WWE SmackDown was hosted from Houston, TX. To further the storyline of John Cena being afraid of Bray Wyatt, he was given the task to face Wyatt Family member Luke Harper. Cena had an opportunity to face his fears, and gain a psychological advantage on Bray Wyatt leading to their match in two weeks at WrestleMania 30.
Fernando vs. Fandango
Not quite sure where this came from, but it looks like WWE still has some glimpse of hope for Los Matadores. Conversely, what a difference one year makes. Just about a year ago, Fandango was defeating Chris Jericho at WrestleMania 29, having the most popular theme song in the WWE, and on his way to winning a midcard championship. Now, he is floundering as a WWE superstar, grasping for wins.
Dolph Ziggler vs. Damien Sandow
Instead of a year, six months can be applied to Damien Sandow. Winning the Money in the Bank, an intriguing feud with Cody Rhodes, a good match on Raw against John Cena, and then... flatlined. His opponent, Dolph Ziggler, does not have an impressive resume either since last summer. At least WWE is showing some signs of giving Ziggler a "push." However, a "push" is not really a push anymore unless you are in the handful of superstars that are in the WWE World Heavyweight Championship mix (Orton, Batista, Cena, Daniel Bryan, possibly Brock Lesnar soon). That is why it is so tough to push a midcard superstar without two titles. It also does not help that the midcard titles do not mean much either nowadays.
Rollins/Ambrose vs. Rybaxel vs. Real Americans vs. Mahal/McIntyre
The match was thrown out for the sake of furthering the program between Kane and the Shield. Although I am not a proponent of this, the New Age Outlaws wanted to work with the Shield, so this segment pretty much solidifies that a six-man will happen at WM 30. Roman Reigns should have had his moment at 30 to ascend his rise to main event status, but it is not a terrible idea to babyface the Shield right now in order to make Reigns' push stronger.
Alberto Del Rio vs. Big E
Why is WWE still trying to push Alberto Del Rio? Sheer nonsense. Big E is one of the future stars of the company, as well as the Intercontinental Champion, but for some reason WWE pulled the plug on his push. Yet and still, Alberto Del Rio always finds a way to stay in the upper midcard/main event level. Hopefully this win leads to a Intercontinental Championship match on Raw, and Big E gets a clean win over ADR.
Bella Twins vs. Natalya/Summer Rae
When I saw this match, I thought, "this must be for a future episode of Total Divas." It appears as if just about every Divas match is for that show, which is not good. I understand that the show is doing well, but the Divas division is already struggling enough for a television show to be more important than the title. The unfortunate part is, I do not see this changing anytime soon, unless Total Divas is cancelled.
John Cena vs. Luke Harper
Good way to showcase Luke Harper again in a singles role. He is very agile for a big man, and has a lot of talent that is not shown as much when he is teaming with Erick Rowan. Of course Cena was going to get the win, but it does raise an interesting question: does Cena put over Bray Wyatt since he went over Rowan and Harper, or does he conquer his "fears" by defeating Wyatt at WrestleMania?
- Kane's promo to start off the show was a good way to further build Daniel Bryan as the ultimate underdog. That will create the usual "feel-good" moment at WrestleMania, hopefully.
- It appears as if Miz did not get the news that "Langston" has left the building for good.
- Big Show getting the impromptu mini battle royal win was a good way to build him as the favorite. However, looking at his track record, this may be another WrestleMania disappointment.
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