SmackDown In A Nutshell: The Rock Show Hits Memphis

Big SmackDown In A Nutshell, as we get to see The Rock show hits Memphis on the Road to WrestleMania 40.

The Rock Show Hits Memphis
Credit: source: WWE

Big SmackDown In A Nutshell, as we get to see The Rock show hits Memphis on the Road to WrestleMania 40.

Yes, The Rock is really going to be on SmackDown in Memphis.

It should be an interesting follow up too. Last week we closed the blue brand show with a big (but not big enough) slap from Cody Rhodes to the Great One.

As big as the Bloodline versus Rhodes and Rollins has become…and it is massive…we have other matches to concern ourselves with as well.

WrestleMania 40 is less than a month away, it is two nights long, and we need to fill out the card.

Read More: 10 Worst WrestleMania Matches, Including Michael Cole versus Jerry Lawler

We have several big matches still yet to be made official, as well as one big champion (Logan Paul) still lacking a title defense.

So, with all that said, it is time for…

SmackDown In A Nutshell: The Rock Show Hits Memphis

Let’s get this show going and see what happens live!

Best Match of the night:

I would give this one to the main event by default. It was fun enough, and it ended by building up the new dominance of a streamlined Damage CTRL. Bayley remains outnumbered and only seemingly has one new friend, but I have a feeling those odds get evened up as we get closer to Philadelphia.

Worst match of the night:

Maybe this will be unpopular, maybe not…but the Rock show to open things?

It was mostly cringe.

The Rock Show Hits Memphis

source: YouTube TV, app, screenshot

A few reasons.

It went on way too long, in my opinion. Rock going into WrestleMania is supposed to be a heel, and he wasn’t entirely a heel here. Also, what made Attitude Era Rock songs work was that, if my memory isn’t wrong, most of them were free form, or memorized.

This time? Rock had sheet music, basically. It felt like it, it felt far less off the cuff and in the heat of the moment.Was some of it funny? Sure, fine, I guess. But, even for a heel, bringing up the controversial Ja Morant was bad form, and the Memphis fans got on him for it.

Crowd Chants of the Night:


Whoop That Trick (I think? I was pretty sure that’s what I was hearing).

Star of the Night

The Rock Show Hits Memphis

source: YouTubeTV, app, screenshot

I want to go with Dakota Kai. Tonight seemed to confirm her positioning as the new leader of Damage CTRL, and she worked well with Bayley before the match ended in a DQ.

Spot of the Night:

The stunner into RKO combo.

I mean, a lot of that was made by how insanely well Theory sells it. He ate the stunner and had to land, adjust his positioning and then launch himself up into the RKO.

Was it kind of obvious and a little not believable? Perhaps…but it worked.

Jobber of the Night:

Austin Theory, for eating that stunner into an RKO.

Upset of the Night:

Logan Paul was none too happy at his demand for a WrestleMania opponent being answered.

The Rock Show Hits Memphis

source: YouTubeTV, app, screenshot

Of course, he got not one, but two opponents…

Holy Sh** Moment of the Night:

I was mildly surprised that when Bayley was getting beaten down and outnumbered, she was only saved by Naomi.

Why surprised? Because it seemed as of what, a week ago? That we could see Jade Cargill interject herself into things. Tonight was an opportunity, but no Jade. No Bianca either, though the fans called for her. To be honest, especially if they want Bayley to have a run…a tag of Bianca and Jade sounds fun. Let them take on the Kabuki Warriors in Philly…

Botch of the night:

At one point during his long winded Rock show, when he was talking to Cody’s mom…Rock made a boo-boo.

He said Momma Rhodes several times. Then he said Momma Reigns.

Was it a botch…or a hint of a turn to come?

Carlito had a bit of a bobble just before Santos came back in.

LOL Moment of the night:

Austin Theory’s super exaggerated oversell was both awesome and hilarious all at the same time.

Noteworthy Moment:

LA Knight versus AJ Styles? Official for WrestleMania.

Jimmy versus Jey? Ditto.


source: YouTubeTV, app, screenshot

Logan Paul has his title match…it’s a triple threat against Randy Orton AND Kevin Owens.

Rey and Santos is happening too…except Rey challenged him to a match for next SmackDown. Wonder if that sets up an LWO versus Legado match?

Overall lowlights:

The Rock show bombed. Fans loved Rock, it had some cute moments-like him singing as his Disney character Maui-but overall, it was too long, too drawn out and too forced.

I never remember his songs coming off so scripted. This one did. Not a fan of it at all. That said, they gave most of the Bloodline the night off (or kept them in the back), and the goal for now appears to be keeping the opponents apart before Philly.

Overall highlights:

Damage CTRL looks dominant.

The tag qualifiers were fun.

Got a few more matches locked in for WrestleMania, and I’d bet that the Rey-Santos tilt next week sets up another.

After the final bell:

The Rock show hit Memphis, and the fans did eat up the former Flex Kavana (he really did admit to that). As much as I disliked the opening song, the segment wasn’t a total dud. It was nice for Rock to acknowledge he got his start there, but the problem of that is…some of his segment, he came off like a face.

Dare I ask…are we going to see another WrestleMania double-turn involving The Rock?

Introduced to professional wrestling in the 1980’s thanks to Superstars and Saturday Night’s Main Event, John’s passion for the... More about John Deegan

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