The SmackDown Women’s Champion needs a challenger at the Royal Rumble event, so three former champions battle in a #1 Contender’s Triple Threat!
- Daniel Bryan VS R-Truth; Bryan wins.
- Rey Mysterio & Mustafa Ali VS Samoa Joe & Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega; Joe & Almas win.
- The Bar VS The Usos; The Bar wins and denies The Usos a title match.
- SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s Triple Threat: Charlotte Flair VS Becky Lynch VS Carmella; Lynch wins and will face Asuka for the title at the Royal Rumble.
PLAY BY PLAY
Daniel Bryan protests the arena food stands?
The “New” Bryan, that is. And he uses this to get AJ Styles’ attention. This is Bryan “educating” us. The concession stands are only here to destroy our health and wealth. Fans boo Bryan’s protest as he rants on about the junk food that fills a void in our “empty and vacuous” lives. That is why fans cheer AJ Styles! Because fans look up to him and fill the emptiness. Styles is exactly like these fans here! Bryan takes someone’s hot dog! Fans stuff their faces, cheer Styles, but leave empty and just move on to something else! Bryan throws the hot dog back at the fan! And then he takes someone’s slushee drink and plastic cup, and then splashes the fan with it! “Fickle! Fickle!”
Bryan continues his “tour” to the merchandise stand! Can he get a Yes Movement shirt? But wait, those were discontinued. Because the Yes Movement is dead and Bryan killed it! He doesn’t want to fill the Earth with this toxic consumerism. But look! Styles shirts, Styles gloves, all to fill the emptiness of everyone’s lives. “Look at this trash!” Plastic garbage ruining the Earth! Bryan moves his protest to the stands where fans stand to boo and jeer him. “I am out here changing the world. I am out here making the world a better place.” But to create change, Bryan must force the fans to change. Fans are weak, submissive and impotent! “Submissive! Change it! Impotent. Change it!”
Bryan is here to change the world one person at a time. He snatches a fan sign to denounce The House AJ Styles Built! Styles fills a void for a few seconds, but Bryan will fill the void with meaning and value! Something the future generations can be proud of! “Impotent! Change it!” Fans boo as Bryan reaches ringside. But here comes R-Truth!? Truth wants payback on Bryan for the humiliating defeat he suffered on Christmas! The referee backs Truth down, but he’s scheduled to have a match with Bryan anyway! Will Bryan be ready to face the Truth after the break?
Daniel Bryan VS R-Truth!
SmackDown returns as Truth reverses a whip. Bryan kicks but runs into a hip toss! Bryan gets to a corner and Truth throws hands and forearms! Truth whips Bryan corner to corner but Bryan goes up and over. Bryan runs but Truth splits and calf kicks him down! Cover, TWO! Truth keeps his cool but Bryan hits back with body shots. Bryan puts Truth in a corner for No Kicks, then snapmares Truth for a kick to the back. Bryan slaps Truth and says “You’re the problem!” The ref reprimands Bryan and Truth hits back. Bryan rocks Truth with a European Uppercut! Bryan puts Truth in a corner for more No Kicks, then runs corner to corner for the dropkick! He keeps going, and hits another dropkick. Bryan wants a third but gets Truth’s flying elbow instead!
Truth fires up and suplexes Bryan, into a stunner! Cover, TWO! Truth grits his teeth as he gets up and back suplexes Bryan. Bryan slips out and gets to a corner, then dodges Truth’s splash. Knee Plus! Cover, Bryan wins!
Winner: Daniel Bryan, by pinfall
The New Daniel Bryan keeps on winning, but that doesn’t mean he’s gotten rid of Truth just yet. Truth is the 30th spot in the Royal Rumble match, will he make the most of it and win his way to a Wrestlemania main event?
Bryan leaves Truth alone, but as he goes up the ramp, AJ Styles attacks! Styles knocks Bryan down and throws hands on the stage! Styles headbutts Bryan over and over, but security comes out to drag him away. He fights out to go after Bryan at the LED wall! Bryan crawls for retreat but Styles pursues, with a chair! The chase leads backstage, but Styles threatens to hit security first. Fans fire up for Styles, and Styles is raring for a fight. Will Styles stop The New Bryan in their Royal Rumble world championship match?
Rey Mysterio & Mustafa Ali VS Samoa Joe & Andrade “Cien” Almas w/ Zelina Vega!
The King of Lucha, the Beacon of Light and the Destroyer all fell short of a title opportunity in the Fatal 5 Way match, but there’s still a path to the title at the Royal Rumble. Mysterio and Ali team up for the first time ever, as are Joe and El Idolo. Which side will win big momentum for the 30 man battle royal here tonight?
SmackDown goes picture in picture as everyone makes their entrances. The teams sort out as we return to single picture, and it will be Ali starting against Joe. The two circle and tie up, and Joe pushes Ali to the ropes. Joe honors the ropebreak, but then gives Ali a shove. Ali and Joe circle again, and tie up. Joe again puts Ali on the ropes but grinds a forearm into Ali’s face. Joe backs off, but Ali ducks the sucker punch. Ali fires forearms then runs, but can’t get Joe off his feet. Ali runs but Joe runs him over! Joe drags Ali up by his hair to CHOP him to a corner. Joe jabs away, then whips Ali corner to corner. Ali dodges and dropkicks Joe back. Ali dropkicks Joe again, but Joe still stays up. So Ali tags in Mysterio, and double dropkicks knock Joe over!
Mysterio and Joe stare down, but Almas tags in. Almas and Mysterio meet again as they tie up. Almas kicks low then wrenches Mysterio to a hammerlock. Mysterio fights back and rebound snapmares Almas down! Mysterio speeds things up and kicks Almas in the leg. Almas lifts Mysterio and spins him, but Mysterio spins through to arm-drag! Mysterio whips but Almas reverses, only for Mysterio to go up and over. Almas knocks Mysterio down and covers, TWO! Almas keeps his cool and drags Mysterio over to his corner. Tag to Joe, and Joe headbutts Mysterio. Joe bumps Mysterio off buckles and jabs away from all sides. The ref counts and Joe backs off at 4 to tag Almas back in. Almas pumps himself up as he drags Mysterio up by his mask.
Fans rally for Mysterio but Almas CHOPS him. Mysterio hits back but Almas shoves. Mysterio comes back to wheelbarrow facebuster Almas down! Fans fire up and both men crawl for their corners. Hot tag to Ali! Ali rallies and speeds things up to headscissor Almas down! Ali bumps and chops Almas, then whips. Almas reverses the whip, but Ali slides to a stop. Ali slips out to the apron to roundhouse Almas back! Ali slingshots and hits the facebuster! Cover, ONE! Ali keeps on Almas with a waistlock, but Almas elbows out. Almas boots but Ali sees the elbow coming and dodges. Joe tags in while Ali runs, Ail gives Almas the flapjack dropkick. Joe and Almas get in each other’s way, and Ali dropkicks them into each other!
Ali aims at Almas and hits the tornado DDT! Almas rolls out, Ali slingshots but into Joe’s arms! Joe throws Ali with a Fall Away Slam onto the announce desk! Fans lose their minds while we go to break!
SmackDown returns, and Almas has Ali in the Tree of Woe. But Ali sits up to throw Almas off! Zelina cannot believe it, but fans rally up for the resilient Heart of SmackDown! Ali pops out of the Tree and drags himself towards his corner. Almas goes after Ali but misses, hot tag to Mysterio! Springboard huricanrana! Mysterio whips but Almas reverses. Mysterio ducks the boot but Almas sunset flips, only for Mysterio to roll through and buzzsaw! But Joe runs in to throw Mysterio to buckles. Mysterio ducks Joe and then sing kicks him away. Mysterio springboards to seated senton Joe down! Almas runs at Mysterio but Mysterio gets around. Mysterio balances Almas on his feet, then jumps up for a destroyer!! Cover, but Joe breaks it!
Joe drags Mysterio up to whip him into a corner. Joe runs in but misses again, and Mysterio baits Joe to ropes. 619!! Then Ali hurries up, 450! Almas gets up and suplexes Ali but Ali slips out., Ali feeds Almas to Mysterio to put on the ropes. Almas gets a shot, to FLY onto Joe! Then Mysterio dials it up, 619! But Almas catches it! Fireman’s carry to gutbuster drop! And then, Hammerlock DDT! Cover, Almas & Joe win!
Winners: Samoa Joe & Andrade “Cien” Almas, Almas pinning
El Idolo shocks the King of Lucha and wins big! Will this mean even bigger things for Almas, and by proxy Zelina Vega, at Wrestlemania?
“You don’t think I hear people talking?” No one thinks she’ll win tonight’s Triple Threat. Why is that? Because she’s good looking? Because she has style and likes to have fun? Or is it because Charlotte Flair knows how to use kendo sticks, or that Becky Lynch finally found a personality. Carmella was SmackDown Women’s Champion for 130 days. And during that time she beat Charlotte twice and beat Asuka twice. All Carmella has ever needed is an opportunity. And she’ll use tonight’s opportunity to prove that #MellaIsMoney. Will Mella put her money were her mouth is? Will Asuka be ready for the FABULOUS Princess at the Rumble?
The Usos speak.
All they have to do tonight is beat The Bar to get a title shot at The Bar? They can get that. Step up or get stepped on! The true tag team steps up. Jimmy and Jey welcome the Bar back to the Uso Penitentiary! But will they get this next title shot #OnLock?
The Miz visits Shane McMahon in his office.
“Tell me you didn’t have anything to do with that.” With what? The Usos getting another chance at the titles, before Miz & Shane! Surely a different McMahon approved this. Because no one is more deserving then The Best Tag Team in the World! Shane says they’re far from that. But that doesn’t’ matter, Shane’s a McMahon. He can just give the team that match. Miz likes taking shortcuts, and Shane is excited for this match, but he’s not going to abuse power. They have to train, scout and be confident enough to win. They have to challenge themselves as well as their competition. Are they in agreement? Yes. Okay then. But speaking of, what about the outfits? Miz likes the white leather. Yes, the white leather, yes… Shane again excuses himself, and Miz decides on red.
Rusev is in the ring!
But the Bulgarian Brute is not his usual jovial self. Last week, Lana helped Rusev against Shinsuke Nakamura’s attack, but ended up being a casualty of the fight. She got hurt because of the selfish actions of the King of Strong Style. Rusev knows Lana is home safe and resting, but he stands here not as United States Champion. Rusev is here not as the Bulgarian Brute, “with the body of a thousand Hemsworth brothers.” He is here as a husband. Fans sing “Lana is the Best~! Lana Number One!” in support of Rusev. Rusev says Shinsuke can do whatever he wants to Rusev. “But once you mess with my wife, you cross a line!” Rusev calls Shinsuke out and promises to break every bone in that body, and CRUSH!
Shinsuke’s response is from the production truck in the back. “Hey, Rusev. You want people to believe it’s my fault”, but Rusev is trying to get sympathy. Shinsuke is in the truck to prove to everyone that it’s not his fault. This is Rusev’s fault. “See for yourself.” Roll footage. It is footage of Shinsuke’s attack, and Lana’s retaliation. But Shinsuke makes sure to focus on the moment the Machka Kick hits. The footage keeps rolling to show the Kinshasa that hits Rusev back, but Nakamura then brings us back to live. “Rusev, you crushed Lana.” Rusev doesn’t care to see things Nakamura’s way. And since Shinsuke didn’t come to him, he’ll go to Shinsuke! Rusev hurries backstage, but will he find Shinsuke in the truck?
The crew direct Rusev to the truck, but Nakamura attacks him with a trunk! The King of Strong Style set a trap for Rusev, and tops it off with a roundhouse and stomps! Security pull Nakamura off but Nakamura says he is the true United States Champion! Rusev manages to sit up, but gets a KINSHASA! Nakamura leaves Rusev down and out, but will this end with the United States of Nakamerica rising again?
Becky Lynch speaks.
“So tonight, I have to jump through hoops to get back to the championship that nobody beat me to have.” Becky made that title the talk of the wrestling world, and woke up the entire industry. But that’s fine, because now Becky can do what she wants. Charlotte and Carmella are formalities, and Asuka will have to do more than climb a ladder. The Empress is on borrowed time, because The Man’s coming around to settle a score. Will the Lass Kicker kick enough lass to go after Asuka’s throne?
Hulk Hogan returned to WWE Television to share his own heartfelt feelings over the loss of perhaps THE greatest interviewer and pure entertainer of all pro-wrestling. RIP “Mean” Gene, you will forever be missed but never forgotten.
The Bar VS The Usos!
Jimmy & Jey know that if they want another shot at the SmackDown Tag Team Championships, they have to win in this non-title match with the Celtic Gladiator and Swiss Cyborg! Can the Usos put the champs on #LOCKDOWN once more? Or will Cesaro & Sheamus make one last jailbreak to deny The Usos once and for all?
SmackDown returns as The Usos make their entrance. Fans are strongly behind the Usos as the bell rings. Sheamus starts against Jey and the two circle. They tie up and Sheamus gets a headlock takeover. Jey headscissors and Sheamus pops out. They circle again and tie up. Jey gets the arm and wrenches. Sheamus forearms out then drags Jey up to whip. Jey kicks Sheamus away then things speed up. Jey clotheslines Sheamus out, and then dropkicks Sheamus on the return! Cover, ONE, and Sheamus tags to Cesaro. Jey tags Jimmy and Jimmy circles with Cesaro. They tie up and Cesaro gets a headlock. Jimmy powers out but Cesaro runs him over. Cesaro runs and things speed up, but Cesaro catches Jimmy! Jimmy slips out and things sped up again, huricanrana throws Cesaro!
Jimmy runs corner to corner but Sheamus saves Cesaro from the hip attack. The Usos grin and laugh but then give chase. Cesaro leads Jimmy back into the ring, but Jimmy blocks the boot to uppercut! Jimmy powers Cesaro tot he Uso corner, tag to Jey. Jey hits a forearm smash, then wrenches Cesaro’s arm. Cesaro knees low and tags Sheamus. The Bar mug Jey and Sheamus puts Jey in a corner with EuroUppers. Jey hits back but Sheamus hits another EuroUpper. Sheamus whips Jey corner to corner but Jey comes back with an uppercut and chops! Jey backs Sheamus down but Sheamus puts on a headlock. Jey powers out and clobbers Sheamus with a clothesline! Cover, TWO!
Jey keeps on Sheamus but Sheamus powers him to ropes. Sheamus lets up but Cesaro hotshots Jey! Sheamus then clobbers Jey back! The Bar has control while we go to break.
SmackDown returns as Jey endures Sheamus’ chinlock. Fans rally and Jey fights out. Sheamus shoves Jey but Jey fights out of The Bar’s corner. Jey runs but Sheamus scoops him to a fireman’s carry, and rolling senton! Tag to Cesaro for a Macho Elbow! Cover, TWO! Cesaro keeps on Jey to tag Sheamus. The Bar mug Jey but fans cheer “Uce! Oh!” Sheamus chokes Jey on the ropes but stops at 4. He drags Jey up into a keylock, but Jey endures and arm-drags Sheamus out of the ring. Sheamus grabs Jey for Beats of the Bodhrain! And more than ten! Sheamus drags Jey up for another go but Jey enziguris out! Jey crawls again, but Cesaro coaches Sheamus on. Sheamus gets in and grabs Jey’s legs, but Jey shoves him away. Hot tags to Jimmy and Cesaro!
Jimmy rallies on Cesaro with kicks and uppercuts, then the dragon whip kick! Things speed up, Samoan Drop! Jimmy fires up with the fans as Cesaro crawls to a corner. Jimmy takes aim, runs in, and hits the hip attack! Cover, TWO! Cesaro survives and Jimmy is shocked. Jimmy takes aim as Cesaro rolls away. Jey intercepts Sheamus with a mule kick, then the Usos both dump Sheamus out onto Cesaro. Jey builds speed and FLIES onto Sheamus! Jimmy DIVES onto Cesaro! Cesaro ends up in the front row! Everyone is down, but Jimmy drags Cesaro back to the ring. Jimmy climbs and leaps, the crossbody hits! Cover, TWO!! Jimmy is again shocked, and both men are down again. Sheamus slowly returns to his corner, and Cesaro rocks Jimmy with EuroUppers!
Tag to Sheamus, but Jimmy ducks the Brogue! Sheamus puts Jimmy on the apron but Jey tags in! Double swing kicks, then SUPERKICK! Cover, TWO!! Sheamus lives, and this match continues as we go picture in picture! Sheamus and Jey crawl for corners, and Jey aims at Sheamus. Jey climbs up top, but Cesaro returns. Jey kicks him down, but his Uso Splash gets knees! Cesaro covers, but Jimmy breaks it! Everyone is down again, and they regroup as teams. Jimmy runs but into Cesaro’s flapjack EuroUpper! Cesaro tags in and runs at Jey in the other corner for a running EuroUpper! Cover, TWO! Cesaro tells Sheamus to get in, and The Bar work together for the double urenage! Cover, TWO! The Bar is furious, but they aren’t through.
Sheamus tags Cesaro back in, and then feeds Jey to Cesaro’s swing! We return to single picture as Jey goes around and around, and then Cesaro puts on the Sharpshooter! Jey endures the legendary leg lock, but fans give him the power to make it to the ropes! Cesaro chokes Jey, then Sheamus gets a cheap shot knee! Cover, TWO!! Sheamus shouts “I don’t believe it!” Cesaro tags Sheamus and Sheamus loom over Jey. Sheamus drags Jey up by the chin, but Jey fights back! Jey headbutts away on Sheamus! Jey grits his teeth as he climbs up, but Sheamus hits him with a big knee! Sheamus steadies himself before hauling Jey out on a fireman’s carry. Sheamus climbs up now, but Jey slips out! SUPERKICK sends Sheamus down! But Cesaro tagged in! Cesaro leaps, into a SUPERKICK! Jimmy recovers and fans fire up!
Jey crawls, but Cesaro pursues. But wait, is that Mandy Rose in just a towel?! The Golden Goddess flirts all the way from the stage. She needs Jimmy’s help. Did she leave her tiny gold shorts in his hotel room? Jimmy doesn’t get what she’s up to, but Sheamus blasts him off the apron! Cesaro hits a Neutralizer! Cover, The Bar win!
Winners: The Bar, Cesaro pinning; The Usos are denied a title shot
Mandy costs The Usos, all to get back at Naomi. Will Naomi make Mandy feel more than just The Glow? As for The Bar, The Miz comes out to address the tag team champions. “Ladies and gentlemen, please give it up for your SmackDown Tag Team Champions, Sheamus & Cesaro, The Baaaar!!” Miz congratulates them on behalf of himself and Shane. The Bar have cleared out all the teams on SmackDown, except one. Miz grants these two an opportunity of a lifetime: putting the titles on the line at the Royal Rumble against the one team they have yet to dominate, #TheBestTagTeamintheWorld!
Cesaro snatches the mic to tell Miz that if they want The Bar, the team that has destroyed everyone on both Raw and SmackDown, to face a team that is “untested, uncoordinated, dysfunctional” and full of daddy issues, here’s their answer: a Brogue Kick!! Sheamus & Cesaro accept this challenge, but they don’t seem intimidated. Will Miz and Shane make The Bar pay for this disrespect? Or will Shane talk some sense into his Hollywood A-Lister partner?
Mandy Rose meets up with Sonya Deville.
Mandy takes off her towel, and surprise! She was wearing her gear all along! The two share a laugh, but the laughing stops when Naomi attacks! Naomi hits both Mandy and Sonya, and then throws Mandy into trunks. Sonya comes back for more, but Naomi is fine taking them both on. At least, until Sonya roundhouses Naomi in the stomach. Jimmy runs in and saves his wife, but this fight is far from over. Will Naomi make Mandy pay via the Women’s Royal Rumble match?
Charlotte Flair speaks.
“Tonight’s Triple Threat match: Charlotte Flair, Becky Lynch, Carmella.” Wait, Carmella? Last year’s hottest thing? And Becky, this year’s hottest thin? But Charlotte Flair, the hottest thing on the entire main roster the last four years running. Charlotte is the combined seven time Women’s Champion, has main evented both Raw and SmackDown and several Pay-Per-View events. But Charlotte no longer needs to prove herself to anyone. She’s here for herself, and for her women’s champion. She focuses on Becky and Carmella tonight, then on Asuka at Rumble. Prepare to be humbled by The Queen! That Triple Threat is next!
Backstage interview with Daniel Bryan.
Bryan is on his way out, but he’s having a bad night because of the mustard stain some “fat, ignorant, impotent man” spilled on his shirt. Actually he’s also having a bad night because AJ Styles attacked from behind. Why? Because Bryan is trying to change the world for the better? Because Bryan fills that empty void in the fans’ heart better than Styles ever could? Or is it because Bryan is the WWE Champion and Styles isn’t?
“I do not care why AJ Styles attacked me.” If we all thought what Styles did was vicious, that’s not half as vicious as the New Daniel Bryan! People have not seen how vicious Bryan can be, but Styles will see at the Royal Rumble! Styles will never take the title from Bryan, because Bryan fights for a cause bigger than anything Styles has ever fought for in his life! What level of violence does Bryan plan on giving Styles in their title rematch?
Shane finds The Miz backstage.
The Bar accepted the challenge, and the match is coming! Shane’s plan worked. That wasn’t Shane’s plan. But Shane said he needed to challenge their competitors, so Miz made the challenge. That wasn’t how Shane meant it! They needed a plan, be on the same page, all that. But they also need the confidence to win. Miz is ready, and he believes in this team! IF they are not testing themselves, then what are they doing?! Miz told Shane how personal this is. They wouldn’t be who they are if they let others pass them by. Well it’s just not how Shane wanted things to go. Miz thinks they can win? He knows they can win. Then Royal Rumble it is! Can The Best Tag Team in the World become champions their first time out?
SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender’s Triple Threat: Charlotte Flair VS Becky Lynch VS Carmella!
The Queen, The Man, and The FABULOUS Princess of Staten Island. These three former champions all want that belt back, but they’ll have to get past the other two to do it! Who will prove themselves the better former champion to then take on the current champion at the Rumble?
The bell rings and fans are strongly behind Becky! Becky makes sure Charlotte and Carmella hear it, Charlotte gets her own fans going with “WOO~!” Becky and Charlotte hit each other, and Carmella takes advantage by throwing Becky down! Charlotte scoops Carmella but Carmella slips out to throw Charlotte into Becky! Carmella then rolls Charlotte up, ONE! Charlotte hits Carmella but Becky returns with EuroUppers for everyone. Becky mule kicks Carmella out then mule kicks Charlotte down. She scrapes Charlotte out of the ring before hitting Carmella with a leaping forearm. Becky runs Charlotte over with a clothesline, then declares “This is MY show!” Becky’s show will return after the break.
SmackDown returns once more, and Becky has Carmella down. Fans fire up as Becky runs into the corner. Carmella dodges but runs into Becky’s boot. Charlotte shoulders in and hotshots Becky back. Charlotte climbs up top, but Becky stops her with forearms. Becky throws Charlotte onto Carmella! Then she drop-sentons them both! Cover on Carmella, but Charlotte yanks Becky off. Charlotte and Becky glare down as they circle. The friends turned enemies are having flashbacks to Summerslam as they brawl with forearms and chops! Charlotte eggs Becky on and the brawling continues. Becky hits, Charlotte chops and back again! Charlotte gets an edge with those knife edge chops! Charlotte runs, but into Becky’s Thesz Press! The two scrap and roll around, but Carmella’s FABULOUS Kick rocks Charlotte!
Becky grabs Carmella but Carmella fights out to hit a complete shot! Carmella goes after Charlotte but Charlotte trips her to get the Figure Four. Carmella resists, Charlotte jackknifes but into the Code of Silence! Charlotte endures, then powers her way up to her feet. Carmella rolls through, TWO! Charlotte knees low, but Becky leaps in! The missile dropkick hits Carmella! Charlotte throws Becky with an exploder! Charlotte baits Carmella in, backbreaker but Carmella slips out, only to get a boot! Fans “WOO~” for the Mad Queen as she drags Carmella around. Charlotte tells the Becky fans to “Shut up and sit down!” before placing Becky in the drop zone.
Charlotte climbs, but Becky springs up! Becky grabs at Charlotte but Charlotte kicks her away. Charlotte adjusts, two for one Moonsault! Cover on Becky, TWO! Cover on Carmella, TWO!! The Queen grows further frustrated, but we go to one more break.
SmackDown returns again, and Becky climbs up after Charlotte on the top rope. The two fight up top and Charlotte saves herself from falling off. The brawling continues, and Becky gets the better of Charlotte. Becky pulls but Charlotte resists the superplex. Carmella comes in to yank Becky down! Carmella hits Charlotte, and then hits the FABULOUS- No, Charlotte counters the steiner into a lift. But Carmella fights through to hit the FABULOUS Steiner! Cover, TWO!! Carmella shouts in frustration, but refocuses. She kicks Charlotte out, then kicks Becky back down. Carmella takes a risk as she builds speed to DIVE! Direct hit on Becky! Carmella drags Becky up, but Charlotte leaps for a SUPER MOONSAULT! Only for both Becky and Carmella to get clear! Charlotte manages to roll through the landing, only for Carmella to kick her down!
Becky gets Carmella with a Becksploder! All three women are down on the outside, but Becky stands up first. She goes over to Carmella and drags her up. Becky throws haymakers, then throws Carmella into barriers! Fans cheer as Becky drags Carmella up and into the ring. Becky and Charlotte both enter, and Charlotte boots Becky down! Carmella rolls Charlotte up, TWO! Charlotte wants the Figure Four but Carmella denies her again. Becky grabs Carmella’s arm but Carmella resists. Charlotte hits Becky with a SUPER Natural Selection! Shades of Summerslam yet again! But FABULOUS Kick hits Charlotte! Carmella covers, but Charlotte breaks it in time! Charlotte covers Becky, TWO! All three women are down from exhaustion, but fans fire up.
Carmella is furious. She SLAPS Charlotte, and again, and again! She hammers away on Charlotte from all sides, but Charlotte slaps he back! Charlotte goes for the Figure Four, and puts it on! She bridges, Figure Eight! But Beck drops a leg on Charlotte!! Cover, TWO!? But right into the Disarm-Her!! FABULOUS Kick!! Carmella tells Becky “You Suck!” before throwing Charlotte out of the ring. Carmella goes to Becky as fans say “This is Awesome!” Becky resists the suplex, but gets a SPEAR from Charlotte! Another FABULOUS Kick! Carmella goes back to Becky, but into the Disarm-Her!! Carmella taps, Becky wins!!
Winner: Becky Lynch, by submission; will face Asuka for the title at the Royal Rumble
The Man gets the better of The Queen and The Princess this time, and now moves on to challenge The Empress! And speaking of, here comes Asuka! Champion and challenger stand in the ring together, and the champion raises her belt. The two stare down and talk trash, but this fight is still a few weeks away. Will Becky be too Relent-Lass for even Asuka? Or will even The Man find out that not even she is ready for Asuka?
What a stellar SmackDown! They took what worked from last night’s Raw and even improved on it a little. The surprise promo from Bryan in front of all the Jacksonville fans was pretty good, though because of that, it was harder to hear Bryan. “The New Bryan” is doing pretty great as what is essentially evil Captain Planet, and this story has really benefited R-Truth! Truth gets to show some fire of his own, and for being a short match, he and Bryan had a fun opening match. Styles attacking Bryan was also a good move for the story. Bryan’s interview about being vicious makes me how this rematch of theirs is at least No Disqualification. In order to cap off the story, I feel the winner needs to really go above and beyond in their win, and violence is definitely the way to go.
Mysterio & Ali VS Joe & Almas was great, and I was really surprised to see the Heels win. At the same time, Almas and Joe were due a win, both of them have had more losses than wins as of late. They’re all in the Rumble, but Joe and Mysterio have the better chances of winning. And even then, I can’t be sure this is the year for Joe or Mysterio to main event Mania. On the way to Mania, I would love to see any mix of these four in singles competition feuds. I feel like Joe VS Ali would be a great test of Ali on the main roster. Ali’s time on 205 Live has proven Ali knows how to do promos, and he’s already proven his ring skills on SmackDown, so it’d be a great feud for him, even though he’d surely lose.
The Bar VS The Usos was yet another instant classic, but I had a strange sense that Mandy Rose would get involved. The Usos don’t get another title match, but the “Fresh Start” calls for new match-ups, so we don’t need another round of this feud. Miz jumps the gun but it made sense to move Miz’s story with Shane along these lines. If they win, we can see them try to handle being a real team and maybe they break up to set up Shane VS Miz at Mania. If they lose, it’s the same but the break-up happens that much faster. As for Mandy and Naomi, I believe I said this before, but they’ll have an encounter in the Rumble, and then their blow-off is likely on a SmackDown after.
That was an amazing Triple Threat! It was on par with the Summerslam edition, maybe even better. I was glad to see they referenced the finishing spot from Summerslam, and then again with switched roles. I was also pleasantly surprised to see Becky winning over Charlotte. Two NXT Horsewomen getting title shots at the same PPV, that’s pretty great. But at the same time, this brings into question: how are we supposed to get Ronda VS Becky this way? Will Becky dare Ronda to fight her just because? Maybe both titles will be on the line and we’ll have the first ever Undisputed Women’s Champion. Though at the same time, the woman who wins the Women’s Rumble could be inserted for yet another Triple Threat. Or maybe Becky doesn’t win at all and she moves over to Raw to get at Ronda. All the options sound good to me.
My Score: 8.7/10