Expectations and interest were low as SmackDown apparently thrust into higher gear ahead of WrestleMania 34.
On paper, the 6-Pack Challenge main event was a strange and less special imitation of the eponymous RAW Elimination Chamber effort over-booked to overcompensate for an obvious result. Baron Corbin's involvement - and the contrived damage to Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn that resulted from it - confirmed that SmackDown, unable to effectively promote its talent nor book simplistic singles storylines, is a meaningless mess of a TV show.
On paper, Bobby Roode Vs. Randy Orton was a potential lesson in anti-chemistry: a slow match lacking in dynamism featuring two wrestlers too similar and too methodical to mesh. Charlotte Flair Vs. Ruby Riott didn't look bad - at all - just unimportant. Road Dogg finally found something for Shinsuke Nakamura, the number one contender for the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, to do. But, in facing the grassroots-popular Rusev, "getting booed" seemed a rare and rash risk for a Head Writer usually defined by a safe and repetitive approach. The New Day and the Usos always deliver - but they delivered an awesome Hell In A Cell match in October 2017. A straight singles bout felt like a backwards step. On paper, Becky Lynch and Naomi Vs. Natalya and Carmella was a TV match masquerading as a PPV match booked by a bloke bereft of imagination.
On paper, the show looked fairly unexciting.