Saturday, June 4, 2011

Smackdown Review: Christian as Heel & NXT Stars

On Friday's Smackdown, fans got the first glimpse of Captain Charisma turning against Randy Orton and moving closer to a heel role. Christian officiated Orton's title match against Sheamus, and gave Orton the win after failing to properly count a Sheamus pinfall. Post-match was bad news for Orton as Christian smashed him with his championship belt, then left with Orton's prized possession.

This will probably be the start of Christian's turn, much like CM Punk did with Jeff Hardy several seasons ago. Smackdown really needs a good heel and viable opponent for Orton. There's no Edge anymore, Sheamus has faced Orton plenty of times, Mark Henry is washed up and the rest are sub-par opponents for someone of Orton's caliber. Christian can certainly deliver in the role.

Smackdown is also presenting several new stars. Jinder Mahal is starting to make his early impact, thanks to having Great Khali as his bodyguard. He didn't need much help in dismantling Yoshi Tatsu in the ring for his debut match, but Mahal allowed his henchman to further attack Yoshi post-match.

The other 3 new stars of Smackdown come via the past two seasons of NXT. Johnny Curtis (remember him?) was last season's big winner. He finally showed up on Smackdown, weeks after the guy he beat, Brodus Clay, has held a prominent role. Curtis, as winner of NXT, was promised a tag team championship shot, along with his pro, R-Truth. It appears that sort of story would work quite well for the R-Truth saga right now, as Truth could either leave his partner high and dry, blame him for a loss, or get attacked by John Cena during the match.

Finally, we have two NXT divas who are getting featured on Smackdown. Kaitlyn was the winner two seasons ago, as she edged out Naomi. However, Kaitlyn's best friend, AJ, is on Smackdown, as she seems popular with the fans. She's a smaller diva but certainly can bring it in the ring. These two are being mentored by Natalya but owned in the ring by the talented Tamina and conniving Alicia Fox.

Smackdown has plenty of room for improvement, but when compared to Raw it seems they have a lot of fresh talent and stories to work with too.

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