Smackdown comes to you from Birmingham, Alabama this week. The show kicks off with a recap of last week. After that, Renee Young introduces AJ Styles for what looks like a talk segment. AJ is asked about his opinion on the booking of the 2-on-1 match against Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens. At first he avoids the question, but then eventually coughs up that he thinks it’s unfair. AJ Styles is wrapping up a promo about Zayn and Owens, until the duo themselves interrupt.
Kevin Owens cuts a promo saying that they will be the first dual-WWE Champions. The promo ends with a YEP chant by both of then. Shane McMahon comes out and questions if this match is fair. He then books a fight for tonight where it’s 3-on-2. Shinsuke Nakamura, Randy Orton, and AJ Styles versus Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn. This feels stupid. You would think if he thought that the PPV handicap match was unfair, he would just un-book it, right? But instead he evened the odds for some reason. Also I like the story of how Shane is disliking everything that Bryan does to spite him.
Becky Lynch vs. Ruby Riott
Before our first match we see an already show promo where Becky Lynch announces her entry into the Women’s Royal Rumble match. Anyways, the first match on the card is Lynch versus Riott. After the break, Becky Lynch made Riott tap to the Disarmer. Nothing too special in this match. Makes sense for Becky to win the match for her return.
The Ascension vs. The Bludgeon Brothers
The repackaging of Luke Harper and Eric Rowen as the Bludgeon Brothers continues this week with another squash match. In under a minute, they got the win.
Zack Ryder vs. Mojo Rawley (US Title Tournament)
The next match is former teammates Zack Ryder and Bobby Roode facing off to decide who faces Bobby Roode in the next round of the US Title Tournament. Bobby Roode was ringside watching this fight. It was a short battle, with Mojo Rawley winning. After the right, Roode and Rawley did a staredown. This personally bored me. That’s the issue with tournaments. To set up for fights later on, sometimes you have to have some pretty lame fights. They should have played up the former teammates thing more than they did.
Shelton and Gable Plead Their Case
After being so close to being tag team champions, Gable and Shelton come out to plead their case. To get heat early on, they mention that Alabama won the National Championship last night, but the fans didn’t actually do anything to get the win. They claim that they didn’t lose to The Usos, they lost to instant replay last week. Gable is wearing a shirt that says #FreeTheTagTitles on it. Daniel Bryan comes out. Bryan reassures them that the decision made by the ref was the right decision. While they are complaining, Gable sarcastically mentions what Bryan wants from them? Asking if Bryan wants them to beat The Usos twice in one night. Bryan likes this idea, and makes a title match for the Royal Rumble a 2 out of 3 falls match.
This segment wasn’t that bad too be honest. I don’t like 2 out of 3 falls matches, though. Also, it feels like Gable has really been looking comfortable in his heel role recently. Gable is showed more personality in this segment than maybe ever before in my opinion. It shows that him teaming up with Shelton is helping him.
Aiden English and Rusev vs. Fashion Police
It’s Rusev Day, everyone! Rusev and Aiden English are scheduled to fight the Fashion Police. In this very brief match, The Fashion Police pulled off an upset with a roll-up. Rusev and Aiden were just barely containing their anger when this happened.
AJ Styles, Randy Orton & Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn
It is finally time for the main event of Smackdown this week. The earlier announced handicap match with Styles, Orton and Nakamura facing Owens and Zayn. Halfway through the match, Zayn and Owens tried to high-tail it, but then Shane came out and made this a no countout match. After the break they were all back in the ring. After 10 or so more minutes of fighting, Kevin Owens ended it by bringing a steel chair into play. We thought the match had ended, but Shane came out once again and made this match anything goes.
AJ Styles chased Owens behind the curtains while Zayn got chased by Orton and Nakamura. He tried to jump a barrier, but the duo dragged him back in. Zayn was hit with many objects, then hit with a Kinshasa by Nakamura. To finish it all off, Randy Orton hit Zayn with an RKO.
This match was a pretty good finish to the show. Shane demonstrated how he won’t let Zayn and Owens get away using their little tricks, and Shane will not let them have any sort of advantage. That wraps up this week’s Smackdown.