Featuring a match between Kevin Owens and The Fiend, and the first part of the WWE Draft, this October 9th edition of SmackDown looks to shape the future of Friday nights.
We start off the show with Stephanie McMahon bringing us the first round of the WWE Draft. Roman Reigns and Drew McIntyre both are staying on the shows they’re on now, and Asuka stays on Raw as well. The first switch is made in Seth Rollins, with the Monday Night Messiah becoming the Friday Night Messiah. Doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, honestly. Raw drafts the entire Hurt Business, which I didn’t know you could do. Pretty lame round one, but what can you do.
Backstage, Kayla Braxton interviews Seth Rollins. He says he’s excited to blaze some new trails on SmackDown, but is sad that he won’t be around to see the Mysterio family implode.
Big E VS Sheamus (Falls Count Anywhere Match)
The two start off quick, with Sheamus executing a shoulder tackle and a rolling senton for two one-counts. He looks for an attack in the corner, but gets hit with a uranage. Big E spears Sheamus off the apron onto the floor for a 2 count, and then pulls out some Booty-O’s and a kendo stick from under the ring. Sheamus delivers a bicycle knee to Big E for a 2 count, and then delivers some forearms.
Sheamus puts Big E up on the apron and then ties him up in the ropes. The Celtic Warrior grabs the kendo stick and delivers some brutal strikes with it. Big E falls out of the ropes, and Sheamus pins him for a 2 count. He goes under the ring for a weapon, but Big E grabs some duct tape from under the ring and wraps it around Sheamus’ ankles. He then grabs the kendo stick and beats Sheamus with it, sending him over the barricade as we go to commercial.
When we come back, Big E is in control, whacking Sheamus with the kendo stick in the locker room area. With painful-looking welts already forming on his pearly-white skin, the Celtic Warrior slams Big E onto an equipment box. He whacks Big E with the kendo stick, and then covers him with eggs and flour from the catering table. He tosses Big E into another equipment box, and leads him into a side hallway.
Big E taps into his inner Best Bout Machine and hits Sheamus with a broomstick, and then a trash can. He brings Sheamus out to the parking garage, and making sure to sanitize his hands, he kicks the Celtic Warrior in the chest. Sheamus finds a crowbar and hits Big E full force with it, effectively turning the tide of the match. He drives Big E through another windshield with White Noise, but Big E is able to kick out at 2 and a half.
Sheamus shoves Big E halfway into a car and then slams the car door on him a few times. He takes it one step further, placing Big E in the trunk of the car. He looks to slam the trunk door on his arm, but Big E blocks it with his leg. He kicks his way out of the trunk, dodges a Brogue Kick that instead breaks the trunk door off the car, and then powerbombs the Celtic Warrior onto the hood of another car. He sends him through the windshield of the car, and then delivers the Big Ending off the car through a table for the win.
Winner via pinfall: Big E
Match Rating: 4/5
Backstage, Kayla Braxton tries to interview Big E, but she’s interrupted by a returning Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods, who celebrate with Big E over his victory.
Jey Uso comes out to the ring and calls out the Universal Champion, asking what the deal is with their Hell in a Cell match. Roman Reigns doesn’t come out, but Paul Heyman appears on the Titantron, telling him he doesn’t get to choose when the champ makes an appearance. Paul Heyman warns any Superstar who wishes to fight Roman with a very well edited video of Roman beating Jey up at Clash of Champions. Roman appears on the screen as well, announcing that the Hell in a Cell match will also be an I Quit match. He also says that there will be consequences if Jey loses, but doesn’t say what they are.
Stephanie McMahon brings us the second round of the draft, but first announces that the New Day will receive a title shot later tonight. AJ Styles moves over to Raw, and Sasha Banks remains on SmackDown. Naomi moves over to Raw, and in the only pick I’ve been excited about so far, Bianca Belair moves over to SmackDown. Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler stay on Raw, but those titles get defended everywhere, so it really doesn’t matter.
AJ Styles comes to us via video call, saying that he should be offended that he wasn’t Raw’s first pick, but he’s relieved, as he no longer has to be around Jeff Hardy and Sami Zayn.
Matt Riddle and Jeff Hardy VS The Miz and John Morrison
This match is following a social media interaction where Matt Riddle asked Jeff Hardy, who he’s a big fan of, if they could team together. Hardy said that would be great, but Miz and Morrison called the team “laughable.” They get a chance to prove it tonight.
Matt Riddle starts off against John Morrison, with Riddle catching a kick from Morrison and turning it into a fisherman’s suplex. He tags Hardy in, and they work together to deliver Broetry in Motion. Hardy assists Riddle in flying to the outside onto Miz and Morrison with Broetry in Mayhem as we go to commercial.
When we come back, Miz and Morrison are in control with a series of maneuvers, ending in a standing Shooting Star Press from Morrison that gets a 2 count on Hardy. The Friday Night Delight locks in a submission, but Hardy fights out and looks for the Twist of Fate. Morrison escapes it, and the two clothesline each other and both go down.
They both tag in their partners and Riddle comes in firing on all cylinders, taking out The Miz with a kick and Morrison with a Pelé Kick. He suplexes Morrison and gives The Miz one as well, and then follows it up with a Bro-ton and a German suplex, but Morrison breaks up the pin. Hardy delivers a Twist of Fate to Morrison, The Miz throws Hardy out of the ring, and then Riddle delivers a Final Flash and a Bro-Derek to the Awesome One for the win.
Winners via pinfall: Matt Riddle and Jeff Hardy
Match Rating: 3/5
After the match, Lars Sullivan makes his return! He takes out everyone in the ring, delivering a Freak Accident to Riddle and The Miz. He’s doing better in the facial hair department then he used to, so I’m willing to see where he’ll go this time. Hopefully he doesn’t just beat up the Lucha House Party like last time.
Stephanie McMahon brings us the third round of the WWE Draft. Ricochet and Jey Uso both stay on the same show as before, and Mandy Rose stays on Raw. Dominik and Rey Mysterio are drafted to SmackDown, and The Miz and John Morrison move to Raw, so Morrison is no longer the Friday Night delight. That’s two nicknames destroyed in one draft. That’s gotta be a new record!
Backstage, Dominik and Rey celebrate about still being able to go after Seth Rollins. Congrats, WWE, you moved a feud to another show. Exciting action here tonight.
Sasha Banks VS SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley for the SmackDown Women’s Championship
Welcome back to Friday Night Inability to Invest in Long-Term Storylines, everybody.
Sasha Banks gets aggressive early, slapping Bayley while she’s being introduced. When the bell rings, the Boss goes straight after the champ, raining furious rights and lefts upon her. She blocks a kick and delivers a solid knee to Bayley, and she tries to leave, but Banks goes out after her and brings her back in. She locks in the Bank Statement early, but Bayley reverses it into a pin, which Banks reverses into a pin of her own for 2. Banks rolls Bayley up again for another 2, and Bayley drops her with a clothesline for yet another 2 count.
She looks for an electric chair, but Banks reverses it into an arm drag and rolls the champ up for another 2. She locks in the Bank Statement again, but Bayley gets to the ropes. Bayley goes to the outside and grabs her chair, using it on Banks to give Banks the win but not the title.
Winner via disqualification: Sasha Banks
Match Rating: 2/5
After the match, Bayley looks to hit Banks with the chair again, but Banks avoids it and drives Bayley into it instead. She grabs the chair and unloads on the champ, and then looks to crush the neck of Bayley in the chair, but Bayley gets out of the chair and runs away from the Boss.
SmackDown Tag Team Champions Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura VS New Day for the SmackDown Tag Team Championships
Xavier Woods starts out against Cesaro, with Cesaro using his power advantage to push Woods around. Woods tries to fight back, but gets dropped with an uppercut. Woods delivers a headscissors to Cesaro but is answered with a brutal clothesline. Xavier gains control with a spinning forearm and a superkick to Nakamura, and tags in Kofi. The two deliver the Daybreak, but Nakamura breaks up the pin and takes out Woods as we go to commercial.
When we come back, Cesaro is in control, beating Kofi down in the corner. Kofi dodges a clothesline and hits a kick and both men go down. They both tag in their partners, and Woods comes in hot, taking out Cesaro on the apron and blasting Nakamura with a kick. He delivers the Honour Roll to Cesaro and delivers a wrecking ball dropkick to the Swiss Cyborg. Woods climbs back onto the apron and delivers an enziguri to Nakamura, then a tornado DDT for 2.
He looks for an attack in the corner but Nakamura moves and delivers a knee, then tags in Cesaro, delivering a double team move for 2. Woods stuns Cesaro with a jawbreaker and tags in Kofi, who hip-tosses Cesaro to the floor and delivers a tornado DDT. He looks for an attack from the top rope, but Cesaro delivers a European uppercut for 2. He tags in Nakamura and they look for the Giant Swing-Kinshasa combo, but Woods holds Nakamura’s leg while Kofi delivers Trouble in Paradise.
Nakamura delivers a kick to Kofi for 2, and looks for the reverse exploder, but Kofi lands on his feet and tags in Woods. He delivers Trouble in Paradise to the King of Strong Style, and Woods delivers his top-rope elbow for the win.
Winners via pinfall and NEW SmackDown Tag Team Champions: New Day
Match Rating: 3.5/5
Stephanie McMahon brings us the fourth and final round of this thoroughly disappointing WWE Draft. Raw selects Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods, which makes, by my calculations, exactly ZERO SENSE, and SmackDown selects Big E, officially separating the just-reunited New Day. Before we go on, it’s stupid that the SmackDown Tag Team Champs are going to Raw, right? We’re all on the same page there? Okay good, moving on. Dana Brooke moves to Raw, and Otis stays on SmackDown. Angel Garza stays on Raw, and we close off the lamest WWE Draft I can remember.
Backstage, a very smartly dressed Tucker helps Otis prepare for his legal battle with The Miz. Someone brings a paper that notifies Otis that the court date is being delayed. Looks like The Miz and Morrison being moved to Raw won’t change anything.
The Fiend VS Kevin Owens
Kevin Owens starts out fast, clotheslining The Fiend in the corner and delivering a cannonball, but it doesn’t faze him at all. The Fiend beats down Owens with some uppercuts and his signature crossbody. He follows Owens to the outside and flips him inside out with a clothesline. Owens dodges an attack in the corner, but The Fiend does his weird bridge thingie to psyche Owens out.
The Fiend catches a superkick and delivers a unique slam, but Kevin fights back with a kick and a clothesline. Once again, it does not faze The Fiend, who locks in a submission. K.O fights out of it and tosses The Fiend to the outside, but instead he is met with a uranage and a Sister Abigail onto the announce table as we go to commercial.
When we come back, The Fiend is in control, but Owens keeps trying to fight back. It doesn’t end well for him, as he gets planted with a uranage. The Fiend twists the neck of Owens, and looks for Sister Abigail, but Owens fights out and delivers a series of superkicks and two cannonballs, sending The Fiend to the outside. He follows him out and delivers a DDT on the floor, but The Fiend gets right back up. Owens superkicks him to prevent him from coming back in the ring, and then frog splashes him on the outside.
The Fiend gets back up, but Owens delivers a Pop-Up Powerbomb through the table. The Fiend gets back in the ring before the 10 count and locks in the Mandible Claw, but Owens turns it into a Stunner. However, the Mandible Claw stays locked in even through the Stunner, and Owens passes out.
Winner via pinfall: The Fiend
Match Rating: 3/5
After the match, Alexa Bliss meets The Fiend on the entrance ramp, and they stare down Owens together.
SmackDown October 9
The matches were good enough, but the focal point of the show was the draft, and the draft sucked. They just kept a bunch of people on the same show, and they said names of amazing talent like Dana Brooke and Ricochet as if they actually have plans to do something with them. This draft is just reminding us of the people who deserve major title runs but don’t get used.