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    Friday, July 26, 2019

    SmackDown RunDown Live (7/23/19): You Want It? You Got It!

    For the first time since WrestleMania, the WWE Championship is the hottest storyline in all of the land. Not that I’m blaming Kofi Kingston for it, since WWE recently suffered from a creative drought. Now that Eric Bischoff is running the show, SmackDown Live finally got the cojones to tell better stories; it started with Kevin Owens and Shane McMahon, and now it’s reaching Kofi Kingston and Randy Orton in a rivalry ten years in the making. 

    It’s rare to see a real-life semi-confirmed urban legend to turn into a kayfabe storyline, and I’m glad I got to witness one in my lifetime. From Kofi Kingston copying Bayley’s playbook by choosing his own challenger to Randy Orton finally admitting to the great sabotage of Kofi’s initial rise in 2009, this storyline is like a kettle boiling to spill the hottest of tea. I’m so hyped for this match and they can’t possibly fuck up a story that writes itself. 

    Except, of course, when they add Samoa Joe to the mix. Can we please not add Joe to this equation? I want a break from seeing him talk big and end up falling flat on his face. He’s basically the 2019 remix of pre-Funhouse Bray Wyatt. This guy’s literally going nowhere and it’s a shame, because y’all know I’m a huge Samoa Joe fan. He needs a win and he needs it bad. I’m not really hyped to see him lose again at the aptly named Smackville.

    I haven't seen The Miz in a long while. Was he here the entire time? Regardless, I'm glad he's back with a brand new storyline brewing for him. And Shawn Michaels was in on it, too? I love it when a great segment hits me right in the face from otgshuodfgsnnwer. I wasn’t really sure why Miz and Ziggler are feuding, but after this explosive segment, I am on board with their program for the 453434th time. Hopefully, Miz can get his heat back from this one.

    The Fiend was the only bright spot last Monday on RAW and this week on SmackDown Live, he once again stole the show with the first-ever live Firefly Funhouse segment. The stupid mask aside, I'm loving the direction Bray Wyatt is currently taking. I really enjoyed how he took out hardcore extraordinaire Mick Foley on RAW, and he'll eventually conquer Finn Bálor at SummerSlam. You better be joining The OC when you come back, you demon.

    And while it all happened in a flash, I'd still put Ember Moon standing tall here among the main talking points. It was a great way to highlight Ember Moon as a legitimate threat to Bayley. What better way to make up for her not deserving a title shot by giving her some edge right before SummerSlam. It's a shame though that this was the only women's segment we got after last week's great showing. Screw you, Vince McMahon rewriting a show at the last minute.

    SMACKDOWN RUNDOWN: The promos get the spotlight this week as we build up the big matches for SummerSlam. Needless to say, I'm hyped to see most of them go down, credit, of course, goes to this week's stellar episode. Still not a big fan of Kevin Owens and Shane McMahon getting all the attention, but as long as they're going with a Kofi Kingston vs. Randy Orton, we good. Uncle Eric (or whoever's in charge creative-wise) is holding things down, folks.

    Show Grade: B

    RunDown CutDown

    • The Kevin Owens/Shane McMahon is still going along great and I really don't have anything new to say. I wish they would take up less air time so others can get theirs. Other than that, they're doing great, I guess.
    • I know I should be hyped that Charlotte Flair and Trish Stratus are going to square off at SummerSlam, but I'm not really a fan of seeing veterans show their ring rust in a PPV. I could be wrong and those two could produce an instant classic, but I'm not betting on it anytime soon.
    • Shinsuke Nakamura is finally being primed as the megastar that he is. Keep bumping him up and push him to the world title scene, you cowards. And while Apollo Crews lost, he looked good out there with a proper main-eventer.
    • As always, New Day killed it on commentary. Everything felt like a big deal because of their unmatched, high-octane energy. Yes, Big E, keep playing your tag team title guitar.
    • Hold up, Michael Cole was here the entire time? And he called the show with Tom Phillips? So they're not the same person? My whole life is a lie.
    Photos from WWE.com


    Ricky Publico (@Peepomania) is Smark Henry's resident SmackDown Live reviewer... for better or worse. He also nitpicks PWR shows when no one's available to do so. A known lover of wrestling tournaments, he's a sucker for well-executed promos and fast-paced matches. He has yet to learn how to operate a microwave. Don't judge him.

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    Item Reviewed: SmackDown RunDown Live (7/23/19): You Want It? You Got It! Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Ricky Jay Publico
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