hogan in a 5 on 5 tag team match against Team Ric Flair.
Here’s the updated Crown Jewel matchup.
WWE Championship: Brock Lesnar (c) vs. Cain Velasquez
Falls Count Anywhere Match for the Universal Championship: Seth Rollins (c) vs. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt
Braun Strowman vs. Tyson Fury
Five on Five Tag Team Match: Team Hogan (Rusev, Ricochet and three others) vs. Team Flair (Randy Orton, Baron Corbin, Bobby Lashley, Shinsuke Nakamura and one more)
Tag Team Turmoil Match: The New Day (Kofi Kingston, Big E and Xavier Woods), Raw Tag Team Champions Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode, Smackdown Tag Team Champions The Revival (Scott Dawson and Dash Wilder), The Viking Raiders (Erik and Ivar), Zack Ryder and Curt Hawkins, Heavy Machinery (Tucker and Otis), Lucha House Party (Kalisto, Gran Metalik and Lince Dorado), The OC (AJ Styles, Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson), and The B Team (Bo Dallas and Curtis Axel).
Cesaro vs. Mansoor
All of this was covered in today’s WWE Now video, which you can watch below.