The Miz kicked off the latest SmackDown LIVE with “Miz TV” and announced that he and his wife Maryse's new show, “Miz and Mrs.,” would debut on Tuesday, July 24, on USA Network immediately following SmackDown LIVE. Miz then welcomed his guests tonight, The New Day, who defeated The Bar in a Money in the Bank Qualifying Match last week. Now, one member of the group is eligible to join the career-changing contest ... but which member will it be?
Miz, who of course had a vested interest in the selection because he too is in the match, immediately tried to pry the information from the trio. However, The A-Lister was met with surprise and confusion when Big E, Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods proclaimed that it would be all three of them entering the match. Knowing that this was just conjecture on the part of The New Day, Miz verbally attacked all three, but his mind games did not seem to penetrate, leading to The A-Lister hastily saying that it wouldn't matter who the group selected because he could defeat any of them.
From there, finally, The New Day announced that it would be Big E ... but not as the entrant for the Money in the Bank Ladder Match, but as his opponent right now. Miz refused the challenge though, proclaiming that if The New Day wasn't going to give him what he wanted, he wouldn't reciprocate on their demand.
Miz was then pelted with pancakes before arriving backstage. However, he was met by SmackDown LIVE General Manager Paige, who told him that although The New Day did not have to give their Money in the Bank answer right now, he would have to face Big E tonight ... actually, next!
With Xavier Woods on commentary, this impromptu match got underway with Big E coming out hot, clearly fuming after Miz's attempted mind games from earlier. While Big E dominated, The New Day refueled him by wiping his brow and giving him a nice sampling of maple syrup. From there, Xavier and Kofi switched places at the commentary desk as the match raged on. When the match appeared to be at a standstill, The Bar rushed out and attacked Woods from behind. This prompted Kingston to come to his aid, and Kofi caught a thunderous Brogue Kick during the chaotic bedlam. With Kofi and Xavier down, The Bar got to the apron, which caused Big E to try and swiftly take him out. However, this allowed The Miz the opening to take down the distracted Big E with the Skull-Crushing Finale for the victory.
Billie Kay would not be intimidated by Lana's presence, even with Aiden English giving her a very “Rusev Day”-esque intro. The IIconics retaliated by singing a number of their own, running Lana's name down prior to the contest.
Right as the match began, Aiden busted out a “Lana Day” sign that prompted he and Peyton Royce to get into an argument outside the ring. This led to Lana dropping Royce on the outside and Kay not taking kindly to it. However, once Billie rolled The Ravishing Russian into the ring, Lana used the commotion to her advantage, stunning Kay with a kick and then dropping her for good with a unique maneuver for the 1-2-3. With the three-count, Lana not only advanced to the Women's Money in the Bank Ladder Match, but she also got the first singles win of her WWE career.
Building off his impressive SmackDown LIVE debut from last week, Andrade “Cien” Almas absolutely decimated another local competitor this week on the blue brand. Sneering at his overmatched adversary and thrashing him about the ring, El Idolo finished him off with two doses of double knees into the corner and the Hammerlock DDT before celebrating with Zelina Vega while staring daggers through the WWE Universe.
Following his victory over WWE Champion AJ Styles last week, Shinsuke Nakamura earned the right to decide the stipulation for his title bout against The Phenomenal One at WWE Money in the Bank.
Nakamura first played coy with Styles, suggesting that they were going to have a pillow fight, but then, getting very serious, Nakamura boldly stated that he knew that he was better than Styles. AJ retorted by reminding Shinsuke that he “can’t beat him when it counts,” and the two began brawling.
The fight spilled into the WWE Universe, and The Phenomenal One began to tee up a Phenomenal Forearm off the barricade, but Nakamura stopped the attack with a steel chair, connecting flush with Styles’ body in mid-air. The King of Strong Style then continued the assault, tossing Styles onto the announce table with a front suplex and nailing him with a Kinshasa on the outside. After that, as Styles laid motionless, Nakamura began to count to 10, then announced that at WWE Money in the Bank, the two would compete in a Last Man Standing Match for the WWE Championship.
With the opportunity to challenge SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Bludgeon Brothers at WWE Money in the Bank on the line, Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson squared off against The Usos on SmackDown LIVE, but not before exchanging fiery words, and then fists, before the bell rang. Looking to get another crack at Harper & Rowan, Jimmy & Jey Uso ripped off offense early and often, but Gallows & Anderson weathered the storm, defeating Jimmy Uso with their patented Magic Killer to earn the chance to dethrone The Bludgeon Brothers.
After not being the one pinned in last week's Triple Threat Qualifying Match against Becky Lynch and Mandy Rose, Sonya Deville got another opportunity to qualify for the Women's Money in the Bank Match in a one-on-one bout with Naomi.
Deville attempted to wear down Naomi, neutralizing her exceptional athleticism, but Deville could just not contain The Glow, and Naomi defeated Deville with a unique rollup to earn entry into the Ladder Match.
Daniel Bryan squared off with Jeff Hardy for the first time ever, and, boy, was it a show.
With Samoa Joe (who will face the winner in a Money in the Bank Qualifying Match next week) doing guest commentary, Bryan and Hardy absolutely enthralled the WWE Universe, laying it all on the line.
As the match continued, the two pushed each other to their absolute limits, with Bryan going for the Flying Knee off the apron, only for Hardy to evade it and connect with a Flying Clothesline. After The Charismatic Enigma dropped his opponent with Whisper in the Wind for a two-count, Bryan struck back quickly with the “Yes” Kicks.
Hardy seemed to be closing in on the victory when he executed the Twist of Fate, but Bryan got his knees up when Hardy went for the Swanton Bomb, keeping himself alive in the contest. Hardy then fended off Bryan's Flying Knee, but Bryan torqued Hardy's leg and locked him in the heel hook for the submission victory.
The “Yes!” Man could not celebrate for too long after earning another chance at qualifying for the Men's Money in the Bank Match because Samoa Joe entered the ring to remind Bryan that they would square off next week. Joe looked ready, Bryan looked ready, and you can bet that the WWE Universe is ready as well.
- Numbers in parentheses indicate the length of the match.
- (c) refers to the champion(s) heading into the match.
- The Miz defeated Big E (w/ Kofi Kingston & Xavier Woods) at 10:55
- Lana (w/ Aiden English) defeated Billie Kay (w/ Peyton Royce) in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match at 1:09
- Andrade "Cien" Almas (w/ Zelina Vega) defeated a local competitor at 1:54
- Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson defeated The Usos (Jimmy & Jey Uso) to be the #1 Contender for the WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championship via pinfall on Jimmy at 5:20
- Naomi defeated Sonya Deville (w/ Mandy Rose) in a Money in the Bank Qualifying match at 4:22
- Daniel Bryan defeated Jeff Hardy via submission at 10:36
Other on-screen talent
The New Day joins Miz TV
The Miz vs. Big E
Lana vs. Billie Kay
Andrade Almas vs. local competitor
Nakamura reveals the stipulation
Luke Gallows & Karl Anderson vs. The Usos
Naomi vs. Sonya Deville
Daniel Bryan vs. Jeff Hardy
- WWE Smackdown Live #979 at CAGEMATCH.net
- WWE Smackdown Live #979 at WWE.com
- Smackdown #979 on WWE Network