This week's episode of WWE Smackdown was taped on Tuesday night from the Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa. The announced main event was WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton vs. Christian in a non-title match. The bout was part of The Authoriy's storyline with Orton where they announced on Raw he would have to face all of the Elimination Chamber challengers in singles matches.
In storyline progression, we'll see the continued dissension between Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns. This started at Royal Rumble when Reigns eliminated Ambrose from the match and has spilled over to television. This in the midst of their program with The Wyatt Family. Things continued between Alberto Del Rio and Batista and Daniel Bryan addressed Kane (his former tag team partner) for attacking him on Raw.
This week's show features a bout Internet fans are going to salivate over as Bryan faces Antonio Cesaro in singles competition. Below are my notes from this week's show:
* Prior to the taping began, producers got a look at Alexander Rusev as he went over Tyson Kidd in a dark match with the Camel Clutch. Lana was with Rusev at ringside.
* The show opened with Daniel Bryan coming out for a promo. Referencing the things The Authority said about him on Raw, Bryan said he doesn't want to be the face of WWE. He calls out his former tag team partner Kane for attacking him on Monday. Kane comes out and apologizes for being unprofessional. Bryan encourages him to ditch the corporate gimmick and put his mask back on. The crowd chanted "you sold out" at Kane and he books Bryan vs. Antonio Cesaro.
* WWE United States Champion Dean Ambrose & Roman Reigns w/Seth Rollins beat Dolph Ziggler & Kofi Kingston. The dissension between Reigns and Ambrose continued throughout the match. Remember on Raw, Ambrose tagged himself in when Reigns was going for a spear. He tried to tag himself in here but Reigns caught him. Ziggler capitalized off the distraction but Reigns ended up hitting the spear. After the spear, Reigns tagged in Ambrose and he pinned Ziggler for the win. After the match, Reigns and Ambrose got into it with Seth Rollins playing peacemaker. The Wyatt Family came on the big screen and said they would soon seen how real Bray Wyatt is.
* Sheamus beat Ryback after hitting a Brogue Kick.
* Backstage, Alberto Del Rio tells Renee Young he's going to tame The Animal Batista.
* Daniel Bryan beat Antonio Cesaro. This was good with Bryan making Cesaro tap out in the Yes Lock that he applied off a hurricanrana. Notable spots saw Cesaro counter the diving headbutt with a European uppercut and Bryan's kicks with a powerbomb. After the match, Kane came out, which provided enough distraction for Cesaro to hit the Neutralizer. Kane hit a chokeslam on his former partner. Prior to the match, Zeb Colter came out with Cesaro and Jack Swagger and touted Swagger winning the Elimination Chamber last year. He said Cesaro would win this year.
* Backstage, WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton cut a promo on Christian to hype their non-title main event match later in the night.
* They aired the vignette for Alexander Rusev and Lana.
* WWE Divas Champion AJ Lee w/Tamina beat Nikki Bella w/Brie Bella. AJ hit Black Widow and pinned Nikki to win the match. There was a misstep between the Bella Twins with Nikki inadvertently throwing AJ into Brie, who was on the apron, and knocking her off.
* Backstage, Titus O'Neil talks to Renee Young about his aspirations for WWE gold. Darren Young interrupts with an attack that was broken up.
* Bray Wyatt w/Erick Rowan & Luke Harper beat Goldust w/Cody Rhodes after he hit Sister Abigail. There was a funny moment where Goldust was intrigued by Bray's creepy spider crawl. Goldust hit a massive spinebuster like he did in the tag title bout on Raw. The Wyatt Family neutralized Cody on the outside.
* WWE World Heavyweight Champion Randy Orton beat Christian after hitting the RKO. The match was good, with Orton hitting the RKO on Christian when he went off the ropes. Orton has mastered executing the RKO from any position.
* After the taping, Daniel Bryan beat Bray Wyatt via disqualification when Luke Harper & Erick Rowan interfered. Bryan had the Yes Lock applied but the Wyatt Family made sure he didn't get the victory. The Usos made the save and celebrated with Bryan once they overtook the heels to send the crowd home happy.