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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Live Results & Report! (3/12/19)

SmackDown promises to answer: Why, Shane, Why?

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SmackDown promises that Mr. Vince McMahon will address his treatment of Kofi Kingston while Shane will explain his betrayal of The Miz!

 

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • 8 Man Tag: Aleister Black, Ricochet & The Hardy Boyz VS Shinsuke Nakamura, Rusev & The Bar; No Contest.
  • Asuka VS Sonya Deville w/ Mandy Rose; Asuka wins.
  • Rey Mysterio & R-Truth w/ Carmella VS Samoa Joe & Andrade Almas w/ Zelina Vega; Mysterio & Truth win.
  • Daniel Bryan & Rowan VS Kevin Owens & Mustafa Ali; Bryan & Rowan win.

PLAY BY PLAY

Here comes the Money~!

SmackDown opens with Shane McMahon and a chorus of boos. Dayton isn’t that far from Cleveland, and everyone saw what Shane did to The Miz after their loss at Fastlane. Shane stands in the ring with the Best in the World trophy as he takes a mic. Fans tell Shane “You Suck!” before he speaks. Shane waits for the jeers to die down then asks the ring announcer to join him. He tells the announcer what to say. “Ladies and gentlemen, the Best in the World, Shane McMahon.” Fans boo even harder but Shane isn’t done. He GRABS the announcer and makes him say it like he means it. “The Best in the World, Shaaane, McMahon!” Not good enough! “The BEST in the Wooooooorld~! Shaaane, McMaaaahon!” Fans boo but Shane is finally satisfied.

Shane finally addresses the fans’ questions. Why did he beat down his “Co-Besty?” Because he is sick and tired of the annoyances in his life. He’s not just talking about the WWE Universe, the WWE superstars, but also the WWE employees. “Shane, what can I do for you to help me get ahead in life?” Fans chant “We Want Kofi!” but Shane ignores them. Shane’s entire life, people have kissed up to him for their own benefit. No one knows what Shane does for them behind the scenes each and every day! Everyone else wants Shane to help them, but that stopped Sunday when he “beat the holy hell” out of The Miz in his hometown.

Shane says he’s not the Best in the World because he won a trophy, or because he became a tag team champion. He’s the best because he was born that way. Fans boo because they don’t agree. But Shane says he’s only going to do things for himself. Which is why beating Miz down was so good. Especially choking The Miz out in front of Papa Miz’s “baked potato face”. It was so liberating! And that sparked something in Shane that he won’t let go out. The WWE Universe just has to get used to this. And for The Miz, this is not a request but an order because Shane’s the boss. Shane had such a great time beating Miz’s ass, it will continue on the Grandest Stage of Them All, Wrestlemania! Miz better get ready for another Best in the World beating, because it will be AWESOME!

 

8 Man Tag: Aleister Black, Ricochet & The Hardy Boyz VS Shinsuke Nakamura, Rusev & The Bar!

The last time the Unexpected Duo was on SmackDown, they ended up having to fight off the Swiss Cyborg, Celtic Gladiator, Bulgarian Brute and King of Japanese Strong Style. Team Xtreme came to their rescue, and now we have a star-studded and internationally flavored opening match! Will Matt & Jeff help Ricochet and Aleister make four major players #FadetoBlack?

SmackDown returns as entrances finish up. The teams sort out and it will be Nakamura and Aleister to start. Nakamura and Aleister square up and give tests kicks. Aleister gets caught but gives back the strike fest! He drags Nakamura over and Ricochet tags in. They double whip and speed things up, Kitchen Sink and standing moonsault! Cover, TWO! Ricochet stays on Nakamura and fires the fans up as he tags in Matt Hardy! Nakamura gets free as fans chant “DELETE! DELETE!” Sheamus tags in and kicks Matt low. Sheamus clubs Matt and scoops but Matt slips out. Matt boots back and hops up for an elbow drop. The shirt comes off and tag to Jeff! The Hardy Boyz work together, leg drop combo! Cover, TWO!

Jeff keeps on Sheamus with a chinlock but Cesaro distracts. Sheamus hits Jeff then tags to Cesaro. Cesaro stomps away then mocks the Hardy leg drop. Cover, TWO! Cesaro drags Jeff by his hair and bumps him off buckles. Tag to Rusev and they mug Jeff on the ropes. Rusev rams his shoulder in over and over but backs off at 4. The rest of his team choke Jeff in the distraction! They let Jeff go and Rusev wrangles him into a chinlock. Fans rally and Jeff endures. Jeff fights up but Rusev drags him back down. Fans continue to rally and Jeff fights his way back up. Jeff elbows free but Rusev pulls him down by his hair! Rusev plays innocent while fans boo. Rusev stomps Jeff then puts him back in the corner.

Tag to Sheamus and they mug Jeff more. Tag to Nakamura and he stomps away. It becomes a stomp cycle! Jeff fights back on Rusev, and hot tag to Ricochet! The One and Only rallies but Rusev reverses the whip. Ricochet rolls off his back then handsprings to headscissor! Dropkick, too! Ricochet rams his shoulder in and fights off Nakamura. Rusev intercepts the slingshot with a haymaker! Aleister defends Ricochet as Cesaro and Nakamura come over while we go to picture in picture.

Ricochet shakes the cobwebs out and Cesaro fetches him. Cesaro bumps him off the announce desk then gut wrenches him back into the ring! Cesaro wraps another chinlock on but fans rally up for Ricochet. Ricochet fights but Sheamus tags in. The Bar mug and whip Ricochet for the Bar Lariat! Sheamus drops the knee and puts on a chinlock of his own. He bends Ricochet back but Ricochet finds a way out. Rusev tags in and clubbers Ricochet down. Rusev drops elbows and covers, TWO! Ricochet crawls but Rusev is on him. Rusev brings Ricochet up to the top rope and tags in Nakamura. Nakamura struts before hitting the Top Shelf Knee! Cover, TWO! Nakamura keeps on Ricochet with his own chinlock. Fans rally again as Ricochet endures the knee in his back. Nakamura drops a knee on Ricochet’s front!

Tag to Cesaro and the mugging resumes. Cesaro rocks Ricochet with a big European Uppercut! Cesaro drags Ricochet up and shoves him back. Ricochet fights out of the corner with furious forearms! But Rusev tags in, and he kicks Ricochet’s legs out. Cesaro and Rusev stomp away then Rusev hits Matt Hardy for good measure! Rusev drags Ricochet back and tags in Sheamus. They mug Ricochet more, then Sheamus gives Ricochet a backbreaker. Sheamus returns to his special chinlock as we return to single picture.

Fans continue to rally but Sheamus shoves Ricochet. Ricochet dumps Sheamus out! Cesearo hurries to help him back in, and then tags in. Cesaro goes right at Aleister with a boot! But Ricochet back drops him! Ricochet crawls, hot tag to Matt! Matt rallies on everyone as fans chant “DELETE! DELETE!” Matt gives “DELETE!” buckle bumps! Tag to Jeff and the brothers double whip Cesaro corner to corner. Poetry in Motion to a Side Effect! BROGUE for Matt! Pump knee for Sheamus! Roundhouse for Aleister! Springboard flying uppercut for Rusev! Dynamic Dropkick for Ricochet! Twist of Fate for Nakamura! Roll up for Jeff, TWO! Twist of Fate for Cesaro! Jeff tosses the shirt aside and climbs up top. SWANTON BOMB! Cover, but Sheamus, Nakamura AND Rusev break it!

Matt and Sheamus brawl with haymakers, and then more brawls break out! All eight superstars throw haymakers and kicks! So here come THE NEW DAY!? They attack EVERYONE!

No Contest

Big E, Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston toss out anyone they can and stomp the rest! Fans are as fired up as they are, as Woods wrecks Sheamus with a dropkick! Big E grabs Sheamus and throws him into steel steps! Then Big E comes around to wreck Cesaro with help from Kofi! Woods and Kofi keep Nakamura and Rusev down with stomps. They sit Nakamura up for Woods to hit the Shining Wizard! Then they drag Rusev up for Kofi to hit Trouble in Paradise! The New Day stand tall and Dayton is right behind them! Will this influence Vince McMahon’s supposed Wrestlemania opportunity?

 

The Usos speak in the bowels of the arena.

They like The New Day’s new attitude. But which team is gonna run up to Jimmy & Jey? Is it “Swiss Cheese and the Light Mayo?” What about Rusev & Shinsuke? Aleister & Ricochet? It don’t matter anyways! That leaves one last team. The brothers like the Usos, but they ain’t like the Usos. The Usos want any and all teams to run up and get done up! They’ll welcome EVERYONE to the Uso Penitentiary!

 

Randy Orton is here!

The Viper heads to the ring and he has something to say, after the break.

SmackDown returns and Orton stands in the ring with a mic. “There’s something I gotta get off my chest.” This is the House that AJ Styles Built? Well then in 2002, Styles was wrestling in some high school gymnasium while Orton was here making his WWE in-ring debut. In 2004, Styles was shaking hands with opponents in bingo halls while Orton was the youngest WWE Champion ever. In 2005, Styles was in Florida getting a tan with Dixie Carter while Orton was here facing The Undertaker at Wrestlemania. Orton continues on to say that 2006, 2007 all the way to 2014, Orton was champion! This isn’t the House AJ Styles Built, it was the house built long before Styles was ever here! This is the House Randy Orton Built! But speaking of AJ Styles, he appears!

The Phenomenal One heads to the ring and picks up a mic to retort. “Wow, Randy. For someone who looks down on the indies, you sure did follow my career pretty closely.” But Styles is flattered. And he’s right, he’s indy made and damn proud of it. It’s been said that guys like Orton weren’t made for that world but for the WWE. Which is good because Orton wouldn’t have made it in Styles’ world. Not with things like his weird pose and a “knockoff Diamond Cutter.” Wait a second. Is Styles saying that none of those indy pals of his never ripped anybody off? Too Sweet. Good one, good one. But take a look around backstage: Orton is surrounded by those indy pals. They all earned the right to be in the WWE. They didn’t have their daddy get them a job.

Styles talks Orton’s career now. Orton had the stroke of Triple H, the intelligence of Ric Flair and the muscle of Batista backing him to make sure he didn’t fail. Orton says he’s accomplished more before he was 24 than anyone in this industry could ever dream! A 13-time world champion and two-time Royal Rumble winner who has been to 15 Wrestlemanias and any other PPV! But Evolution was where it started. And the Legacy. And Rated RKO! No wait, better yet, the Wyatt Family. Orton sure had a lot of babysitters. Stylse knows Orton is exactly what he is. He is a viper who uses everyone else up. Which is why Styles made sure to get the jump on Orton, so he won’t be another victim.

Orton says Styles has no choice. As long as Styles is renting a room in Orton’s house, he has to answer to him. And rent is due. Make it out to the three most destructive letters in sports entertainment: R K O. Well if Orton wants his rent, come take it at Wrestlemania! Whose house will it be after these two meet on the Grandest Stage of Them All?

 

Asuka VS Sonya Deville w/ Mandy Rose!

The Empress of Tomorrow put away God’s Greatest Creation because the Gladiator Gal was doing too much on the outside. But now Asuka looks to show Fire & Desire that neither of them are ready for her! Will that be true when Sonya puts her hair up and squares up?

SmackDown returns as Fire & Desire make their entrance. The bell rings and Sonya circles with Asuka. They tie up and Asuka avoids Sonya’s takedown but Sonya slips out of the facelock. They go around and Sonya gets a ropebreak before Asuka gets the heel hook. Sonya kicks Asuka back but Asuka catches one to hit back. Asuka gives kicks now, then bounces Sonya’s head off the mat! Sonya counters the buzzsaw to a roll up, TWO! Asuka kicks and whips but Sonya reverses. Asuka runs the ropes but misses the dropkick, Sonya SPEARS! Cover, TWO! Sonya knees Asuka’s ribs and covers, TWO! Sonya stalks Asuka to the corner while fans rally up. She toys with Asuka but Asuka gets mad. Asuka SLAPS Sonya, then throws forearms. Asuka fires off palm strikes and body shots, then the pop-up knee! Sliding Wizard!

Sonya bails out but Asuka runs in. She wrecks Mandy instead! Sonya puts Asuka in and forearms Asuka back. Mandy drags herself up but pulls the apron skirt down! It causes Sonya to stagger, Asuka rocks her with a roundhouse! Then the Asuka Lock! Sonya taps, Asuka wins!

Winner: Asuka, by submission

Fire & Desire cost each other again! The Empress sweeps and leaves them behind on the Road to Wrestlemania, but will Sonya and Mandy be able to patch things up?

 

The IIconics speak.

“Oooh… Sonya and Mandy are always in each other’s way.” That’s definitely not IIconic. But Billie Kay & Peyton Royce claim Sasha Banks & Bayley are ducking them. The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions are still champions, congrats! Pbbbt. They can’t run forever, they will have to come to SmackDown, where the future is IICONIC! Strike the pose. Billie & Peyton want to go BFF’s VS BFF’s, but will The Boss & Hug be too busy for the Blue Brand?

 

Becky Lynch is here!

And she tosses aside her crutch! The Man may not be 100% but she feels so much better after Fastlane. What will she have to say about Ronda Rousey’s assistance? We find out after the break.

SmackDown returns, and Becky shares how great it feels to be walking down the ramp on her own. Everyone got brave when she got hurt, then suspended, then un-suspended, then re-suspended and arrested and out of the biggest match of her career. “But The Man is back!” She’s back on her feet and back in the main event of Wrestlemania! This was the match she set in motion when she picked Ronda Rousey only for Charlotte to be shoehorned in. And then Becky had to earn her way back in her match twice! “Lads, do you know how hard it is to play mind-games on a woman with no brain?” But Becky did it! She got “Ronnie” so wound up, she did all this for her. Thanks, ya lil’ weirdo. Becky will pay her back by taking her arm and her title.

Becky doesn’t care if it’s the golden girl or the rowdy one, she will reclaim what they’ve tried to give someone else. And speaking of, here comes Charlotte! The Queen has a mic of her own. “First off, congratulations.” Becky finally gets in Charlotte’s main event. While Becky was suspended and arrested, Charlotte put in all the work. Charlotte’s resume speaks for itself, but she tells Becky it’s one thing to be hot for six months. Charlotte’s been hot for four years! That’s why Vince chose her! So she could get the job done. But does Becky know why the fans love her? Because they pity her. Charlotte pitied Becky. Ronda pitied her.

And no matter how much Becky spins it, that was a hand-out at Fastlane. Charlotte has never seen someone do so little yet take credit for so much. That’s why Charlotte will make Becky and Ronda relevant when they bow down! “Aw shut yer face, ya dope!” Becky’s the reason women are main-eventing at Wrestlemania. They don’t need a Queen, they need The Man. Fans agree as they chant for Becky. Will Becky stand tall against Queen and Baddest Woman?

 

Backstage interview with Daniel Bryan and Rowan.

What was going on in Mr. McMahon’s office? It was a private discussion. Did it have to do with Kofi Kingston? Yes, actually. As WWE Champion, Planet’s Champion, and a winner in a surprise Triple Threat, Bryan wanted to give Vince some feedback before the announcement tonight. What was Vince’s reaction? Bryan and Rowan are in a match tonight, against Mustafa Ali and Kevin Owens. Will the Beacon of Light and Prizefighter be able to get even on Bryan and Big Red tonight?

 

Rey Mysterio & R-Truth w/ Carmella VS Samoa Joe & Andrade Almas w/ Zelina Vega!

After two Fatal 4 Ways for the United States Championship, these four men choose sides for a tag match! Will the King of Lucha Libre and John Cena’s biggest fan be able to overcome the Destroyer and El Idolo?

SmackDown returns as entrances finish and teams sort out. Truth starts against Almas and they circle. They tie up and Almas elbows Truth hard. Almas whips Truth tot he corner but Truth goes up and over to hip toss Almas down! Truth does the splits and runs, and hits Almas with the elbow! He asks the fans “What’s up?!” and tags in Mysterio. Wheelbarrow assist for headscissors on Almas! Mysterio runs but Almas blocks the destroyer. Mysterio makes it a huricanrana to put Almas on the ropes! But Joe tags in to slam Mysterio down! Joe jabs away and stomps Mysterio, to then toss him out of the ring! Zelina taunts Mysterio while we go picture in picture.

Joe fetches Mysterio and gives him headbutts. Joe puts Mysterio back in the ring and scoops him for a big slam. He drops a big elbow, then kicks Mysterio around. Joe tags Almas and Almas runs to dropkick Mysterio back down. Cover, TWO! Almas drags Mysterio away from Truth to stomp him out more. Almas tags Joe and they mug Mysterio while Zelina applauds. Joe drags Mysterio up for a neck wrench but fans rally up. Mysterio fights out but Joe knees back. Joe powerbombs Mysterio down! High stack cover, TWO, to Boston Crab! Joe pulls back on Mysterio then shifts to a crossface while we return to single picture.

Mysterio endures being pulled back as Joe shifts to a Rings of Saturn. Truth kicks Joe to save Mysterio! Joe tags Almas as fans chant “What’s up!?” with Truth. Zelina is annoyed by those chants but Almas knees Mysterio. Almas hits Uno Amigo, then Dos Amigos. Almas goes for Tres but takes time to gloat. Mysterio slips out, Mexican Destroyer! Both men are down but fans rally up. Mysterio crawls for Truth but Zelina grabs his feet! Carmella yanks Zelinda down! HOt tag to Truth! Truth references Cena with the shoulder tackles and spin-out bomb! And “You Can’t See Me!” Five Knuckle Shuffle! Truth fireman’s carry but Joe tags in! Almas slips out so Truth dodges and calf kicks Joe. Truth kicks then tags Mysterio.

Joe dodges to SUPERKICK Truth! Mysterio springboards and dropkicks to put Joe on ropes! Dial it up, but Almas intercepts, only to end up beside Joe! DOUBLE 619! Mysterio splashes Almas but Joe sentons! Urenage, but victory roll! Mysterio & Truth win!!

Winners: Rey Mysterio & R-Truth, Mysterio pinning

The King of Lucha pins the United States Champion! Does this mean Mysterio gets the next shot at Samoa Joe’s title? Joe takes his anger out on Truth with an URENAGE! And one for Almas, too! Mysterio helps Truth get away before anything worse happens. Will Joe be the one to destroy Mysterio’s legacy instead of Almas?

 

Daniel Bryan & Rowan VS Kevin Owens & Mustafa Ali!

The Planet’s Champion survived two opponents at Fastlane, but did have help from his Redwood Bodyguard. Now the Prizefighter and Beacon of Light team up to exact some revenge! Will they be denied or satisfied after tonight?

SmackDown returns again as Mustafa Ali makes his entrance, followed by Bryan and Rowan. Teams sort out and Kevin starts against Bryan. They tie up and Kevin gets a headlock. Bryan powers out but Kevin runs him over. Things speed up and Kevin runs Bryan over! Back senton, too! Kevin drags Bryan up but Bryan scrambles away to tag Rowan. Rowan and Kevin brawl and Rowan puts Kevin in the corner. Kevin still hits back but Rowan runs him over with a shoulder! Bryan cheers Rowan on as he drags Kevin up by his face. Rowan grinds his forearm in but Kevin elbows and PELES! Hot tag to Ali! Ali leaps in but Rowan catches him easy. Rowan suplexes but Ali slips out to bait him into the corner. Ali roundhouses then somersaults for Rowan’s tackle! Rowan hits Kevin for good measure.

Rowan stands on Ali’s chest, then tags Bryan. The Planet’s defenders mug Ali, and Bryan goes after his leg. Bryan wrenches the knee then pulls Ali’s face into a chinlock. Fans rally and Ali fights out. Ali runs but Bryan elbows him down. Bryan brings Ali up fast for a snap Half Hatch suplex! Cover, TWO, but into a sideways Bow ‘n’ Arrow! Bryan uses torturous innovation while we go to break.

SmackDown returns yet again as Rowan rams Ali into a corner, Canadian torture rack style! Tag to Bryan and Bryan throws hands on Ali as he climbs. Bryan hits a Butterfly SUPERPLEX! Cover, TWO! But Bryan goes right for the Lebell Lock! Ali scrambles for ropes and gets them with a foot! Bryan lets go at 4, and reminds the referee of the rule. Bryan drags Ali up for a big EuroUpper. He trash talks Ali as he gives him another. Bryan soaks up the heat before bringing Ali up to whip. Ali kicks back then runs for a flapjack dropkick! Fans rally as Ali crawls for his corner! Bryan intercepts and drags him back, but Ali slips out of the back suplex to a backstabber! Cover, but Rowan breaks it!

Kevin goes after Rowan but the stunner is denied. Kevin denies the claw slam and SUPERKICKS! Ali and Kevin DOUBLE SUPERKICK! Kevin aims at Rowan but Rowan intercepts the cannonball to toss Kevin itno barriers. Ali wrecks Rowan with a dropkick but Bryan has a waistlock. Ali standing switches and rolls up, TWO! Bryan has it, TWO! Tag to Rowan, but Ali elbows Bryan away. Ali hops up but into Rowan’s paws! CLAW SLAM! Cover, Rowan & Bryan win!

Winners: Rowan & Daniel Bryan, Rowan pinning

The Redwood does his part to protect the Planet’s Champion, and now both roll down the Road to Wrestlemania.

Vince McMahon appears!

The Chairman walks out to the ring because it’s finally time to hear what he has to say to Kofi Kingston. We’ll find out what that is, after one last break.

SmackDown returns once more, and Vince McMahon stands in the ring with a mic. He says he’s here to give the fans and Kofi Kingston what he wants. Vince is here to give Kofi an opportunity to compete for the WWE Championship at Wrestlemania. Now Vince wants to explain the misunderstanding at Fastlane. The New Day reasoned with Vince to make the title match a Triple Threat. Vince agreed, but he forgot to mention how it wasn’t with Kofi. And he forgot to mention that Kofi’s match at Fastlane would be a Tornado Handicap Match against The Bar. Vince says fans hear what we wanna hear, because he never said explicitly that Kofi would be in a title match. Kofi had a match and he lost. Vince did it for a reason. Everything is a teachable moment, but The New Day is done listening! They come out to confront Vince!

The New Day is still steaming even after wrecking eight other superstars at the start of the night. Kofi has the fans behind him as he and the others have mics. Big E says they’re not in the mood to be taught a damn thing. And Woods says they’re done holding their tongues. The New Day do everything for this company! They’ve never complained or threatened to live and yet they’re still treated like garbage! Kofi has been here for 11 YEARS! He deserves better! He deserves more! Vince says Kofi doesn’t deserve a damn thing! Neither do the fans! Even Vince doesn’t deserve anything, and he created the WWE! No one deserves anything. No, this is bigger than just opinion. This is bigger than the New Day, or even Vince’s massive ego. There’s nothing bigger than that.

Well if no one deserves anything, but they’ve earned this! Kofi has defeated great WWE champions when they were champions, yet he never got his shot! And that’s just one of many reasons why Kofi IS deserving of a match for the WWE Championship. The WWE Universe has one demand: Kofi Kingston gets his fair shot for the title! And fans let Vince hear it directly! Vince wishes Kofi did deserve that, really. Vince has known Kofi a long time and is a pretty good judge of talent. If Kofi was worthy, it would’ve happened by now. Vince knows Kofi is impressive, extraordinary, and has reached incredible heights. “But let’s face it, Kofi.” Kofi will be in the Hall of Fame, but only as part of The New Day.

Kofi’s smart, right? He’s the older man, he can just coast with Big E and Woods doing the work. Vince wishes Kofi was up to par, but he’s just not. This is not an insult, but Vince was speaking with Bryan, and Bryan hit it on the mark: Kofi’s awesome, but he’s a B+ Player. Kofi keeps Big E and Woods calm as he says that he’s not asking for a free ride or a hand-out or demanding anything. But 11 years ago, Kofi was a kid with a dream. That dream has all but come true. He provides for his family while doing what he loves. But Kofi would hope that somewhere along those 11 years, that he proved himself worthy. Yet Vince says he doesn’t see it?

Kofi doesn’t complain about anything, like showing up week in and week out but other people pass him up. He doesn’t complain that Vince needs Kofi here instead of home for weddings, birthdays and holidays! He’s never been trick-or-treating with his kids, because he’s been here. Two days ago, Kofi’s son lost his first tooth! But Kofi missed that happiness when the Tooth Fairy gave him money for the tooth. Kofi never complains about those who go ahead of him, about the time away from home, or how Vince never seems to let people like Kofi compete for the title. He won’t complain, but he just needs Vince to say here, man to man, what it is that Kofi needs to do to earn a shot, so that he can go and do it! The fans believe in Kofi.

But here comes Randy Orton!? Vince says that all Kofi has to do is beat The Viper. Then he’s in! Samoa Joe comes out, too? Well, yes, beat that man, too. But then The Bar appears?! Oh, and them. And even Rowan!? Kofi has to run the gauntlet to get to Wrestlemania!? And the gauntlet goes after them! The New Day fight off The Bar, they fight off Samoa Joe, and they fight off Rowan! Bryan gets Rowan clear and Orton stays out of it completely as Kofi gives Cesaro a Trouble in Paradise! “That could be YOU, Daniel!!” Kofi is fired up, but can he make it through five intimidating opponents in one night to finally have his shot?

 


 

My Thoughts:

A really great SmackDown here, with some good stuff to move us further towards Wrestlemania. Shane’s explanation for why he turned on Miz wasn’t exactly what I expected, but it’s not a bad reason. It at least works with how Miz more or less used Shane to make good with his own father. Miz VS Shane will be fun, and I would think Miz wins as the hero of this story. That opening 8 Man Tag was great, and The New Day attacking didn’t even really ruin it. It was great to see The New Day show some aggression after all this time. The Usos have another great backstage promo, and I’m wondering if there will be a big tag match to determine contenders. Saving the Hardys for last, I wonder if it’ll be Usos VS Hardys in the end, and that match could go either way.

I was hoping for a bit more out of Asuka VS Sonya, but it sounds like we’re building to Sonya VS Mandy given the passive aggressive revenge Mandy got on her. And if that’s the case, it sounds like Lacey Evans will still be available for facing Asuka for the title. For that matter, if the Women’s Wrestlemania Battle Royal is to return, Sonya and Mandy could work together to be the final two, forcing them to fight out their problems. The IIconics call out Sasha Banks & Bayley, as I hoped, but only time will tell if there’s a response. With only three weeks left now, perhaps the IIconics should show up on Raw to go after the champs while they’re busy with Nia Jax & Tamina.

Randy Orton and AJ Styles did great with their promos, and I’m enjoying this new take on WWE original product VS independent grown talent. Orton VS Styles as a match is going to be great, but I would hope Styles wins. But chances are he won’t, there seems to be a lot of moments where Faces could triumph and WWE never likes to let all their heroes win at the same time. The tag match around the US title story was great, and it’s a nice surprise that Mysterio wins. Mysterio VS Joe could happen at Mania, or it could happen before. I’m still personally hoping for Joe VS Cena. Plus, Almas will still want after Mysterio so who knows how that affects things.

Becky and Charlotte have a good segment, but they’ve always been good. Kevin & Ali VS Rowan & Bryan was another good tag match, but Rowan continues to do the heavy-lifting for the champion. The entire Vince McMahon and New Day segment was incredible. I get people are upset this is just a new Daniel Bryan VS Authority thing, but they need to get over it. Tropes are a thing, enjoy the ride. Kofi has quite the gauntlet ahead of him, but I’m thinking there’s a good chance one of the opponents is softened up by their story counterparts. Orton has Styles, and there’s a chance Kevin or Ali goes after Rowan. Either way, I would think Kofi finds a way to win and force Vince’s hand. This just has to lead to Kofi finally getting his world title and Grand Slam at Mania.

My Score: 8.4/10


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Coverage

Mitchell’s WWE 205 Live Results & Report! (1/22/21)

And you thought last week was big!

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Coverage 205 2021

205 Live doubles down on historic matches!

Not only are two 205 Live OG taking on a BRUTAL combination in Thatcher & Ciampa, but the WOMEN’S Dusty Cup comes to the purple ‘n’ orange!

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade; The Way wins and advances.
  • Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa; Thatcher & Ciampa win and advance.

PLAY BY PLAY

205 Live explains how a certain Dusty Cup match came to be.

It was on NXT that Ashante “Thee” Adonis was in a match with the cruel Karrion Kross. Kross showed no mercy to Adonis as he hit him with TWO Doomsday Saido Suplexes and the blindside forearm smash. Then he would show no mercy to Adonis’ tag partner, Desmond Troy, by wrapping him up in the Krossjacket submission! The damage done was too severe for either man to compete tonight, and now they’re OUT of the Dusty Rhodes Classic! However, there is a new team that has been formed.

The Professor of Pain and the Psycho Killer put each other through torture inside the Fight Pit, and in the end, they found respect for each other. They’re now a killer combination and having their tag team debut TONIGHT, in the tag team tournament! Will they put the Premier Athlete and Persian Lion through similar suffering, all for a shot at history and the NXT Tag Team Championships?

 

Women’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: The Way’s Candice LeRae & Indi Hartwell VS Gigi Dolin & Cora Jade!

How is this for history? 205 Live has its first-ever women’s match, and it is for this historic women’s tag team tournament! But will it be even more historic for the two debuting superstars? Or will Candice & Indi Wrestling dominate where the boys, Johnny & Austin, failed?

The teams sort out, Indi starts against Jade and the two circle. They tie up, go around, and Indi throws Jade down. Indi says Jade is NOT #Impressive, but Jade hits back with body shots! Indi knees low, whips Jade to a corner but Jade dodges! Jade tags Gigi and Gigi dodges Indi for a BOOT! Jade BOOTS Indi, then Gigi runs in to spin and ROCK Indi with a forearm! Indi hits back, drags Gigi over and tags in Candice. Candice stomps Gigi down, brings her up and through the ropes to choke her. The ref counts, Candice lets off at 4 to then CLUB Gigi down. Candice stomps Gigi, taunts Jade, but misses the leg drop!

Gigi rams Candice to the corner, tags in Jade, and Jade runs corner to corner to SHINING WIZARD! Jade brings Candice around but Indi is in the way of her run. Candice CLOBBERS Jade then covers, ONE! Candice hammers away on Jade, dribbles her off the mat, and fans boo as Candice drags Jade up with a chinlock. Candice has a neck wrench, fans chant “You Still Suck!” but Jade fights her way up. Candice CLUBS Jade, whips her to the Way’s corner, then runs in for a back body block! Indi tags in and she taunts Gigi before hitting Jade with a forearm! Indi throws Jade down to cover, TWO!

Indi keeps on Jade with a cravat for the neck crank. Jade fights up, fans rally and Jade throws body shots. Jade whips, Indi reverses and scoops for a sidewalk slam! Cover, TWO! Indi keeps her cool, tags Candice, and Candice wrenches Jade to snapmare and chinlock. Candice digs her knee in but Jade endures. Fans rally, Jade fights up, throws more body shots, then breaks free to uppercut! Jade runs but wobbles, but she elbows Candice again! Jade baits Candice into her own corner, dodges, but Candice gets Jade’s leg! Jade kicks Candice away, hot tags to Indi and Gigi! Gigi didges, fires off on Indi, KICKS away on the leg, then kicks that leg out! BUZZSAW!

Gigi DECKS Candice for good measure before she BOOTS Indi down! Cover, TWO! Gigi snarls as she drags Indi up and clubs her on the back. Tag to Jade, they bring Indi around together to double suplex but Indi fights it off! Indi BOOTS Jade, kicks Gigi and reels Gigi in for a suplex of her own! Indi holds Gigi up for a count of 10 before the SLAM! Gigi bails out so Indi tags Candice. Candice runs into Jade’s roll up, TWO! Jade Oklahoma Rolls, TWO! Ghost pin, TWO!! Candice flounders up but gets around Jade to roll her up, TWO!! Indi tags in and kicks Jade to then back suplex SLAM! Cover, The Way wins!

Winners: The Way, by pinfall (advance to the next round)

Candice and Indi are making their way into the semifinals! But will Kacy Catanzaro & Kayden Carter be in the way of The Way making history?

 

Men’s Dusty Rhodes Tag Team Classic Opening Round: Tony Nese & Ariya Daivari VS Timothy Thatcher & Tommaso Ciampa!

The Premier Athlete and Persian Lion have been here since day one of 205 Live, and were looking strong going into this match when it was against Adonis & Troy. But again, it has only been a couple days since NXT, are the Professor of Pain and Psycho Killer in any shape to face them on their home turf?

The teams sort out and Nese and Daivari seem to laugh at the two former enemies trying to be a team now. Daivari starts with Thatcher, they tie up and Daivari goes after an arm. Thatcher pries him off of that with a chinlock and then grinds into a headlock. Thatcher throws Daivari down, pulls on his head, but Daivari tries to pull hair. Thatcher just smiles that jagged tooth grin as he gets back up and goes after Daivari’s arm! Thatcher wrangles Daivari with a hammerlock, traps it with his legs then gets Daivari’s legs. Thatcher pulls Daivari into a Bow ‘n’ Arrow! Daivari endures, it becomes a cover, TWO!

Thatcher grabs at Daivari right away and has a facelock. Daivari endures, gets around, waistlocks, but Thatcher pries at the arm. Daivari tags Nese in, Nese rolls Thatcher up, TWO! Thatcher trips Nese and has the foot for a toe ‘n’ ankle. He shifts to a heel hook, then gets the arm but Nese scrambles around. Ciampa wants in, so Thatcher tags him in! Fans cheer as Ciampa wrenches Nese’s arm and drags him down. Nese resists the Fujiwara but Ciampa wrenches through again to a wristlock. Nese chinbars to get the arm, but Ciampa slips through to headlock. Nese throws Ciampa off but Ciampa headlocks and throws Nese down! Fans cheer as Ciampa grinds Nese into the mat.

Nese fights up, gets free to waistlock but Ciampa switches. Nese bucks Ciampa off, runs in and trips Ciampa up to go after the leg! Ciampa kicks Nese away, facelocks Nese in return and grinds him down. Fans rally, Nese moves around, and Nese powers Ciampa to the corner. Nese puts the leg on the rope, tags in Daivari, but Ciampa fights out with forearms and elbows! Ciampa DECKS Daivari but Nese trips him up! The ref reprimands but Daivari drags Nese to the corner to SLAM the leg into the post! And then he SLAMS the other leg! Thatcher storms over as Daivari keeps on the legs but the ref shouts at everyone to get back to their corners.

Daivari puts Ciampa in, drops elbows on the leg then stomps it, then drags Ciampa from Thatcher. Daivari drops more elbows, stomps the leg more, then clamps onto the leg to step through, for a Figure Four! Ciampa endures, Thatcher coaches him and the fans rally up! Ciampa drags himself and Daivari over but Nese gets in to hit Thatcher! The ref has to keep Thatcher back but Nese drags Daivari and Ciampa away! Nese tags in to stomp away on Ciampa, and Daivari finally lets Ciampa out of the hold. Fans boo and jeer while Nese flexes. Nese drags Ciampa over, tags in Daivari, and they split the wishbone on Ciampa!

Nese runs at Thatcher but Thatcher DECKS him first! Daivari has Ciampa’s leg but Ciampa enziguris back! Tag to Thatcher! Thatcher clinches Daivari for a BELLY2BELLY! Then a BELLYBELLY for Nese! EuroUppers for both Cruiserweights back and forth! Nese runs back in but Thatcher has the arm! Thatcher clamps on but has to stop Daivari first. HEEL HOOK! Nese pulls Thatcher’s ears and HOTSHOT BULLDOGS! Thatcher is down, Nese tags in, and Nese hurries to PREMIER TRIANGLE MOONSAULT! Tag back to Daivari and Daivari climbs up, LION SPLASH! Cover, but Ciampa breaks it!

Fans fire up as Ciampa returns to his corner. Daivari and Thatcher crawl, Nese tags in first! Thatcher kicks Nese away, and tags Ciampa back in! Ciampa rallies on Nese and Daivari with forearms and CHOPS! Ciampa CHOPS Daivari again but Nese dropkicks the bad leg out! Nese and Daivari both go up, DOUBLE- DECKED! Nese gets a knee, Daivari gets a forearm! Thatcher and Ciampa glare at each other, Ciampa gives Nese WILLOW’S BELL! Cover, Ciampa & Thatcher win!!

Winners: Tommaso Ciampa & Timothy Thatcher, by pinfall (advance to the next round)

These two were tearing each other apart on NXT, but they’re standing together on 205 Live! Will Ciampa and Thatcher tear their way through the tournament to put their names on the Dusty Cup?


My Thoughts:

A good episode, though with some obvious results. While Gigi Dolin (Priscilla Kelly) and Cora Jade (Elayna Black) are very good wrestlers, they weren’t going to beat The Way, and it says a lot that Indi got the pin for this one. Candice & Indi are among the favorites to win the tournament, and I’m betting on a stellar match between them and KC Squared, Catanzaro & Carter. Gigi & Jade still made a good combination, and their aesthetics match up well, I hope they stick together.

Ciampa & Thatcher becoming a team after their Fight Pit match is a pretty cool way to follow up, and naturally they were going to beat the first team they faced. The OG had good combinations, but Nese and Daivari have been perennial jobbers to the stars even before this. Thatcher & Ciampa take on Undisputed Era next and that is going to be a great match that could go either way. Given the history between Undisputed Era and the current tag team champions, Lorcan & Burch, I give it 51-49, UE wins so that they can get a shot at the champions.

My Score: 8/10


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Mitchell’s WWE SmackDown Results & Report! (1/22/21)

Will Apollo be able to #ThinkBig and be a champion?

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Coverage SmackDown 2021

Big time challenges go down on SmackDown!

SmackDown goes big as Big E takes on Apollo Crews’ rematch challenge, and Bayley takes on Bianca Belair in the ULTIMATE obstacle course challenge!

OFFICIAL RESULTS

  • Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay; Charlotte & Asuka win.
  • Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler; Cesaro wins.
  • Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella; Sasha wins.
  • WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews; Crews wins by disqualification, Big E retains the title.
  • Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair; Bianca wins.
  • Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin; Corbin wins.
  • Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns; No Contest.

PLAY BY PLAY

Roman Reigns heads to the ring!

The Head of the Table, with Special Counsel, Paul Heyman, is back to open SmackDown, but no Jey Uso? Roman and Heyman are not in a good mood after the bait ‘n’ switch Adam Pearce pulled over on them with Kevin Owens. Heyman hands Roman a mic as fans boo and give thumbs down on their screens. “So KO said he was going to deliver a message today, huh?” Or is he not? No, we’re not going to see Kevin Owens tonight because Roman said so. Now let’s talk about last week and “card subject to change.” Real clever. A lot of people made comments about Pearce getting one past them, outsmarted them.

But let’s make this clear: “That way of thinking is beneath me.” Card subject to change is how losers think. It’s how people who are scared to come to work think. Roman doesn’t miss appearances, he puts in work! Legitimately! It took Roman’ sown health being at risk during a pandemic to keep him away. So he never wants to hear anyone say anything about him missing appearances. But what if Roma started thinking like “a puss” like Pearce, talking about his elbow and shoulder hurting. No one would doubt it because of the work Roman puts in! Roman’s knees hurt, and so does his neck. But what else? His ankles have been bad since college. And his back… Heyman says just the weight of it all is making Roman’s back hurt, because Roman’s been carrying the WWE for YEARS!

But what if Roman’s back continues to hurt until the Royal Rumble? What if he can’t make it because of that? Pearce walks out and says this is going too far. Heyman says Pearce is being rude not even addressing Roman. Pearce says this is spiraling out of control, and Roman can’t believe he wants to talk about control. We know who is in control. But what’s out of control is that Pearce is going against Roman. That Pearce is doing a favor and putting Kevin back into the Universal title picture. And the fact that Pearce is favoring Kevin! This isn’t even really a favor. Pearce is Kevin’s BITCH! And he’s also Roman’s bitch.

But what Roman really can’t stand right now, is Pearce having the audacity coming out here and complaining about how his body feels. Pearce hasn’t been in a match for six YEARS, but he’s talking about how his body hurts. Pearce is next to the thoroughbred of the WWE, a man who does 52 weeks a year, multiple days a week! Roman never complained, never stopped and busts his ass for this place, and that is why Roman is who Roman is! And Pearce is going to complain, whine, MOAN about stuff? “No wonder you never made it to the WWE.” Heyman chuckles at that one.

Pearce asks if this is funny to Heyman. It is. Pearce can take it from Roman but he won’t take it from Heyman. Oh? Well that’s disrespectful. Disrespecting Heyman is disrespecting Roman. Heyman, straighten Pearce out. Heyman is given the mic to speak. Pearce disrespected the Tribal Chief and his family. Heyman’s known his family 15 years. Roman’s family would not be friends with someone who isn’t tough! Do you know what it is like to be a friend of the Anoa’i family? Everyone buys into Heyman’s persona, that he’s “impotent as a man.” Heyman’s from New York, he whoop yo’ ASS for disrespecting the chief. Wanna stare Heyman down?

Heyman may not be a lawyer but he’s from a synagogue full of them. In Florida, a verbal contract is BINDING. So if you want something big for the main event, how about this? Pearce VS PAUL HEYMAN! What?! Heyman offers a handshake, and Pearce TAKES IT! The challenge is accepted!! Pearce will have his first match in six years, against Paul E. Dangerously! Roman says at the end of the night, Pearce gets his ass kicked. #BelieveThat.

 

Sami Zayn heads to the ring!

He has a sign with #JusticeForSami on it, and he brings out cuffs?! Sami is going to cuff himself to the ringside barriers as a form of protest because he is not part of tonight’s Intercontinental Championship! How will WWE officials respond to Sami’s sudden SmackDown sit-in?

SmackDown returns and Sami claims he is being victimized, but he will enter the Royal Rumble to counter it! Sami says he had Apollo Crews beat, though with hands somehow on Apollo’s tights. But then Apollo does the same thing back to him and Apollo wins?! That is not fair! But then the Empress of Tomorrow interrupts Sami with her entrance, followed by The Queen’s! The WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions are here!

Charlotte Flair & Asuka VS The Riott Squad w/ Billie Kay!

The Queens of Tomorrow have a lot going on as individuals on Raw, but they return to SmackDown to focus on their teamwork! Meanwhile, Liv Morgan & Ruby Riott haven’t been able to focus with the Femme Fatale frantically interfering. Will Billie be a burden as the Squad has a chance at earning a championship opportunity?

As the teams sort out, Natalya and Tamina are watching from backstage. The bell rings as Charlotte and Ruby start. They tie up, are in a deadlock, but Charlotte pushes Ruby to ropes. Ruby pushes back but Charlotte headlocks and throws Ruby down. Ruby keeps her shoulders up, fights to her feet, but Asuka tags in. Charlotte snapmares Ruby, Asuka runs Ruby over with a shoulder! Asuka headlocks Ruby, Ruby fights up but Charlotte tags back in. The Queens of Tomorrow hand Ruby off and Charlotte bumps Ruby off buckles! Charlotte digs her boot into Ruby’s head but lets off at 4. Ruby flounders, Charlotte taunts her to reach for Liv, then CLUBS her down.

Charlotte looms over Ruby, drags her up and whips her to a corner hard! Ruby falls over, Billie protests on the apron but Charlotte runs her off. Ruby rushes at Charlotte but into an elbow! Liv tags in as Billie shouts at Charlotte! Ruby rushes Charlotte but is thrown out, and Charlotte grabs at Billie! Liv apron dropkicks Charlotte back in! Liv hurries up top and leaps to crossbody! Cover, TWO! Billie can’t believe she’s being helpful as SmackDown goes to break!

SmackDown returns again and Charlotte blocks a buckle bump to give a buckle bump! Charlotte stomps away on Liv, backs off as the ref counts, and lets out a “WOO~!” Fans clap on their screens, Charlotte scoops Liv but Liv slips out. Liv runs, Ruby tags in, Liv huricanranas and Ruby runs in to tilt-o-whirl! Charlotte blocks the headscissors but Ruby fires off forearms! Ruby goes up and gives Charlotte DEADLY NIGHTSHADE! Cover, TWO! Tag to Liv, Sami is still filming his protest, and the Squad double SLAMS Charlotte down! Cover, ONE! Liv tags Ruby back in, they stomp away on Charlotte in a corner, and then tag again.

Ruby and Liv bring Charlotte out, double whip but charlotte stops herself to kick and forearm and CHOP! Charlotte CHOPS away, throws Ruby into buckles then kicks Liv low! EXPLODER! And kip up! Charlotte fires up but misses Liv in the corner. Liv runs into the backbreaker and BUCKLE SHOT! Tag to Asuka, SLIDING WIZARD! Cover, Ruby breaks it! Ruby runs but into Charlotte’s BOOT! Liv dropkicks Charlotte and enziguris Asuka! But Asuka has the leg for an ANKLE LOCK! Liv tries to roll through but gets caught to a trapped-leg GERMAN SUPLEX! Asuka kicks but misses, Liv rolls her to swing. Asuka blocks, reels Liv in, but Ruby tags!

Asuka lets Liv go to get Ruby, but Billie distracts! The O’Conner roll is rolled over but Billie argues too long! That costs Ruby, she has to kick Asuka! Liv saves Ruby from the hip attack but falls on Billie! Ruby SUPERKICKS but Asuka counters the Riott Kick to the pop-up KNEE! Asuka runs, tags Charlotte, CODE BREAKER to NATURAL SELECTION! Cover, the champions win!

Winners: Charlotte Flair & Asuka, by pinfall

Billie went from helping to hindering the Squad again! Will this partnership fall apart before Billie’s very eyes?

 

Billie finds the Squad backstage.

She apologizes for, for… For what, Billie? Stopping Ruby from pinning Asuka? Messing this opportunity up for them?! Yeah… Well for someone who doesn’t mean to, she’s pretty good at it. Maybe that should be put on the resume. Well, all the great teams have overcome obstacles! Billie has good news, though. She talked to Sonya Deville and the Squad is in the Women’s Rumble match! They can practice throwing Billie out over the ropes! Billie can pretend to be Bianca or Mella! No, there is no “us” anymore. The Squad works better when it’s just Ruby and Liv. Sorry. Will Billie ever catch a break?

 

Daniel Bryan is here!

And he goes past Sami’s new sign, where SAMI is an acronym: Stand Against Moral Injustice. Clever. Bryan goes to the ring and fans join in the “YES!” fingers on their screens. Bryan says a week from this Sunday is one of the most unique and historic traditions in the WWE, the Royal Rumble match. And even saying that, this time of year, a chill goes down Bryan’s spine. It’s a little hard to explain why but Bryan will give it his best shot. “It’s the uncertainty of what number you’re going to. It’s watching the countdown for every superstar that comes out. It’s waiting for that buzzer to hit, for that music to play, for you to run down, nobody knows that you’re coming, and you don’t know who’s coming out next!

“It’s the exhilaration of competing against 29 other superstars that could go over an hour, and it’s every man for themselves.” One of the most challenging, grueling things you can do in the WWE, and that makes Bryan feel alive. Despite all the pain, all the uncertainty, it is absolutely worth it because the winner gets to face the champion of their choosing in the main event of WrestleMania! Bryan is very proud of his career, he’s accomplished a lot. But the one thing he has never done is win a Royal Rumble! Experts, commentary, Michael Cole even, will say- Cesaro interrupts!

Cesaro thought he beat some sense into Bryan last week, but here Bryan is again talking about how he’ll win the Rumble. Cesaro appreciates Bryan explaining the rules, but Cesaro could’ve done it better and in five languages. But that’s besides the point. Bryan is NOT winning this year’s Rumble, Cesaro is. As the first-ever Andre the Giant Battle Royal winner, Cesaro is an expert on this. Bryan didn’t forget about the loss, but instead of talking, how about putting the mics down, and they can fight it out again? Cesaro says no. Cesaro is sick and tired of proving himself week after week doing the same thing over and over! He beat Bryan, and Bryan isn’t dressed for the occasion, Cesaro issues an open challenge! Anyone who has already declared for the Rumble, come on down!

The one to answer the open challenge is… Dolph Ziggler! One half of the SmackDown Tag Team Champions is here asking about the conversation. Ziggler has been in the second most Rumbles ever. Ziggler can go all night long, ask anyone. And aside from himself and his colleague, Robert Roode, there is no one that can go toe-to-toe with Ziggler except maybe Cesaro. No offense to Bryan but it ain’t 2014 anymore. But if we’re talking about a Rumble challenge, Ziggler wants to win to go to Mania and get paid! So Bryan, scoot over, and Cesaro, consider your challenge accepted. Will the Show-Off show up the Swiss Cyborg?

Cesaro VS Dolph Ziggler!

SmackDown returns and Bryan has joined commentary for this great match-up already underway. Ziggler has Cesaro down and has a leg, gets a cover, TWO! Cesaro gets a lateral press but Ziggler keeps his shoulder up. Cesaro pushes him around, gut wrenches and lifts but Ziggler resists by grabbing Cesaro’s leg again. Ziggler shifts, rolls, has a cover, ONE! Cesaro tries a cover, ONE! Cesaro waistlocks but Ziggler gets the ropes. Ziggler elbows Cesaro away then jumps on for a sleeper hold! Cesaro stays up, RAMS Ziggler into buckles and is free. Cesaro runs in to BLAST Ziggler with that EuroUpper! Ziggler flounders into a trip and then a SWISS SWING!

Cesaro brings Ziggler around and around for a count of 10, then maybe 15 even, or 20! Cesaro throws Ziggler, covers, TWO! Ziggler survives the swing, Cesaro stalks him to a corner, then runs in, only to get POST! Ziggler rolls Cesaro up, TWO! Cesaro back drops, Ziggler sunset flips, TWO! Cesaro sits on the cover, TWO! Ziggler sunsets, TWO! Cesaro, TWO! Ziggler, TOW! Cesaro high stacks, TWO! Ziggler pops him to a cover, TWO! SUPER- No, Cesaro blocks but uppercuts into a backslide,. Cesaro slips out, but into a ZIGZAG! Cover, TWO!! And yes, Sami is still protesting. He’s even memeing! “Sami was robbed, change my mind.”

Cesaro and Ziggler slowly rise and Ziggler sleeper holds again! Cesaro gets up, shifts Ziggler from backpack to a front facelock, for a suplex! Ziggler knees free, kicks low then runs, into a pop-up! Ziggler tries to huricanrana, but Cesaro makes it a NEUTRALIZER! Cover, Cesaro wins!

Winner: Cesaro, by pinfall

Michael Cole points out this is two times in a row that Cesaro has beaten a former world champion! Will Cesaro take the Rumble and be a WrestleMania contender?

 

Sasha Banks VS Reginald w/ Carmella!

It is very rare for WWE to do co-ed matches like this, and certain against a champion like The Boss against the sommelier in employment of The Untouchable Princess of Staten Island. Will Reginald ruin Sasha’s momentum towards the rematch with Mella?

SmackDown returns and Mella makes her entrance to accompany Reginald to the ring, two other assistants bringing the champagne and drinking glasses to the ring for them. Mella and the champagne join commentary as the bell rings. Sasha tells Reggie it’s time to put up or shut up, but Reggie presents her with an orange rose. Sasha accepts the rose but goes to slap Reggie! He blocks, only for Sasha to SLAP him with the other hand! Sasha knuckle locks, goes up and uses the ropes to arm-drag, but Reggie handsprings through! Mella says that’s her Reggie! Reggie waistlocks but Sasha resists the lift and slips out the back to switch. Reggie does the same and rolls right out of the ring!

Reggie plays some cat ‘n’ mouse and does a back flip off the apron! But Sasha wrecks him with a baseball slide dropkick! Sasha whips Reggie at the steel steps but Reggie leaps up and over! Mella applauds the bit of flair, Sasha gives chase, they go in the ring and speed things up with hurdle for hurdle. Reggie shows off with that flip, Sasha goes up and springboards, but Reggie blocks the sunset flip! Reggie wheelbarrows Sasha but she turns that into a BULLDOG! Sasha wants Mella to see why she’s the boss, but Sasha misses the meteora to hit buckles! Sasha avoids Reggie’s elbow drop, Oklahoma roll but Reggie slips out!

Reggie avoids Sasha’s dropkick to bomb lift, but Sasha arm-drags free! Sasha runs in but is put on the apron, but she knees Reggie away! Sasha goes up, leaps, crossbody but Reggie holds her up! Reggie pops Sasha up but into another arm-drag! Reggie is sent out, Sasha hurries to the apron, METEORA! Sasha slaps the champagne out of Mella’s hand! Sasha goes back into the ring with Reggie, brings him in for a backstabber but he rolls through! Sasha kicks him, and knuckle locks to flip up and into another METEORA! Mella sneers but Sasha tilt-o-whirls and drags Reggie down by his arm! BANK STATEMENT!! Reggie taps, Sasha wins!

Winner: Sasha Banks, by submission

Sasha got her revenge on Reggie, and throws him out to Mella! Will Sasha do the same to the Princess at the Royal Rumble?

 

Roman Reigns sits in his private room.

Heyman says Roman was brilliant. They got Pearce! “We? What’re you talking about?” Heyman knew what Roman was up to, he fed right into it. Roman simply passed Heyman the mic to do what he does better than anyone, and that is verbally rip someone to shreds. Roman didn’t say Heyman should challenge Pearce to a match. But Heyman has stepped into it, so he has to do this. Roman didn’t hire some punk to be Special Counsel, he hired a man. So Heyman needs to go out there and represent Roman as a man and handle business. “Paul, be a man. Handle your business.” The Special Counsel has no words, will he have no defense against Pearce?

 

WWE Intercontinental Championship: Big E VS Apollo Crews!

Sami Zayn is irate as Big E taunts him with the belt. But Sami is not the champion’s concern, he’s taking on the man in the ring! Big E and Apollo have been in friendly competition, but after what Heyman told both of them over these last few weeks on Talking Smack, will all of that go out the window?

The introductions are made, the belt is raised, and it’s time to #ThinkBig or go home!

Apollo rushes Big E but right into an OVERHEAD SUPLEX! Apollo goes to the apron, Big E follows and stomps him, to then run and APRON SPLASH! Big E is fired up and gets back in to run at Apollo. Apollo elbows back, BOOTS back, then runs, into a scoop! Apollo slips off, and ENZIGURIS! Big E wobbles into a BOOT! Standing moonsault! Cover, TWO! Apollo keeps focus as he stalks Big E. Apollo waistlocks and GERMAN SUPLEXES Big E! Apollo holds on to GERMAN again! Big E elbows over and over until he’s free, and he gets Apollo with the Urenag-E! Cover, TWO! Big E keeps his cool as he goes out after Apollo.

Big E and Apollo end up by the announce desk. Big E tells Apollo he’ll never make the mistake of disrespecting him again. Apollo pushes Big E away, then dodges him to go up the apron and MOONSAULT! Direct hit and down goes Big E! Apollo gets Big E back in at the ring count of 8 then climbs up top! Big E hits Apollo first then climbs up to join him. Big E throws forearms, stands Apollo up, but Apollo resists the superplex! Apollo throws headbutts as fans clap on their screens! Big E falls back, Apollo adjusts, but Sami uncuffs himself! Sami’s strike is over as Apollo leaps to missile dropkick Big E!

Apollo resets but Sami HELLUVA KICKS him!! SAMI SCREWS APOLLO!

Winner: Apollo Crews by disqualification (Big E is still WWE Intercontinental Championship)

And then Sami HELLUVA KICKS Big E! And Sami has the nerve to talk about injustice! Sami says HE is the champion, but that this is what Big E and Apollo deserve! Will Sami get what he deserves soon enough?

 

Kevin Owens speaks.

“I showed up to work today, and I was told I couldn’t get into the building because Roman Reigns pulled some strings to make sure I wouldn’t be there. Roman, dude… It’s fine. But just know this: at the Royal Rumble, there’s no more strings for you to pull.” At the Rumble, they will settle this once and for all. And Roman calls Kevin “a cockroach that won’t die,” and tells him to just stop fighting, but Kevin can’t do that. Roman has yet to beat Kevin like the champion he claims to be. Roman did not earn those victories. The family did that for him.

And the other reason Kevin keeps fighting is this. Kevin has a lot of tattoos, and they all have a story behind them. He has his wife’s name on his wrist, his kids’ names on the other side, then one to remind him of his parents. Kevin fights for all of them, but he has tattoos on his knuckles. These are his grandfathers’ initials: M for Melvin, his dad’s dad, and P is for Pierre, his mom’s dad. Those men had Kevin’s back all the way. They were his biggest fans, and nothing made them happier than seeing Kevin in the ring. The biggest regret Kevin will have is that he didn’t make it to the WWE in time for them to see, because they both passed away just before.

But they will always be with Kevin. The mark they left on Kevin will always be there, because both men battled illnesses that should’ve made their lives a lot shorter. Those two men refused to quit, and because of that, Kevin was lucky to have many, many great years with them. So how can Kevin stop fighting? That is why Kevin will not stay away and why he will #JustKeepFighting. That is why come Royal Rumble, Kevin will be the Last Man Standing.

 

The Street Profits have a basket.

Montez Ford & Angelo Dawkins see Ziggler talking with Sonya, and have a quick question: Are you ready~, ready~? This is a celebratory basket for congratulating Sonya on her new job and office! But don’t jump the gun! They’re not just congratulating her on the new gig. She sits next to Pearce, looking pretty, but they have business. It has been two, two weeks, since the Profits lost the SmackDown Tag Team Championships against Ziggler & Roode, Entertainment Dysfunction. Put that on a t-shirt, it’ll make millions! But that aside, the Profits- Sonya knows they want their rematch. She’s so smart!

Sonya knows they were champions for 312 days, won two Slammy Awards, so yes they deserve a rematch. But Ford is still recovering from the leg injury. If he gets in that ring too soon, gets hurt and is out of action, that hurts SmackDown as a whole. So hear her out: For now, hang out, keep doing your segments to hype the show, and let another team get the opportunity. Then when Ford is 100%, he and Dawkins get back in the game and back in the title picture. Cool with t hat, fam? yeah, that’s cool. Golly, Sonya, thanks for your concern. Enjoy the basket! It’s expensive. But will the long wait really work out in the Profits’ favor?

 

Ultimate Athletic Obstacle Course Challenge: Bayley VS Bianca Belair!

The Role Model wants The EST to prove she’s still got it when it comes to being the strongest, the fastest, the roughest, the toughest, etc. Therefore, SmackDown is setting up a truly challenging obstacle course for them both to run! Who backs up their words, after the break?

SmackDown returns and Michael Cole presides over this special competition, and gives the introductions for Bianca, then for Bayley. Bayley takes over and says DING DONG, BYE Cole. This is her show now! And look, Bianca, this is what Bayley has for her. America Ninja Warrior ain’t got nothing on UAOCC! This is of course timed, starting right here with the “big ol’ 400 pound tractor tire,” which you only need to flip once. Go down the ramp, take on the short hurdles, climb the trio of military walls. And then Bayley even got advice from Chad Gable and Alpha Academy, he will put you through the full body test, the fireman’s carry!

But that’s not all! The very last challenge is grab the basketball, put it through the net, and time stops at the exact moment the ball exits the bottom of the net! The competitor with the shortest time is of course the winner! Let’s get the clock going, and Bayley wants to go first. Bianca says that’s fine, and we begin… NOW! Bayley flips the tire, hurries down the ramp, though not quite that quickly, and takes on the hop hurdles to go right at the military walls. The short one seems to throw her off, and she just weaves around them?! Is that allowed?

Bayley fireman’s carries Gable, and he seems to be heavier than he looks. Bianca “cheers” Bayley on as she goes from one end to another, then she gets the ball to DUNK- no, wait, there! Bayley finishes at 1:12. But she says she did Bianca a favor. “Let’s EST up this course,” all for Bianca. Oh, the hurdles are now full hurdles, and Bianca wraps her braid. GO! Bianca easily flips the tire, runs down the ramp., leaps the hurdles, leaps the walls, but she isn’t carrying Gable, but OTIS! Bianca has 40 seconds, she carries the 330 pound Otis with ease, then gets the ball and even dares Bayley to play D! She breaks ankles and DUNKS! She had 17 seconds to spare!

Winner: Bianca Belair

Sorry, Bayley, but that’s the power of the EST! Bayley is a sore loser and throws the ball at Bianca! And then hammers away with forearms and stomps! The ref reprimands but Bayley doesn’t care, as she POSTS Bianca and knocks down the basketball hoop! Bayley storms off, perhaps having proven she’s the meanest on the roster.

 

Rey Mysterio coaches Dominik backstage.

Rey reviews with Dom that Baron Corbin is a former boxer, so he has to watch out for the hands. Dom says Rey can trust him to have this. Dom is comfortable with his skills and has prepared. Okay, then we’ll do it his way. But if something goes wrong, they do it Rey’s way. That’s fair. Dom heads out, will he be able to trump the Wolf King?

 

Dominik Mysterio VS King Corbin!

SmackDown returns as Corbin is already in the ring. Dominik makes his entrance, leaving Rey backstage so he can handle things. The bell rings and Dom circles with Corbin. They tie up, Corbin powers Dom to a corner but Dom dodges the hands to throw hands of his own! Dom rams his shoulder in but Corbin shoves him away. Dom dropkicks but Corbin stays up. Dom whips, Corbin reverses but Dom wheelbarrows and throws Corbin out of the ring! The ring count climbs but Dom slingshots, only for Corbin to get clear and CLOBBER him! Corbin drags Dom up and into the ring, covers, TWO! Corbin already glares at the ref as he grows annoyed.

Corbin stalks Dom, drags him to ropes and stands on him! The ref counts, Corbin hops off at 4, then drags Dom up to throw body shots! The ref counts, Corbin lets off at 4 again, then stands Dom up. Corbin whips Dom corner to corner hard! Dom bounces off buckles to hit the mat, and Corbin takes his time bringing Dom back up. Corbin brings Dom around, reel shim in but Dom slips out to dropkick a leg! Corbin ends up on ropes, Dom dials it up but the call is blocked! Corbin drags Dom from ropes, yanks but Dom lands on his feet, only for Corbin to DECK him! Corbin reels Dom in and hits END OF DAYS! Cover, Corbin wins!

Winner: Baron Corbin, by pinfall

The Wolf King wins because he did this his way! Will the Mysterios regroup and draw up a winning game plan?

 

Adam Pearce VS Paul Heyman w/ Roman Reigns!

Scrap Daddy’s switcheroo not only got the better of the Special Counsel last week, it might be why he stuck his foot in his mouth this week! Will Pearce’s return to the ring also get the better of Paul E. Dangerously? Has the Head of the Table truly left Heyman hanging?

Heyman is taping his hands on his way to the ring, but stumbles off the steps? The ref checks on Heyman but he says he’s fine. Give him a minute to walk it off. Heyman fumbles on the steps again and Pearce smells a plot. After all, he let his “bum leg” be why Kevin Owens is back in the title match. And just as he knew, Heyman cites “card subject to change.” This was the trump card Heyman had up his sleeve! Roman did NOT leave the building, he’s heading to the ring! Now that the bait ‘n’ switch is on the other foot, will Scrap Daddy be scrap metal?

Adam Pearce VS Roman Reigns w/ Paul Heyman!

Roman SUPERMAN PUNCHES Pearce the second he’s in the ring! This isn’t even a match because the bell hasn’t rung! Heyman says he has obviously found a suitable replacement, and Roman is pulling steps apart. Pearce throws a haymaker! Roman glares at Pearce, and LOW BLOW KICKS him! And then throws Pearce OVER the barriers! Roman is snarling as he goes around the way to drag Pearce up and throw him INTO ThunderDome screens! And then he drags Pearce up to throw heavy forearms! And then throws him into stage wall! Fans give thumbs down but that’s not going to save Pearce from Roman’s wrath!

Roman fireman’s carries Pearce and puts him on the upper level, the same place he threw Kevin off of. But speaking of, Kevin runs in and attacks Roman! Kevin saves Pearce as he throws haymakers and bumps Roman off barriers! Roman throws Kevin into screens, throws haymakers of his own, then they brawl to ringside! It’s Royal Rumble come early! Roman puts Kevin in the ring, storms in but into a USUPERKICK! Roman SUPERMAN PUNCH- NO! STUNNER from Kevin!! Kevin dares Roman to get back up! Roman sputters as he gets out of the ring but Kevin whips him into barriers! And clubs away on his back!

Referees rush out to try and stop this, and Kevin backs off to cool off. But then Kevin comes back to STOMP Roman into barriers! Roman flounders back up, referees try to talk Kevin down, and even Pat Buck, Pearce’s coworker. But Kevin gets past them to give Roman another STUNNER! Kevin wants Heyman to say something but Heyman has nothing to say! So Kevin brings Roman over, pops him up, POWERBOMB through the announce desk!! Kevin is pulling steel steps apart! The refs keep him from bringing that over to Roman! Kevin says Roman’s lucky the officials are here to stop him, but it won’t happen at the Royal Rumble! Will Kevin truly #StunTheWorld when he is THE Last Man Standing?


My Thoughts:

A great SmackDown that honestly could’ve been a go-home to the Royal Rumble in some cases. Charlotte & Asuka VS Riott Squad was good, but naturally the champions win, mostly because Billie was too involved. She has been kicked out of the Riott Squad, though she wasn’t really a member to begin with, but I feel like they could’ve gone another week, though. Natty & Tamina were watching backstage, I wouldn’t mind seeing them get a match with Charlotte & Asuka, even if they were to lose. The match of Sasha Banks VS Reginald was pretty good, mostly because Reggie is insanely athletic. Depending on how the story goes of him being Mella’s sommelier, maybe he can split off and get into like 205 Live and the Cruiserweight Division to freshen things up a bit.

But of course Sasha wins, she’s the champion. I have a feeling this means the go-home sees Mella standing tall so that Sasha is still the favored to win. The “Ultimate” obstacle course challenge was very clearly going to be won by Bianca, but I commend Bayley for trying to rig it in her favor. Though, shouldn’t she have been penalized or even disqualified for outright skipping those military style walls? Pretty sure we’re getting a match between the two, and Bianca can sell the bad arm to “overcome” it and win, for big momentum going into the Women’s Rumble.

The Profits had a good segment with Sonya, and I like that, at least on the surface, Sonya is being a responsible official and having the Profits wait so they can be healed up. But I wonder if there will even be defenses in that time, as there aren’t many tag teams on SmackDown. It’s mostly the champs, the Profits, Cesaro-Nakamura, and maybe Alpha Academy, aka Gable & Otis. Dom VS Corbin felt like filler just to get things to what Rey was talking about last week, which should’ve just been what we got this week. Unless it was because the person they have in mind (Cain Velasquez) isn’t available right now because of some COVID concerns. That I’d understand.

Sami Zayn “protesting” this episode just so he’d be ringside for the Intercontinental Championship was a pretty good long game for the episode. Sami’s signs were clever, but it does seem a shame for what should’ve been a huge match. Maybe we get another Triple Threat for this title, and that is the way Big E loses. Though, I think it’d work well if Big E won, making his reign feel even bigger from having dealt with two contenders. After that, Big E can face just about anyone else on the roster, such as Nakamura, Cesaro or even Otis. And speaking of, Cesaro had a good promo with Bryan and a really good match with Ziggler, but I feel like all these wins are setting Cesaro up to not win the Rumble. But I said the same thing about Bryan making it his mission to win the reason he won’t, so maybe as far as SmackDown goes, it’s between the two of them as Rumble finalists.

And again, we got a lot of great stuff out of the Roman Reigns story. The opening promo segment was really good, it helped set up the main event, and gave a great tease of Pearce VS Heyman. But Heyman using the fake injury and “card subject to change” back on Pearce was also very clever, and naturally it was Roman who would beat Pearce up to get back at him for everything so far. Kevin had a really good promo, made a great save, and got to stand tall tonight with the table bomb. I’m curious as to Kevin’s part in the go-home next week. I can’t see him standing tall two weeks in a row just to keep the math in Roman’s favor, so maybe Roman turns this around to then defy the math and still retain the title. I’m pretty sure Roman does retain, and we leave it up to the Rumble to decide the rest.

My Score: 8.5/10


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