WWE SmackDown Live was broadcast from the Valley View Casino Center in San Diego on Dec. 12, 2017.
WWE SmackDown Live main event: Randy Orton def. (pin) Sami Zayn (with Kevin Owens handcuffed ringside… really)
Yes, the handcuff thing actually happened.
Orton absolutely brutalized Zayn for the first part of this match, which included an AWFUL looking spot where Orton backdropped Zayn onto the announcers table. Zayn took a monitor straight into the back, and it didn’t look or sound pleasant at all.
Eventually Zayn brought out some boltcutters into this mess, which allowed Owens to get free. It wasn’t enough to win the match, as Orton won with the vaunted schoolboy rollup pin. However, Owens and Zayn went for the 2-on-1 post match beatdown when Shinsuke Nakamura interrupted and helped Orton clear the ring.
To close the show, they cut to Shane McMahon backstage, who said that he will be the special guest referee for the match at Clash of Champions, and that Owens and Zayn will be fired from WWE if they lose that match.
Rusev and Aiden English def. (pin) The New Day (Kingston and Big E)
The New Day interrupted a jolly Rusev Day celebration. How rude of them.
What followed was a short but fun little match, where Rusev actually got the pin on Kofi Kingston with a kick to the back of the head. Interesting to see where this goes, but getting a win over the New Day is definitely a good sign for Rusev and English, who are emerging as a more featured team on SmackDown Live.
Bobby Roode def. (DQ) Baron Corbin (w/ Dolph Ziggler on commentary)
These three are having a triple threat for the U.S. Championship at Clash of Champions, so of course, Ziggler got involved quickly here. After a Roode/Corbin double clothesline, Ziggler hit the ring, hit Roode with a Zig Zag, and caused the disqualification. Ziggler also laid out Corbin with the Zig Zag for good measure.
Shane McMahon confronted Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens (again)
Zayn and Owens opened the show and antagonized the crowd about how much better they were than everyone else. They even invoked the names of guys like Bret Hart and Stone Cold Steve Austin for good measure.
Zayn eventually walked out on the ramp to help define what the ringside area really was (to prove he actually wasn’t ringside last week) when Randy Orton interrupted in the form of a flying RKO out of nowhere on Owens in the ring. Shane then emerged and announced that Owens and Zayn would be facing Orton and a partner of Orton’s choosing at Clash of Champions. Considering the main event of this show, it looks like that partner will be Shinsuke Nakamura.
Charlotte Flair def. (sub) Tamina
Flair won in a quickie here. Bigger story is what happened after the match, as the Riott Squad (Ruby Riott, Liv Morgan, Sarah Logan) interrupted afterwards to warn Charlotte and Natalya about their lumberjack match at Clash of Champions, which Daniel Bryan announced earlier in the night.
You should probably expect interference in that match… just sayin’.
Best of the rest of WWE SmackDown Live
- Rusev has a Rusev Day t-shirt. It is everything, and the crowd loved it when he and Aiden English unveiled it in-ring.
- Rusev and Aiden English were added to the tag team championship match at Clash of Champions, making it a fatal-four way with the New Day, the Usos, and Gable & Benjamin.
- The Bludgeon Brothers (Harper & Rowan) def. (pin) two guys called Adam James and Josh Carl.
- No Fashion Files this week. This made me very sad.