Yep it’s another Friday, which brings with it another episode of Friday Night SmackDown. That means I’ll be with you throughout the night giving you the live play-by-play of the show as it happens. Watch this space, and while you wait, here’s Goldberg doing a backflip and also an article talking about it.
Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman open the show. Paul says just when you thought he was out, Roman pulled him back in. Warns us not to point fingers at Heyman for corrupting Reigns, it’s the other way around. Asks what happened to all the thank-yous and appreciate from the executive decision makers from the life-threatening illnesses he went through and overdelivered, when he needed just a little time off, what did you do to his championship? A Fiend or a Monster, they’re not right to be a champion. Roman’s reign as your champion has always been defined by what WWE purports itself to be built on, family, tradition, legacy, the responsibility of being a champion and accountability for owning one’s actions as pure champion and that’s what this champion is.
Paul says on Raw, they had a triple threat to determine a No. 1 Contender. Heyman says that everything about this champion will be all the more sensational, so they’ll have a fatal four way. He’s going to tell us one time. “Ladies and gentlemen, my name is Paul Heyman and I serve as special counsel to the tribal chief, your reigning, defending, undisputed Universal Heavyweight Champion, Roman Reigns.”
Roman says he signed the contract, wrecked the monster and the fiend and left as Universal Champion. Doesn’t care who he faces at Clash of Champions because this is his island.
Backstage, Roman meets up with Jey Uso. They hug it out at first but then Jey asks what’s up with the alliance, after everything they’ve went through. Roman tells him to trust him and walks off.
Heavy Machinery vs. The Miz & John Morrison
Otis with a waistlock takedown on Miz. And another. Big shoulder block, tag to Tucker, double shoulder tackle for a 1 count. Morrison tags himself in but gets a huge hip toss, avalanche in the corner and Otis tags in, double teaming leaves Morrison floored. Double bodyslam, clotheslines send both heels to the outside right before a commercial break.
We come back to see the heels double teaming Tucker until he ducks a double clothesline and makes the tag to Otis, series of big shoulder tackles! Pancake to Morrison, charges in the corner but a sidestep leads to a Flying Chuck/Legtrip combo from the heels. Miz tags in, gets him in a chinlock and tags right back, both hit running kicks for a nearfall. Miz tags in again, double whip in the corner, Miz tries for the Mizline but Otis avoids it, dumps Morrison, back elbow to Miz, Otis wants a tag but Morrison pulls Tucker off the apron and hits a Moonlight Drive on the floor!
Miz starts kicking Otis in the tummy though, and that allows him to Otis up, T-Bones for both men and now an Avalanche onto both men, leads to the Caterpillar! Nails the elbow to Miz, then goes to the second rope for a Vader Bomb!!! And that is that!
Winner: Heavy Machinery
Vader Bomb isn’t a bad finish for Otis at all. Afterwards, Morrison steals the MITB briefcase and celebrates with it on the stage.
There’s a birthday celebration prepared for Xavier Woods, who is also back to host Talking Smack. Big E says he’ll celebrate by winning tonight and cashing in for a Universal title match. He gets word that Woods just got here and cheerily takes up the cake to go greet him, but it’s an ambush as Sheamus jumps him, hits a Brogue Kick! He pulls him over to a car, hoists him up, White Noise onto the windshield!
Sasha Banks and Bayley are being interviewed about the titles they’ve lost. But tonight they face Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler in a tag title rematch. Bayley says at Payback they’d never seen them as a team before so they didn’t know how to prepare but now they’ve got it on lock. Interviewer points out that Shayna has submitted Bayley three straight times and Sasha gets upset on her behalf.
Backstage, Adam Pearce says they don’t know the extent of his injuries, but Big E will not be able to compete in the four way and they are looking for a replacement. Paul Heyman comes up to him and beckons him away.
WWE Women’s Tag Team Championships: Bayley & Sasha Banks vs. Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
Bayley and Sasha with immediate double teams taking both champs to the floor, they try for Stereo Baseball Slides, but the monsters catch ’em and this leads to a series of Giant Swings into the barricade! Commercial break. As we come back, champs still in control, charging knees and avalanches get a nearfall on Bayley. Nia with a Shoulderbreaker kinda I guess, for a nearfall. Cobra Clutch, Bayley fights to her way up for elbows but Nia throws her int othe corner. Pin for 2.
Baszler tags in, charging high knee in the corner, takedown for a hammerlock. Shayna with an armbreaker. Nia tags in and hoists Bayley up but Sasha clips her, tags herself in, pummels her, gets sent to the apron but some high knees to the head daze her! Pullover double knee drive, hits the ropes for a Meteora! Goes up top, Flying Meteora for a nearfall! Nia hoists her up, Banks escapes to the apron but Shayna tags herself in, Sasha knocks Shayna to the floor, gets Nia on the apron, tag to Bayley, Hot Shot from Bayley allows Banks to Powerbomb Jax onto the floor! Baszler sneaks in for a Kirifuda Clutch but Bayley with a Back Suplex counter!
Quick tags and isolation commence now. Baszlder fights back, series of headlock takeovers, wants the Kirifuda Clutch on Bayley but Sasha stops her with a Backstabber for a nearfall! Tag to Bayley who goes up top, Flying Elbow Drop for a nearfall! Baszler rolls to the apron, gets a Dropkick to the ribs in on Baszler, tries for a Meteora against the post but Baszler side-steps her and she flies into the post! Sasha struggles to the apron, Hot Shot on Baszler, wants her pullover double knees again but Baszler blocks it, throws her against the buckles and nails a chop block, that’s a lot of devastation to that leg.
Sasha tries to pull herself up, sliding leg sweep! She wants to hook her for a leglock, Banks with an inside cradle for a nearfall, Baszler knocks Bayley off the apron and keeps going after the leg. Muta Lock sinks in, but Bayley into the ring, Shayna wants the same double submission from Payback but Bayley this time counters into a Bayley-To-Belly! Sasha covers for a nearfall, Sasha rolls her into a Bank Statement, Jax pulls Bayley to the floor and breaks it up, tags herself in. She pummels Sasha and thwarts her comeback attempt, takes her up top, Bayley in to pull Sasha to the mat. They hit a Double Back Suplex on Baszler but Banks’ leg gives out, Nia with a Crossbody on both to get the pin.
Winners: Nia Jax & Shayna Baszler
Finish was never gonna compare to Payback but I did think that was a much better match with them just letting Sasha be the face. Afterwards medics are tending to her leg.
We come back from break and Sasha is still in the ring with the doctors. Sasha starts shoving them away. Bayley tries to help her out instead, but she can’t seem to stand so she helps her roll out of the ring instead… only to start stomping her! She takes her to the floor and throws her into the steps! Shoves her face into the post, and now Bayley’s singling out the injured leg and slams it against the steps, stomps it into the steel. Bayley pulls her up by the hair and rams her into the barricade, then into the apron, forces her into the ring. Pulls out a chair and she’s setting up for a Pillmanizing! Banks kicks her away but eats a knee to the face! Bayley attacks again and this time wraps the chair around her throat instead, comes off the second rope to stomp on the chair! She leaves with a wicked smile as medics return.
Sasha Banks is loaded into an ambulance after the break. Now out comes Sami Zayn. He gets mad at Greg Hamilton for his introduction because he didn’t refer to him as IC Champ even though he’s holding the title. Hamilton says it wasn’t in his notes. Sami asks who’s running the floor, asks for a stagehand and gets the headset to talk to the truck. He talks to someone called Marty and asks if they made sure to include “Intercontinental Champion” on his graphic. He angrily asks why not, and evidently it wasn’t in his notes either.
Sami starting to get mad talking about how he sees a pattern here but now out comes Jeff Hardy who says if he wanted a rematch for a title shot all he had to do was ask. Zayn tells him he’s already the champion and if anything, Jeff needs to ask HIM for a title shot! AJ Styles out now, asking how they can parade around with those titles knowing that he is the uncrowned Intercontinental Champion! Jeff tells AJ that he’s ready to defend anytime, Sami shouts at him to distract him and AJ jumps Jeff from behind! Heels double team for a moment but Styles with a round kick to the head, looking for the Styles Clash, Jeff attacks him to break it up though, Twist of Fate to Styles, wants another on Sami but he reverses and hits a Helluva Kick on Hardy! Raises the title as he leaves.
We see a scene of some woman’s heels walking around.
Heavy Machinery talk backstage about Morrison taking the briefcase but Otis tells him he doesn’t keep the contract in there, he actually has it in his lunchbox! In another part of backstage Miz tries to explain to him that stealing the contract doesn’t mean he’s Mr. Money In The Bank. Morrison disagrees but when he opens the briefcase, it’s just a sandwich.
Jey Uso speaks with Roman Reigns backstage and thanks for getting him in the match tonight – he’ll be replacing Big E in the four way. Roman tells him he knows Jimmy would’ve won and of course Roman wins everything, suggests he get it done himself for once. King Corbin on the way to the ring, Riddle’s already here, Corbin shouts about how this match has been tainted by nepotism when Riddle charges up the ramp at him. Sheamus and Jey come join in the brawl and they fight around ringside.
Bray Wyatt in the Firefly Funhouse says you’re probably a little down in the dumps since he’s lost his favorite toy yet again but he has a pick-me-up – a new friend in the Funhouse for next week! Speaking of which, Nikki Cross is watching on the screen, Alexa shows up and apologizes for last week and gives her a hug as Ramblin’ Rabbit watches on in the distance.
Winner Gets Shot At WWE Universal Championship: Jey Uso vs. Sheamus vs. Matt Riddle vs. King Corbin
Jey with an immediate superkick to Corbin. Everyone starts brawling, Jey flips onto his feet off of a Riddle German Suplex, Corbin pulls Jey out of the ring to drive him into the barricade. Brawl continues in the ring, Corbin dumps Sheamus, Riddle comes in but eats a big Spinebuster for a nearfall, Sheamus back in the ring and the big boys stare each other down but instead start ganging up on Jey. They keep Riddle out of the ring as Jey eats a big right hand, Ring-Around-The-Ringpost attempted but Riddle stops him with a Front Kick! Sheamus with an Irish Whip, Jey with a boot off a back body drop attempt, Riddle into the ring to pummel him with strikes, enziguris to both big men! Charging forearms traded in adjacent corners, but a Deep Six and Irish Curse counter a second charge for a double nearfall! Commercial break.
We come back to see Sheamsu hitting Jey with an overhead belly to belly. Hotshots Corbin when he tries to come onto the apron, then a baseball slide takes him to the floor. Ten Beats of the Bowery to Jey, making sure to tear his shirt first! Pulls him into the ring to hoist him onto his shoulders but Riddle stops him with a high kick, Corbin attacks him from behind but eats a Ripcord Knee! Exploder Suplex to Sheamus, PK, Broton nailed! German Suplex with a bridge, nearfall! Sheamus rolls him up but Riddle counters with a Triangle attempt, Sheamus powers him for the Backlund Bomb for a nearfall but Sheamus holds onto his legs for the Cloverleaf!
Uso breaks it up with a superkick but Corbin rolls him for a 2 count, goozle but on the chokeslam attempt he escapes, another superkick, Umaga style Hip Attack, Superkick Party commences on everybody! Hits the ropes, wants a tope but Corbin clobbers him to stop him. Sheamus and Riddle attack Corbin and dump him over the barricade where he hilariously completely disappears, Riddle and Sheamus square off but they both get dropped with a tope! Corbin reaches towards Jey but gets slammed against the barricade, Jey charges over the barrier but Corbin catches him out of the air and tosses him past the front row of Thunderdome screens! Fun.
Back in the ring, Corbin has Riddle set up for the End of Days but he escapes it, Sheamus with a Brogue Kick to Corbin, Riddle hits the Bro To Sleep on Sheamus, Floating Bro to Corbin but Jey shocks him with a Top Rope Frog Splash for the win!
Winner: Jey Uso
Quite the unexpected happening tonight, Jey Uso coming out of nowhere to win a shot at his cousin… that’s gonna be quite the story. Jey being interviewed afterwards, tells his cousin, “Welcome… you know the rest!” And that’s the show.