Jinder Mahal and the Bollywood Boys lend an Indian flavour to WWE Smack Down

WWE Smackdown Superstar Jinder Mahal with Punjabi Boys

WWE Smackdown aired live tonight. A new contender to the WWE Champion was crowned as the blue brand looked forward past the upcoming Payback pay-per-view. Here are the highlights from the action –


AJ Styles continues to impress

A week removed from his match that earned him a shot at US belt, Styles took on Baron Corbin, with US Champion Kevin Owens on commentary. Both superstars started with a head of steam and tried to seize the advantage in the early going. After the initial back-and-forth, Corbin reversed the Calf Crusher and caught Owens in the Deep Six to get the upper hand momentarily. But Styles turned it around and hit the Forearm-High Knee combination on Corbin, causing the latter to crash into Owens. Styles ran back into the ring and got the count-out win.



Kevin Owens: The face of Smackdown

United States Champion Kevin Owens went one-on-one against local wrestler Gary Gandy to determine the true ‘face of America’. After squashing his competition, Owens claimed he was not going to lose his title to Jericho at Payback and would remain the face of American as long as he held on to the US Championship.


Jinder Mahal is the new #1 Contender

Jinder Mahal won a battle royal involving Dolph Ziggler, Sami Zayn and Erick Rowan to earn the right to be the next in line for WWE Champion contention. Aided by the distraction provided by the Bollywood Boys, Mahal dropped Zayn to win the match. After the match, Orton foreshadowed a victory over Bray Wyatt, after which he claimed the only prize Mahal is in line for is an RKO from him. Wyatt appeared on the screen and cut a short promo about the upcoming match at Payback.



Charlotte quickly makes her mark on the Blue Brand

At the start of the show, 4-time Women’s champion, Charlotte made her way out and demanded to be added to the Smackdown Women’s Championship picture at that moment. Champion Naomi came out and showed no signs of holding back, but before the two women could come to blows, Smackdown commissioner Shane McMahon came out and made a match with the stipulation: if Charlotte beat the champion, she would become the new contender. In the subsequent match, Charlotte used her in-ring awareness to dominate Naomi. The action was full of rest holds and signature moves from the two. Towards the end, Charlotte hit Natural Selection to set his contention in stone and picked up the win.



Image source: @slicewrestling/Twitter 

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