Welcome to Ringside News’ coverage of WWE SmackDown! Please keep refreshing throughout the show for constant updates once it kicks off at 8:00 PM EST.
For tonight’s show, the focus seems to be on the fallout from last week’s fantastic gauntlet match, as all three of the announcements for tonight’s episode of SmackDown are related to the fallout from that match. Let’s run down the announced card.
First up, Rey Mysterio looks to get revenge on King Corbin in one-on-one action tonight. Last week, after Mysterio was eliminated in the gauntlet match, Corbin came down to the ring and seemingly attacked Mysterio for no reason, so Mysterio will look for retribution tonight.
In another match where one superstar is looking for revenge on another, Shinsuke Nakamura will face off against Jey Uso in singles competition. Uso and his cousin, the Universal Champion Roman Reigns attacked Nakamura last week after Nakamura very nearly ran the gauntlet just before being eliminated by Adam Pierce. Nakamura looks to get payback against Jey Uso in their match.
Finally, Roman Reigns and Adam Pearce are set for a contract signing for their Universal Championship match at Royal Rumble. Pearce received this match after “winning” a gauntlet match last week against 5 other superstars, but the official contract signing to make the match official is tonight, so will Pearce actually sign the contract for their match and make it official? Find out tonight.
All of this and more is set for tonight’s episode of SmackDown! Make sure to refresh the page throughout the night for the most up-to-date results and coverage, and we will being coverage when SmackDown goes live at 8:00 PM, EST!
We get a recap of the confrontation between Roman Reigns, Jey Uso, and Paul Heyman and Adam Pearce that led to Pearce being put in last week’s Gauntlet Match.
We also see Nakamura making Mysterio tap out, pinning Corbin, and pinning Bryan, then getting beaten up by Jey Uso and Roman Reigns. Finally, we see the closing moments of Pearce’s body being dragged over Nakamura’s for the pin.
This week, Roman is backstage with Paul Heyman. Heyman and Reigns are looking over the contract for the Royal Rumble. Heyman is explaining to Roman that the contract is the same as every other contract, but he doesn’t like it because the match needs a stipulation.
Heyman offers to take the contract off of Roman’s hands, and Roman gives it to him to take care of and bring to Adam Pearce. Heyman says, “Consider this handled,” and Heyman walks off.
Jey Uso comes down to the ring and grabs a mic. He says how he and Roman run the show, not Adam Pearce, Kevin Owens, or anyone else. He says that Pearce is going to find that out the hard way.
Uso talks about how everyone needs to be thanking Roman Reigns for everything that they have in the back, like fresh towels and catering. Uso then moves on to say that he will enter the Royal Rumble and win it, then go to Raw and challenge Drew McIntyre or “Oldberg” for the Raw title and he and Roman will run WWE together.
Uso goes on to hype up Nakamura and talk about Nakamura’s performance. However, when they decided that Nakamura was done with his run, he was done. He says that Nakamura should be thanking them instead of wanting to fight Uso.
Nakamura comes out to the ring and stands face to face with Uso with a mic in his hand. Nakamura makes fun of Roman’s “Big Dog’ nickname, then kicks Jey in the face. Uso rolls out of the ring and we are told that the match between these two is up next.
Jey Uso vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Nakamura and Uso immediately lay into each other with strikes. Nakamura takes Uso down with a shoulder tackle and a snapmare, pinning him for two. Nakamura goes in for a side headlock. Uso pushes off and takes Shinsuke down with an elbow.
Uso picks up Nakamura and hits a scoop slam, then pins him for one. Uso picks up Nakamura and they trade strikes again. Uso whips Nakamura hard into the corner, then picks him up. Nakamura takes Uso down with a spinning heel kick, then knees away at Uso’s midsection.
Nakamura hits an inverted suplex, then lays into Uso with knees again. Nakamura kicks away at Uso, then gets him in a chinlock. Jey fihts to his feet, but Nakamura hits him with knees to the head.
While Nakamura is taking down Uso, Cesaro’s music hits. Nakamura is slightly distracted, but Nakamura instead hits a running sliding kick to Uso. Cesaro seems to be coming down to help Nakamura, as he walks towards a downed Uso on the outside and Nakamura rolls back into the ring, and we go to commercial.
Back from commercial, Cesaro is on commentary and he says that he is there for his friend to support him. Cole accuses him of not being there for Nakamura last week, and Cesaro says that the Thunderdome is a large place and he couldn’t make it down on time. Cesaro says that he will enter the Royal Rumble.
Back in the ring, Uso is kicking and stomping away at Nakamura in the corner. The ref pulls him away, but he comes back and keeps stomping away. Uso runs at Nakamura in the corner, but Nakamura hits a running knee to Uso’s face.
Back to his feet, Nakamura kicks away at Uso, taking him down with a knee to the midsection and a sliding knee to the head. Uso fights back, but Nakamura hits a sliding snap German suplex, pinning Uso for two.
Nakamura goes for a back suplex, but Uso fights back and hits a Samoan Drop, pinning Nakamura for two. Uso picks up Nakamura, but Nakamura fights back with strikes. Uso comes back with a back suplex into a neckbreaker, pinning Nakamura for two.
Uso thinks about going to the top rope for a frogsplash, but Nakamura rolls away from range. Nakamrua instead goes to the top and hits a kick at Uso from the top rope himself. Nakamura lines up for the Kinshasa, but Uso catches him with a superkick.
Uso goes for the frogsplash again, but Nakamura catches him with his knees up. Nakamura runs at Uso in the corner, but Uso dodges and rolls up Nakamura. He puts his feet on the middle rope and the referee catches him, stopping the count.
Uso argues with the referee and Nakamura grabs Uso and spins him around for a Kinshasa. Nakamura pins Uso for three.
Winner: Shinsuke Nakamura
Cesaro gets in the ring and celebrates with Nakamura.
We are told that Bianca Belair will be a guest on Bayley’s new talk show, Ding Dong Hello, later tonight.
Backstage, Adam Pearce and Sonia Deville talk about Pearce’s history as a wrestler. Sonia says that she has seen Pearce wrestle and she thinks he could win. Pearce says that he is no longer that guy.
Paul Heyman shows up and hands over a contract to Pearce. He says that the match has become a No Disqualification match, but Paul says that it was for the benefit of Pearce.
Pearce doesn’t believe it; he thinks that the stipulation was added so that he could be injured, which is what Paul wants. He signs the contract anyway and hands it back to Heyman.
Back from commercial, Jey Uso is arguing with Charles Robinson, the referee who stopped the count during his match. He says that he had Nakamura pinned, but Robinson is saying that Uso had his feet on the ropes. Uso threatens that Robinson will be fired, and then Uso storms off.
We get a recap of the events over the last two weeks between The Street Profits and Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode.
The Street Profits are interviewed backstage about their match. They were asked if it was wise to put their titles on the line against Ziggler and Roode. They said that they were not scared to put their titles on the lines.
They said that they were champions for over 300 days because they were beating everyone that challenged them. They said that they are going to win their titles back and they “want the smoke.”
Backstage, Roman Reigns is speaking to Apollo Crews about something. Heyman comes in and hands the Pearce-signed contract to Roman. Crews gets up to leave but Roman tells him to stay and that he might learn something.
Heyman tells Roman about how the match has become a No Disqualification Match. Roman says that he wants a Last Man Standing Match. Heyman says that Pearce will never go for that, but Roman says that Heyman will make him go for it and make him sign it in the ring, tonight.
Roman tells Paul to handle it, hands him the contract, and goes back to talking to Apollo Crews about something that is inaudible.
Natalya (w/Tamina) vs. Live Morgan (w/Ruby Riott and Billie Kay)
Kay has a new look and is trying really hard to fit in with Morgan and Riott.
Billie joins them on commentary, and Morgan and Natalya trade strikes. Morgan runs the ropes and hits a hurricanrana. Morgan then catches Natalya with a back elbow.
Morgan hits a monkey flip on Natalya, but Natalya keeps a grip and takes her down, then hits a wheelbarrow into the top rope, pinning her in the corner. Natalya hits a suplex, then geos for another, but Morgan rolls Natalya up for two.
Natalya gets Morgan in position for a backbreaker submission. Morgan fights back with an elbow to the head. Live rolls Natalya up for two again, then kicks at Natalya and takes her down with an enziguri.
Morgan hits a running knee to the head of Natalya, then stomps away at her. Natalya trips Morgan up and sends her into the corner. Natalya rolls her up for two as Bille Kay runs up to the side of the ring.
Morgan hits a lungbuster on Natalya, then pins her for two. Billie Kay runs at the ref again, but Tamina shouts at her. Billie Kay tries to run from Tamina, but does so by running into the ring. She distracts Morgan, and Natalya is able to surprise Morgan with a roll-up, pinning her for three.
Liv Morgan and Ruby Riott are both furious at Billie Kay as Billie tries to plead her case with them.
We see a recap of the match between Corbin and Mysterio from last week. Rey Mysterio and Dominik come down to the ring for Mysterio’s match with Corbin, which is up next.
Rey Mysterio vs. King Corbin
Mysterio hits a hurricanrana on Corbin into the corner, but Corbin takes Myterio down in the corner. Corbin taunts Dominik, who is sitting on commentary. Corbin hits a back suplex on Mysterio, pinning him for two.
Corbin goes for another back suplex, but Mysterio reverses it into a blldog. Corbin tosses Rey out of the ring in the direction of the commentary table. Corbin hits Mysterio with a clothesline, then shoves Dominik at ringside.
Corbin tosses Mysterio in the ring and pins him for two. Corbin picks up Mysterio and chokes him against the ropes while staring at Dominik. Corbin picks up Mysterio and hits him with a hard right, then taunts at Dominik more.
Mysterio hits a dropkick on Corbin, taking him down, then following it up with a senton. Mysterio then runs the ropes and goes for a crossbody. Corbin catches him, but Mysterio hurricanranas Corbin into the middle rope.
Mysterio runs at Corbin for a 619, but Corbin catches Mysterio and hits him with Deep Six, then pins him for two. Corbin runs out of the ring and tries to run back in, but Mysterio catches him with a kick.
On the outside, Corbin hits Dominik with a right hand. Mysterio kicks Corbin on the outside. Corbin gets back in the ring and Dominik looks to follow him in. Mysterio keeps Dominik out of the ring on the apron, but Corbin pushes Mysterio into Dominik, knocking him off the apron, then hits Mysterio with End of Days, pinning him for the win.
Winner: King Corbin
Adam Pearce is backstage and he comes across Paul Heyman. He asks Paul if Roman signed the contract. Heyman says that there was a wrinkle. Paul says that Roman didn’t sign because Roman didn’t agree to a No Disqualification match.
Paul Heyman says that the match is now a Last Man Standing. Pearce opens the contract and looks at it, but Heyman says that Pearce can take his time to look over it and he can bring up any questions face to face with Roman Reigns when he signs the contract live tonight, in the ring.
A ring crew are setting up a prop door for Bayley’s show, Ding Dong Hello, and that is next.
Backstage, Mysterio and Dominik are talking as Mysterio tries to talk him out of picking a fight with Corbin. Mysterio says that, if they want to take out Corbin, they know just the guy to talk to.
In the ring, Bayley is hosting her premiere episode of Ding Dong, Hello. Bayley calls down Bianca Belair as her first guest for the show. Bianca grabs a mic and goes to sit down, she makes Bianca use the fake door and Bianca takes Bayley’s chair when she walks in.
Bayley congratulates Bianca on her Chronicle episode on the WWE Network. She says that she has a special sneak peak of Bianca Belair’s Chronicle episode, but it was a clip of Bayley pinning Bianca Belair from a month ago.
Bayley asks Bianca about why she is called the EST of WWE. Bianca says that it is because of her accolades outside of WWE. Bianca says that she isn’t doing it to brag, she says that she is just being herself.
Bayley says that if Bianca is the best and she beat Bianca, doesn’t that make her the best? Bianca challenges Bayley to a rematch, but Bayley says she already beat Bianca. She proposes an obstacle course challenge between herself and Bianca, and Bianca accepts.
Daniel Bryan is training backstage earlier with Chad Gable and Otis for their Royal Rumble appearances. Bryan is asked about his training with them, and he says that he loves training with them because of how motivated they are.
Kayla Braxton asks if Bryan’s loss to Shinsuke was a blow to Daniel’s confidence. Daniel says that he has nothing but respect for Shinsuke and he thinks that Nakamura feels the same way. Cesaro interrupts and says that Bryan doesn’t speak for Shinsuke because Bryan isn’t Shinsuke’s friend, but Cesaro is.
Cesaro says that Shinsuke was just shaking Bryan’s hand last week out of pity. Cesaro then makes fun of the Alpha Academy training. Bryan gets in Cesaro’s face and that was the set up for their match tonight.
Bryan comes down to the ring and his match with Cesaro is next.
Daniel Bryan vs. Cesaro
Cesaro and Bryan lock up. Bryan pushes Cesaro off and Cesaro takes Bryan down with a shoulder tackle. Bryan takes Cesaro down with an armdrag. Cesaro backs Bryan into the corner, then hits him with an uppercut in the corner.
Cesaro whips Bryan into the corner then runs at him, but Bryan dodges and hits an armbreaker. Bryan maintains a hold on Cesaro’s left arm, manipulating the wrist into a submission. Cesaro fights to his feet and scoop slams Daniel Bryan.
Cesaro kicks at a downed Bryan, then picks him up. Bryan fights back, but Cesaro takes him down. Bryan rolls Cesaro to the mat and Cesaro lands hard on his neck. Cesaro rolls to the outside and Bryan hits a dive to Cesaro on the outside.
Bryan picks up Cesaro and strikes away at him then pins him against the ringpost on the outside. Bryan hits Cesaro with a few Yes Kicks on the outside, but Cesaro ducks one and Bryan kicks the ring post hard, sending him to the ground as we go to commercial break.
Cesaro is in control of Bryan in the ring. Cesaro picks him up and they trade uppercuts. Cesaro whips Bryan into the corner, but Bryan flips out and takes down Cesaro with a drop toe hold, then gets in a Yes Lock.
Cesaro powers out of the hold and swings Bryan, then locks in the sharopshooter. Bryan reaches for the ropes and Cesaro grabs that arm, going for a crossface. Bryan uses that opening to go for a Yes Lock, but Cesaro reaches the bottom rope with his foot.
Bryan sets Cesaro on the top rope. Bryan geos for a hurricanrana, but Cesaro blocks and hits a vertical suplex on Bryan form the top. Cesaro pins Bryan for two. Cesaro picks up Bryan and goes for the Gotch Neutralizer.
Bryan blocks and tries to backslider Cesaro into a pin. Bryan kicks Cesaro in the head and both men fall to the mat. Bryan runs at Cesaro, but Cesaro pops Bryan up into an uppercut, hits him with a neutralizer, thne pins him for three.
Backstage, Kayla Braxton interviews Carmella. Carmella immediately starts running down Sasha, saying that Sasha hasn’t been seen since she pinned her two weeks ago. Sahsa comes out of nowhere and attacks Carmella.
Reginald stands between them and stops her from getting to Carmella. Sasha says that Carmella can have a match against Sasha if Sasha can have a match against Reginald first.
Apollo Crews comes out for a match against Sami Zayn, which is up next.
We see a clip from Talking Smack last week when Paul Heyman was giving Apollo Crews a “pep talk,” motivating Crews to do better and “come back” when he wins a title.
Apollo Crews vs. Sami Zayn
Zayn comes down with the same documentary camera crew as last week.
We see Big E at ring side, lounging on a couch at ringside.
Apollo Crews immediately runs at Zayn, hitting him with a release over the head German suplex. Zayn clotheslines Crews over the top to the outside. Zayn and Apollo are fighting in front of Big E and the commentary crew.
Apollo gets to the announce table and hits a moonsault onto Zayn. Crews tossed Zayn back in the ring and Crews goes to the top rope. Zayn blocks it and crotches Crews on the top turnbuckle.
Zayn pins Crews three times, getting a two count each time. Crews hits Zayn with a release German suplex, then a step-up enziguri and a standing moonsault. Zayn rolls up Crews for a pin, but Zayn is grabbing the ropes, so the ref stops the count.
Zayn hits an exploder suplex on Crews into the corner. Zayn runs at Crews for a Helluva kick, but Crews dodges and rolls up Zayn but grabs the tights. The referee doesn’t see Crews grab the tights, and Crews wins.
Winner: Apollo Crews
Apollo walks up to Big E at ringside and grabs Big E’s title. Big E stands up and Crews tosses the belt back to Big E as they trade words.
Adam Pearce is backstage, looking over his contract as he gets ready to head to the ring for the contract signing, which is next.
Back from commercial and we are told that a match between Big E and Apollo Crews for the Intercontinental Championship has been made for next week, and the obstacle course challenge between Bianca Belair and Bayley will also be next week.
Contract Signing Between Roman Reigns and Adam Pearce
Roman, Heyman, and Uso all come down to the ring together. Pierce comes down with the contract. He sits down at the desk in the ring, contract in had. Heyman is pressuring Pearce to sign the contract, and Uso picks him up out of his chair.
Pearce comes around to the other side of the desk as Roman sits at the head of the desk. Pearce opens the contract and signs it, then slides it over to Roman Reigns. Roman signs it, then stares at Pearce while he hands the pen back to Paul.
Pearce grabs the contract and says, “I’ve waited all night for you to do that.” Roman gets a strange look on his face as Pearce quickly walks tout of the ring and up the ramp. As he nears the top of the ramp, he stumbles and limps.
He talks about how he has a knee injury that has crept on him on the worst time. He says that all WWE contracts say the same thing: Card subject to change. He says that, as a WWE official, he will find a suitable replacement, since he might not be medically cleared to wrestle.
He says that he has a suitable replacement in mind. He gestures to the back, and Kevin Owens comes out. Owens signs the contract with a big smile on his face. He looks at Roman in the ring and Roman looks despondent as SmackDown goes off the air!
What did you think of tonight’s show? Who do you think will win between Big E and Apollo Crews next week? What happens next for Shinsuke Nakamura? Will Carmella and Reginald accept Sasha Banks’ challenge? Let us know in the comments below, and come back on Monday for our coverage of Monday Night Raw!