WWE Champion AJ Styles & Shinsuke Nakamura teamed up against Shelton Benjamin & Chad Gable, but did their mutual respect last through one final SmackDown LIVE prior to their WrestleMania 34 dream match? Elsewhere, Shane McMahon returned to SmackDown LIVE… and so did Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn.
After a rough several weeks following the savage attack he suffered at the hands of Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn, SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon returned to the blue brand focused on his and Daniel Bryan’s tag team match against The “Yep!” Movement this Sunday at WrestleMania. Shane, of course, suffered multiple injuries during the attack and was diagnosed with an acute case of diverticulitis and an umbilical hernia.
Shane-O-Mac and Bryan buried the hatchet over their misunderstandings during these tumultuous months, as Owens & Zayn had tried to divide them. Shane and Bryan even opted to hug it out! The two view Sunday as a chance to get much-deserved retribution on Kevin & Sami after all they have put them through and finally rid SmackDown LIVE of The “Yep!” Movement once and for all.
In an unsettling scene, Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn crashed SmackDown LIVE, much in the same way they invaded a WWE Live Event this past weekend. The “Yep!” Movement hopped the guardrails and stood on the commentator’s desk, apologizing to Daniel Bryan’s family for what they were going to do to him and Shane McMahon, who they promised to send crying to his daddy.
However, Owens and Zayn’s microphones soon cut out, and security made their way to ringside, prompting KO and Sami to exit back through the crowd. Shane and Bryan, both now on the rampway, addressed Owens and Zayn, who were now scurrying through the crowd. SmackDown LIVE management asked for the WWE Universe to take a long look at The “Yep!” Movement because, after Sunday, they would never be seen on the blue brand again.
Following their attempted blindside of AJ Styles & Shinsuke Nakamura last week, Shelton Benjamin & Chad Gable took on the two Superstars who will compete for the WWE Championship this Sunday.
Styles & Nakamura seemed to be on the same page for most of the contest as they engaged with the always game Benjamin & Gable. Even with their dream match title bout just five days away, the two remained composed, though Styles wore down Gable and opted not to tag in Nakamura. Instead, the WWE Champion positioned himself on the apron right next to WWE’s Rockstar, then soared through the sky and clocked Gable with a Phenomenal Forearm for the 1-2-3.
After Styles made his exit, Benjamin attempted to jump Nakamura from behind, but The King of Strong Style soon fought back and cleared him from the ring. After doing so, Shinsuke turned around to see Styles leaping in the air toward him, ready to connect with a Phenomenal Forearm. Much like Nakamura last week, though, Styles stopped short, landing right in front of his soon-to-be challenger before patting Shinsuke on the head. His message? I’ll see you at WrestleMania.
In other action … Charlotte Flair def. Natalya … Rusev def. Jinder Mahal … and Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler, Mojo Rawley & Primo Colon def. Tye Dillinger, Zack Ryder & Breezango.