John Cena Attacked Baron Corbin
This was a great segment to kick off the show. Cena masterfully controlled the crowd yet again and both guys played their roles well. The shots Cena and Roman Reigns have thrown at each other so far have been great and have gotten their feud off to a strong start. I felt bad for Corbin last week when Kevin Owens came to his aid backstage, but he was back to being a straight-up jerk in this segment. Obviously, that was done by design to set up what would happen later in the night, but I am curious if this gimmick is eventually going to lead to Corbin endearing himself to the audience or if he'll always end up getting his ass handed to him and the butt of the joke.
Rey Mysterio def. SmackDown Tag Team Champion Jimmy Uso
The Mysterios have lost to The Usos at every turn in recent weeks, so this was a much-needed win for them. Dominik's match with Jimmy was fairly brief last week, so I was glad this lasted a little longer and what we got was good. The finish saw Dominik cheat to help Rey win and it was done in the same way that The Usos have beaten the Mysterios in their last few matches, so it was the "turnabout is fair play" excuse, which is fine. I'd save their rematch for the SmackDown Tag Team Championship until SummerSlam.
Sasha Banks Saved SmackDown Women's Champion Bianca Belair From Carmella and Zelina Vega
Belair continues to be incredibly over with these live crowds. She's a star. I laughed out loud when Carmella came out, thinking we might be getting a third match between her and Belair for the SmackDown Women's Championship. I laughed even louder when Vega came out and staked her claim at a title as well considering she hasn't won a single match since returning to WWE earlier this month. Thankfully, this segment only existed to reintroduce Banks and set up the tag team main event.
24/7 Champion Reggie def. Chad Gable by Disqualification
Both Gable and Otis are Minnesota boys, which is why they received a positive reaction from the crowd when they came out. It's a shame they were wasted on this trash, but at least they were on the show at all. Where were The Street Profits? Didn't they return last week to resume their rivalry with Alpha Academy? Nonetheless, at least this was kept on the shorter side. Reginald noted beforehand that he's now going by Reggie because he isn't actually French, he only did that to be Carmella's sommelier. That doesn't explain while he was doing it while with Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler, but whatever. Keep this crap on Raw, please.
John Cena Signed the Contract to Face Universal Champion Roman Reigns at SummerSlam
This segment started out strong with the mic work from Reigns and Finn Balor before quickly going downhill. Reigns was terrific in his response to Cena from earlier, though I wish we heard more Balor. I always figured we were getting Cena vs. Reigns at SummerSlam, but why not just announce it right out of the gate as opposed to taking the convoluted way and teasing Reigns vs. Balor instead? Cena signing the contract that was meant for Balor made zero sense and made him look like a bad babyface. This whole angle was asinine. I'm sure we'll get Reigns vs. Balor coming out of SummerSlam, but this did nobody any favors.
King Nakamura, Big E and Cesaro def. Intercontinental Champion Apollo Crews, Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode
This was the follow-up to the segment featuring these same Superstars last week on SmackDown. I found out they ended up doing the match that same night when the feed cut to the Rolling Loud festival. All of these guys feel like they're stuck in limbo at the moment, but one thing I can say for certain is that Big E and Crews need to get the hell away from each other. Thankfully, Nakamura pinned Crews (champs are chumps, eh?), so that looks to be the next Intercontinental Championship program. I don't know what you do with Big E coming off his huge Money in the Bank victory, though. My guess is that he won't even be on the SummerSlam card unless he cashes in that night.
Seth Rollins Attacked Edge
I really liked how this segment was executed. Edge was shown making his entrance before the commercial break, and when we came back, we found out Rollins actually ambushed him during the break. It was Rollins' revenge for being embarrassed by Edge last week. He then cut a great promo on Edge, further building up their bout at SummerSlam. I've loved the simple storytelling in their feud and am really looking forward to that match.
SmackDown Women's Champion Bianca Belair and Sasha Banks def. Carmella and Zelina Vega
This was a fairly standard tag team main event with the chemistry that Belair and Banks have as partners being the main focus. Carmella and Vega had solid showings and it was a decent match, but the crowd was super into Banks and Belair specifically. Banks was so over-the-top that you had to know she was going to turn on Belair at some point and I'm glad it happened on this show. The crowd gave her excellent heat for the turn. This is the version of The Boss I wanted going into their WrestleMania match, so I'm happy we're at least getting it going into SummerSlam. That's another top attraction for the pay-per-view.
As much as I hated what they did with the contract signing, this was an enjoyable edition of SmackDown on the whole. Cena vs. Reigns is now official for SummerSlam while Edge vs. Rollins and Belair vs. Banks are all but confirmed for the card. The 24/7 stuff was a waste of time and, as previously mentioned, the blue brand's midcard could use some work, but at least we have some semblance of an idea of where they could be going with Crews and Nakamura. It's amazing how much easier of a watch SmackDown is compared to Raw most weeks and I'm expecting that to reflect at SummerSlam when the SmackDown side of things outshines the Raw matches.