United, We Stand.
Just two nights before WWE Payback, the 721st edition of WWE Friday Night SmackDown came to you from the Greensboro Coliseum Complex in Greensboro, NC. Before Kane challenges Dean Ambrose for the United States Title and Randy Orton & Daniel Bryan challenge Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns for the WWE Tag Team Titles at Payback, the team of “The Big Red Monster” Kane, “The Viper” Randy Orton, & Daniel Bryan would face The Shield, Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, & Roman Reigns, in a 6-Man Tag Match!
- Sheamus def. Antonio Cesaro by pin following the Brogue Kick.
- Heath Slater (with Jinder Mahal & Drew McIntyre) def. The Great Khali (with Natalya & Hornswoggle) by pin following a DDT.
- Chris Jericho & Alberto Del Rio def. Dolph Ziggler & Big E. Langston (with AJ Lee) by Alberto Del Rio rolling up Dolph Ziggler.
- Non-Title: Curtis Axel def. Wade Barrett by pin following the Axel Cutter.
- 6-Man Tag: Randy Orton, Kane, & Daniel Bryan def. The Shield by Seth Rollins tapping out to Daniel Bryan’s No Lock.
Before he and Randy Orton challenge Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns of The Shield this Sunday at WWE Payback, SmackDown kicks off with Daniel Bryan. Bryan says that, when he first arrived in the WWE, he never thought that he would be the World Heavyweight Champion and he never expected to be the WWE Tag Team Champions with Kane for six months. Bryan then says that Team Hell No is one of the greatest tag teams of all-time before Bryan calmly asks “The Big Red Monster” Kane to come to the ring. Kane reluctantly comes down to the ring, telling Bryan that the only thing that he is interested in right now is their 6-Man Tag Match against The Shield later on in the night. Daniel Bryan says that he is “proud” of what they have done in and out of the ring to become better partners, but, at Payback, Kane will not be his partner and, when he wins the tag titles, it will be with someone else and he will not be teaming with Kane anymore. Kane then asks if Daniel Bryan is “breaking up” with him before saying that the same thing will happen when he wins the United States Title at Payback. Bryan names the team of him and Randy Orton, “RK-No”, but Kane argues that it is not a forgone conclusion that Orton & Bryan will win the tag titles. Daniel Bryan takes this to mean that Kane thinks that he is the “weak link” before saying that he and Orton will win the tag titles at Payback and prove that he is not the weak link. Bryan continues, saying that Kane will have to sit back and watch him and Orton do what he and Kane could not do and that could only mean one thing.
Kane asks if Bryan is saying that he is the weak link and Bryan says “yes”, he is. Kane then grabs Bryan around the throat, but Randy Orton interrupts, saying that, while he cannot blame Kane for wanting to chokeslam Daniel Bryan, he needs Bryan at 100% for their title match at Payback. “The Viper” then says that, if Kane decides to chokeslam Daniel Bryan, then Kane could find himself hit with an RKO. Bryan then takes issue with Orton, saying that he did not need Orton to come to his rescue. Kane then states that he has had enough, starting to exit the ring, but Daniel Bryan tells Kane to “run off” like he always does. This sparks an argument between the three, but it is interrupted when The Shield appears on the Tron. Dean Ambrose, Seth Rollins, & Roman Reigns laugh at the team’s dissention before Dean Ambrose says that Orton, Kane, & Bryan are mad at themselves because they have all tried to put different “super teams” together, but all have fallen as The Shield remains undefeated and “unstoppable” as a team. Ambrose continues, saying that the main event will be just like every other night before Roman Reigns says that Orton, Kane, & Bryan will lose tonight and they will lose again at Payback, saying that they are the “hounds of justice” and they “run this yard”.
Before facing Damien Sandow on the Payback Kickoff pre-show this Sunday night, the opening match of the night would see “The Celtic Warrior” Sheamus going one-on-one with Antonio Cesaro. Before the match, Damien Sandow had some tough words for “The Celtic Warrior”, questioning Sheamus’ intelligence and vowing to host Sheamus’ own “Irish wake” this Sunday. In the match, Antonio Cesaro would dominate Sheamus for much of the match, but a sudden Brogue Kick out of the corner from Sheamus would secure the victory for “The Celtic Warrior”. After the match, Damien Sandow would get a piece of his Payback Kickoff opponent, clubbing Sheamus from behind on the staging area.
The Great Khali was in action on SmackDown as “The Punjabi Giant”, with Natalya & Hornswoggle in his corner, faced Heath Slater, with Jinder Mahal & Drew McIntyre in his corner. During the match, Jinder Mahal & Drew McIntyre pick a fight with Hornswoggle as Jinder shoves down the pint-sized Superstar. Khali sees this and drops Jinder with a chop from inside the ring. However, Heath Slater takes advantage of the brief distraction, spiking Khali with a DDT en route to picking up the upset victory!
Two nights before he returns to pay-per-view competition when he defends the World Heavyweight Championship against Alberto Del Rio at Payback, World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler would team with his heavy, Big E. Langston, with AJ Lee in their corner, to face the team of the #1 Contender for the World Heavyweight Title, Alberto Del Rio, with Ricardo Rodriguez in his corner, and the man who will face the returning CM Punk at Payback, “Y2J” Chris Jericho. In the end, it was Alberto Del Rio catching Dolph Ziggler by surprise with a roll-up to pick up the win for himself and Chris Jericho.
After finding out on RAW that her “secret admirer” was all an elaborate setup by AJ Lee to humiliate her on live television, Kaitlyn was in action on SmackDown as, two nights before she defends the Divas Title against AJ Lee at Payback, the emotional Divas Champion was set to go one-on-one with Aksana. However, after spotting Aksana laughing at her over what happened on RAW, Kaitlyn would snap, hammering the Lithuanian Diva in and out of the ring and, when the referee tries to restrain the Divas Champion, Kaitlyn attacks the referee too! Kaitlyn then refuses to stop her assault on Aksana, taking Aksana to the outside. Again, the referee tries to break up the fight, but the Divas Champion slaps the referee across the face! The brief hold-up with the referee allows Aksana to make a quick retreat, getting away from the emotionally broken Kaitlyn.
Before facing Curtis Axel in a one-on-one match, Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett tries to strike a business deal with Paul Heyman & Curtis Axel, saying that they should wait until Payback to get their hands on each other. Before a deal can be struck, The Miz comes out, leading the crowd in a “fight” chant, forcing Barrett and Axel to agree to have the match.
Before he and The Miz challenge Wade Barrett for the Intercontinental Championship in a Triple Threat Match at Payback, the undefeated Curtis Axel was in action on SmackDown as, with Paul Heyman in his corner, “The New Perfect” went one-on-one with Intercontinental Champion Wade Barrett in a non-title match, with The Miz lingering at ringside. During the match, Wade Barrett and Curtis Axel would fight on the outside in front of The Miz, but amidst the fight, Wade Barrett would side-step an oncoming attack from Axel and Axel would inadvertently drop Miz with a right hand! Shortly after this, Curtis Axel was able to catch Wade Barrett coming in, hitting the Axel Cutter on Wade Barrett en route to pinning the Intercontinental Champion for the win! After the match, The Miz would get a piece of Curtis Axel, planting the “Paul Heyman Guy” with the Skull Crushing Finale!
Then it was time for the volatile main event of SmackDown as the team of Randy Orton, Kane, & Daniel Bryan would face The Shield, United States Champion Dean Ambrose and WWE Tag Team Champions Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns, in a 6-Man Tag Match. At the end of a chaotic match, it was Kane shoving Seth Rollins off of the top rope right into an RKO by Randy Orton and Daniel Bryan then locks in the No Lock on Seth Rollins, forcing Rollins to tap out to hand The Shield their first loss ever in 6-Man Tag action!
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