We open with Randy Orton, Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon watching Randy Orton hit an RKO on Brock Lesnar all the way from the SmackDown Live roster on last night’s RAW. Shane is telling Orton that Lesnar is going to come after him, and that jeopardizes a lot of things beyond just Orton himself. He does acknowledge that it was pretty awesome, though, so that’s a good start. There are a lot of security guards standing by, though, because Orton can’t just keep RKOing Lesnar to save everyone.
The Miz and Maryse wander on in, and Miz demands to know why no one came out to hoist him up like they did to Dean. Bryan says he didn’t even want Miz on the show, just the championship, and tonight they’re going to determine the number one contender for his title. Dean wanders through as well, mostly just to say hi, I think.
Welcome to SmackDown live!
We open on Daniel Bryan and Shane McMahon, who immediately tell us that it’s all about the Superstars. That’s great guys, so… why are you here? Of course I don’t mind because it’s Daniel Bryan, everyone’s doing yes chants and standing up cheering for him when we cut to the opening titles. It’s new theme music, and I’m faintly disappointed even though I knew it was coming, because I legitimately really loved the previous theme music.
Well, I’m joining you late, starting myself off with a triple threat video package, because I was busy getting sugary drinks and setting up the fan. It’s warm in England tonight, and I’ve finally got the preshow up and going! Aaaaand Jerry Lawler is apparently still here – the roster split looks like he’s lost his spot on main commentary thanks to what Vince probably calls ‘a little indiscretion’, but he’s still going to be here for the pay-per-views. Either that, or everyone’s too embarrassed to tell him he’s fired, so they let him sit at the table and feel important, and then later on, they’ll take him out back and put him out of his misery.
Hey, wrestling fans it’s that time again! Another month, another pay per view. This one should be interesting, as the brand split has now officially happened, so it will be the last time before next month’s PPV that we will see a lot of these guys in the ring together. But enough about that, and onto my predictions for how this show will go.
Welcome to the first SmackDown live! Your highly caffeinated recapper is more than excited for the draft, so can we just jump straight in?
We open on Daniel Bryan’s music, and a yes chant so large that I’m already even more excited than I already was. There’s a brief recap of the rules; RAW goes first, six picks off the NXT roster, and RAW gets 3 picks for every 2 of SmackDowns.
Well, here we are, the last Raw before the draft, and it’s up late, because I believe – unlike Vince McMahon – that sometimes sleep is more important than wrestling. Also that if I sleep through my alarm at twenty past twelve at night, I clearly need the rest. So here we are, Tuesday morning and I’m starting this recap ten hours later than usual! Is Raw ten hours now? Or does it just feel like ten hours?
With the draft coming up next week, and Battleground hitting our screens a week from today, things are heating up. Let’s get to it!
Battle Royal for Number One Contendership for the Intercontinental Title – Darren Young wins after Apollo Crews and Baron Corbin eliminate each other.
Sheamus vs. Zack Ryder – Sheamus wins by pinfall.
Breezango vs. Lucha Dragons – Breezango wins, with Tyler Breeze pinning Kalisto.
Kevin Owens vs. Cesaro – Kevin Owens wins by pinfall.
Heath Slater vs. Titus O’Neil – Titus O’Neil picks up a victory by pinfall.
The New Day visited the Wyatt Family compound, and almost looked like getting the upper hand when suddenly hundreds of fireflies and sheep masks showed up to put the fear of Wyatt into them.
Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson vs. Enzo & Big Cass – Enzo and Big Cass win by disqualification after AJ Styles interferes, but don’t come out happy.
Sasha Banks vs. Dana Brooke – Dana taps out to the Bank Statement.
Vince McMahon announced that Shane McMahon will be Commissioner of SmackDown, while Stephanie McMahon will be Commissioner of RAW.
We open with an “earlier today” segment, Kevin Owens backstage telling us about how he found a birthday card that Sami Zayn wrote for his son before everything went to shit between them. How… often do you clean out your bag, man? In any case, he tells us that the birthday card never made it to his son, because even though Sami is practically the boy’s godfather, he only gave him $20. That is, $20 Canadian, which is the height of insult as far as Kevin is concerned. So he’s pocketing the $20, and just to remind us that this is a wrestling show, drops in that he’s going to be fighting Dean tonight.
Speaking of Dean, a limousine pulls up out the front, and… of course it’s not Dean, why would Dean show up anywhere in a limousine? It’s Charlotte and Dana. Charlotte refers to Sasha’s victory over Dana on Monday Night RAW as “the biggest upset of [her] career”, and we set up for the rematch tonight.
Next, Maryse is doing her makeup while Miz clears his throat in irritation in the background, because he wants her to hurry up and do his makeup also. He is inviting Darren Young and Bob Backlund onto Miz TV tonight to find out what was behind that whole “make Darren Young great again” thing.
And now we have Dean Ambrose, our champion, who is wearing sunglasses in a dark hallway. That reads “hungover” to all those members of the audience old enough to have been there and done that, I’m just saying. He tells us a little about how he’s going to wreck Kevin Owens in the ring because he’s champion, and I just really can’t argue with that.
This is the final SmackDown before the draft next Tuesday, as Mauro Ranallo reminds us as soon as we cut to the arena. And once we’re here, we’re straight into a match!
Raw comes to us live from Detroit tonight, and we’ve already got Instagram-fuelled rumours that Alicia Fox might be back – a woman who isn’t milk pale and/or blonde? Get out of here.
We’re starting with a battle royal for The Miz’s IC title, because apparently that’s the level we’re putting the IC title at. I’m literally agog.
We open with a series of “earlier today” segments, starting with AJ Styles and The Club conspiring. Chris Jericho has apparently lost his scarf. Sami Zayn taunts Jericho from afar. Seth Rollins tries to pick a fight with Jey Uso and ends up making a match for later on tonight.
I can’t remember if I’ve ever said this before, but I actually really like the SmackDown theme music. Sometimes I sing it in my car while I’m driving around.
JoJo starts to announce that the following contest is scheduled for… something, because then Dean Ambrose’s music hits and he makes his way down to the ring. Byron and Mauro are again joined on commentary by Jerry Lawler, but I’m trying not to focus too much on that. Dean wants to use his clout as WWE champion to become a ring announcer for a night, because it’s always looked like fun to him and he thought he’d be good at it. I feel like you can set your sights just a tiny bit higher, Deano.