11/8 WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: Keller’s report on Reigns vs. Corbin, Banks vs. Cross, Tyson Fury returns, more Survivor Series hype

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor

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NOVEMBER 8, 2019

Announcers: Michael Cole, Corey Graves


-They opened with a clip of Shayna Baszler attacking Bayley and Sasha Banks last week on Smackdown. Then a clip of Tommaso Ciampa on Miz TV. Then Triple H and Shawn Michaels talking with Daniel Bryan. And the other NXT involvement leading to the main event between Bryan and Adam Cole. Then the closing scene of Triple H saying they’re ready for a fight because “We – are – N-X-T!”

-The Smackdown opening theme aired, still heavily featuring Kofi Kingston at the start (which feels so dated and just a reminder of how messed up his run has been since the premiere episode on Fox).

-They cut to a wide shot of the arena stage with pyro blasting next to a scaled back set but giant UK flags. Cole said they were in England tonight for Smackdown.

-King Corbin made his entrance dressed in his take on the King outfit. The sidebar noted he is a three-times Golden Gloves Champion, an Andre the Giant Battle Royal winner, and 2019 King of the Ring winner. Cole said Survivor Series and “NXT’s takeover” was grabbing the headlines over the last week, “but this week we turn back to personal issues.” Cole said, “After a hiccup last week, we are back on Smackdown.” Graves said the troops have been galvanized so they better not dare invade. He said all the WWE Universe can talk about is how NXT took over Smackdown last week. He said it’s embarrassing and there are many to blame, but most of the blame rests on the shoulders of Roman Reigns, the supposed locker room leader.

Corbin talked about Reigns’s accomplishments in WWE and even graciously talked about him being a role model for battling Leukemia and returning in less than a year. He said the “fickle, blood-sucking audience only cares about one thing, which is ‘what have you done for me lately.'” (I often theorize that whatever Vince McMahon’s frustration is with his fans manifests in heel promos, so this is a fun promo if you consider that possibility.) He said Reigns hasn’t done anything lately. He said being King takes a lot of responsibility. He said Reigns is “half the man and a step behind what he used to be.” He said his Shield brothers abandoned him and the fans are starting to see through him. He said he still calls himself the “big dog,” but he thinks the big dog’s testicles have shriveled up into “itsy-bitsy, tiny little marbles.” He then put a graphic of a high-pitched yipping from a dog.

A half-hearted “We Want Roman” chant began at Corbin’s prompting. Then it pathetically died almost instantly. Corbin said his bark is worse than his bite. Reigns didn’t come out. Corbin then revealed he’s not there yet because he’s granting a wish to some child somewhere. He said he’ll be out later. He vowed to beat the crap out of him. Corbin pulled out dog poop bags and told fans to scrape up the Big Dog’s excrements and take them home as souvenirs. Boos. (Fans definitely didn’t sign up for poop clean-up, apparently.) He said they will all bend at the knee at the King.

-Cole said Corbin talks a good game knowing Reigns wasn’t there yet, but said he’ll be there later for the main event. Then they hyped what’s upcoming on Smackdown including the return of Tyson Fury.

(Keller’s Analysis: Well, that lasted ten minutes. I mean, I’m glad they’re having a heel cut a promo to set up the main event later. I wish it wasn’t such a long juvenile scripted-sounding promo.)

-They cut to New Day’s Kofi Kingston & Big E dancing backstage. Kayla Braxton approached and asked if they had a message for their injured partner Xavier Woods. Big E told him not to drop the soap. Kofi said he’s not in jail, he’s injured. “Oh, he didn’t do the embezzlement?” asked Big E. Kofi made weird utterances as he said The Revival are taking credit for taking Xavier out of action. He said they need the seventh tag title reign, especially because Charlotte is catching up. They showed their “XW” armbands and then hugged Kayla excitedly. [c]

-They showed postcard shots of Manchester including the arena and other landmarks. Cole hyped Reigns vs. Corbin.

(1) THE REVIVAL (Dash & Dawson) vs. THE NEW DAY (Kofi Kingston & Big E) – Smackdown Tag Team Title match

Cole noted that if New Day win, they will replace The Revival at Survivor Series. Cole said he talked to Kofi about his loss to Brock Lesnar, and Kofi said it was “a disheartening loss,” but he’s trying to stay positive, look ahead, and get some gold back tonight. New Day isolated Dash. Big E scored a two count after Kofi leaped over him and leg-dropped him. Dash went for a leapfrog, then sold that his knee gave out. The ref checked on him and Big E backed off. They cut to a break as Dawson checked on him, too. [c]

Big E gave Dash a belly-to-belly after the break. Graves said Dash’s knee injury was a perfect ruse. Graves said Dash can’t overpower Big E, so you have to outsmart him. Kofi and Dawson both tagged in. Kofi rallied. Dash and Dawson hit a superlplex/top rope splash combo for a near fall, broken up by Big E. In the end, Dawson blind-tagged in and then they gave Big E a double team DDT off the middle rope, Randy Orton style. Wilder then hit a flying elbow and leveraged Big E down for a near fall. Kofi blind-tagged in and they hit Dash with a Trouble in Paradise double-team for the win. Graves said if Kofi had any doubts about the state of his career, those doubts were erased with this win.

WINNERS: New Day in 9:00 to regain the Smackdown Tag Team Titles.

-As New Day celebrated, the announcers hyped what was still to come, including Tyson Fury.

-They showed Roman arriving backstage. Chad Gable approached him and told him what Corbin said earlier. Reigns seemed mostly amused. [c]

-Sami Zayn approached Daniel Bryan backstage. He said he gave Bryan the invitation a couple weeks ago to join him and Shinsuke Nakamura. He said he’s okay that he didn’t answer right away. He said, though, had he answered “yes” right away, he’d be NXT Champion this week. He said there is no way he would have allowed Adam Cole to beat him. He said like-minded individuals have to stand together. He said he doesn’t understand what he can do for his career and his life. He told Bryan to check with Nakamura, who has been liberated and is firing on all cylinders. He took credit for Cesaro being in a main event match two weeks ago because of him. He told Bryan to check with them because they’ll be in a tag team match later. He invited him to watch what he does for them and what they can do. Bryan seemed to soak up the case Sami made. Cole and Graves said Sami was making good points, and cited Survivor Series as a reason you need allies.

-Heavy Machinery came out for a match against unnamed opponents. Imperium from NXT attacked them. Big E, Kofi, Apollo Crews, Ali, and Gable ran out to help Heavy Machinery clear the ring.

(Keller’s Analysis: Otis and Tucker looked fine for a fight, but I bet their “scheduled match” isn’t mentioned again on the show.)

-Kayla called it “another brazen attack” by NXT. She then introduced Sasha Banks and Bayley. They said the NXT women will always live in their shadow because they put NXT on the map. Bayley said last week on Raw (it was this week, but whatever), Becky and Shayna said they’d “keep an eye on her.” She said they better because she’s the only woman to hold the NXT, Raw, and Smackdown titles. She said they can play takeover games, too.

-Shinsuke Nakamura and Sami Zayn made their ring entrance. [c]

(2) SHINSUKE NAKAMURA (w/Sami Zayn) & CESARO vs. ALI & SHORTY G (Chad Gable)

Cole said CBS Evening News did a feature on Ali this past week. Graves touted it. Before the bell, Bryan strolled out onto the stage. He watched with his arms crossed. Cesaro charged and caught a distracted Gable with a running uppercut. Gable knocked Cesaro out of the ring and made the slow crawl toward an Ali tag. Cesaro cut him off. Gable made the hot tag a few seconds later. Ali took it to Cesaro. Cole said Ali talked about not being able to change what people think, but you can change what people see. He said he’s optimistic and inspirational. When Nakamura broke up an Ali cover on Cesaro, Gable entered. Gable gave Nakamura a belly-to-belly toss over the top rope. Nakamura landed with a thud. Cesaro gave Gable an uppercut and threw him to the floor. Ali kicked Cesaro to the floor, then speared him into the front row.

Back in the ring Cesaro caught Ali out of mid-air and then Cesaro gave him a back-breaker for a two count. Graves and Cole marveled at what Cesaro just did. Gable clipped Cesaro as he had Ali lifted and applied an anklelock, but the ref ordered him out of the ring. Nakamura then came up behind Ali and gave him a reverse exploder. He charged Ali, but Ali caught him with a kick to the chin. Sami was going to knock Ali off the top rope, but Gable cut him off. Cesaro then knocked Ali off instead. Nakamura then hit the Kinsasha for the win.

Bryan stood on the stage, rubbing his beard to indicate he was thinking hard. Graves said Bryan better think about this invitation. Bryan didn’t give a clue. Sami held open the ropes. Bryan turned and left. Graves said he’ll come around to see what’s best.

WINNER: Nakaura & Cesaro in 4:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: Good action, as you’d expect. The Bryan storyline is fine, I suppose, as a hook and mystery to drag out a bit, but I hope it turns out Bryan reveals he never even considered Sami’s offer and just strung him along.)

-The announcers hyped Tyson Fury again. Graves noted this is his hometown. He wondered if they’d see Braun Strowman.

-Backstage Nikki Cross excitedly walked down the hallway. They hyped Sasha Banks vs. Nikki was up next. [c]

-Back from the break, Bayley was taking a seat at ringside. She didn’t seem happy to be there and eyed Graves. Sasha then made her ring entrance. As she stood on the stage, we got a remix of Sasha’s entrance.

-A sponsored video package aired on Nikki vs. Bayley last week with the NXT invasion. Bayley talked about how NXT’s women were trying to make a name for themselves at their expense. Nikki then made her ring entrance. Cole asked Bayley why she seems to have such an issue with Graves. She said he’s been too critical of her over the years. Graves denied it and said he appreciates her new outlook.


(3) SASHA BANKS (w/Bayley) vs. NIKKI CROSS

Bayley got annoyed by the singing fans and said she’s tired of trying to please everyone. She said fans tried to credit themselves for her successes. Cross knocked Sasha to the floor, then leaped off the ring apron with a crossbody. She then ran over and attacked Bayley. Fans cheered. Nikki then put on Bayley’s headset and began yelling. When Nikki climbed back onto the ring apron, Bayley grabbed her leg. Sasha then charged and knocked Nikki to the floor. Nikki surprised Sasha with a small package for a two count. Sasha regrouped with Bayley at ringside. [c]

Bayley was disgusted by wearing the headset again after Nikki wore it. She wanted hand sanitizer. Banks dominated for a few minutes. She then applied a Bank Statement for the clean tapout win. Bayley smiled.

WINNER: Banks in 10:00.

-Afterward, Bayley snuck in the ring and attacked her. Her stomps missed badly. Yikes. Shayna Baszler snuck in and attacked Bayley. Fans got the loudest they had all night with an “NXT!” chant. She gave Bayley a gut wrench suplex onto her face. Sasha ran back out, so Baszler retreated. Cole called it “a hit and run attack again.”

(Keller’s Analysis: Bayley was good on commentary here getting across her current heel character.)

-Backstage Sami said he knows artists can be temperamental, but he thinks Bryan should have come to the ring and celebrated with them. He said the other guys were upset, but he told them that Bryan needed more time. Sami said he thinks he’s had enough time and the truth is screaming inside of him, so just say it. “You don’t want to go back to the Yes chants and the Yes Movement,” he said. “You want to move forward, and you want to move forward with us. Just say what you want to say.” The lights flickered a bit. Then the lights went out before Bryan could answer. The Fiend then appeared under a red light and put the Mandible Claw on him. He laughed maniacally. [c]

-They replayed what happened with the Fiend and Bryan. The announcers then reacted. Graves said Bryan has been in emotional turmoil, which makes him perfect pray for Bray Wyatt. Cole then transitioned to the WWE in-ring debut of Tyson Fury. Cole narrated highlights.

-Fury made his ring entrance. They showed clusters of fans who appeared excited to see him. He talked about his next boxing match in the U.S. in February. He said he has unfinished business with someone in WWE. Braun Strowman then came out. Braun got in his face and said, “You wanted me. Here I am.” Fury said he wanted to thank him for the opportunity in Saudi Arabia. He said it was a great fight and he appreciates it. He said it was one of the toughest fights he had. He said he learned why they call him the Monster Among Men. They shook hands. Fans cheered. Fury said if they ever fight again, it should as them as a tag team. Braun liked that idea instantly and asked the fans. Braun said he really likes the sound of that. He said there ain’t two dudes in the back stupid enough to beat them, unless they’re trying to get all four of their hands. B-Team’s music played.

Curtis Axel said, “Hey morons, we’re stupid enough to fight you!” Bo Dallas said, “That’s not what he meant to say. That came out all wrong.” He said everybody knows the B in B-Team stands for fearless. He mockingly said, “We ain’t scared of those hands.” Braun knocked them off the ring apron. Then he signaled for the sprint around ringside. He knocked them both over and then played to the crowd to modest cheering. Fury smiled in the ring. Braun threw Bo into the ring. Fury punched him. Braun then powerslammed him. Braun’s music played out the segment. They replayed Fury KO’ing Bo.

(Keller’s Analysis: Not surprised that they decided to team together. Braun fell in love with the idea almost too quickly when Fury suggested it. B-Team were good foils for this angle. Who makes sense for them to face on the Smackdown roster, though? Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode? Cesaro & Nakamura?)

-They went to the announcers who talked about the main event. They threw to an interview from WWE Backstage on FS1 when Corbin attacked Reigns with his scepter.

(4) CARMELLA & DANA BROOKE vs. SONYA DEVILLE & MANDY ROSE – Winners Represent Smackdown at Survivor Series

Graves:  “Please don’t compare JBL and Mandy Rose again, Cole. You ruined it for me.” After several minutes of back and forth action, Dana dropkicked Deville into the ringside steps. Back in the ring, Dana leaped off the top rope with a flip senton for the clean three count. Cole said they had never teamed before, but they’ll represent Smackdown well at Survivor Series.

WINNERS: Carmella & Dana in 3:00.

-The announcers threw to clips of Corbin’s promo at the top of the show.

-Reigns made his ring entrance. Cole said the feeling changes in the room when Reigns come to the ring. [c]

-A commercial said on Raw, the Kabuki Warriors defend their tag titles against Charlotte Flair & Natalya.


Reigns clotheslined Corbin over the top rope as soon as he arrived in the ring. They fought at ringside. Corbin took over briefly. Reigns made a comeback and signaled for his Superman Punch. Roode and Ziggler came to ringside. Reigns left the ring and went after them. He sold being a little hurt after taking Ziggler down. Corbin dragged Reigns back to the ring. He gave him Deep Six for a near fall. They cut to a break. [c]

During more back and forth action after the break, Graves said Ziggler and Roode are disgruntled with Reigns, and a lot of the locker room feels that way. He claimed the locker room respects Corbin. Cole said maybe that’s true in the circles Graves hangs out with. Eventually Roode and Ziggler interfered again. Reigns got rid of them, including a spear of Ziggler, but then Corbin gave Reigns an End of Days for the win.

WINNER: Corbin in 12:00.

FINAL THOUGHTS: A pretty basic show, but some high points and low points to talk about. I’m off to podcast live. Join us live!

Tonight after WWE Friday Night Smackdown, join me live with guest cohost Mike Chiari from Ring Rust Radio to break down the show with live callers and mailbag.

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3 Comments on 11/8 WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT: Keller’s report on Reigns vs. Corbin, Banks vs. Cross, Tyson Fury returns, more Survivor Series hype

  1. So if Bryan was attacked by the Fiend, doesn’t he pretty much have to be a babyface now? He can’t go join up with the heels next week.

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