WWE SMACKDOWN LIVE! (5/30/17)
-Sami Zayn & Shinsuke Nakamura VS Baron Corbin & Kevin Owens; Zayn & Nakamura win.
-WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 5 Elimination Match: Charlotte Flair VS Becky Lynch VS Natalya VS Tamina VS Carmella w/ James Ellsworth; no contest.
-Breezango VS The Colons; Breezango wins.
-AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler; wins.
PLAY BY PLAY
The five women competing in tonight’s SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 contender’s match state their case. Charlotte’s genetics, Carmella’s “class”, Natalya’s family legacy, Becky’s fire or Tamina’s “time”, who will be the last woman standing to face Naomi at Money in the Bank?
SmackDown opens with another episode of Kevin Owens’ Highlight Reel.
The Face of America will give credit to Chris Jericho inventing the Money in the Bank ladder match, yet Y2J never won that match. The fans upset Kevin with chants for AJ Styles but he ignores them. Kevin will prove he’s better than Jericho by winning the Money in the Bank briefcase to then get his shot at the WWE World Championship anywhere and anytime. Then Kevin will become the Face of America and the WWE! As for his guest tonight, he is just one of the men Kevin will “step on” to win the ladder match, the “Rockstar” and “Artist, Shinsuke Nakamura!
The King of Strong Style is told by Kevin that that is “enough of your stupid little dancing”. This is Kevin’s show, and he wishes to get to the heart of who Nakamura is and why he’s on SmackDown. Though, the real question that Kevin wants to ask is if Nakamura knows what happened to the other rockstar of WWE. Kevin sent Jericho off into “early retirement”, and if Nakamura shows up at MitB, that will “be the day the music dies, do you understand me?” Before Nakamura can answer, Baron Corbin appears!
The Lone Wolf says no one cares what Nakamura was going to say. A Highlight Reel needs to be showing highlights of a real superstar. And by that, Corbin means the footage of him dismantling Sami Zayn last week after Corbin was embarrassed when Sami beat him with a roll-up. Kevin can’t believe Corbin is bragging about beating up Sami Zayn, Kevin’s been doing that for 15 years. Plus, Corbin wasn’t invited, so get out. So “Cartman” wants someone to respect his authority? Corbin will make more highlights by beating up Nakamura and then winning Money in the Bank. Nakamura would like to point out that Jericho wasn’t the only rockstar to beat Kevin, Nakamura pinned Kevin last week. As for Corbin, Nakamura beat Sami and Sami beat Corbin, so Nakamura should have no problems. However, 2v1 right now doesn’t favor Nakamura at all! So Sami Zayn makes the save!
He and Nakamura fight Corbin and Kevin off! The Underdog and the Rockstar command the ring, and Sami wants to continue his fight with both Corbin and Kevin. If Nakamura is up for it, let’s have a tag match right now!
Sami Zayn & Shinsuke Nakamura VS Baron Corbin & Kevin Owens!
Yes, this match was made thanks to Commissioner Shane McMahon and it begins with Nakamura and Corbin. The Lone Wolf doesn’t let the Rockstar push him back, but Nakamura does get a waistlock. Corbin turns that into a wristlock but Nakamura rolls out and cartwheels to turn it around. Corbin gets a ropebreak, Nakamura rests on Corbinn’s stomach. Corbin shoves him, Nakamura dares him to bring it, Nakamura knees and kicks Corbin into a corner. More knee strikes, then Good Vibrations before Nakamura backs off. Nakamura brings Corbin over, tag to Sami, Corbin slips away to tag Kevin. Sami and Kevin brawl, Sami backing Kevin down. Sami’s whip is reversed, he springboards up and over to then headscissor Kevin, Kevin slips uot of the ring. Cat ‘n’ mouse leads to Kevin turning things around, tag to Corbin. Corbin punches Sami into a corner, sets Sami top rope, but Sami slips down only to get knees crushing him in those battered ribs. Sami fires off hands on Corbin in the corner, way past ten! Sami drags Corbin out to try a suplex but cannot. Corbin backs Saim against ropes, cheap shot in the form of a kick from Kevin. Corbin stomps away before tagging in Kevin, now Kevin stomps away. Kevin keeps Sami against the ropes before tagging Corbin back in. Corbin brings Sami to a neutral corner and sets him top rope, but Sami fights back. Corbin denies the tornado DDT with pure power and body slams Sami down, we go picture in picture to stay with the action.
As commercials play, we can see Corbin stalk Sami along the ropes. Corbin throws Sami out of the ring, Kevin gets a bunch of cheap shots while the ref is distracted with Corbin. Corbin then goes out to drive Sami into the barriers. Things return to the ring, Corbin stomps Sami down before he can tag Nakamura. Corbin takes Sami back to a corner to give him another punch, tag to Kevin and the mugging continues. Kevin furiously chokes Sami against ropes then gives a back senton, TWO. Chinlock applied, Kevin won’t let Sami get away. Sami fights back but can’t get away, cheap shots from Corbin now as Kevin distracts the ref. Kevin keeps Sami down, covers, TWO, so Kevin puts on armlocks. Sami wills himself to his feet, so Kevin yanks him back into a backbreaker, TWO. Chinlock once again, Sami endures as we return to single picture. Sami reaches for Nakamura as he fights out, Blue Thunder Bomb! No time for a pin, Sami heads for Nakamura. Kevin tags Corbin, Corbin knocks Nakamura off the apron. Roll-up from Sami, TWO. SPINEBUSTER!
TWO again and Corbin is frustrated. Corbin looms over Sami as he taunts the crowd. Corbin gives straight punches to Sami’s face, Sami fires back with a sudden lariat! Sami crawls towards Nakamura, gets the tag! Kevin is in, too, Nakamura rallies on the Prizefighter. Corner to corner whip then a running knee, Kevin is set on the top rope for that top shelf knee! TWO, but Nakamura is not deterred. Nakamura picks Kevin up but Kevin resists the suplex. Nakamura swings, misses the first but gets the other, Corbin barrels in to break the pin. Sami returns to swing wild on Corbin until the ref backs him down. Sami sends Kevin into Corbin and Corbin gets upset with him! Kevin shoves Corbin, Corbin rocks Kevin with a right hand. Sami clotheslines Corbin out, KINSHASA from Nakamura! Nakamura and Sami win! Will either of these men take down that blue briefcase at Money in the Bank?
The SmackDown Tag Team Champions, the Usos come to the ring.
The WWE Universe in Atlanta looks “salty” and “mad”. Why? Is it because the Usos are still the WWE SmackDown tag team champions? They thought American Alpha was going to beat them, but nope. They thought Breezanga was gonna beat them, but nope. They thought the Falcons were gonna beat the Patriots, but NOPE. But nobody goes hard like the Usos– ATLANTA~! Don’t you dare~ be sour! Clap for the returning New Day and feel the powah~!
Yes, the New Day is back! Big E, Kofi Kingston and Atlanta’s own Xavier Woods have returned and are finally on SmackDown! And as such, the New Day’s “world class hips”– Hold up, “chumps”. You get lost off the yellow brick road? This is the Uso Penitentiary! The New Day knows all about penitentiaries. As for those SmackDown tag titles, “we likes ’em. And we wants ’em.”
Well wake up out of your fairy tale, this is some real ish. Usos run SmackDown like track stars or else you “unicorns” are getting taken out Ol’ Yeller style. Whoa, whoa, really? “Honey…! That’s so cute!” The guys who really run the show are Shane O’Mac and D-Bryan. And it would seem the Usos having opponents at Money in the Bank. Who who who? Jim, Jey, get ready for The New Day to become the new SmackDown Tag Team Champions! “BECAUSE~!” New, Day Rocks! Paranoia versus positivity, which will win gold on June 18th?
A look back at last week’s Punjabi Championship Celebration. The new champion, the 50th all time champion, the Hard Body Maharaja, celebrated his triumph over the Viper, Randy Orton. Mahal dedicated his win to his people of India, and as his win was as big news in India as much as it was anywhere. However, Randy Orton is due his rematch at Money in the Bank in his hometown of St. Louis, can the Viper take back the title or will Jinder Mahal continue his reign for the glory of Punjabi?
Fandango goes solo in a Fashion Files Noire edition. The gumshoe feels so down after his loss to the “Uggos”. Where do they go from here? But just then, he sees someone has ransacked HQ! Everything’s a mess, from conspiracy board to the evidence table. A silhouette in the doorway gets his eye. Freeze, dirt bag! No. Breeze, dirt bag. Prince Pretty is back in town but why is he undercover? Oh good he thinks Breeze is still undercover. Wait they can hear each other telepathically? Either way, they both want to know what happened. Someone is sending a message. A clue! Cologne? As in, THE Colons! Is Fandango thinking what Breeze is thinking? Depends, is he thinking how that dress suits Breeze? No but thanks. Their next case involves the Shining Stars, Epico and Primo!
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship #1 Contender Fatal 5 Elimination Match
Charlotte Flair VS Becky Lynch VS Natalya VS Tamina VS Carmella w/ James Ellsworth!
Naomi has the title and everyone wants to take it from her. Only one among the Queen of PPVs, the Lass Kicker, the Queen of Harts, the Daughter of Superfly and the Princess of Staten Island can #FeeltheGlow at Money in the Bank. Though if you listen to Pretty Jimmy Dream, he already declares Carmella the future, “DUH!” The Welcoming Committee is still allied enough that they attack Becky and Charlotte before the bell, but Becky and Charlotte hold their own. Natty gives Charlotte a quick couple of suplexes, though, the ref trying desperately to get them to settle down. Charlotte gives back forearms but then Tamina pounces. Samoan Drop, and then Carmella and Becky brawl by barriers. Becky puts Carmella over into the time keeper’s area! To then jump on her with a Fire-Arm!
The ref needs them all the regroup in the ring but Tamina takes apart the announce table to then drag Charlotte over. Charlotte revives and rams Tamina into the apron and the post. Charlotte then gives Natty an Exploder! Charlotte climbs high now and… MOONSAULT!
She topples Natty and Tamina over, but this match STILL isn’t official. Carmella returns to crossbody Charlotte! Becky gets Carmella with a Becksploder! SUPERKICK from Tamina to Becky, boot from Charlotte to Tamina, Discus from Natty to Charlotte! Natty sees that table now, more refs are out to try and gain control, Natty drags Charlotte over. Charlotte throws her to steel steps! Charlotte sees that table for herself now and puts Natty through it with a powerbomb!!
But, who will face Naomi!? Shane McMahon appears to figure that out!
SmackDown’s women’s division is insane, but perhaps too insane. What to do about this? Well, since all of them are so intense, let’s do something big! The first ever WOMEN’S MONEY IN THE BANK LADDER MATCH! History will be made! Who will be the first ever Ms. Money in the Bank!?
Breezango VS The Colons!
The Fashion Police found their headquarters in shambles, and the prime suspects are the former Shining Stars of Puerto Rico. Though, Tyler is still “undercover” as he comes out with Detective Fandango, and the Colon cousins have a bit of a laugh at it. Tyler and Primo start, Tyler is trying to keep the skirt down despite his tights. Primo “hits a lady” and takes off the dress and wig. Primo drags Tyler up, Tyler hits a dropkick and tags in Fandango. Double elbows, TWO, so the gumshoe whips Primo. Sunset flip but Fandango uses his water gun!
And Tyler, too, to stop Epico! Both Colons end up out of the ring, the Fashion Police have control as we go picture in picture.
Fandango waits for the Colons, the cousins decide to flank him, but Fandango sees it coming. Armdrag to Primo, but Primo gets out with a knee. Fandango prevents the buckle bump and returns the favor. Fandango gives chops to Primo, Primo puts on a headlock and tags Epico. Epico trips Fandango, drags him out and rams him into the apron. Back into the ring, slingshot senton, TWO. Epico drives knees into Fandango’s spine, then rains hands down on his head. Epico tags Primo, double suplex slams Fandango down, TWO. Fandango heads for Breeze but is pulled away. Primo sweeps the legs, TWO, so Primo puts on a half surfboard. Fandango endures and powers out, but Primo throws him down by his hair. Tag to Epico, double Russian leg sweep, TWO. Chinlock is applied now, Fandango fights his way out, roll up, TWO. Epico clotheslines Fandango and gives a cheap shot to Breeze, body drop from Fandango but no tag can be made. Epico gives Fandango a tilt-o-whirl backbreaker, TWO. The Colons are getting frustrated now, they hold Fandango against the ropes. Tag to Primo, Fandango denies the running attack with a lariat! Fandango can’t get a tag yet, he gets a Complete Shot instead, TWO. Epico bumps Fandango off a buckle then sits him top rope. Epico climbs up, Fandango resists the superplex to hit a Sunset Powerbomb! Fandango can’t make the cover, but where is a partner? Janitor Breeze is back!
Fandango tags in the Janitor! Who rallies all over Primo! Corner to corner is reversed but he slips out of the way, enziguri for both Colons! The Janitor is on fire! Fandango and Primo tug-of-war on the mop, but Primo ends up in the Unprettier! The Fashion Police win! Can they find the “evidence” back towards the tag titles?
Backstage interview with AJ Styles. How does the Phenomenal One feel about facing the Show-Off this close to Money in the Bank? Well, a great team plays against a good team to gain momentum, so that’s exactly what’s going on here. Sorry to interrupt, but Ziggler wants to let Styles know that “house” he built was built on Ziggler’s “foundation”. Ziggler has been a Mr. Money in the Bank before to also become world champion before, and he vows to do it again. For tonight, does “P1” wanna go right now? Yeah cuz that’s how it’s done in the ATL. Well DZ tells him he’ll have to wait a little longer. Who will gain the momentum towards that ladder match?
Randy Orton comes to the ring.
The Viper hasn’t had the best time as of late, from Jinder Mahal stealing the world title belt, to Jinder Mahal being why Orton lost the House of Horrors match to Jinder Mahal winning the world title with the help of the Singh Brothers. For those who haven’t been paying attention for the last 17 years, Orton has defeated living legends, is the son of a Wrestlemania main eventer, and knows his grandfather–rest his soul–would SLAP Randy for losing to Jinder Mahal! Granddad Orton was of the “silent generation” who would just talk with their actions. Mahal is too arrogant to see that, to see that he doesn’t have anyone’s respect. Mahal has only earned a “good ol’ American” Orton Family brand ass-whooping! Ask any of the other legends, and they’ll all say that “winning is the only option.” Orton won’t talk about it, he’ll make it happen and become the 14 Time World Champion! But then, Jinder Mahal’s music hits, only for the Maharaja to speak via titantron.
Mahal again claims Orton to be like the rest of America, just telling stories about the past while letting the present state of America decay. Orton lives on his family’s coattails while Mahal and the Singh Brothers are the future! Despite all those words, Orton is not deterred. Their coming match is not only for the title but for national pride, will the Viper or the Maharaja reign in the WWE?
AJ Styles VS Dolph Ziggler!
The Phenomenal One and the Show-Off want to use the Money in the Bank briefcase as a way back to the world title, and will use the other as a stepping stone towards that purpose. Ziggler and Styles circle each other, Ziggler gets that leg but Styles fights him off it. Standing switches back and forth, ropebreak has a dirty separation from Ziggler but Styles fires back with a punch and dropkick. Ziggler throws and slides Styles into the post, Styles holds his ribs as we go to break.
Upon return, Ziggler is still in control but fans rally Styles to his feet. Ziggler pulls on Styles’ hair, Styles fights out to hit a back suplex! Styles and Ziggler get to their feet and start brawling. Styles hits the Phenomenal Blitz, Ziggler rolls to a corner, Styles hits a jumping clothesline then a sliding forearm low! Styles is fired up, he gets Ziggler on his feet into a fireman’s carry. Ziggler slips out but gets hit with a wheelbarrow facebuster, TWO! Styles goes for the Clash but Ziggler reverses. The dirty pin is found out by the ref, USHIGOROSHI from Styles!
TWO! Styles is shocked but won’t stop there, he stalks Ziggler to a corner and drags him up. Styles wants the Clash, Ziggler gets ropes, so Styles lets him go to the apron. Stiff right from Styles, then Styles suplexes Ziggler in then into the buckles! Styles climbs up, dragging Ziggler to follow. They sit atop the top rope, and wants the Clash! Ziggler slips out, jumps up, SUPER Satellite DDT! The two men slowly get up, Ziggler kicks a knee but the Famouser is denied, Clash denied again, Ziggler just throws a headbutt! Zig Zag– backbreaker! Both men are down again, the referee sees they’re okay to continue, and Styles runs at Ziggler only to take a wild knee strike. Styles rolls to a corner but Ziggler is upon him. Ziggler puts Styles up top, climbs up, but Styles resists. Styles slips under, trips Ziggler, but then misses on the side step. Ziggler tries another DDT, is denied, Calf Crusher! Ziggler endures that deep hold, the fans are electric, Ziggler rakes eyes to get Styles to let go. Ziggler yanks Styles into ropes, ZIG ZAG! TWO! Ziggler lines up for a Superkick but misses, then jams his knee. Styles runs in but is put on the apron, Styles punches Ziggler away but is tripped up on his springboard! SUPERKICK, Ziggler wins!
Ziggler gets that momentum Styles talked of, can he once repeat history and win that briefcase?
SmackDown once again triumphs when Raw is lacking. Kevin is still brilliantly keeping his feud with Jericho alive by continuing to steal the Highlight Reel, then we get a great opening tag match from him, Corbin, Sami and Nakamura. The New Day is finally back and haven’t lost a step, they’re headed right into a great program with The Usos, both in ring and on the mics as they easily demonstrated tonight. And as if to completely one-up Raw’s waste of a women’s division segment, the hyped up five woman elimination match doesn’t happen but we get some even better action: a huge five woman brawl that then results in the stellar announcement that we will have the first ever Women’s Money in the Bank ladder match! It was also great to see the Fashion Police aren’t done just yet, they’re keeping it fresh rather than fading into the background, hopefully they can keep things going so that they can pit their unique take on the WWE Universe against the New Day for some incredible segments. And of course, that main event was as great as a main event should be, and I’m legitimately surprised Ziggler got the win here. There is lots of time before the MitB PPV, so taking a loss now won’t hurt Styles’ chances and Ziggler needs to stay strong or else he really will just end up “jobber to the stars” again.
The only real low point to me was perhaps the Mahal-Orton interactions. SmackDown literally just reran the video package from last week about Mahal surprising the world, that led into a recap of the celebration, which resulted in squat tonight. Orton’s retort was alright, nothing sensational, and neither was Mahal’s final word on it thereafter. As fun as the shock value of Mahal winning gave us, something has quickly cooled off in this feud, and it’s a bit disappointing. Hopefully the weeks left before Money in the Bank can heat things back up, but WWE and SmackDown need to be careful they don’t drop the ball and prove naysayers right.
My Score: 8/10