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WWE SmackDown results, live blog (July 31, 2020): Two championship matches

WWE SmackDown comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (July 31, 2020) with a show at the WWE Performance Center in Orlando due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. There won’t be any real fans in attendance, but we will see two championship matches. That includes AJ Styles vs. Gran Metalik for the Intercontinental championship, and Nikki Cross challenging Bayley for the women’s championship. Also advertised: Naomi vs. Lacey Evans, and the return of Otis and Mandy Rose.

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


He rides a road, that don’t have no end, an open highway, without any bends. Tramp and his stallion, alone in a dream, proud in his colours, as the chromium gleams. On Iron Horse he flies, but me, I’m just here to liveblog this pro wrestling show, folks.

The show opens with Bayley and Sasha Banks backstage cutting a promo about how Bayley’s gonna beat Nikki Cross tonight.

Nikki gets a chance to fire back and says she beat Alexa Bliss last week, and Alexa is better than both of them, so she’s gonna win.

Big E gets a promo and says his partners are on his mind and in his heart, and Miz is gonna feel the power tonight.

Miz and John Morrison fire back, laughing at the idea of E getting a singles run.

Lacey Evans gets a promo where she promises to give Naomi what she deserves.

Naomi fires back by saying she deserves to beat Lacey senseless and she’s gonna feel the glow.

Gran Metalik cuts a promo in Spanish about winning the Intercontinental Championship.

AJ Styles fires back, saying he’s impressive, but he’s not phenomenal.

We get a new episode of Firefly Fun House.

Bray Wyatt is late because he was out searching for Braun Strowman in the swamp, but he couldn’t find him. He speculates about gators eating him before saying part of his soul will always be trapped there, and he wants to make one thing clear— he never wanted to hurt Braun, only to help him. But now, He is waiting, and He wants something that Strowman has.

Until He gets what He wants, nobody is safe. Images of the Fiend appear. Bray asks that we let Him in before waving goodbye.

We get entrances for our first title match and go to break.

AJ Styles (c) vs. Gran Metalik (WWE Intercontinental Championship)

Circling, collar and elbow, into the corner, clean break. Back to the lockup, Metalik in charge this time, again referee Jessika Carr counts and we get a clean break. Test of strength, Styles with a kick to the midsection and he follows it up with a barrage of stomps! Smashing his face into the turnbuckles, chops in the corner, running backbreaker in the middle of the ring!

Beating him down in the corner, Gran firing back with slaps, whip reversed, leapfrog, roll into la casadora and Styles goes for an elbow drop but nobody’s home! Tijeras sends AJ to the apron, slingshot over, the champion kicks his challenger to the floor! Slingshot over, Metalik trips him up and follows it up with a tijeras off the apron that sends us to break!

Back from commercial, Styles has Metalik up top but he gets knocked down,,, diving crossbody for two! Stomping away in the corner, monkey flip blocked, AJ with kicks to the torso, he catches a kick and starts hammering Gran’s hamstring! Wrenching his foot over the ropes until referee Jessika Carr admonishes him, stepover knee drop follows it up.

Toehold applied, wrenching it in, rolling into a half-crab but Metalik makes the ropes! Jockeying for position, Gran hits a DDT... NOPE! Missile dropkick follows it up, another two count, fireman’s carry but the knee gives out! Styles Rush! In position on the apron, springboard... NOBODY HOME! Metalik with an enzuigiri, both men down and out!

Gran shaking himself back into it, ropewalk dive... CHOP BLOCK CUTS HIM OUT OF MID-AIR! Calf Killer in the middle of the ring...

AJ Styles wins by submission with the Calf Killer to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship.

Post-match, Styles beats Lince Dorado down... STYLES CLASH!

Backstage, Chad Gable is minding his own business when King Baron Corbin appears to give him crap for “being on the sidelines” just now.

He claims they’ve always been friends and he was just trying to motivate Chad, and Gable sees right through him, saying he clearly just wants him to take Matt Riddle out for him. Baron admits that yes, he would like for Gable to take Riddle out, but he claims to be genuinely wanting to help him.

We get a recap of last week’s Bar Fight and see Jeff Hardy walking backstage.

Otis hugs him to send us to break.

Back from commercial, Jeff Hardy makes his entrance.

He gets on the mic and says he hasn’t felt this good in a long time. The last few months have been tough, with Sheamus a constant reminder of just how dangerous his demons are. He just has to remind himself how bad it can be, because sobriety is a never-ending challenge, and beating Sheamus was a reminder that he’s on the right path.

He’s an alcoholic, but he’s so much more than that— a husband, a father, a WWE Superstar— and he gets to peform for us, and he loves that. He’s grateful for the love of his family and friends in getting him to this point, and he never wants to let us down again. The struggle is real, but he’s grateful to be alive and well and on SmackDown.

Enter King Baron Corbin.

He mocks Jeff for “whining and crying” about his recovery, but says he gets it, because Hardy’s life sucks, but he should shut up and deal with it. He feels like he’s losing his mind and his kingdom is turning into an insane asylum, to which Jeff says if everyone around you is a problem, maybe the real problem is you.

Baron wants to be honest— he’s disappointed because he thought Hardy would be more worried about getting in his good graces. Drew Gulak attacks him from behind!

They brawl and we go to break before their match can begin.

King Baron Corbin vs. Drew Gulak

Back from commercial, match is in progress. Gulak with an arm wringer into a kneeling armbar, staying on him, a wicked hammerlock soon enough followed by headbutts and strikes in the corner. Corbin tries to turn him around but Drew ducks and keeps the pressure on. Baron using his size, dropping Gulak with a right hand to the throat!

Overhead elbows into a half nelson chinlock, Drew slips out but gets caught by a leg trap spinebuster into a standing half-crab! He shifts gears for forearms but Gulak catches his arm and counters into a LeBell Lock! Corbin wriggles out, Drew stays on him, Just Facelock but he gets a foot on the ropes! Off the ropes, dropkick staggers the big man, another one knocks him down and Gulak is fired up!

Headed up top, perching, diving lariat connects... NOPE! Deep Six connects but before he can capitalize, Matt Riddle makes his entrance! Inside cradle... NOT ENOUGH! Baron hooks him...

King Baron Corbin wins by pinfall with End of Days.

Post-match, Riddle hits the ring and beats Corbin down! Ripcord knee strike connects, wristlock maintained... GABLE FROM BEHIND WITH CHAOS THEORY ON RIDDLE! He waits for Baron to get up and gives him the “yeah that happened” eyebrows before leaving together with the King.

And so we go to break.

Big E vs. the Miz

Circling, collar and elbow, E pushes him into the corner, clean break and right back to the lockup. Next corner, another clean break and Big taunts him with some clapping and the hip swivel. Miz with a go-behind, E counters with a fireman’s carry takeover and more swiveling. Test of strength, the A-Lister feints into kicks before beating Big down.

Off the ropes, drop down, leapfrog, E locks a Cobra Twist on. Shift gears, back elbow for two, Miz slaps him across the face and Big dumps him out of the ring! Stalking out after him, smashing his face into the announce desk and then into the ringpost! Morrison running interference, corkscrew off the steel steps catches Big unawares and Miz follows with a slingshot dropkick to take control!

Back inside, reverse chinlock applied, E gets out and clotheslines the A-Lister on the apron! Clubbing blows from the floor, Big Splash on the apron... NOBODY’S HOME AND WE GO TO BREAK!

Back from commercial, Miz is in control with a reverse chinlock but E posts to his feet. The A-Lister with a bodyscissors, Big fades back down onto a knee before firing up and ramming Miz into the corner! Slinging him aside, but Miz comes right back with a big boot for a deep two! Big with the trifecta of belly-to-belly suplexes, hip swivel in full effect, off the ropes, big splash!

Back elbow, slip out of the Big Ending, slip out of Skull-Crushing Finale, rake of the eyes blocks the Big Ending and Miz hits the basement DDT... SO CLOSE! Chest kicks, Morrison cheering him on, E ducks under the buzzsaw and goes for a powerbomb but the A-Lister floats over! Miz takes his knee out from under him and goes to work on the leg, hamstring knees hung up in the ropes.

Charging knees in the corner, E hits the big Rock Bottom out off the corner for two! Off the ropes, the spear gets countered with a knee strike! Elbow up on the charge, Morrison with a cheap shot, Miz capitalizes... SKULL-CRUSHING FINALE CAN’T PUT BIG E AWAY! The A-Lister locks the figure four leglock on!

E struggling, sitting up in the hold, reaching, Morrison pulls the ropes away from him but he gets them to force the break! Big clutching his knee, Miz smells blood in the water and hits a few knee strikes to the knee. Referee Charles Robinson catches Morrison trying to interfere and throws him out!

Schoolboy pin, Miz kicks out but E locks a standing Stretch Muffler on... IT’S OVER!

Big E wins by submission with a standing Stretch Muffler.

Backstage, Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura are celebrating their tag titles with some champagne when Lucha House Party roll up.

They jaw at each other and Cesaro makes fun of Gran Metalik for blowing his chance to become Intercontinental Champion.

Commentary hypes up Lacey vs. Naomi and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Sheamus cuts a promo.

He says his mistake was that he fought Jeff Hardy in his natural environment, and it was practically a handicap match, Sheamus vs. Jeff Hardy & Alcohol. It’s a testament to his courage that the match was as close as it was, but he’s not here to make excuses or complain, because it’s only a matter of time before Hardy falls off the wagon.

Jeff Hardy isn’t his problem anymore, and that’s bad news for the SmackDown locker room, because now he’s their problem.

Lacey Evans vs. Naomi

Collar and elbow, Evans backs her into the corner and slaps her across the face with a handful of braids! Catch a headscissors, counter powerbomb plants Naomi in the middle of the ring! Smashing her face into the mat over and over, implant DDT into a gator roll, dragging Naomi to the apron for a bow-and-arrow over the ringpost!

Smashing her face into the post, break the count, trapping Naomi’s braids inbetween the two halves of the steel steps! Lacey takes a breather in the middle of the ring while referee Danilo Anfibio counts, but Naomi gets back inside. Kicks from the apron, off the ropes... SLIDING FLIP PILEDRIVER ON THE FLOOR! Back inside... NOPE!

Tying Naomi’s hair in the ropes again, she slips out with ease, catch the punch, capitalize...

Naomi wins by pinfall with a backslide.

We go backstage with Mandy Rose and Otis.

She says it’s been a while since they had a proper date, so she booked a reservation at his favorite BBQ spot, a table in the back room where nobody can see how much advantage they’re talking of the all you can eat deal. They talk about what they’re gonna have, with Mandy going in depth on an ice cream concoction she has in mind.

They split up to go get ready for their date and Sonya Deville emerges from the background.

To break!

Back from commercial, Mandy Rose is doing her makeup when Sonya Deville rolls up and attacks her from behind!

She holds her down and smears lipstick across her face between strikes! Screaming at her, asking what she has now, smashing her face-first into the unyielding floor. She grabs a pair of scissors and lops off chunks of Mandy’s hair, saying she can’t wait to show people her pretty face and she’s gonna ruin her life to get even.

Asking what else she can do, she paws through all the makeup and whatnot on the table before finding a rather incongruous pair of clippers and firing them up. Referees and five-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion Adam Pearce roll up and stop her from using the clippers before checking on Rose.

Kayla Braxton is on the scene as Otis rolls up to check on his girlfriend. Miz and Morrison show up and say this is an outrage before making a bunch of cruddy hair puns. Tucker runs them off, telling them that it’s not funny.

Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross make their entrance to send us to break.

Bayley (c) vs. Nikki Cross (WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship)

Off the ropes, Cross ducks a lariat and hammers Bayley with forearms. Into the corner, mounted punches ahoy, dropkick follows, and a monkey flip after that! Going for the neckbreaker, blocked, Lou Thesz Press into punches instead! Whip across, Bayley with a front kick, pass to the floor, they stalemate and stare at each other.

Nikki to the floor, forearms, smashing her face into the apron, back inside, boot to the face. Guillotine leg drop from the champ, only two! Boots in the corner, boot up to counter, Cross throws Bayley into the post and to the floor and hits a crossbody off the apron! Nikki standing on the announce table, fired up, and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Bayley with a reverse chinlock into a mat slam, cover for one. Smashing her face into the turnbuckles, putting boots to her, back suplex gets two. Shoulder thrust in the corner, Cross sidesteps the charging uppercut and Bayley aggravates her injured ribs! Throat thrusts from Nikki, dropkick, off the ropes, crossbody... NOPE!

Tornado DDT out of the corner, another tight two count, to the apron, inverted DDT connects and the champion falls to the floor! Sasha Banks checks on her pal, Cross dives but Bayley rolls back in first! Go-behind sets up the Regal Cutter, Nikki in charge but not quite able to win yet! Cross finds the Boss knuckles and throws them at Sasha!

Back suplex gets another two count, Bayley hits the Stunner over the middle rope for some breathing room! She climbs on the announce table, mocking Cross, when Nikki comes out to trip her up and throw her into the barricade! Stinger Splash against the Lexan, back inside, Sasha Banks runs interference but Alexa Bliss pulls her to the floor!

Cross dropkicks Banks and heads up top after... diving crossbody but Bayley rolls through! Trading covers, leapfrog, Oklahoma roll for two! Backslide... still not doing it! Bayley capitalizes...

Bayley wins by pinfall with an arm-trap headlock driver to retain the WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship.

Post-match, Bliss consoles Cross but Nikki’s too upset and shoves her away before storming out.

The lights go down and come back up red.

The Fiend is standing in the ring with Alexa.

He kneels down and reaches out with a hand on her shoulder, slowly bringing his free hand in... MANDIBLE CLAW!

Lights out.

That’s the show, folks.

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