- The 2018 Superstar Shake-Up Continues! Last night on Monday Night Raw, Smackdown lost the following Superstars: Bobby Roode, Baron Corbin, Dolph Ziggler, Jinder Mahal (with Sunil Singh), Liv Morgan, Ruby Riott, Sarah Logan, Natalya, Chad Gable, Mojo Rawley, Zack Ryder, The Ascension, Breezango, Mike Kanellis, "Free Agents" Kevin Owens and Sami Zayn, and NXT Callup Drew McIntyre. That's quite a long list of talent switching shows. Will Smackdown receive the same treatment? Last night, it was already announced The Miz is moving back to Smackdown, thanks to some backstage pull from Daniel Bryan (in storyline).
- Presented LIVE on the USA Network from Providence, RI. Tom Phillips, Byron Saxton, and Corey Graves are calling the action tonight, unless otherwise noted.
- WWE Champion A.J. Styles comes out to kick things off. You can tell a lot about a man through his failures, and we know all we need about Shinsuke Nakamura. He failed at WrestleMania and showed his true colors. He's not just an artist, he's a con-artist. Last week, all he could think about was retribution, but he was presented with a "real" Dream Match™ with Daniel Bryan, a match that Shinsuke ruined. He's not letting it go and won't leave the ring until he confronts him. Instead of Nakamura, out comes Aiden English and Rusev, heeling it up. So, is Rusev a heel this week? Styles says since it's Rusev Day and Nakamura doesn't have a spine, he wants to fight right now.
- Shane McMahon and Paige are backstage for some exposition. Paige books A.J. and Daniel Bryan against Rusev and English, as expected (in honor of former GM Theodore Long).
- The Miz is standing by with a cell-phone promo. He addresses Daniel Bryan's tweet about wanting to #PunchHisFace, directed at The Miz. That's not happening tonight because he's in LA with his family. Miz promises the Premiere of The Miz on Smackdown Live... NEXT WEEK. If Bryan ever trolls him on Twitter, he's going to kick his a--- and Maryse cuts him off for using language in front of the baby.
- Sonya Deville and Mandy Rose are the newest members of Smackdown Live.
- Post-match, Samoa Joe calls Smackdown Live "The Land of Handouts." Everyone has had it easy before he arrived, but he's here to change all that, and he's going to get all the opportunities. He segues into a promo on Roman Reigns and seems to forget what Championship he's challenging for in Saudi Arabia.
- SANITY is coming to Smackdown Live!
- Renee Young catches up with Daniel Bryan backstage. She asks him why he helped A.J. Styles earlier. He says out of respect. He made a list of Superstars to help motivate him, and at the top of the list was A.J. Last week he wanted to prove he hasn't lost a step, but Shinsuke Nakamura ruined that moment. The promo is cut short by a returning BIG CASS, who makes sure to point out the height difference between them.
- The ‘Mellabration is on, as Carmella celebrates winning the Smackdown Women's Title from Charlotte Flair last week, thanks to a lengthy attack from the IICONICS (yes, double I for whatever reason), Billie Kay and Peyton Royce. She shuts the crowd up for trying to start a "You Deserve It" chant. She can't help but hide her jubilation beating Charlotte, without giving credit to the assist. She beat the woman that ended Asuka's undefeated streak. We get a video montage of Carmella being Ms. Money in the Bank. She names the women's title "Cleopatra." Charlotte Flair interrupts to remind us that she only got the briefcase because of a chinless freak, and for a beatdown from Royce and Kay. Kay and Royce interrupt the interruption to mock Charlotte some more. Charlotte gets ganged up on until Becky Lynch makes the save.
- MORE ADDITIONS to the Smackdown Live Roster: Luke Gallows and Karl Anderson.
- Cellphone promo from Sheamus and Cesaro... and now they're on Smackdown Live. The New Day have choice words about it until running into R-Truth. Well, they all can't be winners. R-Truth and Tye Dillinger share an awkward stare-down before doing a ridiculous handshake. R-Truth still thinks he's on Monday Night Raw, though.
- Andrade "Cien" Almas and Zelina Vega are coming to Smackdown Live, too. OH MY GOD. SMACKDOWN IS GOING TO BE AWESOME.
We come back from commercial, with English working over Styles. English with a snap mare and knee to the back before hooking a chin-lock. Styles escapes but gets taken over with a back drop. Rusev in to apply a bear-hug. Rusev drags Styles back to his corner to avoid letting Bryan into the match. English with an avalanche and Rusev drops Styles with a lariat for two. Styles with a jaw breaker on English, followed by the Pele Kick. Bryan finally gets the hot tag and runs wild on Rusev with rights. Whip to the corner, he flips over a charging Rusev and comes off the ropes with a clothesline. Bryan shakes the ropes like a Warrior and hits the running corner dropkick. He goes for the Yes-Lock, but English makes the save. English gets dumped out. Bryan with a Dragon screw leg whip on Rusev, followed by the Yes-Kicks. Bryan with the running knee, meanwhile, Shinsuke shows up and hits A.J. Styles in the junk AGAIN. Bryan checks on Styles and turns around, only to be met with a big boot from Big Cass, drawing the Disqualification at 12:35 (including a commercial break). It wasn't that good of a match, so nothing was really ruined.
- Renee Young tries to get a word from Shinsuke Nakamura, who again says he doesn't speak English.
Final Thoughts: Adding Samoa Joe, Jeff Hardy, Andrade "Cien" Almas, Sanity, Asuka, The Club, Sheamus and Cesaro, among others, is going to make Smackdown Live an interesting place going forward. Tonight was more about introducing the roster changes, so I'm going to hold off from being overly critical over the questionable booking (cough:Usos:cough) and look forward to the future.