WWE SmackDown Live comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (May 15, 2018) from the O2 Arena in London, England, featuring all the latest build to the upcoming Money in the Bank pay-per-view (PPV) scheduled for next month in Chicago.
Advertised for tonight: Carmella’s big celebration, AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura with the winner picking the stipulation to their WWE title match at Money in the Bank, 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.)
NOTE: Due to the time difference, SmackDown will air pre-taped tonight. We have spoilers for this show here; please keep discussion of those to that post. This comments section should be kept SPOILER FREE.
WWE SMACKDOWN RESULTS AND LIVE BLOG FOR MAY 15
Don’t misunderstand me, it’s not always easy to say the words in your head and your heart that you just can’t explain. I can see clearly, a face in the sky; Moon’s in your eye, you’re passing me by, but for now I’ve got to liveblog this here pro wrestling show.
The show opens with commentary hyping up tonight’s edition of AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura and recapping the feud that’s got us here.
Daniel Bryan makes his entrance for an in-ring interview.
Thunderous “Daniel Bryan!” chants nearly drown Renee Young’s preamble out and Bryan asks that she feels all their energy. He was disappointed that he lost Greatest Royal Rumble and of course he doesn’t like losing, but when he came back he was just happy to be back doing what he loves. Now, though, that’s not enough, he doesn’t want to just be back, he wants to be on top.
He knows it’ll be a fight and a climb and he’ll have to scratch and claw but when all is said and done he’ll be WWE Champion again!
Enter Big Cass. He says he’s been in the back listening to him run his mouth and he’s sick of it. He may have all these people fooled, but Cass knows the real truth. His loss to Rusev was supposed to be his first major setback, but he couldn’t disagree more. Big claims he was Dan’s first major setback and the reason he lost to Rusev and will keep losing, because he’ll make sure he never achieves his dreams in WWE again.
At Backlash he lost, yes, but he didn’t tap out because he was in pain, no, he wanted out of the hold so he could beat Bryan up again, and that’s exactly what he did. Dan’s not gonna be able to go anywhere in WWE without a seven foot shadow following, he says, before mocking Bryan’s 75 minutes in the Greatest Royal Rumble and asking what happened when he got in the ring with him.
He calls the American Dragon a loser and mentions the little person he beat up in Montreal, saying that at least that guy took his beating with dignity. He asks several questions about Bryan being a loser, that he should have stayed retired, and that he should have stayed home and let Brie wear the pants in the family (pants are way overrated, sir, wearing them is nothing to be proud of), and answers each with a “Yes!”
Cass gets in the ring and mocks the Yes! fingers one more time and Bryan’s right in with forearms! Shoved off, basement dropkick to the knee, pummeling him in the corner, Dan wrenching his injured knee over the ropes and stomping and kicking away at it! Referees hit the ring to break it out but Bryan’s not done with him, smashing his knee into the ringpost! Back inside, chop block! The American Dragon falls back into a heel hook and Cass taps but Bryan won’t let go of the hold for anything! 5-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion (and current WWE road agent) Adam Pearce hits the ring and pries him off!
Commentary hypes up our proceedings for the rest of the night and we go to break.
Back from commercial, Miz makes his entrance and joins the commentary booth.
New Day (Big E & Xavier Woods) vs. the Bar (Cesaro & Sheamus) (Money in the Bank Qualifying Match)
Cesaro and Woods to start, Xavier ducks a lariat and clears the apron before sliding under the Swiss Superman and clobbering him with a forearm. Tope con giro takes Sheamus out! Springboard back in, taking Cesaro out only a nearfall and he gets caught by a back suplex and lands on his feet. Wheelbarrow, Cesaro blocks, hoists him up, tag made, diving axehandle assisted back suplex!
Celtic Warrior clubbing away, tag back to Cesaro, double clothesline and the Bar drop their catchphrase to send us to break.
Back from commercial, the Bar still in control and hit Demolition Decapitation on Xavier! Cesaro legal, a cheap shot from Sheamus gets a nearfall but Woods fights back out of the corner, wild punches, off the ropes, blocked and he back body drops the Swiss Superman to the floor! Reaching, tags made! Big E in hot, overhead belly-to-belly suplexes, duck a lariat, a normal belly-to-belly suplex into the hip swivel!
Off the ropes, big splash but Sheamus got his knees up! Charging in... E counters with the Rock Bottom! Cesaro runs interference, schoolboy nearly does it, blind tag, Big lives Sheamus up but the Bar cut him off, double DDT connects! Cesaro with the Sharpshooter, E making his best effort to counter it but it’s on in the middle of the ring! Sheamus yanks Woods out of the ring when he tries for the save but Xavier’s able to put him into the post and make the save!
Uppercut sets up a tag, Woods in with a tornado DDT... NOT ENOUGH! Swiss Superman with a throat thrust, to the corner, Xavier passes him into the post, rolling Face Eraser... SHEAMUS WITH THE SAVE! Big in, trading blows with the Celtic Warrior, a knee combo hits hard but E is able to put him on the apron... SPEAR THROUGH THE APRON! Woods walks the ropes...
New Day win by pinfall with the Gran Naniwa ropewalk elbow drop from Xavier Woods on Cesaro, qualifying for one spot in the men’s Money in the Bank ladder match.
Commentary hypes up Styles/Nakamura as well as Carmella’s celebration and we go to break.
Back from commercial, we get a creepy Bludgeon Brothers vignette where they say joy is a disease and the cure is to bludgeon before smashing the camera with their hammers.
Paige is on the phone with Carmella saying she can’t have a horse-drawn carriage when Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville roll up. Mandy says her little power trip didn’t work last week since she still beat Becky Lynch and she’s headed to Money in the Bank. Paige says that wasn’t a qualifier and they need to relax on the attitude or they’re not getting a qualifier.
They’re both getting a qualifier, in three-way action against Becky Lynch, you see.
AJ Styles is interviewed backstage as to what he’ll choose as his stipulation if he wins tonight. It’s not if, it’s when, and who knows what he’ll pick. An inverted scaffold match, or a pole on a pole match, or maybe a bullrope, Hell in a Cell inferno match, maybe with some guard dogs. Renee Young suggests the referee be dressed as Elvis but AJ says that’s a step too far but no matter what he picks, everyone will be entertained but Shinsuke Nakamura.
He claims to have forgotten English, but Styles knows the international language of “forearm to the face”, and no matter when it is, Nakamura can’t beat him in the House That AJ Styles Built.
Commentary hypes up Andrade “Cien” Almas and Zelina Vega’s debut and we go to break.
Back from commercial in time for entrances.
Andrade “Cien” Almas vs. Jake Constantino
Collar and elbow, Almas with a waistlock, standing switch and a pair of brutal elbows take Constantino down! Dropkick connects, but Andrade shrugs him off and clobbers him with a chop. To the corner, putting boots to him, repeated shoulder stomps, El Idolo is fired up! Corner knees leave Jake gasping for air, Almas hooks him...
Andrade “Cien” Almas wins by pinfall with the hammerlock legsweep DDT.
Zelina gets on the mic and says they were expecting more out of SmackDown. After all this anticipation, this guy is what they get? It’s pathetic, almost as pathetic as every superstar in the locker room that thinks they can do the same thing. Their message is clear, they came here to take over!
Rusev Day are backstage and Aiden English disparages London as the home of the pedestrian, boring and unimpressive like their food or the Rolling Stones. Rusev says unlike the band he CAN get Satisfaction when he wins Money in the Bank. Aiden has a song picked out and wants to give Rusev a preview when Lana rolls up and asks him to save his beautiful voice because very soon he’s gonna have a ravishing new song to sing.
Next week she has a qualifying match against Billie Kay and she’s very excited to crush Billie Kay, whereupon they will be the first ever Mr. and Mrs. Money in the Bank. Rusev says together they’ll rule all of SmackDown and Lana gives English the cue to sing that it’s gonna be on Rusev Day.
Commentary hypes up Carmella’s celebration and we go to break.
Back from commercial, a man dressed as a town crier of sorts introduces Carmella in vaguely old-timey fashion.
Three men dressed in traditional English Army uniforms herald Carmella’s actual entrance.
She asks the crowd to shower her with the praise she deserves for the next ten seconds or so, and London... doesn’t really oblige. She asks what’s wrong with “these people”, lining up outside a hospital for a glimpse of a royal baby but not willing to give her the respect she deserves? She commands everyone to bow before her (logistically not sure how that’d work, ma’am) before saying they remind her of every single woman on the SmackDown roster.
None of them think she’s good enough or deserves to be champion, but guess what, Mella is money, and Mella is champion, and that makes her better than each and every one of the crowd, at one point affecting a bad accent to get her point across. Furthermore she’s better than everyone, up to and including Ronda Rousey, Trish Stratus, and Lita--
Enter Paige. She says it’s great to be home and she has something to tell Carmella. She says she’s better than everyone and that’s quite the proclamation, but she has a proclamation of her own, Carmella’s opponent for Money in the Bank. Carmella says she’s not defending her title at Money in the Bank, but Paige insists, and hits the music...
ENTER ASUKA! She gets in the ring and squares off with Carmella, but the champion grabs her title and bails.
Backstage, Shinsuke Nakamura is interviewed about his chances tonight.
He asks what “chance” means, and needs clarification on “possibility” in the followup before saying he knows what it means but Renee is using the wrong word. It’s certain that he’ll win and AJ Styles will lose with a knee to the face, and another, and another, and another and another and so on, until his chin is shattered and his face is gone. He’ll dishonor AJ and take his title.
Commentary hypes up our women’s qualifier and we go to break.
Back from commercial in time for entrances.
Becky Lynch vs. Mandy Rose vs. Sonya Deville (Money in the Bank Qualifying Match)
Circling, Becky lights into both of them, dumping Mandy to the floor before clubbing away at Sonya and smashing her face into the turnbuckles. Deville with the reversal, body blow, Lynch sidesteps a charge, lands a kick but here comes Rose to work That Damn Numbers Game, but there’s a malfunction at the junction and the former Absolution partners are at each other’s throats as we go to break.
Back from commercial, Sonya is standing tall over the other two women’s prone bodies. Mandy rolls to the floor and Deville goes over to Becky, smashing her into the corner and putting the boots to her. Whip across, back body drop scouted and Lynch lands the lariats, two with her arms and one with the legs! Kick to the midsection, exploder suplex connects and Sonya’s down and out in the corner!
Block the charge, a pop-up knee drop but Rose steals the cover... NOPE! Becky with a cradle, nope, trying Dis-Arm-Her, blocked into the turnbuckles, Angel’s Wings connects... DEVILLE WITH A SNAP GERMAN BUT A STOLEN PIN WON’T END IT! Sonya ditches her partner out of the ring and trades punches with the Lasskicker before putting her into the corner again.
Body blows, setting Lynch up top, Mandy comes over, electric chair, Sonya throwing punches but Becky hits a missile dropkick for a modified Doomsday Device that takes both women out! Cover on Rose... NOPE! Trading forearms, Mandy hits a knee, trying Angel’s Wings again, denied, armbar takedown but here comes Deville with kicks to break it up, running knee strike... NOT ENOUGH!
Suplex denied, Sonya floats over but Mandy clobbers her with the knee! O’Connor roll comes up empty, Becky reverses...
Becky Lynch wins by submission with Dis-Arm-Her on Mandy Rose, qualifying for the women’s Money in the Bank ladder match.
And so we go to break.
Back from commercial, commentary announces Big Cass vs. Samoa Joe for a spot in Money in the Bank next week, as well as reminding us about Billie Kay vs. Lana.
Samoa Joe gets a handcam promo talking about the match and how ambition has made Cass a victim. It’s funny they call him Big, since the only thing that’s really big about him is his mouth and he’s dealt with fake tough guys like him his whole life. When it’s time to walk through the fire, men like Cass always come up short, and his ambition demands the Money in the Bank briefcase.
The Iconic Duo also get a handcam promo and do some word association, running London and Lana down and putting themselves over before declaring the future to be iconic.
We get entrances for our main event, but the match will wait until after the break.
AJ Styles vs. Shinsuke Nakamura
Circling, Nakamura grabs a waistlock, snapmare gets AJ out of it, wristlock reversal, and Styles reverses to one of his own. Shinsuke reaches for the ropes, struggling, before rolling through for a reversal and going for a lariat. AJ with a waistlock, Nakamura reverses into a cover and Styles returns the favor to stalemate.
Kick to the midsection, knee to the ribs, forearm, Shinsuke in control, disdainful slaps, knee in the ropes, off the ropes and the champ nails him with a dropkick! Passing him into the corner, wicked elbows, jockeying for position over a suplex and Nakamura gets a few knees off but gets caught by a backbreaker! Shinsuke to the floor for a breather... AJ HITS THE SLINGSHOT FOREARM TO THE FLOOR!
Back inside, but Nakamura rolls back around and cuts Styles off on the apron with a kick! Setting him, running knee to the side of the head! Back in, the cover only gets one and we go to break.
Back from commercial and Nakamura is in control, clubbing Styles in the ropes. Referee Ryan Tran warns him off and Shinsuke takes it to the corner, choking AJ and applying Good Vibrations, but the champion fights back with elbows. Nakamura looking for the inverted exploder suplex, blocked with overhead elbows but Shinsuke ducks a lariat and catches him with the dropkick for a nearfall!
Reverse chinlock, shift to a Dragon sleeper, trying to wear the Phenomenal One down but AJ breaks with a knee to the face. Rising to their feet, Nakamura with a strike rush, suplexing Styles up top, climbing to meet him but AJ slips out. Shinsuke kicks him away and Styles is able to clock him in the face with the Pele kick! Back on their feet, AJ ducks a lariat, Styles Rush, off the ropes he lands a sliding forearm and kips up, fired up!
Charging in, leaping lariat in the corner, fireman’s carry but Shinsuke fights out so he shifts gears and hits the back suplex facebuster... NOPE! Nakamura charges him into the corner but AJ picks the leg and rolls through, Shinsuke out, jockeying for position and the reverse roundhouse connects... LANDSLIDE! ONLY A NEARFALL! Smashing him into the corner, setting him up for the big corner knee lift but AJ slips out!
Springboard... NAKAMURA ROUNDHOUSE KICKS HIS LEG OUT FROM UNDER HIM AND GETS THE CORNER KNEE! Drawing Styles up on the apron, floating over a suplex attempt and clocking AJ with a lariat... diving Kinshasa on the apron! NOT ENOUGH! Waiting for him, charging over... Styles catches the knee and rolls through for the Styles Clash but it’s blocked with a kick! Ushigoroshi... CAN’T DO IT!
Off the ropes, an upkick cuts the champion off! Off the ropes, Kinshasa... NO GOOD! Countering a second attempt with a kick, thinking Styles Clash, back body drop to the apron! Elbow strike, springboard comes up empty and nearly wipes referee Ryan Tran out... Nakamura feigns like he got hit low! Inverted exploder, charging out of the corner...
Shinsuke Nakamura wins by pinfall with Kinshasa, earning the right to choose the stipulation for their WWE Championship match at Money in the Bank.
That’s the show, folks.