10 Ups & 5 Downs From Last Night's WWE SmackDown (May 21)

Big E & Dolph Ziggler return, Kingston battles Zayn, and Shane crushes Reigns.

Dolph Ziggler Kofi Kingston

Once considered WWE's most consistent weekly brand, recent weeks have seen SmackDown struggle for quality, with the 14 May episode a particularly mundane offering from the new, Road Dogg-less writing team. Fortunately, this week's episode was something of a rebound. As the Ups-to-Downs ratio attests, it wasn't perfect, but the night's biggest problems stemmed from one specific performer on whom your mileage will likely vary anyway.

WWE.com's pre-show blurb promised Big E's big return, and we got it in a typically entertaining New Day opening segment that, predictably, didn't pass without incident. The 24/7 Title brought all kinds of chaos to Tuesday nights, too. R-Truth began the evening as champion and was forced to go to extreme lengths to keep hold of his dark green strap, resulting in some of the evening's silliest (read: most fun) moments.

Elsewhere, we got new SmackDown Women's Champion Bayley teaming with Raw counterpart Becky Lynch to face Charlotte Flair and Lacey Evans. Kofi Kingston faced Sami Zayn in a non-title bout, Carmella and Mandy Rose brought their Twitter beef to television, and Andrade and Ali kept the workrate fans satisfied.

Fingers crossed that this show signals a return to form. SmackDown must recover before the Fox deal starts in October...


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