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WWE SmackDown Live results (April 18, 2017): Number one contender

WWE SmackDown Live comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (April 18, 2017) from the KFC Yum! Center in Louisville, Kentucky, featuring the blue brand bridging the gap until its turn on the pay-per-view (PPV) schedule.

Advertised for tonight: A match to determine the next number one contender to the WWE championship, and more!

Come right back here at 8 p.m. ET when the SmackDown live blog kicks off once the show starts on USA. It will be below this line here. (REMINDER: NO GIFS OR PICS ARE ALLOWED IN THE COMMENTS SECTION. OFFENDERS WILL BE BANNED.)


Hell has deceived you, you were so blind. Just like all mortals, you'll lose your mind. Hell has deceived you, you were so blind. Join Venom's legions, 'cause we're going wild, and me, I'm liveblogging this here pro wrestling show, folks.

Show opens with with an "In memory of..." graphic for Rosey before the usual "Then. Now. Forever." bumper and a recap of last week's episode of SmackDown.

Enter Charlotte Flair. She says seven days ago, the Queen arrived at SmackDown. Seven days and she's already lost her patience, what's taking so long? Did Daniel and Shane go on summer vacation early? She hopes they had fun, because they're gonna face the fury of a queen scorned.

How has she, Charlotte Flair, (Wooo!), the greatest superstar to set foot in the ring now been granted a SmackDown Women's Championship match yet? She's only going to ask one more time-- what is taking so long?

Enter Naomi. She doesn't know where Charlotte thinks she's at, but this is SmackDown, and around here we don't have kings and we sure as hell don't have queens, but we do have champions, and Flair's looking at one. Naomi knows what she's about and what she wants, she just hates to see her out here begging like this.

So let's not waste any more time, she'll give Charlotte what she wants, because she ain't scared. She sets the title down and clobbers Flair with a forearm! They brawl, Charlotte ends up out of the ring and referee Dan Engler comes down to hold her back! Scrabbling on the apron, Naomi gets a kick in!

Enter Shane McMahon. He asks Louisville if they want to see a fight and says we're gonna see a fight. But it's still SmackDown, and superstars have to earn title shots, despite their pedigrees and resumes. So if Charlotte can beat Naomi, she'll become #1 contender for a title match to be held next week.

He wishes both women luck and shuffles off back up the ramp.

Flair clobbers Naomi and throws mounted punches before chucking her out of the ring like a sack of potatoes! She holds the title up but Naomi comes back in and throws her out in return, standing tall with the title over her head.

Commentary hypes up our six-pack challenge #1 contender's match for the WWE Championship, it's after the break.

Back from commercial, Natalya is waiting for Shane in his office, complaining about Charlotte getting a title shot. She says she's the only woman on SmackDown who deserves to be a champion. McMahon says she had an opportunity at WrestleMania, Neidhart says that's not a real opportunity, and Shane says all she had to do was ask if she wanted a singles opportunity.

Carmella and James Ellsworth roll up, and Carmella reluctantly agrees with Nattie, saying it's not fair that Flair gets a shot at a shot. Jimmy says only Carmella deserves a shot and Natalya threatens to knock him out as they bicker. Tamina rolls up and asks where HER opportunity is, which leaves Ellsworth scoffing and them bickering again.

Nattie says this is all Charlotte's fault, but she has a plan and wants to discuss it in private, leading them off and leaving Shane to his business.

Dolph Ziggler vs. Erick Rowan vs. Jinder Mahal vs. Luke Harper vs. Mojo Rawley vs. Sami Zayn (WWE Championship #1 Contender's Match)

Jinder goes after Dolph after a moment of hesitation from all six men and they pair off. Rowan breaks off from Sami and throws Mahal off Ziggler so he can go to work. Jinder with shoulder thrusts in the corner for Rawley, he throws the hype man outside to brawl with him.

Luke flattens Dolph with a big boot for two but Erick blindsides him after. Harper to the apron, knocks Rowan down, slingshot senton, ducks a dive from Sami and plants him with a Michinoku Driver to send us to break.

Back from commercial and all six men are paired off on the top turnbuckles! Mojo superplexes Dolph, Harper on Rowan, but Sami mixes it up with a sunset flip powerbomb on Jinder! Zayn's fired up, thinking Blue Thunder Driver, Ziggler blocks, goes for the Zig Zag, blocked, superkick for Sami, Luke takes Dolph's head off with a lariat!

Thunder fire powerbomb from Rowan, he and Jinder clobber each other with simultaneous larats! Rawley runs Mahal over, gets low bridged by Sami but Harper dumps Zayn posthaste... LUKE HARPER SUICIDE DIVE! A SECOND! He heads back in the ring but Dolph catches him with a dropkick only to run into a reverse roundhouse from Erick for a nearfall.

ROWAN POWERBOMBS ZIGGLER TO THE OUTSIDE! He heads outside and brings Sami back in for a cover but it's not enough to do it so he dumps him back outside and we go back to break as Harper rolls back in.

Back from commercial and Dolph and Mojo are down on the mat. Ziggler to his feet first, he fires a headbutt off but Rawley blocks the neckbreaker and lays a few charging shoulder tackles and a lariat in. Stinger splash, a second gets cut off with a back elbow, Dolph tries a diving crossbody but he gets caught into a front fireman's carry slam!

Body blows in the corner on Dolph, Mojo connects with the charging right but Jinder knocks him out of the ring and pins Ziggler... SAMI SAVES IT AT THE LAST FRACTION OF A SECOND! Mahal knocks Zayn away with a knee, Rowan hits a Rock Bottom and Harper breaks it up. Erick throwing hands, setting his former brother up in the corner.

Dolph throws Rowan into Harper, Zig Zag... NO GOOD! Dolph throws a dropkick at Luke, looking for the Fameasser but Harper counters to the Brodie Bomb! Harper's fired up and feeling it, he's calling for the lariat but Jinder yanks him out of the ring and throws him into the steps.

Back in, he charges, Zayn passes him into the steel post, he's wobbly but alone in the ring. TOPE CON GIRO ON HARPER! Rowan keeps Sami from getting back in and Rawley pounces him... SAMI ZAYN ARABIAN PRESS ASAI MOONSAULT ON MOJO! Back in the ring, corner exploder on Jinder, he's calling for the Helluva Kick but the Bollywood Boyz have his feet...

Jinder Mahal wins by pinfall with the full nelson slam, becoming #1 contender to the WWE Championship.

Jinder is interviewed by Renee Young after the match. He berates the crowd for booing him, because he doesn't fit their stereotypes of an American, because of his family's wealth, his higher education, or because he speaks two languages. The fact is, he says, Americans don't accept diversity, but we'll have no choice but to accept Jinder Mahal as the next WWE Champion.

Enter Randy Orton. He guesses that congralutations are in order, Jinder has won the jackpot! Only his prize won't be the title. The only prize he's awarded himself is an RKO, and before he puts his hands on Mahal, he's got another thorn in his side, named Bray Wyatt. He doesn't know what a House of Horrors match is, but if it's anything like the last house, he'll burn it down all the same.

(Wyatt noise.)

Bray appears in a dark room and says he wants Orton to feel his pain as footage of Orton burning the barn down plays. He wants Randy to feel all of the agony he's had to endure at the Viper's hand. But still, none of these things will compare to the terror he'll feel in the House of Horrors, and he doesn't think Randy understands what he's getting into.

He may walk into the House of Horrors as the Viper, but he swears, he promises, he will never walk out. Never. Run!

Commentary reminds us that Charlotte/Naomi is later tonight, but first, an in-depth look at Shinsuke Nakamura after the break.

Back from commercial we get a New Day vignette and thence into the Nakamura video package.

AJ Styles is interviewed backstage as to who he'd prefer to wrestle out of Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho. He says it doesn't really matter, because he's got home field advantage here on SmackDown, the House That AJ Styles Built. Baron Corbin rolls up, apologizing for being late, seemingly under the impression that this is his interview.

Styles points out that he beat him last week but Corbin rebuts that he wasn't pinned and this is none of AJ's business. AJ says his business is winning and if he wants an encore he'd be happy to give him one tonight. Baron agrees and tells AJ to remember that he asked for this.

Charlotte is waking backstage when she runs into Carmella, Natalya, and Tamina. Nattie welcomes her to SmackDown and Jimmy Dream says they're humbled to be in the presence of such greatness. They let her through but Neidhart gives her the cold shoulder, and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Charlotte makes her entrance once more.

Charlotte Flair vs. Naomi

Charlotte hits the ropes and gives us a "Wooo!" to start, then into the collar and elbow, forcing Naomi in the corner. Rolling elbow, boots in the corner, referee Charles Robinson warning her off, then a huge biel that gets a one count. Snapmare to a reverse chinlock, a quick cover and back to the chinlock, then Naomi rolls through and turns it into a hammerlock

Flair to her feet, throws a slap, Naomi in with a double leg, flip over into a pin, Charlotte powers out, Naomi shifts to a backslide, still no good. Wristlock, Naomi wrenches the arm down, arm wringer, Flair escapes with a cartwheel and a leg sweep for a quick cover and then into the figure four necklock.

Rolling through a few times, Charlotte releases on the last and the champion seeks sanctuary in the corner. Boots and a choke, but Naomi gets a sunset flip for two. Mat slam in return and back to the reverse chinlock, Naomi out into a headscissors takeover and a leg drop so Flair chops her one.

Chops for leg kicks now, into the Speedball kicks and the final roundhouse finds home for a nearfall! Headscissors over the ropes to the outside and we head to break.

Back from commercial, Charlotte is laying repeated inverted facelock backbreakers in on Naomi and keeps her trapped in the Dragon sleeper after before swinging it down into an inverted leg drop bulldog! Back suplex connects for two, Flair follows with a trio of knee drops but still can't put the champion away.

Face slammed into the turnbuckle, another back suplex but Naomi lands on her feet, trying for a sunset flip but Charlotte drops a knee across the back of her neck! Off the ropes but Naomi dodges the knee this time and clobbers her with a back elbow. Boots up on the charge, jumping roundhouse kick, schoolboy pin and Naomi is laying forearms in now, over and over.

Kick to the gut and one to the head, headscissors takeover, a wheelbarrow stunner doesn't quite go off as planned but close enough! Pop over to the apron, a roundhouse catches Flair on the side of the head, diving crossbody... NOPE! Fireman's carry, thinking Benadryller but Charlotte catches the boot! Rear View blocked with a kick...

Charlotte Flair wins by pinfall with Natural Selection, becoming #1 contender to the WWE SmackDown Women's Championship.

Commentary hypes up Styles/Corbin and we toss to American Alpha walking backstage as we head to break.

Back from commercial and we have the hosts for Team Ninja Warrior in the front row.

Charlotte is moseying along backstage when she passes by Carmella, Natalya, Tamina, and Ellsworth again. She shrugs them off and lets a "Wooo!" out.

American Alpha (Chad Gable & Jason Jordan) vs. Epico & Primo Colon

Primo and Chad to start, Gable ducks a lariat and takes Colon down, riding him and throwing crossface strikes before tagging Jordan in. Diving axehandle to the arm, he pops Primo up and pins him for two, arm wringer, tag to Chad. Stepover knee drop armbreaker, northern lights suplex but Epico stops referee Jason Ayers from counting the pin. Gable eats post and Primo wrenches his arm over the middle rope to boot.

Epico in, fish hook, double underhook lift, delayed and dropped into a double knee gutbuster! A punch into a reverse chinlock, the Olympian gets to his feet and throws Colon off but gets laid back out by a lariat. He sets Gable up top but gets caught by the armbreaker in the ropes!

Jason tags in, big dropkick, overhead belly-to-belly suplex, charging shoulder block but Primo breaks up the pin. Chad clotheslines him out of the ring, Jordan with a sunset flip but Primo gets involved...

Epico & Primo Colon win by pinfall with a folding press from Epico on Chad Gable.

Commentary recaps the finish to the WWE Championship #1 contender's match from earlier.

Kevin Owens' Face of America Open Challenge is up next, but first Lana takes a break from her busy schedule of insulting people on Twitter to present us with another vignette to send us to break.

Back from commercial we get some hype for Talking Smack, which does not feature Daniel Bryan tonight.

Tye Dillinger is interviewed backstage about the fan response to him and he says it's great that their voice is heard. He has a bunch of theories, but there's something that could explain things ten times better than he could, and he tosses to video package of him being over in NXT and at the Royal Rumble.

And that, he says, is why they call him the Perfect Ten.

Kevin Owens makes his entrance for his Face of America Open Challenge. He shoos the ring announcer away and introduces himself and his opponent, Gary Gandy.

Gary Gandy vs. Kevin Owens

KO in with a boot and hammer blows, stomps in the corner, then to punches, drags him out, a big right, off the ropes...

Kevin Owens wins by pinfall with the pop-up powerbomb.

Kev gets back on the mic and tells all the lazy citizens of the United States to put the hot dogs down, shut up, and listen to him. As long as he's our United States Champion, he will remain the face of America. Chris Jericho won't take that away from him, AJ Styles won't take that away from him, NOBODY will take that away from him.

And now he's gonna give some Canadian insight to the commentary desk during the main event, because they sorely need it.

Baron Corbin makes his entrance and we head off to break.

Back from commercial, Austin Aries cuts a promo about TJ Perkins being full of himself to hype their match on 205 Live tonight up. He's gonna hit Teddy Joystick so hard that the smirk on his face lands in section 309 and he sees A-Double.

AJ Styles vs. Baron Corbin

AJ hesitant to start, Corbin penning him in but he goes under and kicks Baron's leg in. A second kick caught and the Lone Wolf puts him to the mat and tries to cave him in with stomps, but Styles keeps dodging. AJ offers him a shot and sidesteps to throw more leg kicks but gets laid out hard by a forearm strike!

Circling, AJ goes behind for a sleeper hold and Corbin fights him off by backing him into the turnbuckles and throwing him outside under the bottom rope. Styles slides back in as Baron slides out, gets passed to the apron, ends up in a fireman's carry and the Lone Wolf drops his face across the apron to send us to break.

Back from commercial and Corbin has Styles in a half nelson neck crank but the Phenomenal One gets to his feet and backs him off with elbows. Baron charges and throws him hard into the ringpost under the bottom rope! AJ stumbles to his feet and Corbin comes over to put his back into the apron hard before jawing at Owens.

In the ring, Baron puts boots to him but Styles comes back with chops. One forearm staggers him in return but he gets the boots up on a charge and trades a punch for a forearm. Corbin passed outside and right back in, AJ sidesteps him and he eats the ringpost himself this time!

Styles Rush partially blocked, Pele kick connects, leaping lariat in the corner, fireman's carry but Corbin slips out, back suplex Styles lands on his feet, kicks his leg out of his leg, leaping forearm gets a nearfall. Calling for the Styles Clash, Corbin throws him off, goozle, CHOKEBREAKER! NOT ENOUGH!

Charging right, Styles ducks, traps the leg, Calf Killer applied but Corbin's long reach gets him the ropes. Deep Six connects... NO GOOD! AJ drags himself up the ropes and low bridges Baron outside. The Lone Wolf tries to get back in and Styles catches him with a forearm and a sliding knee off the apron.

Calling for the Styles Clash right in front of Owens but Corbin back body drops AJ into the United States Champion! Looking for End of Days but AJ slips out and hits an enzuigiri, referee Mike Chioda is counting and Styles knocks Corbin into the crowd with a jumping forearm...

AJ Styles wins by count-out.

Styles celebrates while Owens seethes, and that's the show, folks.

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