HEADING INTO WWE CROWN JEWEL

In my opinion, RAW was rather lackluster. We saw the return of Brock Lesnar. He F5’d Braun Strowman, which if WWE opposite booking holds up, we know who our Universal Champion will be come Friday afternoon.

The segment with Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose was effective. It took a little too long as we had to watch Dean make mean mug face for an uncomfortable amount of time. This isn’t over.

The RAW Tag Team division is trying to become interesting. AOP is the only legit team as of now. Ascension are just jobbers. Bobby Roode and Chad Gable might become legit. And the Revival will eventually challenge AOP one day for the red belts. We still have to figure out what’s up with the current tag champs. The former champs, Dolph and Drew, seem to be destined to split. Drew McIntyre has the Universal Championship in his sites.

The end segment with The Brothers of Destruction and DX was solid. A live mic in front of Taker has never been his specialty. Knowing that Kane is a Mayor somewhat takes away from him being a bad ass. Which is kinda weird considering we know Triple H is a COO yet he seems more believable as a character than The Big Red Machine. Shawn Sweet Chin’d The Deadman so my guess is TBOD defeat DX in a bout that doesn’t close anything. The Heartbreak Kid didn’t just come back for a tag match in a foreign county.

The other RAW Notes: Lashley impressed Acting General Manager Baron Corbin enough to earn a spot in the WWE World Cup, replacing John Cena. Elias hilariously dissed Dana Brooke.

Overall Grade for RAW: C+

As for Smackdown Live, the opening promo with AJ Styles and Daniel Bryan was electric. AJ offered to defend the WWE Championship tonight! Why wait until Friday?! Out came Shane McMahon for what would seem to be a reason to pause all the hype. Nope! He said let’s do it right now! Good way to get Bryan out of WWE Crown Jewel.

As for the match itself, mostly what you would expect from two of the best WWE has to offer. Back and forth with each man in control at different points of the match. Bryan “injured” his knee on a suicide dive which gave Styles something to target. Styles reversed/Daniel botched a top rope maneuver that caused Bryan to hit his head hard on the mat. Bryan did regain control momentarily and trapped AJ in the Yes Lock. The Champ reached the bottom rope to break the hold.

AJ put a beating on Bryan for a few moments only to see Daniel take back control. Bryan, running on adrenaline, hit AJ with two running knees and a hurricanrana. AJ bounced back and attempted a Phenomenal Forearm but was countered into an armbar then transitioned into a Yes Lock. Styles reversed the hold as he was beginning to fade, The Champ turned a hold into a Styles Clash! Styles held on after the Clash and locked in a Calf Crusher. Bryan was forced to tap. AJ Styles retains the WWE Championship.

There was a hug of mutual respect. Samoa Joe interrupted the embrace out of nowhere and locked in a Coquina Clutch on Styles. Bryan tried to help Styles but his help got him locked in the Clutch for his troubles. Joe grabbed the Championship. Later in the show, Styles demanded to GM Paige that he faces Samoa Joe for the Championship. It will be Joe vs Styles for the WWE Championship Friday at WWE Crown Jewel.

What a way to start of Smackdown Live! Too bad a Trick or Street Fight had to follow the incredible WWE Championship match. That’s right. Trick or Street. At least we got New Day entering as The Brood. Big E vs Cesaro in this street fight. But it’s a street fight so there are NO DQ. Once the rest of The Bar and New Day realized this, all bets were off.

Pumpkins, pancakes, a candy corn kendo stick, apples. “Right in the jack-o-lanterns” was a phrase uttered by Tom Phillips. There was Brood Blood spit onto Big Show. For comedic effect it wasn’t that bad. Get it in now I guess, since FOX said it will be reducing the comedy next October. Big E won by the way.

Shinsuke vs R-Truth happened. Shinsuke, the United States Champion, got NO ENTRANCE. EDIT: Shinsuke might have got an intro and I just skimmed it on dvr. Either way…This was supposed to be Shinsuke vs Tye Dillinger for the Championship, but I guess Smackdown hates The Perfect 10. There was a fucking dance break during this match. Poor Shinsuke. Shin wins but his title reign is lackluster to say the least.

My wife, I mean Becky Lynch, came out to hype WWE Survivor Series. Ya know, b/c women can’t wrestle at WWE Crown Jewel. Becky cut a short and sweet heelish promo on Ronda. Rousey vs Lynch at WWESS in three weeks will be so good. Yes, Ronda is going to win. Yes, it’s to delay Charlotte vs Rousey until Wrestlemania, but still. Enjoy the process.

Rey Mysterio and Jeff Hardy defeated The Miz and Randy Orton. This match was a tag match between Smackdown’s World Cup Participants. Orton RKO’d everyone after the match.

The other SDLive notes: Charlotte was offered Team Captain of the Smackdown Women’s Team at Survivor Series. She turned it down, saying she’s not the right woman for the job. Paige asked her to reconsider. Carmella raps now. With R-Truth of course. If a Smackdown representative loses to a RAW superstar in the World Cup Final, it’s adios to Smackdown, per Commissioner Shane McMahon.

Overall grade for Smackdown Live: A-

News: It appears Renee Young will be allowed to be a part of the commentary team at WWECJ. That’s a decent bone for Saudi Arabia to throw the WWE I suppose.

Check us out Friday for WWE Crown Jewel. We will have a pre show on Periscope, Instagram, and YouTube at 9:30 AM CST. Just find The Five Star Show. Wednesday, we will have our Final Predictions for WWE Crown Jewel right here on the site.

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