Finally, the WWE has gotten to their last night in Brooklyn as last night SmackDown LIVE would be the goodbye to the Barclays Center after hosting them for the past week. All the hype going into this one would come in the form of The New Day Celebration for the new WWE Champion Kofi Kingston as well as it simply being the SmackDown After Mania which has brought great moments in years past. Would SmackDown deliver on this occasion? Let’s take a look:
A New Day Celebration
For the first time since winning the WWE Championship at WrestleMania, Kofi Kingston returned to his home of SmackDown LIVE for a New Day Celebration set up by his New Day brothers, Xavier Woods and Big E. The “KOFI” chants would reign down for a third day in a row as he continued to be the biggest fan favorite of the weekend. Woods and E would continue to put over their brother while talking about the road to that moment and why it was still such an honor for them to be apart of. Woods would even bring up that when he finally made it to the WWE and met Kofi the first time, it was like meeting one of his heroes. And while they were on Monday Night Raw to celebrate, there was nothing like being back on the blue brand. They would both give another congratulations to their brother because finally after so long, he was champion. Kofi would finally start speaking, bringing up how this wasn’t by any means the plan but look where they were now. Kofi would emotionally speak about his family and how they have made him a better man through all of this. Of course, he would be interrupted by The Bar because they seem to never stay out of The New Day’s business. They wanted a “thank you” from Kingston because they claimed they saved him from losing the WWE Championship one night after winning it. The Bar would continue by challenging The New Day to a six man tag team match, then introducing their partner and “friend” they met at Raw, which would be the Scottish Psychopath, Drew McIntyre.
The match would main event the show in this one. Much of the night would focus on next weeks Superstar Shake-Up, and they would discuss the real possibility that Drew McIntyre could dawn blue next week. As the match went on, The New Day would show their prowess of teaming for five years as they would continue to make quick, effective tags all throughout the match. Eventually, the European trio would take advantage on Woods, as McIntyre would hit a wicked reverse Alabama Slam on Woods into the announce table that would really switch the momentum of this one. Woods would finally tag in Big E who would hit plenty of belly to belly suplexes as well as his big splash for a near fall. As the match was coming to a close, McIntyre was nowhere to be found as the WWE Champion looked to close this one out. Kofi would take out Cesaro on the outside with his Trust Fall Dive before getting back into the ring to hit the Trouble in Paradise on Sheamus to secure the pinfall and keep his momentum rolling. He would bring his family into the ring to celebrate once more as SmackDown would go off the air with The New Day standing tall.
The Hardys Up The Usos for Tag Team Gold
Prior to WrestleMania, many thought that the two brother tag teams of the WWE would face-off with each other on the grand stage of WrestleMania in hopes of proving which brothers were the best in the history of the WWE and best tag team overall in the WWE’s history. For the first time ever, they would face off last night with the SmackDown Tag Team Championships on the line. These two teams would show why they are two of the best in the history of the company in this one, countering each other move for move and having a very exciting finish to top it all off. Jeff Hardy would tag himself in and try to take advantage, but Jimmy Uso would catch Jeff with a big Superkick to the mouth. This would lead to the tag in of Jey Uso who would hit the Uso Splash, but Jeff would manage to kick out. This would leave The Usos shocked, but it wouldn’t affect them for long. They would go for the Double Uce Splash, but miss as Jeff would roll out of the way. Doing so, Jeff would tag in Matt Hardy which would lead to a Twist of Fate and the ultimate Swanton Bomb by Jeff, resulting in The Hardys becoming eight-time tag team champions in the WWE, and their 17th tag title win as a unit overall. As the team would prepare to celebrate another victory, Lars Sullivan would arrive and take out two more legends of the company after doing so on Raw the night prior. And regardless of being in the path of destruction that Lars seems to be on, they are once again tag team champions.
SmackDown LIVE MVP: The IIconics
Imagine being IIconic? The IIconics have taken over the WWE in a short matter of time. Just one year ago from today, Billie Kay and Peyton Royce debuted on SmackDown LIVE and helped cost Charlotte Flair her SmackDown Women’s Championship. One year forward, they are the reigning, defending WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions. If you like the IIconics or if you do not, you have to respect their road to where they are now. Both of them have been wrestling for at least 10 years now, all in hopes of someday getting to the point that they can be on top of the biggest company in the world. The best friends, Australian natives have finally accomplished their dreams together which is something that any fan should appreciate. Last night, they made their first appearance as champions and simply stole the show. They would get in the ring to hit a promo discussing that they simply did it. And while they were in full character, there has been a pouring of support all weekend towards the IIconics for those who have missed it. As they talked about defying the odds to win the championships, the crowd responded with a resounding cheer for the champs. They would make fun at all the champions who say they are going to be “fighting champions”, and explained they will walk the walk and do the same starting last night. They would take on the “undefeated”, Brooklyn’s best tag team of the Brooklyn Belles who were 45-0 (in reality, the duo were indie stars Kris Statlander and Karissa Rivera). It was full of great laughs for the fans as these two were ready to defend their championships for the first time. Of course, the match would be a quick one as The IIconics would not play around any longer after a close roll up, as Peyton Royce would hit a knee strike on the side of one of the Belles’ heads as Kay held her up, securing the victory and their first championship defense. While their segment may have been short lived, it was plenty to realize and appreciate The IIconics road and simply how entertaining they are as a team.
Following their match, their would be an interview in the back with former Divas Champion and SmackDown LIVE General Manager, Paige. Paige was keeping an eye on the match the entire time and would hype up next weeks Shake-Up. She would then drop a bomb on the fans, explaining how she would bring an impressive tag team of her own, seemingly as their manager and a new challenger to step forward against the IIconics. More magic added to the fire as the Shake-Up approaches.
Officially, the WrestleMania weekend has come to an end as we look forward to the Superstar Shake-Up next week. Be sure to check back all week long for continuous wrestling news, as well as the rundowns next week which will include every move of the Shake-Up on each show.