WWE were keen to hammer home that the "new era of SmackDown" arrived on Friday night.
Fresh blood debuted, some familiar faces from Raw made an impact and a part-time attraction bowed out (at least for now). There's a massive problem with this "new era" claim every year though: WWE position the Draft right before Survivor Series, which sucks when that pay-per-view relies on brand vs. brand warfare.
So, in other words, the writing team are left scrambling to try and match up ill-fitting pieces. Suddenly, fans are told, workers who previously crowed about one brand are now loyal to another. That never makes sense, but it's just something everyone must deal with 'cause...it's October/November and Survivors is on the horizon.
This week's SmackDown suffered from that. On the plus side, WWE produced one of the hottest opening angles in recent memory, and creative did do a good job when introducing the show's next hot faction. It was nice to see the E keep things simple for the most part, but they really struggled with the inter-brand stuff.
Like, really struggled...