By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)
WWE Friday Night Smackdown (Episode 1,210)
Live from St. Louis, Missouri at Enterprise Center
Aired October 28, 2022 on FS1
[Hour One] Michael Cole and Wade Barrett were on commentary, and Samantha Irvin was the ring announcer… Ridge Holland and Butch made their entrance while the broadcast team recapped the Sheamus injury angle (congratulations on the nuptials!).
Backstage, Sami Zayn and Solo Sikoa prepared to make their entrance while Jimmy Uso and Jey Uso stood by. Sami noted that Roman Reigns had not arrived. He asked Jey to bring positive energy and said he wanted their hands being raised in the air to be the first thing that Reigns saw once he arrived. All four men made their entrance…
1. Ridge Holland and Butch vs. Sami Zayn and Solo Sikoa (w/Jimmy Uso, Jey Uso). Holland and Butch hit Zayn with a double team version of Ten Beats in tribute to Sheamus. Moments later, Jimmy took a cheap shot at Butch while the referee was caught up with Sikoa.
Butch came back and ended up sending Zayn to ringside and then hitting him with a flying knee off the apron. Butch stood up and jawed at the Usos. Sikoa hit Butch from behind and then slammed him onto the ring apron heading into a commercial break. [C]
Holland worked over Zayn until Sikoa made a blind tag. Sikoa superkicked Holland and then put him down with a Samoan Drop that led to a two count. Holland rallied and put Sikoa down with a headbutt, and then both men tagged out. Butch set up for a cloverleaf, but he was distracted by Jimmy on the apron. Butch knocked Jimmy off the apron and then Zayn rolled up Butch for a two count.
Butch ended up going up top after putting Zayn down. Jey pulled Zayn to ringside. Sami complained that he had his opponent where he wanted him. Sikoa got between the two men and tried to make peace. Holland ran over and shoulder blocked Sikoa and Uso. Zayn returned to the ring where Butch caught him in an inside cradle and pinned him.
Ridge Holland and Butch beat Sami Zayn and Solo Sikoa in 11:50.
After the match, Jey barked at Sami. Sikoa got between them again. Jey told Sikoa to get his hands off him. Jimmy spun his brother Jey around. They were quickly interrupted.
Roman Reigns’ entrance music played and he headed to the ring along with Paul Heyman. Cole said there would be a very uncomfortable conversation between the family… [C]
Powell’s POV: An entertaining match that was capped off with a mild upset win for Butch and Holland. Of course, Zayn and Sikoa taking the loss sets up drama heading into Roman’s appearance. Reigns making his entrance after the other Bloodline members were arguing was a really nice hook going into a commercial break.
The Bloodline stood in the ring while Cole hyped Reigns defending the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship against Logan Paul at WWE Crown Jewel. Reigns held his hand out and Heyman immediately passed him a microphone. Reigns told the St. Louis crowd to acknowledge him.
Reigns said it was time to acknowledge the elephant in the room. Reigns said “you two” want to act like kids, then they would be treated like kids. Reigns said he wanted them to lay it all on the table because he wanted the problem fixed immediately.
Zayn said there had been a communication breakdown lately and he felt it was specifically with Jey. Zayn said he’s always like Jey and they always got along until he started hanging out with The Bloodline. Zayn said he doesn’t know what he did to offend Jey, but he’s sorry and doesn’t want it to keep going on. Zayn asked Jey if they could bury the hatchet once and for all.
Zayn put his hand out for a handshake and pleaded with Jey to shake his hand. After a long delay, Jey told Zayn he had two seconds to get his hand out of his face. Jey said he doesn’t like Zayn, his hair, his face, or his t-shirt. Jey asked how Zayn could be in The Bloodline when he’s not blood.
Jey said Zayn doesn’t belong and no one else in the group likes him either, but he’s the only one who will say it out loud. Jey called Zayn a “fake-ass Uce.” Zayn said he was trying to make peace, just as Reigns wanted. “I don’t give a damn what the Tribal Chief say,” Jey said.
Reigns snapped his head to the side and then slowly turned and faced Jey. A brief “You f—ed up” chant broke out. Zayn told Reigns that what Jey said was “super messed up” but he didn’t mean it. Zayn said Jey went through a lot and hadn’t been himself. Zayn said Jey just hasn’t been very Ucey, which triggered an Ucey chant. Reigns and Jey broke lost it laughing.
Reigns asked if the problem really was that Jey wasn’t feeling Ucey. Reigns put his arm around Jey, who had to cover his smile again. Reigns said that if Jey can’t find his “inner Ucey” again, then he’d do something that Jey wouldn’t like. Reigns threatened to take away the “Honorary” part of Zayn’s name and dub him Sami Uso. The fans chanted “Sami Uso.”
Heyman said the Tribal Chief had called an end to the segment. Heyman encouraged fans to catch the Tribal Chief in action at Crown Jewel and then plugged his match against Logan Paul. The fans booed the mention of Logan Paul’s name. “And now a kind word from our sponsors,” Heyman said before counting down to a commercial break.
A Bray Wyatt video teaser aired and listed him as addressing his demons during the show… [C]
Powell’s POV: I haven’t seen that much giggling during a skit since Jimmy Fallon left Saturday Night Live. I can’t blame the Bloodline members. The Ucey talk was hilarious.
The latest Viking Raiders vignette aired. One of them drank liquid from a horn and then poured it onto a fire, which made the flames go higher…
Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods made their entrance while the Maximum Male Models were already inside the ring. A pre-tape aired with Kingston and Woods mocking the Models and then talking about facing the Usos, who are moving closer to their record for longest WWE tag team title reign…
2. Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods vs. Mace and Mansoor (w/Maxxine Dupri). Cole mentioned that Woods would appear on Sunday’s Celebrity Family Feud. Woods held up Mace in suplex position and then Kingston performed a crossbody block that led to a two count.
The Models got the better of Woods briefly. Kingston took a hot tag and worked over both models. Kingston performed a Boom Drop on Mansoor. Mace distracted Kingston and was quickly taken out by Woods. Kingston shoved Mansoor off the ropes and then splashed onto his back. Kingston tagged in Woods and they hit the Midnight Hour on Mansoor, which led to Woods scoring the pin…
Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods beat Mace and Mansoor in 3:45.
Powell’s POV: No televised entrance and a clean loss. Things are not looking good for the Models, who were one of Vince McMahon’s final pet projects. That said, it’s perfectly logical to build up Kingston and Woos as they approach the match where they will try to prevent The Usos from breaking their record.
Sonya Deville was interviewed by Kayla Braxton on the backstage ring set. Deville said Liv Morgan took a loss and is now completely broken. Morgan entered the picture and attacked Deville. Adam Pearce and referees entered the scene and struggled to pull apart Deville and Morgan… [C]
A video aired with Braun Strowman talking about his Crown Jewel match against Omos. He said there’s a saying that there’s always someone bigger and stronger than you are. He said Omos is bigger than him, but he questioned whether Omos is stronger. Footage aired of Strowman pushing over vehicles. Strowman said Omos would find out that there’s no giant too big for the Monster of All Monsters…
Smackdown Women’s Champion Ronda Rousey made her entrance. Once in the ring, Rousey said the belt was back where it belongs. She said she was in the mood for an open challenge. She said she didn’t expect the fans to recognize how special it was to have a champion who would defend the belt in such a manner. Rousey said it’s because only the greats recognize greatness. “Let’s get the formality out of the way,” Rousey said. She asked who was feeling lucky.
Emma (Tenille Dashwood) made her entrance wearing shades. She took them off and smiled and then pounded on her chest while playing to the crowd. Cole said Emma was one of the most popular wrestlers in NXT. Barrett said it’s cool and we haven’t seen her in years. Cole asked if Emma could shock the world…
An ad for Raw touted it as the Halloween edition and listed Brock Lesnar, Matt Riddle vs. Otis in a Trick or Street Fight, and an appearance by Roman Reigns… [C] St. Louis imagery was shown…
3. Ronda Rousey vs. Emma for the Smackdown Women’s Championship. Cole said Saturday will mark five years since Emma was released by WWE. Cole also played up Emma’s Australian heritage. Rousey caught Emma with a kick that sent her to ringside. Rousey followed and ran Emma into the ring steps. Rousey went for a running knee strike, but Emma moved and Rousey’s leg hit the steps.
[Hour Two] Back inside the ring, Emma put Rousey in the Tarantula and released the hold before the referee’s five count. Emma went up top and hit a crossbody block for a near fall. Rousey regained offensive control and then toyed with Emma.
Emma hesitated while running the ropes at one point and then performed a head-scissors takedown. Rousey caught Emma in an ankle lock. Emma teased tapping out and then rolled out of the hold. Emma ducked a high kick and then suplexed Rousey. Emma played to the crowd before performing her Emmamite Sandwich splash in the corner.
Rousey stuffed a suplex attempt and hoisted up Emma, who slipped away. Rousey shoved Emma toward the ropes. The referee had to turn to avoid Emma. Rousey took advantage of the distraction by raking the eyes of Emma, then put her down with Piper’s Pit. Rousey locked in an armbar and got the submission win…
Ronda Rousey defeated Emma in 6:50 to retain the Smackdown Women’s Championship.
Powell’s POV: No bubbles? Emma is an interesting rehire. She was at her best in NXT and then never got a sustained push on the main roster before she was released. She worked for Impact Wrestling and struggled to click as a personality, but she did get better as a heel late in her Impact run. While the match was clunky, it was laid out in a way that made Emma look like she put up a good fight before Rousey resorted to heel tactics to win.
The broadcast team announced Bianca Belair vs. Bayley in a Last Woman Standing match for the Raw Women’s Championship, and The Usos vs. Ridge Holland and Butch for the Undisputed WWE Tag Team Championship for the WWE Crown Jewel event…
Paul Heyman blocked Jey Uso from entering Roman Reigns’ dressing room. Jey said he wanted to speak to Reigns about what happened when Logan Paul knocked him out. Heyman said sometimes it’s better if Reigns hears it from his wise man. Jey asked if Heyman had him. Heyman said always and then shook hands with Jey and hugged him. Heyman let out a big sigh and looked stressed after Jey walked away…
Legado Del Fantasma made their entrance for a six-man tag match. Cole questioned who would team with Hit Row… [C]
Ronda Rousey was walking backstage when Shayna Baszler showed up and hugged her. Natalya approached Rousey and told her she was lucky that she didn’t accept her open challenge. Baszler hit Natalya and then choked her out. Rousey and Baszler walked away together. On commentary, Barrett labeled it completely unnecessary and said it was an appalling attack…
A sponsored ad recapped Legado Del Fantasma attacking Hit Row… Hit Row made their entrance. B-Fab said they have friends in high places. Shinsuke Nakamura’s entrance music played and he made his entrance as their mystery partner.
Nakamura and Hit Row charged the ring and brawled with LDF before the opening bell. Nakamura and Hit Row got the better of LDF and only Escobar was left in the ring. Vega ran in to check on him. B-Fab took out Vega with a kick. Nakamura and Hit Row all did Nakamura’s “come on” bit together while staring down Escobar… [C]
4. “Legado Del Fantasma” Santos Excobar, Cruz Del Toro, and Joaquin Wilde (w/Zelina Vega) vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and “Hit Row” Top Dolla and Ashante Thee Adonis (w/B-Fab). The match was joined in progress. Top Dolla did his spot where he hoisted up one opponent on his shoulders and then caught another before slamming them both to the mat. Escobar ran in and took a shot at Top Dolla.
Top Dolla no-sold a chop from Escobar, then held his arm while he ran up the ropes and delivered a chop to Escobar’s head. Escobar tagged in Del Toro, who dumped to the mat by Top Dolla. Nakamura tagged in and took out Del Toro with a Kinshasa and pinned him to win the match…
Shinsuke Nakamura and “Hit Row” Top Dolla and Ashante Thee Adonis beat “Legado Del Fantasma” Santos Excobar, Cruz Del Toro, and Joaquin Wilde.
Backstage, Paul Heyman asked Roman Reigns to watch one piece of footage. A Logan Paul boxing sparring session was shown on the television inside Reigns’ dressing room. Reigns asked why they were watching it. Heyman said it just takes one lucky punch. Reigns said Paul wouldn’t get a lucky punch. Heyman said he knows a doctor who knows a doctor who knows Logan Paul’s doctor.
Heyman said he was told that Paul once broke his hand and now has steel pins inserted in his knockout hand punch. Reigns said Paul has had two matches. Heyman said Brock Lesnar won the UFC Title in his third match. Heyman said that doesn’t mean Paul is Lesnar or that Lesnar is Reigns. Heyman said he thought this would be a good time to make his exit and then left the room…
Powell’s POV: The six-man tag match was fine, but it looks like we’re getting some parity booking in the Hit Row vs. LDF feud, which rarely benefits either side. They continue to push the Reigns vs. Paul match in the best way possible by playing up the possibility of Paul landing one lucky shot. I’m surprised they haven’t done more to reach outside the wrestling bubble to promote that match.
LA Knight was interviewed by Kayla Braxton on the backstage ring set. Ricochet showed up and called him “LaLa Knight.” He said Knight might get a better reception if he didn’t act like he was God’s gift to Smackdown. He said that when someone’s head gets as big as Knight’s has, someone is likely to knock it around. Knight said Ricochet was right – he is God’s gift to Smackdown…
Karrion Kross and Scarlett made their entrance followed by Madcap Moss…
5. Karrion Kross (w/Scarlett) vs. Madcap Moss. Cole noted that Crown Jewel will start at 11CT/NoonET a week from Saturday. Kross took offensive control early. Moss came back with a shoulder block and then threw a weak looking clothesline that sent Kross over the top rope to ringside. [C]
Moss had a late burst of offense that included a fallaway slam. Moss followed up with a couple of running shoulder blocks. Scarlett climbed onto the apron and distracted Moss, who was then booted by Kross. Moments later, Kross blasted Moss with a shot to the back of the head and then pinned him.
Karrion Kross defeated Madcap Moss in 9:35.
After the match, Kross put Moss in his Kross Jacket submission hold while holding a mic in his hand. Kross said Moss put up a better fight than McIntyre. Kross said Moss isn’t a coward or a hypocrite like McIntyre. Kross said McIntyre stands for nothing but his own ambition. Kross said history would repeat itself during their cage match. Referees struggled to pry the arms of Kross off of Moss. Scarlett leaned down by Kross, who then released the hold…
Powell’s POV: I thought this would be more of a spotlight match from Kross than a competitive match. Moss isn’t going anywhere until they give up on that awful Madcap name, so they might as well have made this more of a lopsided win for Kross than it was.
Bray Wyatt was shown pacing backstage and a television showed images of the masked character… [C] An ad aired for Braun Strowman vs. Omos at WWE Crown Jewel… The broadcast team ran through the Crown Jewel lineup…
Kayla Braxton stood on the backstage ring set and interviewed Rey Mysterio, who will challenge Gunther for the Intercontinental Championship on next week’s Smackdown. Rey spoke briefly about being thankful to be back on Smackdown when he was struck by a chair. Giovanni Vinci and Ludwig Kaiser grabbed Rey and held him. Gunther tore Rey’s shirt and chopped him…
The broadcast team announced the following matches for next week’s Smackdown: Liv Morgan vs. Sonya Deville in a No DQ match, and Gunther vs. Rey Mysterio for the Intercontinental Championship…
Bray Wyatt made his entrance through his doorway on the stage. He carried his lantern to the ring. Wyatt told the crowd that it’s pretty new to him, but he can get used to it. He asked if they could feel it and he mentioned adrenaline. Wyatt said he wanted the fans to see something he’s very proud of.
Wyatt said he wasn’t hiding behind a mask and there was no smoke and mirrors. “It’s just me and you,” Wyatt said. He said it’s Bray Wyatt, the real man. He said it’s the best version of him that there will ever be. He said he was proud to be here and he will do spectacular things.
Wyatt said he’s been out of control for the majority of his life. He said emotions can send him to a very dark place and then there are times when he doesn’t feel anything no matter how hard he tries. Wyatt said he’s had to do some horrible things to get to where he is, and there’s part of him that likes that he’s not afraid to do horrible things.
Wyatt said there will come a time when he’s faced with adversity and he’ll be asked to do something completely horrible. The masked image appeared on the screen. The man took off the mask and had another mask on. The man said a bunch of things, including that you killed the world. The masked man recalled Wyatt saying he didn’t wear a mask. He said that’s not true and Wyatt would never be able to hide from him. “Your Uncle Howdy,” the man closed while giving himself a name…
Powell’s POV: The Wyatt entrance is great. It was more of the same from him in terms of him coming off like a babyface. We got a little more from the masked figure, including the Uncle Howdy name that’s been floating around. I continue to enjoy the slow build to whatever this is leading to. I am covering AEW Rampage momentarily, so I will be back later tonight with my audio review of that show and Smackdown for Dot Net Members (including our Patreon patrons).