WWE SmackDown Report – 5/23
– Tonight’s WWE SmackDown opens with a video package on Jinder Mahal’s WWE Title win at Backlash.
– We’re live from Toledo, Ohio with Tom Phillips, JBL and Byron Saxton. They start talking when we hear a bunch of police sirens in the background. The camera cuts outside and there’s a police escort making its way to the parking lot. They stop and The Singh Brothers hop out of a car. They place a carpet down and new WWE Champion Jinder Mahal steps out of a car. He takes a look around and gets ready for his Punjabi Celebration.
– We go back to the ring and out comes SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon.
Shane talks about how history was made at Backlash with the WWE Title change and fans boo. Shane announces that Randy Orton will get his rematch at the Money In the Bank pay-per-view from St. Louis. He also announces the Money In the Bank Ladder Match and introduces the participants as we see the briefcase hanging above the ring. Out first comes AJ Styles to a pop. Baron Corbin is out next followed by Sami Zayn, Dolph Ziggler and WWE United States Champion Kevin Owens. Shane halts production and says Owens knows he’s not one of the participants. Shane introduces the final participant and out comes Shinsuke Nakamura to a pop.
Owens throws a fit and can’t believe these 5 are in the match. He understands why some of these guys are in the match as Sami and Nakamura won at Backlash. Owens says he also won at Backlash. The guy he beat is in the match but he’s not. Owens doesn’t get that and says it must come down to favoritism. He says SmackDown is the land of opportunity but Shane dictates who gets those opportunities. Owens wonders if it”s something else. He thinks Shane is a little upset because Owens did what he couldn’t do at WrestleMania 33 – defeat AJ. Shane ends up agreeing and putting Owens in the match as the 6th participant.
Corbin tells Owens to shut up and stop talking. Corbin says Owens got himself into the match but it won’t turn out good for him. Corbin knocks the others and tells Shane he should just lower the briefcase down and give it to Corbin now. AJ shuts Corbin up and reminds him that this is the house AJ Styles built. AJ knocks Owens and calls him WWE’s version of Eric Cartman. Fans chant Cartman now. AJ doesn’t care who it is, he plans on getting that case and getting his title back. Sami throws his two cents in but Corbin interrupts and says his win at Backlash was a fluke. They argue and Owens tells them to shut up. Ziggler interrupts and says he’s the only one to actually cash in and win, and he will do it again. Nakamura takes the mic and fans chant his name. Nakamura introduces himself, for those who still don’t know him. Nakamura says we can call him Mr. Money In the Bank for now. Shane announces Corbin vs. Sami in a Backlash rematch for tonight. He makes the main event as well – Ziggler and Owens vs. Styles and Nakamura. Shane’s music hits as everyone faces off.
– We see Becky, Charlotte and Naomi walking to the ring. We go to commercial.
Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch vs. Carmella and Natalya
Back from the break and out first comes Charlotte Flair for this tag team match. Becky Lynch is out next as Greg Hamilton does the introduction. SmackDown Women’s Champion Naomi is with her. Carmella and Natalya wait in the ring. James Ellsworth is at ringside with Tamina Snuka.
Carmella and Becky start things off and Becky takes control. We go to commercial as Charlotte comes in to even the odds up. Tom sends us to picture-in-picture viewing but it appears that does not apply to USA Network on the Sling service.
Back from the break and Becky finally gets a hot tag as she kicks away a Sharpshooter. Charlotte unloads and takes out Carmella. She goes to work on Natalya and hits a neckbreaker, then a big boot for a 2 count. Charlotte goes up for the moonsault but Tamina gets on the apron. Naomi takes her out. Charlotte climbs down but Natalya hits her with a German suplex. Becky tags in and goes to the top. Becky with a dropkick to Natalya. Carmella tag sin and rocks Becky with forearms. More back and forth. Ellsworth gets involved and tries to make the save but Becky still gets the win with the Disarm Her.
Winners: Becky Lynch and Charlotte
– After the match, Naomi enters the ring and celebrates with the winners.
– Still to come, Corbin vs. Sami and Jinder’s celebration. Back to commercial.
Sami Zayn vs. Baron Corbin
Back from the break and both Superstars are out. The match barely gets underway when Sami rolls Corbin up for the quick win out of nowhere.
Winner: Sami Zayn
– After the bell, Sami jumps up and starts celebrating but Corbin nails him from behind. Corbin unloads and sends Sami to the floor. Corbin sends Sami into the timekeeper’s area and grabs a steel chair. Corbin nails Sami with the chair and keeps up the attack, fighting over into an area by the crowd. Corbin scoops Sami up and drops his neck over the railing. Corbin mushes Sami’s face into the ringside barrier and unloads on him with punches. Corbin marches off to the back as fans boo. Officials check on Sami and a stretcher is brought out.
– Still to come, our tag team main event. Also, another edition of The Fashion Files. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see what just happened to Sami. He was stretchered out during the commercial.
– AJ greets Shinsuke Nakamura backstage and hypes their first time teaming tonight. AJ admits he learned a few things from Nakamura in Japan but tonight, Nakamura needs to follow his lead because this is the house AJ built. AJ says everything will turn out fine if he does that. Nakamura says tonight they will team but he’s taking the briefcase at Money In the Bank and making AJ’s house Nakamura’s playground. Nakamura walks off.
– We get another edition of The Fashion Files with Tyler Breeze and Fandango approaching Shane McMahon. They go to turn their badges in but Shane puts them in singles matches against The Usos tonight.
– We see the final preparations being made in the ring for Jinder’s celebration. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and several Indian dancers come out to kick off the Punjabi Celebration. The Singh Brothers appear next and walk down a red carpet in between the dancers. They stop at ringside. New WWE Champion Jinder Mahal is out next as his music hits. Jinder stops and greets The Singh Brothers before entering the ring with them. The dancers are dancing around the ring now.
Jinder raises the title in the middle of the ring as the music stops. Fans boo. Jinder goes on about how people in his home country are cheering for him. People boo him here because of how he talks and how he looks but he proved everyone wrong with the win at Backlash. Jinder says Randy Orton is just like everyone else, he’s on the wrong path but Jinder is on the rise. Jinder goes on and says the people can’t ruin his celebration, they can’t hijack The Maharaja’s crowning. Jinder says this isn’t about the fans, it’s about him celebrating his accomplishments, celebrating his people, celebrating the Punjab and celebrating India. Jinder tells everyone to keep quiet so he can speak to his people in Punjabi. The segment ends as pyro goes off above the ring and Jinder’s music hits again. Jinder poses with the title as the dancers make their way to the back.
– Still to come, Nakamura and AJ vs. Owens and Ziggler. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get a new vignette for Lana’s debut, coming soon.
Jey Uso vs. Tyler Breeze
Back from the break and out comes SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos. Tyler Breeze is out next with Fandango.
The bell rings and Uso doesn’t look interested. He takes a mic and says they already beat these two chumps at Backlash. Uso goes after Fandango, who shot him with a water gun, but Breeze takes advantage and rolls Uso up for the quick win.
Winner: Tyler Breeze
– After the bell, Jimmy Uso wants his match.
Jimmy Uso vs. Fandango
The bell rings and Uso goes to work on Fandango, whipping him hard into the turnbuckle. Breeze gets chased around the ring, distracting both Usos. He decks Jey as Fandango rolls up Jimmy off the distraction for another easy win.
– After the match, Breezango takes the mic and wants a rematch for the titles. They taunt The Usos and The Usos call for the match right now. A referee goes to the timekeeper’s area and puts on a headset to communicate with the back. The match is official.
SmackDown Tag Team Title Match: Breezango vs. The Usos
The referee raises the titles as both teams get ready to go. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and the match is underway. Fandango and Jey get hot tags at the same time and go at it. Fandango drops Jey with a spinning kick. Fandango takes out both of The Usos and covers Jey for a close 2 count. Uso counters a Falcon Arrow and sends Fandango into the ring post. The Usos double team both of their opponents.
Uso goes to the top for a big splash but Fandango gets his knees up. Fandango with a close 2 count. Fandango climbs back to the top but has to kick Jey off the apron. Jimmy takes advantage and nails him. Jimmy climbs up. Jey tags in but Fandango doesn’t see it. Fandango hits the Last Dance on Jimmy but Jey follows right up with a top rope splash to Fandango for the win.
Winners: The Usos
– After the match, The Usos stand tall as we go to replays. Breeze and Fandango are shown recovering on the floor.
– Still to come, AJ and Nakamura vs. Owens and Ziggler. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Shane is on the phone. Natalya walks in and wants her shot at the SmackDown Women’s Title. James Ellsworth and Carmella are in next to make her case for getting a title shot. They argue until Becky comes in. Tamina walks in next and she also wants a title shot. Charlotte enters next. Shane announces a Fatal 5 Way Elimination Match for next week. The winner faces Naomi at Money In the Bank.
Kevin Owens and Dolph Ziggler vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and AJ Styles
Back from the break and Dolph Ziggler, WWE United States Champion Kevin Owens, AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura are all out for the main event. AJ starts off with Ziggler.
Back and forth to start. Ziggler misses a dropkick but AJ comes right back with a dropkick of his own. Nakamura gets a tag. Ziggler wants none of him and tags in Owens. Fans pop as Nakamura and Owens face off. Owens talks trash and Nakamura decks him. Nakamura goes to work and goes for an early Kinshasa but Owens rolls to the floor for a breather. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and Nakamura and Owens finally go at it. Nakamura with a big knee to the gut and some good vibrations in the corner. Owens uses the top rope on Nakamura and turns it around. Owens unloads with stomps and yells about being the champ. Owens keeps Nakamura in the corner and tags in Ziggler for a bit of double teaming. Fans chant for AJ. Ziggler keeps control of Nakamura out of the corner and hits a neckbreaker for a 2 count. Ziggler keeps Nakamura grounded now.
Nakamura looks for a comeback but Ziggler floors him and grounds him again. Owens tags in and keeps Nakamura down before showing off some. Owens with shots in the corner now. Owens takes Nakamura down and kicks him in the back. Owens with a headlock now. Fans chant for AJ as Owens keeps Nakamura down. Nakamura fights up but Owens floors him. Ziggler comes back in for a bit of double teaming. Nakamura finally fights out of the corner and decks both. Nakamura looks to make a tag but Ziggler rams him back into the corner. Owens tags in and knocks Styles off the apron. Owens with a clothesline and a corner cannonball for a 2 count. Owens mounts Nakamura with right hands as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Ziggler cuts Nakamura off with a dropkick for a 2 count. Owens tags in and keeps up the attack. Owens splashes Nakamura for a 2 count. Owens with more offense and a tag to Ziggler, telling him to finish Nakamura. Nakamura fights Ziggler off but Ziggler knees him. Ziggler charges but runs into the ring post. AJ gets the hot tag and unloads on Ziggler with strikes and a clothesline. AJ with a sliding forearm for a 2 count on Ziggler.
AJ knocks Owens off the apron. Ziggler and AJ trade holds. AJ with the fireman’s carry neckbreaker for a 2 count. Styles goes for the Styles Clash but Owens distracts him. Ziggler takes advantage and drops AJ over the top rope. Ziggler sends AJ to the floor. Owens with a senton on the floor. Owens sends AJ into the apron and brings him back up onto the apron for a running knee to the back, sending AJ back to the floor. Owens taunts Nakamura. Owens brings AJ back into the ring and grounds him with a headlock.
Styles fights up and out from Owens. Owens backdrops him for another pin attempt. Owens with elbows to the head now. Ziggler takes AJ to the top for a superplex but it’s blocked. AJ slides to the mat. Ziggler rushes down and stops him from tagging. AJ ducks a clothesline and plants Ziggler on his face. Both are down now. Nakamura and Owens tag at the same time and they go at it. Nakamura unloads and hits a running knee in the corner. Nakamura places Owens on the top turnbuckle and runs in with a high knee for a 2 count. Owens fights back but runs into a knee. Nakamura drops Owens for a 2 count as Ziggler breaks the pin.
Ziggler misses a Zig Zag on Nakamura. Nakamura launches him with an exploder. Owens stops a Kinshasa to Ziggler. AJ with a pele kick to Owens. AJ goes for the Styles Clash on Owens but Ziggler superkicks him. Nakamura dropkicks Ziggler out of the ring. Nakamura hits Kinshasa on Owens and covers for the pin.
Winners: AJ Styles and Shinsuke Nakamura
– After the match, Nakamura’s music hits as he stands tall. AJ and Nakamura have their arms raised in the middle of the ring as we go to replays. Nakamura continues the celebration as AJ looks on, standing on the second turnbuckle. SmackDown goes off the air with AJ and Nakamura standing in the middle of the ring facing off as we see the Money In the Bank briefcase hanging high.