Before SmackDown LIVE officially gets underway, SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon and SmackDown General Manager Daniel Bryan are reviewing what happened last week when James Ellsworth inadvertently cost Dean Ambrose the Intercontinental Championship. Management then addresses James Ellsworth in the room with them as it becomes apparent that Ellsworth has a nasty sickness. Shane and Daniel try to reprimand Ellsworth for his interference before it becomes clear to them both that Ellsworth is way too sick to be competing for the WWE World Championship, informing Ellsworth that his WWE World Title match is postponed again! James then sneezes on Daniel before leaving the office as Shane offers Daniel some hand sanitizer.
SmackDown LIVE then kicks off with Intercontinental Champion The Miz and his wife Maryse in the ring for Miz TV. The Miz says that tonight’s Miz TV is “special” before introducing his guest, WWE World Champion AJ Styles, who makes his way to the ring. The Miz brings up James Ellsworth not being able to compete for the WWE World Title tonight and AJ Styles says that, sooner or later, he is going to “destroy” James Ellsworth. The Miz then jokes about how AJ Styles is going to sleep at night knowing that Ellsworth is waiting in the wings for his title match. The Miz then asks AJ Styles what’s next for him and AJ says that he’s beaten John Cena, he’s beaten Dean Ambrose, and he’s going to beat James Ellsworth, asking who else is on his level. The Miz says that he has taken the Intercontinental Championship and made it “legendary”, pointing out that AJ Styles has never beaten James Ellsworth and AJ struggled with Ambrose for months while The Miz beat Ambrose last week.
The Miz then tells the WWE World Champion that he’s not on AJ’s level, he’s “above it”! The Miz then suggests that maybe it’s time he makes the WWE World Championship “legendary”. This leads to a face-off between the two champions before Dean Ambrose makes his way to the ring. AJ Styles and The Miz then retreat to the ring apron before Dolph Ziggler joins Ambrose in the ring. Dolph calls both of them “paper champions” before saying that The Miz is hiding behind AJ’s “skirt”. This fires The Miz up, bringing Miz into the ring where Miz uses a rake to the eyes before hitting Dolph with the Skull Crushing Finale. Dean Ambrose is then quick to strike, spiking the Intercontinental Champion with Dirty Deeds! AJ Styles then walks away from the fight awaiting him in the ring as Dean Ambrose decides to hit Dolph Ziggler with Dirty Deeds as well! Luke Harper then inexplicably arrives on the scene, leveling Dean Ambrose with his discus clothesline! Harper then glares at AJ Styles, apparently staking his claim on a shot at the WWE World Championship.
Backstage, WWE World Champion AJ Styles confronts Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan demanding “protection”. Daniel Bryan responds by informing the champion that, tonight, there will be a Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match between Dean Ambrose, The Miz, Dolph Ziggler, and Luke Harper. Daniel then points out that, if Maryse, Bray Wyatt, Randy Orton, or anyone else gets involved in the match, that will result in an elimination for whoever they help out. Shane then adds that the winner of the Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match will face AJ Styles for the WWE Championship on the December 27 edition of SmackDown LIVE!
After Carmella accused Natalya of being the one who attacked Nikki Bella at Survivor Series, Natalya would go one-on-one with Carmella on SmackDown LIVE with Nikki Bella a guest on commentary. During the match, Natalya and Nikki Bella would go face-to-face on the outside before Natalya shoves Nikki out of the way to hit Carmella with a right hand. Back in the ring, Natalya is claiming her innocence to Nikki and Carmella takes advantage of the distraction, surprising Natalya with a roll-up to pick up the win.
Then it was time for a #1 Contenders’ Tag Team Battle Royal as American Alpha, The Hype Bros, The Ascension, The Vaudevillains, Breezango, and former champions Heath Slater & Rhyno would compete in the battle royal with the winners becoming the new #1 Contenders for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles. As soon as the match begins, Mojo Rawley eliminates Simon Gotch, hindering The Vaudevillains’ chances of becoming the #1 Contenders. Later on in the match, Chad Gable manages to eliminate Viktor only for Konnor to rush Gable and eliminate him from the match. Shortly after this, Breezango is trying to eliminate Rhyno, but Rhyno manages to fight both men off and Heath Slater dives at Breezango to try and help his tag partner, but Breezango moves out of the way and Slater accidentally eliminates Rhyno! Jason Jordan then eliminates Aiden English, ensuring that The Vaudevillains will not be the new #1 Contenders.
Breezango then work together to eliminate Mojo Rawley with Fandango scoring the elimination. Heath Slater then uses a leg sweep to eliminate Fandango from the match. Viktor and Tyler Breeze then form a temporary partnership to eliminate Jason Jordan from the battle royal, crushing American Alpha’s shot at becoming #1 Contenders. Heath Slater then takes over in the battle royal, but his momentum is cut short by Konnor, who tosses Slater out of the ring, leaving Konnor, Tyler Breeze, and Zack Ryder representing their respective teams in the battle royal. Tyler Breeze then tries to surprise Viktor, but Viktor ends up eliminating Tyler Breeze before Zack Ryder manages to take Viktor to the outside, eliminating Viktor to ensure that The Hype Bros will challenge The Wyatt Family for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles!
SmackDown Women’s Champion Alexa Bliss was set for action on SmackDown LIVE, but the champion refers to her opponent, saying that, unlike Becky Lynch, she doesn’t do “charity work”, calling her opponent “Jane Ellsworth”. The competitor then gets in the champion’s face before Alexa cheapshots her scheduled opponent, knocking her out of the ring. Becky Lynch then comes out to confront Alexa, saying that Bliss wasn’t even in her ring gear last week when she asked for her rematch. Becky then points out that both of them are dressed to compete, so why don’t they have their rematch for the title right now! However, Alexa says that Becky will get her rematch for the title, but it just won’t be tonight. The champion is quick to exit the ring, but Alexa is halted in the entranceway by the arrival of SmackDown Commissioner Shane McMahon. Shane tells the champion that’s not how they roll on SmackDown LIVE, saying that the timekeeper can ring the bell because Alexa will face Becky for the SmackDown Women’s Title right now!
In an impromptu match made by Shane McMahon, Alexa Bliss would defend the SmackDown Women’s Title against former champion Becky Lynch on SmackDown LIVE. During the match, Alexa Bliss would try to escape Becky Lynch before appearing to hurt her knee on the outside. The champion would stumble around the ring on the outside, unable to enter the ring before the referee’s ten-count as Becky wins the match by count-out, meaning that Alexa retains the title. Enraged over this decision, Becky attacks Alexa on the outside, but after Becky brings the champion back into the ring, it becomes apparent that the injury was a ruse as Alexa fights back against Lynch. Bliss then manages to escape the ring before remembering that she was supposedly injured.
Then it was time for the main event as “The Lunatic Fringe” Dean Ambrose, Intercontinental Champion The Miz, with Maryse in his corner, “The Show Off” Dolph Ziggler, and SmackDown Tag Team Champion and Wyatt Family member Luke Harper would compete in a Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match where the winner will challenge AJ Styles for the WWE Championship in two weeks on SmackDown LIVE with WWE Champion AJ Styles a guest on commentary. During the match, with Dean Ambrose, Dolph Ziggler, and Luke Harper all down in the ring, The Miz would try to pin Dolph and Harper to no avail before Dean Ambrose surprises The Miz with a roll-up, eliminating the Intercontinental Champion from the match! Later on in the match, Dolph Ziggler catches Luke Harper with a super kick and Dean Ambrose follows it up with Dirty Deeds as Ambrose pins Luke Harper to eliminate Harper from the match as it comes down to just Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler.
Dean Ambrose nearly manages to put Dolph Ziggler away with a small package and “The Show Off” is able to kick out before both Ambrose and Ziggler take each other out. This is when The Miz would make his way to ringside, which draws Dolph out of the ring. Dean Ambrose then dives to the outside, taking down The Miz before Dolph hits The Miz with the super kick. Ambrose then sends Ziggler back into the ring while The Miz does his best to keep “The Lunatic Fringe” from re-entering the ring. Ambrose then tosses The Miz into the barricade before entering the ring, walking right into the super kick from Dolph Ziggler as Dolph pins Ambrose to win the match and earn a shot at the WWE Title against AJ Styles in two weeks on the final SmackDown LIVE of 2016!
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