The KO Show with Kevin Owens and Daniel Bryan Turned to Chaos; SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Street Profits, Bryan and Owens def. Dolph Ziggler, Robert Roode, Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura
I enjoyed the interaction between Bryan and Owens during The KO Show and liked how Bryan brought up what he said on Talking Smack last week about how he'd like to see the Intercontinental Championship more regularly on SmackDown, which was obviously designed to plant the seeds for him rekindling his rivalry with Sami Zayn. I don't know if this was supposed to be a one-off for him and Owens as a team, but if so, they worked wonderfully together in what was a fun eight-man tag team match. SmackDown's tag team division desperately needed a reset, so we'll see if that happens now that the Draft has shaken up the scene significantly.
Bianca Belair def. Zelina Vega
While this wasn't the smoothest encounter I've ever seen, it was definitely an impressive SmackDown debut for Belair. I still think breaking Vega away from Andrade was a dumb idea as she has way more value as a manager than as a wrestler in my opinion, but she was the perfect person for Belair to go in there and squash on Night 1, especially given their history over on Raw. Belair has all the tools to be successful on SmackDown and I'm looking forward to seeing her growth. By that way, that was one of the best looking K.O.D. finishers Belair has delivered yet.
Lars Sullivan def. Shorty G
WWE is clearly going all in on Sullivan based on how he's been presented in the past two weeks and how he got the video package treatment ahead of his decimation of Shorty G here. The match was exactly what you'd expect it to be and Shorty G solid well for Sullivan's offense, but the most interesting thing about this came afterward when Shorty G claimed he was "quitting." He clarified in a backstage segment that he was simply quitting being Shorty G and was instead going back to being Chad Gable. It's about damn time! The fact WWE didn't pull the plug on the Shorty G crap sooner is beyond me, but hey, it's better late than never.
Sasha Banks Forced SmackDown Women's Champion Bayley to Sign the Contract for Their Hell in a Cell Match at WWE Hell in a Cell
A lot of the segments and promos Banks and Bayley have been cutting heading into Hell in a Cell have been hit or miss, but this was one of their better interactions yet. I think the biggest problem this program has had is that WWE has rushed the rivalry, so they've just barely scratched the surface of what they can do together. Maybe Hell in a Cell is the beginning of a longer story between them, but I'm not getting my hopes up. Banks was more intense than usual as she should have been and Bayley played her role remarkably well. There is no doubt in my mind that they should go on last on Sunday.
Seth Rollins def. Murphy
There's a pay-per-view in two days and few matches have been announced for the card. You're telling me WWE couldn't wait until then to do this match and bother to hype it up in advance a bit? That's ridiculous. On the bright side, it was a great match with the two getting a ton of time. Murphy was made to look like an equal to Rollins throughout, so if he wasn't going to win (which he didn't), that was the next best thing. Unfortunately, Aalyah returned post-match and came to Murphy's aid despite Rey and Dominik Mysterio telling her not to. This stupid story just won't end.
Universal Champion Roman Reigns Revealed the Consequences for His Hell in a Cell Match with Jey Uso at WWE Hell in a Cell
I really liked how Jey used his brother Jimmy to trick Reigns into thinking he was talking on the Titantron so Jey could ambush him from behind. It was refreshing to see Jey stand tall over Reigns for a change (in addition to what happened with him last week) since no one truly views him as a threat to the title at Hell in a Cell. I don't know if Jimmy has officially been cleared for competition yet, but he seemed to be moving around a lot better here compared to at Clash of Champions a month ago. Reigns mentioned that if Jey loses on Sunday (and he will) that he must either join him or be "excommunicated from the bloodline." It's obviously going to be the former and that makes me really excited, as a potential faction with Reigns and The Usos has money written all over it. This was another strong segment from these guys and a great way to lead into the Hell in a Cell pay-per-view.
Once again, SmackDown did a much better job of generating interest in the upcoming pay-per-view than Raw did on Monday night. The stuff with Reigns and The Usos was the perfect conclusion to the show and the rest of the two hours were enjoyable as well. Bayley and Banks had an equally excellent segment, we're getting Chad Gable back (hell yes!), Belair dominated in her SmackDown debut, and the tag team division was showcased nicely. Hell, even the various "lawsuit" segments with Otis and The Miz exceeded my expectations, though I understand they won't be for everyone. SmackDown continues to be the superior show compared to Raw and it's bizarre because both brands are apparently written by the same people.