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WWE SmackDown Live results (Feb. 27, 2018): John Cena returns

WWE SmackDown Live comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Feb. 27, 2018) from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, featuring all the latest build to the upcoming Fastlane pay-per-view (PPV) scheduled for next month in Ohio.

Advertised for tonight: John Cena is back looking for a WrestleMania match, Ruby Riott vs. Naomi, Sami Zayn vs. Baron Corbin, 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.)


Stand and fight we do consider, reminded of an inner pact between us that’s seen as we go and ride there in motion. To fields in debts of honor, defending, stand the marcher’s soaring talons. Peaceful lives will not deliver freedom, but me, I’m here to liveblog this here pro wrestling show, folks.

The show opens with John Cena making his entrance.

He welcomes us to the show and introduces himself, which is a little weird because he’s John friggin’ Cena, but we’ll go with it. He reminds us that he’s here to find his way to WrestleMania and says he wants in on the five-way match for the WWE Championship at Fastlane. He’s not here for a handout, he’s here to do whatever it takes to earn a spot in that match.

Enter Shane McMahon. He puts Cena over as one of the most decorated superstars in the history of WWE and shakes his hand to welcome him back. He says we all heard exactly what was on his mind and everybody is looking for their role at WrestleMania, but the pathway he’s proposing puts him directly into the WWE Championship match. John says half the folks want him to win and half want him to lose so he thinks being in the match is a great idea.

McMahon reiterates his statement, saying that if he does win, not only would he go on to main event WrestleMania, but history would be made, seeing as he’d be walking into WrestleMania as a 17-time world champion. This is the land of opportunity, however, there’s--

Enter Daniel Bryan. He says he thinks he and Shane are actually on the same page tonight, because SmackDown is the land of opportunity and every superstar in the five-way earned their shot at the WWE title. If John wants in the match, he’ll have an opportunity in tonight’s main event, a match where if he wins, he’ll be in the WWE Championship match at Fastlane.

Cena doublechecks the stipulation and says he’s in, and Bryan informs him his opponent is someone he’s familiar with, the WWE Champion himself, AJ Styles!

Commentary hypes up Naomi vs. Ruby Riott and Sami Zayn vs. Baron Corbin for later in the show. A hype reel for tonight’s Mixed Match Challenge follows and we go to break.

Back from commercial in time for entrances and to see that Kevin Owens has joined the commentary booth.

Baron Corbin & Sami Zayn

Collar and elbow, Corbin backs Zayn into the corner and gets shoved back on the break. Sami turns him around, bit of pattycake on his chest on the break and Zayn bails outside to avoid Baron’s wrath. Shoulder thrust from the apron, slingshot up and over, but Corbin runs him over with a shoulder block. Outside, Zayn catches him with a few boots, right hands, smashing the Lone Wolf’s face into the announce table!

Back inside, abuse from the apron but Baron lands a right that sends Sami to the floor! Out after him, smashing him into the barricade, but a back body drop puts Corbin into the timekeeper’s area! Bryan and Shane are watching backstage and McMahon picks a nit about Kevin Owens being on commentary, but Dan defends him as doing a great job at it. Shane complains about KO potentially getting involved in the match and Bryan says there’s no reason he should.

Back to the action, they trade punches on the outside and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Zayn has a rear chinlock applied in the middle of the ring. Corbin powers out of it, they trade forearms and again we go backstage with Bryan and Shane. Dan puts the match and Kevin Owens’ commentary over while McMahon eats popcorn and says we’ll see how it ends. Back to the action, Zayn comes off the top only to get caught in the chokebreaker!

Around and back in, big lariat from the Lone Wolf! Sami recovers, low bridge sends Baron to the floor on a charge, following with a pescado, Corbin locks eyes on Owens and lawn darts Zayn into the announce table! Back in, Sami gets two off a small package, boot to the face, knucklelock, step-up tornado DDT, only a nearfall!

DOLPH ZIGGLER COMES OUT OF NOWHERE AND SUPERKICKS KEVIN OWENS! Sami’s distracted momentarily, charges back in...

Baron Corbin wins by pinfall with End of Days.

Dolph’s back and he lays Corbin out with a Zig Zag!

Back to Bryan and Shane, McMahon offers some popcorn and says Dan’s boys got what was coming to them. He suggests Bryan check on them but he says Shane should, and actually he’d rather go home and see his family. McMahon approves.

Commentary informs us Naomi vs. Ruby Riott is up next and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens are walking, Sami apoplectic about what happened and Kev selling his neck when they roll up on Shane McMahon. He cuts them off by saying before they go off on another conspiracy theory, they best go after Bryan and catch up since Brie doesn’t like when they’re late for dinner. Zayn loses his mind about “this guy” and I’m not inclined to disagree.

Naomi vs. Ruby Riott

Ruby with a shove, Naomi comes back with forearms and they slug it out until Riott hits a knee. To the corner, headscissors butt shake into the sliding slap and Ruby rolls to the floor and the support of her stablemates. Naomi and her pals head around and we have a three-on-three faceoff that sends us to break.

Back from commercial, Ruby is in control with a seated full nelson, swinging Naomi about to wrench it in. We cut backstage to Carmella who’s answering social media questions. Ruby goes for a back suplex, both women duck roundhouse kicks before clobbering each other with a second try at the same time! Trading hamstring kicks, Naomi launches into the Speedball kicks and finishes with a dropkick!

Flying elbows, splits to duck a lariat, into the ropes, springboard roundhouse kick... NOPE! Naomi blocks Riott from crawling outside, cover for two, Rear View blocked and Ruby hits a forearm to the back of the head and follows it with a basement superkick. Naomi to the apron, Ruby draws her up and gets kicked in the head for it. Naomi up top, nobody home on the dive but she gets a scorpion kick in!

Looking to bulldog her into the turnbuckles, Riott slips out, wristlock...

Ruby Riott wins by pinfall with the Riott Kick.

Post-match, Charlotte Flair and Becky Lynch immediately get in the ring to head off any attempt by the Riott Squad to beat Naomi down.

Commentary hypes up our main event of Cena/Styles IV and we go backstage with Breezango, who are looking over their corkboard of cases when a man we’re introduced to as the star of Unsolved and who looks kind of like a tiny Kevin Nash rolls up. Tiny Kevin Nash is impressed to meet the hot cops and Breeze has a laugh that his show is called Unsolved.

Tyler has his case solved, because Big E is right here. Tiny Diesel points out that his show is actually about Biggie Smalls but they’re not having it, pointing out that E once won a rap battle, and Big lets out a few bars to prove it. Little Oz points out that he’s not an actual detective, he just plays one on TV and it’s all make-believe. Fandango is heartbroken and New Day take the segment over as we go to break.

Back from commercial, Big E does his deal and the New Day make their entrance, slinging pancakes everywhere as usual.

Xavier Woods begins, saying with WrestleMania season in full swing, your boys are looking to secure their position on the grandest stage of them all. Kofi Kingston continues, saying that Fastlane is first and they’ll be up against their greatest rivals, two men that have pushed them to the limit at every turn, Jey and Jim, the Usos. Big E says their rivalry is hotter than his inner thighs in the summer and demands Kingston spritz him repeatedly.

Woods reminds us how they earned the opportunity, by beating Chad Gable & Shelton Benjamin, and Kofi says they respect the Usos, but this isn’t about respect, it’s about winning. And at Fastlane, when they win, they’re gonna head down to New Orleans and party.

Enter the Usos. They say the New Day are spreading the power of positivity through pancakes but they’re right about one thing-- they did go to war, and only one team was left standing tall with the tag titles, and they haven’t looked back since. They used to be just like the New Day, running around singing and dancing dressed like a box of Skittles, but that didn’t take them to the next level.

You talk about the power of positivity, how about a dose of reality? New Day have been grinding for nine years, blood, sweat, and tears in the middle of the ring, trying to prove that the Usos belong on WrestleMania. Year after year they’ve been getting passed over, nine years in the game and zero WrestleManias. WrestleMania 27? Sidelined. 28? Sidelined. 29? 30? 31? 32? 33? All sidelined.

But this year is their time! And they’re gonna run through the New Day like they always do, and this year they’re the starters and New Day are on the sideline. The difference between the two teams is the Usos know how to adapt and evolve, and New Day are stuck five years ago. E gets hot at the notion of five years in the past and says they’ve been at the top, kicking down doors and setting records.

They hosted WrestleMania when the Usos were in the back eating catering and they didn’t get here because of their daddies, and they didn’t stand on the sideline because they rushed the field and took what was theirs. And at Fastlane, they take what’s theirs and become five-time WWE tag team champions, and there’s not a damn thing the Usos can do about it!

Uso swats E’s hand out of his face and they step up to each other when the Bludgeon Brothers’ music hits! Harper and Rowan make their way to the ring, hammers in hand, and Usos and New Day take their leave.

Commentary hypes up our main event once more.

We go to a backstage segment from earlier in the day when Rusev Day rolled up on Shane McMahon to complain about not being on the show. McMahon says today is their lucky Rusev Day, because Aiden English has a match tonight... against Shinsuke Nakamura.

On that bombshell, we go to break.

Back from commercial, Dolph Ziggler gives a handcam promo about how he didn’t come back to SmackDown to get lost in the shuffle and how he intends to rise above everyone at Fastlane and do what he was put on the planet for-- main event WrestleMania.

Backstage, Bobby Roode is interviewed. He says he’s excited to wrestle Randy Orton and he wants to be the greatest United States Champion in history, and that means testing himself against the best, and Orton is one of the best of all time. He seems to have an issue with him of late, but after all Randy’s accomplished, it can’t be that Roode was ranked above him...

Randy Orton rolls up and says it’s not about the list, it’s about the title. The United States Championship is the only one he’s never won in his sixteen years in WWE, and Bobby is just the guy he has to roll through to take it.

Aiden English sings himself an introduction running down Los Angeles and putting himself over.

Aiden English vs. Shinsuke Nakamura

Collar and elbow, Nakamura with a go-behind but English nails him with a back elbow and grabs a wristlock. Shinsuke rolls through to escape, whip reversed, shoulder block, Aiden takes a bow but eats an upkick for his trouble! Nakamura bids him come on, catches him with a knee, snapmare, knee drop to the face but English rolls away and to the floor to dodge the follow-up kick.

Shinsuke outside, rolls him back in but Rusev nails the King of Strong Style with a roundhouse kick while the referee is occupied with Aiden! On that cheap shot, we go to break.

Back from commercial, English is still in charge, setting Nakamura up in the corner and climbing to meet him. Shinsuke knocks him back, kicks Rusev off the apron but Aiden is able to get a nearfall off a slam! Hard whip into the corner, but Nakamura catches him on the charge, sets him up for the corner knee, English escapes, diving crossbody! Shinsuke ducks a lariat, hits the jump kick, and follows it up with chest kicks.

Enzuigiri to finish, whip, running knee into Good Vibrations and he sets Aiden up top for another knee lift! Fired up...

Shinsuke Nakamura wins by pinfall with Kinshasa.

As Shinsuke goes to leave, John Cena makes his entrance and they have a staredown and both point at the WrestleMania sign to send us to a Black History Month vignette that sends us break.

Back from commercial, we’re shown a “YouTube superstar” in the front row. Sure.

AJ Styles vs. John Cena

Circling, Cena with a fakeout, collar and elbow, Styles with a go-behind, Cena clobbers him with a back elbow and follows with punches in the ropes. Snapmare into a cover, only one, and John grabs a side headlock. AJ shoots him off, eats the shoulder block, another cover, no good, and Cena closes for punches in the corner. Slam comes up empty, and John shifts to a reverse chinlock.

Shift to a half nelson chickenwing, Styles breaks out of it, chops and slaps, whip across, but Cena gets a boot up on the charge and lands a tornado DDT for a nearfall! On that note, we go to break.

Back from commercial, Cena ducks a lariat and hits the fall-forward Blue Thunder Driver! “You can’t see me,” off the ropes, Five Knuckle Shuffle, fireman’s carry but Styles grabs the ropes and gets away! Fireman’s carry of his own... USHIGOROSHI! ONLY TWO! AJ sets up the Styles Clash, Cena picks the legs to counter, catapult into the corner, World’s Strongest Slam swung out into the cutter, only two!

Jockeying for position in the corner, Styles gets the Argentine backbreaker rack, spins it out into a powerbomb... NO GOOD! Cena gets him in the electric chair and drops him into a facebuster for a nearfall in return! John charges out with a lariat after a beat to recover... NOPE! Waiting for AJ to rise, a desperate Cena charges in and eats an enzuigiri and we go to break with both men down and out on the mat.

Back from commercial, both men are... still down and out, although we see AJ hitting the Styles Clash and Cena getting an Attitude Adjustment during the break to no avail. Styles back to his feet first, a wicked lariat takes the 16-time champion’s head off but can’t put him away! Quebrada comes up empty, Cena hits the Yoshi Tonic for a nearfall, holds onto the leg, STF applied!

Styles escapes, to the apron, Phenomenal Forearm... CENA’S ROAD TO WRESTLEMANIA LIVES! Considering his next move, AJ rearranges John on the mat a little, back to the apron... SPRINGBOARD 450 SPLASH BUT THE KNEES WERE UP! Fireman’s carry, Attitude Adjustment, he rolls through for a second but AJ gets to the apron! Charging around, Styles sidesteps and Cena goes through the steel steps!

Refere Mike Chioda counting but AJ demands he stop the count and heads to the floor... ATTITUDE ADJUSTMENT THROUGH THE ANNOUNCE TABLE! Cena rolls back in and the 16-time champ has no such compunctions about taking a countout victory! Styles, desperate, using a fan to help himself up, he gets back in at the last second! Fireman’s carry, AJ slips out, rolls through and the Calf Killer is on in the middle of the ring!

Cena screams, rolls, posts to his feet, fireman’s carry...

John Cena wins by pinfall with an Attitude Adjustment, earning a spot in the WWE Championship match at Fastlane.

Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn make their entrance but it’s Baron Corbin that blindsides Cena! Putting a beating in on him, Owens and Zayn join in and put boots to Styles as well... DOLPH ZIGGLER MAKES THE SAVE! He runs all three rudos off with superkicks and makes like he’s gonna celebrate with the babyfaces before slugging Styles!

John Cena hits an Attitude Adjustment on Ziggler!

That’s the show, folks.

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