WWE SmackDown results, April 7, 2016: Zayn helped Styles & Cesaro overcome Owens & Jericho
In the wake of WrestleMania, SmackDown featured WWE World Heavyweight Champion Roman Reigns, the return of Dean Ambrose from his Show of Shows clash against Brock Lesnar, the debut of The Vaudevillians, an Intercontinental Title rematch and a turbulent tag team main event.
SmackDown LIVE Results : Quick Hits
SmackDown LIVE Results : Full Details
Roman Reigns and AJ Styles sized up the competition
HOUSTON — The three-time WWE World Heavyweight Champion Roman Reigns kicked off SmackDown, fresh off his epic World Title WrestleMania victory over Triple H. The Big Dog made it clear that he is ready to take on all comers and explained that he is not the good guy or the bad guy; he’s the guy!
It wasn’t long before his new No. 1 contender AJ Styles interrupted, three nights after earning that distinction on Raw by defeating a returning Cesaro, Kevin Owens and Chris Jericho in a Fatal 4-Way Match set up by Shane McMahon.
Though the interaction between the two Superstars was not necessarily hostile, they did seem to be sizing each other up for their impending showdown. While Styles made it clear that he had been the champion all over the world, The Big Dog asserted that to be the champion in WWE, The Phenomenal One would have to have beat him for the World Title. Reigns then closed out their interaction by saying that Styles never beat him and never will.
Vaudevillains def. Lucha Dragons
After building a tremendous reputation in NXT, the unique combination of Aiden English & Simon Gotch made an impressive SmackDown debut against The Lucha Dragons, taking out Sin Cara outside the ring before dropping United States Champion Kalisto with the earth-shattering Whirling Dervish for the three-count.
They may look like a blast from the past, but clearly The Vaudevillians have a very promising future.
Natalya def. Summer Rae
On the heels of her Raw confrontation with Natalya, the first WWE Women’s Champion Charlotte — along with her WWE Hall of Fame father Ric Flair — joined SmackDown commentary to watch The Queen of Harts take on Summer Rae.
In the culmination of the match that followed, Natalya made her opponent tap out to the Sharpshooter. But will she be as successful in a match against the self-professed “genetically superior” titleholder?
Intercontinental Champion The Miz def. Zack Ryder
On Raw, a disruption involving new Intercontinental Champion Zack Ryder’s father and The Miz’s wife Maryse ultimately helped “The A-Lister” capture the title.
Three days later on SmackDown, the stunning Maryse was again on hand, introducing Miz as the new titleholder for his rematch against Long Island Iced-Z.
A determined Ryder was willing to pull out all the stops to reach the top of the mountain for the second time in a week. The Hollywood power couple once again proved too much for him, though. When Maryse distracted both the referee and the challenger by untying one of the turnbuckles and throwing it into the ring, Miz hit the unsuspecting Ryder with a thumb to the eye and the Skull-Crushing Finale.
Apollo Crews def. Curtis Axel
NXT’s Apollo Crews made his very successful debut Monday on Raw. But before he could make his SmackDown debut, The Social Outcast first had to play “rock, paper, scissors” to see who would face him — a contest Curtis Axel won by turning his “paper” … into an ax?
Anyway, while Axel won that battle with his cohorts, he would not win the war. Instead, Crews used his mixture of high-flying ability and all-out power to deflect the interference by Bo Dallas, Heath Slater and Adam Rose and reign supreme over his opponent with an earth-shattering Spin-Out Powerbomb.
Dean Ambrose def. Tyler Breeze
Just four days after his brutal No Holds Barred Street Fight against Brock Lesnar at WrestleMania, Dean Ambrose settled back into action to face Tyler Breeze. In the final moments of the contest, The Lunatic Fringe nearly took off the chiseled face of Prince Pretty with a clothesline before finishing him off with Dirty Deeds.
AJ Styles & Cesaro def. Kevin Owens & Chris Jericho
After AJ Styles, Cesaro, Kevin Owens and Chis Jericho all competed in a whirlwind Fatal 4-Way Match for a WWE World Heavyweight Title opportunity on Monday’s Raw, the four Superstars battled in SmackDown’s tag team main event.
But in the height of the action, Sami Zayn — whom couldn’t compete in Monday’s World Title No. 1 Contender’s Match because of KO — emerged. The commotion allowed AJ Styles to pick up the win over The Prizefighter and ignited a fierce post-match brawl between Owens and Zayn that ended with Zayn being viciously thrown into the steel ring steps and KO being forcefully pulled away by WWE officials.