This week’s WWE Friday Night SmackDown show opens with a video package for Sting. Love or hate WWE, their video packages are second-to-none.
We are immediately taken to the ring for a new episode of “MizTV”. Damien Sandow is carrying a pair of kids title belts, BTW. Miz claims he’s the sole WWE Tag Team Champion and raises one of the belts. Mizdow does the same with one of his plastic ones and gets a huge pop. Miz will now interview Big Show about what happened when he turned on Team Cena at Survivor Series.
Show comes out, and we see video of Erick Rowan challenging Show to a fight on RAW. A dumbass “You sold out” chant breaks out. Miz says he’s been talking to a lot of the superstars, and they’re all saying negative things about Show, including calling him a traitor. He says Show’s only mistake was joining Team Cena. Show agrees, and he had to do what was best for himself and his family. No one else understands that. Everyone wants to come to quick judgments, including Rowan. Rowan doesn’t know his situation. He doesn’t know…
MATCH 1-20-MAN BATTLE ROYAL FOR THE WWE UNITED STATES CHAMPIONSHIP; PARTICIPANTS: WWE TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS THE MIZ & DAMIEN MIZDOW, THE BIG SHOW, ERICK ROWAN, THE USOS (JEY & JIMMY), GOLDUST, STARDUST, DIEGO, FERNANDO, CESARO, TITUS O’NEIL, ADAM ROSE, HEATH SLATER, TYSON KIDD, SIN CARA, CURTIS AXEL, JUSTIN GABRIEL, JACK SWAGGER (W/ZEB COLTER) AND RUSEV (CHAMPION, W/LANA)
Lots of brawling until Gabriel and Cara are both eliminated back-to-back. Rowan sends Slater flying to the floor. Down to 17. Axel gets tossed by Goldust. Adam Rose is tossed by Los Matadores. Cesaro nearly eliminates Stardust, but he hangs on. Show eliminates both members of Los Matadores by shoving them out throat-first. Rowan zooms in on Show, and they trade blows. Rowan nails an avalanche, then another, then sends Show out to the floor with a clothesline. Show is gone. Rusev then tosses Rowan. Cesaro, Titus and Kidd try to eliminate Rusev. One of the Usos joins in as well, but he hangs on. Commercials.
Back from the break, it doesn’t appear anyone else is gone. Cesaro tries to eliminate Mizdow, but Mizdow hangs on, and Miz pulls him back in. Miz tries to toss Cesaro, but no luck. Stardust sends Miz to the apron, but Miz slides back in and tosses Stardust. Stardust hangs on on the apron, then low-bridges Miz with a Goldust assist. Miz is gone, so Mizdow proceeds to eliminate himself. God, I love this man. Swagger then eliminates both Goldust and Stardust at the same time. Cesaro gets Swagger on the apron, but Swagger hangs on. An Uso avoids elimination and goes up top, but Titus nails a big boot and Uso (I’m being told it’s Jimmy) is gone. Jey then eliminates Titus off a big boot gone wrong. Kidd gets backdropped by Jey and lands on the apron before pulling Jey out with a bodyscissors. Jey is gone. Cesaro almost suffers the same fate, but only one foot touches. We’re down to Cesaro, Swagger, Kidd and Rusev. Swagger goes after Rusev, so Kidd goes after Swagger. Cesaro starts hitting everybody, then looks to toss Swagger with help from Kidd and Rusev. Swagger is holding on and lands on the apron. He fights everyone off and climbs back in. Cesaro jumps on him, but Swagger rams him into the buckle. He tosses Kidd onto Cesaro, then sends Rusev into Kidd. Rusev gets a Samoan drop, and Swagger drops the other two with rights. Rusev gets hit with the Swagger Bomb, and now Cesaro is trying to toss Swagger. Swagger reverses and tosses Cesaro to the apron. Kidd leaps onto Swagger, and Swagger catches him, dumping him to the floor. Kidd’s gone. Rusev gets Swagger crotched on the top rope, and Cesaro quickly tries to toss Swagger out. Swagger holds on, and Rusev charges in. Cesaro sidesteps him and sends him into Swagger. Cesaro tosses Rusev, but only one foot hits the ground. Swagger then backdrops Cesaro to the outside. Rusev then gets the last elimination by nailing Swagger with a jumping side kick on the apron.
WINNER AND STILL CHAMPION: RUSEV.
We see Kane working the merchandise booth, selling t-shirts to some kids. Santino Marella walks up and compliments Kane on his Ryback shirt. He wants a different one, but Kane scares him off by staring at him.
Bray Wyatt comes down to the ring and says as Dean Ambrose started to climb that ladder at Survivor Series, he looked just like an angel, ascending to Heaven. For a moment, he almost put a smile on Wyatt’s face. But they ain’t got much room for people like them up there. People like him and Ambrose belong somewhere different. As he laid there, suffering with his own thoughts, he felt the chairs crashing down on him. The pain started to feel euphoric. It was in that moment that, for the first time, he felt like he failed Ambrose. But he only failed himself. If Ambrose wants to wallow in his own misery, he’s welcome to. His demons mold him, but Wyatt molds the demons. They march on his command. Ambrose thinks he has Wyatt figured out, but the devil works in mysterious ways. What’s his is his, and it will always be. Congratulations, Ambrose. This is a celebration. They’ve reached the point of no return, and what happens next will change Ambrose. Tables, ladders and chairs. Tables, ladders and chairs. Oh my. At TLC, as Wyatt smashes him through tables and beats him with chairs, he’s going to climb the ladder, look down at Ambrose’s lifeless body, and he’ll finally be able to smile, because he’ll put Ambrose where he belongs: in the dirt, with the rest of the insects. Follow the buzzards.
MATCH 2: EMMA VS. WWE DIVAS CHAMPION NIKKI BELLA (W/BRIE BELLA; NON-TITLE)
The two lock up, and Nikki hits a forearm. Emma gets in a roll-up for 1, so Nikki boots her in the face. She hits a release hammerlock slam, then throws Nikki into the buckles. Emma comes back with the Dil-Emma, then slaps Nikki on the ass. She slaps Nikki across the face and charges into the corner, but Nikki blocks it with an elbow. She hits a sloppy-ass springboard kick, then hits the Rack Attack for 3.
WINNER: NIKKI BELLA.
Nikki says that it’s time that everyone knows the real truth about AJ Lee. They’ve heard over and over again her sob story, but Nikki has worked harder. Take a look at what a real Divas Champion looks like. Lee will always be that pathetic, manipulating little girl from New Jersey.
Lee charges down, and Nikki throws Brie to her. Lee nails a Thesz press and a few punches before Brie escapes to the floor.
Back to Kane at the merchandise table, except Kane is nowhere to be found. Instead, the table and the wall display have both been destroyed.
MATCH 3: RYBACK VS. SETH ROLLINS (W/J&J SECURITY)
Ryback backs Rollins into the corner with a lock-up, then misses a clothesline. He blocks a kick and shoves Rollins down for 1. Rollins escapes a bodyslam and applies a side headlock. Ryback breaks free, and the two crisscross until Ryback catches Rollins and hits him with a front powerslam. Rollins escapes to the floor for a breather before coming back in with punches and kicks. Ryback eventually throws Rollins to the corner and nails a chop. He hits another one in the adjacent corner. Rollins comes back with a mule kick and a chop of his own. Ryback no-sells it, as well as a few more and hits a hard one that knocks Rollins down. Ryback beals Rollins across the ring and charges in, but Rollins sends him shoulder-first into the ring post. Ryback collapses to the floor, and now Rollins is on the attack on the outside. He rams Ryback back-first into the barricade, then slams his face into the apron. Back in the ring, Rollins gets a 1-count. He nails a corner forearm, then stomps Ryback down. Rollins hits a kick to the ribs, but Ryback comes back with more punches. Rollins puts him down with a dropkick for another 1, then applies a front chancery. Ryback fights his way out and rams Rollins into the corner. He runs Rollins across the ring, but Rollins reverses into a sunset flip for 2. He blocks a clothesline and hits a complete shot into the middle buckle for another 2. Rollins mounts the middle rope and hits a punch to the face. He dives off the top, but Ryback catches him and hits a spin-out powerslam. Rollins rolls to the floor, and Ryback pursues. J&J distract him, which allows Rollins to send him into the ring post with a knee to the back. He then throws Rollins back-first into the steps before rolling back in. Commercials.
Back from the break, Rollins has Ryback in a side headlock. Ryback tries to counter with a back suplex, but Rollins blocks. He holds on, and on the third try, Ryback hits a slingshot back suplex. He signals for the Meat Hook, so Rollins rolls to the apron. Ryback goes for a suplex, but Rollins lands on his feet, only to turn back around into a back-body drop. He tries to escape, but Ryback pulls him back in and goes for a powerbomb. Rollins escapes that move and nails Ryback with a jumping kick to the head. Rollins follows up with a thrust kick to the face (I hope El Patron saw how to do that move correctly just now) for 2, then mounts Ryback for some straight punches. Ryback tosses him off and pulls himself up in the corner. Rollins charges in and misses a splash, getting caught on the top rope. Ryback picks him up for Shell Shocked, then mounts the middle rope. Rollins escapes and goes for a sunset flip powerbomb. Joey Mercury jumps on the apron for a distraction, allowing Jamie Noble to kick Ryback’s hands off the ropes. Rollins then hits a running powerbomb into the buckles across the ring, but it’s still only good for 2. Rollins goes for the curb stomp, but Ryback catches him in a gorilla press. Rollins escapes, and that’s when J&J jump on the apron. Ryback goes after them before backdropping an incoming Rollins onto them on the outside. Outside, Ryback grabs Rollins and rolls him back in. He nails a standing spinebuster, then calls for the Meat Hook again. It connects, and now Ryback looks for Shell Shocked. He drops Rollins, however, when Kane enters the ring with a chair, leading to the DQ.
WINNER VIA DISQUALIFICATION: RYBACK.
Ryback ducks a chair shot and nails Kane with a standing spinebuster. He grabs the chair and looks to hit Kane. Rollins tries to grab the chair, but Ryback shoves him away. He turns around, and Kane drops him with a big boot. Rollins has the chair now, and he hands it back to Kane. Kane nails Ryback repeatedly across the back as Rollins and J&J look on from the stage. Kane pulls Ryback up and chokeslams him onto the chair.
We get a video for the New Day as a collective unit. They debut tonight.
MATCH 4: CURTIS AXEL AND SLATER-GATOR (TITUS O’NEIL AND HEATH SLATER) VS. THE NEW DAY (BIG E, KOFI KINGSTON AND XAVIER WOODS)
Axel and Woods start off with a lock-up. Axel applies an arm wringer, which Woods counters before snapping Axel onto his back. Woods hits a clothesline and tags in Kofi, who comes off the top with a stomp to the arm. He hits a snapmare and tags in Woods. Kofi hits a low kick, and Woods nails a dropkick as E tags in. E hits a Warrior Splash, then tags in Woods. E wheelbarrows Woods onto Axel with a splash for 2. Axel eats a back elbow, and Slater distracts Woods enough for Axel to hit a dropkick. Slater tags in and stomps Woods down before tagging in Titus. Titus hits a backbreaker into a falling slam. Axel tags in and nails a gut shot. He goes for a back suplex, but Woods lands on his feet and hits a modified enziguri. Kofi and Slater tag in, and Kofi comes off the top with a chop. He hits both Axel and Titus on the apron, then hits Slater with a back elbow and a dropkick. He misses a jumping clothesline, avoids a corner whip by jumping onto the buckles and hits a springboard cross-body for 2 as Axel breaks it up. E comes in and drops Axel with a belly-to-belly. Titus charges in, and Kofi low-bridges him to the floor. Slater slides into Kofi, but Kofi leapfrogs him, sending Slater face-first to the outside. E tags in and tosses Kofi onto all three opponents on the outside. He rolls Slater back in as Woods makes a blind tag. E picks Slater up on his shoulders for the Big Ending and hits it while Woods simultaneously hits a leaping DDT for the middle rope, which is good enough for 3.
WINNERS: THE NEW DAY.
Renee Young is with Daniel Bryan. She mentions him running RAW, then asks how it feels to be back. Bryan says he’s had a blast, and he misses the WWE Universe. Before he turns over authority for next week, he has one more decision to make. Since Kane loves chairs so much, and Ryback would like some retribution. So, at TLC, it will be Kane vs. Ryback in a Chairs Match. Not sure why Bryan keeps referring to him as “The Ryback”, but whatever. Before Bryan leaves, Young asks, on behalf of the WWE Universe, will he be back soon? Bryan thinks for a moment, shakes his head “no”, then starts screaming “YES! YES! YES!”
We get a promo from Gold & Stardust. Stardust is complaining about anguish. Goldust is angry. Their insides are black. Stardust says science has failed them. The cosmic key is gone. The light has been snuffed out and now there’s darkness. Welcome to the black hole. Goldust then says darkness falls on the new day. Not sure if that was an expression or he was talking about the New Day faction. I’m guessing the latter.
MATCH 5-INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP: DOLPH ZIGGLER VS. LUKE HARPER (CHAMPION)
The two circle each other, and Ziggler goes for a quick schoolboy for 1. He hits a few kicks and a neckbreaker for another 1. Harper rolls to the apron, where he looks for a suplex to the floor. Ziggler blocks it and hits a hotshot before sending Harper to the floor with a dropkick. Commercials.
WINNER VIA COUNT-OUT: DOLPH ZIGGLER. STILL CHAMPION: LUKE HARPER.
Harper attacks Ziggler after the match with a right hand. He walks across Ziggler’s back, then grabs the IC title from the timekeeper. Back in the ring, Harper goes to brain Ziggler with the belt, but Ziggler ducks and nails Harper with a Zig-Zag.
End of show.
Great main event tonight, and I’d like to see more of Harper/Ziggler in the future. The New Day’s gimmick sucks, but they looked good as a team.