SmackDown Report for 4/24/20

SmackDown on Fox Episode #30
SmackDown Episode # 1,079
Orlando, FL – WWE Performance Center

Before we go into the intro video we see a hype video for tonight’s celebration of Triple H’s 25 year anniversary. 

We then throw to the announcers that hype up tonight’s show. 

The new SmackDown Tag Team Champions New Day come to the ring and talk about becoming eight-time tag team champions and then Kofi runs down a list of Hall of Fame worthy teams that they have more title reigns than, Big E starts going on a tangent but gets interrupted by the Lucha House Party. LHP congratulates New Day but says they are tired of getting passed up on title opportunities by all the other teams so they are here to be the first to challenge New Day. 

Miz and Morrison come out and head straight to the ring walking right past LHP, Miz is upset that New Day claim to be the new tag team champions despite the fact that they won the titles in a match where only one member of each team was allowed in the match and then he goes on to say that New Day has never beat them in a regular tag team match. Miz goes on to say that New Day makes the titles a joke and they want their titles back right now. LHP enters the ring and Metalik lets Miz have it in Spanish and Miz tells Morrison to translate since he spent time wrestling in Mexico and Morrison says that Metalik said he respects Miz. Big E says that’s not what Metalik said and he can’t say what he really said, Dorado starts to tell Miz what Metalik said but is interrupted by The Forgotten Sons. 

Steve Cutler introduces himself and his comrades and then talks about how they were treated like trash after serving their country and they are gonna reign over the SmackDown tag division. Miz talks trash to the Forgotten Sons and demands respect, but the often silent Jaxon Ryker speaks up and says that The Miz is a poser as he only plays the role of a marine in the movies while he is a genuine real-life marine. The Forgotten Sons take the first shot and we get a brawl in the ring that ends up with The Forgotten Sons beating down the babyfaces while Miz & Morrison run away unharmed. Ryker powerbombs Kofi on top of Big E to end the segment and go to break.

This was a fine segment with the exception of The Forgotten Sons who are just terrible at everything except for what happens in the ring, their motivation for being assholes is that they were treated like crap after serving our country but we have yet to see any evidence of this being a thing so they just come off as three whining assholes instead of three intimidating badasses that they should be portrayed as. 

We come back from the break to a video highlighting Triple H’s days as Hunter Hearst Helmsley the stuck up pompous douchebag. 

Miz and Morrison are interviewed backstage and they want the Lucha House Party in a match tonight. 

Match #1: King Corbin vs Drew Gulak w/ Daniel Bryan (Money in the Bank Qualifying Match)
The match starts with a lock up and then Corbin uses his power to gain control and throw Gulak over the top rope, but fortunately, Gulak lands on his feet. Gulak gets back into the ring and locks up with Corbin and then goes in with a single leg takedown that grounds Corbin. Gulak grabs a side headlock momentarily but Corbin shoves him off. Corbin rushes in and backs Gulak up against the ropes only for Gulak to slip away, Gulak tries to trade hands with Corbin but ends up on the losing end when Corbin lands a body blow and then drives his elbow into the neck of Gulak. Gulak goes for another single leg but Corbin has it scouted this time and blocks it but Gulak comes back with a dropkick to the leg and then a boot to the head which sends Corbin out to the floor. Gulak baseball slides Corbin sending him into the announce table and then follows up with another dropkick and this sends Corbin flying back over the announce table as we go to break. 

We come back from commercial and Gulak is working over the arm of Corbin, but Corbin powers Gulak back into the corner and then whips him into the corner but is able to avoid the contact, and then Corbin goes out and back in where he takes Gulak down with a clothesline. Corbin continues to work over Gulak with strikes, Gulak tries yet again for a single leg only for Corbin to block it again, but Gulak spins out and delivers a forearm to Corbin and then Gulak goes for a surprise roll-up, but Corbin kicks out at 2. Corbin cuts Gulak back down with a knee and then hits him with a wrist clutch spinning side slam. Corbin talks trash to Gulak and then puts the boots to Gulak in the corner. 

Corbin talks more trash and then goes for another kick, but Gulak catches his leg and then makes a comeback as he fires away with forearms that end up backing Corbin into the corner. Corbin shoves Gulak away and tries for a clothesline, but Gulak ducks and hits a dropkick that has Corbin reeling, Gulak charges in but is caught by the throat and Corbin looks to hit the chokeslam backbreaker, but Gulak counters it into a sunset flip that gets 2 count. Gulak continues to take it to Corbin as he hits him with a crossbody for another 2 count. 

Corbin rolls out of the ring and Gulak goes for a baseball slide, but this time Corbin moves out of the way only for Gulak to catch his leg and dragon screw Corbin into the steel steps. Corbin rolls back into the ring and Gulak goes up top where he comes off with a clothesline that gets yet another 2 count. Cesaro and Nakamura appear out of nowhere and grab Bryan, they pull him over the barricade and send him into one of the LED screens. Cesaro and Nakamura come over the barricade and Gulak takes down Cesaro with a clothesline off the steps. Nakamura distracts Gulak which allows for Corbin to shove him into the ring post. Corbin rolls Gulak back into the ring and hits the End of Days which ends the match.
Winner: King Corbin via Pinfall    Match Rating:  **1/2

This was a good match that was better than I expected it to be and I really liked the fire Gulak showed during his comebacks. I really hope they don’t have Corbin win the Money in the Bank to make up for him failing to cash it in successfully last time, but they did give him the King of the Ring win so I could see them giving him the Money in the Bank briefcase as well. 

After the match, Cesaro and Nakamura show up and help hold Gulak up so Corbin can hit him with the scepter. 

We cut to the announce table, where they talk about Rob Gronkowski going back to the NFL with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (along with Tom Brady) and they, say that despite his return he still has to defend the 24/7 Championship and then we go to break. 

Looks like Gronk didn’t want to pursue a career in WWE as much as he acted like he did, it will be interesting to see who ends up with the 24/7 Title next, if I were WWE I would try to get some mainstream publicity by having Tom Brady win it from Gronk. 

We come back to our next match of the night. 

Match #2: Sheamus vs Daniel Vidot
Vidot goes right at Sheamus with forearm shots until Sheamus picks him up and drives him into the corner and then beats Vidot down in the corner with body shots and a spinning back elbow. Sheamus brings Vidot out of the corner and repeatedly elbows Vidot in the back. Sheamus then delivers some knees to the head and clubbing blows to the chest and then he finishes things off with a Brogue Kick for the win. 
Winner: Sheamus via Pinfall   Match Rating: *

Another week means another squash match for Sheamus. Daniel Vidot looks like he could be a Roman Reigns stunt double. 

We then go to chapter three of the Jeff Hardy comeback story and this part covers his return at WrestleMania 33 up to his most recent injury. We will be getting the fourth and final part of the story next week. 

The Miz & John Morrison make their way to the ring as we go to commercial. 

We come back from the break to another Triple H video and this one covers his time as a member of D-Generation X. 

We cut back to the announce table where Cole continues to talk up Jeff Hardy and then we see that Sheamus is standing behind him. Sheamus rips Cole’s headset off and stares him down while Lucha House Party makes their entrance at the same time. 

Match #3: The Miz & John Morrison vs Lucha House Party (Lince Dorado & Gran Metalik)
Miz and Dorado start things off with a lock up and Miz pushes Dorado into the corner and goes for a clothesline, but Dorado ducks and delivers kicks to the leg of Miz. Dorado flips over the back of Miz and chops him and then goes for a springboard move, but Miz boots him right in the face. Miz hits a hard chop on Dorado and then drags him into the heel corner where Miz and Morrison hit their backbreaker slingshot elbow combo move. Morrison toys around with Dorado by giving him some weak kicks and then he flips him up onto his shoulder, but Dorado arm drags out of the move and then charges toward Morrison only for Morrison to toss him over his head where Dorado lands feet first on the middle turnbuckle and this allows Metalik to make a blind tag. Dorado backflips off the turnbuckle but Morrison ducks and walks right into an overhead kick by Metalik. Metalik hits the falling splash off of Dorado’s shoulders for a 2 count. 

Metalik tags Dorado back in and Morrison shoves Metalik through the ropes to the floor and then Dorado slides under Morrison’s legs and runs off the ropes, but Morrison catches him and hits a rolling Alabama slam followed by a running knee strike. Morrison grabs Dorado and gains control of the arm as he tags in Miz and they hit a double gutbuster on Dorado. Miz beats down Dorado some before tagging Morrison back in. Miz snapmares Dorado into the middle of the ring and then hits him with a running boot to the head and Morrison follows up with another running knee strike and a standing shooting star press which gets a 2 count. 

Dorado is trying to catch his breath when Morrison chokes him across the bottom rope. Morrison picks Dorado up but this was a mistake as Dorado fires up with punches until Morrison lands a forearm and takes Dorado down with a single leg and then reigns down with mounted punches. Morrison sends Dorado into the ropes but Dorado comes back with a handspring stunner which causes Morrison to fall back into a tag to The Miz. Miz runs over to cut the ring off so that Dorado can’t make the tag but Dorado kicks him away and then makes the hot tag to Metalik. Metalik springboards in and takes Miz down with a crossbody and then slides under a big boot attempt only to get hit with that boot moments later. Metalik stumbles back into the corner and Miz charges in but Metalik gets his boot up and then hits Miz with a sling blade bulldog and then goes up top where he attempts the moonsault, but Miz gets the boots up. Miz botches a kip-up and then picks Metalik up as he looks to hit the Skull Crushing Finale, but out of nowhere Metalik executes a victory roll and in a total upset LHP gets the win.
Winners: Lucha House Party via Pinfall   Match Rating: **¾ 

This match was a lot of fun especially when it was Morrison and Dorado going back and forth. I definitely wasn’t expecting the upset win, but I’m not complaining as I would love to see LHP become serious contenders for the tag titles as they are a really good team that always deliver when given the chance. 

We go to another commercial. 

We come back and go straight to our next match 

Match #4: Lacey Evans vs Sasha Banks w/ Bayley (Money in the Bank Qualifying Match)
Sasha Banks makes her way to the ring and she has a cutout picture of Lacey’s daughter on a stick and is using it as if it were a fan. 

As soon as the bell rings Bayley pops up on the apron with the picture of Lacey’s daughter and this causes Lacey to charge at her and Sasha uses this distraction to her advantage as she attacks Lacey from behind and the action quickly spills out to the floor where Lacey sends Sasha into the barricade. Bayley runs over to check on Sasha but Lacey grabs her and pulls back her arm looking to hit Bayley with the Woman’s Right, but Sasha pushes Lacey which causes her to crash into the ring post hand first. Sasha throws Lacey back into the ring and hits her with an arm breaker and then she wraps the damaged hand over the top rope and pulls on it. Sasha lays Lacey in the corner horizontally and goes for the double knee drop, but Lacey gets out of the way sending Sasha’s knees crashing to the mat. 

Lacey makes a comeback as she takes Sasha down with a clothesline and a big boot, Lacey has Sasha down in the corner and tries for the rope-assisted bronco buster, but her bad hand makes it where she can’t post herself on the ropes to hit the move, Sasha takes advantage of this by sending Lacey’s hand into the ring post once again and then if that wasn’t enough she kicks it so that Lacey’s hand is sandwiched between the ring post and Sasha’s boot. Sasha goes up top and hits a Meteora, but that is only enough to get a 2 count. Sasha hammerlocks the arm of Lacey but Lacey is able to get out of it with a back elbow and a drop toe hold into the middle turnbuckle. Lacey is able to hit the bronco buster this time to the back of Sasha and then she repeatedly slams Sasha’s head into the ring post. 

Lacey goes up to the middle rope and drags Sasha up there with her, Sasha blocks a superplex attempt and then stomps on the bad hand of Lacey and then she slips between Lacey’s and continues to stomp on Lacey’s hand repeatedly. Sasha powerbombs Lacey out of the corner which gets a 2 count and then Sasha immediately transitions into the Bank Statement, Lacey is able to escape the hold and then gets a backslide on Sasha for a 2 count. Sasha kicks Lacey’s hand once again to regain control of the match. Sasha runs off the ropes and Lacey connects out of nowhere with the Woman’s Right, Lacey goes for the cover only for Bayley to place Sasha’s foot on the rope at the last second. 

Lacey grabs Bayley by the hair and drags her up to the apron but the referee breaks them up, Sasha takes this as an opportunity to roll Lacey up, but the referee is still dealing with Bayley as she takes her time to get off the apron and this allows Lacey enough time to get her wits about her and kick out. Sasha stares Bayley down as she feels like Bayley intentionally distracted the referee and then Sasha turns around into another Woman’s Right and that is enough to finish off The Boss.
Winner: Lacey Evans via Pinfall   Match Rating: **1/2

After the match, Tamina lays Bayley out with a superkick to send us to break. 

This match was all about Sasha working over the hand of Lacey so she can’t hit the Woman’s Right but then she ends up hitting not one but two of them despite all the damage Sasha did to her hand, which made zero sense. I liked how they continued to tease the break up of Sasha and Bayley at the end of the match with Bayley staying on the apron just a couple of seconds too long to distract the referee from counting the pinfall because she had to find a way to keep Sasha out of Money in the Bank so that she doesn’t have to worry about Sasha winning a guaranteed title shot against her because she knows that Sasha is the only person on the SmackDown roster that can beat her. It was nice how it seemed like Sasha and Bayley were back to being friends after the match, but at the same time, Sasha didn’t seem too bothered when Tamina laid out Bayley with the superkick. 

We come back to a video package on the history between Braun Strowman and Bray Wyatt 

We then get another video on everything going on with Mandy Rose, Otis, Dolph Ziggler, & Sonya Deville which is to set up the announcement that next week we will have our final qualifying matches which will be Otis vs Dolph Ziggler and Mandy Rose vs Carmella. 

We cut to the back where Carmella is stretching for the tag titles match that she has coming up next when her tag partner Dana walks up and they talk about how both of them could be in the money in the bank match and also be the tag team champions and Carmella admits that Dana inspired her last week to go for both. 

When we come back from another commercial we see another Triple H video and this one covers his quad tear in 2001 and his big return in January of 2002. 

Match #5: Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross © vs Carmella & Dana Brooke (WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship)
Dana and Nikki start the match out and right out of the gate Dana takes Nikki down with a running dropkick and this sends Nikki rolling to the outside. Carmella comes off the apron with a crossbody on Alexa and then Nikki throws Carmella into the barricade and then Dana dives off the barricade with a crossbody onto Nikki as we go to break. 

We come back from the break to see both Dana and Nikki making hot tags to their respective partners. Carmella takes Alexa down with a pair of clotheslines and then runs Alexa into her boot. Carmella moonwalks and then hits Alexa with a bronco buster followed by a kick that gets a 2 count when Nikki breaks the cover. On the outside, Dana takes Nikki out with a handspring back elbow into the ring post. Alexa takes Dana down with a baseball slide and this gives Carmella a chance to roll Alexa up in a schoolgirl which gets a 2 count. 

Alexa hits a big right hand and then goes up to the middle rope, but Carmella cuts her off only for Alexa to hit her with another right hand. Carmella goes for a handstand frankensteiner out of the corner, but before she hits it Nikki makes a blind tag. Nikki goes for a crucifix pin but Carmella kicks out and then Nikki headbutts her in the midsection before tagging Alexa back in. Carmella counters the Purge and hits a couple of kicks on Nikki and then goes in for a third one but Nikki catches her and they hit her with an assisted DDT which looked like a modified version of a 3D and this is enough to keep the gold around their waists.
Winners: Alexa Bliss & Nikki Cross via Pinfall   Match Rating: **

This was a pretty underwhelming title match but I did like the finish. I’m curious to see who the next challengers are for Alexa and Nikki as there aren’t any teams for them to face unless they decide to finally bring back the IIconics and let those two teams feud for a few months. 

We go to break and when we come back it’s time for the Triple H 25th Anniversary Celebration.

Triple H comes out and is fixing to get on the ring apron to do his big water spitting spot, but before he can someone grabs the water bottle as spitting water everywhere is a no-no during a pandemic. Triple H can’t believe it’s been 25 years and before he can continue Shawn Michaels makes his way to the ring. 

Triple H goes in to hug Shawn, but Shawn says he has two words for Triple H and that is Social Distancing. Shawn said he sent invites to all of Triple H’s friends and family and as you can see they all showed up, Triple H points out that at least Cole and Graves are there but Shawn says they are obligated to be there as part of SmackDown. Shawn talks about how he and Triple H have been friends ever since Triple H walked in the door of the WWE, but he never got a chance to thank Triple H for his own 25th Anniversary show. They then do a bit where Triple H tries to remember one moment from the night of Shawn’s Anniversary show which leads to Shawn eventually saying he never got a 25th Anniversary show. 

Triple H and Shawn move on to talk about their days in D-Generation X and talk about how they did everything in one take and this leads to a blooper reel of Triple H and Shawn Michaels. Shawn talks about how he is Mr. WrestleMania, but his accolades are far outmatched by Triple H’s performances at WrestleMania, this leads to another video of all of Triple H’s WrestleMania losses after the video Triple H asks Shawn how many WrestleMania matches he has lost but Shawn ignores him. 

Triple H talks about all of his great opponents over the years and Shawn says those were good times, but then he says there came the time when Triple H met Stephanie No Fun and then he goes on and on mocking her until Triple H’s phone rings and it’s Stephanie who is complaining about Shawn mocking her while Triple H is trying to brush it off but she says she can see it on the TV and he is continuing to mock her and Stephanie starts to call Shawn something really bad but Triple H hangs up on her. Shawn then moves on to talking about Ric Flair and how Evolution was something special and then Flair calls in and congratulates Triple H and tells him not to let Shawn superkick him at the end of the segment and then he is moved to tears and has to hang up, but then he calls right back and is exaggeratingly crying as we abruptly cut to commercial.   

We come back and Triple H has Road Dogg on the phone and Road Dogg doesn’t want to hang up despite them being back live so Triple H hangs up on him. Shawn says they are starting to run out of time, but Triple H assures him that he has talked to Fox and they are allowing him to go as late as he wants and this brings out Vince McMahon. Vince congratulates Triple H on 25 years and says normally he would come down and give Triple H a big hug, but he better not do that right now. Vince goes on to talk about how this is the most boring segment he has ever seen and that says a lot considering all the awful and boring things that have happened in WWE such as the Gobbledy Gooker, Katie Vick, and Bayley This Is Your Life which he says wasn’t Bayley’s fault at all. Vince tells Triple H he loves him and Triple H says he loves Vince and then Vince says it’s time to go as he walks to the back. Triple H starts asking if he is throwing them out and then the lights start going out and crickets start chirping as the show comes to a close. 

Good Lord this segment felt way longer than it actually was, but I guess that is to be expected as it was centered around the guy who has to have the longest WrestleMania match each year. This was nothing more than a 20 minute Triple H jerk fest with a lot of really bad jokes coming from two middle-aged men. The Vince part of the segment was awkward although it was nice to see him be self-aware that his company has produced a lot of crap throughout the years. I was expecting the segment to end with something happening that would maybe give a current talent a rub from being in a segment with Triple H and Shawn Michaels, but instead, it just had a very flat and anti-climactic ending. 

Compared to last week this episode was very underwhelming and the ending segment was really bad. The highlight of the episode was the Miz and Morrison vs Lucha House Party match. The show was also hurt by not having Mandy, Otis, Sonya, or Ziggler on the show as that is by far the most interesting story on SmackDown. Hopefully, we will get a better show next week as we will have our final two qualifying matches when Mandy faces Carmella and in a WrestleMania 36 rematch Otis takes on Dolph Ziggler. 

That’s it for me for this week, I’ll be back next week as we continue our journey to WWE HQ where six men and six women will have the chance to literally climb the corporate ladder. 

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