For Raw, the confrontation between Braun Strowman and Brock Lesnar was a great preview to what we are going to see at No Mercy. Like I have said before, when Braun Strowman is in the ring, you always may see something you have never seen before. This time around, Strowman no sold a German suplex delivered by Brock Lesnar and that moment when Lesnar saw him get back up with ease was a great sight. Moments like that really show how great they have been pushing Strowman to be a monster and really show that nothing can really stop him. The build to this match at No Mercy has been perfect and its moments like this confrontation that get me even more excited for this match.
For Smackdown, what they did with Vince McMahon and Kevin Owens really helped intensify the Kevin Owens vs. Shane McMahon rivalry. Vince announced that this match is official at Smackdown’s next upcoming PPV, Hell in a Cell. What happened next was something that I didn’t see coming. Owens head butted Vince, which busted him open and then he proceeded to beating the hell out of Vince. This was a crazy sight to see considering that Vince is 72 years old, but it is events like this that really helped establish Kevin Owens as one of the top bad guys in WWE. This rivalry just got turned up a few notches and it will be really interesting to see where this goes when Shane McMahon comes back to Smackdown.
For Raw, while I am a fan of what is going on between Seth Rollins and Dean Ambrose vs. Cesaro and Sheamus, this week it felt like it took a step back. The main reason I feel this way is because they are now starting to get Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson involved in this even though the match is set between Ambrose and Rollins vs. Cesaro and Sheamus at No Mercy. Involving Gallows and Anderson led to an 8-man tag match for the main event for the show, which shouldn’t have been the main event considering we had John Cena vs. Braun Strowman. For the tag team division, they just threw teams together and made them have a match and when it was all said and done, nobody really gained anything out of this and that is a disappointment considering how well this rivalry has been going.
For Smackdown, the lack of stars on this show is something Smackdown needs to figure out. We had no Shinsuke Nakamura, Bobby Roode, Randy Orton, Breezango, Sami Zayn, etc. I know two hours is a short show when you have all of these superstars on it, but you have to find ways to give them time. Especially for somebody like Shinsuke Nakamura because he is fighting for the WWE Championship and to not even have him cut a promo on the upcoming match, this takes away the prestige of the championship. Along with that, they have been pushing week after week on who attacked Breezango and to not even have a Fashion Files segment on it to at least push it back another week, that is disappointing too.
The Final Verdict
Both shows had very good moments, and they also had moments that really weren’t worth paying attention too. Smackdown really did turn up the heat to build up their upcoming PPV, Hell in a Cell, while Raw did help layout more build to their upcoming matches at No Mercy as well. This week though, I will have to give to Smackdown. First, they had great matches on their show such as the Tag Team Championship match as well as the United States Championship match. They also ended the show on a high note with the Kevin Owens and Vince McMahon situation and really make you wonder what is going to happen next week. When shows get you excited to see what happens next, then they are doing their job very well. Overall, while Raw did do a good job of building up their matches for No Mercy, Smackdown hosted multiple title matches on their show and really helped intensify one of their main rivalries going into their PPV.