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WWE SMACKDOWN TV REPORT
APRIL 15, 2022
WORCESTER, MASS. AT THE DCU CENTER
AIRED ON FOX
Commentators: Michael Cole, Pat McAfee
Ring Announcer: Samantha Irvin
-The “Then, Now, Forever” opening aired.
-A three minute video package aired on the latest happenings on Raw with the Usos and RK-Bro.
-Michael Cole introduced the show as the camera panned the crowd.
-RK-Bro came out to Randy Orton’s theme. They had the Raw Tag Team Titles with them. (Samantha Irvin didn’t pronounce the “T” in “Orton.” She said, “Or-uhn.” Seriously, what’s up with people dropping the “T” these days? Sasha Banks was the first I noticed doing it. Now it’s happening everywhere!) They cut to Cole and Pat McAfee at ringside. McAfee was, of course, over-the-top excited about Raw wrestlers visiting Smackdown. Riddle said, “I am so stoked to be back on Smackdown, especially with my best friend Randy.” He said they didn’t come all the way to Worcester to say “What’s up?” Riddle started telling stories about Worcester Sauce being named after a city named Worcester in England. He said he learned that on a Snapple lid one time. Orton said that’s not why they came to Worcester. He said the Usos kicked them on their show, so they’re in the Uso’s ring. He called them to the ring. He asked Riddle if he had anything to add. Riddle used an invisible key to lock his lips closed.
The Usos then came out to their music. After entering the ring, Jey said they’re behind enemy lines. He said they’re where the Bloodline resides. Jimmy asked what they were doing on their show. Jey said before they say something they regret, they should remind them who they are dealing with. Jey said to Jimmy that they have each others’ backs. They took turns talking each other up before boasting that they are the longest-reigning Smackdown Tag Team Champs in history. They said RK-Bro should turn around and go back to Raw because they’re the ones.
Orton said he likes their whole family and respects them. He said he remembers meeting them as a young boy, “but you two are assholes.” He was bleeped. Orton said the Big Dog apparently let the bitches off the leash. Orton got red-faced and intense as he talked about that being his ring. He said he’s been setting records for 20 years. Orton accepted their challenge. They held up their respective tag team titles mid-ring. Cole wondered if WWE officials would make it official as Orton’s music played. The Usos attacked Riddle as Orton was standing on the second rope playing to the crowd. Orton ran over to assist Riddle; the Usos quickly fled.
(Keller’s Analysis: By the numbers stuff, but the crowd ate up Orton and Riddle doing their thing.)
-They cut backstage to Naomi and Sasha Banks chatting about Naomi’s match against Rhea Ripley later. Liv Morgan and Ripley walked up and asked them to keep explaining their plan. Naomi said the glow always outshines the nightmare. Sasha then did her (hideous) fake laugh.
-Naomi’s ring entrance took place. [c]
-Backstage they were showing Adam Pearce on his phone for some reason. Then Orton and Riddle barged in. Orton said he wanted news on the match becoming official. Pearce said as of last Friday, the high-ups are still deliberating whether to have the match and he hopes to have the answers tonight. Riddle said he wants the belts more than anything, but he’d also want to face Jimmy Uso “so bad.” Pearce said he could give him that. Riddle said that’ll be a good warm-up.
-They went to Cole and McAfee at ringside briefly.
(1) NAOMI (w/Sasha Banks) vs. RHEA RIPLEY (w/Liv Morgan)
Ripley grounded Naomi in the early minutes. Naomi made a comeback and head scissored Ripley out of the ring. Ripley came back by ramming Naomi hard onto the mat and then climbed to the top rope. Naomi kicked her off the top rope, then went for a slidekick. Ripley moved and clotheslined her. [c]
Back from the break, Naomi rammed Ripley’s head into the mat with a head scissors and scored a two count. Ripley came back with a Northern Lights suplex for a near fall. Ripley set up a Rip Tide from the second rope, but Naomi slipped free. Ripley dropkicked her instead for a two count. Naomi small packaged Ripley for a near fall seconds later, then followed up with a springboard flying knee. Ripley went down. Naomi landed a sitout full nelson, but Ripley rolled through on a pin attempt and then landed the Rip Tide for the win.
WINNER: Ripley in 8:00.
(Keller’s Analysis: A little slow to get going, but the execution was solid as they build to the finish.)
-Kayla Braxton caught up to the Usos and began to ask them a question about RK-Bro. They ignored her and went into Roman Reigns’s locker room.
-Cole hyped “Madcap on a Mission,” a video package recapping last week’s angle where Madcap Moss broke up with Happy Corbin and turned babyface.
-Megan Morant interviewed Corbin backstage in the ring set. He interrupted her question when she called Madcap his “associate.” Corbin said he was more of a hanger on or a lackey. He said is funny to laugh at, but then he became an anchor around his neck dragging down his career. He said he has dropped him and now he’s reaching “peak levels of happiness.” He said now Moss is out to make a name for himself, but he will fall flat on his face and become the laughing stock of Smackdown.
-Cole threw to Drew Gulak, whom he said is auditioning to become a member of the broadcast team. Gulak, in a suit, asked Moss about Corbin. Moss said he feels bad for Corbin. He said imagine people liking you better as a bum. Moss said Corbin taught him now to tell jokes, which is why they were so terrible. “Rule number one of communication is know your audience: My audience was a large, bald, rather simple man who loved puns,” he said. “I’m just glad I can move on.” (What about those yellow suspenders?) He stuck his butt out and pointed at it and said Los Lotharios can put that on their Kiss Cam. They put the Kiss Cam graphic up as he stuck his butt out toward the camera.
(Keller’s Analysis: Whatever equity he gained from disowning the bad pun jokes he lost when he posed like that. Geesh.) [c]
-Moss made his ring entrance. He was introduced as the winner of the Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
(2) HUMBERTO (w/Angel) vs. MADCAP MOSS
Los Lotharios made their way to the ring and kissed the cheeks of a woman in the front row. Moss was pointing at his butt again, smiling like it was the most clever thing anyone could do. Angel pulled on Moss’s leg at the bell, giving Humberto an opening to take control early. McAfee said Moss spent the entire commercial break trying to get the audience to give him two thumbs up as he wants to win back their support. Moss made a comeback at 2:00 with a flurry of whips into the ropes and hard collisions with Humberto. He caught Humberto leaping at him and then gave him a fallaway slam. He played to the crowd. Cole said the “WWE Universe was rallying behind Moss.” Moss charged at Humberto in the corner, but he moved; Moss hit Angel on the ring apron instead. Humberto tried to take advantage, but Moss fended him off and then hit the Punch Line finisher for the win. Moss celebrated by yelling next to his Andre trophy. Angel chewed out Humberto for “losing to an absolute joke.” Meanwhile, Moss kissed the trophy.
WINNER: Moss in 3:00.
-Charlotte approached Pearce and asked who accepted Ronda Rousey’s challenge. Gulak interrupted and asked Pearce how he did. Charlotte took offense, then told him to step up and interview her in the middle of the ring. “Don’t be nervous,” she said, while trying to make him nervous. McAfee was very excited about this.
-A Raw commercial hyped Sasha & Naomi vs. Ripley & Morgan for the Women’s Tag Titles, Finn Balor vs. Austin Theory for the U.S. Title, and the double wedding ceremony with Reggie-Dana Brooke and Tamina-Akira Tozawa.[c]
-Cole announced that Backlash will feature the RK-Bro vs. Usos match. McAfee declared there can only be one tag team atop the mountain of greatness in WWE. He said he was “so excited.” He said whoever made the decision did a great job.
-Gulak stood mid-ring and introduced Charlotte. He called her special and said it was his great privilege. He touted her accomplishments and asked the audience to give it up for her. As Charlotte made her entrance, Cole hyped the I Quit match. He said in that type of match, you have to beat your opponent so badly that they utter “those humiliating and embarrassing words, I Quit!” Gulak asked about the I Quit match and whether she’s nervous about Rousey’s submission game. Charlotte said she asked Ronda to go to the back of the line, not because she’s scared of her, but because she’s nervous for her considering how devastated Rousey was after losing to her at WrestleMania. “Imagine the humiliation after an I Quit match,” Charlotte said. Gulak said he watched their match and it appears to him that Rousey made her tap out. Charlotte called it ridiculous. Fans chanted “You tapped out!” Charlotte said, “I was fixing my bra!” She said none of them understand.
Gulak said he didn’t mean to impose. Charlotte told him, “Then don’t impose.” Gulak said had the referee seen what she did, Rousey would be standing there as champion right now. Charlotte said he’s out of line. “I am the champion and I didn’t tap out,” she said. She mocked “What?” chants. Charlotte said she wanted to ask Drew a question. She asked if he quit being “a competitor” so he could hold a mic and ask her stupid questions. She said he is used to quitting just like the fans. She said she bets they quit the gym membership, their jobs, and their relationships. She said quitting isn’t in her DNA. She then held up the Smackdown Title and said that’s in her DNA. She said she is a submission master and has been submitting people for over a decade. She told Drew he doesn’t deserve to interview her, so get out of her ring now. Drew turned to leave. Charlotte clipped his leg from behind and then put him a Figure-Eight. Gulak tapped frantically. She slapped him and yelled at him to yell “I quit” louder. Drew cinched on the Figure-Eight again and he yelled “I quit” more. Three referees ran out and implored Charlotte to release the hold. She did. Her music played as a referee told her to get out of the ring. He handed her the title belt, but acted disgusted with her.
(Keller’s Analysis: Charlotte was really good here playing off of Gulak, and it’s nice to see the talented Gulak get some TV time because he is good in whatever role he plays. I’m not sure where this going or if this was just a one-off to Charlotte could put him in the Figure-Eight.)
-They went to Cole and McAfee at ringside again. Cole threw to a recap of Sami Zayn talking his way into a match with Drew McIntyre this week.
-Drew made his ring entrance. [c]
-A graphic touted social media activity for WrestleMania compared to the Super Bowl.
-Gunter and Ludwig Kaiser cut a promo. Kaiser said Gunter “protects the honor of this great sport” by passing out punishment to the weak.
(3) DREW MCINTYRE vs. SAMI ZAYN
Sami made his ring entrance. He had a mic in hand and insisted he isn’t scared of Drew. He said tonight he’s not going to run or hide, he’s going to beat him in the middle of the ring and regain the respect the fans owe him. As soon as the bell rang, Sami rolled to ringside. (Funny.) Drew then went after him quickly, ramming his back into the ring apron and ring barricade. He threw Sami into the ring, but Sami rolled out of it and hid behind Pat McAfee. Drew swung and punched Sami as McAfee ducked. Drew and McAfee high-fived. Cole accused McAfee of showing bias. Sami raked Drew’s eyes to take control. Drew came back with a Glasgow Kiss. He set up a Claymore, but Sami rolled out of the ring. Drew grabbed him as he tried to climb over the barricade. He then went for a Claymore again, but Sami ducked out of the ring and ran up into the crowd. Drew chased after Sami.
WINNER: McIntyre via countout in under 3:00.
-Kayla Braxton interviewed Ricochet backstage. He said Jinder Mahal is mean and imposing, but he cannot match his abilities. He said he sees a tree trunk of a man ready to be chopped down. He said people call him flawless not because he is perfect, but because he makes it look perfect. He headed to the ring to his theme. [c]
-Backstage Pearce startled Sami as he was looking around for Drew. Pearce said it’s unacceptable that he ran from Drew again. Sami said it won’t happen again. Pearce said yeah, it won’t happen again because next week he’ll have to face Drew in a lumberjack match.
(Keller’s Analysis: Sami is so good in this role. It’s nice to see a lumberjack match happen for its original purpose after years of it just being done for the sake of “adding something extra.”)
-Cole hyped Summerslam coming to Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn.
(4) RICOCHET vs. JINDER MAHAL (w/Shanky) – Intercontinental Title match
Jinder made his ring entrance. He overpowered and bodyslammed Ricochet right away. Jinder bashed him with a forearm and stomped on him. Cole said Jinder still has the drive to be champion. Ricochet came back. McAfee touted how smooth and flawless his offense was. Jinder tried a comeback, but Ricochet cut it short and landed the Recoil. When he set up a 450, Shanky pulled Jinder to ringside. Ricochet leaped off the top rope onto both of them. He shoved Jinder back into the ring and then hit the 450 for the win. Cole called him exhilarating, invigorating, innovative, and breathtaking.
WINNER: Ricochet in under 4:00 to retain the IC Title.
-Morant interviewed Sheamus, Ridge Holland, and Butch. She asked about apparent dissension between them last week. Sheamus said where he comes from, that was a civilized discussion. He said they’ve agreed that Butch needs to better control his aggression, though. Holland put him in a friendly headlock. Butch shoved Sheamus and shouted “New Day!” McAfee screeched, “Butch speaks!” Sheamus was talking to Morant when Holland said, “We’ve lost Butch!” Sheamus looked around worried as they cut to a break. [c]
-A sponsored clip aired from June 27, 2002 of John Cena’s debut against Kurt Angle and then Undertaker congratulating him on a nice job.
-Backstage, New Day were signing merch backstage when Butch leaped over the table and attacked them. Sheamus and Holland showed up and a big pullapart ensued with Pearce and various other officials.
-McAfee said Butch is a wild animal and absolutely insane.
-Cole threw to another vignette on Lacey Evans. He said her life story is heartbreaking and inspirational.
-Lacey said after her mom took them and ran, it wasn’t long until their father found them. She said he wanted to teach them work ethic, but the way he did so scarred them for life. She said she was made to do terrible tasks including having to sit for hours in a chicken pen if it wasn’t clean enough after she was done cleaning it. She said he would throw food at them if it wasn’t prepared just right, and it’d leave them covered in broken glass. She said he was eventually a wanted man on an assault charge. She said they jumped state to state, living in camp grounds. She said she learned about fighting and child protective services was involved her life as much as law enforcement, but neither saved her or her family. She said she learned to rely on herself and keep fighting no matter what life threw at her. She said she has never been handed a single thing, and the ability to find positives no matter how much life throws at her defines her. She said what she has been through has defined who she has become. She said that doesn’t make her better than anyone else in the locker room, but they aren’t better than her.
-Natalya and Shayna Baszler were backstage rolling their eyes. She said the younger wrestlers don’t have any respect for them. She said this newest wrestler is using their locker room like it’s her own personal playground. Raquel Rodriguez introduced herself to Natalya. She was very friendly. Natalya then turned and left, pulling Baszler with her.
-They went to Cole and McAfee at ringside again to react.
-Riddle and Orton made their ring entrance. [c]
(5) RIDDLE (w/Randy Orton) vs. JIMMY USO (w/Jey Uso)
A few minutes into the match, Riddle tried to kick Jimmy on the ring apron, but Jimmy swept his leg and rammed him into the ringside steps. Then he threw him into the barricade. He superkicked Riddle over the barricade. Orton looked concerned as they cut to a break. [c]
Back from the break, Riddle kneed Jimmy in the chin and then set up a top rope move. Jey knocked him off the top rope as the ref was yelling at Orton. Jimmy then went for a top rope move as Orton slammed Jey onto the ringside table. Jimmy looked over at them, giving Riddle a chance to move and then surprise him with an RKO for the win.
WINNER: Riddle in 9:00.