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SmackDown In A Nutshell: Blue Brand Gets Edgy Before SummerSlam

It's almost time for it, so let's get into SmackDown In A Nutshell, where this week the blue brand gets edgy before SummerSlam!

It’s the next to last SmackDown In A Nutshell before WWE’s biggest party of the summer! This week, the blue brand gets edgy before SummerSlam…or tries, anyways.

Yes, it’s another Friday, so another SmackDown…and you are here for another Nutshell!

Or, I hope you are…because otherwise, I am just talking to myself…which would be weird.

Anyways, we’ve got just a week before WWE crashes Las Vegas! The blue brand is in Tulsa this week, and it’s all about final prep for SummerSlam.

John Cena and Roman Reigns will be face to face this week, with each Superstar flexing over who did better in the Fast and Furious.

OK, maybe…but probably not?

In all seriousness though, there’s an expectation that the blue brand gets edgy before SummerSlam. Perhaps Roman’s since-edited risque joke was a harbinger of things to come?

Folks, there’s but one way to find out (OK, there’s not…but you are already here…).

It’s a great time for a Nutshell, don’t you think?

SmackDown In A Nutshell: Blue Brand Gets Edgy Before SummerSlam

Let’s crack open this Nutshell and see how edgy the blue brand gets!

Best Match of the night:

Nakamura over Apollo for the Intercontinental Championship.

Good match, odd timing.

Like, I don’t hate the title change. I question a big change before SummerSlam, however.

Unless they do a rematch where it’s for the belt and the crown, and we get King Crews?

Worst match of the night:

I’d go with Alpha Academy and The Street Profits. Too short to be much more than filler.

nutshell
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With Bronson Reed now gone, I have to stop imagining WWE pairing him and Otis together, to form the Natural Disasters 2.0….

Crowd Chants of the Night:

Cena

Cena sucks

the obvious ones for sure.

Star of the Night

Tough call.

I liked, to a point, the effort to make the blue brand edgy.

blue brand gets edgy
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That credit, at least on camera, goes to John Cena, Roman Reigns, Sasha Banks and Bianca Belair.

I will say this…for as much as fans loved to point out the CM Punk references in recent AEW episodes…there was this:

Not a shock, the four involved in the SmackDown top SummerSlam matches.

Spot of the Night:

I guess WWE wants us to feel like, heading out of this show, the spot of the night is Sasha Banks with the Bank Statement on top of the table.

So, I guess we go with that?

smackdown in a nutshell
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Jobber of the Night:

Zelina Vega and Carmella? Why not.

I mean, they were there to take punishment so that Bianca Belair could get offense in, just not on Sasha.

Otherwise, having them out for a contract signing was…really random and pointless?

Upset of the Night:

Nothing

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

Maybe it was a bit contrived, but we said the blue brand was going to get edgy…and I’d say they at least tried.

Surprised by some of the verbiage tossed around.

Especially with some of the shots. Maybe it’s just me, but surprised WWE/Cena went with shots at The Shield protecting Reigns, and Roman running Ambrose out of WWE.

Botch of the night:

Honestly didn’t catch one.

LOL Moment of the night:

I guess, maybe, having Corbin steal the briefcase? Feels borderline similar to other briefcase swerves though…

It’s not much. Corbin’s whole begging thing can be funny but then painful…so I do hope they move it forward quick.

smackdown in a nutshell
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Like, this one screams for some DiBiase-type angle…but who knows.

Fans love getting on his case too…

blue brand gets edgy
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Noteworthy Moment:

Shinsuke Nakamura is not only king, but he is now a 2 time Intercontinental Champion.

Overall lowlights:

The show was OK. Not stellar…just OK.

Yes, the hook in the title claims “the blue brand gets edgy”. The language used and content covered certainly tried.

Here’s my issue, more with the open than the close, but the criticism holds for both…

It felt too forced at times.

Bianca and Sasha at least have a little bit more history, recent though it may be.

smackdown
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Cena and Reigns could have…and there’s common threads to play off of…but if you distill things enough, at least to me, some of it didn’t feel organic.

Or, simply put…Cena wasn’t bad…but he’s also been much better.

Overall highlights:

I give WWE credit for having Reigns say very little…though I think that Cena would have been better if his opponent was sharper on the mic.

That’s a knock on many in this current generation. Too few are capable on the mic, and for the most part, WWE kills off managers who help mask that (with a few notable exceptions).

Still, Cena did what Cena does, and he told a good story…even if I was a bit surprised to see it go first.

I can’t say whether John Cena wins his 17th title a week from now. But the seed was firmly planted…and with Ric Flair gone and probably showing up in AEW soon…

I mean…Vince IS a spiteful person, right?

Like seeing Nakamura get the win.

Bianca and Sasha’s signing was predictable, but honestly I don’t think it needed the extra help.

After the final bell:

Here’s how I console myself after that SmackDown.

There’s still one more SmackDown In A Nutshell before SummerSlam.

That SmackDown won’t have to get edgy. But we should probably get to see Edge, which is OK.

I think that’s something glaring here. The top of the card feels off, and I can’t help but wonder if it’s because we’ve got 2 of the 3 biggest blue brand matches using part time talent.

Yes, Cena and Edge are all time greats…but they are part time talent, and even if one may have been at a show and not used…they have not been on television each and every week.

I’m used to it…doesn’t mean I like it.

So, here’s hoping next week really gets us excited.

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