Steel Cage Clash, Beat the Clock Challenges and NXT Releases (WWE SmackDown Review - April 29, 2022)
Before breaking down the April 29, 2022 edition of Friday Night SmackDown, Graham "GSM" Matthews gives his thoughts on the latest round of NXT cuts including Dakota Kai, Dexter Lumis, Malcom Bivens and other notable names. He then talks the Steel Cage clash between Drew McIntyre and Sami Zayn, Madcap Moss crashing Happy Talk, Ricochet successfully defending the Intercontinental Championship against Shanky and why breaking Shanky away from Jinder Mahal would be a bad idea, Raquel Rodriguez's in-ring debut, the tag team title unification match at WrestleMania Backlash turning into a six-man tag team match with nothing on the line (as of now), Naomi vs. Shayna Baszler, The New Day trading wins with Sheamus and Ridge Holland in singles action, Ronda Rousey beating Charlotte Flair in a Beat the Clock "I Quit" Challenge, and more!
It's a special Draft Day edition of WrestleRant Radio this week as Graham "GSM" Matthews gets complete coverage of the 2022 NFL Draft from RJ Marceau including thoughts on who's eligible to be picked from the Big Board, top names to keep an eye on, the order of the teams, his love for the Georgia Bulldogs and how they replenish the pot year after year, and much more. Of course, there's plenty of wrestling chatter as well as the duo discuss the celebration of Randy Orton's 20-year anniversary in WWE on Monday's Raw, the return of Asuka and if she's being groomed for a shot at the Raw Women's Championship, Becky Lynch's controversial comments regarding AEW's women's division and if there's any truth to what she said, and Mustafa Ali shockingly resurfacing on Raw as well. Did this latest run for him be better than the last, or is a departure still likely later this year?
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Despite the influx of fresh faces on the show lately, Friday Night SmackDown still needs a reset of some sort. Graham "GSM" Matthews gets into his thoughts on the April 22, 2022 edition including Xia Li seemingly turning heel already, Charlotte Flair and Ronda Rousey signing the contract for their "I Quit" match at WrestleMania Backlash, Butch's latest loss to Xavier Woods, Gunther squashing Teddy Goodz, Riddle battling Jey Uso, Natalya and Shayna Baszler emerging as the newest challengers for Sasha Banks and Naomi's WWE Women's Tag Team Championship, Madcap Moss vs. Angel, the Lumberjack main event between Drew McIntyre and Sami Zayn, and more!
All-new SmackDown Superstar Raquel Rodriguez joins Graham "GSM" Matthews to kick off this week's WrestleRant Radio to discuss being called up to the main roster and when she found out it was happening, who knew about it ahead of time, her journey over the last several years, eventually teaming with Rhea Ripley, having her name changed, and more!
GSM and RJ Marceau then reflect back on the six-year anniversary of Samoa Joe winning the NXT Championship at an NXT house show they attended before getting into how Raw has been better lately (awful weddings notwithstanding), Theory winning the United States Championship and how far he can go, Randy Orton celebrating 20 years in WWE next month and what some of his best matches are, Rhea Ripley turning heel, Bianca Belair's upcoming opponents, and Cody Rhodes vs. Kevin Owens for the first time ever.
They also have plenty of thoughts on Kushida leaving NXT and if more releases are soon to follow, the debut of Roxanne Perez on Tuesday's show, why Sammy Guevara turning heel was the right move and why him regaining the AEW TNT Championship was the wrong one, AEW and New Japan Pro-Wrestling announcing their first-ever joint show for June and what the main event could be, CM Punk vs. Adam Page being primed for the Double or Nothing main event, why WWE being interested in FTR is hardly surprising, Jack Evans' AEW contract not being renewed, and what's next for Darby Allin and Andrade El Idolo following their Coffin match main event.
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