Reviews

The John Report: WWE Smackdown 07/01/22 Review

wwe smackdown july 1

This week’s WWE Smackdown featured a six-woman tag team match along with a men’s fatal four-way match as we headed closer toward Money in the Bank on Saturday night.

Note: I will be on vacation starting next Monday, July 4th. I know it’s a holiday in the US that day. Here in Canada, it’s July 1 as our birthday. Anyway, I’m going to be off for a week. That means no reviews of Raw, NXT, Smackdown, Dynamite or Rampage next week. I’ll be back ready to write for the July 11th edition of Raw. I will most likely do condensed reviews for the shows I miss because I want to get them all done. I look forward to a wrestling break. I know our news and feature writing team will keep the content coming on TJRWrestling without me, so keep supporting the site and we will continue to cover the wacky world of pro wrestling as best we can.

I missed Smackdown live because it’s Canada Day here and I decided to catch some fireworks with some family. I came home to watch Smackdown after that. Our TJRWrestling WWE Money in the Bank preview was posted earlier on Friday right here. I anticipate being home on Saturday night to write about Money in the Bank live.

From the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona, this is Smackdown for episode #1193. Follow me on Twitter @johnreport. Let’s get to it.

The Smackdown commentary team of Michael Cole and Pat McAfee were at ringside welcoming us to the show with Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match competitors in the ring.

Let’s Hear from Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match Competitors

There were giant ladders in the ring with Drew McIntyre, Riddle, Sami Zayn, Sheamus and Seth “Freakin” Rollins at the top of the giant ladders. Omos and MVP were standing in the ring.

Seth welcomed us to Smackdown to remind us that Money in the Bank is right around the corner (on Saturday). Rollins was cut off by Drew McIntyre and Riddle while adding that the best place to cash in Money in the Bank will be SummerSlam when Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar beat eachother up in a Last Man Standing Match. Riddle said that he was rooting for Roman Reigns while adding when he cashes in he can beat that dirtbag, bro. Zayn said that’s not going to happen because Sami, the Honorary Uce, is in the match. Sami had his Bloodline shirt on. Sami said that as long as he has that contract, Roman Reigns will be safe from these vultures. MVP called them idiots while noting that he has a giant Omos standing next to him and he is the favorite to win. MVP said when it’s all said and done, Omos will be the last man standing. Sheamus said that he’s already been Mr. Money in the Bank and he’s already cashed in on Roman Reigns (that was 2015) while mentioning that it could be Lesnar. Drew spoke up saying he’s beaten Lesnar in five minutes and at Money in the Bank, he’s going to beat all of them.

The Miz interrupted the promo party. There were ladders all around the entrance area and ringside. The Miz reminded Drew that he successfully cashed in Money in the Bank on Drew while saying he was the only two-time Mr. Money in the Bank in this company, so he deserved to be in the match.

Ezekiel was next saying he was supposed to have a qualifying match with Kevin Owens, so if anyone deserves to be in Money in the Bank then it’s got to be Zeke.

Happy Corbin ripped on Zeke for being dumb like his buffoon brother. Corbin said he’s won that briefcase before and nobody is as lucky as him in Las Vegas.

Madcap Moss ripped on Corbin saying that the thought of Corbin squandering that contract again is hysterical. Moss said he’s there to step up and take that last spot tomorrow night.

That led to WWE Official Adam Pearce showing up by the entrance area. Pearce told the crew to get the ladders out of the ring because they’re going to have a “good old fashioned battle royal” up next.

Analysis: They have done these types of segments before with the wrestlers standing on the ladders doing the promos to hype up Money in the Bank. It’s nothing new or unique about it. A lot of guys made valid points, but it wasn’t that interesting. Setting up a battle royal wasn’t what I was expecting at all.

(Commercial)

10-Man “Good Old Fashioned” Battle Royal: Drew McIntyre, Seth Rollins, Ezekiel, Sheamus, Riddle, Madcap Moss, Ezekiel, The Miz and Happy Corbin

There was no reward for the winner. It was just a battle royal.

Zayn nearly eliminated Riddle, but Riddle held onto the ropes. Omos drove his knee into the throat of Moss against the ropes. Drew nearly eliminated Miz, but Miz held on with an eye rake. Omos eliminated Ezekiel. Moss tried to fight Omos, which was a big mistake and Omos eliminated Moss. Zayn shoved Miz into Omos, so Omos easily eliminated Miz. That’s three straight eliminations by Omos. Riddle with forearms to Omos. Drew faced off with Omos, who choked Drew a bit and then Drew was back up with punches, but Omos stopped that with a headbutt. Omos sent Sheamus into the turnbuckle followed by a back elbow splash. Omos elbowed the back of Sami’s neck. Rollins waved at Omos in the ring, then Seth turned around and jumped over the top to eliminate himself because Seth realized how pointless this was. Riddle went after Rollins on the floor with Riddle giving Rollins an RKO on the floor. Riddle got a hold of Omos’ arm against the ropes, so then Drew & Sheamus teamed up to eliminate Omos. Big pop for that.

Analysis: I feel like we should applaud Seth for eliminating himself from this pointless battle royal. What a smart man.

(Commercial)

The match returned with Riddle running into a clothesline from Sheamus. Zayn and Sheamus tried getting rid of Riddle, but Riddle managed to hold on. Riddle battled with Sheamus, who came back with a clothesline on Riddle. Drew beat up Zayn with punches, then Sheamus took turns and Drew tossed Zayn across the ring. Corbin hit a Chokeslam backbreaker on Riddle for two. Sheamus worked over Zayn with forearms to the chest, Zayn with a necksnap against the ropes, Riddle with a Bro to Sleep on Sheamus and Riddle with a running senton. Riddle with a powerslam like his mentor Randy Orton and Riddle hit the draping DDT on Sheamus. The RKO attempt was blocked, Sheamus sent Riddle to the apron, Riddle to the middle rope and Sheamus hit a jumping knee to eliminate him. Corbin with a Chokeslam on Sheamus.

The final four were Happy Corbin, Drew McIntyre, Sheamus and Sami Zayn. Drew fought back with punches, Zayn went for the kick and Drew moved so that Zayn hit Corbin with the Helluva Kick. Drew with a neckbreaker on Sami. Drew set up for the Claymore Kick, but Sheamus hit a jumping knee to the face. Sheamus tried dumping out Drew, then Drew fought out of it and hit a Glasgow Kiss. Drew continued his dominance by tossing Sheamus across the ring and doing it to Zayn as well. Drew with a Future Shock DDT. Zayn tried eliminating Drew, but Drew was able to avoid it and Drew hit a Claymore Kick on Zayn. Drew dumped Zayn out of the ring. Drew tried to dump Sheamus, which didn’t work and Corbin ended up dumping Drew/Sheamus out of the ring. They went 16 minutes.

Winner Happy Corbin

Analysis: **1/2 I thought it was a decent battle royal. It wasn’t anything special and with nothing up for grabs for the winner, it made it hard to get into. What was the point of it? To fill time, I guess. It was one of the more pointless battle royals that I can remember.

(Commercial)

Happy Corbin celebrated the win during an interview with Kayla Braxton. When she asked if Corbin answered Pat McAfee’s challenge for SummerSlam, Corbin said nothing and it ended.

A video aired promoting the Ronda Rousey/Natalya match at Money in the Bank.

Natalya was interviewed backstage by Megan Morant. Natalya said that all Ronda has left is talk. Natalya said she has seen fear in Ronda’s eyes. Natalya said you can make fun of her and her “rack” all you want. Natalya said that she’s going to make Ronda Rousey tap out to the Sharpshooter. Natalya said she’ll leave with the Smackdown Women’s Title and the only thing Rousey will be holding will be her ten-month-old baby. Natalya smiled.

Analysis: I liked Natalya’s confidence in the promo. I don’t like her chances of beating Rousey even though I like her more than Rousey. I just think Ronda is in for a long title run.

The New Day’s Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their entrance. They showed the Viking Raiders attacking New Day last week on Smackdown.

(Commercial)

The New Day duo of Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods were in the ring for the promo. They hyped up the crowd talking about being in Phoenix with Kofi thinking it was June, but Woods said that June is over and Kof said “Ju-lying.” And that led to Kofi winning five bucks due to the reaction. New Day said that they are the gives that give us what we want to see and last week the fans wanted to see a dancing Shanky. It was a great time until the Viking Raiders ruined it. Woods said it was not a good viking experience. Kofi said they’re serious and dangerous vikings now. Woods: “Let’s get dangerous.” Kofi called out the Viking Raiders leading to “New Day rocks” chants.

The Viking Raiders were introduced as “the new, vicious Viking Raiders” by ring announcer Samantha Irvin. Erik and Ivar had some giant shields in their hands. Ivar used the shield to block a Woods attack and Ivar knocked down Woods by hitting him with the shield repeatedly. Erik was beating up Kofi with his shield. Ivar used the shield to knock Kofi down again. Erik and Ivar picked up Kofi for a doubel Powerbomb. That was a stiff Powerbomb for sure. They put Woods on top of Kofi and the Viking Raiders left to boos.

Analysis: I think they got the point across well by having the Viking Raiders dominate that segment rather than having a match. They kept on putting over the “new, vicious Viking Raiders” phrase on commentary. It’s WWE trying to elevate the Raiders as heels while using The New Day to feud with them since WWE knows how popular New Day is. They’ll have good matches whenever they get to that point. I like both teams.

There was a backstage segment with Madcap Moss, The Miz, Happy Corbin and Ezekiel talking to WWE Official Adam Pearce. Pearce let them know that Kevin Owens was going to be in a match against Ezekiel to qualify for MITB, but KO was not medically cleared. Pearce informed them that they’ll have a Fatal 4-Way match with the winner earning a spot in the Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder match.

The entrances took place for the six-women tag team match.

(Commercials)

Becky Lynch was on commentary for this match. She did a quick promo talking about her accomplishments.

Asuka, Liv Morgan & Alexa Bliss vs. Shotzi, Lacey Evans & Raquel Rodriguez

All six women are in the Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match along with Lynch. Asuka’s team is from Raw and Lacey’s team is from Smackdown.

Evans whipped Asuka into the turnbuckle, Raquel tagged in with a corner splash and Evans hit a leaping attack on Asuka in the corner. Asuka broke free against Raquel leading to a running kick to the face. Raquel was in control against Bliss with a running shoulder tackle. Morgan tagged in with a double dropkick on Raquel. Morgan hit a jumping shoulder tackle, then a running knee and Shotzi tagged herself in for a two count. Bliss did a spot with Shotzi where she kicked her in the back into the turnbuckle. Shotzi took a breather to regroup on the floor. Evans yelled at her partner Shotzi to get back in the ring Morgan hit a suicide dive on Shotzi/Evans, who were nearly too far away, but they caught enough of Bliss. Asuka kicked Raquel down and then Bliss hit a somersault dive onto Raquel.

(Commercial)

The Smackdown team was in control with Shotzi getting a nearfall on Bliss. Cole noted to Lynch in the women’s division, every cash-in attempt has led to a title change. Shotzi hit a corner splash on Bliss. Shotzi with a leg scissors on Bliss against the ropes. Shotzi suplexed Bliss so that her feet hit the ropes. Bliss with a boot to the face and then she got a sunset flip, but Shotzi turned it into a modified Boston Crab. Bliss kicked her way free leading to Asuka making the tag while knocking Evans off the apron. Asuka ran over Shotzi with a shoulder tackle. Asuka avoided a kick, Asuka with an Ankle Lock and Asuka hit a German Suplex. Asuka with a running hip attack on Shotzi for two. Morgan tagged in, Asuka kicked Shotzi and Morgan hit a double knee attack on Shotzi for two. Asuka and Bliss kicked Rodriguez out of the ring. Evans with a punch on Bliss, Asuka back fist to Evans, Shotzi kicked Asuka out of the ring and Shotzi celebrated that. Morgan took advantage of that with the Oblivion slam off the ropes to pin Shotzi to win the match.

Winners by pinfall: Liv Morgan, Asuka & Alexa Bliss

Analysis: **3/4 A solid match where the heel Shotzi refused to tag out to her babyface teammates in the second half of the match. That’s why they lost. I thought they should have had Lacey or Raquel tag themselves in by forcing it and building up the dissension more. The positive momentum for Morgan continues with another win in this match.

Post match, Cole said he was picking Liv Morgan to win Money in the Bank. Lynch went into the ring and hit Asuka with the Manhandle Slam before Morgan or Bliss could stop it. Lynch left proudly.

Adam Pearce was in his office with Sonya Deville showing up to ask about what happened last week. Sonya complained about Adam putting her in a handicap match last week. Sonya said she filed a formal complaint because what he did was wrong and what she was about to do was wrong too. Sonya slapped Pearce in the face. The camera zoomed in on Pearce’s face to end it. McAfee remarked that it was a tough spot for Pearce and he’s had a rough time like the Brooklyn Nets.

Analysis: I’m not really sure where the story is going there. Sonya isn’t being pushed on TV much while the slap makes Pearce looks weak. Maybe he’ll want revenge.

The Usos made their entrance as the Unified WWE Tag Team Champions. Cole noted they have been champions (Smackdown titles) for 347 days. They are part of an “Ask Them Anything” segment up next.

(Commercial)

Ask Me Anything: The Usos and The Street Profits

The two teams were in the ring behind podiums with Kayla Braxton moderating this segment that will ask these teams anything. The Usos were asked how fearful The Usos were of losing their titles. Jimmy laughed it off. Jey noted they don’t look fearful because they have confidence since The Bloodline is running all the damn shows. Montez Ford said that Roman Reigns runs this show and Angelo Dawkins said they just run to the grocery store.

Braxton brought up it’s been a year and a half since The Street Profits last held the Tag Team Titles, so have they lost their killer instinct and what is this she is hearing that they aren’t getting along? Dawkins asked where she got that from and they both asked: “dirtsheets?” Probably. Ford dismissed it. Dawkins said that Montez is like a brother. Ford said that they had the killer instinct every time they step in the ring with The Usos. Ford said he knows about The Usos family lineage, they respected that and said that they have not prepared The Usos for the hungry, starving Street Profits. Ford said that on Saturday they are getting the Tag Team Championships under the bright lights and their legacy begins.

Jey warned Ford to be careful about what comes out of his mouth. Kayla left the ring. Jey said that they actually like The Street Profits, but they aren’t like the man and on Saturday, The Usos are up and they want the smoke. Dawkins said that they will beat their asses and become the new undisputed Tag Team Champions because they’re the two’s while they (Street Profits) are The Ones. The teams had a staredown, but there was no physicality.

Analysis: Good promo work from both sides. I liked the format because it was a bit different from what we normally see. They ended it by stealing catchphrases. I think Kayla’s question asking about problems with The Street Profits was interesting and maybe it will lead to a split between the team if they fail to win the titles. I think they’ll have a very good match that might be great and possibly be the best match at Money in the Bank as well. Both teams are very talented, so I have high expectations for what they can do. I’m picking The Usos for what it’s worth.

They showed Max Dupri talking to Adam Pearce saying everybody will see the magnificence of Maximum Male Models. Pearce told him the showcase is next with Max saying “yes” to end it.

(Commercial)

There was a Progressive Match Flo video showing highlights of Intercontinental Champion Gunther destroying people.

Maximum Male Models

Max Dupri was introduced for a promo in the ring. Max was introduced as the founder of Maximum Male Models. Max talked about the love of fashion that will be displayed by the most virile men in all of fashion. Max said you knew him as Mace, but now he gives us Mace. Max pronounced his name as “Mace” with an accent on the e (ma.cé). That led to Mace making his entrance walking on a red carpet wearing some unique attire. The announcers plugged maximummalemodels.com as an actual website.

The next model was Mansoor, but you can now call him Mansoir, but they still spelled it as Mansoor with accents on the letters (mån.sôör). Mansoor had a fanny pack as part of his attire and Pat referenced Michael Hayes. Cole said he didn’t know what to say. The wrestlers posed on the ramp while photographers took photos. The fans booed.

Mace and Mansoor made their entrance together with the fans booing them. Max said that they are there to titillate the juices of your guilty pleasures. Max said “thank you” and Pat said “thank you” in return. Pat was applauding at ringside.

Analysis: This was awful. I get that it was done to get heat because it’s a heel gimmick, but I thought it was really bad. I guess it depends on how it is presented when they are booked in matches.

Ronda Rousey was interviewed by Megan Morant in the backstage area. Rousey said it has been fun to teach Natalya how to promote a fight, then she said Natalya should know the age of Rousey’s baby because she is nine months (Natalya said ten months) and then Rousey said she’s going to make her tap out.

The Miz made his entrance for the main event. That led to Cole mentioning Logan Paul signing with WWE and Logan held up a sign saying he was coming for The Miz. Madcap Moss was next for the fatal four-way main event match.

(Commercial)

Next week on Smackdown: Maximum Male Models reveal their tennis wear collection.

Ezekiel was already in the ring while Happy Corbin made his entrance. The winner of this match gets to join the Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match. They did a rundown of the rest of the Money in the Bank card.

* Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Carmella

* Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: The Usos (c) vs. The Street Profits

* Smackdown Women’s Championship: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Natalya

* United States Championship: Theory (c) vs. Bobby Lashley

* Women’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Lacey Evans vs. Liv Morgan vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Raquel Rodriguez vs. Asuka vs. Shotzi vs. Becky Lynch.

The full card is at the bottom of the review.

Men’s Money in the Bank Qualifying Match: Madcap Moss vs. The Miz vs. Ezekiel vs. Happy Corbin

The first fall wins this match with no countouts and no disqualifications.

Moss knocked Corbin out of the ring, Miz got a rollup on Moss and then Ezekiel did a sunset flip on Moss for two. Ezekiel with a body slam, but then Moss came back with a running back elbow. Corbin was back with a knee on Moss, then Moss jumped off the middle rope and hit a shoulder tackle. Miz stomped on Moss in the corner, then Corbin splashed Moss and Miz charged, but Corbin turned on him with a clothesline. Ezekiel punched Corbin while on the floor and clotheslined Corbin over the barricade. Miz was punched by Moss and Ezekiel on the floor. Corbin shoved Moss into the steel steps. Corbin with a belly to back slam on Miz on the apron. Corbin gave Ezekiel a Chokeslam on the announce table, which did not break. Corbin stared right at McAfee after he did it.

(Commercial)

Moss was in control with a flatliner on Corbin and a lifting slam on Miz with an elbow drop. They did a Tower of Doom spot out of the corner during the break. Moss did a catapult spot that sent Miz’s head/neck into Corbin’s groin. Ouch. Moss hit the Punchline neckbreaker on Corbin for two because Ezekiel made the save. Ezekiel jumped off the top with a cross body block, Moss caught him and hit a fallaway slam. Miz hit a running knee on Moss for a two count. Miz delivered kicks on Ezekiel and Moss followed by a backbreaker/neckbreaker combo on Moss for two as Corbin made the save. Miz charged at Corbin, who hit the Deep Six slam for two. That is Corbin’s nearfall spot. Corbin and Ezekiel exchanged punches, Ezekiel kicked Corbin down and hit a clothesline. Ezekiel sent Moss into the turnbuckle, Ezekiel with three straight corner splashes and then Ezekiel hit a jumping knee on Corbin for two. Ezekiel with a spinebuster on Moss. Miz hit a Skull Crushing Finale on Ezekiel, but Corbin pulled Miz out of the ring and sent him into the barricade. Corbin hit the End of Days on Ezekiel, but Moss went into the ring and Moss threw Corbin into the ring post. Moss stole the pin to cover Ezekiel for the pinfall win after 12 minutes.

Winner by pinfall: Madcap Moss

Analysis: *** I thought it was a good match for the most part. It was the classic “steal the pin” finish that WWE loves booking for multi-person matches. I’m not that surprised that they would go for that kind of ending even with a face like Moss getting the win. Going into the match, I figured Moss or Ezekiel would win it, so I’m fine with the result. Everybody in the match had big moments and hit some major moves like Miz, Moss and Corbin hitting finishers, but in the end, it was Moss stealing the pin after Corbin hit the End of Days slam. I thought it was booked well.

The win by Madcap Moss means he joined six men in the Money in the Bank Ladder Match: Seth “Freakin” Rollins, Omos, Sami Zayn Drew McIntyre, Riddle, Sheamus and Madcap Moss.

Madcap Moss celebrated the win while Pat McAfee celebrated that “Bum Ass” Corbin didn’t win the match to qualify for Money in the Bank. McAfee laughed at Corbin. Moss celebrated the win some more. That was the end of the show.

Analysis: My pick is Drew McIntyre as I wrote in our preview. I think Riddle and Rollins are good choices as well. I’d love to see Sami Zayn win as well, but I’m not sure if he’s going to get that big win.

 

Three Stars of the Show

1. Liv Morgan

2. Drew McIntyre

3. Madcap Moss

 

The Scoreboard

5.5 out of 10

Last week: 6.5

 

Final Thoughts

It was just another average Smackdown. At least we got to see the final MITB Men’s Qualifier with Madcap Moss getting the win. The women’s six-man tag was okay as well. I didn’t really care much for the battle royal that seemed rather pointless and so random.

I thought the Maximum Male Models segment with Max Dupri introducing Mace and Mansoor with new looks was really bad. I get that it’s a heel thing that we are supposed to hate, but it wasn’t entertaining at all. The fans booed it loudly. I’m glad that they did.

Happy Canada Day. Bring on Money in the Bank on Saturday night.

The next WWE Premium Live Event is Money in the Bank from Las Vegas on Saturday, July 2nd. Here’s what we know so far.

wwe money in the bank 2022 tjrwrestling review

* Men’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Seth “Freakin” Rollins vs. Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus vs. Omos vs. Sami Zayn vs. Riddle vs. Madcap Moss.

* Women’s Money in the Bank Contract Ladder Match: Lacey Evans vs. Liv Morgan vs. Alexa Bliss vs. Raquel Rodriguez vs. Asuka vs. Shotzi vs. Becky Lynch.

* Raw Women’s Championship: Bianca Belair (c) vs. Carmella

* Smackdown Women’s Championship: Ronda Rousey (c) vs. Natalya

* Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championships: The Usos (c) vs. The Street Profits

* United States Championship: Theory (c) vs. Bobby Lashley

You can watch WWE Money in the Bank, streaming live Saturday, July 2, at 8 ET/5 PT on Peacock in the United States and on WWE Network everywhere else.

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Thanks for reading. Please check out my reviews of every WWE PPV ever listed in order. Go Toronto Blue Jays. My contact info is below.

John Canton

Email mrjohncanton@gmail.com

Twitter @johnreport