SmackDown gives a tribute to The Undertaker!
Has it finally happened? Has The Undertaker finally hung it up? If so, SmackDown wishes to pay tribute to the legend this brand was built upon!
- 4/4/20 WrestleMania 36 Night 1 – Boneyard Match: The Undertaker VS AJ Styles; The Undertaker wins.
- SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 4 Way: Alexa Bliss VS Nikki Cross VS Dana Brooke VS Lacey Evans; Cross wins and will challenge Bayley for the title at Extreme Rules.
- 8 Man Tag: The New Day & Lucha House Party VS The Miz, John Morrison, Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura; The New Day & Lucha House Party win.
- Jeff Hardy VS Baron Corbin; Hardy wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
The Phenom, The Dead Man, The Undertaker.
For three decades, the “awe inspiring” and truly one of a kind talent has made sure his opponents would #RestInPeace. He battled other legends, such as Shawn Michaels, Triple H, Mick Foley, Kurt Angle, and even his own Brother of Destruction, Kane! His streak at WrestleMania went on for 21 YEARS before being stopped, but even that didn’t stop him. “Every time that I went out, I went out to do the best that I could. I did things my way. I’m gonna leave my way. This time, the cowboy really rides away.” Mark Calaway has been blessed to have his family at home and his family on the road and around the world.
SmackDown’s Superstars cheer and clap for the legend, acknowledging that the ride has finally ended. We will hear from an incredible list of legends to recount their own interactions with The Phenom over his 30 year career. But first, we start where it all began! Survivor Series 1990, The Undertaker’s debut!!
“From Death Valley,” the Million Dollar Man called upon the Deadman, the Undertaker! “Look at the size of that hamhock!” Taker had an ominous presence and chilling expression from the moment he got in the ring with Dusty Rhodes’ Survivor Series team. That was the first chapter, but we will relive the last: The Boneyard Match from WrestleMania 36!
SmackDown hears from some of Taker’s best opponents.
John Cena says, “I think the legacy of The Undertaker is reliability.” His dedication to the craft. Taker loved the business so much, he put it above all else. Roman Reigns says Taker is legitimately one of the best performers of all time, in any form of entertainment. Cena says the passion and dedication can’t be questioned. Reigns says Taker dedicated his whole life. You can’t do that and not love this business. The bar for respect is Taker. It isn’t just getting to the top, but staying there as long as he did. That goes to the investment and passion, and the belief the fans had.
Edge says “There is a definite mood that changes within the entire arena when that first gong hits.” Christian remembers being in awe of that larger than life aura. Taker took that character, morphed it and kept it alive. Bret Hart says Taker delivered every time. There’s just something special, like lightning in a bottle. Taker caught that lightning all 30 years.
Kane says Taker is the greatest character in the history of the WWE. Ric Flair says Taker was a “whole new deal.” A character so unique, it was mythical, legendary and amazing. Never before was there someone that big that could move that way. Diving over the top rope at 6’10”, 280 lbs, who else does that? And Taker is the only one who has been able to maintain his integrity and add to it. So strong and well-defined, Taker is perhaps the biggest star in the business.
Boneyard Match: The Undertaker VS AJ Styles!
The Phenomenal One couldn’t stand that the Phenom made sure he didn’t win accolades unfairly. But then he made it personal by badmouthing Taker’s legacy, and Taker’s wife, Michelle McCool. This would be the match that settled the score between them, and cement the final chapter of the Deadman’s legacy!
Cameras take us to a cemetery in an undisclosed location. A hearse pulls up as Taker’s theme plays. Hooded figures bring a casket out of the back. The casket opens, but it isn’t Taker, but AJ Styles! Styles laughs as he hops out and looks around. “This don’t look scary at all!” Styles dares Taker to show himself. “I’m ready!” And pulling up on a motorcycle with Metallica blaring, it’s Big Evil! The American Badass drives into the Boneyard! Styles is surprised Taker came. Does Michelle know he’s up this late? A grave has been dug for Taker, but Taker says that’s for Styles. Taker steps to Styles, but Styles grabs a brick! Taker DECKS Styles first and dares Styles to get back up. Styles wanted this, now he’s going to get it! Taker decks Styles again then brings him to the grave.
Styles gets away but Taker pursues. Taker turns “Allen” around to DECK him again! Taker throws Styles into the casket lid! “It’s all fun, right?” He bounces Styles off the lid! And again! Styles crawls but Taker grabs a big spike! Taker goes after Styles but Styles moves! The hearse’s window smashes and cuts Taker’s arm. Taker isn’t scared, he’s just upset. Taker keeps Styles from crawling away but Styles kicks back! The two brawl and Taker throws Styles over the hood ONTO the windshield! The glass cracks and Taker wonders if Styles still wants some. It’s here that SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns as Styles flops off the side of the car and Taker asks if he wants more. Taker stalks Styles but Styles hits back! Styles has Taker wobbling and he LOW BLOWS him! No Disqualifications in the Boneyard! Styles drags Taker over to the grave. Styles punches Taker over and over but Taker stays up. “Just fall already.” But Taker ROCKS Styles back! Taker hauls Styles up to punch him into the grave! “How does that feel down there?” But here come the Good Brothers! The OC says this is just getting started. Taker heads over, but then lights turn on. And from the light, hooded figures emerge and surround Taker! Taker watches them closely, and a huge brawl breaks out!
Taker fights off the mysterious minions but then Gallows and Anderson attack! They beat Taker down on the ground and stomp him around. Gallows drags Taker up and Anderson has a shovel stick. Taker fights free and boots Anderson down! He decks Gallows, then Anderson. Taker takes the shovel stick to CLOBBER Anderson! And then CLUB Gallows! But Styles returns and SMASHES Taker with a cinder block! “You ain’t got what it takes, old man!” Styles clubs Taker back down and talks more trash about Michelle. He rains down hands but ends up jamming his own fingers. Styles fixes his hand and blames Taker for that.
Taker gasps and sputters as Styles tells him to stay down. Taker refuses and sits up. Styles tells him to quit and retire already, or he’s going to bury him. Taker stands and Styles RAMS him THROUGH THE FENCE! Both men are down, and SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns and Styles crawls from the wreckage while Taker continues to gasp. “You just don’t have it anymore, old man.” Taker slowly gets up but Styles is standing. Taker flips Styles off and eggs him on! So Styles throws down more fists! Styles says the “American Badass” just looks like some “broken down old bi*ch.” Styles grabs a shovel with a head on it, and says he is doing the WWE Universe a favor. Taker crawls and Styles BREAKS the shovel across his back! Taker falls into the grave! Styles sprinkles dirt as he says, “Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.” Styles goes to the tractor and starts it up. But wait! Is that…?! Taker magically appears behind him!!
Taker punches Styles again and again! Styles flounders off the tractor and Taker kicks him around. Styles heads for a ladder by the barn. Taker pursues Styles as he’s on the roof. This is what he wanted, isn’t it? Styles backs away, but PILLARS OF FIRE keep him from running! Taker BOOTS Styles down! Then he punches the OC away! Taker throws Gallows off the roof! And he scoops Anderson for a TOMBSTONE! That’s a tin roof, too! Now it’s just Taker and Styles. Styles doesn’t understand how Taker is doing this. Styles throws hands but Taker just eggs him on. Taker then choke grips Styles, for a CHOKE SLAM OFF THE ROOF!! Taker climbs down the ladder and stalks over to Styles, while SmackDown takes a break.
SmackDown returns again, and Styles stirs in the wreckage of the fence. Taker asks if Styles remembers his wife’s name. Taker wants Styles to stay awake, because they’ve still got plenty to do. He drags Styles from the wood wreckage and scoops him. Taker carries Styles over to the grave and drops him just outside. Styles apologizes but Taker wants him to be specific. Taker drags Styles up and says he put up a hell of a fight. Styles doesn’t want to be buried, but Taker says he isn’t going to do that. They hug it out and Taker commends Styles for bringing the fight. Taker pats Styles on the head, then BOOTS him into the grave! Taker goes to the tractor, starts it up again, and DUMPS DIRT INTO THE GRAVE! Taker uncovers the headstone, and it reads… AJ STYLES!
Winner: The Undertaker
Styles is left behind in a shallow grave as Taker gets back on his motorcycle. And with a raise of his fist, fire shoots from the barn! Taker’s symbol glows in the sky as he heads out into the night. Taker’s last ride was one final victory, and his legacy shall never #RestInPeace.
SmackDown returns to live, and Baron Corbin is in the ring!
The Wolf King applauds Taker’s final match. It just happened to be 30 years after his first. But why was it a Boneyard Match? Because that is exactly what Taker is: “an old bag of bones.” The crowd boos as Corbin says Taker was a shell of what he used to be. Taker is supposed to have this storied career, wow~. How many of those years were spent by Taker kissing the ass of a certain family? There used to be a Kiss My Ass CLUB! And Taker was the founding member! Corbin says 30 years is impossible, unless you’re coddled and protected by the boss. The crowd boos but Corbin says Taker has been STEALING money from WWE for the last TWENTY years! Taker is a selfish SOB who was holding superior athletes back for a very, very long time.
Now Corbin has to hear all these Hall of Famer sand legends pay respect! And a bunch of fools chanting, “Thank You, Taker!” on top of it. But Corbin doesn’t thank Taker at all! The crowd starts that chant up but Corbin says Mark Calaway needs to be left with one final thought: “You suck!” Jeff Hardy attacks Corbin from behind! The Charismatic Enigma won’t let Corbin talk trash anymore! Corbin gets away, tries to come back for more, but Hardy WRECKS him with a dropkick! Hardy defends the honor of the Phenom, will he get to shut Corbin up once and for all?
More superstars speak on The Undertaker.
When Stone Cold thinks of Taker, he thinks of a guy with all this mystique. As soon as you met him, you knew he’d be somebody. Kurt Angle says Taker is a very intelligent man. Taker knows how to evolve and adapt. It was not just the evolution of a character, but of his wrestling style. Austin knows Taker is one of the toughest guys ever, just on what he’s done at WrestleMania time and again. “He’s a warhorse.” Angle notes the big main event level matches at Mania. He’s like Superman. The company always put a lot of pressure on him, but he’d always given his all. Taker wanted WrestleMania moments, the matches fans would remember forever. Taker deserves that notoriety. Taker has had one of the best careers in wrestling ever.
Backstage interview with Jeff Hardy.
It seems he took offense at Corbin’s disparaging comments about The Undertaker. Corbin hit a nerve. Taker was a mentor and teacher from day one. WWE’s Mount Rushmore would just be Taker four times. Everyone owes a debt of gratitude to Taker. But since Taker can’t be here to deliver a message, Hardy will do that for him. His Royal Highness can consider this a challenge. As a graduate of Deadman University, Hardy will unleash all of that painful knowledge that took him a lifetime to acquire.
Bayley and Sasha Banks join commentary!
The Golden Role Models are back, feeling great after not only retaining their WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships, but from issuing a challenge to Asuka! The Boss wants to join Bayley in the double belts club, but that will have to wait. They’re here to watch…
SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 4 Way: Alexa Bliss VS Nikki Cross VS Dana Brooke VS Lacey Evans!
The SmackDown Women’s Champion still needs a contender! The Goddess and Loony Lass put their friendship aside for just a moment as they, Ms. Flex Appeal and the Sassy Southern Belle fight for the right to go after #BayleyDosStraps! Who proves they’re ready to get extreme?
The bell rings, the four approach, and Lacey shoves Alexa. Nikki pushes back, but then Dana pushes Nikki. Alexa pushes Dana, Lacey rolls Alexa up, Nikki rolls Dana! TWO and TWO, and Bliss-Cross regroups. Nikki wants things to wait a moment, but then Dana and Lacey kick Bliss-Cross. They go to opposite corners for stomps and haymakers! But Nikki turns things around on Dana to throw forearms. Alexa does the same to Lacey, and then Bliss-Cross work together, to go corner to corner and splash Lacey and Dana! Then they go corner to corner, Alexa SLAPS Lacey and Nikki CHOPS Dana! Bliss-Cross hug, but then Nikki rolls Alexa! ONE, and Nikki apologizes, but this is about the singles title. Alexa understands, shakes hands, and the two friends circle.
Alexa and Nikki tie up, and turns out Bayley doesn’t approve of the name “Golden Role Models.” Nikki wrenches, Alexa rolls her to a cover, TWO! Alexa headlocks but Nikki powers out. Things speed up, Lacey trips and drags Alexa out, to throw into barriers! Dana and Lacey flank Nikki, but Nikki fights back, and jumps onto Lacey for a sleeper hold! Dana throws Nikki down, runs and handspring splashes! Cover, but Lacey breaks it! Dana and Lacey argue, Nikki throws forearms! Lacey kicks then Dana stomps Nikki down. Dana and Lacey double whip Nikki to a corner, stomp away, but Alexa runs in. Alexa’s sent into Nikki, and Dana DECKS Lacey! Dana handsprings corner to corner to sandwich Bliss-Cross! Lacey LARIATS Dana!
Lacey gives Bliss-Cross a swinging BRONCO BUSTER! Cover, but Dana breaks it! “that’s what you get!” But then Lacey tackles Dana! Lacey hammers away, then whips Dana, but Dana handsprings and back elbows! Dana drags Lacey up, scoops and slams her to a drop zone, then heads to the corner. Dana climbs up, aims, and SWANTONS! Cover, but Nikki breaks it! Bayley and Sasha are slightly impressed with this match. The crowd rallies with Nikki but Dana DECKS her! Dana brings Nikki up, scoops and slams her down, then fires up. But Alexa ROCKS and STOS’s Dana down! The crowd fires up as Alexa climbs up top now. TWISTED BLISS onto knees! Nikki gets in, and dropkicks Dana out of the ring!
Lacey, Nikki and Alexa are left, and Bliss-Cross works together. Lacehy sweeps Alexa’s legs, decks Nikki then BOOTS Alexa! Nikki bums Lacey off buckles, runs in, but Lacey dodges. Lacey forearms and sweeps the legs, then slingshots for the elbow drop! But Dana returns, Lacey dodges, Dana handsprings, into the WOMAN’S RIGHT! Nikki rolls Lacey! NIKKI WINS!
Winner: Nikki Cross, by pinfall (NEW #1 Contender to the SmackDown Women’s Championship)
Extreme Rules is going to be crazy! Because Crazy Cross has the title in her cross hairs! Will Nikki take one of Bayley’s belts away?
More superstars speak on The Undertaker.
Triple H thinks he’s one of the most loyal people he’s ever met. The loyalty to the business, to what he dedicated his life to, and what gave him his life. The longevity to evolve in a methodical way, for HBK, is magical. Because of that, you can’t help but respect him. There were constants in the WWE, and one of them was Taker. The legacy is that there will never be another like him.
8 Man Tag: The New Day & Lucha House Party VS The Miz, John Morrison, Cesaro & Shinsuke Nakamura!
AWWWW~ people at hooome~! Don’t you dare be sour! Kofi Kingston and Big E team with Lince Dorado and Gran Metalik to take on the Greatest Tag Team of the 21st Century and the Artist Collective! Will a team step up and prove themselves worthy of challenging the SmackDown Tag Team Champions? Or will the New Day be the ones to take the spotlight?
The teams sort out and we begin with Big E daring Cesaro and Nakamura to step up. The Swiss Cyborg and King of Strong Style get on the apron, but Miz comes up from behind! Big E still CLOBBERS him! Big E brings Miz up, throws body shots, then whips him to ropes for a big elbow. He drags Miz to the apron, CLUBS away on Miz’s chest, then aims on the apron. APRON SPLASH! Miz is gasping as he gets back in the ring! Big E covers, TWO! Tag to Lince and he hops up for Big E to give him a boost! Splash and cover, TWO! Lince clubs Miz but Miz gets away to tag in Cesaro. Lince dodges, counters the hip toss to a CHOP, body shot and flip! Things keep moving, Lince rolls up to huricanrana, but Cesaro blocks with power!
Cesaro brings Lince up, Lince flips out of the bomb attempt, and baits Cesaro into an elbow! Lince boots, tilt-o-whirls, goes around, rolls Cesaro to a cover, TWO! Lince knees and CHOPS, then runs, tilt-o-whirls and headscissors Cesaro down! Tag to Metalik, he gets a boost from Lince for the elevated splash! Cover, TWO! Metalik wrenches Ceasro but Cesaro kicks and European Uppercuts! Tag to Nakamura and he gives the King of the Ropes some Bad Vibes! Nakamura whips Metalik corner to corner, but runs into a boot! SLING-DOG! Tag to Kofi, he brings Nakamura up but Nakamura pushes free. Nakamura ducks Trouble in Paradise to swagger over and tag in Morrison. The Guru of Greatness throws strikes on Kofi, knees low then whips him corner to corner. Kofi goes up and dropkicks down! Cover, TWO!
Kofi runs in at Morrison, but Morrison denies the flip to put Kofi up top and enziguri him out! The ref is busy with Morrison as Nakamura RAMS Kofi into barriers! Big E protests but Cesaro tags in to get Kofi back up. Tag to Nakamura, Cesaro EuroUppers then feeds Kofi to the enziguri! The Artists taunt Big E and LHP with “C’MON~!” The ref does his best to keep the peace while SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns as the crowd is thunderous, but Morrison kicks Kofi down. Morrison tags in Miz, they double gut buster! And then double It Kicks! “Hey hey! Ho ho!” They sucker punch LHP! Miz basement BOOTS Kofi down, covers, TWO! Miz keeps on Kofi with a facelock. The crowd rallies as Kofi reaches but Miz knees him low. Miz whips Kofi away, Kofi goes up and hits a tornado DDT! Both men are down but the crowd rallies up. Kofi crawls, but so does Miz. Hot tag to Nakamura, and he stomps Kofi down. Nakamura swipes at Big E, and Cesaro goes after Big E on the outside! Nakamura WRECKS Big E with the baseball slide in the distractions! Nakamura gives Kofi a gourd buster, then aims from a corner. “YAO~,” but he runs into DOUBLE STOMPS!
Kofi and Nakamura crawl for their corners, hot tags to Morrison and Metalik! Metalik springboard crossbodies, then kicks and whips. Morrison reverses, Metalik handsprings but Morrison gets clear. Morrison waistlocks but Metalik bucks him off. Metalik springboards for a wicked huricanrana! Metalik dropkicks Miz down, then Cesaro! Morrison is back up and capoeria kicks! He whips, Metliak rolls up and SUSNET BOMBS! COver, TWO!! Metalik gets up and moonsaults! Tag to Lince and Metalik moonsaults again! Lince is up top, SHOOTING STAR! Cover, but Miz and Cesaro break it! The New Day go after the Artists while Miz saves Morrison. The brawl goes up the ramp and to the backstage, Miz tags in! Lince tags Metalik just as Miz attacks! Miz whips, GOLDEN REWIND!
Lince goes up top again, and LEAPS to HURICANRANA Morrison! Metalik enziguris Miz! Metalik goes up, for the tightrope walk MACHO ELBOW! Cover, Lucha House Party and The New Day win!!
Winners: The New Day & Lucha House Party, by pinfall
The SmackDown Tag Team Champions return and celebrate with the Golden Lynx and King of the Ropes! Kofi and Big E still want to settle scores with Cesaro and Nakamura, but will they also have to worry about #LuchaLit on the other side?
Backstage interview with Baron Corbin.
The Wolf King has his crown and his scepter as he prepares for Jeff Hardy. Hardy says Taker is a mentor, but where did that get him? In and out of jail, in and out of rehab, and yet Hardy thinks he’ll teach Corbin a lesson. Corbin will teach Hardy a lesson in reality. Hardy should follow in Taker’s footsteps and hang it up. That way, Hardy can finally #RestInPeace. The King of the Ring is laughing now, but will he be the fool after tonight?
SmackDown returns to BRAUN!
The Strowman Express pulls into the ring, still managing a smile even after witnessing the resurrection of the old Bray Wyatt. “I wanna tell you about when I first met Bray Wyatt.” For the first time in his life, he felt fear. Not a bump in the night as a child. The type of fear that makes the hair on your neck stand up. The type of fear that gives you the feeling in the pit of your stomach that something’s wrong. The type of fear that makes grown men tremble. One night, Strowman sat at the edge of the swamp, and Bray’s lantern shone in the dark. As Strowman looked in the water, a water moccasin snake slithered right up to that lantern. As Strowman noticed, he wanted to stop the snake, but Bray said, “No, no no. That’s my friend.,”
Strowman didn’t understand. He watched Bray walk to the snake and kneel down to be face to face with it. As the snake coiled up, it lashed out and bit Bray right on the face. All Bray did was laugh! Bray laughed as the snake bit him again and again and again. It was in this moment that Strowman knew he was in the presence of evil. Bray didn’t get poisoned by the snake, he didn’t bleed, he didn’t even flinch! All Bray did… was laugh. Bray was the devil himself. Strowman was overcome with emotion, enamored at this feat he just witnessed. And so, Strowman did the devil’s work. The worst part of it all? Strowman loved every second of it. Parts of him still do.
Strowman has done everything in his power to lock that side away. It is in the back of his mind, somewhere he thought he could forget about it. But it calls to him. And Bray, Strowman can’t go on living like this. “So what do you say we go back to the swamp? To that eerie, miserable hell you call home.” This ends only one of two ways. Strowman thinks and thinks and thinks. He either comes out of this “the most evil son of a bitch this earth has ever seen,” or he comes out with the satisfaction that he spat in the devil’s face and ripped him limb from limb and stomped him out! Then, Strowman will drag Bray into the swamp and let the gators finish him.
So what does Bray say? Does he want to go home? Because Strowman is ready to turn it into the place of Bray’s destruction. “Let’s go home.” Bray’s response? Flashes of the Wyatt Family, and his laughter. Braun echoes that laughter. Has Bray already won?
More superstars speak on The Undertaker.
If Batista were to brag about his WWE career, it wouldn’t be what he accomplished, but the fact he worked with someone like Taker. Mick Foley still gets asked if he ever wrestled Taker, and when he says yes, their eyes light up. Taker was the top of the totem pole. Having the respect of someone like that shows how truly great Batista was. Foley’s career benefited so much, he can’t imagine what it’d be without Taker. Taker is one of the best ever. There will never be anyone to ever match him. We’re all fortunate to have seen him to performer. Taker has even transcended sports entertainment to become one of the best in all of entertainment.
Jeff Hardy VS Baron Corbin!
The Charismatic Enigma and Wolf King have each spoken their piece, but now it’s time to put up or shut up! Will Hardy put up enough to shut up Corbin forever? Or does Corbin get to retire another icon?
The bell rings, Hardy rushes Corbin but Corbin runs him over! Corbin mocks the crowd cheering for Hardy then rains down rights. Corbin brings Hardy up by his hair, throws body shots, but Hardy hits back! Hardy runs, but into a back elbow! Cover, TWO! Corbin is upset with the ref but he goes back to Hardy. Corbin drags Hardy up to throw forearms into Hardy’s back. He stomps Hardy down but the crowd rallies up. Corbin stalks Hardy to the ropes and stands on Hardy’s head! Corbin brings Hardy up by his hair again, puts him on the ropes and CLUBS him with forearms over and over. The ref counts, Corbin argues with him, then goes back to choke Hardy on the ropes! The ref counts, Corbin stops at 4, and Corbin soaks up the heat from the crowd.
Corbin runs at Hardy, Hardy dodges and clotheslines Corbin out! Then baseball slides, but into a right hand! Hardy bumps into the announce desk and Corbin refreshes the ring count. Corbin goes to bump Hardy off steps but Hardy blocks and elbows back! Hardy throws hands, Corbin knees, then whips. Hardy reverses and Corbin goes over the desk! Corbin flounders, Hardy returns to the apron, and Hardy LEAPS to ax handle Corbin down! The crowd fires up with Hardy as he puts Corbin back in the ring. Hardy clubs Corbin around the ring, stomps him at the ropes, then bumps him off buckles. Corbin flounders but Hardy stays on him with more buckle bumps!
Hardy whips Corbin corner to corner, Corbin reverses, but Hardy elbows back! Hardy goes up, WHISPER IN THE WIND FLOPS! Corbin hurries to POST Hardy! Hardy flops out of the ring, the crowd boos, but Corbin just revels in it. A ring count begins, and Corbin mocks Taker’s famous pose! The crowd boos even harder as SmackDown goes to break.
SmackDown returns and this has unofficially become a Lumberjack Match as many superstars now surround the ring. Corbin leans on Hardy with a chinlock but Hardy endures. Hardy fights up, fights back, but Corbin throws him by his hair! Everyone boos but Corbin doesn’t care. Corbin brings Hardy up to DECK him! Corbin mocks the rallying applause, then rains down rights on Hardy. Cover, TWO! Corbin brings Hardy back up to run and DECK him again! Corbin stalks Hardy as the superstars chant, “Corbin Sucks!” Hardy hits back and boots from the corner! Corbin knees low then brings Hardy around to whip him hard into buckles. Corbin runs in, Hardy dodges, Corbin slides out then in, and he CLOBBERS Hardy again!
Corbin looms over Hardy as the superstars and crowd boo. Corbin throws Hardy out then storms over. He presses Hardy against Plexiglas then CLUBS him! Corbin laughs at the smudge left on the glass before he refreshes the count. Corbin drags Hardy up and in, backs the “lumberjacks” down, then goes into the ring. Cover, TWO! Corbin clamps on a chinbar and half nelson to crank on Hardy. The rallying continues as Hardy endures. Hardy fights up, fights back, and jawbreakers free! Corbin staggers into another jawbreaker! Hardy gets up, counter punches Corbin, then whips. Corbin reverses but Hardy forearms him down! Atomic drop, leg trip and leg splitting leg drop! Basement dropkick! Drop splash, cover, TWO!
The crowd rallies as Hardy gets up. Hardy waits for Corbin to stand, kicks him low, but no Twist yet! Corbin runs into a haymaker! Hardy goes up but Corbin clubs him down. Corbin back suplexes, Hardy lands on his feet! Hardy dodges, but runs into DEEP SIX! Cover, TWO!! Hardy still lives and only Corbin is upset. Hardy gets out of the ring, the lumberjacks coach him up, and Hardy dodges Corbin to send him into steps! Hardy puts Corbin in, throws off his shirt, and climbs up top! SWANTON BOMB!! Cover, Hardy wins!!
Winner: Jeff Hardy, by pinfall
And SmackDown celebrates with him! But Corbin’s a sore loser and attacks from behind! Corbin rains down hands, then DECKS Kofi! Big E scoops Corbin, for the BIG ENDING! Big E helps Hardy up, and Hardy wants Strowman to join in! Strowman gets in, takes off the Universal Championship and waits for Corbin to stand. Corbin does, and Strowman scoops for the MONSTER SLAM! Hardy wants Matt Riddle to get involved! The Bro obliges, goes to a corner, and hits the FLOATING BRO! SmackDown is united in downing the disrespectful Corbin! Hardy pays tribute by striking Taker’s signature pose! #ThankYouTaker!
A really good episode of SmackDown, though I was a bit disappointed that their televised encore of the Boneyard Match had to cut some out of the beginning. Still a really good match even the second time around. Hearing from all the superstars that faced him in the past was great, and obviously they were all absolutely right. While the WWE may have made Hulk Hogan, The Rock, Stone Cold, John Cena, Batista and even The Shield members feel like the stars, Taker was always the real star of the show just on how he was always around. There’s not much more anyone else can say other than #ThankYouTaker.
What we got as new material was still pretty good. Clearly Corbin is used as the Heel heat magnet punching bag, which is fine. His match with Hardy was really good, and a great way to end the show to set up the new generation paying homage to the legend. The 8 Man Tag was a great match, and it was pretty great for LHP to get the pin to bring them up in the ranks. New Day VS Cesaro & Nakamura is still looking like the match for Extreme Rules, but maybe LHP comes in for something on the way to SummerSlam. We got a great Fatal 4 Way contenders match, and I’m excited to see Nikki Cross getting the nod here. She has Alexa to counter Sasha being in Bayley’s corner, but this could add to Sasha challenging Asuka. Bayley could want Sasha to back her up against Bliss-Cross even though Sasha has to prepare for her own match, and the tension is automatically there.
Braun’s promo basically accepting Bray’s rematch challenge was just the right kind of creepy. He delivered that story about the snake in the swamp very well, and it is clearly feeding into this “Horror Show” subtitle WWE is slapping onto Extreme Rules. Whatever match Bray and Braun end up having, I’m growing confident that they’ll do an amazing job, just as with Boneyard Match, Firefly Fun House match and the other cinematic matches.
My Score: 8.3/10