SmackDown Recap & Reactions (March 10, 2023): United Front

Back Use returned to Friday Night SmackDown this week alongside his brother, Jimmy, in a united front with The Bloodline. He came to explain why he turned against Sami Zayn.

Because it had to.

” I do not want to do it. But I had no choice. Because (Jimmy) is my blood.

It says it all, doesn’t it?

As much as anything else, that means Kevin Owens was right all along. No matter how much Sami wanted to be a member of the group, he was never their blood and he never would be. Jey repeated those same words on that same show.

He blamed Sami for everything, saying that if he wasn’t so selfish, none of this should have turned out this way. But he remained human because he also lashed out at fans because “you don’t know what I’m going through.” There was something deeply personal here that added so much to the character and the story in general. It was great.

Eventually, they turned their attention to Cody Rhodes, who, wouldn’t you know, was in the building and made an appearance once he heard his name. They tried to goad him into a fight, and that’s when Zayn arrived on the scene to start a big fight that spilled out into the crowd.

They returned to the ring just so the babyfaces could clear their heels and stand tall as the show went on. The commentary questioned whether Rhodes had made a critical error in getting involved in this side of The Bloodline’s affairs.

Owens, for his part, was nowhere to be found.

They do a great job of weaving the two stories together, and it increasingly looks like WrestleMania 39 could be where we see The Bloodline’s downfall. But I’m still struggling to see how they re-hire Owens and Sami’s side given his current position. They have six shows left to do so.

Wouldn’t it be something if Cody Rhodes, Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens closed WrestleMania holding all the gold?

Everything else

  • This show opened with the Drew McIntyre vs. Sheamus vs. Karrion Kross vs. LA Knight vs. Xavier Woods Fatal 5-Way to determine who would go on to challenge GUNTHER for the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania 39. I want to start by highlighting this Knight has again received a very nice ovation and I hope the right people recognize its potential. He didn’t win here, but he wrote the winner of Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal on him. The real winner was, well, both Drew McIntyre and Sheamus, who pulled off a decisive win at the same time. Referees argued over what to do as the two men argued over it and they eventually said Adam Pearce would have a decision to make on it. The decision he reached was McIntyre vs. Sheamus next week to determine who would win the title, which is actually a good way to go considering it means they will have heated up enough to properly earn it.
  • Rey Mysterio has been announced as the first official inductee into this year’s Hall of Fame class. Naturally, his son Dominik showed up to spite him before he could even thank for the honor, saying he was ashamed to be his son. It brought out Legado del Fantasma, with Santos Escobar defending a man he defends as a legend he admires. A six-man tag ensued, a match The Judgment Day won because Dom kicked his father, who tried to respond and inadvertently created a distraction which Damian Priest took advantage of. Afterwards, Dom once again called his father a deadbeat and even went so far as to say he should have been Eddie Guerrero’s child. We got a little closer to retaliation from Rey, but he again repeated “I’m not going to fight you!” This story continues to be great and Rey has been wonderful as a tortured father who doesn’t want things to go like this with his son.
  • The Viking Raiders defeated Ricochet and Braun Strowman in a match that took longer than expected, but was absolutely much better than you’d think would come out of a televised match like this. They’ve been flirting with the Raiders as top contenders since the fresh coat of paint, and that could help them become post-WrestleMania challengers. In the meantime, is it time to start questioning Strowman and Ricochet’s split?
  • Charlotte Flair asked Adam Pearce for a match on this show, since we’re so close to WrestleMania, so he put her up against Shotzi. Shortly after the match started, Rhea Ripley showed up to hang out at ringside to watch it all unfold. What she saw was Flair tapping Shotzi with the number eight. Afterward, she jumped in the ring and called Charlotte insecure while promising to take the one thing that makes her feel important, the SmackDown Women’s Championship. Flair’s answer? That if Ripley got better, so did Charlotte, and she’ll outperform anyone, male or female, because she takes this matter seriously. It was good to see these two meet, but am I the only one not feeling the kind of tension they need for a great title match? Hopefully that will change in the coming weeks.

It was an interesting show if only because they didn’t spread themselves too thin on everything, doing fewer segments but giving those segments more time.

It was a good show.

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