The final SmackDown before Hell in a Cell takes place at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, Ohio tonight.
For the first time since they became the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Champions, The Usos will defend their titles tonight. Riddle & Shinsuke Nakamura will be The Usos’ challengers.
The Usos defeated Riddle & Randy Orton two weeks ago to unify the Raw and SmackDown Tag Team titles. After that match, Roman Reigns and The Usos attacked Riddle and Orton.
With Orton out of action, Riddle teamed with Nakamura on Raw this Monday and defeated The Usos by disqualification in a championship contender’s match. The DQ came when The Usos attacked Riddle with his own scooter.
The next challenger for Ronda Rousey’s SmackDown Women’s Championship will also be decided tonight. Raquel Rodriguez, Natalya, Shayna Baszler, Xia Li, Aliyah, and Shotzi will take part in a number one contender’s six-pack challenge.
Plus, Madcap Moss returns to SmackDown looking for payback on Happy Corbin.
Our live coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
Michael Cole and Pat McAfee ran down the card for tonight. McAfee noted tonight’s a celebration of Cole’s career since it’s his 25th anniversary. He added that Cole only missed two shows in his career.
New Day and Drew McIntyre Segment
This was a good opening segment. The fans were into it and reacted big for New Day and McIntyre. McIntyre promised to win the Universal title at Clash at the Castle.
They recapped Drew McIntyre and New Day defeating The Brawling Brutes last week.
Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their way to the ring to start SmackDown. They got a massive reaction after referencing Columbus, Ohio. They mentioned defeating the Brawling Brutes last week with their mystery partner. Kingston and Woods then introduced Drew McIntyre to another big reaction.
McIntyre started by giving a shout-out to Big E at home. The fans popped for Big E. McIntyre started a loud “Big E” chant. He knows what it’s like to be out with an injury. McIntyre promised to win the WWE Undisputed Univeral title at Clash at the Castle.
McIntyre quickly changed the topic and called himself Big D. They teased McIntrye would make a dirty joke, but New Day cut him off. They gave him an early birthday present, a pair of shorts with the words Big D.
The Brawling Brutes interrupted and walked out onto the stage. Sheamus noted they were at a disadvantage because McIntyre was a surprise. They didn’t get a chance to prepare for him. Butch heard enough and ran to the ring, but McIntyre knocked him out. Sheamus and Holland tried to hold Butch back as they went to a commercial break.
The Brawling Brutes defeated Drew McIntyre & The New Day (10:54)
This was a fun match and a good opener. The Brutes got their win back from last week.
The match started during the commercial break.
The faces had the early advantage as they isolated Butch on their side of the ring. Woods hit a senton for a near fall. Holland made a blind tag and rocked Woods with a tackle. The Brutes took over and cut Woods off from his corner.
Butch slowed the pace down and stomped on Woods’s hand. Kingston tagged in, and he ran wild. He caught Sheamus with a flying crossbody for a near fall. He followed up with the Boom Drop and set up for Trouble in Paradise, but Butch broke it up. New Day sent the heels to ringside and hit a double dive. They celebrated on the announce table, with Woods taking McAfee’s headset.
Back from the break, the heels were firmly in control, beating down Kingston in the corner. Holland hit a power slam, and Sheamus followed up with a diving knee for a two-count. Kingston fought back, and McIntyre got the hot tag. McIntrye ran wild and rocked Sheamus with a clothesline and gave McAfee a stiff high five.
McIntrye caught Butch and gave him a belly-to-belly suplex. In a brutal-looking spot, Kingston attempted a plancha on Holland. Holland tried to catch him in a power slam, but he fell backward with Kingston on his shoulder. Holland fell on top of Kingston hard. Kingston appeared to be hurt. The finish came when Butch hit the bitter end on Woods for the win.
They recapped Riddle and Shinsuke Nakamura forming a team last week.
In the back, Kayla Braxton interviewed Riddle and Nakamura. Riddle noted they’re still in the honeymoon phase. They recapped The Bloodline attacking Riddle and Randy Orton two weeks ago. Cole claimed Orton might never wrestle again.
Riddle added that tonight’s not about winning the titles. It’s about getting revenge for Orton.
Max Dupri entered Adam Pearce’s office. Pearce was on the phone and stated the six-pack challenge tonight was Ronda Rousey’s idea. Dupri noted he’s been looking for his first client to headline fashion shows and WrestleMania. Durpi finally found his first client. He promised to reveal his new client next week.
They showed a Cody Rhodes vs. Seth Rollins Hell in a Cell video package.
Jinder Mahal (w/Shanky) defeated Humberto (w/Angel) (2:15)
This was pretty bad. It’s unclear who was the face aside from Shanky, who wasn’t in the match. The focus was on Shanky wanting to dance.
They recapped the angle with Mahal and Shanky from last week. Los Lotharios did the kiss cam as they walked to the ring.
Before the match, Shanky was dancing when Mahal approached. He warned Shanky to take the match seriously and forbid him from dancing. Cole pointed out that Shanky had new ring gear.
Shanky joked around and danced behind Mahal’s back. Humberto backed Mahal in the corner for the advantage. He followed up with hard chops. Mahal fought back and gave Humberto a huge back body drop. Cole claimed the fans want to see the “Skyscraping” Shanky dance.
Mahal took over and rocked Humberto with a vicious kick. He set up for the Khallas, but Shanky started dancing. Mahal yelled at him to stop. Humberto rolled up Mahal, but Shanky distracted the referee. Humberto then yelled at the referee, which allowed Mahal to roll up Humberto for the win.
After the match, Shanky tried dancing with Mahal. Mahal stormed off, so Shanky danced in front of ring announcer Samantha Irvin. Eventually, she stood up and danced. The fans popped and cheered for Irvin dancing.
Ronda Rousey made her way to ringside to watch the six-pack challenge.
They recapped Ronda Rousey vs. Raquel Rodriguez and the angle involving Aliyah locking Shotzi in the dressing room.
Shotzi came out first for the match. Irvin introduced Aliyah, but she didn’t come to the ring. They cut backstage, and Aliyah was locked in the dressing room. In the ring. Shotzi laughed at Aliyah.
McAfee had the line of the night when he pointed out that Shotzi locked Aliyah, the cameraman, and the boom operator in the dressing room.
Six-Pack Challenge: Natalya defeated Raquel Rodriguez, Shotzi, Aliyah, Shayna Baszler, and Xia Li (4:03)
This was an okay match. They only got four minutes, and it felt rushed. A lot happened in the short amount of time they had.
Back from the break, the competitors stood in the ring when Aliyah ran out and attacked Shotzi. They never explained how Aliyah escaped the dressing room. All six started brawling around ringside. Back in the ring, Li avoided the sharpshooter and caught Natalya with a suplex. Li then rocked Natalya with a kick for a near fall, but Aliyah broke up the pin.
Natalya rocked Li with a discus clothesline, but Rodriguez jumped in the ring. Rodriguez went for the corkscrew elbow, but Shotzi cut her off. Rodriguez then dropped Shotzi onto Natalya.
Rodriguez recovered and hit the corkscrew elbow. She then hit the powerbomb on Shotzi and had the match won. Baszler jumped in and caught Rodriguez in the Kififuda Clutch. Natalya took advantage and covered Shotzi for the win.
After the match, Rousey got in the ring and faced off with Natalya. Cole noted Natalya receives a title shot against Rousey in the future.
They recapped Happy Corbin injuring Madcap Moss. In a digital exclusive, Corbin promised to hurt Moss again, or he could beg for his job.
In the back, Moss emerged from the back of an ambulance. He dropped the suspenders and has a new look with simple black tights.
They showed a Lacey Evans video package and announced Evans returns to SmackDown next week.
Madcap Moss Segment
This was a fine segment. Moss was good in his role and got a good reaction from the fans.
Moss made his way to the ring to address Corbin’s attack. The fans broke into a brief “welcome back” chant. He discussed Corbin injuring his neck a few weeks ago. He noted Corbin thought that was the end of Moss. Moss said that Corbin’s right. It was the end of the old Madcap Moss.
Moss can still hear Corbin making him tell jokes over and over. He then called Corbin out to the ring. Corbin walked onto the stage and thought Moss just wanted his old job back.
However, Moss only wants Corbin to come to the ring for a fight. Corbin turned down Moss’s challenge, but Adam Pearce interrupted. Pearce made the match official, and it’s next.
Happy Corbin defeated Madcap Moss via DQ (1:19)
There wasn’t much of a match, and it had a weak finish. It was more of an angle to get over Moss’s new character and the feud with Corbin. The fans were into the post-match angle and popped big when Moss attacked Corbin with the chair.
Before the bell, Corbin refused to get in the ring. He finally got in but jumped out at the bell. Corbin took over after using the referee to distract Moss. Moss fought back and sent Corbin to the floor with a clothesline.
They brawled around ringside, but Corbin grabbed a chair. Moss kicked the chair out of his hands. He then hit Corbin with the chair for a disqualification.
After the match, Moss beat down Corbin with the chair. The fans broke into a loud “One more time” chant. Moss put Corbin’s head in the chair and tried to drop the stairs on him. Referees and officials ran out to stop Moss. The fans booed. They announced Corbin as the winner, and the fans erupted in louder boos.
Later, Happy Corbin was leaving the arena when Adam Pearce walked up to him. Corbin assumed Pearce would suspend Moss. Instead, Pearce announced Corbin vs. Moss in a No Holds Barred match at Hell in a Cell.
Kayla Braxton interviewed The Usos backstage. They promised to retain the titles and dedicated the match to Roman Reigns.
Cole announced Intercontinental Champion Ricochet vs. Gunther for next week. In the back, Ricochet promised to retain the title. Ludwig Kaiser and Gunther guaranteed victory. The fans broke into a loud “U.S.A.” chant.
WWE Undisputed Tag Team Champions The Usos defeated Riddle & Shinsuke Nakamura (13:19)
Riddle and Nakamura and The Usos had a good match with a distraction finish. They told a good story with the finish working into the Sami Zayn/Bloodline storyline. However, it did nothing to build to Hell in a Cell this Sunday night.
The fans were great all night and reacted big to almost everything. The medical team took Nakamura to the back midway with an injury, leaving Riddle on his own. The fans desperately wanted Riddle to pull it off and win the titles.
The Usos took over after slamming down Riddle with a double-spine buster. Jimmy slowed the pace down with a chin lock. Riddle broke free and rocked Jimmy with a kick to the head. Nakamura then tagged in and ran wild on The Usos. He placed Jey on the corner and hit a running knee for a near fall.
Nakamura hit a sliding German suplex in the ropes. Riddle followed up with a penalty kick for a two-count. He went for the floating bro, but Jimmy knocked him off the top. The Usos then hit the double superkick on Riddle for a close near fall. Nakamura broke up the pin attempt and brawled with Jey at ringside.
At ringside, Nakamura went for a running knee, but Jey moved, and he hit the stairs hard. Jey then stomped on Nakamura’s knee and he went down in pain. The referee immediately threw up the “X” sign. The trainers and referees ran out to check on Nakamura. They took him to the back, leaving Riddle on his own.
Riddle ran wild and sent The Usos to the floor as they cut to commercial.
Back from the break, The Usos were firmly in control, but Riddle briefly recovered. The Usos took over and mocked Orton. Riddle got back to his feet and caught Jey with a running knee.
Riddle rocked Jimmy with a series of strikes. He threw The Usos around the ring with suplexes and hit two bro-tons. Riddle hit Jimmy with a kick to the face and followed with a floating bro to the floor. He went for the draping DDT on Jey, but Jimmy made the save.
Riddle then hit the draping DDT on Jimmy and set up for the RKO. Jimmy avoided and sent Riddle into Jey. Riddle recovered and rolled up Jimmy for another two-count. The fans thought it was over and popped for the near fall.
The finish came when Riddle and Jimmy were fighting on the top rope. Suddenly, Roman Reigns’ music started playing. Riddle was briefly distracted. He hit the super RKO on Jimmy anyway, but Jey made a blind tag. Jey then hit the flying splash for the win.
In the production truck, they revealed that Sami Zayn was the one that played Reigns’ music. Zayn was overjoyed and ran out to celebrate with The Usos. Riddle recovered and attacked The Usos and Zayn to end SmackDown.
Next Week: Intercontinental Champion Ricochet defends against Gunther. Plus, Lacey Evans returns to SmackDown.