July 18, 2014
The current WWE champs are as follows:
WWE World Heavyweight Champion: John Cena (6/29/2014)
WWE Intercontinental Champion: Vacant (6/30/2014)
WWE U.S. Champion: Sheamus (5/5/2014)
WWE Divas Champion: AJ Lee (6/30/2014)
WWE Tag Team Champions: The Usos (3/3/2014)
Your hosts are Michael Cole and JBL.
It’s time to play the music. It’s time to light the lights. It’s time to meet Dean Ambrose on Smackdown tonight. They take us back to this past week on Raw when he was taken out of the six-man tag match and had to spend the night in the hospital thanks to a beatdown by Seth Rollins, Randy Orton, and Kane. I wish Ambrose had done what Sting did when he was sent to the hospital right before a big TV match with Rick Rude. You know, show up at the last minute and take your beating like a man. How heroic would it have been to have seen Ambrose stagger to the ring, climb onto the apron, and reach out to Cena for that hot tag. But nooooooo. Anyways, Ambrose is here wanting more from the Authority. Rollins appears on the TitanTron to tell Ambrose that he’s got more guts than brains. Ambrose calls Rollins out for a fight that cannot wait until Sunday. Unfortunately, Rollins has a tweaked knee and can’t compete tonight. Sorry, pal. Ambrose thinks Rollins is just scared and tells Rollins to come out anyway and face his fears. Rollins refuses to oblige him and informs Ambrose that he’s got a match tonight with Kane. The range that Kane has to set those corners on fire is AMAZING.
– Dolph Ziggler & Sheamus vs. The Miz & Fandango
Fandango is all alone. The Miz is a delusional poor man’s Hollywood Rock from 2003. This team is just sad. Dolph and Sheamus have no trouble with the pretty boys to start. To play off the finish from his match with Sheamus on the Main Event, Miz is afraid of having any damage done to his face. Let’s take a commercial break. When we return, Fandango gets caught shaking his booty on the apron by Sheamus. Miz distracts Sheamus and that allows Fandango to escape and deliver a spinning heel kick. Now Sheamus is *your* face in peril. White Noise from Sheamus to Fandango sets up the hot tag. Inverted Rocker Dropper by Ziggler to Miz gets two. Jumping DDT to Miz garners the same result. Miz ducks the Brogue Kick and Fandango gets wiped out. So much for this tag team. Miz dumps out Sheamus, but backs up into the Zig Zag as Ziggler scores the pinfall. (7:30 shown) Love the random tag teams put together as they all look forward to the Battleground Battle Royal over the IC title. **½
– Special Guest Referee: Nikki Bella – Alicia Fox vs. Eva Marie
Cole’s sources told him that Stephanie McMahon made Nikki Bella the special guest referee for this contest. JBL plainly tells us that the reason behind this decision is that it “gives Nikki something to do.” I can’t argue with that. Eventually, Alicia and Eva Marie start beating the crap out of her for the DDQ. (1:30) That’s what you get Nikki for sticking up for family!
Elsewhere, Goldust and Stardust talk to one another. This gets David Bowie weird.
– Chris Jericho vs. Luke Harper (w/Bray Wyatt & Erick Rowan)
Jericho has a big bruise on the side of his face to sell the Sister Abigail he received on the ramp this past week on Raw. From his rocking chair, Bray reminds Jericho that he needs to remember to save himself. Harper bullies Jericho around the ring to start. Jericho knocks him through the ropes and to the floor to take us into commercial. And we’re back. Harper and Jericho work off a chinlock for quite a bit here. Jericho mounts his comeback with a flying elbow smash. When he can’t get the Walls of Jericho, he settles for the enziguri for two. Harper shocks Jericho with a Michinoku Driver for a nearfall. Jericho delivers a flying bodypress, but then eats a big boot. Sitout powerbomb by Harper gets 1-2-NO! Jericho comes back with the Lionsault, but he’s slow to cover. Codebreaker gets shoved away and Jericho looks for the Walls of Jericho again. Rowan senses trouble and hops up on the apron. Jericho takes care of Rowan with the springboard dropkick. Harper wants the Discus Lariat, but Jericho ducks and rolls up Harper for the three-count. (9:30 shown) After the bell, the Wyatts jump Jericho until the Usos clean house. I feel like we’ve seen this recently with someone else. Hmm. **½
After we see what Jack Swagger did to Rusev this past week on Raw, Zeb Colter and Swagger are in the ring to assure us that Swagger will be “crush proof” come Battleground. Rusev and Lana interrupt for the standard counter argument.
– Kofi Kingston vs. Alberto Del Rio
Cole and JBL put over Kingston’s recent string of wins. ADR dumps Kingston to the floor for a big spot. As Kingston gets whipped into the apron, he launches himself through the ropes and comes back around to nail Del Rio with a tope suicida. Pretty freaking awesome. Cole expects to see Kingston do something amazing in the Battleground Battle Royal. Back inside, Kofi clotheslines Del Rio around and hits the Boom Drop. Del Rio avoids Trouble in Paradise and superkicks Kingston for two. SOS by Kofi gets two. Over to the corner, Del Rio stops a superplex and double-stomps Kingston for the win. (4:30) Short, fun match here. I’d love to see Del Rio stick around as a strong mid-card guy. *½
Fandango tries to make good with Layla and Summer Rae backstage. Once he wins the IC title at Battleground, he hopes the two of them will come back to him. Layla and Summer Rae both feel they deserve better than “Flamingo”. After they leave, Bo Dallas provides some encouragement for Fandango. That was actually pretty funny.
– AJ Lee & Paige vs. Layla & Summer Rae
Summer Rae dances around to start and then gets kicked around by AJ for showing off her talents. Paige gets caught on the wrong side of town while JBL makes fun of the current generation breaking up relationships over Twitter. I’ll give it to him to there. AJ taps out Summer Rae with the Black Widow. (2:30) Paige gives AJ the stink eye after the match, but then they share a passive aggressive hug. ¾*
Backstage, Seth Rollins tries to smooth things over with Kane on Randy Orton’s behalf. It was all just about the WWE world title, you see? Nothing personal. Kane plans to deal with Orton on his own and hopes he’s watching tonight, because he’s got plans for Dean Ambrose. Rollins wants Kane to leave him just a piece for Battleground. Kane warns Rollins not to cash in his MITB briefcase this Sunday. Geez, spoiler alert.
– Dean Ambrose vs. Kane
Much like Ambrose’s match with Orton two weeks ago, Kane works the injured shoulder quite a bit. Ambrose makes a good comeback with a tornado DDT and then slugs Kane down so he can climb up to the top rope and connect with a missile dropkick. McGuinness Lariat gets goozled, but Ambrose escapes and dumps out Kane for the tope suicida. Big mistake though as Kane runs Ambrose into the steps. He looks for the Tombstone on the steps, but Ambrose slips away and runs Kane into the ringpost. Just as things are looking up for Ambrose, Rollins appears and decks Ambrose with the MITB briefcase for the DQ. (5:00) Cole wonders why Rollins isn’t limping now. It was all a ruse! Afterwards, Kane and Rollins slide the bottom half of the stairs in the ring so that Rollins can Curb Stomp Dean’s face on them. The Authority hold their heads high while standing over a beaten Ambrose as we close out the show.
Until next week, so long for now. Enjoy WWE Battleground this Sunday night on the WWE Network!