Smackdown opens with a 9/11 "Never Forget" graphic. Well, how are we ever going to if you keep bringing it up every year?!
Welcome to Bleeding Cool's WWE Smackdown report. We watch, so you don't have to!
WWE Smackdown Report for September 11, 2020 Part 1
After replaying basically Paul Heyman's entire promo from last week over a video package showcasing Roman Reigns' heel turn, followed by a recap of Jey Uso's big win, The Smackdown theme song plays, and Michael Cole welcomes us to the Thunderdome. Two men enter. One man… oops, sorry, wrong Thunderdome.
Smackdown Promo – Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman
The Big Dog comes out, which you can tell from the giant CGI rendering of his crotch that WWE likes to throw up on the screen. The piped-in boos are deafening! The computer-generated crowd really hates heel Roman Reigns… unlike the actual fans viewing on the Thunderdome screens who are, for the most part, clapping and smiling, just like last week. Isn't it ironic? Don't ya think?
Paul Heyman says the Trible Chief has authorized him to enlighten us on some recent history. He starts recapping again from two weeks ago. Jesus Christ, are we stuck in a time loop? I'm recapping a recap of a recap that follows a recap of things I recapped for the past two weeks!
Heyman talks up Jey Uso's win last week. Now he's the number one contender for Roman's championship. Heyman introduces Jey Uso: "The challenger for the Universal Championship at the Clash of the Champions, ladies, and gentlemen, yes, legally he's Roman Reigns' cousin, but he may as well be his blood brother, ladies, and gentlemen, I give to you Jey Uso."
Jey Uso comes out. Michael Cole shows us some Instagram pictures of Roman and Jey as teenagers while Uso walks to the ring. Jey thanks Paul Heyman for getting him into the fatal four-way last week. He's excited to compete against Roman at Clash of Champions.
Heyman says Jey doesn't owe Heyman any thanks. The appreciation should go to Roman. It was his idea for Paul to get Jey into the match. Heyman calls Reigns "the reigning defending undisputed universal heavyweight champion," and Uso and Reigns do their best not to laugh.
Roman says he's proud of Jey and his whole family is proud. Jey earned this. He's gonna be in the main event at Clash of Champions and take a huge payday home to his family. This is Jey's moment. At Clash of Champions, it won't be Jey's moment. Roman is gonna whoop his ass like when they were kids. The belt has to stay on Roman's waist.
Now at this point, you're probably thinking that there's something missing from Smackdown tonight. Something like the Ratings King of Friday Nights? Well, WWE is aware and sends Baron Corbin out to the ring.
Corbin says it doesn't take a genius to figure this out. It was a setup. Roman pulled strings to get a handpicked opponent for his first title defense, a guy who's Roman's cousin. Corbin says it's a classic case of nepotism, and it makes him sick. There's nothing he despises more than somebody abusing their power.
Sheamus comes out and agrees with King Corbin. The whole situation stinks. It should have been a triple threat after Sheamus took Big E out. But Roman pulled strings and got Jey Uso in the match. The other competitors couldn't compare for that.
Uso interrupts. If they want time to prepare, they can take time to prepare for a tag match with him and Roman. Uso says they can call it "The Blood vs. Butt Mudd." Uso tosses Sheamus out of the ring and tosses Corbin into the ring post. Roman just stands there scowling as Uso's music plays. Then Roman's music plays, and he walks away.
Sami Zayn is seen in the production truck flipping out about a match graphic for Jeff Hardy vs. AJ Styles in an Intercontinental Championship match, which is happening next. He believes he's the real champion, you see. Smackdown takes a commercial break.
After a Connor's Cure promo (philanthropy is the future of marketing), Jeff Hardy comes out as we watch a replay of his title win three weeks ago. Then AJ Styles comes out. Shouldn't the champion come out last? Maybe he does, as Sami Zayn comes out to interrupt the introductions. He says this match can't be for the Intercontinental Championship because Sami is the champion. He explains how he won the title and defended it at WrestleMania, but then while he was taking a couple of months off for "personal reasons," WWE decided to crown a new champion. Sami says this is an exhibition match.
Adam Pearce comes out because what both Raw and Smackdown have been missing all these months is… middle management. Sami thinks he's gonna get his back, but Pearce and some security guards want to escort Sami to the back. Sami throws the mic down and leaves. Styles attacks Hardy, and the ref rings the bell.
AJ Styles vs. Jeff Hardy – Intercontinental Championship Match
- Jeff Hardy hits a Twist of Fate as the first move of the match, but Styles dodges a Swanton Bomb to lead into another commercial break. Is there anything more annoying than these commercial breaks right when a match starts? Well, it's WWE, so there are lots of things more annoying than that… but it's still pretty annoying.
- They have an okay match after that, sullied a bit by Jeff Hardy ripping off Shotzi Blackheart's moveset.
- But it ends abruptly, while Styles is getting ready for a Phenomenal Forearm when Sami Zayn pulls him off the apron and hits the Helluva Kick on Jeff Hardy.
Isn't this pretty much the exact same place we were in last week? Was there a point to this?
We see an ad for the Firefly Funhouse in which Michael Cole calls Bray Wyatt "the pied piper of puppets." Ugh. Then we see Jey Uso excitedly talking to Roman Reigns in Roman's dressing room while Reigns sits there disinterested. Then back to the ring, where Jeff Hardy tries to walk backstage but collapses on the entrance ramp. Sell, Hary, sell! Smackdown takes a commercial break.
Will Jeff Hardy makes it back to the dressing room, or will he get arrested for DUI? Find out in part two of our Smackdown report!
This post is part of a multi-part series: WWE Smackdown Report for September 11, 2020.