Following the move away from being its own brand, SmackDown has widely been regarded as the B-show of WWE programming. Its typical setup is a handful of repeat matches you already saw on Raw and a bit of recapping Raw thrown in for good measure.
However, a few weeks ago, there were rumors WWE would be putting more effort into making it a far more prominent part of its schedule, with the emphasis being more like Raw, rather than just repeating what happened on Raw.
Recent efforts over the past two weeks have given strength to this theory, with last week in particular being a good example. For the first time ever, we saw Cesaro and Dean Ambrose team up against Seth Rollins and Kevin Owens in a fantastic tag team match that more than solidified all their positions as main event material.
Going on the evidence presented so far, these four men appear centric to the plans of a SmackDown revival, and it's paying off.
Moving Raw to three hours long was a move even Triple H has spoken out against, and at times, it can feel there too much padding to fill the time. But if SmackDown continues to take the best part of what makes Raw work and confines it to a far more concise time frame, it could effectively be well on its way to become the unofficial "A" show among fans.
It is so sad and too soon that I am having to write another obituary heat following the death of Dusty Rhodes in June, but to say anything worse happened in wrestling last week would just be plain wrong.
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper—the kilt-wearing trash talking WWE legend and movie star—died on Friday. He was just 61 years old.
Born Roderick George Toombs, Piper joined WWE in 1984 and was well known for his feuds with Hulk Hogan, Rick Rude and Adrian Adonis. However, despite his successful in-ring prowess and hard-hitting matches, he is probably better known for his entertaining, controversial, and colorful antics.
One could say he was the Y2J of the '80s, with his popular Piper's Pit talk segment arguably paving the way for similar future setups including The Highlight Reel, Peep Show, and MizTV.
I remember being drawn to him as a child under the belief he was a real Scotsman (which I am 1/4 of), but even when I found this to be no more than a gimmick, it did little to detract my appreciation of him as a showman and performer. Just don't tell me Stardust is not really from the fifth dimension, as I don't want to know.
It is ironic—he was perhaps one of the greatest bad guys in wrestling history, but he couldn't have been more loved.
RIP Hot Rod.
So there you have it, my two choices for the week. What do YOU think are the Cheap Pop and Cheap Heat this week in professional wrestling? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!