Everybody wants to be the King
On Monday Night Raw, it was revealed that the King of the Ring Tournament would be making its return to the WWE after a four-year absence. Starting next week, sixteen of the best WWE superstars, eight from each brand respectively, will battle for the right to be called King.
Baron Corbin, Cesaro, Cedric Alexander, Drew McIntyre, Ricochet, Sami Zayn, Samoa Joe, and The Miz will represent Monday Night Raw in the tournament. The Blue Brand's representatives will be Ali, Andrade, Apollo Crews, Buddy Murphy, Chad Gable, Elias, Kevin Owens, and Shelton Benjamin.
SmackDown's elite show out
Prior to SmackDown Live, Ali and Andrade faced each other in an incredible contest.
Steal the show before the show. #SDLIVE— ALI / Adeel Alam (@AliWWE) August 14, 2019
Reports from fans throughout the crowd claim that it was a fantastic match, which isn't too surprising considering the in-ring capabilities of the Soul of SmackDown Live and El Idolo. As seen in the highlights above, the two took each other to the limit, but a simple roll-up counter to Andrade's Hammerlock DDT was enough to secure the win for Ali.
One has to wonder if this will be enough momentum to help push Ali onto the second round once the tournament starts next week. Though the WWE tends to not acknowledge matches that take place before SmackDown often, with Ali bringing it up on his own personal Twitter and the reaction that it's gotten so far, it's possible that the company will at least have the commentary teams mention it.
Andrade came into the match tonight after a 2-0 clean sweep over Rey Mysterio in a 2-out-of-3 falls match last night. Will this speedbump be enough to knock him off course once the KOTR comes around? We'll have to wait and find out next week. Though, it's worth noting that Andrade isn't known to let anyone get one over on him that easily.