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On this Thanksgiving episode of Smackdown, a new #1 contender to the Intercontinental Championship is established by way of a Triple-Threat match pitting Dolph Ziggler against Tyler Breeze and Dean Ambrose. New Day Thanksgiving hijinks also abound.
WWE Smackdown review
November 26, 2015
Taped 11/24/15 in Indianapolis, Ind.
Aired on SyFy
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)
– WWE Open.
– Smackdown Open.
– The show proper began with Roman Reigns coming through the crowd to the ring, a ring that contained a ladder, a chair, and a table. Stills of his match with Dean Ambrose at Survivor Series were shown, complete with the follow-up; plus, we saw what happened at the end of his match with Rusev on Raw. A graphic was shown for Reigns vs. Sheamus for the WWE World Title at TLC. Reigns finally spoke, saying that when he and the Usos were kids, they used to fight around the house all the time. And while they always dreamed about winning the WWE Title, at the time, it was just that: a dream. He was able to accomplish that dream on Sunday, but it ended when Sheamus delivered a Brogue Kick. Right on cue, Sheamus’ music interrupted and he came out, World Title around his waist.
From the stage, Sheamus said Reigns needs to “get over this,” and called him “a walking, talking, Adele song.” Sheamus continued to find humor in Roman’s short title reign. Sheamus said everyone agrees that the title looks better on him. He has even adopted the Seth Rollins cackle as heel champion. The champ put Reigns over a bit for what he had to go through at Survivor Series. Sheamus criticized Reigns for not thanking Triple H for giving him an opportunity, but spearing him instead. He described, with great emotion, how good it felt to defeat Reigns for the title. Reigns, calmly, challenged Sheamus to come to the ring to show him what he can do to Sheamus in under five minutes. Sheamus made like he was coming to the ring, but stopped before he even left the stage. “Not a chance,” said Sheamus.
Sheamus said Reigns only wants to fight and doesn’t think things through; that’s why he’s no longer champ. Sheamus intimated that if Reigns had just shaken Triple H’s hand, he would not have cashed in. He said that’s why he has the title on Reigns just has broken dreams. Reigns looked ahead to TLC, vowing to break the jaw of Sheamus with a Superman punch. He described how he’d use all of the TLC objects during their match. Reigns closed with his “believe that” catchphrase.
– Tonight, Jack Swagger takes on Alberto Del Rio.
– In the main event, an Intercontinental Championship #1 Contender Triple Threat Match, pitting Dolph Ziggler against Dean Ambrose and Tyler Breeze. Ooh, I hope Kevin Owens is on commentary for this one!
– The Dudley Boyz came out for tag-team action. They face Braun Strowman and Erick Rowan, next.
– This week’s Did You Know: WWE Network ranks as one of the top 10 subscription services.
– They showed an inset interview with the Dudleys. Bubba said The Wyatts get a taste of Dudley wood. I don’t think that’s PG. They also made mention of tables. A wholly unimaginative soundbite, even by WWE standards.
1 – THE DUDLEY BOYZ vs. BRAUN STROWMAN & ERICK ROWAN
D-Von had difficulty with Rowan in the early going. After a double-team suplex on Rowan, Strowman tagged in. Bubba worked a top wrist-lock on Strowman, who eventually just shrugged him off. Bubba missed a double axe-handle in the corner and Strowman struck him from behind. With the ref distracted, Luke Harper got involved. The show cut to break at 2:52 of the match.
Back at 7:05 with Strowman working the arm and shoulder of Bubba. Bubba evened the score by getting a boot up on a charge and clotheslining Rowan down as Bray Wyatt (from his chair) and Harper watched from ringside. D-Von made the tag and worked over Rowan. Strowman broke up a pin attempt, and Bubba tried to neutralize him. Suplex/neck-breaker combo from the Dudleys. Bubba shouted, while looking right at Wyatt, “get the tables!” D-Von picked one out and put it in the ring. Before they could use it, Harper ran in and kicked Bubba for the disqualification.
WINNERS: Dudleys, via DQ, at 10:06. Extremely limited match, not a surprise given who was involved.
After the match, Strowman picked up D-Von and choked him out while Bray yelled at D-Von. Double chokeslam by Rowan and Harper on Bubba, putting him through the table in the process. The heels posed after the match while Wyatt yelled his buzzards line.
– New Day cut a WWE Shop pre-tape, talking about the Black Friday deals offered by the website. They are quite the salesmen.
– As Paige made her entrance for the next match, they showed the controversy surrounding Charlotte’s win at Survivor Series, followed by Paige’s attack on Charlotte at the end of their rematch on Monday.
2 – PAIGE vs. BECKY LYNCH
Lynch got her full entrance, complete with smoke down the side of the ramp, which looked cool. A couple of arm-drags and a dropkick by Lynch. Paige screamed in anger while standing on the steel steps, trying to keep her distance from Lynch. Paige continued to stall. Her tactics didn’t end up working to her advantage. Paige turned the tide with a running knee to the face of Lynch. Fall-away slam by Paige. They went to break at 2:11 of the contest.
Back at 5:38 (.com) with Paige landing a flurry of knees to the face of Lynch. Charlotte was shown watching the monitor from the requisite awkward angle backstage. Paige worked to stretch the arms and shoulders of Lynch. Lynch came back with clotheslines and a leg lariat. Exploder suplex for two at 8:26. Paige reached the ropes when Lynch attempted the disarmer. Paige then rolled Lynch up for the pinfall.
WINNER: Paige, at 9:00. Good women’s match. Not great, but good. Would like to see Lynch get more, lengthy singles opportunities like this.
– New Day (sans Xavier Woods) was backstage along with Team BAD in front of a table full of Thanksgiving food. Big E. announced that it was the first annual Thanksgiving Pot-Luck. The tag belts were also displayed prominently on the table. In walked Heath Slater walked in with his award-winning Slater-Slaw. Big E. noticed a Band-Aid in the food. Adam Rose walked in and Kofi Kingston reminded Rose that he hates parties. Rose shoved a pot of rabbit stew into Kofi’s arms, then he walked away. New Day was near apoplectic at that pronouncement.
The Ascension were next to walk into the shot. Big E. asked what they brought. “Desecration and destruction” was not what New Day had in mind (and was not an actual dish to pass), so they were shooed away. Woods and Kofi argued over who was supposed to bring the turkey when the Gobbledygooker entered the picture. It was revealed to be Woods. Woods said it’s the 25th anniversary of the ‘Gooker. And tonight, against the Lucha Dragons, they’ll show their opponents the power of positivity and the power of poultry. Woods went to spread some holiday cheer as the ‘Gooker.
– Alberto Del Rio and Zeb Colter came out for the next match. It’ll take place after the break.
– ADR and Colter had mics at ringside out of break. Colter wanted to talk about Jack Swagger. Colter said he taught Swagger all Swagger knows, but not all that he knows. He called Swagger ungrateful and ignorant. Colter said Swagger and the people of Indianapolis are all haters. On the front of his scooter, Colter had a sign that said “No Hate Zone” with a strike through the phrase. Del Rio said after the match, Swagger will be exiting with his tail between his legs.
3 – ALBERTO DEL RIO vs. JACK SWAGGER
Swagger tackled Del Rio and tried to punch him, but Del Rio created separation by kicking Swagger off. This had the feeling of a real fight in the early going. Rear chin-lock by Del Rio, who then stomped on the back of Swagger’s head. He did the same, this time, coming off the middle rope. Swagger managed to slam Del Rio for a two-count. Del Rio went to ringside and curiously tried to leave the ringside area through the crowd at a section where there was no aisle. Swagger stopped him and tossed him into the timekeeper’s area. As Swagger looked at Colter, appearing to have an internal debate about confronting his former mentor, Del Rio nailed Swagger from behind with a chair.
WINNER: Swagger, via disqualification, at 3:05. Sadly, it looks like we’re going to get more out of this feud. The positive is that it gives Swagger something to do.
Del Rio re-entered the ring with the chair. The ref admonished Del Rio, which allowed Swagger to grab the chair and hit Del Rio with it. After receiving a few whacks, Del Rio and Colter escaped together up the ramp. They replayed the end of the match and the post-match chair-related activities. Chairs match at TLC for the U.S. Title?
– Tonight, there will be a Triple-Threat Match to determine the #1 contender to the I.C. Title.
– The Usos were walking backstage when they crossed paths with the Gobbledygooker, who clucked and wished them Happy Thanksgiving. They knew it was Woods, then one of them got an idea and they walked off camera.
– The Lucha Dragons came out. They’re in action against New Day, next.
4 – THE LUCHA DRAGONS vs. BIG E. & KOFI KINGSTON
Big E. came out with his chef’s hat still on, and the Woods ‘Gooker walked out with his trombone. Pre-match, they showed the video of the birth of the Gobbledygooker from Survivor Series 1990. The Dragons shined early on against Kofi. Big E., the ‘Gooker and Kofi all danced on the apron in what assuredly will become another popular New Day dancing .gif (if anyone watched Smackdown, that is). Sin Cara found himself on the floor at ringside as New Day clapped around him heading into break at 2:18 of the match.
Back at 5:51 with New Day working their patented constant stomps in the corner. Splash on Sin Cara by Big E. for a two-count. Big E. launched himself at Cara in the corner, but missed, and went shoulder-first into the post. Kalisto and Kingston both tagged in and Kalisto went to work. Kingston rolled up Kalisto and put his feet on the ropes, but the ‘Gooker pushed them off. Kingston asked what was up, which allowed Kalisto to hit Salida del Sol for the win.
WINNERS: Lucha Dragons, at 8:26. I feel like this was just a sample of what these two teams can do in the ring. But it’s almost like WWE doesn’t trust the Dragons to carry their part in a feud with New Day, hence the inclusion of The Usos…
After the match, New Day tried to get some answers from the Gobbledygooker, but out came one of the Usos with an air-horn, along with Woods, in his boxers and with duct tape on his mouth and tying up his hands and feet. Woods ended up rolling down the apron. The ‘Gooker revealed himself to by Jey Uso. Kofi and Big E. were taken out by the Dragons and Jimmy Uso. Woods tried to hop away, but the Dragons rolled him into the ring. Superkick by Jimmy to Woods, while Jey climbed the top rope and hit a Gobbledygooker splash. The superkick and splash were shown again.
– The announcers were shown on-camera. They showed a Tyler Breeze selfie promo from earlier in the day where, along with Summer Rae, he proclaimed his desire for the ultimate accessory to his wardrobe: The Intercontinental Title.
– Next, a video package on the Undertaker’s 25th Anniversary.
– The announcers sent it to an Undertaker video package.
– Renee Young was backstage with Dean Ambrose. Ambrose said luck had nothing to do with what happened last Sunday. Neither his win or loss had anything to do with luck – on that night, Roman Reigns was the better man than he was. He turned his attention to tonight, where he faces Ziggler and “Fuzzy-Boots McGee,” Tyler Breeze. He seemed to indicate his confidence in his chances in the match tonight.
– Kevin Owens walked out. He’ll join the announce team for the main event.
5 – TYLER BREEZE vs. DOLPH ZIGGLER vs. DEAN AMBROSE – TRIPLE-THREAT MATCH TO DETERMINE THE #1 CONTENDER FOR THE INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPIONSHIP
Ziggler cut an inset promo during his entrance where he said tonight, he’ll fight like his career depends on it. Ambrose got an early roll-up on Ziggler for a two-count. Summer Rae took her place in the VIP lounge set up for her and Breeze. As Ziggler went to ringside to avoid Ambrose, Breeze attacked him. Ambrose flew over the top onto Breeze. Ziggler then took out Ambrose and stared at Owens. They went to break at 1:16 of the match.
Back at 4:55. The action continued at a frenzied pace. Ziggler with a jumping elbowdrop for two on Breeze. Owens continued to criticize Rich Brennan on commentary. Fameasser by Ziggler on Ambrose for a near-fall. Ambrose launched Ziggler into the corner. Lariat by Ambrose, but Breeze threw him out of the ring and tried to pin Ziggler. Ambrose came off the top with an elbow on Breeze for two. Ambrose came off the ropes to clothesline Breeze in the back at the same time Ziggler tried to cross-body Breeze from the front, making a Breeze sandwich. Jabs and chops to Ziggler and Breeze. Ziggler superkicked Ambrose and took out Breeze for a near-fall. Zig Zag from Ziggler on Ambrose, but Breeze broke up the pin. After a reverse of a roll-up, a Beauty Shot by Breeze put Ziggler down. Before Breeze could hit the Unprettier, Ambrose came up and delivered Dirty Deeds to Breeze for the win.
WINNER: Ambrose, at 10:51.
A few replays were shown of key moments in the match. Ambrose and Owens went face-to-face at ringside. Ambrose shoved Owens back down into the announce chair. Owens got right back up in Ambrose’s face, then walked away past him. They shared a few looks as Ambrose stayed at ringside and Owens backed his way up the ramp to close the show.
Did you watch Thursday’s Smackdown episode? Send your 0-10 score & Reax to firstname.lastname@example.org for our TV Reax feature.
Greg Parks has been covering WWE Smackdown for PWTorch.com since January of 2007. He is the host of “Moonlighting with Greg Parks,” a PWTorch VIP-exclusive audio show posted each weekend. Follow him on Twitter @gregmparks for live Tweeting during Raw, Impact, and PPVs, as well as other bits of wisdom. Comments, questions and feedback are welcome, and can be sent to email@example.com.
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