Five nights after Money-in-the-Bank, the 726th edition of WWE Friday Night SmackDown came to you from the Dunkin’ Donuts Center in Providence, RI. After his shocking betrayal of CM Punk at Money-in-the-Bank as well as his orchestrated destruction of CM Punk at the hands of Brock Lesnar on RAW, Paul Heyman will be put in the hot seat when Heyman joins The Miz on Miz TV! After a banner night at Money-in-the-Bank where he became the Money-in-the-Bank contract holder for a guaranteed WWE Title shot, “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” would be in action on SmackDown as Randy Orton would go one-on-one with World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio in a non-title match. Also, in his final match before an extended departure from the WWE to tour with his band, Fozzy, six-time World Champion Chris Jericho would go one-on-one with the man he beat twice last week, Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel, with the Intercontinental Title on the line!
- Dolph Ziggler def. Jack Swagger (with Zeb Colter & Antonio Cesaro) by pin following the Zig Zag.
- Daniel Bryan def. Wade Barrett by submission to the Yes Lock.
- Intercontinental Championship: Curtis Axel (c) (with Paul Heyman) def. Chris Jericho by pin following the Axel Cutter to retain.
- Rob Van Dam def. Darren Young (with Titus O’Neil) by pin following the Five-Star Frog Splash.
- Non-Title: Randy Orton def. Alberto Del Rio by pin following the RKO.
SmackDown kicks off with SmackDown Senior Advisor Theodore Long, who says that, as everyone saw on RAW last week, there is a new General Manager of RAW in Brad Maddox. Long then reveals that WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon will be on SmackDown tonight to give Theodore Long a job performance evaluation similar to the one Vickie Guerrero got on RAW last week that ultimately resulted in Vickie getting fired! Long then asks the fans if they think that he has been doing a good job and if they think he should be named the new permanent General Manager of SmackDown! However, Theodore Long’s mood completely changes when the actual SmackDown General Manager makes his return as 2013 WWE Hall of Famer Booker T surprises everyone, returning after a two-month hiatus where he rehabbed a torn triceps muscle! Booker says that Theodore Long has been doing a hell of a job filling in for him during his absence, but now he is back and he is ready to get back to his GM duties. WWE Chairman Mr. McMahon then comes out with a smile on his face, making his way to the ring, telling Booker T and Theodore Long that he is out there to let them know that only “one person” can be in charge of SmackDown. The Chairman first asks Theodore Long what kind of match he had in mind for the main event of SmackDown and Long reveals that he was planning on having Curtis Axel defend the Intercontinental Title against Chris Jericho! Mr. McMahon then poses the same question to Booker T, who says that he intends to have World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio face “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Randy Orton in a non-title match.
The impromptu evaluation is then interrupted by RAW General Manager Brad Maddox, who scrambles out to the ring, telling Mr. McMahon that he should be named the General Manager of SmackDown, as well! Maddox claims that he was going to make the exact same matches that Booker T and Theodore Long just came up with before revealing that, tonight, Rob Van Dam will return to SmackDown! Then it was time for the WWE Chairman to make his decision and, instead of Booker T, Theodore Long, or Brad Maddox, Mr. McMahon announces that the new General Manager of SmackDown is none other than the recently fired Managing Supervisor of RAW, Vickie Guerrero! With Booker T, Theodore Long, & Brad Maddox all standing in the ring in disbelief, Vickie Guerrero makes her way to the ring, pulling no punches, telling the fans that she “hates” each and every one of them! The new SmackDown GM then says that there is nothing that anyone can do about her being in charge as the permanent General Manager of SmackDown!
After twice being cost a match by his now ex-girlfriend AJ Lee, Dolph Ziggler would try to get back on track as “The Show-Off” would go one-on-one with “The Real American” Jack Swagger, with Zeb Colter & Antonio Cesaro in his corner. During the match, Antonio Cesaro would get involved on the outside of the ring, hitting Dolph Ziggler with his signature uppercut. Suspicious of Antonio Cesaro’s involvement, the referee ejects both Zeb Colter & Antonio Cesaro from ringside! In the end, it was Dolph Ziggler hitting the Zig Zag on Jack Swagger en route to picking up the win. After the match, Dolph Ziggler reminds everyone that he dumped AJ Lee on RAW this past Monday, saying that he is “sorry” that he did not break it off with her a lot sooner! Backstage, this sends AJ Lee into a psychotic rage as the Divas Champion screams, tossing chairs and refusing to be calmed down by Big E. Langston, slapping Langston before finally letting Langston calm her down with a hug. Langston nearly takes it one step further as he looks to go in for a kiss on AJ, but instead, Langston kisses AJ on the forehead and walks away.
After successfully defending the WWE Tag Team Titles against Jimmy & Jey Uso on Money-in-the-Bank Kickoff, WWE Tag Team Champions Seth Rollins & Roman Reigns would face Jimmy & Jey Uso in a non-title rematch on SmackDown. Before the match can begin, Jimmy & Jey Uso rush the ring, sparking a brawl between the two teams, but United States Champion Dean Ambrose rushes out to aid his Shield cohorts as The Shield begins a three-on-two beat down of Jimmy & Jey Uso. However, Mark Henry makes his way to the ring with payback in mind as “The World’s Strongest Man” takes it to The Shield, but when the numbers game catches up with Mark Henry, Jimmy & Jey Uso come to the aid of Mark Henry, helping the big man rid the ring of The Shield!
The new #1 Contender for the WWE Championship at SummerSlam was in action on SmackDown as Daniel Bryan would go one-on-one with Wade Barrett. In the end, it was Daniel Bryan locking in the Yes Lock on Wade Barrett, forcing Barrett to tap out to pick up the win.
Backstage, RAW General Manager Brad Maddox confronts his former boss and the new General Manager of SmackDown, Vickie Guerrero, offering to put their issues behind them. Vickie responds to the proposal with a jaw-breaking slap to the face of the RAW GM!
With The Miz in the ring, it was then time for Miz TV as “The Awesome One” welcomes everyone to Miz TV, saying that his guest cost CM Punk the Money-in-the-Bank All-Stars Ladder Match, as well as orchestrated Brock Lesnar’s destruction of CM Punk on RAW, introducing his guest, Paul Heyman. Heyman makes his way to the ring, joining The Miz, who says that, since Heyman never tells the truth, he has nothing to say to Paul Heyman. The Miz then gives the floor to Paul Heyman, telling him to say whatever he wants. Heyman thanks The Miz, saying that he is merely an “advocate”, but his client, Brock Lesnar, is a “merciless emissary of suffering” with his sights set on CM Punk. Heyman continues, saying that Brock has no conscious, claiming that he still has “love” in his heart for CM Punk. Heyman then warns Punk to “stay down” and “leave the WWE”, telling Punk that, if Punk ever shows his face in the WWE again, Lesnar will take Punk’s actions as a “spiteful act of provocation”, vowing that Punk will be “dealt with” by Brock Lesnar if Punk does not heed his warning. The Miz then says that he is “revolted” by Heyman’s face, his tone of voice, his frame of mind, and he is revolted by the fact that Heyman swore on his children and still lied! Disgusted with his guest, The Miz walks off of his own show, but Heyman halts in the entranceway with the introduction of the man who defeated The Miz to retain the Intercontinental Title at Money-in-the-Bank, Intercontinental Champion Curtis Axel, who locks eyes with The Miz as the two pass as Curtis Axel makes his way to the ring to defend his title.
After beating the Intercontinental Champion twice last week, the most decorated Intercontinental Champion of all-time, Chris Jericho, would challenge Curtis Axel, with Paul Heyman in his corner, for the Intercontinental Championship on SmackDown. After coming within an eyelash of winning an unheard-of tenth Intercontinental Championship, a timely distraction from Paul Heyman would allow Curtis Axel to take advantage of the match, hitting the Axel Cutter on Jericho en route to picking up the win to successfully retain the Intercontinental Title. With Chris Jericho helpless in the ring, Ryback marches to the ring, toying with the six-time World Champion, but Jericho would do his best to combat Ryback. However, Ryback would end Jericho’s momentum with a huge Meat Hook Clothesline before dropping Y2J in the center of the ring with Shell Shocked, delivering a punt to the gut of Jericho before finally leaving the ring!
Five nights after betraying his best friend, Cody Rhodes, at Money-in-the-Bank to win the Money-in-the-Bank contract for a guaranteed World Heavyweight Title shot, “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Damien Sandow appears on SmackDown. Sandow states that the Money-in-the-Bank Ladder Match is every man for himself and, despite what the world thinks, he did not screw Cody Rhodes. After showing footage of Cody Rhodes attacking him on RAW, Damien Sandow says that he is not going to react the way that the fans would. Sandow continues, saying that both he and Cody Rhodes and “civilized” and they are still “best friends”! Damien Sandow then invites Cody Rhodes to the ring so that they can put the whole situation behind them. Rhodes makes his way to the ring, asking for the microphone, but Sandow refuses, saying that Rhodes does not need to explain and that he “forgives” Rhodes! Sandow continues, saying that he forgives Rhodes for what he did to him on RAW and he forgives Rhodes for everything, saying that he is offering Rhodes a “metaphorical olive branch”, saying that Rhodes can be the “protector of the case”, which would see the second-generation star more or less babysit the Money-in-the-Bank briefcase until Sandow is ready to cash in! However, Sandow makes the mistake of letting Rhodes hold the briefcase as Rhodes uses the briefcase to pop Sandow in the skull with the briefcase, getting a few shots in on Sandow before “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” is able to escape as Rhodes tosses the Money-in-the-Bank briefcase at the staging area.
Appearing on SmackDown for the first time in more than eight years, “The Whole Damn Show” would return to SmackDown as Rob Van Dam went one-on-one with one-half of The Prime Time Players, Darren Young, with Titus O’Neil in his corner. After knocking Titus O’Neil off of the ring apron, it was Rob Van Dam hitting the Five-Star Frog Splash on Darren Young en route to picking up the win.
Backstage, the unemployed Theodore Long confronts the new General Manager of SmackDown, Vickie Guerrero, saying that they have been mortal enemies for several years, but it is time to let bygones be bygones, saying that everyone has room to “work together”. However, when Theodore Long asks if she really means it, Vickie gives Long a “hell no”, calling for security to escort Theodore Long out of the building! As security escorts Long out of the arena, Vickie screams at Long that the only way he will ever be on her show again is if he buys a ticket!
Then it was time for the main event as, five nights after surviving the Money-in-the-Bank All-Stars Ladder Match to secure the Money-in-the-Bank contract for a guaranteed WWE Title match, “Mr. Money-in-the-Bank” Randy Orton would go one-on-one with World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio in a non-title match. At the end of a hard-fought match, it was Randy Orton rolling out of the cross armbreaker, hitting Alberto Del Rio with the RKO en route to pinning the World Heavyweight Champion for the win.
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