WWE SmackDown Recap: October 23, 2018
S18 episode 43 Aired on October 23, 2018

Randy Orton and Jeff Hardy rekindled their rivalry with another barbaric encounter on the blue brand. Elsewhere, the footage from the wild brawl between SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch and Charlotte Flair at the WWE Performance Center was finally revealed.

In a rematch from SmackDown 1000, WWE Champion AJ Styles & Daniel Bryan attempted to work cohesively against The Usos, as their WWE Title clash at WWE Crown Jewel rapidly approaches.

Much like last week, Styles and Bryan matched the blue brand cornerstones move for move while making timely tags and seemingly keeping the peace. However, the good vibes could only last so long, and The Phenomenal One drilled Bryan with a Pele Kick – seemingly accidently -- after Jey Uso evaded it. That split second of miscommunication between AJ and Bryan was all Jimmy Uso needed to connect with a big splash and pin Styles to earn a second consecutive win.

Still down on the canvas, Bryan and Styles exchanged unpleasant looks with one another.

After watching the confrontation on “Miz TV” moments earlier, SmackDown LIVE General Manager Paige gave Rey Mysterio what he wanted, setting up him vs. Miz for right now on the blue brand.

There was no warming up in the bullpen for Mysterio, as he came out of the gates hot and was all over Miz. Crafty as ever though, The Miz found his openings and wore down the legendary luchador as the match progressed. In the pivotal moments, Rey caught Miz off-guard with a headscissors that landed The A-Lister in perfect position for the 619, allowing Rey to tattoo his opponent with his signature maneuver, drop the dime off the top rope and get the monumental W heading into WWE’s World Cup.

A classic, brutal rivalry was reignited, as Jeff Hardy squared off with Randy Orton on SmackDown LIVE. The two WWE World Cup combatants battled it out for the first time since their barbaric clash inside Hell in a Cell last month.

The two picked up right where they left off, as the contest saw The Viper savagely backdrop Hardy onto the announcer’s table and The Charismatic Enigma fire back with his explosive attack, including Whisper in the Wind and a Twist of Fate. However, just when it seemed that Jeff was setting up for the Swanton Bomb, The Apex Predator wisely rolled to the floor.

Hardy attempted another spur-of-the-moment Swanton onto Randy’s prone body on the floor, but Randy moved out of the way, leaving Hardy in bad shape. Orton rolled Hardy back into the ring, and although Jeff evaded an RKO, the war-torn Charismatic Enigma was easy pickings for The Viper, who connected with the dreaded move for the win.

In other action … Big Show vs. Kofi Kingston ended in a no-contest … The Miz and Rey Mysterio got into it on “Miz TV,” leading to an impromptu match … Dancing and destruction arose ahead of the Women’s Battle Royal at WWE Evolution … and Shane McMahon got the WWE Universe amped for the WWE World Cup to determine the best in the world.

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