This episode of Smackdown further advanced multiple storylines for the women ahead of the much-anticipated Money In The Bank event in two weeks’ time.
ZELINA VEGA DEF. IYO SKY
IYO SKY accepted Zelina Vega’s challenge for a match with one of DAMAGE CTRL’s members during last week’s episode of “The Smackdown LowDown”. Both women were looking to capitalize on this opportunity to gain momentum as Money In The Bank Ladder Match competitors. SKY’s offense dominated the majority of the match, but it wasn’t until Bayley distracted the referee for the LWO representative gained the upper hand on SKY. As the two DAMAGE CTRL teammates were bickering after the blatant miscommunication, Vega delivered an unexpected 619 to SKY to pick up the win.
Writer’s Thoughts: I’m glad to see WWE provide DAMAGE CTRL with a storyline despite Dakota’s absence due to injury. It’s also very refreshing to see Zelina be built up as an even bigger threat to the other Money In The Bank Ladder Match competitors with this win over one of the company’s best wrestlers.
IYO SKY PUTS BAYLEY’S MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH SPOT ON THE LINE AGAINST SHOTZI
As DAMAGE CTRL continues their dispute backstage over SKY’s loss to Vega, a vengeful Shotzi confronts the two stating that Bayley’s interference cost her the opportunity to compete in the Money In The Bank Ladder Match. To combat Bayley’s confident claim of Shotzi not being on their level, she challenged Bayley to a match next week with Bayley’s Money In The Bank spot on the line. Before the hesitant “Role Model” could give her a reply, IYO jumped in on the conversation and accepted the challenge on Bayley’s behalf.
Writer’s Thoughts: In this segment, we see IYO’s character have more depth as an independent by stepping up as Bayley’s equal and passively setting up DAMAGE CTRL’s leader for possible failure. With rumors of a solo IYO SKY face run in the near future, a rivalry with Bayley could be a good stepping stone to further establishing SKY as a top star on Smackdown.
CHARLOTTE FLAIR GUESTS ON “THE GRAYSON WALLER EFFECT”
Charlotte Flair, the #1 Contender for Asuka’s WWE Women’s Championship, appeared as a guest on this week’s episode of “The Grayson Waller Effect” to share her thoughts on her upcoming title match. But before “The Queen” could get her words in with Grayson, an upset Bianca Belair interrupted the show to say her piece. The former champion expressed her disbelief at Flair jumping the line for a title match despite her three-month hiatus from WWE since Wrestlemania 39.
Charlotte, however, debated Belair’s claims stating that she never demanded Rhea Ripley for a rematch after her championship loss at the “Grandest Stage of Them All” before questioning Bianca’s credibility as a competitor without the championship. This then led “The EST” to defend herself as the longest reigning women’s champion of the modern era and remind Charlotte and Asuka that she was coming for the title regardless of whether the two is champions after the title match.
Writer’s Thoughts: This may arguably be one of Bianca’s best promos to date. Her natural charisma on top of the fire lit under her from losing the championship to Asuka in an underhanded fashion makes her an easy crowd favorite in this storyline. However, with Charlotte and Bianca Belair being the clear direction for a future championship storyline, I hope that not too much attention is drawn away from Asuka as she is still the champion, nonetheless.
KARRION KROSS & SCARLETT DEF. AJ STYLES & MICHIN
After Scarlett and Karrion Kross’ attack on AJ Styles last week, Michin and Styles geared up to face the eerie duo in a Mixed Tag Team Match on this episode of Smackdown. Michin and Scarlett’s brawl spilled to the outside with the two women landing a double-spinning facebuster to take each other out. In the ring, Kross locks Styles in a Kross Jacket before delivering a Powerslam Facebuster maneuver to secure the three count.
Writer’s Thoughts: Non-title storylines involving women are always on a positive note. We see that Michin is still involved with The OC, and the added element of Scarlett’s in-ring involvement makes things more interesting. I hope this is also the start of Scarlett appearing as a competitor more often as she has a lot of moves in her arsenal that the WWE Universe may not be aware of from her time in the independent scene and IMPACT.
Check out our Smackdown Post-show below.