Matt Riddle def. Sheamus by Disqualification
I didn't know I wanted this match until we got it, as this turned out to be a hell of a hard-hitting affair. They wrestle similar styles and thus they held nothing back while beating the crap out of each other here. Riddle continues to shine against everyone he steps in the ring with on SmackDown and this was another standout showing for me. I hated the lame finish with Shorty G going after Riddle, but I guess it was designed to protect both guys. Riddle vs. Chad Gable, whenever it happens, should be a blast.
Heavy Machinery Crashed The Dirt Sheet with Sonya Deville Hosted by The Miz and John Morrison
I tend to enjoy Miz and Morrison more often than not, but their material in this segment regarding Mandy Rose was downright deplorable. Seriously, who the hell thought it was a good idea to air that? And if it was Miz and Morrison who came up with that, maybe splitting them up wouldn't be such a bad idea after all. Thankfully, Deville's mic work salvaged the segment, even if it wasn't as strong as it normally is. Heavy Machinery coming out set the stage for their tag team match with Miz and Morrison later in the night.
SmackDown Tag Team Champion Cesaro def. Lince Dorado
The Lucha House Party stepped up to Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura backstage last week, probably because there aren't any other teams on the blue brand for Cesaro and Nakamura to feud with at the moment. These teams are talented, but Lucha House Party have meant so little for so long that I don't view them as threats to the titles whatsoever. On the bright side, this was a highly entertaining sprint with both guys delivering as always.
"The Fiend" Bray Wyatt Used Alexa Bliss to Lure in Universal Champion Braun Strowman
I absolutely loved the ending to last week's SmackDown with The Fiend attacking Bliss and it left me looking forward to finding out what was next. Strowman finally resurfaced here via a pre-taped promo filmed elsewhere, but it was way too hokey for my liking. The intentionally-evil voice he used was especially ridiculous. Bliss preventing The Fiend from laying her out again was interesting, though. I know it won't happen, but I'm hoping this angle ends with Bliss aligning with Wyatt in some form or fashion. Considering Strowman straight up said he doesn't care about Bliss, I'd say it isn't impossible.
Jeff Hardy def. King Corbin by Disqualification
The first two matches these two had against each other were vastly underwhelming, so while I understand this stemmed from their interaction last week, I wasn't clamoring for them to square off again. Thankfully, this didn't last longer than it needed to before Sheamus interfered and attacked Hardy so he could cost Corbin the victory as retaliation from earlier (because of the bounty Corbin previously put on Riddle). That led immediately into the next match...
Sheamus def. King Corbin
i don't think Sheamus and Corbin have ever gone one-on-one before, so this felt fresh and I enjoyed it. My only issue with it was that I wish it would have been advertised in advance instead of being thrown out there coming out of a commercial break. What we got from them for the five minutes this went was pretty good, but Riddle getting involved at the end was unnecessary. WWE went overboard with the interference finishes on this show. By the way, are they setting up some sort of multi-man match with Sheamus, Corbin, Riddle, Hardy and Gable for SummerSlam or an upcoming episode of SmackDown?
Stephanie McMahon Sealed the SummerSlam Fate of WWE Women's Tag Team Champions SmackDown Women's Champion Bayley and Raw Women's Champion Sasha Banks
We found out on Raw this week that if Asuka can beat Bayley next week on Raw (which she will), then she'll get another shot at Banks' Raw Women's Championship at SummerSlam. Additionally, it was announced here that a tri-branded Battle Royal will be held next Friday night on SmackDown to determine Bayley's SummerSlam opponent because of how she's made plenty of enemies on all three brands. Again, it defeats the purpose of the Brand Split, but it's getting easier and easier to not care because of how often the company has Superstars appear on the opposing brand. The SummerSlam developments were fine, but the way this was done with Stephanie holding a "video conference" on the big screen while Bayley and Banks stood in the ring was comical because it couldn't have been more obvious that Stephanie's part had been recorded in advance.
Heavy Machinery vs. The Miz and John Morrison Ended in a No Contest
Watching this match made me realize just how much of an afterthought the Money in the Bank briefcase Otis holds at the moment is. I'm still a fan of his, but what was the point of him winning it in the first place if there was never any long-term plan? Nonetheless, the match itself was decent and featured some great fire from Heavy Machinery. The finish focused on Deville and Rose going at it with it being revealed that Rose has cut her hair after what transpired last week. Honestly, it's a nice look on her. Fingers crossed WWE is building to Rose vs. Deville at SummerSlam and not some sort of six-person tag team affair. That's better off happening on SmackDown. Rose and Deville deserve the SummerSlam spotlight all to themselves.
RETRIBUTION Destroyed Everything in Sight
I maintain that RETRIBUTION is WWE's latest attempt to boost the ratings, and while I'm not currently high on whatever this is supposed to be, I'll give it time to develop. Admittedly, what we saw here was damn cool, even if it felt like a hybrid of The Nexus and Aces & Eights from TNA. It had a badass vibe to it, but until we know why they'e wreaking havoc, it's difficult to get too invested in it. Time will tell, but they created a buzz with this one angle and they'd be smart to not squander it. Oh, and by the way, WWE needs to stop doing the chaotic camera cuts. They're more annoying than they are effective.
That ending was wild and was clearly intended to get people talking about the show. Well, it worked. I still don't know if I'm sold on it or not yet, but because it's different than anything else we've seen from WWE in recent memory, I will say they have me intrigued. At any rate, this was a solid SmackDown on the whole. It wasn't on the same level as the last two episodes, but storylines were furthered, some of the wrestling was fun, and we got a better idea of what we can expect from SmackDown at SummerSlam.