We’ve got one last B-show before Hell in a Cell. To be quite honest, I’m not completely sold on this PPV, so let’s hope this episode of Smackdown does something to get me on board.
The champ is walking backstage when he runs into Corporate Kane. They trade some barbs about who is going to win at the PPV, and Seth walks off in a bad mood. Kane runs into New Day, and they are unhappy about what happened to Xavier Woods. They blame Kane. Kane plays the world’s smallest trombone. He places them in a match against Dean Ambrose and Roman Reigns. It seems like nobody is particularly happy with Kane these days.
Seth Rollins vs. Cesaro
Somewhere, the independent wrestling fans are hyperventilating. Cesaro hits a belly to back slam and gutwrench suplex to kick things off. Rollins rolls to ringside in order to collect himself. Rollins grabs his belt and begins to head towards the back. He sells concern that Kane may be waiting for him, so he gets back in the ring. He is met by a series of uppercuts and a dropkick from Cesaro. He sets up for the swing, but Rollins grabs the bottom rope and slips to the outside. He again attempts to leave, but Cesaro gives chase this time. Rollins slams him into the barricade and the ringside steps, getting in his first offense of the contest. We head to a break. Rollins hits a springboard flying knee when we return. Stardust and the Ascension are in the crowd for some reason. Rollins hits a running forearm in the corner. Rollins taunts a bit too much, and Cesaro is able to place a charging Rollins on the top turnbuckle and dropkick him to ringside. Cesaro hits a running uppercut that sends both men flying over the barricade. He gets Rollins back in the ring, and nails a top rope crossbody for a two count. Rollins attempts a sunset flip, but Cesaro grabs his leg and attempts the swing. Rollins escapes and hits a jumping kick to the head. He goes to the top turnbuckle for a flying knee, but Cesaro dodges it and hits an elevated uppercut. Cesaro locks in a crossface, but Rollins gets his feet to the bottom rope to force the break. Cesaro pulls Rollins up to the top rope, but Seth jumps to the mat and crotches Cesaro. Rollins hits the Pedigree for the victory.
Winner: Seth Rollins (pinfall)
Analysis: This was a great match to kick off the show. These guys probably have some leftover chemistry from their days wrestling each other in the indies. It’s good to see Rollins pick up a legitimate clean win heading into Hell in a Cell.
Renee welcomes in the Miz to discuss his MizTV segment tonight. He tells us that Summer Rae is going to drop a bombshell on us.
When we return from the commercial break, Paige is in the ring to address the attack on Natalya last week. She says nobody believes that she didn’t do it. She wants Charlotte and Becky Lynch to come out and they oblige. They aren’t buying her supposed change of heart. Lynch is pissed. Charlotte tells Paige she should know what it meant to her to win her first championship. Charlotte believes that Paige doesn’t respect her. Team Bella comes out to the stage to add some fuel to this fire. Nikki says the only thing she is focused on is regaining her title. Charlotte doesn’t want to wait until the PPV to get in the ring with Nikki. Paige tells Nikki she has to go through her first. Nikki accepts her challenge.
Paige vs. Nikki Bella
Nikki hits a scoop slam and a facebuster on her knee. Paige fights back with an arm drag and a scoop slam of her own. She follows it up with a headbutt. She pulls Nikki over to the rope and hits knees to the midsection. Paige avoids an Alabama slam and hits a running knee to the face. Nikki plants Paige with a tornado armbreaker before the commercial break. Nikki is working over the arm when we return. She wrenches the arm over the bottom rope and slams it into the turnbuckle multiple times. She stomps on the arm and plants her knee into it. She hits a suplex with Paige’s arm behind her back. She applies a submission on the arm, but Paige is able to escape. She slams Nikki into the turnbuckle and hits knees to the face. She hits a thrust kick, but only gets a two count. Nikki comes back with a spinebuster after hanging Paige up in the bottom rope. Paige fights out of the Rack Attack and rolls Nikki up for two. Paige nails a fallaway slam, but still can’t get the pin. Nikki counters a vertical suplex into a small package for another nearfall. Nikki hits the Alabama slam, but she can’t get a pin either. Nikki nails Paige with a forearm and drops her with the Rack Attack.
Winner: Nikki Bella (pinfall)
Analysis: That was a really solid match. I’m glad they gave them enough time to develop the match, and it fit perfectly with the storyline of Paige trying to redeem herself to her teammates.
It’s time for MizTV! He brings out Dolph Ziggler. Miz wants to know how it feels to be tossed aside by Lana. Ziggler says Lana is a grown woman and she can do whatever she wants. Miz thinks that Dolph drove Lana away for Summer Rae. Queue her music. Miz thinks that Summer Rae has gotten the worst of this situation. Summer Rae still thinks she and Dolph have unbelievable chemistry and that she proposed to the wrong man. Dolph says he’s just not that into her. Summer Rae laughs and says she wasn’t out here to propose to Ziggler. She wants him to see what a real man looks like. Finally, we get the debut of Tyler Breeze. He gets a nice reaction from the crowd. He introduces himself and runs down Ziggler’s sense of style. He vows to give WWE a much needed facelift. Dolph begins his retort, but Breeze attacks him. The refs have to pull him off of Ziggler. He delivers a spinning heel kick before taking a selfie. I’m glad he’s finally on the main roster, but I wish he wasn’t inserted into this lame storyline.
Sheamus & King Barrett (with Rusev) vs. The Lucha Dragons
This match is barely worth talking about. The Lucha Dragons hit some high energy offense. The heels come back with power offense. The babyfaces make a brief comeback before the numbers game catches up to them and Kalisto falls to a Brogue kick.
Winner: Sheamus & King Barrett (pinfall)
Analysis: This match happened. That’s about all I can say about it.
Ryback vs. Bo Dallas
Bo Dallas informs us that he would like to accept John Cena’s U.S. Open Challenge at Hell in a Cell. I’m sure that would be a selling point. Ryback runs over Dallas and hits a scoop slam. Dallas attempts a neckbreaker, but Ryback avoids it. Dallas hangs Ryback up over the top rope and applies a chinlock. Ryback hits a backpack stunner and follows it up with the Meathook. A Shell Shock wins it for Ryback.
Winner: Ryback (pinfall)
Analysis: Just a squash match to remind us that Ryback can win a match.
Renee meets up with Kevin Owens backstage to ask about his match on Sunday. He admits that Ryback is an intense monster, but he isn’t the champion. As far as Owens is concerned, the Intercontinental title didn’t exist before he held it. He plans to retain at Hell in a Cell.
Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose vs. Kofi Kingston & Big E Langston
Ambrose hits an inverted atomic drop and a running clothesline to a seated Kingston. Reigns tags in and nails Kofi with a big leaping clothesline. Kofi tags out to Big E, who takes Roman down with a shoulder block. Reigns attempts a Samoan drop, but Big E slips out. Reigns hangs Big E over the top rope. Kofi interferes, which allows Big E to shove Reigns off the apron and into the barricade before our last commercial break. Reigns is locked in an abdominal stretch when we return. He escapes, and Big E eats the ringpost when he tries to hit a running shoulder thrust. Ambrose tags in and hits a suicide dive. Kingston prevents Ambrose from getting back in the ring. He tags in and hits a running kick to Ambrose on the apron. New Day takes turns tagging in and stomping a mudhole in Ambrose. Kofi hits his running dropkick against the turnbuckle. Kofi locks in a surfboard submission. Ambrose starts to fight out, but Kingston slams him into the mat. He hits the boom boom leg drop, which we haven’t seen in a while. Kofi misses Trouble in Paradise and a springboard crossbody. Reigns tags in and lays waste to Kofi. He hits his turnbuckle clotheslines and a powerslam. Reigns hits the drive by dropkick on Big E, and does the same to Kofi on the announce table. Ambrose enters the picture again, hitting a missile dropkick on Big E. New Day has had enough, and they head to the back. However, the Dudley Boyz force them back to ringside. Ambrose hits a lunatic lariat on Big E. The babyfaces hit a doomsday device on Big E. Kofi takes a superman punch and spear to give Reigns and Ambrose the win.
Winner: Roman Reigns & Dean Ambrose (pinfall)
Analysis: Not a bad match. The champs look vulnerable heading into the PPV.
The Wyatt interruption plays and Bray is sitting in a rocking chair somewhere. He tells Reigns that he can’t outrun his fears, and that he will see him in hell.
The first half of this show was awesome, with two really good matches and the debut of Tyler Breeze. The second half left a lot to be desired with two squash matches that existed solely to get some people onscreen before the PPV. The main event managed to get the show back on track. I must admit, this show did go a long way towards piquing my interest for Hell in a Cell.