The Bar and Drew McIntyre Crashed Kofi Kingston's WWE Championship Celebration
The New Day's grand celebration for new WWE Champion Kofi Kingston was every bit as over-the-top as many assumed it would be. It was a fun way to kick off the show and was a cool moment for Kingston. The Bar coming out to crash the party was a bit of a bummer, though. It made sense for them to target New Day on Raw, and it made even less sense for them to do it again here. They said they made a new friend in McIntyre while at Raw, setting up the night's main event. I can't say I'm a fan of Superstars appearing on both brands as often as they have been lately. Here's hoping this nonsense stops after the Superstar Shake-up.
Ali, Ricochet and Aleister Black def. Andrade, Rusev and Shinsuke Nakamura
This was a pretty random six-man tag team match on paper, but hey, I can't complain much because it was fun. All six stars worked well together and it was an entertaining outing on the whole. With the Shake-up next week, nothing really matters until then, so in other words, this was glorified filler. Ali didn't have much time to celebrate his victory because he was immediately laid out by Randy Orton with an RKO, and then Kevin Owens surfaced to hit a Stunner on Rusev. Again, I wouldn't read too much into that due to the upcoming Shake-up and how all of these guys could wind up on different shows by the end of it.
Braun Strowman Attacked United states Champion Samoa Joe
Thank you, Joe, for cutting short the silly segment with R-Truth and Carmella. I was hoping someone new would come to Truth's aid to kick off a feud with Joe, but it ended up being Braun Strowman from Raw. Similar to McIntyre showing up in the opening segment, I assume this was done to build excitement for the Shake-up and get people talking about potential matches we could see coming out of it. If Joe and Strowman end up on the same brand, I would not at all be opposed to a feud between them over the United States Championship.
WWE Women's Tag Team Champions The IIconics def. The Brooklyn Belles
No, The Brooklyn Belles aren't an NXT team you weren't familiar with. Rather, they were two local losers who The IIconics hand-picked so their first title defense as the WWE Women's Tag Team champions would be an easy one. I was surprised just how beloved The IIconics were by this crowd, though I personally wasn't a big fan of their pre-match mic work. The returning Paige teased afterward that she'd be bringing a tandem to SmackDown Live next week to rival The IIconics. Kairi Sane and Io Shirai, perhaps?
Shane McMahon Addressed the WWE Universe
Considering how compelling the rivalry has been between Shane and The Miz up to this point, I have no problem with them continuing it at least through Money in the Bank. Shane did mention early on in this segment that Miz wasn't in the building, but I think many fans still expected him or someone else to interrupt Shane. Sadly, that never happened. Shane has turned into a glorious asshole, but this felt like it dragged on longer than it needed to.
The Hardy Boyz def. The Usos to Win the SmackDown Tag Team Championship
As much as I liked the Fatal 4-Way we got for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship at WrestleMania 35, this was the match everyone wanted to see. It was WrestleMania-worthy and deserved to go down on the grand stage. Nevertheless, this was an enjoyable first-ever-time encounter between The Usos and The Hardy Boyz that featured a surprising yet satisfying finish. I figure the title change was done to allow The Usos to move to Raw in the Shake-up, seeing as how they've been on the blue brand since the start of the Brand Split.
Lacey Evans Attacked Raw and SmackDown Women's Champion Becky Lynch
Lynch didn't really have anything new to say following her Raw appearance, but the crowd was hot for her, regardless. This segment only existed so Evans could get one over on Lynch for the second straight night, which you had to know was coming. Between what happened here and on Monday's Raw, Evans' main roster run is already off to a strong start. I'm interested to find out how this feud will further develop in the weeks ahead.
The New Day def. Drew McIntyre and The Bar
Unlike on Raw, at least we knew well in advance this is what we were getting to close out the show. It didn't make it that much better, though. From an in-ring standpoint, it was perfectly solid, but it was hardly the ending many were hoping for on this post-WrestleMania SmackDown Live. Not only that, this felt rushed and consisted largely of a commercial break. This was not properly planned out at all. It's worth noting that McIntyre disappeared right before the finish, but as far as I know, he wasn't injured.
This would have been an above-average edition of SmackDown any other week, but it didn't have the kind of surprises fans have come to expect from the post-WrestleMania shows, so it fell flat as a result. Only The Hardy Boyz' title win and Kingston's championship celebration were memorable, as everything else felt like filler with the Shake-up taking place next week. Fingers crossed SmackDown makes out just as well as they did last year, because I'd hate to see them lose their top stars and not get any from Raw in return.
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