AJ Styles and Jinder Mahal look to settle the score as Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn for their WWE careers!
The SmackDown brand WWE Clash of Champions 2017 PPV took place Sunday, December 17 at the TD Garden in Boston, Mass. and aired live on WWE Network. Watch our Clash of Champions Recap on YouTube, stream/download the podcast, or scroll down to read our detailed report!
WWE Clash of Champions 2017 Results – TD Garden in Boston, Mass.
We kick off the Kickoff show (pun intended) with a good video package for WWE Champion AJ Styles vs. Jinder Mahal.
Dasha The Robot interviews Styles backstage. Styles says he’s going to beat Jinder Mahal all alone and will overcome all of Mahal’s tricks, even if that includes The Great Khali and Singh Bros. Styles says he’s got to be better than good or great. He’s got to be phenomenal.
WWE Clash of Champions Kickoff: Mojo Rawley def. Zack Ryder. Rawley got the pin on his former Hype Bros. tag team partner with a running forearm. This new incarnation of Rawley reminds me of a young Monty Brown who had a lot of raw talent and charisma in TNA back in the day. I don’t think Rawley is quite there yet, but this is his opportunity to finally standout on his own without the help of Ryder or his association with Rob Gronkowski.
Triple Threat Match for WWE United States Championship: Dolph Ziggler def. Baron Corbin (c) and “Glorious” Bobby Roode to win the WWE U.S. Title.
We kick things off with the U.S. Title match. Boy, has Roode lost steam since debuting a couple months back. Boring feuds and matches with Baron Corbin and Dolph Ziggler will do that to you. Roode and Ziggler take out Corbin early on to make it a one on one match for now. It doesn’t last long as Corbin hits Roode with a big clothesline on the outside, followed by a punch to Ziggler. Corbin slows things down for a bit until Roode hits the blockbuster for the nearfall. Ziggler gets his own nearfall on Roode with a Fameasser. Corbin breaks up the pin. Corbin rips off his shirt to signify he’s had enough of Roode and Ziggler. Corbin gives them clotheslines in the corner. Ziggler hits a running dropkick. Corbin hits a Deep Six on Roode for close two count. Crowd audibly chanting “Bobby Roode!”
Corbin puts Roode on the top turnbuckle. Roode knocks Corbin off the top, but Ziggler hops on for the superplex attempt. Of course, it wouldn’t be a triple threat match without a Tower of Doom spot. Corbin powerbomb/Ziggler superplex combo. Though Corbin can only get a two count. For once, I’d like to see the Tower of Doom result in a three count. Crowd really likes this match up to the point. Corbin tries to hit a chokeslam backbreaker on Ziggler. Ziggler escapes and moves out of the way, causing Corbin to hit his shoulder on the post. Ziggler’s superkick attempt is thwarted by a Roode spinebuster. Roode goes for a Glorious DDT, but Ziggler reverses and hits his own DDT. Ziggler gets a nearfall. Corbin tries to throw Ziggler outside. Roode throws Corbin outside. Slingshot by Roode on Ziggler into the turnbuckle. Glorious DDT by Roode on Ziggler. Corbin tries to steal the pin, but is thwarted. Roode goes for the cover, but Corbin pulls his leg out at the last second. Backbreaker by Corbin on the outside.
Now this is where it gets weird. Corbin goes for End of Days on Roode, but Ziggler hits a Zig Zag on Corbin at the same time. One, two, three, and for DOLPH EFFIN ZIGGLER is your new WWE United States Champion in a result absolutely no one expected. Excellent match and finish from three guys that needed to hit a home run after a lackluster stretch on SmackDown Live.
Dasha interviews Corbin backstage and asks him if he’ll be known as the man who squanders opportunities after losing the MITB briefcase and U.S. Title in short order. Corbin screams he’ll get his title back from Ziggler and throws some intimate object at the wall as storms off.
WWE SmackDown Tag Team Championships: The Usos (c) def. The New Day (Combo of Kofi Kingston, Big E, Xavier Woods), Chad Gable and Shelton Benjamin, Rusev and Aiden English to retain the tag titles.
Aiden English introduces Rusev to a huge ovation and massive chants of “RUSEV DAY!” English and Rusev are complete babyfaces in Boston. Sloppy in some spots, but got real good at the end with a good number of high spots and nearfalls. Usos get the win after hitting the splash on Gable. Not at the level of Usos vs. New Day matches, but entertaining and definitely enhanced by the hot crowd.
Backstage, Shane McMahon what is going through Daniel Bryan’s head. Bryan says he’s only trying to protect the integrity of SmackDown Live. We’ll see about that, y’all.
WWE SmackDown Women’s Championship Lumberjack Match: Charlotte Flair (c) def. Natalya to retain the Women’s Title. Lumberjacks include Riott Squad’s Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan, and Liv Morgan, as well as Tamina Snuka, Lana, Naomi, and Ms. MITB Carmella.
It appears Naomi is Charlotte Flair’s only ally — for now. Natalya was knocked outside first and beat up by Naomi. Natalya retaliates and sends Flair into the Riott Squad, Lana, Tamina, and Carmella who beat on the champ. Natalya sends Flair back to the outside over and over again. Flair finally throws Natalya back outside, but the heels roll her safely back in the ring. Flair goes into high gear and attempts to lock in the Figure Eight before being sent outside. Tamina and Carmella and the Riott Squad fight over who beats up Flair. Byron Saxton and Corey Graves argue on commentary about morals and whatnot. Saxton is not great at his job. Naomi takes out everyone with a dive.
Back in the ring, Natalya locks in the Sharpshooter on Flair. Flair escapes. Natalya and Flair are sent outside. The Riott Squad start fighting everyone. Carmella tries to sneak into the ring to cash in on Flair, but is thwarted by the Riott Squad. More brawling on the outside. Flair hits (well, grazes) everyone with a top rope moonsault. Natalya drags Flair back in the ring to attempt a Sharpshooter. Flair counters and taps out Natalya with the Figure Eight for the win. Good match that was overshadowed by lumberjacks and outside interference.
After the match, Kayla interviews Natalya in the ring. Natalya says Charlotte Flair won by cutting corners and using her family name. Natalya claims she’s given the WWE Universe the best matches and carried the women’s division for 10 years only to have them turn their backs on her. She says if the women’s division and fans want to turn their backs on her, she’s turning her back on all of them. This bizarre segment ends with Natalya crying herself to the back. So did Natalya just quit in storyline?
Dasha asks the Singh Bros. if she can speak to Jinder Mahal. The Singh Bros. tell Dasha Mahal is meditating and won’t need their help to beat AJ Styles to become a two-time WWE Champion. Dasha questions if this means they won’t interfere tonight. The Singh Bros. shrug her off hinting Mahal may try to win this match alone.
The Bludgeon Brothers (Luke Harper and Erick Rowan) def. The Fashion Police aka Breezango (Tyler Breeze and Fandango). This was short, sweet, and exactly what it needed to be. Complete destruction.
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn tell Dasha that Daniel Bryan is the only fair person on SmackDown Live and that they’ll win tonight to continue the YEP! Movement. Dasha asks what if they don’t and get fired, which is met by awkward silence.
We get a Royal Rumble 2018 trailer. My favorite PPV!
Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn def. Randy Orton and Shinsuke Nakamura to keep their jobs in WWE. Shane McMahon and Daniel Bryan are special referees.
KO, Bryan, and Zayn get huge ovations. The two referees in the ring at the same time deal looks awkward as hell, which Graves also points out on commentary. Dueling chants for Nakamura and Zayn. Nakamura goes for the first pin attempt on Owens with both Bryan and McMahon counting to two. Again, very awkward, but can’t say this doesn’t make this match significantly more interesting. Bryan and McMahon argue for a bit and decide to take their respective halves of the ring. Owens goes for a pin on Orton. McMahon counts to two. Owens screams at McMahon to count faster. KO and Zayn continue to work both refs throughout the match. Zayn screams at Orton for trying to take their jobs away. This is essentially a SmackDown Live TV main event with another ref and hotter than usual crowd. Crowd wakes up after some dull moments when Owens hits a splash on Nakamura through the announcers table.
Back in the ring, Orton hits the draping DDT on Zayn and hits an RKO. Orton goes for the pin, but it’s broken up when Owens pushes Bryan against McMahon making the count. McMahon screams at Bryan “that was three!” Bryan tells Orton it wasn’t on purpose. Orton hits another RKO on Owens, but KO isn’t the legal man. Zayn and Orton trade rollups. Zayn rolls up Orton for what looks like a three count, but McMahon stops purposely at two. After an intense argument between both refs, Zayn goes for another rollup and gets the win after a Bryan fast count. Nothing too special outside of the table spot and finishing sequence that surely sets up an interesting episode of SmackDown Live this Tuesday night. Not a fan of Nakamura once again being an afterthought.
WWE Championship: AJ Styles (c) def. Jinder Mahal (with Singh Bros.) to retain the title.
Styles gets aggressive early in ring and on the outside, working on Mahal’s leg. Mahal hits Styles with a forearm to the throat and launches the champ rib-first onto the top rope. Styles bounces out to the floor. A fan audibly yells Mahal is on steroids. OK then. Mahal ignores the hooligan and sends Styles into the barricade. Mahal continues to work on Styles’ ribs. Mahal recklessly goes up top, but Styles answers back with a midair dropkick. They brawl on the outside before Mahal is rolled back in the ring. Styles goes for the Phenomenal Forearm, but Mahal pushes the champ and causes him to land ribs first on the top rope again. Gutbuster by Mahal for the nearfall. Solid old school psychology in the match with each man working on a body part. Styles with the knee. Mahal with the ribs. The two trade several nearfalls and reversals. Styles barely kicks out of a Mahal big boot. Crowd is quieter than expected, but it’s hard to buy Mahal as a serious threat after losing the title before the India tour. Mahal goes up top and eats a Styles Pele Kick. Styles knocks Mahal off the top.
Styles looking to continue his momentum until the Singh Bros. grab Mahal. Somehow this isn’t a DQ. Styles takes both men out. Styles goes for the Phenomenal Forearm. Mahal moves out of the way and hits the Khalas. Mahal dragged Styles in the middle of the ring and got only a two count. This slightly wakes up the crowd. Mahal teases hitting the Styles Clash, but the champ counters with the Calf Crusher. Mahal nearly gets to the ropes, but Styles cradles and rolls Mahal away from the ropes, forcing him to tap out. Good match, no where near the level of their match on SmackDown last month. Crowd was quiet in certain parts. Both men put in a great effort in this old school style affair.
Overall, an above average PPV enhanced by a hot crowd for most of the night, but nothing you have to go out of your way to watch other than the U.S. Title match.
Check out our WWE Clash of Champions (Night of Champions) Review Compilation!
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