– Tonight’s WWE SmackDown on FOX opens up with a graphic in memory of “The Natural” Butch Reed, who passed away today at the age of 66. We go to the normal WWE intro video.
– We get a video package showing Bianca Belair and WWE Hall of Famer Edge after their big Royal Rumble Match wins this past Sunday at the pay-per-view.
– We’re live from the ThunderDome at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida as Michael Cole welcomes us to SmackDown, noting that we are officially on The Road to WrestleMania 37 now. He’s joined at ringside by Corey Graves. Graves confirms that Edge and Bianca Belair will both be here tonight.
– We go right to the ring and out comes WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns with Paul Heyman and Jey Uso. The boos pick up as Reigns stops on the stage to raise the title to pyro going off.
Reigns and his crew march to the ring as we see stills from Reigns’ win over Kevin Owens in the Last Man Standing match at the Royal Rumble on Sunday. Reigns poses in the middle of the ring and raises the title as more pyro goes of. Fans start chanting “you suck!” when the music stops. Reigns isn’t a fan of re-capping the past but if you didn’t see the Rumble, he beat Owens, like he said he would because he’s a man of his word. But enough about the past, let’s talk about the future. Reigns says apparently the future is Edge. fans cheer his name. Reigns brings up the WrestleMania main event as we see the WrestleMania 37 sign hanging high. Reigns asks who’s the main event around here and Heyman acknowledges him.
Reigns has two issues here. He being the Tribal Chief of WWE, the main event, why in the hell would Edge waste his time visiting WWE NXT or RAW when he should come straight to Reigns’ show, beg him at his feet and sell him on why he should let you on the island of relevancy. This brings him to his second issue. He asks Heyman why the hell he’s out here first. Where is Edge at? Reigns says Edge makes the mistake of disrespecting him all week but Reigns being a nice guy, a gentleman, he’s willing to let that slide but now Edge is making him wait. Reigns tells Heyman to get Edge’s ass out here. Heyman starts yelling for Edge’s entrance and pyro to start. A ringside crew member shrugs. Heyman says a few words to Reigns and Reigns is upset.
Reigns says Edge isn’t here. He says Edge must think he’s a fool. Does he look like a fool or a man who wants to play games? Reigns yells and asks why would Edge play games with him? Reigns seethes now and says the last man that played games with him was named Kevin Owens, and he’s no longer here because Reigns whipped his ass. He says Owens is history, gone, never to be seen again. The loud boos continue from the crowd. Reigns says he will tell Edge this nicely – you need to understand this because this is your only chance, you’re going to give your decision by the end of the night. Reigns repeats himself and drops the mic as the boos continue. Reigns exits the ring as his music starts back up.
– The announcers talk about Edge and plug tonight’s show, including the Intercontinental Title Triple Threat. Cole says today marks 33 years since WWE Hall of Famers Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant battled on WWE Main Event. Hogan will be here tonight to discuss who he thinks Edge should challenge.
Dominik Mysterio vs. King Baron Corbin
We go back to the ring and out comes Dominik Mysterio with his dad Rey Mysterio. Cole says Dominik is hoping the third time will be the charm with King Baron Corbin tonight. Corbin suddenly attacks Rey and Dominik from behind. He drops Dominik and launches Rey off the stage to the floor. Corbin goes on and makes his way to the ring while laughing. We go to commercial.
Back from the break and the bell hits as Corbin charges. Dominik avoids some shots and nails a dropkick to send Corbin to one knee. Dominik rocks Corbin again and fights in from the apron. Dominik with another dropkick for a 2 count. Corbin turns it around and hits a Spinebuster. Corbin mounts Dominik with lefts and rights. Corbin uses the middle rope on Dominik as the referee warns him.
We see trainers checking on Rey near the stage now. Corbin whips Dominik into the corner and hits a big running splash for a 2 count. Corbin unloads with elbow strikes now, keeping Dominik grounded and working on his shoulder. Dominik fights up and out but Corbin drops him as fans boo. Corbin stands over Dominik and taunts him now. Corbin with more trash talking and more focus on the shoulder while driving a knee into the jaw. The referee checks on Dominik. We see Rey getting his knee looked at by the trainer and the referee.
Dominik fights up and out but Corbin knees him in the gut again. Dominik ends up dumping Corbin over the top rope to the floor. Dominik launches himself to the floor, taking Corbin down. Rey is limping over to the ringside area now, cheering his son on. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Dominik comes off the top but Corbin catches him. Dominik fights out of a suplex attempt and nails a neckbreaker. Dominik with a standing moonsault for a 2 count as Rey watches from ringside. Corbin goes for a chokeslam but it’s blocked. Dominik rolls Corbin up for a 2 count. Corbin avoids a 619 and drops Dominik with Deep Six for a close 2 count.
More back and forth now. Dominik sends Corbin flying over the top rope to the floor for a pop. Dominik runs the ropes and nails a suicide dive, sending Corbin into the announce table. We see someone climbing under the ring it looks like, possibly Rey? Rey grabs Corbin’s leg from under the ring now as Corbin tries to re-enter the ring. The referee does not see this. Dominik takes advantage and hits 619. Dominik goes to the top rope and hits the Frogsplash to get the pin and the win.
Winner: Dominik Mysterio
– After the match, Rey and Dominik celebrate at ringside as the music hits.
– Still to come, Edge will be here tonight. The announcers hype Bianca Belair’s appearance and the Intercontinental Title Triple Threat.
– This week’s Progressive Match Flo replay shows Sami Zayn handcuffing himself to the barrier during Apollo Crews vs. WWE Intercontinental Champion Big E two weeks ago, and then interfering during the match and attacking both competitors. Kayla Braxton is backstage with Big E now. Big E goes on with his promo and says they are going to fight tonight, but Sami and Apollo are not ready.
Daniel Bryan vs. Cesaro
We go back to the ring and out comes Daniel Bryan as the “yes!” chant starts up. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and out next comes Cesaro. The bell rings and they go at it, unloading on each other. Bryan takes Cesaro down and kicks the rm. Bryan goes to work on the arm now. Cesaro charges but Bryan dumps him over the top rope to the floor. Bryan goes to the top and leaps out, taking Cesaro down on the floor.
The referee counts as Bryan brings it back in the ring. Bryan goes to the top and hits a missile dropkick for a pop. Bryan with a kick while Cesaro is on his knees now. Bryan goes for the arm again as Cesaro goes for a rake to the eye. They trade counters now until Bryan blocks the big uppercut in mid-air. We see Shinsuke Nakamura watching backstage as Cesaro uppercuts Bryan to drop him. Cesaro with more big uppercuts now. Bryan takes him down and goes for an arm bar.
We see Cesaro’s head bleeding now as Bryan tries to turn the arm bar into the Yes Lock. Cesaro overpowers and turns it around, driving knees into Bryan on the mat. Bryan blocks a big corkscrew uppercut, then drops Cesaro with a kick to the back of the neck. Cesaro kicks out at 2 and Bryan shows a little bit of frustration. Bryan stomps away now. Cesaro comes back with a big backbreaker and then the Cesaro Swing.
Cesaro keeps swinging Bryan and then drops him into the Sharpshooter in the middle of the ring. Cesaro has trouble with his arm but he manages to tighten the hold. Bryan taps out for the finish.
– After the match, Cesaro stands tall while selling the arm injury, with blood running from the back of his head. He stands tall and celebrates as the music hits. Cesaro turns around and looks at Bryan, who is down in the corner. Cesaro walks over and offers his fist to Bryan for a bump. They bump fists in a show of respect and Cesaro makes his exit as his music starts back up.
– We get a video package on Royal Rumble winner Bianca Belair now. Kayla is joined backstage by Belair. We see footage of her parents reacting to her big Royal Rumble Match win this past Sunday. Bianca talks about wanting to make her parents proud and says even though they won’t be walking down the aisle with her at WrestleMania 37, they will be there with her. Kayla asks if she will challenge RAW Women’s Champion Asuka or SmackDown Women’s Champion Sasha Banks at WrestleMania. Belair knew she would get asked this. Everyone has told her to take her time announcing her opponent but if she waited around she wouldn’t be where she’s at. She goes on and says she’s doing this her way, putting the EST and WrestleMania together, and will be ready to make the biggest decision of her life soon.
Bayley vs. Ruby Riott
We go back to the ring and out comes Bayley as the pyro goes off. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and we get a video package on Seth Rollins. He will be back next Friday night. Ruby Riott is in the ring with Liv Morgan now. Billie Kay is on commentary. Bayley and Riott go at it after the bell hits. Bayley takes control in the corner and talks trash until Riott rocks her with a right hand.
Riott keeps fighting and levels Bayley with a kick for a close 2 count. Riott mounts Bayley’s back and unloads with more strikes. Bayley counters in the corner and launches Riott face-first into the top turnbuckle for a close 2 count. Bayley keeps control for another 2 count. Bayley grounds her by her arm and drives elbows. Riott rams Bayley back into the corner and turns it around. Bayley ends up getting sent face-first into the second turnbuckle.
Bayley fights back out of the corner but Riott runs up and launches her to the mat with a big arm drag. Riott blocks the Bayley-to-Belly suplex for a 2 count. Bayley keeps control and Riott goes to the apron. Bayley slides under her and tries to powerbomb her to the floor but Riott fights her off with a kick to the face. Bayley drops Riott over the second rope. Bayley comes right back in and applies an arm submission but Billie runs over and tries to break it up or interfere. Liv yells at her. Riott turns Bayley’s submission into a 2 count as Liv and Billie argue. Bayley counters Riott and drops her on her face for the pin to win.
– After the match, Bayley makes her exit as the music hits. Billie runs over with her resumes and 8X10s, stopping Bayley but the camera cuts away.
– We see Bianca Belair walking backstage. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get a promo for WrestleMania 37, which is just 64 days away.
– We see WWE Hall of Famer Edge walking backstage.
– We go back to the ring and out comes Bianca Belair to a big pop.
Belair takes the mic but the fans are cheering her on. She says her whole life changed overnight since winning the Women’s Royal Rumble. She’s been doing non-stop press and her phone has been blowing up. Belair says this is the biggest decision of her life. She brings up RAW Women’s Champion Asuka and her success. She then brings up her girl, SmackDown Women’s Champion Sasha Banks. She goes on praising Banks and says if she’s going to put the EST in WrestleMania, she has to do it her way. She says this while pointing up at the WrestleMania 37 sign.
Reginald, Carmella’s sommelier, comes out to interrupt. He wants to offer her some advice. He’s quite sure Belair can defeat Asuka, but if she picks Banks, well… he laughs. Reginald is in the ring now. He says Belair can’t beat Banks because she can’t even beat Carmella. The music interrupts and out comes Carmella now. Carmella says Reginald means well, even when he gets a little over-excited. Carmella brags about beating Banks twice and with all Belair’s hype, she’s sure she can do the same to Belair. They have words but the music interrupts and out comes Banks.
Banks says with all due respect, she’s going to stop looking in her rear view and start focusing on the road that’s ahead. Banks says Belair certainly has her attention. Banks has seen Belair has been in two Rumble Matches, setting records both times. She gives Belair for lasting almost an hour this past Sunday, staking her claim to main event WrestleMania. Banks has been watching Belair. She saw Belair pick up Otis, so she knows she’s the strongest. She then saw her chase Bayley and beat her down, so she knows she’s the fastest. But the best? Banks laughs and doesn’t think Belair is the best. Banks says if Belair is going to pick her, then do it because she has it all but she doesn’t have this… the title. Banks takes the title off and raises it in the air. Carmella is between them, rolling her eyes.
Belair says if she does choose Sasha… Reginald gets in the way and says Belair got lucky on Sunday, so if she does choose Banks, she will lose, just like he said. Belair drops the mic and starts whipping Reginald around with her hair. She sends him out of the ring as fans pop. Carmella looks on. Banks laughs. Belair’s music hits as she starts swinging her hair around, pointing up at the WrestleMania sign.
– Still to come, The Hulkster will join us. Also, Edge is here.
– We see Roman Reigns backstage talking with Jey Uso. Paul Heyman says it’s now confirmed that Edge is finally here. Reigns thinks it over as we go back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Kayla is backstage with Sami Zayn, who has his film crew with him. Sami accuses Kayla of being a corporate shill and a propagandist. He goes on about the injustices against him and says finally they will get a happy piece of footage for his documentary as he will reclaim his Intercontinental Title and his status as Champion of The People. Sami walks off.
Otis and Chad Gable vs. Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler
We go back to the ring and out first are Chad Gable and Otis. We get a pre-recorded video of Gable saying Otis may have came up short at the Royal Rumble, but they were back to training the next day and now they are coming for the champs. Out next are SmackDown Tag Team Champions Robert Roode and Dolph Ziggler for a non-title match. They come out with new theme music.
Ziggler starts off with Gable, going back and forth. We see The Street Profits doing commentary from backstage in a picture-in-picture video. Gable takes Ziggler down and works on the arm. Ziggler kicks him away and shoves him into their corner. Gable fights off Roode on the apron but Ziggler dropkicks him for a 2 count.
Roode tags in and holds his boots up as Ziggler sends Gable into them. Roode goes to work on Gable now. Roode with a big suplex for a 2 count. Roode grounds Gable now. Gable ends up turning it around and making the hot tag to Otis. Otis runs wild on Roode and launches him across the ring. Ziggler runs in but Otis sends him up and back down. Otis with a big discus clothesline to Ziggler.
Otis splashes Roode in the corner and he goes down. Otis hits the Caterpillar on Roode and drops the elbow for a pop. Otis tags in Gable. Ziggler knocks Otis off the apron and runs in but Gable catches his superkick. Gable with a big German suplex to Ziggler. Roode takes advantage and drops Gable with the Glorious DDT for the pin to win.
Winners: Dolph Ziggler and Robert Roode
– After the match, Roode and Ziggler celebrate as their music hits. The Street Profits are still talking trash on backstage commentary. Otis hits the ring and tries to attack but the champs retreat and celebrate at ringside with the titles.
– Still to come, The Hulkster will be here. Back to a Black History Month video and a commercial break.
– Back from the break and Cole talks about 33 million people tuning in to watch WWE Hall of Famers Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant do battle for the WWE Title on WWE Main Event 33 years ago today. We get a video package looking back at the match. Hogan and WWE Hall of Famer Jimmy Hart join us with a quick pre-recorded promo now. Hogan talks about Edge choosing WWE Champion Drew McIntyre or WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns for WrestleMania 37. Hogan asks whatcha gonna do when Edge runs wild on you?
Triple Threat for the WWE Intercontinental Title: Apollo Crews vs. Sami Zayn vs. Big E
We go back to the ring and out first comes Apollo Crews for the next match. WWE Intercontinental Champion Big E is out next. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and we see Edge talking to Shinsuke Nakamura backstage. We go back to the ring and out comes Sami Zayn with his documentary crew. We get formal ring introductions from Greg Hamilton. The bell rings and Sami talks trash to Big E. E charges but Sami retreats to the floor. Apollo comes from behind but runs into E’s elbow. E and Crews go at it now. Big E leap frogs and drops Apollo with an elbow. Sami runs back in and goes to work on Big E.
E catches Sami with a big back-drop, sending him back to the floor as Crews attacks E. Crews with a German suplex, holding it for a second, and then a third German. Big E kicks out at 2. Sami runs in and attacks Crews from behind. Sami works Crews over with lefts and rights now. Crews counters with a clothesline. Crews with a running splash to E, then Sami in the corners. Big E dodges a splash and clotheslines Apollo in the corner, then does the same to Sami. E runs into a kick from Apollo. E sends Crews to the apron. E runs for the Spear but Sami holds his leg from the floor.
Sami pulls E to the floor and beats him up. E blocks a shot into the apron and send Sami face-first into the apron a few times. Apollo runs the ropes and leaps out, taking Big E down on the floor. Apollo with a moonsault from the apron to Big E on the floor. Sami launches himself at Crews, taking him down at ringside now. We go to commercial with Sami in control on the outside.
Back from the break and Sami has Big E down in the middle of the ring. Sami uses the middle rope now as the referee warns him and fans boo. Sami knocks Apollo back off the apron to the floor. Big E charges but Sami sends him face-first into the second turnbuckle. Big E blocks a move and gets out of the way as Crews flies off the top with a missile dropkick, dropping Sami. Big E dodges a pump kick from Apollo and nails several belly-to-belly throws for a pop.
Sami applies a Sleeper from behind but Big E slams him to the mat. Big E runs the ropes and hits the big splash to both challengers at once as fans cheer him on. Big E rallies now but Crews nails an enziguri to stun him into the corner. Crews charges in the corner but Big E sends him over the top to the floor. Sami charges for a Helluva Kick but Big E drops him with the Uranage for a close 2 count.
Big E stomps on Sami on the apron now. Big E goes for the big splash on the apron and he hits it. Crews follows up with a dropkick to Big E on the floor. Apollo goes to the top to take advantage. He hits the big Frogsplash to Sami but Sami kicks out just in time. Crews runs into an elbow from Sami in the corner. Crews goes for a big throw to Sami but Big E grabs them both from behind and launches both of them with a bigger throw as fans pop. Sami crawls to the apron. Big E runs for the Spear but Sami gets a knee up. Sami comes in for a Helluva Kick and he nails it on Big E. Sami covers for the pin but Apollo pulls him out of the ring right before the 3 count. Sami yells at the referee and pounds on Crews, showing frustration.
Apollo blocks a shot and unloads with right hands at ringside. Apollo presses Sami above his head and launches him into the timekeeper’s area. Apollo looks back in the ring and sees Big E still down from Sami’s kick. Apollo enters the ring but Big E scoops him for the Big Ending to get the pin and retain.
Winner: Big E
– After the match, Big E takes the title and raises it in the air as his music starts up. We go to replays. Big E raises the title again in the corner as Crews watches from behind him. Crews rolls out of the ring as Big E’s celebration continues.
– We see The Rated R Superstar walking backstage. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and announced for Talking Smack tomorrow morning is Adam Pearce, Big E and Bianca Belair. Kayla Braxton and Paul Heyman will host.
– The announcers air the video package for Seth Rollins’ return on next Friday’s SmackDown again.
– Back from the break and out comes WWE Hall of Famer Edge to a pop. The pyro goes off as the Royal Rumble winner heads to the ring and poses in the corner.
Edge says you can’t accomplish something you’ve never dreamed of. He talks about dreaming for the past 7 months while rehabbing his injury. He dreamed of coming here, coming back home. He was dreaming of winning the Royal Rumble and main eventing WrestleMania 37, taking back something he never lost, something he feels is his. Edge goes on about entering the Men’s Rumble at #1 and outlasting 29 of the best Superstars today. So now he finds himself on the precipice of the main event at WrestleMania, and that begs the question – which champion does he choose? It’s an embarrassment of riches. Does he choose WWE NXT Champion Finn Balor, WWE Champion Drew McIntyre or WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns? Fans boo Reigns’ name. Edge says he gets a different answer from his family and his friends. But at the end of the day… the music interrupts and out comes Reigns with Jey Uso and Paul Heyman.
Edge and Reigns stare each other down as the heels march down to ringside. Uso waits at ringside and is now in a staredown with Edge while Reigns and Heyman move over to the steel steps. Reigns and Heyman hit the apron, as does Uso from another entry point. Uso lurks and stares Edge down as fans boo, looking like he’s about to pounce. Heyman is all smiles. Edge asks Reigns if he had to bring back-up, if he’s already sweating him. Edge says he’s out here alone. Reigns takes the mic and says man to man, he gives Edge his word. Without Reigns’ blessing, Heyman will not make a move on Edge. They laugh but Edge stares ahead.
Edge says he’s renting space in Reigns’ head already, he sees it, that’s why Uso is out here. Reigns tells Uso to go back to the bus because he’s got this. Uso exits the ring, as does Heyman, who watches from the apron. Reigns steps closer to Edge and accuses him of disrespecting him, and disrespecting his family. Reigns is only going to say this once – acknowledge me. Acknowledge me as the main event at WrestleMania, acknowledged me as the champion of choice. Say my name. Reigns says that was Edge’s cue, now go.
Kevin Owens suddenly attacks Reigns from behind and quickly drops him with a Stunner as the crowd pops. A stone-faced Owens marches right out of the ring and straight up the ramp as the crowd pops, not stopping to look back. Edge simply places the mic on the mat, looks down at Reigns on the mat, and exits the ring as the post-Royal Rumble edition of SmackDown goes off the air.