– Tonight’s WWE SmackDown on FOX opens with the usual intro video. We’re live on tape from the empty WWE Performance Center in Orlando, Florida as Michael Cole welcomes us. He hypes tonight’s matches – The Usos vs. The New Day to determine the WrestleMania 36 opponents for SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Miz and John Morrison, WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Asuka vs. Alexa Bliss, Bray Wyatt’s Firefly Fun House, and more. We will also look at Roman Reigns vs. Triple H from WrestleMania 32 in anticipation of Reigns vs. WWE Universal Champion Bill Goldberg.
– We go right to the ring and out comes Sasha Banks with SmackDown Women’s Champion Bayley. Cole hypes Bayley’s WrestleMania 36 Fatal 5 Way Elimination Match with Banks, Naomi, Tamina Snuka, and Lacey Evans.
Banks and Bayley hit the ring with mics and talk about WrestleMania 36. They talk about how special the event is but say this year WrestleMania is a nightmare for them. Bayley goes on about Paige trying to put them against each other. Bayley says there is no separating them, they are like peanut butter and jelly. Right? Sasha doesn’t look like she’s about to agree with Bayley. Before she can speak, the music hits and out comes Evans.
Evans takes shots at Banks and Bayley. Bayley calls her a loser and Banks says she has a bratty little daughter. Evans goes on about how she will take care of both Banks and Bayley at WrestleMania, taking the title from… the music interrupts and out comes Naomi. Naomi runs down Banks and Bayley and says the glow will shine bright at WrestleMania. Bayley says this isn’t going to be one of those nights where everyone comes out and interrupts… the music hits and out comes Tamina.
Tamina enters the ring and stares everyone down. She says actions speak louder than words. Snuka drops Naomi with a headbutt, then Evans with a superkick. Banks and Bayley go after Naomi in the corner but run into Snuka instead. Banks and Bayley exit the ring and back up the ramp after Bayley grabs her title. Tamina looks on from the ring as Evans and Naomi recover on the mat.
– Still to come, Drew Gulak vs. Shinsuke Nakamura with WrestleMania 36 implications. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see recent happenings with Daniel Bryan, Drew Gulak, Sami Zayn, Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura.
Drew Gulak vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
We go back to the ring and out comes Drew Gulak with Daniel Bryan as Greg Hamilton does the introductions. Shinsuke Nakamura is out next with Cesaro and WWE Intercontinental Champion Sami Zayn. If Gulak wins this match, Bryan gets the WrestleMania 36 title shot from Zayn. Zayn joins Cole on commentary.
Nakamura takes control early on and beats Gulak down. Nakamura drives knees and keeps control. Gulak eventually explodes out of the corner and unloads on Nakamura. Gulak takes Nakamura against the ropes and beats him down as the referee warns him. Cesaro pulls Nakamura to safety on the outside. The referee talks to Gulak and warns him in the ring. Gulak ends up on the outside as Nakamura delivers big kicks against the announce table, while Sami yells at him. Bryan walks over and Sami yells at him.
Nakamura brings Gulak back into the ring but Gulak goes for the leg and turns it around. Gulak works on the leg some more while Nakamura is tied up in the ropes. Gulak unloads on Nakamura in the corner while Cesaro talks trash from the floor. Gulak misses a running kick in the corner. Nakamura with a flying knee from the second rope for a 2 count. Bryan tries to rally for Gulak at ringside.
Nakamura has Gulak grounded now. Nakamura drives a knee and keeps control. They get back up and trade strikes but Nakamura rocks Gulak and slams him face-first into the mat. Nakamura calls for the Kinshasa but Bryan provides an assist, pushing Gulak out of the way. This allows Gulak to get the pin for the win.
Winner: Drew Gulak
– After the match, Gulak and Bryan celebrate as Bryan is going to WrestleMania to face Zayn for the title. Sami throws a fit and yells out as we go to replays. Bryan and Gulak continue taunting Sami and his crew from the ramp.
– Still to come, Asuka vs. Bliss, plus the Firefly Fun House. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Cole confirms Bryan vs. Zayn for the Intercontinental Title at WrestleMania 36.
– Cole shows us what happened between Dolph Ziggler and Otis last week. Otis snapped after Ziggler displayed photos of he and Mandy Rose on the big screen. We see Ziggler backstage talking on his phone, to Rose, when the intentional glitch once again flashes across the screen. Otis and Tucker run up but officials stop them from attacking Ziggler. Ziggler taunts Otis as officials hold him back. Otis and Ziggler agree on a WrestleMania match and Ziggler says Mandy will be in his corner.
– We go back to the ring area and Elias is up on the perch with his guitar. He thanks everyone for allowing him into their homes. He brings up how WrestleMania host Rob Gronkowski thought it would be a good for Elias to face King Baron Corbin at the big event. Before he gets there, Elias wants Corbin to hear his latest song. Elias starts performing the song about WrestleMania and Corbin. Elias thanks “the capacity crowd here at the Performance Center” and goes to wrap up but Corbin attacks him and destroys him. Elias is hanging onto the railing of the perch as Corbin taunts him and works him over. Elias tries to climb back up but Corbin uses his scepter to knock Elias down to the floor below. Elias falls from up high and is laid out. Officials rush over and calls for help to come assist Elias. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we see what just happened to Elias. Cole plays up the seriousness of the situation and calls it a “horrific” attack. Cole says Elias is being transferred to a local medical facility and we will try and learn how this impacts the King Corbin vs. Elias match at WrestleMania.
Asuka vs. Alexa Bliss
We go back to the ring and out comes WWE Women’s Tag Team Champion Asuka. No sign of Kairi Sane. Alexa Bliss is out next with Nikki Cross. Cole is joined at the announce table by Cross.
The bell rings and Asuka has words for Bliss. Bliss tells her to bring it. Bliss ducks and taunts Asuka. They have more words before going at it. Bliss unloads with forearms. They run the ropes and Bliss nails a dropkick for a 2 count. Bliss keeps Asuka grounded with a headlock now. She gets free and drops Bliss with a shoulder. Asuka mocks Cross from the ring.
Cross tries to rally the empty crowd as Asuka keeps Bliss down. Bliss comes back and sends Asuka out to the floor. Bliss mocks Asuka from the ring. Asuka comes back to the apron and they have words. Bliss sends Asuka back down to the floor. Bliss follows but Asuka kicks her and then launches her into the steel ring steps. Asuka stands tall on the floor and taunts Cross as we go back to commercial.
Back from the break and Asuka has Bliss grounded in the middle of the ring. Asuka rocks her with a kick and strikes against the ropes. Asuka mocks Cross again. Asuka ends up missing a Hip Attack as Bliss kicks her in the back and she goes down. Asuka turns it around and they tangle on the apron but Bliss counters and slams Asuka face-first into the apron by her arm.
Bliss brings it back into the ring for a close 2 count. Bliss continues to focus on the arm. Bliss with a big kick. Asuka charges but misses as Bliss moves. Asuka hits the turnbuckles hard. Bliss with a clothesline and right hands. Bliss goes on but misses a moonsault as Asuka moves, rolling to the floor. Bliss chases Asuka back to the apron, dropping her face-first into the apron. Bliss keeps control and brings Asuka back in for a 2 count, and another. Cross is extra annoying on commentary tonight. Asuka goes for the Asuka Lock but Bliss rams her back into the corner.
Bliss rolls Asuka out of the corner and nails a big DDT in the middle of the ring for the pin to win.
Winner: Alexa Bliss
– After the match, Cross hits the ring to celebrate with Bliss as the music hits. We go to replays. Cross and Bliss hug in the ring as Asuka crawls on the outside.
– The Usos are backstage getting hyped up for tonight’s match with The New Day.
– Also still to come, a look back at Roman Reigns vs. Triple H from WrestleMania 32. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and we get hype for WrestleMania 36 and how Night One is just 8 days away. Cole talks about former NFL tight-end Rob Gronkowski serving as the host.
– Cole shows us a replay from Roman Reigns vs. Triple H at WrestleMania 32 in 2016. We take a commercial break and come back to the match. We take another commercial break. We come back and get one more break before seeing Reigns’ big title win that night. Cole comes back and is joined by Triple H, who is in the back. He asks for a prediction on Reigns vs. WWE Universal Champion Bill Goldberg at WrestleMania 36. Triple H talks about how both men bring major intensity in the ring, but different kinds. Triple H says Reigns’ intensity increases as the match goes on. If the match goes quick, he believes Goldberg will win, but if it goes long and Reigns can withstand the initial onslaught of Goldberg, then Reigns will build and build until Goldberg runs out of gas and The Big Dog wins the title. Cole hypes Reigns vs. Goldberg at WrestleMania 36. There has been no mention of Reigns not wrestling at WrestleMania 36.
– We go backstage to The New Day. They get hyped up for tonight’s big match with The Usos.
– Still to come, Bray Wyatt’s Firefly Fun House. Back to commercial.
– Back from the break and Dolph Ziggler is with Sonya Deville in the back. He’s talking about what Heavy Machinery did earlier. Mandy Rose walks up and greets them. Deville leaves to handle some business. Rose asks Ziggler why he’s doing all this to Otis. Ziggler downplays it and says he deserves it. Rose asks if he really had to rub the photos in. Rose says she’s all for their match at WrestleMania but she refuses to let them fight over her like some prize. Ziggler looks ahead to all this being over, then walks off with his arm around Rose.
– We go to the Firefly Fun House and Bray Wyatt welcomes us. He’s super excited to see us. We see the head lantern. Wyatt tells it to shut up because it had its chance but failed against John Cena. Wyatt says “He” won’t fail, The Fiend. Abby The Witch speaks and asks Wyatt if he now has the secret recipe to defeat Cena or something. Wyatt pulls out a blender and various ingredients, including hot sauce, disappointment, rage and resentment. Ramblin’ Rabbit appears with a carrot, that will help him see Cena. Wyatt grabs Rabbit and says this is what he was missing – some irrelevant opinions. He adds Rabbit to the blender as Rabbit pleads and screams. Wyatt laughs as he blends the smoothie up. Wyatt does some more comedy and says he’s created the perfect smoothie for “Him” to defeat Cena at WrestleMania. Wyatt says Cena deserves a WrestleMania match that’s not ordinary, especially since “He” is anything but ordinary. The Fiend wants Cena to step into their world. Wyatt says The Fiend is now challenging Cena to a Firefly Fun House Match. Wyatt drinks the smoothie and says there is just one… nasty side effect. He gets serious and stares at the camera as The Fiend flashes across the screen. The segment ends.
The New Day vs. The Usos
We go to the ring for tonight’s main event and out come the SmackDown Tag Team Champions, The Miz and John Morrison. They join Cole for commentary. The New Day and The Usos will do battle here to determine who challenges for the titles at WrestleMania 36. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and announced for next week is a face-off between Roman Reigns and Bill Goldberg, plus John Cena’s response to the Firefly Fun House challenge from Bray Wyatt. We go to the ring and out first comes Kofi Kingston and Big E of The New Day. Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso are out next.
Jimmy starts off with Kofi and takes control early on. They run the ropes and Jimmy catches Kofi in mid-air. Kofi counters and they tangle into and out of the corner. Kofi dropkicks Jimmy but it’s blocked. Jimmy launches Kofi into the corner but he lands on the turnbuckle and nails a springboard dropkick. The Usos end up on the floor to regroup. Miz and Morrison taunt them from the announce table.
Uso comes back in and Big E is the legal man. They lock up and Big E overpowers, launching Uso across the ring. More back and forth between the two teams now. Kofi goes at it with Jey. Jimmy tags in for the big double team, dropping Kofi across the top rope for a big 2 count. Big E comes in and unloads on Uso with belly-to-belly suplexes. Big E goes for a pin but stops and drags Uso to the apron to pound on him with forearms from the floor. Big E goes to the apron and delivers a big splash to Uso on the edge of the apron. Back to commercial.
Back from the break and Jey hits a big Samoan Drop on Big E for a close 2 count. Uso with the big Rikishi splash in the corner. Jimmy tags back in and charges but Big E catches him with a big Uranage out of the corner. Kofi tries to rally the empty arena for Big E. Kofi and Jey tag in at the same time. Kofi unloads and nails a dropkick. Kofi with more offense and a Boom Drop in the middle of the ring. Uso ducks Trouble In Paradise and rocks Kofi. More back and forth now. Uso blocks a shot in mid-air and slams Kofi into a half-Crab in the middle of the ring.
Kofi fights out of the Crab and manages to drop Uso with SOS in the middle of the ring. Uso kicks out at 2. Kofi slides out of a hold. Uso runs into an elbow in the corner. Big E tags in for the big double team but Kofi has to land on his feet. Uso runs in and sends Kofi into the ring post, then superkicks Big E twice for a close 2 count. The Usos argue with the referee. The Usos double team Big E with chops in the corner now. They take Big E to the top for a double superplex but he knocks them to the mat. Uso with a big kick, sending Big E from the top to the floor. Kofi gets brought into the ring and then tossed back out but he hangs on. Kofi counters and sends The Usos to the floor. Kofi runs the ropes and leaps out, taking down The Usos on the floor again.
Miz and Morrison are standing on the announce table now, taunting the other teams. Kofi knocks Morrison down. Usos flies over the top and takes them down. Big E runs the ropes and hits a Spear to knock Uso to the floor. Everyone is down now. Big E brings Uso back in but Miz and Morrison attack Big E to force the disqualification.
Winners by DQ: The New Day
– After the bell, Morrison and Miz bring both teams back into the ring and beat them up. The referee calls for them to break it up. Cole stands up and has breaking news from WWE officials. He announces Miz and Morrison vs. The New Day vs. The Usos in a Triple Threat Ladder Match for WrestleMania 36. The New Day ends up taking out Miz and Morrison as The Usos look on from the floor, nodding in approval. The Usos’ music hits as they back up the ramp. SmackDown goes off the air.