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WWE SmackDown results, live blog (Apr. 23, 2021): Rollins’ revenge

WWE SmackDown comes waltzing back into our lives tonight (Apr. 23, 2021) with a show from the ThunderDome at Yuengling Center in Tampa, Florida, featuring all the latest build to the upcoming WrestleMania Backlash event scheduled for next month at the same venue.

No specific segments have been announced for tonight’s card yet. However, WWE did release a video teasing that we’ll witness the fallout of Seth Rollins’ blindside attack on Cesaro from last week. The video also suggests that a new contender will emerge to challenge Roman Reigns, and that we are now in the era of Bianca Belair.

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.)


Soaring through the sky, there’s a demon in my mind, blasting off my soul. I lay sleeping, body cold, limbo for all time unless I can find my way to liveblog this here pro wrestling show for you, folks.

The show opens with a recap of Roman Reigns giving Cesaro the cold shoulder last week and the storyline that ensued therefrom.

Cesaro is in the ring mic in hand—

Enter Seth Rollins.

He says he came out here to congratulate Cesaro because he did it, he finally reached and fulfilled his potential by being in the ring with Seth freakin’ Rollins at WrestleMania. He brought him to the promised land, and where’s his thanks? All he hears from Cesaro is that he’s moving on and he’s got his sights set on the Universal Championship?

He said it last week and he’ll say it again, this isn’t over because nothing is over until he says it’s over.

Enter Jey Uso.

He’s fired up to go beat Cesaro up but Seth cuts him off, selling him on doing a pincer movement to make sure they can teach the Swiss Superman a lesson.

Enter Daniel Bryan.

He slips in the ring and asks where Rollins and Uso are going. He says he knows Cesaro’s out here for a title match, Rollins is here because he’s embarrassed and upset about losing at WrestleMania, Uso came out because Roman Reigns told him to, and he’s here to make sure Cesaro finally gets what he deserves.

He has an infinite amount of respect for Cesaro because he’s worked harder than everybody, himself included, and Reigns is only where he is because of family connections whereas Cesaro’s never gotten one break. He mocks Roman for his refusal to get his hands dirty before speculating on a scenario where Reigns comes out to help them attack, but there’s nobody he’d rather stand against That Damn Numbers Game with than Cesaro.

Enter Roman Reigns, flanked by Paul Heyman as usual.

Reigns is wearing a t-shirt depicting his WrestleMania victory and points out that Daniel Bryan was the bottom on the pin, and that makes him a loser, and he continues to run Bryan and Cesaro down at length before leaving to send us to break.

Back from commercial we’re informed a tag team match has been booked but not started because all four men are brawling mad!

Jey Uso & Seth Rollins vs. Team Uppercut (Cesaro & Daniel Bryan)

We get a bell, Bryan and Uso to start, half-halch suplex from the American Dragon and a tag to Cesaro. Double slam, elbow drop, only two! Delayed vertical suplex, one-handed before the impact... NOPE! Rollins tags in, Sling Blade, double sledge across the base of the skull, putting boots to the Swiss Superman! Ode to Rikishi from a freshly-tagged Uso and into the heat segment we go.

Tag to Bryan, hammering away with kicks, chest kicks, counter the enzuigiri into an ankle lock and then he transitions into a bridging German suplex for two! Yes! fingers, charging in, Seth counters... BUCKLE BOMB! Blind tag in there, Uso off the top... CESARO BREAKS UP THE PIN! Heels beat him down and dump him to the floor, where they double suplex the Swiss Superman to send us to break.

Back from commercial, the heels are in control and working Bryan over. Dan kicks out of a Samoan drop but the heat segment rolls on, shot off, backflip up-and-over, Bryan hits the Axe Bomber and the path is clear! Cesaro tags in, uppercut city, discus lariat for two! Uso gets the ropes before the giant swing, enzuigiri gets a springboard corkscrew uppercut for two!

Neutralizer countered to a back body drop, Cesaro lands on his feet... SWISS DEATH! ROLLINS BREAKS IT UP! Bryan comes in, brawling with Seth, back body dropping him to the floor and laying him out with a suicide dive! Jey clobbers Cesaro out of the ring, goes for a dive but the Swiss Superman cuts him off with an uppercut!

Cesaro up top, Jey plucks him out of midair with a superkick, and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Cesaro and Rollins are slugging it out, swinging neckbreaker countered into the swing countered into a crossleg victory roll, kickout! Sharpshooter applied, Uso breaks it up with a superkick! Jey tags in, up top, Cesaro cuts him off with an uppercut while Rollins hobbles his way up the ramp, intent on an exit.

Swiss Superman draws Uso up and hits the deadlift superplex! Tag to Bryan, lying in wait...

Team Uppercut win by pinfall with a Busaiku Knee from Daniel Bryan on Jey Uso.

Post-match, Daniel Bryan gets on the mic and calls Roman Reigns out, asking if he’s still coming to whoop them or what. Uso hits the ring and Cesaro cuts him off, giant swing, Dan counts along and Jey gets wiped out! Bryan calls Roman out again, Cesaro joins him and they say this shows what kind of champion and what kind of man he truly is.

Dan has an idea for one more test and asks Cesaro to swing Uso again. He does, Bryan points out that Jey has saved Reigns every single time he’s defended the Universal Championship and surely if he’s really head of the table or King of SmackDown or whatever he’d come down and save his cousin, but nope. Dan says Roman is afraid that if he wrestles Cesaro one-on-one, he’ll lose.

Backstage, five-time NWA World Heavyweight Champion Adam Pearce is chatting with Sonya Deville when Apollo Crews and Commander Azeez roll up.

Crews is mad that he has to defend the Intercontinental Championship tonight, threatening to have Azeez break the match up early with the Nigerian Nail if he has to defend against Big E. Pearce informs him that Big E is still in line, but tonight he’ll wrestle Kevin Owens.

Nia Jax, Shayna Baszler, and Reginald make their entrances to send us to break.

Back from commercial, Jey Uso is interviewed.

He’s mad and he’s looking to take it out on Cesaro.

Nia Jax vs. Tamina

Jax in control early, jawing and shoving at Tamina, Snuka fires back with forearms, shove off, Lou Thesz Press into forearms! Tamina knocks her messy to the mat for more brawling, overhead elbows, Shayna Baszler runs interference, Snuka takes the action to the floor and rams Nia into the barricade! Smashing her head over and over, back inside, Tamina lands a kick after some distraction...

Tamina wins by pinfall with a schoolboy pin.

Kevin Owens is interviewed backstage.

He says he’s thrilled and delighted and surprised to have a title match tonight but he’s not gonna turn it down because lots of folks want to take the title from Crews and he’ll be glad to be the one.

Big E rolls up laughing and calls Kevin a line-jumper and KO admits he absolutely should be getting a rematch first but it’s not tonight.

And it’s up next, after the break.

Back from commercial, five-time NWA World Heayweight Champion Adam Pearce is in his office when Daniel Bryan rolls up.

Bryan asks about the Cesaro/Reigns match and Pearce asks him to understand the pressures of his job but promises to try. Dan tells him to do more than try.

Apollo Crews (c) vs. Kevin Owens (WWE Intercontinental Championship)

Circling, collar and elbow, into the corner, out of it, Owens with a single leg into an ankle lock, then a side headlock, trying to grind Crews down. Shot off, shoulder block, dropkick and KO presses the attack with chops in the corner. Off the ropes, drop down, back elbow, big senton from Owens! Off the ropes, a lariat sends Apollo to the floor!

Off the ropes, KO stops short of the dive because Crews is hiding behind Commander Azeez! Leg trip on the apron, back inside, Apollo with right hands, back to the floor, moonsault off the apron, land on his feet, Owens cuts him off with a superkick and throws him back inside! KO off the top with the senton atomico... NOPE!

Sami Zayn makes his entrance and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Sami Zayn has joined the commentary desk, jockeying in the turnbuckles, Crews gets away, Owens lays him out with a superkick... NOPE! Apollo Hot Shots him, big falling lariat... STILL NO! Crews into the rolling German suplexes, but he still can’t put Owens away! Owens sidesteps the charge, big German suplex, cannonball, another one, cover for two!

Kick to the gut, Stunner countered, back suplex countered, arm drag, another Stunner blocked, KO gets the superkick, draws him up, off the ropes, pop-up powerbomb... APOLLO CREWS KICKS OUT! Crews to the floor, Owens with a frog splash off the apron! Back inside, Commander Azeez runs interference...

Apollo Crews wins by pinfall with a schoolboy pin to retain the WWE Intercontinental Championship.

Post-match Owens lays Crews out with the Stunner but Azeez takes him out with the Nigerian Nail!

Sami Zayn slides in the ring and dances over KO’s fallen body.

Paul Heyman is interviewed backstage.

He prevaricates and says he loves Cesaro in a professional way and promises that Roman Reigns will give us all his answer to Cesaro’s challenge later tonight.

And so we go to break.

Back from commercial, Apollo Crews is interviewed.

He says Azeez is cleaning Kevin Owens’ tears off his thumb and says he hears his ancestors praising him for sucking the hope out of KO. He keeps ranting about his victory and Big E blindsides him!

Referees and road agents pull E away whild Commander Azeez rushes out to help his pal.

We get an Aleister Black video package where he reads some Tales from the Dark Father and condemns us, the fans, saying we should be scorched from the earth to make room for more fertile things.

The Dirty Dawgz are interviewed backstage.

Dolph Ziggler predicts Alpha Academy will beat the Mysterios tonight, and Street Profits roll up to try and claim the next title shot.

Bayley rolls up and tells a rambling story running Bianca Belair down. Montez Ford rolls up with his wife on the phone and informs her about Bayley, and she says she’ll be right there. Bayley says she’ll tell it to her face, and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Bianca Belair and Bayley are having a confrontation backstage.

Bayley tries to weasel out, claiming she was just congratulating her and she’s honored to be her first challenger. She leaves and comes back and cracks up, laughing hysterically before walking off again.

Alpha Academy (Chad Gable & Otis Dozovic) vs. Dominik & Rey Mysterio

Heels in control early, Alpha Academy with the beatdown on the floor, Otis and Dominik back inside and we go to break.

Back from commercial, Gable gets a nearfall of a bridging Tiger Suplex, clear the apron, drag Dominik over and tag Dozer in, the heat segment rolls on. Rolling belly-to-belly suplexes, shifting to a German for the third but Mysterio lands on his feet and Hot Shots him! Tag to Rey, right hands, whip, kick, off the ropes, tijeras!

Yoshi Tonic connects, not enough, up top, jockeying for position, Mysterio hits an Avalanche Frankensteiner for two! Tag to Dom, whip to a back body drop to the apron, slide under for a trip, Dominik with a suicide dive sunset flip into the barricade! Back in, Rey tags in again, whip into a drop toehold, Dom dives onto Otis and passes him into the announce table!

619 connects, Rey up top...

Dominik & Rey Mysterio win by pinfall with a frog splash from Rey on Chad Gable.

Cesaro & Daniel Bryan make their entrances to send us to break.

Back from commercial, we’re informed that Apollo Crews will defend his title against Big E next week.

Cesaro and Daniel Bryan are in the ring and Cesaro says they’re waiting for Roman to come out here and give them his answer, but if he doesn’t want to come to the ring, they’ll go backstage and get an answer.

Enter Roman Reigns, flanked by Paul Heyman and Jey Uso.

He gets in Cesaro’s face and asks who he is to think he belongs in the ring with the Tribal Chief, and says he’s done nothing to earn a shot and his answer will always be no because he’ll never be on his level. The Universal Champion issues the challenges around here, and he challenges Daniel Bryan. He doesn’t like him, he’s never liked him and he never will, but he’s gonna give him one more shot.

This is as close as he’ll ever get to the title, and next week he gets one more shot. Dan is pensive, Cesaro tells him he has to take it and he knows he can do it. Before Bryan can speak, Roman has one more thing— when Dan loses, he doesn’t ever want to see him again. He wants him to disappear and never see him on his show ever again.

Bryan accepts!

That’s the show, folks.

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