As Superstars looked to raise their stock en route to Tuesday’s WWE Draft on the premiere of SmackDown Live, the final Thursday night edition of the blue brand proved to be a hotbed for all-out types of chaos.
Following Sasha Banks’ victory over Dana Brooke on Monday’s Raw, WWE Women’s Champion Charlotte informed The Boss that she would have to prove she could defeat Brooke again before even being considered for an opportunity at her title.
In the subsequent contest on SmackDown, Banks withstood Brooke’s powerful offense in order to make her opponent tap-out to The Bank Statement, taking out Charlotte in the process. Yet, before The Boss could celebrate, Charlotte viciously attacked her and booted her in the face before hurling her over the SmackDown announcer’s table.
Towering over Banks as she laid prone on the cement, Charlotte’s message was clear: She is the true Boss.
Claiming they didn’t have anything better to do than hurt The Club, Enzo & Big Cass took on AJ Styles and Karl Anderson in a thrilling tag team showdown on the final Thursday SmackDown.
With the referee distracted in the height of the action, an interfering Luke Gallows craftily, and shadily, toppled Big Cass and sent the 7-footer off the apron before Enzo could tag him in. This opened the door for Anderson to ambush Big Cass on the ringside floor, as The Phenomenal One locked in the Calf Crusher on Amore in the middle of the ring for the submission victory.
Before WWE Champion Dean Ambrose’s main event match against Kevin Owens could begin, Seth Rollins, the Superstar who will challenge for The Lunatic Fringe’s WWE Championship on Raw this Monday, made an unscheduled appearance on SmackDown commentary to lend his thoughts on the upcoming showdown. However, before the one-on-one encounter between Ambrose and Owens was a minute long, Rollins blindsided Ambrose and opened the door for a two-on-one assault on the titleholder.
Yet, their numbers advantage was short-lived as Sami Zayn soon came to The Lunatic Fringe’s aid. From there, the contest was restarted into a tag team contest, pitting Rollins and Owens against Ambrose and Zayn for the first time in history.
The action was intense as both pairs of future Battleground opponents gave it everything they had on the final Thursday edition of SmackDown. In the closing moments, “The Underdog from The Underground” made a critical mistake. With Ambrose down, Zayn missed a Helluva Kick on Rollins. This allowed Owens to trip up with his one-time friend and set up a Rollins Pedigree for the victory.
Following the match, Rollins and Owens tried to continue their assault on Zayn, but Ambrose put an immediate stop to it. The Architect and The Lunatic Fringe scrapped it out before Ambrose got the upperhand, sending both his opponents heading for the hills.
Don’t miss the WWE Draft when SmackDown Live premieres this Tuesday night at 8/7 C, with a SmackDown Live Pre-Show at 7/6 C across all digital platforms and the WWE Draft Center Live three-hour supplemental show at 8/7 C exclusively on the award-winning WWE Network.
In other action... Dolph Ziggler def. Rusev... Kalisto def. Tyler Breeze... and “Miz TV” hosted special guests Darren Young and Bob Backlund.