WWE SmackDown advertised a long-awaited face off between Cody Rhodes and Roman Reigns ahead of their WrestleMania 39 main event. WWE also advertised Sami Zayn against Bloodline member Solo Sikoa and Liv Morgan—the last person to beat Rhea Ripley—taking on Ripley in singles action.
Last week’s broadcast of SmackDown from Montreal drew 2.408 million viewers.
WWE SmackDown Results | March 3, 2023
- Rhea Ripley def. Liv Morgan
- Dominik Mysterio def. Santos Escobar
- Shayna Baszler def. Tegan Nox
- Solo Sikoa def. Sami Zayn
WWE SmackDown Ratings
- February 24, 2023 | 2.408 million
- February 17, 2023 | 2.383 million
- February 10, 2023 | 2.438 million
- February 3, 2023 | 2.384 million
- January 27, 2023 | 2.544 million
- WWE SmackDown Venue: Capital One Arena (Washington, D.C.)
- WWE SmackDown Tickets Distributed: 12,271
- Available Tickets: 236
WWE SmackDown Winners and Grades
Cody Rhodes and Roman Reigns Face Off
Fans cheered wildly for Roman Reigns and The Bloodline, but erupted even louder for Cody Rhodes.
Cody Rhodes mentioned him and his friends selling out a 10,000-seat building and the All Out reference got a huge pop.
Roman Reigns cut a fine promo about main eventing WrestleMania and his relationship with Dusty Rhodes, but it was an inferior version of a similar promo Paul Heyman cut on Rhodes weeks ago.
This segment felt like a WrestleMania main event. WWE is not only slow-playing the storytelling, they’re slow-playing the physicality. I wouldn’t be surprised if Reigns and Rhodes didn’t touch until they get to Inglewood.
Cody Rhodes and Roman Reigns Faceoff Grade: A
Rhea Ripley def. Liv Morgan
Liv Morgan was the last woman to beat Rhea Ripley back in May of last year, and I wish this was played up more.
Rhea Ripley continues to be showcased as a monster en route to WrestleMania. If she captures the title, she could go on an unbeaten run similar to that of Roman Reigns.
Rhea Ripley vs. Liv Morgan Grade: B-
Dominik Mysterio def. Santos Escobar
Roman Reigns wasn’t even the best heel on his own show as that distinction went to Dominik Mysterio.
Mysterio’s heel work is enhanced by Michael Cole being incensed by Mysterio’s actions, similar to Lance Russell in Memphis wrestling.
After Mysterio’s win, thanks to Rhea Ripley’s Riptide, he tore Santos Escobar’s gifted mask from Rey Mysterio. He eventually gave the mask back to Mysterio, but not before attacking his father yet again.
WWE continues to borrow from the Undertaker vs. Kane 1998 playbook as Rey Mysterio refuses to get physical with his son the way Undertaker refused to put hands on Kane.
Dominik Mysterio vs. Santos Escobar Grade: B
Drew McIntyre Challenges GUNTHER
Drew McIntyre feels like Batista during WrestleMania season in 2008.
McIntyre called out GUNTHER and got Sheamus. Then it turned into a cavlcacade of WWE Superstars with nothing to do at WrestleMania including LA Knight, The New Day and Karrion Kross.
Intercontinental Championship Contender Segment Grade: C+
Shayna Baszler def. Tegan Nox
Shayna Baszler wasted no time marching to the ring while Rousey sported an arm brace, which was also her black belt from judo.
Shayna Baszler made quick work of Tegan Nox and it was described that Baszler and Ronda Rousey have been running roughshod through the women’s roster. Maybe that’s true, but it hasn’t been treated as the big deal it should have been.
Shayna Baszler vs. Tegan Nox Grade: C+
Bobby Lashley Calls out Bray Wyatt
After coming off as a huge heel in the Brock Lesnar storyline, amid a potential Hurt Business reunion, Bobby Lashley was right back to smiling and shaking hands in his surprise SmackDown appearance.
Backstage, Roman Reigns continued to manipulate Jimmy Uso into getting rid of Sami Zayn while Jey Uso remains influx.
Bobby Lashley vs. Bray Wyatt Segment: B-
Solo Sikoa def. Sami Zayn
Roman Reigns said if Jey Uso doesn’t show up next week, Reigns is going to blame Jimmy.
Michael Cole did a great job laying out the narrative of The Bloodline and how Roman Reigns may need to look himself in the mirror for inviting Zayn into the group to begin with.
Despite his loss, Zayn narrowly escaped a beatdown and snuck in a Helluva Kick for his troubles. The Bloodline didn’t end Sami Zayn, and next week’s SmackDown, with Jey Uso possibly returning, will be interesting.
Sami Zayn vs. Solo Sikoa Grade: B+
#Winners #Grades #Rhodes #Reigns #Finally #Face