WWE SmackDown aired from the Performance Center in Orlando. Jeff Hardy battled Sheamus in the main event. In addition to the takeaways below, Kofi Kingston told Big E that he is going to be out for a bit and it was time for him to show what he can. do as a singles competitor.
SmackDown Results (7/24)
- Nikki Cross def. Alexa Bliss to earn a shot at the SD Women’s Title next week
- Matt Riddle def. Tony Nese
- Gran Metalik def. Lince Dorado, Shorty G, Drew Gulak to earn a shot at the IC Title next week
- Jeff Hardy def. Sheamus in a Bar Fight
Here are 5 takeaways from this week’s show:
Bayley Will Defend Her SmackDown Women’s Championship Against Nikki Cross Next Week
Bayley and Sasha Banks kicked off the show and addressed the championship landscape. They claimed that they were the new definition of greatness and bragged about all the championships they have.
The crowd chanted “you suck!” and Bayley called them idiots. Banks claimed that the women’s evolution is over because it started with them and will end with them. Bayley said that they are bringing a new era, the era of Sasha and Bayley.
Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss interrupted and came to the entrance ramp. Cross said that Sasha Banks stole her championship opportunity and that the era of Banks and Bayley is over. Nikki had her ribs taped up and Bliss told her that she should take it easy.
Cross demanded a shot at the SmackDown Women’s Championship right now. Bayley told Nikki that she can have her title shot if she defeats Alexa Bliss. The winner of the match can face her for the SmackDown Women’s Championship next week. Nikki told Alexa that they have to do this as SmackDown went to a commercial break. Bliss and Cross battled when SmackDown returned as Bayley and Banks joined commentary.
Match Recap: Cross drove Bliss to the corner until the referee broke it up. Cross took control and hit Alexa with a Running Bulldog for a two count. Nikki trapped Bliss in the ring skirt but Alexa broke free with a couple of kicks. Cross and Bliss then leveled Bayley and Banks as SmackDown went to a break.
When SmackDown returned, Bliss connected with a Dropkick that knocked Nikki to the announce table. Cross returned to the ring and Alexa focused her attack on Nikki’s injured ribs. Cross connected with a Jawbreaker and then beat Bliss down in the corner of the ring.
Nikki followed it up with a Neckbreaker and went for the cover but Bliss kicked out at the last moment. Cross climbed to the top rope and went for a Crossbody but Bliss got out of the way and Nikki crashed to the canvas. Cross grabbed her ribs in pain and the referee checked on her. Nikki then rolled up Bliss for the victory. Bayley will defend her SmackDown Women’s Championship against Nikki Cross next week.
After the match, Alexa Bliss told Nikki Cross that she was very happy for and congratulated her. Bliss told Nikki that he was time to focus and beat Bayley to become the next SmackDown Women’s Champion.
King Corbin Put A Bounty On Matt Riddle
Matt Riddle faced Tony Nese tonight on SmackDown.
Match Recap: Matt Riddle dominated early and hit Nese with a Gutwrench Suplex for a two count. Riddle followed it up with a Broton for another two count. Nese battled back and hit a Moonsault and went for the cover but Riddle kicked out at two. Riddle hit an Exploder Suplex and followed it up with a Penalty Kick. Matt then hit the Bro Derek for the pinfall victory.
After the match, Riddle grabbed a microphone and called out King Corbin. King Corbin was greeted with a chorus of boos from the crowd as he made his way to the entrance ramp. Corbin told Riddle that he doesn’t get to call out the King without putting in a formal request.
Corbin told Riddle that he doesn’t belong here and has that new car smell. Eventually that new car smell fades and that he needs to go back to NXT for a little more seasoning. Corbin told Riddle that maybe he should go to 205 Live because he could be a top guy there. King Corbin stated that he is putting a King’s Ransom because Riddle doesn’t belong in his kingdom. Riddle told Corbin that he is the next guess on the Bro Show before booting Tony Nese in the face.
Opinion: I thought it was odd that Corbin dissed two WWE products (NXT and 205 Live) in his promo. There remains zero interest in this feud for me and I don’t think it is going help Matt Riddle all that much.
Naomi Joined Miz TV
Naomi joined Miz and Morrison for an episode of Miz TV tonight on SmackDown. The Miz and Morrison danced around the ring to Naomi’s theme as she made her way to the ring. Naomi complimented them on there dance moves before Miz said that Naomi trended worldwide after her loss to Lacey Evans last week.
Naomi thanked the fans for their support and that they are her motivation. The Miz said it makes sense for them to go viral for their hit music videos and made fun of Naomi for losing all the time. Naomi wondered why The Miz thinks he can pass judgement on her and that the fans have her back because she gives it her all every time.
John Morrison apologized because things were about to get worse and welcomed Lacey Evans to the show. Lacey joked that Naomi got her ass kicked so bad that it created a pity hashtag. Evans added that Naomi has been here for a decade and that has hardly anything to show for it. Naomi and Lacey then traded punches and Evans retreated out of the ring.
Gran Metalik Earned A Shot At The IC Title Next Week
Lince Dorado, Drew Gulak, Gran Metalik, and Shorty G battled in a Fatal 4-Way to determine the #1 contender for the Intercontinental Championship. The winner will face AJ Styles next week. Intercontinental Champion AJ Styles joined commentary for the match.
Match Recap: Gulak slammed Dorado to the floor outside the ring but turned around into a Suicide Dive from Matalik. Shorty G hit Metalik with an Arm Drag but Metalik battled back with a Dropkick. Shorty G connected with a Moonsault onto everyone as SmackDown went to a break.
Shorty G hit Gulak with a Suplex and went for the cover but Drew kicked out at two. Gran Metalik knocked Gulak and Shorty G to the canvas with elbows to the face. Lince Dorado hit Gulak with a Crossbody for a near fall. Lince followed it up with a Stunner but Gran Metalik broke up the cover.
Shorty G planted Metalik with a Suplex and then launched Dorado across the ring. Shorty G hit Gulak with an Exploder Suplex and then delivered one to Metalik for a near fall. Gulak applied a Dragon Sleeper but Shorty G broke free. Shorty G then applied an Ankle Lock on Gulak in the middle of the ring but Dorado broke it up with a Splash off the top rope.
Dorado hit Shorty G with a Moonsault from the first and then second turnbuckle. Lince made his way to the top rope but Gulak broke it up. Shorty G shoved Gulak to the floor and planted Dorado with an Exploder Suplex off the top rope. Gran Metalik then came out of nowhere with an Elbow Drop off the top rope for the pinfall victory. Metalik will face AJ Styles for the Intercontinental Championship next week.
After the match, AJ Styles offered a handshake but Metalik refused. AJ slapped Metalik in the face and Metalik responded with a Tornado DDT. Metalik posed with the title before throwing it back to Styles to end the segment.
Jeff Hardy Defeated Sheamus In A Bar Fight
Hardy and Sheamus battled at Irish Shannon’s in Orlando. Sheamus arrived at the bar first and was about to have a shot of whiskey before Jeff showed up. Hardy took a seat next to Sheamus at the bar.
Sheamus offered Jeff a shot but Hardy declined. Jeff asked for a cup and poured himself some water. Jeff told Sheamus that his brother had to delete his WWE career and tonight he is going to recover his. Hardy added that sobriety has changed his life and warned Sheamus to be ready for anything.
Jeff stated that he is connected to everything now and is the TV, the window, and the bar. Sheamus said that he is The Bar before Jeff threw the glass of water in Sheamus’ face. Hardy bounced Sheamus’s head off the bar a couple of times before Sheamus battled back.
Sheamus slid Jeff across the bar and hit him with several clubs to the chest. Jeff sent Sheamus into the whiskey barrels and started throwing basketballs at him. Sheamus slammed a door on Jeff a few times before bouncing his head off a sink in the men’s bathroom.
Sheamus shoved Jeff’s head in a urinal and flushed it while shouting that he will cleanse Hardy’s demons. Hardy went for a Crossbody but Sheamus caught him and slammed him into the wall a couple times. Sheamus grabbed a guitar and tried to hit Jeff but he got out of the way. Sheamus launched Hardy into a drum kit as SmackDown went to a break.
When SmackDown returned, Sheamus went for the Brogue Kick but Jeff avoided it and knocked him to the floor. Jeff connected with Twist of Fate and set up a barrel by the whiskey barrels. Jeff climbed up the ladder before the bartender attacked him. Hardy Powerbombed him through a table but Sheamus struck him with a barstool from behind.
Sheamus put a hat over Jeff’s face before pouring himself a beer. Sheamus took a sip and then downed the entire beer. He limped towards Jeff and told the referee to get ready. When Sheamus took off the hat, Jeff had face paint on and jumped to his feet. Hardy beat Sheamus down and hit the Swanton Bomb off the ladder for the pinfall victory.
Opinion: I thought that the Bar Fight was filmed very well and actually enjoyed. The ending was well done, we will see if Hardy is portraying Willow or another version of his character in the weeks to come. Having said that, this storyline was awful and this absolutely needs to be the end of it. Overall, this week’s episode of SmackDown was a good show and next week’s episode is set up well with two title matches.