Courtesy of our live coverage partner Matt Boone of RAJAH.com.
The final SmackDown on the road to WrestleMania 39 kicks off with the usual "WWE Then. Now. Forever. Together." opening signature narrated by pro wrestling legend and WrestleMania Goes Hollywood: Night 1 opening act, John Cena.
From there, we shoot inside the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles, CA. where the camera pans the venue and Michael Cole and Wade Barrett welcome us to the show. They get their Progressive ad-read out of the way and then run down the lineup for tonight's show.
After that, The Usos' theme hits and out comes the 621-reigning tag-team champions of WWE to kick off the final SmackDown before this year's two-night premium live event on "The Grandest Stage of Them All."
"Hey-hey, The Bloodline is now in your city," they say to start things off. They mention their match on the biggest stage possible at WrestleMania, but before they can say anything else, we hear the familiar sounds of Sami Zayn's theme music.
Out comes the duo of Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn as the fans sing along with Zayn's super catchy-ass'ed theme song. Zayn begins talking as the two head to the ring, mentioning that The Usos are right about their match being the biggest tag-title showdown in WWE history.
Sami Zayn vows that they will finish things up once and for all tomorrow night. Kevin Owens then takes over and says there's something he needs them to know. He mentions being conflicted about what he has to do tomorrow. He says the first two guys to make him feel welcome when he came to WWE, was The Usos.
Owens says he remembers bringing his son on the road, The Usos would hang with them and play with him. He said he thought of them as guys he and his son could look up to, until he started doing his cousins bidding. He continues about Roman Reigns and stops to tell The Usos, "Look at me when I'm talking to you!"
The crowd ooh's and ahh's and then Owens mentions that the two tried taking away his livelihood from him. He says the only reason that didn't happen was because of Zayn. He tells them to look at him again and tells The Usos it's not paranoia, they are gonna take their titles at WrestleMania.
Jimmy Uso begins responding saying they were nice when he first came to WWE but says the two men standing in the ring now are different. He says they got no love for Owens and damn sure ain't got none for Sami. The Usos say they are what Owens and Zayn wishes they could be -- real family.
Zayn interjects and says loyalty is what makes family. Jey Uso chimes in angrily and asks what Sami knows about loyalty. Sami says he's always been loyal, even to them, and it was them who have issues with trust and loyalty, particularly because of Reigns. Jey turns around.
Sami continues and says here's something Roman didn't ever tell them -- the pressure and everything else in The Bloodline lies with them. He says they're taking them out at WrestleMania and when they do, that's the end of The Bloodline, Roman Reigns, all of it.
He says then The Usos can go back to being who they used to be -- the guys everyone in the back loved, the fans, etc. He says the only difference is they won't have the tag titles any more. The fans break out in a light Usos chant and then a louder "Ucey" chant. Sami tells them off-mic, "I know you know it's true. I know you know."
Jey Uso replies, "Nah, nah, nah. That ain't it." He says it's gonna be the same thing with Owens and Zayn that it's always been -- they're gonna lose the big match and Owens is gonna stab Zayn in the back, again. Meanwhile, they're gonna do what they've been doing the past 600+ days, holding the tag titles.
He says he's sick of hearing people saying The Bloodline is gonna fall. He says this is Bloodline-mania. He vows The Usos will retain their titles on "The Grandest Stage of Them All" and slams the mic down. The four men stare each other down to end the opening segment.
As The Usos turn to leave the ring, they head up the ramp and The Street Profits' theme hits. The two teams walk past each other as Jimmy and Jey head to the back and the duo of Montez Ford and Angelo Dawkins begin making their way down to the ring.
The ring announcer then begins the formal ring introductions for our opening contest, which will be a fatal-four-way contest. The Street Profits settle inside the ring as we head to a pre-match commercial break. When we return, one member from each team in the Men's Showcase match at WrestleMania will be in action.
When we return from the break, Ricochet's theme hits and out he comes to the ring. Already in the ring is Erik and Chad Gable, as well as Montez Ford, who will be representing The Street Profits.
With all four men in the ring, the bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with this one. We see Erik and Ricochet splinter off to one side of the ring while Ford and Gable duke it out on the other. Ricochet and Ford knock their opposition out of the ring and turn their attention to each other.
The two try and springboard splash onto Erik and Gable on the floor, but they each catch them and suplex them on the floor. They then turn their attention to each other but turn back around and go back to work on Ricochet and Ford.
As the action continues, we head to a mid-match commercial break with Erik going on an offensive tear after ending his brief alliance with Chad Gable. When we return from the break, we see a bunch of back-to-back high spots that pops the crowd, with Ricochet wrapping things up with the victory.
After the four-way bout wraps up, we head to another commercial break with Cole and Barrett promoting the latest annual Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal taking place when we return.
When we return from the commercial break, we see a lengthy video package showing the road to the WrestleMania 39 showdown between Charlotte Flair and Rhea Ripley for the SmackDown Women's Championship.
Once that wraps up, we shoot back inside the arena where the ring announcer formally introduces the latest annual Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal. All of the participants in this bout make their way down to the ring at the same time.
As they wrap up their ring walks, we see a video package showing the history of Andre The Giant's legacy in WWE and the annual battle royal tradition in his name. Once it wraps up, we shoot back inside the arena.
Getting his own entrance is "The All Mighty" Bobby Lashley. He also gets the fireworks/pyro treatment and a separate introduction by the ring announcer. Lashley heads to the ring, which is filled up with everyone else competing in this battle royal.
We head to a pre-match commercial break with all of the guys in the ring ready to rock. When we return, the match is off-and-running. We see Elias and Rick Boogs trying to work together, including Boogs trying to save Elias from being thrown out.
Otis is having a good showing, successfully making multiple eliminations. Boogs then goes on an elimination rampage, which includes some favorites such as Otis, as we head to a mid-match commercial break while the action continues.
When we return from the break, we see a bunch of eliminations to clear out the ring a bit. Gargano and Lashley each start having strong moments that the commentators focus on. Lashley ends up eliminating Gargano. Ridge Holland hoists Bronson Reed up at one point but Reed escapes out the back door.
On the floor, Butch is knocked out but caught by Ridge, who was eliminated moments earlier. Seconds later, Butch is thrown out anyways. LA Knight is thrown out by Reed but he hangs on and rolls back in. Moments later, Reed eliminates him just as the fans were rallying behind him, so they started booing heavily.
Lashley, Strowman and Reed are the final three remaining in this one. The fans start to make a ton of noise as the three begin to mix it up. Reed ends up eliminating Strowman. Reed heads to the top-rope with Lashley down, but Lashley moves. Reed crashes and burns and then stands up just in time to be Speared by Lashley.
Reed tries to throw Lashley out after recovering, but Lashley hangs on and seconds later, tosses the massive Bronson Reed out for the final elimination. Bobby Lashley is the winner of the 2023 Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal. We see him pose on the ropes as the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal trophy is nearby.
Winner of the 2023 Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal: Bobby Lashley
After the Andre Battle Royal wraps up, we head to another commercial break. When we return, we see Shayna Baszler making her way down to the ring accompanied by Ronda Rousey.
Already in the ring are her three opponents for this fatal-four-way bout featuring one member from each team in the Women's Showcase bout scheduled for WrestleMania Goes Hollywood -- Raquel Rodriguez, Natalya and Sonya Deville.
The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with this one. We see Deville starting off strong but then Nattie takes over and locks her in the Sharpshooter. Baszler ends up slapping a choke on Nattie to pull her off, freeing Deville in the process.
With Baszler choking Nattie, she starts to climb up the middle rope backwards. Rodriguez ends up hoisting both of them over her shoulders -- at the same time -- in a cool spot.
Deville tries firing up but leaps off the ropes and is caught by Rodriguez, who holds her and big boots Baszler down before slamming Deville with her finisher for the pin fall victory. After the match, we head to another commercial break.
Winner: Raquel Rodriguez
When we return from the break we see a video package hyping the Dominik Mysterio vs. Rey Mysterio son vs. father showdown at WrestleMania Goes Hollywood. After that, we shoot backstage where Rey Mysterio is in his suit and tie getting ready for his WWE Hall of Fame induction.
Then we see Legado Fel Fanstasma approach him. He thanks them for having his back. They tell him to teach Dom a lesson at WrestleMania. Rey gives them some shirts and they turn them around to reveal the LWO logo (Latino World Order) from yester-year in the WCW days.
Michael Cole mentions, "This time, Rey Mysterio willingly joins the LWO" and then we head back inside the arena for our next match of the evening.
As we head back inside the Crypto.com Arena, we hear the familiar sounds of Sheamus' theme. "The Celtic Warrior" emerges and stops. His music cuts off and then Drew McIntyre's theme plays.
"The Scottish Warrior" emerges and the two begin heading down to the ring together for our next match of the evening, They will be taking on Ludwig Kaiser and Giovanni Vicci from Imperium when we return.
On that note, we head to a pre-match commercial break. When we return from the break, we see Imperium make their way down to the ring. The bell sounds and we're officially off-and-running with this one.
We see McIntyre jump off to an early offensive lead and then Sheamus is tagged in. "The Celtic Warrior" picks up where McIntyre left off, taking it to Imperium and even hitting his Ten Beats over the Bowery spot as the crowd counts along with each shot that lands.
McIntyre tags himself back in as Sheamus seemed to be setting up for the Brogue Kick. This leads to some pushing from the two veterans, which leads to Kaiser and Vicci attacking them from behind.
They clear the ring of the two and look at each other. We see GUNTHER watching on backstage and head to a mid-match commercial break as the action continues. When we return from the break we see Sheamus getting handled by Imperium.
Drew McIntyre ends up tagging himself in and going on an offensive spree, shifting the momentum back in the favor of his team. He hits a wicked belly to belly suplex. He goes for the Claymore Kick but Sheamus tags himself in. Eventually the two work their way to the win.
Winners: Drew McIntyre & Sheamus
After the tag match, we head to another commercial break. When we return, we hear the familiar sounds of the entrance theme song of "The American Nightmare" Cody Rhodes. With that said, the winner of the 2023 Royal Rumble match makes his way to the ring.
He settles in the ring and then his music dies down. He begins with his usual, "So, what do you wanna talk about?" line and the fans pop. He talks about his story and being ready to finish it this weekend.
Rhodes says he could talk about anything. He begins singing the lyrics to California Love by 2Pac and Dr. Dre -- and for a good minute, too. He talks about the fans welcoming him back when he returned to WWE. He says he needs medicine and the only fix is beating Roman Reigns on Sunday.
Cody says the last time he saw Roman, he was laying the belts at his feet and mentioning how Cody couldn't get over in his own company, AEW. He says Roman was a 11-year veteran who WWE put tens of millions of dollars into, which only started paying off in year eight.
He then mentions another thing that bothered him about what Reigns said and then as he goes to say his "finish the story" line, he is interrupted by the familiar sounds of the theme song of Roman Reigns. "The Tribal Chief" emerges accompanied by "The Wise Man" Paul Heyman and heads to the ring.
Reigns settles in the ring and his music dies down. He begins as always, "Los Angeles ...ac..." he stops. "You know what Wise Man," he adds. Heyman replies, "Yes my Tribal Chief..." and Reigns continues, "You know what? I don't care about any of them" he points to the crowd.
The Undisputed WWE Universal Champion simply looks at Cody with a dead serious look in his eyes. "Cody Rhodes ... ACKNOWLEDGE ME!" He holds the titles up high as he and Cody go face-to-face to wrap up this week's show. The show goes off the air on that note. Thanks for joining us!
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