This episode of SmackDown hailed from the old AWA stomping grounds of Minneapolis MN. It gave us the first ever townhall meeting conducted by COO Triple H, as well as gave Daniel Bryan an opportunity to compete against a member of the Shield.
The townhall meeting was innovative, and a good way to start the show. Damien Sandow and Heath Slater was embarrassed, while Kofi Kingston and "The Big Guy" Ryback were rewarded for speaking up. Quite a funny segment, and admittedly, Ryback's snarky demeanor garners a few chuckles.
Randy Orton vs. RVD was a very good match. RVD getting pinned this close to his match with Alberto Del Rio at Night of Champions was not the best idea, but at least there was some interference to justify the loss. Orton being an active champion, having good matches against RVD, Christian and Cody Rhodes, is also something to applaud.
Kofi Kingston vs. Curtis Axel was a bit of a shocker, seeing how Kingston is not someone whom the WWE is investing in. This may be a tease for a title change on Raw, but not very likely. At least he received a brief moment of satisfaction, defeating Axel. There is no doubt that the better decision would be to drop the title off Axel, seeing how he has only defended the title four times since he won it in June, and it will not be defended at a pay-per-view geared to showcase the champions.
Well how bout that… #SMACKDOWN— Kofi Kingston (@TrueKofi) September 7, 2013
Naomi vs. Brie Bella leading to a disqualification was relevant to the storyline involving the "Total Divas" vs. the non-"Total Divas." Although it is a bit convoluted, at least it gives other divas not involved with the show, namely Alicia Fox (who could have been a good cast member), Aksana and Layla. Even if the face/heel divide is quite murky now.
Real Americans vs. Usos was good match, and that European Uppercut from Antonio Cesaro had ROH written all over it. Although the Usos once again are diminishing their momentum, it is a good thing for teams in the division to split wins. Thus, the division becomes more unpredictable. Hopefully we can at least see at tag team turmoil match in the near future to really showcase the division. Only this time, please don't put together teams like Mark Henry and Evan Bourne.
Big Show vs. 3MB was a good way to atone for the episode of "As the Raw Turns" aired on Monday. Even under the subjection of the Triple H and Stephanie McMahon, Big Show should not be portrayed that way. As a face, he still needs to be viewed as a monster, not unleashing only because of company orders. Hopefully, no more "Sappy" Show.
Daniel Bryan vs. Seth Rollins was a great match, as expected. It was good to see Bryan get the win, gaining some momentum after being attacked every show by Randy Orton.
And them he got attacked by Randy Orton.
This build has so much potential to be one of the best in years, but it is getting redundant. While many compare Bryan to Austin during his feud with McMahon, there is one big difference. AUSTIN WAS NOT ALWAYS ON HIS BACK, and him one-upping McMahon constantly was what drew money and ratings back in 1998. Something needs to happen, quickly, to break the monotony of these constant Orton attacks.