Big huge card tonight as we will see John Cena vs. Baron Corbin, Nikki Bella vs. Natalya and American Alpha vs. The Wyatt Family for the Tag Titles. Tonight! 8pm ET!
SMACKDOWN! LIVE (01.10.17)
BATON ROUGE, LA (River Center)
Host: Tom Phillips
Commentators: Mauro Ranallo, John "Bradshaw" Layfield, David Otunga
Written by Brendan Wahl
The Ambrose Asylum made its return with the new Intercontinental Champion Dean Ambrose bringing out his guest, the FORMER champion (as of last week), the Miz (along with Maryse, of course). Dean announced that he will be in the Royal Rumble and introduced his new mascot, an alligator head named Maurice. Miz accused Ambrose of tainting the integrity of the title and the Royal Rumble itself so he also enters himself into the Rumble match. Miz gave Dean the opportunity to simply hand back the title but instead he gets back his Miz Participation Award. Miz threw the award at him and dished out a beating but Dean ducked a slap and Miz became the recipient instead. Ambrose then dropped Miz with Dirty Deeds and gave Maryse the participation award. She throws it down and Dean happily leaves the ring.
We got a lengthy history package between Nikki Bella and Natalya followed by the latter attacking Bella as she gets prepared for their big match and doing her walk down the hallway. After Natalya made her entrance to the ring, Nikki's music played and she stalled a bit to sell the injury. Eventually, she came out though and got her revenge on Nattie with some brawling all around the ring and inside of it. The match never officially starts and a swarm of referees break up the fight. Eventually, they continued to fight though and then Nattie finished the whole thing off by locking Nikki in the Sharpshooter outside the ring.
Dasha Fuentes talked to Dolph Ziggler, who talked about his attack on Kalisto last week as well as his locker room brawl with Apollo Crews... except that he didn't and simply walked away.
1) Kalisto defeated Dolph Ziggler in 8:37 via a cradle pinfall. Kalisto was aggressive after suffering the superkick at the hands of Dolph last week but the Show-Off put his new persona on display by stalling and keeping his opponent grounded as much as possible. It seemed like Dolph may have made a slower-tempo version of his theme music on display here but I could be wrong. After Kalisto got the win, Dolph snapped and attacked Kalisto with a steel chair as he really starts to settle into his new heel personality. Of course, the fans cheered him anyway because that's what we deal with now. Apollo Crews came out to attack Dolph as retribution for last week but he took a couple of chairshots as well.
Dasha interviewed the Smackdown Tag Team Champions American Alpha with Jordan saying that they are the only Alphas here on Smackdown despite what the Wyatts claim. Gable adds that they'll beat them again and walk out with their belts still around their waists.
Renee Young talked to John Cena, who said that Baron Corbin has nothing to prove.
2) American Alpha retained the Smackdown Tag Team Titles over the Wyatt Family in 15:31 via pinfall when Gable pinned Orton with an O'Connor Roll. Bray and Orton represented the trio with Harper in the corner this time. The match started at some point during the commercial break so the time is not 100% accurate. Gable got a hot near fall with a rollup counter to Sister Abigail and then later hit a very impressive German suplex where it looked like he dead-lifted Orton up and over with no help from Orton at all. Again, we got more dissension in this match between Orton and Harper as the former accidentally knocked Harper off the apron and then later when they collided, it led to the win by the champions. After the contest, both Orton and Harper very nearly came to blows until Bray Wyatt separated the two and then became the accidental victim of a superkick from Harper. Each of the family then left the ring separately to fuel the tension between them all.
A filmed message of Baron Corbin was shown in which Corbin talked about hunting his "prey" tonight, John Cena.
Becky Lynch and Daniel Bryan tried to figure out the identity of La Luchadora but Alexa Bliss interrupts and says that there's no way that this earns Becky any kind of title shot. However, Daniel says that Becky WILL get a title shot against Bliss next week in a Steel Cage!
3) Carmella [w/James Ellsworth] defeated CJ Lunde in 2:42 via submission when she applied the Code of Silence after some James Ellsworth interference. JBL spent most of the match making fun of CJ's look, comparing her to Eleanor Roosevelt and calling her an 'aunt.' We also get a "let's go jobber!" chant from the crowd. Lunde botched a move from Carmella pretty badly just before the finish and she looked really nervous out there.
James Ellsworth was expecting a kiss but Carmella instead promised to take him on a shopping spree next week.
Baron Corbin told Dasha Fuentes that he doesn't care about getting props from John Cena. AJ Styles interrupted to tell him to go out there and do his best AJ impression so he could "beat up John Cena." AJ then joined the announcers for color commentary.
Noam Dar does a quick promo to hype up his match with Cedric Alexander tonight on 205 Live.
4) John Cena defeated Baron Corbin in 10:57 via pinfall when he hits the AA. Corbin dominated a good portion of the match and even countered the AA by simply shifting his weight and landing on the leader of the Cenation. The Lone Wolf did a lot of taunting of Styles by threatening to take the WWE Title either from him or Cena depending on who wins at the Rumble. Cena actually had to use speed and avoid a move from Corbin which says something because usually he makes the comeback with his power moves. Even then, this match was mostly all Baron Corbin on offense.