WWE SmackDown Report – 2/25/2022
– The post-Elimination Chamber edition of WWE SmackDown on FOX opens up with a video package showing recent happenings between WWE Champion Brock Lesnar and WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns. We’re live from the GIANT Center in Hershey, Pennsylvania as Pat McAfee welcomes us. He hypes tonight’s show and sends us to Michael Cole in the ring.
– Michael Cole is in the ring with a mic. He begins the introduction for Ronda Rousey and out she comes to a pop. Rousey slaps hands with fans at ringside on her way to the ring.
Cole asks Rousey why she decided to return at the WWE Royal Rumble after being gone for three years. She talks about breaking her hand in the WrestleMania 35 main event, rehabbing that and breaking her other hand, and then getting pregnant. She knew then that she wanted to return after giving birth and punch her ticket for her second WrestleMania main event, and she did it. Rousey brings up how her mother was the second woman to win a judo world championship, while she was a second mom, while she was studying for her PhD, and while she was an engineer. She wanted to set that same badass example for her daughter, so that’s why she’s back.
Cole brings up some of Rousey’s accomplishments, WWE and pre-WWE, and asks how winning The Rumble felt. Rousey doesn’t like to dwell on accomplishments as she’s already focused on what’s next, and she’s ready to tap out SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair. Cole brings up how she had one arm behind her back at WWE Elimination Chamber as she and Naomi defeated Flair and Sonya Deville. We see stills from the match and McAfee talks about how Flair focused on hurting Rousey in the match. The music interrupts before Rousey can speak and out comes Flair. She stops on the entrance-way and poses as the pyro goes off.
Flair takes the mic and speaks from the entrance-way, commenting on how much fun it was giving Rousey a little taste of a comeback last week. She comments on Rousey having one arm behind her back and says it won’t be like that at WrestleMania 38 because that night will be stupendous, and she plans on locking Rousey in the Figure Eight. Flair says for the first time in Rousey’s life, she will scream for mercy and tap out, which means Flair will remain the champion. Flair says the silver lining for Rousey is that she gets to go home and work on baby #2.
Still standing on the entrance-way, Flair laughs and Deville hits the ring from behind, taking Rousey down with a chop block. Deville talks some trash as Rousey slowly gets back up. Flair trips her from the floor, pulling her leg out. Flair slams Rousey’s leg around the ring post a few times while talking more trash. Deville talks more trash at Rousey as she struggles to get up. Rousey still takes Deville down with a throw, sending her to the floor retreating. Rousey stands tall as her music hits, yelling out and asking Deville if that’s all she’s got.
– We see Big E and Kofi Kingston riding a 4-wheeler backstage. They will face Los Lotharios next. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Adam Pearce is backstage with Sonya Deville, watching what she just did to Ronda Rousey. Pearce is not happy and he says that due to Deville’s actions and Rousey’s request, Deville vs. Rousey will take place next Friday. Pearce says the match has already been approved with upper management.
Los Lotharios vs. The New Day
We go back to the ring and out comes Los Lotharios – Angel and Humberto. They stop on the entrance-way and pose. We then get the Los Lotharios Kiss Cam as they find a young woman at ringside and kiss her on the cheeks. Out next comes Big E and Kofi Kingston of The New Day. Big E is driving his 4-wheeler and Kofi is on the back. Cole says this was Kofi’s birthday gift to Big E. They ride around the ring and park the quad before entering the ring for this rubber match.
The bell rings as Kofi and Humberto trade holds. Kofi drops Humberto and splashes him for a 2 count. Big E tags in for a big shoulder thrust into the corner, then he lets Kofi leap off his back for a splash in the corner. Big E covers for a 2 count. Big E with an abdominal stretch to Humberto now. Fans chant for The New Day as Big E works over Humberto in the hold. He fights off and mounts offense but Big E beats him down.
Kofi tags back in for more double teaming. Kofi covers but Humberto kicks out at 2. Kofi ends up kicking Humberto but Angel distracts him from the apron, allowing Humberto to kick him to the floor. Los Lotharios take Big E out with a double team, then run to the other side of the ring and take Kofi back down on the floor. They pose at and on the announce table as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Angel is working Kofi over in the corner, turning him upside down. Humberto tags back in and they double team Kofi for another 2 count. Humberto grounds Kofi but he slowly fights out as fans chant and rally for The New Day. Humberto drops Kofi and knocks Big E off the apron. Angel tags back in for another double team, rolling Kofi by each of his legs, and slamming the back of his head to the mat.
Angel grounds Kofi in a single-leg Crab now. Kofi resists and gets free, then nails a big running stomp for a pop. Big E is back on the apron now, rallying the crowd. Big E and Humberto tag in at the same time. Big E with a big belly-to-belly suplex, then another. Big E ducks Humberto and hits another belly-to-belly slam. Big E plays to the crowd and gets hyped up, then hits the running splash in the middle of the ring. Big E waits for Humberto as fans rally. Angel distracts from the apron, allowing Humberto to drop Big E with a superkick. Angel tags in but Big E catches him with the Uranage. Kofi tags in and they hit the Midnight Hour. Kof3i covers for 2 but Humberto runs in and makes the save just in time.
Big E gets sent out by Humberto. Kofi dropkicks Humberto out of the ring. Angel blocks the SOS and sends Kofi to the floor. Angel with a big suicide dive to the floor. Angel rolls Kofi back in but now he walks over to the quad, which is still running. Kofi runs and leaps off the steel ring steps, taking Angel down at ringside. Humberto comes over but Big E hits a big belly-to-belly throw on the floor.Kofi goes back in and leaps off the top but Angel superkicks him in mid-air for a close 2 count. Angel can’t believe it.
Angel goes to the top to leap onto Kofi but he stops when he sees Big E sitting on the quad, threatening to run over Humberto at ringside while he’s flat on his back. Kofi takes advantage and comes from behind but Angel rolls through. Kofi levels Angel with a jumping knee. Big E tags back in and they hit the Midnight Hour, then Big E covers for the pin to win.
Winners: Kofi Kingston and Big E
– After the match, Kofi and Big E celebrate as the music hits.
– We see Sam Roberts backstage talking with SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos.
– Cole sends us to a commercial for the Toyota Tundra, featuring Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs. We go to a break.
– Back from the break and Sheamus and Ridge Holland stop Big E and Kofi Kingston on the quad backstage. They taunt The New Day and Sheamus calls them out for fight night, saying they’d have to use the 4-wheeler to carry their arses out. Big E and Kofi drive off, frustrating Sheamus and Holland.
– Sam Roberts is backstage with SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos. Sam brings up tonight’s WrestleMania 38 contract signing and Jey Uso says it’s for the biggest WrestleMania match of all-time. Jimmy Uso says WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns will put that work in on WWE Champion Brock Lesnar, like they will do to The Viking Raiders. They talk trash about Erik and Ivar, until The Vikings show up and attack them, demanding their title shot.
– Megan Morant is backstage with Xia Li now. Li says she’s waited for this moment her own life. Li says she worked so hard in WWE NXT and always dreamed of competing on SmackDown. She is nervous but also confident because she is The Protector, and tonight Natalya will need protection.
Xia Li vs. Natalya
We go back to the ring and out comes Xia Li for what Cole and Morant are billing as her WWE debut. Li comes out with her unique entrance and hits the ring as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and out comes Natalya. We see Shayna Baszler, Aliyah, Drew Gulak and Mansoor watching backstage as Cole says there’s a lot of interest in Li’s debut tonight. The bell rings and they lock up. Natalya goes behind and slams Li by her hair. Natalya drops Li in the corner and stomps away as the referee warns her.
Natalya whips Li into the corner and tries the same in the opposite corner but Li jumps to the top and rolls through to the mat, then nails a dropkick for a 2 count. More back and forth now. Natalya with the discus clothesline for a 1 count. Natalya takes Li back to the corner and works her over. Natalya with a snap suplex in the middle of the ring. Natalya talks some trash and continues dominating as the referee warns her. Natalya with an abdominal stretch now, working Li over while she’s in the hold as fans boo and Natalya smiles.
Natalya bends the leg back while keeping the abdominal stretch locked in. The referee checks on Li but she starts fighting out with elbows. They both go down and Li mounts offense with strikes now. Fans chant “Xia’s got it!” as she unloads with strikes and shouts out to the crowd. Li with two big knees and a kick to send Natalya into the corner. Li with a running knee into the corner, then an elbow to the top of the head.
Li with an overhead suplex for a 2 count. Natalya ends up going for the Sharpshooter but Li kicks her away. Li stands tall and yells out, swinging her arms around and then punching the mat. She charges and levels Natalya with a big spinning heel kick. Li then covers for the pin to win.
Winner: Xia Li
– After the match, Li stands tall as the music hits. She has her arm raised as Natalya looks on from ringside. Li stares back at her as we go to replays. Li bows to the crowd on all sides as Natalya yells at her from ringside.
– This week’s Progressive-sponsored Match Flo video looks back at how Sami Zayn won the WWE Intercontinental Title from Shinsuke Nakamura last week.
– We go back to the ring and out comes new WWE Intercontinental Champion Sami Zayn as Samantha Irvin does the introduction. Zayn is dressed up in a suit as he heads to the ring for a championship celebration. Zayn poses on the apron as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Zayn is in the ring, which is decorated with a red apron cover. Zayn has balloons on the ring post, and his Intercontinental Title belt on display in the middle of the ring. Zayn says finally the title is back where it belongs. He goes on about the conspiracies against him and where he’s finally at now, but then complains about how the balloons and the ring apron aren’t the colors he wanted, but oh well. Zayn insists “they” will persecute him any chance they get, but now he knows he can get over no matter what they throw at him. Sami screams for the fans to show him some respect as the new Intercontinental Champion but they give him the “What?!” treatment and boo him
Sami says he’s happy to give Shinsuke Nakamura a rematch but he’s still picking up pieces of his kneecap, which Zayn shattered. Sami says unlike Nakamura, he’s happy to defend this title against all comers, anyone who’s brave enough to step in the ring against him. Sami says now that he got that out of the way, let’s get down to the festivities. The Jackass theme song interrupts and out comes Johnny Knoxville to a pop.
Knoxville takes the mic as fans chant “Johnny!” now. Sami gets fans to pop for Knoxville again. He says Knoxville got his reaction, so why is he here now? Knoxville says Zayn crashed his Jackass Forever movie premiere, so he’s here now. Knoxville says hi to Sami. Zayn says they can talk later but for now he’s going to ask Knoxville to get the hell out of his ring. Knoxville thought he heard Zayn throw down a challenge for the title, so let’s do it. Fans pop and Zayn begins to seethe. Zayn thinks it over and says apparently Knoxville doesn’t learn. Sami says he told Knoxville this before but he will say it again – Knoxville doesn’t belong in this ring. Sami gives Knoxville some credit for getting in his head, but says he sees through this and it won’t work. Knoxville asks Sami if he wants to be a fighting champion, or does he not have enough balls? Fans chant “no balls!” now.
They toss their mics and face off in the middle of the ring now, trash talking each other. Sami says he’s not going to fight, and then walks past Knoxville. Fans chant for Knoxville and he’s distracted by the chants as Sami comes back over and drops him with a cheap shot. Sami beats Knoxville up and then leans him in the corner for a Helluva Kick. Knoxville is still up on his feet, but leaning against the ropes and dazed. Sami yells in his face as officials hit the ring to pull him away. Sami delivers another Helluva Kick and this one puts Knoxville down. Zayn raises the title in the air, and some of his balloons, as the boos get louder. Sami taunts Knoxville some more as he exits the ring.
– Still to come, Roman Reigns and Brock Lesnar will make their WrestleMania 38 match official. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get a Black History Month video on WWE Ambassador and 2020 Warrior Award recipient Titus O’Neil. The video focuses on his Bullard Family Foundation non-profit and the work Titus does for the community.
– We go backstage and Sami Zayn is ranting to Adam Pearce about what he just did to Johnny Knoxville. Zayn apologizes for overreacting but blames Knoxville. Pearce isn’t thrilled with Sami. Ricochet walks up and interrupts. He knows Sami and Pearce have a lot going on right now but he heard Sami say he wanted to be a fighting champion, and he’s here to step up. Sami tells Ricochet to take a number and get to the back of the line. Pearce likes Ricochet’s idea and announces Ricochet vs. Sami Zayn for next Friday with the WWE Intercontinental Title on the line.
Sasha Banks vs. Shotzi
We go back to the ring and out comes Sasha Banks to a big pop for her return. She hits the ring and poses to pyro as fans cheer her on. Shotzi is already in the ring, staring Banks down.
Before the match can begin, the music hits and out comes Naomi. She joins the announcers for commentary. Shotzi slaps Banks and yells at her, welcoming her back. Banks takes Shotzi right down with a headlock. Shotzi grabs her hair and talks more trash but Banks slaps her and goes to work.
Banks with a suplex in the middle of the ring. She holds it and hits the Three Amigos to pay tribute to WWE Hall of Famer Eddie Guerrero. Shotzi counters a move and slams Banks over the top rope. Shotzi stomps away on Banks now, then covers for a 2 count. Shotzi leaves Banks against the ropes and nails the Stage Dive against the back of the neck. Banks kicks out at 2 and Shotzi shows some frustration.
Banks looks to turn it around but Shotzi kicks out at 2. Banks ends up hitting a big Meteora from the top. Banks plays to the crowd for a pop, then drives double knees into Shotzi with a new offensive move. Banks then hits the Backstabber and transitions right into the Bank Statement for the submission win.
Winner: Sasha Banks
– After the match, Banks stands tall as the music hits. Naomi applauds her and gets up from the announce table. We go to replays as Banks celebrates. Naomi enters the ring and takes the mic. She announces that she and Banks are the next WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. The titles are currently held by Carmella and Queen Zelina Vega. Naomi’s music starts back up and she celebrates with Banks as they do their own handshake.
– Megan Morant is backstage with Happy Baron Corbin and Madcap Moss. We see how Drew McIntyre won the Falls Count Anywhere match over Moss at WWE Elimination Chamber last Saturday, including the inverted Alabama Slam bump Moss took. Corbin jokes about how Moss used his head. He says it’s a good thing Moss has a strong head. Corbin goes on and says tonight Drew gets to deal with him. Corbin says this is a WrestleMania caliber match and now it’s happening on SmackDown. Corbin says we saw how Drew is off his rocker as he tried to use a sword on Corbin. He says you don’t get to disrespect Corbin or his friends like that and get away with it. Corbin is going to show Drew who the real warrior is tonight, and that’s no joke. Moss looks on a bit concerned, clutching his neck. Cole says Corbin has called an audible and will be facing Drew tonight instead of Moss.
Drew McIntyre vs. Madcap Moss
We go back to the ring and out comes Drew McIntyre with his sword, Angela. McIntyre poses in the corner and raises the sword as the pyro shoots up from the ring posts. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and out comes Happy Baron Corbin with Madcap Moss. They keep focusing on how Corbin is undefeated since he became Happy. Corbin takes the mic and reminds us how he said this was a WrestleMania caliber match, and asks Drew if he really wants to get embarrassed in front of this Hershey, PA crowd. Corbin says these people are pathetic. Corbin says nothing would make him more happy than stomping Drew to a pulp, but his friend, Moss, is a real inspiration as he landed on his head and kept on fighting. Corbin tells Moss to step up to the apron and show everyone how good he really is. Moss poses to boos. Corbin says why don’t Moss take this rematch because he deserves it. Corbin says it’s only Drew, Moss can take him. Moss looks a little worried or surprised. Corbin drops McIntyre with a cheap shot to start. McIntyre gets double teamed now.
The bell hits and Moss runs across the ring with a big corner thrust to Drew. This will be Drew vs. Moss now, which was the original announced plan before it was changed to Drew vs. Corbin earlier this afternoon. Drew comes right back with a huge Glasgow Kiss headbutt, knocking Moss into the opposite corner. Drew goes for another Alabama Slam but Corbin pleads from ringside, screaming no at Drew. Moss hangs on to the rope and quickly scrambles to the floor to re-group with Corbin, avoiding the Alabama Slam. Drew yells at them from the ring as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and we see how Moss sent him into the barrier during the break. More back and forth now. Moss drops Drew as Corbin cheers him on from ringside. Moss levels Drew with a shoulder tackle for a 2 count. Moss stomps away and looks to capitalize but Drew levels him and they both go down. They slowly get up and trade big strikes in the middle of the ring now.
McIntyre gets sent into the corner but he comes out with a big clothesline. Moss gets up with a clothesline. Drew with a big throw across the ring, then another. Drew with a neckbreaker and then a kip-up for a big pop. Drew calls for the Claymore Kick but Corbin hits the apron for a distraction. Fans boo. Moss with a thumb to the eye as the referee is distracted by Corbin. Moss sends Corbin shoulder-first into the ring post, then drops him for a close 2 count.
Moss and Corbin are frustrated now. Moss yells out while pounding on Drew with fists. Moss runs the ropes but Drew nails a big Claymore Kick out of nowhere. Corbin looks on shocked as Drew covers for the pin to win this rematch from Elimination Chamber.
Winner: Drew McIntyre
– After the match, McIntyre stands tall as his music hits. We go to replays. Drew poses in the corner with Angela now, pointing it out as Corbin looks on from ringside.
– We see what happened in the opening segment with Ronda Rousey, SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair and Sonya Deville.
– Morant is backstage with Ronda Rousey. She asks about next Friday’s match against Sonya Deville. Rousey says for all the times Deville has messed with her and bullied Naomi, next week she will show everyone what happens when authority figures step out of line. Rousey walks off.
– We go back to the ring for tonight’s WrestleMania 38 contract signing and out first comes The Bloodline – WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Paul Heyman, and SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos. Heyman hands Reigns the title and he raises it in the air, while The Usos raise their gold in the air, and the pyro goes off. Reigns hits the ring as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Adam Pearce is at the table for a contract signing. The Bloodline is also in the ring, and the ring is full of security. Reigns takes a seat at the table. Heyman takes the mic and goes on about how this Winner Takes All Title Unification Match at WrestleMania 38 is. He goes on about how this is bigger than Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant, Steve Austin vs. The Rock, and bigger than when he conquered The Undertaker’s Streak, which he will give half credit to The Beast for. Fans loudly boo Heyman’s comments on this being bigger than those three legendary matches.
Heyman goes on hyping the match and says these security guards are here to protect The Beast from his own impulsiveness, and to protect him from his own Tribal Chief, Reigns. Heyman says that, ladies and gentlemen, is what you call a cliffhanger. SmackDown abruptly cuts to another commercial break.
Back from the break and WWE Chairman & CEO Vince McMahon is announced for The Pat McAfee Show next Thursday. We go back to the ring and out comes WWE Champion Brock Lesnar. Lesnar heads to the ring and enters. He places the strap on the table, stares at Reigns, and then starts laughing. Reigns stares up from his chair. Fans chant “Suplex City!” now.
Lesnar takes the mic and addresses Reigns as Mr. Acknowledgement, and Heyman as Mr. Dick. Lesnar introduces himself as the new, reigning and defending WWE Heavyweight Champion of the World… Brock… Lesnar! Lesnar says he must contain himself a little bit here. He admits he is very impulsive, and says if they think for one second these skid-mark security guards will stop him from jumping the table and kicking Reigns’ ass and Heyman/The Usos’ ass, they have another thing coming. Lesnar says Brock Lesnar is the only thing stopping him from coming over the table and kicking their asses. Lesnar says he’s going to sign this contract because he’s kicking their asses at WrestleMania and you can bet he’s getting paid for it. Pearce hands the contract to Lesnar next.
Heyman rants about how he’s tired of Lesnar. Lesnar laughs. Heyman says this will not be a Unification Match because Lesnar won’t have the WWE Title when he gets to WrestleMania 38 because he’s losing it next Saturday at Madison Square Garden. Reigns takes the contract and signs it now. Pearce walks away with the contract. Reigns says Lesnar, the farm boy, must be confused because that WWE Title belongs to Reigns. Reigns stands up and goes on about how he’s going to smash Lesnar, about how this is his ring, his camera man, Cole and McAfee work for him, the WrestleMania sign is his because he is WrestleMania.
Reigns goes on about how he runs everything and everyone works for him. Lesnar stands up in the ring now. Reigns, speaking from ringside, says everyone works for him, including the security in the ring. They surround Lesnar and put their fists up. Lesnar flips over the table and starts destroying the large group of security guards. Lesnar swings furniture around and delivers his signature moves to clear the ring. Lesnar drops two guards with F5s as The Bloodline looks on from the entrance-way, looking a bit worried. SmackDown goes off the air with Lesnar standing tall in the ring.