By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Super ShowDown
Aired live February 27, 2020 live on WWE Network and pay-per-view
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia at Mohammed Abdu Arena
Kickoff Show result: Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson beat The Viking Raiders.
A video package kicked off the main show… A huge round of pyro shot off on the stage. Michael Cole welcomed viewers to the show. Cole was joined on commentary by Corey Graves and Byron Saxton…
Ring announcer Mike Rome announced the rules for the Tuwaiq Trophy gauntlet match. The giant trophy was shown a ringside. Cole noted that it was named for a mountain in the area that is a symbol of strength and fortitude…
1. AJ Styles vs. Rey Mysterio vs. R-Truth vs. Andrade vs. Erick Rowan vs. Bobby Lashley in a gauntlet match for the Tuwaiq Trophy. R-Truth was out first and did his full “What’s Up?” entrance, which was really well received by the crowd. Bobby Lashley came out as Truth’s opponent and was accompanied to the stage by Lana, who wore a lot more clothing than usual. Lana headed to the back while Lashley went to the ring.
Lashley was dominant early on. Truth came back and performed a Five Knuckle Shuffle. Truth went for the Attitude Adjustment, but Lashley stuffed it. Truth threw a kick at Lashley, who came right back and put Truth down with a Flatliner. Lashley went to the corner and then went for a spear, but Truth moved and Lashley crashed into the corner. Truth rolled up Lashley and pinned him.
R-Truth eliminated Bobby Lashley in 5:40.
Lashley worked over Truth after the match and ran him into the ring post and the ring steps. Lashley rolled Truth back inside the ring and then speared him. Lashley rolled out of the ring and left while Truth was left down in the ring.
U.S. Champion Andrade was the next entrant (no Zelina Vega). The referee separated Andrade and Truth, then called for the bell to start the second part of the match. Cole emphasized that each match in the gauntlet could end by pinfall, count-out, disqualification, or submission. Andrade dominated the weary Truth for the bulk of the match. Andrade went for a spinning elbow and the story was that they bumped heads, which led to Truth falling onto Andrade and pinning him.
R-Truth eliminated Andrade in 5:10.
Erick Rowan was the next entrant. Whatever is in the pet cage cleared customs (or something). Truth had an early flurry of offense that included a dive over the top rope onto Rowan at ringside. Rowan came back and ran Truth into the ring steps, which knocked over the pet cage. Rowan picked up the cage and then slammed Truth’s head into the ring steps. Rowan picked up a piece of the ring steps and ran them into Truth for the DQ. Rowan roughed up Truth afterward.
R-Truth eliminated Erick Rowan by DQ in 2:30.
The fifth entrant was AJ Styles, who received a pop from the crowd and some pyro. There was a loud AJ Styles chant. Styles toyed with Truth and mocked his dancing to start. Styles applied a Calf Crusher and won the fall via submission
AJ Styles eliminated R-Truth in 2:40.
Rey Mysterio’s entrance music played. The broadcast team wondered why Styles was smiling. Mysterio didn’t come out. His music played again. Styles continued to smile and there was no sign of Mysterio. They cut backstage where Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson were putting the boots to Mysterio. A small “Undertaker” chant broke out.
Styles took the mic and said it didn’t look like “Little Rey” would be getting up. Styles named himself the winner of the gauntlet match via forfeit and told the referee to raise his hand. The referee did not comply.
The referee spoke with Mike Rome, who announced that Mysterio had until the count of ten to make it to the ring or Styles would be declared the winner. Gallows was shown lying on the ground backstage. Anderson flew into the picture. The legs of Undertaker were shown walking past them. Styles blew a gasket in the ring.
The gong sounded and Undertaker made his entrance. Styles got in Taker’s face and jabbed him in the chest with his finger. Taker grabbed Styles and chokeslammed him. Taker, who still had his hat on, folded Styles hands over his chest and pinned him.
Undertaker beat AJ Styles to win the Tuwaiq Trophy gauntlet match.
After the match, Taker walked to ringside and looked at the trophy…
Powell’s POV: And I thought Shane McMahon was undeserving when he won the Best in the World trophy. Is Taker going to turn heel and repeatedly boast that he’s the Tuwaiq Trophy winner? Okay, probably not. This was ridiculous, but the live crowd was thrilled to see Taker, and his entrance was pretty damn impressive looking. There’s been a lot of talk about Taker vs. Styles at WrestleMania. Taker is mostly about the entrance and the in-ring greatest hits at this point, so I guess they can go back to it if they really want to.
Big E and Kofi Kingston cut a brief backstage promo about their tag title match… A brief ad aired for WWE Elimination Chamber, which will be held a week from Sunday…
2. Big E and Kofi Kingston vs. The Miz and John Morrison for the Smackdown Tag Titles. Even Miz and Morrison received the fireworks treatment. At 8:30, Big E hoisted up Morrison and then Kingston did a double stomp that drove Morrison to the mat. Big E covered him for a two count. Miz checked in moments later and DDT’d Big E for a near fall. Morrison tagged in and did his own double stomp into a Miz neckbreaker on Big E. Morrison went for Starship Pain, but Big E rolled out of the way.
Big E tagged in and hit the Big Ending on Morrison, but Miz broke up the pin. Kingston sent Miz to ringside and then performed a trust fall dive over the top rope. Miz moved and Kingston crashed onto the floor. Damn. Why? Miz returned to the ring and hit the Skull Crushing Finale on Big E for a near fall. Kingston checked in and avoided a Skull Crushing Finale and rolled Miz into a pin for a two count. Kingston got another two count, then Morrison hit Kingston with a chair from the floor, which allowed Miz to roll up Kingston and pin him…
The Miz and John Morrison defeated Big E and Kofi Kingston in 13:15 to win the Smackdown Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: There was some good action down the stretch. The Kingston trust fall crash and burn was ridiculous. WWE spent some time on Smackdown teasing another New Day vs. Usos match. Are they working toward a Triple Threat for the tag titles at WrestleMania or was that simply a swerve to make viewers think New Day would retain the tag titles in this match?
Byron Saxton checked in from backstage where he interviewed Raw Tag Team Champions Seth Rollins and Murphy. Rollins said he respects The Street Profits as athletes, but their moral compass is off kilter. Rollins said he didn’t need a plan for the match because it’s a matter of destiny that he and Murphy leave with the tag titles and the threat of the Street Profits will be eradicated along the way…
3. Angel Garza vs. Humberto Carrillo. Zelina Vega didn’t come out with Carrillo either, so she must not have made the trip. The broadcast team hyped Carrillo and Mysterio vs. Garza and Andrade for Monday’s Raw. Carrillo ran up the ropes and performed a dive into a headbutt on a standing Garza during the opening minute. Carrillo followed up with a suicide dive a short time later. Back inside the ring, Carrillo covered Garza, who kicked out at one.
Later, Carrillo caught a seated Garza with a kick to the head. Carrillo went to the top rope and tried for a moonsault. Garza put his feet up, but Carrillo went over them and landed on his feet. Carrillo went for a couple pins, but Garza ended up stuffing a sunset flip attempt and sitting on top of Carrillo while the referee made the three count…
Angel Garza beat Humberto Carrillo in 9:05.
Powell’s POV: Another win for Garza over Carrillo. This doesn’t feel like much a rivalry at this point because Garza keeps winning. The tough part is that Carrillo isn’t a strong promo, so it’s hard get over his frustration if the plan is to build to him finally beating his cousin. I didn’t expect to see Zelina Vega on this show, but how crazy is it that they apparently flew Lana all the way to Saudi Arabia to make a ten-second appearance on the stage?
Bayley was interviewed by Byron Saxton on the backstage interview set about her match against Naomi…
An ad aired for John Cena returning to Smackdown. Cole and Graves hyped Cena’s return and read a tweet from Cena…
4. Seth Rollins and Murphy vs. “The Street Profits” Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins for the Raw Tag Titles. The Street Profits also received fireworks as part of their entrance. Rollins and Murphy teamed for a nice Buckle Bomb into a kick on Ford. Murphy had the pin, but Dawkins ran in and broke it up. Dawkins took a hot tag and threw a couple of dropkicks while working over both opponents.
Later, Ford put Rollins down with a kick and then went up top and performed a frogsplash. Ford had the pin, but Murphy pulled him off from ringside. Dawkins sent Murphy flying over a broadcast table. In the ring, Dawkins hoisted up Rollins for a double team move, but Rollins slipped away. Murphy returned to his corner and took a tag. Ford leapt from the top rope into a kick from Rollins.
The tag champs set up for a double Pedigree, but the challengers countered into simultaneous DDTs. Ford went for a flip dive, but Rollins and Murphy caught him and threw him into the barricade. Dawkins took out Rollins and Murphy with a double clothesline from the apron. Dawkins rolled Murphy back inside the ring. Rollins held up Dawkins briefly, allowing Murphy to catch Dawkins with a kick. With Dawkins lying over the ropes, the referee didn’t let Murphy go after him. While the referee was caught up with that, Rollins performed a Stomp on Dawkins. Murphy covered Dawkins and scored the pin…
Seth Rollins and Murphy beat The Street Profits in 10:40 to retain the Raw Tag Titles.
Powell’s POV: The finish was a bit clunky. While I’m all for the referees enforcing the rules, it’s so rare that you see them actually stop a wrestler from going after someone in the ropes (619?), so it felt a bit contrived. It didn’t help that Dawkins seemed to be bracing himself for the Stomp. The action was solid otherwise. The crowd wasn’t as vocal for this match, but they came through with a late “this is awesome” chant.
A WrestleMania ad aired. We are 38 days away… The broadcast team recapped the Kickoff Show match…
5. Mansoor vs. Dolph Ziggler. Saxton said that Ziggler ruining Otis’s date with Mandy Rose was despicable (even though he basically sat down at the table when Otis was late?). Robert Roode came out with Ziggler. Roode shoved Mansoor and told him to show respect to Ziggler. Mansoor shoved Roode back and ended up dropkicking him. The referee ejected Roode before the opening bell.
Ziggler targeted Mansoor’s left shoulder and worked at a slow pace early on. Mansoor eventually rallied with a leap over the top rope into a neckbreaker, which led to a two count. Ziggler came back with a Zigzag for a near fall. A short time later, Mansoor ran up the ropes and performed a DDT on the way down. Mansoor followed up with a moonsault and scored the pin.
Mansoor defeated Dolph Ziggler in 9:20.
After the match, Mansoor thanked the live crowd and told the fans that they picked him up and gave him hope. He said the fans showed him last year that Saudi Arabia was ready for its first WWE Superstar, and tonight they showed that “we are here to stay.” Mansoor spoke to the crowd in Arabic. Graves said Mansoor has had some luck in his hometown, but he wants to see what he can do when he competes around the world…
Powell’s POV: This wasn’t as fun as Mansoor’s match with Cesaro. The live crowd enjoyed it, but it also seems like they are on to the formula, as they weren’t as hot for this as they were Mansoor’s past wins. The moonsault was rough in that Ziggler was in the middle of the ring and Mansoor’s legs crushed him.
An ad aired for the Ruthless Aggression series on WWE Network (which is great if you enjoy laughing at how WWE tries to change history)… The hosts spoke briefly about WWE Elimination Chamber and hyped the chamber match for a shot at the Raw Women’s Championship… A video package set up the WWE Championship match…
6. Brock Lesnar (w/Paul Heyman) vs. Ricochet for the WWE Championship. Ricochet had a small firework display and a lot of cool laser lights on the stage during his entrance. Mike Rome delivered in-ring introductions until Heyman took the mic and delivered his own introductions for himself and Lesnar. Heyman reminded the crowd that the winner would go on to defend the title against Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania. Heyman delivered another spoiler while introducing Lesnar as the winner as part of his pre-match introduction.
Ricochet, who wore trunks rather than long tights, went for a dropkick and was swatted away by Lesnar. Ricochet took two German suplexes. Graves said it might be as good as over for Ricochet, then Lesnar performed a third German suplex. Lesnar grabbed Ricochet by the neck and pulled him up from the mat and hit him with an F5 and pinned him…
Brock Lesnar beat Ricochet in 1:30 to retain the WWE Championship.
Powell’s POV: We’ll never know what would have happened if Ricochet had worn tights rather than trunks. Anyway, this was disappoint. There was zero reason to think that Ricochet would win, but it would have been nice to see him get a little offense. What a waste of time.
A video package set up the cage match…
7. Roman Reigns vs. King Corbin in a cage match. Reigns locked the cage door. As he was putting the key in his pocket, Corbin took a cheap shot at him before the bell. The referee separated them, checked on Reigns, and called for the bell to start the match. Corbin went on the offensive to start based on the pre-match attack.
Corbin ended up with the key to the padlock and was able to remove the lock and chain, but Reigns stopped him before he could leave through the door. Corbin hit Reigns and told the ringside referee to open the door. Corbin crawled toward the door. Reigns stopped him again and ended up pulling the cage door into the face of Corbin. Reigns went for a Superman Punch, which Corbin stuffed and followed with a chokeslam for a two count.
Corbin wrapped the chain from the door around his fist and mocked the way Reigns punches the mat. When Corbin tried to use the chair, Reigns caught him with a Superman Punch. Roughly five people in the crowd chanted “this is awesome” for a few seconds. Later, Reigns wrapped the chain around his fist and hit a Superman Punch. Reigns covered Corbin and scored the pin.
Roman Reigns beat King Corbin in 12:50 in a cage match.
Reigns went to ringside and celebrated with fans. He made the hang loose hand gesture as fireworks shot off, then went back to visiting with kids at ringside for a moment and then headed to the back…
Powell’s POV: Aside from those five fans who apparently thought this was awesome, the crowd reaction suggests that the Reigns and Corbin feud is boring fans to fans worldwide.
An ad aired for a WWE 24 piece on R-Truth that will air after the event on WWE Network. Cole said he saw the documentary and praised it. Saxton said it’s one of the most motivating stories in all of WWE. They recapped Undertaker winning the Tuwaiq Trophy…
8. Bayley vs. Naomi for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. Both women wore t-shirts over gear that covered their entire bodies. Mike Rome delivered in-ring introductions for the title match. Bayley worked as a heel and jawed at someone in the crowd right after the bell rang. At 4:20, Bayley ran Naomi into the barricade, then brought her back inside the ring and covered her for a two count.
Later, Naomi pulled Bayley into her feet. Seconds later, Bayley hit her Bayley to Belly finisher for a two count. Bayley kicked the back of Naomi’s left thigh repeatedly. Bayley caught Naomi with a running knee in the corner. Bayley went up top, but Naomi caught her with a kick to knock her down. Naomi went for a split legged moonsault, but Bayley rolled out of the way. Bayley tied up Naomi’s feet in the back of her own shirt, then slammed her face first into the mat and pinned her…
Bayley defeated Naomi in 11:30 to retain the Smackdown Women’s Championship.
Powell’s POV: Graves claimed the finish was an old schoolyard bully trick. Did all the nerds at Corey’s school wear oversized t-shirts? The best thing I can say about this match is that it was good to see Bayley remain true to her character after the strange love fest match between Natalya and Lacey Evans when they worked in Saudi Arabia.
An Elimination Chamber ad aired… The broadcast team hyped Elimination Chamber, John Cena’s return on Smackdown, and Beth Phoenix appearing on Monday’s Raw to provide an update on Edge… A video package set up the WWE Universal Championship match…
9. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt vs. Goldberg for the WWE Universal Championship. Goldberg made his usual walk through the back with security entrance and had a fairly tame entrance as far as pyro and fireworks are concerned. The Fiend received a cool red laser entrance. Rome delivered in-ring introductions for the title match.
Goldberg and The Fiend glared at one another. Goldberg ended up spearing The Fiend and getting a two count. The Fiend applied the Mandible Claw. Goldberg escaped and then speared The Fiend again. Goldberg speared The Fiend a third time. Once The Fiend got up, Goldberg speared him a fourth time and covered him for a two count.
The Fiend applied the Mandible Claw again. Goldberg got to his feet and broke it with knees to the gut and a headbutt. Goldberg hoisted up The Fiend for a clunky Jackhammer and scored the pin…
Goldberg defeated “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt in 3:00 to win the WWE Universal Championship.
After the match, Goldberg celebrated on the middle rope with the championship. The Fiend got back on his feet and glared at Goldberg. The lights went out and when they came back on The Fiend was gone (a kid comically pointed under the ring to tell Goldberg where The Fiend went).
Cole wondered if Goldberg would show up in Boston with his championship. Graves said he would hope so. “This isn’t a part-time job,” Graves said. Um… Fireworks shot off around the venue while Goldberg stood on the middle rope and continued his post match celebration to close the show…
Powell’s POV: The Jackhammer didn’t look as bad on replay as I thought it did live. Goldberg going over means he will likely face the winner of the Elimination Chamber match. The favorite is always Roman Reigns, but I guess we can include John Cena as a longer shot, and Daniel Bryan as a dark horse. Overall, the show was newsworthy with a couple of title changes, but it was still not a hot show by any means. I will have more to say in my post show audio review coming up later for Dot Net Members. Let me know what you thought of the show by assigning it a letter grade in our post show poll available on the main page.