WWE Smackdown Live Match Ratings And Notes For 4/17/18 From Sean Ross Sapp

Opening segment

  • AJ Styles calls out Shinsuke Nakamura, who isn't there. According to an interrupting Aiden English and Rusev. Styles and Rusev pick a fight with each other, and it's on.
  • The total absence of sense to put the most popular guy against your top babyface. Almost immediately Rusev is put in a Calf Crusher, and Aiden English interferes and causes a DQ.
  • Daniel Bryan makes the save. The VEGAN community!?
  • Backstage, Paige makes a tag team match between the two sides, and does a totally miserable Teddy Long impersonation. I guess to be fair, every heel in the history of Smackdown debuted on Raw last night

Jeff Hardy defeated Shelton Benjamin
6.5/10

  • Shelton Benjamin comes out and says his Twitter was hacked last night and he'd never say anything nice about Chad Gable. He wants title opportunities that he deserves.
  • Randy Orton comes out, but he's interrupted by Jeff Hardy.
  • This is a good match with two guys who know each other well. Shelton's run-up kick to a top-roped Jeff Hardy is great.
  • Jeff Hardy hits Whisper in the Wind ONLY because Shelton Benjamin is a total pro who runs into it. We get the classic Shelton dragon whip as well.
  • Hardy hits a Swanton for the win. Good shit, pal.

Harper defeated Jey Uso

  • This is really abrupt. A big fight breaks out at ringside, Harper cracks Jey with the Discus Lariat and wins.
  • Naomi comes out to stop the beating, screaming and squalling.

Samoa Joe defeated Sin Cara

  • Well, Sin Cara got on Smackdown Live. He LEARNED today.
  • Sin Cara takes such a beat down that he just falls down. Conquina Clutch.
  • Samoa Joe says he's going to win the Intercontinental Championship in Saudi Arabia, and rip the Universal Championship from Roman Reigns' waist at Backlash. Joe cuts an awesome promo. He calls this the land of handouts.

Backstage Crappenings

  • Sanity is coming. I'd rather Killian be left in NXT and tag with Lars, but the other three are more than ready to come to the main roster. Nikki not coming up with these guys is flat out stupid. She's been left off TV forever and is a primary reason the act is even over.
  • Daniel Bryan is backstage talking to Renee Young, but he's interrupted by Big Cass, who isn't impressed.
  • Anderson and Gallows are heading to Smackdown Live. Hopefully they're put with AJ Styles.
  • We see selfie promos for The Bar and Andrade Cien Almas & Zelina. They'll be heading to Smackdown Live.
  • R-Truth is welcomed to Smackdown by Tye Dillinger and New Day, but he thinks he's on WWE Raw.
  • Absolution are on Smackdown Live.

Mellabration

  • Carmella comes out and talks over her cash in win, and says she'll miss her briefcase. She then hilariously throws to a video of herself. I usually hate this stuff, but this is really good.
  • Charlotte is out and says she can't be mad because she knows the "dirtiest player in the game," but she's coming after her title.
  • IIconics come out, and they are STARS. They imitate Charlotte and eventually jump her.
  • Becky Lynch makes the save, but I'm glad that the IIconics didn't stop stomping.

Charlotte Flair (w/ Becky Lynch) defeated Billie Kay (w/ Peyton Royce)
5.25/10

  • It's weird to see someone near Charlotte's size wrestling against her.
  • Billie and Charlotte are about a mile apart on a forearm to Flair's face when she's flying in the ring.
  • Billie Kay used Enzo's old finish. She also hit a nice suplex, but was submitted by Charlotte. Kay went about ten minutes with the top woman on the roster.
  • Carmella did really good looking unimpressed. All three jump Charlotte and Becky, but a debuting ASUKA shows up. Smackdown's women's roster is loaded.

AJ Styles & Daniel Bryan defeated Rusev Day via DQ
5.75/10

  • This crowd is COOKIN'.
  • Styles and Bryan go for their submissions at the same time. I can tell Graves is making an effort to learn more about MMA. Rusev Day get out of them and we go to a commercial break.
  • Rusev is doing a bearhug in 2018. It's still scary to see Bryan take bumps. Either way, he gets offense after a hot tag off of a Pele Kick.
  • Shinsuke CockNakamura comes out and punches Styles in the wiener HARD! It's a DQ. Cass also joins the fray with new gear and beats up Daniel Bryan.
  • Big Cass is a nice foil for some of these babyfaces, methinks. He could be what Baron Corbin should have been.

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