A Fate Etched in Steel?
Two nights before WWE TLC, the 695th edition of WWE Friday Night SmackDown came to you from the Webster Bank Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, CT. With their no contact clause in effect for two more nights, can Sheamus and World Heavyweight Champion Big Show avoid coming in physical contact with each other before WWE TLC or will the personal rivalry get the better of the champion and challenger, costing both of them dearly?
- Non-Title: Big Show (with Antonio Cesaro) def. R-Truth (with Sheamus) by pin following the K.O. Punch.
- Team Rhodes Scholars def. Jimmy & Jey Uso by Damien Sandow rolling up Jey Uso with the tights.
- Kaitlyn def. Aksana by pin following a single-knee gutbuster.
- 8-Man Tag: Tyson Kidd, Justin Gabriel, Hornswoggle, & The Great Khali (with Natalya) def. The Prime Time Players and Primo & Epico (with Rosa Mendes) by Tyson Kidd rolling up Epico.
- Non-Title: Kofi Kingston def. Alberto Del Rio by roll-up.
- Non-Title: Antonio Cesaro (with Big Show) def. Sheamus by count-out.
The show kicks off with Sheamus and United States Champion Antonio Cesaro as guests on commentary for the opening match of the night as World Heavyweight Champion Big Show went one-on-one with R-Truth in a non-title match two nights before their respective WWE TLC title matches. During the match, both Big Show and R-Truth would confront their respective opponents at ringside and, while Sheamus and Big Show are forbidden from coming into contact with each other, Antonio Cesaro would not have the same protection from “The Celtic Warrior”. When R-Truth is knocked down on the outside, the United States Champion would have a few choice words for his challenger, but Sheamus would get involved, shoving Cesaro back into his seat! Meanwhile, in the ring, Big Show would drop R-Truth with the K.O. Punch en route to picking up the win. After the match, Big Show and Sheamus would come face-to-face, but Cesaro would shove Sheamus into Big Show before Sheamus puts the United States Champion down. However, this exchange would elate Big Show as the World Heavyweight Champion excitedly tells “The Celtic Warrior” that Sheamus touched him and, thus, their match at WWE TLC is off!
Backstage, a beaming Big Show confronts SmackDown General Manager Booker T, saying that Sheamus “clearly” initiated contact with him, meaning that their Chairs Match for the World Heavyweight Championship is off. However, Booker has a different outlook on what happened, saying that Antonio Cesaro was the one who initiated contact, telling Big Show to just admit that he is “scared”! The World Heavyweight Champion says that he is not scared and, despite his best objections, the GM informs Big Show that the match will still take place as scheduled!
Before he and Cody Rhodes face Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara in a Tables Match at WWE TLC to determine the new #1 Contenders for the WWE Tag Team Titles, “The Intellectual Savior of the Masses” Damien Sandow. Sandow first re-introduces everyone to his tag team partner, the newly “mustachioed” Cody Rhodes. The second-generation Superstar then joins his Team Rhodes Scholars teammate in the ring. Amidst chants of “Cody’s mustache” from the crowd, Rhodes says that it is an “honor” to be back in the ring with Sandow, saying that Sandow can now end his quest for a new apprentice because his “equal” is back. Before Team Rhodes Scholars can continue, they are interrupted by their opponents, Jimmy & Jey Uso.
Two nights before they face Rey Mysterio & Sin Cara in a Tables Match to determine the new #1 Contenders for the WWE Tag Team Titles at WWE TLC, Team Rhodes Scholars was in action on SmackDown as Cody Rhodes & Damien Sandow face the second-generation team of Jimmy & Jey Uso. In the end, it was Damien Sandow catching Jey Uso with a roll-up, hooking the tights en route to picking up the win for Team Rhodes Scholars.
Backstage, World Heavyweight Champion Big Show brings his no contact clause to WWE’s resident lawyer, David Otunga, who says that Big Show has a case, leading Big Show to the ring to take the case public. Moments after, Big Show and David Otunga are in the ring as the World Heavyweight Champion says that, if Booker T will not listen to him, maybe the GM will listen to David Otunga. Otunga then says that, last week, Booker had Big Show and Sheamus sign a binding no contact clause. Otunga continues, calling the GM “biased” and saying that they have no choice but to take their case to the WWE Board of Director, threatening to have the Board call the WWE TLC match off and to have Booker removed as the General Manager! Booker T then comes out, saying that a contract is not honored by the “letter of the law”, but by the “spirit of the intent”. Otunga “objects”, but Booker says that Otunga can go and waste the Board’s time if he wants, but the match between Sheamus and Big Show is still on! Otunga then makes things personal with the GM, saying that, just because Booker has been to prison, that does not make him a legal expert. Otunga continues, saying that Sheamus clearly violated the no contact clause, vowing to get Sheamus fired, as well. Naturally, this brings out Sheamus, who marches to the ring with a steel chair in hand, saying that if Big Show decides to go through with his legal action, then there is nothing stopping him from kicking Big Show’s “arse” right now. Not having thought of that, a visibly afraid Big Show utters that, as far as he is concerned, the contract is still valid! Big Show then leaves the ring, leaving David Otunga to get laid out by the Brogue Kick of Sheamus!
For the first time since getting attacked by The Shield two weeks ago on RAW, “The Viper” Randy Orton would discuss the attack in a backstage interview with Matt Striker. However, Orton would not even make it to the interview as WWE cameras catch The Shield at the tail-end of an attack on “The Viper” as Orton is amidst a broken table and a pile of debris while Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, & Roman Reigns stomp away at Orton. The Shield then walks away from the injured Orton as Orton receives medical attention.
The Divas were in action on SmackDown as Kaitlyn went one-on-one with the Diva who twice attacked her in recent months, Aksana. In the end, it was Kaitlyn dropping Aksana with a single-knee gutbuster en route to picking up the win.
Backstage, Matt Striker provides and update on Randy Orton, revealing that, as a result of the attack by The Shield, Orton has suffered a separated shoulder and a possible concussion!
Before they team with Ryback to combat The Shield in a 6-Man TLC Tag Match at WWE TLC, WWE Tag Team Champions Team Hell No would appear as the special guests of The Miz on Miz TV. The Miz welcomes everyone to Miz TV, saying that the most controversial individuals in the WWE right now are the trio known as The Shield. Miz continues, saying that three men look to stop The Shield in a 6-Man TLC Tag Match at WWE TLC, including his guests, the WWE Tag Team Champions, Team Hell No. With that, Kane & Daniel Bryan make their way to the ring. Daniel Bryan says that he and Kane have been in anger management for months talking about their feelings, but the time for talk is over as they look to destroy The Shield at WWE TLC. Kane then says that The Shield made a big mistake by attacking them because that attack has landed them on the same page. Kane continues, saying that, now that Daniel Bryan has unleashed his “inner monster”, Team Hell No is “unstoppable”! The WWE Tag Team Champions then proclaim that they will use tables, ladders, and chairs and they will love “every second” of it! The Shield then make an appearance from an undisclosed location with their own camera, telling Team Hell No to ask Randy Orton what happens when people threaten them. The Shield says that Team Hell No has forced their hands, saying that Daniel Bryan hides behind Kane and that Kane has become a “helpless victim” thanks to them. The Shield then vows to “bring the sword” at WWE TLC, saying that “justice will be served” and Kane asks the trio why they should wait until WWE TLC. The Shield agrees as Team Hell No prepares for a fight, but as Seth Rollins, Dean Ambrose, & Roman Reigns make their way through the crowd, they are halted by the arrival of Ryback, who stands with Team Hell No in the ring! Faced with even sides, The Shield thinks twice about making their way to the ring.
In a big 8-Man Tag Match, the team of Tyson Kidd, Justin Gabriel, Hornswoggle, & The Great Khali, with Natalya in their corner, would face The Prime Time Players and Primo & Epico, with Rosa Mendes in their corner. In the end, it was Tyson Kidd catching Epico with a roll-up en route to picking up the win. After the match, a brawl breaks out between all eight men as Tyson Kidd, Justin Gabriel, Hornswoggle, & The Great Khali take out The Prime Time Players and Primo & Epico.
Two nights before he defends the Intercontinental Title against Wade Barrett at WWE TLC, the Intercontinental Champion was in action on SmackDown as Kofi Kingston went one-on-one with “The Mexican Aristocrat” Alberto Del Rio, with Ricardo Rodriguez in his corner, in a non-title match. In the end, it was Kofi Kingston catching Alberto Del Rio with a roll-up en route to picking up a big win. After the match, Wade Barrett would try to attack Kofi Kingston from behind, but the Intercontinental Champion ducks the attack before laying Barrett out with Trouble in Paradise!
Then it was time for the main event as, two nights before he collides with Big Show in a Chairs Match for the World Heavyweight Championship at WWE TLC, “The Celtic Warrior” Sheamus would go one-on-one with United States Champion Antonio Cesaro in a non-title match. During the match, Sheamus’ attention would be drawn away from the match by an uncomfortable scene on the staging area as Big Show, with steel chair in hand, tosses Sheamus’ friend, William Regal, down on the stage. As the referee counts to ten, Sheamus makes his way to the stage and, as Regal repeatedly tells Sheamus to not let Big Show make him cost himself a title match, Big Show waylays Regal with a steel chair shot to the spine as Regal falls at the feet of Sheamus, leaving Sheamus in a state of unbridled rage! Has Big Show effectively cost himself the World Heavyweight Title by forcing Sheamus into a state of destructive rage rarely seen from “The Celtic Warrior”?
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