Rehash · smackdown

Rehash: SmackDown 2nd June ’16

Welcome to Thursday Night SmackDown!

We open the program with a recap of John Cena’s return to Monday Night RAW and the very exciting heel turn of AJ Styles. I have had many doubts about how AJ’s story has been progressing, but watching him, Gallows and Anderson beating the hell out of Cena just made me happy inside in a way I can’t explain. I won’t try. Just know that it’s true.

Once the show starts proper…


I am basically always happy to watch The New Day dance their way down to the ring, and so far this episode of SmackDown has not disappointed me. I mean, we’re only about five minutes in, but that doesn’t have to mean anything. We get another recap of Monday Night RAW, this time of Gallows and Anderson interfering in The New Day’s match against the Vaudevillains, before they begin to cut a promo. Big E is disappointed that the Vaudevillains deprived the world of Stephanie McMahon dancing, Xavier is still concerned about the brand split, but Kofi wants to talk about the devastation wrought by the Club. The New Day reassure us that the Club will never be our champions, so of course, who comes out to play?

Gallows and Anderson make it extremely clear that they intend to take the tag team championship away from the New Day, and the New Day maturely counters by asking if the Club meet weekly in a treehouse and mock the fact that they are both bald. The New Day issue a challenge before singing AJ Styles’ theme music (“they don’t want none”) tauntingly, pointing out that without AJ, it’s 3 on 2, so…

This musical cue reminds someone backstage to put on AJ’s real music, and AJ Styles comes out to pledge almighty allegiance to the Club. The New Day gyrate in the general direction of the Club and taunt them some more about how the New Day are our WWE World Tag Team Champions. AJ tries to dismiss Kofi’s ten year career in the WWE as a “nothing but a joke”, and Kofi savagely points out that he has been collecting title reigns as US Champion, IC Champion, and Tag-Team Champion for ten years, while AJ hadn’t even made it to the WWE. This is, of course, a set-up for AJ to get his boys and Kofi to get his so they can fight it out later.

MATCH: Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte (with Dana Brooke)

Becky makes her way to the ring first, so this lovely program is just getting better and better in my mind. Maybe I’m easily pleased, but I just really enjoy all the talent we’ve seen so far! Charlotte follows, with Dana Brooke by her side.

  • Lock up in the middle of the ring, Charlotte takes Becky to the floor but she manages to recover.

  • A pair of arm drags from Becky end with Charlotte on the ground in an armbar, but she works her way out of it.

  • Byron Saxton and Jerry Lawler argue about whether Charlotte deserves to be champion while Charlotte works Becky with a series of kicks.

  • Becky reverses Charlotte into the corner and takes Dana to the floor with a right hand, but lands on the floor herself as Charlotte capitalizes, as we cut to commercial.

  • Leg lariat from Becky when we return, putting Charlotte in the corner. Corner splash into a kick, Charlotte kicks out of the cover.

  • Becky runs into a back elbow from Charlotte and takes a knife-edge chop and Charlotte is well in control as she strikes Becky.

  • Becky appears to regain control with some forearms but Charlotte puts her in a sunset flip. Becky kicks out.

  • Armbar from Becky is turned into a powerbomb by Charlotte, Becky kicks out.

  • Charlotte climbs onto the turnbuckle for a moonsault, but Becky rolls out of the way.

  • Becky goes for the Disarm-her, but Dana interferes. This ends the match in a disqualification.

Becky looks exasperated more than anything as Dana and Charlotte make their way up the ramp, but then Natalya makes her way down and helps Becky drag both Charlotte and Dana back to the ring. It becomes a four woman melee in the ring before Charlotte and Dana manage to make their escape and Charlotte hoists her title tauntingly as they leave.

Dean and Sami are interviewed by Renee Young next, and she asks them how they can work together knowing they’ll be up against each other in the ladder match. Sami explains that it’s every man for himself at the ladder match, and even though Dean is weirdly racist against Canadians they can still work together. Dean tries to rant about Chris Jericho, Kevin Owens and the border patrol guy who tried to confiscate his nunchucks, and Kevin Owens comes in and accuses Sami of trying to “manipulate” Dean Ambrose (after all, he is also Canadian). Kevin ends the segment by insulting Renee’s jewellery, and things are awkward.

MATCH: The Dudley Boyz vs. The Golden Truth

The Dudleys are already in ring as R-Truth and Goldust enter, but I’m more entertained by the fact that Breezango are at ringside with frozen cocktails and coloured cushions. They aren’t simply watching the match from commentary, they are doing so in style! R-Truth is rapping his way down, and Lawler doesn’t like it, but I kind of approve.

  • Bubba Ray and Goldust start in the ring together with a lockup, Goldust gets backed into the corner but drags Bubba Ray to the ground before tagging in R-Truth.

  • Breezango are gossiping in the VIP section beautifully.

  • Arm-drag into an arm bar by R-Truth, and though Bubba Ray breaks the hold, Goldust comes in for a double suplex on Bubba Ray.

  • R-Truth hits a leg drop then puts Bubba Ray into the corner and they exchange strikes. D-Von interferes and distracts R-Truth for long enough for Bubba Ray take R-Truth to the ground and D-Von tags in.

  • D-Von is very in control although R-Truth kicks out of the cover.

  • European uppercut from D-Von leads into another cover, but R-Truth kicks out just in time. Bubba Ray tags back in and drives R-Truth’s head into the turnbuckle then hits him with a series of strikes as he stumbles out of the corner.

  • Big leg lariat from R-Truth takes both of them to the ground and both tag in their partners.

  • Goldust takes D-Von down with a series of clotheslines, then slaps him and Bubba Ray both before hitting a spine buster.

  • Tyler Breeze climbs up onto the apron to take a selfie, distracting the Golden Truth and allowing D-Von to get Goldust into a rollup.

Fandango and Tyler Breeze pose on the ramp and for a fleeting moment I swear I see them kiss, but it turns out it’s just my imagination or perhaps wishful thinking. Fandango says something about the game of “shooty-hoops”, and I’m baffled into silence as they start something I can only call aggressively flirting – Fandango calls them “gorge-elicious” because they are the most gorgeous and delicious tag-team, and Tyler shoots his selfie face at the camera as he suggests that they’re a “stunning combination”. I’m not sure if they’re actually a couple now, or if maybe those frozen cocktails were a little too strong, but either way, I think I’m into this.

There’s a recap of Dolph Ziggler’s feud with Baron Corbin, culminating in the amazing moment where he deliberately got himself disqualified by kicking Corbin in the crotch on RAW. Corbin is interviewed by Renee Young in the parking lot outside, where he says that the WWE universe does not deserve him as they cheered for Ziggler’s cheap shot and the next time they see him in the ring will be because he is destroying Ziggler.

MATCH: Dean Ambrose & Sami Zayn vs. Kevin Owens & Alberto Del Rio

Dean makes his way to the ring first, followed by his tag partner Sami Zayn. I still want to call these two the Roughriders, even though I know Sami finds that too suggestive and sexual. What can I say? I guess I’m a Dean at heart. Del Rio, then Kevin Owens, enter after a beautifully timed ad break.

  • I know this is not about the match, but someone in the crowd has a sign with a picture of HappyScary Dean Ambrose from Chibi Wrestlers? I couldn’t help but notice that.

  • The match begins with Dean climbing out of the ring and before Del Rio can officially step out, Kevin Owens begins attacking Sami.

  • Kevin throws Sami over the ropes but he doesn’t hit the floor, vaulting back over Kevin and taking him to the mat with a hurricanrana.

  • Del Rio tags in, and Sami leapfrogs over him and hits a dropkick.

  • Del Rio is backed into the corner, nd Dean tags in and pushes him into the turnbuckle and keeps him there with a series of strikes and then rapid-fire kicks to the midsection.

  • Dean whips Del Rio into the opposite ropes then takes him down with a clothesline. Dean tags Sami back in a and the two men double-team Del Rio with a back elbow but Del Rio kicks out of Sami’s cover at 2.

  • Sami looks for a vertical suplex, but takes a backstabber, kicking out of the cover at 2.

  • Del Rio sends Dean to the floor, then throws Sami into the turnbuckle and tags in Kevin Owens who keeps Sami in the corner with a series of kicks.

  • Dean tries to climb into the ring but is sent back out by the referee as he has not been tagged in.

  • Owens tags Del Rio bak in, who hits Sami with a roundhouse kick to the midsection then attempts to suplex Sami, however he lands on his feet and tags in Dean.

  • Dean goes for a running bulldog on Del Rio, but blows Kevin a kiss on his way through because he’s nice like that.

  • Del Rio ends up on the floor, and Dean dives after him. Kevin assaults Dean on the floor as Del Rio climbs back into the ring and we cut to commercial.

  • When we’re back, Del Rio and Dean are in the ring together and Del Rio goes for a cover on Dean but he kicks out.

  • A series of strikes back and forth, and Dean is thrown into the corner. He kicks Del Rio away as he goes after him but ends up taking a double stomp as he gets twisteed around the ropes.

  • Kevin tags back in and throws Dean to the floor, and turns to taunt  Sami. Sami tries to climb in and this distracts the ref so Kevin and Del Rio can take the opportunity to double-team Dean on the floor.

  • Sami assists by flying over and landing on both Kevin and Del Rio and throws Dean back into the ring to encourage Dean to make the tag. Kevin climbs back in before he can, and Dean hits a pendulum lariat, but is still suffering and cannot tag out before Kevin tags Del Rio back in.

  • Dean hits a swinging neckbreaker on Del Rio but still does not seem to be in control. He is sent into the corner and Kevin holds him in place so Del Rio can attempt to hit a kick to the head, but Dean ducks out the way just in time for the kick to hit Kevin Owens in the head instead.

  • While Del Rio and Owens are distracted by this development, Sami is able to make his way back into the ring to hit a Helluva Kick on Del Rio for a successful cover.

Dean Ambrose and Sami Zayn embrace in the ring to celebrate their victory. Kevin takes a microphone and screams that he is sick of this crap, with his partners losing him matches. He makes as though he is going to go after Dean and Sami to assault one or both of them, but instead grabs a ladder to climb up for the briefcase. Cesaro enters before Kevin can manage this, though, and takes Kevin out while still wearing his gorgeous suit, then puts his sunglasses daintily in his pocket before climbing up to grab the briefcase himself. Kevin starts to tear up the commentary booth in a fury while Dean chortles at him.

MATCH: Rusev (with Lana) vs. Jack Swagger

Lana introduces her husband in the ring, and he makes his way in dramatically. Swagger follows, because apparently he took offence to Rusev’s anti-American comments on RAW this week.

  • Rusev begins an assault on Swagger before the match has even begun. Swagger hits the floor, and is then sent flying into the steel steps before Rusev throws him back into the ring. The referee asks if Swagger is still willing to participate in the match, and he says yes.

  • Swagger catches Rusev’s kick as the match begins and both men end up on the floor again. Rusev takes a clothesline, but both men seem equally wounded by it.

  • Both men manage to get back into the ring and Rusev is clearly in control. He takes off Swagger’s shirt and flings it away before continuing, locking in a headlock. Swagger powered out of it and strikes at Rusev, but he is nursing an injured shoulder after that early assault.

  • Swagger hits a corner clothesline on Rusev then a belly-to-belly suplex, but his splash is blocked by Rusev’s knees.

  • Rusev hits the mat from a running clothesline but kicks out of the corner.

  • Swagger tries to lock in the Patriot Lock, but Rusev kicks him away and throws Swagger to the outside, Swagger hitting the steps on the way down.

  • Commentators suggest that Swagger might be knocked out, but he makes it back into the ring before the ten count.

  • Swagger rolls out of the Accolade and manages to reverse it into an attempt at the Patriot Lock, but Rusev is able to kick him away again.

  • Rusev locks in the Accolade and Swagger struggles to his knees but can’t recover, and he weakly taps out.

Rusev holds in the Accolade even after the match has ended, and there is a suggestion that Swagger may have passed out as Titus O’Neil enters for the save. He starts yelling trash talk at Rusev and challenging him as the United States Champion makes his way out of the ring and leaves with his wife.

There’s another Darren Young and Bob Backlund promo, where Backlund suggests that Young should walk briskly everywhere and never run. I’m still not really digging these promos, but not everything on the show is going to be perfect for me!

We get a recap of Seth Rollins’ return from injury, starting with him hitting Roman Reigns with a Pedigree at Extreme Rules, and continuing on to this past Monday Night on RAW when Seth ran back and forth like he was going to do something then aggressively did not do so. Of course, we get a reminder that Reigns is facing Rollins in a title match at Money in the Bank.

MATCH: AJ Styles (with Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson) vs. Kofi Kingston (with Big E Langston and Xavier Woods)

AJ and his boys make their way to the ring first. We see a recap of AJ assaulting John Cena on RAW, before The New Day make their way down to the ring also.

  • AJ and Kofi immediately embark on some beautiful chain wrestling, with snap mares into headlocks into head scissors into two simultaneous kip-ups. Kofi laughs like that show was hilarious to him, but AJ looks unimpressed.

  • Some more back and forth, then AJ takes Kofi down with a pair of arm drags. Kofi gets back to his feet and sarcastically applauds AJ.

  • Kofi locks in a headlock on AJ. AJ throws him into the corner as he gets out of lock, but Kofi leapfrogs over him then hits a hurricane.

  • Kofi kicks AJ in the corner and then hits a big dropkick in a one-man version of the Unicorn Stampede. The New Day and The Club enter the ring and the ref tries to coax the extra people out of the ring and we cut to commercial.

  • As we come back, AJ and Kofi are alone in the ring again. AJ rebounds off the ropes several times, but Kofi leapfrogs twice then catches AJ with a back elbow.

  • Kofi whips AJ into the ropes, then baseball slides to pull his legs out from underneath him. The Club and the New Day start to argue outside the ring, and AJ throws Kofi into the ring post.

  • AJ throws Kofi back into the ring and hits him with a series of strikes, then a pendulum backbreaker. Xavier Woods yells some trash talk which distracts AJ for a moment to allow Kofi to hit a jawbreaker, but AJ hits several more strikes on Kofi and he ends up falling to the mat again.

  • AJ tries to drag Kofi to his feet but Kofi strikes him in the midsection. An attempt at a corner elbow is reversed into a very impressive monkey flip. A clothesline and a leg drop take AJ to the ground, but rather than capitalise, Kofi chants “New Day Rocks!”

  • AJ recovers and tries to pull Kofi into a Styles Clash, but Kofi counters, then hits AJ with a dropkick. AJ kicks out of the cover.

  • Kofi places AJ on the turnbuckle for a superplex, but AJ drops out and pulls Kofi’s leg out from under him, sending him face first into the turnbuckle.

  • Xavier distracts AJ with Francesca II as he is about to springboard, presumably into the Phenomenal Forearm. Kofi hits SOS, but AJ kicks out of the cover. Gallows and Anderson attack Xavier and Big E at ringside, and Kofi leaps out of the ring to help. When he climbs back in, AJ hits the Pele Kick and then a Styles Clash for a successful cover.

AJ and his boys embrace in the ring then make their way together up the ramp as Xavier and Big E comfort Kofi in the ring.