Time to strap in and take off!
Before blasting off in Houston, SmackDown lays down the law in Dallas! Daniel Bryan and Bray Wyatt make their Strap Match official!
- Six Man Tag: Roman Reigns & The Usos VS Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode; Reigns & The Usos win.
- Bliss-Cross VS Fire & Desire; No Contest.
- Elias & Braun Strowman VS Shinsuke Nakamura & Cesaro w/ Sami Zayn; Elias & Strowman win.
- Kofi Kingston w/ Big E VS John Morrison w/ The Miz; Morrison wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
Six Man Tag: Roman Reigns & The Usos VS Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode!
SmackDown just went from zero to 60 in six seconds! That’s because six men with a lot of history and animosity are starting us off with a main event level match! Will the Samoan Bloodline overthrow the tyrannical Wolf King? Or will they be forced to bow down before the Royal Rumble?
Tensions run high but the trios sort out. Fans boo Corbin as he holds up his scepter but Roman glares at him the entire time. We start with Jey and Ziggler, and they tie up. Ziggler puts Jey in a corner but lets up at the ref’s count. Ziggler gets a cheap shot elbow in and then headlocks. Jey headlocks back but Ziggler powers out. Jey runs Ziggler over with a shoulder and Dallas fires up! Jey CHOPS Ziggler towards the corner and tags in brother Jimmy. The Usos work together to double elbow and elbow drop on Ziggler. Cover, TWO! Ziggler scrambles away to the King’s corner and tags in Roode. The GLORIOUS One circles with Jimmy and tie up. Jimmy wristlocks and wrenches but Roode pulls hair.
Roode knees Jimmy in the corner and stomps him down. Fans rally with “UCE! SO!” but Roode keeps on Jimmy. Jimmy uppercuts and CHOPS back! And again! Jimmy whips corner to corner but Roode puts Jimmy on the apron. Jimmy has a fall but then Ziggler RAMS him into steel steps! That was almost a ZigZag into the steel! The ref restores order, and Jimmy’s knee seems to be the real injury. Medics hurry out to check on Jimmy while Roman and Jey stay close. Roman and Jey want them to check his head as much as they do his leg, but the main thing is, Jimmy is now out of the match. Fans cheer in encouragement, but it seems this Six Man just became a Handicap match. We’ll see more after the break.
SmackDown returns and it does seem to be 3v2 now as Ziggler grapples with Roman. Fans rally for Roman ash e puts Ziggler on the ropes. Roman lets up and Ziggler takes advantage with a kick! Ziggler throws haymakers but Roman counter punches! Roman drags Ziggler up to tag in Jey. The Bloodline mugs with headbutts then Jey cravats to a snapmare. Jey runs to drop a falling headbutt! Cover, TWO! Jey keeps focus as Ziggler gets to ropes again. Ziggler elbows back then brings Jey to the corner. Tag to Corbin, and the Wolf King mugs Jey with body shots. Fans boo but Corbin tells them to shush. Corbin throws big hands but Jey throws uppercuts! Jey rocks Corbin to a corner then runs in to whip. Corbin reverses but Jey stops himself. Corbin slides out then in, but Jey ducks the lariat to uppercut again!
Jey heads up top and leaps, but Corbin gets under. Jey rolls, but turns around into DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO!! Jey survives and Roman is right in Corbin’s face. The ref backs Roman down, this has to wait until Roman’s legal. Corbin drags Jey up and over to throw out of the ring. Fans rally for Roman as Corbin talks trash. This keeps everyone distracted from Ziggler’s cheap shots on Jey. Corbin tags Roode and Roode rams Jey into the LED apron! Roode puts Jey in then keeps between him and Roman. Roode stomps Jey’s hands then turns him around for a neckbreaker! Cover, TWO! Roode keeps on Jey as fans rally, and Ziggler tags in. Roode-Dolph mug Jey and stomp him down, then Ziggler jumps to drop an elbow. Cover, TWO!
Ziggler keeps Jey away from Roman and tags in Corbin. The mugging continues as Corbin drives elbows into Jey’s shoulders. Tag to Roode and Ziggler applauds while fans shout, “Corbin Sucks!” Roode whips Jey into the corner but Jey uses that to hit the King and his court! Jey kicks, Roode blocks, but the dragon whip comes around! Both men are down and Dallas is thunderous! Jey crawls but Corbin is lurking! Corbin trips Roman before the tag! And then rams Roman into steel steps and barriers, and even dumps him into the crowd! The Bloodline is in danger as we go to break.
SmackDown returns again as Corbin and court keep Jey isolated. They have Jey in the ring and fans boo hard as ever. Corbin whips Jey corner to corner but Jey reverses to send Corbin into the post! Both men are down now but Roman is still recovering. Ziggler and Roode coach Corbin on as he crawls, but fans go nuts as Roman returns! Corbin grabs Jey, but Jey still makes the tag! Corbin tags right out to Ziggler, but Roman runs roughshod over Ziggler and Roode! Roman whips, Ziggler reverses, but Roman hits a leaping lariat! Fans are fired up as Roman gives Ziggler the point-blank corner clotheslines! Roman goes all the way to 10 and then runs to BOOT Ziggler down! Roman goes to a corner and hears the fans getting even louder. Roman aims at Ziggler, locks ‘n’ loads, but Roode gets in to distract. Corbin attacks Roman from behind!
SUPERKICK from Ziggler! Cover, TWO!! Roman lives and Corbin is furious! Ziggler is freaking out, too, but he quickly refocuses to bring Roman up and throw him out. Ziggler distracts the ref so that Roode and Corbin can stomp away! The King and his court get away with that one, and Ziggler goes out to fetch Roman. Ziggler drags Roman up and puts him back in the ring, and then drops another elbow. Cover, TWO! Roman still lives, but Ziggler rakes his eyes! Tag to Corbin and Corbin stomps Roman down. Corbin drags Roman up and knees low, then runs to DECK Roman with that right hand. Corbin mocks Roman’s posing as fans boo and jeer. Corbin then rains down rights on Roman over and over and over.
The ref reprimands Corbin but Corbin tags out to Roode. Roode winds it up, “GLORIOUS~!” Roode kicks, but Roman rolls him up! TWO and a dead lift for a POWERBOMB! And Jey has returned! Roman and Roode crawl for their corners as fans rally up. But now Ziggler trips Jey to deny the tag and throw him into barriers! And then back the other way! And then across the desk! Roode tags to Corbin as Ziggler flips the desk hood on Jey. Corbin throws big hands on Roman, then body shots in the corner. The ref backs Corbin off but Corbin says not to touch him. Tag to Ziggler and Ziggler smiles as he brings Roman up and out for a neckbreaker. Cover, TWO! But Roman surviving only means taking more damage.
Ziggler backs off to tune up the band. Fans boo and jeer because Ziggler’s no Heartbreak Kid. Roman rises, Ziggler comes over, SUPERMAN PUNCH instead! Corbin and Roode can’t believe this! And more than that, here comes JIMMY! Bad leg or not, Jimmy wants back in! Hot tags and Jimmy rallies on Roode! Mule kick, uppercut and Samoan Drop! Fans are fired up and the “UCE! OH!” echoes out. Jimmy uppercuts then DIVES onto Corbin! Corbin goes over the desk and Jimmy hits Roode again. Uppercut for Ziggler, Jimmy climbs up, big crossbody! Cover, but Corbin gets in to break it just in time! Corbin reels Jimmy in but Jimmy escapes, SUPERMAN PUNCH for Corbin! Roman wants after Corbin now, and he gets to throw BIG uppercuts!
Roman keeps on Corbin all around the ring and throws him out into the crowd! Falls Count Anywhere comes a few days early with this! Roman throws a trash can into Corbin! Roode is still down in the ring as Roman beats down Corbin in front of the fans. They end up going by the stage and to the back. Jimmy uses his one good leg to climb, but Ziggler anchors it. Jimmy shoves Ziggler away, Jey LEAPS from the desk! Ziggler is down but Roode climbs up to intercept Jimmy! Jimmy headbutts Roode away and adjusts, for the USO SPLASH! Cover, the Usos and Roman win!!
Winners: Roman Reigns & The Usos, Jimmy Uso pinning
The Bloodline has this on lock down! The court got put in the Uso Penitentiary, but will Roman put Corbin in the dog house in Houston? Where in the arena will that match even end?!
WWE Backstage is going to be huge in Miami!
Not only with the entirety of The New Day be there with Renee Young and Booker T, but so will Roman Reigns! Will the Big Dog be feeling #GOODT after the Royal Rumble?
Michael Cole welcomes Lacey Evans to the stage!
The Sassy Southern Belle is here ahead of her SmackDown Women’s Championship match with Bayley in Houston, and fans are happy to see her. To look back at how this all started, Lacey simply questioned the leadership tactics of Bayley and Sasha Banks. But why did she do that? Lacey says it’s because they’re just bullies disrespecting the other women. Lacey learned early on to stand up, not be intimidated, and that’s what she did. Michael was able to talk with Lacey more about her “rough upbringing” growing up. Is that one of the reasons Lacey challenges the bullies? Lacey does admit that her upbringing wasn’t the best. Her father suffered and worked hard against addiction and depression and eventually lost that battle. That is something that Lacey deals with and uses as motivation to show the world that it doesn’t matter what hand you were dealt. You can play the game and do what you want in life.
And Lacey isn’t done by far. The hardest part of being in this position is knowing what the bullies are doing, what this world is coming to, and knowing that she has even this chance to set a proper example. She made it, there is nothing that you can’t do if you set your mind to it. That is why Lacey joined the Marines to prove part of her message, and then she eventually came to the WWE. One thing about Bayley and Sasha that Lacey must keep in mind: questioning their leadership, becoming champion would mean being the leader herself. What kind of leader will Lacey be? An inspirational one that pushes through and accomplish goals. Lacey will show not what she’s been through but what everyone else has been through doesn’t hold you back.
Lacey also sets an example for daughter, Summer Evans, who is also a fighter. We now review footage of about a month ago, Sasha VS Lacey, and it spilled to the outside, right in front of the Evans family. Summer shouted at Sasha and even growled, but Sasha mocked her for it. Lacey seeing that for herself, she is angry. But she is proud that Summer stood up to a bully. That was very brave. What others didn’t see is when later, Lacey had to comfort her crying daughter that this is her job. Sasha took advantage of having Summer nearby, and Summer is so worried for her mother. Lacey put Sasha on the shelf, and she’ll put Bayley- Bayley attacks Lacey first! The bad bad bully is pulled away by referees but Bayley mocks her, “Where’s your daughter now?!” Lacey gets up with teeth grit and eyes burning. Will Lacey make Bayley pay in interest for that one?
Backstage interview with Carmella and Dana Brooke!
The FABULOUS Princess and Ms. Flex Appeal are both declaring for the Women’s Royal Rumble. “It’s time to rumble, baby!” They’re ready, and Mella is the odds on favorite. After all, she did win the Women’s WrestleMania Battle Royal, and she is the original Ms. Money in the Bank to also successfully cash in and become champion. So don’t get it twisted, #MellaIsMoney. But Dana points out that everyone knows her Wikipedia. This year, every woman has a chance to swing for the fences. Friend VS friend, foe VS foe, every woman for herself. Dana may be a huge underdog, but she knows her worth and what she’ll have to do to win.
Wait, Lacey is after Bayley already! She’s throwing her off equipment trunks and then into ladders! Security hurries over, and even Dana and Carmella stop Lacey. But then Lacey takes off a shoe and uses it on Bayley! SmackDown goes to break, but will the chaos end?
Bliss-Cross VS Fire & Desire!
The Goddess and her crazy bestie got the better of Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, and that was even with Otis Dozovic there to save his “sweet peach” from certain disaster. But now that things are going to be 2v2, will Alexa and Nikki keep things rolling? Or will Mandy and Sonya make big moves towards the Women’s Rumble?
Before the match, SmackDown shares a moment between Mandy and Sonya backstage. Mandy apologized to Sonya for the distractions, but Sonya lets it slide. It was silly to have gotten Otis involved. In the end, their team is Fire & Desire, not Fire & Desire & Dozer. That’d be weird. But anyway, things seemed to have been smoothed over. Will they stay that way?
The teams sort out and Alexa starts against Sonya. They circle, tie up, and Sonya waistlocks to slam Alexa down. But wait, Bayley and Lacey run down the ramp!? This is getting out of hand! They spill into the ring and get caught up in the match!
Alexa and Nikki fight on Lacey’s side while Fire & Desire do what they can to help Bayley! This might even be what the Women’s Rumble looks like. Bayley decks Alexa and bails out, but the referees have to separate the others. Fans want to “Let Them Fight!” as Alexa and Nikki catch up to Bayley. Order is restored somehow, but will it just take off again once we’re in Houston?
Elias encounters Braun Strowman backstage.
The Drifter and the Monster Among Men are a duo to take on Team Sami, up next!
Ladies and Gentlemen: Elias.
“Brothers and Sisters, the Royal Rumble is upon us.” Thirty men enter, only one can win. That one faces the World or Universal Champion at WrestleMania. Elias vows to put his heart and soul into winning, so he has just one question for Dallas: “Who wants to Walk With Elias?!” Dallas does! Elias has a song titled Texas Dream, so please clap along.
“This year’s Rumble, starts with The Beast. Luckily for you, it’ll end with me. So good-bye Seth, Messiah you ain’t. Good-bye, Randy Orton, Rey and Ricochet. Before this next part, I need someone to help me sing. So please welcome the Monster Among Men to the ring!” BRAUN makes his way out now, and Elias makes it clear that it is every man for himself. Strowman wasn’t ready for this, but Elias felt it’d be a special treat to do a duet. Dallas, do you want to hear Strowman sing with Elias? “YES! YES! YES!” Well there you have it. So Elias offers Strowman his mic. Neither man is one to disappoint the fans, so Strowman gives it a go. Elias plays and Strowman counts himself in. But then Team Sami interrupts!
Elias & Braun Strowman VS Shinsuke Nakamura & Cesaro w/ Sami Zayn!
The Monster will #WalkWithElias as they both look to get their hands on Team Sami! Will one man also earn himself that sought after WWE Intercontinental Championship match while they’re at it?
The teams sort out and Cesaro ties up with Elias. Elias headlocks, shifts to a hammerlock, but Cesaro reverses to then rabbit punch Elias in the head. Cesaro throws European Uppercuts and haymakers, then whips Elias to the ropes. Elias blocks the hip toss to scoop and long dart Cesaro into buckles! Elias clotheslines and fans fire up. Elias wrenches Cesaro and then goes to the corner. Elias starts his rendition of Old School, with the METEORA mix! Elias brings Cesaro up but Cesaro whips him to the corner. Elias hits Shinsuke and then throws forearms, but Shinsuke gets in. This distracts so that Sami can swipe at Elias and Cesaro and LARIAT him! Cesaro throws Elias out and distracts the ref so that Shinsuke can ROUNDHOUSE Elias! Strowman runs in to run Shinsuke over! Sami goes running for the hills as SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns as Cesaro grind Elias down in a chinlock. Elias fights his way up but is put in the Team Sami corner. Elias boots Cesaro back then elbows Shinsuke. Elias fights more but Cesaro whips him back in. Elias goes up and boots Cesaro back! Both men are down and crawling for their corners, but Cesaro drags Elias away. Elias boots Cesaro away but Shinsuke tags in! Shinsuke clobbers Elias and taunts Strowman. Cesaro gets in and BOOTS Strowman down! But then Elias throws Cesaro out! Elias ducks one kick but not Shinsuke’s second! Shinsuke aims from the corner, “YAO~!” But Elias KNEES Shinsuke down first! Both men are down again, and Strowman returns! Hot tag to the Monster Among Men!
Strowman rallies with big shoulders and elbows to run Shinsuke and Cesaro over! Shin is in a corner, Strowman corner splashes! And TOSSES Shinsuke to the other corner, for another corner splash! Then Strowman CLUBS Shinsuke down! Fans fire up with Strowman and Sami panics. Strowman runs in but misses, Shinsuke roundhouses! Shinsuke hops up, flying knee! Tag to Cesaro and Cesaro cravats Strowman. Together, Team Sami throws Strowman into a post! And then hits a Double Russian Leg Sweep! Penalty Kick! Cover, TWO! Strowman survives but Cesaro hits a basement EuroUpper! Cover, TWO! Sami protests but it’s really just a distraction so Shinsuke can fetch a chair! But Elias comes running around the way to push Shinsuke into a post! Elias hits Cesaro, Strowman scoops Cesaro for the MONSTER SLAM!
Tag to Elias, and he goes up top for the MACHO ELBOW! Cover, Elias and Strowman win!
Winners: Elias & Braun Strowman, Elias pinning
It wasn’t pretty, but it was a win! The Drifter gets some momentum into the Rumble, but will it help him when The Beast will be present? And will Strowman ever get that title match with the King of Strong Style?
Big E oils up!
And a lot… He even has an oiling assistant get his legs! Kofi Kingston can’t even. But Kofi knows Big E’s motto: “If ya boy is greasy, eliminating can’t be easy!” Big E hugs his oil boy bye, but then says he realizes the Rumble is Sunday. Tonight is about Kofi going 1v1 with John Morrison! AKA the Prince of Parkour who thinks he can back flip to where he was 8 years ago. It’s one thing to make a big return, that’s easy. It’s another thing to back it up. And backing up what one does is the expertise of who? Who who who? The NEW~ DAY~! They’ve been backing up their tag title reigns, and after handling some bidness, it’s on to Houston! Kofi loves this time of year, he is excited for the countdown! It don’t matter what number the New Day comes out, the Power of Positivity is on their side! Time to climb that mountain one more time together. And do it for ya boy, Xavier Woods! Why? BECAUSE~ New! Day Rocks!
Backstage interview with Baron Corbin!
The Wolf King insists he is not concerned losing in the Six Man Tag. He went toe-to-toe with Roman out there and didn’t back down. What is Kayla Braxton doing Sunday? Probably asking more stupid questions. What is Corbin doing Sunday? Facing Roman in Falls Count Anywhere where he will embarrass Roman with the beating of a lifetime. Corbin will use every inch of Minute Maid Park, and will make that handcuffing and dog-food smearing look like child’s play. “Roman Reigns will not make the Royal Rumble match.” But Corbin will, and vows to win to then crown himself the NEW Universal Champion.
SmackDown runs The Royal Rumble by the numbers.
“The prize: a world championship opportunity at WrestleMania. The challenge: outlasting 29 other superstars, eliminating your opponents by tossing them over the top rope so that both feet hit the floor.” Success lies in the numbers. In the 32 years, from 1988 to tonight, 1070 total competitors have entered. That is 6596 FEET. The longest spent in a single rumble for the men was Daniel Bryan at one hour and 16 minutes, while the women has Natalya at just over 56 minutes. The most important thing about a Rumble is to do everything you have to in order to survive. A literal highlight reel of Naomi, John Morrison and Kofi Kingston shows you just how creative one can be to avoid the floor like lava. Others just have a hard time getting into the ring. Santino Marella was the one-second wonder, and Titus O’Neil was Titus World SLIDE~!
But Houston’s Minute Maid Park will host a historic Rumble in itself. Because for the first time ever, the reigning, defending, undisputed WWE Heavyweight Champion of the World, The Beast, BRRROCK, LESNARRR will enter as number one. Back in 2003, Lesnar won the Rumble as just a rookie. Now he is a veteran and dominant as ever. Only seven have won multiple Rumbles, with Stone Cold Steve Austin being the only one with three. Furthermore, entering as number one has very slim odds of winning it all. Will Lesnar turn Houston into Suplex City? Or will this most competitive field to date change that? Three brands, two matches, one night. Time’s up. Are you ready to rumble?
“Three weeks ago, the Celtic Warrior returned to SmackDown to exterminate the disease spreading vermin that have infested my home.” Chad Gable was the loudest little rat he could find, and he Brogue kicked Shorty G upside-down. But that sneaky rodent bit back. To Gable, Sheamus says, “Good for you, little fella.” Enjoy yourself while you can. Because Sunday, Sheamus won’t make the same mistake. This Sunday, Sheamus finishes what he started. “And like a rat out of hell”, Gable will be gone before the morning comes.
Kofi Kingston w/ Big E VS John Morrison w/ The Miz!
AWWWWW~ Dallas~! Don’t you dare be sour! Watch two of the greatest Rumble acrobats compete just days before entering that iconic match! Will there be iconic moments from both men on Sunday? What about iconic moments here tonight?
SmackDown returns as Morrison and Miz make their awesome entrances. Miz has a mic to speak on last week. Morrison made his in-ring return after being away from the WWE for 8 long years. How did the fans celebrate it? High-five? Blow off the roof like they would for everyone else? No, they booed. Miz doesn’t get why. Is it because Morrison is still associated with The Miz, and that The Miz has changed? Miz says he hasn’t changed, he’s still himself. Just watch Miz & Mrs. have its season two premiere after NXT! It is a winner, Miz is a winner, Morrison is a winner! Morrison will keep winning, and could even win the Rumble because “WE are officially entering the Royal Rumble.” So whether it is the Prince of Parkour of the Most Must-See Superstar, Houston will be… AWESOME! As awesome as Miz makes it sound, will this match be positively awesome?
The bell rings and Morrison circles with Kofi. They tie up, Morrison puts Kofi in the corner and then gives him a shove. Kofi shoves back, and Morrison swings hands. Kofi blocks,s wings kicks and avoids kicks. The fans like the exchange as the two tie up again. They go around, Morrison puts Kofi in a corner and whips him corner to corner. Morrison runs in, monkey flips, but Kofi lands on his feet! Kofi grins and runs back in, monkey flips and Morrison FLOPS! Miz says that’s okay, just a misstep. Kofi whips, Morrison stops himself and then sends Kofi out. Morrison builds speed to FLY! Kofi gets out of the way and Morrison manages to combat roll through. Kofi bounces and lifts off to senton onto Morrison! Fans fire up with Kofi as he puts Morrison back in the ring. Miz gets up close as he coaches Morrison, and Morrison shoves Kofi into the post! Tensions run high as we go to break.
SmackDown returns again and fans rally for the New Day as Kofi kicks back at Morrison. Kofi gets up but Morrison is on him with EuroUppers. Morrison whips Kofi corner to corner, then runs in. Kofi slips out to kick back then slide under. Kofi sunset flips but Morrison slips out to Shining Wizard hard! Morrison goes up, Starship Pain FLOP! Kofi gets to the apron and climbs up as fans rally again. Morrison stands, Kofi’s springboard ax handle takes him down! Kofi rallies with big chops and a dropkick! Kofi runs but into a mule kick. Morrison whips Kofi corner to corner but Kofi goes up, up and around to huricanrana! Morrison gets up and runs into Kofi’s DOUBLE STOMPS! Cover, TWO! Kofi keeps his cool and Big E coaches him up. Kofi Penalty Kicks Morrison and then fires up! Dallas fire sup with him and the NEW~ DAY~ Boom Drop!
Kofi goes to a corner and fans fire up even more. They clap along with Kofi as he aims at Morrison. Morrison rises, ducks under and HEEL KICKS the Trouble in Paradise down! Cover, TWO!! Morrison came so close and Miz insists that was three. Morrison drags Kofi back up and around, but Kofi swings on him. Morrison ducks the punch to put Kofi up top. Morrison throws big hands and climbs up, but Kofi hits back. Kofi headbutts Morrison down and Morrison tumbles into the ref! Miz checks on the ref, or rather distracts him, so that Morrison can poke Kofi in the eyes! Morrison then climbs up for a SUPER SPANISH FLY! Cover, TWO!! Kofi survives and Miz can’t believe it! Fans rally for Kofi but Morrison kicks him while he’s down.
Morrison throws more hands to wobble Kofi as fans start to duel. Kofi catches Morrison, SOS! Cover, TWO!! Morrison survives and shocks Kofi now! Kofi stalks Morrison but Morrison trips him up. Morrison high stack covers, and uses the ropes! But Big E stops that just in time! Kofi KICKS Morrison right from the mat! Miz shoves Big E! Big E glares and chases Miz around the way, then Kofi gives Miz Trouble in Paradise! But Morrison clobbers Kofi into the drop zone! STARSHIP PAIN!! Cover, Morrison wins!
Winner: John Morrison, by pinfall
That’s a 2-0 sweep for the Shaman of Sexy over the seven-time tag team champions! Will this earn Morrison and Miz an awesome SmackDown Tag Team Championship opportunity as we head for WrestleMania?
Michael Cole presides over the Universal Championship contract signing!
The special stipulation that Daniel Bryan himself wanted is a Strap Match! There will be a literal leather strap tying champion and challenger together, and there will be no disqualifications or count-outs, only a pinfall or submission ends the match. First out, the challenger, Daniel Bryan. Dallas is happy to see the Yes Movement return! And of course, we now welcome the champion, Bray Wyatt. But first, Firefly Fun House! Bray is apparently trying to fax something. He realizes he’s a bit late. He’s trying to send the final copy of the contract, but it’s so hard getting this thing to work. Welp, maybe this is a blessing in disguise? Why would Bryan willing tie himself to “him?” It’s MADNESS. But Bray calls customer service real quick.
Yes, hello. Yes, English or Ancient Sumerian please. Bryan interrupts the call by saying Bray needs to “cut the crap.” Bray is sick, but he can at least show up to sign the contract. That’s not nice, Bryan. Bray is not sick. He’s never been better! As for Bryan’s request, Bray’s attorney, Mercy the Buzzard (yes he has his license) has advised Bray to stay in the Fun House. Enough! Bryan finally sees through the charades and the games, Bray living in his fantasy world. But Bray just runs away from everything. From his past, his mistakes, but now there will be nowhere to run because the strap will tie them together. There’s nowhere to run or hide. Wait, mistake? YOWIE WOWIE, that was the word of the day! YAY~! Because this is all about Bryan’s mistakes, not Bray’s. Bryan never did learn his lesson from that betrayal. Bryan is a liar, and now he will pay. One other thing, it won’t be Bray, it’ll be him. So he should sign the contract.
That’s right! The lights go out, and when they return… IT’S THE FIEND! Red lights and all! The Fiend takes the other end of the strap, and the brawl is on! The Fiend uses the Mandible Claw to smother Bryan! The Fiend yells and shouts as he suffocates Bryan, then hits SISTER ABIGAIL. The Fiend rips at Bryan’s shirt and bares Bryan’s back. The Fiend measures a length of the strap to LASH Bryan on that back! This is what Bryan chose, and now he’s paying for it! The Fiend laughs as he unties himself from Bryan so that he can sign the contract. But then he thinks about it, and doesn’t want to use the pen. He STABS his own hand to draw blood!! This contract is now a blood oath that they will settle things with the strap. Fans chant, “You’ve Got Issues!” but The Fiend sets the contract down by Bryan’s side before disappearing. Will Bryan regret making this deal with the demented? Or will Bryan finally help us all wake up from this nightmare?
This was a really good go-home episode! And with very few matches. The Six Man Tag was an incredible way to open the episode, and I really like that use of Jimmy “injuring” his leg to come back at the right moment. While I want this rivalry to end with Corbin and Roman, I would love if Roman and the Usos stuck together more closely after this. The Bloodline should have its own opportunity to be a golden trio with the tag titles and I’m going to assume the Universal title. Corbin does good at talking some post-loss smack, so I’m thinking he loses at the Rumble to further humiliate him. But please, let it end there. Please no Dog Food Match, I can’t stress that enough. Lacey’s promo was pretty good, again this Face turn is as I was expecting her to go in NXT. Bayley’s attack and the brawl was great. It got in the way of the women’s tag but that actually made it better, because that’s just how much Bayley and Lacey hate each other.
I really liked the tag match of Elias & Strowman VS Team Sami. Letting Elias get the cover works, because it keeps Strowman and Nakamura even. I just hope we get that Intercontinental Championship at Elimination Chamber, not Super Showdown. I can’t see this stretching to Mania, that’s too long from now. The New Day had a great promo, Morrison VS Kofi as the main event match was great, and it doesn’t seem we’re getting the tag title match at the Rumble. I hope we get it at the Chamber, because again, Mania is just too far away. There needs to be one match now, and then maybe they can bring it to Mania in a rematch or something. The title contract segment was great, because of the swerve. Granted, it seemed pretty obvious The Fiend was going to be the persona defending the title, but The Fiend appearing and beating Bryan up like that was good. The blood signing was freaky but perfectly within The Fiend’s character. That Strap Match is going to be brutal, I can’t wait.
My Score: 8.6/10