The Intercontinental title will be on the line on SmackDown's go-home show for Extreme Rules.
Intercontinental Champion AJ Styles defends his title against Matt Riddle on tonight's show. Riddle made his main roster debut a few weeks ago and confronted Styles during his Intercontinental Championship presentation. Riddle then defeated Styles in a non-title match to earn the title shot tonight.
Riddle also defeated John Morrison on SmackDown two weeks ago after Baron Corbin interrupted an interview with Riddle but refused to face him.
Also on tonight's show, Bray Wyatt will host a Firefly Fun House segment. It comes in advance of Wyatt facing Universal Champion Braun Strowman in a non-title Swamp Fight at Sunday's pay-per-view. Wyatt promises to address Strowman and has a message for him.
Alexa Bliss will also host A Moment of Bliss with a mystery guest. Bliss and her tag team partner Nikki Cross lost a non-title match to Women's Tag Team Champions Sasha Banks & Bayley last week. Cross is challenging for Bayley's SmackDown Women's Championship at Extreme Rules.
Our coverage begins at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
SmackDown started with a series of quick interviews.
AJ Styles promised to retain his title against Matt Riddle and avenge his loss from a few weeks ago. He noted Riddle had the element of surprise but not this time.
Riddle then talked about the match as well and vowed to win the title. Daniel Bryan on Zoom noted Riddle and Styles are going to have a classic match.
Alexa Bliss promised a major surprise later on a Moment of Bliss.
The Miz and John Morrison discussed Morrison's match with Braun Strowman later. Miz kept asking Morrison if he was scared. Miz and Morrison did some comedy that didn't fit with the tone the previous interviews set.
Cesaro and Shinsuke Nakamura revealed they have a title match against The New Day at Extreme Rules. Cesaro takes on Big E tonight, and the winner picks the stipulation.
The New Day promised to defeat Cesaro and Nakamura. Big E guaranteed victory. The New Day than did their introduction and headed to the ring.
This was a different way to start the show and did build some anticipation for the card tonight. It was similar to the beginning of the old Saturday Night's Main Events in the 80s, but it went a bit long. There weren't any long in-ring promos tonight, which was a nice change.
Cesaro (w/Shinsuke Nakamura) defeated Big E (w/Kofi Kingston)
The winner's team gets to pick the stipulation for Extreme Rules, which is either a tables match or a cage match.
Cesaro and Big E had a good hard-hitting match.
Cesaro had the early advantage and slowed the pace down with a chin lock. Big E fought back and caught Cesrao with a massive belly to belly suplex. He followed up with a splash on the apron.
Back from the break, Big E attempted a spear through the ropes, but Cesaro rocked him with a boot. Cesaro followed up with a middle rope springboard uppercut for a close near fall.
Cesaro fought out of a submission and did the big swing into the sharpshooter.
Big E powered out of the sharpshooter and attempted the Big Ending. Cesaro grabbed the top rope, which forced the referee to move out of the way. Nakamura jumped on the apron and rocked Big E with a forearm, which allowed Cesaro to hit the neutralizer for the win.
Cesaro and Nakamura get to pick the stipulation for the match at Extreme Rules. After the match, the heels jumped Big E and went to pull out a table from under the ring. Kingson hit a dive taking the heels out. The New Day placed Cesaro on a table, but Nakamura made the save.
In the back, Kayla Braxton interviewed King Corbin. Corbin's certain AJ Styles will have no problem defeating Matt Riddle.
Back from the break, Cesaro and Nakamura were in the back. They tried to decide which stipulation they should pick. Nakamura suggested a cage match, but Cesaro doesn't want to see The New Day dancing against the cage. They then announced the stipulation is a tables match.
A Moment Of Bliss With Special Guest Raw Women's Champion Asuka
The announcer introduced Alexa Bliss and her enthusiastic best friend, Nikki Cross. Bliss and Cross discussed the fifth anniversary of the women's evolution. Bliss made a few predictions including the Lakers will win the championship, Matt Riddle will defeat AJ Styles for the I.C. title tonight, and her friend Braun Strowman will defeat Bray Wyatt in the swamp fight.
Bliss was about to introduce her guest when Cross interrupted. Cross assumed she was the special mystery guest and went on a rant. She promised to defeat Bayley for the SmackDown Women's title at Extreme Rules.
Bliss revealed that Cross isn't her guest. Cross was dejected but tried to understand. Bayley and Sasha Banks interrupted and made their way to the ring.
Bayley and Banks noted they're the architects of the women's evolution. Bayley then predicted that she would defeat Cross, and Banks will defeat Raw Women's Champion Asuka at Extreme Rules.
Banks mocked Bliss and Cross. Bliss said that was great but noted they didn't let her introduce her guest.
Raw Women's Champion Asuka's music hit and she walked onto the ramp. Bayley and Banks freaked out and jumped Bliss and Cross in the ring. Asuka ran down for the save. Bliss grabbed the mic and demanded a referee. This was a good segment; in particular, Bayley and Banks were great.
In the back, Matt Riddle and Drew Gulak were sparring in preparation for Riddle's match later.
Daniel Bryan discussed AJ Styles and Riddle's match later tonight. Bryan knows what Riddle can do and thinks he has a chance to defeat Styles.
WWE Women's Tag Team Champions & SmackDown Women's Champion Bayley & Sasha Banks defeated Raw Women's Champion Asuka & Nikki Cross (w/Alexa Bliss)
This was a good tag team match that picked up towards the end.
The heels isolated Cross in their corner to gain control of the match. Cross fought back and used an inside cradle for a near fall. Bayley regained control and used a chin lock to slow the pace down.
Asuka got the hot tag and ran wild on Bayley. The heels tried to double team Asuka, but she took them both down. Asuka used the hip attack to knock Bayley off the apron. Banks attempted a sliding dropkick to the floor, but Asuka caught her in the ring apron skirt. Asuka and Cross beat down Banks. The faces then caught Bayley in the apron skirt and beat her down as well.
Cross caught Bayley with a crossbody off the apron. The faces jumped on the announce table and started dancing.
Back from the break, the heels regained control and kept Asuka on their side of the ring. Banks slowed the pace down with a chin lock. Asuka fought back and tagged in Cross.
Cross hit a splash in the corner and followed up with a running bulldog for a near fall. Cross missed a crossbody, and Banks hit a basement dropkick for a near fall. Bayley climbed to the top, but Cross cut her off. Bayley sent Cross to the floor, but Cross recovered and hit a tornado DDT off the announce table.
Bayley crawled to make the tag, but Asuka tried to pull Banks off the apron. Banks fought back and attempted the Metearo but missed. Asuka then rocked Banks with a superkick.
In the ring, Bayley tripped up Cross and used the ropes to pin Cross. Bayley once again beat Cross, although she had to cheat to win.
In the back, Miz tried to convince John Morrison not to be scared of Braun Strowman. Morrison tried to get Miz to take his place, but Miz turned him down.
The Firefly Funhouse
The opening theme began but cut out, and a cartoon swamp briefly appeared before The Eater of Worlds Bray Wyatt appeared in a real swamp. Wyatt talked about his past association with Braun Strowman. He said he created Strowman, but then he left.
After Extreme Rules, a part of Strowman will live at the swamp forever. Wyatt knows that the Strowman that he knows is still inside of him. Wyatt noted Strowman didn't embrace the monster he wanted him to be. Instead, Wyatt has to destroy the monster he has become. This was a good Wyatt promo.
Non-title match: Universal Champion Braun Strowman defeated John Morrison (w/The Miz)
Before the match, Strowman noted he has to go home to the swamp to face his fears. He has to destroy Wyatt before he destroys him. Strowman noted he isn't going to let Wyatt turn into The Fiend.
This was basically a squash match. Strowman completely dominated Morrison and beat him around the ring. At one point. Strowman picked up Morrison from the mat and slammed him back down. Strowman hit the running power slam for the quick win.
After the match, Strowman grabbed the mic and promised to go home. Strowman laughed and then walked off.
Morrison refused medical attention but needed Miz's help to the back. Lacey Evans made her entrance as Miz helped Morrison to the back.
They recapped the Karaoke Showdown from last week and Evans jumping Naomi.
Lacey Evans defeated Naomi
Naomi and Evans had a short match that dragged at times.
Naomi tossed Evans into the corner. Naomi slid on her knees and slapped Evans in the face. Evans took over and hit a springboard elbow for a near fall. Evans attempted a bottom rope moonsault, but Naomi got her knees up.
Naomi hit a series of kicks, but Evans caught the leg. Evans missed the women's right, and Naomi rocked her with a kick. Evans ended up on the apron and tied up Naomi's hair in the ropes.
Naomi broke free, but Evans rocked her with the women's right for the win.
In the back, Kayla Braxton interviewed Jeff Hardy. Braxton wondered why Hardy accepted the challenge for the Bar Room Brawl and put his sobriety at risk. Hardy noted Sheamus is a bully, and it's a risk to walk in the bar, but he has to defeat Sheamus.
Hardy noted Sheamus framed him so he couldn't compete in the I.C. title tournament. Suddenly, Sheamus hit Hardy with The Brogue Kick. Sheamus promised to defeat Hardy in the Bar Room Brawl.
Back from the break, Braxton interviewed Bayley and Sasha Banks. Braxton wondered if their momentum will continue at Extreme Rules. Bayley promised Banks would win the Raw Women's title. They mocked Cross and laughed at her.
Cross and Bliss were watching the interview. Cross noted she lost two weeks in a row, and she lost her confidence. Bliss tried to cheer her up, but it didn't work. Cross heard Bayley and Banks laughing nearby. Cross snapped and jumped the heels.
Michael Cole and Corey Graves discussed the fifth anniversary of the women's evolution.
Intercontinental Champion AJ Styles defeated Matt Riddle
Riddle and Styles had a really good match. They worked a fast pace but told a story. Riddle looked good, and the finish protected him somewhat.
They locked up, and Riddle backed Styles into the corner. Riddle then got a waist lock, but Styles broke free.
Riddle took over with rolling gut-wrench suplexes and a springboard knee, which knocked Styles off the apron. Styles was upset and banged on the announce table, which Riddle mocked. Riddle then rocked Styles with a jumping knee.
Back from the break, Riddle was firmly in control and hit a series of knees. On commentary, Michael Cole and Corey Graves pushed that Riddle is dominating Styles and the match.
Riddle used the fishermen suplex for a close near fall. Styles then dropped Riddle on the top rope to gain control. Styles attacked Riddle's leg and worked it over. Styles slowed the pace down with a chin lock.
Riddle recovered and hit a running forearm in the corner and followed up with a suplex. Riddle missed a standing moonsault but landed on his feet.
Riddle hit the bro to sleep and transitioned into a powerbomb and then hit a jumping knee.
Back from the break, Styles rocked Riddle with a clothesline to regain control. Riddle fought back with vicious chops, but Styles went back to the leg.
Riddle quickly recovered and caught Styles with a German suplex. However, Styles fought back and rocked Riddle with a superkick. Styles attempted the Styles Clash, but Riddle blocked it. Styles attempted a suplex, but Riddle escaped and hit the final flash.
Riddle attempted the floating bro, but Styles moved, and Riddle crashed to the mat. Styles attempted the Styles Clash, but Riddle broke free.
Styles then hit a vicious looking brainbuster for a near fall. Styles attempted the Phenomenal Forearm, but Riddle caught him and attempted Bro Derek.
Styles broke free, but Riddle hit the senton. Riddle and Styles traded shots in the middle of the ring. Riddle attempted the Pele kick, but Styles locked on the calf crusher.
Riddle countered into the bro mission, but Styles countered and rolled up Riddle for the win.
After the match, Riddle and Styles had a staredown. Styles showed Riddle respect, and they shook hands.
Suddenly, King Corbin jumped Riddle from behind. Styles hesitated and seemed like he might help but just walked away.
Corbin beat down Riddle and hit the end of days.