The August 24, 2012 Edition of Smackdown is a Professional wrestling television show of the WWE's Smackdown brand, which took place on August 21, 2012 at the Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield, California.
Still seething from two controversial losses at The 25th Anniversary of SummerSlam and Raw, Alberto Del Rio turned his frustrations to action, triumphing over Randy Orton in a main event clash that springboarded him into a World Heavyweight Championship Match against Sheamus at Night of Champions.
A reflective Randy Orton emerged at the outset of SmackDown to refute claims about his “tainted” victory against Alberto Del Rio on Raw. Professing his love for confrontation, The Viper, who defeated The Mexican Aristocrat Monday mere moments after World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus interrupted a referee’s pinfall count, stated that he deserved to be the next No. 1 contender for The Great White’s illustrious title.
The Celtic Warrior himself then made his way to the ring, relishing the idea of defending his championship gold against WWE’s Apex Predator.
SmackDown General Manager Booker T soon joined two of SmackDown’s best in the ring, acknowledging Orton's ability before turning to the controversy that resulted from SummerSlam’s World Title Match and the events on Monday's Raw. However, before he could start, he was quickly interrupted by a livid Del Rio, who proceeded to call Sheamus a “cheater and a criminal,” Orton a "a crazy animal" and questioned the five-time WCW Champion’s intelligence.
The SmackDown GM conceded leaning toward granting Del Rio another World Title opportunity — until the well-heeled competitor commenced his inappropriate rant. Instead, Booker decreed that The Mexican Aristocrat and The Viper would square off in the main event to determine who deserves the coveted status of No. 1 contender to the reigning World Heavyweight Champion.
Following weeks of harassment by his nefarious rival, the ferocious Ryback finally received an opportunity to help Jinder Mahal realize his “place in the food chain.” While the Punjabi Superstar seized some early momentum in the match, Ryback quickly turned the tables against his pesky adversary.
With a raucous crowd that cheered his every move, the freakish brute imposed his will on Mahal with an earth-shaking powerslam and a devastating clothesline. Before his devious foe could regain his composure, Ryback nourished his appetite for destruction by finishing off his opponent, leaving an overwhelmed Mahal completely Shell Shocked.
Seeing her first action in nearly two weeks, Divas Champion Layla displayed no signs of ring rust against Alicia Fox. The British bombshell took a tenacious fight to her latest opponent, summoning her grit and hustle to answer her agile opponent’s skill set. The reigning Divas Title holder secured victory with a well-timed whirlwind kick, impressing the crowd and one particularly important visitor at ringside.
Kaitlyn, the No. 1 contender for the Divas Title and Cole’s guest commentator for the match, stepped into the ring after the pin to offer Layla a gesture of goodwill. However, her show of sportsmanship ended abruptly as Eve, the Diva who Kaitlyn eliminated last to win the Divas Championship No. 1 Contender Battle Royal on Raw, stepped forward and curiously raised both of her ringmates’ arms in celebration. Neither the reigning titleholder nor her impending challenger seemed to know what to make of the gesture, but the trio elected to keep the peace on this night.
Looking to build upon his recent success in the ring, Sin Cara locked horns with the boastful Heath Slater. The International Sensation employed multiple counters and aerial maneuvers including his signature springboard arm drag to keep Slater off balance, creating the impression that The One-Man Band’s arsenal may still need some fine tuning.
However Cody Rhodes — who watched the action from ringside as Cole’s guest commentator — opted to chime in before the clash came to a conclusion. When the referee became distracted by Slater, the grandson of a plumber forcefully turned his masked rival’s cover backward, leaving Sin Cara unable to defend himself against The One-Man Band’s snap reverse DDT. The meddling resulted in a victory for Slater and a reason for The International Sensation to remain furious with the former two-time Intercontinental Champion, Rhodes.
If that wasn't enough, Rhodes opted to attack Sin Cara after the bell, just to make sure he saved face.
In a match made possible by Teddy Long’s recommendation to the SmackDown GM Booker T, World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus faced off in a highly anticipated battle with Mr. Money in the Bank, Dolph Ziggler. Though the Gaelic grappler showed no fear at the prospect of facing The Showoff, the titleholder needed to remain on his guard in case Ziggler chose to cash in his Money in the Bank Contract during the encounter.
Ziggler, brimming with confidence following his victory over Chris Jericho on Raw that left Y2J without a WWE contract, battled The Great White to a standstill, with the cocky combatant’s resourcefulness being neutralized by Sheamus’ brute force. Knocking the Irish Superstar down did not present a problem for Ziggler, but getting him to stay down did not go so smoothly.
A failed sleeper hold attempt sent momentum surging in Sheamus’ direction, but a late assist by Vickie Guerrero almost cost The Celtic Warrior his championship gold. Guerrero slipped the Money in the Bank briefcase to her client, who promptly used it to clobber his opponent. The tactic forced the referee to disqualify The Showoff, but left Ziggler with a golden opportunity to collect his guaranteed title opportunity.
The brash competitor initially declared his intentions to cash in his Money in the Bank Contract, but eventually changed his mind as Sheamus rose to his feet. Instead, Ziggler and Guerrero made a hasty exit from ringside, choosing to wait until the right moment to initiate their instantaneous challenge for the World Heavyweight Title.
Lamenting the loss of the United States Championship and the connection to American culture that came with it, Santino Marella addressed the WWE Universe about whether he and The Cobra remain on the same page. The Italian rapscallion, whose title reign came to an end in a special SummerSlam Pre-Show match against Antonio Cesaro, lifted his spirits by rediscovering the potential for success his green sock represents, even going so far as to state his belief in once again becoming the United States Champion someday.
That declaration garnered the attention of the new titleholder, who declared himself a winner in five different languages. Marella wasted no time powerwalking his way toward the steel stage to confront Cesaro, but The Cobra dragged their collective gaze at the alluring Aksana instead. The brief detour provided the Swiss-born Superstar with an opening to educate Santino in the universal language of pain.
Feeling invigorated from their successful title defense at The 25th Anniversary of SummerSlam, WWE Tag Team Champions Kofi Kingston & R-Truth took the fight to Primo & Epico in a non-title match. Both sides put their impressive talents to good use, with the reigning titleholders blending their all-around abilities well while the perfect chemistry of the former champions helped them keep pace.
Primo’s failed Backstabber attempt ultimately proved to be his side’s undoing, granting his adversary with a prime opportunity to connect a knockout blow. R-Truth obliged, leveling Primo with a lethal reverse STO to seize a victory that impressed everyone at Rabobank Arena — everyone, that is, except The Prime Time Players, who watched their SummerSlam opponents in action while providing guest commentary alongside Michael Cole at ringside.
Seeking a new title opportunity against World Heavyweight Champion Sheamus, Alberto Del Rio brought his temper under control before battling Randy Orton in the main event on SmackDown.
With the No. 1 contender status at stake, both The Mexican Aristocrat and WWE’s Apex Predator showed no mercy — no easy feat considering The Celtic Warrior kept a close eye on the action while joining Michael Cole as the bout’s guest commentator.
In fierce showdown that could have gone either way at any moment, Del Rio inflicted serious damage on the arm of the always dangerous Viper in hopes of later exploiting the injured appendage with his signature finisher. And following a missed RKO attempt by Orton, the affluent grappler promptly capitalized by applying his Cross Armbreaker for an undisputable victory and the right to be called the No. 1 contender once again.
The Mexican Aristocrat taunted Sheamus following his win, eventually leveling the titleholder with his shoe and a strong roundhouse kick.
Then, as the smoke cleared, Dolph Ziggler emerged, looking to cash in his Money in the Bank Contract against a roughed up Celtic Warrior. However, the recovering Orton saved the weary champion from being obligated to participate in an impromptu title opportunity by connecting a well-timed RKO on The Showoff.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Dark Match: Ted DiBiase defeated Jack Swagger
- Ryback defeated Jinder Mahal (2:51)
- Layla defeated Alicia Fox (2:05)
- Heath Slater defeated Sin Cara (2:37)
- Sheamus defeated Dolph Ziggler by DQ (5:05)
- Kofi Kingston & R-Truth defeated Epico & Primo (2:21)
- Alberto Del Rio defeated Randy Orton in a World Heavyweight Title #1 Contendership Match (6:49)
- Dark Match: John Cena defeated The Big Show in a No Disqualification Match
Other on-screen talent