The White prevails.
With just nine nights before WrestleMania, the 657th edition of WWE Friday Night SmackDown came to you from the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. Before he defends the WWE Championship against Chris Jericho a week from Sunday at WrestleMania, CM Punk would appear on SmackDown as the WWE Champion teams with the #1 Contender for the World Heavyweight Title at WrestleMania, “The Great White” Sheamus, to face World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan and The Miz in tag team action.
- Mark Henry def. R-Truth by pin following the World’s Strongest Slam.
- A.J. (with Daniel Bryan) def. Brie Bella (with Nikki Bella) by roll-up.
- Zack Ryder (with Hornswoggle) def. Jack Swagger (with Vickie Guerrero) by pin following the Rough Ryder Leg Lariat.
- Brodus Clay def. Heath Slater by pin following the Funky Flapjack.
- The Great Khali (with Theodore Long) def. Dolph Ziggler (with John Laurinaitis) by count-out.
- CM Punk & Sheamus def. Daniel Bryan & The Miz by Sheamus pinning The Miz following the Brogue Kick.
Nine nights before he defends the World Heavyweight Championship against Sheamus at WrestleMania, SmackDown kicks off with the World Heavyweight Champion, Daniel Bryan, and his girlfriend, A.J. Daniel Bryan states that he could talk about himself all night, but he is going to put A.J. “on the spot” before asking A.J. what it is like to be in love with the World Heavyweight Champion. However, the moment that A.J. starts to talk about her match later on in the night, Bryan interrupts and tells his girlfriend to answer the question. A.J. says that it is “heaven” being with Daniel Bryan, adding that Bryan “caresses” her and he has the “softest lips” and, sometimes, they “spoon”. A.J. continues, but when she refers to Bryan as “Danny”, Bryan lowers the microphone and sternly tells A.J. that she is not to call him that in public. A.J. then says that Bryan is “brave” and “generous”, also saying that Bryan’s “mind and spirit are pure”, adding that Bryan makes her feel “safe”. Bryan then whispers something in A.J.’s ear, making A.J. state that he is a “great lover” and, at WrestleMania, Bryan is going to make Sheamus “tap out”. Just as Bryan and A.J. were set to leave the ring, they are greeted by the #1 Contender for the World Heavyweight Title, “The Great White” Sheamus. Sheamus calls Bryan a “sniveling little coward” and refers to him as “Danny boy” before saying that, if Bryan hates being called “Danny”, he is really going to hate being called the “former World Heavyweight Champion”. Sheamus then vows to kick Bryan’s teeth down his throat at WrestleMania.
Nine nights before they are on opposing teams in the Team Teddy vs. Team Johnny 12-Man Tag Match at WrestleMania, Team Teddy member R-Truth went one-on-one with Team Johnny member “The World’s Strongest Man” Mark Henry. In the end, it was Mark Henry hitting the World’s Strongest Slam on R-Truth en route to picking up the win. Will Mark Henry display this same dominance at WrestleMania? Will Mark Henry be responsible for Team Johnny winning at WrestleMania?
Backstage, Zack Ryder approaches SmackDown General Manager Theodore Long, trying to convince the GM to let him be on Team Teddy at WrestleMania. The former United States Champion brings in Hornswoggle, who wields a flag with Long’s face on it, but Long says Ryder will need to do something “bigger” to convince him. Ryder responds by bringing in The Great Khali, who is decked out in Ryder gear, telling Long that, if Long lets Ryder be on the team, then Khali is in as well! Long then gives them the good news that they are all a part of Team Teddy! Now that Theodore Long has recruited Zack Ryder and The Great Khali for his team, will Team Teddy beat Team Johnny at WrestleMania?
After defeating Nikki Bella on RAW, A.J., with Daniel Bryan in his corner, went one-on-one with former Divas Champion Brie Bella, with Nikki Bella in her corner. During the match, A.J. locks in an armbar on Brie Bella, but Nikki Bella gets on the ring apron, sparking an argument between Nikki, the referee, and Daniel Bryan. This distracts A.J., but when Nikki tries to catch A.J. from behind, A.J. ducks, causing an inadvertent collision between The Bella Twins. A.J. then takes advantage, rolling Brie up to pick up the win. After Daniel Bryan and A.J. leave the ring, Nikki Bella gets in the ring, revealing that Brie roots for Team Johnny while she roots for Team Teddy before Nikki leads the crowd in a cheer for Team Teddy.
Nine nights before they are on opposing teams at WrestleMania, Team Teddy member Zack Ryder, with Team Teddy mascot Hornswoggle in his corner, went one-on-one with Team Johnny member Jack Swagger, with Vickie Guerrero in his corner. During the match, Hornswoggle would approach Vickie Guerrero and Vickie gets on the ring apron, trying to protect herself from the mascot. However, this distracts Jack Swagger long enough for Zack Ryder to take advantage as Ryder hits the Rough Ryder Leg Lariat on Swagger en route to picking up the win.
Four nights after their match on RAW, the rematch would take place on SmackDown as “The World’s Largest Athlete” Big Show went one-on-one with “The Big Red Monster” Kane. During the titanic match-up, Big Show would plant Kane with the chokeslam, but before Show could pin Kane, Cody Rhodes emerges, attacking Big Show before escaping through the crowd. Show mows security down in pursuit of Rhodes, but, in the ring, Randy Orton slides into the ring, planting Kane with the RKO!
Then it was time for SmackDown to get funky as “The Funkasaurus” Brodus Clay went one-on-one with Heath Slater. In the end, it was Brodus bringing the funk to Slater, hitting the Funky Flapjack en route to picking up the win.
With Team Johnny member, Christian, a guest on commentary, the newest addition to Team Teddy, The Great Khali, with Theodore Long in his corner, went one-on-one with Team Johnny member, Dolph Ziggler, with team captain David Otunga and John Laurinaitis in his corner. During the match, Dolph Ziggler manages to lock in the sleeper hold on The Great Khali and John Laurinaitis rings the bell, claiming a submission victory for Dolph! However, Theodore Long declares that the match is not over, saying that Ziggler has until the count of ten to get back in the ring. However, Dolph does not comply and the referee counts to ten before Long awards the match to Khali! After the match, Santino Marella and Kofi Kingston come from behind, sending Dolph back into the ring as Khali drops Dolph with the Khali Chop!
Then it was time for the main event as WWE Champion CM Punk teams with the #1 Contender for the World Heavyweight Title at WrestleMania, “The Great White” Sheamus, to face World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan, with A.J. in his corner, and The Miz. In the end, it was Sheamus blasting The Miz with the Brogue Kick en route to picking up the win for himself and CM Punk. Can Sheamus Brogue Kick his way to the World Heavyweight Title at WrestleMania?
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