5 things that could happen on SmackDown Live next week: Fastlane takes shape
This week’s episode of SmackDown Live was extremely easy to get through. It had some good wrestling, didn’t feel overly long, and they actually got some stuff accomplished! I have a few nits to pick, like how Randy Orton was just given a US Title match with Bobby Roode instead of having to earn it.
I get that he answered the US Open Challenge last week, but the match didn’t happen and there’s a third man involved. Plus, that 'third' person stood tall over the US Champion and his opponent at Fastlane! Why wouldn’t you make Orton vs Jinder Mahal next week with the winner going on to face Bobby Roode?
They should have booked that feud this week instead. However, let’s talk about my predictions for this week’s show and see how I did.
- Ruby Riott pins Charlotte in the six-woman tag match
I was close on this one. Ruby did get the pinfall, but it was Becky Lynch who took the loss via pinfall instead of Charlotte Flair. The match was actually very entertaining, and I enjoyed it a lot. Later on in the show they did the dopey selfie video promos, and I think they aired them out of order.
Charlotte’s was first, and she said that she was going to go through all three members of the Riott Squad, and Ruby was the last one left. If she has to put the title on the line to get that match, then she’s ready to accept that challenge.
Shortly after, Riott and her girls did their selfie video, in which Riott said that the only way Charlotte would get a chance to wrestle her would be to put the Women’s Title on the line. Sounds out of order to me.
- Corbin vs Zayn and Ziggler vs Owens take place
Again, I was close on this one. Ziggler did indeed take on Kevin Owens, but Baron Corbin wrestled AJ Styles in the main event. They were both enjoyable matches, and I am intrigued to see where the Zayn and Owens storyline goes from here.
Zayn claimed that he would help Owens take out the other three men and then when it came down to the two of them, he would lay down and let KO become the WWE Champion, but that’s obviously not going to happen.
It’s pretty guaranteed that Owens vs Zayn will be on the card at WrestleMania, which makes this whole Daniel Bryan/Shane McMahon bickering situation that much worse. What’s the point? I’m begging to find out what the endgame is for this whole thing, and not because I’m interested. Because I want it to be over.
- No real advancement in the tag team division
There wasn’t necessarily any “advancement”, per se, but they did set up the SD Live Tag Title match for Fastlane, so that’s something. The New Day beat Gable and Benjamin in a good match, so we will get to see another instalment in one of the best rivalries that 2017 had to offer.
It’s like a lateral move. They didn’t want to actually move anything forward quite yet because there aren’t any solid plans for WrestleMania, but they also aren’t ready to put Harper & Rowan in there with The Usos.
The Bludgeon Brothers did indeed destroy a pair of tiny little guys after making their entrance before New Day was able to leave the ringside area. I have a hard time believing that The Usos vs The Bludgeon Brothers is going to be the title match at WrestleMania, but I certainly wouldn’t be against it.
- Rusev Day is cancelled for the second week in a row
I was mostly joking with this one. What the hell? Where are Rusev and English?
- Randy Orton beats Jinder Mahal
I actually said that this match would happen but wouldn’t be for the #1 Contendership for Roode’s US Title. I guess I was just thinking about long-term booking. Silly, right guys? Instead, Jinder Mahal did a bizarre “Bobby Roode has a big ego” promo (no, really?) and then Orton came out and yelled at Roode without taking a microphone.
They both took out Mahal, then Orton failed with the RKO outta nowhere and ate a Glorious DDT, but Jinder stood tall after hitting the Khallas. And because he’s a petty jerk, Shane awarded The Viper with a title match. Okie Dokie!
Overall, I went 2 out of 5 this week. I’m giving myself half a point for Ruby vs Charlotte being made for Fastlane, half a point for Ziggler vs Owens and a full point (sadly) for Rusev being nowhere to be seen.
It was another sad Tuesday as Rusev Day was cancelled again. How about next week? Will there be a Rusev Day next week? Let’s see.
#5 Nakamura appears in a quick selfie cam promo
Instead of running with the great idea of turning Orton heel and having him challenge Nakamura for the WrestleMania title shot, Orton is instead wrestling for the United States Title and Nakamura isn’t even around.
I get the idea of not wanting to burn him out before WrestleMania, but since the guy can’t cut much of a promo, the best-laid plan would be to have him valiantly defend his Royal Rumble victory against the snake in the grass who used to be his tag partner.
We got a throwaway video package this week for Nakamura, just to remind people he exists, and next week maybe he’ll make some faces into a phone camera!