Thursday, July 25, 2024

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SmackDown 08/07/2018: Lana strives to stay #1

Hey Smackdown fans!! We are getting closer and closer to the SummerSlam PPV. Last week Charlotte Flair returned and thanks to Paige, she was given the chance to enter into the SummerSlam Smackdown Women’s Championship Match. She defeated Carmella last week in the main event and earned her spot in the PPV match making it a triple threat match which includes Becky Lynch.

Flair and Lynch find themselves teaming up this week to face the IIconics. The IIconics were mocking the tea time vixens over social media this past weekend. They were up to their old tricks, saying how Flair did nothing to earn a title shot and that Lynch is, and will always be Flair’s sidekick.

Before the match gets under way, Lynch and Flair are backstage conversing. Flair explains that she had to take this qualifying championship opportunity that Paige gave to her last week. She hopes that Lynch isn’t going to take it personally, as she better then anyone, should know how competitive Flair is. Lynch seemed to understand even though her chances of winning have been cut down. She explains that she will now just have a bigger hill to climb. In fact she referred to Flair as a tall blonde boulder. Flair wanted to confirm that they would be okay with their tag team match, and then it happened, Lynch threw a verbal punch at her former horsewomen members. She confirms with Flair that they aren’t Sasha Banks and Bayley.

The Smackdown Women’s Champion, Carmella, makes her way out to commentary to make her presence known during the tag team match. She has a huge interest in the outcome of this match. After Carmella takes her seat next to Corey Graves, Lynch and Flair making their separate entrances. Flair again makes her way to the ring with the wrong statistics on the screen. For those of you who may not remember, last week it showed that Flair is a four-time Women’s Champion. In fact, she is a five-time and also a 1-time Divas Champion. Well, the statistics were wrong again, and still said four-time. Maybe I should write a letter? Anyway, back to the entrances.

The IIconics make their way to the ring next. They continue their “mean girl” schtick. The crowd in Orlando gives them some “boring” chants which Flair and Lynch shook their heads in agreement. Peyton Royce and Billie Kay continued to mock Flair for getting an opportunity at the title for doing nothing, and for Lynch for being lost in Flair’s shadow.
The match itself did not stray to far from the normal interactions between these two teams. Although the teams worked amongst themselves well, the match itself was no different from what we have seen. The standard Bexploder and moonsaults were used. The match ended with Flair picking up the win by executing the Figure Eight on Royce. After the match, Carmella stood on top of the announce table with her title raised to show that she is at the top of the mountain as Lynch and Flair exchange words with her.

After the match backstage, Lynch and Flair are happy about their victory. They mention how they work great with each other because they are best friends. Lynch’s victory cheer soon turns to concern, as she feels that this may change come SummerSlam. Flair seems less worried and comforts her by saying they will just have to be great against each other instead.

Before the other women’s match of the night, Lana is backstage preparing for your rematch against Zelina Vega. Her husband Rusev is with her and apologizes for not being ringside with her last week. He vowed that he will go out to the ring with her tonight and be in her corner. Before they head to the ring, Aiden English approaches the couple. English has “inadvertently” caused Rusev and Lana to lose their matches in recent weeks. He sincerely apologizes to the couple. They both accept his apology and agree that all is forgiven. However, as English attempts to follow them out to the ring, Rusev tells him that he should sit this one out.

Earlier in the day, Vega and Lana exchanged some words on twitter. Vega states she will end Lana day, whereas Lana enforces that win or lose, it will always be Lana Day!

The match is up next. Vega comes out first with her client Andrade “Cien” Almas. Lana then comes out with her husband, Rusev. This match showed more promise then the tag team match earlier in the night. Lana and Vega both produced a high action match. Two of the highlights of the match was some of my personal favorite moves. Neither move was announced correctly, but Lana did perform a Trish Stratus approved bulldog, and Vega executed a nice codebreaker that would have Chris Jericho proud. After a couple of suplexes, Lana had Vega right where she wanted her, however, this is when Almas hopped up on the rope apron to provide the distraction. This distraction was enough for Vega to execute the codebreaker and take advantage. Rusev then went after Almas outside the ring, and slammed him into the barricade. Vega kicked Rusev in the back of the head to give Almas the chance to gain momentum. Almas may have gained momentum on Rusev on the outside, but Vega lost track of Lana and she received a kick to the face as a result! Lana then attempted to capitalize by going to the top rope to attempt a high risk maneuver. English then came down to the ring, and pushed Almas and Rusev into the ring post which caused Lana to lose her balance from the ropes. This allowed Vega to picking up the pin and the win!

Although, this clip does not directly reflect the women’s division, it was something I found funny to share. R-Truth states he will have to pin Carmella if he wants a chance at the U.S. title.

Thoughts: Lets start with the negative and end on a positive note:

The tag team match did not do much I feel for either side, unless this was to drive a wedge between Flair and Lynch. What my concern with this is, all of IIconics offense was done during the commercial break. I am not sure if every cable providers USA network is the same, but I am able to see what goes on during the commercial break on the side of the screen. During this break, the IIconics were taking control and the match looked more interesting then what was portrayed during the normal time. I do not think the IIconics are fairing well on the main roster and I hope eventually they can pick up some wins. I am hoping that the Flair/Lynch dynamic turns one of them heel to be honest.

The positives:

The Lana and Zelina rematch, I felt, was even better than last weeks match. Lana has proven that she has become leaps and bounds to where she was during her matches with Naomi (WHERE IS SHE??). I hope they continue this momentum for Lana and I am so glad that Zelina is getting in the ring as well. Battle of the managers is amazing when the matches are pretty top notch. I am all for Zelina and Lana having a PPV match at some point.

I am still holding out for some tag team titles for the women, once they get more talent on the main roster. I am thinking once the Mae Young Classic is over, they may move some of them into NXT and move some NXT talent up to the main roster in tag teams. Just an idea.

What did everyone think of the show this week? Which match was your favorite and what would you like to see in the future? Are you enjoying Lana being in the ring more and would you like it to continue? Discuss in the comments!

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