6/24 WWE SMACKDOWN RESULTS: Keller’s report on Gunther defending against Ricochet, Drew McIntyre declares path to WWE Universal Title

By Wade Keller, PWTorch editor


SPOTLIGHTED PODCAST ALERT (YOUR ARTICLE BEGINS A FEW INCHES DOWN)...

WWE SMACKDOWN TV REPORT
JUNE 24, 2022
AUSTIN, TEX.
AIRED ON FOX

Commentators: Michael Cole, Pat McAfee

Ring Announcer: Samantha Irvin


Tonight after AEW Dynamite, join Wade Keller live with guest co-host Brandon LeClair to break down the show with live callers and emails.

STREAM LIVE HERE ABOUT 5 MINUTES AFTER THE SHOW CONCLUDES
•CALL: (347) 215-8558

•EMAIL COMMENTS/QUESTIONS: wadekellerpodcast@pwtorch.com
•IF YOU DON’T LISTEN LIVE, SEARCH “WADE KELLER” ON YOUR PODCAST APP TO SUBSCRIBE AND THEN DOWNLOAD OR STREAM THE FULL SHOW TWO HOURS OR SO AFTER THE TV SHOW ENDS.


[HOUR ONE]

-The signature “Then, Now, Forever, Together” open aired.

-A video recap aired of the RK-Bro vs. Bloodline saga including last week’s WWE Universal Title defense by Roman Reigns against Riddle followed by Brock Lesnar showing up.

-They cut live to the arena as Michael Cole introduced the show. Pat McAfee then hyped the Reigns vs. Lesnar main event for Summerslam.

-Drew McIntyre’s ring entrance took place. He said no matter what he does, Reigns is ducking him. He said Lesnar showed up and gets a title shot. He said that’s fine, that’s Brock’s way, but he has his way. He said he’ll be watching closely, and when their done with the Last Man Standing battle, the winner better be ready to have their ass Claymored.

Sheamus, accompanied by Butch and Ridge Holland, walked out and told McIntyre the MITB winner will be cashing in against the Reigns-Lesnar winner, but it won’t be McIntyre. Sheamus said Drew’s only experience with MITB is being cashed in on. He said he’s a previous winner, and he cashed in on Reigns. Paul Heyman then interrupted. He walked out, with WWE official Adam Pearce a few steps behind. He introduced himself. Holland was holding back Butch the whole time in the ring. Heyman said Reigns will be the victor against Lesnar, but he’ll be vulnerable to the MITB cash-in. He said it has happened before and he is there to be sure it won’t happen again. Drew asked him to get to his point.

Heyman said Pearce, “a great man, this top executive, this man whose reputation is beyond reproach, has a very special announcement to make.” Pearce said he was hasty in putting them both in the MITB ladder match since neither of them lost against each other, but neither of them won either. He said after some “influence by Mr. Heyman,” WWE management has chosen to overrule his decision. He said neither of them will be part of the MITB ladder match. Sheamus yelled that he is spineless. Pearce said there is a path forward to qualify. He said if they can team together tonight and defeat The Usos, that is their path forward.

As the Usos came out, Cole said, “Are you kidding me?” He said Sheamus and Drew are expected to get along well enough to beat the best tag team on the planet.

(Keller’s Analysis: That is some weird logic, but there is some logic – make them win a match of some kind. They could have had them fight one another again, and it seems strange that hasn’t seemed to cross Pearce’s mind. The idea that Heyman is pulling strings behind the scenes works for me, and it’s plausible he’d have supreme confidence a team of two men who don’t get along couldn’t beat the Usos so this would be an advantageous deal for WWE officials to make.)

-Cole plugged Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Sami Zayn in a MITB qualifier next. [c]

-As Nakamura made his entrance, Cole said the Usos’ tag titles aren’t on the line later nor will they qualify for MITB if they win. They’re there just to stand in the way of Sheamus and Drew.

-Kayla Braxton interviewed Sami backstage, introducing him as an honorary member of the Bloodline. He said “we” always do right by Roman Reigns. He said he is dedicating his match to the Tribal Chief and then win MITB. Kayla asked if he’d cash in against Lesnar or Reigns. Sami told Kayla he wouldn’t cash in against Reigns. He would win MITB to protect Reigns. His music played and he headed to the ring.

(1) SHINSUKE NAKAMURA vs. SAMI ZAYN – Money in the Bank Qualifier

Nakamura applied an early armbar and then kicked Sami into the corner. Nakamura landed a leaping sidekick. Sami rolled to the floor. Cole said his tactic lately has been to run away. Sami took control after ringside and rammed Nakamura into the ringpost. He then overhead suplexed him into the barricade. A “Sami sucks!” chant rang out. Nakamura beat the countout and then surprised Sami with a small package for a two count. Sami knocked Nakamura off the top rope. They cut to a break at 3:00. [c]

Sami tried to use the ropes for leverage on a pin a couple minutes back from the break. As Sami protested to the ref, Nakamura landed a leaping knee to the back of his head for a convincing near fall. Nakamura set up the Kinshasa, but Sami rolled to ringside again. Nakamura pursued him and landed a running Kinshasa. He threw Sami back into the ring. McAfee said he should just leave him there, implying a countout win qualified him. Sami suddenly surprised Nakanmura with a Helluva Kick for a three count. Cole called Sami “shrewd and wily.”

WINNER: Sami in 9:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: Good match. It didn’t aspire to be epic or particularly memorable, but it told it’s story well.)

-A graphic showed Sami, Seth Rollins, and Omos had qualified for MITB now.

-The New Day began their ring entrance. [c]

-Shanky and Jinder Mahal made their entrance. New Day said they don’t do rematch after rematch, and nobody wants to see this rematch. They suggested instead that Shanky dance. When Xavier Woods played trombone, Shanky began dancing. Jinder stopped him and yelled at him. Shanky shoved him. Jinder left the ring in a huff. Shanky turned and went back to dancing. Shanky went back to dancing. However, the Viking Raiders horn sounded and they jumped New Day and Shanky from behind. Boos rang out in the arena. They brualized New Day including a powerbomb of Xavier off the second rope. Cole said these aren’t the Raiders they were used to.

-They went backstage to Pearce on his phone when in walked Sonya Deville. She said she watched Pearce take Sheamus and Drew out of the MITB match after inserting them last week. She said it “kind of gave me, like, second-hand embarrassment.” Pearce said she knows those decisions come from above his head. She said he’s always got excuses. She asked what excuse he has for how he’s booking the Women’s Division. She said people are talking. She said she has been back wrestling for a while, yet Lacey Evans and Racquel Rodriguez both suddenly showed up and got MITB qualifiers. She demanded respect. She told Pearce not to take it out on her that he’s bitter that his in-ring career was a failure. He said she’s got a match against both Racquel and Lacey next. [c]

(2) SONYA DEVILLE (w/Shayna Baszler, Xia Li) vs. LACEY EVANS & RACQUEL GONZALEZ – Two-on-One match

Cole noted Xia and Baszler were the wrestlers Lacey and Racquel beat to qualify earlier. Cole said he had no idea that Sonya was back on the Smackdown roster until now. Xia grabbed at Lacey’s leg from ringside, giving Sonya an opening to take over. Lacey crawled over and hot-tagged Racquel a minute later. Baszler distracted Racquel, giving Sonya an opening. Racquel tagged in Lacey, though, and then Racquel whipped Sonya into Lacey’s finisher, the Women’s Right. Raquel and Lacey fended off Sonya and Xia afterward.

WINNERS: Lacey & Racquel in 3:00.

(Keller’s Analysis: Does Lacey have to change the name of her finisher thanks to the Supreme Court decision earlier? It feels quite dated suddenly.)

-They cut backstage to the Street Profits. Angelo Dawkins made that hideous noise and then they walked backstage and saw Angel and Humberto with a woman. Then they saw Drew Gulak suspending himself in the air between two ladders. Then Montez sang/howled. Then they saw Madcap Moss doing stretch bands. Dawkins said what he did to Happy Corbin last week was off the chains. Dawkins asked if he could tell a joke. “Why did the coach go to the bank? To get his quarter back.” Moss wasn’t impressed. Dawkins laughed uproariously. Ford didn’t react at all, either.

-Ronda Rousey’s music played. Natalya came out dressed as Rousey, including the eye make-up. She pushed a baby carriage to the ring and slapped hands with a pasted on smile.

(Keller’s Analysis: That was funny.) [c]

[HOUR TWO]

-They showed postcard shots of the University of Texas at Austin.

-Natalya stood mid-ring. She said “she” (Ronda) has an inferior submission hold and therefore will lose to Natayla. She tapped out preemptively, then apologized ahead of time for losing to her fans, offered to hand over her title to Natalya, retire, and push her stroller right out of WWE. “I’m probably the Saddest Woman on the Planet.” McAfee said, “This isn’t normal.” The real Rousey walked out. She asked if that was Natalya. “Nattie, that’s you? I almost didn’t recognize you without your rack out,” she said. (Funny.) She said she won’t pass up having kids to avoid missing a day of wrestling for ten years. “I’m also not going to mutilate my body chasing impossible industry body standards like you do,” she said. (That suddenly felt too harsh.) She said she’s not just going to bend over and hand over her title because she thinks she’s earned it.

Rousey mockingly said she’s a Hart and she works hard, so she has earned it. She said because she’s so lacking in natural talent and charisma, so despite her unrivaled pedgree and work ethic, the closest she’ll get to a main eventer in WWE is dressing up like her. She said, “Nice jacket.” She then tried to rip it off of Rousey. Natalyathrew the baby carriage at Rousey, then shoved her down hard and bailed out of the ring.

(Keller’s Analysis: Man, Rousey came back heavy. It’s like if someone makes fun of your haircut and you respond by calling out every body imperfection, the fact that they’re divorced, that you make more money than them, they have bags under their eyes, they have no friends, they’ve put on 20 pounds this year, and point out cellulose. I think some viewers are thinking: “Settle down Ronda. You do talk about being a mother incessantly. Have a sense of humor about it.” I think the way that was scripted actually made Natalya out to be the sympathetic one. But it also felt on brand for Ronda’s sense of social awareness.) [c]

-Megan Morant interviewed McIntyre and Sheamus backstage. Holland again held back Butch as Sheamus and Drew bickered. Drew told Sheamus to take the night off so he can battle the Usos on his own. Sheamus said he can’t get the job done on his own

-Gunther began his ring entrance. [c]

-A graphic plugged Undertaker’s “1 Dead Man Show” July 29 in Nashville, Tenn.

(3) GUNTHER (w/Ludwig Kaiser) vs. RICOCHET – Intercontinental Title match

Cole noted Gunther is undefeated since arriving. Ricochet took it to Gunther with an early barrage of offense, but Gunther brushed him off and then delivered a big boot. Ricochet took over with a couple high knees. Gunther came back with hard chops and uppercuts followed by a stacked powerbomb for the clean win.

WINNER: Gunther in 3:00 to retain the IC Title.

(Keller’s Analysis: Back to the mid-card for Ricochet. Probably a prudent choice to have Gunther win in dominant fashion since he is one of few untainted potential world title level wrestlers on the rise on the WWE roster.)

-Kayla interviewed Heyman backstage. Sami interrupted and said he would never, ever cash in on Reigns no matter what Kayla would imply. Heyman put his arm around Sami and smiled. Sami said he would cash in on Brock. Heyman removed his arm and gave Sami a death stare. Sami realized his mistake, implying Reigns might beat Brock. Sami walked away. Cole said Sami should quit while he’s ahead.

-Tamina was in the ring. [c]

(4) TAMINA vs. SHOTZI – Money in the Bank Qualifier

Tamina nearly won but Shotzi draped her leg over the bottom rope. Shotzi then hit her leaping DDT “Never Wake Up” finisher for the win. Cole said only one slot remains for the MITB match.

WINNER: Shotzi in 2:00 to qualify for the MITB.

-A recap aired of the return of the Viking Raiders.

-A backstage soundbite aired with the Raiders with red lights shining on them. They said for too long they’ve been pushed aside and forgotten, but that’s over and now no one is safe.

-They showed Max Dupri backstage talking to someone. McAfee was excited. “Handsomeness on the way!” he said. [c]

-Dupri told Pearce backstage, as a spotlight awaited his arrival in the ring, that he can’t tell if he’s actually a WWE official. He said he’s prevent the debut of his Maximum Male Model clients. He said he’s a WWE Saboteur. He said he failed to provide the proper dressing room at the right temp with the beverages they requested. He said they’re models, not monsters. “You need to get this right.” Pearce said next week will work. Dupri said next week they are prepared to titillate the juices of their guilty pleasures.

-McAfee stood on announce table and taunted Corbin. A sponsored replay aired of what happened last week between them. Back live, he said if they were to get in the ring, he would wish he was dead. He said that’ll never happen because he loves every moment of his life. He said when he walked into the ThunderDome for the first time, all he could say is, “I feel alive!” He then challenged him a match at Summerslam. He vowed to kick his teeth down his throat. Cole asked McAfee if he really thought that through. McAfee said Corbin is “an insufferable douche bag” and he’s the one to knock him down a few pegs.

-Sheamus’s ring entrance took place. Then Drew’s. [c]

(5) SHEAMUS (w/Ridge Holland, Butch) & DREW MCINTYRE vs. THE USOS

The Usos ring entrance took place. Sheamus and Drew dominated early. Butch charged at Drew at ringside. Drew threw him into the barricade. Sheamus shoved him. Drew and Sheamus exchanged blows. The Usos dove onto them. They cut to a break. [c]

Back from the break, the Usos were in control. Sheamus came back with a knee and then tagged in Drew who rallied against the Usos. The Profits, who were guests on commentary, reacted with excitement. Uso avoided a charging Drew, who went shoulder-first into the ringpost. He landed a frog splash for a near fall, broken up by Sheamus. Drew then made a comeback with neckbreakers to both Usos. He kipped up and then set up a Claymore. Jey yanked Jimmy out of the ring to save him from getting kicked. He then kicked Drew at ringside. Butch rani to the ring, but the ref blocked his entrance. Holland carried him to the back. Sami then showed up, but Dawkins knocked him down. Drew flip dove onto the Usos and the Profits. A “Holy shit!” chant rang out. Drew rallied in the ring and went for a superkick. Jimmy blocked it, but Drew tried again and hit it for the win. Cole hyped the MITB line-up as Sheamus and Drew celebrated together.

WINNERS: McIntyre & Sheamus in 10:00.


Tonight after AEW Dynamite, join Wade Keller live with guest co-host Brandon LeClair to break down the show with live callers and emails.

STREAM LIVE HERE ABOUT 5 MINUTES AFTER THE SHOW CONCLUDES
•CALL: (347) 215-8558

•EMAIL COMMENTS/QUESTIONS: wadekellerpodcast@pwtorch.com
•IF YOU DON’T LISTEN LIVE, SEARCH “WADE KELLER” ON YOUR PODCAST APP TO SUBSCRIBE AND THEN DOWNLOAD OR STREAM THE FULL SHOW TWO HOURS OR SO AFTER THE TV SHOW ENDS.

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