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    Sunday, December 12, 2021

    SmackDown BreakDown (12/10/21): Cold-Blooded Canadian

    Okay, this week's episode of SmackDown slapped somehow.

    First off, they couldn't possibly go wrong with running the sequel to the masterpiece of an opening segment two weeks ago. Just when you thought Sami Zayn was done being the most entertaining annoying man in wrestling, they decided to add Paul Heyman to the mix and make everything 100x better. Aside from delivering yet another thrilling 20 minutes of television, it also helped advance the most interesting storyline brewing in the background: the impending reunion of Brock Lesnar and Paul Heyman.

    Let's break the segment down, shall we? Once again, everything rested firmly on Sami Zayn's back as he spent around five minutes just generating as much heat as possible. He ticked all the right boxes: whining about his troubles, blaming almost everyone, threatening to sue—all the fix-ins! And right on cue, Paul Heyman came out after hearing threats of litigation to give us a rare heel vs. heel face-off where two bad guys kept out-heeling each other. But of course, the one with two burly male nurses as backup will always get the last word. Not unless a Beast walks out to make the save.

    And this is where things get even more interesting. Brock Lesnar, the Beast Incarnate, one of the most dominating wrestlers of all time, apologizing and being friendly in his own intimidating way? Man, Brock must really enjoy working with Sami Zayn. Also, this was the most we've seen Brock talk in his entire career and whoever said this guy couldn't handle a mic needs to apologize right about now. Anyway, Brock and Sami were about to enjoy a weekend hunting moose in Canada when Heyman had a case of nostalgia and just started pushing the right buttons to put Brock in Beast mode.

    Don't you just love this segment? It literally has everything you need to have in a segment to make it legendary: stellar writing, mesmerizing mic work, and a satisfying beatdown—all while advancing the main storyline at hand. I'm always a big fan of hardworking segments like this and if we're ranking the top segments of 2021, this will be up there for sure. Who knows if Sami Zayn will get another shot at Brock Lesnar, but the return of Roman Reigns this week will surely escalate things to new heights.

    After that excellent opening segment, I really thought the rest of the show would drag since it was followed by the neverending rivalry between Los Lotharios and Team Shinsuke Nakamura, who is the Intercontinental Champion in case you already forgot. But then we got Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus, the debut of Xia Li who now owns the best entrance graphics in WWE, and Charlotte Flair and Toni Storm finally beating each other to a pulp. But perhaps the most interesting match last week was the randomly booked main event where they suddenly care about the tag team division. 

    I'm not even sure how this whole debate started, but whatever the reason is, I'm still glad it happened because it actually brought a PPV-worthy match to free TV, something SmackDown has never done for months now. While I'm surprised Twitter actually thinks RK-Bro is the best tag team in WWE right now, it did bring us Randy Orton back to SmackDown—and sure, Riddle was there, too. That alone brought some sort of freshness to the Blue Brand's booking. But then they added The Usos and the New Day to the mix and boom, we got one of the most randomly great main events this year.

    Although if I really have to nitpick anything, I would've given the W to The Usos simply because they need it the most. I get that they're just glorified lackeys for Roman Reigns, but they're still The Usos. That alone should give Creative enough motivation to give them more wins here and there. It baffles me how the SmackDown Tag Team Champions are in this losing streak whenever they're not defending their straps. It would've been a big boost for their heel personas to win this three-way and have them brag about being the best tag team in WWE for weeks. Otherwise, this was a fun match!

    FINAL BREAKDOWN: I don't know what SmackDown ate this week, but they managed to deliver a pretty eventful episode. Brock Lesnar always drives the quality up and during the times he wasn't on screen, they stepped things up by giving us a great main event, a good debut, and a few hard-hitting matches. They should really just iron out the nonsense and we'll be back to peak SmackDown in no time.

    Show Grade: B

    Header image from WWE.com


    Ricky Publico (@nyamnyamgarbage) is Smark Henry's seasoned veteran and resident SmackDown reviewer. He's a sucker for well-written promos and fast-paced matches. While he enjoys nitpicking shows, he now prefers enjoying wrestling for what it is instead of stressing himself over things he can't control. He's anxious about the future, now more than ever. His potential haunts him.

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    Item Reviewed: SmackDown BreakDown (12/10/21): Cold-Blooded Canadian Rating: 5 Reviewed By: Ricky Jay Publico
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