WWE SmackDown Live results, recap, grades: Shock return has Kofi Kingston facing new challenge
A returning superstar immediately set his sights on the WWE champion Tuesday night
Since earning one of the most memorable wins in WrestleMania history, WWE champion Kofi Kingston has been walking around SmackDown Live with a major target on his back. Thus far, he's successfully stepped up to every challenge that's been presented, but on Tuesday night's edition of SmackDown Live, a new threat emerged in the form of a returning superstar simply fueled by nothing more than jealousy.
Let's have a look at everything that went down Tuesday night on SmackDown, beginning with Kingston's newest WWE title challenger.
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Kofi Kingston gets more on his plate
WWE champion Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods were out to welcome Big E back to television from injury. After bringing out an impostor draped in a dark cloak as a rib, the real Big E emerged with his left knee braced. In the ring, Big E and Woods referenced his impeccable Twitter activity while he's been rehabbing and joked a bit more before Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn interrupted. New Day trolled the fact that Owens lost to Kingston at Money in the Bank, but instead of firing back on the microphone, Owens simply walked to the back. Left by himself, Zayn promised The New Day that their night would not end in fun after he defeats Kingston later in the night while Kingston got the last word in by proclaiming he'll walk right through Zayn.
Prior to Zayn battling Kingston, Big E was shown writhing in pain backstage as Woods let Kingston know he'll take care of their friend during the match. Big E did reveal the attacker to be Owens, and as the bout was taking place, the announcers noted Woods left with Big E to head to the local medical facility.
Kofi Kingston def. Sami Zayn via pinfall. Following the conclusion, Paul Heyman appeared and teased Kingston with the briefcase. As the WWE champ was distracted, Dolph Ziggler appeared out of nowhere and began to brutally dismantle Kingston, a beatdown that included wrapping his head within a steel chair and slamming him into the announce table. Kingston was stretchered out but walked himself to the back when they reached the top of the stage. A short time later, Ziggler took the mic out to the fans and explained it was basically jealousy that led him to the attack; jealousy over Kingston taking the spotlight he should have enjoyed following Ali's injury leading into WrestleMania 35. Ziggler finished by saying that, at Super ShowDown, he's taking the WWE title from Kingston.
While Ziggler is a familiar face, that was certainly a bit out of left field, eh? Everything about Kingston's booking as champion since his dramatic win has been stellar, and this layer of everyone from Owens to possibly Lesnar and now Ziggler gunning for him at the top should make his run at least the slightest bit more memorable. Seeing as both men debuted on the main roster in 2008, the story of jealousy that's being told is very fitting for this new feud, and this has the potential to be the best in-ring offering in Saudi Arabia if given the proper time. Grade: A-
What else happened on SmackDown?
- Carmella searched for 24/7 champion R-Truth in the back and found him disguised in the blonde wig. Truth mentioned he needed her help to hide from everyone, and she obliged.
- Ali def. Andrade via pinfall. After being brutalized throughout the match, Ali surprised Andrade with a small package for the win.
- Mandy Rose vs. Carmella ended in a no contest when a group of superstars ran out for R-Truth and the 24/7 championship.
- New SmackDown women's champion Bayley cut a promo telling the entire locker room to be ready because she's moved past the hugs.
- Bayley & Becky Lynch def. Charlotte Flair (via pinfall) & Lacey Evans. Bayley got the best of Flair yet again, catching her in a small package during a Figure Four attempt.
- R-Truth evaded attempts from both Jinder Mahal and the B-Team to take his 24/7 title.
- A promo package aired highlighting the Triple H-Randy Orton history to hype up their Super ShowDown match.
- Roman Reigns def. Elias via pinfall after a spear. Shane McMahon attacked after the match, and as Reigns gained the upper hand and was about to nail him with Elias' guitar, McMahon's new heavy Drew McIntyre laid Reigns out with a Claymore kick to end the show.
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