The Showoff shooed Renee away and verbally lit into The King of Strong Style, insulting him and not allowing him to speak. Finally, Nakamura retorted, calling Ziggler a "jackass". Ziggler attempted to respond with some fistcuffs, but The Artist was ready, dropping The Showoff and forcing him to flee from the ring.
Following last week's hard-hitting contest that saw A.J. Styles defeat Baron Corbin via count-out, the two ran it back tonight on SmackDown LIVE. Just as he did last week, United States Champion Kevin Owens, who will potentially defend his title against Styles at WWE Backlash if he can retain it against Chris Jericho at WWE Payback, sat in on commentary.
The two Superstars duked it out in a hard-hitting affair, but Styles caught Corbin off-guard with a rollup for the victory after KO tried to get involved.
Following Styles' win, The New Face of America and The Lone Wolf began to lay a beatdown on The Phenomenal One. The two were unable to get their licks in for long, however, as Sami Zayn soon rushed out, evening the odds. Styles and Zayn neutralized Owens and Corbin for a bit, but the United States Champion got the last laugh and stood tall after taking the No. 1 contender down with the Pop-up Powerbomb.
As the first two of the four teams competing in the Beat The Clock Challenge, American Alpha and The Colons tried to set the pace to determine the new No. 1 contenders to The Usos’ SmackDown Tag Team Championship.
Jason Jordan & Chad Gable worked vigorously, seeking redemption from their loss to Primo & Epico a week ago. The two teams engaged in an all-out scramble, looking to end matters quickly and establish a time that would be tough to beat.
Rusev made his first appearance on SmackDown LIVE via a pre-recorded video to express his disdain for both SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon and SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan. The Bulgarian Brute claimed that he would only ever appear on Team Blue if he got a championship opportunity at WWE Money in the Bank on June 18.
With his House of Horrors Match against the maniacal Bray Wyatt looming at WWE Payback this Sunday, Randy Orton faced off with The Eater of Worlds’ former disciple, Erick Rowan, in a No Disqualification Match on SmackDown LIVE.
Rowan brought his most brutal offense to try and weaken The Viper, even doling out some brutal lashes with a kendo stick. However, The Apex Predator battled back, putting Rowan through a table, ramming him into a steel chair and connecting with an RKO for the win.
After the contest, Orton got on the mic and promised The Eater of Worlds that the House of Horrors Match this Sunday will be Wyatt’s eternal hell. However, the WWE Champion was then interrupted by the No. 1 contender to his title, Jinder Mahal. The Maharaja emphatically stated that he would not put up with what he perceived as Orton’s disrespect toward him ahead of their match at WWE Backlash on May 21.
The two engaged in a war of words that saw The Singh Brothers, also known as The Bollywood Boyz, attack The Viper from behind. Mahal soon joined in, putting the exclamation point on the beatdown. The Maharaja then grabbed the WWE Championship and raised it above his head before leaving with it, sending the clear message that he was as serious of a threat to Orton’s title reign as anyone.
With American Alpha’s win time of 5:17 looming large, Breezango and The Ascension knew they would have to act quickly if they wanted to secure top contendership to the SmackDown Tag Team Championship at WWE Backlash.
Konnor & Viktor attempted to use their size and strength to wear down Tyler Breeze & Fandango, but Fandango connected with the Falcon Arrow onto Viktor, allowing Breezango to topple The Ascension with 2:36 to spare to become the new No. 1 contenders to the SmackDown Tag Team Titles!
The two Superstars left it all in the ring, dazzling the WWE Universe with a technically-sound, athletically-fueled contest. However, the victor would never be determined, as the scheming group of Natalya, Carmella and Tamina interrupted the match and attacked The Queen and Naomi, causing the contest to be thrown out.
The three Superstars were so aggressive in their assault of Flair that Naomi opted to come to her rival’s aid. However, the numbers game was too great, and the three left Charlotte and the champion laying as they basked in the glory of their excellently executed plan.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- American Alpha (Jason Jordan & Chad Gable) defeated The Colóns (Primo & Epico) in a Beat The Clock Challenge match (5:17)
- Breezango (Fandango & Tyler Breeze) defeated The Ascension (Konnor & Viktor) in a Beat The Clock Challenge match to be the #1 Contender for the WWE Smackdown Tag Team Championship (2:36)
- Naomi (c) vs. Charlotte Flair in a WWE Smackdown Women's Championship match ended in a no contest (9:00)
Other on-screen talent
Shinsuke Nakamura & Dolph Ziggler
AJ Styles vs. Baron Corbin
American Alpha vs. The Colons
Randy Orton vs. Erick Rowan
Breezango vs. The Ascension
Naomi vs. Charlotte
- WWE Smackdown Live #923 at CAGEMATCH.net
- WWE Smackdown Live #923 at WWE.com
- [Smackdown #923 on WWE Network]