The day has come – SmackDown is finally live and the long-awaited draft is a done deal! Let’s look at the first episode of SmackDown Live and see who the top picks are!
RAW picks Seth Rollins
SmackDown picks Dean Ambrose
Neither one of the first picks is a surprise. We knew Seth and Dean would be the respective faces of RAW and SmackDown since their match on RAW. It’s a great sign of recognition for both men to be the chosen leaders.
RAW picks Charlotte
RAW is taking a second championship and it’s a major one. However, I see where they are coming from. Stephanie is the benefactor of the Divas Revolution, so it would be normal for her show to take the WWE Women’s title.
SmackDown picks AJ Styles
The moment SmakcDown picked AJ Styles, instead of The Club, it was obvious the Club wasn’t going to survive the draft. The Phenomenal One is too good of a singles competitor to stay bound in a stable.
RAW picks Finn Balor
Finn Balor – the first pick form NXT, made me jump right out of my seat. We knew it was coming but once you’ve officially heard it, it suddenly feels so real. The main roster just got better.
John Cena def. Luke Gallows
Cena hadn’t been chosen in the first round of picks, so he reminded us of his presence. There was no way he was losing that match and with the Club broken up, I don’t see Cena losing on Sunday either.
Enzo & Cass had to prove that they were useful to Cena after the way their match ended on RAW. That’s exactly what they accomplished.
RAW picks Roman Reigns
Seth and Roman on the same show? Dean is so not keeping this championship at Battleground.
SmackDown picks John Cena
Interestingly, the WWE still went with the Reigns/Cena parallel. Would that mean that Reigns will STILL be a face, even after the drug issues? What a joke!
RAW picks Brock Lesnar
That was huge but it wasn’t shocking. Brock would have had to go to the bigger brand and to Stephanie.
SmackDown picks Randy Orton
With the Lesnar/Orton match at SummerSlam coming, it was the logical choice for SmackDown to follow Lesnar’s draft with Orton’s.
RAW picks New Day
The New Day stay together. This is a surprise. With the way the Wyatt Family feud was going, most people thought, the New Day would part ways.
Darren Young & Zack Ryder def. Rusev & The Miz
This match was bizarre. Young and Ryder – both in important positions. To be fair to them, both men were strongly passionate about what they were doing. These two are hungry for success but if I had to pick one, Darren Young did better.
Rusev was the man of the match. I’m impressed with the way he’s regained his credibility as a superstar and as a champion.
Darren Young made the Miz tap out. If there were any chances of him dethroning the Miz, I think they just went out of the window. It would be too much to handle so quickly.
Bray Wyatt def. Xavier Woods
What was this match all about? On RAW it seemed that Xavier had left his fear at the compound. On SmackDown we’re back at it again. I didn’t like that backwards writing.
Despite being drafted together, the New Day might not stay together if Woods’ relationship with Bray stays the same.
Kevin Owens vs. Kane
KO and Sami Zayn were at each other’s throats again and no one regretted not seeing the Kane vs. Owens match. However, Kane made a statement – he might be old but he can’t be ignored.
RAW picks Sami Zayn
Interesting. You’d expect RAW to go for Kevin Owens first. I guess that was Mick Foley’s choice.
SmackDown picks Bray Wyatt
RAW and SmackDown are separating the Wyatts and the New Day. That means the feud will end at Battleground.
RAW picks Sasha Banks
Well, RAW had Charlotte, so it was only natural, they’d pick Sasha as well. This feud is what makes the title hot right now.
SmackDown picks Becky Lynch
At least, Becky got to be in the televised part of the Draft. She should do much better in this environment.
RAW picks Jericho
Jericho is a weird choice. I’d imagine it’s a courtesy choice for a legend because he’s in no feud and he still gets drafted before the #1 contenders for the midcard titles.
Charlotte & Dana Brooke def. Sasha Banks
Chrlotte picked up momentum, the tension between her and Sasha grew visibly and Dana showed she deserved attention. I’d say this segment was a real win.
RAW picks Rusev and Lana
SmackDown picks Miz &Maryse
Raw takes the US title and SmackDown the IC title. Fair enough.
RAW picks Kevin Owens
So I take it Owens vs. Zayn is not ending at Battleground? It’s a shame. The rivalry is strong but I would have loved to see them do something new.
SmackDown picks Baron Corbin
Great pick! Corbin made the top drafts and that’s a good sign. I can see him IC champion very soon.
RAW picks Enzo & Cass
RAW blew SmackDown out of the water with this one. Then again, it makes sense. The New Day won’t be champs forever and Enzo & Cass are THE guys to replace them.
Jericho def. Cesaro
Jericho not only got drafted, but he also got a clean victory? The WWE must have big plans for Chris.
We can’t say the same for Cesaro though. He hasn’t been doing well lately.
Natalya vs. Becky Lynch
A passionate brawl with no holding back. The divas need that sort of heat. There’s no championship between Becky and Natty, so they have to invest emotion to sell the feud.
RAW picks Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson
Yep, The Club is no more. I can’t say I disagree with that decision. At least for Styles’ sake, this split had to happen.
SmackDown picks American Alpha
Best pick of the night! I can’t describe my happiness when this choice was made. The one team SamckDown picked is the most charismatic team in the entire WWE at the moment!
RAW picks Big Show
The Big Show – a top pick? Well, I take what I said about Jericho back. THIS is a courtesy pick for a legend.
SmackDown picks Dolph Ziggler
Dolph gets drafted before Zack Ryder. That doesn’t say anything good about Zack’s future. Otherwise it’s a good thing. Ziggler fits perfectly on SmackDown and he might actually get to do something now.
RAW picks Nia Jax
I have nothing against Nia Jax but picking her over Bayley feels wrong. Bayley should have been the one to be called up and on TV.
RAW picks Neville
One of the most exciting picks of the night! Neville is back and he got the gesture of being picked on TV. That’s definitely a good thing for the high-flying superstar.
SmackDown picks Natalya
So SmackDown’s betting on Natty vs. Becky when it comes to women. A safe choice, I’d say.
RAW picks Cesaro
A bit late but still on the show. Cesaro’s not completely forgotten then. However, going to RAW might not be the best thing that could have happened to the Swiss Superman.
SmackDown picks Alberto Del Rio
Del Rio on SmackDown. Could I possibly get my wish of seeing Del Rio face for once?
RAW picks Sheamus
After Del Rio got picked, Sheamus had to be as well. It would have been a huge hit for the Irishman if he hadn’t.
Dean Ambrose def. Seth Rollins
This match only had 15 min or so of runtime. Ambrose barely had any offence and the crowd was annoyed. This definitely didn’t come up to the level of their match on RAW.
Ambrose, pinning Rollins clean was a surprise. Something tells me that it’s just a saving grace ahead of Sunday where the Lunatic Fringe will drop the belt.
What did you think of the first episode of SmackDown Live? Share your thoughts in the comment section, on FB or Twitter!