The Smackdown Shakedown – April 11th, 2017

Is it obvious to anyone else that even though these two weekly shows are meant to be equal, there’s clearly some favoritism for Monday Night Raw still?

On this week’s Smackdown Shakedown we’ll talk about all the talent moving over to Smackdown and what it means going forward.

To quickly recap, Smackdown acquired the following wrestlers:

  • Kevin Owens
  • Sami Zayn
  • Primo & Epico
  • Jinder Mahal
  • Sin Cara
  • Rusev & Lana
  • Tamina
  • Charlotte Flair
  • The New Day

After all the talent that moved over to Raw, Smackdown needed to get some big names to fill the holes left by wrestlers like The Miz, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt and Alexa Bliss. Did they manage to do that? In my opinion, not quite. But let’s go through each pick and talk about what it all means.

Kevin Owens

This was kind of a given. The Shakeup was being billed as trades, so from that perspective it would have made no sense at all for Smackdown Live to trade away one champion without getting another back in return. KO coming to smackdown will be interesting, and fills the gap that was left by The Miz for a true heel. His promo tonight solidified that. After all, there’s nothing that makes someone a bad guy faster in the WWE than saying they’re not American.

Hopefully this means we will see Kevin Owens as WWE champion before too much longer. I mean, after we get amazing KO vs AJ matches of course.

Additionally, having Kevin Owens on talking smack is going to be amazing, if this week is anything to go by. It was awkward, uncomfortable and incredible.

Sami Zayn

I think this is a case of storyline blurring with real life a little. Sami keeps talking about how he’s wanted to be on Smackdown Live for months, and you have to think it’s a better fit for him. Smackdown seems like the place talent like him can shine through and get a fresh chance to ascend the card. On Raw, Sami was the guy who would always put in a great effort but come up short.

I’m not sure what the plan could be with him yet, but I am glad we’re not getting Sami vs KO again just yet. That’s a match they can tease out and maybe have them involved in some Tag Team matches or something, but we shouldn’t see them one on one for a long time still.

Special mention to Kevin Owens’ reaction to hearing Sami’s music. Amazing.

Primo & Epico

Really? I mean, I guess they’ll get a little bit of a chance on Smackdown, and they can take The Vaudevillains place now that Gotch is gone and English is a theatre star. But, I am not excited about this at all. At least they were called Primo & Epico and HOPEFULLY that means they’re dropping the terrible Shining Stars gimmick.

Jinder Mahal

I wasn’t excited about this pick at all, until about halfway through Jinder’s appearance on Talking Smack. He let a little real personality out once he’d hit all his talking points, and I finally got a little interested in seeing what he could do. Just, stop talking about how good you look, and show us how good you ARE.

Also stop trying to get the better of celebrities. It’s just going to end badly.

Sin Cara

Maybe Sin Cara and Kalisto just hate each other, and they won’t come to work if they’re on the same show? I don’t understand the move. Sin Cara could be a great help to 205 Live, even just as someone who’s a sort of Veteran, or at least a face WWE fans have known for a while. He’s going to do nothing on Smackdown.

Maybe they can unmask him and bring back Hunico as a heavy for the Usos. That could be fun.

Rusev & Lana

This was a big surprise. Especially considering both Rusev and Lana were just announced in video packages. And moreover, announced separately. I’m grouping them together because that’s how we’ve always seen them. But it appears Lana is going to be getting in the ring as a performer, which will be interesting.

Rusev however, is injured. So it makes sense to have the video package. Hopefully people don’t liken him to the level of Sin Cara though, because he could be Smackdown’s biggest heel if given the chance. Again of course, because he’s foreign, and foreign and not funny equals bad guy these days. I see good things in his future though.

Tamina

If memory serves, Tamina just wasn’t drafted right? I think she was injured.

I think this is great. Smackdown needed a “monster” style female wrestler, and Tamina being a powerful strong woman fits that bill. I can think back to a few years back when she was first coming on the scene, she was great. Hopefully she can recapture a little of that. Maybe a feud with Becky Lynch. She seemed to have the biggest reaction to Tamina’s entrance.

Charlotte Flair

Shane McMahon said it best. The BIGGEST acquisition of the Superstar Shakeup. Charlotte Flair is a true main event talent. She is far and away the best female wrestler, in terms of an all-round package. And she has proven that she is one of the best of this generation, regardless of gender. She’s broken down barriers, along with Sasha, and seeing her on Smackdown, with all kinds of fresh matchups is going to be really exciting. I would imagine she will be the champion in the next couple of months. That already makes her a 5 time champion. Trish Stratus had 7.  Just let that sink in for a bit.

Charlotte is a great pickup and a great move to keep her momentum going. I can’t wait to see what happens.

The New Day

Paige is coming back and they don’t want her and Xavier on the same show? This one came as a bit of a surprise for me. I was sure Enzo and Cass would make the move. But, considering that since losing the Tag Titles, The New Day really haven’t done a lot, and didn’t even get a match on Wrestlemania, a fresh start is a great idea. The New Day vs The New Usos could be very interesting. But, I would love to see them evolve the team a little. Possibly even find a way to become a duo. Big E is destined to be a singles star. And Smackdown could use another big heel. I could see it happening.

Whatever happens, it looks like a good move to me, and a way to extend the life of what’s been one of the more entertaining teams of the last few years.


Do you want to know.. who… I … am?

Let’s talk about the action this week really quickly.

  • Randy Orton looks like he’s counting down the days until he loses the title again.
    I can’t get behind Orton as champion. He just doesn’t seem to care as much anymore, and this House of Horrors match is not needed. Does anyone actually think for a second Bray would win the WWE championship when he’s not a part of Smackdown anymore? Please.
  • The Wyatt Family needs to end. 
    Erick Rowan was still being announced as part of the Wyatt Family. There can’t really be a family if it’s just he and Bray, and they’re on separate shows.
  • AJ vs KO is money.
    It’s not going to happen for a while, but I’m so excited for this match. It’s a shame it can’t be built for Summerslam, but I think we’re a bit too far away for that. Hopefully Sami Zayn is still a part of the US Title picture as well, but as I said earlier, NOT against KO. Not yet.
  • NAKAMURA!
    You want to talk about excitement? Say what you will about Dolph Ziggler, but the guy is a veteran. He’s been in the WWE since 2006. He’s had memorable matches, is known for putting everything into what he does, he’s been World Heavyweight Champion, and he can get a guy over with his selling. I’m so excited to see what Nakamura and Ziggler will do when the bell rings, and hopefully we don’t have to wait too long.

That’s about it for this week folks. Who do you think was the biggest star who made a move to Raw or Smackdown? Who do you see becoming part of the main event scene on Smackdown now?

Check back later in the week for new content, and we’ll be back next week with our regularly scheduled Raw & Smackdown content.

Follow me on twitter at http://www.twitter.com/_stcwrestling_  and give the facebook page a like at http://www.facebook.com/squaringthecirclewrestling as well!

And let me know what you think of what I’ve written. Do you agree? Disagree? Have a completely different theory? leave a comment and speak your mind!

Cheers!

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