Written by: JR
Shane was STILL trying to play a face role. It’s just not going to work. He came out to mixed reactions and loud “AJ Styles” chants. The crowd also booed Shane when he mentioned the idea of him beating AJ Styles. Creative will have no choice but to officially make Styles a face after Wrestlemania because the crowd loves him too much. One notable point to take from this segment was that the Wrestlemania match would be a standard wrestling match. No hardcore rules, no special stipulations. Just plain wrestling. Although AJ is an elite worker, Shane has always excelled in gimmick matches and no holds barred environments. With Shane being close to 50 years old, I can’t see the match lasting longer than 20 minutes. Shane looked a little shaky on his elbow drop to Styles on the announcer’s table last week but we’ll see how the match goes at WM.
The women’s match wasn’t anything noteworthy. Carmella came out to silence but Ellsworth was more over and looked comfortable in his new role as a heel manager. The match turned into another fight between the women in the Smackdown division and later turned into another filler tag team match.
The highlight of the whole segment was the return of Naomi. I cringed a little bit at her hurricanrana to Natalya on the ramp because I felt it was too early to do such a high risk move after returning. Naomi has had recurring injury problems for about a year and toning down her style would be beneficial for the longevity of her career. The crowd was showing heavy support for Naomi and even chanted along to her “Feel the Glow” catchphrase. I’m hoping that she wins back her title at Wrestlemania.
Speaking of the Smackdown Women’s Title match at Wrestlemania, as of this writing the match will be placed on the preshow. A pet peeve of mine is having title matches on the preshow. If you’re trying to legitimize titles especially new titles like the SD Women’s Championship, it devalues the title and the division to just throw them on the preshow. Hopefully they will reconsider this before Sunday.
*Shane McMahon, AJ Styles contract signing
*Carmella vs Becky Lynch ends in DQ when Mickie James and Alexa Bliss fight in the ring
-Carmella and Alexa Bliss defeat Becky Lynch and Mickie James (assist from James Ellsworth)
-Natalya comes to ringside during the tag team match
-Naomi makes a return after the match
*MizTV segment with more “unseen” footage from Total Bellas
The Miz TV segment started at the end of the first hour and continued into the 2nd hour. My only response to the segment was: WOW!
Miz provided more unseen clips of “Total Bellas” and in these clips he started mocking Daniel Bryan as well as Cena and the Bellas. The end of the last clip showed Miz taking off his Cena costume and ripping into Cena’s presentation of his personal life as well as his unnatural awkward relationship with Nikki. I thought the end of the clip was the highlight of the whole segment. That is until Cena came out. John gave one of the most ruthless caustic promos that I’ve ever seen from him. He not only ripped apart Maryse but he also made some harsh comments about Miz’s marriage situation. He even went as far as suggesting that Miz was sterile and couldn’t have children. Like I stated last week, Cena was far from amused with The Miz’s vignettes mocking him. Judging by how deep Cena went with his promo, he definitely didn’t take the parody in good humor. With all that being said, we know that Cena and Nikki will win and John most likely will propose at Wrestlemania. I still expect a fun match between the two couples at Wrestlemania.
The 10 man tag match was just filler. I was disappointed over the fact that the newly crowned Tag Team Champions The Usos were going to get thrown in the Andre the Giant Battle Royal. After Wrestlemania is over, both Raw and Smackdown need to figure out what to do with their tag team divisions. It would be best to have one set of Tag Team Champions who can defend the titles on either show. I feel that the same should be done for the women’s division as well. Technically that won’t make it a “complete” brand split but it’s far better than seeing champions either not defend their titles or be thrown in filler preshow matches.
The main event was OK and the show ended with an overproduced Randy Orton pretaped promo. Orton and Wyatt will have a good match at WM and I look forward to what’s next for Bray Wyatt’s character.
*End of MizTV segment, John Cena and Nikki interrupt
*American Alpha, Mojo, Slater and Rhyno defeat Usos, Fashion Police, Ziggler
*Bray Wyatt defeats Luke Harper
-Randy Orton pretaped promo
Dean Ambrose and Baron Corbin confrontation via satellite
Overall this was just an OK show. I STRONGLY recommend that people watch the Miz TV segment. As for other parts of the show to watch, the opening segment with AJ Styles and Shane McMahon as well as Naomi’s return are two other segments that are worth a look.