Where Monday Night Raw lacks, SmackDown Live can pick up. That’s been the trend over the past few years at WrestleMania.
Although RAW has major matches this year, SmackDown Live will most definitely be bringing some heat as well. With the flagship title on the Blue brand and even John Cena on Tuesday nights, SmackDown live has a lot to develop as they go to WrestleMania. Even with Fastline on the horizon, SmackDown’s plans are looking somewhat solid. Here are the storylines to watch out for on SmackDown live during the road to WrestleMania 34.
Leadup to AJ Styles vs Nakamura
AJ Styles vs Shinsuke Nakamura is a match that true fans want. You have a New Japan classic match that is a rematch on a WrestleMania stage. Due to this, the leadup will be very important. The only issue (within the ring) for AJ Styles is that he’s defending his title against John Cena, Kevin Owens, Sami Zayn, Baro Corbin, and Dolph Ziggler.
Zayn and Owens have been on Styles’ radar for the past few weeks. Dolph Ziggler’s somewhat surprise return will add some fire under his character as he tries to make a splash. Baron Corbin will clash with Dolph since the two are feuding. We have 4 participants that have other storylines brewing besides their chase for the WWE title. John Cena does as well which is his chase for his 17th title reign, but; his true storyline will begin during this match. I’ll mention this later.
Expect AJ Styles to pick up another win at FastLine as well as start to mention his time in Japan where he last lost to Shinsuke Nakamura. Nakamura is automatically over but hearing reasons for challenging AJ will be interesting to hear as well.
Charlotte’s WM Opponent
I like the fact that they're still teasing who Asuka's facing, but let's face it, Charlotte v Asuka is the money match. And Jax against Bliss just makes sense. #WrestleMania
— PWStream (@PWStream) February 27, 2018
Charlotte has a more complicated title picture. She has the potential to face Asuka if she wants to jump to SmackDown live. She can also face Becky Lynch, Natalya, Noami and a few other people on the grandest stage of them all. But more of a guess is the motives of Carmella. She holds the Women’s Money In The Bank briefcase which expires this summer. The SmackDown Women’s picture looks hard to call with a month away from WrestleMania 34.
New Day vs Uso’s
The Bludgeon Brothers are a great opponent for the Uso’s at WrestleMania 34, but they aren’t ready for the big time match in terms of storyline purposes. Since Raw’s WrestleMania Tag Match won’t really hit the nail like last year, The Uso’s and New Day should clash one more time, but this time on the WM Stage.
Here’s why. The main reason is that both teams deserve this stage. In all honesty, this match can be before Cena’s Match, Styles vs Nakamura, and Reigns vs Brock. In terms of rivalries over the past year, this rivalry has been some of the best we’ve seen. Besides Reigns and Braun, Cena and AJ, and a few other storylines, this pairing hits home every single time.
Some people could argue that this rivalry is repetitive but in all honesty, the Uso’s doing it on the WrestleMania stage is what makes things different this time around. They haven’t really been on the WrestleMania stage as much as the New Day. Due to this fact, the Uso’s should use that as motivation.
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
This match is coming. Zayn hasn’t really got the upper head from KO ever since their Ring of Honor days. KO and SZ will clash in their FastLine match which could set up this match. No matter the result, this match could be an instant classic if the timing is right.
Rusev is over than most of the WWE right now and he barely wrestles. He probably won’t get a singles match but put him in the Andre The Giant Memorial battle royal, easy winner for sure.
Bobby Roode & U.S Title Picture
Like Owens and Zayn, Rusev, and even the New Day vs Uso’s; Bobby Roode’s US title picture will probably be overshadowed at WM by other storylines. He faces Orton at FastLine which could be a great match. Where the road leads to this match are interesting. Expect a US title match on the WrestleMania card.
John Cena vs The Undertaker
John Cena’s storyline for WrestleMania will be really deiced at FastLane. Some reports are mentioning Rey Mysterio as his opponent. But in all honesty, the only person who can interrupt a match and have Cena lose is the Undertaker in this case.
No, Cena vs Taker isn't too many years too late…YOU KNOW WHY…because it's this year in this point in their careers you can sell & believe a loser retires match. Now more than ever based on where they're at in career. #RAW
— Justin LaBar (@JustinLaBar) February 27, 2018
Taker and Cena haven’t really had a lot of interaction since Cena left for RAW in mid-2005. For the sake of the fans and the Undertaker finally going out on a good note, Cena must be his opponent. Expect to see Cena vs Undertaker. If not, the ball has been dropped once again.