Notes In Observance – WWE SmackDown Live 1/3/17: Dirty Deeds Leads
By Nicholas Jason Lopez
“Notes In Observance” features random thoughts and analysis on recent television shows. Quick results can be found at the bottom of the post.
Dirty Deeds Leads
– The WWE Intercontinental Champion The Miz/Maryse/Dean Ambrose in-ring segment greatly setup their IC Title main event match while they had Miz on the mic to credit himself/Maryse as the “it” couple and “ratings spike.” It’s like Edge and Lita all over again. A good followup to last week, when Ambrose/Renee Young got one over on him, as Ambrose pretended to be a security guard to attack the Champ from the side when Miz only requested to be interviewed by Young. Also like the real-life edge that’s thrown in there as they used Young/Ambrose’s relationship as a way to draw more heat for Miz. Maryse also gets to shine as the angry wife who can slap whom she pleases. They also fit in the new year’s resolution stuff, as Miz promised to be “more forgiving” and wanted an apology from Young for her slap. The Miz/Ambrose interaction was solid, as he hid behind his wife when confronted and backed out of the ring. Maryse slapped Ambrose hard too. Easy way to stir up drama. Who’s better than Miz right now?
– The Baron Corbin-Dolph Ziggler match made sense on paper as the two battled it out in last week’s thriller main event and came short of becoming WWE World Heavyweight Champion. They still had some problems to work out, so what better place than the ring? Corbin exemplified his power as he tossed Ziggler around and screamed at the Referee to count faster. He also targeted the lower back as he used the apron. Ziggler sparked some momentum with a dropkick, but Corbin stopped it with intense clotheslines. Ziggler hit the Fameasser for a closer near-fall than we thought. Corbin avoided a Zig Zag and hoisted Ziggler in the air to land on his face. Ziggler landed the Zig Zag for a great near-fall. Usually nobody kicks out of that, so it looked good on Corbin’s end. Corbin came back with the End Of Days to pin Ziggler, which was a dramatic way to put “The Lone Wolf” over. Post-match, Corbin grabbed a chair for more punishment when Kalisto ran him off. That was logical given Kalisto’s history with Corbin (their chairs match at TLC was great) and even better done was Ziggler’s apparent heel turn, as he superkicked Kalisto suddenly and screamed he never needed anyone. Ziggler’s anger comes from his pent-up frustration, so to see him him snap immediately revitalized his character.
– The Carmella/James Ellsworth backstage segment furthered their odd friendship/relationship. Ellsworth awkwardly flubbed his words (on purpose) to thank her for her kind words. She thanked him and suggested he escort her out later. It was a little funny that Ellsworth’s gift was the shirt off his back. It was a stretch that the confident Ellsworth we saw in the ring with WWE World Heavyweight Champion AJ Styles not long ago was reduced to telling Carmella, “Me go ring you.” It’s about right. How the meme stock has fallen.
– The Ziggler/Apollo Crews/Mojo Rawley/Rhyno backstage segment was awesome followup to Ziggler’s actions, as cameras caught up with him throwing things in the locker room. Crews was upset because Kalisto was his friend and confronted Ziggler, who in turn snapped on him. In one night, Ziggler turns heel and starts two feuds? Sweet. They could’ve left it as it was with the turn angle alone, but that they furthered it here was great. Crews’ anger also showed a different side of him than we’re used to.
– The Becky Lynch-La Luchadora match built off the new intriguing angle where we’ve tried to figure out who the new one was that cost Lynch gold, while WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss also played her just to mess around. To start, Lynch was understandably more aggressive. “Twin magic” was the name of the game, as LL went under the ring and came out the other end. A big giveaway was when LL attempted Twisted Bliss landed in the Disarmer to tap out. Lynch revealed Bliss as one LL, but the other attacked her from behind. Bliss gave Lynch the DDT as her/LL walked up the ramp. Keep the mystery going.
– The Royal Rumble WWE World Heavyweight Championship Contract Signing segment with General Manager Daniel Bryan/Champion AJ Styles/John Cena/Baron Corbin was strong for the Cena-Styles exchange. Loved that Styles began as he spoke how similarly him/Bryan broke into the business while Cena did nothing and was given World Title shots after a four month absence. Bryan’s answer that he made the match to “continue the ratings momentum” and “give people what they wanted to see” made sense from a manager’s perspective. Even Styles couldn’t disagree. Styles’ overconfidence was on display as he jabbed that Cena’s “brother-in-law gave him the match.” He also rubbed it in Cena’s face how last time they spoke, Cena had the belt and told Styles he needed to prove that he belonged in WWE with a win, but now the roles were reversed. Styles’ went on further as he labeled Cena a “has-been” that’d never be as good as The Rock in Hollywood or as good as himself in the ring. Cena’s response was well-done, as he painted his passion for the business and claimed he lost respect for Styles’ “punk little bitch” attitude. This “I’m John Cena” character gives him a little edge, but the ironic thing is that he’s such a passionate talker we actually want to like the guy genuinely, not forcibly. Corbin’s involvement did seem out of place, but at least he was positioned as someone waiting in the wings for the winner and wasn’t afraid to mix it up with either guy. Even better, he set up a cheap shot for Styles on Cena, as he downed him with an eziguri. Of course, Corbin-Cena was booked for next week. We also learned via the segment that Corbin was the first announced SD competitor in the Rumble match. Perfect.
– The Maryse/Young backstage segment was short, but simple. She slapped Young and knocked her down, last week’s payback.
– The Carmella-Aliyah match was more competitive than expected, but was obviously just a way to get the camera on Ellsworth at ringside and have the broadcast team coin them as “CarmEllsworth.” JBL’s constant rips on Ellsworth were funny though. Sure enough, Ellsworth played a hand in the finish as he distracted Aliyah on the top rope, which set up Carmella’s drop toehold/Code Of Silence for the win. Still need to see more to be convinced this is good for both of them, but again, things could be worse.
– The Breezango-WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions American Alpha match was a logical squash. Tyler Breeze handed Chad Gable a “fashion police ticket,” to which he was given a suplex/Grand Amplitude. Poor Fandango didn’t even get in the ring there. Breezango could be so much more. Instead, they remind us of Raw’s third hour. The post-match Wyatt Family fog promo was good, as we heard Bray Wyatt warn them to cherish the belts because next week, they’d reclaim what was “rightfully theirs.” We liked that Randy Orton said “run” this time. They also teased some more tension between Orton/Luke Harper. Next week’s show sounds more loaded.
– The Nikki Bella/Natalya in-ring segment was in the end, no more than fancy insults to set up a match between the two next week. Some decent lines in there though. Bella’s claim that Natalya “lived off her family’s legacy” was easy to see, as her music was just like her uncle Bret Hart’s and the sharpshooter also paid homage to him. Natalya had the weaker end of things, as she simply called Bella “beautiful” and noted that beauty fades and she’d die alone. Yeah. Pretty much. Bella uncorked a right hand to knock Natalya out cold. Didn’t know it was that easy to upset Bella.
– Ambrose’s backstage promo was more notable because Dasha messed up her lines several times. Ambrose went right along with it though and made it sound like he was out to take something personal from Miz – his Title. Zing.
– “The Extraordinary Gentleman” Jack Gallagher’s backstage promo hyped the upcoming episode of 205 Live as he reminded us of his “expedition of exhibition” and how he outsmarted Ariya Daivari with an umbrella. Good choice, since he’s the shining light of the lowly division on the babyface side that people actually react to.
– The WWE Intercontinental Championship match between Ambrose and Champion Miz went off without a hitch. Ambrose immediately pursued Miz, until the Champ stomped the boots down. Ambrose replied back as he dragged Miz around the ringside area. Maryse distracted Ambrose so that Miz could get the upper hand. Miz continued as he worked over the left leg to soften him up for the Figure Four. Great near-fall when Miz hit the Skull-Crushing Finale upon another Maryse distraction. The great action continued as they went back-and-forth, as Ambrose landed a tope suicida. Maryse slapped Ambrose in the face in plain view of the Referee, as he went to call for a disqualification. Ambrose knows that feeling all too well, so he stopped him and convinced him to eject Maryse instead. Another big tease as Miz clobbered Ambrose over the head from behind with his belt for another near-fall. Ambrose literally dripped sweat as Miz attempted another SCF, only to get hit with Dirty Deeds for the three-count. Crowd popped huge for that. Miz has done such a great job as IC Champ that his matches have become better and more important by default. We don’t even mind the Title change because it guarantees a rematch clause for the near future. Perhaps the Rumble? Either way, a great main event with many twists and turns. The differences between Raw and SD Live are night and day, folks.
- Baron Corbin def. Dolph Ziggler via pinfall
- Becky Lynch def. La Luchadora via submission
- Carmella (w/James Ellsworth) def. Aliyah via pinfall
- American Alpha def. Breezango via pinfall
- WWE Intercontinental Championship – Dean Ambrose def. The Miz (Champion) (w/Maryse) via pinfall to become new Champion
Posted on March 28, 2017, in WWE and tagged AJ Styles, Alexa Bliss, Aliyah, American Alpha, Apollo Crews, Baron Corbin, Becky Lynch, Breezango, Carmella, David Otunga, Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, Jack Gallagher, James Ellsworth, JBL, John Cena, Kalisto, La Luchadora, Maryse, Mauro Ranallo, Mojo Rawley, Renee Young, Rhyno, Royal Rumble, The Miz, The Wyatt Family, Tom Phillips. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.