This week’s edition of WWE Smackdown featured Bray Wyatt’s return to the blue brand, a Fatal 4-Way match for an Intercontinental Title shot and more.
The show started with “breaking news” as Karrion Kross was shown in the parking lot with Michael Cole saying he was in a car accident. There was a crashed car in the background. Drew McIntyre showed up to attack Kross while WWE Officials and referees tried to stop it. Scarlett was there also selling the car accident that she was involved in because she’s married to Kross. Anyway, Drew got some offense against Kross and then Drew shouted that “this was only the beginning.” Drew was pulled away at that point.
Analysis: If you watched NXT over the years then you know that Triple H loved to book random parking lot attacks when he was booking there, so now we see it on the main roster too. I’m not surprised that the Drew/Kross feud was continuing because the finish was cheap at Extreme Rules, which means the rivalry should continue.
The Smackdown intro video aired.
It was Michael Cole and Wade Barrett on commentary recapping the Drew/Kross situation. They showed what happened at Extreme Rules last Saturday when Scarlett sprayed pepper spray into Drew’s eyes, which led to Kross getting the win. That’s why Drew was going after Kross.
The New Day’s Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their entrance noting their record as WWE Tag Team Champions is 483 days. That’s the all-time longest tag team title reign in WWE history. Cole noted that The Usos are 30 days away from that record.
Analysis: It sounds like they will probably do an Usos vs. New Day match with New Day trying to take the titles before The Usos set the record.
Sami Zayn was shown talking to Solo Sikoa backstage. Jey Uso was shown there with Sami telling Solo to focus on his match tonight while Sami told Jey that he’s with Sami tonight. Sami asked where Jimmy Uso was, Jey said Jimmy was handling family business and Sami said that he should know about it then. Sami’s phone rang it was Roman Reigns and Sami handed Jey the phone. Roman apparently gave Jey some orders, Jey said Roman’s The Tribal Chief and Sami talked to Reigns again.
Zayn made his entrance with Jey Uso, who had the Raw & Smackdown Tag Team Title with him.
Sami Zayn (w/Jey Uso) vs. Kofi Kingston (w/Xavier Woods)
Kingston started off with a dropkick that sent Zayn out of the ring. Kofi teased a dive, Zayn moved out of the way and Woods played some trombone as the show went to break.
Zayn hit a suplex, then he set up Kofi in the corner and Zayn hit a running butt splash in the corner like the Usos and Solo do. Zayn really didn’t touch Kofi as he hit the turnbuckle, but it’s the thought that counts. Zayn hit an elbow to the back followed by a chinlock. Kofi fought out of it, but Zayn came back wit ha clothesline for two. Zayn with a body slam. Zayn went up top very slowly, Zayn jumped off with nothing and Kofi hit a dropkick to knock Zayn down. The fans were chanting “New Day rocks” for Kofi. That led to Kofi firing up with a clothesline. Kofi went for a hurricanrana off the top, they mistimed it and improved something else as Zayn got a cradle pin attempt for two. Kofi hit a jumping foot stomp to the chest. Kofi went up top, Zayn went after him, Kofi with a headbutt and then Zayn got back up to shove Kofi off the top rope to the floor.
Kofi hit the SOS spinning trip into a slam for a two count, which his what that move usually gets for about 15 years now. Kofi charged, Zayn caught him, Kofi hit back elbows to the head and Zayn rolled out of the ring to prevent an attack. Kofi ran the ropes leading to a somersault dive over the top onto Zayn. Jey got in Xavier’s face and hit a superkick. Kofi was distracted by that, so Zayn hit a Blue Thunder Bomb for two. That’s what Sami gets with that move, but it always works as a nearfall. Zayn charged, Kofi got a boot up and Kofi jumped off the top with a punch to the head. Jey to the apron, Kofi knocked him down and Zayn got a rollup for two. Zayn avoided a Trouble in Paradise attempt, but Kofi got a pin attempt sitting on top. Jey kicked Kofi (the referee didn’t see it), so Kofi was able to get a pin attempt while sitting on top for the pinfall win after 15 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Sami Zayn
Analysis: ***1/4 A pretty good match that was all about the story with Jey cheating to help Zayn get the win. Kofi had the match won with his pin attempt, but Jey kicking Zayn led to the counter and Zayn sitting on top to win. They did a nice job with the nearfalls towards the finish. Prior to that it wasn’t that exciting, but I liked the last few minutes a lot.
Sami Zayn celebrated the win as if he did it all on his own while Jey stood behind Zayn with a smug look on his face.
They showed Triple H backstage talking to police officers (likely about the car attack on Karrion Kross). Hunter thanked them and they left. Rey Mysterio walked up to Hunter to talk to him. Rey said that things have reached a breaking point on Raw and he won’t fight his son. Rey said he still sees that little boy that bounced around on his lap or fell asleep on his shoulders. Rey said he can’t do this anymore. Rey said he loved WWE, this is home, but he wanted to look Hunter in the eyes and tell him: “I quit.” The fans booed that. Hunter said that he can’t imagine what Rey is going through, but there’s got to be another way. Hunter said let’s just talk in his office, so they went into the office that said “HHH” on the door.
Analysis: That’s a new thing to have Triple H on the show in the Executive role, but it makes sense to do it to get an authority figure on the show for a situation like that. It makes sense that Rey would want to quit instead of fighting his son Dominik, but I doubt this is the end of Rey as a wrestler.
This Monday on Raw: Brock Lesnar is there to follow up on his attack on Bobby Lashley last week, The Miz vs. Dexter Lumis and Seth “Freakin” Rollins defends the US Title against Matt Riddle.
A commercial aired for NXT on Tuesday.
They showed Roxanne Perez of NXT talking to Shotzi and Raquel Rodriguez about how Roxanne wanted to pick Raquel to face Cora Jade on NXT next Tuesday. Bayley showed up with Dakota Kai & IYO SKY for some trash talk with Bayley saying Roxanne should have picked her. Roxanne pointed out Bayley hasn’t been on a winning streak. Bayley challenged them to a six-woman tag team match later.
Analysis: It’s definitely a good thing to have more NXT stars on Raw/Smackdown and vice versa because it’s going to make some fans a little more interested in checking out NXT. It’s not a surprise since Triple H was the guy that built NXT and of course, he’s going to want to promote that brand more now that he’s in control of Raw/Smackdown. Plus, it’s a smart business move that Vince McMahon should have done as well.
Braun Strowman vs. James Maverick & Bryan Thomas
Strowman knocked them both down including a kick to the face and a corner splash. Strowman launched Maverick across the ring. That led to Raw’s Omos and MVP walking down the steps in the crowd as Strowman stared at them. Strowman punched Maverick in the chest and Strowman hit the powerslam on Thomas. Strowman gave Maverick a Monster Bomb (Powerbomb) onto Thomas. Strowman didn’t do a great lift right away, but he finished the move. Strowman did a one foot pin for the win. It went around two minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Braun Strowman
Analysis: 1/4* Easy win for Strowman as expected here. He almost dropped the guy on the Monster Bomb, but managed to power through it and hit it perfectly.
There was some trash talk from MVP telling Strowman that some monsters are meant to stay in the shadows. Strowman wanted Omos to come get him, but Omos and MVP left.
Analysis: That should lead to Strowman vs. Omos at Crown Jewel, I assume. They teased it in the past when they showed Omos watching a Strowman match on a TV backstage. It won’t be a great match, but maybe interesting as a spectacle between two really big guys.
The Fatal 4-Way match for a shot at the Intercontinental Title is the main event and they don’t know if Karrion Kross will be able to compete.
They showed highlights of the Brawling Brutes beat Imperium at Extreme Rules.
Sami Zayn, Jey Uso and Solo Sikoa were shown standing backstage. Jey wanted Sami to thank him for helping him win. Jey said Roman told him to make sure Sami won, so that’s what Jey did. Sami acted like he didn’t get any help. Solo said he didn’t see it and said that he was watching Sami while adding he can learn from him. Sami mentioned he was a three-time Intercontinental Champion and Solo said he was going to bring home some gold.
Analysis: Poor Jey did the right thing and can’t seem to get the credit for it. They are doing such a great job with this storyline. It’s my favorite story in WWE today.
Maximum Male Models made their entrance with the lovely Maxxine Dupri. They showed LA Knight ending his run as Max Dupri. Cole tried to explain the fake brother/sister thing between Max and Maxxine Dupri, which was ridiculous.
LA Knight made his entrance with the same music that he had in NXT and Barrett was excited about it.
LA Knight vs. Mansoor (w/Mace & Maxxine Dupri)
Knight with a back body drop on Mansoor followed by a clothesline over the top to the floor. Mace and Maxxine distracted Knight, so Mansoor sent Knight into the steel steps. Back in the ring, Mansoor hit a reverse DDT for two. Knight sent Mansoor into the turnbuckle, but Mansoor came back with a DDT for two. Knight drove Mansoor into the corner followed by a neckbreaker. Knight with a knee to the face followed by a shoulder tackle. Knight caught a boot, slammed Mansoor down and hit a clothesline. Knight kicked Mace off the apron, Knight hit the BFT (Blunt Force Trauma) slam into the mat for the pinfall win after three minutes.
Winner by pinfall: LA Knight
Analysis: *3/4 Easy win for Knight as you would expect in his first match on Smackdown. The Models gimmick needs to go away, but if it doesn’t then they will keep losing matches as long as they are out there.
Knight did a promo: “Let me talk to ya.” Knight insulted the fans saying he didn’t need those “incels” supporting them. Knight issued a warning to the guys backstage saying they can punch their ticket against him. Knight said whose game is it, it’s LA Knight’s game.
Analysis: There’s a heel promo. The LA Knight character should absolutely be a heel, so I’m fine with that. It made sense for Knight to be a face for this match with Mansoor to wrap up this storyline, but he should be a heel and I’m glad that he is.
The return of Bray Wyatt was still to come.
They replayed some highlights of Bray Wyatt returning at Extreme Rules.
Damage CTRL made their entrance for a six-woman tag team match. The babyface team of Shotzi, Raquel Rodriguez & Roxanne Perez entered on Shotzi’s tank.
Damage CTRL – Bayley, Dakota Kai & IYO SKY vs. Raquel Rodriguez, Shotzi & Roxanne Perez
This is Roxanne’s first match on the main roster since she’s on NXT. Perez hit Kai with two armdrags followed by a headscissors takedown. Sky tagged in with a headscissors on Perez, who tripped up Sky and Sky grabbed the hair. Perez with a headscissors takedown, Sky landed on her feet and hit a dropkick. Perez knocked Bayley off the apron. Bayley was legal, so Perez hit her with a suicide dive on the floor. Perez with a side Russian legsweep on Bayley. Sky pulled Roxanne’s hair while the referee wasn’t looking and Kai tagged in, but Perez broke free. Shotzi tagged in with a kick to the head, then she tripped up Sky on the apron and Kai hit a running kick on Shotzi on the floor. Sky sent Shotzi into the ring, Kai tagged in and Kai kicked Shotzi in the ribs. Kai tried a move by the ropes, but Shotzi hit her with a DDT on the apron. Raquel got the tag with a shoulder tackle on Bayley, then a clothesline and a fallaway slam across the ring. Raquel hit a splash on Kai/Bayley in the corner. Perez tagged in, Bayley prevented a double team move and Raquel was pulled out of the ring. Sky with an uppercut on Raquel, then Raquel caught Kai on the floor and Sky hit a moonsault onto Raquel on the floor. Shotzi dove off the top onto the pile of women on the floor. Back in the ring, Perez got a two count with a rollup. Bayley hit the Bayley to Belly suplex for a two count because that’s not her finisher anymore. Bayley went to the turnbuckle, Perez went after her and Perez hit a hurricanrana off the top for two. Good nearfall there. Bayley sent Perez into the ropes and wanted the Roseplant, but Perez tried a pin. Bayley pulled Perez into position for a crucifix pin and Bayley got the pinfall win after about seven minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Damage CTRL – Bayley, Dakota Kai & IYO SKY
Analysis: **1/2 The match was just average for the most part. I understand wanting to feature Roxanne a bit, but the crowd was mostly dead for this match and barely reacted to anything. I like Perez, but this crowd didn’t react much to her at all and barely know her from NXT, so it was tough to get into the match. Bayley getting the win was the right way to finish the match.
There was a Progressive Match Flo showing Legado Del Fantasma with Zelina Vega attacking Hit Row last week.
Hit Row made their entrance for tag team action. There was a Bray Wyatt logo shown as Hit Row finished their entrance.
A video aired showing Ronda Rousey beating Liv Morgan to win the Smackdown Women’s Title at Extreme Rules.
There was a video shown of the Viking Raiders with Sarah Logan. They didn’t show her face.
The Legado Del Fantasma group made their entrance with the same song they had in NXT, which is a good thing.
Legado Del Fantasma (Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde) (w/Santos Escobar & Zelina Vega) vs. Hit Row (Top Dolla & Ashante “Thee” Adonis) (w/B-Fab)
Hit Row attacked Legado in the aisle. They beat them up a bit, then Cruz was sent into the ring and Dolla slammed Adonis onto Cruz. The referee Charles Robinson finally called for the bell. Dolla hit Cruz with a boot to the face. Dolla some dance moves leading to an elbow drop. Escobar tripped up Adonis on the apron. Vega hit a clothesline on B-Fab on the floor. Dolla was distracted, so Cruz knocked him down. Wilde tagged in for a double superkick. Legado hit a double team kick/legsweep combo move for the pinfall win after about two minutes.
Winners by pinfall: Legado Del Fantasma (Cruz Del Toro & Joaquin Wilde)
Analysis: *1/4 I am not surprised by the result because Legado winning is the right move just like LA Knight earlier in the show. It was a very basic match with the heels using the numbers game advantage to get the win. The only thing that surprised me is that Dolla was pinned instead of Adonis because I thought they would beat the smaller guy Adonis.
Sonya Deville was interviewed by Kayla Braxton backstage. Sonya said that Liv Morgan has been gifted opportunities, but she failed at Extreme Rules instead of proving that she deserved the Smackdown Women’s Title. Deville said that Morgan doesn’t have “it” and is nothing but a whiny…and here comes Morgan. That led to Morgan attacking Deville with punches followed by a suplex onto an equipment crate. Morgan sent Deville’s head into a table repeatedly while Morgan was laughing about it. Morgan kicked Deville to knock her down and Morgan put Deville on a table backstage. Morgan climbed up the scaffolding that was part of the set and Morgan hit a senton on Deville through the table. Cole said she was going “extreme” so they are pushing the story that Morgan likes using weapons.
Analysis: It seems like Morgan is going through a change where she likes violence and she likes doing big spots like that table spot on Deville. It was strange that they could fight that long without anybody trying to break it up, but again WWE is selective about when fights are broken up and when they just let it go to further a story.
Ricochet made his entrance for the four-way match.
They showed highlights from Extreme Rules when Matt Riddle beat Seth Rollins in the Fight Pit Match.
Sheamus was up next with the fans cheering him since Sheamus is a face now. There was no sign of Butch and Ridge Holland with Sheamus this week. Solo Sikoa was next as the Enforcer of The Bloodline group making his entrance by himself. Due to injury, Karrion Kross was unable to compete, so the fourth competitor was…Rey Mysterio. Big ovation for Rey.
Analysis: The story was that Triple H was able to talk Rey into not quitting and Hunter gave Rey this spot.
Ricochet vs. Rey Mysterio vs. Sheamus vs. Solo Sikoa
The winner of this match will get to challenge GUNTHER for the Intercontinental Title.
Solo tried to tackle Ricochet, who sent Solo out of the ring. Ricochet with a knee knocking Solo down followed by Ricochet hitting a dive onto Rey. Cole mentioned that Rey has never faced Sheamus in WWE before. Rey sent Sheamus out of the ring by pulling down the top rope. Rey jumped over the top with a spinning splash onto Sheamus and Ricochet. Rey didn’t even touch Solo, but Solo sold it too.
Ricochet hit Sheamus with some kicks to the chest, but Sheamus came back with a clothesline. Sheamus hit a backbreaker on Rey. Ricochet charged at Sheamus, who hit him with a powerslam. It was noted by Cole that Rey is now officially a part of Smackdown after his deal with Triple H. Solo went back into the ring to knock Ricochet down while Sheamus set up for a Brogue Kick. Sheamus had a faceoff with Solo, they exchanged punches and Sheamus knocked Solo out of the ring. Sheamus went after Solo, who hit a Samoan Drop on the floor. Ricochet hit a suicide dive onto Solo on the floor. Rey hit a sliding attack under the bottom rope onto Sheamus on the floor. Rey faced off with Ricochet as Rey hit a headscissors, Ricochet landed on his feet and they did some quick moves leading to a Ricochet rollup for two. Ricochet hit two suplexes in a row. Ricochet went up top, jumped off with a 450 Splash, landed on his feet and Solo was back in with corner splashes, the hip attack on Ricochet in the corner and Solo hit a spin kick on Sheamus. They went to break.
Here’s an official tweet about Rey being on Smackdown now. It’s not like the brand extension is strict, but it’s a way to separate Rey from Dominik for now.
— WWE (@WWE) October 15, 2022
Solo was in control as he worked over Sheamus with punches in the corner. Solo headbutted Rey on the apron. Sheamus and Solo exchanged punches, Sheamus hit double boots to knock Solo down. Sheamus was on the turnbuckle, Ricochet went after him, Rey joined in against Sheamus and that led to a double superplex tease, but Solo was back up with a double Powerbomb on Ricochet and Mysterio. As Solo pinned Rey, Sheamus jumped off the top with a knee to the ribs/kidney to break up the pin. Sheamus had some visible bruises from his physical matches last week. Sheamus worked over Solo with repeated forearms to the chest with the fans chanting along for 26 forearms. Solo got a headbutt, Sheamus with a knee and the Irish Curse backbreaker on Solo. Sheamus went for the Cloverleaf submission, Jey Uso showed up at ringside, so did Sami Zayn and Sheamus cleared Jey/Zayn from the ring. Solo superkicked Sheamus to knock him out of the ring. Jey and Zayn went after Sheamus, so Butch & Ridge Holland saved Sheamus. It turned into a brawl on the floor. Rey sent Ricochet into the ropes, Rey wanted a 619, but Ricochet caught him. Rey did a headscissors to plant Ricochet headfirst into the mat. Rey hit a 619 kick followed by a top rope Frog Splash for the pin on Ricochet. It went about 16 minutes.
Winner by pinfall: Rey Mysterio
Analysis: ***1/2 When Rey replaced Kross in this match I figured he would get the win. Sheamus should get another shot at GUNTHER and he probably will, but it was fine for Rey to win this match. They got a lot of time, they had each guy looking like they were close to winning and then the chaos at ringside led to Solo/Sheamus being taken out of match. I don’t think anybody was surprised by Ricochet losing since that is what he tends to do. A push for Ricochet would be nice to see. Anyway, the crowd was quiet for a lot of it, but then they woke up with Rey’s flurry of offense for the finish.
Rey Mysterio talked to the camera saying this is home now and now he’s got a shot at the Intercontinental Title.
Bray Wyatt’s return in the main event was up next. Run. I would, but I have writing to do.
Next week on Smackdown in Toledo, Ohio:
* Logan Paul is there.
* Smackdown Women’s Tag Team Titles: Damage CTRL vs. Raquel Rodriguez & Shotzi
* Liv Morgan vs. Sonya Deville
It was main event time featuring a segment with Bray Wyatt.
Bray Wyatt Returns To Smackdown
There was a door by the entrance area while the lights were out in the building. Wyatt walked through the door while carrying a lamp. The “fireflies” in the crowd had their phones up to provide some light as Wyatt walked down to the ring with the lamp. Wyatt had a new theme song. I don’t know what it’s from or anything, but it’s more of a hard rock type of song. When Wyatt got into the ring, he blew out the lamp and the light went out while the music stopped.
Bray Wyatt stood alone in the ring with a microphone and some blue light on him. The fans chanted “welcome back” to Wyatt. Bray looked emotional, almost like he had tears in his eyes due to the emotion of the moment. Bray said he was incredibly grateful, he was nervous and he is just him being him for the first time. Bray said that this is genuine him. Wyatt said that this past year in his life, he lost a lot of things, he lost his career, he lost his self-confidence and he lost two people who were very close to him. One of them was Brodie Lee (Luke Harper) for sure. Wyatt said that he thought what he did was meaningless and none of this mattered to anyone, but he said he was wrong. Wyatt said when he was done feeling for himself, he said he would see people asking when he would come home. Wyatt talked about how he would see people that came to him and say to him that they were in a time of need, they felt weak, they felt vulnerable and in this weakened state, they found Bray’s words and they would thank Bray for saving their life. Bray said he didn’t think about stuff like that as the fans chanted “thank you Bray” for him. Bray said he can look us in the eyes saying we were there when he was weak, vulnerable and down while saying that “you” (the fans) saved his life. Wyatt said that you are the reason…and the lights went out.
There was a masked figure that appeared on the screen telling Wyatt to come with him. He said you have no idea who you’re dealing with, but you will. There was laughter, he said “you will” and that was it. That Wyatt logo appeared again. End show.
Analysis: I liked Bray’s promo a lot. It did feel like him being himself while talking from the heart. The fans were receptive to it, they were hanging on every word and reacting strongly to him. The mystery masked creature appearing on the screen telling Bray to come with him is something like an alternate personality like what The Fiend was, so we’ll see more of it in the weeks ahead most likely. I’m certainly intrigued by it. That kind of thing is also something that you want to watch again so you can catch something that you missed because it was so quick and then it just ended. It was mentioned by Fightful that WWE was calling it an “Uncle Howdy” name although I don’t think that’s going to be the name officially. Anyway, I really enjoyed Bray’s promo a lot. I thought it was genuine on his part.
— WWE (@WWE) October 15, 2022
Three Stars of the Show
- Bray Wyatt – Welcome home.
- Rey Mysterio
- Sami Zayn
7.5 out of 10
Last week: 7.25
I thought it was a pretty good show. Bray Wyatt was very emotional getting a chance to speak from the heart in the main event while thanking the fans for supporting him so much. I think he was really genuine in what he said and it’s nice that he was given the freedom for a promo like that. After that, a mystery figure appeared on the screen saying you have no idea who you’re dealing with, but you will. It may be a split personality gimmick for Bray like The Fiend was although maybe it will be different than that.
There were two entertaining long matches with Rey Mysterio (now on Smackdown) earning the IC Title match in the Fatal 4-Way match. When Rey replaced Karrion Kross in the match, I figured Rey was going to win just because that’s how they book those sorts of things. I also liked the Sami Zayn win over Kofi Kingston with Jey Uso helping even though Sami thought he won on his own. The interactions between Sami/Jey continue to be great.
The rest of the show had some shorter matches to put over things like LA Knight’s first SD match, plus Legado Del Fantasy picking up the win and there were some decent matches. I thought it was paced well and it was smart for Wyatt to main event for his Smackdown return after over a year from WWE TV.
The next WWE Premium Live Event is Crown Jewel from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday, November 5th. Here’s the lineup so far.
Undisputed WWE Universal Championship: Roman Reigns (c) vs. Logan Paul
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