SmackDown Women's Champion Sasha Banks def. Bayley
I loved that a video package preceded this match running down the storied history these two have, making it feel like the big deal that it was. I still wish it was saved for the TLC pay-per-view, but at least they told the story of how Banks has never been able to defend a singles title on the main roster prior to this point. As expected, this was an excellent match and the nearfalls added to the unpredictability of the outcome. Banks holding onto the gold was the right call and it's cool that they're wasting no time in transitioning her into her next program with the returning Carmella.
King Corbin def. Rey Mysterio to Qualify for SmackDown's Men's Survivor Series Team
I was looking forward to this match because of how Corbin tends to really well with Superstars smaller than him. He's had his best matches in WWE against the likes of Chad Gable (where the hell is he by the way?), AJ Styles, Kalisto and others. It was a quality contest and I'm glad it got the time it did, but I felt it could have been better. The interference from Seth Rollins, Murphy and Aalyah was predictable and that End of Days to Mysterio looked terrible. This wasn't the greatest comeback matchup for Mysterio, who had previously been out injured since late August.
Ruby Riott def. Zelina Vega and Natalya in a Triple Threat Match to Qualify for SmackDown's Women's Survivor Series Team
I doubt Riott and Liv Morgan are done teaming just yet. Rather, they're probably just taking a break while SmackDown focuses on beating Raw at Survivor Series. The match was fine, but I was really happy with Riott winning. It's worth noting that this is the second week in a row that Natalya has been involved in a qualifier and hasn't been pinned. I couldn't care less about her personally, but I assume she'll eventually make the team because SmackDown is light on star power and there's three more spots that need to be filled.
Seth Rollins def. Otis to Qualify for SmackDown's Men's Survivor Series Team
There has been zero follow-up to the Heavy Machinery split from Hell in a Cell. Neither Otis nor Tucker were on TV last week, and this week, they lost on their respective shows. At the very least, I thought they would qualify for Team Raw and Team SmackDown so they could finally face off, but no such luck. Don't get me wrong, Rollins is a better fit for the squad than Otis, but Otis has had a real fall from grace this year and it's sad to see. Murphy helped Rollins win here, so it looks like he could be reuniting with Rollins and bringing Aalyah with him.
Michael Cole Hosted a Sit-Down Interview with Lars Sullivan
I was in the minority of fans who actually liked the sit-down interview Sullivan did with Corey Graves last week, as I thought it was an effective piece of character development. This, however, was the exact opposite. What the hell was he going on about and why did he feel the need to scream? Man, that was cringe-worthy. I don't think this promo killed his push dead, but it was definitely a step backward after the good work he's done lately.
Jey Uso def. Kevin Owens
It's crazy how the idea of Jey Uso wrestling in the main event of SmackDown went from being unheard of to commonplace in the span of two months. He owns victories over AJ Styles, Daniel Bryan and now Owens, which is incredibly impressive. He and Owens had an entertaining main event and Reigns' music serving as a distraction (along with the low blow from Uso) protected Owens in defeat. WWE continues to kill it with this Reigns and Uso story and I appreciated how Uso didn't convert into a full-fledged heel overnight. Rather, he showed signs of hesitation throughout the show but ultimately did what he knew he had to do. The storytelling is spectacular and I'm always excited to see where they go next with it week after week.
I'm at the point where I absolutely loathe this never-ending saga with Rollins, Murphy and the Mysterio family, so as you could imagine, the middle of this show was a drag to get through because that's largely what it revolved around. That's in addition to the qualifying matches, which are difficult to get invested in because the brand supremacy storyline has been played out. The opening and closing matches were the best parts about this show and I enjoyed the latest developments in the women's division with Reigns and Uso, but on the whole, this was a weaker edition of SmackDown than we've come to expect in recent months.