WWE SmackDown Preview: Roman Reigns’ next title feud with 8-time champion, former world champion gets a warning (April 16, 2021)

The expectations are high from this week’s episode of WWE SmackDown, especially since RAW after WrestleMania was uncharacteristically average. The possibilities are endless on the Friday night show as we prepare for the beginning of several interesting storylines. From highly-anticipated title feuds to heated rivalries, a lot can transpire on the Blue brand this week.

Let’s take a quick look at the most prominent segments that can unfold on WWE SmackDown this week.

#1 Cesaro to challenge Roman Reigns for the Universal Championship on WWE SmackDownRoman Reigns is a top heel on WWE SmackDown
Roman Reigns is a top heel on WWE SmackDown
WWE SmackDown Superstar Roman Reigns picked up a monumental victory in the main event of WrestleMania 37 after pinning both Daniel Bryan and Edge for the Universal Championship. Following a successful title defense at the pay-per-view with the help of Jey Uso, The Tribal Chief will turn his attention towards the next superstar, who will step up and challenge him for the gold.

They missed their Tribal Chief. #WrestleMania#AcknowledgeMe pic.twitter.com/m6qjF9F1lQ— Roman Reigns (@WWERomanReigns) April 12, 2021
The recently concluded event also witnessed an excellent match between Cesaro and Seth Rollins that ended in The Swiss Cyborg’s impressive victory. Before WrestleMania, Paul Heyman had stated that the winner of the match between Rollins and Cesaro could be Reigns’ next challenger. The latest reports have also revealed that Heyman is heavily invested in Reigns’ storylines on SmackDown.

Thus, we could see Cesaro make his much-deserved entry into the world title picture by kickstarting a feud with Roman Reigns. He has enjoyed great momentum on the Blue brand for a few months now and even looked prepared for The Tribal Chief back at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view. Since then, the creative has had more time to make Cesaro look as threatening as possible.

🧐 pic.twitter.com/lyMTM2lb7e— Cesaro (@WWECesaro) April 13, 2021

He has delivered great matches on the Blue brand in the recent past. Cesaro has held eight championships in WWE, including the tag team titles and the United States title. However, he has never held a world title in the company. For one reason or the other, his push would often meet an unexpected block, and he would be forced to start all over again.

This time, the creative appears to have a better plan in place for Cesaro. An intense feud with Roman Reigns will help elevate his position in the WWE SmackDown locker room. Even if Cesaro doesn’t win the title at the end of their rivalry, it will at least allow him to prove that he belongs in the top feuds of the Blue brand. He is being booked as a tough babyface, and it will eventually help WWE add a more notable feud to Reigns’ current title reign.#2 Otis sends a warning to Rey Mysterio ahead of their match on WWE SmackDownOtis has relentless targeted Rey Mysterio on WWE SmackDown
Otis has relentless targeted Rey Mysterio on WWE SmackDown
The WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship picture has recently become more active, with new teams actively competing to reach the top of the division. The last few weeks have seen Alpha Academy engage in brutal encounters with the Mysterios. In one of their matches, Otis mercilessly drove Rey Mysterio through the barricade to assert his dominance.

After a compelling to-and-fro on WWE SmackDown, Otis and Rey are set to face each other in singles action tonight. Both superstars will look to gain the upper hand for their respective teams. Otis even sent a warning to his Rey Mysterio ahead of their match, stating that he will break the latter’s ribs during the match. This match looks promising on paper, and it would be interesting to see who will walk out with a win.

Otis has been excellent ever since he turned heel. He has become more dominant inside the ring while Chad Gable handles the mic work. Together, they are looking to make a mark in the WWE SmackDown tag team division. On the other hand, Rey Mysterio wants to win the Tag team Championships with his son, but the father-son duo have big challenges awaiting them in their quest for rare title glory.#3 Who will challenge Bianca Belair for the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship next?Bianca Belair picked a huge victory at WrestleMania
Bianca Belair picked a huge victory at WrestleMania
Bianca Belair defeated Sasha Banks to win the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship at WrestleMania 37. Although their feud was slightly underwhelming on the road to the pay-per-view, both superstars delivered a memorable match in the main event of WrestleMania’s first night. This also marked the beginning of Belair’s first-ever title reign in the company.

The newly crowned WWE SmackDown Women’s Champion is expected to address her WrestleMania victory on the show this week. However, the segment is bound to have interferences from a few former champions. We could see Sasha Banks demand a title rematch and continue her feud with Belair on the Blue brand.

Apart from Banks, Belair will also have to look out for Bayley or Carmella. Belair and Bayley feuded on WWE SmackDown for a long time before the 2021 Women’s Royal Rumble winner shifted her focus to the title. Carmella has also been eager to reclaim the championship ever since she returned on WWE SmackDown. It will be exciting to see what the creative has in store for Belair’s title run.#4 Apollo Crews celebrates his Intercontinental Championship victory on WWE SmackDownApollo Crews would be far from humble on WWE SmackDown
Apollo Crews would be far from humble on WWE SmackDown
Apollo Crews turned heel on WWE SmackDown earlier this year and embraced a new gimmick that pays respects to his Nigerian heritage. He challenged Big E for the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania 37. After a grueling match, Big E looked close to defending his title before a monstrous figure (Dabba Kato) emerged from the audience and entered the ring.

The latter then attacked Big E and helped Crews in winning the championship. He is now expected to celebrate his victory on WWE SmackDown, and he could also reveal more about his newest ally. There’s no report about Kato possibly continuing under the same ring name. In either case, Crews will use this equation to his advantage on the Blue brand.

We could see Big E demand a WrestleMania rematch since Crews never got a clean win. They can engage in a feud until the next pay-per-view, WrestleMania Backlash. The New Day member might spend a little more time in the United States Championship picture before setting his sights on Roman Reigns’ Universal title on WWE SmackDown.#5 The Street Profits get another shot at WWE SmackDown Tag Team ChampionshipsThe expectations are high from the upcoming title match
The expectations are high from the upcoming title match
Last week on WWE SmackDown, Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode successfully defended their tag team titles in a Fatal Four-Way match. Angelo Dawkins and Montez Ford came to the brink of reclaiming the titles during this entertaining bout before the champions got away with a sneaky victory. The Street Profits now have another opportunity to challenge Ziggler and Roode.

Both teams will lock horns in the WWE SmackDown tag team title match this week. Although Ziggler and Roode have not been involved in many notable feuds during their title reign, they have put on good matches in their bid to defend their gold. The two teams also share a long history that adds to the excitement surrounding their upcoming bout.

It is improbable that Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode will lose their WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships this week. Other teams might soon earn a shot at the title, and the creative will look to book an intense feud before the said championships change hands. Hence, this week’s episode of WWE SmackDown could determine the next challengers for the SmackDown tag team titles.


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