4/8 WWE Friday Night Smackdown results: Powell’s review of the WrestleMania 38 fallout edition with Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Happy Corbin hosts Happy Talk

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

WWE Friday Night Smackdown (Episode 1,181)
Live from Milwaukee, Wisconsin at Fiserv Forum
Aired April 8, 2022 on Fox

[Hour One] Smackdown opened with a WrestleMania 38 recap video package… Michael Cole and Pat McAfee were on commentary…

Kayla Braxton stood in the ring and introduced Ronda Rousey, who came out in regular clothes and smiled while slapping hands on her way to the ring. Footage was shown of Charlotte Flair tapping out out during their match while the referee was down.

Rousey said she wouldn’t make excuses. She said that to be the best in the world, you have to be able to beat anyone twice on your worst day because the referee’s not always going to count it the first time. She said she made Flair tap but not when it counted and that’s on her.

Braxton asked Rousey what’s next for her. “I want a rematch,” Rousey immediately declared. Rousey challenged Flair to face her in an “I Quit” match for the WrestleMania Backlash show (May 8 in Providence, Rhode Island).

Smackdown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair appeared on the big screen and laughed. She said quitting isn’t in her DNA, but winning is. Flair said she didn’t tap out, she walked out as the champion. Flair feels that Rousey’s baddest woman on the planet label is just a myth.

When it came to the challenge, Flair said no. “Get in the back of the line, bitch,” Flair said. Rousey said the match would happen and Flair would quit when she turns her elbow backwards. Rousey’s music played to close the segment…

Highlights aired of Sheamus and Ridge Holland beating Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston at WrestleMania, and Butch attacking Woods afterward. Butch vs. Woods was announced for later in the show…

Sheamus, Holland, and Butch were shown in the backstage area. Sheamus and Holland worked up Butch for his first Smackdown match and they both chanted “fight night” before they made their entrance heading into a commercial break… [C]

Powell’s POV: I like that Rousey’s character didn’t complain about the way she lost. I guess now we’ll have to see how they get to making the I Quit match official.

Cole hyped Sasha Banks vs. Liv Morgan for later in the show…

Xavier Woods and Kofi Kingston made their entrance and delivered a promo on their way to the ring. Kingston congratulated Sheamus and Holland on their win. Woods said he didn’t have a WrestleMania win. Kingston said that when he won, “we all won.” Woods said WrestleMania is essentially a season finale and that makes this show the season opener. He said all the records are reset. Kingston said that meant they are 0-0 against Sheamus, Holland, and Butch…

1. Butch (w/Sheamus, Ridge Holland) vs. Xavier Woods (w/Kofi Kingston). Butch took a series of moves that concluded with Woods dropkicking him while he was seated. Butch rolled to ringside and had a cut on the bridge of his nose. Woods followed to the floor and ended up being slammed onto the apron. [C]

Butch was in offensive control coming out of the break and McAfee pointed out the blood on his face from the cut. Woods came back with a kick to the face and connected with additional kicks. Woods went for a springboard move and leapt right into a punch from Butch. In the end, Woods avoided a kick and then caught Butch in an inside cradle for the win.

Xavier Woods pinned Butch in 8:35.

After the match, Sheamus and Holland tried to console Butch, who shoved them and threw slaps and punches at Holland. Cole called it a temper tantrum…

A graphic listed Sami Zayn with the question of “Hero or Jackass?”… [C]

Powell’s POV: The cut that Butch (f/k/a Pete Dunne) suffered wasn’t too bad. I don’t read too much into him losing the match, as they clearly wanted to do the temper tantrum spot. Of course, he could end up losing a lot if the creative forces like having him throw temper tantrums. Meanwhile, I’m happy that Xavier Woods returned and King Woods is no more.

More WrestleMania footage aired and then the broadcast team hyped Roman Reigns for later in the show. They also set up footage of the Jackass match between Sami Zayn and Johnny Knoxville from WrestleMania…

Backstage, Sami Zayn asked Adam Pearce how he let that happen to him at WrestleMania. Pearce reminded him that the Anything Goes match was his idea. Zayn complained about having to deal with Party Boy, Wee Man, and the giant hand.

Zayn said he wanted to get his respect back and would face the first person who walked through the locker room door that they were standing by. Drew McIntyre emerged from the locker room. “The person after that,” Zayn said. Pearce told him the match with McIntyre was official.

A crew member showed up and handed Pearce a piece of paper that had his name on it. Pearce asked the crew member to let Ronda Rousey know that he couldn’t meet with her…

Ring announcer Samantha Irvin introduced Ludwig Kaiser (f/k/a Marcel Barthel). Kaiser stood on the stage and introduced Gunther, who joined him on the stage. Cole labeled Gunther one of the most decorated international competitors of the last decade and said he would be in action next…

Powell’s POV: Ludwig and Gunther. I guess it could be worse. Poor Fabian Aichner appears to be out of Imperium after walking out on the tag team match on Tuesday’s NXT television show.

An ad for Monday’s Raw hyped Cody Rhodes vs. The Miz, MVP’s VIP Lounge with guest Omos, and Veer Mahaan vs. Rey Mysterio… [C]

2. Gunther (w/Ludwig Kaiser) vs. Joe Alonzo. Alonzo’s entrance was not televised. There were loud “Walter” chants at one point. Cole and McAfee both acted like they chanted Gunther.

Gunther defeated Joe Alonzo in 2:05.

Powell’s POV: I thought this was Alonzo’s night. Okay, so it was the dominant squash win for Gunther that it needed to be.

Raquel Gonzalez was introduced on the backstage ring set by Kayla Braxton. A graphic listed Gonzalez as Raquel Rodriguez. She spoke about how impressive the Smackdown women’s roster is. She said they haven’t seen anything like her. “Los Lotharios” Angel and Humberto showed up and wanted to welcome her with their kiss routine. She told them not a chance and they left. Rodriguez asked Braxton if Angel and Humberto are always that annoying…

Powell’s POV: Raw got Cody Rhodes, the return of Veer Mahaan, and the shocking debut of Ezekiel. Smackdown has gained Gunther, Ludwig, and Rodriguez so far tonight. I’m happy to see Gonzalez make the move to the main roster. There was nothing left for her to do. She seemed to be a babyface during this interview. I hope that’s not the case because I find her to be a better heel.

Happy Corbin and Madcap Moss made their entrance for the Happy Talk segment. Moss was still giddy about winning last week’s Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal, and Corbin was somber after losing to Drew McIntyre at WrestleMania… [C]

Cole hyped Roman Reigns appearing later in the show…

Corbin said it was supposed to be the happiest Happy Talk ever. There were balloons that were supposed to spell “Congrats” but a few of them were deflated. Corbin said he reflected while he was on his yacht and he was ready to admit that there was only one person to blame for his loss to McIntyre.

Corbin said the man to blame was Madcap Moss. Corbin recalled Moss distracting him during the match. Moss was apologetic. Corbin said Moss made WrestleMania weekend all about him winning The Dre trophy. A “Madcap Moss” chant broke out briefly.

Corbin said Moss is getting too big for his suspenders. Corbin asked Moss to tell him a joke. He told a terrible joke, which Corbin actually said was terrible. Rinse and repeat with another bad joke. Corbin said he brought Moss to Smackdown to tell him jokes that make him laugh, but lately all of his jokes have been terrible.

Corbin told Moss he was giving him one more chance to tell him a joke. Corbin said Moss’s job depended on it being funny. Moss asked what you call a guy who treats his friends like garbage, who thinks he’s better than everybody else, and who dresses like he’s going to a funeral for Tommy Bahama. “You call him Happy Corbin,” Moss said.

[Hour Two] Corbin asked if everyone thought it was funny. Corbin hit Moss from behind with the microphone. Moss fired back hit Corbin with a shoulder block in the corner and then tossed him over one of the chairs used for the talkshow set.

Corbin rolled to ringside and Moss followed. Moss ended up slamming Corbin’s head off the broadcast table several times before rolling him back in the ring and then clotheslined him over the top rope. Cole said Corbin was trying to blame everyone else for his failures and Moss finally had enough…

Powell’s POV: I sure hope this babyface turn comes with a name and wardrobe change for Moss.

Backstage, Jinder Mahal and Shanky spoke with Adam Pearce. Mahal wanted an Intercontinental Title match with Ricochet. Ronda Rousey showed up and glared at Mahal until he and Shanky left. Rousey asked Pearce if she’s getting her I Quit match with Charlotte Flair. Pearce said they should have her answer sometime tomorrow…

Drew McIntyre made his entrance for a match against Sami Zayn… [C] A graphic touted WWE’s social media count during WrestleMania weekend… Sami Zayn made his entrance…

3. Drew McIntyre vs. Sami Zayn. McIntyre dominated the match in the ring and at ringside. He brought Zayn back inside the ring and did the countdown for his Claymore Kick, but Zayn left the ring. Zayn hopped the barricade and ran up the steps into the crowd while the referee counted him out. McIntyre grabbed his sword and pointed it at Zayn…

Drew McIntyre beat Sami Zayn via count-out in 3:40.

A shot aired of Steve Austin and Pat McAfee drinking beers together at WrestleMania. Cole said they would revisit the full story after the break… [C]

Powell’s POV: While he could do both, I wonder if McIntyre being tied up with Zayn temporarily means he won’t be next in line for Roman Reigns. Either way, I’m looking forward to an eventual McIntyre vs. Gunther match.

Additional WrestleMania still shots were shown… Footage aired of McAfee vs. Austin Theory, Vince McMahon vs. McAfee, and Steve Austin kicking everyone’s ass afterward… McAfee said he was still sore and still hungover, but it was a dream come true…

Lacey Evans wore a black top and camouflage pants and stood in front of a rusted backdrop. She spoke about being born in a small town in Georgia. She said her father suffered from mental health issues and had problems with drugs and alcohol. She said her mom got caught in the middle of it while trying to be the best mom she could be.

Evans said she was taken away from everything she knew before she could even start elementary school. She recalled her mother putting everything they owned in black bags and then picking them up from school without her father knowing. She said they moved around from state to state and stayed in women’s shelters and campgrounds.

Evans said all the moving around made her realize that she could adapt and overcome or completely give up. Evans said she refused to give up. She said she may not have been blessed with some of the things that the other women in the locker room were.

Photos of Evans in her Marine uniform and then playing with her children were shown while said she said everything she went through made her the woman she is today. She said she is a motivated, ready for anything, caring mother, wife, sister, daughter, United States Marine, and WWE Superstar.

Evans said that doesn’t make her better than the other superstars, but they damn sure aren’t better than her. Cole said on commentary that her story would continue next week…

WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Sasha Banks and Naomi made their entrance… [C]

Powell’s POV: The Evans video was outstanding. I got a kick out of the Sassy Southern Belle act, but I always wondered why the company didn’t into her military background. She has an amazing story and I think she’s going to get over big as a babyface now that she’s being herself rather than portraying an over the top character.

A video package recapped the odd story that was Liv Morgan and Rhea Ripley losing a non-title match to Banks and Naomi only to be rewarded with a tag title match next week…

Liv Morgan was warming up backstage when Megan Morant asked her about being on Smackdown when she has a tag title shot on Monday. Morgan said she came to beat Banks to give her team momentum. Morant asked if Rhea Ripley was with her. Morgan said no, but added that Ripley would be there on Monday for their tag title match. Morgan made her entrance…

4. Sasha Banks vs. Liv Morgan. Naomi sat in on commentary. Cole pointed out that Banks and Naomi are the first Black women’s tag team champions in WWE. Naomi had him repeat it. Banks was in offensive control when they cut to a break just over a minute into the match. [C]

Shayna Baszler and Natalya were shown watching the match on a backstage monitor. Late in the match, Banks hit double knees in the corner. As Banks ran to the opposite corner, Morgan followed her and hit her with double knees. Banks came right back with a superplex, but Morgan used her leg to hook Banks into a pin for the upset win…

Liv Morgan defeated Sasha Banks.

Powell’s POV: I assume that Morgan winning without Ripley there is playing into their breakup storyline somehow. By the way, I missed that Raquel Gonzalez has been renamed Raquel Rodriguez. So she went from Raquel Diaz to Raquel Gonzalez to Raquel Rodriguez for those of you keeping score at home. I updated the recap of her segment to include the name change.

The broadcast team recapped the Rick Boogs injury during his Smackdown Tag Title match at WrestleMania. Cole said he had successful surgery and they showed an Instagram post from him…

Undisputed WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns, Paul Heyman, and Smackdown Tag Team Champions Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso made their entrance. Footage aired of Reigns beating Brock Lesnar in the WrestleMania Sunday main event… [C]

The broadcast team hyped a Drew McIntyre vs. Sami Zayn rematch, and Ricochet vs. Jinder Mahal for the Intercontinental Championship for next week’s Smackdown…

Heyman passed the mic to Reigns, who told Milwaukee to acknowledge him. Reigns said Smackdown just wasn’t enough, so he went to Raw and smashed Brock Lesnar to become the unified champion. Reigns said he has two titles, but his cousins only have one title each. Reigns said the Usos would unify the tag titles and The Bloodline would have all the gold soon.

Shinsuke Nakamura made his entrance and entered the ring. Reigns told Nakamura that he didn’t have to say anything because he knows how he feels. Reign said Nakamura lost his partner Rick Boogs and he gets that. He recalled Jimmy Uso being lost to an injury for over a year.

Reigns said the Island of Relevancy is a place of love now that they have all the gold. Reigns asked Nakamura to let him give him some Bloodline love. Reigns hugged Nakamura, who looked confused. Once the embrace ended, the Uso dropped Nakamura with a double superkick.

The Usos spoke off-mic about going to Detroit. Cole said the Usos have their marching orders and would be going to Raw in Detroit to go after the Raw Tag Titles held by Randy Orton and Riddle. The Bloodline held up their title belts to close the show…

Powell’s POV: It’s hard to see Nakamura as a threat to the championship at this point, so the creative forces have their work cut out for them. It will be interesting to see if they actually unify the tag titles. If so, then it’s possible that the world championship unification will lost longer than I expected it to. Will they do the same for the women’s titles?

Overall, this felt like the first Smackdown after WrestleMania a lot more than Monday’s Raw felt like the night after WrestleMania show. The debuts of Gunther, Kaiser, and Rodriguez, along with the return of Evans made this a newsworthy show. I will have a lot more to say in my same night audio review, which will be available for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons). Let me know what you thought of Smackdown by grading the show below.

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Readers Comments (10)

  1. Rodriguez?
    What the hell’s wrong with Gonzalez??

  2. TheGreatestOne April 8, 2022 @ 8:12 pm

    Gunther gets to look like a badass, Moss and Corbin get broken up, and Raquel Gonzalez gets away from Dakota Kai.

    The opening match was stupid, but the 3 main segments since them have been moves in the right direction.

  3. I could’ve sworn Kayla called her Rodriguez and not Gonzalez.Maybe she made a mistake?

  4. TheGreatestOne April 8, 2022 @ 8:26 pm

    Holy shit, are they actually going to correctly package Lacey Evans?

  5. TheGreatestOne April 8, 2022 @ 8:29 pm

    Just clicked back to the Raquel interview and Kayla definitely called her Rodriguez. Could be a main roster WWE trademark issue.

  6. And still no Bayley,Asuka,or Bliss for that matter..

  7. TheGreatestOne April 8, 2022 @ 9:57 pm

    Of those 3, Bliss is the weirdest. Her Lily doll was the highest selling single merch item for any active WWE wrestler in 2021, and second only to something with Austin’s name on it.

  8. Maybe Fabian Aichner has gotten off lightly. He could have been walking out as Klaus von German this week.

  9. For the record, Raquel started in the Mae Young Tourney as Reina Gonzalez. Raquel Diaz was Shaul Guerrero’s NXT name.

  10. For the next segment with Lacey Evans I hope they turn off the sound from the live crowd so we can better hear her. The background noise was an unnecessary distraction.

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