SmackDown Report for 3/5/21

SmackDown on Fox Episode #75
SmackDown Episode # 1,124
Orlando, FL – The Thunderdome (Tropicana Field)

The show opens with a video recapping the events that led to Edge choosing Roman Reigns as his opponent for WrestleMania. 

We then go into the ThunderDome where Michael Cole is in the ring as he is set to interview Daniel Bryan who has a big steel cage match against Jey Uso coming up later tonight where if Bryan wins he earns a championship match against Roman Reigns at Fastlane. 

Michael Cole talks about the steel cage match tonight and how if Bryan wins then it would put a wrench into the big tag match that was supposed to happen at Fastlane which saw Bryan teaming up with Edge against Roman Reigns and Jey Uso. Cole then asks Bryan one of the dumbest questions a wrestling announcer has ever asked a wrestler as he asks him why he chose to forgo that tag match and start focussing his attention on Roman Reigns and the Universal Championship. Bryan says Cole is making a lot of assumptions about him forgoing that tag match as he never was told about that tag match, which is a common occurrence because they know he will go with the flow and do whatever is asked of him and will work his ass off while doing it. So he understands why none of the participants in the match nor management ran the match by him. Bryan understands that it would be a dream match and he is the only one who doesn’t want to see it happen so he is going to do whatever it takes to make sure it doesn’t happen. 

Bryan politely tells Cole to leave the ring as he has things taken care of and then he throws to a video package of him winning the Elimination Chamber and the Universal Championship match that followed it. Bryan says he has never felt like more of a failure than when he was laying on the floor after Elimination Chamber and Edge attacked Reigns after the match staking his claim for the Universal Championship. Bryan then talks about how WWE gave the wrestlers tests and his test came back showing that he had the lowest ambition score out of all the other wrestlers who took the test. Bryan says that low ambition score was because he loves wrestling and doesn’t feel like he has had to work one day in the last 21 years. 

Bryan talks about how in the last year he has wanted to be more of a full-time father and less of a full-time wrestler and because of that he has taken a step back and given opportunities to the younger guys, but recently he has realized that taking a step back is the biggest self failure he could ever have. He has come to realize that he has more ambition than a test could ever show and that is why he needs to be in the main event of WrestleMania. Bryan says that in the last three weeks he has wrestled more matches than Edge and Reigns have all of this year combined and every time he comes out to the ring he wrestles because he loves it and him continuing to put himself on the back burner would be a disservice to himself. Bryan says he will beat Uso tonight because that’s the only way he can get into the main event of WrestleMania. 

Roman Reigns and his crew come down to the ring and we go to a commercial. 

We come back from the break and go right back to where we left off as Reigns and crew have joined Bryan in the ring. Reigns says he is confused by the fact that Bryan could ever be ambitious or driven as Bryan is the underdog who waits for opportunities and sometimes it works out whereas ever since he was a kid he has taken what he wanted. Reigns says that Bryan doesn’t love wrestling, he needs wrestling because he has nothing else. Reigns then goes on to explain what his definition of love is and then explains how he loves this business because he doesn’t need to do it but he does because everyone needs him there and soon Bryan will accept that he also needs Reigns. 

Bryan goes to respond to Reigns, but Uso grabs his mic and starts running his mouth about how this is as close as he is going to get to the Universal Championship. Uso then looks to attack Bryan from behind like he did last week, but this time Bryan sees it coming and dumps Uso out of the ring. Bryan and Reigns stare each other down as the segment comes to an end. 

Wow, this opening promo segment was really long and it didn’t need to be anywhere near as long as the Reigns part of the segment really served no purpose and could’ve been left out for the sake of brevity. I have to mention that dumbass question Cole asked Bryan to start out this segment about why he decided not to be in the tag match and instead go after Reigns and the Universal title, Why would anyone want to go for a title instead of being in a tag match, because he wants to be the fucking Universal Champion which is the ultimate goal for every single person in the locker room, whoever came up with that question for Cole to ask Bryan should be fired because they have no business being in the wrestling business. The highlight of this whole segment was the passion Bryan showed during his part of the promo, although I didn’t think the part about him taking the test was really needed as he could’ve gotten his point across without that story. 

We then go to a recap video of the match last week between The Usos and the team of Sami Zayn and King Corbin. The Street Profits make their way to the ring and we go to a commercial break. 

We come back to the Street Profits in the ring and they are about to cut a promo but are interrupted by Sami Zayn who comes out and talks about how last week the Street Profits got a fluke win and tonight he and Corbin will prove it was a fluke. Corbin comes out and interrupts Zayn and tells him they are not tag partners or friends and he doesn’t like Zayn. Corbin says that since he is a singles competitor he wants a singles match against whichever member of the Street Profits wants to face him. Ford tells Corbin to get in the ring and they can do the damn thing and this gets Dawkins excited as he realizes he is going to get to face Zayn, Zayn then thinks there is a conspiracy against him and Corbin is working with the Profits as he was told this was going to be a tag match. Corbin gets into the ring and we are set for our first match of the night.

Match #1: Montez Ford w/ Angelo Dawkins vs King Corbin w/ Sami Zayn

We get a lockup and then Corbin knees Ford in the gut and then sends him into the corner, but when Corbin charges in Ford jumps up and over him and then backflips into the center of the ring where he rocks Corbin with a couple of dropkicks which has Corbin staggering around the ring. Ford runs off the ropes but gets caught with a spinebuster for a 2 count. Corbin traps Ford in the corner and works him over with body shots and then he sends him sternum first into the turnbuckle. 

Corbin is in full control until he decides to talk trash to Ford and this allows Ford to recover enough so that he can jump on Corbin’s back and apply a sleeper, Corbin escapes the sleeper by pulling Ford over his shoulder but Ford lands on his feet and hits Corbin with a combination of kicks. Ford takes a page out of his partner’s playbook as he hits Corbin with a spinning splash in the corner. Ford runs off the ropes and Corbin tries to throw him into the air, but Ford lands on his feet and hits Corbin with a DDT which he follows up with a standing moonsault for a 2 count. Ford goes up to the middle rope but gets distracted by Zayn and this allows Corbin to regain control and moments later he hits Ford with the End of Days which is enough to get the 3 count.
Winner: King Corbin via Pinfall   Match Rating: *½ 

After the match, Corbin and Zayn argue on the floor and then Zayn gets up on the apron where Dawkins knocks him off and he falls onto Corbin. Corbin walks up the ramp leaving Zayn to face Dawkins all on his own and that sends us to a commercial break. 

We come back to the next match already in progress. 

Match #2: Angelo Dawkins w/ Montez Ford vs Sami Zayn
Dawkins slams Zayn head-first into the turnbuckles and then attempts to lift him, but Zayn grabs the ropes to block that from happening. Zayn kicks Dawkins in the gut and then grabs a side headlock but is sent into the ropes and hit with a shoulder block, this leads to a drop-down and leapfrog spot which ends with Dawkins nailing Zayn with a dropkick for a 2 count. Zayn rolls to the ropes so that Dawkins can’t attack him and then he rolls to the floor where he regains control as he slams Dawkins into the barricade and the ring apron before throwing him back into the ring. Zayn hits Dawkins with a clothesline from behind and goes for a pin but only gets a 2 count. 

Zayn hits Dawkins with some right hands and then chokes him on the middle rope while he talks trash to Ford. Zayn sends Dawkins into the ropes and connects with a big clothesline, but he still can’t put Dawkins away as he keeps kicking out. Zayn sends Dawkins into the ropes once again looking for another clothesline, but this time he eats the clothesline and this leads to Dawkins making a comeback as he hits Zayn with the spinning back elbow, the spinning splash in the corner, and the one-handed bulldog. Dawkins attempts an exploder, but Zayn elbows out of it only to be cough moments later in the double underhook spinning neckbreaker which gets a very close 2 count.

Zayn rolls out to the apron and when Dawkins reaches over the ropes to grab him Zayn drops Dawkins throat-first across the top rope. Zayn goes for the Blue Thunder Bomb, but Dawkins blocks it by hitting Zayn with elbows to the back of the head. Dawkins tries for another spinning splash in the corner, but Zayn moves and then hits Dawkins with an exploder in the corner. Zayn sets up to hit the Helluva Kick, but he ends up getting distracted by Ford who is on the floor messing with Zayn’s documentary crew. Dawkins catches Zayn with a schoolboy and keeps him down for the 3 count.
Winner: Angelo Dawkins via Pinfall   Match Rating: **

After the match, Zayn grows suspicious of one of the men on his documentary crew as he says he doesn’t look familiar and then he starts attacking him with knees to the gut. 

While neither match was anything special I really liked how they changed things up this week rather than just having a rematch of what we saw last week. I like the story they are telling with Corbin and Zayn where they are both heels but that don’t necessarily mean they like each other or are automatically going to get along. I will say that the Street Profits didn’t come out looking that great after this as Ford lost his match and Dawkins needed a distraction in order to win his match, this is not the way to build them back up as strong contenders for the tag titles. I also liked the post-match beatdown that Zayn gave to the guy on the documentary crew as his obsession with being a conspiracy theory victim is really starting to make him go crazy. 

We cut to the back where Reginald runs into Carmella (who is looking AMAZING) and she is not happy about his recent infatuation with Sasha Banks and says he betrayed her, Reginald tries to explain himself that he was doing all of this for her but Carmella doesn’t want to hear it. Carmella knocks the tray of champagne out of his hands and then fires him. 

Rey and Dominik Mysterio make their way to the ring and we go to a commercial. 

As we come out of the break we get a video package for Big E which tells us that he will be back next week.

We then go to our next match of the night. 

Match #3: Dominik Mysterio w/ Rey Mysterio vs Chad Gable w/ Otis
We get a lockup and Gable goes behind and hits Dominik with a couple of waistlock takedowns, but when he goes for a third Dominik runs toward the ropes and ducks down which causes Gable to fly out of the ring. Gable runs back into the ring and gets caught with an arm drag and then he looks to work over the arm, but Gable spins around to break Dominik’s grasp and then Gable grabs a side headlock on Dominik which he quickly transitions into a drop toe hold. Gable then goes to work on the leg of Dominik as he slams it into the mat and when Dominik gets to his feet he is taken back down with a dragon screw which is followed by Gable dropping his knees onto the leg of Dominik. Gable puts Dominik in a stepover toehold, but Dominik quickly escapes as he kicks Gable in the face a couple of times and then he hits him with an enziguri. 

Dominik charges at Gable in the corner and looks to hit a monkey flip, but Gable catches him and spins him around so he is sitting on the top turnbuckle, but this ends up being a mistake as Dominik comes off the top with a diving hurricanrana. Dominik hits Gable with a bodyscissors whip which sends him into the middle turnbuckle face-first. Dominik goes up and looks to hit the diving tornado DDT, but Gable throws him off and then catches him with a bridging tiger suplex for a 2 count. Gable goes up top looking for a moonsault but Dominik rolls out of the way but thankfully Gable is able to land on his feet and then tries to catch Dominik in a German suplex, but Dominik blocks it and moments later he rolls Gable up in a pinning combination which was enough to get the 3 count.
Winner: Dominik Mysterio via Pinfall   Match Rating: **½  

After the match, Rey gets some revenge on Otis for the last weeks as he hits Otis with a dropkick through the ropes and then he dives off the apron with a seated senton which sends Otis tumbling over the announce table. 

This was a fun little sprint and I thought both guys worked very smoothly in this match as everything they did looked really good. It’s still amazing how good Dominik is this early in his career, although I shouldn’t be surprised seeing as his father was the exact same way. This feud between the Mysterios and Alpha Academy has become a bit of a hidden gem of a feud as nobody is talking about it but it has been really fun over the past few weeks and all four guys work well with each other. 

We get a video recap of what happened last week between Seth Rollins and Cesaro and then we go backstage for an interview with Rollins (who is rocking a sweet pink blazer). Rollins is asked about what Cesaro did and he can’t understand why Cesaro did that to him and then says Cesaro is afraid of him and afraid to embrace the vision because he knows they are powerful. Rollins says that Cesaro wanted to embarrass him and he will never forget that. 

Rollins then looks over his shoulder to see Buddy Murphy standing behind him and Murphy tells Rollins that perhaps he can assist him with his Cesaro problem, however, Rollins tells him to get out of his sight. 

Shayna Baszler makes her way to the ring alongside Nia Jax as she is in action after the break. 

We come back and get the entrance of Bianca Belair and then Sasha Banks comes down to the ring (looking like a hot pink and black zebra) and Reginald is lagging behind which Sasha doesn’t seem to sit well with Sasha, but nonetheless, we are ready for our next match.

Match #4: Bianca Belair w/ Sasha Banks & Reginald vs Shayna Baszler w/ Nia Jax
They lockup and Shayna goes right for the arm but Bianca lifts her up looking for a slam only for Shayna to slide out the back and grab a side headlock which Bianca reverses into one of her own, but Shayna pushes her off into the corner where Bianca jumps up and over Shayna and then backflips into the center and then takes Shayna down with a shoulder block. Bianca taunts Shayna and then goes for a dropkick but Shayna catches her leg and tries for a toehold, but Bianca kicks her off, and then she dodges a knee strike attempt from Shayna and rolls her up in a schoolgirl for a 2 count. 

Bianca goes for a la magistral but Shayna kicks out and grabs control of the arm where she attempts to bend back the wrist but Bianca breaks away and lifts Shayna up in a fireman’s carry only for Shayna to slide out the back and send Bianca toward the corner, but Bianca leap up and catches Shayna with her legs only to have Shayna kick her arm out from under her. Shayna charges at Bianca in the corner and connects with a knee strike to the arm which is enough to get Shayna a 2 count on a pin attempt. Shayna continues her attack on the arm and wrist of Bianca as she bends the wrist back and then falls back on the arm for arm breaker. Shayna looks to charge at Bianca in the corner once again, but this time Bianca moves out of the way, and then she slams Shayna when she tries to go back to the arm. 

Bianca starts to make her comeback as she hits Shayna with a big right hand and then drives her shoulder into the midsection of Shayna as she is in the corner. Bianca hits Shayna with a suplex and then kips up as she is now on fire. Bianca passes Shayna into the ropes and hits her with a backdrop and then looks to hit her with a double chicken wing slam, but Shayna rolls through sending Bianca crashing out to the floor. Bianca confronts Reginald at ringside and then shoves him into Nia. Bianca slides back into the ring where she is met with a knee strike to the head.

At ringside Nia shoves Reginald away and then looks to run him over but he sidesteps her and she ends up crashing into Sasha. Shayna looks to lock Bianca in the Kirifuda Clutch, but Bianca uses her power to lift Shayna up and hit her with the KOD to pick up the win.
Winner: Bianca Belair via Pinfall   Match Rating: ** 

After the match, Reginald goes over to check on Sasha but she ends up slapping him and telling him to stay out of her business. 

There is so much to talk about with this whole situation, but I will say that the match itself was fine and I was happy to see that Bianca didn’t end up losing after all the distractions at ringside but it would’ve been better had those distractions not happened at all. Why do we need to see Bianca and Sasha team up against Nia and Shayna yet again when they are set to face each other in a big title match at WrestleMania which is only 3 weeks later, they should be focussing on building a story of Sasha vs Bianca, not Sasha teaming with Bianca and furthermore the sole focus should just be on the two competitors in that match and not on Shayna, Nia, and Reginald. This match sells itself we don’t need all of these bells and whistles to get us interested in the match.

On the flip side of what I just said about building to Sasha vs Bianca why are we not starting to build to a big match for Nia and Shayna at WrestleMania? At this point, I have no clue who Nia and Shayna could defend against because the top babyface team in the division which is The Riott Squad hasn’t had a win on TV in forever. I would say that they could defend against an NXT team but it seems like NXT could be bringing in their own women’s tag titles so that won’t be happening either, so I don’t know which way they will turn for the women’s tag titles at WrestleMania and at this point, I don’t think they care.

I do want to give my thoughts about NXT adding their own women’s tag titles as I know there are a lot of people unhappy that this is happening because it means the “main roster” tag champs won’t be floating to NXT to defend the titles, I have no problem with them adding their own titles because they have a women’s division that is stacked enough to make it work and furthermore what is the point of having the “main roster” titles defended there when you know there is zero chance of a team from NXT winning the titles. Vince doesn’t want a “main roster” title being held by a team in NXT and that was made clear this week when Dakota and Raquel lost to Nia and Shayna because if there was ever a team down in NXT that was deserving of those titles it was Dakota and Raquel. Now that NXT has its own tag titles we can actually see a fiercely competitive women’s tag division because we are not getting that on the main roster, unfortunately. 

Now that I have gotten off my soapbox we can continue on with the show.

We go to the back where Reigns and Uso are talking and Reigns tells Uso that if he wins tonight then the Universal Championship is safe until WrestleMania, but if Uso loses he has to defend the title at Fastlane. Reigns says if Uso loses he embarrasses himself and his entire family. Uso tells Reigns that he has got this and walks off and that sends us to a commercial break. 

We come back and it’s time for the next match of the evening. 

Match #5: Cesaro vs Buddy Murphy
Seth Rollins was on commentary for this match.

Cesaro charges right at Murphy and hits him with a couple of gutwrench style slams which gets him a 1 count. Cesaro goes to pick up Murphy but ends up eating a back elbow and then he follows Murphy into the ropes and catches Murphy off a leapfrog attempt with a tilt-a-whirl backbreaker for a 2 count. Cesaro grabs the leg of Murphy but Murphy quickly gets to the ropes and then he dumps Cesaro out of the ring to the floor where he hits him with a tope con hilo. Murphy throws Cesaro back into the ring and goes up top where he connects with a meteora for a 2 count. 

Cesaro shoves Murphy into the corner and looks to charge in but eats a boot and then Murphy looks to dive off the middle rope, but Cesaro catches him with a big uppercut that knocks Murphy silly. Cesaro hits Murphy with several running uppercuts in the corner and then drops him with a big boot. Cesaro gets Murphy in the big swing and then he transitions into the Sharpshooter which is enough to make Murphy tap out.
Winner: Cesaro via Submission   Match Rating: **¼ 

No! No! No! No! Murphy you are not joining back up with Seth Rollins, I did not sit through six months of you two feuding with the Mysterio family where you end up eventually turning on Rollins and banging Aaliyah just so you can come back 3-4 months later without Aaliyah and join back up with Rollins, I will not stand for this! This was a fine match as you would expect from Cesaro and Murphy, but it felt like a total time filler as nothing really happened between Rollins and Cesaro this week. 

We cut to the back where Reginald knocks on Sasha’s locker room door and when she answers it he tries to apologize but she tells him no and slams the door in his face. Reginald walks off looking dejected when he runs into Shayna and Nia, Shayna mocks him and calls him a failure but Nia tells her to stop as she finds him kind of cute.

My thoughts on this little segment are a giant eye roll. 

We go to a commercial break and when we come back Apollo Crews makes his entrance and he is holding a spear (it actually looks more like a shovel) and is accompanied by two men dressed in military fatigues. Crews starts to speak and surprisingly he is talking with an African accent out of nowhere.

Crews says that everywhere he goes he hears people talking about how they don’t like the new Apollo Crews, well he has good news for them because this isn’t the new Apollo Crews this is the real Apollo Crews and this is how he really is and how he really talks. He is a real African-American and this is his Nigerian elite guard who has protected his family for many generations and now they protect him. Crews says that he has heard many stories of his Nigerian heritage from his father, but he has always been ashamed to accept that heritage because he wanted to fit in with everyone else and he would never be accepted for who he truly is. Crews says that even his closest friends who knew of his heritage mocked him and asked him ridiculous questions. Crews says his ancestry is full of the most feared and respected warriors in the history of Nigeria. 

Crews then moves on to say that he is happy that Big E is coming back next week because Big E tried to conquer him and humble him, but he is no longer the man that Big E dismissed and he wants another shot at the Intercontinental Championship and this time he promises to leave Big E a broken man for the rest of his life. 

Isn’t it amazing how just giving someone time to cut a promo can instantly make them feel like a star, imagine if they had done this for Crews years ago instead of just having him come out as the smiley babyface who is just happy to be there. I love Crews coming to the ring with the guard as that makes him feel like a big deal as well. One thing that I feel is a miss about all of this is having Crews suddenly start talking with an African accent as that isn’t really needed for us to believe his story of being Nigerian and I’m not even going to get into how the accent can come off as racist as I’m not the person to judge that aspect of it either positively or negatively. 

We then go to the back where Natalya and Tamina are complaining about not being given the title shot at Fastlane. Adam Pearce tells them the match has been made and that is the end of it, but as he walks off Sonya Deville tells them she would’ve made a different decision. 

While I have no love for Natalya or Tamina nor do I want to see that match ever happen they do have a point as they have beat the Riott Squad numerous times and deserve a shot before a put-together team who has already lost against Nia and Shayna. 

We go to the back where Uso is interviewed about the cage match which is coming up shortly and he says Bryan shouldn’t have stepped up to Reigns, Bryan then attacks Uso from behind as payback for the last two weeks. We then go to a commercial break.

We come back and it’s time for a surprise edition of Ding Dong, Hello! which is taking place backstage in the interview ring. Bayley introduces a new segment where she reads some sweet tweets from her fans since there are no mean tweets out there about her. Bayley reads two tweets that are positive towards her but when she gets to the third one she stops and looks over to ask someone if they wrote this one and then she crumples up the card and leaves slamming the stand-alone door behind her. 

We go to the ring where Corey Graves is inside the steel cage hyping up the brutality it can cause and also going over the rules of the match. 

We get the entrances for our main event including Reigns who takes a seat at ringside to watch the match and then we go to a commercial break. 

We come back and it’s time for the main event.

Match #6: Daniel Bryan vs Jey Uso w/ Roman Reigns & Paul Heyman (Steel Cage Match)
Bryan charges right at Uso as the bell rings and they trade punches until Bryan hits an uppercut and a kick to the leg and then he looks to throw Uso into the cage, but Uso reverses and Bryan crashes into the cage instead. Uso slams Bryan’s head up against the cage a couple of times and then he grinds the side of his face into it and this brings Reigns to his feet as he stares at Bryan. Uso picks Bryan up in a fireman’s carry position and drives his head into the cage and then Uso calls for the door to be open but Bryan grabs Uso before he can escape which results in Uso beating Bryan down with several punches. Uso then starts to climb the cage but Bryan is able to get to his feet and grab a hold of Uso’s foot preventing him from climbing out. Bryan and Uso are on the top rope and slam each other’s head into the cage and then Uso jumps down and grabs the leg of Bryan causing him to fall crotch first onto the top rope and then Uso hits him with a big right hand.

Bryan is in between the ropes and the cage as Uso slams him face-first into the top turnbuckle and then tries to do it for a second time but Bryan blocks it and slams Uso’s head into the steel. Bryan goes up top and takes Uso down with a missile dropkick and now both men are down, both men slowly come to and Bryan gets to his feet first and hits Uso with a running kick to the arm and then he hits Uso with an arm breaker before sending Uso into the cage shoulder-first. Bryan continues to work over the arm of Uso and then he looks to send Uso into the corner, but Uso reverses the whip causing Bryan to backflip off the top, and then Bryan ducks a clothesline and starts climbing the cage until Uso grabs his foot and pulls him down.

Uso puts Bryan in the tree of woe and starts stomping on the bad knee. Uso tries to climb the cage but the injured arm that Bryan worked over is slowing him down and this allows Bryan to pull himself up and grab the leg of Uso to stop him in his tracks. Bryan climbs up the cage to join Uso and then headbutts him in order to make him get down and it works, but then Uso grabs Bryan and hits him with a Samoan drop off the top rope and now both men are down as we go to a commercial break.

We come back to Bryan and Uso trading strikes as they both straddle the top of the cage, Bryan gets his feet out of the cage at one point but Uso brings him right back in. Bryan and Uso climb down to the top rope where Bryan leans Uso up against the cage wall and starts kicking him in the chest, but Uso comes back with a superkick which causes Bryan to fall back into the ring. Uso hits Bryan with the Uso Splash, but somehow Bryan is able to kick out. Uso calls for the door as he slowly crawls toward it, but Bryan grabs his foot to stop him and as Uso gets to his feet he hits Bryan with an enziguri only for Bryan to come back with a roundhouse and Uso tops that by hitting Bryan with the superkick, but that still isn’t enough to keep Bryan down for the count. 

Uso slowly tries to work his way to his feet, but Bryan catches him in a crucifix for a 2 count but when Uso kicks out Bryan transitions into hitting Uso with elbow strikes to the side of the head. Bryan tries to transition into the Yes Lock, but Uso blocks it and starts punching away at Bryan from the mount position and he follows that up with a catapult into the cage. Uso says it’s over as he starts to climb the cage, but Bryan is able to climb the cage and stop him and then Bryan starts to climb out but Uso puts him in a cravate and uses that to pull Bryan back into the cage. Bryan fights back as he slams the arm of Uso into the cage and then he hits Uso with the butterfly suplex off the top and then he locks in the Yes Lock, Uso tries his best to stay in the fight as he gets to the ropes, but that means nothing in this match and then Bryan pulls back further on the neck of Uso leaving him no choice but to tap out.
Winner: Daniel Bryan via Submission   Match Rating: ***¾ 

SmackDown comes to a close with Daniel Bryan celebrating his big win as Roman Reigns looks pissed off and one can only wonder what consequences Uso will have to face for losing this big-time match. 

This was yet another great match in the series of matches between Bryan and Uso and the fact that it was inside the steel cage made it even better as they were able to come up with some creative ways to inflict punishment on each other. It was nice to see the match end in submission as it feels like most WWE cage matches end with someone escaping the cage so this was a nice change of pace. I’m looking forward to the match between Reigns and Bryan at Fastlane as they have the potential to have a fantastic match as their match in 2015 at Fastlane was a show stealer and I expect nothing less than that for this match. 

I am going to add a new section to the end of my reviews each week as a way to recap the entire episode and I’m going to call it the 5 Count where I will list both the top 5 pros and top 5 cons of the episode. I will always list the cons first because I want to end the review on a good note.


  1. The build to Sasha vs Bianca – Too many extra elements being thrown into the feud that are not needed.
  2. The lack of building up a credible babyface women’s team that could go on to face Nia and Shayna at WrestleMania.
  3. The sudden African accent being used by Apollo Crews.
  4. The teasing of Murphy joining back up with Rollins only months after having Murphy turn on Rollins.
  5. The stupid question Michael Cole asked Bryan during the opening segment.


  1. The main event steel cage match between Daniel Bryan and Jey Uso.
  2. The promo by Apollo Crews that did a lot to build up his new heel persona.
  3. The passion showed by Daniel Bryan during the opening promo.
  4. The underrated feud of the Mysterios vs Alpha Academy – Midcard feud that is over-delivering
  5. The fashion style of Sasha Banks and the fact that she is always looking like a star. 

That’s it for me for this week, I’ll be back next week for more action from the blue brand.