The biggest winners and losers from last night's SmackDown (September 11)
Last night's SmackDown completed WWE's recent track record of delivering disappointing go home shows, as the blue brand served a night that was mostly forgettable aside from the tag team qualifying match between Rusev Day and The Bar. The other matches were filler and the women's division made another regression as the show was headlined by Brie Bella and Maryse.
Overall, this was a forgettable show, and you'd have missed nothing if you chose not to watch it.
Was there anyone who managed to gain steam en route to Hell in a Cell on Sunday?
Loser: Jeff Hardy
Jeff Hardy's track record of delivering awkward, badly written, incoherent promos in 2018 continued as he opened the show. The promo tuned the audience out right at the start of the broadcast. The match with Shinsuke Nakamura was academic and felt like it didn't need to go as long as it did, especially when, to the surprise of no one, Randy Orton interfered and caused a disqualification.
Jeff Hardy retaliated by attacking Orton with a Twist of Fate and Swanton Bomb. Hopefully, that means he's losing on Sunday, because Randy Orton has far more momentum and upside to him right now than Jeff Hardy does. As long as The Viper doesn't capture the WWE Championship any time soon, he's a welcome force to be reckoned with on the blue brand.
The bout with Randy Orton and Jeff Hardy also feels out of place, having lost some momentum from its hottest point in July. AJ Styles vs. Samoa Joe feels far more deserving of being inside the Hell in a Cell structure. It's another odd choice from Styles' oddly booked WWE Championship reign. Hopefully, Orton and Hardy can deliver inside the Hell in a Cell.