What is it about this show that makes WWE not want to build it up? Last year there were three matches set up after the final SmackDown and this time there are only five. Granted three of them are inside the Cell but don’t you think that’s a little bit low? I’m sure there will be two or three more (plus a Kickoff Show match) but for now, as of rather early Sunday morning, we only have five to work with. Let’s get to it.

Jeff Hardy vs. Elias

This is one of the two matches that was set up this week and is the only match without something on the line. They are tying this back to the May segment where Hardy allegedly hit Elias with a car and I’m not sure if that is enough to make it work out that well. It’s certainly a match that can be thrown onto pay per view with no issues, but at the same time, it might not be that thrilling.

Now it’s personal:

 

This has to go to Elias, as there is little reason for it to continue if Hardy wins so early. If nothing else, with Elias’ album coming out this week, you don’t want to have him lose so soon. I’m not sure where they are going to go with who drove the car, mainly because it seemed like they established that it was Sheamus. Either way, the match should be fine, though it’s not something I’m looking forward to all that much.

Money In The Bank Briefcase: Otis(c) vs. The Miz

I don’t want to get on Otis for the briefcase situation because it hasn’t been his fault, but dang this has been a big fall off from where he was just a few months ago. It was one thing when the fans were there cheering for him and you could imagine him stealing the title from Braun Strowman, but there is no way you can put Otis in the ring with this version of Roman Reigns and expect it to be taken anything closer to seriously. That isn’t on Otis, but it isn’t going to work either.

For whom the court rolls:

Miz almost has to win here, as at least you can imagine him cashing in and taking a thrashing for daring to step to Reigns. It makes a lot more sense than Otis, and while I feel bad for Otis losing everything, a Tucker turn wouldn’t shock me. They almost have to do it here though, and that’s going to make things a little bit easier for everyone involved. Well save for Otis of course but you get the idea.

SmackDown World Title: Roman Reigns(c) vs. Jey Uso

Much like their previous match, this isn’t so much about who leaves as champion as much as how they get there, and in this case, what happens next. This story has turned more into a way of knowing what is coming but still making it interesting, which is actually a heck of a trick. Reigns has turned into something from another planet as of late and I could go for a lot more of him on top, especially if he has some lackeys with him.

A fighting family:

Of course Reigns wins here, and it is going to be brutal to watch. That is exactly what they should be doing too and under the right circumstances, this could steal the show all over again. Reigns can turn up the brutality when he needs to and Uso is a pretty snappy underdog. Letting these two do it again inside the Cell is interesting, but they already have months worth of story ready for when Reigns wins. Good storytelling has gotten Reigns this far and it is going to get him a lot further than this after another successful title defense.

SmackDown Women’s Title: Bayley(c) vs. Sasha Banks

this is one of the most confusing and also interesting matches on the show. The story has been a very long time in the making and they have set this up very well. It’s good enough to make an exception for the first (real) match in the feud taking place inside the Cell but that leaves a heck of a question: what happens here? They really could stretch this out for several more months and possibly even make it a featured match at WrestleMania (if not the headliner), but that might be asking too much.

That’s not how contracts work:

I think I’m going to go with Bayley retaining here, maybe by some shenanigans, as there seems to be some steam to this feud and if they play it right, this could go on all the way to WrestleMania. I’m not sure I want it to or if that’s a good idea, but I think they have Bayley hold onto the title for one more month at least. If nothing else, have Bayley debut some kind of a bodyguard that Banks has to beat next month to set up something in December. I wouldn’t be shocked at all if Banks wins, but I kind of don’t want her to just yet.

Raw World Title: Drew McIntyre(c) vs. Randy Orton

Yes we’re still on this feud that started back in July and I’m kind of over the whole thing. I don’t need to see them fight again though for some reason that’s what we’re getting for a third time. Orton isn’t the kind of guy who is going to lose over and over again on pay per view, but at the same time, he’s now 40 years old and someone who has been a made man for at least ten years. A loss wouldn’t kill him, but how much does McIntyre get after beating him twice already?

In the big red cage:

I’ll take Orton to win here, though I’d love to see McIntyre hold onto the title. Either way, I think McIntyre gets it back before WrestleMania 37 ends, though at some point he has to lose to make that a possibility. Orton tacking on another World Title isn’t the worst idea, but it isn’t a match I really need to see again as they are already repeating the same setup that got us to Summerslam.

Overall Thoughts

I keep thinking I’ve left something out of this and somehow that isn’t the case. I’m not sure why they only have five matches set for a pay per view less than twenty four hours in advance, but WWE has only had a month to set this up and that’s a lot of scripts that can be torn in half in advance. The big matches are set and that’s what matters, but dang man. How hard is it to announce a few matches on Talking Smack or Raw Talk?

Thomas Hall has been a wrestling fan for over thirty years and has seen over 50,000 wrestling matches. He has also been a wrestling reviewer since 2009 with over 5,000 full shows covered. You can find his work at kbwrestlingreviews.com, or check out his- Amazon author page with 30 wrestling books. Get the latest and greatest in professional wrestling news by signing up for our daily email newsletter. Just look below for “GET EXCLUSIVE UPDATES” to sign up. Thank you for reading!

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