– Tonight’s WWE SmackDown on FOX opens live from the ThunderDome at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. Michael Cole welcomes us. He’s joined at ringside by Corey Graves.
– We go right to the ring and out comes WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Jey Uso and Paul Heyman. The boos start right up. Reigns stops on the stage and raises the title in the air as the pyro goes off. Greg Hamilton does the introductions as they march to the ring.
Reigns and his crew head to the ring as we see a replay of WWE Hall of Famer Edge appearing on RAW and saying he will wait until after Elimination Chamber to reveal his WrestleMania 37 opponent. We see Adam Pearce in the ring now, holding a contract. Reigns stares him down from ringside. Reigns finally enters the ring and raises the title again as more pyro goes off. The boos get louder. A “you suck!” chant begins now. Reigns tells Pearce to step closer to him, asking him why he’s scared. Reigns says Pearce waits on him, not the other way around.
Reigns goes on talking trash to Pearce, about how Reigns is in charge, not Pearce. Reigns says he’s the sun, everything orbits around him, and he’s here because of Reigns. Reigns says he also doesn’t wait on Edge, let’s talk about Edge. Reigns saw Edge in the ring last week and Edge doesn’t want it. Reigns says Edge got nervous, he looked Reigns in the eye and he was scared, because he knows what Reigns will do to him. Reigns will beat Edge down so bad he will have to be put on a Legends contract and just an Ambassador for the company. Reigns says let’s go ahead without Edge. He goes on and says he’s not dropping the WWE Universal Title until he wants to, and it’s staying on his shoulder for good.
Reigns says let’s now talk about why Pearce is here, Elimination Chamber. Pearce says he’s had the contract for a week but Heyman wanted to do it this way. Pearce says the contract states Reigns will defend the Universal Title inside the Elimination Chamber, just like WWE Champion Drew McIntyre. Fans cheer as Reigns shakes his head and says he’s going to let Heyman handle this. Heyman introduces himself to Pearce and says he understands Pearce has an agreement he wants them to take a look at. Heyman mentions how Reigns’ contract with WWE says he will appear at major events, including Elimination Chamber, but it doesn’t say he will defend inside the Chamber, just that he will defend the title AT the pay-per-view. Heyman suggests the winner of the Elimination Chamber will receive a title shot from Reigns on the spot, on the same night as the Chamber match. Fans boo. Heyman asks Pearce what the hell he’s going to do about it – fire Reigns this close to WrestleMania 37? Heyman asks how did WrestleMania 36 do without Reigns last year? He says it was the lowest-attended WrestleMania of all time, carefully forgetting to acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic.
Heyman rants about the Chamber match being held once again, and the winner receiving a title shot that night from Reigns. He says Pearce is welcome. Pearce says there will be qualifying matches tonight. Heyman tries to interrupt and Pearce asks if he ever shuts up. Pearce first has two Superstars in mind, who don’t need to qualify, who have taken Reigns to the limit in the past. The first is Uso. A surprised Uso looks on, as does Reigns. Pearce now steps out of the ring and goes on about the next person. He names Kevin Owens. Reigns exits the ring and gets in Pearce’s face at ringside. He doesn’t care about anyone right now but Pearce. Reigns seethes in Pearce’s face as Heyman comes out and tries to get him to back away. Uso also comes out and stands behind his cousin. Reigns and Uso stare Pearce down as Heyman gets them to back off. To clarify, Reigns will defend against the winner of the Chamber match on the same night as the pay-per-view.
– Cole and Graves hype the Chamber match for the blue brand. They show us a video package for Seth Rollins as he will be returning to SmackDown tonight. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and the announcers plug Sasha Banks appearing as the Honorary Starter at NASCAR’s Daytona 500 on Sunday.
– Sonya Deville stops Adam Pearce backstage and congratulates him on standing up to Roman Reigns, calling it incredible what she saw. Pearce thanks her and says they have to fill the Chamber up now. She’s already ahead of him, and suggests a tag team match.
Elimination Chamber Qualifier: Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio vs. Sami Zayn and King Baron Corbin
We go back to the ring for the Elimination Chamber qualifying match as Rey Mysterio and Dominik Mysterio come out. King Baron Corbin is out next. His partner is Sami Zayn, who has his documentary crew with him. Sami starts ranting about having to earn a title shot and having to team with Corbin for this match, no disrespect. Sami finishes his rant on the apron but gets knocked off by The Mysterios.
The bell rings and Rey attacks Corbin to start. Corbin with a knee to the gut to turn it around. Rey goes for an early 619 but Sami trips him. Dominik then nails a big suicide dive to take Sami down on the outside. Rey tangles with Corbin and sends him to the floor. Rey and Dominik run back in the ring to stand tall as fans cheer them on. Corbin and Sami regroup at ringside as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Corbin has Rey grounded, manhandling him as Sami looks on. Rey sends Corbin into the turnbuckles and tags in Dominik. Sami also tags in but Dominik goes to work, getting the upperhand. Dominik with a running back splash in the corner. Sami runs into a boot. Dominik with a big tornado DDT from the corner for a 2 count.
Dominik with shoulder thrusts in the corner. Dominik mounts Sami in the corner but gets sent to the apron. Dominik fights back in and launches himself over the top rope with a senton. Dominik then drops Corbin as he tries to come in, and launches himself onto Corbin with another senton. Sami rolls Dominik from behind for a 2 count. Sami comes right back and hits the Blue Thunderbomb for a close 2 count in the middle of the ring.
Dominik with a swinging neckbreaker for a 2 count. More back and forth between the two teams for a few minutes. Corbin rocks Rey off the apron but Dominik blocks End of Days. Rey and Dominik end up hitting a double 619. Sami comes in and hits a big Exploder suplex into the turnbuckles on Dominik. Sami follows up and hits a big Helluva Kick for the pin to win and earn the Chamber spots.
Winners: Sami Zayn and King Corbin
– After the match, Sami and Corbin celebrate as we go to replays. The Mysterios regroup as the heels continue celebrating.
– Sonya Deville and Adam Pearce are backstage with SmackDown Tag Team Champions Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler now. They want to be in the Chamber match. This goes on until Pearce and Deville say they have to beat Daniel Bryan and Cesaro to get in the match.
WWE Intercontinental Title Match: Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Big E
We go back to the ring and out comes WWE Intercontinental Champion Big E. Back to commercial.
Back fro the break and we see Bianca Belair whipping Carmella’s sommelier Reginald with her last week. Reginald walks up on Sasha Banks backstage talking to Kalisto, offering her a glass of champagne. He apologizes to Banks and says he will never drop the ball again. Banks asks if he really meant what he said when he said she can beat Carmella? Banks laughs and sends Carmella her regards. Reginald walks off but stops to look back at Banks and Kalisto chuckling as she sips the champagne. We get a Progressive Match Flo replay on how Big E retained his title over Apollo Crews. Big E is in the ring now with a mic.
Big E talks about retaining the title against the odds last week. He goes on about how he declared he would be a fighting champion when he won the title. He’s ready to issue an Open Challenge but the music hits and out comes Crews again. Crews is ready for another title shot. Big E says he was issuing the Open Challenge to anyone but Crews, even Michael Cole, but not Crews. They have words but there are audio issues in the arena and it’s hard to hear them, but apparently Big E told Crews to go back to catering. The audio issues are restored, briefly, and Big E tells Crews they are done, go to the back. Big E yells for his next challenger to be brought out. The music hits and here comes Shinsuke Nakamura. Crews watches and he’s not happy. Crews exits the ring as Nakamura heads down the ramp. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and the match is underway. Nakamura strikes but ends up running into Big E and going down. Big E works Nakamura over on the apron and hits the big running splash on the edge of the apron. Crews watches from ringside. Big E covers Nakamura for a 2 count as Crews yells at him from the apron.
Big E gets up and has words with Crews. Crews hops back off the apron and Big E turns around to Nakamura dropping him to one knee. Big E blocks the reverse Exploder and fights him off. Nakamura with a knee to the gut in the corner. Nakamura places Big E across the top rope in the corner and delivers a running high knee. Nakamura goes to the middle rope and waits for Big E to get up, then nails a jumping kick for a 2 count. Nakamura grounds Big E and drives knees into his ribs now.
Nakamura waits for Big E to get up as fans cheer him on. Big E blocks the Kinshasa and they tangle but Nakamura nails a kick. Nakamura goes for the Kinshasa again but Big E plants him with the Uranage for a close 2 count. Big E rallies for the Big Ending but Nakamura slides out, right as Crews runs in and drops Crews with a shot to the face. The referee calls the match.
Winner by DQ: Big E
– After the bell, fans start booing as Big E’s music hits and he recovers. Crews backs up the ramp while talking trash back at Big E in the ring.
– We get a promo for Seth Rollins’ return to SmackDown tonight. We go back to the ring and the entire locker room starts walking down the ramp to the ring, apparently to show The Architect some respect. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and the entire SmackDown locker room is surrounding the ring like Lumberjacks. The music hits and out comes Seth Rollins making his return to SmackDown. Fans cheer in the ThunderDome crowd as Rollins heads to the ring. This is Rollins’ first appearance on SmackDown since November, and his first appearance since returning in the Royal Rumble Match two weeks ago.
Rollins takes the mic and says it feels good to be back. It just feels right, this is where Rollins belongs. Rollins says a lot has changed since he sacrificed himself at Survivor Series, and he knew it would, but what has changed the most has been a surprise. What has changed the most is him.
Rollins says as most of us know,he recently became a parent for the first time. He says he’s the proud father of a beautiful, perfect baby girl, who has changed his life in ways he never dreamed of. He did not name Becky Lynch. That change has given him a new perception, and that new perception has given him a new vision. Rollins says he looks around the ring and sees some of the most talented individuals in history. He looks at SmackDown and wonders where he fits in, but after a lot of self-reflection the answer became very clear to him… he is the great leader that SmackDown needs to push it into the future and make it greater than it already is, because success and leadership is not about what you can do for me, it’s about what I can do for you.
The SmackDown Superstars have heard enough. They start walking away, some throwing their hands up in the air out of frustration. Rollins continues ranting about how he can lead. He says for a better tomorrow and a better SmackDown, all you have to do is embrace the vision. The boos are getting louder from the crowd now, no more cheers. Rollins looks around at how everyone has left him. Except Cesaro, who is looking skeptical at ringside. Rollins says he knew Cesaro would get it, he knew Cesaro would understand, out of all the people. Cesaro shakes his head and then walks away like the others.
Rollins rushes out of the ring and drops Cesaro on the ramp by taking the knee out from behind. Rollins tackles Cesaro again and unloads on him, keeping him down and talking trash. Referees rush down and try to get Rollins off Cesaro as he punches away. Daniel Bryan runs down and decks Rollins, forcing him to retreat to the ringside area. Bryan checks on Cesaro as Rollins looks on, smirking. Rollins’ music hits as he continues staring over at Cesaro and Bryan.
– We get a video package looking at the Elimination Chamber.
Bayley vs. Liv Morgan
We go back to the ring and out comes Bayley as the boos start up. She stops on the ramp and starts talking trash as the pyro goes off. Bayley heads to the ring and we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Bayley looks on as The Riott Squad comes out next – Liv Morgan with Ruby Riott. The bell rings and Bayley rocks Liv into the corner. Back and forth now as Liv does a Matrix-like duck. Liv drops Bayley into the ropes and dropkicks her in the back Liv goes on and nails a missile dropkick for a close 2 count. Bayley goes to the floor to regroup now as the referee counts.
We see Natalya and Tamina Snuka backstage watching the match. Liv goes out and runs, and leaps off the steel ring steps at Bayley but Bayley side-steps and Liv crashes into the barrier. Bayley brings it back into the ring for a close 2 count. Bayley stomps away now. Bayley uses the middle rope on Liv, right in front of Riott, making her watch the punishment. Liv with a shot to the gut to turn it around. Liv with a unique springboard Facebuster out of the corner for a 2 count.
Bayley counters another springboard attempt from the corner, knocking her out of mid-air. Liv is clutching her hurt shoulder now, from the dive off the steps into the barrier earlier. Bayley drives Liv down by her shoulder and keeps control but Liv hangs in. Bayley tries for a whip now but Liv levels her with an enziguri. Liv goes on but Bayley kicks out.
Billie Kay appears at ringside now, trying to apologize to Riott. A stack of resumes get knocked into the ring, distracting the referee. Bayley takes advantage and rakes Liv in the eyes, then drops her face-first with the Rose Driver for the pin to win.
– After the match, Bayley exits the ring as her music hits. She stops and laughs at Kay, who is picking up her resumes and 8x10s. Bayley is all smiles as she heads to the back and Ruby checks on Liv.
– Kayla Braxton is backstage with Cesaro and Daniel Bryan. He says Seth Rollins wasted everyone’s time earlier tonight but he will not waste his own time. Despite what happened out there with Rollins, Cesaro is able to compete and will qualify for the Elimination Chamber with Bryan. Cesaro walks off. Bryan points out to Kayla how tough Cesaro is.
– The announcers continue to promote the upcoming NASCAR season and Sunday’s Daytona 500 race. We get a video showing The Street Profits at a Daytona Motor Speedway earlier this week. They hang out with Chase Elliott and present him with a custom WWE Title. Elliott gives them driver helmets and custom orange Solo cups.
The Street Profits vs. Otis and Chad Gable
We go back to the ring and out comes The Street Profits – Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins. They air a backstage promo from earlier with The Profits talking about wanting a rematch at the SmackDown Tag Team Titles and tonight’s match. They make it known that they want the smoke. Ford and Dawkins hit the ring and celebrate as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and out comes Chad Gable and Otis. We see a video from earlier of Alpha Academy training. Gable mentions Otis wanting the smoke but sprays him with a fire extinguisher instead. Gable and Dawkins start the match off as the bell rings. They tangle and Dawkins drives Gable down. The mat back & forth continues now as Gable gets the upperhand. They run the ropes and Gable hits a big arm drag. Dawkins comes back with a big arm drag of his own. Gable with another, then Dawkins with another. They have a stalemate as Ford cheers them both on.
Ford tags in as Gable waits. They lock up and Ford twists the arm up. Gable takes Ford down by his arm now. Ford gets free and flips around to show off for a pop. Gable counters and slams Ford on his face for a 2 count. Gable with another deep arm drag into an arm bar. Gable keeps Ford down and grounds him in the middle of the ring now. More back and forth now. Dawkins comes in and they double team Gable for a 2 count. Dawkins immediately grounds Gable. Gable clotheslines Dawkins and in comes Otis off the tag.
Otis dodges Dawkins and levels him. Otis keeps control and in comes Ford but Otis lifts him high, then drives him into the mat. Otis tosses Ford out of the ring, then launches Dawkins and splashes him in the corner. Otis with The Caterpillar. Gable comes in and they double team Dawkins but Ford pulls the rope down, sending Otis to the floor. More back and forth between Gable and Dawkins.
Ford tags in and goes to the top as Dawkins hits The Anointment on Gable. Ford then hits the big Frogsplash on Gable for the pin to win after The Cash Out.
Winners: The Street Profits
– After the match, The Profits celebrate as the music hits. We go to commercial. The Profits head up the ramp but stop on the stage as the music of SmackDown Women’s Champion Sasha Banks starts up. Banks comes out and dances on the stage with Ford and Dawkins. They go to the back while Banks goes to the ring. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and announced for tomorrow’s Talking Smack is Sasha Banks and Sami Zayn. Paul Heyman and Kayla Braxton will host.
– We go back to the ring and SmackDown Women’s Champion Sasha Banks is wrapping up her entrance.
Banks says everyone is talking about Bianca Belair’s big decision because we’re on The Road to WrestleMania 37. Banks likes Belair a lot because she’s like a little sister. Banks says there’s just one decision for Belair to make, and that’s her. The music interrupts and out comes Belair.
Belair sees Banks and heard her, she likes her too. Belair enters the ring now and says no, Banks is not the boss of her. Belair says it’s her time and she’s enjoying every second of it, and everyone is talking about her WrestleMania decision. The music interrupts and out come the WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions – Nia Jax and Shayna Baszler. They start knocking Belair and Banks on the way to the ring. They wonder why no one is talking about their title win, which came the same night Banks beat Carmella and Belair won the Rumble. They are on a roll and should be getting the spotlight. Banks heard they might show up tonight so she came prepared. Banks shows footage of Naomi beating Baszler on last week’s RAW. They laugh and Banks says that’s not the footage she meant. Jax says she better not do it, she wouldn’t dare. Banks and Belair taunt her before Banks shows the footage of Jax yelling out “My hole!” during the Tables Match loss to Lana.
Jax isn’t happy. A brawl breaks out now. Jax gets taken out and sent to the floor, clutching her backside. Baszler then gets double teamed as Jax clutches her backside at ringside. Baszler stumbles over to check on Jax as Banks and Belair dance together in the ring.
– We see Cesaro and Daniel Bryan backstage talking.
Elimination Chamber Qualifier: Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler vs. Daniel Bryan and Cesaro
We go back to the ring for tonight’s non-title main event as SmackDown Tag Team Champions Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler are out. The winners of this match will earn the final Elimination Chamber spots. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and the champs are wrapping up their entrance. Out next comes Cesaro, then Daniel Bryan. They head to the ring together as a “yes!” chant starts up. The bell rings as Bryan and Ziggler go at it. They run the ropes and Ziggler hits a big shoulder for a 2 count. Bryan ends up dropping Ziggler with a kick. Cesaro tags in for a big double team slam. Cesaro covers for a 2 count. Ziggler turns it around on Cesaro for a close 2 count. Roode tags in and they quickly double team Cesaro. He drops Roode with a shot to the face and in comes Bryan.
Bryan with kicks around the ring. Roode ducks a kick and rolls Bryan for a 2 count. Bryan goes for the Yes Lock but Roode easily gets the bottom rope to break it up. Roode works Bryan over and knocks Cesaro off the apron with a cheap shot. Bryan ends up sending to the floor next to Cesaro. Bryan runs for a big dive but Roode moves and Bryan hits the barrier next to Cesaro.
Roode and Ziggler keep control, sending their opponents into the steel steps, and then return to the ring together, standing tall. Sami Zayn and King Baron Corbin come walking down the ramp as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Ziggler has Bryan grounded as Cesaro reaches for a tag. Sami and Corbin watch the action from ringside. Ziggler takes Bryan back to the corner and in comes Roode. They unload on Bryan in the corner. Ziggler with a cheap shot as Roode distracts the referee. Roode with a suplex to Bryan for a 2 count.
We see WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns and Paul Heyman watching backstage. Ziggler drops a big elbow on Bryan for a 2 count. Ziggler brings it back to the corner and takes Bryan up. Ziggler climbs up for a superplex but Bryan fights him, headbutting him to the mat. Bryan nails a missile dropkick. Fans rally with a “yes!” chant. Roode gets the hot tag and runs in to knock Cesaro off the apron. Bryan rolls Roode for a 2 count from behind. Bryan fights back with uppercuts now. Roode comes right back with a big Spinebuster for a close 2 count.
Ziggler comes back in and they hit a big double team and Ziggler covers for 2. Cesaro finally gets the tag. He levels Ziggler and knocks Roode off the apron. Cesaro runs wild on Ziggler now as fans cheer him on. Cesaro with running uppercuts from corner to corner to corner, stopping to knock Roode back to the floor. Cesaro with the big uppercut to Ziggler for another close 2 count while Sami and Corbin watch closely.
Roode stops the Cesaro Swing on Ziggler. Bryan with a running knee to Roode. Ziggler with the Fame-asser to Cesaro for another close 2 count. Cesaro catches a superkick and does the torture Rack into a knee to the back on Ziggler. Cesaro with the Swing on Ziggler now, then goes right into the Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring. Ziggler taps out for the finish.
Winners: Cesaro and Daniel Bryan
– After the match, Cesaro and Daniel Bryan stand tall as the music hits. They have earned the final two Elimination Chamber spots, joining Zayn, Corbin, Jey Uso and Kevin Owens. They immediately turn their attention to Sami and Corbin at ringside, waiting for a fight. However, Uso comes in and cracks Cesaro in the back with a steel chair, shocking him. Bryan gets sent out to the floor, where Sami and Corbin are waiting to double team him. A big brawl breaks out in the ring now. Corbin and Sami come in to keep it up. Sami ends up turning on Corbin. Bryan sees this and levels Sami with a running knee. The chaos continues until the music hits and out comes Owens while Cesaro has Uso down in the corner. Owens runs wild to a pop and delivers Stunners to everyone. We see Reigns and Heyman watching backstage again, and they aren’t happy. Owens stands tall and looks into the camera, taunting Reigns. Owens grabs a chair and sits it up, taking a seat. Owens speaks into the camera and tells Reigns he’s coming for him, they are not done, and he’s not going anywhere. Owens says he will see Reigns soon. He continues staring into the camera as SmackDown goes off the air.