SmackDown LIVE was slated to begin with a contest between former friends, Natalya and Carmella. However, Kevin Owens quickly interrupted James Ellsworth’s introduction of Ms. Money in the Bank, announcing his intentions to interject himself into the match as the special guest referee. Just as he did during the Sami Zayn vs. Aiden English match last week, KO demanded that the referee give him the striped shirt, which prompted the arrival of SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon, who has been at odds with the former United States Champion for months.
Shane-O-Mac made it clear that Owens’ unruly behavior the last several weeks would no longer be tolerated, resulting in a heated argument that brought each man closer to his boiling point. Finally, Owens went deeply personal, suggesting that the McMahon family would have been better off if Shane hadn’t survived his helicopter crash, causing the Commissioner to attack Owens.
Shane tackled Owens over the announce desk and continued to hammer away until SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan arrived with referees and security to pull Shane off Owens.
Owens, who was still irate in the backstage area after the brawl, announced his intention to pursue legal action, sue SmackDown LIVE, WWE at large and every member of the McMahon family, letting it be known that he’s determined to bring WWE down completely.
After Shane McMahon instigated a brawl with Kevin Owens, KO threatened to file criminal charges against Shane-O-Mac. With so much in motion, SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan called Shane down to the ring.
In a rough spot because of Shane’s actions, Bryan tried to convey to the Commissioner the mess SmackDown LIVE and WWE were in due to him attacking Owens. Clearly contrite and aware of his mistake, Shane indicated he would take the necessary steps to resolve the issue, but Bryan told him that it was too late for that.
The “Yes!” Man revealed that he received a call from Mr. McMahon declaring that, effective immediately, Shane was indefinitely suspended as Team Blue’s Commissioner.
In one of the biggest main events in SmackDown LIVE history, Shinsuke Nakamura faced off with Randy Orton with the winner getting the opportunity to face WWE Champion Jinder Mahal for the title at WWE Hell in a Cell.
With so much on the line, neither Superstar hesitated to bust out the heavy artillery early and often in hopes of making their way to WWE Hell in a Cell to challenge The Modern Day Maharaja. The two jockeyed back and forth with Orton backbody dropping Nakamura onto the announce table, The King of Strong Style retorting with some vicious kicks, and The Viper coming right back with a scintillating superplex.
However, Nakamura found his second wind to overcome Orton’s best offense, countering the RKO not once, but twice, to connect with a head-ringing Kinshasa for the win, ensuring that he would see Mahal again at WWE Hell in a Cell.
In other action... Natalya def. Carmella... Dolph Ziggler re-debuted on SmackDown LIVE... Aiden English def. Sami Zayn... Baron Corbin def. Tye Dillinger... and Carmella kissed (and smacked) James Ellsworth.