Yes, I did put the WWE Universal champion in 10th place this week. I almost didn’t put him on the list at all this week but just because of the sheer amount of times he was on screen (5 or 6) he deserves to be here. I felt like he was the 5th most important person in that opening segment (behind Rollins, Foley, Steph, and HHH who wasn’t even there) and that he could have done more to make himself standout during that segment. The rest of the night went well for him having pretty good backstage segments with Jericho, Zayn and the authority figures and then a solid match with Zayn but that opening segment really hurt him in my eyes. I think things will get better for him but WWE will need to be careful and not let him turn into a comedy champion.
Another good backstage promo for him this week as he got to interact with Daniel Bryan for the first time since the infamous Talking Smack segment. He also had a nice match with Apollo Crews and picked up the victory there. He ALSO did such a great heel move by making his wife go into the ring to get his IC Title when he left it in there. He is so good at what he does and continues to showcase it week in and week out. Looking forward to seeing him defend his title against Ziggler this Sunday.
Bo Dallas returned to Raw this past week with a new, darker character. After returning and holding a sign that made us think Bo was running for office, he cut a nice, dark sounding promo and got an impressive win against a jobber. I’ll be anxious to see where Bo goes from here.
Sheamus and Cesaro continue to put on good matches in this best of seven series. They are telling great stories and are really getting the most out of this storyline. Sheamus gets the nod for number 7 just because he went up 3-0 at Raw this week which is a commanding lead. He might have been higher had he not lost Wednesday in England to pull Cesaro back to 3-1. Sheamus has had good promos also the last few weeks and I’m excited to see where the Cesaro/Sheamus best of seven goes from here.
He didn’t have a match this week, but he got me excited for the match he is getting ready to have this Sunday. I have not been a fan of how they have built this AJ/Dean match up so far but I feel Dean did the same thing he did in the promo before SummerSlam. He made me want to watch the match more now. I believe this was a really good promo for him and did some good things for his character. At the end of Backlash, I expect him to still have the title because of some outside interference that causes a no contest.
The Usos might have lost in 30 seconds to American Alpha this week but they also had a dramatic heel turn when they attacked American Alpha after the match and put Chad Gable on the shelf. The Usos needed something to really get their character going again and this is exactly what they needed. Now we have to wait and see if the writers can write them up the right way and if the Usos can perform the right way.
I’d say a lot of people will not like me putting him this high on my list or even like that I am putting him on there at all but I believe in terms of character development, he did a lot for himself this week. He finally got a match against someone who wasn’t a jobber and he won by count-out! Now, some people didn’t like that he won by count out because they said they thought it made him look weak. I thought it showed a new level to his character. Someone who can beat you with his brute strength and someone who can outsmart you. He could have thrown Sin Cara back in the ring but he decided to take the smart road and win no matter what. I think this does a lot for his character and am looking forward to seeing how this plays in with his character from now on.
She beat the Raw Women’s Champion, Charlotte on Raw and again got one of the biggest pops of the week. People love Bayley. She had a solid match with some great ring psychology and picking up that win will catapult her to a Raw Women’s Title match at some point in the future. With Sasha coming back, I’m not sure if that is going to be at Clash of Champions or not but it is coming soon.
Heath Slater and Rhyno
Heath Slater and Rhyno both got, in my opinion, the two biggest pops of the entire week from any show. The crowd loves Slater right now and they were so incredibly loud for Rhyno right before the end of their tag team match against the Hype Bros. People love them and they are the team I believe will win the Smackdown Tag Titles at Backlash
After being screwed out of the WWE Universal title last week on Raw, Seth came out and essentially turned face and got a shot at the title at Clash of Champions. I don’t think they turned him the right way if they were intending on turning him but that is a different article all itself. He had a really good match with Jericho and basically everything he did was great. Him being face could turn into some great matches and great programs. Expecting to see Rollins/HHH probably at Hell in the Cell or Survivor Series.