WWE Smackdown review
June 9, 2016
Taped 6/7/16 in Wichita, Ks.
Aired on USA Network
By Greg Parks, PWTorch Columnist (Twitter: @gregmparks)
– WWE Open.
– Smackdown Open.
– First in the arena was The Club. Interestingly, despite this being a promo segment, the chyron highlighted A.J. Styles above the rest of The Club. As they came to the ring, they showed John Cena trying to fend off The Club this past week on Raw, and how New Day helped him out. A graphic for Styles vs. Cena at Money in the Bank was also shown, along with the Fatal Four-Way WWE Tag Team Championship Match. Styles hyped up MITB by saying it is being compared to Wrestlemania in terms of card strength. Styles talked up his match with Cena and said with the upcoming brand extension, this could be the first and last time we see some of these matches. A loud “Cena” chant began.
Styles said he said what needed to be said on Raw, and what most people were thinking: The past decade has been the John Cena Era. He said the New Era will start when he takes out Cena. He also said that had been the plan all along, since he, Luke Gallows, and Karl Anderson debuted. Styles did the Cena hand wave and said he’ll show Cena, “you can’t beat me.” He also said Anderson and Gallows would become the new tag champs at MITB. Enzo & Cass came out to interrupt.
Enzo did his usual opening spiel and Cass added that there are other teams besides New Day in the tag title match at MITB. The Mr. Clean Dream Team won’t be walking out as champs, he said. I think they had to add Enzo saying “WWE” in front of World Tag Team Champs in post-production or something. Anderson accused Enzo of managing a Hooters. Enzo said that’s true, he used to do that (Wikipedia confirms). Gallows said last time Enzo had a big match, he went to sleep on the job. Enzo said he gives his all in the ring and acknowledged he doesn’t work with a full deck. After a few play-on-words dealing with Las Vegas (where MITB will be held), Cass called The Club “SAWFT.” Tag team action is next.
– New Day was at ringside with the announcers for the next match.
1 – THE CLUB vs. ENZO AMORE & BIG CASS
Mauro Ranallo deferred to New Day for commentary on this one. Big E. had a broom with him and said he brought it to clean up the tag division. Headscissors take-over by Amore. Cross-body followed but Luke Gallows had tagged in and caught him with a big boot. Back to Anderson with a back-breaker. Byron Saxton fed Big E. grapes. He didn’t even have to wear a veil. Tree of Woe set up and Anderson ran across the ring and kicked Amore right in the mid-section. From the apron, Amore gave Anderson a stunner over the top rope. Gallows missed a big boot on Amore. Amore dove into the empty ring to try to make a tag, but Anderson cut him off with a kick. The Vaudevillains came onto the stage to watch the proceedings. They cut to break at 4:08 of the match.
Back at 8:01 with Gallows delivering a suplex to Amore. Amore’s comeback was cut off when Gallows shoved him down. Gallows set Amore on the top rope, and Amore came off with a DDT. Gallows made the tag, and at 9:27, Cass finally tagged in. Fall-away slam to Anderson. Splash and a big boot followed. Empire Elbow for a near-fall, with Gallows breaking it up. Running boot sent Gallows out of the ring, but Anderson dumped Cass, too. The Vauds crept down to ringside at this point, and New Day left commentary to ensure the heels didn’t get involved. In fact, the two teams brawled. The ring filled with all four teams, leading the ref to call for the bell.
WINNERS: No Contest, at 10:58. They’re really protecting Cass, but then again, getting heat on Amore the entire match leading to the hot tag is a formula that has worked well for them thus far.
In the end, Enzo & Cass stood tall in the ring with their music playing to end the segment.
– The genesis of the Chris Jericho-Dean Ambrose feud, from Raw two months ago, was shown.
– Up next, WWE remembers Muhammad Ali.
– The announcers reacted to the loss of Muhammad Ali. A video package on Ali followed.
– More Ali reminiscing from the announcers before Ranallo shifted to talking about the MITB card (once again noting its Wrestlemania-worthy lineup) and specifically, Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins. Cena vs. Styles was also mentioned.
– Backstage, Renee Young was with Lana and Rusev. Lana denied that Rusev was ducking Titus O’Neil. Rusev called himself the greatest champion of all times, even greater than Ali. He said O’Neil and everyone else is jealous of him. He said he’d crush Titus at MITB. Is that match official? O’Neil chastised Rusev for putting himself on the same level as Ali. O’Neil copied some of Ali’s famous quotes and said the US Title will come home with him. O’Neil’s body language was awkward as he cut the promo here.
– Cesaro came out for a match. Sami Zayn made his entrance, as they’re in tag team action against Alberto Del Rio and Kevin Owens, after the break.
2 – CESARO & SAMI ZAYN vs. ALBERTO DEL RIO & KEVIN OWENS
Owens got frustrated after finding himself on the receiving end of a few arm-drags, so he angrily tagged in Owens. Owens and Del Rio were clearly not getting along in the early going. Del Rio mounted Cesaro in the corner and delivered a few right hands, but Cesaro turned the tables and brought down the rights a little harder. Del Rio, like Cesaro, got away before ten. Owens walked out on Del Rio at about the 2:25 mark of the match. Zayn chased after Owens and went backstage to get him. Cesaro wasn’t happy about that. Kick and a DDT from Del Rio. Del Rio ended up outside the ring where Cesaro cannonballed onto him from the apron. They went to break at 3:17.
Back at 6:18 with Owens and Zayn still MIA. Del Rio slowed the pace while on offense. Cesaro dead-lifted Del Rio into a vertical suplex. At 8:26, Zayn and Owens came back onto the scene, brawling their way to the ring. Owens and Del Rio engaged in a shoving match. Del Rio then took a page out of Owens’ book and tried to take a walk. Owens got in his way to stop him. While they were arguing, Zayn hit a top con hilo onto Owens. Cesaro wiped out Del Rio with an uppercut, sending him into the front row. He suplexed Del Rio back to ringside. Cross-body from the top by Cesaro for a near-fall. Del Rio worked the arm of Cesaro, but Cesaro came back with corner uppercuts. Miscommunication in the corner with Del Rio, Cesaro, and Zayn. Eventually, Cesaro swung Del Rio and fought off Owens. Cesaro ended up getting tied to the Tree of Woe after some rare teamwork by the heels. Del Rio hit his finisher on Cesaro then Owens tagged himself in, roughly pulled Del Rio out of the ring, and pinned Cesaro.
WINNERS: Owens and Del Rio, at 13:06. The writers must love MITB time of year, because they seem to recycle the same types of matches and storylines each year for the match.
– They showed Chris Jericho destroying Mitch the Plant on Raw last month, right into the back of the head of Dean Ambrose.
– Becky Lynch and Natalya came to the ring. Lynch is in action next, after giving a hug to a young fan who had a “free hugs for Divas” sign. Apparently, he didn’t get the memo about the name change.
3 – BECKY LYNCH vs. DANA BROOKE
Natalya came out with Lynch, and Charlotte with Brooke. They also aired part of the promo exchange from Monday in which the babyfaces tried to get Brooke to switch sides. They edited out Lynch tripping over Natalya from the package. Lynch caught a kick from Brooke and turned it into a leg-whip. After a break, Brooke reentered the ring and took over on offense (with some assistance from Charlotte). Handspring elbow onto Lynch for one. Lynch fired back with clotheslines and a kick. Charlotte distracted Lynch, allowing Brooke to bring Lynch throat-first across the top rope. Brooke slapped Natalya, who approached her, but Brooke ran and Charlotte speared her. Lynch got hold of Charlotte, but before anything else could go down, the ref ejected them both from ringside. Roll-up for two by Brooke. Roll-through into a Disarm-Her for the tap-out win.
WINNER: Lynch, at 3:03. Not a very good match. Really, too much going on for just three minutes. Granted they had to call an audible when Emma got hurt, but Brooke’s main roster stay has not impressed thus far.
– Baron Corbin was walking backstage. He’s in action, next.
– Bob Backlund wanted to see how Darren Young will celebrate when he starts stacking up the wins. Young did the Millions of Dollars dance, but Backlund wasn’t impressed. He also didn’t like the idea of a moonwalk. Backlund then transitioned to speaking about money, telling Young to save it and not spend it. Young asked Backlund how he saves so much money. Backlund deadpanned, “this is my only pair of clothes.” He asked Young about wearing a bowtie, but Young didn’t seem on board with that.
– Dolph Ziggler joined the commentary team for the next match.
4 – KALISTO vs. BARON CORBIN
Kalisto went with kicks to start. He low-bridged a charging Corbin, then dropkicked him through the ropes. Corbin launched Kalisto from the apron onto the top of the barricade, sternum-first. Corbin confronted Ziggler, but kept Kalisto at bay. Back in the ring, Corbin wore down Kalisto. Kalisto fought out of the half-nelson chin-lock with a jawbreaker. Corckscrew flying headbutt by Kalisto. Corbin shrugged off a Salida del Sol attempt and finished Kalisto with the End of Days.
WINNER: Corbin, at 3:25. Well, Kalisto had a good run. Would prefer to re-insert him into the tag division with Sin Cara if his usefulness as a singles has run its course.
After a few replays, Corbin and Ziggler jawed back and forth from a distance.
– From Raw last month: Dean Ambrose destroyed Chris Jericho’s jacket. Ambrose vs. Jericho is tonight’s main event.
– The announcers talked about the MITB card and referred to John Cena vs. A.J. Styles as a “dream match.” Jerry Lawler talked about the matches he had leading up to facing Jack Brisco for the (presumably) NWA Title and how they were all dream matches for him. Roman Reigns vs. Seth Rollins was also discussed.
– Sheamus was backstage watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and he was bragging to Zack Ryder, Goldust, R-Truth, and Summer Rae. Ryder made a joke at Sheamus’s expense. Sheamus talked about how great he was and how everyone should be waiting on him. He said he’s an A-List star. Isn’t this Miz’s gimmick? Apollo Crews walked through the audience of wrestlers and faced up to Sheamus. Sheamus asked if Crews came to carry his bag for him. Crews hauled off and punched Sheamus, sending Sheamus falling safely into a number of cardboard boxes behind him. That pissed Sheamus off, so he threw some of the boxes around.
– Dean Ambrose came out for the main event. He’ll host an Ambrose Asylum Monday on Raw, where the guests will be Seth Rollins AND Roman Reigns. Jericho then came out and took the “free hugs for Divas sign” from the kid in the aisle and crumpled it up. Main event is next.
5 – DEAN AMBROSE vs. CHRIS JERICHO
Ranallo noted that it was the first time ever on Smackdown that these two were going one-on-one. Jericho yelled at Ambrose and then slapped him. Realizing his mistake, Jericho ran away from Ambrose. They eventually settled back into the ring, with Ambrose taking over control. Ambrose stomped Jericho’s gut and yelled “C’mon bay-bay!” while flexing, a la Jericho. Jericho took over on offense and continued yelling at Ambrose, reminding Ambrose that 69 thumbtacks were stuck into him at Extreme Rules. Suicide dive by Ambrose onto Jericho at ringside. Ambrose took the cover off the announce desk. He had to go back in to break the count. Atop the table, Jericho countered and catapulted Ambrose onto the floor. Then he threw a drink on Ambrose for good measure. They cut to break at 3:48 of the match.
Back at 6:50 with Jericho still in control. Ambrose came back, but was dropkicked down. Roll-up by Ambrose and again, Jericho stayed on Ambrose, this time with a clothesline. Both men were down after an Ambrose clothesline. Dirty Deeds was avoided, as was a Walls of Jericho attempt. Jericho came off the second rope, but Ambrose caught him with a forearm to the jaw. Ambrose ran into a boot from Jericho, and Jericho hit a kick from the second rope, good for a two-count. Ambrose sent Jericho to the mat after a superplex attempt from Y2J. They collided in mid-ring with both connecting on forearm shots. Jericho with a one-legged Codebreaker after Ambrose managed to avoid running into ref Charles Robinson in the corner.
WINNER: Jericho, at 13:15.
Replays of the end of the match were shown. Jericho brought a ladder into the ring after the match. Ambrose reversed a whip, sending Jericho face-first into the ladder. Ambrose dropped the ladder on Jericho’s back. Ambrose climbed to where he was sitting atop the ladder, then jumped off and elbowdropped Jericho back to the mat. The show ended with Ambrose’s music playing and a plug for the Ambrose Asylum Monday night.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org.