SmackDown Live this week was a night of celebration. Tuesday night marked the 1,000th episode for the blue brand, which began its run in April 1999. SmackDown 1,000 was a show that had everything from popular faces of the past to some good matches to a heel turn, and we even witnessed a championship change hands on the historic episode.
It was certainly a notable evening at SmackDown 1,000, but if there's one thing we've all learned throughout the years, there is no celebration in WWE without featuring the family that's responsible for it all. And because SmackDown 1,000 on Tuesday night was so epic, the patriarch himself even graced us with his presence early on.
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WWE SmackDown 1,000 results, grades
A McMahon-heavy opening segment: The historic 1,000th episode of SmackDown opened up with an episode of "Truth TV," with R-Truth and Carmella in the ring to open the show following an incredible video package. Truth said there have been a lot of memorable moments in the history of "Truth TV," but none like tonight. Carmella hilariously reminded Truth the show's only had one episode, so then, of course, it was time for a 7-second dance break. After yet another dance break, Carmella said it was time to welcome out their first guest, and current Raw commissioner Stephanie McMahon made her way to the ring.
McMahon recalled that she was the first general manager of SmackDown, and back then she had a vision. It's so nice to see her vision come to life. Before Truth can fire off a question, the music of SmackDown commissioner Shane McMahon blared over the speakers to an enormous pop (seeing as he's been absent for a while). Shane said the opening video package flooded him with a lot of memories from throughout the years, and he then thanked the fans for making not only SmackDown but WWE the success that it is. Stephanie jumped in by saying Shane was just pandering, and Shane then welcomed her to the "A-show." To draw some heat from the crowd, Stephanie touted how much better Raw is, saying she wouldn't start off a Monday night segment with "Truth TV." Before the siblings got too heated with one another, it was time for Daddy to step in.
Yes, "No Chance in Hell" hit, the place went ballistic and Vince McMahon entered the ring. Vince told his children that no one wants to see them fight and bicker; the people just want to be entertained. Vince wondered how the people could be entertained, so he called for ... a dance break! Vince danced in the ring with Truth, Carmella, Stephanie and Shane to put a bow on the SmackDown 1,000 opening segment. Grade B+
The Usos def. AJ Styles & Daniel Bryan via pinfall: The WWE champion and his challenger at Crown Jewel were working well together for most of the match, right up until the very end. Bryan went to nail Jey Uso with a forearm but inadvertently connected with Styles instead. Styles shoved Bryan right into a superkick from the Usos before eating one of his own to give The Usos the win. Grade: B
SmackDown GM get-together backstage: Backstage, the camera showed Paige hanging out with Vickie Guerrero, before the man himself -- and maybe the most notable blue brand general manager in history -- Teddy Long showed up doing his signature dance. John Laurinaitis then made his way into the shot to end the segment. Oddly, no talking could really be heard.
Evolution reunion gets a bit heated: The familiar Evolution theme music played as the show came back from commercial, and out came Ric Flair, Triple H, Randy Orton and Batista. Triple H started off pondering how you can accomplish 1,000 episodes. He said you accomplish it by evolving. He said the only way to celebrate it is to bring back the one group that epitomizes the word "evolution." Flair took his quick turn on the mic, simply wooing and strutting for a bit to get a great reaction from the crowd. Orton said it was a pleasure to get his start with the men in the ring with him, he's just busted his ass to continue evolving; he even took a slight dig at Batista's movie career by saying he's spending more time these days in a makeup chair.
Batista took his turn at the end and said he's a little nervous being back in the ring, but he's gonna enjoy it, and he's gonna ignore what Orton said. Batista said that everyone knows that the last place he wants to be is with the microphone in his hand. He admitted that he came up with four reasons why he returned: He's back on the blue brand which he helped build; they're in his hometown of Washington, D.C.; all of the fans in the building brought him back, whether they love him or hate him; and the other members of Evolution with him because of how special they are together. "The Animal" then took the time to point out why each of his fellow Evolution members are special. When he got to Triple H, though, things got awkward. Batista said that "The Game" has done it all in his career -- except beat him. The two stared each other down for a bit before hugging, but it's clear they planted the seeds for something down the road. Grade: A-
The Miz def. Rusev via pinfall (World Cup qualifying match): Miz got the rollup after Aiden English distracted Rusev from the outside. After the match, Lana kicked English right in the crotch, and Rusev proceeded to decimate his former friend on the outside. Grade: D+
"Cutting Edge" turns into chaos: Edge came out to an enormous pop for the advertised "Cutting Edge" segment, and he said things don't get much bigger than SmackDown 1,000. He had to be here because SmackDown has always felt like his show, and he ran down his list of blue-brand accomplishments from there. The last few weeks, though, he's been watching something go down on SmackDown, and he of all people is going to attempt to be a moral compass. He first welcomed out SmackDown women's champion Becky Lynch. Edge told Lynch that they have a lot of similarities, and the champ said she emulates Edge and is appreciative of being on the show. Edge said, like Lynch, he had to claw and scratch for everything that he got. However, he doesn't believe Lynch made the right choice in destroying her friendship with Charlotte Flair. He lectured Lynch from there about how, no matter how much she accomplishes in her career, she'll be alone one day celebrating it all and will end up not liking herself. Lynch agreed with Edge -- she doesn't like herself, rather she loves herself. She told Edge to get out of her ring, and threw in a snide remark about being careful he doesn't hurt his neck on the way out.
Flair came out immediately and said all Lynch cares about is that title. That's why she ran at Super Show-Down and last week before she was put through the LED board. Flair said that if she loves herself, then she's gonna love what she does to her right now, and dove right in for the takedown. The two women brawled before the officials came out to break them up. Grade: A-
SmackDown Tag Team Championship -- The Bar def. New Day (c) to win the titles: Sheamus & Cesaro were about to tear apart New Day on the outside, when all of a sudden, Big Show's music hit. He came out and seemed to stalk The Bar, but instead, we got a heel turn with Big Show taking out Kofi Kingston. In the ring, Big E was distracted and got nailed with the Brogue Kick from Sheamus for the 1-2-3. We have new SmackDown tag team champions. Now we need to find out just what the relationship is between Big Show and The Bar. Grade: C+
John Cena sends congratulations: A pre-taped promo aired with Cena. He called back to his "Ruthless Aggression" debut on an episode of SmackDown where he challenged Kurt Angle, and he said that 1,000 episodes do not happen without the fans. He looks forward to many more in the future.
Rey Mysterio def. Shinsuke Nakamura via pinfall (World Cup qualifying match): It was, as expected, a successful return for Mysterio as he begins his new full-time run. Mysterio earned the win after hitting the 6-1-9 followed by the frog splash. The WWE World Cup field is now complete. Grade: B
Undertaker sends a message: As Mysterio celebrated his victory, the bell tolled, the lights went out and The Undertaker slowly made his way down to the ring. Taker took the mic and said that, at Crown Jewel, he has just three words for D-Generation X: Rest in Peace. SmackDown 1,000 concluded with a shot of Undertaker with his fist raised at the top of the ramp.
WWE SmackDown 1,000 highlights
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