The Friday Night Smackdown after Super Showdown is behind us and boy was it everything we hoped it would be! We knew John Cena and Goldberg were scheduled to make appearances tonight, but if you read the Smackdown Preview this morning, you knew another superstar may return tonight as well!
Tonight’s Smackdown came from Cena’s home state of Massachusetts, from the TD Garden in Boston. With the road to Wrestlemania beginning to take shape, lets take look at what pieces of the puzzle came into place on tonight’s episode of Smackdown…
Segment 1- Goldberg enters to a mixed reaction from the crowd, begins to discuss his win over “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt at Super Showdown. Goldberg says, “Do NOT be mistaken, it’s not about who was last, it’s all about WHO’S NEXT!” As Goldberg stands tall, Roman Reigns music hits and the “Big Dog” marches to the ring. Roman and Goldberg lock eyes from the moment Roman emerged from backstage. After a brief stare down, Roman grabs the microphone and commandingly says “I’m Next!”
Segment 2- Bayley and Naomi are set to collide in a Super Showdown rematch. Prior to the bell ringing, Bayley grabs the microphone and says that it is absurd she is being forced to perform in front of the “idiots” in Boston. Bayley says she only came to Smackdown for one reason to introduce the “future grammy winner” who is “Better than Beyonce,” Sasha Banks.
Match 1- After Banks returns to a warm ovation from her hometown crowd, her and Bayley begin to attack Naomi. Seeking to help her friend Naomi, Lacey Evans emerges and begins to attack Bayley and Banks. The match gets reset as a tag-team match. Lacey and Naomi jump out to the early lead with impressive simultaneous aerial assaults. Banks and Bayley apparently recovered during the commercial as they are delivering a double back breaker to Naomi as the show comes back from the break. From there Banks and Bayley cut off the ring and continue to beat down Naomi until she is able to deliver a sharp enziguri to Sasha and tag in Lacey. The two sides go back and forth for a few minutes until Naomi sunset flips over Bayley and pins her, picking up the Win.
Segment 3- Kofi Kingston & Big E are seeing walking backstage talking about “getting back on the horse” after losing their tag team championships at Super Showdown. The New Day members run into Robert Roode & Dolph Ziggler and it is announced that Kofi vs. Roode is next.
Match 2- Kingston w/ Big E vs. Roode w/ Ziggler starts off and the two go exchange moves for a period of time. Kofi eventually gains the upper-hand, sending Roode to the floor. While Roode is down, Ziggler distracts the referee. When the referee turns around, Roode channels his inner Eddie Guerrero leading the official to believe that Big E attacked Roode while he was distracted. After Big E was ejected from ringside, Roode definitely makes the most of the 2-on-1 advantage. Kofi manages to overwhelm Roode with his high-flying offense and deliver the “SOS.” While attempting a pin, Ziggler places Roode’s foot on the rope stopping the referee from counting to three. As Kofi confronts Ziggler, Roode rolls Kingston up and picks up the sneaky win. After the match, the camera cuts to Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville standing backstage watching Ziggler and Roode celebrate. Sonya looks to Mandy and says “Your man (referring to Ziggler) sure seems happy!”
Segment 4- Otis is seen sitting in the locker room having just seen Sonya call Dolph Ziggler “Mandy’s Man.” Tucker approaches and the two begin talking. Otis claims that something just doesn’t feel right about Mandy going out with Ziggler, but he cant quite put his finger on it. Tucker attempts to tell Otis that nothing may be wrong, because in the real world “the guy doesn’t always get the girl” Tucker floats the idea that maybe it might be time to let go of Mandy and go back to the WWE Universe, who would never pick Dolph Ziggler over him.
Segment 5- Braun Strowman and Shinsuke Nakamura contract signing for the Intercontinental Championship at Elimination Chamber. Sami Zayn praises Nakamura for being willing to sign a contract just a week after receiving 9 staples to the head after an attack from Strowman. Zayn invites Braun to the ring to “review the language of the contract.” Strowman emerges (with a new haircut) and says that he knows it doesn’t matter what the contract says because he’ll have to deal with Zayn and Cesaro when he faces Nakamura and blindly signs it. Zayn interprets Strowman’s statement and signature as Strowman agreeing to face them all in a 3-on-1 handicap match for the Intercontinental Championship. Before Strowman can explain what he meant, Zayn calls him a coward for wanting to go back on his word. Strowman agrees to face them 3-on-1 and begins to attack them on the spot. The numbers game catches up to him and the segment ends with Zayn, Nakamura, and Cesaro putting Strowman through a table.
Match 3- Daniel Bryan and Curtis Axel begins with Axel taking it to Bryan early on (yes you read that correctly) thanks to his “Coach” Drew Gulak. Eventually, Axel gets arrogant and begins to mock Bryan’s “Yes!” chants to the crowd. Bryan rallies and delivers a viscous series of “Yes!” kicks to Axel and begins to take the offensive. Bryan wins the match in short order with the LeBell lock, picking up another win against an ally of Gulak.
(SIDE NOTE- After the commercial break, Michael Cole announces that Roman Reigns vs. Goldberg for the Universal Championship at Wrestlemania has been made official)
Segment 6- Miz and Morrison (HEY! HEY!-HO! HO!) look to celebrate their Tag Team championship win from Super Showdown. The Miz attributes their win to a movie sequel that everyone waited 11 years to see. Says their reign will be like “The Godfather” or “The Marine” in which the sequel was vastly superior to the original. Announcer Greg Hamilton interrupts their celebration and informs Miz & Morrison that he has just received word they will be forced to defend their championships inside the Elimination Chamber, and they have a match against the Usos, NEXT!
Match 4- The Usos vs Miz & Morrison starts off with the tag champs holding their own and delivering some pain to the Jimmy. Miz delivers a fierce clothesline and breaks out in some *interesting* dance moves as the crowd chants “Hey! Hey!- Ho! Ho!- Miz & Morrison” The Usos begins to pick up some speed and start to take some offense to the new tag champs. Morrison attempts to rally but is stymied by a new crippling finishing move the Uso’s use. Jimmy sunset pile-drives Morrison off of the top rope and Jey delivers a frog-splash and the Uso’s pick up the win relatively quickly.
Segment 7- John Cena’s long awaited return to Friday Night Smackdown! The GOAT entered the arena to a chorus of cheers and “John Cena suckkkks” chants. Cena claims his sole reason for returning tonight is to answer the question “What will John Cena be doing at Wrestlemania?” He says that he believes in the future of the WWE and knows how coveted every Wrestlemania spot is within the locker room. Cena states that Wrestlemania should go on without him this year and that he doesn’t know when he’ll return. Cena concludes by saying “This isn’t a goodbye forever, just for now” and that he wanted to give it in front of his family and friends. As he retreats up the ramp, John goes to give us his famous salute when the lights to the arena go pitch-black. When the lights come back we see Cena still standing on the ramp, looking very confused. As He turns around, he locks eyes with “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt. “The Fiend” stares deeply into the soul of Cena and points to the Wrestlemania Sign. Cena looks at the sign, stares back at “The Fiend” and offers a tip of the cap, signaling their match at ‘Mania is on.
Smackdown ends with “The Fiend” escaping into the darkness and all we hear is the sinister laugh of Bray Wyatt.
Thank you for reading. Come back to Pro Sports Extra for preview/review of Monday Night Raw and follow me on twitter @bordsbus for more coverage of Wrestling & other sports!