After requesting a match with The Viper earlier in the evening, Dean Ambrose took on Randy Orton. The two tough-as-nails Superstars fought vigorously and the action was furiously competitive, until Luke Harper (who had just eaten an inadvertent dive from Ambrose moments earlier) abruptly entered the ring just as it seemed Orton was gearing up for an RKO. The distraction proved costly, however, with Ambrose being able to capitalize as The Apex Predator attempted to usher Harper out of the ring, rolling up Orton for the win.
After the contest, Harper and The Viper began exchanging blows before Bray Wyatt separated them and then struck Harper, as well exchanging tense words with Orton before Harper promptly exited.
After taking a moment to officially declare himself as a participant in the Royal Rumble Match, Dean Ambrose welcomed the Superstar he defeated for the Intercontinental Title last week to “The Ambrose Asylum.”
The Miz wasted no time claiming that he, too, has declared himself as a participant in the Royal Rumble Match. He then went on to suggest that Ambrose should hand over the Intercontinental Championship after the controversial ending of their title contest last week. The Lunatic Fringe did not bite on that bait, but offered an olive branch of sorts by re-gifting “The Miz Participation Award” back to the A-Lister.
From there, Miz and Ambrose got into it, with Ambrose ultimately getting the upper hand after he ducked a Maryse slap that wound up connecting with Miz square in the jaw. He then handed Maryse the award as a parting gift.
What a way to ring in the new year! After a couple of weeks of run ins with The Miz and his meddling wife Maryse, the devious duo took things a little too far as first Maryse slapped Dean in the ring, and then she hunted down Renee Young backstage and slapped her teeth out too! Uncalled for, and it was enough to send Dean in to a suitable enough rage to manhandle The Miz all over the ring, beat him up, and take his stuff. Yep, we’re celebrating the new year with an Intercontinental Championship win! We’re sure The Miz wont let this rest and more shenanigans are in store, but for now we bask in the glory of his win. Congratulations, Champ! Here’s what WWE.com had to say!
Following their confrontation in the ring earlier in the evening and then Maryse slapping Renee Young backstage, the stakes were raised even higher for The Miz and Dean Ambrose’s Intercontinental Championship Match.
Ambrose was a house of fire right out of the gate, bringing furious flurries of offense to Miz both in and outside of the ring. The A-Lister was able to gain control, however, when Maryse was able to distract The Lunatic Fringe.
From there, the two Superstars put forth a thrilling and brutal contest that kept the WWE Universe on its toes. Maryse tried to pull a fast one by slapping Ambrose, clearly looking for a disqualification, but instead Ambrose pleaded with the referee to simply eject Maryse, which is ultimately what occurred. From there, The Lunatic Fringe survived an assault with the Intercontinental Championship behind the referee’s back, then reversed a Skull-Crushing Finale into Dirty Deeds to defeat Miz for the Intercontinental Championship.
After last weeks vicious attack by The Miz, Dean Ambrose is out for a little payback. The opportunity presents itself perfectly when The Miz demands an interview with the woman that slapped him last week, Renee Young. As Renee interviews Miz and asks him about the upcoming year, Ambrose sneaks up behind him stealthily dressed as security, much to the amusement of his lady. Renee backs off as Miz realizes his predicament, but its a moment too late as Dean attacks. Beating Miz into a pulp and serving the security their own backsides too, before calmly taking a walkie talkie and reporting back that everythings ‘All clear’. Well, for now.
Looking for payback on Dean Ambrose for pinning him in the Fatal 4-Way Elimination No. 1 Contenders’ Match last week, Luke Harper battled The Lunatic Fringe one-on-one.
During the contest, Ambrose struck Bray Wyatt & Randy Orton on the outside and a few minutes later was able to secure the victory with a cradle.
After the contest, The Wyatts brutally beat down Ambrose, leaving him lying in the ring. This prompted the return of The Miz and Maryse. Miz waited until Ambrose rose to his feet, then Miz savagely attacked him yet again, laying him out with the Skull-Crushing Finale in a bit of clear retribution for Renee Young’s slap earlier in the evening.
With it being announced moments prior that James Ellsworth’s WWE Championship opportunity had been suspended due to him coming down ill on SmackDown LIVE, the show-opening “Miz TV” became the hot stove for all things title talk.
WWE Champion AJ Styles was the initial guest of Intercontinental Champion The Miz and it didn’t take long for The A-Lister to more than subtly suggest that he should be the new No. 1 contender for Styles’ title. However, the two were quickly interrupted by Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler, both of whom seemed ready to fight.
Ziggler and Miz, naturally, got into it, leading to Miz hitting Ziggler with a Skull-Crushing Finale and Ambrose striking both Miz and Ziggler with Dirty Deeds while Styles got out of dodge. Things only became more layered when Luke Harper suddenly appeared in the ring behind The Lunatic Fringe, with him laying out Ambrose.
After the chaotic “Miz TV” earlier in the evening, it was announced that a Fatal 4-Way Elimination Match would be had to determine the new No. 1 Contender for the WWE Championship.
AJ Styles sat on commentary as these four Superstars battled for the right to take him on for the most coveted prize in all of WWE. The Miz was ousted first when Dean Ambrose caught him in a rollup for three. The A-Lister’s elimination was followed by Luke Harper, who was taken out by a combo of a Dolph Ziggler Superkick and an Ambrose Dirty Deeds.
The thrilling contest came down to a SummerSlam rematch between Dean Ambrose and Dolph Ziggler. Ambrose and Ziggler went back and forth in a series of thrilling exchanges, until Ziggler, thanks to some involvement from The Miz (who was seemingly out there just to cause a ruckus), was able to catch Ambrose with a Superkick for the victory and the opportunity to capture SmackDown LIVE’s top prize.
Dean Ambrose is not an angry man, they might call him crazy but it takes a whole lot of self control to keep from exploding when someone you thought was a friend has wronged you. Dean displays this self control magnificently at the start of Smackdown, when he interrupts Ellsworth and AJ Styles to simply nail James’ head to the mat and calmly leave. Like making him a human exclamation point that punctuates the statement “You messed up, kid” pretty darn well.
Dean keeps things simmering in to Miz TV, where the obnoxious A Lister (in his own mind) sets out to prod the dormant lunatic in to a reaction. Dean’s amused by this, saying we haven’t seen him truly angry and he’s always surprised by people that attempt to make him so. The Miz arrogantly produces a ‘Participation Award’ for Dean, a consolation prize for the WWE Championship slipping through his fingers thanks to Ellsworth. Dean politely suggests they attempt shoving the entire plaque down The Miz’s throat. Something Daniel Bryan steps in to keep from happening – I’m not sure medical insurance covers plaque insertions – however, Bryan does announce a main event match. Dean Ambrose Vs The Miz for the Intercontinental Championship! Much better.
The main event rolls around and despite a hard fought match, Maryse is up to her usual shenanigans and shoves Dean from the top turnbuckle as he seems to have the match won. This gives The Miz the chance to try and wrap things up, but Dean kicks out. At this point, Ellsworth hurries down to the ring to tell the referee Maryse pushed Dean. Unfortunately for James, he distracts the referee and keeps Dean from getting a three count pin on Miz. Dean notices who caused the distraction and is furious.. and distracted himself enough for Miz to hit him with the skull crushing finale, and end the match.
Ellsworth runs away. Smartest thing he’s ever done. Oy.
WWE World Champion AJ Styles kicked off the show to announce that he would be unable to compete tonight due to an injury suffered at WWE TLC against Dean Ambrose, and thus, his scheduled match with James Ellsworth tonight was cancelled.
Ellsworth arrived, claiming that he thought it was possible that Styles was not competing tonight because he was being “protected” by SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan in fear that Ellsworth would defeat him for the fourth time. However, before Ellsworth could go on too long of a diatribe, he was met by an incredibly disgruntled Ambrose. Still clearly incensed that he cost him the WWE World Title on Sunday, The Lunatic Fringe made a beeline for Ellsworth and dropped him immediately with Dirty Deeds before leaving as soon as he came in.
“Miz TV” with special guest Dean Ambrose
What we’ve learned: It’s probably best to not try and interview the unstable.
Clearly on edge and furious over James Ellsworth costing him the WWE World Title against AJ Styles at WWE TLC, Dean Ambrose was in no mood for Intercontinental Champion The Miz’s sly offhandness on “Miz TV.”
The A-Lister tried to prod Ambrose even further by awarding him the first “Miz Participation Award” for his valiant effort at WWE TLC. SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan arrived to announce that Ambrose and Miz would clash for the Intercontinental Title tonight in the main event!
Following their explosive session on “Miz TV” earlier in the evening, The Miz and Dean Ambrose laid it all out for the Intercontinental Championship in the SmackDown LIVE main event.
The two Superstars battled ferociously and it looked like Ambrose was gaining ground en route to the victory, but then Maryse interfered behind the referee’s back. Much like on Sunday night, James Ellsworth ran out to ringside, but this time it seemed like he was trying to help Ambrose by informing the referee of Maryse’s wrongdoing. All of this calamity led to The A-Lister striking with The Skull Crushing Finale from behind to retain the Intercontinental Championship.
The Lunatic Fringe was enraged after the contest, however, Ellsworth wisely got out of dodge … at least for tonight.
With TLC on Sunday, Dean’s got everything to play for and on this final Smackdown pitstop before the big event, he takes an opportunity to rejuvenate his ‘talk show’ The Ambrose Asylum. His special guest? James Ellsworth of course! I mean who else would he have on there right now? James has been an integral part of Dean’s recent battles with AJ and weather or not he ever meant for his pint sized pal to become such a big part of the plan is up for question. But like it or not, here he is with three victories over AJ and a title shot of his own.. which leads to one of Dean’s main questions. Who does James want to win at TLC and go on to face for the title? James says it’d be an honor to wrestle Dean, but he has three wins over AJ already, so maybe…
Hm, we’re with Dean when we say we think the fame might have gotten to his head a bit! At any rate, AJ interrupts the discussion to tell James once again he doesn’t belong in the WWE and Dean that he’s going to get respect beaten in to him at TLC. Dean counters this saying most battles are fought and won or lost in the mind, and AJ’s been so easy to crack he’s already lost. We tend to agree, AJ has let Dean get under his skin and into his head so much so, he’s starting to make foolhardy decisions like his match against Ellsworth last week. Does Dean have him mentally out of the game already?
I guess we’ll see. But Deans insinuation is enough to tip AJ off of the deep end and he lashes out, attacking Dean and knocking him out of the ring, then smashing him with steels steps before turning on Ellsworth, who he beats with a chair and then delivers the Styles Clash on the steel steps. Ellsworth is whisked away in an ambulance and Dean vows to make it right, swearing revenge. A revenge he takes in the closing moments of Smackdown as he assaults AJ backstage, delivering a beat down that no doubt continued after the cameras stopped rolling. You never want to make it too personal with Dean Ambrose. Big mistake, AJ. Related Links:
1. Smackdown Digitals
2. Smackdown Screencaptures
3. Alt Video Link
After the events of Survivor Series, we knew Dean might be in for a little retribution from the powers that be, but we didn’t think they’d try and kick him out of the building! Well, a cranky Shane McMahon at least. He tries his best to order Ambrose to take the night off and leave the arena, but like a boomerang Dean just keeps coming back. First to bring Shane Pizza, then dressed as The Mountie and finally.. he stops by as a Hockey team Player and crashes the Ellsworth Vs Styles match for Ellsworths Smackdown contract. Dean keeps James from a defeat, but is then knocked out of the ring by AJ’s Phenomenal Forearm. Ellsworth goes on to win the match on his own merit. Well who knew! Dean’s there to celebrate with his little pal.. in the building. Sorry Shane.
SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon met in the ring with Dean Ambrose and a very worse for wear James Ellsworth (after Braun Strowman threw him off the stage and through a table at Survivor Series) to seemingly award Ellsworth a SmackDown LIVE contract. However, things escalated quickly when, after Shane told Ambrose that because of recent actions he would be given the night off and had to leave the building, WWE World Champion AJ Styles arrived to make a mockery of the entire gathering.
“The Champ that Runs the Camp,” aghast at the idea of sharing the same locker room with Ellsworth, proposed that he and Ellsworth face off in a Ladder Match tonight with his SmackDown LIVE contract suspended above the ring. If Ellsworth wins, he would become a full-fledged member of Team Blue. If he loses, Styles claimed that he would rip up Ellsworth’s contract in front of his face.
Shane-O-Mac was totally opposed to the idea, but it was Ellsworth who bravely accepted and even upped the ante, saying that if he could beat Styles tonight he wants a future WWE World Championship opportunity.
With everything on the line, James Ellsworth took on WWE World Champion AJ Styles in a Ladder Match. If he could somehow win, he would be awarded a SmackDown LIVE contract and get a future WWE World Championship opportunity. However, if he lost, he would lose out on it all. The Phenomenal One was in control for virtually the entire contest. Unfortunately for Ellsworth, an altercation between Styles and Dean Ambrose earlier in the night left The Lunatic Fringe barred from ringside and unable to help him.
Yet, just as the fairytale looked to be coming to an end, Styles was met with an unbelievable surprise when Ambrose, disguised as a hockey player, appeared and neutralized Styles. This allowed Ellsworth to topple a discombobulated Styles off the ladder and hit him with a pinpoint superkick to climb the ladder to success (like, for real) and grab the contract, then celebrate his miracle of a victory along with Ambrose.
WWE Hall of Famer Edge returned to host his always memorable talk show “The Cutting Edge” on the 900th episode of SmackDown LIVE, and boy, did it not disappoint. The cornerstone of SmackDown LIVE was in rare form and the WWE Universe could not have been more excited to see The Rated-R Superstar.
This particular episode of “The Cutting Edge” had a little bit of everything — an attempted 5-second pose with Edge and Team SmackDown LIVE mascot James Ellsworth, Edge questioning his former partner Randy Orton, and Dean Ambrose and AJ Styles almost got into it … but then, GONG!
The arena went dark during “The Cutting Edge” and to the ring came the legendary Undertaker. He stared down all those on Team SmackDown LIVE, including (and especially) Shane McMahon, his WrestleMania 32 opponent. The Undertaker first pronounced that there was no better choice for a Commissioner of SmackDown LIVE than McMahon. He then claimed that he was back, “taking souls and digging holes.”
The Deadman then forewarned the entire team that SmackDown LIVE had always been his home and that if Team Blue failed at Survivor Series then the fear of failure would not be their chief concern, but, instead, they should then be fearing the wrath of The Phenom.
Will Team Raw rest in peace? Find out this Sunday at Survivor Series only on WWE Network!
The full SmackDown LIVE 5-on-5 Traditional Survivor Series Men’s Elimination Match roster — WWE World Champion AJ Styles, Dean Ambrose, Bray Wyatt, Randy Orton and Baron Corbin (along with a few extra guests: Luke Harper and the apple of Scotland’s eye, James Ellsworth) — continued to struggle with team unity. This culminated with Styles and Ambrose getting into a war of words, Corbin walking out and The Wyatt Family simply stoically standing in the ring.
SmackDown LIVE Commissioner Shane McMahon came out to try and rally the troops and then, per the mind of Ellsworth, named the underdog the official mascot of Team SmackDown LIVE. Then, in an attempt to get the team to work out some of their aggressions against one another, set up a Six-Man Tag Team Match between The New Wyatt Family of Bray, Orton and Harper against Ambrose, Corbin and Ellsworth later in the night in Glasgow.
After Baron Corbin rejected his spot in SmackDown LIVE’s match in Glasgow, a replacement was found — resident enemy of The New Wyatt Family, Kane.
WWE World Champion AJ Styles sat at the commentary desk and what a match he was treated to. All six Superstars absolutely threw down on the primetime stage. The battle was aggressive and brutal with several momentum swings.
The match dynamic changed completely when Kane and Harper brawled to the backstage area, in effect making it a virtual tag team contest with Wyatt and Orton battling Ambrose and Ellsworth (who had yet to be tagged into the match).
With the crowd going absolutely berserk behind him, Ellsworth could not help himself and tagged himself in while a worn down Ambrose was attempting to recover. Ellsworth came in and began to tune up the band for “No Chin Music,” however it was to no avail. As soon as Ellsworth attempted the move, The Eater of Worlds caught him and immediately transitioned the counter into Sister Abigail for the victory.
Moments after SmackDown LIVE’s main event, Dean Ambrose looked as though he was about to be ambushed by The New Wyatt Family with Styles was also lurking. However, before things could get crazy, Shane McMahon rushed to ringside to try and break it up.
This prompted the arrival of SmackDown LIVE General Manager Daniel Bryan, who after trying to find a replacement for Baron Corbin on the Survivor Series SmackDown LIVE Men’s team all evening, realized that there was now only one choice — Shane McMahon! The Glasgow crowd chanted “YES!” and, soon after, so did Shane himself.
After last weeks big time blunder by James Ellsworth, he opens Smackdown this week to beg forgiveness from Dean Ambrose. Might be a tough ask from a man that specializes in revenge, but he’s open to hearing what James has to say and comes to the ring to hear him out. Once there, he decides that even though he’s imagined smacking him around for what he did, he can’t look at his face and not forgive him. Dean tells him it’s all good, but just never ever ever get in his way again. James continues to try and apologize when AJ interrupts and tells James that Dean’s just been using him. Dean doesn’t take kindly to this and James tries to break it up as Dean and AJ get face to face, only for AJ to shove James in to Dean and then take him down with a kick to the head followed by his ‘Phenomenal Forearm’.
Backstage a little later on, Deans fuming and as James once again tries to apologize, Dean says he’s done. Until Daniel Bryan tries to calm things down and promises Dean another shot at becoming #1 contender, tonight. And under no circumstances is James to come to ringside. It seems like Ellsworth can’t hear too well as later on in the night as Deans interviewed about his match, he turns up again to plead with Dean to let him come to ringside. Dean laughs in his face, telling him absolutely not, go eat some candy.
Before his match, Dean decides he’s not taking the risk and packs Ellsworth off out the back exit, telling him any man with two hands can call an Uber and skidaddle. Thinking hes in the clear, Dean heads in to his match. He takes the fight straight to AJ and it quickly becomes an outside brawl. The two men now so adept at wrestling one another they’re coming up with counters to each others counters, making for a breath taking ride. Until once again.. Ellsworth gets involved, running in through the crowd and almost costing Dean with another distraction. Security chase Ellsworth all around the arena, and eventually AJ Styles gets so ticked off he shoves James over the announce desk. It gives Dean just enough time to regroup and as AJ goes for his Phenomenal Forearm off the top rope, Dean kicks him in the gut on his descent and nails him with Dirty Deeds. Picking up the win.. and a new #1 Contendership!
Maybe Ellsworth is just as crazy as Dean is.. somehow it worked out. Here’s what WWE.com had to say.
Following his accidental disqualification of Dean Ambrose in The Lunatic Fringe’s high-stakes matchup with AJ Styles last week on SmackDown LIVE, a clearly distraught James Ellsworth came to the ring to make a public apology to Ambrose.
A perturbed, but sympathetic Ambrose listened to Ellsworth’s sincere request for forgiveness, and accepted, but also told Ellsworth to never get in his way again. Both were then interrupted by WWE World Champion AJ Styles, who was quick to disparage both Ellsworth’s WWE merit and his relationship with Ambrose.
This unnerved the unstable Ambrose, which led to him to get into a brawl with Styles, which Ellsworth nobly attempted to break up before being shoved by The Phenomenal One into Ambrose. Styles then took advantage of the staggered Ambrose by hitting him with the Phenomenal Forearm. Styles then promptly exited the ring, laughing at the comedy of errors that Ellsworth had just produced, while the underdog looked on, completely mortified.
Daniel Bryan announced earlier in the night that, much like last week, if Dean Ambrose could defeat AJ Styles in the main event, he would be named the new No. 1 contender for the WWE World Championship. This time, however, James Ellsworth was not to be at ringside.
Continuing their string of incredible matches, Ambrose and Styles wowed the WWE Universe with incredible action that saw the momentum shift several times over. As the action picked up though, Ellsworth could just not help himself and made his way out to the arena.
The two Superstars kept going at it, and then, in the match’s pivotal moments, despite Bryan’s warning, Ellsworth snuck out to ringside! Security began to chase Ellsworth all over the arena before Styles finally got ahold of him. The WWE World Champion did not think twice about pouncing him over the announce table before returning his attention to Ambrose. However, the tides turned on The Phenomenal One quickly when, going for his signature Phenomenal Forearm, Ambrose caught him with a kick to the gut as he descended from the top rope which he then transitioned into Dirty Deeds for the victory to become the new No. 1 contender.
After the match, security finally got their hands on Ellsworth, but Ambrose snatched him from their grasp and began to celebrate with him.