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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Report! (3/6/18)



All images courtesy of the WWE’s official Twitter.



  • Randy Orton VS Jinder Mahal w/ Sunil Singh; Mahal wins.
  • Becky Lynch VS Carmella; Becky wins.
  • AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler; no contest.
  • Fatal 5 Way: AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler VS Kevin Owens VS Sami Zayn VS Baron Corbin; Zayn wins.


SmackDown starts with a face-to-face.

The Queen appears in Green Bay just days away from her title defense at Fastlane, as does her wild child contender, Ruby Riott.

Charlotte and Ruby are both 2-0 in defeating the other’s allies, so the deciding win will be their 1v1 match this Sunday. Ruby starts by saying that this didn’t begin with her actions a month ago. This all started November 14th, 2017, when Charlotte became the SmackDown Women’s Champion. Charlotte’s entire life was set up for success. She’s tall, blonde, athletic, cunning, and daughter of a two-time Hall of Famer, the Nature Boy, Ric Flair. And when Charlotte became champion, she became the first woman to win NXT, Diva’s, Raw and SmackDown Women’s Championships. Ruby watched as “the myth began to form”. The myth that Charlotte was the personification of the Women’s (R)Evolution. Which is why Ruby and her Squad showed up.

The Squad exists to do one thing: destroy the myth of Charlotte. Charlotte responds by saying the only myth is that she’s been handed anything in life. She’s worked hard, or even harder, because of who she is. Charlotte has the weight of the Flair expectations on her shoulders. That’s hard to live up to. Her failures are magnified and reflect on her family. She has to not only succeed, but be transcendent. The fact Charlotte did everything Ruby said proves she is no myth. And the reality is, Charlotte is right here, every bit as good as we’ve heard. And that’s what makes it so fun for Ruby. Whether Charlotte was placed there or put herself there, she’s on a pedestal. When Ruby takes her crown, the “Queen” will crumble, and becomes another “bleach blonde failure with a famous last name.”

Charlotte gets in Ruby’s face, the Squad get in the ring. And out comes Charlotte’s GLORIOUS new friend, Bobby Roode!

The United States Champion diffuses the situation with his presence, but he does have his reasons for being out here. He joins commentary for a match between his contender and the man who was overlooked, up next!


Randy Orton VS Jinder Mahal w/ Sunil Singh!

The Viper wants the one title that has eluded him his entire career, but the Modern Day Maharaja wants to prove to “Bob Roode” that Orton is not worthy. Can Orton put Mahal away quickly so he can turn his focus onto the United States Champion?

The bell rings and this rematch from their days fighting over the WWE Championship begin. Mahal gets the arm lock and wrenches it to a keylock, bringing Orton to a knee. Green Bay is on Orton’s side as he powers his way out and around to a hammerlock. Mahal elbows out then puts on a headlock, but Orton powers out. Mahal runs Orton over, then gets running again. Orton jumps over then elbows Mahal down, and Mahal scrambles to ropes. They circle again but Mahal kicks low. Orton ends up in a corner and Mahal gives him stiff body shots. Mahal whips corner to corner but Orton evades, RKO narrowly avoided! The Viper grins at Mahal, as does Roode, while we go picture in picture.

Roode nods at his contender and would-be challenger, while Orton hears out the fans cheering. He welcomes Mahal back into the ring, and counters punches with punches. Orton gives Mahal a European Uppercut, then some more. He whips Mahal but Mahal reverses, Orton throws Mahal down by his hair. The Viper stomps on Mahal limb by limb, then drags Mahal up to scrape his laces on his face. Orton whips Mahal corner to corner, but Mahal shoulders his way out. Mahal stomps on Orton in a corner, then whips him corner to corner. Orton reverses, puts on a headlock, Mahal powers out but Orton elbows him back. Mahal boots Orton and brings him down! Cover, TWO! Mahal grins as he stomps Orton more.

Orton ends up by the ropes and Mahal drops knee after knee before grinding a knee into his chin. Mahal grins at Roode, too, before dragging Orton up. He snapmares then dropkicks Orton in the back, cover, TWO. Mahal keeps on that back with a knee in the spine, and a seated half-nelson chinbar. Orton endures the holds and makes his way to his feet. Mahal keeps him down while keeping on the hold, but Orton feeds off the fans’ chants of “USA! USA!” while we go single picture.

Orton fights out of the hold but Mahal kicks low. Mahal whips but Orton kicks, only for Orton to run into Mahal’s leaping knee! Cover, TWO, but Mahal grins again. He runs to drop another knee, then drives elbows and knees into Orton again. The fans keep cheering for Orton, but Mahal puts him back in the half-nelson chinbar. Orton works back to his feet and fights out again, but Mahal kicks low. Mahal swings but Orton counters into a back suplex! Orton glares down at Mahal as the two stand up. Orton rallies with clotheslines, then baits Mahal into the powerslam!

The fans fire up while Mahal gets to the apron, and Orton comes over. He drags Mahal out but Mahal escapes, only to run into a Fall Away Slam! Orton keeps on Mahal with EuroUppers, then whips. Mahal reverses but Orton reverses back into the back2back backbreaker. Mahal returns to the apron, and escapes the DDT again. He even uses Sunil as a human shield! Orton takes Sunil and gives him a big back suplex, tossing him onto the announce desk!

Mahal pounces in the distraction, and goes to throw Orton at Roode, only for Orton to turn it around, Mahal collides with Roode! They both go down, then Orton drags Mahal up and into the ring. Mahal slips away but Orton is right on him. He drags Mahal out, draping DDT!

And now Orton hears those voices in his head! The fans fire up with him as he stalks Mahal. Roode gets on the apron? He’s pissed at Orton for what happened, but then Mahal gets up! Mahal knocks Orton into Roode, then KHALLAS!! Mahal steals the win! The Maharaja’s plan to use champion and challenger against each other has paid off, will this lead to a US Championship match after Fastlane?


Sami Zayn meets with Kevin Owens backstage.

They’re both ready for the Six Pack Challenge. However, this is every man for himself, at least on paper. Kevin is still unsure about how Sami said he’d lie down for Kevin. Yes, Sami said that, because he meant it.

After everything they’ve been through, Kevin can’t believe it. Though, Sami is such an amazing guy. It would mean so much to Kevin and their friendship. Sami knows all that, but it’s to thank Kevin for helping him turn everything around. There will be a day when Sami becomes champion, but Kevin is one win away from fulfilling a dream. He could be a grand slam champion! Sami is so proud of Kevin, and again thanks him. They hug it out, is #Kami stronger than ever?


Baron Corbin speaks.

The Lone Wolf is actually grateful to see John Cena has been added to the WWE Championship match at Fastlane. Because Corbin owes Cena for the Money in the Bank contract fail. He will make Cena’s Wrestlemania dream into a nightmare, and beat Cena’s eyes shut. That way, when Corbin stands over Cena with the WWE Championship, pointing to that Wrestlemania, “You Can’t See Me!”


SmackDown takes a look at the greatest tag team rivalry in recent history.

That is to say, the incredible war between two of the greatest tag teams ever, The Usos and The New Day. They went back and forth for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships, leaving everyone in awe. Now they’re set for one more match at Fastlane, “This is Awesome!” There is much respect, but in the end, it’s about winning. When the New Day wins, they will go to New Orleans and Wrestlemania! But the Usos say that at the end of their war, they were the ones with the titles. They changed themselves in order to truly prove they are worthy of Wrestlemania. Nine years, zero ‘Manias. It won’t be that way this year, because this year is #OurTime!

But the New Day fired back! The New Day stepped up, getting to the top because they “rushed the field” and took what is theirs. They will rush The Usos and take those titles back to become five time tag team champions! It doesn’t matter how many times it’s been, this amazing rivalry goes for one more to see who is truly the better!


Backstage interview with Shinsuke Nakamura.

He knows of the Six Pack Challenge, but is he worried about not having the WWE dream (re)match of Nakamura VS Styles? “Yes, but I hope AJ wins, so that I can beat him at Wrestlemania, with a knee to…” However, Rusev & Aiden English appear. English can’t sing, because of the damage done by a “knee to throat”. This is like breaking Billy Joel’s hands. But English is not Billy Joel. Be that as it may, “you broke my friend.” Rusev wants a match at Fastlane to break Nakamura back. Challenge accepted! But when Nakamura wins, it will be NAKAMURA DAY~!

Pff, you can’t just make up holidays, bro. Will the Bulgarian Lion regret getting in the King of Strong Style’s path on the Road to Wrestlemania?


Becky Lynch VS Carmella!

A war of words on social media between the Lass Kicker and Ms. Money in the Bank has brought about this match. Will Becky make the Princess of Staten Island #TrendingANDTapping this close to Fastlane?

The bell rings, they circle and tie up, Becky backs Carmella down. Carmella swings things back out and knees Becky low. Carmella whips Becky to a corner but Becky goes up and out to forearm Carmella back. Becky shoulders in then climbs up but Carmella rocks her with a forearm. Carmella throws Becky with a FABULOUS Steiner, then rains left hands in a frustrated response to fans chanting for her opponent. Cover, TWO, so Carmella grinds Becky’s face in the mat. She bounces Becky off the mat before dragging her up. Becky hits back with stiff body shots and right hands, then whips Carmella into a tilt-o-whirl takedown! Carmella spins it around to put Becky in a corner, but ends up in the corner herself. Becky jump kicks but Carmella blocks to push Becky into buckles.

Carmella kicks Becky, then climbs up to put a hanging headscissors on. She lets go at 4, then drags Becky back by her hair to stretch her on the bottom rope. Carmella then brags that she’s Ms. Money in the Bank before kneeing Becky in the head! Naomi is watching her friend in this match, but Carmella covers, TWO. Carmella keeps her cool while throwing Becky out of the ring again. She embraces the heat while she drags Becky up and throws her into barriers. Carmella throws Becky again, then stomps away on her. She bumps Becky off a post, then puts her in the ring, cover, TWO. Carmella gets mad at the ref, then drives elbows into Becky before wrapping on a thrashing chinlock. The fans rally for Becky, and Becky fights out. Carmella knees low then slaps Becky, but Becky hits a leg lariat!

Both women are down and a ten count begins. Carmella gets up first and crawls over to Becky. She throws a forearm, Becky throws one back. They go back and forth but Becky gets the edge. Becky runs but Carmella evades to FABULOUS Kick Becky down! Cover, but Ropebreak! Carmella throws a tantrum, but this allows Becky to get up. Becksploder! Becky fires up but runs into another kick. Carmella wheelbarrows for the headlock takedown, but Becky slips out into the Disarm-Her! Carmella taps, Becky wins! Will this #StraightFire deter Carmella from #CashingIn at Fastlane?


Natalya walks in to join Naomi backstage.

According to the Queen of Harts, Becky is “lucky lucky.” Naomi says Ms. MITB tweets a big game. Well Carmella was sick, so that’s why Becky won. Naomi should stay away from Becky, because all Becky’s friends get burned. It seems Natty is jealous of Becky, seeing as Natty as no friends. Natty has friends. Name one that isn’t a cat. There’s no time for that. Natty knows Becky can’t beat “The Best There Is, the Best There Was, and the Best There Ever Will Be.” In that case, Natty and her “friend” Carmella can face Becky & Naomi at Fastlane. That’s fine, the Queen wants a warm-up before challenging the SmackDown Women’s Champion at Wrestlemania. The only thing Natty will be doing at Wrestlemania is sitting on the couch with Two Paws. Will the Glow and the Fire take care of the Queen and the Princess?



AJ Styles heads to the ring.

After hearing the fans out on their cheering, he says, “It wasn’t long ago where I only cared about one person.” But after becoming the WWE Champion for a second time, he sees things differently. Styles is the champion, “but here’s the thing.” It’s a grind to get here, which reminds him of his past, but it’s a grind to stay here. Fastlane brings on a match where Styles doesn’t need to be pinned in order to lose the title. The odds are against him once again, but he won’t cry or complain about it. He’s just gonna fight.

“This is SmackDown Live, the House that AJ Styles Built!” And sometimes, life just gets the better of you. Styles lost to John Cena, and Cena’s never at a loss for words.

We flashback to Raw last night, Cena talking about breaking the record of 16 WWE world championships, at Styles’ expense. Fastlane paves the Road to Wrestlemania, but Cena said Styles could just make his rematch at Wrestlemania. That’s not what Styles wants, and that’s not what the WWE Universe wants. Styles wants his Wrestlemania Moment by taking the most prestigious title to the Grandest Stage of Them All to defend them against the Best, and that’s Shinsuke Nakamura! Who would have ever dreamed that match could happen in the WWE? Styles isn’t’ just fighting for himself, he’s fighting for “us”. And his win at Fastlane will be Phenomenal.

However Ziggler makes his entrance to respond.

This is “for us”? What happened ot Styles? He used to be cool. SmackDown, the House that AJ Styles Built? He’s not phenomenal, he’s just desperate. Styles is desperate? From the guy who’s been here 13 years yet hasn’t reached his full potential? Says the guy that took a decade to even enter the House Dolph Ziggler Built! But let’s relax, Ziggler just wants Styles to know that at Fastlane, Styles will lose. It’s not numbers, odds, math, or any of that, it’s that Styles’ head isn’t in the right place. Styles wants to do it for the people, but Ziggler tells him about “the people”: the second you let them down, they will stab you in the back.

Ziggler has a story: he was told to his face that he’d never, ever be champion. But he always kicked down obstacles or got up from being tripped up. And somehow, Ziggler became Mr. Money in the Bank to become World Heavyweight Champion. He and the fans relished in it together, but “they didn’t deserve it.” The fans did what they always do: nothing! Ziggler proved he was “the best that ever happened to this company”, and the fact he has yet to have a 1v1 Wrestlemania match “is criminal.” Styles can say “us”, “we”, “them” but the fact is, they don’t care about your feelings. Take that dream match and shove it!

Well if that’s how Ziggler feels, let’s move this match up! Ziggler agrees, and it’s happening!


AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler!

With both men ready to fight, the Main Event happens now! The bell rings, Styles blocks the Superkick and goes for Clash but Ziggler bails out. Ziggler composes himself before returning, and he ties up with Styles. Ziggler gets the wristlock, then works into a takedown cover, ONE. Styles switches and floats to a facelock, but Ziggler gets to ropes. The break is tense but clean, and they circle again. Another tie up, waistlock for Styles but Ziggler elbows out. Ziggler throws a haymaker, then rolls Styles to a cover, TWO. They stand up, circle again, and Styles gets the waistlock to a takedown. Styles stays on Ziggler with a headlock, but Ziggler snapmares out. Ziggler dropkicks Styles down, then embraces the heat.

Ziggler brings Styles into a corner, then snapmares him back out for the elbow drop. Cover, ONE, but Ziggler stays on Styles with a chinlock. He drags Styles down, partial body scissors on. The fans rally while Styles works his way up and out of the hold. Ziggler keeps on the headlock, but Styles fights his way out. Styles whips and things speed up, Styles dropkicks Ziggler back. Ziggler gets out of the ring again, and Styles waits for him to return. Ziggler climbs up but then Styles kicks him back down. The ring count resets, and Ziggler gets up again, but Styles slingshot forearms to knock him down!

The champion has control while we go picture in picture.

Styles brings Ziggler up and into the ring, then drags Ziggler up into a corner. He kicks Ziggler right in the ribs, and Ziggler falls to the mat. Styles brings him back up, lift for the side backbreaker. Cover, TWO, but Styles keeps his cool. He stalks Ziggler to the ropes, but Ziggler hits back. Styles clubs Ziggler in the back, then brings him up in a corner for a stiff chop. Ziggler leans against the ropes, but Styles snapmares him for the running knee drop. Ziggler rolls all the way out, but Styles pursues. Styles puts Ziggler back in the ring but Ziggler pounces while we go back to single picture.

Ziggler catches his breath while Styles clutches his back on the outside. Ziggler wants the count out win, so he encourages the ref to count. Styles beats the count, but Ziggler is on him with a scrape of the laces on his face. Ziggler goes after Styles in the corner, then grinds Styles’ face on the ropes. Ziggler walks around to embrace the heat but Styles fights back with chops. Styles runs, but into a big back body drop! Cover, TWO, but Ziggler keeps calm. He grins as he watches Styles on the mat, then brings him up and into a corner. Ziggler gives Styles a forearm, then scrapes Styles’ face, but Styles hits back with a haymaker. Styles blocks to counter, then unleashes the Phenomenal Blitz! Ziggler goes down, Styles gets running, sliding forearm knocks Ziggler down again!

Ziggler crawls to a corner, Styles goes to the opposite corner and runs in, big corner clothesline. Fireman’s carry but Ziggler grabs ropes and slips out to rake the eyes. He kicks low, Famouser hits! TWO, and Ziggler grows frustrated. Styles rolls away for separation, then crawls back to meet Ziggler. Ziggler throws a haymaker, Styles throws one back. They brawl back and forth with heavy hands, but Ziggler kicks low to then forearm Styles against ropes. Styles staggers up and out to the apron, but Ziggler comes over. ZIggler drags Styles up, and goes to suplex him back in but Styles blocks. Styles tries to suplex Ziggler out but Ziggler resists. They go back and forth, but it’s Styles who brings Ziggler outside with him. Ziggler trips Styles up to catapult him into a post!

Styles goes down, we go to break.

SmackDown returns, and Ziggler stops Styles on the top rope with right hands. Ziggler drags Styles off the top to be in Clash position, bu Styles slips that around to try for a submission. Ziggler slips out so Styles SUPER– No, Ziggler blocks the kick and deflects it into ropes, to Zig-Zag! Cover, TWO! Styles survives the Show-Off’s best move, but now the match is invaded by Kevin & Sami! Sami & Kevin attack Styles and Ziggler both to throw this match out! Kevin & Sami continue to beat down Styles and Ziggler, embracing the heat from the fans.

But then Styles and Ziggler fight Kevin & Sami off! They send Sami & Kevin running, so SmackDown Commissioner, Shane McMahon, appears.

Shane O’Mac wonders if Kevin & Sami were trying to take out two opponents before Fastlane. But since they want a match so bad, get back in the ring. Green Bay probably expects a tag team match, but Shane knows this is about bringing the best. And since we’re days away from Fastlane, let’s change things up! AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler VS Kevin Owens VS Sami Zayn VS one more for a Fatal 5! Yes, it’s Baron Corbin!


Fatal 5 Way: AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler VS Kevin Owens VS Sami Zayn VS Baron Corbin!

This was the Fastlane WWE Championship match until John Cena won his way in. Who will win this what-could-have-been just days before the real deal?

We come into this match while it’s under way, and Sami throws Styles into barriers. Ziggler is also on the outside while Corbin throws Kevin into barriers, too. Corbin then goes after Sami to put him into barriers. Ziggler and Kevin crawl back to the ring while Corbin puts Sami in. Styles is not far behind while Corbin enters the ring to go after Sami more. Corbin unloads right hands, and even hits Styles. Kevin goes after Corbin but Corbin backs him down with elbows. Corbin goes after Ziggler with a stiff right, then another. He goes after STyels with a corner to corner whip, bouncing Stylse off the post, then throws him across the way! Corbin runs at Ziggler but Ziggler dumps him out, for Sami and Kevin to pounce on! Kevin & Sami throw Corbin into steel steps, working together as always.

Sami & Kevin go after Styles and Ziggler in the ring again, because “This is MY Show”, according to Kevin. Sami whips Ziggler and runs him over, then Kevin drops the back senton. Kevin covers, TWO. Kevin grinds his forearm into Ziggler while Sami keeps Corbin out and Styles down. Sami drags Styles up while Kevin stomps Ziggler, then wrecks Corbin with another dropkick. Kevin goes after Styles again, then Sami drags Styles up. They double whip Styles, drop toehold to a back senton on Styles’ back.

Cover, TWO, but #Kami keeps control. Sami grinds Ziggler while Kevin grinds Styles, and Corbin is still on the outside while they hug.  Kevin kicks Corbin down again, then Sami drags Corbin back up. Corbin shoves Sami away then knocks Kevin, Corbin returns to boot Sami. SUPERKICK from Kevin, Famouser from Ziggler! Helluva Kick from Sami, but Styles Pele kicks Sami! Everyone is down while we go to break.

SmackDown returns once more, and Sami fights against Styles on the top rope. Ziggler comes over to add on, but Sami still holds on. Corbin and Kevin come over now, and we have a full Five-Man Tower of Doom!

Double powerbombs and double superplex! Everyone is down, with Styles and Kevin spilling out of the ring. Corbin slowly stands up with Sami and Ziggler in opposite corners. Corbin runs and clotheslines Ziggler, than clotheslines Sami. Ziggler dodges, stinger splash to Sami and one to Corbin. Sami evades but runs into Corbin’s boot! Ziggler runs out but Sami feeds him into Corbin and those two collide. Blue Thunder Bomb! But Styles breaks the cover! Sami throws Styles out then returns to Ziggler.

Kevin returns but Ziggler throws Sami out. Kevin German Suplexes Ziggler! He takes aim from the corner but Corbin runs in, Kevin evades to send him into the post! Then Kevin hits the cannonball on Ziggler, and Vader Bomb elbows Corbin! Cover, but Styles breaks that up, too! Kevin goes after Styles, throwing him out, but Ziggler hits Kevin with the satellite DDT! Corbin goes after Ziggler, back suplex but Ziggler escapes to ZIG-ZAG! Sami returns, chop and acrobatic moves, but Ziggler avoids the DDT to SUPERKICK Sami down! Cover, but Styles breaks this for a hat trick! Corbin returns and goes after Styles, then throws him out. Styles stays on the apron, shoulders back in, and slingshots, but into a stiff right hand!

Sami dodges Corbin, who slides out and in for a lariat! Corbin blocks the Superkick to hit Ziggler with the Choke Slam Backbreaker, then goes after Kevin. Kevin boots him back, but runs into DEEP SIX! Cover, but Styles breaks this for four! Everyone is down from exhaustion and soreness.

Styles sits up first while the fans cheer. Corbin gets up, too, and goes after Styles, but Styles enziguris and clotheslines him out. Ziggler tries but is denied, Styles heel kicks him down. Styles boots Sami away, then moonsault DDT’s him down! Styles rolls out to the apron and takes aim, but has to sliding knee Corbin down. Ziggler runs over but is thrown out, #Kami get Styles! HELLUVA KICK on Kevin?! Sami wins?! Was this Sami’s plan all along?! Are there truly no friends when it comes to the WWE Championship?

When Kevin comes to, he’s just a shocked.

Interview on stage with Sami Zayn.

After everything Sami promised his “best friend”, why? Why? How about Sami is the best WWE has? Or the fact that Sami has been without a doubt, the most overlooked superstar? Why is she asking dumb questions? This may not have been about the title tonight, but this was about the best, and that’s SAMI ZAYN! Will he prove this all over again when the gold is on the line?


My Thoughts:

What a truly strange episode of SmackDown, even for a go-home. The night starts with the Women’s Championship face-to-face encounter, and both women do well with their promos to frame this match’s story. However, the segment doesn’t really resolve itself given the strange segue into the next segment. Roode appearing makes sense because he is both Charlotte’s Mixed Match Challenge partner and because he wants to watch his challenger up close. Orton VS Mahal was alright, nothing too different from their multiple matches before this. The usual “this guy throws that guy into the other guy” was a nice touch, it finally gets Roode and Orton going after each other, and perhaps gives Mahal his way into the US Championship scene on the home stretch to ‘Mania. In which case, I hope Roode retains to keep match-ups fresh.

Nice to hear we’re getting Rusev VS Nakamura even if it’s just to tide them both over, they can have a really good match. Keeping the Tag Team Division off helps give time to everything else, such as Becky VS Carmella 1v1 and set-up for a Woman’s Tag Team Match at Fastlane. Keeping Carmella busy on the Fastlane card could be both a way to stop a MITB cash-in or a smokescreen so we won’t expect it.

The promos before the “moved up” main event were only alright, but were still good with how Styles and Ziggler work-shoot on each other. They have a great 15 minutes before things are “ruined”, and then we get an honestly amazing Fatal 5. It seems odd that we’d get what is 90% of the Fastlane match for free, but it was still great action from everyone involved, especially Corbin for the stretch near the end. And then that swerve ending was great, because it really seemed like Sami meant it when he said he’d just lie down for Kevin. Sami may have just out-Heeled Kevin, and could easily become the superior Heel in this long and winding story SmackDown has been giving us. Assuming Sami & Kevin don’t win the title, I could see a great grudge match between them at ‘Mania as the blow-off to all of it.

My Score: 8/10