Following their shocking reunion last week, Team Hell No kicked off SmackDown LIVE by chatting with Renee Young. Kane explained to the WWE Universe that he figured it would only be a matter of time before Daniel Bryan could use some backup and that The Beard’s run-in with The Bludgeon Brothers last week was the time to come to the rescue. However, as the two friends tried to express their excitement about their upcoming SmackDown Tag Team Championship opportunity at WWE Extreme Rules, they also couldn’t help but fall back into their old patterns of arguing over… well, pretty much everything. The two soon found themselves in a shouting match, but they were quickly interrupted by The Usos.
Jimmy and Jey were happy to see that Team Hell No were back together but took great exception to Bryan & Kane receiving a title opportunity right out of the gate. The Usos believed that Bryan and Kane had been awarded the title match for all the wrong reasons, a claim that Team Hell No of course refuted. Seeing tensions rising between the two teams, SmackDown LIVE General Manager Paige hit the scene with a blockbuster announcement: Team Hell No would receive their opportunity against The Bludgeon Brothers for the SmackDown Tag Team Titles at WWE Extreme Rules no matter what. However, if The Usos could defeat Team Hell No tonight in the main event, Jimmy & Jey would be added to the match to make it a Triple Threat.
And, well, how do you say “no” to that?!
With the Fourth of July just one day away, United States Champion Jeff Hardy issued the Independence Day United States Open Challenge to anyone on the roster… enter The A-Lister.
Yes, The Miz, who defeated Jeff Hardy to qualify for the Men’s Money in the Bank Ladder Match in a barnburner last month, answered the call and took the fight to The Charismatic Enigma.
The Miz constantly attempted to ground Hardy’s aerial mastery, but The Charismatic Enigma battled back, and after the referee caught The Miz red-handed trying to use the ropes for leverage during a pinfall attempt, Hardy caught an irate A-Lister with a Twist of Fate and a must-see Swanton Bomb for the victory.
Trying to spread some positivity (and pancakes) on the night before Independence Day, The New Day unveiled their First Annual Third of July Pancake Eating Contest. Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods competed in a flapjack-eating challenge set to last for a staggering five minutes. During the contest, however, the lights went out, and SAnitY attacked The New Day from behind. SmackDown LIVE officials rushed out to try to stop the attack, but SAnitY couldn’t be contained. Eric Young, Killian Dain and Alexander Wolfe continued the savage beatdown, and Dain and Wolfe held Woods down on a table while Young elbow-dropped him through it to cap off the assault.
With SmackDown Women’s Champion Carmella on commentary, Asuka and James Ellsworth engaged in a battle of the sexes after Carmella seemingly gave her lackey one simple instruction: Take Asuka out.
Ellsworth seemed ready to follow the orders until the bell rang and then the ultra-focused Empress of Tomorrow laid in, and an absolute pounding began. Making Ellsworth pay for his pivotal involvement in Carmella’s successful title defense at WWE Money in the Bank, the unrelenting Asuka forced Ellsworth to run away after catching him with an echoing slap. Asuka chased him, which resulted in a double count-out since Ellsworth had sprinted over the barricade and beyond. Carmella took complete advantage by blindsiding The Empress of Tomorrow while she was in hot pursuit.
The job didn’t go according to plan for the SmackDown Women’s Champion, but the night ended with Asuka briefly downed all the same, giving Carmella the edge heading into their match at WWE Extreme Rules. However, Ellsworth wasn't totally in the clear as it SmackDown LIVE General Manager Paige announced that Ellsworth would face Asuka again next week, this time in a Lumberjack Match with the entire blue brand Women's division surrounding the ring.
WWE Champion AJ Styles arrived on SmackDown LIVE ready to declare why he would defeat Rusev to retain his title at WWE Extreme Rules (aka Rusev Day), but The Phenomenal One was quickly interrupted by The Bulgarian Brute and Aiden English. Rusev let Styles know that he’s never faced anyone quite like The Super Athlete before promising to defeat him soundly at WWE Extreme Rules and move into “the house that AJ Styles built” as champion. Styles’ ensuing contest against English saw The Mozart of Mayhem try to get revenge after AJ dropped him several weeks ago, and English took advantage of a distraction from The Super Athlete right as the bell rang. That wouldn’t be enough, though, as Styles defeated English with the Calf Crusher for the tapout win.
However, The Phenomenal One would have no time to celebrate, as Styles was then met by an unexpected Machka Kick from Rusev, who locked the champion in the Accolade. Statement made.
Looking to continue her hot streak, Becky Lynch took on Peyton Royce (with Billie Kay by her side) on SmackDown LIVE.
The Irish Lass Kicker took Royce’s best, persevering through several expertly placed kicks by Peyton, locking her in the Dis-arm-her and notching the tapout victory to keep her winning streak alive.
With the stakes as high as could be for The Usos, Jimmy & Jey took on Team Hell No with a place in the SmackDown Tag Team Championship Match at WWE Extreme Rules on the line for them if they could prevail.
The two legendary tag teams went all out in a hard-hitting thriller that absolutely captivated the WWE Universe. As the match progressed, Jimmy & Jey caught fire, kept The “Yes!” Man down and continued to apply the pressure with high-impact offense. However, showing no rust at all, Daniel Bryan and Kane fought back, and when Kane incredibly caught both Usos in Chokeslam position from his back, Bryan knocked out Jimmy with the Running Knee, and The Big Red Machine connected with the Chokeslam on Jey for the win.
Team Hell No couldn’t bask in their victory as much as they would’ve liked, however, as their celebratory “Yes!” chant was cut short when The Bludgeon Brothers arrived at the top of the stage, staring holes into Bryan and Kane and reminding them of the challenge that awaits them at WWE Extreme Rules.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- Dark Match: Andrade Almas (w/ Zelina Vega) defeated Sin Cara
- Jeff Hardy (c) defeated The Miz to retain the WWE United States Championship (16:23)
- Asuka vs. James Ellsworth in a Battle of the Sexes match ended by a double count out (3:11)
- A.J. Styles defeated Aiden English (w/ Rusev) by submission (3:44)
- Styles was the WWE Champion at the time of this match.
- Becky Lynch defeated Peyton Royce (w/ Billie Kay) by submission (3:17)
- Team Hell No (Kane & Daniel Bryan) defeated The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) (11:42)
Other on-screen talent
The Usos confront Team Hell No
Jeff Hardy vs. The Miz
New Day's Third of July fesitivities
Asuka vs. James Ellsworth
AJ Styles vs. Aiden English
Becky Lynch vs. Peyton Royce
Team Hell No vs. The Usos
- WWE Smackdown Live #985 at CAGEMATCH.net
- WWE Smackdown Live #985 at WWE.com
- Smackdown #985 on WWE Network