SmackDown filmed tonight from London’s O2 Arena. These London shows are usually full of intense wrestling action. They pretape these shows so there usually isn’t much storyline movement. But with Backlash looming so close, who knows what the blue brand will do?
Just wanted to point this out before we get started, Jinder Mahal looks very intense and menacing in those graphics they use to promo the show ten minutes before SmackDown goes “live.” I wonder if they’re using the same mean-looking pictures of him in India.
Lana is in the opening graphic now. She might have been there before, but I just caught it this week. They used a clip from her “dancing on a chair in the ring” promo.
Randy Orton’s music broke out and out he came with his WWE Championship. He looked at it carefully on his way to the ring so he remembered not to let someone steal it this week.
Randy took the mic and looked intense. He started talking about Payback and didn’t make any excuses about losing that House Of Horrors match. Then Jinder Mahal came out before Randy could start hyping his match at Backlash.
Jinder stood there with the Singh Brothers on either side and showed pictures of himself with the WWE Championship. He got really sweaty in the last one after he took off his suit.
He kept talking about how the people in his homeland will love him and he will cleanse our ignorance with his greatness. It was really decent heel stuff. Then he said he was going to speak in Punjabi and Kevin Owen’s music hit.
Kevin said everyone needs to stop with the crap because nobody cares about the House Of Horrors, India, or England. The only thing people need to care about is Kevin Owens. Owens was surprisingly over for someone who just insulted the London crowd.
Owens started hyping up the fact he took out Chris Jericho and he plans on ending another career at Backlash. The crowd really booed that one. London loves AJ Styles.
Kevin said after he beats AJ Styles, he’s going after the WWE Championship because he wants to be the face of WWE. Then Kevin spoke in French because he could and everyone hated that.
AJ Styles’ music hit and the #1 contender for the US Championship hit the ramp with a live mic. AJ said this isn’t Backlash, this is SmackDown Live, “The House AJ Styles built.” AJ said it’s not a big deal KO beat Y2J because he’s no AJ Styles. He said KO will never be the face of SmackDown Live.
Insert Baron Corbin… Now insert Sami Zayn jumping Corbin from behind. The crowd was lit and chanting thunderous “ole” chants at Sami. Those were good to hear.
The heels left the ring and there was an awkward moment before Orton’s music hit and the segment ended.
Becky Lynch vs Natalya
Ellsworth, Carmella, and Tamina were in the ring and they gave James Ellsworth the microphone first. He insulted the crowd and then Carmella took over. She dropped some of her signature slogans and introduced Natalya with much fanfare.
Nattie came out and her hair was done up so it looked like she has cat ears. I know she’s done that before, but I just wanted to point that out here. Meow.
Naomi came out and turned the O2 Arena into a rave with her entrance. London was over for Naomi when she said: “London make some bloody noise!” She introduced Becky Lynch and put a lot of gusto behind it.
Becky came out and everyone was happy to see the Steampunk Princess.
As Becky and Nattie set to square off, Charlotte came out to a lot of “woos.” She said she didn’t need anyone to introduce her because she didn’t need an introduction. She’s just carrying on like nothing happened on May 4th except for a bunch of people shared Star Wars memes.
Natties powdered out of the ring early on after Becky got an advantage. Lynch didn’t let her back in because she dropkicked her while Nattie was trying to get back inside. Then Lynch attempted to get over on Nattie, but Natalya hit a punishing move on Lynch.
Nattie tossed The Lass Kicker back in the ring and continued the assault. She locked Becky in a submission and stretched her as much as she could. The crowd chanted for Becky and it gave her the power to counter out of Nattie’s hold.
The two traded some blows in the middle of the ring until Becky hit a clothesline and then Lynch got all fired up. She hit her with a flying forearm, but Nattie backed her into the corner with some blows. Becky got an advantage, but then things popped off outside the ring and distracted Lynch. Nattie got the pin and the heels celebrated in London.
Good news! She’s coming soon!
Charlotte and Naomi were arguing about Becky losing the match. Charlotte asked Naomi if she’s gonna glow on her. That was funny. Becky Lynch rallied the troops and fixed the situation. She said it will continue until they do something about it. They are going to “out bond their bond” in a 6-women tag team match at Backlash. Charlotte said, “whatever because I’m the greatest…at bonding.” Charlotte doesn’t seem to want to be part of this group. She also got a lot of woos from the crowd.
Fashion Files Segment
I can’t even attempt to describe how amazing this was. I hope WWE never stops doing these! They need to win the SmackDown Tag Team Titles at Backlash. Just give them the titles already and give them all the money. All of it. These are amazing segments.
Luke Harper vs Erick Rowan
We asked for this as a big PPV match, but SmackDown in London will work. Erick Rowan’s Slipknot-inspired sheep mask is pretty sick though.
Rowan got pushed out early on and then they both ran back and forth to the in and outside. Once they met in the ring Harper took over. He hit Rowan with a dropkick and the crowd popped big for him.
Rowan was pissed and left the ring. He consulted with his sheep mask that was on the ring post and went back in the get in some nice moves including a spin kick. Rowan slapped on that head crushing submission he does until Harper was able to corner out of it.
These two work so well against each other. Harper jumped over the ropes and connected with a couple elbows and a senton bomb from the apron for a two-count.
Harper went for the Discus Clothesline, but Rowan countered. Rowan ended up taking a spinning powerbomb from Luke for a two-count.
They wrestled on for a bit and Rowan got the upper hand. He hit a few big moves and got a two-count. Then he grabbed his mask like he was going to hit Harper with it, but the ref stopped him. When the ref’s back was turned, Rowan hit Harper with a thumb to the eye and ended up getting the win over Luke. Looks like Erick Rowan is going old-school heel on us.
Shinuke Nakamura Is In London
Dolph Ziggler came out to a lukewarm reaction at best. He said everyone is a hypocrite. Then he started talking about his eight-year career and how he’s done so much but he didn’t mention his comedy career. He said the people treat him like a contagious disease.
Then the Nakamura chants started in full force. Ziggler said Nakamura’s never had a match on SmackDown Live and a bunch of NXT chants started. Ziggler said it would all be edited out. Obviously, it wasn’t.
Ziggler said calling Nakamura “The Artist” is pathetic. Point taken. Ziggler started talking about how nobody ever cared what he’s done in his career. But people will care now. Then he called out Shinsuke Nakamura.
The King Of Strong Artist Style came out to a choir of people filling the O2 Arena all screaming the melody to his music. Nakamura really does have a rock star entrance.
Nakamura stood there and looked Dolph over while the crowd chanted his name. Ziggler said it’s been almost a month of Shinsuke sashaying out to the ring and it’s time for him to put up or…then Nakamura grabbed the mic and said: “shut up.” Nice.
Nakamura said “I’ll show you now” then a referee came out and the crowd exploded. Shinsuke Nakamura took off his jacket and got ready to rumble.
Suddenly Dolph had a change of heart and said: “nope, we’ll do this when I say so and I’m going to expose you for the fraud you are at Backlash.” Then he jumped Shinsuke.
Nakamura got the upper hand and threw some stiff knees and a stiffer looking kick as Dolph powdered out of the ring. Ziggler acted like he was going to get back in the ring, but he didn’t. Classic heel move.
Sami was hyping up Randy Orton and AJ Styles. Sami was really energized and talked very fast as he motivated his teammates for their upcoming match. He was nonstop as he told Randy he should strike first and then moved on to AJ and give him some advice. It was really funny. He’s taken on a neurotic and nervous personality or something. Sami is a funny dude. He really is the Seth Rogan of WWE.
Zayn told everyone to close their eyes and visualize their win and when he opened them, they were gone. Pretty funny little segment. Sami Zayn is able to talk really fast.
New Day Promo
Yay, The New Day are coming to SmackDown Live… soon. As soon as Kofi’s ankle is ready.
The Ascension vs Breezango
Fandango and Tyler Breeze are very over in London, especially Dango. The crowd was Fandangoing to his music and everyone was have a good time.
Fandango hit Viktor with a cross body and then Konner got the tag. Konner used his size to dominate Fandango. Then the heels started laying it to the babyface Dango.
Breeze finally got the tag and he started taking out The Ascension all by himself for a bit with his Supermodel Kick. Fandango got the tag as Viktor got knocked down. Breeze took care of Konner and Dango hit his awesome top rope leg drop for the win.
The Usos came out and talked some smack to Breezango. They said Dango and Breeze are getting knocked out in various ways in 12 days. Jimmy almost got Jey laughing with some of the things he was coming up. Jey was on fire though.
The Usos delivered a very nice promo in London. They said, “it’s not Paranoia, it’s The Usos.” They should use Flagpole Sitta by Harvey Danger as their new theme music.
Mojo was backstage getting some kids hyped. He was giving some kids a tour for some reason. They let him do that. Okay. Mojo started talking about Andre The Giant but then started talking about a kid who was different and was even bullied as a boy. He then showed the kids his Andre Battle Royal trophy. A little girl kicked him and he said it was funny. Mojo Rawley’s character just took a weird turn. It was interesting how obvious it was when he talked about bullying.
They played the Rusev video we previously reported about. He’ll be at SmackDown Live next week
Jinder Mahal, Kevin Owens, and Baron Corbin vs Sami Zayn, AJ Styles, Randy Orton
Say what you want about Jinder Mahal, I really dig his theme music. Baron Corbin looked happy to be back from his one-week vacation/suspension too.
Huge AJ Styles chants from the crowd as he started the match against Baron Corbin. Styles used his quickness to get the advantage and tagged in Sami Zayn. But Corbin tagged in Mahal.
Jinder Mahal didn’t look out of place at all when he’s in the ring with the top people on the SmackDown brand. Seriously, he’s a big dude and Mahal’s got traps for days. Randy Orton begged for the tag and Zayn gave it to him. Mahal tagged Kevin Owens though.
“I’m the face of WWE!” Owens said as he went charging for Randy. The Viper turned it around on him and nearly popped off an RKO. Owens powdered out of the ring.
“What was that you were saying?!” yelled Randy.
“Shut up!” replied Owens.
The banter between those two was classic. It’s great to see those two mix it up again.
Baron Corbin and AJ Styles fought a little bit until Mahal got the tag. Jinder tried to take some work to AJ but Styles hit him with a dropkick and got the tag to Sami.
Jinder pushed Zayn to the corner and the heels beat on him until Kevin Owens got the tag in to continue his assault. Sami mounted Kevin in the corner and rained down some punches on his head. Sami grabbed Owen’s hand and went for his tornado DDT, but as he climbed up the ropes, KO racked him with the ropes.
Corbin got the tag. Sami got thrown outside and Jinder got some cheap shots in on him. Corbin grounded Sami and didn’t let him get much movement.
Sami eventually got free but was dumped to the apron. Sami went to jump over the ropes, but Corbin nailed him with a right hand. Mahal got the tag and continued to punish Sami for being himself.
Kevin Owens got the tag and locked a headlock on Sami Zayn. The Underdog From The Underground wasn’t having a good time. They wouldn’t let him get to the tag. KO hit a senton bomb on Zayn as they continued to keep him away from his corner.
Baron Corbin got the tag and started hitting Sami Zayn with all he had. The Lone Wolf nearly ran over the ref while driving Sami into the turnbuckle. Corbin turned around and hit Randy Orton off the apron for no good reason.
Sami slithered out of a move and got a tag off to AJ Styles. AJ hit a forearm to a seated Corbin and Styles signaled for the Styles Clash. It didn’t work, so he locked in a Calf Crusher.
Kevin Owens broke up the Calf Crusher and chaos erupted. Sami hit the bad guys with a splash and tossed Corbin back in the ring. AJ set himself up for the Phenomenal Forearm, but Owens knocked him off the rope. Corbin hit Styles with a Deep 6 and got a two-count.
Corbin launched AJ up and he went crashing to the mat. That looked like it hurt. Mahal got the tag and the heels started bringing the pain to AJ Styles this time.
Mahal tagged in KO and Owens started kicking away at Styles. Then he locked in a headlock. Owens went for another senton, but AJ moved.
Styles sent KO face first to the mat and AJ got the tag to Orton as Mahal got the tag from KO. Orton took out Mahal and Corbin with his signature powerslam and got KO with his DDT through the ropes.
The Singh Brothers distracted Orton as he was preparing to RKO Mahal and chaos broke out once again. RKO hit an RKO on Owens but Mahal was the legal man. So, Jinder snuck up behind Orton and hit him with his Cobra Clutch Slam. 1-2-3 and Jinder Mahal just pinned Randy Orton.
SmackDown “Live” ended from London with the heels celebrating their victory.