5 Takeaways from this week's WWE SmackDown Live (10 July 2018)
The show began with an episode of Miz TV featuring Kane and Daniel Bryan. However, it descended into chaos when The Bludgeon Brothers and Sanity interfered, prompting a run-in from The New Day, to set up a 10-man tag team main event.
The first match of the night saw AJ Styles defeat Shinsuke Nakamura via disqualification following interference from Rusev. Jeff Hardy then intervened to help Styles, setting up a tag match between the four men which Rusev won for his team after a Machka Kick on Hardy.
Up next, the lumberjack match between Asuka and James Ellsworth largely centred around the rest of the women’s division battling it out at ringside, but “The Empress of Tomorrow” was still able to pick up the victory after making Ellsworth submit.
Elsewhere on the show, Andrade “Cien” Almas defeated Sin Cara, while Team Hell No & The New Day defeated SAnitY and The Bludgeon Brothers in the final match of the night.
Let’s take a look at five things that stood out to us from this week’s episode.
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#5 Daniel Bryan was right about long-term storylines
Daniel Bryan recently questioned during a candid out-of-character interview with the Gorilla Position podcast whether WWE can be trusted to tell long-term stories, specifically referencing a possible match against The Miz at WrestleMania 35.
While D-Bry’s comments probably didn’t go down well with WWE’s storytellers, he definitely had a point, and fans needn’t look any further than this week’s match between AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura on SmackDown Live to see what he was talking about.
Styles and Nakamura have been feuding for the majority of 2018 over the WWE Championship, with their somewhat underwhelming rivalry culminating with a Last Man Standing match at Money In The Bank in June, yet they did battle once again in a meaningless non-title encounter this week.
The commentary team continually hyped how the match was a “WrestleMania rematch”, which was totally irrelevant because they have already had four televised rematches since WrestleMania, and the whole segment summed up Bryan’s thoughts about WWE’s inability to tell long-term stories.