By Graham "GSM" Matthews
Seth Rollins Interrupted Hulk Hogan
I've complained ad nauseam for months about how WWE should be doing more with Hogan from a storyline standpoint. He's a great ambassador for the company if they ever need anything promoted, but I was glad to see him mix it up with the current talent in this segment. I enjoyed his exchange with Rollins, but the segment started to drag after that. Everyone played their part well, but it was just another one of those long, formulaic segment that you know where it's going and it overstays its welcome.
Ryback def. Kane
Ryback and Kane simply don't have the best of chemistry, so it was best that this match was kept short and sweet. It wasn't even that the match was all that bad, but people simply couldn't care less for Kane these days. Ryback was protected by having to face a two-on-one advantage and getting attacked by Rusev afterward. Their feud has been very well handled so far and the crowd will go crazy if/when Ryback gives him his comeuppance.
Naomi def. Alicia Fox
As far as Naomi has come in the ring since her days on NXT four years ago, she is still a bit green as seen in this match. I wouldn't call it a terrible match, but it was clunky in spots and awkward on the whole. The win was a nice momentum booster for Naomi, but after losing her Divas Championship match last week, I'm curious as to what's next for her.
Adam Rose def. R-Truth
This was essentially the same match we saw on Monday's Raw, only slightly longer. I wasn't frustrated when Rose came out all happy-go-lucky, if only because I didn't expect him to go full-fledged heel after his attack on The Bunny from Raw. Was the rosebud with the bruises on his face the guy in the bunny costume? That was never explained or hinted at, but at the very least, it was nice to not see Rose and The Bunny not back on the same page. The match was forgettable, but I'm hoping this is only the beginning for Rose as a heel and that he slowly starts to rid himself of the "party" aspects of his character over time.
Dean Ambrose def. United States Champion Rusev by Disqualification
There aren't many wrestlers on the roster than Rusev hasn't run through yet, so Ambrose being revealed as Rusev's opponent was a pleasant surprise. I don't believe we've seen these two square off prior to this point, so it felt fresh and they worked a really good match. You had to know Rusev wasn't going to lose the title on an episode of SmackDown and Bray Wyatt's interference was only inevitable, but I enjoyed the action. This show was taped before this week's Raw, so I'm not sure if the Wyatt vs. Ambrose feud will be continuing or not. If so, they really need to get to the part where Ambrose finally wins, but they're probably just killing time before the Royal Rumble.
Jimmy Uso def. WWE Tag Team Champion The Miz
Honestly, I completely zoned out during the match up until the very end. We've seen these two trade victories each week and their matches aren't anything we haven't seen before. They're telling a good story, but the problem is that there doesn't appear to be an end in sight. Their match going on late in the show also didn't help matters.
Roman Reigns and Intercontinental Champion Dolph Ziggler def. Seth Rollins and Big Show
All four competitors worked well together and everyone was able to get their spots in at one point or another. There wasn't anything noteworthy in the first portion of the bout, but they picked up the pace down the stretch and captured the crowd's attention. I'd rather see Show take the pinfall loss than Rollins, but at least it was done in a way where Rollins was protected and didn't lose much at all.
This was everything you'd expect a holiday episode to be. There wasn't any Christmas silliness like there was on Monday, but nothing of note happened and no feuds were furthered. As noted, this show was taped last weekend and it appeared they just copied and pasted the script from Raw for SmackDown because there were a handful of rematches. It wasn't a bad show, but it was mostly filler and nothing worth going out of your way to see.
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