SmackDown prepares for the Extreme!
Extreme Rules is around the corner, so SmackDown is rising to the occasion! Before they battle for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships, The New Day, Heavy Machinery and the Planet’s Tag Team Champions meet for a SmackDown Summit! Will there be peace this close to the Triple Threat tag war?
- Finn Balor VS Shinsuke Nakamura; Nakamura wins.
- Nikki Cross VS Carmella; Cross wins.
- Triple Threat: Otis Dozovic w/ Tucker Knight VS Xavier Woods w/ Big E VS Daniel Bryan w/ Rowan; Dozovic wins.
- Roman Reigns VS Dolph Ziggler w/ Shane McMahon, Elias & Drew McIntyre; Reigns wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Footage from earlier, as Dolph Ziggler arrives at SmackDown.
Kayla Braxton asks Ziggler about the implosion between him and his tag partner, Kevin Owens. Partner? That “worthless tub of excuses” Kevin Owens? Ziggler carried Kevin like he has the entire WWE for a decade. But Kevin pulls up behind Ziggler and honks his horn. Kevin then parks and Ziggler complains about the interview. Oh what? Was Ziggler going to say it should’ve been him again? Or maybe that he steals the show? Only because Ziggler does! A brawl breaks out and other superstars hurries to pull them apart! Kevin shoves the Singh Brothers off him to keep brawling with Ziggler! The B-Team hold Kevin back and then Shane rushes out.
Shane tells Ziggler to go inside, and then tells Kevin to leave the parking lot. Kevin, bloody lip and all, is told to take the night off. Kevin doesn’t want to cool off, but he has no choice. Will he get back at Ziggler before Extreme Rules on Sunday?
Cut to Shane McMahon backstage.
His response to that brawl was to cancel the scheduled main event. It is his job to keep superstars from fighting outside the ring. Kevin is sent home and Ziggler stays, but what is the new main event? He has some ideas and will circle back to an interview when he has made a decision. What will replace the grudge match now that we DON’T get Prizefighter VS Show-Off?
Kevin Owens invades SmackDown!
The Prizefighter doesn’t care about the ban! He spoke the truth about Ziggler, and now he’ll speak the truth about Shane! Kevin’s tried to be a good company guy, but he’s done! Kevin saw the McMahon Family say “from now on, we’re going to listen to the fans,” but the only thing we’ve gotten is SHANE becoming an abuser of power and hogger of spotlight! Now we sit back and watch Shane claim he’s the Best in the World. It makes Kevin want to smash his head on the announce desk! Speaking of, Kevin gets on the desk! Shane comes out and cuts Kevin’s mic. But Kevin just grabs another mic! “Hey guess what, idiot? There’s more than one microphone!”
And as he was saying, Shane hogging the spotlight is an insult to wrestlers who work so hard to be part of the WWE! And when Shane calls himself the Best in the World, everyone wants to tell Shane, “Kiss my ass!” Another mick goes off, so he takes Byron Saxton’s headset! Security is told to take Kevin out as Kevin rants about all the superstars who are left off the show because of Shane. Kevin gets away from security and Shane is satisfied, but the fans are cheering for Kevin. Is this the last Shane has heard from an irate Prizefighter?
Finn Balor VS Shinsuke Nakamura!
The Extraordinary Man is still the WWE Intercontinental Champion, but the King of Strong Style might look to change that. Can Nakamura prove himself against Finn tonight to cut the line to a title match?
SmackDown returns as Nakamura makes his entrance. Finn follows with his entrance, and throws up some Too Sweets. The bell rings and we begin!
Nakamura and Finn circle and tie up. Fans duel as Nakamura waistlocks. Finn standing switches but Nakamura elbows out hard! Nakamura rains down those elbows, then whips Finn to ropes. Finn reverses but Nakamura sunset flips, only for Finn to roll through and dropkick him down! Finn drags Nakamura up but Nakamura powers him to a corner. Nakamura rams his shoulder in over and over, but backs off at the ref’s count. He comes back to stomp Finn as SmackDown goes picture in picture. Nakamura backs off again and Finn catches his breath. Nakamura chokes Finn on the ropes but lets up at the count. He drags Finn around in a facelock to grind him down. Finn endures and fights his way up, only for Nakakura to snapmare and drop a knee! Cover, TWO!
Nakamura keeps his cool as he kicks away on Finn. Nakamura drags Finn up for knees. Finn blocks a kick! But Nakaura comes from the other side! Cover, TWO! Nakamura keeps on Finn with another chinlock. Finn fights his way up and fights out of the hold. He runs but into Nakamura’s knee! Nakamura covers, TWO! Nakamura stomps Finn more then drags him back into the facelock. He stands Finn up and suplexes for a gourd buster! ANd he rams in his knees! Cover, ONE! Nakamura grows annoyed but he keeps on Finn by pulling him into a chinlock. Nakamura stretches Finn back but Finn fights his way up, only to be wrangled back down. The chinlock returns and Finn endures again.
Nakamura suddenly lets Finn go to stomp him more. Nakamura toys with Finn as he puts the chinlock back on. SmackDown returns to single picture as Finn fights up out of the cobra clutch. Finn gets free but Nakamura knees low. Nakamura whips corner to corner but Finn boots him back. Finn runs and rallies with forearms! Finn whips but Nakamura reverses, only to get forearms! And the takedown to double stomps! Finn fires up with the fans as Nakamura gets to a corner. Finn runs in to CHOP and whip! Nakamura reverses but misses a kick, to get the elbow drop DDT! Cover, TWO!
Finn keeps his cool as he aims from a corner. Nakamura stops the Slingblade and shoves Finn, to block the boots and KICK Finn in the back. Sliding German Suplex! Nakamura takes aim from a corner now, but Finn Slingblades back! Finn hurries up top as Nakamura is down! But Nakamura is up fast to trip Finn up! Top Shelf Knee! Finn tumbles to the apron but Nakamura follows. Nakamura aims from the second rope, FLYING KNEE! Finn falls to the floor but Nakamura pursues. Nakamura drags Finn up and brings him around to throw right into the post! Then the barriers! Then as the count reaches 6, back into the post! Nakamura gets in at 9, but Finn is in at 9.5! Nakamura throws Finn back out and follows again. Finn stands, KINSHASA!
Nakamura returns into the ring and lets the count climb. Finn stirs at 8, and is back in at 9.5 again! But another knee from Nakamura sends him back out! Nakamura shows no mercy as he whips Finn into barriers, then into steel steps! He knees Finn into the steps, then waits until 8 to reenter the ring. Finn’s in at 9.5 again?! KINSHASA! Cover, Nakamura wins!
Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura, by pinfall
It took a third time, but the King of Strong Style puts Finn down for the count! Will Nakamura turn up the intensity even more when it’s for the title?
Shane talks with Elias and Drew McIntyre.
They had Roman Reigns where they wanted, but then Cedric Alexander ruined things. Shane and McIntyre still won even though Roman and Cedric tried to cheat, so now the Best in the World has the physical and mental advantage. Elias has the perfect funeral song for Undertaker, too. It’s very spooky. But Ziggler comes by to complain about not getting to end “that mouth breather” Kevin Owens. Shane knows that he was going to do that in the parking lot, but he couldn’t allow that. Kevin is gone, but since Ziggler still wants to be in the main event, he will be. Ziggler can help Shane out against Roman Reigns. Ziggler’s in for that, especially with Shane and crew ringside for him. Will this main event conspiracy go Shane’s way?
Samoa Joe speaks.
“You can deny the truth all you want, but that does not change the facts.” Joe offered Kofi Kingston mercy and safety, but he knew Kofi wouldn’t accept it. Kofi is everything Joe says he is. Kofi is a hustler, and at Extreme Rules, Joe will tear away that lie and beat him down to the bear essence of his true self. And when that’s done, Joe puts Kofi to sleep. “For all those who you call brother, for all those you have called family,” that he stood on and walked over, Joe will take all of that back. But most of all, Joe will take the WWE World Championship. Will Joe’s twisted truth become reality?
Kayla Braxton presides over the SmackDown Women’s Championship contract signing.
First out, representing herself and Alexa Bliss, it’s Nikki Cross! The Loony Lass won a Beat the Clock Challenge on last night’s Raw to make sure The Goddess got the stipulation she wanted. And what better stipulation for the miniature manipulator than to make it a Handicap Match? Therefore, Nikki is here to sign for both herself and Alexa. Bayley makes her entrance next and takes her seat across from Nikki. We all know the stipulation has been set to put pressure on Bayley. Is that why she attacked after talking? Bayley says she’s not here to fight, she just wants to talk. She’s not surprised Alexa didn’t show up, and is glad Nikki did. Bayley and Nikki are actually a lot alike. Bayley was starstruck, naive, and then grew up enough to see her “friend” only used her. That’s when Bayley became a champion on her own.
Oh so the one that dropped an elbow on Nikki is the “real” Bayley? Good to know Alexa was right! No, are you not seeing what Alexa is doing to you? She’s in Nikki’s head, controlling her! Nikki is doing Alexa’s dirty work! Because Alexa knows Nikki can handle herself! Bayley wants Nikki to ask herself something: “Are you really okay with helping someone else win a championship?” Nikki gets upset again, so Bayley says it’s fine. Bayley knows she’s in awful odds. Nikki is formidable, she doesn’t need Alexa. But Byaley will bring everything she has and will do anything to win. So what happens when they still lose, and Alexa blames Nikki?
Bayley signs her part, and Nikki says she’s doing this to help her friend. Not that Bayley would know what that’s like. All Bayley’s friends abandoned her! So don’t try to drive a wedge between her and Alexa! Alexa isn’t using Nikki! Alexa promised that when they win, she’ll share the title as the first-ever SmackDown Women’s co-champions! And with that, the contract is signed! Nikki tells Bayley to stick around for Nikki’s match with Carmella. Then Bayley will see that when it’s time to play, Nikki has all the fun. Carmella makes her entrance, because that match is next!
Nikki Cross VS Carmella!
SmackDown returns with the bell, and Nikki crossbodies immediately! Nikki rains down furious fists, then powers Carmella into a corner. She rams her shoulder in over and over then stomps a mudhole into Carmella! The ref backs Nikki off but Nikki snapmares Carmella for a dropkick! Cover, ONE! Nikki grins then glares at Bayley as she bounces Carmella’s face off the mat. Nikki thrashes Carmella and bounces her head off the mat again. Carmella gets to a corner and Bayley cheers her own but Nikki clubs Carmella down. Nikki snapmares Carmella and covers, TWO! Nikki keeps on Carmella with a modified Rings of Saturn, but fans rally up. Carmella endures and pops to a cover, TWO!
Nikki is on Carmella again with a half nelson and chinbar. Carmella fights her way up and fights out! Carmella rains down rights but Nikki shoves her away to clothesline her down! Nikki makes sure Bayley watches as she says, “This is on you!” But Carmella SLAPS Nikki! Nikki fires off and whips, but Carmella reverses to duck the crossbody! Both women are down but Carmella gets up. She rallies with clotheslines on Nikki, then gives her an atomic drop! Carmella bumps Nikki off her boot, to moonwalk and come back with the FABULOUS Bronco Buster! Nikki staggers up but blocks the Fabulous Kick. Nikki fishermans, but Carmella cradle counters! TWO, but Carmella mule kicks. Nikki blocks the kick again, PURGE! Cover, Nikki wins!
Winner: Nikki Cross, by pinfall
The Twisted Sister grins at Bayley, and Bayley nods. Bayley respects Nikki, but she’ll have to worry about both her and Alexa. Will Bayley be able to overcome two opponents at once to stay THE SmackDown Women’s Champion?
SmackDown shares footage from WWE Tokyo!
The live event in Japan a couple of weeks ago pit the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions, the IIconics, against Kairi Sane and Asuka, aka the Kabuki Warriors! Japan was excited to have the Pirate Princess and Empress of Tomorrow back for the night as the home team! And that home team defeated Peyton Royce and Billie Kay with an InSane Elbow! Now the Kabuki Warriors are lined up for a title shot!
The IIconics encounter the Kabuki Warriors and Paige backstage!
So remember the bet they made? They need to schedule a match for the titles. How about tonight? Sorry, can’t! Billie’s feeling ill. What does she have? Mad Cow Bird Flu… Stop stalling! This is so annoying! Ever since they won the titles, they just run and make excuses! All they ever do is run their mouths. They’re just “overrated, underwhelming, shrill, cowardly clowns!” And before Billie can retort, Paige SLAPS her! But they can’t fight back, right? They’re “sick”. But this match is coming. Will the Kabuki Warriors take those titles as easily as they took that win in Japan?
Backstage interview with Roman Reigns!
The Big Dog returns to SmackDown to speak on the new main event with Dolph Ziggler. But the deck is stacked again. Will Roman make it to Extreme Rules? Roman loves being against the odds! Roman is ready but Ziggler ain’t. And then Roman and the Deadman will be ready at Extreme Rules. Shane and his boys will #RestInPeace!
It’s time for the SmackDown Tag Team Summit!
Awwww~ Manchester~! Before their Triple Threat Tag match for the titles, the three teams are going to meet in the ring for a peaceful talk. Out first is the New Day’s Big E and Xavier Woods, but surprisingly no pancakes. Xavier speaks first that tonight he will be in a triple threat match with Daniel Bryan and Otis Dozovic. This will help ya bois get ready for THE triple threat tag match. Unfortunately, Big E was hoping for some other kind of three way. But hey, that means the New Day can touch championships! The New Day will be six~ time- Dang it, the Planet’s Tag Team Championships have to interrupt here?
Daniel Bryan clears his throat as he can’t believe the fans boo him. The fans should boo the New Day. Despite Bryan pinning Big E last week and Rowan slamming Xavier through a table, the New Day continues to make lewd jokes. And people wonder why they’re not taking this match seriously. That’s because when the New Day wins tag titles, no one else takes them seriously. Xavier says Bryan talks too much without actually saying things. And second, what does Big Red Rowan have to say? Strong silent type confuses Xavier. First Rowan takes orders from Bray, then Harper, and now Bryan? Who is Rowan’s daddy? Rowan is furious but Bryan keeps him back. Fans taunt with “Who’s Your Daddy?!”
Ignorant people follow ignorant leaders. The New Day deflect criticism with humor. But the New Day are among the best tag teams in the WWE! They’ve had some of the best tag matches in WWE history! Yet they’re somehow never out of the midcard, and are nothing more than a comedy act. They are the worst thing for the WWE tag team division. No, actually, Heavy Machinery would be worse. Those two follow in the New Day’s example, making jokes and walking like hot garbage- Speaking of, Heavy Machinery arrives! Tucker Knight and Otis Dozovic have mics, too. Tucker gets it, the champs are so great. But at Stomping Grounds, in their first attempt at those titles, Tucker and Otis took them to their limits.
Heavy Machinery proved who they were about. They lost but they didn’t feel sorry. They got back to work in the gym. Heavy Machinery earned their place in this Triple Threat! “Because Tucky, we’re Blue Collar Solid~!” That means overcoming any obstacle, even if it’s the longest-reigning champions, The New Day. Five times is great and all, but that sixth will have to wait. Heavy Machinery wants to be the NEW, W, W, E, Smack, Down, Tag, Team, CHAMPIONS~! Feels good. And when Heavy Machinery will show you there’s no party like a Blue Collar Party~! But that’s Sunday. Tonight, Dozer wants Woods and Bryan to know… “I’m COMIIIIN’~!” Dozer heads for the ring because that match is after the break!
Triple Threat: Otis Dozovic w/ Tucker Knight VS Xavier Woods w/ Big E VS Daniel Bryan w/ Rowan!
SmackDown returns as the three men are in the ring and the bell sounds. The three circle but Bryan bails out. Fans boo but he just soaks it up. Woods and Dozer circle and Woods waistlocks to headlock. Dozer powers up but Woods holds on. Fans say “Bryan Sucks!” while Dozer powers out of the headlock. Woods dodges Dozer and slides under but still gets run over !Bryan runs in now to hop onto Dozer with a sleeper! Dozer powers Bryan to a corner and breaks free, tot hen toss Bryan across the way! Woods kicks Dozer then facelocks, but Dozer is too big to suplex. Bryan returns to actually help Woods, but that’s still not enough! Dozer double suplexes them straight up! Then slams them down! Manchester, NH loves this as Dozer covers Bryan, TWO!
Dozer gets up and whips Woods to a corner. Woods bounces off to another whip, then another! Then yet another whip, and another whip! Dozer sees Bryan come in and pops him up for a flapjack! Dozer runs at Woods but gets a boot! Rowan clobbers Woods and Dozer, no disqualifications in a Triple Threat! He even takes out Big E and Tucky! But then they power him right over the announce desk! Big E and Tucker start shoving but the referee keeps the peace. The ref says they and Rowan are EJECTED! Fans boo but that’s the only way this triple threat can continue fairly. Who recovers first as SmackDown goes picture in picture?
Bryan, Woods and Dozer are each in a corner. Bryan slips out to the apron whiel Dozer staggers up. Dozer goes after Woods but Bryan trips him up! Bryan throws Woods out of the ring to then throw him into barriers! And rain down right hands! Bryan soaks up the heat again as he returns to the ring. He stalks Dozer at the ropes to throw forearms and kicks. Bryan whips but Dozer reverses hard! Bryan hits buckles and falls, and Woods returns to dropkick Dozer! Dozer stays up so Woods hits a roaring elbow and another dropkick! Dozer tumbles out and Woods takes aim. Woods slingshots but into Dozer’s arms! Woods slips out to shove Dozer into the apron, then dropkick him into it!
Bryan returns and hits a flying knee from apron to Dozer! Dozer’s down and SmackDown returns to single picture as Woods clobbers Bryan! Woods throws Bryan into barriers hard! Then Woods throws hands and puts Bryan back in the ring. Woods climbs up fast, then leaps at Bryan for a missile dropkick! Cover, TWO! Woods keeps on Bryan with a fireman’s carry, but Bryan fights out. Bryan puts Woods in a corner then runs in, but gets an elbow. Woods rolls, but into a takedown! Bryan has the arm for the Lebelle Lock! It’s on deep, but here comes Dozer! Dozer breaks it up and Woods gets to safety. Bryan glares at Dozer and starts throwing Yes Kicks!
Fans rally behind Dozer as he takes kick after kick! Bryan aims but the buzzsaw is blocked to a scoop! And a spinning slam! Woods returns to kick Dozer, then steps in for the tornado, but Dozer blocks and throws Woods! Dozer hits a corner splash on Woods, then one on Bryan! Bryan falls like a tree while Woods is on the apron. Fans fire up as Dozer pumps it up! Dozer hits the Caterpillar Elbow! Bryan crawls away to the apron, and hotshots Dozer away! SUPERKICK from Woods to Dozer! Bryan runs but Woods shows his own strength! Trophy lift to gut buster drop! Bryan bails out again, Woods SUPERKICKS Dozer again! But Woods runs into a pop-up powerslam!! Cover, Dozer wins!!
Winner: Otis Dozovic, by pinfall
Heavy Machinery’s human wrecking ball wins one for the team! Can he and Tucker do it together when it’s all six men at once?
SmackDown takes a look at catering.
WWE 24/7 Champion Drake Maverick hides under the buffet table, but the focus is on Ember Moon. She grabs herself some things, but then Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville cut in line. Ember speaks up, but they’re the ones accusing her of skipping the line. This isn’t Twitter where you can troll and get away with it. This is real life. Yeah, and Ember was justified in what she said. And big talk from Mandy when Ember beat her. Pff, they are over with that. That actually brought these two closer together. But why doesn’t Ember go find herself a tag partner to have a match next week? If Ember can find herself a partner. Challenge accepted. And Ember will fight, even if it’s alone. Who will join the War Goddess in her fight with Fire & Desire?
SmackDown hears from Mustafa Ali.
“When you see evil, you’re supposed to run. Not me.” Ali runs towards evil. It’s not because he has no fear, no. He has fear. It’s that evil only wins when the good do nothing. So it doesn’t matter if it’s a monster, a giant or a devil, Ali has seen them all and fought them all. He saw them as a police officer and among the people he swore to protect and serve, and even those who swore to be the ones to protect and serve! There is no evil Ali will not battle. If Ali comes across the devil, he’ll square up and dance. And for those out there facing their own evil, remember that evil only wins when you don’t fight. When and where will we see the Beacon of Light fight the evil?
Aleister Black talks via titantron.
The Embodiment of the End has wanted to know who knocked on his door, but the other chair is empty. His opponent is choosing to stay anonymous until Extreme Rules itself. Aleister laughs and actually likes that. Because he sees what his opponent is doing. It is something Aleister would do, so he applauds this man for doing it. This is smart, it really is. But at this point, Aleister doesn’t even care anymore. Aleister doesn’t care who it is, he will fight whoever this is- But wait. Someone paces around the empty chair. They sit down, and it’s CESARO! Well here we go. Cesaro tells Aleister, “I’m the one who knocked at your door, because I’m here to pick. A fight. With you.” “Oh so very good, Mr. Cesaro.” Because Sunday, Aleister is ready to fight!
Shelton Benjamin thinks on Roman Reigns VS Dolph Ziggler.
And he thinks. And thinks. Then thinks some more. He smirks again, then leaves. Just what is Benjamin thinking these days?
SmackDown returns with a backstage interview of Kofi Kingston!
Paul Heyman walks by before the WWE Champion speaks on the “controversial” response to Joe’s handshake. Does Kofi worry what Joe will do to him at Extreme Rules? No, not at all! Kofi knows exactly who Joe is and what Joe does. That includes Joe getting inside his opponent’s minds. But what happened? Controversy~! Kofi got in Joe’s head and then gave him Trouble in Paradise right upside the dome! Joe is going to be Kofi’s most dangerous opponent, but by beating such opponents, that will be how Kofi becomes one of the greatest W, W, E, World, Heavy, Weight, Champion~! … BABYYYYYYYY!
Roman Reigns VS Dolph Ziggler w/ Shane McMahon, Elias & Drew McIntyre!
The Big Dog is backed against the wall again, but he doesn’t sweat it. Will he be able to keep his focus on the Show-Off while the Drifter, the Scottish Terminator and the “BEST in the WOOOOOOOOORLD” lurk nearby?
SmackDown returns once more, and the bell rings. Roman and Ziggler circle and approach. Ziggler gets a leg but gets away before Roman has him. Shane joins commentary but lets Elias and McIntyre go where they want around the ring. Ziggler ties up with Roman and pulls hair but Roman puts Ziggler in a corner. Roman lets up but Ziggler shoves. Roman shoves back and Ziggler falls down! Ziggler gets up to punch Roman then throw hands in the corner. Roman blocks to headbutt Ziggler down! Roman bumps Ziggler off buckles then again. He whips Ziggler and runs him over! Fans cheer as Roman fireman’s carries Ziggler. Ziggler slips out and kicks the leg, to then dropkick Roman down!
Ziggler drops elbows then covers, TWO! Shane isn’t worried as Ziggler bumps Roman off buckles and throws hands. Ziggler walks away to run back in for a big splash! And then another, but gets an uppercut! Ziggler bails out but Roman follows. Roman tells Elias to back off, then goes at Ziggler to hit the Drive-By Dropkick! McIntyre also lurks and Roman sees he’s surrounded. He puts Ziggler in the ring, but the ref warns McIntyre and Elias to stay back. Ziggler grabs Roman but Roman uppercuts him away! The ref checks on Ziggler while Elias distracts Roman. McIntyre shoves Roman into a post! Shane plays dumb as Ziggler fetches Roman to whip him into barriers! Ziggler puts Roman in to cover, TWO!
Ziggler grows frustrated and drops elbows to cover, TWO! Shane isn’t worried as Ziggler puts Roman in a crossface. Fans rally up for Roman as he endures the hold. Roman fights his way up and Ziggler keeps a sleeper hold to then throw Roman down. Ziggler drags Roman up for a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Shane is actually excited while Ziggler grows frustrated. Ziggler keeps on Roman with a chinlock but fans rally up again. Roman feeds off the energy and fights his way back up. Ziggler kicks low then turns Roman but Roman shoves him away, and gets him with a Samoan Drop! But Shane is still not worried.
The ref starts a standing count as both Roman and Ziggler are down. Ziggler gets up first and to the ropes. Roman follows at 5, but Ziggler runs in, only for his DDT to be denied! Roman rallies with clotheslines, then whips, but Ziggler reverses. Roman hits the leaping lariat! The Big Dog gives Ziggler point-blank clotheslines in the corner! Roman gets all 10 then BOOTS Ziggler down! Fans fire up as Roman locks ‘n’ loads! Now Shane is worried. Roman hits Elias with the SUPERMAN PUNCH! But Ziggler ZIGZAGS! Cover, TWO!! Shane is relieved that Roman is down, but Ziggler grows further frustrated. Ziggler stomps a la HBK as he waits for Roman to stand. Roman does stand, to SUPERMAN PUNCH! Cover, TWO!!
Ziggler survives but Roman isn’t done here. Fans fire up with Roman again, but McIntyre saves Ziggler. So Roman builds speed to FLY! Roman takes out Elias and McIntyre but Ziggler is safe. Shane gets in the ring to distract Roman, Ziggler SUPERKICKS Roman down! But wait, is that Kevin Owens!? STUNNER!! Shane is down but Roman and Ziggler get back in the ring! Roman denies the ZigZag to SPEAR!! Cover, Roman wins!!
Winner: Roman Reigns, by pinfall
The Big Dog overcomes the odds again! Will he and the Undertaker put the Best in the World down in the ground? Or will No Holds Barred only help Shane screw them over that much harder?
For a go-home episode, this SmackDown was much better than usual. This was certainly better than Raw just on the flow, but I don’t like that we needed a lot of recaps. We got people giving promos to help recap, and videos just take up minutes that could be used for matches and promos. But that aside, Samoa Joe and Kofi Kingston did give us good promos to keep the hype going. Rumors are that Kofi isn’t 100%, and may not be cleared for his match. Hopefully that isn’t the case, or else I fear we’ll get a quick squash like Joe VS Mysterio at Crown Jewel when Mysterio was hurt. And if that is the case, it’s now okay that this match isn’t getting a stipulation, since it’d just be a waste.
The developments with Kevin Owens were a great part of the night. His brawl with Ziggler in the parking lot and now what is basically a full Stone Cold style Face turn is going to be great for him and for SmackDown as we get deeper into the Summer. His promo on Shane was great, and his part in the main event getting at Shane was the icing on the cake. Roman VS Ziggler was a good match, even with the ringside help of McIntyre and Elias, and the Shane and Kevin stuff only added to it. Again, pretty sure Roman and Taker win despite what the math says about standing tall and all that. Taker VS McIntyre is likely at Summerslam, and now McIntyre can feud with Kevin on Shane’s behalf as the build.
In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if this builds to Survivor Series somehow. There are enough superstars on each side for the traditional 5v5, where you don’t even need Shane or Taker in the match. Team Shane can be McIntyre, Elias, Ziggler and The Revival against Team WWE or whatever name, with Roman, the Usos, Miz and Kevin. But that’s looking a little too far ahead, even with Bischoff set to have influence starting next week. Though, one thing I’d like to see at Summerslam is the Finn VS Nakamura title match. They had a great non-title match here tonight, and if Bischoff were to help with the build, I bet they can have an even better match in Toronto. That match could go either way, which is honestly the best thing.
I was a little disappointed hearing they wanted to reveal Aleister Black’s opponent for Extreme Rules, because it takes away some of the drama. I do like that they chose Cesaro, and the way he revealed himself was well-done, but it would’ve been so much better as a surprise on Sunday. Aleister VS Cesaro is going to be an amazing match, and Aleister obviously wins for a strong singles re-debut. Ali had a solid promo, but who knows where he’s going while titles are spoken for. For that matter, what is up with Shelton Benjamin doing the “trying to solve math” meme face? Hopefully Bischoff comes up with ideas to follow Vince’s random thoughts. Maybe the Intercontinental Championship gets more active when SmackDown moves to Fox, with Benjamin and Ali included in the picture.
The tag titles, SmackDown Women’s title and Women’s Tag Titles all got some good play tonight, too. The SmackDown Tag Team Summit was great, with all the promos flying back and forth. That Triple Threat singles match we got was great, and it was big for Dozer to win, but this only reinforces that someone else wins the tag match. It would be amazing if The New Day all had titles, but that level of amazing is why it isn’t happening just yet. Probably Summerslam if we’re lucky. The Women’s Tag promos were good, especially Paige’s SLAP to Billie Kay. Kabuki Warriors might have to wait for Summerslam, too, which works since we need more matches for Asuka and Kairi.
Bayley and Nikki had good promos and Nikki VS Carmella was solid, but there’s no way we get co-champions. I still expect Alexa to blame Nikki if they lose, bringing their story about. Though, that really removes contenders for Becky on Raw. This is the one time uncertainty might not be good. We need to know there will be strong contenders on both shows so that the Wild Card Rule doesn’t actually have to be used that match. Alexa and Nikki could still feud while also getting Becky involved, I’m just not sure how that works at this point, with Vince clearly still influencing Raw. Bayley is probably fine on SmackDown, with Charlotte open to come back around, Carmella still being a good choice, and even Ember, Mandy and Sonya.
My Score: 8.1/10