– Tonight’s WWE SmackDown opens live from the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina. Stephanie McMahon is in the ring with Shane McMahon, WWE Champion Daniel Bryan and Rowan. The ring is set up for a contract signing. Stephanie welcomes us to SmackDown. Shane says we’re here for a historic contract signing.
Stephanie plugs the WWE Title match at Fastlane and fans start chanting for Kofi Kingston. Shane starts talking Kofi up while clips play from various moments in his career, also giving a shout-out to The New Day. Shane says perhaps we have overlooked Kofi but no longer. They go on about Kofi for a few more minutes with Stephanie talking about recent happenings that led to Kofi getting the WWE Title shot at Fastlane. Shane goes on and introduces Kofi. Out comes The New Day – Kofi, Big E and Xavier Woods. Bryan looks on from his chair at the table, Rowan stands behind him. Fans start chanting for Kofi. Tom Phillips welcomes us to SmackDown. He’s joined by Corey Graves and Byron Saxton.
Kofi takes the mic and says this is all he’s ever wanted but after all these years, it’s finally happening. He says none of this would be possible without his brothers, his boys. He poses with Big E and Xavier for a pop. Fans chant “you deserve it!” now. Kofi gives credit to the fans for making this happen for him. He addresses Bryan now and goes on about taking the WWE Title from him at Fastlane. Kofi drops the mic on the table and taunts Bryan some as fans chant his name. Shane calls on Bryan to sign the contract and he does as some fans boo. Kofi goes to sign but the music interrupts and out comes WWE Chairman Vince McMahon to a pop.
Vince applauds from the stage and takes the mic. He praises Kofi for his career and accomplishments, calling him truly remarkable. However, he says… fans start booing. Vince says it’s up to him as the chairman to give fans the biggest box office there is, the best competition. Vince says he is replacing Kofi, with a man who is more deserving, more qualified. Vince introduces Bryan’s new opponent for Fastlane and out comes a returning Kevin Owens, who has been out since October following double knee surgery.
The New Day is not happy. Owens enters the ring and takes a seat at the table. Owens and Bryan stare each other down as The New Day yells behind them. The New Day leaves the ring now and fans aren’t happy. Shane and Stephanie look on. Fans chant for Kofi as The New Day heads up the ramp. Bryan and Owens continue staring each other down as we go to commercial.
– Back from the commercial and Kevin Owens is with Shane and Stephanie McMahon backstage. He knows they weren’t involved in what just happened and they wonder how long he knew. Owens says he wants to tag with Kofi Kingston to face Rowan and Daniel Bryan later tonight. The McMahons say they will take it under consideration.
The Bar vs. The Hardy Boys
We go to the ring and The Bar waits, Sheamus and Cesaro. They were set to face WWE NXT Superstars but the music hits and out comes the returning Hardy Boys instead, Matt Hardy and Jeff Hardy.
Jeff starts off with Cesaro and ends up taking control. Matt tags in for the double team. Matt works over Cesaro and does the “delete!” chant. Cesaro catches Matt and takes him to the corner for a tag to Sheamus. Sheamus unloads on Matt in the corner. Matt turns it back around and in comes Jeff for more double teaming. Cesaro runs in but they double team him too for the takedown. The Bar gets sent out to the floor. Jeff leaps out of the ring with an assist from Matt, taking The Bar down on the outside. The Hardys stand tall as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Sheamus is going at it with Jeff. Matt reaches for a tag but Cesaro comes in and takes over. Cesaro keeps Jeff grounded now. Sheamus comes in and Jeff fights off the double team. Jeff takes them both down with a Whisper In the Wind. Matt rallies the crowd now.
Matt tags in as does Cesaro. Matt unloads and takes Cesaro to the turnbuckles. Matt signals for a “delete!” chant but Cesaro blocks the running bulldog. Matt with the Side Effect for a 2 count. Matt with a second rope elbow drop for another pin attempt. Matt plays to the crowd for another “delete!” chant and drops Sheamus as he approaches. Cesaro avoids the Twist of Fate and rolls up Matt for a 2 count after Sheamus gets a cheap shot in. The Bar tries to double team Matt but Jeff runs in and drops Cesaro. Matt with a 2 count on Sheamus. Matt drops Sheamus with a Twist of Fate. Jeff tags in and hits the Swanton Bomb to Sheamus for a big pop. Jeff covers for the pin to win.
Winners: The Hardy Boys
– After the match, Matt and Jeff celebrate as their music hits. We go to replays.
– Still to come, Aleister Black and Rusev vs. Ricochet and Shinsuke Nakamura. We see Ricochet and Black backstage talking when Lana appears. She doesn’t understand what all the fuss is all about – Ricochet’s nothing special and Black is ordinary. She goes on with the insults and Ricochet points to their recent non-title win over RAW Tag Team Champions The Revival. They go on and Black promises to make Rusev and Nakamura fade to black tonight. Lana walks off.
– We go to the ring and out comes WWE United States Champion R-Truth with Carmella. Truth is out for a US Open Challenge. We go to commercial.
– Back from the break and the announcers lead us to the 2019 WWE Hall of Fame video package for The Honky Tonk Man.
– We go to the ring and WWE United States Champion R-Truth is with Carmella for his US Open Challenge.
Truth cuts a promo and out comes Andrade with Zelina Vega. They head to the ring but Rey Mysterio runs down and attacks, taking it to the ring. Truth calls for them to stop and asks why we can’t all just get along. Truth says he’s at a crossroads, he doesn’t know who to face. He asks what would John Cena do? Carmella says Cena would face both of his opponents at once. Truth says damn, Cena is brave. Truth was thinking more like no thank you to both potential challengers. Truth says he’s going to make Cena proud – let’s do the Triple Threat.
Triple Threat for the WWE United States Title: Andrade vs. Rey Mysterio vs. R-Truth
The bell rings and Andrade nails Rey Mysterio with a big dropkick. R-Truth comes over but Rey sends Andrade out of the ring. Truth and Rey go at it now. Truth drops Rey for a 2 count. Andrade ends up powerbombing Truth out on the floor. Rey with a baseball slide. Rey goes to slide back out on his chest but Andrade hits him in mid-air with a kick and Rey lands hard on the floor with Truth. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and Rey springboards in off the top to take Andrade off Truth’s shoulders with a big move. The crowd pops and Zelina Vega can’t believe it at ringside. Rey and Truth go at it now. They collide and go down. Andrade delivers knees to the corner on Rey and goes to do the same to Truth but Truth moves. Truth works Andrade over now. Truth drops Andrade with a clothesline and then a scissors kick as Carmella cheers him on. Truth with the flying forearm in the corner. Truth slams Andrade and calls for Cena’s Five Knuckle Shuffle. Truth nails it for a 2 count.
Truth scoops Andrade and Vega gets on the apron to help him. Carmella runs over and yanks Vega off the apron. Andrade sends Truth into the ring post. Rey flies in at Andrade and sends him into the ropes for 619. Rey goes for 619 but Andrade avoids it. Rey with a big boot. Andrade levels Rey with a big back elbow for a close 2 count. More back and forth between Rey and Andrade. Truth comes back into the mix. Rey nails 619 to Andrade. Truth immediately comes from behind and rolls Rey up for the pin to retain.
– After the match, Truth celebrates as his music hits. He grabs the title and leaves with Carmella as Rey looks on. Andrade recovers and comes from behind, decking Rey. Andrade goes for the Hammerlock DDT but Rey gets out. Rey goes to follow-up but Andrade retreats to the floor with Vega. Rey’s music hits.
– Still to come, Kofi and Owens vs. Bryan and Rowan. Also, Ricochet and Black vs. Rusev and Nakamura.
– We see Charlotte Flair walking backstage. We go back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see what happened earlier with Vince McMahon changing the Fastlane main event.
– We go to the ring and out comes Charlotte Flair to somewhat of a hometown pop. We see what happened on RAW with Ronda Rousey, Stephanie McMahon and Becky Lynch.
Flair takes the mic and talks about Vince McMahon saving the WrestleMania 35 match for the RAW Women’s Title by putting her in it in place of Lynch. Fans chant for Becky and Flair asks if they’re done yet. Flair goes on putting herself over, taking shots at Rousey and Lynch. Flair says she does everything asked of her and she always delivers. Fans give her the “what?!” treatment now.
Flair goes on about Rousey and Becky being scared of her. Flair announces that she is the true champion. Flair says she will be on RAW next Monday and she’s going to show up so Vince can crown the new RAW Women’s Champion, someone who deserves it – your Queen, Charlotte Flair. Flair delivers a “wooo!” to a mixed reaction as her music hits.
– Still to come, Owens and Kofi vs. Bryan and Rowan in the main event.
Ricochet and Aleister Black vs. Rusev and Shinsuke Nakamura
We go to the ring and out first comes Aleister Black from WWE NXT. Ricochet is out next, also to a pop. We go to a video package for Black History Month and a commercial break.
Back from the break and Rusev is out to the ring with Lana. Shinsuke Nakamura is also out. Nakamura starts off with Black and they tangle into the ropes. Nakamura tells Black to bring it and they run the ropes. Black ducks a kick and takes a seat on the apron, taunting Nakamura. Black ends up in control on the mat. Black tags Ricochet in and they unload with the double team on Nakamura for a 2 count. Nakamura turns it around and takes out Ricochet’s knee now. Rusev tags in and unloads on Ricochet with stomps while he’s down.
Rusev drops Ricochet with a big right hand and kicks him around, taunting him. Nakamura tags back in for the double team now. Nakamura keeps Ricochet grounded as Lana looks on. Nakamura drives knees into Ricochet and tags Rusev back in. Rusev with a big suplex on Ricochet for a 2 count. Ricochet finally gets some offense in and makes the tag to Black. Nakamura also tags in and they go at it. Black gets the upperhand as fans pop for him. Rusev runs interference, allowing Nakamura to send Black out of the ring. Rusev tags in and levels Black on the floor. Rusev stands tall over Black as we go to commercial.
Back from the break and Rusev is in control of Black after interference from Lana. Rusev with a big kick to the back as Ricochet waits for a tag. Rusev stomps on Black’s hand and taunts him. Black tries to fight back but Rusev knocks him into the corner. Rusev with a bear hug in the middle of the ring now, rag-dolling Black.
Black fights out and fights back but Rusev drops him to the mat with ease. Rusev scoops Black but he counters and falls on top of Rusev. Ricochet tags in and nails Rusev in the air. Ricochet unloads with offense and knocks Nakamura off the apron with a kick. Ricochet springboards in with a big uppercut and a standing moonsault for a 2 count as Lana screams for Rusev to kick out. Ricochet goes to the top but lands on his feet as Rusev moves. Ricochet avoids the Machka Kick. Ricochet counters again but Rusev drives him down with a big side-slam for a close 2 count.
Rusev yells “goodnight rookies!” and looks to put Ricochet away. Rusev stomps Ricochet for The Accolade but Ricochet avoids it. They trade shots and in comes Nakamura for some double teaming. Ricochet elbows Nakamura and sends Rusev over the top rope to the floor. Black tags in and pulls the top rope down as Ricochet flies over to take Rusev down on the outside. Black and Nakamura go at it now. Nakamura with the reverse Exploder. Nakamura waits for the Kinshasa but Black drops him with a Black Mass as he charges in. Black covers Nakamura for the pin to win.
Winners: Aleister Black and Ricochet
– After the match, Ricochet and Black celebrate as Black’s music hits.
– Kayla Braxton is backstage with AJ Styles. Styles starts off by saying he’s happy to hear Roman Reigns is in remission. Kayla brings up how AJ has been a cornerstone of SmackDown for years and he’s described himself as everything from a ferocious pitbull to a family man. She asks about his role in the rise of Daniel Bryan and says people are saying he’s in a slump for the first time in his career. AJ says he’s his own harsh critic and nothing can be said that he hasn’t said himself. He goes on about setting his own standards and how they push him to be his best. AJ says sometimes as of late, he hasn’t been himself and he’s part of the blame for the rise of Bryan. AJ had the chance to stop Bryan from being WWE Champion but he did not succeed. AJ says that doesn’t mean he won’t stop trying. It took him 15 years to get to WWE and he was never given anything. He’s going to stop listening to the critics, pick himself up and dust himself off, fight the next challenger and keep fighting to justify his claim that this is the house he built. Randy Orton appears. Orton asks, “The house that AJ Styles what?” Orton walks off as AJ watches.
– We go to the ring and out comes Lacey Evans. She walks down the ramp to the ringside area as her music plays. Evans turns right around and heads to the back as we go to commercial.
– Back from the break and the announcers hype the tournament on WWE 205 Live to crown a WrestleMania 35 challenger for WWE Cruiserweight Champion Buddy Murphy.
– The announcers show us a video package with highlights from Roman Reigns return on RAW last night, announcing that he is in remission from his second battle with leukemia.
Kofi Kingston and Kevin Owens vs. Daniel Bryan and Rowan
We go to the ring for tonight’s main event and out first comes The New Day – Kofi Kingston with Big E and Xavier Woods. Kofi hits the corner to pose as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and WWE Champion Daniel Bryan and Rowan are finishing their entrance. Kevin Owens is also out. It looks like Kofi is starting out with Bryan but Rowan tags in to start. Rowan overpowers and sends Kofi to the mat. Bryan applauds him. Kofi tries again and gets slammed hard. Rowan misses in the corner and Kofi unloads with kicks. Rowan looks to turn it around and Owens tags himself in. There’s some tension with Kofi already. Owens and Rowan go at it, unloading in the middle of the ring. Rowan drops Owens and yells out. Owens fires back out of the corner and beats Rowan into the opposite corner. Rowan runs into a boot. They run the ropes and Rowan delivers a dropkick for a 2 count.
Rowan tags in Bryan and holds Owens for a cheap shot. Owens comes back and levels Bryan. Owens plays to the crowd for a pop. Owens takes Bryan to the corner and works him over. Kofi tags in for some double teaming and a 2 count on Bryan. Kofi goes on and sends Bryan over the top rope to the floor. Kofi tags in Owens and Owens launches himself over the top rope to Bryan on the floor, taking him back down. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and Rowan has Kofi down on the mat. Rowan works Kofi over, pounds on him and keeps him grounded while talking trash. We see how Kofi was launched into the barriers by Rowan during the break. Rowan clubs Kofi to the mat again and plays to the crowd for some boos. Rowan with a backbreaker for another 2 count. Bryan tags back in and keeps Kofi down, standing on his face. Kofi fights up from the mat but Bryan rocks him with an uppercut. Bryan talks trash and uses the second rope on Kofi as the referee counts and warns him. Bryan with a big shot to the back, leaving Kofi down on the apron. Bryan runs the apron and delivers a low dropkick, sending Kofi out to the floor.
Rowan tags back in and slams Kofi out on the floor. Rowan brings it back in the ring for a 2 count. Rowan bounces off the rope and delivers a splash in the middle of the ring for another close pin attempt. Rowan keeps Kofi grounded on the mat now. Rowan lifts Kofi for a backbreaker but slams him face-first into the turnbuckles instead. Bryan tags in as Rowan charges over for a cheap shot to Owens. Bryan takes Kofi up to the top and delivers a big superplex but Kofi still kicks out at 2. Bryan immediately goes for another pin attempt.
Fans chant for Kofi now as Bryan talks trash and keeps control. They tangle again and this leads to Bryan applying the LeBell Lock. Kofi struggles and makes it to the bottom rope just in time. Bryan takes Kofi to the corner and delivers kicks now. Bryan with a running dropkick to the face. Bryan with a second running dropkick. Bryan goes for a third but Kofi leaps back at him out of nowhere with a big double stomp. Owens reaches for the hot tag now.
Owens tags himself in and unloads on Bryan. Owens with a big back body drop. Owens with a clothesline in the corner. Owens leaps off the second rope with a dropkick. Owens rocks Rowan on the apron and hits a senton on Bryan. Rowan looks to approach but Owens rocks him, sending him back out. Owens with the Corner Cannonball now. Rowan comes from behind but Owens fights him off and sends him out of the ring. Rowan comes right back to the apron but Owens superkicks him off. Bryan charges but Owens catches him in a Pop-Up Powerbomb for a close 2 count. Owens can’t believe the kick out.
Bryan goes back to the top for the Frogsplash but Rowan pulls him off. Rowan tosses Owens over the announce table. Kofi leaps out of the ring but Rowan catches him in mid-air. Kofi slides out and sends Rowan face-first into the ring post. Kofi goes to the top and leaps down with a big chop to Rowan on the floor. Owens returns to the ring with Bryan now. Bryan misses the corner dropkick and hits his knee. Owens catches Bryan and hits a big Stunner for the pin to win.
Winners: Kevin Owens and Kofi Kingston
– After the match, Owens’ music hits as he and Kofi have their arms raised by the referee. They both look at each other as we go to replays. Owens and Kofi have some words and it looks like things will not get out of control, but we can’t hear what they’re saying. SmackDown goes off the air with Owens and Kofi in the ring.