With just 48 hours to go for WWE Survivor Series, SmackDown booked a loaded episode to build the matches for Sunday.
Roman Reigns was expected to meet King Woods in the middle after the former disrespected The King on SmackDown last week.
The final member of Team SmackDown was also crowned during the show. WWE announced a 25-man Dual Brand Battle Royal to warm up the crowds on Sunday night.
Apart from that, Shinsuke Nakamura got some revenge on SmackDown as he took down Angel in a singles match. The victory will give the Intercontinental Champion some boost before his match against the United States Champion.
Natalya and Shayna Baszler teamed up to defeat Naomi and Aliyah after the referee counted a fast count. After the match, Aja Smith asked Sonya Deville if she did a good job before being sent on her way.
Take a look at the five things WWE SmackDown got right on Friday before Survivor Series.
#5. Roman Reigns disrespected King Woods on WWE SmackDown before Survivor Series
WWE SmackDown Tag Team Champions The Usos opened the show. Jimmy and Jey Uso believed they sent a loud and clear message to Big E on Monday night.
The ring was decorated with the King of the Ring items stolen after the group attacked Xavier Woods on SmackDown last week. Roman Reigns took exception to the items in the ring and claimed he didn't need any gimmicks to be acknowledged.
King Woods interrupted the Universal Champion and challenged him to a match later in the night without The Usos around. Woods watched as The Bloodline damaged his cloak, throne, and scepter in the middle of the SmackDown ring.
The King tried to stop Reigns from destroying his crown, but The Usos got hold of him. They held Woods down, and Roman smashed the crown with his foot to make a statement.
It was a brilliant segment to kick off the show. New Day’s presence on SmackDown, along with Big E being the WWE Champion, helped the company build the biggest Survivor Series match.
Watching Woods’ lifelong dream and struggle ruined by The Bloodline was an emotional moment. The segment was booked very well, and The Bloodline made a statement early on in the show. Unfortunately, there was no real build for The Usos' match against The RK-Bros for Survivor Series on SmackDown.
#4. Sheamus picked up a big victory on WWE SmackDown
The final spot on Team SmackDown for WWE Survivor Series was on the line this week. Jinder Mahal, Cesaro, Sheamus, and Ricochet battled in a fatal 4-way match to determine who’d take the final spot for Sunday.
All four men delivered their signature moves early in the contest to keep the action ticking from the start. Ricochet was phenomenal throughout the contest.
Cesaro took Mahal for a swing and locked in the Sharpshooter. Ricochet broke it up and delivered a beautiful 630 splash to Mahal in hopes of picking up the win. However, Sheamus delivered a thunderous Brogue Kick to Ricochet just after the splash.
The Celtic Warrior nearly got the win, but Cesaro broke the pin. Ridge Holland ran down to cause a distraction that allowed The Celtic Warrior to deliver a Brogue Kick for the win on SmackDown.
Sheamus will be a great asset on Team SmackDown. However, Ricochet or Cesaro would have also been great picks. Holland’s alliance with Sheamus could work well in the long run. The two massive men can soon become a dangerous tag team.
#3. The problems between Team SmackDown continued to rise before WWE Survivor Series
A backstage confrontation took place between Jeff Hardy, Happy Corbin, and Madcap Moss on WWE SmackDown. This led to a match between Hardy and Moss on Friday night.
Hardy was aware that Corbin would interfere during the contest. He introduced Drew McIntyre to take his side during the match.
The two men got going as McIntyre ensured Corbin didn't interfere. After The Scottish Warrior wiped out the heel at ringside, Hardy picked up the win with a roll-up.
The match was ordinary and could have worked better had the two men gotten more time. However, the main purpose was to build more tension between the members of Team SmackDown.
Moss could end up costing Hardy during the big match at Survivor Series. Just like Team RAW, the Blue Brand’s team is also not united this year around. Hardy and McIntyre are much better than this, and it will be interesting to see where the two men head after Survivor Series.
#2. Sasha Banks defeated Shotzi on WWE SmackDown
Shotzi was looking to target Banks early and injure her. The villainous superstar trapped Banks’ arm in the steel steps and kicked it repeatedly to weaken her opponent.
She looked to take the Bank Statement out of the equation as she continued to target Banks’ arm. The green-haired superstar delivered her finisher to Banks, but the former SmackDown Women’s Champion rolled out of the ring in time.
After enduring a lot of punishment, Banks fought back and applied the Bank Statement with her legs to make Shotzi tap out.
Sonya Deville walked out after the match and expected the rivals to shake hands. They did, only for Banks to deliver the Backstabber and leave Shotzi lying. Just like the men’s team, there are a lot of differences in the women’s team for Survivor Series.
Banks is back to playing a babyface while Shotzi is a great heel. It looks like WWE is going to book one of the teams to implode during the contest to help RAW pick up the win.
#1. Big E got his big moment on WWE SmackDown
King Woods made his way out for the final segment of WWE SmackDown before Survivor Series. He called out Universal Champion Roman Reigns after The Tribal Chief accepted his challenge to meet him in the ring.
Reigns made a slow entry before Paul Heyman called for The Usos to make their way out on SmackDown. Neither Jimmy nor Jey appeared until they were hurled through the entranceway by the WWE Champion.
Big E’s music hit, and the big man made his way out to surprise Roman. A brawl between the Survivor Series opponents broke out, and Big E overpowered Reigns with ease.
The Usos ran in to save their leader and ate a Big Ending from the WWE Champion. Reigns hit a Superman Punch but nearly ran into a Big Ending before he dived out of the ring.
The final build-up to the big match between the WWE and Universal Champion was great. The opening segment was delivered, and the creative team ended the night on a high.
It looks like Reigns has the advantage as Big E ended the night with the upper hand. However, it will be interesting to see how Reigns overcomes the biggest member of New Day on Sunday.