Daniel Bryan sent a message to Roman Reigns and hurled Jey Uso out of the ring
A determined Daniel Bryan kicked off SmackDown by making it clear that he will no longer be the “old” Daniel Bryan. He said that after Elimination Chamber, he felt like a failure for putting himself on the back burner for so long, and he was now determined to prove that he was the absolute best by making sure “Reigns vs. Edge” never happens at WrestleMania.
He was soon interrupted by Roman Reigns, Jey Uso and Special Council Paul Heyman. The Big Dog said Bryan would lose to Uso and realize that he “needs” Reigns and will therefore acknowledge him as The Head of the Table. When Uso attempted to deliver a sneak attack to Bryan as he did last week, though, Bryan stopped him in his tracks and sent him flying out of the ring.
King Corbin def. Montez Ford
After teaming with Sami Zayn in a losing effort against The Street Profit last week, King Corbin refused to team with him again. Instead, he challenged either member of The Street Profits as a solo competitor. In the one-on-one matchup that followed against Montez Ford, Corbin shook off a wicked enziguiri and hit End of Days for the victory.
Angelo Dawkins def. Sami Zayn
Prior to his matchup against Sami Zayn, Angelo Dawkins knocked his imminent opponent off the apron and directly into King Corbin at ringside. As a result, the irate Corbin decided to take a walk and let Zayn face his opposition alone. In the subsequent match, The Master Strategist managed to kick out of the Silencer. Nevertheless, when Ford began messing with documentary crew outside the ring, the distraction allowed Dawkins to roll up Zayn for the win. In the aftermath, an angry Zayn beat up a member of the documentary crew.
Dominik Mysterio def. Chad Gable
After two brutal attacks by The Alpha Academy on Rey Mysterio in tag team action in recent weeks, Dominik Mysterio picked up a huge victory for his family with the technically sound quick pin on Chad Gable. Then, seconds after the bell, the quick-thinking Rey hit Otis with an explosive senton onto the announce table outside the ring.
Bianca Belair def. Shayna Baszler
On the heels of the announcements that she would face SmackDown Woman’s Champion Sasha Banks at WrestleMania and team with the titleholder against WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Shayna Baszler & Niz Jax at WWE Fastlane, Bianca Belair battled Baszler with The Boss, Jax and a recently fired Reginald all at ringside.
After being thrown out of the ring and to the feet of Reginald, an annoyed Belair hurled him across the ringside area at Nia Jax’s feet. When Jax then came after the disruptive Reginald, she ended up taking Banks out instead. Although Baszler attempted to take advantage of this disruption with the Kirifuda Clutch, The EST of WWE escaped before it was fully locked in and executed the K.O.D. for the the huge victory on one-half of the WWE Woman’s Tag Team Champions. In the aftermath, Belair took issue with Reginald, and he ended up feeling the slap of The Boss.
Cesaro def. Murphy
Last week, Seth Rollins informed Cesaro that he lacked a “killer instinct” and received a vertigo-inducing Cesaro Swing for his trouble.
This week, The SmackDown Savior joined SmackDown commentary as his one-time disciple Murphy went head-to-head with The Swiss Cyborg. Cesaro hit the Cesaro Swing on his opponent before making him tap out to the Sharpshooter. As the smoke cleared, Cesaro and Rollins stared each other down as The Architect gave the victorious Superstar a standing ovation.
Apollo Crews demanded an Intercontinental Title Rematch against Big E
Once again professing the dominance and power of his family heritage, Apollo Crews insisted he was now showing the “real Apollo.” Flanked by his his imposing Royal Guard that had been protectors of his family’s wealth for generations, he spoke of how his royal ancestors were the most feared and respected warriors in all of Nigeria. Claiming that Big E tried to conquer him, Crews demanded that The Powerhouse of Positivity give him a rematch for the Intercontinental Championship and promised the titleholder would fall at his feet.
Daniel Bryan def. Jey Uso in a Steel Cage Match
After being robbed of a Universal Championship opportunity last week with a double count-out, Daniel Bryan once again faced off against Jey Uso – this time inside the dreaded Steel Cage. If he emerged victorious, The Leader of the “Yes!” Movement would earn a Universal Title Match against Roman Reigns at WWE Fastlane. If he lost, he would have to acknowledge Reigns as the Head of the Table.
Prior to the match, Bryan leveled Uso backstage and made it clear that he meant business. In the absolutely brutal match that followed, both Superstars felt the full extent of the unforgiving steel and took each other to the limit.
After the competitors brought the action to new heights on the side of the cage, Bryan hit the butterfly suplex from the top turnbuckle and drove his foe down hard onto the canvas. This paved the way for him to secure the “Yes!” Lock and make Uso tap out to earn his Universal Title Match against The Big Dog on March 21.