News and video from last night’s Smackdown dark matches

Oct 2, 2021 - by Marc Middleton

WWE held several dark matches at last night’s Draft Night 1 edition of SmackDown from the Royal Farms Arena in Baltimore, MD.

Hit Row opened the show as hometown star “Top Dolla” AJ Francis defeated Cedric Alexander in a dark match. Xia Li then defeated Dakota Kai. Keith “Bearcat” Lee squashed a local enhancement talent right before SmackDown went on the air.

The dark main event after SmackDown saw Drew McIntyre and The Street Profits defeat WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns and SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos in six-man action.

Li and Kai were expected to be drafted from WWE NXT to RAW or SmackDown, but it did not happen last night. They are still eligible to be drafted during Monday’s RAW. As noted, last night’s Draft edition of SmackDown saw Lee get drafted to RAW while Hit Row (Dolla, “B-Fab” Briana Brandy, Ashante “Thee” Adonis”, NXT North American Champion Isaiah “Swerve” Scott) was drafted to the blue brand.

Top Dolla tweeted a photo from Hit Row’s dark match entrance and wrote, “Man #SmackDown drafted us in the hometown… same arena I grew up coming to shows watching @TheRock and KNOWING I wanted to do this. @WWEonFOX ITS MONEY SZN”

Scott, who is expected to drop the NXT North American Title to Santos Escobar soon, also tweeted the entrance photo and wrote, “To the Podcaster that said my ceiling was in NXT…”

WWE also released a backstage segment with Megan Morant interviewing Hit Row after the show, which you can see below. Top Dolla recalled watching WWE Hall of Famers like the nWo and Steve Austin, and The Rock, in the same arena, and talked about how Hit Row is really family.

Stay tuned for more. Below are several shots from last night’s dark matches, and the related tweets from Hit Row, plus the backstage segment with Hit Row and Morant:

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