After his cat and mouse game with No Mercy opponent Randy Orton ended with “The Viper” finding him and attacking him, SmackDown LIVE kicks off with “The Eater of Worlds” in action as Bray Wyatt would go one-on-one with the man that defeated him in a No Holds Barred match at Backlash with a big assist from Randy Orton, “The Big Red Machine” Kane. During the match, Bray Wyatt is sizing Kane up for Sister Abigail, but that is when Randy Orton would appear upside down on the Tron. Orton tells Bray that Bray is used to seeing the world upside down, but at No Mercy, he is going to turn Bray’s world “right side up”. Orton then turns himself upright as “The Viper” tells Bray that he can play his game “better” than Wyatt before telling “The Eater of Worlds” that, if he is really a “predator”, then he better come get his “prey”. However, while this is taking place, Kane had gotten back to his feet as Bray is knocked to the outside with an uppercut from Kane. Bray then appears conflicted on whether or not he should get back into the ring with “The Eater of Worlds” ultimately deciding to take the count-out loss to Kane.
Before she challenges Becky Lynch for the SmackDown Women’s Championship this Sunday at No Mercy, Alexa Bliss would go one-on-one with Nikki Bella on SmackDown LIVE with Nikki Bella’s rival Carmella a guest on commentary. During the match, the action would spill to the outside and this is when Nikki Bella would decide to throw Alexa Bliss into Carmella at ringside, taking Carmella down. Naturally, this would lead to Carmella attacking Nikki Bella from behind in the ring, ending the match by disqualification. Carmella and Alexa Bliss then set out to beat down Nikki Bella but Becky Lynch rushes out as the SmackDown Women’s Champion makes the save, helping Nikki clear the ring.
In an impromptu tag match, SmackDown Women’s Champion Becky Lynch would team with Nikki Bella to face the #1 Contender for the SmackDown Women’s Title Alexa Bliss and Carmella. During the match, Nikki Bella would take Carmella down before Carmella tries to escape Nikki, leading to Nikki chasing Carmella all the way to the back. Meanwhile, in the ring, Alexa Bliss hits Twisted Bliss on Becky Lynch, pinning the SmackDown Women’s Champion to pick up the win for herself and Carmella.
Backstage, in a role reversal from last week, it was Bray Wyatt who was hunting Randy Orton in the backstage area as “The Eater of Worlds” would set his sights on his signature rocking chair sitting nearby. Bray would approach the chair and laugh at Orton, asking if that’s all “The Viper” has got. This is when Orton would appear, quickly closing and locking the garage door to the room, trapping Bray inside! Orton then asks how it feels not that the “hunter” is the “hunted” before saying “lord have mercy” and adding “or not”. Meanwhile, inside the locked compartment, a furious Bray Wyatt pounds on the walls and the door.
In tag team action, SmackDown LIVE would see The Hype Bros face The Vaudevillains. In the end, it was The Hype Bros hitting the Hype Ryder with Mojo Rawley pinning Aiden English for the win. After the match, The Ascension would appear on the stage, staring down The Hype Bros.
Before he puts the Intercontinental Title up against Dolph Ziggler’s career this Sunday at No Mercy, Intercontinental Champion The Miz and his wife Maryse would host a special edition of Miz TV as The Miz would present a “Dolphumentary”. The Miz says that he doesn’t want to waste any time, pointing out that tonight could be the last night that his guest on Miz TV could be appearing on SmackDown LIVE, introducing his No Mercy opponent Dolph Ziggler. Once Dolph gets in the ring, The Miz reminds Ziggler of what is at stake at No Mercy, saying that Dolph’s career may be over after this Sunday but it will not be “forgotten”.
The Intercontinental Champion then shows a video package that is dubbed “The Success of a Failure: The Dolph Ziggler Story”. The biased video package shows Dolph’s WWE debut as Kerwin White’s caddy to his time in the Spirit Squad to having to kiss Sheamus’ backside, the video package shows some of the most humiliating moments of Dolph’s career. The video presentation then shows when Dolph was awarded the World Heavyweight Title back in 2011 only to lose the title to Edge ten minutes later. The video then shows several wrestlers including Edge, Booker T, Becky Lynch, Chris Jericho, and others appearing to say bad things about Edge. The video package then concludes by calling Dolph’s career “eleven long years of mediocrity” and saying that Ziggler is saying “goodbye to a career that never was”.
After the embarrassing video package concludes, The Miz is pointing and laughing at an unamused Dolph Ziggler, saying that if his career was as embarrassing as Dolph’s, he would have quit a long time ago. Dolph responds by saying that, if The Miz says that again, he’ll slap the hell out of him. Ziggler then says that, at any point, he could have walked away or quit, but he couldn’t because, for every ten embarrassing moments, he gets a moment where he can make a kid smile. Dolph continues, saying he cashed in Money-in-the-Bank a couple of years ago the night after WrestleMania to win the World Heavyweight Title and the fans were the reason that he became a champion on that night. Dolph then says that is why he “can’t walk away” before saying that he came to a crossroads and he knew that he had to put his career on the line because if he can’t deliver, then he doesn’t belong in WWE.
Ziggler then says that there is a shred of dignity inside him that tells him that he will beat The Miz at No Mercy and he will become the Intercontinental Champion, saying that The Miz is not taking his career away from him. Dolph continues, saying that it’s been a hell of a ride and all good things must come to an end, but he’s “not done yet”! The Miz then gets in the face of Ziggler saying that Dolph’s career will end this Sunday and it will end because of him. The Intercontinental Champion then has a surprise for Dolph Ziggler, saying that he’s got something to cheer Dolph up and, with that, The Miz brings out two members of the Spirit Squad as Kenny and Mikey join Dolph in the ring! As Dolph stands by, Kenny & Mikey do their best cheer routine with The Miz cheering the Spirit Squad. Kenny & Mikey then do a cheer that suggests Dolph will be heading to the “unemployment line” after this Sunday before The Miz adds that there were more members of the Spirit Squad but some of them got lost on the trip when they were sent back to OVW. The Miz then says that, after Dolph loses at No Mercy, he can join back up with the Spirit Squad on the independent scene.
Clearly fed up with The Miz, Dolph gets in the face of the champion, clearly ready to fight The Miz but this is when Kenny & Mikey attack their former teammate from behind, beating down “The Show Off” as The Miz watches from the ramp. However, Dolph fights back, dropping both Kenny and Mikey with the super kick before The Miz tries to catch Ziggler off-guard, narrowly avoiding a super kick as he escapes the ring. The Miz then stands stoically on the stage, holding the Intercontinental Title belt high as champion and challenger stare each other down.
With a match against Heath Slater & Rhyno for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles this Sunday at No Mercy, Jey Uso, with Jimmy Uso in his corner, would go one-on-one with American Alpha’s Jason Jordan, with Chad Gable in his corner. In the end, it was Jason Jordan surprising Jey Uso with a roll-up, picking up the win over one-half of American Alpha. After the match, Jimmy Uso would blindside Chad Gable on the outside, taking Gable out. The Usos would then chop-block Jason Jordan, setting their sights on putting Jordan on the shelf just like they did Chad Gable. Luckily for American Alpha, the SmackDown Tag Team Champions would make the save as Heath Slater & Rhyno rush the ring as The Usos make a quick exit from the ring.
Still locked in the storage compartment backstage, Bray Wyatt is sitting in his rocking chair, telling the unseen Sister Abigail that he knew she’d come back. Bray then tells Abigail to take him home because he is “ready to go home”. Shortly after this, Randy Orton puts his ear to the locked door before opening the door to find that Bray Wyatt is gone and all that remains is Bray’s rocking chair. “The Viper” responds by throwing the chair around the room as his attempt to get into Bray’s head appears to have failed.
Following a backstage confrontation earlier in the night, “The Real American” Jack Swagger would compete for the first time since being signed to SmackDown LIVE as Swagger would go one-on-one with “The Lone Wolf” Baron Corbin. During the match, Jack Swagger would lock in the Patriot Lock on Baron Corbin as “The Lone Wolf” desperately tries to claw his way to the bottom rope. However, the referee would see this as Corbin tapping out and the official awards the match to Swagger by submission. This questionable call sends Baron into a rage as “The Lone Wolf” tears apart the ringside area.
Before they go to war in a Triple Threat Match for the WWE World Championship this Sunday at No Mercy, it was time for the face-to-face-to-face confrontation between WWE World Champion AJ Styles, John Cena, and Dean Ambrose. Coming out first would be the defending champion at No Mercy as WWE World Champion AJ Styles makes his way to the ring. After proclaiming “the champ is here”, Styles says that he beat John Cena and became the “face that runs the place” at SummerSlam and, at Backlash, he had the opportunity to beat Dean Ambrose for the WWE World Title and he did that too. The champion then says that, at No Mercy, he has the chance to beat both John Cena and Dean Ambrose at the same time.
However, AJ is then interrupted by one of his two opponents this Sunday, Dean Ambrose, who calls Styles a “chump”, saying that Styles took the “low road” at Backlash. Ambrose then says that he’s mad because he had AJ beat for the WWE World Title last week before John Cena showed his “true colors”, saying that Cena should be thanking him for bringing the WWE World Championship to SmackDown LIVE in the first place.
This brings out the fifteen-time former World Champion who looks to tie the record set by Ric Flair of sixteen World Title reigns this Sunday, John Cena. Before Cena can even speak, Styles tells Cena to “shut up”, saying that they all know what Cena is going to say. AJ tells Cena “how dare you” for comparing himself to a legend like Ric Flair, saying that Cena will never be in the “same conversation” as Ric Flair. The champion then says that, if he was Cena, he wouldn’t be worried about Ric Flair’s legacy, saying Cena should be worried about him, saying that he “makes history”. AJ then says that he’s going to watch Cena make a “fool” out of himself just like he did at SummerSlam.
With the champion taking a step back to watch the proceedings, Cena again starts to speak, but Ambrose also stops Cena from talking. Ambrose says that Cena is the master of the “political spin”, saying that Cena undercuts anyone who is a threat to him, accusing Cena of trying to do that to him since day one. Ambrose continues, telling Cena to check his resume, saying that he’s never had a “sick day” or taken time off for an injury and he’s had more matches than anyone in WWE. “The Lunatic Fringe” then says that Cena has “no respect” for him because he’s never played by Cena’s rules and he never will, saying that he’ll be Dean Ambrose because that’s “real”, telling Cena to have fun “being the guy that plays John Cena on TV”.
Finally allowed to speak, John Cena simply says “talk is cheap” before attacking Dean Ambrose, tossing AJ Styles out of the ring before hitting Dean Ambrose with the Attitude Adjustment! Cena then grabs the WWE World Title belt, symbolically holding the title high but this is when AJ Styles comes back into the ring, avoiding the Attitude Adjustment before connecting with the Phenomenal Forearm, leaving Cena laid out. The champion then leaves the ring with his title before Ambrose blasts Styles from behind, spiking AJ with Dirty Deeds on the steel ramp! “The Lunatic Fringe” then holds the WWE World Title high, making it clear to both John Cena and AJ Styles that, come No Mercy, Ambrose is willing to go through whoever and whatever he has to go through to reclaim the WWE World Championship.
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