Tuesday’s SmackDown Live was more about two friends squaring off than anything else. But sprinkled in among the Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn drama was a Bludgeon Brothers vs. Usos tag team title storyline, a U.S. Championship match between Bobby Roode and Rusev which was meant to put over a Viper and a chance for SmackDown women’s champion Charlotte to prove why she should be ranked as the top female on the blue brand’s roster.
Speaking of rankings, WWE offered up a SmackDown Live Top Ten list of talents as voted on by the SmackDown Live roster. Why they did this was uncertain and where it will be going is unclear but the whole idea was thrown into the show without much reasoning, meaning the WWE must have plans that aren’t clear.
Styles ranked as both a winner and loser, New Day had some fun at the expense of Corey Graves and Booker T and Randy Orton got the push over two more deserving WWE Superstars. Here are your winners and losers from SmackDown Live on February 6, 2018.
Winner: AJ Styles
The outcome of the Sami Zayn versus Kevin Owens match didn’t work out in AJ Styles’ favor, but the reality is that Styles won’t be losing the WWE Championship prior to WrestleMania. So somehow, Styles will succeed at the Fastlane pay-per-view.
Why he was a winner on Tuesday was because he made No. 1 on the SmackDown Live Top Ten list, as he should have. Styles is the champion, he’s the best in-ring performer on the show and likely one of the more respected talents backstage (assuming the voting was legit).
Loser: Bobby Roode
Bobby Roode hasn’t had a chance to be much of a U.S. Champion since winning the title a few days before the Royal Rumble. He was quickly brushed aside for the pay-per-view weekend and while he won his match against Rusev on Tuesday, WWE was pitting a babyface against a babyface and Roode was going to lose out.
Then, of course, the few cheers he did receive were drowned out by an RKO that came out of nowhere. Hopefully, the decisions on how to book Roode start making sense and he’s given a feud he can sink his teeth into. WWE has already blown the momentum he had coming in from NXT.
Winner: Randy Orton
For some reason, WWE is still completely enamored with Randy Orton and they showed their favoritism toward him by having him layout all three of Bobby Roode, Aiden English, and Rusev. Why the WWE sees it necessary to have a veteran like Orton, who is rumored to want time off, get the rub versus three Superstars on the upswing is baffling but the crowd seemed into his RKOs.
Loser: Liv Morgan
If there was ever a match on a show that you know someone wasn’t going to win, Liv Morgan was it on Tuesday. She stood no chance against Charlotte and she was left hanging by her Riott Squad partners who were removed from ringside.
Because WWE hasn’t really taken any time to build the individual characters for the members of the Squad, fans don’t care much for what they do individually. Morgan was a part of a match that could have been something but at the end of the day was a showcase for Flair.
Winner: The Usos
They walked to the ring as the Bludgeon Brothers were leaving and stared them down. Then they walked into the ring and delivered one of their best promos in a long time. The Usos have changed so much over the past couple years, but they are they top tag team in WWE by a mile.
You believe every word they say, they can beat anyone and their characters are refreshing, never-stale winners. More tag teams should do what they Usos do, which is prep their promos in advance. It’s clear they are a step above the competition.
Loser: Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon
There’s no other way to say this than to tell the WWE they are boring fans with the McMahon and Bryan interactions. Both seem like a record stuck on repeat and every episode they come out and deliver the same promo with a slightly different script. The company needs to move this forward in some direction that would work for the fans.
There was a hint of foreshadowing when McMahon talked about Bryan wanting to wrestle again but that didn’t last long once AJ Styles interrupted. WWE seems to be dragging this out to WrestleMania and the fans have no idea where this is going.
Winner: New Day Digs
— Cageside Seats (@cagesideseats) February 7, 2018
It unclear if WWE is intentionally letting the heat between Corey Graves and Booker T leak out onto television but on both Monday’s episode of Raw and Tuesday’s SmackDown Live, wrestlers or announcers have hinted at the behind-the-scenes friction. New Day took it to a new level on Tuesday.
On two occasions they mentioned Graves having fighting skills and it was a direct shot at the feud between the announcers. It was funny if you’re following the whole thing closely and interesting that so many wrestlers are aware and curious to see who is taking what sides in the debate.
Loser: SmackDown Live Top Ten
— WWE (@WWE) February 7, 2018
Why the WWE felt the need to have a SmackDown Live Top Ten is unclear but it seemed extremely out of place an unnecessary. They mentioned that the WWE roster voted but there was not Rusev, Dillinger magically came in at No. 10 and other selections felt a bit odd.
Unless there is a feud coming out of the list, there really seemed no point to have one and if it is a legit thing the wrestlers voted on, there’s a good chance it could cause some friction between Superstars who were left off the list.
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