WWE SmackDown aired from the Performance Center in Orlando. Both the Intercontinental and SmackDown Women’s Championships were defended during tonight’s episode. In addition to the takeaways below, Sonya Deville attacked Mandy Rose from behind and chopped off some of her hair before referees broke it up.
SmackDown Results (7/31)
- AJ Styles def. Gran Metalik to retain the IC Title
- King Corbin def. Drew Gulak
- Big E def. The Miz
- Naomi def. Lacey Evans
- Bayley def. Nikki Cross to retain the SmackDown Women’s Championship
Here are 5 takeaways from this week’s show:
AJ Styles Retained The IC Title
AJ Styles defended the Intercontinental Championship against Gran Metalik tonight. Lince Dorado was ringside for the match.
Match Recap: Styles controlled the match early and beat Metalik down in the corner. Styles connected with a Backbreaker and followed it up with a Vertical Suplex for a near fall.
Styles went for an Elbow Drop but Metalik got out of the way. Metalik sent Styles tumbling to the floor outside the ring as SmackDown went to a commercial break. When SmackDown returned, AJ was back in control and perched Styles up on the turnbuckle.
Metalik booted AJ to the canvas and hit a Crossbody for a near fall. Metalik followed it up with a DDT and went for the cover but the Intercontinental Champion kicked out at two. AJ battled back with a Clothesline and knocked Metalik to the mat.
AJ set up for the Phenomenal Forearm but Metalik avoided it and hit an Enziguri. Styles booted Metalik to the mat and locked in the Calf Crusher in the middle of the ring for the submission victory. AJ Styles is still the Intercontinental Champion.
After the match, AJ Styles attacked Lince Dorado and planted him with the Styles Clash as the crowd booed.
Shorty G Cashed In On The King’s Ransom
Jeff Hardy came to the ring and said that beating Sheamus in the Bar Fight proved that he was on the right track. Hardy added that he doesn’t want to let his family and fans down again. Hardy stated that he was so grateful to be well and here on SmackDown.
King Corbin interrupted and said his head is going to explode if he has to hear about Jeff’s sobriety again. Corbin claimed that SmackDown was turning into an insane asylum. Hardy told Corbin that if he thinks everyone around him is the problem, he’s actually the problem. Gulak then attacked Corbin from behind and it led to a singles match.
Match Recap: Corbin dominated the match early and kept Gulak on the mat. Corbin connected with a Spinebuster and then locked in a Half Crab in the middle of the ring. Gulak countered into a Crossface but Corbin got his foot on the bottom rope to break the hold.
Gulak made his way to the top rope and hit a Flying Clothesline for a near fall. Corbin hit Deep Six but Matt Riddle’s theme hit. Riddle came down to the entrance ramp and Corbin got distracted. Gulak tried to capitalize with a roll-up but Corbin kicked out at two. Corbin then planted Gulak with the End of Days for the pinfall victory.
After the match, Matt Riddle rushed the ring and attacked King Corbin. Riddle hit the Ripcord Knee but then Shorty G showed up. Corbin had talked to Shorty G earlier in the show about the King’s Ransom he had out on Riddle. Shorty G planted Riddle with a German Suplex and Corbin smiled.
Big E Tapped Out The Miz
Big E faced The Miz tonight on SmackDown. John Morrison was ringside for the match.
Match Recap: The Miz booted Big E in the midsection and unloaded several right hands to start off the action. Big E applied an Abdominal Stretch and spanked Miz a couple of times. Big E followed it up with an elbow to the face for a one count.
The action spilled out of the ring and Big E sent Miz into the ring post. Morrison hit Big E with a cheap shot and Miz followed it up with a Dropkick through the ropes. Back in the ring, Miz applied a Headlock in the middle of the ring as Morrison cheered him on.
Big E knocked Miz to the apron and went for a Splash but Miz got out of the way. Big E crashed on the apron and fell to the floor as SmackDown went to a break. When SmackDown returned, Big E hit a couple Belly to Belly Suplexes and followed it up with a Splash.
The Miz hit Big E with a Dropkick to the knee and then stomped away on it in the corner. Big E battled back with a Uranage for a near fall. Big E went for a Spear but Miz countered with a knee to the face. Morrison hit Big E with another cheap shot and Miz capitalized with a Skull Crushing Finale.
Miz went for the cover but somehow Big E kicked out at two. Miz locked in the Figure Four in the middle of the ring but Big E was able to make it to the bottom rope to break the hold. The referee caught Morrison going for another cheap shot and kicked him out from ringside. Big E applied the Stretch Muffler submission for the pinfall victory.
Naomi Defeated Lacey Evans
Lacey Evans squared off against Naomi tonight on SmackDown. Before the match, Lacey Evans mocked the #NaomiDeservesBetter hashtag and vowed to make everyone really feel sorry for Naomi tonight.
Match Recap: Evans drove Naomi to the corner to start off the match. Naomi broke free but Evans planted her with a Powerbomb in the center of the ring. Lacey wrapped Naomi around the ring post and booted her in the back of the head.
Evans trapped Naomi’s hair in the steel steps and got back into the ring in hopes for a count-out victory. Naomi escaped and made it back into the ring and the match continued. Evans went for the Woman’s Right but Naomi countered into a cover for the pinfall victory. After the match, Lacey Evans went to the announce table and demanded that people start a Lacey deserves better hashtag.
Bayley Retained, The Fiend Attacked Alexa Bliss
Match Recap: Nikki beat Bayley down in the corner and unloaded several right hands to her face. Cross went for a Neckbreaker but Bayley blocked it. Nikki sent Bayley out of the ring and the champ took a moment to regroup.
Nikki brought Bayley back into the ring and hit her with a Dropkick. Bayley battled back and connected with a Leg Drop for a two count. Nikki slammed Bayley into the ring post and followed it up with a Crossbody outside the ring. Cross then posed on the announce table as SmackDown went to a commercial break.
When SmackDown returned, Bayley hit Nikki with a Suplex and then sent her to the corner of the ring. Nikki battled back and hit a Crossbody for a near fall. Cross followed it up with a Tornado DDT and went for the cover but Bayley kicked out at two. Nikki slammed Bayley on the ring apron for another near fall.
Cross had the Boss ring (brass knuckles) and threw it at Sasha outside the ring. Cross launched Bayley into the barricade before rolling her back into the ring. Sasha hopped up on the apron but Alexa tripped her up. Nikki hit Sasha with a Dropkick and made her way to the top rope. Nikki hit a Crossbody and then rolled up Bayley for a two count. Bayley then connected with the Rose Plant for the pinfall victory. Bayley is still the SmackDown Women’s Champion.
After the match, Nikki Cross refused help from Alexa Bliss and shoved her to the canvas. The lights in the arena went out and The Fiend showed up behind Alexa. The Fiend circled Alexa before locking in the Mandible Claw.
Opinion: I thought this week’s episode of SmackDown was a very solid show. Deville’s attack on Mandy Rose was very well done and it seems like we could be getting a Hair vs. Hair match at SummerSlam. I’m also intrigued as to where The Fiend, Strowman, and Alexa Bliss storyline is going.