Fans who attended the Friday, July 29th show of Smackdown in Atlanta last night were in for a treat. AJ Styles, who resides in Gainesville, Georgia, competed in a one on one dark match when Smackdown went off the air against Happy Corbin.
Styles would hit his Phenomenal Forearm finisher to get the pin-fall victory. The fans were sent home happy by seeing the Raw star win. Sadly, fans who watched live on FOX did not see this match go down.
AJ has been regularly featured on Raw in recent weeks, starting with a short feud with The Miz and then teaming up with Dolph Ziggler to face The Alpha Academy. We will see if the pairing was a one-off or will become a long-term story of Ziggler and Styles evolving as a duo.
Another dark match had Raquel Rodriguez, a rising SmackDown star that dominated in NXT, going against Shayna Baszler. Rodriguez came out on top following her signature Tejana Bomb and the successful pin.
Rodriguez has only been featured in one televised match since the Money in the Bank ladder match on July 2nd, where she and five other women lost to the eventual winner, Liv Morgan. Raquel is still competing regularly at WWE live events and during dark matches, and knowing that the new head of creative in WWE, Triple H, is a big fan of Rodriguez bodes well for the up-and-coming powerhouse.
We will have to see what WWE does for fans in the future, but this is more proof that it pays off to attend the show live whenever it is possible.
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