WWE SmackDown Results: Winners, Grades, Reaction and Highlights from October 9
WWE Super Show-Down seemingly ended multiple rivalries on SmackDown Live, as AJ Styles made Samoa Joe submit to the Calf Crusher and The New Day clearly defeated The Bar. However, other feuds were made far less certain, with tensions running high going into the October 9 edition of the blue brand.
Becky Lynch escaped Charlotte Flair by getting herself disqualified in Australia at the weekend, so she was set to defend her title again with the stipulation that a disqualification would lose her the title. The hope was it would be a great match while also setting up an even greater clash at Evolution on October 28.
Daniel Bryan managed to defeat The Miz quickly on Saturday, which set up The Beard to fight Styles at Crown Jewel on November 2. However, it was clear The A-Lister would not take this lightly after he invited both men to join him on Miz TV.
While these older feuds dominated the top of the show, it was a brand-new event that defined the bulk of the blue brand. Multiple WWE World Cup qualifiers were set for the week, as Randy Orton fought a returning Big Show and Jeff Hardy battled an angry Samoa Joe.
The excitement was high coming into Tuesday's SmackDown, with the hype from Super Show-Down already building toward forthcoming pay-per-views.
SmackDown Women's Champion Becky Lynch vs. Charlotte Flair (DQ Can Win Title)
The night started with the SmackDown women's champion and her challenger in the ring, prepared for their rematch.
While Charlotte's power helped her stay in the match early, she began to lose control thanks to Lynch's focused attack on the left arm.
As the match got more intense down the stretch, both women hit their best shots but managed to escape pinfalls. The Irish Lass Kicker tried to walk out on the match, but The Queen threw her back in. In the ensuing chaos, Lynch was almost disqualified.
Charlotte connected with Natural Selection, but her former best friend rolled outside. In frustration, The Genetically Superior Athlete followed and kept attacking until both were counted out. Afterward, she speared Lynch through the stage LED wall, injuring her hand in the process.
SmackDown Live general manager Paige later announced Lynch vs. Charlotte at Evolution in the first-ever main roster Last Woman Standing match.
Lynch vs. Charlotte ends in a double count-out; Lynch retains the SmackDown Women's Championship
This match got all the time to deliver, and both women went all-out. It started sloppy and tentative, but the action ramped up with the talent. These two have always been good together, but this felt like the best showcase of their chemistry so far.
It is disappointing this was not the main event of SmackDown because it was clearly the highlight of the night. This feud continues to make a strong case for being the best story on the blue brand and will certainly be the best thing going into Evolution.
The Last Woman Standing match should main-event the all-women pay-per-view.
Samoa Joe vs. Jeff Hardy (World Cup Qualifier)
Joe walked into this match with a bandaged left leg, and it was the only target Hardy could find to stay in this contest.
It proved to be enough, though, as Joe's injury was too much for him to stay on his feet, and the referee ended up stopping the contest early, awarding the victory to Hardy.
Hardy def. Joe by referee stoppage to qualify for the WWE World Cup
This felt like a waste of not only the talent involved but also their stories.
Hardy had previously lost to Randy Orton in such an emphatic fashion that it seemed he was being written off WWE programming. The Daredevil returned this week, though, with no fanfare and defeated a man who needed a victory.
While the finish protected Joe, there's no reason he should have been in this situation at all. The match was over quickly and undermined the idea of this tournament: finding the "best in the world."
The Miz TV Featuring Daniel Bryan and AJ Styles; Styles vs. Shelton Benjamin
The A-Lister started off Miz TV trying to remain professional, but Styles and Bryan seemed more focused on taunting him than on their own approaching fight.
Eventually, the host lost it and made clear he wanted the next shot at whoever held the WWE Championship after Crown Jewel.
He then introduced the champ's opponent for the night, Shelton Benjamin. While Bryan and Miz argued on commentary, The Gold Standard caught the champion with a step-up knee strike and took over the match. Styles refused to stay down, though, and hit a Phenomenal Forearm for the win.
Styles def. Benjamin by pinfall
This feud may be built around Styles vs. Bryan at Crown Jewel, but it looks like Miz will stick around as an antagonistic force until he can compete directly for the title. From the strong promo segment to a great match, this was all-around quality television.
If there is any complaint to be levied at this part of the show, it's that the two-minute-man jokes are already getting old. This is supposed to be SmackDown's lead program, but the only guy taking this seriously is being mocked by the faces in juvenile fashion.
Lana Reveals the Full Story of 'One Night in Milwaukee'
Aiden English revealed more of the One Night in Milwaukee video, seemingly again showing Lana had an affair with him. He stopped the tape, though, to offer an ultimatum to Rusev that he would burn the footage if The Bulgarian Brute left his wife and reformed Rusev Day.
Instead, The Ravishing Russian came out to reveal the whole clip she had stolen from The Artiste with a straightforward hack. It made clear she was not interested in his advances. The Super Athlete then attacked English.
It's mercifully over. Infidelity angles cripple most WWE stories, and this has been nothing but an anchor around the neck of an interesting rivalry.
The interesting result of this latest segment was the reveal that English really cares about rejoining Rusev Day. After all he has done in recent weeks, it is surprising he would still want to team with The Bulgarian Brute this much.
Randy Orton vs. Big Show (WWE World Cup Qualifier)
Orton struggled to get an advantage over Big Show throughout this match. Repeatedly, The Apex Predator rolled outside to stay in it.
Big Show caught Orton with a chokeslam, but it wasn't enough. The Viper used a thumb to the eye to set up an RKO for the win.
Orton def. Show by pinfall to advance to the WWE World Cup
This was an awkward main event from start to finish, as the veterans did not seem to be comfortable working together despite countless matches against each other. Big Show has been in and out of the ring so much that it wasn't completely surprising, but he has rarely looked this far off his best.
The action was sloppy and uncoordinated, putting a damper on a night which had multiple segments that would have been better in this final spot. At least Orton advancing made sense, as he has been on a roll lately, even including this mess.