This episode of WWE Smackdown Live came from the Save Mart Center in Fresno, CA.
Shane McMahon opened Smackdown and relieved Paige of her duties, announcing she’d remain on the blue brand.
After Shane’s announcement, Becky Lynch called out Ronda Rousey for costing her the Smackdown Women’s title. Charlotte came out and followed suit. Asuka then hit the ring to flaunt her new title. Vince McMahon interrupted the three to announces Naomi as the champion’s challenger for the evening for the women’s title.
- This was a solid opening segment, with fine fall out from the PPV. I did enjoy the “take control and take it out on Rousey” line, because that shit could get really interesting. I really don’t think Vince was needed here. More McMahons are not the answers, allowing Charlotte, Becky, Asuka, and Naomi get over by putting the focus on them is.
Smackdown Women’s Championship: Asuka (c) defeated Naomi. Asuka defeated Naomi by submission with the Asuka Lock.
- This was a good and fun match to kick off tonight’s in ring action. The two have been friends and partners, and it showed here as they worked really well together. They worked hard, the action was well laid out and smooth, and I enjoyed this.
The Miz knocked on the door for the McMahon’s dressing room, which Vince McMahon answered. Miz asked for Vince’s blessing to tag with Shane McMahon. Vince refused, but instead set up a tag match for later in the night for Miz to prove himself.
Rusev & Lana are interviewed. Rusev says he hopes the McMahon family is watching because he’s handsome, a hunk, a star, super athlete, and champion. Meanwhile, Nakamura looks like Sonic The Hedgehog.
Jeff Hardy said he’s made mistakes in the past, but that’s in the past. He then called out Samoa Joe. Joe hit the ring and said everyone is worried that Hardy will fall back into his past issues. Joe started to walk away, but turned and went to attack Hardy. Hardy reversed and hit the Twist of Fate before leaving up the entrance ramp.
The Miz and Mandy Rose defeated R-Truth and Carmella. Mandy Rose distracted Carmella and R-Truth, allowing Miz to hit the Skull Crushing Finale for the pinfall victory.
- A short and pointless match.
Commentary announced Mustafa Ali is now a permanent member of the Smackdown Live roster.
We get a video package on Lars, EC3, Lacey Evans. Nikki Cross, & Heavy Machinery coming soon. These call-ups were reportedly all set for January, but expedited due to the angle on Raw.
The Usos vs. Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson ended in a no-contest. The Bar came down to interrupt the match, but SAnitY came through the crowd and attacked The Usos and Gallows and Anderson. After SAnitY laid everyone out, The Bar finished the job and showed off with their titles.
- This was a pretty good match, with an effort to put some new faces into the tag title mix with Sanity & The Good Brothers.
Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Rusev for the United States championship was announced for next week, as well as Jeff Hardy vs. Samoa Joe.
Daniel Bryan arrives, and he says that he killed the YES movement, and killed the house that AJ Styles built. He’s creating a brave new world here on Smackdown. People fear change, and runs down the fans for their toxic habits. The city of Fresno ranks #1 in pollution in California, SHAME, SHAME, SHAME, SHAME! Self-education is the only real education, but these people wouldn’t know education if it was handed to them through a drive-through window. These people have failed, and he’s here to show them the way.
AJ Styles and Mustafa Ali defeated Daniel Bryan and Andrade Cien Almas. Ali pinned Bryan after hitting the inverted 450 splash. Styles took out Almas with the Phenomenal Forearm to set up the victory.
- This was a very good main event, with four talented guys, and them all working hard and having a blast. It was great to get Almas back on TV, and Ali picks up a HUGE win and is now officially a member of the Smackdown roster.
End of show.