The December 12th edition of WWE SmackDown Live took place at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio.
– This week’s broadcast opens up with a look at what lead to Kevin Owens & Sami Zayn vs. Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura, with special guest ref Shane McMahon announced for Clash of Champions.
– We go to the arena where Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn are backstage handing out “occupy SmackDown” flyers to protest Shane McMahon. They’re wearing Daniel Bryan’s “Yes” t-shirts.
– WWE Champion AJ Styles comes out to the ring to kick off the show. AJ gets in the ring, and he’s got a mic. The Champ talks about his upcoming match against Jinder Mahal on Sunday, and says he doesn’t want to lose what he finally got back – the WWE Title. AJ says he knows Jinder will do anything to get the Title back, and then AJ is interrupted by The Singh Brothers. They say this week, they’re not announcing Jinder because he beat them down last week. AJ says he feels bad for the Singh Brothers now, and invites them to the ring to hug it out. They come to the ring and say they’ll be in AJ’s corner at Clash of Champions, and thank AJ for supporting them. The Singh Brothers say they’re done with Jinder, and they call him a disgrace. AJ encourages them to continue, and they continue to trash Jinder, and say how bad he smells. AJ asks why the Singh Brothers were still with Jinder last weekend, and says he’s not being fooled by what the Singh Brothers are trying to do to him. Jinder comes out to the stage to interrupt. AJ starts beating down the Singh Brothers. Jinder approaches the ring, but doesn’t go in. The Singh Brothers roll out and Jinder checks on them as AJ stares them down. AJ’s music hits and the heels back up the ramp.
The Riott Squad is shown backstage as Ruby Riott warms up for her match against Charlotte.
– Charlotte Flair vs. Ruby Riott: This one is a non-title match, and Natalya is on commentary. We see a recap of The Riott Swad’s activity in their first weeks on the roster. The opening bell sounds and they go back and forth until Liv and Logan provide a distraction and Ruby rolls up Charlotte for an early pin attempt. Flair comes right back with a fall-away slam. Another distraction by Logan leads to Ruby hitting an STO on Flair. Ruby is now working on keeping Charlotte grounded, and the fight spills out to ringside. Natalya gets involved and Charlotte drops her. Natalya comes back and hits Charlotte, and the ref calls for the DQ.
Winner via DQ: Charlotte Flair
– After the match, The Riott Squad beats down Charlotte as Natalya watches. They continue to triple team Charlotte around ringside until Naomi comes out for the save. Naomi drops Logan and Liv first, then hits the Rear View on Ruby. Live and Logan pull Ruby to safety and they run up the ramp. Lana, Tamina and Carmella appear on the ramp to block the Riott Squad, and they start brawling. The Riott squad retreats again as the other women stare them down.
– The broadcast team plugs this Wednesday’s NXT episode airing on the USA Network.
– Daniel Bryan is backstage on the phone with who we believe is Shane McMahon. Bryan says he’ll be on commentary tonight to watch the main event, and then Zayn and Owens walk in the room and interrupt the call. They leave more of their “occupy” flyers with Bryan. Bryan tells Shane on the phone that the Clash of Champions is his top priority, as Owens and Zayn walk off. Bryan says goodbye to Shane, then checks out the flyers after OWens and Zayn leave.
– Baron Corbin vs. Dolph Ziggler: Bobby Roode joins the broadcast table for this one. This one is a non-title match. The opening bell rings and Corbin backs Ziggler into the corner with offense early on. Corbin drops Ziggler with strikes, but Ziggler comes back with a dropkick. After more back and forth shots, Corbin misses in the corner and hits the ring post himself, and now both men are down. Roode decides this is a good time to get in the ring for a closer look. Ziggler gets up first and Roode drops him with the Glorious DDT, and the ref calls for the bell.
Winner via DQ: Dolph Ziggler
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– After the bell, Corbin grabs Roode, but Roode gets the better of him and hits the Glorious DDT on him too. Roode talks trash to both Corbin and Ziggler before leaving as his music plays.
– We see a preview of the latest Fashion Files episode, and are told to go watch the whole thing on WWE.com.
– The Bludgeon Brothers vs. Colin Delaney & Joe Monroe: Rowan starts this one off and is destroying the jobbers with ease. Harper tags in and continues the beat-down. The assault spills out to ringside, and then back in the ring, before they hit their double team finisher for the win.
Winners: The Bludgeon Brothers
– Sami Zayn and Kevin Owens are out next. They come down to the ring in their new “Yep!” t-shirts, styled like the old Daniel Bryan “Yes!” t-shirts. Owens takes the mic and says the “yep movement” has arrived, and Sami adds that the energy in the arena is surreal right now. Sami talks about being united for change, and Owens says “Yep” after every point Sami makes. Sami shows us some footage from SmackDown last week of Owens being handcuffed to the ring. Owens says Vince and Stephanie McMahon are nothing compared to Shane McMahon in terms of evil. Owens says he hopes the ring is reinforced, because it’s time to “occupy SmackDown.” Owens asks for everyone in the back to come out and fill the ring, but no one shows up. Finally, Daniel Bryan emerges from the stage and stares at the two in the ring. Owens says Bryan is the inspiration for the yep movement, and Bryan steps in the ring. Sami says he thought thousands of people would join them in the ring right now, but he’s happy with only one, because it’s Mr. Daniel Bryan. Bryan asks what they’re doing, and they talk about how they’re just like Bryan. Bryan says they’re nothing alike, and says the “yes” thing was about the fans – not him. Sami and Owens continue to rant about how Shane is out to get them. Bryan says he has Shane’s back, but he knows Zayn and Owens are talented. Bryan says he’ll make sure their tag match on Sunday is fair, and it will be a chance for Sami and Owens to prove they belong on SmackDown. Bryan says if they lose, there are no excuses. Bryan says he and Shane will always have each other’s backs, and then he announces that he will join Shane as the second guest ref for the tag match at Clash on Sunday. Owens and Zayn seem happy with the news, and Bryan leaves.
– The Usos vs. Aiden English & Rusev is coming up.
– Aiden English and Rusev are out, and English treats us to a song about the 12 Days of Rusev Day. The Usos come out to interrupt, and they start cutting a promo until Chad Gable and Shelton Benjmain interrupt. Gable calls the other teams weak, and Shelton says on Sunday they’ll be collecting those Tag Titles. We go to commercial.
– The Usos vs. Rusev & Aiden English: This one opens up with Rusev and English taking control early on. Rusev gets Jey in a bear hug and talks trash to Jimmy on the apron. Jey starts mounting a comeback and drops Rusev. Jimmy and Aiden both tag in, and Jimmy hits a Samoan Drop on him. Jimmy is fired up and goes for a splash in the corner, but English blocks it with a boot to the face. Uso recovers and comes back with a superkick to English, but Rusev breaks up the pin. Jey sends Rusev out to the floor and goes for a suicide dive, but Rusev stops him with a punch in the face. Jimmy comes over to back up Jey, and the chaos leads to Rusev hitting a big boot on Jimmy at ringside. Aiden takes Jimmy back in the ring and quickly rolls him up for the win.
Winners: Rusev & Aiden English
– AJ Styles is backstage for an interview where he’s asked about Jinder and the Singh Brothers. AJ says the brothers weren’t fooling anyone, and unlike Jinder, AJ can win on his own without any help. Jinder and the Singh Brothers suddenly run in and attack AJ from behind. They beat AJ down and Jinder yells that AJ won’t be beating the odds on Sunday.
– The announcers take a moment to promote this Sunday’s Clash of Champions card.
– Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura make their way out to ring, separately. They get in the ring for an interview with Renee Young. She asks what they think about both Bryan and Shane being guest referees on Sunday. Orton says he doesn’t know about Shane or Bryan’s motives, but he knows he doesn’t like Owens or Sami because they’re obnoxious and entitled idiots. Renee asks if Nakamura agrees, and he says “yep.” Renee thanks them, and Nakamura’s music plays as we go to commercial.
– Cedric Alexander vs. Ariya Daivari is announced for tonight’s episode of 205 Live.
– Daniel Bryan comes down to join the broadcast table for tonight’s main event.
– Shinsuke Nakamura vs. Kevin Owens: Orton is still in the ring with Nakamura and Owens and Zayn make their way out together. Orton takes his time leaving the ring as this singles match opens up. Owens gets the upper hand on Nakamura early on, and he keeps him grounded with a headlock. Owens talks some trash to Orton, who is still at ringside. Nakamura fights up, but Owens drops him again with a knee. Nakamura finally gets off a successful kick to the face, and Owens rolls outside for a breather. Nakamura follows him to ringside, where Owens rams Nakamura into the corner of the ring apron a few times. Back in the ring, Owens hits a senton for a two count, then applies another headlock. Owens slams Nakamura down by his hair, and continues the offense while Nakamura is grounded. Nakamura finally counters a shot and connects with a running knee to the body of Owens. Nakamura tees off with forearm shots to the face, then positions Owens over the corner ropes. Nakamura goes for the running knee, but Owens moves and Nakamura crashes into the turnbuckle. Owens pulls Nakamura outside and whips him into the bawrrier, then beats him down around ringside. Back in the ring, Nakamura starts firing up but Owens shuts him down with a lariat. Nakamura comes back with a heel kick and Orton cheers him on. Nakamura continues to punish Owens and delivers a series of kicks. Owens fires back with a kick of his own, but Nakamura shuts him down with an enziguri. More strikes from Nakamura and then the Good Vibrations. Nakamura keeps the momentum going and sets Owens up on the ropes and connects with a running knee strike. Nakamura takes Owens up top and hits more forearm shots, but Owens fights him off and headbutts him down to the mat. Owens goes for a senton, but Nakamura blocks with his knees. Owens accidentally knocks the ref down, and Bryan gets up from commentary and hits the ring with a ref shirt on. Nakamura blocks a powerbomb attempt and drops Owens for a two count, counted by Bryan. Sami runs in, but so does Orton and Orton drops him. Sami and Orton brawl on the floor, while in the ring Nakamura gets ready for a Kinshasa on Owens. Sami runs back in the ring and Nakamura knocks him down. Owens takes advantage of the distraction and hits the pop up powerbomb on Nakamura. Owens covers, and Bryan counts the three count.
Winner: Kevin Owens
– After the match, Owens and Zayn celebrate up the ramp. Orton checks on Nakamura, and Owens and Zayn taunt them from the stage. Owens gets on the mic and says this proves nobody will be able to stop them, because they are the absolute best. He says they’re not just the best on SmackDown, but the entire WWE, and he tries to get a “yep” chant going. SmackDown goes off the air with Owens and Zany continuing to celebrate the big win.