The main storyline on SmackDown has been the family drama involving the Usos and Roman Reigns. With Jimmy Uso having returned for action, something of a battle for Jey Uso’s soul has broken out between Jimmy and Reigns. That continued on Friday’s edition of SmackDown, a show that saw the Usos team up for the first time in more than a year.
The Usos not only won their match, beating The Street Profits, but secured a championship opportunity for next week. That success did not leave Reigns happy, however, and the universal champion spent most of the night fuming over what seemed to be control of his family slipping away.
CBS Sports was with you all night with recaps and highlights of all the action from the ThunderDome inside Yuengling Center in Tampa.
The Usos earn title shot against The Mysterios
The Usos opened the show excited about teaming together again for the first time in more than a year when Roman Reigns interrupted and asked Jimmy Uso what his endgame was with teaming with Jey again. Jimmy said the endgame is to win and move toward becoming champions. After wishing the team luck, Reigns asked Jey if he was letting his brother speak for him now and suggested that if Jey is “with him” as Jey had told Reigns, he needed to tell Jimmy.
The Usos def. The Street Profits via pinfall after Jimmy Uso hit Montez Ford with a superkick. Before the match, the Profits sent the Usos into a rage by taking shots at “the family.” The mocking continued during the match, with the Profits rubbing it in every time they had the advantage early. The match was very long, featuring some huge moments, including an incredible Ford dive over the corner post onto Jey on the outside of the ring. Jey was able to pull Jimmy out of the way of a Ford frog splash, allowing Jey to hit a superkick for the win. Later in the night, Jimmy petitioned Adam Pearce to give them a title match next week.
SmackDown Tag Team Championship — Rey & Dominik Mysterio (c) def. Dolph Ziggler & Robert Roode via pinfall to retain the titles. The show came back from a pre-match commercial break with Rey on the ground backstage having been attacked. Roode and Ziggler were in the ring saying it should be a forfeit if the Mysterios couldn’t compete, leading Dominik to say he would step up for their family the way Rey had at WrestleMania Backlash. Dominik was dominated early before making a brief comeback. As the tide turned again, Rey made his way to the entrance ramp, allowing Dominik to steal the pin with a roll-up. The Usos came to the ring to confront the champs as Reigns watched backstage as the show came to an end.
There’s nothing quite as satisfying in wrestling as a situation where you’re left unsure what exactly will happen. That’s playing out currently with the Usos and Reigns. Will Jey abandon his twin brother at Reigns’ instruction or will Reigns suddenly lose the advantage he has enjoyed of having a right hand man willing to do anything he is told at any moment? The Mysterios are champions, but bit players in the bigger story that will play out next week. Also, the Usos vs. Street Profits match was just plain good television wrestling. Grade: B+
What else happened on WWE SmackDown?
- Tamina & Natalya def. The Riott Squad via pinfall when Tamina pinned Ruby Riott with a top-rope splash.
- Bianca Belair def. Carmella via pinfall after hitting the Kiss of Death. Bayley was on commentary for the match, making her intentions to secure a rematch with Belair clear.
- Seth Rollins cut a lengthy promo, first calling Cesaro out to the ring and then taunting when explaining that Cesaro was not there because of Rollins’ attack last week.
- Kevin Owens def. Apollo Crews (c) via disqualification after interference by Commander Azeez. Owens got off to a lightning fast start and quickly hit a stunner but Azeez broke the pin with a Nigerian Nail for the DQ. Owens was granted a rematch for the intercontinental championship for next week with Azeez banned from ringside.
- Shinsuke Nakamura def. Chad Gable via pinfall with a Kinshasa. Rick Boogz again played guitar for Nakamura’s entrance. Otis slammed Nakamura before the match, softening up Nakamura. King Corbin came to ringside during the match and stole back his crown, but Boogz struck from behind to knock the crown loose for Nakamura to steal back.