WWE SmackDown aired from the ThunderDome in the Amway Center in Orlando. It was the final episode of SmackDown before Clash of Champions this Sunday night.
SmackDown Results (9/25)
- Sami Zayn def. AJ Styles, Jeff Hardy in a Triple Threat match
- Shinsuke Nakamura def. Gran Metalik
- King Corbin def. Matt Riddle
- Lacey Evans def. Alexa Bliss via DQ
Here are the takeaways from this week’s show:
AJ Styles Sent A Message Heading Into Clash of Champions
AJ Styles, Sami Zayn, and Intercontinental Champion Jeff Hardy came down to the ring to begin this week’s SmackDown. The ring had three ladders in it to hype up the Intercontinental Championship Ladder match this Sunday at Clash of Champions.
Corey Graves announced that tonight will be the first ever “Intercontinental Championship Ascension Ceremony”, in which Sami and Jeff Hardy’s IC titles will be raised above the ring.
Styles noted that Jeff Hardy cheated to win the title from him in the first place. AJ mocked Sami and claimed he took a couple months off to grow out his neckbeard. Zayn said AJ was a fraudulent champion and so was Jeff but he never lost the title.
Sami complained about having to defend his Intercontinental Championship in a Ladder match. Jeff told Zayn that he should be grateful and then they put their titles on the rung. As they were being raised above the ring, Sami shoved over the ladder onto AJ Styles and Jeff Hardy. Adam Pearce then announced a Triple Threat match for tonight.
Match Recap: AJ Styles dominated early and hit Jeff Hardy with a Backbreaker. Styles followed it up with a Dropkick to Sami that sent him tumbling out of the ring. Sami battled back and leveled Styles with a Clothesline for a near fall. Styles sent Jeff to the outside and applied a Headlock to Sami in the middle of the ring.
Jeff Hardy got back into the ring and hit Sami and Styles with a double Dropkick. Hardy climbed to the top rope but Zayn shoved him to the floor. Styles then took out Sami with a Crossbody as SmackDown went to a commercial break.
When SmackDown returned, Jeff connected with Whisper in the Wind of Zayn and Styles. AJ hit Jeff Hardy with the Phenomenal Forearm but Zayn threw Styles out of the ring. Sami then pinned Jeff Hardy for the victory. After the match, Styles hit them both with ladders and posed with the IC titles.
Opinion: I’m looking forward to the Triple Threat Ladder match at Clash of Champions the most out of anything on the card. However, I don’t understand why these three superstars needed to have an entire match two days before their match at the PPV. AJ Styles attacking them and posing with the titles on the ladder would have sufficed.
Bayley Warned Nikki Cross
SmackDown Women’s Champion came to the entrance ramp with a steel chair in her hand. Bayley took a seat and said she could watch the footage of her attacking Sasha Banks over and over but she is not going to because she doesn’t have an ounce of time to waste on Sasha.
Bayley said she has a championship match to prepare for and that she admires Nikki Cross’ fighting spirit. She claimed she was going to slap the smile of Nikki’s face and then grabbed the chair. Bayley warned Nikki that “she can only imagine what is going to happen next, right Sasha?”.
Opinion: Nikki Cross didn’t appear tonight and Bayley’s promo was mainly about Sasha Banks. It is impossible to be invested in the SmackDown Women’s title match at Clash of Champions.
Lucha House Party Still Aren’t On The Same Page
Shinsuke Nakamura faced Gran Metalik tonight on SmackDown. Nakamura and Cesaro will defend the SmackDown Tag Team Championships against Lucha House Party Sunday night at Clash of Champions.
Match Recap: Nakamura brought Metalik to the outside and launched him into the barricade. Shinsuke followed it up with a running knee on the apron before the action returned to the ring. Nakamura then hit the Kinshasa for the pinfall victory. After the match, Nakamura and Cesaro attacked Metalik and Lince Dorado. Kalisto didn’t help and Metalik and Dorado shoved him down to end the segment.
Opinion: Andrade and Angel Garza aren’t getting along as a tag team. Lucha House Party aren’t getting along as a tag team. Both teams have title shots Sunday at Clash of Champions. I would have rather just seen Nakamura & Cesaro versus Street Profits at the PPV instead of a quick match on “RAW: In Your Face”.