Smackdown – September 25, 2020

Smackdown
Date: September 25, 2020
Location: Amway Center, Orlando, Florida
Commentators: Corey Graves, Michael Cole

It’s the go home show for Clash Of Champions though the Smackdown side of things might not interest you the most. The blue main event for Sunday’s show will feature Roman Reigns defending against Jey Uso, which kind of slows down the interest that the show is going to have. Maybe the last show before Sunday can help things out. Let’s get to it.

In Memory of Road Warrior Animal.

Here are AJ Styles, Sami Zayn and Jeff Hardy for a Championship Ascension ceremony to set up the ladder match. Corey Graves, the emcee, explains the match and says there is no champion’s advantage. AJ says Jeff must think the title feels heavy because it’s the last time he’ll be holding it. As for Sami, why are you here? He took six months off to grow a neck beard and still thinks he’s champion.

Sami accuses AJ of being stupid for winning a tournament and calls Jeff’s title a shampionship. Jeff: “Sami, Sami shut up man.” Hardy actually agrees with Styles when he says Sami has no claim to the title. The belts are hung but Sami drives the ladder into their heads and beats on Jeff, with AJ making the save. Cue Adam Pearce to make the scheduled Sami vs. Jeff match a triple threat with AJ also involved. We’ll do that next.

AJ Styles vs. Sami Zayn vs. Jeff Hardy

Non-title. Sami gets sent to the floor so AJ can hammer on Hardy. That doesn’t last long as Sami comes in to jump AJ and then send Hardy outside. AJ is right back with a chinlock on Sami but Jeff is back in with a dropkick for the save. Jeff uses Sami for a springboard to splash Styles in the corner but Sami breaks up the Swanton by knocking him to the floor.

Styles follows with a slingshot forearm and we take a break. Back with the Tower of Doom being broken up and a triple slugout starting. Sami hits a running boot to each of them but AJ nails a Pele. AJ is back up with the Phenomenal Forearm to Jeff but Sami throws him outside and steals the pin at 12:02.

Rating: C. Not only is it winning a match via pin to set up a match that has nothing to do with pins, but it’s the most basic ending to a triple threat that you can find in WWE. Oh and for a bonus, the champ gets pinned. The wrestling was fine, but it feels like the kind of thing that we’ve seem time after time. Kind of like ladder matches in general, as WWE (counting NXT) has run an average of about a ladder match a month for the last year.

Post match AJ jumps Sami and climbs the ladder to pick up both titles.

We recap Miz/John Morrison threatening to sue Otis over the Money in the Bank briefcase.

Otis doesn’t buy this and doesn’t trust Miz’s lawyers so he’s keeping the briefcase. Miz and Morrison come up with the former saying that he is going to take everything, including Otis’ mama’s double wide. More threats are made, with Miz bringing up Mandy Rose being sent to Raw. Otis goes for Morrison’s throat and referees break it up. Is anyone ever going to explain why Otis and Mandy, who work in the same company, in the same city, in the same building, but on different shows where wrestlers seem to come and go as they please, is a big problem?

We look at Bayley attacking Sasha Banks twice in a row.

Here’s Bayley, with the chair that started it all, to have a seat for a chat. Bayley doesn’t have time for the fans booing because the champ’s time is important. She has business to tend to on Sunday because Nikki Cross is waiting for her. Why is Cross thinking it should be different just because there is no Sasha? Bayley looks at the chair and says she is retaining the title. Bayley: “Right Sasha?”

Gran Metalik vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

The rest of Lucha House Party and Cesaro are here too. Graves gets straight to the point by saying that singles matches have almost no bearing on tag team wrestling. Metalik misses a superkick to start but sends Nakamura outside. That’s fine with Nakamura, who sends him hard into the barricade, followed by a hard ram into the turnbuckle back inside. Metalik sends him outside and hits the big flip dive, followed by a slingshot hilo for two back inside. The moonsault misses though and Nakamura pulls him off the ropes. The reverse exploder into Kinshasa finishes Metalik at 4:17.

Rating: C. I was worried they would do something like have Metalik get the cheap pin here, which would be a bit too much to take. Granted when you have commentary saying that the match doesn’t mean anything for Sunday, you kind of have to wonder why we’re supposed to be interested. The match was fine as Metalik is talented, but it didn’t exactly draw me in.

Post match Cesaro comes in and lays out Lince Dorado as Kalisto looks on. After Cesaro and Nakamura leave, Kalisto gets in but gets yelled at by the rest of the team.

Jey Uso wants Roman Reigns to come deal with things.

Video on Jey Uso vs. Roman Reigns, including clips of them growing up and members of the Anoa’i Family commenting. Rikishi and Sika talk about watching their sons growing up and Jey is ready to fight his family to be champion. Jey says Reigns used to be a puppy and both dads say their kid will win. This was a really good idea and as usual, WWE knows how to produce a video.

Here’s Jey Uso for a chat. We see a clip from last week’s street fight, where Jey pinned King Corbin and then picked up the Universal Title. Reigns didn’t like the pin or what happened after the match, giving him a big glare to end the show. Uso wants Reigns out here now, but we see Heyman and Reigns in the back sitting in silence.

Heyman finally comes out of Reigns’ locker room and says the world should get to see these two face to face in the ring. Here’s where everyone has it wrong though: it’s on Reigns’ time, not Uso’s. That will happen tonight, but on Reigns’ time. Uso isn’t happy with that and says he’ll man up at Clash and tonight. Welcome to the Uso Penitentiary.

We recap Matt Riddle vs. King Corbin.

Corbin is ready to make Riddle say Bro, but with meanings involving all kinds of pain.

King Corbin vs. Matt Riddle

We get an inset promo from Riddle, who says he can’t wait to throw down and show Smackdown the difference between a stallion and a jacka**. Riddle starts fast and hammers away but Corbin catches him on the way inside. Corbin powers out of what looked like a Kimura and hits a hard elbow for two. A kick to the face sends Corbin outside though and Riddle throws him over the announcers’ table as we take a break.

Back with Riddle grabbing a triangle but Corbin powers out in a hurry. Corbin’s running right hand drops Riddle again and he can barely get back up. It’s just a ruse though as Riddle catches him with a jumping knee to the face. The Broton into another knee gets two so Riddle tries the Bromission. That’s broken up as well and Corbin hits the Deep Six but the End of Days is countered into another knee to the face. The Floating Bro hits knees though and End of Days finishes Riddle at 11:23.

Rating: C+. Was anyone asking for this to continue? I’m not sure, but WWE had the chance to set up a trilogy and all it took was Riddle losing clean to Corbin of all people. I’m sure we’ll have a third match at some point, but it’s not like Riddle had any momentum going after beating Corbin in the first place.

Post match Riddle says losing sucks but it isn’t stopping the stallion. He is going to keep going until Smackdown is the Bro Show.

The mystery woman puts on her jewelry and makeup. She also writes UNTOUCHABLE in lipstick on her mirror and takes a picture of it.

Alexa Bliss vs. Lacey Evans

Fallout from last week when Bliss took Lacey out after a match. In an inset promo, Alexa calls Lacey a Karen without calling her a Karen. Bliss rolls her up for two to start but Lacey knocks her down. Lacey sends it into the corner and throws the napkin at her, followed by the slingshot dropkick for two. We hit the cobra clutch for a bit but Bliss comes right back by cranking on the arm. Hold on though as the Fiend’s laugh is heard and we take a break.

Back with Evans stomping away and tying up Bliss’ legs for a forearm to the face. Bliss gets sent into the corner and a nasty slingshot dropkick puts her on the floor. Back in and Lacey gets two as we cut to a crowd shot (possibly so Bliss can fix her gear). Bliss makes the comeback with a basement dropkick but Evans cranks her down by the arm. Evans misses the double jump moonsault (Bliss had moved before the second jump) and we have the Fiend’s red light. Bliss snaps and unloads on Evans for the DQ at 10:50.

Rating: D. These two didn’t even seem to be in the same book out there for a lot of this, but some of that is due to trying to cram in a little too much. They did the Fiend’s voice and then did the light, all so Bliss could snap. On top of that, Lacey is now a former Marine, a tough mom, a southern belle, and now Karen. Pick two of those at most and calm down.

Post match, Alexa hits Sister Abigail on the floor and Fiend’s voice says let me in.

Here are Reigns and Heyman for the big closing. Before Heyman can get very far, here’s Uso to interrupt. Reigns cuts him off and says this family needs him to be the tribal chief. That’s why he’s keeping the title on Sunday and he walks away. Jey asks what if Reigns is wrong. Why can’t Jey be the Big Dog and provide for his family and kids as Universal Champion?

For his whole life, it has been Reigns as the star and the man. Whenever anyone talks about Jey, they ask which one he is. On Sunday, Jey is going to the top. Uso goes to leave but Reigns pops back up with a Superman Punch. Reigns screams at him about feeding the entire family with the title. Jey can take the payday and the whipping that comes with it, but he’s never taking the title from Reigns. He is never taking Reigns’ place at the head of the table. This was more incredible stuff from Reigns, as it tends to always be these days.

Overall Rating: D+. The wrestlers were trying, but this came off like a show that did not matter in the slightest. It was a bunch of middle of the road stuff, including a match where commentary said it didn’t matter with regards to Sunday. This felt like a show where they took the week off and threw whatever they had out there to fill in the time. Uso vs. Reigns has actually been set up well though and I’m more than a little impressed with how they have turned what should be a two minute squash into something interesting. Well done there, but the rest might as well have been Main Event.

Results

Sami Zayn b. AJ Styles and Jeff Hardy – Phenomenal Forearm to Hardy

Shinsuke Nakamura b. Gran Metalik – Kinshasa

King Corbin b. Matt Riddle – End of Days

Lacey Evans b. Alexa Bliss via DQ when Bliss attacked Evans

 

 

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