Results by: Eric Lynch, rajah.com
This week’s live episode of WWE SmackDown aired from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA. This is the first episode of SmackDown after Sunday’s Backlash pay-per-view.
– New WWE World Heavyweight Champion AJ Styles comes out to the ring with his belt to open up SmackDown. AJ says he hates to tell us he told us so, but he did, and now he truly is the face that runs the place. John Cena interrupts and comes out to the ring. Cena says AJ has something that belongs to him, and he wants it back. AJ throws his headband in Cena’s face, but Cena clarifies that he was talking about the title belt. Cena says he wants to hold the World Heavyweight Title as many times as Ric Flair, so he needs to beat AJ for the strap. Dean Ambrose interrupts before AJ can answer. Ambrose says AJ stole from him by hitting him with a low blow in the match, and says now he is officially enemies with AJ and he promises to make his life miserable. Cena spins Ambrose around by the shoulder and calls out Ambrose for giving AJ a low blow a couple weeks back. Cena says Austin was right when he called Ambrose out on his podcast, and Cena says the low blow shouldn’t have hurt Ambrose because he has no balls. Ambrose calls Cena a lazy part-timer who can’t keep up, and that WWE uses him as a corporate puppet. Shane McMahon is out next and says that AJ took the easy way out in his match against Dean Ambrose with his low blow. Cena says Ambrose will get his one-on-one rematch eventually, but at No Mercy, AJ Styles will defend his title against Cena and Ambrose in a triple threat match. McMahon books Cena and Ambrose in a tag match against AJ Styles and a partner of his choosing. If AJ can’t find one, one will be appointed to him.
– The Usos def. The Hype Bros: Ryder is selling a knee injury early on and the Usos focus in on it. Mojo gets the hot tag and clears the ring, then hits a series of Stinger splashes on both Usos. Jimmy works on Ryder at ringside while Jey hits Mojo with a superkick in the ring. Jey comes off the top with a splash on Mojo for the win.
– The Miz comes out to the ring with Maryse to cut a promo about how great he is as the Intercontinental Champion. Dolph Ziggler interrupts and says the fans will never see The Miz as a top guy because they know he’s phony. The Miz says he doesn’t care about the fans’ respect and that Ziggler’s career is dead. Ziggler admits he’s in a slump, but says The Miz needs to prove it one more time without the help of his wife. Maryse interrupts, but before she gets very far Daniel Bryan interrupts and says Ziggler will get his rematch. The Miz tells Bryan he won’t defend the title until he gets a new SmackDown contract. Daniel Bryan walks into the ring and Miz rolls out and leaves through the crowd.
– Backstage, AJ Styles tries to recruit Baron Corbin as his tag partner for tonight. Corbin declines, saying he would rather be his opponent and take his title belt.
– Apollo Crews vs. Baron Corbin – No Contest: Corbin lays out Crews before the bell, then Jack Swagger comes out for the save. He gets in Corbin’s face and Corbin rolls out of the ring and walks to the back. Jack Swagger cuts a promo saying he’s joined SmackDown, and says you might think you know his abilities, but “you don’t know jack.”
– Alexa Bliss vs. Natalya vs. Carmella vs. Nicki Bella vs. Naomi: Becky Lynch cuts a promo about winning the Women’s Title before the match, and she’ll be sitting at ringside for this one. The women all go at it after the bell with Natalya ending up taking out several of them. She hits a Michinoku driver on Naomi but Nikki breaks the pin. Nikki hits an electric chair suplex on Noami but Alexa breaks the pin. Natalya takes out Alexa with a spear, then Naomi kicks Alexa in the face and hits a full nelson bomb. Natalya dropkicks both Alexa and Naomi, then turns around into an X-Factor from Nikki for a two count. Naomi hits Nikki in the face with her butt for a two count. Natalya takes out Naomi and leaves Nikki and Alexa to fight in the ring. Carmella comes out of nowhere with a superkick on Nikki, but Alexa throws her out of the ring and steals the pin for the win.
– Shane McMahon brings Heath Slater and Rhino out to the ring to sign Slater’s new SmackDown contract. Slater signs and then thanks Shane and Daniel Bryan. Slater thanks his wife and Rhino, and says that they will defend their Tag Titles any time against anyone. Slater starts thanking his kids but is interrupted by The Ascension, who wants a title shot right now. Slater says they shouldn’t do it now because of the table and carpet in the ring, but Shane says now is a great time. They clear the ring, and we have a match.
– Heath Slater & Rhino (c) def. The Ascension: The Tag Team Titles are on the line in this one. The Ascension hit a (botched) Doomsday Device-like double team move on Slater. Slater fights his way to Rhino for the hot tag and Rhino clears the ring. Rhino goes to work on Victor and hits a spinebuster for a near-fall. Connor throws Slater to the outside, then Rhino throws Connor to the outside and hits the Gore on Victor for the win.
– AJ Styles runs into Daniel Bryan backatage. Bryan says he is going to appoint AJ Styles, and it’s one of the local jobbers from a previous show named James.
– Randy Orton is out to the ring in a sleeveless hoodie. He cuts a promo on Bray Wyatt and Wyatt interrupts on the big screen. The lights flicker and Wyatt is suddenly at ringside. Wyatt takes off his hat and jacket, but then the lights go out again. When they come back on, Rowan is in the ring and he attacks Orton from behind. Rowan gives Orton a moment to recover and Orton hits an RKO.
– John Cena & Dean Ambrose def. AJ Styles & The Miz: As James Ellsworth is on his way to the ring, The Miz attacks him from behind and hits the Skull Crushing Finale on the ramp. The Miz is now AJ’s partner. The Miz starts off with lots of offense on Cena until Cena gets the tag to Ambrose. Styles tags in too and Ambrose drops him with a backbreaker. Ambrose follows up with an elbow off the top rope for a near-fall. AJ comes back with a Pele kick that drops Ambrose. Cena asks for the tag but Ambrose igores him and Ambrose gets dropped by The Miz. AJ tags in and hits Cena with a forearm that sends him to the floor, while the Miz chokes Ambrose behind the ref’s back. Cena and Miz tag in and Cena goes to town on the Miz. He hits a back suplex and the Five Knuckle Shuffle, but AJ breaks up the Attitude Adjustment attempt. Ambrose throws AJ outside and follows up with a suicide dive. The Miz gets up and Cena hits the AA on him for the win. After the match, Ambrose hits the Dirty Deeds on Cena and leaves him laying in the ring as SmackDown goes off the air.