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KELLER’S WWE SMACKDOWN REPORT
JUNE 4, 2021
AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH FLORIDA IN “THUNDERDOME”
AIRED ON FOX BROADCAST NETWORK
Commentators: Michael Cole, Pat McAfee
Ring Announcer: Greg Hamilton
-They went right to the ring for Roman Reigns’s ring entrance alongside Paul Heyman. They showed the fans on the ThunderDome screens giving him thumbs down as boos were piped in. McAfee touted him as the greatest WWE Superstar. Cole hyped the Apollo Crews vs. Kevin Owens match for the Intercontinental Title, plus The Usos challenging Rey & Dominik Mysterio for the Smackdown Tag Team Titles. Then they went to the announcers at ringside briefly to comment on those matches. Cole said there has never been a more confident champion.
Reigns lifted his belt into the air as a “Roman sucks!” chant blared over the sound system. He soaked it up for a minute (he has years of practice at that), then said he wants to be really direct about how he’s feeling. He said last week he wasn’t happy, but with the counsel from the wise man (Heyman) and a week to chew on, he changed his position. He said it’s no secret he’s the centerpiece on Smackdown, and it all revolves around him. “But I’m a giver,” he said. “I allowed this to happen.” He directed comments to Jimmy Uso, saying if he says he’s going to win, he better win. He told Heyman, calling him “wise man” again, that he has a lot on his plate and he wanted his cousins now. Heyman called for the Usos music. The Usos came out together as Cole talked about the Usos teaming up last week.
Jey shook hands with Reigns and called him the Tribal Chief. Reigns looked at Jimmy and said, “It’s your turn now, acknowledge me,” he said. Jimmy said he already did back at Hell in a Cell when he was choking him and his brother out. He said that’s in the past, and tonight is about him and his brother winning the tag team titles for the seventh time. Reigns nodded, but seemed irked. He let out a deep sigh and said, “Well, good luck. You called the shot, I get that. I do that. But then I get the job done. So if you say you’re gonna win, make sure you win.” He said their whole family is watching, so get the job done “and bring me the titles when it’s over.” The Usos said, together, “Welcome to the Uso penitentiary!”
-Rey & Dominik began their ring entrance. Cole said this is “bloodline vs. bloodline.” [c]
(1) REY & DOMINIK MYSTERIO vs. JIMMY & JEY USO – Smackdown Tag Team Title match
Cole noted that the Usos and Rey have never been in a match against each other. The Usos isolated Rey for a few minutes. Rey headscissored Jimmy to the floor, then slid under the bottom rope at him. Jey caught him on his shoulders and gave him a Samoan Drop onto the announce desk. They cut to a break. [c]
As the Usos continued to beat on Rey, Cole called him the biggest underdog in WWE history. At 11:00, Rey finally fought back and “dragged his beaten body to his son,” as Cole described it. Dominik hot-tagged in and went fast and furious at both Usos and scored a two count early against Jimmy. He gave Jimmy a spinning DDT off the middle turnbuckle for a near fall. Jimmy knocked Dominik off balance on the top rope. Jey tagged in and they delivered a double-team Samoan Drop for a near fall. Jey showed frustration at the kickout. Both Usos charged at Dominik, but he ducked and they tumbled to the floor. Rey landed a running senton off the ring apron onto Jey. Jimmy, though, immediately superkicked Rey. Back in the ring Jimmy superkicked Dominik and then leaped off the top rope at Dominik. Dominik lifted his knees. Dominik rolled up Jimmy for a three count. Cole thought he kicked out. Jimmy immediately protested the referee’s count.
WINNERS: Rey & Dominik in 14:00 to retain the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Titles.
-They cut to Reigns backstage watching on a monitor. He was fuming. Heyman looked on with concern. Reigns asked Heyman to “bring them to me now.”
-Cole commented on a slo-mo replay that clearly showed Jimmy lifted his shoulder before the third count. McAfee said, “This is Smackdown, that can’t happen!”
-They showed Seth Rollins getting mic’d up backstage with Kayla Braxton for an interview regarding Seth’s attack on Cesaro. [c]
-Cole and McAfee hyped the return of WWE to arenas. McAfee said they’ll be blowing the roof off arenas across the country starting in July.
-Backstage, Jimmy told Reigns he knows they got screwed because he saw it. Reigns yelled, “I don’t want to hear it!” He told Jimmy, “You lost to a child. You called your shot, you said you were going to win, you embarrassed us. What did I say about misrepresentation?” He said there’s still time left in the show to talk Adam Pearce or Sonya Deville to right this wrong. “I want this fixed tonight,” he said. He said they’re six-time tag team champions who made the WrestleMania show once. He said in less than a year, with the Tribal Chief, he closed the show and walked out with his head held high for the whole world to see. Jimmy hung his head in shame. Reigns asked Jey if he understood him, but he called him Jimmy. Jey said, “It’s Jey.” Reigns said the way things are going, does it matter who is who? He turned to walk away.
(Keller’s Analysis: That was tremendous. We’re likely supposed to believe that Reigns knew it was Jey when he called him “Jimmy” and it was to prove a point, but either way, really well played. The match was pretty one-sided throughout, but they managed to protect the Usos from a clean loss while extending the controversy and perhaps building in a main event rematch later in the show.)
-Kayla conducted a sit-down interview with Seth. She asked him for an explanation for such a reprehensible act two weeks ago. They went right to highlights of the attack, including Seth stomping Cesaro’s head on the steel. Seth was all smiles on the set. He told Kayla that he doesn’t owe her or the WWE Universe anything. She said Cesaro refuses to give up or back down, so what happens when Cesaro returns to Smackdown. Seth took off his lapel mic and studied it and then threw it at her lap. She said, “Thank you.” Seth smiled.
-The Street Profits were chatting backstage when in walked Chad Gable. He said he feels compelled to advise them on a certain downward trend he’s seeing in their career. He said he’s been studying their matches, and it’s obvious that “Profits are down.” He said Montez Ford has lost six inches on his frog splash, and Angelo Dawkins’ sky high is just a grounded medium now. He proposed he coach them, citing what he has done for Otis. “Are you ready to unleash your inner Alpha?” he asked. “Can I get the smoke?” Dawkins and Ford said it’s a no, a hard no. They laughed and walked away, leaving Gable snarling mad.
-A soundbite aired with Carmella saying fans won’t be able to take their eyes off of her “and I kinda like that.” Carmella made her ring entrance and played with her hair. McAfee said she’s a bombshell and she’s next. [c]
-McAfee thanked Ozzy Osbourne for the theme to “Hell in a Cell.”
-The Usos walked up to Pearce and Deville. Jey said he had to see the ref missed a call. Pearce said the referee did make a mistake, but the referee’s decision is final. Deville said they’d review the footage and give them a decision later. Pearce said that’s fair. The Usos said to make it right.
(2) CARMELLA vs. LIV MORGAN
Liv made her ring entrance. Cole said she’d “go it alone” this week. (No mention, of course, that WWE cut her longtime partner Ruby Riott). A soundbite aired with Morgan saying when she’s done giving her the Liv Morgan Makeover, nobody’s going to watch her because they’re all going to want to watch her instead.
Carmella slapped Liv at the start a few times. Liv chased Carmella, who bailed out to ringside. Liv threw Carmella into the barricade. Liv smashed Carmella’s head into the ring apron a few times. Back in the ring, Carmella made a comeback with a kick to the chin. McAfee touted Carmella as “one of the greats, one of the GOATS here.” Liv battled back with a back stabber and a stomp to her back for a two count. Cole said that would have been an upset. Carmella surprised Liv with a drop toe hold into a Code of Silence for the tapout win.
WINNER: Carmella via tapout in 2:00.
-Afterward, Carmella called the ring announcer over and told him to announce her as “the most beautiful woman in all of WWE.”
(Keller’s Analysis: They’re definitely pushing Carmella’s act here, but having Morgan lose so quickly does define her down, or lock her down where she has been near the bottom of the roster. At least they did give each women some mic time to trash-talk a big before the match.)
-They cut to Bianca Belair walking backstage, twirling her pony tail. [c]
-They showed Dominik and Rey about to leave the arena with their suitcases. Pearce said they reviewed the footage and it’s clear the referee made a mistake. Deville said they deserve a rematch. Pearce said it’d be tonight. Rey said, “You’ve got to be kidding.” Dom, on the other hand, said, “Okay.” Rey looked over at him surprised, but then nodded.
(Keller’s Analysis: Nice touch showing that the Mysterio were close to leaving and suddenly have to get back into the mindset of defending the belts for this rare same-night-rematch situation. Dominik looked good taking on the challenge and being a good sport about the fact that they didn’t get a clean three count earlier.)
-They went to Cole and McAfee at ringside. Cole said it’s nearly unprecedented. McAfee said officials don’t make mistakes like this. They replayed the finish and the ref missing the raised shoulder.
-Belair said the WWE Universe isn’t laughing with Bayley, they’re laughing at her. She said that laugh is getting to her more than she thought it would. She said people have been trying to keep her down since she was three feet tall. She said people have been trying to shrink her to soothe their own insecurities and second-guess themselves. She said people have called her a showoff her whole life. She said people used to call her “man-ish” because she was muscular and athletic, but she left all those people in the dust after winning trophy after trophy, and championship after championship. She said she’s dealt with “teasers, doubters, and bullies,” but nobody has ever laughed at her in her face. She said that’s utter disrespect and she’s not standing for that.
She turned to the stage and challenged Bayley. She told her to take her cackling self and meet her in the ring at Hell in a Cell, and she won’t be laughing then. Bayley showed up on the big screen and asked when she’d realize the whole world doesn’t revolve around her. She said she’s been laughing at people like her her whole life. She revealed she’s not even there, she’s coming to her via satellite. She said this is her oasis and sanctuary where she comes to clear her mind and make peace. She accepted her challenge and said she after she beats her, she won’t be the only one laughing. She started cackling. Belair raised her belt in the air. The ThunderDome screens all switched to Bayley’s face laughing. Belair looked around like she was weirded out.
-Backstage, Otis confronted The Street Profits. He said Gable was trying to help them and they laughed in his face, so they need to apologize. Ford said they don’t owe anyone an apology. Ford told Otis that Gable is actually holding him back. He asked Otis what he has accomplished since aligning with him. They told him to check out of the Academy. Otis slapped Ford and threw Dawkins to the ground, then left. The showed Dawkins clutching his ear.
(Keller’s Analysis: It’s good to see a storyline between two tag teams, especially two talent tag teams.) [c]
-A video package aired on the King Corbin-Shinsuke Nakamura feud over the crown.
-Rick Boogs played his guitar on the stage. He introduced himself and then introduced Nakamura. He shrieked his name. McAfee asked, “Can you win a Grammy every Friday night, Cole?” Corbin watched from the ring in dismay as Nakamura danced his way to the ring.
(3) SHINSUKE NAKAMURA vs. KING CORBIN
McAfee was standing on the announce desk as the bell rang. Cole said he’s jumping around like a fool on the table. Corbin took it to Nakamura at the start. McAfee said he almost passed out during the entrance. When Nakamura made a comeback, Corbin dropped to ringside. He clotheslined Boogs. Back in the ring Nakamura caught Corbin with a leg sweep for a soft two count. Corbin came back with a jackknife cover for the sudden win.
WINNER: Corbin in 2:00.
-Boogs grabbed Corbin’s leg at ringside. Nakamura kicked Corbin and took the crown back. Boogs played Nakamura’s theme again.
(Keller’s Analysis: There was a 14 minute match to star the show, and now 15 minutes into the second hour, there’s been four more minutes of official wrestling.)
-A video package aired on the Commander Azeez attack on Kevin Owens last week. Then backstage, as Owens was getting ready to head out, Azeez attacked him backstage. He rammed him with a rolling crate. WWE officials ran up to him to pry him off of Owens. Apollo Crews showed up laughing. [c]
-They replayed the attack by Azeez.
(4) APOLLO CREWS vs. KEVIN OWENS – Intercontinental Championship
Crews was inside the ring waiting for Owens. Owens made his way to the ring gingerly. He told the ref he was ready to fight, though. McAfee said KO looks like he just doesn’t give a damn as long as he gets a shot at the title. Crews took it to KO with stomps to his injured ribs. McAfee said they’re going to learn a lot about Crews tonight. Owens fought back at 2:00 and went for a Pop-up Powerbomb, but his ribs gave out. Crews leaped at Owens, but Owens ducked and Crews flew over the top rope to the floor. Owens rebounded off the ropes, but collapsed in pain. Crews then dropped him ribs-first on the ring apron and then back suplexed him at ringside. They cut to a break. [c]
Crews continued to dominate Owens for several minutes after the break. He scored near falls. When Owens made a comeback and went for a top rope flip senton, Crews raised his knees. Owens, a minute later, avoided a top rope Crews splash. Owens then kicked him in the face and delivered a Pop-up Powerbomb for a near fall. When Owens climbed to the top rope again, Crews caught him and gave him a Death Valley Driver on the ring apron a minute later for the win.
WINNER: Crews in 12:00 to retain the IC Title.
-Sami Zayn then ran past Crews and Azeez and gave Owens a Helluva kick in the ring. He said he was already hurt and he just made it worse. He said that’s what happened to him. He said karma got him. The ref ordered him to leave. Sami got in one more stomp on KO. “It’s called karma!” yelled Sami as he left.
-Ford and Dawkins told Otis to mind his own business because they’re about to send Otis back to the dump where he belongs along with Gable, because they want the smoke.
(Keller’s Analysis: This is the serious side of the Street Profits that I’ve been wanting a bigger dose of more often. This was dignified and serious. I like it. More of this from them.)
-They showed the Usos readying to head to the ring.
-A Raw commercial hyped a Bobby Lashley-Drew McIntyre contract signing, plus Shayna Baszler visits Alexa Bliss’s Playground. [c]
(5) REY & DOMINIK MYSTERIO vs. THE USOS – Smackdown Tag Team Title match
The Usos took it to Rey at the start. They cut to a break just two minutes into the match with Dominik at ringside. [c]
After the break, Rey was battling the Usos. Rey slid out of the ring under the bottom rope onto Jey at ringside. Rey ducked a charging Jey, and Jey went face-first into the ringpost. Back in the ring, Rey hit the 619 on Jimmy. Dominik tagged in and climbed to the top rope. Reigns then leaped into the ring and took Dominik off the top rope with a Superman Punch.
WINNERS: Mysterios via DQ in 9:00 to retain the Smackdown Tag Team Titles.
-When Rey came to Dominik’s aid, Reigns hit him with a spear. Reigns tossed Rey over the top rope, then threw Dominik into the ringside steps. He threw Rey into the barricade seconds later, then went back after Dominik, throwing him into the barricade. Reigns then hit Dominik with the top part of the ringside steps. He hit Rey with the steps next. As Reigns put Dominik in a guillotine, Jimmy said that’s enough and he should let him go. Reigns let go. Jimmy said, “Not like this.” He left the ring. Reigns looked over at Jey. Jimmy called Jey to leave with him. Reigns walked up to Jey and got within a few inches of his face. Jey hung his head. Reigns went back to beating on Dominik. Jey stood in the ring and hung his head as Reigns powerbombed Dominik and let out a yell as the show ended.